Monday, 30 March 2009

This is why I do what I do for charity

No one understands the full implications of this illness until it hits them not only physical, mentally but financially as well.

This is why I campaign so hard to help others who are worse off than me and who really need the help.

I don't do it for reward I do this because it keeps me going.

The last couple of weeks have been hard for me not being able to go out and do any charity work has hit me hard but watching videos back of what I have achieved and am achieving is helping.

There is still much more I can do and I will do to help others.

I am not going to let my physical or mental state let me give up. I am determined to get through the fight for bureaucracy that chronically sick patients fight daily.

I want a life without having to fill in long horrendous complicated forms and that once someone gets a diagnosis they should automatically be given the benefits they require. Not have to have an examination with a 32 page report which is incorrect posted out to them after a certain period of time being on a certain benefit.

Friday, 27 March 2009

I am so excited

Dear All

(I hope you are all sitting down to read this otherwise you will fall over)

After the week I have had with its ups and downs visits in and out of hospital, Shropdoc you name it and needles which I hate with a vengence I am slowly starting to feel much better.

Well I opened up my emails today and I am still pinching myself. Why? I hear you ask.

To cut a long story short Ronan Keating has got a member of his staff to email me and offer two complimentary tickets to his live tour in June this year.

My initial reaction was to telephone MacMillan and offer them to them (who immediately refused and told me to make use of them myself). I have never been to a live concert ever in my life let alone a huge famous band like this one.

Steve is over the moon and was amazed when I tried to offer the tickets to MacMillan. I suppose I am just scared of big crowds and hence had a fear of going and thought the charity might like them to raise some money. Typical of me says Steve.

Oh well just got to wait and see now whether the dates we want are avaiable and have confirmation as I know from my legal work nothing is certain until its in your hands.

So am waiting to hear back now.

Best wishes to everyone


Tuesday, 24 March 2009


Thanks to Saturday's visit to Attingham Park my husband and I have now become members of the National Trust.

I am looking forward to venturing there again in the very near future and taking my time so that I can ensure I enjoy every thing at a steady pace.

It just goes to show what a day out can do not only to make me feel inspired but it also helps the National Trust as well.

Thanks again

Best wishes


Sunday, 22 March 2009

Mother's Day :-(

I hope all you wonderful mums have a wonderful day and really enjoy it.

I tried telephoning my mother having sent a card and as usual got no answer. I am hurting each time this happens as I feel it is rejection or perhaps I am overreacting.

I last saw my parents in March 2005 but I do speak on the telephone as and when I can. I always send the relevant cards and try and make contact as much as possible. I invited them to my wedding but they unfortunately had other plans.

In some ways I wish I was a mum myself but I know this will never happen as I made a very hard decision when I was 32 and just been diagnosed. I had no idea I was pregnant at the time of the operation and the nurses did not do pregnancy tests back then. So I had the operation and went home the say day. A couple of months later early January I felt extremely unwell and collapsed I was taken to hospital and then referred to a larger one. Here I discovered I was pregnant. I saw the gynaecologist the following week who said with my illness we would have to be extremely careful if the pregnancy was to continue and I had a while to decide what I wanted to do. The decision was made for me as a couple of days later I miscarried this meant a removal of products had to be carried out (yet another operation). The lovely gynaecologist told me I could also be sterilised at the same time to prevent the risk of yet another miscarriage and also the risk of passing the illness on to my offspring. I had a couple of days in which to decide.

In some ways I feel I took the coward's way out. I had the operation and sterilisation so will never know what it is going to be like to be a natural mother. I did have step children in my first marriage and loved them as if they were my own. Making things for them and loving them as best I could but I always knew and often they reminded me "You are not my real mum".

So I know life is tough and hard decisions have to be made. I made the decisions with the advice from the professionals but sometimes I yearn for what I have not got other days when I hear a baby screaming in a shop and it just won't stop I feel I am glad it is not happening to me.

So for all you mothers who have children, babies, teenagers or grown up remember you are the lucky ones you have faced your challenges and will have more to come because even when children are adults they always want their mum.

