Tuesday, November 2

Dear neglected blog

 My poor neglected blog, just sitting here with words of old, minding your own business, doing nothing. My poor blog, I need you again. I need somewhere to put my thoughts, my feelings, my current life. I hope you'll have me back. 

I'm in a little bit of a lost place at the moment, but stuck in groundhog day. Day in, Day out, the same thing. 

My lovely hubby was knocked off his motorbike six weeks ago today. He almost died at the crash site. She pulled out on him. A young girl, 23, didn't see him! Those famous last words... I just didn't see him. Despite the fact he was on a big motorbike, with panniers and was loaded up to go camping after he'd worked 5 days in Scotland, she still didn't see him, hit him and almost killed him. 

I'll write more about that in a separate post but for now I need a space for me. I need to de-brain, if that's even a word and I really can't de-brain to anyone in real life.

So, today is day 43 since the accident. 6 weeks yesterday. I feel like I'm stuck in groundhog day. It's the same thing, day in, day out. We've (my son and I) only been home home for 10 days and hubby has been in a local hospital for the same amount of time. Before that we were 260 miles away and hubby was in a hospital in Scotland and we stayed in a bed and breakfast, then a rented house, then a bed and breakfast again for 5 weeks. It's taken some settling down back at home, trying to get a routine together and doing it all without my main support system, because he's still in a hospital bed. It's beginning to get very lonely. I know I have my son but it's just not the same. I need comfort, love and physical contact from the other half of me. But I have to walk away from him every day, and I go to bed alone every night, which, after 21 years is very difficult and it's getting harder by the day. I realise it's not as hard as what hubby is going through, but this is a different kind of hard. It's difficult to go to the hospital every day trying to be upbeat and happy and funny when in reality I want to just do things for me for a while. Not have to go anywhere, just be me. Craft a few things. But the reality is I get up, do a few jobs/necessary tasks, go to the hospital at 10 to 1 taking all the things he needs that day. Get home around 5 - 5.30, cook and eat dinner, chat with son, go to bed. And it's the same, day after day after day. 

I guess I'm wallowing in self pity at the moment, when really I shouldn't. I've still not really cried or processed the accident, his life changing injuries, the fact that he's likely to be in a wheelchair for the rest of his life, unable to ride a motorbike again. He is healing well and he can now get himself from the bed to his wheelchair and can wheel himself around the hospital which is amazing given how he was a couple of weeks ago. His nerve pain is under control and he can move his left leg with his hands or a strap under his feet and can do so without the stabbing, shooting nerve pain he was having. This is all great and I'm so chuffed that he's a determined character. Standing is going to be his next goal. He'll cry if he can stand again. He didn't have enough right leg muscle to stand up last time he tried. Fingers crossed it goes well this time. 

I'm so glad he's doing so well. I guess I just feel weary and a little bit run down. I'll get over it. I really just want him home, but that in itself will bring a whole new set of challenges. 

For now, I need to eat and think about getting ready to leave for the hospital..again. I have to take his shoes in today as the Orthopedic team are going to make a calliper to attach to his left shoe to give his left leg stability. 

Take care and keep smiling 

Annie xx

Wednesday, June 29

How about some... awwwwwww?

A friend of mine has been on hatch-watch. The swans were sitting on eggs on a local pond. My friend phoned last night and told me that he'd seen the cygnets swimming on the pond. So off I trotted this morning, camera in hand, and here are the results, with an added bonus of some newly hatched ducklings.

Wednesday, April 27


My 5 year old loves dandelions, and this year there seems to be billions of them. We have to hunt out the 'dandelion clocks' whenever we take the dog for a walk and tell what time it is by seeing how many blows she has to do before the seeds have all blown away.

We had a single dandelion clock in our garden and I wanted to photograph it. She hung about at my side, trying to blow the seeds off before I'd got my photographs. I managed to get her to hold on by giving her my point and shoot camera and letting her take photographs too. I've not got hers processed yet, but here are mine.. followed by a few shots of my Clematis which looks beautiful this year. It feels so good to finally use my camera again after having a photographic drought for the past six months. 

Click the images to view them full size and see the detail.

Monday, November 15


OOB stands for out of the box. Sometimes when I don't feel like doing anything else, I play with my photographs. Today was one of those days. Here are the results.

All the photographs were taken by me and then 'played with' by me.

Monday, November 8

Time.. where does it go?

Why do I never seem to have enough time? I don't go out to work so I guess I'm a stay at home mum, but good grief, I never seem to stop running about doing this that or the other.

I did however get a little bit of time to myself a week last Friday. (see .. it's well over a week ago already!) and I was invited over to a photography friends house to use his small home studio to take some photographs of Isabelle. Supplied with coffee and hints and tips on photographing a not particularly photogenic child with the attention span of a goldfish.

