To the lovely lady in the toilets

Today a lovely lady in the arndale toilets made me smile. Here’s the scene.

I step out of a cubicle. Shorts, off the shoulder slayer top, laddered tights, smudged eye make up, messy hair, remnants of a black eye (from my microdermals), slight neck bruise (from choking), slight limp  and massive bruise showing out of the top of my top. Anyone who knows me sees this as kind of standard except for the limp but I never thought how it looked to the outside world.

So I go to wash my hands and more bruising shows as I lean forward. I catch a woman’s eye I smile at her a sleepy it’s too early to be in town smile. She strikes up a conversation, lovely friendly then she asks if everything is ok as I start to brush my hair. I laugh and say fine I was just too lazy to do my hair before leaving the house it was before 7 and I haven’t had enough sleep. I neaten my face pop some foundation on and fix my eye liner and she tells me it will be ok and I shouldn’t have to hide the bruises. I slowly realise she thinks I am being abused.

I calmly tell her I am not. She is so lovely and concerned without being at all pushy she tells me there are lots of places to get help if I am and asks me to take her number. I promise her I am ok. We talk for a minute and she comes to get a coffee with me as that’s where I was going anyway.

We sit down and talk and I explain that I really am not abused and all of my marks are consensual. She apologises and says how silly she feels but she just couldn’t not say anything. I tell her to never change that and that I think she should always talk to someone she thinks may be in trouble because one day they might really need it. We talk about kink and abuse and the differences. She tells me I have been really enlightening for her and she is glad she met me. I tell her that her genuine care and compassion has made my day brighter even if I didn’t need it. We hug and part ways. It’s an interesting start to the day…….

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O Captain, My Captain, Suicide It’s time to talk

Today the topic of suicide has been talked about more than any other day I can remember. This is because a great comedy genius has (most likely) taken his own life. I want to start this by saying I am rarely upset by the passing of famous people but today I cried (partly because if you have been reading lately I am a little depressed) because a man whose wonderful comedy and heart felt dramas helped me through some of my darkest moments is gone most likely due to the same illness I struggle with daily and because no one seems to mention the other over a million people in the world who have taken their life in the last year (http://www.suicide.org/international-suicide-statistics.html). That is someone choosing death over life every 40 seconds, it’s 1.8% of deaths worldwide and its an increase of 60% in 45 years.

So to Robin Williams you were on my list of people who I thought had used their mania to do beautiful things (something I was made to write during therapy), you made people smile and cry, you brought up issues some people would never have thought about and raised a beautiful daughter ( a big deal to me dealing with bipolar and a 10 year old). I am saddened that you couldn’t get the help you needed and find peace. You will be remembered by millions.

While we are talking about suicide and mental illness though what about the other millions lets have a moment for them, many of them weren’t famous and went basically unnoticed by the world on a grand scale but their lives were surely worth every bit as much. I am saddened by their passing too, several on a very personal level. There are people I miss everyday because their illnesses won. I was so very nearly one of them having attempted suicide on more than one occasion but I am so lucky I have good friends and a high tolerance to pills it would seem. I am so glad I didn’t become part of these statistics but I am aware that one day I could easily do so.

On that note I really hope some good comes of all this talking, I hope people become more understanding because I have heard some awful things today.

“Having no sympathy for suicide because it is selfish” I think is the worst I have seen from the absolute fucking delight that is Alan Brazil. This shows a complete lack of respect and understanding of people with depression, it insults the deceased and causes more harm to those suffering. I know for a fact that when people say things like this it makes people who have attempted it at some point feel guilty which is the last thing we need. If you have never suffered from a genuinely debilitating mental illness you really have no idea how tough it is to live with and how much you know you are putting those around you through, you don’t know the feeling that absolutely nothing will improve and that you only make their lives worse you don’t realise that many people do it for those they love because they feel they would be better off without you.

I have also heard that suicide is a bit over the top because everyone has hard times and gets over it. Depression is not having a hard time. Stop dismissing genuine sufferers of depression you wouldn’t dismiss how hard having cancer is to deal with, how much it takes over your life or how it affects those around someone.

“He was rich how could he be depressed” well this one is just ridiculous are there people out there who still haven’t realised that mental illnesses are ILLNESSES and illnesses do not pick who will have them based on what people own that is 100% not how illness works.

Now moving forward I would really recommend that everyone who reads this also pops over to http://www.suicide.org/suicide-warning-signs.html and takes note of the warning signs of suicidal people because apparently 75% of people who commit suicide show some of these warning signs so knowing them could seriously save lives. Maybe share the page around and save some lives or at least improve understanding.

Thanks people.

Lost

I should be happy. Life is pretty good. I recently found out I am not going to die from my blood disease. I have a beautiful husband and child. I just had an awesome weekend in beautiful places with my husband and sister, who also rocks.

