Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Libraries and nostalgia

Have you ever revisited a place you haven't been to for years and almost felt yourself be transported back in time? I don't mean Dr Who-esque, but just being a slave to your senses, smells, sights, sounds. They can all evoke the strongest of emotions.

The place this happened to me? my local library. You reach an age where libraries no longer seem to serve a purpose. Supermarkets provide a glut of cheap books. (I love the guilty thrill I get of throwing in a book with the weekly shop - or is that just me!?!) and the internet, well the internet can answer pretty much any question you may have.

As an avid reader for as long as I can remember, libraries were central to my childhood. Struggling to the counter carrying as many books as my tickets would allow. (These were the days where you had a handful of tickets as opposed to a solitary card). I can still remember the excitement I'd feel if I was the first person to take out a book and get the first stamp in it. The days when Famous Five books were in hardback.

Even into adulthood, libraries were still central to my life. Though at university as the textbooks got bigger the struggle got harder and numerous rucksack straps broke under the strain of various tomes of anatomy being shoved into them.

As I eventually dragged myself away from the role of eternal student, to that of responsible, tax paying citizen libraries began to become a distant memory and I missed them.
In the many hours I've spent in them I've flirted (I go for the nerdy look!!), written, daydreamed, people watched, had the odd illicit kiss and of course studied.

So how did I find the library 2006? Well in a strange way, little had changed. The smell was the same, as was the sense of tranquility. But much to my amusement so also appeared to be the choice of authors. As I wandered around the shelves the same names leapt out at me as they had done many years ago. I'm glad I've rejoined. The internet is revolutionary as is
www.amazon.co.uk. But there are times where you just need to touch the books and wander around aimlessly, fervently hoping you'll happen upon a new author.

What I do now as I pass time in the library? - simple, just picture my novel there! Plus maybe look for the odd book on archery!

Monday, May 29, 2006

A healthy dose of denial

Ok. So much for sticking to my resolution to write copious amounts. But of course I have an excuse. I've been celebrate my birthday. I escaped to my parents, turned off my phone and felt safe. What a wonderful feeling, 48 hrs of denial. I now feel ready to face anything. (Ok not quite anything, but a hell of a lot more that I could face last week!!). So with that in mind I will:
-try not to burst into tears on various friends shoulders!
-walk 10,000 steps a day - got a pedometer for my birthday and yes, it's official I am a sloath, cunningly disguised as a female!!!
-Book myself in the beginners archery course (hehe I'm really keeping this positivity thing going!!)
-Read some erotica! (more on that later!!)

Hmmm what an eclectic mix of achievements I will have under my belt.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Nursing - the unofficial guide

There are times when I love my job, I mean really love my job. In these moments I truely believe I have found my vocation (incidently I'm not a nun!). I am a nurse.

I never set out to be a nurse, far from it. From the age of 11 I was going to be a doctor and nothing was going to stand in my way. Nothing that was except nerves and a subsequent rather poor interview performance! So that is why 16 yrs (ouch I can't believe it's quite that long) later I qualified as a nurse. Admittedly it was a bit protracted, but I got distracted with various other career options along the way!

There is so much more to nursing than mopping brows (yes I have done this) and chasing after Drs (done this too, but after many alcoholic berverages). Nursing is ones of those professions to which 101 cliches are attached. Which is quite possibly why so many nurses leave the profession after qualifying. It's time to dispell those myths:

-Firstly (and most importantly). Nurses uniforms are not sexy in any shape or form. Infact therein lies the problem, they have no shape or form! Unless you have a fetish for unflattering polyester garments banish that thought instantly.

-Nurses are not Tony Blair's angels (God forbid). We are not angels by any stretch of the imagination. To call us that (yes it has happened to me) is tantamount to.... well I don't know, it's just too awful to contemplate.

-Nurses do not have sex with Drs in laundry cupboards. (well maybe they do and I've just missed out!) For starters you wouldn't have the time and secondly linen is such a rare commodity there is never any there. So it would be obvious what you were up to.

