Christmas and New Year 2020 Round up

Wow what can I say about this year… It certainly has been a wild ride, I’ve had to learn how to adapt quickly to new situations and be ok with the things that are completely out of my control and I’ve had to learn how to be ok completely on my own, which has been incredibly hard but interesting.

I’ll jump back to Christmas before continuing with the round up of the year. I thankfully was able to spend Christmas and Boxing Day with my friend, which was good fun. I got some great presents, I cooked a delicious roast dinner, we went for a walk, watched movies, ate and played games. I really had a good time, it was very much needed after such a crazy year.

Yesterday it was announced that we are now in Tier 4 which means sadly my friend can’t come over for New Years.. but thank god for technology! We’ll still be able to chat which won’t be the same but it’s the safest way.

Oh on the 19th Dec disability benefits decided to send me assessment forms! Absolute assholes! They’ve got to be back for 13th Jan, which just isn’t long enough. So I rang up for a time extension.. although its not much better and I booked myself in for a form filling service because I’m not doing it myself, its just too stressful. So all I really need to do now it gather evidence to send off with my assessments. I really don’t understand why they’re assessing me every 2 years, its not like I’m suddenly going to be healed! But whatever… they’ve extended my money until Oct 2021 so hopefully non of my payments will stop which will take a lot of stress out of the situation… But yeah URGH! they suck!

Speaking of my health, this year it has definitely got worse. I not only have Granulomatosis with Polyangiitis, but I have high blood pressure and borderline under active thyroid… and my fatigue has been so bad that my whole body sometimes feels like jelly and I feel so shaky and sick. My fatigue hasn’t been this bad in years and its just so awful, whatever I do I have to have a sit down and rest afterwards, which is really frustrating. I can’t even really explain how bad my fatigue is some days, but I really hate it so much.

Other then all of that I’m actually mentally feeling alright, I’m getting used to being on my own for very long periods of time, not being able to just go out and do anything. It doesn’t really bother me now, earlier on in the year the lockdown and all the change that came with it was extremely stressful because I wasn’t really sure what was happening, what I was/wasn’t allowed to do. But now I feel like I’m more settled, I’m used to not doing the things I would usually do and being home more. I mean in the winter I’m home more then I would be in the summer anyway, so its not so bad. Although there doesn’t really seem to be an end of this in sight just yet, but I’m sure at some point in the new year life can slowly start getting back to normal.

It’s not easy everyday though, some days I’m still finding thigs really difficult. Even simple things like making breakfast feels like a mammoth task, but I do what I always do and just push through. However I am trying to sit more and try and really concentrate on connecting with how I’m feeling because pushing through regardless is easy but doesn’t always acknowledge what you really need/want and can make how I’m feeling worse. So I do try and connect with myself to see how I’m feeling and what I need in that moment. Most of the time what I need is a nap lol! which is easy enough and its actually a good way to have a little break from everything.

I think overall this year has been a good one, despite the strange circumstances that we’ve all found ourselves in this year.

I like a lot of people have experienced loss this year, I lost a friend to Covid-19 and my stepdad also passed away this year, which I don’t think the grief for either has entirely hit me yet, but I think that’s been my brains way of protecting me in order to get through these times safely. I think the sadness and grief has come out when I’ve watched a movie that’s made me cry, which happens quite often as I’m a sensitive soul but that’s ok.

I’ve made huge progress through counselling which I am so proud of! I feel like I can tackle any friendship/relationship and relationship with myself in a much more healthy way and finally healing those deep routed trauma’s, which feels good.

I feel like I’ve changed so much in just 12 months, I am unapologetically myself and I am confident in who I am now and that feels good. For the first time ever I know myself, I listen to myself, I know what I want and need and I know what I won’t put up with and I don’t feel guilty for asking to be treated better. I don’t feel embarrassed to be seen or even to exist, I feel solid.

So 2021, I have no idea what this year will bring and I’m not going into the new year with any resolutions. But I am going to continue to heal and continue on this journey with myself.

That’s it really, see ya all in the New Year.

Stay safe

Peace out

Zak

Dealing with Grief

Grief is something I think a lot of us are dealing with right now, whether that be the loss of a person, the loss of a pet, the loss of a job, the loss of your sense of self. A lot of people have lost a lot this year due to the covid-19 situation, it has been such an intense year.

