Plugging away at keeping going.

It’s been a while since I last wrote, and I thought I better get back on the wagon, so to speak. I am also sleepless tonight, as I had all the signs of a flare up of the fibromyalgia earlier in the day, and then by 6pm, it was coming on strong. It used to be that I would get about 24 hours warning, now it seems to be about 6. My signal, that a flare up is imminent, is the delightful IBS.

Anyhow, I am always of the mind to keep my mind off of it. When I woke this morning, so exhausted that I seriously thought that after dropping Jack to school I would go back to bed, I instead came home, and levelled off the next bit of ground out the front, and planted the second Strelitzia we bought a few weeks back. I have a few plants to get in, 2 Heliconia’s, 2 Canna’s, a Lemon Grass plant, and half a dozen other things, that are supposed to control cats, ie, keep them out of the yard, well deter them anyhow.

The Canna’s and Heliconia’s were on hold until the fence which they will be going against was painted, and hopefully, by tomorrow afternoon, the fence will be done, I have 1 coat to go on the palings, the rest of it, posts and rails, are finished. Then, a whole heap of basalt rocks need to be moved, and then the area levelled and cleaned up, then the babies can be planted. I even ended up painting the steps in front of the shed with paving paint.

I never tackle these tasks in one hit, it’s just too much for my fibromyalgia, so, it may sound like I did a lot, but in reality, it wasn’t that much, and was fairly spaced out, so basically, I would do 15 to 20 minutes, and then need to rest for a good hour or so before tackling it again. It really sucks having fibromyalgia.

I can’t believe that only a few years ago, I would do heavy work all day, no problem, and then work half the night doing the same thing as well. I used to fit tyres and vehicle accessories all day, some times having to lift 100kg vehicle assemblies on my own, quite often whilst lying on my back, while fitting them back onto vehicles. Now holding a bag of shopping for any longer than need be is a struggle.

Anyhow, short and sweet tonight, I have a little adventure to write about soon, last weekend we did a nice 500km+ round trip for the day, and it was really an awesome day, so I will share a bit of that with you next time.

Andy.

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Light show

Tonight, after several very warm and incredibly humid days, the heavens have erupted in a dazzling light show. It’s been rumbling with thunder since 5pm, and its just past 10pm now. I made a few attempts to get a few shots, but the rain just kept chasing me around. I may have something, I am not sure, but nothing too spectacular.

Yesterday Mum and I went off to the nursery to get some Bird of Paradise plants, Strelitzia’s, and one is planted already, the other will be done when I level out the ground where it needs to go. We even had the first 3 beans off our bean plants, Jack, Mum and I all had one fresh out of the garden, and it is years since I have had fresh beans !!

I have tied up the bean plants, to get them off the ground, and added some wires to the tomato trellis also, the tomato plants are growing like mad right now, it’s incredible. Talking about incredible, the 2 grape vines and the passionfruit vine are all growing about 2 to 3 inches every day at the moment. I am blown away.

The rest of the garden is doing well, I managed to cut a bit of the lawn out the back today, but my fibromyalgia is not good right now, so there is still a little bit to do.

Tomorrow is shopping day, but tomorrow Mum also wants to get a new school shirt for Jack, the shirts are special ones you can only get from the school, so we will have to get that before we head off to the markets for our fruit and vegetables, and then to the supermarket for the rest. It is our off week for the butcher, so at least we don’t have to do that.

Jack is motoring along at school, making impressive progress. Tomorrow is Cross Country day, and then next week is school photo’s, and it is also the last week before Easter break. We have a few plans for the school holidays, we will go off for a day trip to Babinda Boulders for a swim, we are thinking of a day trip to the Botanic Gardens, and I can’t remember the other things Mum said, but we reckon we will do about 2 things special a week for the holidays.

I must go now, my medications are all kicking in, and the fatigue is coming over in a flood.

Andy.

Circles

It first came out as circicles, whatever that means. Yep, pretty much how I am at the moment.

The moment I have been waiting for, but not wanting, has arrived. Well one of the moments anyhow. The inevitable crash, after months and months of sustained stress, and having to be superhuman somehow to get through, has happened.

I have been so incredibly fatigued every day for about 4 or 5 days now, but that doesn’t mean sleep comes easy. 2 nights ago, I was in constant pain and hardly slept. Amazing seeing that I feel like I am going to fall asleep every few minutes. The pain is unbearable, but I have to bear it, there really isn’t any choice. Imagine the most helpless you have ever felt, add to that a dash of hopelessness, and for good measure somehow keep going with a smile on your face. Pretty much sums it up right now.