None of it seems to matter my head hurts, I am bored, my life lacks direction, I don’t know what to do so I lack the motivation to do anything. I feel so lost. I can’t even find myself in my own head. My thoughts are spinning faster than I can keep track of yet I am depressed this is not how it usually works. I don’t know what to do with these feelings but I know I need to do something. I wonder what I should do with my life, where I should go from here.

I wonder if I will ever be able to go a week without questioning myself. I am so much better than I used to be but I have so far to go. I know I will never think quite like most people do but I am ok with that I don’t really want to be normal. I think I just want to be doing something………but what?

You obviously don’t have bipolar you get along fine without meds

So this infuriated me a little, maybe more than a little, maybe a hell of a lot more than a little.

Today when talking to a relative I was told I obviously don’t really have bipolar because I get by ok without the meds. She didn’t mean this is a crappy way I am sure. She is just under the impression that everyone with bipolar must be medicated. She thinks they must be wrong about what is wrong with me. Maybe they are maybe I have been misdiagnosed I can’t really tell you that.

What I can tell you is I struggle almost everyday, maybe 1 in 5 days I won’t be confronted with a problem relating to my bipolar and that is a massive improvement on where I used to be when it controlled my every waking and sleeping moment. It dictates my sleeping pattern, whether or not I can work, if I can think straight, if I am capable of making a decision, if my skin crawls and I want to peel it off one strip at a time. I do not simply get by I struggle I fight with my own mind. I have found out what helps and what makes things worse. I am so much better than I was and am so proud of myself but I definitely am not getting by ok I am just coping because this is the only life I have so sometimes coping is just what I have to do.

Apparently I am going completely against the feminist agenda because people saw my nipples yesterday

Yesterday on tumblr I posted pics joining in with topless Tuesday. I posted 2 pics of me and shared one of my husband. None were sexualised pics. One of mine showed nipples and one didn’t. I like being naked. I am happy naked. I don’t see why it’s ok for men to be topless but frowned upon for women. I don’t see how me having boobs is anti feminist.

I am a feminist and I love my breasts I am in no way ashamed of them and don’t see why I should keep them hidden because some people over sexualise them. Get over yourselves I can show any part of myself in any way I want.

Pagan Pride

Firstly this was a wonderful event. Everyone I spoke to was lovely. It was suitable for all ages so I took my son. As it was a pagan event I obviously went with my husband and boyfriend them both being vikings. I only got a couple of funny looks for clearly being with both of them or maybe the looks were to do with the antlers, so I would say it was poly friendly I would say they were everything friendly I don’t think there is anyone who wouldn’t have been welcome. I am sure I saw it stated somewhere that you didn’t even have to be pagan just respectful.

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So we turned up at the starting point for the parade. As soon as we were off the tram people started talking to us, helping each other find exactly where we were going. There was a huge sense of community spirit which I have missed having not been to a pagan event for a while.  We easily found the rest of the parade mainly because from round the corner you could hear the delightful Esme getting everyone in the mood.  There were at least 100 people just gathered around talking, laughing and looking very happy. I saw some of the best outfits I had in ages, people had made a real effort there were fairies, robes, corsets, steampunk outfits, belly dancers and traditional period costumes amongst other things. I myself was dressed in green with antlers. The parade was great I think all in all there must have been several hundred people involved.
The people we passed in the street cheered and smiled and looked like they enjoyed seeing us pass by. It was lovely.

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Once in the park we saw loads of stalls, speaking tents, music in the band stand, an arts tent and a children’s area. There were so many talks, bands and dancers we really struggled to pick what we wanted to see. In the end we saw James J Turner who was a lovely way to start the day, then a little bit of Red Fire Ants who I thought were fantastic and had a really interesting sound. The first talk we went to was Taz Thornton-Clearwater- Remembering Our Forgotten Lands this was definitely mine and my sons favourite of the day. I love the animated way she speaks and the amount of passion she has for what she is talking to. We did some journeying during this session which all four of us got something from me and little one especially as the journeying involved local dragon spirits and that is something we have discussed before and he is very interested in. After the journeying we talked about our experiences and she really took what he had to say seriously which made him so happy and I really appreciate, although I do believe she was genuinely interested in what he had to say. He has talked of dragons to everyone since it has been pretty amazing.

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We also saw Barbara Meiklejohn-Free – The Power Of The Wise who did some more journeying which little one and the husband took part in and both definitely got something from. The last talk we saw was Dean Kirkland – Yggdrasil’s Road; Shamanism and The Northern Tradition which was interesting, recapped lots I already knew, which made me realise how much I have learnt about the northern tradition over the years and I learnt a few new things.  We also saw some of Way of the Wyrd Morris Dance, BlackPeacock BellyDance and Beatrice Flowers Tribal Bellydance who were all fantasic. We met The Dragon Keeper and Frazzles the dragon who sang for my son which made him very happy.

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There were so many stalls I am not sure I saw them all but I bought some lovely mead from The Lancashire Mead Company who gave tasters of everything so I could pick the ones I liked, I also bought a lovely new scrying bowl from The Green Man Pottery and a present for my sister Tink. There was so much I didn’t see and I will definitely be going again next year.