Tag Archives: adjusting

Jumping the gun a little

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I have found a house that I imagine I would like to live in and am going to see it on Saturday. In fact it is more or less the dream place for me, but I know that without the money in place to make an offer – this little venture will lead to a bit of heart ache…

The move is coming closer though and and some point the search must begin.

Also, one idea is that if I see a smaller house it will make it more easy to rid myself of more bits and pieces long before the move happens.

And, I do like looking at houses.

 

 

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Reflections on a marriage

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After successful surgery and we hope the all clear, the ex and I have settled into a routine of sorts. We have taken turns to cook meals, I have played nursey a bit, but he is healing fast and well. We have had a meal out, seen a film, had coffee in town, talked about some of the things that need to be done on the house, his life in paradise and have sat side by side on the sofa watching programs on the iplayer.

9 years ago this week we arrived in England full of hope and concern for the family we were creating. Daffodils are in bloom now, as they were then. It did not work out. Previous baggage, unrealistic and unshared expectations, my depression and his controlling nature were some of the reasons.

But this last few days as I listen to tales of paradise, I see a man that while is intelligent and sometimes very funny,  is someone who thinks nothing of comparing our lives and situations. He told me my choice (for monetary reasons) of moving to the next town was dodgy, it being a horrible, dangerous place, but was ideal for me and my new start in life!!

We just didn’t know each other well enough when we made the commitment. Our values differ too much. He said he visited a holiday villa that rents out for $35,000 A NIGHT in the peak season on the island…he said at first he thought it was unjustifiable, but after looking round decided it was probably worth it. I think his head has been turned. He bemoans the fact that ALL his friends are millionaires and it is so hard for him.

Those two comments alone do not sit well. Friends are people that you like, respect, have an interest in and they reciprocate that. And with all the homeless, stateless, starving, scared people around the world hoping just to survive, I cannot see the justification in such a property.

So while it has been adult and peaceful and in some ways good to have the company, I found myself feeling very sad today as the dog and I walked on the farm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Out of my head

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This has been a long, long week of lectures and driving. We are packing all the academic stuff in before placement starts, theatres, followed by an elective surgery ward…

In this long week I have struggled to sleep and have been in a state of high anxiety for most of the time.

My artist sister and my lovely hairdresser/friend both extolled the words of Eckhart Tolle, especially his book, The Power of Now….I had a wee look and listen to him on a YouTube clip and did not warm to his slightly wombat like countenance. (Not that I don’t like wombats, I think they are gorgeous, and think me cruel, judgemental, whatever, but if I want to open my mind, I need to feel it is in the right place and time and with the right person)…BUT, after picking up a Deepak Chopra book for 57p, which was simple and similar to a lot of such writing, I put it aside and gave old Eckhart another listen while knitting my socks. (Yes, thank you, they are coming on nicely, progress picture soon..).

Some of it struck a nerve and reminded me of sessions with the counsellor about not living in my head, which is full of what ifs, fear, anxiety and other unhealthy emotions. The trick is to ‘step out of it’, out of the thoughts and leave them behind. I did some stepping out and in some ways it is no different to the old school ‘pull yourself together’ process, only the imagery is nicer and it feels like a CHOICE.

So I am working hard on choosing to be less worried and fretful and to work down my lists, to be gentle and kinder to myself and allow the blips.

 

 

 

 

The dam bursts

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An email was waiting when I got home from my lovely hairdresser’s with a smart new – no longer silver at the roots – cut.

Nasty and mean about me and the girls. It was like a slap. Out of the blue. I cried after reading it. Then, wrote back. The long and the short of it was a furious exchange in which he demanded clarification, explanations and justifications. I laid it all out and gave him the option to take it or leave it.

Then the dam burst I think, on his side. He has been really suffering, tormenting himself with questions and what ifs. The last few emails were gentler, kinder, more introspective and accepting. I hope he now realises that anger and resentment do not allow us time to grieve and that by actually admitting how he feels to himself, it will help him.

He says he is looking forward to moving on and having a better relationship with me now. I am hoping too that this will be possible.

We all come to terms with things at different rates and in different ways. It is easy (as any reader of this will know) to be one sided and forget about how others may feel.

Although I write about my side all the time, I do know there is his side. I have always hoped that at some point some acceptance of his role in the end of our marriage would be forthcoming. There is no great sense of glory, now that it has. It has just lifted a great cloud and cleared the way for both of us to get on with our own lives and, that part of our lives that still overlap.