I am beginning to run out of projects that I am able to do, there are projects, but they required an amount of physicality I just don’t have in reserve at the moment. And if it requires any sort of complex thought, well, see ya later. Each and every day just blurs into the next, each day in pain, dog tired, and more hopeless.

Weirdly enough, I am still not slumping into depression, somehow I am still managing to see some light in every day. I have had to resort to the walking stick today, something I haven’t had to do for quite a few months. I did say it was bad.

I keep trying not to sleep during the day, but to be honest, I think tomorrow I am probably going to have to sleep most of the day.

Jack had a bit of hayfever last week, I have managed to get him back well again, but a result of it was that he ended up with a bit of a staph infection around his nose and up a nostril. For days I treated it, which isn’t real fun, with a combination of Betadine, and a few other healing creams. It’s all healed wonderfully now, and he is going well again.

He’s been coming into my room a bit at night recently, he’s been having a few nightmares, especially about the violence he witnessed being waged upon me by his Mum. Even after 6 years, the memories come back from time to time. Anyone who says a 2 year old child doesn’t remember or take stuff in, is a fool.

Talking about flashbacks, I’ve had a few of my own in recent days. Maybe it’s just the result of a whacko brain full of fatigue. They haven’t been about my ex, but of random things, like the first day we started driving up here, just random snippets of that first day. I’ve also had a couple of those deja vu moments, which freak me out a bit. I haven’t had one of those for quite a long time, but I’ve had about half a dozen in the past week.

I might leave this for now, I don’t think I can process anything much anymore, let alone write, but that’s where I am at right now. Hope you all are doing better than me.

Andy.

Weirdness

I haven’t been bombarding the airwaves for the past couple of days, it’s been a bit of a whirlwind of days. Last week ended as it does, on a Friday, hahahaha, yes I know I’m funny, well dad joke style, and then on Saturday we had a day off. Well, sort of.

I managed to sleep in a bit, although 8 to 8.30 am is about the best I can do these days, even though I still wake like a zombie, and feeling like I need 3 years sleep. It’s just the way it is all the time now. We had breakfast, Jack actually made himself an omelette all by himself, with a little guidance from Mum, and he was really chuffed. I had a bowl of my usual cereal, one of those full of grain things with dried cranberries and tropical fruits. I don’t always eat breakfast now, like I never did before, but because I was trying to set an example for Jack, I started again for a while. I just don’t seem to feel like eating until around 10am, and if I don’t eat until then, I lose weight.

After breakfast, we headed down to Babinda Boulders, a really neat swimming hole, on Babinda Creek, a few kilometres from the little town of Babinda. I had been there before, and funnily enough, so had Jack, although in his mothers womb at the time, it was one of the places we went when she was suffering from the pregnancy. The swimming hole is at the joining of Babinda Creek with a small side branch waterway, and the water is mountain cold, and crystal clear. It is surrounded by rainforest, the bed of the waterhole being course sand and smooth rocks with no silt, so really nice on the feet. Green Birdwing and Ulysses Blue Butterflies float around without a care in the world. Mum came too, and she has fallen in love with the place as much as I have been, since the first time I went there over 9 years ago.

After about an hour of just floating around in the beautioful cool water, we got out and changed, and then went back into Babinda for a little walk around to see what was about, before we headed up to Belenden Ker Cafe, a non-descript little cafe in a 2 storey house next to the highway. We had heard about the amazing pies they make, so after finally finding it (it just has a sandwich board sign out the front advertising coffee and cake, with no other signage to even indicate it is even a business), we stopped in for lunch. All the talk about the pies was spot on. They were the best I have had for years.

After that, we took a drive down a side road, to Behana Gorge, just to see where the road went. It is not far from home, so it will certainly be another adventure soon. Apparently there is a waterfall there, although you need to walk to it. Then, we decided that going home was not an option just yet, so we headed out to Yarrabah, Mum hadn’t been out there yet, and took in the wonderful paradise once again that is this beautiful Aboriginal Community. After that, we were thoroughly tired, so a slap together meal was all we could manage to make and eat, before drifting off to sleep.

Sunday, we were out again, this time earlier, as we had heard about another fruit and vege market that is in Cairns city, Rusty’s Market. We hadn’t been in before, but after our Sunday morning visit, we have unanimously decided it will be where any fruit and veges we need will come from. It is open every Friday, Saturday and Sunday, which is great as we need to buy fruit and veges weekly. As our vege garden gets into production, we won’t need so much from the shops, but we will not be growing everything, we just don’t have the space, so we will still need to go there.

The rest of Sunday was a blur, even though it was only yesterday, I can’t remember much else we did, I was suffering pretty badly with fibromyalgia, so that is probably why I don’t remember. Getting to sleep was an ordeal last night too.

