Family Time with My Siblings

This week has been an interesting one, I have seen both of my siblings, part of my family and I am feeling loved, I hope that they do too.

I went out with my sister on Thursday for several hours, just the two of us in her car, she is a new driver and wanted to get some practice in now that she has a car. We drove to the shops and both she and I had places in mind that we wanted to see although she did not have the address for hers, we went in that direction. Stopping at the shop for some car supplies, we munched on donuts in the car park of a store before setting off. They were the best donuts I have had in years, light and fluffy with just the right amount of jam. They melted as they hit your mouth and were really enjoyable, leaving the obligatory slightly sticky fingers. A clean up and we set off on our little road trip. I loved the afternoon and evening we spent together, it was just lovely to be ourselves, with no one else around, driving through the countryside along country roads, in the sunshine, the car full of fresh air talking about all sorts of things. My partner called to make sure all was going well and asked us how Thelma and Louise were doing today, it made us both laugh. I loved that we could be totally natural, no-one to judge us, no-one to interrupt us either. We arrived back in the evening tired and happy and enjoyed a meal together.

Over dinner she gave me a wonderful compliment, she said to my partner that she has always seen me as always demure and ladylike and seemed to be able to remain calm, she admired me for that. I told her that I had made a conscious effort to be that way, it didn’t come naturally to me. But there is fire within, we discussed that too, that I am not one to be pushed. I will only allow it so far, she said that she had only ever seen me lose my temper twice. (I didn’t ask for details) I am not proud of letting rip, it takes a lot for me to do that. My sister although like me in many ways, is much more fiery, she will say whatever comes into her head and blow the consequences, it has such an effect that she often has no recollection of it afterwards, the steam and the words have gone. Often they leave their mark elsewhere, but once they are out in her mind they are gone. As she set off later that night, we agreed, as we often do, that we should spend more time together and hope to see each other next week as well.

I saw my brother yesterday, it was the first time we had actually met up in about a year. We had so much to catch up on, despite regularly speaking on the phone, it is wonderful to hug him and talk with him. He is working abroad these days and returns for short trips in between his contracts. I was physically ill and couldn’t see him last year when he arrived back, so yesterday we started early and he arrived in the afternoon, staying for lunch and dinner with us. It was great to share some stories, hear about his travels and that he is enjoying getting out and about with his camera he showed me some great photos he’d taken, he wants to do more of this, I suggested Instagram as he goes.

One conversation with my brother yesterday I mentioned to him that I am writing a blog and a book. He asked what it is about. I told him many things, It contains photographs, memories, stories and so far has covered many subjects, such as Invisible Illnesses, He looked as though he did not know what I meant, I explained, Depression, PTSD, Endometriosis. He seemed a little shocked, I told him of my plans to publish a book of poems this year. I have the poems, people are reading my blog and poetry and I have a twitter account now, as of last week with followers there too. Thank you to all of the above on and also being joined by my 50th follower, athling2001 on the blog, another personal milestone for me this week.

He asked me what my own plans were, I told him that although I do not currently have a paid job, I have been writing for some months. That it started out as a recovery thing for me, but I used to write years ago, poems and things and felt the need to be creative once again. I tried to draw, and paint, and make things, but writing seems to have taken off in a big way for me and comes naturally, he had been speaking to a lady we both know, who is currently writing children‘s stories, she apparently told him of her night writing and the times when there is nothing, but then it can return in floods. He laughed, I told him yes, it is real. It has given me the opportunity to express myself. The REAL me. I found myself explaining to him that for so long, I had been stifled by people around me, who expected me to be a certain way. I was facing an inner battle, yes, there were times when I wanted to shout at people and tell them that they were behaving badly, but I didn’t. I held it all in for years and suddenly, I couldn’t anymore. I admire the people I know who can just shout about it straight away and it’s over. I am not one of those people.
I carefully consider the possible repercussions of my words and actions, over think things and then think better of saying things, wise after the event. I should have said…. If I were to do it over again I would do/say etc, you get the gist.