Best wishes


Saturday, 21 March 2009

Thank You Wrekin Writers

Dear Simon and others

It was a lovely meeting today in totally different surroundings and what a large group we now have.

I was so glad I struggled to make the day out and am truly glad I did. Everyone as normal was friendly and each time I seem to sit by someone different so that helps the socialising side much better.

I am hopeless with names and remembering things at present due to medication but I think I was sitting next to Dorothy (if wrong name I sincerely apologise) she looked after me so well and made sure my needs were met as much as possible. The Natural Trust certainly did us proud providing the room. The catering was much better than our "normal" meetings and it was lovely to see the sunshine.

When I got home I was so exhausted I fell asleep on the sofa due to the exhilaration and hilarity of the morning.

I will certainly be returning to Attingham not only with Wrekin Writers but will drag my poor suffering husband out of these four walls to enjoy life too.

I am certainly inspired to do more research and continue to write who knows where this will lead.

I am now more determined than ever to obtain a treasured and prized Moleskin which Simon so lovingly unwrapped before our very eyes at last month's Wrekin Writers meeting.

I am going to recharge my batteries for a while thanks to the medication at least one good thing I have now finished my antibiotics HOORAY. So a few less tablets a day to take.

The waiting game is what I am in for now. Waiting to hear from publisher and waiting for hospital appointments.

I hope to make next month's meeting but if I can't I will certainly let you know.

I am getting so popular I have already had three appointments all on the same date in April and have cancelled one already the others are going to either fit inside each other and I will end up being a whirlwind at each event or I am just going to have pace myself and for once be choosy.

Not an easy task when Wrekin Writers means so much to mean.

Thank you again Simon, Sue and all the others who I have not mentioned it means so much to be part of this "mad" group but I am so very glad I found you all.

Best wishes


Thursday, 19 March 2009

Half and half

Yesterday was a traumatic day to say the least. I had been trying to find out when one of my hospital appointments was for the last three weeks. Steve chased yesterday morning at 9.05 am and was told it was at 10.45 that day. Needless to say it was a rush to get me ready to go. We got there to discover the Professor was running over 2 hours late and had not even arrived yet!!!

So we were advised to go and get a cuppa. Just trying to work out where to go as there is very little wheelchair accommodation in the tea area when I was asked to go for an x-ray. This I duly did and then was advised again to go and get a drink and something to eat. By the time we had had something to eat and drink it was gone 1pm. So we returned the clinic area. Eventually we were called in and the registrar saw me and said he was going to get the Professor to review me. After waiting over 45 minutes the registrar returned without the professor and said "your condition has not changed therefore we will see you again in twelve months".

The last time they saw me I was walking the corridor with sticks this time I was in a wheelchair so hence my condition had changed.

I asked about the other symptoms I was having in the hope that I was going to get referred to someone. I just got told it was not his department and that I was to go home and if the symptoms reoccurred I was to call for an ambulance by 999.

I therefore telephoned my GP today and told him the outcome of the appointment of yesterday and he said "I am not sure who to refer you to but leave it with me I will do some research and you will be referred to the correct specialist".

As my husband is now my full time carer and had applied for Carers Allowance last week he received a letter by post this morning saying his Job Seekers Money would be going into a bank account which is now closed so he telephoned them to let them know this. The DWP then asked him why he had not been to sign on at 10.30 am. He explained he is now applying for Carers Allowance and they told him to get to the job centre in Madley for 11.30 am. We arrived there and after waiting a while we were eventually called. The gentleman behind the desk enquired why he had not filled in his diary of looking for work when I explained he was applying for carers allowance and the reasons why this had not happened before last week due to the fact that the letter had arrived a week ago Saturday explaining my care level had gone from low to middle rate from the DLA and that he was only entitled to apply for Carers Allowance as of last Monday and the form arrived last Tuesday that was why he had not filled in his "diary".

