Saturday, 8 December 2018

Once again, the bad blogger side of me has shown it's ugly head. I apologise. I haven't been blogging since 29th September. 
Not much has really happened since then, as let's face it, our lives aren't exactly the most interesting, fun or exciting, nothing much happens. 
But, i'll do a 'catch up' for you all, just so you know what we've all been up to since September. 

Well, around the first week of October, my mum went abroad - it was her first ever holiday, abroad. She turned the big 50 in April and her sister turned the big 60 in September - so their Brother and his wife, surprised them both with a holiday to Greece during the first week of October. 
She absolutely loved it - A week of peace without me, or the girls annoying her. Peace away from her husband (my dad) - and away from my brother. No-one bothering her, no worries, no stresses, some much needed and well deserved time for her to relax. It was strange, I will be honest. Me and my mum are so close, we don't go a single day without seeing each other - even if it is only for five minutes after or before the school run - (pffft who am I kidding? it's never for a quick 5 minutes) - so going from seeing her every single day, to not seeing her at all - and barely having contact as lets face it, overseas calls cost a fortune, and the fact she was too busy lapping up the sun to be bothered with texts or phone calls, and rightly so. The girls missed her like crazy too, and I know she missed them, but, she was back within a week - and everything went back to normal. 

While she was away, I got gas heating installed in my own home - and my Dad and David decorated Mum's living room for her while she was away - so it was a busy week at home for us aswell. 

The night before the gas was due to be installed - I had to stay over night with the girls at my Dad's - as our beds had to be moved, and everything piled on top of them - So it was nice to have a bit of quality time with Dad - as that's something we NEVER do, ever.. We watched a movie with the girls and he got munchies in for us all. It was nice. 

The gas getting installed left a HUGE mess - but it was totally worth it. The heating ever since we changed over has been incredible. We are all so much warmer. It's a lot cheaper to run, and the water pressure since changing - WOW! - I would definitely recommend gas heating over oil heating, any day. 

The girls started at a new girls brigade in October also. Their old GB was lovely, and all the leaders so nice - unfortunately the girls didn't really know anybody, and so were not enjoying it for those reasons, so we moved them to a new Girls Brigade that all of their friends attend, and so far, they are absolutely loving it, and look forward to going each and every week, which is fabulous! 
How cute do they look in their new uniforms though? 

Lacey-Beth took part in another dance competition in October - WLDF (world lyrical dance federation) - where she danced her Jazz Solo and Lyrical Solo! 

She placed 7th Place, in the Under 8's Section with her Jazz Solo and 8th Place in the Under 8's section with her Lyrical, and won two trophies, so she was overwhelmed. 
She was planning on taking part in the improv section - but backed out at the last minute. 
The competitions are definitely giving her a new found confidence. 

Lexie-Anna returned to dance for a second year - after taking a month out, she decided she wanted to go back. We've put her in on her own, well in a class on her own, without Lacey-Beth with her - and to be honest, it is the best move we made, shes become a lot more independent instead of relying on Lacey-Beth, and she can enjoy learning the dances more, rather than Lacey-Beth bossing her about. 
She's looking forward to performing in the Christmas Showcase next week. 

Lexie-Anna's class in school were doing the topic - "what do I want to be when I grow up"
and Lexie-Anna has decided she would like to be a Paramedic. 
She's become really interested and obsessed with paramedics since October. 
My granda (her great granda) - took sick, and the paramedics came out to the house. She witnessed this, and became intrigued in what they do, and how they helped her Granda Benny, and ever since then, she has said, she wants to be a paramedic when she grows up.
She loved it, that the paramedics came into the school for a visit to her class aswell. 

The girls had a very busy week leading up to Halloween - School had a Halloween Disco, and the girls dressed up as a Broken Doll, and a Candy Witch - then their youth club had a halloween disco - again Lacey-Beth went as a broken doll, and Lexie-Anna as a Zombie Bride - then Halloween it's self they dressed up as a Broken Doll and Witch for trick or treating. 

Halloween was also Lacey-Beth's 7th Birthday! I can't believe my first born, is now seven years old. 
We celebrated earlier on in the day, with a trip to Build-a-Bear, followed by lunch at Cosmo's all you can eat buffet, and a shopping trip in Belfast - visiting Castle Court's The Entertainer, and Lush Cosmetics - where the girls picked out some Halloween Bath Bombs and Bubble Bars. 