Today my body has been a rollercoaster ride, Jack has been back to school, and I just pushed on, mulching the vege plants, doing a bit of weeding, some cleaning, fixing some of Mums furniture that got broken by the removalists, and what ever else happened. Yes, today was bit like yesterday as well.

I started this post with the title, weirdness, and this is the part where I explain it. With everything that’s been happening, and the fact that since just after Christmas the main living areas of the house have been some form of construction zone, I have not felt settled.

Right now, we don’t have a functional kitchen, it’s nearly there, but we are having to use the laundry tub as our kitchen sink, and the BBQ, which fortunately has a gas ring burner as well, is our stove and everything else. The great big 8 seater table I made years ago is inside, currently being used as our kitchen bench. It really is too big to use as a kitchen table inside, that is why, up until the kitchen benches were removed last week, it was outside. It will go back out there once the bench tops are ready to pick up and I’ve installed them. Thankfully all the tiling is now finished and we have our house a little more normal. But it’s not quite there yet.

When I came up the street on Saturday after our day out, and saw the house, I had this sudden feeling that I wasn’t coming home just yet. It doesn’t quite feel like home. I am not sure what it is, I put it down to the fact that things haven’t settled down yet because of the renovations, but yeah, I don’t know, it’s just not quite home yet. How long does it take for a new place to feel like home?

I spoke to Mum about it today, and she agreed, she feels the same way. That is just how things go. As we make more of our own mark on the place, as the gardens get fuller, and everything settles down, it will feel more like home. I get these feelings sometimes, at absolutely random moments in time, that I almost have to pinch myself that we are actually living here now. Only last Friday, when I was stopped at the traffic lights on the way to pick up Jack from school, this wave of disbelief that we are really here rolled over me. It’s just so random when it happens, but so unreal. I guess once life returns to normal routine again, it will be alright.

Thursday, I will be seeing a new doctor, for the first time here. I am getting low on medications I need to stay mainly okay, and don’t want to run out. I have been procrastinating over it, but now with only about 8 days worth of Tramadol left, I really need to just get on with it. I really hope the new doctor is as good as my old one. I will find out on Thursday I guess.

Anyhow, I should get myself off to bed, I need sleep as always, and I have to be up early for the usual school day stuff. Goodnight.

Andy.

Ticking along.

Somehow or another, I have managed to get through another day. Yippee for me !!! I know, I know, wow wee, but when you are battling against your own body, or is that your body is battling against you, every single day, getting to the end of the day, having achieved anything at all other than getting up, and going back to sleep, is a big deal.

Talking about achievements, today I have managed to sort a few more things out, although I haven’t been able to spend much more than 5 minutes on a job before I’ve had to rest again for a bit, but I planted all the tomato seedlings we got on the weekend, finally hung the 2 hanging baskets with the Cucumelons in them, and, I have managed to fix the teeny little rust spots in the roof of my car where stone chips had started to become something else.

I used to be a car detailer for quite a few years, and learnt about fixing paintwork at an automotive refinishers as part of my qualifications (yes, car detailing is technical if you do it right). Even though I have the skills, and have also had the materials to do these little fix it jobs on my own car for at least 12 months, it’s either been my body against me, too many other things going on in life, or the weather hasn’t been conducive to doing car paintwork repairs. Now I live in a better climate, and life is starting to settle down a bit, I decided to push back against my recalcitrant body, and get on with it. The little chips had started to spider out from the original chips with little lines of rust forming under the paintwork, and the recent heavy rain had accelerated it a little bit, so it went from being a get to soon job, to a little more urgent. I also have a set of roof racks coming for my car, I bought them on Ebay, so I wanted to get it sorted before I fit them, otherwise the job would be harder with them in the way.

Right now, I have probably 2 more coats of paint to go on to them, and a little bit of cutting and polishing, and then it will not even look as though I have had to do anything. The paint is so well colour matched that it will not be noticeable in the slightest. I am so happy that I still have the skills, and am able to actually do it. There is a lot of other stone chips to fix, and a few small scratches as well, ( The roads in Victoria, Australia are not good for car paintwork, actually, they aren’t real good for any part of a car !!), but none were as urgent as the roof, and for now, they are only stone chips, they haven’t progressed into the more problematic rust as yet.

Apart from those tasks, I have also managed to do my washing, and changed the bed linen, which I am probably a bit anal about, I have to do it every Wednesday. Luckily, Jack is now old enough to help me strip and make the beds, so it’s not as big a task as it was even 6 months ago.

Well, for now, that is the little update, I am not great, but trying to get on with life, what else can I do ?

Andy.

Emotional.

