Push it

So, a small hernia update. I’m still in pain, and the muscle on the left side is definitely swollen.

The pain varies from not at all, to almost like getting a tattoo on the inside of my belly button to stabbing pains.

It happens more when I’ve been moving or stretching,  but also at rest.

I think it’s a case of they can’t treat what they can’t see, so I’ll have to keep going until the pain becomes unbearable or something shows up on an ultrasound.

My best guesses? The mesh put in three years ago may have popped out of place from a particularly deep backward bend, or this is like before, where I suffered pain for years before my hernia became an issue.

It makes my voices worse though,  physical pain always does.

Keep on trucking, I suppose!

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How many times in life do we get a second chance?

This is how I need to see this, because any other way and I will go under from the misery of it all.

My hernia has reappeared. I think the worsening in symptoms is probably because of this and I think I’m going to have to have surgery again.

But it’s like a nice bookend. Well, a horrible, painful bookend. Life does have a symmetry to it sometimes, and it was around the time I had my first hernia that things started to go very wrong for me.

So here I have it – that second chance everyone dreams of to have another go at something they wish they could have done differently and to get it right.

I won’t be going alone to the hospital. I won’t be ignoring my pain and keeping myself on my feet with codeine and amphetamines. I won’t be unsupported. I can relax, without the pressure of working two jobs. I have friends around me I can talk to. I won’t, immediately after recovery, fall in love with a psychopath.

I’ll find my feet. I’ll take my time.

This is real catharsis, I’ve been crying all day. It’s like the death, perhaps. That lost, miserable girl is getting buried and once I’m stitched up again I can start my life over.

Wish me luck.

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I’m not a violent person. In fact, I’d go as far as to say violence is wrong. But I learned quite early the most effective weapon I have is words.

My father was rarely violent during my teenage years, but the damage he inflicted with words….

Cuts and bruises heal, but words, words can cut you to your core. An errant word to the wrong person can dissolve governments, start wars, cause someone to harm themselves…

His command of language is artless, and having a predisposition towards the flow of language (a natural advantage to being a woman, certainly, but also from learning various other tongues) I sometimes feel I have surpassed him in his cruelty.

I’ve learned from example. It’s a horrible thing to realise, that you have inside of you this pattern of behaviour that you don’t want, but when someone hurts me through their actions, their thoughtlessness, carelessness, I try to hurt them back in the only way I know how. It’s vindictive, reactionary and a truly spiteful side to myself.

And his legacy. I am my fathers daughter.


I’m working on it.

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We are the same

Mind and body, they are both one and the same.


But what about the soul? What about the curious and intangible self so many of us ascribe to the human condition?

I believe that it is once again, once and the same.

I’m going to draw a comparison from Doctor Who again, this time from ‘The Shakespeare Code’.

The Carrionites, witch-like creatures from another dimension use an arrangement of words to create a portal in place of numbers – the language we have come to use in physics and the academic study of how the universe works.

So why is the mind/spirit/soul anything different? It’s a question of language, whether you use the flowery, religious, poetical, or perhaps look at the scientific – the chemical reactions that drive our bodies as humans every day.

And this does not, for example in the case of love, detract from it – in fact:

“A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”

Does it make the intense feelings of connection with the world around us any less profound? The synchronicity we witness throughout our lives? No – we are, like everything in this universe, made of the same stuff. We are stardust.

So, bringing it all back to mental health. This is why talking therapies are important. We have our numbers, our medications (although, we know they are very clumsy tools at the moment – a rant for another blog) and we have talking and alternative therapies. Things like talking, singing, art, yoga, they all have a profound effect on mental illness because the use and stimulation of certain parts of the brain and the body can clearly be used to help heal it.


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I wish I could fall in love
At the drop of a hat
And I wish I could fall out
Like that

But love is like acid
That burns through your skin
Your flesh melts away
And it drives itself in

There’s a jar in my stomach
And a fire that keeps lit
And the acidic matter
The fire’s made of it

I’ve tried water
I’ve tried fire
But what I’ve found works best
Is patience
Leave the bell jar
Let it burn down
And rest

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Five Powerful Ways Abusive Narcissists Get Inside Your Head


I think this is useful for everyone to read.

Originally posted on Self-Care Haven:


In popular culture, the term “narcissistic” is thrown about quite loosely, usually referring to vanity and self-absorption. This reduces narcissism to a common quality that everyone possesses and downplays the symptoms demonstrated by people with the actual disorder. While narcissism does exist on a spectrum, narcissism as a full-fledged personality disorder is quite different.

People who meet the criteria for Narcissistic Personality Disorder or those who have traits of Antisocial Personality Disorder  can operate in extremely manipulative ways within the context of intimate relationships due to their deceitfulness, lack of empathy and their tendency to be interpersonally exploitative. Although I will be focusing on narcissistic abusers in this post, due to the overlap of symptoms in these two disorders, this post can potentially apply to interactions with those who have ASPD to an extent.

It’s important in any kind of relationship that we learn to identify the red flags when interacting with people who display malignant narcissism and/or…

View original 1,849 more words

“I understand why ‘disparity’ gets thrown around an awful lot but the problem is so much worse than that. If I could travel back in time and make sure that physical and ‘mental’ health care came under the same bracket I would. The brain is a physical organ and we have been complicit in its neglect by permitting this divide. ‘Mental’ health problems have physical, chemical routes and the only ‘mental’ part is the abstract language we have come to use to distinguish our minds from our bodies. Might have to go back a couple thousand years though, as I think this is largely philosophical in route.”

