Pain is not good for Concentration

These last few days (4 or 5) I’ve been feeling somewhat under the weather.
Headaches, nausea, dizziness and basic malaise – not enough to send me to bed or the Dr. just enough to make me into a whiny sod. I have footled about on the thesis, moped and cried a bit and generally not been very productive.

But once or twice it slipped over into real pain and utter failure to work. I Hurt. Wrist, knee, hips.. My shoulder has been doing a burning, stabbing agony type thing. Not so that I can’t move my hand or type, just enough that it hurts all the time and I can’t move my head without wincing. Although, ironically, it seems to be better in the pub and hasn’t yet stopped me hefting firkins or pulling pints but tends instead to sieze up when I sit down to write or try and sleep.
B tells me it is because I haven’t been using my proper chair and laptop stand… (Don’t tell him but there may be some truth in that) I however am firmly of the opinion that I am suffering an acute psychosomatic stress reaction.
I feel like shit because I am worried about my thesis and I have an excuse for not doing much on my thesis because I feel like shit – sounds like a perfectly plausible self-fulfilling prophecy and one step up from laziness. Fact remains though it is really difficult to concentrate when you hurt



Do you know what I’m finding hard about healthy eating?
Aside, of course, from the fear of control issues and the need to maintain sensible self-image.. and the insane cheese cravings that plague everyday of my life.
The problem is my thesis. – That is its ability to induce boredom, frustration and anxiety which lead to pacing, procrastination and sandwich-making (especially of the cheese variety). To stave off the desire to eat, I make coffee. Eventually though the slow years of trying to reduce my caffeine intake leave me with jitters and the desire to kill the jitters with food or booze.
So since being an alcoholic is both expensive and fattening and the thesis isn’t going away just yet I am trying to learn how to snack on lettuce and hoping that my appetite will eventually vanish as the stress gets higher – like during my A-levels, and finals…

I don’t want to be thin, I don’t want to stop enjoying food. I want to get back closer to my pre-antidepressants weight (partially so I can stop being paranoid about my blood pressure and whether they’ll take me off the anti-baby pills) and I want to get back to feeling fit with the hope that maybe I’ll have more energy and my joints will stop playing up. I want to wake up not feeling tired and I want not to spend everyday in pain.

Not at my most optimistic

Have you ever walked the line between the DOOM in your head and the absolutely resolutely sensible getting-by day person who is busy not making a fuss?

I am currently very quietly running around screaming. Absolutely completely panicking about my thesis and its state of unfinished ridiculosity. Dreaming about it, waking up in cold sweats about it, crying at inopportune moments because of it, giving up sex and forgetting to eat because of it and pretending its no big deal.
The world still requires my presence – I have to get up and go to work, buy food, walk the dog, talk to people and plan my future as though I am not having a crisis with every breath and I think I might be losing it.

Though the desire to sleep incessantly is pretty strong mostly the fight is to keep away from my razor blades. Although I have slipped into my bad habits once or twice since the last time I really crashed you can’t tell – the scars on my arms are nearly a year old and finally fading to silver to match the rest. It has really been 3 months since i touched the blades at all.
I fantasise about it everyday – and its getting worse.
I don’t think there is any way to explain to someone who has never felt it the pull addiction has. I have other coping mechanisms: people to call, things to do – but that quick sharp sting and the soft flow of blood is still the first and last image in my mind when I can’t quite cope. I guess alcohol and heroin in their way offer that same stupid siren song. The ease with which I could make a mistake isn’t a worry its a comfort just like the knowledge a little more is a little better.
For now I have it locked down, a treat I must deny myself, like chocolate and sleep. I keep on saying that maybe tomorrow I will relent, I just have to wait til tomorrow, keep holding on.
But soon .. soon I will be too tired to care about tomorrow and consequences; soon just making it through today is all I can hope for.

Workplace Bullying

How do you deal with a manager who makes your life miserable?
What ways are there to fight back in a “your word vs theirs” scenario? Especially if your self-confidence is low and assertiveness is merely a word in your personal development manual..

The wife’s boss is somewhat making life difficult at the moment. The main consequence of which is that W feels that the cumulative effects of bad management and lack of support that led to her taking time of work because of “anxiety and work-related stress” (as noted on her sick-line) are entirely her fault. Support that she asked for from Occupational Health is unlikely to be given, especially since she has been told that the DDA doesn’t apply to her. [The consequences of this for me largely consist of feeling like a useless lump of poo and bursting into tears a lot]

One problem with bullying and harassment (other than the basic making you miserable issue) is deciding what constitutes unacceptable behaviour and what is merely having high expectations. W feels that it any accusation of bullying would immediately be countered by an accusation that she is incompetent and excessively absent. I, of course, disagree with her assessment of her ability and believe that she is meeting the obligations of her employment. I also know that in this instance it is not single acts of disregarding W’s concerns or difficulties, or overloading her with work or denying her leave but the cumulative effect of repeated poor treatment.

I just don’t know how to help..

ETA- Disclaimer: I accept that this is my opinion, it does not represent an attack on an institution nor should it be considered a professional attack on the reputation of the people involved. At this time I have no evidence and am not making a formal complaint and unless that is done all rants must be considered personal in nature.

Money Worries

The thing I hate about money is there is never enough of it.

My dearly beloved wife gets quite upset about any time she is broke; she finds lack of money and especially asking for money an affront to her pride. I understand, its just a shame she is good at spending it 😉

This time of year is always expensive- not just holidays, but new clothes for smother visiting and sorting out the next academic year with regards books and computer equipment. That reminds me I have to send my form in to the DSA to get some money from them….

As I get paid in cash I have to make a constant effort to pay money into my current account in order to use my card for anything, it works nicely for covering food, drink and transport costs with no more than we have. W pays most of the bills with her monthly earnings and I keep an eye on our joint savings account and day-to-day cash flow which works well unless I get paid late or until we get to things like clothes that fall between our accounts -cue annoying stress.

We are lucky. We are all able to work (to a greater or lesser degree), we aren’t dependent on hand-outs or going without food. We are just getting by..

Sigh. Anyone fancy donating me substantial amounts of money?