This is my favourite shot from the day as it really does summise Isabelle. She is a walking talking whirlwind until she decides to read a book (which she does love to do). I love the concentration on her face and the appearance that she's completely lost in the book. Kipper really is too easy for her to read these days, but she still loves it.

and I like this one because it was her own choice of pose and she's looking cute.

Fast forward a week and a bit to yesterday. My hubby, previously know as couch potato has spent the last couple of years getting fit, losing weight, stopping drinking and smoking, and started running. After a couple of half marathons, he decided to do the Hell Up North aka Hell Run through Delamere Forest. Isabelle and I were dragged along for support and praise him at the end for doing well. The run is 12 miles up hill and down dale, avoiding trees wherever possible and ending up running wading through the Bog Of Doom. 

Isabelle and I managed to get ourselves down to the edge of the bog.. and it stank!! As the runners went through we were splattered and covered in mud, it was messy, but we managed to see Mark on his way through. 

 Yes he is up to his waist in mud and water, it was a bloody big puddle in the bog. And he was wearing white shorts!!!
Helping someone through the bog... nice and clean aren't they?

And then this came wading through!! Words fail me LOL it was bloody freezing cold too.

Thursday, October 28


After everything that has happened since Tuesday night, loads of phonecalls yesterday and a whirlwind going around in my head which just won't stop - and is causing lack of sleep, I think I have come to a few conclusions, and I basically have two options.

1. Take the questioning, the answering, the guilt laying, the 'you should have', and all that comes with it.

2. Walk away from it all

I phoned mum yesterday morning, afterall, she did tell me the night before she was going to kill herself. I am not the cold hearted uncaring person I am sure she and my brother percieve me to be. She was ok, but full of questions wanting answers. 

The basic upshot of it all is:

She can't bear to be in the same room as my hubby. She brought up an incident 11 years ago when hubby and I first got together. It was Christmas and we'd all gone to my brothers house. Hubby (unknown to me at the time) is what's known as a binge drinker alcoholic. He didn't drink during the week, but when he was off work for any time, he would drink to excess every evening. He IS an alcoholic, but has now been t-total for 5 and a half years. Hubby decided in his drunken state to tell my mum what he thought of her and how she'd treated me. It didn't go down well obviously and everyone ended up in a state. She brought this up yesterday and told me I was wrong for not standing up for her at the time.  This had all been discussed and (I thought) solved years ago.

Various other incidents were brought up which all involved hubby's alcoholism and how he abused me. Again, since he stopped drinking none of this happens anymore. That has all been dealt with over the years and threat of divorce etc due to his drinking. He is a different person sober and has changed so much for the better. Sleeping dogs will not lie however and now Mum and my youngest brother have both said they can't stand him for what he's done over the years and don't want him in the same room. A nice position for me to be in eh? considering it's a 3 hour drive to visit mum... one that I can't drive alone for various reasons (including medical)... which, according to my brother (I've since found out) are just excuses and I'm a whinger.

All through the phone call I was being asked 'why didn't you do...?' or told 'you should have done this...' I can only do what I can do based on my judgement and situation at the time.  All the time she was telling me that she was seriously ill for 4 years. I am fully aware of that. She had a mental breakdown.. was treated, told she was bipolar, told she wasn't, but now insists she is again. Either way, whatever it is, I supported her the best I could. Considered her as much as possible. My actions are now being questioned. When I asked if she needed me to come over, no, she couldn't cope with anyone there, especially a child under 5. I didn't go. She had dr's and nurses visiting, my brother, my aunt and various other people, I thought there were enough people to care for her. Now it seems that I should have rented a flat near her house for a month or so, just so she knew I was near if she needed me. I should have over-ruled her decision for me not to go and gone anyway. WHAT?

She has gaping holes in her memory of the last 4 years, which I can understand. When you suffer a breakdown, one day rolls into another and you don't remember things or situations.  I have suffered with depression on and off for over 20 years. I have fibromyalgia which can immobalise me at times. I am an emotional wreck and am currently on medication for anxiety and depression. I am not a coper, especially when it comes to me having to justify myself. But when I said this, it was met with, but that's nothing to what I've gone through. Nowhere near. Maybe it's not. As far as I'm concerned, it's not a competition as to who has been the worst medically. I was trying to explain that things can be difficult for me too because of medical reasons. To which the reply was, when you were sick as a single parent with two young children I came straight over to help. Where were you when I needed help?

Oh it went on and on, I tried to fill in some of the gaping voids and explaining situations that she had no recollection of or had got totally wrong in her head, and that decisions had been made with her being foremost in the decision making to ensure things were the least stressful for her. 

