I’m having an amazing day today (and they are so rare). There is so much going on in my life right now, I’ve hardly got time to sneeze! I have college tomorrow again which I’m determined to make a success. I am enjoying it so much. The Autumn prospectus will be out soon and then I intend to enrol in some more, deeper studying. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do and never thought I would achieve it having been told as a child that “I wasn’t clever enough to stay on for ‘A’ Levels or go to university”. I always wanted to be an Occupational Therapist which I guess is ironic in that I need one myself now! Nevertheless, I’m thankful for what I have.

books for blog

The best news today is that I’ve been offered a contract for my third book….hooray!! I am so delighted and excited! I’m currently working on my fourth book now and thoroughly enjoying it even if I am burning the candle at both ends. There’s something special about being up at two or five o’clock in the morning, and  often I am doing both within the same 24 hours! It’s so quiet everywhere. The world is asleep and I can hear the regular owl sitting on my roof calling out, the occasional goods train running through at the back of the garden and I love the sound of trains and I can hear the clock ticking regularly and evenly. I look up at the clear, dark sky and see a half-moon and far away stars, maybe containing life (who knows?). For a few moments I feel at peace.

burning candle

Meanwhile today, I have a friend in who’s painting my previously dull hallway for me which is so kind. It’s going to be white…simpler, cleaner, brighter, like I feel today. Then I have to save up to have the floor recovered.

Then there is my potential new church! I am going to visit a new church on Sunday. I’m very excited about it as I feel it is time for a change because where I am presently, I find my faith is waning and I have to admit that I was even questioning myself as to whether there was a God! And I do need God in my life. He is my Father. I know He will guide me to the right place to express my faith.


So, all-in-all, despite the pain in my life of losing my children and grandchildren to ignorance, my mental health problems and my disability (all of which is nothing compared to what some people go through on the planet), I am on a high today and for once it is not a drug or alcohol induced high. I managed to end my addictions and alcoholism with the help of AA and CA and have now been clean and sober  for two years exactly, today!! Another celebration! :))



I have to say, having completed my first full day at college plus travelling (by wheelchair), I’d forgotten how exhausting it all is, having not done it for many years. I got caught in the rush-hour. I haven’t had the ‘pleasure’ of that for years, thankfully!

I arrived at college early so had time to have a much-needed coffee which always calms me down if I’m feeling anxious (I know that goes against all the health guidelines about caffeine but it works for me!). The course started at 10am. It was really strange being amongst other people in a learning environment. It’s been many years  since I’ve been in a classroom of any type. I took notes on my laptop because of my physical inability to write. The topic was interesting…Food and Mood of which, having been anorexic, I thought I was an expert on! But this wasn’t about calories and kilos but about the chemical changes that take place in your brain and how that ties in with nutrition. There was only five of us given that a couple of people were away sick and another couple had backed out at the last moment. I was pleased in a way as I find working in a large group too impersonal.


We stopped for a lunch break and I got chatting to two of the other students over coffee (and a banana, my lunch!). We got on really well and swapped phone numbers so we could stay in touch and in fact, I have already spoken to one of the girls from there this evening which was nice.

Then came the afternoon group (a totally different ‘kettle of fish’ altogether). I felt intimidated both by the size of the class and also by the tutor who seemed very unapproachable and obviously  wasn’t used to working in a mental health environment despite the fact we were studying NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) which is a type of therapy or way of managing life. Useful? Yes. Interesting? Yes. Interaction between students and rapport with tutor? No.

We were working through several leaflets, handouts and books, breaking NLP down into various sections. I found it quite fascinating and could connect with most of what was being said or studied. But suddenly i was overcome and shocked by a flood of unexpected feelings which left me completely paralyzed and locked in my own little world. Why? Because we’d turned the page and the not-so-approachable tutor announced that we were going to talk about triggers!! She was apparently referring to positive triggers like evocative memories of music, smell, feelings etc. I was ‘gone’ by then….flashbacks flooded through me, memories of abuse including smell, touch etc suffocated me. She mentioned pleasant scenes from the past being positive but all that was going through my head by then were very negative, abusive, terrifying scenes from the past. I found myself holding my breath; my eyes welling up; my body shaking and then the PTSD took over and I had a full-blown panic attack followed by uncontrollable sobbing.