When I explained that the letter stated that my care level had gone up as of the 9th January but we had applied on the 6th January and that it had taken over 3 months to be informed that the care level had gone up the staff looked stunned but agreed the system was not brilliant for the genuine claimants.

Now my husband is applying for Carers Allowance he cannot claim JobSeeekers on top we understood this and hence that was the reason we thought he did not have to go and sign on today.

Once Carers Allowance is agreed and we are notified by letter than we can claim Income Support. I enquired how long this would take to happen response 3 -4 weeks. I said "you know that someone is entitled to a certain benefit and yet they can't apply for it until another comes into force by letter, what are they meant to do in the meantime?"

Well depending on the circumstances we can back date certain things. I then said they could not back the Carers Allowance as my husband had earned in excess of an average of £95 per week and hence the claim had had to commence from that date. The gentleman dealing with us looked stunned.

I then asked if we could claim Income Support as of now and was informed "NO".

This is why people like us just want to give up on life.

I throw myself into helping others and doing various things to keep busy otherwise I would go around the twist. My medication is not helping me with thinking and writing and I am finding everything a struggle.

When you meet me on Saturday if I have a lapse of concentration it is not that I am not paying attention or not listening to anyone it is the medication making me like this. I then get frustrated and frequently have to ask what was I talking about.

Bless my husband he is so caring and wonderful about it all. Today I have had to borrow his hanky three times so far to wipe my tears of anxiety away.

On the good side though so far I have gained four raffle prizes for Cancer Research Relay for Life event in September and have several addresses to write to so that we can gain some more donations.

So I am feeling a lot more positive about things now.

The sun is shining and I am going to venture out again this afternoon.

Best wishes


Tuesday, 17 March 2009

A Good Day today

I woke up in a daze following my new medication routine so please excuse me when you meet me in the future I know I am not my usual self.

After dragging myself off the sofa I decided it was high time this place was sorted out and had a sort of spring clean. So with my "Genius at Work Room" being in such a mess I started that. First all the junk that had been piled high near enough to the ceiling was dragged from this room to the bedroom where my husband sleeps. He has been nagged to tidy up for so long that this forced the issue especially if he wants to sleep tonight as I have my nice cosy sofa downstairs LOL.

While sorting stuff out I came across double bedding from my previous marriage and as we have no use for this as Steve has to have a king sized bed due to his height this was bagged up and I decided we would take it to the Salvation Army where I am sure it would be useful. I telephoned them first to make sure that we were not going to be wasting our time as I know some places are finding it hard to find volunteers to staff charity shops. It was not a problem that was the first job off the list.

I have been out begging for donations for raffle prizes for Cancer Research Relay for Life event taking place in Shrewsbury. I started off with stores we knew of.

First of all we went to Blacks as Steve and I (mad fools that we are may be camping out overnight at the relay event) so we went to look at tents and hence opened the conversation up to what we wanted. Within a few minutes my business card was handed over and someone will be contacting me back in the near future to see what they can do to help the relay event.

Next we went to Boots as Steve wanted some personal stuff and I wanted their help in promoting sun protection at the Relay so as you can see I was killing two birds with one stone everywhere we went so far. Boots again took my business card and while we were there we met a lady from the Shrewsbury store who told us to call in and she would see what she could do to help.

Then it was off to other shops to see what I could beg for donations. Unfortunately most of them now have policies that you write to head office at least 8 weeks in advance. So it pays to be well organised in advance of an event.

So that sums up my good day.

Got to go and take my medication so that will be all from me tonight on this blog for today.

Best wishes


Saturday, 14 March 2009


The New Writer landed on the mat this morning. I had forgotten all about subscribing to it and I picked it up. I ripped off the plastic cover and dived straight in.

I was so excited like a little girl with a new toy. I flicked through it briefly then studied the astrology article. Oh boy how accurate was it, absolutely spot on for both myself and my husband.

I skimmed through some of the advice and flicked over the pages and found some free stuff and a competition to enter.

Who knows this time I may pluck up the courage and enter something from this magazine.

