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Gratitude Journal #75

Life is all feeling very strange at the moment. I've been keeping a journal, of sorts, about what's going on and how I feel about it all but I haven't been about here for a couple of while. It's been a combination of not wanting to write and not having the time to write with the children around me.

Whilst we are safe indoors (safe, not stuck), now is as important a time as ever for me to concentrate on what I am grateful for. So, in no particular order:

Mother's Day
I was very spoilt this year for Mother's Day including a small gift that the girls chose me at school via a scheme the 'Friends of' hold each year.

T's Birthday
T turned 6 last weekend. Unfortunately we had to cancel her birthday party, which was a joint party with my friend L's little girl at soft play.  They were both very disappointed, understandably so, but we have promised we will take them for a day out instead once we are able to do so.   T was lucky to have so many lovely gifts from family and friends and has some new things to occupy her whilst we are at home. 

Having a garden
Whilst we are staying indoors, we have been making the most of our garden.  The girls have been playing on their bikes, scooters and trampoline.  They made a nest for the birds that visit the garden as well as bug hotels.  Last week I cut the grass, cleared our driveway and set some seeds.  

Black humour. Any humour. It's all helping at the moment. It's good to laugh and forget, even if just for a moment, all the craziness that is taking place.

I am grateful to the NHS for all the wonderful work they are doing in such difficult circumstances. It is not a job that I would want to be doing at the best of times.

Keeping Safe
D is classed as a key worker but luckily we are a small business working in an environment where workers can keep their distance from each other.  The business is now closed to the public, helping to minimise risk.

I am grateful that I am able to work from home around my family. I am beyond grateful that 
we are staying inside, venturing out only for food shopping. I have been out twice in the last 10 days. Even when I feel a little stir crazy at the thought of being home. 

My little Bud.  He's absolutely loving having us all at home and has kept us all entertained being his usual cheeky self. I think he can probably sense my anxiety too as come evening, once the children are in bed, he's straight over to me where he will stay for the night. 

Twinkly Tuesday | Taking a break

Hello!  Thanks for popping by this Tuesday morning.  

Unfortunately there is no Twinkly Tuesday this week.  My apologies for the short notice but with everything being as chaotic as it is - I am, of course, talking about the corona virus - life has been a bit of a blur and it just doesn't feel quite right with the gravity of the situation.  

I do hope you all understand.  Pop back soon.  

Take care, keep safe and keep washing your hands x

Gratitude Journal #74

It's been a tough, anxiety-filled week and I'm more than aware that there are likely to be many more ahead. I have no shame in admitting that talk of the coronavirus and all of the issues that surround it, have filled me with fear.   So it is probably more important now than ever for me to keep up with my gratitude journals.  All of those little things need to be noted and acknowledged and whilst my journals may look similar to you, the reader, I hope that they might just help to lift my spirits again.  

Working From Home
I am fortunate to be in a position where I am able to work from home and in line with the Government recommendations, that is what I am now doing.  Although how much work I will actually be able to do with the kids here remains to be seen.

Schools Closed
This is a catch-22 for me.  I am grateful that the schools have closed. It will minimise the children's risk of catching the virus and also the parents when we stand in close proximity in the playground.   On the flip side, it is somewhat of a juggle to work around them and to keep them entertained.  Not only that but I do feel I am a better parent when I am not around them all the time, so it will be interesting to see how I manage without that me time.

School Actions regarding Coronavirus
The schools have been in a really difficult position over the past few weeks.  I have to say that I think ours have been brilliant.  They've put new steps in place and have made changes to the school day to keep the children safe, all whilst keeping us properly up to date.  I think if we are quick to criticise that it is just as important to complement and to acknowledge their hard work so popped them an email to say thank you. 

I genuinely don't think my house will ever be this clean again!  I've been cleaning a lot over the past week or two with plenty of disinfecting taking place. Despite the reasoning behind it, I'm grateful the house is benefiting.

I was in two minds as to whether I should go to my appointment but I didn't want to cancel if I could help it.  The hairdressers I use has gone from 5 days a week to 3 since the pandemic hit and need their customers now more than ever. I'm grateful I went because my hair feels much better and will hopefully keep me going for the next few weeks. 

Food Shopping
I'm grateful that I have been able to do my food shop and get pretty much everything I wanted to buy. 

Mum Home from Holiday
My Mum, Stepdad and grandparents went to Morocco for a week's holiday.  I didn't agree with it as three of them fall into the vulnerable category.  I'm grateful that they all made it home safely, the airport descended into chaos with people trying to return.  And I'm very grateful that, so far, they aren't showing any signs of the virus. I hope it remains that way. 