I managed to wheel out of there into the kitchen, swiftly followed by one of the students I’d got chatting to earlier who made me a coffee and sat with me for a while, for which I was very grateful. I couldn’t go back in to rejoin the class though as I was too shaken. I really hadn’t foreseen that one coming. However, on a positive note, I’m not giving up. I’m going back on Thursday to have another go, including tackling the NLP group as this time I will be prepared, just in case, although the centre of the topic will have probably moved on by then but if not, I will stay with it and not let my abusers prevent me from furthering my education as they did as a child.

I will have a future and move on from being held back by my past. I will not let those bastards win. This time, I will beat them!


I’m feeling very down and dispirited today and am counting the hours till my carers come and then I can go to bed and start afresh tomorrow.

I’m not very good at dealing with change and am attempting to cope with two changing situations at the moment although I should add that they are both my choices but I still find it scary. Tomorrow, I start part-time summer college, run by our local Mental Health Trust and will be doing art, creative writing, Mindfulness (which I know little about) and studying NLP Therapy and how it works which sounds interesting. I’m very worried about being with people I don’t know, in a group setting. Also, I am the only disabled student there so feel a bit like an ‘odd man out’. Nevertheless, I think it will be a good challenge which can only be a positive thing. I just have to take a deep breath and walk (drive) in and jump in at the deep end!

Also, I’m thinking about changing my church which is a very big and important decision. I’ve been a member at my first and current church for over 7 years and was happily baptized there in 2008. However, I still have this ongoing problem with not feeling accepted as a person with a disability. Everyone is polite to me and reasonably helpful although I am very independent, friendly and ‘smiley’!. I know loads of people there but I have never made any friendships that continue outside of a Sunday morning. Also, I’m finding that my faith is waning somewhat lately and I don’t know why.

So, I’m thinking about going to a new church called ‘The Life Church’, which is still of the same faith, just with different attitudes and convictions. My current church is Baptist and this new one is Pentecostal (known as ‘happy-clappy’), which I quite like the idea of. However, the prospect of driving my wheelchair into a church full of 250 new people, is scary to me. I’m hoping that the ‘liveliness’ of this new church will ‘recharge my faith batteries’ and improve my current relationship with God which I currently find worrying.

As I said at the beginning, I feel very low today and my hypervigilance is really bad which has left me exhausted now, early in the evening. My prayers are a bit half-hearted lately which isn’t good and is something I desperately want to improve. Hopefully, I will wake up tomorrow feeling refreshed and ready to face these new challenges.

Life church


My impulsivity is really bad today and was yesterday but I can’t seem to get it under control. Yesterday, I emailed my son and daughter-in-law for the second time this week pleading to have some contact with my beautiful, one-and-a-half year old granddaughter who doesn’t even know I exist. Then, on the spur of the moment, I phoned both my son and my daughter-in-law and my daughter (all who are absent in my life). It was a nice message, chatty and friendly but begging to see my grandchildren (again). None of them picked up the phone so I just had to leave messages.Today, I received a short, sharp and unpleasant email consisting of one line from my d-i-l and I very obviously am not going to be given the opportunity to meet that little one.That hurts. It really does hurt.

Then I found this image on Facebook which just fitted how I felt and I impulsively put it on my FB Timeline:

the truth is...

Of course, I was referring to access to  my grandchildren (again). Then I panicked in case any of my family saw it and quickly deleted it and hope there was no harm done.

Today, I know I’ve been a real nuisance; phoning my neighbour and cracking a joke (I never do that!!); phoning my mum in the middle of the day when I usually phone in the evening, just to check in with her, and I know she isn’t out anywhere today but she didn’t answer (obviously not a good time to phone). I’ve ordered three pairs of jeans, two Kindle books which I’ll never find time to read (but they sounded good!), two CDs when I’ve got stacks already, yet I choose to play the same one on repeat for about three weeks running before I change it! Plus more purchases (mostly unnecessary) when I’m in debt already!