We then had cake when we arrived home - a gorgeous LOL themed birthday cake, for an LOL mad little girl. 

It was a nice chilled, relaxing day, and she said it was the best birthday she had ever had. 

We put our Christmas Tree up quite early on in November - I have no idea why, I was feeling a tad excited at the time, and thought, yes, let's do it - But, our Charlie came down once it was all up, and was loving the lights.
He's almost 5 months old, and will soon be celebrating his first Christmas, it's hard to believe. 

And lastly - in the last few days - Our elf Peppermint returned - bringing with him his Wife snowflake and their babies - Buddy and Cindy-Lou-Who. 
And the girls also went to visit Santa in the grotto at the school Christmas fayre. 


That's us all caught up to date! 
Like I said, nothing very exciting, just the days of our normal everyday lives. 

Thursday, 6 December 2018

Mental Health Progression | I've taken back my life

Previously I made a post about my mental health story, if you haven't read it yet, you can do so here

This was the image I used whilst posting that story, it must be two years (or almost) ago!
My eyes, are dead. I am not myself at all. I had no life about me. Friends asked me to do anything, I agreed, but inside, didn't want to do it, or i'd try and find some kind of excuse to get out of it.

I didn't want to do anything. I was stuck in a rut, stuck in my own wee bubble.

Anyway, i'm not here to talk about that path - because fast forward two years later, and here I am.

I have just finished a seven week course in Confidence Building and Life Coaching with an incredible local lady.
This lady has done more for me, in seven short weeks, than any councillor or doctor done in twelve years, and she barely knows just how much she helped me, save me!

I will be honest, when I first started this course, I was oblivious. Pfft I thought, it'll never help me. I've been down the same pathways for the last twelve years, and still end up in the same rut, feeling like the world is on top of me, feeling wacked with this endless guilt, not wanting to do anything, stopping myself from being my true self, but hell was I proved wrong.

Here I am now.

On the right - and by God, I feel a lot better! The smile, is a true smile, not fake. 

My eyes are lit up. I feel back to - my true self. 

Granted, it's a filter pic - but I have an excuse for that - I literally did look like shit that day - and no, not because I felt shit, as in down but because I was bunged with a cold - and couldn't be assed putting makeup on, for me to be wiping it all away under my nose, so we went for the bare-faced look, hence the filter to hide my snotty-ish red nosed reindeer look. 

This lady helped me build my self-esteem back up, my confidence, she helped bring me back out of myself and for that I am forever grateful. 

When I was a teenager, I was a mouthy little cow, anyone who knew me, will tell you that. After losing my Uncle, and the grief of his death set in, that's when I started to shut myself away, and keep myself to myself - a couple of years later, following a miscarriage, things escalated then. 
Add on PND when my first born came along, and me not seeking help after my local mental health team failed me, I let things escalate until they got so bad that I was in and out of hospital like a yo-yo.  I stopped doing things for myself anymore, relying on my mum or husband to make phone calls on my behalf, accompany me to meetings, or anywhere else I had to go. I even feared being in my own home alone. I couldn't go to the shop alone - I couldn't even go to the girls school to pick them up or drop them off alone. I was a prisoner in my own body, and only I could help me escape. 

And that is exactly what I have done. Debbie helped me realise that I am safe, all is well 
Everyday is a new day, everyday is a beautiful day, and everyday I can find at least one thing I like about myself, everyday I can find at least one thing I am grateful for. 

And after seven weeks of hard work trying to get myself to this point, I now know that yes I AM SAFE, ALL IS WELL. 

I am back to being me. I am back to being that mouthy teenager again - I'm not afraid to express myself. I'm not afraid to stand up for what I believe in. 
I can now travel to the girls school to pick them up or drop them off, alone. 
I can now stay at home everyday alone, while the kids and hubby are out at school or work. 
I can now make phone calls without relying on others. 
I can walk in the dark, without being afraid. 

I haven't had palpitations in a few weeks - something which became an everyday occurrence.  

Now don't get me wrong - My depression and anxiety and panic attacks, they haven't magically gone away. Of course they haven't . 
They are still there - but it's ok to have a down day, it's ok to have a sad day, it's ok to feel nervous. 
It doesn't mean I'm falling back into that pattern, these kind of days happen to even the happiest of people. They are normal. 
But now? I am in control 
I no longer let depression, anxiety and panic attacks control me or my life, and I vow to never let them get the better of me again. I have taken back my life, and won't hand it over again without a fight.