 

 

 

 

 

A sense of order

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With all that is going on and the way my mind works (a bit like a spinning top) it is very easy to get sucked into a state where it all just seems TOO MUCH.

Living alone, I recognise that it is always going to be up to me to get on with things, no-one to nag or remind me and no one to help or to share the load. It isn’t bad though. I get to do things how and when I like…but I am very, very easily distracted.

I also recognise that by focusing on things, one at a time, there is a higher chance that tasks will be completed, done well and in time (if there are deadlines).

My lovely friend LE gave me a ‘Things to do Today’ pad and it is so cool it took over a week for me to write in it!!! Grand were my plans for it…..

It has its first list in it now. Stuff on paper that no longer has to jostle for space in my head. A MANAGEABLE list.

The relentless 9-6 (or 7) days are coming to an end soon and there will be time to do the things that I worry about. It is liberating to see them written down and I feel a bit more relaxed.

The charity shop has a new driver too and they will be coming to get the furniture in a day or two….woohoo.

 

 

 

What it’s worth

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The Grim Challenge was a big success for the four young things who ran today. Bitter cold winds but gorgeous sunshine made it ok for the few spectators as well. They were soaking and shivering and covered in mud when they got back to the car. The turnout was great and loads of charities were represented.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

Grim Challenge, Aldershot, 7/2/2016

There was talk on the way home of getting the mothers to run as well next year….

While waiting for the runners to finish, the smell of coffee and hotdogs was tempting, but at £4.00 for a sausage in a bun and £3.00 for a coffee, there was no way I could afford to or would want to pay that amount….

Of late, my long term financial situation has been playing on my mind. At 55 with only about 7 years of work under my belt in the UK, my State pension pot is paltry. It will be about 18 months before I can hope to work full time again and despite efforts to find a Saturday job, it has not happened (yet).

I am a good saver and big believer in putting pennies away. The problem is that it is hard to save when there is no income! Yes, I do live off the joint account at present, but as He in Paradise is always checking the ins and outs of it, I am careful about purchases.

I mentioned my student loan recently. I invested part of that in a crowd-funding property deal, buying a small share in a rental property in Manchester. The returns (not guaranteed of course) look good. I also have been a long term investor in a peer to peer lending scheme. It returns an average of 4% per annum, which in this market is great.  This type of passive income is good but in order for it to have any significant financial reward, one needs a lot of money invested. At present only the odd tenner can be popped in, now and then.

Without a load of money one needs to be frugal, and I notice that of late, more thought goes into purchases. Where cash back or discounts (or both) can be used they are. £2 coins go in a tin that cannot be opened (need a can opener) and £5 notes are saved. A friend taught me this one. Any £5 s that end up in my wallet at the end of the day are removed and banked at the end of the week.

I have been experimenting with a capsule wardrobe too and after a week of wearing the same ‘uniform’ (washed in between), not a person has commented, which goes to show how much anyone notices, and that we all worry too much about what we wear!

So, all this has inspired me, for what it’s worth, to persist with the collection of pennies, the making of packed lunches and wearing a capsule wardrobe….it all adds up to savings for my dotage.

 

 

 

 

 

Now there’s a (troubling) thought

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He says he might pack it in and come back. The job is not what he was told and expected. He would have to stay in the house with me (eeek), (good thing the charity folk haven’t collected the beds yet!).

Heart sinking moment or two, but it is still a MIGHT.

It is a troubling idea though. Under one roof again.

But, let’s cross that bridge when it rises up before us…

Daughter is THIN and pale and worn out. Lots of TLC, good food, some chocolate and REST. Tonight we are having TONJIRU the all time best ‘feel good’ food. My dear friend in Japan made it for me at the lowest point in my life, that and apple crumble….cures everything. Only we are having Tori (chicken) jiru (soup), cos the pork looked so awful and I prefer chicken anyway, still does the same trick…

Flights to Bologna booked and paid for but sadly not with Nectar points as I missed out by not booking them on Thursday. It seems that only one or two seats per flight can be purchased that way, and one has to be quick. However, I still managed a fab deal and feel proud and really, really excited. Just over a month to go.

 

 

 

All at sea

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It has been a bit of a bumpy ride since the exam. Nothing dreadful, just out of sorts and not myself. Lost focus and lots of niggles.

It feels like pieces of a jigsaw are missing. I can’t move till I find a house and I can’t look for one until the flat sells, and He who lives in paradise is concerned that plummeting stock markets have made it difficult for him to produce the dosh etc, and it is all a mishmash of things not happening.

