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Saturday, 24 July 2010


This morning the only thing I felt like watching was 'Got to Dance'.  It was a repeat (I actually recorded the live shows at the time so have seen them all before).  I love dancing. I love dancers.  Every kind of dance, but mainly ballet and contemporary.  I used to dance.  I used to baton twirl and before that did ballet (though I never did any grades).  I love dancing in night clubs.

But all that is in the past.  The most I can ask for now is to manage 5 minutes on a dance floor and that leaves me with extreme pain so don't undertake it often (the last time was around Christmas).  Watching other people dance upsets me because it reminds me of what I've lost, what I can't have.  Yet I am constantly drawn to it.  In some ways watching is better than nothing.  When I feel really good I spend hours on YouTube watching baton twirlers and cheerleaders pulling stunts I never got the chance to try.  Watching them brings me a little closer but it also makes me realise just how much I hate M.E. and what it is doing to me.   I was never going to be a great dancer.  I didn't really want to be.  I just want to be able to dance and enjoy it and love it.  There is no feeling like it.

So if you don't do something that secretly you would like to try ask yourself why.  If it's any reason other than you physically can't, go out and give it a go.  Enjoy the life you have.  Because it's only when it gets taken away from you that you'll realise just how much you had.  So take advantage of it now and hope that you can continue forever.  But at least you won't regret not doing it.

Thursday, 22 July 2010

Naming Characters

This post is for the writers that read my blog:

Yesterday I came up with a new idea for a short story that I'm pretty psyched about.  As the idea struck in the middle of the night I spent most of the night thinking about it and trying to name my two main characters.  They are a mother and daughter - yes, that part's important.  Because I realised something as I was trying to find the right name for the daughter.  I could think of quite a few that fit her personality and character perfectly but there was something not quite right about them.  And then I realised.  I was trying to name how she was now, not what she would have been named.  So I started thinking more about the mother character and by getting to know her I knew what she would name her daughter.

I've never heard of this as a way to name characters before - let their own imaginary mothers find the name - and perhaps you're thinking I'm completely insane right now.  But it worked this time and it's a method I will definitely be trying in the future when I get stuck on a name (and that is the main part of characterization I have problems with). 

How do you name your characters or do you just instinctively know their names (this has happened to me once)?

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Positive Advice

Everyone who's ever had a bad patch in their life has probably been given some 'cheer up, it gets better' advice.  With my M.E. a lot of people say the same thing.  (Which, by the way, just makes it worse as it's probably not going to get better.)  And recently I've found myself dishingo out the think positively advice to other sufferers.  I don't mean it as an insult, and I'm very careful with how I phrase my words when it comes to it, as I know how it feels.  And the reality is the last thing you want is someone telling you to think more positively, not everyday will suck.  We already know that, but when we're complaining it's usually because I don't care that tomorrow might be better - right now sucks.  Yet I'm still giving the positive vibes in response to posts simply because I don't want to join in and remind them that yes, my life sucks too.  When you're in a bad mood, everyone else tends to be in the wrong.  So I'd rather say something uplifting and be hated for that than for something depressing.

My problem is, it's relatively easy to say it to someone else, so why can't I give myself the same positive thinking that I'm advising other people to use.  Don't get me wrong, I want to be happier, more positive and learn to deal.  But the reality is that's it's. so. hard.  It's much easier to just wallow and feel crappy than to force myself to believe that there might be light at the end of the tunnel.  Especially as thinking positively can feel like you're using a mammoth amount of energy whereas wallowing doesn't use up half as much.

I don't really have a point with this post other than it's a lot easier to dish it out than to accept it yourself.  But this isn't necessarily hypocrisy (though in some cases of course it is).  Just because I can't feel happy all the time doesn't mean that I don't try at least some of the time.  And whenever I give out positive advice I think hard about what effect it might have on the receiver - as well as what effect it would have on me if someone were to say it to me.

And if anyone believes that life with M.E. doesn't really suck then read this post and perhaps you'll have a chance to rethink!

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Sunday Shout Out

If you are a reader like me, you'll always be looking for the next book to read.  At Peeking Between The Pages you will find as many reviews as you can devour by Darlene.  Each review explains the story and gives a fair review so I always know what to expect and what disappointments I might have in any novel.  I've never managed to get around to reading any of the books she's reviewed, due to money, but from the reviews I've read I've already compiled a hefty reading list.