But nursing does have its unforgettable moments, the moments that make you laugh and cry. Where else would you find yourself demonstrating kickboxing/streetdance/reenacting west end show tunes to a captive audience? I'd like to think that alongside giving out pills, ranting at drs, taking blood etc I am giving that little bit of me. What do I get in return? big hugs :0)

Monday, May 22, 2006

A little bit of creativity

Sitting, leaning against the door she listens to the silence. She knows though that it won’t stay that way for long. Silence is only ever an interlude, a precursor to something bigger. The silence is broken, footsteps make their way up the stairs, getting louder as they draw closer, drawers and cupboards are being pulled opened and closed and finally a suitcase is zipped up. Then there is silence again.

Time passes. Yet she stays still, as if scared to move. If she moves, she becomes real and everything that is happening around her becomes real. By staying still it’s almost as if it’s a dream and reality is suspended. Except of course, it’s not. This is all very real.

The silence is broken as footsteps make their way towards her. She hears them pass the door, the door she is leaning against. They pause, as they do so she holds her breath in anticipation. In anticipation of what though, she doesn’t know, moreso she doesn’t know what she wants to happen next. Part of her wants them to walk in her direction, to see him one last time. That’s the thing about love, no matter how much the hurt and the anger there is that small part of you that doesn’t want to let go. But is that love or being scared of the future?

Sunday, May 21, 2006


Right! New positive attitude, new resolutions, new everything. Am going to write something on here a few times a week. Okay, so with that there may be a correlation between positivity and a rapid deterioration of the waffle I churn out. Ah well, am sure some gems will manifest themselves occassionally! Plus of course this whole exercise is a cathartic, self indulgent exercise, I hardly feel Booker prize material being produced.

The reason for this? Well it will help my typing skills, being sat infront of a computer makes me feel powerful (only kidding - sitting on my bed, balancing my laptop on my knees whilst simultaneously trying not to drop special K bar crumbs in the keyboard is probably the antitheses of power) Anyway don't particularly want to be powerful. Though for years I have always harboured a desire to have a job which involves wearing clip cloppy shoes. (Ok, sounding a bit like a child in a dressing up box now!) and I figure the more I write the more competent I should become. Either that or I'll realise that I really have no skills in this area so should stop now!

Along with this new found positivity (not quite sure where it has come from!) I also plan to be less introspective. I want the old me back, the me who has fun, who laughs at the stupidest of things (more often than not myself!) giggling uncontrollably, who is inspired who is motivated, who is full of energy and just enjoys life. Plus I wouldn't mind a few extras on the side - Well everything can be improved upon. So make that thighs/bum/abs/arms to die for (ok, total body overhaul!), hair a al shampoo commercial (as in grows down as opposed to out) and a talent in something.

The desire to have a talent in something leads me to a conversation I had with friends last night(yes, I do have friends, though from the self indulgence of the last few posts you'd be forgiven for thinking I live alone on an island in the middle of nowhere). Somehow the topic of conversation got onto the Olympics and 2012 and how we'll be too old to compete. Actually at this point alarm bells should have been ringing that in actual fact it is my lack of athletic prowess that is stopping me competing, not my age! Yet that factor didn't appear to figure much in my thought processes. So there we were wondering which sports we could possbibly stand a vague chance of learning/becoming world class at/being selected for Olympics. The answer handball (apparently not overly popular) or archery (age may be less of a handicap). So the next step. Well get myself a ball and start playing catch I imagine!

...either that or take a bit of a reality check and look for a slightly more attainable goal. So it looks like i'm heading off to space.

Ah well we all have to dream

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Who am I?

So, for days now I have sat infront of the computer trying to think of something insightful or inspirational (or even insipid- just to keep the alliteration thing going!!). Yet nothing earthshattering or indeed witty has sprung to mind. However, I have just realised this is not a problem, I will write anyway. Granted it may not be of much interest, but heh that's life. We don't generally run around with one liners flying out of our mouths left, right and centre. Infact, can you imagine anything worse than someone perpetually happy.

.....Which neatly brings me onto my resolution to break out of the SUL habit. Have done this with remarkable panache. I sobbed on a friend's shoulder with remarkable prowess. Then in the same 12 hrs I found myself also crying with laughter - emotions are fickle things! So, the day's positivity score. An average of 7 - with peaks of 9 and lows of -4. Confused? well me too!

At the moment I feel like I'm on some rollercoaster ride of emotions. With highs where I laugh, relax and remember for a fleeting moment who I am and lows where I just want to scream "stop this ride I want to get off!" But more importantly it's made me start to ask...Who am I?