As normal Simon is full of good advice about his article on writing circles and answering a query on that subject.

I am so glad I subscribed instead of having to drag myself to the shops to obtain a copy of a magazine which they possibly don't stock.

So am on a roll with words playing around in my head lets hope I remember them and get something written down before I go to bed.

Best wishes


Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Pink Day Today

I have had a "Pink Day" today I bought at The Works Danielle Steel "The Dating Game", Jacqueline Wilson "Love and Longing" and then to top it all off I bought Jasvinder Sanghera "Shame" all 3 were under £5.

So I have a broad selection of losing myself in romantic fiction, a strong autobiography to go through and a selection of Prose and Poems.

So I am having a wonderful day with what I have done this afternoon.

This makes up for the trouble I had on Monday night and I am now feeling much better. If you want to check out my other blog you will see what I am referring to.

I am still busy organising the event for September and being spurred on to continue to write. I also bought a copy of the Lady and found some wonderful literary stuff which I will bring along to the next meeting for those that may be interested.

I also bought another magazine to see what writing styles they want and if I can possibly do anything in that field.

Best wishes


Tuesday, 10 March 2009


Just got back home from a Cancer Forum Meeting. I hate the "C" word with a vengence but its now firmly part of my life and I have difficulty coming to terms with saying the word.

Its nice to be able to discuss our views openly and honestly. We all cope with this illness in different ways and the word that gets bantered about most is "normal". To us we will never be normal ever again. I was "normal" before the illness. Now my normality is battling on everyday coping with five minutes at a time a time on a bad day and coping with each day as it comes when I feel good.

That is my normality.

I just hope that follow in this journey will have a better time of it and hopefully what I do will make a difference so that the mistakes I have come across don't happen to anyone else.

Best wishes to you all.


DVD Video

I recently received a DVD from Noel's HQ of the whole show. Last night I finally managed to work out how to decrypt the thing and upload it to the computer. Some success.

Having done that I thought it was going to be easy to get the bit I required cut and put onto the computer. How wrong was I. This is proving far more difficult than I first envisaged. Never mind nothing ventured nothing gained and if I don't play about with it I will never learn anything.

I love it when things go right but when things go wrong I call myself stupid for not understanding something or coming to grips with things straight away. But wait how many of us can remember the easiest part of a spelling test or remember the words we got wrong.

I know it was the errors that made me who I am today I learnt from my mistakes.

So the more errors I make the more I learn from them.

That is what life is all about.

So I will keep trying and hopefully get somewhere with this project.

Best wishes


Sunday, 8 March 2009

How Many?

How many sides are there to one person?

Well there are several

the person who sometimes need comfort
advice giver and vice versa
Mrs Motivator (nag more like)
and above all else

I love my writing and
am getting a thrill
despite having a chill

I play with words and it seems to work. Just writing something anything whatsoever whether it be my inner thoughts or how I feel I just type or write about it.

Thank you all for your encouragement.

Best wishes


Friday, 6 March 2009

My view of life

Life is like a game of chess
It can end up in such a mess
But don’t despair or get in a rage
Fear not there is another page
Turnover a clean sheet of paper
Ready for the next chapter
Start writing again tomorrow
And don’t be full of sorrow

Thursday, 5 March 2009

Another Success

I received a telephone call today informing me I got letter of the week on the 2nd March in the local paper.

This means another pen is on its way. Who knows perhaps Simon will swap a moleskin for a pen or two.

I feel the gauntlet being laid down again.

Best wishes.



Due to my enthusiasm for writing and my frustration with the comment "word verification" I decided to look up the word "word" in the dictionary.

There are 54 descriptions of this word. (Yes I know I am sad I counted them!)