I am jumpy, trying to do too many things at once because I can’t decide whether ‘this’ is more important than ‘that’ and I want to do both now! I’m trying hard not to impulsively eat everything in the fridge (just because I fancy ‘something nice’). And now I’ve written this and know I won’t be able to not press the publish button I feel I’ve got to. Stop the world, I wanna get off!

it seemed like a good idea at the time



What is it with you? I am sick of it all! Who gives the right to judge me when you make no effort to get to know me at all? What do you know? What do you care anyway?

you don't know what i've been through

Why do you have to make me look so small? You have NO right! NO right at all. How dare you give me your opinion of what you think my problem is when you can’t even be bothered to scratch below the surface to find out. I do have feelings, you know and you just go and tread all over them with your size 9 hobnail boots!


Too sensitive?…You say I’m too sensitive…if only you knew; if only you could climb into my shoes and feel what I am feeling! I am angry…so angry…I know you don’t even want to begin to understand the condition that I have, Borderline Personality Disorder, that being the ‘Emotionally Unstable’ variation. And is it any wonder when you say you don’t believe me, you show that you really don’t care, couldn’t give a damn and make it blatantly obvious that you have no love for me whatsoever, and sometimes, in fact I’m pretty sure, I don’t think you ever had.

never make the mistake

And yes, I know, that you, rather pathetically can’t deal with physical disability either and are therefore, ashamed of me. You’d like to pretend I don’t exist; shut me in a cupboard, lock the door and throw the key away. How do you think that makes me feel? How the hell do you think I feel?

Well, fuck you, you ignorant bastards! And no, maybe I shouldn’t be so angry but on the other hand, I have nothing to lose… I have lost it all already….you made sure of that, didn’t you? I don’t have to excuse myself; I don’t have to explain myself to you. You, who think you know it all, so high and mighty, well I tell you, you are no better than I am, not one iota, not one dot, not for one second. I never use to hate….I don’t like hating, but you, well, you’ve driven me to the brink; you’ve gone too far; you’ve pushed me over the edge.

I have had all I can take from you; enough is enough! I know you will never read this (although I am sorely tempted to copy and paste in into an email and send it to you) but you’re not worth it…you’re just not worth it. I have better things to do with my time and apart from which, I don’t bloody well have to explain myself to you, of all people!

no obligation to make sense


Today, I had a tumble or more accurately an accident! I fell….but it was no ordinary fall….it was quite a spectacular experience (but not funny). I fell out of my electric wheelchair on to the ground with a thud because of negligence on behalf of the council. Was I hurt? Yes, I was – I have hurt my back, hip and leg which is making my disability worse (hopefully only temporarily). Time will tell.

fallen broken wheelchair

I was on my way back from town with my wheelchair, riding on the pavement (not the road) as I am meant to but nevertheless, I have to cross roads like everybody else. I was just passing the railway station and was crossing the entrance which is quite a narrow but busy side road. I came up to the kerb, ready to cross and lurched down into the road with a huge bump, as usual. I have already complained in writing to the council to say that they have not provided that busy road with a ‘dropped’ or lowered kerb; a prime example of a non-dropped kerb is shown in the image below (that’s not me in the photo, by the way!).

wheelchair and kerb

I crossed the road and then approached the kerb on the other side, also not ‘dropped’ as it should be under The Discrimination Act, but worse still, the kerb was broken so very uneven (also previously pointed out to the council). I tried to mount this damaged and rather steep pavement edging. There is no other way of getting home other than this route, unfortunately. My front wheels slammed into the kerb, causing my wheelchair (with me in it) to fall over into the road. I was trapped; unable to get out because of lack of use of my legs, so there I lay, on the ground, hurting, embarrassed, angry and helpless. I was obviously in need of help and would you believe eight people walked straight past me, totally ignoring me as if I were invisible!!

