Monday, 16 May 2011

Could I be good enough?

Apparently as my medication decreases, so does my self-esteem.

Which is annoying, because that's something I'd been working very hard on. I was getting pretty good at it too. There's still some remnants of my progress remaining, but it's definitely a lot shakier.

I want to be cleverer. Funnier. Prettier. Thinner. More insightful. More interesting. Better at coding. Better at proof-reading. Better at everything.

I want to be the best.

To be fair, it's not all bad. It gives me the drive I need to succeed. It makes me push myself to the limits. It made me cycle 36 miles yesterday. It made me carry on at work today when my head was throbbing and I felt sick and shivery and sad and just wanted to curl up in a ball.

But sometimes, I just want to feel good enough. Constantly trying to be the best can also be very tiring.

Sunday, 15 May 2011

It's been a long time coming....

I don't remember why I stopped blogging. It wasn't a conscious decision, it just kind of happened. I didn't even miss it.

Until today.

I do know why that happened. I love my new job, working in social media, but it does consume every aspect of my life. I live on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn (both because I love them and because it is useful for my job). And now, as part of my job, I want to become a blogging expert. So it's time to revive this blog as well!

A few things haven't changed. I still love Eels (which is the main reason why I chose to revive this blog rather than starting a new one; I was never going to think of a name I liked more!). I still cycle lots. And I still have depression.

It's getting better though. For real this time. Reading my last post, I was trying to lower my dose, and it wasn't going so well. I'm trying again, and it's going much better this time. I'm definitely in a much better place mentally now. The job helps with that a lot. I feel happier, I feel more confident, I feel like I can cope. I'm not recovered yet, but every day I feel closer than ever before.

Actually, another reason for starting to blog again is that I've been following the Elephant in the Room Campaign on Facebook and Twitter. And I want to talk openly about my experiences more widely. And this is the platform I'm most comfortable talking about it.

(Apologies to anyone finding out about my depression this way; it's something I find hard to drop into casual conversation! If you want to know more, I'm happy to talk about it. If not, please continue treating me exactly as normal, that's fine too.)

Monday, 27 September 2010

And another hurdle...

Seriously, I'm so bored of all this now. I was put on a lower dose of Citalopram last week. At first I was excited and everything was going great. But for the last two days I've been snappy and irritable and grumpy and had a splitting headache. I want my chemical happy back. My doctor and my counsellor said dropping down a dose wouldn't affect me too much. I knew they were lying...

Just so sick of thinking "the worst is over now" just to find a new challenge. Sick of fighting. Sick of asking other people to put up with me. Terrified what's going to happen in the long run when I try to come off them completely.

I've always hated all forms of medication. This one is the worst. It's not a solution, I hate how much it is relied upon. It feels like it's actually made things worse, given me a couple of months of false happiness, false hope. Now I'm starting to doubt whether I've made any progress at all, or whether it's all just been a waste of time. I'm not even sure if the counselling has made that much difference, really, just more false positives from the medication.

I have no idea. Maybe I'll stabilise and feel better in a few days. But right now I'm feeling lower than I have done for a long time and I don't like it. Probably won't even be able to sleep it off due to this bloody headache...

Saturday, 11 September 2010

People are weird

So I had an amazing couple of days. Went up to Chester to visit my cousin and his family. They have a 4 month old boy and girl who I think is nearly 3 years old now. They are both so gorgeous and I had so much fun! I've visited Florrie a few times and she is always lovely, and now she's so bouncy and bubbly and has an amazing imagination. It was my first time meeting Barney, and he is also very sweet. He's always really cheerful and has an adorable laugh! I spent a long time giving him cuddles!

And we went to the toy shop and Florrie loved it and my staff discount got thoroughly abused and it was awesome! The branch there is about four times bigger than the one I work for, so I had quite a lot of fun looking around too.

I'd also like to give a special mention to the place I stayed, . Which brings me to the subject of this post. I loved this inn. It was very good value for money, my room was huge and full of character, the bathroom was bright and modern, the staff were consistently polite and professional and attentive. The complimentary Continental buffet breakfast was amazing. I cannot praise this place highly enough.

And yet, ALL the other guests seemed to find something to moan about. One guy managed to flood his room because he doesn't understand shower curtains, and this is clearly the hotel's fault. He also complained that the shower didn't come with instructions. It was a fairly standard shower. He also failed to understand the toaster and the coffee machine. I started to wonder how he remembered to breathe.

