Tuesday, October 19, 2021

When my mouth says yes

Yesterday Sean messaged me and asked if I wanted to do the bit about creative prayer in Zac's bible study tonight. (I'd previously offered to do it 'at some time'.)

Unusually for me, I did have a quick think before saying yes but I had all the ideas written down so it was just a case of pulling it all together. So I said, 'Yes.'

Hence today - because all my creative ideas involve stones - you would have found me collecting stones from a wet and windy beach. Actually the collecting wasn't the bad bit: carting them back to the car was. Especially the really big but very pretty one.

I warned Husband before I went beach-combing that the Sainsburys delivery would be some time between 12 and 4. 'Okay,' he said.

When I got back the delivery man had been and gone again. Husband hadn't heard him as he'd been playing a computer game, with his headphones on.

When I grumbled he pointed out that I'd had another email saying the delivery would be between 12 and 1 so it was partly my fault. 

I'm still trying to work out how.

I'm also still hoping that the delivery will turn up again in the next thirty minutes.

Monday, October 18, 2021

That very silly idea

I've written in great detail about it on my author website blog, which you can read here. In summary I'm committing to write some fiction each day in November. My own version of NaNoWriMo.

See? I told you it was a silly idea.

But with good intent. A refinding of my creative purpose.

And while I'm about it, here's the link to my radio show podcast. It's not the actual show, just my talky bit.

And I'm in the process of arranging to speak to my subject (the man whose story I'm ghost-writing) tomorrow. 

Picking up my life again.

And a little wiggle of my bum

I've had a very silly idea. I shall ponder it a bit more before telling all and thereby committing myself.

Has anyone watched Clickbait? It is intriguing and getting more and more complicated as it progresses.

Is it manipulation if the other person isn't aware they are doing it? Is it manipulation if the other person is doing for their good? 

I came home from exercise feeling reinvigorated and with plans. Then I spent nearly an hour watching pointless video clips on youtube.

But it's not too late to ... you know ... pull myself together. Right, will message and email people. With intent. 

I can do this, come on.

Sunday, October 17, 2021

It didn't warm the cockles of their hearts

We had our flu jabs yesterday. A waiting room full of (socially-distanced) old people in masks, some of whom can't see very well, some of whom can't hear very well, and some of whom can't walk very well.

Amazingly turnaround was very quick and smooth.

And today has been a walking day. This morning I walked with granddaughters 1 and 2 to the coffee shop for milk shakes (or ice cream in my case), and this afternoon on the beach with friends. It really is beautiful autumnal weather.

But to spoil my evening I've just received a rejection. I've not submitted any writing anywhere for - probably years but just after I posted my Cockles story on this blog I spotted a call for submissions to a newish online literary magazine, on the theme of memories. So, thinking, 'what have I got to lose?' I submitted it before I could change my mind.

Ah well. At least it reminds me why I don't submit my writing any more!

Friday, October 15, 2021

A slice of yum

Thinking about food, I realise I forgot to show you what I had to eat on Sunday evening at Slice.

We opted for the Taster menu - lots of small dishes. All delicious.

Shwmae butt

Going into Zac's yesterday to deliver the food I had collected I noticed a man in a duffel coat wandering down the road talking to himself. When I came out he spoke to me.

'Morning. Bonjour. Bore da.'

I responded throwing in a buongiorno for good measure. We had a brief chat about the the day's menu and then he said, 'Au revoir. Goodbye.' Then he paused, 'What's Welsh for goodbye?' he asked.

I had a think. 'I don't know. I'm learning Welsh but I don't know.'
'Welsh is easy to learn,' he said.
'No, it's not.'
'Yes, English and Welsh are easy to learn.'
'Perhaps it's because I'm old I find it hard.'

He didn't argue.

I should point out - because I think it's interesting in regard to the ease with which we learned languages - that he was of Asian origins.

P.S. I looked it up when I got home. Goodbye is Hwyl fawr. Then I realised I didn't know hello either. It's Helo, or more usually shwmae.

And, incidentally, today in Wales is Shwmae Day. Apparently it was initiated in 2013 to promote the idea of starting every conversation with shwmae, to show that the Welsh language belongs to us all.

On Wednesday Daughter asked me to film myself saying shwmae for something they were doing in school. So here we are.