After about five minutes, a young girl, listening to music on her ipod, stopped and asked me if I needed an ambulance and then went into the station to ask for assistance for me. Two well-built men came out and righted my wheelchair and got me a glass of water. I guess I must have been in shock. The ambulance arrived just at that moment and they checked me over, made me comfortable and stretchered me into the back of the ambulance.

ambulance crew rescue

I started to recover from the shock but I was hurting, physically so they carefully checked my back and ‘thank the Lord’, I hadn’t broken anything. I was badly shaken up, bruised, battered and very sore though. I didn’t want to go to hospital so they slowly got me back into my wheelchair and one of the men kindly pushed me all the way home where my carer was waiting. I was so glad to be home.

So, I’d like to publicly thank C. City Council for their negligence in keeping the pavements and kerbs in such good condition, NOT, and for breaking The Discrimination Act which believe me, I’m not going to let them get away with! WATCH THIS SPACE!


I’ve had an eating disorder ever since I was a child. At times, it has been severe both as anorexia and periods of bulimia. I have been hospitalized (sectioned) twice in 1996 and 1998 as my anorexia was severe and my weight dropped dangerously low to five stone only. I was in my late thirties at that time as contrary to popular belief, eating disorders affect both men and women of any age, not just teenagers although I was in the minority being that age on my ward.

I don’t intend to go into details about my past eating behaviours as this post isn’t about encouraging anyone who is struggling with tips on how to eat less and all the other negative practices associated with an ED. This is just about my feelings about myself.

eating  disorders are not optional

As most of you know, I am now in my early fifties and over the years my weight has gone up and down like a yoyo. I have also acquired, as a direct result of my ED, severe osteoporosis and problems with my teeth amongst other issues. (NB. This isn’t the cause of my disability although it obviously aggravates my symptoms).

Suffice it to say, I still have great difficulties with my eating and know I have a distorted body image but despite counselling, I still have a daily battle. My weight is fine (although I would like it to be less [but that is the anorexia speaking] and classically, think I look far too fat). I come slap-bang in the middle of the healthy range on the BMI scale yet I still see this as bad instead of healthy and good. I generally eat fairly healthily but maybe a little too less than I should. But, this is interspersed with sudden desperate urges for chocolate, cakes, ice-cream etc for which I go out of my way in my wheelchair to the local supermarket or newsagent for too large a quantities! I don’t keep any ‘naughty‘ food as such, in the house because I wouldn’t be able to control my bingeing on it.

I hate having an ED – it rules my life and is just an added stress on my mind and body along with the effects of my child abuse, rape, PTSD etc which I have written much on previously. Many people consider that once you have gained a healthy BMI, you are ‘cured‘! This is not the case, unfortunately, speaking for myself that is. I only wish it were. EDs don’t always get better; they may wax and wane or be mild or severe at times). Currently, I would put myself in the middle of that scale which is a constant battle.

I detest my ED. It’s the first thing that springs to mind whenever I am stressed or have experienced current feelings of trauma such as flashback and new memories surfacing. I think about food first thing in the morning until last thing at night. When I was younger and in out of hospital, I truly believed at times that I had become free of my ED. However, this is not the case….eating disorders can bite back! However, I still have fight in me and will never give up believing that one day, I will be free of all this.

hold fast to your dreams


eating disorders bite back pick

“Who told you it is not okay to grow
as you did as a child, like a tree
taller and taller?
You convinced yourself to stop,
to stay thin
like a small child
even when your stomach grumbles
like wind through a mountain,
shrinking and straining and starving
for someone else’s idea of perfect?
But every tree gains leaves
and rings, symbolizing age,
and the growth
of a great being.
Who told you to feel heavy
when your breasts accept gravity
and when your skin makes marks on itself
to adjust to you?
Who told you it was a sin
to be big,
and why did we give all this
unearned power to them?

You are a tree,
your leaves and rings
are magnificent
no matter what anyone else says.”

~ Colleen Michele

(artwork by Natasha Szymkiewicz, produced for The Center for Eating Disorders at Sheppard Pratt ‘Love Your Tree’ Campaign, 2013)