She had wanted to come down and visit us very shortly, which I wasn't entirely comfortable with considering she had been away. Not only that but we don't know if we've come in to contact with the virus ourselves.  She's now changed her mind and whilst it means I don't know when we will see them again, it is necessary action as it stands.

What are you grateful for this week, big or small?

Twinkly Tuesday | Featuring Kate on Thin Ice

Good morning folks.  

What a week it has been.  The news is changing daily and I find myself becoming anxious with everything I read, as I know many others are.  I was in two minds as to whether to post the linky this week but I think it might do us good to have a distraction or two.

This week's Tuesday Twinkler is a post from Kate On Thin Ice with Self Care for a Healthy Mind, which seemed more than an appropriate post to be sharing. With many of us facing the possibility of isolation and/or quarantine, do take a read because the more we can arm ourselves with the tools to keep our minds healthy, the better.  

This Week's Linky

Please don't forget to follow the rules below, it only takes a moment to share your post and the linky. 

* You can link up to one post per week, old or new. Additional posts will be deleted.
* The linky will open at 6am Tuesday and close at 23:55 the next day (Wednesday).
* Please add the Twinkly Tuesday badge to the bottom of your post.
*  By linking up, you are giving me permission to use the images from your blog if featured as a Tuesday Twinkler.

* Please comment on my post and at least two other posts, including the one directly before yours and as many others as you can - we're all busy but let us show other blogs some love.
* I will comment on as many posts as I possibly can but please do not be offended if I don't manage to visit your blog. Rest assured, I'll continue to choose a Tuesday Twinkler.
* Don't forget to add #TwinklyTuesday to your comments so they know where you found them.

* If you would like me to send you a weekly tweet to remind you that the linky will be open, please could you take a moment to leave me a comment to confirm, with your twitter handle.

* Sharing your post on Twitter? Don't forget to tag me, @newmummykate, using  #TwinklyTuesday and I'll make sure to RT you! 

#TwinklyTuesday linky badge:
Confessions of a New Mummy 

Tuesday Twinkler? This one's for you:
Confessions of a New Mummy 
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3 Things I want you to know about fibromyalgia

Whilst more people are certainly aware of it, I still come across many people who don't know what fibromyalgia is.  Or, if they have heard of it, they have no idea what it entails and how it affects those who are diagnosed with it.  It affects everyone differently but today I'm sharing the three most important things I think you need to know about fibromyalgia.

1 -  Fatigue

The problem with have fibromyalgia and other so-called invisible illnesses is that no one can see what you are dealing with and it can be hard to explain it at times.  For many of us, fatigue is one of our biggest symptoms.  

When I tell you I am tired, I mean it. I'm not exaggerating or complaining about it for the sake of it. I certainly don't want your sympathy, just some understanding. 

It isn't laziness or all in my head.  It isn't down to a bad diet or too many late nights and it isn't something that regular exercise will fix.  It is all-encompassing. It is frustrating and affects everything that I do. 

(See also Chronic Fatigue : it's more than being tired)

2 - Pain every day

Yes, every day.  I might not tell you I am in pain and it might rank differently on a 1-10 pain scale but it's still there.  Sometimes it will be niggling away in the background, not enough to stop me from getting on with my day, but I am aware of it all the same. And other days, it can bring me to tears because it is so overwhelming.  If I'm particularly quiet one day, it isn't because someone has annoyed me or I'm in a bad mood but because I'm having a high pain day.

3 - No 2 days bring the same pain

Often it is pain that causes a deep ache all over. Sometime it will be a burning pain or a deep stabbing. My joints often hurt from being sat for too long in the same position. Some days, I wince in pain as I slowly inch myself out of bed, hoping to avoid a jolt of pain as I stand. Other days? I can bolt upright with minimal pain. 

Some days, it is hard to focus.  I feel foggy-headed and tired (see fatigue above).  I'm barely able to keep my eyes open and all I can think about is having a nap.  It is a struggle to focus on anything for longer than a few minutes. And on others? I smash through the To Do List and then some. 

Of course, this is just my perspective. Others with fibromyalgia may have a different experience of it and clearly, I cannot speak for them. But, I do think these are the three most important things you need to know about fibromyalgia.  One of the most important things for people suffering from an invisible condition is that someone acknowledges it and attempts to understand. 

Do you have fibromyalgia? What do you want people to know about it?