But I now feel that I can't justify myself and my decisions over the last however many years of my life any longer. My life and my decisions have been mine. Rightly or wrongly made they were made for a reason at the time and I dealt with the consequences. I feel that now my mum is trying to go through a big therapy session to solve her life through, in particular, me and my middle brother, or more.. his wife. It isn't just me this is happening to. My sister in law has just had mum over for the weekend and told her a few truths. This led to the killing herself phone call from mum. My elder daughter is also involved in this. But what mum can't see, is that she is the common denominator in all this. All her immediate family are involved. We all feel the same way, we're all being put through the mill because my mum has decided that things need discussing. I know that there are still more things she wants to discuss.. it's looming over me but I can't take any more of it. It is taking over me. It's all I can think about and it's not fair. My hubby's point of view? Why are we all still pandering to her like we always have? She's no longer depressed by her own admission. She's trying to sort herself out and she has a cuckoo land idea of what her family should be. And it's not the way she wants it to be so she's trying to change it. 

She is behaving like a spoiled brat stomping her feet because she's not getting her own way. But for me there is no happy medium. I'm not prepared to do the 3 hour each way drive once a month and stay for the weekend without my hubby because that's what my mum wants. But if I remain in contact with her, I will constantly be told she needs to see me. She even said we can stay in a hotel somewhere for the weekend just so that we can spend time together.. her, me and Isabelle. She said she's not making me choose between her and my hubby, but she's made it clear that he's not welcome in anything that involves her and myself.

I need to write to mum to say a few things. I can't think quick enough on the phone. I don't like confrontation. And having had at least 4 confrontational phone calls with her, I really can't deal with any more. But how do I write without being accusing and saying it's her fault, even by implication? I don't want to upset her, especially when her emotions are all over the place. But in the interim, she has no idea what I'm having to deal with. And even when I did say I was struggling to cope with it all, she said 'Well I've had to deal with it for years and I'm trying to sort everything out now.'

Having written all this to try and get it out of my head and sort some kind of sense, it's becoming more and more clear what my only option is. I just need to work out a way to go about it. I don't like hurting or upsetting people, I put other peoples feelings first.. to a fault.. but I'm not prepared to live with a whirlwind in my head and my self esteem plummeting lower than it already is.. if that's possible.

Wednesday, October 27

novel? if only it were

Hubby was late home and she and her young daughter had already finished eating dinner when he got home. She started to wash the dishes mulling the day over. It had been a rough week what with her daughter having a stomach bug and then her. For the best part of a week someone or other had been throwing up. It looks like the bug had finally left.

She was up to her armpits in soap suds when the phone rang. Surely hubby would get it afterall, he was in the living room whilst she was washing up. No. Her young daughter came running through to the kitchen with the phone in her hand. In her hurry, her little girl dropped the toy she was playing with and started wailing I've lost it, I've lost it. She anwered the phone with a 'just a second', she found the toy and handed it back and picked up the phone again. 'Sorry about that' had to sort a major catastrophe out'. It was 7.15pm. 

A voice on the other end of the phone spoke. A female voice, it was her mother who had been to stay at her daughter-in-law's for a couple of days. Her mother said.. "what did I say to your eldest daughter on her birthday that upset her?" What? she said. That was back in June.. hold on, I can't think... although she did wonder what had happened to the words hello, how are you? Oh, she said, i think it was something about her getting a motorbike and some comment you made. Her mother replied.. I can't take this anymore, (in tears) why do you all hate me so much, I'm going to kill myself and hung up.


Her mother lives a 3 hour drive away and she'd just said she was going to go and kill herself. She stood in shock, looking at the phone in her hand. Had she heard right? Yes she had. Panic!! What was she to do? Phone the police? What? What was she supposed to do? her mother had been in a poor mental state on and off for 4 years, but it had never been this bad. She phoned her brother who hadn't spoken to her since a previous argument with her mother a couple of months before. She told him what had been said and told him to get round there to her mother's house quick. He could be there in 10 minutes. Still in a panic she phoned her mother back and was relieved to hear her pick the phone up. Don't do anything, she said to her mother. I might as well, she replied, but your aunt is coming round. Thanks for being my daughter, and hung up again.

She was in floods of tears now and didn't know what to do. What would the next phonecall entail?

She waited a couple of hours and phoned her brother back, who didn't go round but phoned and was told someone was coming to see their mother. He had spoken to her again and she was ok, she told him. She had calmed down some and was ok. 

The worry is, that her mother lives alone and no one is staying with her tonight. It's going to be a long night, hence typing this at almost 1am.

No it's not a novel.. this actually happened to me tonight, and I don't really know what to do.