These include

word (NEWS)
word (PROMISE)
word (ORDER)
big word
complex word
dirty word
four-letter word
the f-word
a good word
guide word
household word
last word
magic word
nonce word
nonsense word/syllable
part of speech
swear word
word association
word perfect
word processing
the written word
not believe a word of it
not have a civil word to say about sb
(your) every word
be as good as your word
Many a true word is spoken in jest.
What's the magic word?
Mum's the word.
the operative word
say the word
send word
spread the word
take it from me
weigh your words
breathe/say a word
by word of mouth
not get a word in edgeways
word for word
(upon) my word!
put in a good word for sb
have a word in sb's ear
in a word
put the word about/around/out/round
word gets about/around/round
word has it
(the) word is
(the) word is/gets out
give your word
take sb at their word
your word is your bond
man/woman of your word
from the word go

It just goes to show there is no other word to describe "word" it appears in its own definition.

So in my own words "word" is a wonderful word.

Best wishes


I finally took the Plunge

Yesterday I actually plucked up the courage to send an enquiry email out to a publisher regarding my book.

I know I will not hear for a while but at least I have attempted to get noticed.

Nothing ventured nothing gained.

Will keep you posted as to progress.


Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Why do I write or do what I do?

I knit a little bit, I sew a little bit but above all else I love writing.

I loved writing my assignments for my law degree and found I was pretty good at getting the points across while telling a story at the same time.

My life changed most when I came into contact with Sail4cancer

It was following this that a design for my website t-shirt came about with the talk of putting two sails together in the shape of a bra and adding a slogan.

After this day out I met Trisha Goddard and my life has changed completely.

I now help with a lot of charity stuff getting various things improved to help others and trying to make the best of life.

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

My view on Spring

Its raining Its pouring
I feel like snoring
and going back to bed
as I have bumped my head

at least the grass is growing
and soon will need mowing
for the cattle are lowing
and will want to be fed


To help a charity you need to work out

1) which charity or charities are you going to devote time to?

2) What does this charity do and why are you wanting to help and get involved?

3) What is your personal aim and what do you hope to achieve?

4) What can you give the charity that someone else can't. e.g. time, personal experience?

5) What is the aim of the charity and what events are they holding ?

6) Be willing to badger for support and obtain donations whether it be raffle prizes or money

7) Can you get media coverage for the event you are holding? Who do you know where to obtain assistance from?

8) Let your friends and family know what you are doing once they see you are inspired and are determined they will most probably offer help and support of some sort or another.

9) Do you need sponsorship for your event, e.g. online sponsoring or getting people to pledge.

10) List your achievements no matter how small of who you have got on side

11) Above all else show enthusiasm as this rubs off on others.

I suppose writing is the same. Once you let your friends and family know you have goals to achieve they will usually help you. I am lucky my in-laws support me 100% with everything I do. For example I ran out of printer paper and my mother in law sent half a ream on Sunday afternoon when my husband had gone to visit her. She always enquires as to my achievements no matter how small they appear to me


I don't know about anyone else but I am getting a bit frustrated with the word verification when I post a comment on someone else's blog. I wouldn't mind if they were actually words but to use random letters and call them words seems completely wrong to me.

With words in mind I have this annoying idea of what is a "celebrity". I looked it up it means someone famous or well known. It does not say anything about being wealthy or rich.

I suppose fame comes in many shapes or form. We could call Simon famous through the writing circle as he known in various magazines, the Writers Bureau and for being a published author.

It is strange how others view us.

Take me for example, striving to overcome various things in my life and doing all I can to help others along the way and in so doing getting invited to tv studios.

I have no idea the impact I have on people. Today opened my eyes I had no idea I helped so many I just do what I feel is right and just carry on regardless of the consequences sometime.

I suppose I would compare myself like a bull in a china shop at times and others I am so cautious it hurts as I think about things for so long and worry about the consequences that it takes longer to achieve the goals I set myself.

As long as I am happy at the end of the day and know I have kept in touch with my friends and done my best that is all I can ask.

Best wishes


Monday, 2 March 2009

This will cause you to laugh

I discovered tonight what the term "self publishing" means. For those professionals out there who have already been published this will make you smile at naive little me.

I thought self-publishing was printing and binding the books together yourself. I did not realise it meant paying for the publishing to be done.