I've never liked uncertainty in life, I find it unsettling and tiring. I like having a constant to ground me. Take life for example, I can cope with all manner of crises, provided there is something in my life that remains constant. I guess in some ways it's a bit like being a boat bobbing around in the sea. As long as the boat is anchored it can bob away without coming to too much harm. But take away the anchor and the boat becomes vulnerable. (Ok, a bit too much overanalysis there, but you get the jist, I'm a boat with a dodgy anchor!)

Anyway, all this introspection has led me to wonder just who I am, how others percieve me and amusingly whether there is any correlation between the two! Recently I have noticed a tendency for me to compartmentailise various aspects of my life, almost to the extent that I'm being to feel I become different people in specific situations. Or at least different versions of the same person. But what does this mean? Some would argue that it means I am not being myself in certain situations. But there is also the counterargument that different situations and people bring out different aspects of your personality.

The accusation that "You've changed" is one frequently heard in relationships. Reading between the lines it probably means "Help! get me out of here, you're not what I thought!" In relationships these words are about as welcome as "We need to talk", "It's not you, it's me" etc etc. But the whole point is, is change really a bad thing? Ok, obviously huge shifts in personality, principles, beliefs may cause a few problems. But the reality has to surely be that we do change, we evolve, as we experience life so life shapes us.

Is it really so important that we have a definative answer to who we are? Seemingly so, we love quizzes that purport to tell us things about ourselves. Open any women's magazine and the odds are you'll find some quiz, enlightening you about some aspect of your personality. Be it your sexual preferences, your exercise style, what you'll be like when you're older, what you're really like now. Anything it seems can be put in a series of closed questions and come up with a definative answer.

Take for example these insights into who I am! Amazon (www.amazon.co.uk) perceives me as a person who would buy Riverdance. A quiz on a website www.greatwriting.co.uk said that I should be a joke writer (hmmm possibly not!!) . Whilst a personality quiz on a BBC website (www.bbc.co.uk) tells me I have a mentor personality, meaning apparently that I am extrovert, outgoing, empathic and like to keep the peace. Enthused by these answers I then went on to answer a quiz about which of Santa's reindeer I'd be!! Apparently a shy one, who could be naughty!! What have these quizzes told me about myself? Not a lot to be honest (though it's always useful to know what type of reindeer you'd be!!).

But all this has got me thinking how do people view me? The only way to really find out is to ask them outright, but the reality is that most would probably tell me what they think I wanted to hear. I imagine though that if I asked my friends, family, colleagues to write down three words to describe me they'd all be very different, but equally relevant.

So after all this, who am I!!? I could tell you, but surely it would be much more fun for you to hypothesize and come up with your own theories. Who knows, you might even have a better idea than me!

Tuesday, May 02, 2006


I have decided to rate my days on a scale of positivity - No idea why, no particular reason why. Though it may be amusing to see if there is a relationship between the positivity score and the readability of this waffle.

Ok, so today rates at a 6 (1 being help get me out of here, 10 being wow I bet there isn't a drug that makes you feel this good).

So the past couple of days have been interesting and have exposed me to the whole gambit of emotions. You name it, I've felt it. From down right despair ( I wasn't great company in these moments), self pity (involving lots of tears), anger (more tears). Yet the one that left me feeling at my most vulnerable and rawest state was HOPE. A simple word, that sounds so innocuous, yet I am now of the opinion that hope is one of the strongest emotions we possess, far surpassing love and hate. Without hope what have we got, goals seem pointless, infact it permeates into every aspect of our lives rendering our existance worthless without it.

A quick search on the internet with the keywords hope and emotion revealed the following website www.emotioneric.com which I feel compelled to provide a link to for two reasons: It's the first one on the list and secondly, well you'll see for yourself, possible a more self indulgent website than this blog (ok maybe not) - But I can't wait to see the face for "realisation that your autographed life size elvis doll has been stolen". Pure genius - Ok, genius may not be quite the description I'm looking for, but it's put my life into perspective. Losing a husband (unautographed) compared to losing a life sized Elvis (autographed) - no comparison.

So as it stands at the moment I have hope. Vague hope, possibly misdirected hope, but hope all the same and it is that that has allowed me to function and to think beyond today. True, if things go back from not so bad to bad then the pain felt will be worse than ever, but that's the deal with hope. You have to expose yourself to the risks to stop feeling the pain.