Another was complaining because they had decided they only wanted to stay for six nights, not five, and the restaurant staff couldn't refund her the night she wasn't using. Sadly it got referred to the hotel manager and I have no idea what the final result was. I hope she didn't get her money back. The hotel has a clear enough cancellation policy, they can't just bend to your random whims.

I could go on, but I'm bored of wasting my energy on these miserable idiots. I stayed there to have a nice trip, apparently they stayed there just to find things to moan about. I just don't understand this mindset.

Time to go leave a good review on Trip Advisor!

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

I love play

So I did my playtime. It was AWESOME. I loved it. The kids loved it. The parents loved it. My boss loved it. All round good day. I had sososo much fun and made lots of children smile and laugh and create and imagine and discover. I also spent a lot of time explaining to parents how easy and fun it is it to help their child create something from nothing, how good our arts and crafts section is, and how they should buy it all. Most of them bought something. One woman spent £80!! Our conversion rate was mind-bogglingly high.

I think my boss will be letting me do playtime again!

It always amuses me though how often I get asked if I have any children or any child care qualifications or whatever. It doesn't seem to occur to people that it's possible to naturally get along with children. I am not a childcare expert. I have no idea how to feed a baby or change a nappy. But I do know how to play. I don't understand why this surprises people.

It probably does help that I'm from a fairly large family. My brother is five years younger than me, I spent a lot of time looking after/playing with him when we were growing up. At family gatherings, I was generally left to entertain like five kids while the parents all got drunk. Now my oldest cousin has two children (who, by the way, I am going to see on Friday, which is incredibly exciting!). I've always been around small children and I've always loved play.

Having said that, I would absolutely love to have children one day, and would like that day to be sooner rather than later. I will probably one day study for some form of teacher/childcare qualifications. But I don't think either of these things are necessary to understand play.

Monday, 6 September 2010

It's playtime!

So every Tuesday morning between 10am and 12pm, our shop has a playtime. The person who usually runs it is on holiday at the moment, so I've been entrusted with it tomorrow! I have no idea how it's going to go, but I'm really excited!

I've only been working during playtime once, and it was really quiet. I only actually played with one child. But recently there's been a lot more promotion of the event, so hopefully it should be fairly busy. But not scary busy!

At least I know what I want to do. I've run it by a few people and they think it's a good idea. We're going to design our own Very Hungry Caterpillars! There's a big push on books right now, so it seemed a good place to start. It's fairly flexible, so hopefully children of all ages will be able to enjoy it. I'm hoping I might have a chance to read the book to them too, although not sure about that.

I have been able to be a lot more creative at work recently, it's been really fun. I coloured in a leaflet promoting a new range of collectables. And then made a mask of one of the characters from the range. And used these really cool like wax pipe cleaners to make a flower and a blue bird. And covered the shop in balloons! I'd forgotten that I am actually quite creative (although not imaginative, which is confusing and can make being creative difficult). It's been a nice discovery!

Thursday, 2 September 2010


So I am not good at beauty rituals. When I was growing up, I was a tomboy. My best friend was a boy, my mum wasn't particularly feminine and I had no sisters. I have always refused to buy glossy mags because they are insanely expensive and mostly incredibly dull.

I didn't wear make-up at all until I was 18, didn't do it well until I was 21, and still don't bother with it half the time. I am still incapable of doing anything nice with my hair. My fashion sense is shaky at best.

I can live with all of this. But tonight, I made the mistake of attempting my most despised beauty ritual. Plucking my eyebrows. I hate it.

I always start with my left eye. I can get that into a semi-acceptable shape without too much trouble. But then I move onto the right. I find that harder, but can eventually get that into an OK shape too. But then they don't match. The left eye is always long and flat; the right shorter and more curver. I start trying to make the left one look more like the right one, but inevitably overpluck and end up with a bald patch.

The worst thing is this happens EVERY TIME. You'd think I'd learn, but apparently not. I've considered going to a professional, but I dread to think what they'd think of my own efforts!

On the bright side, my eyebrows are fairly pale and don't grow too quickly, so I only infict this on myself two or three times a year. This might be enough to last me until January.....!