Last year I stopped holding it all in. A counsellor helped me realise that it doesn’t solve things, to keep them put away. I was urged to find an outlet, give myself some me-time on a regular basis and find out what I needed and make sure that I got some of it. It was an eye-opener, just taking permission to do something for me, for no-one else time alone now and then and I have guarded it ever since. Now I have an outlet, I WRITE. I am not carrying all this emotional baggage around with me, I have room in my head, to think, to plan, to have a future. I may not be rich, I may not have a successful job at the moment, but I did, so I could again. But for the time being I am Happy! I am Grateful for the things I have learned, for the people who have put their faith in me, for allowing myself to be ME again. I might be a new me, but it is exhilarating to find the nice bits, bring them out and cherish them within the new person that I am still becoming. I explained to my brother that writing is quite cathartic, the release it gives is wonderful. He looked quite concerned, as though I may have rambled a bit, I think it took him by surprise. I don’t know if he understood, perhaps he never will.

On reaching 100 and Counting, (Still)

Well, that’s one for the list of Yay’s…
To those of you have been waiting and would like to know, you’ll be pleased to hear that I have now reached my 100 poems. This is the goal that I set myself to write, before I would choose which ones I will include in my first book. It also appears on the list of Yay’s. For the uninitiated, this is a list which I made myself in February, just as I began this blog of things that I wished to achieve (preferably) this year. As I complete them, I place the Yay! By way of celebration in the completed column. See Intentions – Things I want to do this year

The truth be told, I have surpassed this particular personal goal in a glut of writing that began yesterday and went on through the night. It was daylight when I finally clambered into bed at 5am having been unable to sleep once again, the words and thoughts just kept coming and I am but its slave. Having been in bed for the grand total of three hours I was suddenly awake again, at 8am the notepad pulled from under the pillow, the pencil poised once more. Round two, ding-ding!

I am not stopping yet though, let’s continue to make hay whilst the sun shines. (Although this morning is actually met with rain) the selection process will begin, just about the time that my current stream of writing falters a little, I will then feel able to edit and work on how it will all come together and final quantity that will be included in the book itself, also on how on earth I am going to get it out there and market it on my non-existent budget. Hold on to your hats.

The intention is there and I had anticipated that it would be my first book, but since my butterfly mind is flitting once again I may conclude something else I am also working on first. I know, I know the voice inside my head warns the old me to finish what I had started, before moving on to the next thing. But there is another deadline I would rather like to meet. It is a competition entry, with a month to spare and would be my first entry for writing. It could be a short story, but what constitutes a short story and where is the line drawn before it becomes a long one?  If last night was anything to go by, it could end up a novel. It started off a couple of months ago, notes on a page, characters in my head, stories to be told. It has sat there, whiling away the time, until more thoughts formed in my head and I began to consciously write it, I somehow knew that once I did it might open a floodgate.

This particular story is of a young girl, reaching womanhood and the people she encounters, who try to change the direction her life should take and the people thrown into her path. The way that it is coming thick and fast at the moment, I might just ,make the deadline for that particular competition, dependent on what else May holds for me. If not, then there’s a rather large shelf full of stuff that I could put it on. I’d been sitting on there myself until recently, but it was time to dust myself off this year and start something new.

Oh metaphors, how I love thee….

I said that May is going to be a good month, where good things happen. It is traditionally so and I don’t want to break with that particular tradition. I have a lot to accomplish this month and so far, progress has been made, so Salut and long may it continue.

There is another goal, which I am so close to reaching on the list, the magical number of 50 followers to my blog. So, if you are reading this for the first time and want to do me the honours, I’d be over the moon to be able to tick that one off too and I‘m oh so close…

I am filled with Gratitude for the people who follow the blog and regularly send me their comments and emotional support, sometimes the road can be rocky, but your words continue to inspire me. Thank you!

 

 

 

Who Will Buy? In the words of Oliver Twist..

It’s inspiration that we find in the strangest of places, today this tune and a couple of lines of it have been going around my head.

In the words of Oliver Twist…

Who will buy
This wonderful morning?
Such a sky
You never did see!

Who will tie
It up with a ribbon
And put it in a box for me?

So I could see it at my leisure
Whenever things go wrong
And I would keep it as a treasure
To last my whole life long.

Who will buy
This wonderful feeling?
I’m so high
I swear I could fly.

Me, oh my!
I don’t want to lose it
So what am I to do
To keep the sky so blue?
There must be someone who will buy…

I set myself a goal when I began writing this blog and post my own brand of poetry here. Finally, I would be doing something that I wanted to do.  That special thing, ME TIME! and who knows, somewhere along the way, someone might like it and read it.

To all those of you who have so far brightened my days with your likes and comments, it is appreciated more than you could know.  To the people who follow this blog, THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart, you give me a reason (and boy, do I love one of those) to go on with it.