Interspersed with the reviews, Darlene lets you into her life a little.  In particular her readers love Buddy, her incredibly cute dog - she posts a lot of pics of him - so don't worry if the blog opens to a post that doesn't look like a review; it won't take you long to find some.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010


After reading Stephanie Faris' post Regretting Parenthood I had to comment here as the points she makes are so valid in my own life.  I am not a parent.  I don't intend to be a parent.  But for some reason it is assumed that I will be a parent.  Now, I'm not saying I won't change my mind; I'm not saying I will - I don't know, I can't know.  But I know that where I am now emotionally and mentally, I don't want a baby.  In the same way that I know that I don't want to get married.  This doesn't stop me from being in a loving relationship and being happy.  The way I see it, not have a marriage certificate probably won't make much difference in my life at all.  Of course, I can't guarantee that I won't get married.  I'm fully aware that I might change.  But it's the fact that everyone assumes that I'll grow out of it and soon enough will want to be a wife and a mother.

What happened to feminism people?  To me, feminism is about choice but it still seems that if you don't choose to follow the 'norm' in society then there is something wrong with you - that you're weird.  Personally I don't care if you have kids, I don't care if you don't.  I don't even care if you're one of those (in my opinion) idiots attempting to do both fully and completely.  I'm not saying it can't be done but I'm not sure it can be done and there still be space in your life to be yourself and actually be happy.  We only get one life so we might as well enjoy it.  So why can't I enjoy my choices without prejudice?  It's not like they really effect the majority of the population.  Everyone deserves to be able to live as they want (you know, as long as it's not hurting anybody - so no, I'm not condoning murder etc) and to be happy. 

I won't judge you (unless you are a close friend and your choices really are making your life miserable) so please have the curtesy to not judge me or anyone else.  You don't have to agree, you don't have to like it - but something I remember my mum saying is 'if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything' and I totally agree with this.  It is a motto of life.  There is no need for meaness or judging.  And remember that you can't know everything that person thinks and feels so in reality, you don't have any right to comment.

Sunday, 11 July 2010

Sunday Shout Out

I just have to include with my head in the clouds in my Sunday Shout Out.  Every post seems to be filled with a lyrical, almost fantasy-like writing.  The words speak about anything and everything and make it beautiful.  The author also has an incredible knack for finding the perfect pictures to include with the words she scribes.  Every post leaves me wanting more - not just from her blog, but from life itself.  So please check it out.

Thursday, 8 July 2010

Break It Down

I read a lot of blogs - probably far too many (if you're that interested you can see the full list on my blogger profile).  And I feel that if I want to follow them I should read every post - or at least I want to read every post.  Yesterday I was unable to check any new posts as I was pretty much bedbound (evil M.E.) so today I opened it up to find over 50 new posts.  Being who I am I have to read them all and so have opened them all up so they're waiting for me.

Seeing so many posts could have overwhelmed me, possibly to the point where I could have closed them all and therefore not read any.  I guess I could have chosen which posts to read, therefore prioritizing them.  But let's face it, I don't have much else to do today so I really do have plenty of time to read them all.  So instead of worrying that I have far too much to read I am taking them a few at a time.  I am reading (yes, I'm still going through them) a small block of them and then do something else (go on facebook, write this post, rest).  I am breaking the task down into managable bites.  I believe this is the best way to go about any overwhelming task.  It works particularly well with tidying - instead of trying to tidy the whole room I focus on a small area where I can actually see the difference I've made. 

It can also work with writing.  Instead of thinking 'OMG I have to write x number of words to finish this' break it up so you think 'I want to write 500 words today/in the next hour'.  When you've written them you'll feel better because you'll have accomplished something and won't be worried that you didn't meet your target.  And many lots of 500 words really do mount up incredibly quick.  Of course, don't feel that you can't write more than your set target if you're on a roll.  As long as you're writing something rather than sitting about worrying how much you have to do.

This, as I said before, can be applied to any situation that makes you feel as if you don't want to start because there is so much to do.  If it helps, make a list of all the seperate componants of what you need to do.  And then take it a piece at a time and hopefully whatever the task at hand is, you'll finish it before you realise.

Monday, 5 July 2010


I have a huge decision to make.  I'm going to the cinema but I can't decide whether I should see Toy Story 3 or Shrek Forever After.  Normally I'd advise someone in this situation to see both but due to my M.E. this isn't possible and so I have to make the choice.  I'm sure I'll see both of them sooner or later - but which one do I see now and which do I wait until I can see it on DVD?  Seriously, I'm asking for your opinion here.

There are a few ways I know of to aid in making decisions though a lot of them involve chance - flip a coin, run a random generator, eeny meeny miny mo.  Or there is the making a list of pros and cons way to go about it.  The main problem I have is that they pretty much both rate the same on the pros and cons.  I've already made the choice to see whatever I see in 2D - now is just the problem of which film.  So how do you make your decisions?