A 3000 word essay is due Tuesday night and I am about half way through. I have lost my drive. It was the one thing that kept me going, the degree, nursing and the future, but right now, even that has gone. (It will return, but it is not a good feeling when my true passion has faded).

It is a matter of (again) re-evaluating, making priorities, and taking manageable steps to get things done.

It does not help that apart from dog walks there has been no serious exercise. Endorphins really do work!

Oldest daughter had a blip at uni this week, boyfriend and other things and has been packed off home for a few days by her tutor for some TLC. It is hard when you are young and have to learn about the painful side of love. She arrives tomorrow. Having her here will be nice, although she warns me that she plans to sleep a lot!

I have vowed to do SOMETHING on the essay tonight , just to feel as though progress is being made. I have also downloaded ENDOMONDO on my phone – an app I used to have and used all the time.

I do this, flounder and then attempt to rally and boost myself up again,  we all do no doubt. But it is a bit like being all at sea, bobbing around, waiting for other things to fall into place so that I can get on.

But one thing happened today that was very unusual and very welcome. A large sum of money hit my account from Student Finance. I immediately allocated it to various places that will cover upcoming expenses, to my cash ISA and have some left which I plan to invest! (Part of my plan to put something towards my dotage as I do not have a pension here….). There are some who might think that student finance is for living on, it is, but I am so frugal at the moment that I do not for now, have to touch it. That may change when I come to buy my new home, so it may as well work for me while it can!

Wall Street – watch out!!!

A weird thing to do, or is it just me?

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Facebook revealed a photo of the ex today, uploaded by a friend, of him and his first wife at their wedding. There was some banter about him holding his stomach in and a comment from someone I have seen in the last few months saying ‘ how nice to see….’ (name of ex-wife).

It hurt, and here is why. That marriage ended in tears and then very, very sadly a few months later in the death of his wife.

The person who commented about his wife, was once a bit unkind about her, to ME.

Since that marriage, we were married, but it seemed as if the last ten years just DO NOT exist.

So, here I am getting all upset and hurt, then I started thinking how very odd to put up a photo that is so OLD. He looks nothing like that now. It was not (according to him) a happy relationship, but there was the photo for all to see. What on earth was the point?

So weird, or is it me just thinking that?

Once I manned up, I started, tentatively tackling my ever growing ‘to do’ list. More stuff for the charity shop, and they are coming with the van next week to take some of the bulkier bits of furniture….

Student Finance has agreed to lend me money – never thought I would be happy to be in debt, but it is going to seriously help over the next few months. I emptied my pound coin and penny jar and had over £50 which was banked.

I am now about to start more work and have a gym date at uni in the morning before hitting the library and seeing the head of the program.

 

 

 

 

 

Blips

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Had a major one yesterday – all overcome with emotion and hurt. Some hard self examination and reflection about being a NICER, KINDER soul. I could really work on that! Basically beat myself up about a lot of stuff, got teary, did a little study and a lot of procrastinating.

Today was a little better. It started though, with a big unexpected expense as my laptop was not talking to the printer and a call to the helpline revealed that my IP address had been hacked and there were over 45,000 Trojans in the system….slowing shutting down all I have.

I paid for them to fix it, it took a couple of hours but both laptops are clean and protected now. The Internet was fine, just the IP address.

That motivated me to record the expense and have started using and adapting the budget template from Blonde on a Budget‘s blog to get an idea of spends.

The solicitor also sent me a requested letter about my marital status and financial situation so that I can apply for a little more bursary and the accountant has sent all my tax returns so that the girls can apply for a bit more help.

So even with my head under the duvet, things still got done!!

While it is clear there can be no extravagance, I did knock for my neighbour, who spends days on end alone and asked if she would like to have a coffee with me in town as there were errands to run. It was nice and a break from the desk.

Daily, small downsizing tasks are being performed too. Yesterday a wardrobe was emptied, today all the old office paraphernalia that was in this room has been collected in one space to be donated.

Little and often is my mantra for dealing with the big things that are freaking me out!

About to do a pasta bake for dinner/lunchbox tomorrow and food for daughter while I am on shift.

PS. Daughter ran 18k in the foulest, coldest, wettest, windiest weather the other day. She was dripping and splashing through water ankle deep. To accompany her I fashioned a waterproof ensemble from wellies, a raincoat tied around my waist, apron like to keep the rain off my legs, rain coat, worn traditionally, gloves (leather) but covered with bright blue surgical gloves for water proofing, scarf and waterproof hat to keep the rain off my face. The brim of which sent waterfall like torrents onto my legs if I looked down…..

Think, The Lady in the Van, only on a bike.