So, I set about it.  Putting my thoughts on paper, (or laptop) random things, poems, feelings, photos etc and here we are, a few months later, although early days, I am making progress on to my next goal.

When I reach 100 poems that I have written, I will self-publish a book of poetry.  Some you will have seen here, some you will not. (After all, I have to hold something back) Like one last card to my chest, I sometimes get fed up with being the proverbial open book. So once I reach that 100, I’m actually almost there… Yay! I will start to select the few that will end up in my first book and I will have reached that goal.

I have a name, a format and a question…. Who will buy?  Then another, If it ever makes it to proper print, (hard copy) then should I wrap it up in a ribbon?

Since I am planning to self publish this book, I’d love to have a physical book for people to have, hold and share. If any other bloggers here have had any success in getting donations towards hard copy publishing and can give me any advice, it would be much appreciated.

For those of you who may now have the tune whizzing around your head, here’s a link to the words.  Who Will Buy… From Oliver Twist, by Lionel Bart

 

 

 

 

The Music of The Hills

6 (6)A storm is brewing, keep things close at hand.
The woods gently sing their quiet song.
The wind is blowing across the top along the land,
Begins it’s low howl it resonates deep and long.
Building itself up, as though to make an entrance,
Bending trees along the way, start to sway and dance.
Reaching it‘s crescendo thunder crashing through the hills,
A dramatic drum roll there it’s mad frenzy sending chills.
Hurling itself up before swirling around the ledges,
Nature singing out from the safety of the hedges,
Cattle calling across the way, invisible in the mist.
Lovers lost to it’s emotions, meeting for their tryst.
Eerily silent once again, this weather is a curse,
before tinkling raindrops signal the next verse.
Thoughts are stirred up taking you right back,
For a moment, you temporarily sidetrack.
Lost up there in music, a world away from your own,
As they rest again exhausted, the hills will sigh and moan.
This is the music of the hills,
Pay close attention to how it feels,
Of all things fierce and good.
Played out by the Orchestra of the Wood.

The Daily Post – The Music of The Hills

The Spiral Staircase

The Daily Post – Stairway

I am not quite sure when it became apparent to me, but one of my lasting memories as a child was the recurring dream.  I dreaded it’s arrival as I felt so out of control when it happened. The dream itself took on so many forms over the years, but always somewhere at some point in there was a spiral, almost like being in a vacuum somehow, being pulled always backwards downward as though on a spiral staircase.  Although it would always start slowly, as time went on, it would then drag me way too fast and I was powerless to stop it.  The sick dizzy feeling that going backwards fast can give you somehow remained with me once I had awoken.  I was very small when it happened for the first time.  In adult life, both physically and emotionally, I don’t like going backwards, I refuse to travel backwards on a train, it messes with my senses, gives me a headache and makes me dizzy again, bringing back that old familiar dreamlike feeling.  I also dislike not making progress however small, since I am naturally impatient and have to curb that sometimes, it seems to be a driving force.  Static is almost as bad as the backward spiral and I continue to fight against them both.

Hurly Burly

Thinking of the Hurly burly,
In my brain when I’m due up early.
No rhymes have come for almost a week,
This is not exactly like counting sheep.
Lay me down again you know,
That this is the moment, it starts to flow.
But by way of recompense,
It kind of makes perfect sense.
The brain is busy, the fever gone
And into my room, the bright moon shone.
Waiting for my head to burst,
As I quench the writers’ thirst.
I will write in present tense,
There is no form of defence.
Emotions out and feeling weak,
No chance for me to even speak.
At the end I must concur,
That the night becomes a blur.
It seems as though it’s been an age,
Since writing words on the blank page.
Lack of sleep, Oh what fun
As often, off my mind will run.
A free spirit, don’t try to tame
As it plays this silly game.
Feelings deep, behind the eyes,
Not the time to criticize.
Rest a while as you lament,
When you suffer this torment.
The lights are out, the room is black,
There really is no turning back.
Your own fault, who lit the fuse,
Don’t hold them back there is no use.
Hope the words will come out right,
When I’m awake half the night.
Feelings will come into play,
If I awake at break of day.