I am glad I asked the question and no doubt others will look at this post and say "So that is what it means". If you don't enquire as to what something means or what something entails you never learn anything in life.

We all have to start somewhere.

I am a complete amateur at writing and how I came about joining a writers group will also make you smile to yourselves (especially poor Simon, at least my book was small then!!).

It was 1st July 2008 and I decided I was happy with the outline of my book and what I wanted to achieve so sent it off to a publisher I had discovered on the internet who dealt with autobiographies and such.

This publisher was so sweet in his reply which he sent almost immediately he stated mainstream books should be 40,000 - 120,000 words if they were to get published and that I should obtain the "Red Book" as I call it "The Artists and Writers Handbook for the current year". It was through his encouragement that I searched the internet and found some hints and tips on another website and then finally found Wrekin Writers.

Simon will remember my email so well I expect. I sent him my whole book, consisting of three chapters, the beginning, the middle and the end, it wasn't very long at all but summed up most of what I was trying to achieve in my own little world.

Simon patiently emailled me back pointing out it was not the thing to do and that if all the writers in the group submitted their books to each other no one would have time to write. Needless to say I was slightly embarrassed. Simon in his lovely email also invited me to join the writers group.

I now look back and laugh at my arrogance and naivety. I expect the others in the group will also have a giggle at this post.

Thank you Sue and Simon for putting up with such an ignoramous it is only by making mistakes that we learn from them.

I hope this post has made people smile I am giggling as I type it and am also a bit red faced but if someone learns from this post then it will have been worth it.

Best wishes to you all.


My Dreams

We all have dreams and aspirations.

1) To get my book published so that it can help other women through a really tough time.

2) To live in a bungalow so I don't have to struggle up the stairs in excruciating pain

3) To have a laptop to type my writing on to

4) Go to see places I long to go back to including Cornwall, St Lucia, Aberdyfi, Twyn and the Lake District.

5) To eventually have a honeymoon once passports have been renewed.

6) To be free of debt.

I think these are achievable and one day I will tick them off a list.

Best wishes.


Sunday, 1 March 2009

St David's Day

I have just done some research to work out why people in Wales wear a leek or daffodil on this day. Well leeks represent the fact St David (Dewi in Welsh) was a vegetarian and one of the meals he ate was leek cawl (a leek soup). Leeks are supposed to be good for health.Daffodils came later when they were worn at the investiture of the Prince of Wales at Caernarfon.

I can remember wearing a leek to school and I liked raw leeks by the time it came for my leek to be judged there was nothing left I had eaten it all.

Perhaps I ought to eat more leeks and see if my health improves.

Best wishes to everyone celebrating St David's day.



I was sitting tapping out a story on my computer for a competiton and thought what am I afraid of most? The answer failing? Failure can be viewed in many ways.

An artist can fail if they don't attempt to put pencil to paper. Not trying to create anything can be counted as a failure as you let self doubt in to your life and then you never achieve your goals.

I was watching various programmes on Margaret Thatcher. I suppose when she came to power and the talk of her being the first woman prime minister was an amazing feat in itself. I thought she had had it easy, until I saw the programme about Finchley. It just goes to show she was determined to overcome self doubt, prejudice and the "old school tie brigade".

If I don't enter the competition I will never know if my writing would have been a successful piece or not. I have completed the piece and once I am happy with it I will no doubt send it off. At least my motto nothing ventured nothing gained will have been applied.

If I don't win I won't have failed I have tried my best and that is all we can ask of ourselves.

If we don't try we never know what we can achieve.

I know I have to concentrate on my writing despite, my cough, aches and pains. Anxiety seems to be playing a part too in my ailments and this certainly is not helping. I wake in the night with pains in my chest, I reach for my inhaler and try and relax. Each time seems to be worse than the one before all I can hope for is sleep as I know tomorrow is another day and it will be better.

What helps me through my challenges is my friends and support. Knowing others are feeling the same way about their writing and wondering if it is good enough to be published means I know I am not alone.

Best wishes to everyone.