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

If I only had a brain

In Zac's last night we looked at the story of the man Jesus healed at the pool of Bethsaida. At the end of the story Jesus says, 'Go now and don't sin again,' leading to a discussion over whether it was his sin that crippled him.

'Perhaps he was having an affair with a married woman and he broke his back when he fell out of the window trying to escape from her husband,' I said.

Everyone burst out laughing. 'Are you in the middle of writing another novel, Liz?'

'No.' But perhaps I should be. It might be a more appropriate use of my imagination. I must try to think before I speak.

The discussion continued and broadened and I was about to say something but I gave way to another speaker. When the man had finished Sean said, 'I'm aware Liz wanted to say something,' he glanced at me, saw the look on my face, and said, 'so I'll give her a minute to remember what it was!'

'If I only had a brain.'

Today I was back in Zac's cooking chilli. I think I'm quite a good cook but I KNOW I'm a very messy one. Hence today you would have found me shifting the freezer so I could sweep up the raw mince that had fallen behind it. 

The only surprise is that it hasn't happened before.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Let it go!

I've been preparing next week's talk and as I read back over what I'd written it occurred to me: I am very good at not practising what I preach. 

So much of what I say seems to go along these lines: This is what the bible says but, yes, I know how hard this is and often can't do it. 

I know it may help people sometimes to know that others are human and have the same difficulties but, really, all the time? Is there a point at which being flawed becomes too flawed? 

In my talk I was thinking about letting go, in particular, of unforgiveness. I was supposedly encouraging listeners to 'let it go' while saying I'm not sure I have. 

But then today, continuing to ponder the topic, I realise the incident I was thinking about is forgiven. It's gone, it's okay. But no sooner was I was celebrating the fact that I was okay on that front, than another event cropped up in my memory. And it's not even one I've thought about forgiving - or thought about the need to forgive.

There is a person, not really in my life any more, with whom I have issue. I have been working on changing my attitude for some time, taking action to be a better person, and it is helping but now I see that the unforgiveness thing, which was buried deep, is still a 'thing' for me. So I need to forgive. 

Just me and God. No need to involve the other who would have no idea what I was talking about anyway. Then maybe I'll be able to continue improving my attitude, and have one less flaw to feel guilty about!

Sunday, October 10, 2021

Little black clouds

Today is World Mental Health Day. 

As regular readers will know I take a daily happy pill to keep me sane, but even so I am still prone to unexpected, unexplained even, lows. One hit me late yesterday morning. There was no trigger, no reason for it. If you think of depression as varying degrees of black cloud then a dirty grey one simply drifted over my head. 

It wasn't particularly serious and dispersed when I met up with the family. But these visiting clouds are a reminder of how sneaky they are, and how for some, the many whose problems are much more serious than mine and who need a lot more support, they never disperse fully or go away.

I was sitting at the computer when the cloud floated over. I knew I needed to get up and do things, to shake myself out of the apathy that was gathering. I knew that sitting at the computer wouldn't help but would only make it worse yet I was stuck, not even doing anything that could be called useful but playing solitaire over and over again. I had things I needed to do but they seemed too ... I don't know, much I suppose.

I'm fine now, by the way. It really was a brief passing wisp almost. But I'm an intelligent woman (honest I am really!), I have a loving family, and friends, I have my Christian faith, a good comfortable home, and all I need. I am so blessed in so many ways. What have I got to be depressed about?

Nothing. But that's not the way depression works.

I am fortunate that I am only mildly affected and that, on the whole, my symptoms are kept in check. Others aren't so lucky. 

There is more support available now than ever, and there is less stigma attached to mental health issues, so please, if you're struggling, talk to someone you trust, or to a professional. Sometimes talking is all you need.

Back to reality

After a week of resting - and feeling slightly guilty - real life starts again today. I did enjoy my break though and got through loads of Grey's Anatomy and a number of books so all good. I do feel a bit like I do if I have a little nap in the afternoon. Some people can do it and wake fully refreshed; I wake and just want to go back to sleep. 

But it's a sunny day and all is good.

We had an impromptu barbecue at Elder Son's last night. It was delicious, casual and fun, and tonight Husband and I have a booking at our favourite restaurant, Slice. It will be the first time we've eaten out in this country since lockdown began. Slice is only tiny and it's highly rated so getting a table is not easy. I made the booking for this in early September!

Not looking forward to weigh-in at Slimming World tomorrow evening though ...