Living the Wild

It seems that we have the getaways again. Oh dear, Scotland is calling us loud and clear. To be fair to it, we should have been there again by now, it is waiting for us. We had plans, but due to illness we are waiting until our health has improved, since it can be pretty bleak up on the hill. So at the moment, we try to satisfy our cravings for the scenery and beauty, with any hope of a Scottish view or voice via the television. Yes, we are most definitely homesick until we arrive there for this years piece of the puzzle. It has been four months since we last visited, but seems like forever. That almost felt like “It has been four months since my last confession”, but I am not of the Catholic faith and so it has been a lot longer than that…

The other evening we watched it again, Ben Fogle’s series New Lives in the Wild UK, we had seen this particular episode last year, but I had no hesitation in watching it again to drink in the scenery. It documented the life on Fair Isle, Scotland of Tommy Hyndman, who moved there from the USA around ten years or so ago. You simply have to admire Tommy for getting stuck in there and making it work. We have learned that it is not always easy to integrate into a new community but he seems to have got the mix just right there. Having taken on a guest house, named The Auld Haa, he seems to be running it with some success and I wish him much more. It was not only a crofter’s cottage, but is also his home and he chooses to share it with travellers worldwide, thus enriching his life with experiences and also earning him a living. It appears from this program, that the welcoming home and atmosphere of his surroundings, would rest the heart of any weary traveller who set foot there. Fair Isle is a birdwatchers haven, as well as being known for it’s wonderful sweaters but for anyone looking for a get away from it all and back to nature vacation, away from the hustle and bustle, it looks like the ideal spot.

We were naturally in awe of Tommy’s Studio, he get’s to rent the lighthouse and that alone would have us flocking there, but I think there is probably already a long queue should he ever decide to vacate it.
I personally cannot think of a more inspirational workspace in which to write, but I’m pretty sure that given the chance, I would find huge inspiration there.

My partner used to skipper a weekend fishing boat and has always been a seafaring Bear and I know that he misses being out on the water. Me, well I would live on a diet of fish if he‘d let me. The size of the Lobsters that he and Ben caught on camera, had me positively drooling at the thought.

At the end of it all, I hope that Tommy finds love with a strong woman who can cope with the demands of Island Life and who will throw herself into it headlong with him and make him truly happy. It seems as though it is the only thing he lacks in his life.

Following the program, my partner asked me to look up property for sale on the Island, he had missed the bit where it was owned by the National Trust of Scotland but, there must be other beautiful Scottish islands right? I should explain myself. I love looking at property, I have always wanted to find and own a property portfolio all over the place, but have not yet been able to raise the finance for this particular dream. I also think that I would be hesitant to let any of it go, so would be constantly moving from one place to another. But I regularly look to see what is out there. A quick search brings up a place called Sanday, It was beautiful and for offers around £120,000 I found a 2 bed farm with 30 acres leading down to the sea for sale. Imagination fired once again, what sort of life could we live in a place like that! However the reality of a Scottish Island for two people with arthritis, would be far different of course, I think the climate would make us miserable especially in the winter months, but the beauty of such a place never fails to tug at the heart and fire the imagination. There’s always a holiday though…
Living the Wild,

Watching a great series on television,
On how some people have made it their mission
On how to let their dreams run wild,
They celebrate their inner child.
Look at Tommy, he’s been blessed
Found a place where sea birds nest.
In the lighthouse, held aloft
Views to sea, or over his croft.
Wild winds, emotional Scottish weather,
Howl and tease amongst the heather.
But when the day is clear and calm,
Can’t fail to notice, it has it’s charm.
A place that’s known as Fair Isle
Where special sweaters are made with style.
Family businesses weaving the yarn,
Made to measure in house and barn
Tommy has lived there making his way,
Day in and day out come what may.
Could walk for miles without a trace,
But never alone in this wonderful place.
A workshop where he will create,
Livestock will roam, so close the gate.
Community living, you’d earn your keep,
When you’re out on the moor tending the sheep.
The guesthouse he runs is called the Auld Haa,
Impossible to travel there just by car.
Stopping to spot an unusual bird,
Trek the fields, with the herd.
Walking and painting that’s the trick,
Plenty to see for the romantic.
Nooks and crannies in which to play,
While children while away their day.
The Craggy cliff face can be sheer,
But hold on tight nothing to fear.
Shoes off, to get your toes in the sand.
Off by plane back to the mainland.
Out to sea by boat to get fish,
More time spent here is your wish.
As Tommy cooks a fabulous dinner.
This has to be your holiday winner.
Open your arms in your dreams you’re hurled
With it all to see, you’re on top of the world.