Thoughts on disparity

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Body Positive

I’ve been having something of an epiphany recently about my body. Perhaps it’s my age, perhaps I’m finally coming to terms with media-brainwashing and teenage insecurities but I am definitely changing the way I think about my body.

Let me take you back.

This is me at the tender age of 16. I thought I was overweight. I really, really, did. My father made comment, probably when he was drunk about how my Mum was ‘half my size’ when he met her, and that stuck. As a teenager I didn’t diet, per se, but I did avoid eating whenever I could and I binge drank til the point of vomiting regularly, which is sort of disgusting now I think about it. I was, and still am, marginally obsessed with measurements. I’ve always been heartily disappointed on the scales, due in part, I think, to the amount of muscle I carry on my lower body and my bountiful chest.


So, even by the age of 16, in fact when I think about it, by the age of 14 I was decided that I was fat, ugly and no amount of flattery could make me think otherwise.

By the time university came to my final year I was overweight. I was on the pill, has been in a long term relationship that was very up and down and I had literally let myself go. I’ll put a photo here for you for the comparison.


I hate these photos of myself. The reaction I get to seeing myself look less than ‘perfect’ goes as follows:

I get the urge to grab a sharp object and cut the offending flesh from me. There’s a real sick satisfaction in it. I’ve never done it, I don’t want to, but I suppose it’s like an invasive, obsessive thought. Being overweight makes me feel suicidal, feeling overweight makes me want to mutilate myself.

Now let’s go the opposite way. There aren’t a huge amount of photos from when I was at my skinniest, but after my manic episode in 2011/2012 I was very, very slim. I still thought I was fat. Even though I KNEW I wasn’t.


I started to put on weight again probably when my mood started to stabilise after taking olanzapine last year – which is known to cause weight gain.

Let me break this down for you in terms of UK dress sizes (accross 3 sizes because of vanity sizing). Photo number 1, I am a 6-10. Photo number 2, I am an 8-12. Photo number 3, I am a 4-8.

I am 5’2 and any weight shows. Let me show you me now, and in a photo I am particularly proud of.

Photo by Ace A.M.P Photography

(Photo by the wonderful Ace A.M.P Photography)

Do I still think I’m fat? Yes. In this photo, yes, I did at the moment of taking it, I did. And then I read the comments.

“Strong woman.”

“Dem hips…”

Strong? I then realised, my whole way of thinking about my body had been dictated by a media-popularised standard of beauty, and my own insecurities routed in my Dad’s appalling insensitivity to a young and troubled mind. I will never be a dainty, lithe looking girl. And that is what I have aspired to. This idea that femininity equals fragility, but as a woman you are your own femininity. Any size, any shape, you can lose weight, gain weight, you can tone and buff and build but you are whatever shape you are.

So here’s the body positive. I have strong, muscular thighs. I have a toned stomach, a big bust and the slightly larger, muscled arms that help to carry this bust. As I’ve been getting more into my fitness I’m starting to come to terms with my own limitations physically, not insofar as to how hard I can train, but what my body is physically capable of looking like while I am eating healthily and remaining active.

I’m redefining my femininity. Sometimes I hear my voices saying things like “disgusting” or “sickening” when I look in the mirror (something I do a lot, because I can be quite vain and narcissistic, and I make no secret of that.)

I still look down at my thighs and my throat tightens as though I’m about to throw up and I get the urge to hack away at them.

Every time this happens I am going to remember I am a strong, robust woman. That beauty in society is a standard that few meet. And fragility does not mean femininity.

Femininity is whatever you want it to be.

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Flights of fever, fiction, or fact?

Occasionally I get a jolt. Where memories come back, things I randomly remember click like a puzzle falling into place.

How much of my acid trip was a bad trip? How much of my psychotic episode was real? Was I remembering something?

It all converges on a few people.

The revenge scenario I had dreamed up is pointless. I have so many things to live for, and even though I do feel suicidal at times, I have a life ahead of me and that is what I want to do. Live it.

Having said this. If I believe, without a shadow of a doubt that any part of the torture I endured was real, I will make it a goal to bring back capital punishment and have you hung, drawn, and quartered.

If I find out, I am coming for you.

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Can you feel it?

“The only thing about the dance is, you never get to stop. Everyday you wake up, it’s the same bloody question that haunts you. Is today the day I die? Death is on your heels, baby, and sooner or later it’s gonna catch you. And part of you wants it… not only to stop the fear and uncertainty, but because you’re just a little bit in love with it. Death is your art. You make it with your hands, day after day. That final gasp. That look of peace. Part of you is desperate to know, what’s it like? Where does it lead you? And now you see, that’s the secret. Not the punch you didn’t throw or the kicks you didn’t land. She merely wanted it. Every Slayer… has a death wish. Even you. The only reason you’ve lasted as long as you have is you’ve got ties to the world. Your mum, brat kid sister, Scoobies. They all tie you here but you’re just puttin’ off the inevitable. Sooner or later, you’re gonna want it. And the second – the second that happens, you know I’ll be there. I’ll slip in. Have myself a real good day. Here endeth the lesson. I just wonder if you’ll like it as much as she did. “

My voices starting reciting this the other day. Because, I don’t know about some of you, but I identify with it. Sometimes I feel like I’m fighting a battle that is going to one day draw to an inevitable conclusion, and when that day comes I will welcome it, because then at least it will be over.

Fighting like this every day is exhausting. Some days are better than others.

And the joke of it is, I’m not badly off. Of course, I have debts that keep me awake at night, I’ve not a penny to my name and my mental health is only sporadically good at best but I’ve got food to eat, clothes on my back, a safe place to live and a family that love and care for me no matter what.

Maybe that day will come, when I can no longer see that, though in the words of Aragorn:


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