Too much has happened in the last 8 months. Too much. I am at the point where everything is too much. I need a break, but even that would be too much. The stupid illness is wearing me down, more than before. Although I haven’t reached the really bad, almost writhing in pain pain, it’s been so heightened recently that it has left me destroyed. I find myself on the verge of tears, especially when I start to think is it going to end. Am I going to get a break from this soon? I am trapped by my own body. I am being held to ransom by it. It is just so ……I don’t know, I don’t know.

I FEEL SO ALONE.

Today we were up early, for the little jaunt to the markets, it was nice, but to be honest, although we had a successful day, by the time we got home at lunchtime, I had fallen into despair. A not real taxing drive, and a little wander around an old WW2  Aircraft hangar where the markets were held had done me in.

I know that Mum notices that I am not coping well. I am so wiped out, and my enthusiasm is waning. I just want to have a decent sleep, have no pain, and feel good, even if just for a couple of days. I feel lost, I feel lonely.

It’s not depression I feel. I am prone to it, I know it, it is an awful companion in my life at times. This is just sort of like a Groundhog Day. Same shit, different day. It’s almost a desperation for it to just change. Right now, if I were to win the lottery, it would still be the same. Sure, right now I sit here writing with tears streaming down my face and I feel sorry for myself. I am allowed to.  It would be so nice if some lovely lady walked into my life, hugged me tight, and told me everything will be alright.

Anyhow, I can’t write anymore right now, I am going to retire to my cold bed, and not sleep properly again. I know.

Andy.

Just………..well, just

I am just hanging in there. This is one of those posts. You know, where I lay out how bad the fibromyalgia is, and the struggle worsening today. Well, it is, but isn’t one of those posts, but it is. Wow, that was a great bit of back and forth, wasn’t it ???

I still try and make myself laugh when the fit hits the shan. Yep, there I go again. Today has been rough. Real rough. This morning I woke up asleep, and really haven’t shifted past that all day, but somehow I have managed to get to this end of the day. And pains have been popping up everywhere. At one stage, the stage where I had to drive the car to pick up Jack from school, my right arm, around and just below the elbow, got so painful that I couldn’t hold it up and hold the steering wheel. “So what?” I hear you say. Well, I drive stick. I hate automatics. That’s the so what. So every time I had to change gears, I had to move my arm up in agony to steady the wheel while changing the gears (yes, I am Australian, we drive on the correct side of the road !!!)

It started waking up asleep, stepping out of bed, and as I took my first step, pain shot through every single toe on my foot. During the day, it’s been between my shoulders, and travelling up my neck, and randomly appearing in my calves, my feet, fingers, arms, and anywhere else it tickles it’s fancy.

Anyhow, not to let being absolutely crippled get me down, I  actually managed to mow the grass, and finally sold my trailer. I have been getting stuffed around by half a dozen people, they arrange a time to come, then no show, or turn up, agree on a price, say they are going to get the cash and come back, never to be seen again. Well, today’s chap contacted me last night, drove a 2 hour round trip from the Atherton Tablelands, this afternoon, and after about 2 minutes looking it over with his Uncle, handed over the cash, did the paperwork, and that was that. I have been stuffed around for over 2 weeks, and then this fellow made it all so easy. It was refreshing to finally encounter someone who has manners enough not to stuff someone around.

Now I have $500 in my pocket, part of which is buying me a brand new mattress tomorrow, the first brand new mattress I will have ever had in my 41 years of life. The rest is going to be rolled into a business venture that I am going to try and embark upon. I will fill you in on that as it unfolds, but just let me tell you, it will be multi-faceted.

The other little bits of today where I was capable of anything much, I managed to get Jack to and from school, it may not seem like much, but today it was climbing Mt Everest, I cleaned out a bunch of plastic milk bottles that we need to take to the container refund scheme, yep, a stinky job, and popped a cutting of turmeric, that the chap that is tiling our place brought with him for us this morning, into a pot.

On the subject of tiling, he is nearly finished, and it looks fantastic. The renovations are nearing completion, well the major bits anyhow, with the last major thing to do, the removal and replacement of the kitchen bench tops, being done early next week, yet again, by me. We will be without a functioning kitchen for about 5 days, but it will be so worth it. That is the time it will take to remove it, get the new tops made to size, and then for me to fit the new ones once they are ready. That will be the last majorly disruptive thing to be done. Over the next few months we will paint the place as well, but that is easy and will be done in small bits, as finances allow.

Well, for now, I might leave it here, I need sleep, and my body feels like I have done 20 rounds with Mike Tyson (minus the ear biting bit), so hopefully, seeing the pain killers seem to be just kicking in, I will be able to sleep.

Goodnight.

Andy.