Loss and grief covers a wide range of things we experience and go through, its not just about losing a loved one

We can grieve over, divorce/relationship break up, loss of health, losing a job, loss of financial stability, miscarriage, retirement, loss of a pet, loss of a much sought after dream, loss of a friendship, loss of safety after trauma and selling the family home. But we can grieve over different things that are personal to us and that is absolutely ok. No matter how small and insignificant you think your loss is, its still ok to feel that grief, its such a personal thing and such a personal journey.

I decided to write about grief as I lost two people in my life this year and the biggest grief I’ve suffered so far in my life is the loss of my dad 9 years ago which was one of the hardest things I’ve experienced. Also a friend has recently had a big loss of a parent too and I wanted to use my experience to help them and others.

I don’t think that you can ever prepare yourself for any sort of loss, whether it be suddenly or over a prolonged illness. When that grief and loss hits, it hits so hard and I think what I wish I could change about my grieving process when I lost my dad was the people I was surrounded by. At first everyone was super lovely, so understanding and we’re all really great I couldn’t fault anyone but as time went on, people I had in my life at the time were fed up with my anger and depression and just the fact I was a complete and utter mess and this was only 6 months after I had lost my dad. It was like I was expected to have gotten over it by that point! The worst thing was I allowed that to influence me and I didn’t stand up for myself and I internalised just everything, didn’t talk to anyone about anything and just quietly dealt with it on my own, without the support from others who were meant to be there for me.

Do not ever let anyone tell you how you should feel and that you should be over it by now! because grief doesn’t work like that and I think what often isn’t talked about is that grief never leaves you, its always there like a part of you is missing. But over time whether is takes you 6 months, 1 year or 10 years you learn how to live with it, even though at the time you just feel so broken and feel like you’ll never be happy again, you will. You’ve got to give yourself time and the space to feel how you feel without letting outside influences telling you how you should be feeling.

After the loss of someone its ok to feel happy in the moment, its ok to feel relief, its ok to feel positive, don’t stop yourself from feeling however you feel because you think you’re supposed to feel a certain way. Just let those emotions flow through you, if you stop yourself from feeling however you feel, it will prolong the healing process.

Surround yourself with those who truly care about you and will hold that space for you, who will carry you through when you can’t carry yourself.

During times of grief self care is so important and so is having some sort of routine, but its also ok to do nothing. Try and keep up with the basic self care things like showering, taking medications, having a good sleep routine, even though cooking and eating is so difficult try to eat every day, get out for some fresh air, have some quiet time, talk to friends and family, try and do things you normally do and enjoy.

I like my lists, so writing lists of acts of self car that you can do daily may help to give you that focus and writing a journal will help so much for you to get out your feelings and help you process things and its just an amazing tool, especially if you make a habit of doing it on a daily basis, its such a simple tool but its so powerful.

Cry, cry a lot, you may find your just randomly bursting into tears and that is so normal, please don’t hold yourself back, don’t hold it in, let it out. I know when your start crying it may feel like you’ll never be able to stop but you will, you will be ok and you’ll probably have a really good sleep after. I don’t think I cried after I lost my dad till about 3/4 weeks after as I was just in shock and I just couldn’t cy, but once I did cry I cried a lot and for well over a year.

Sleep will be very hit and miss, I struggled so much to sleep at night. Especially after I went to see my dad’s body, every time I closed my eyes I saw his face. I do not regret one bit going to see his body at the funeral home, it was such a traumatic experience but I am so glad I saw him. He died very suddenly at the age of just 51 of a heart attack and he didn’t live locally to me so I needed to go and see him just to make sure it was really him. Even though after that I kept seeing his face I don’t regret it. My brother chose not to go and see our dad but its not something he regrets not doing, its very personal. If you think its something you’ll regret not doing 100% do it! because that will be your only chance. Take someone who can be strong for you, it’s such a hard thing to do but down the line when you’ve begun to heal you’ll be proud of yourself for going through that experience.

Back to sleep, so I struggled so bad with sleeping during the first few weeks and I asked my GP for some sleeping tablets, just so I could get through that first few weeks of stress. But after those had ran out, I often didn’t sleep a lot at night and slept a lot during the day and you know that was absolutely ok, I did what I needed to do in order to survive. Although as time went by I did try get back into a better sleep routine, so going to bed at the same time every night, getting up at the same time etc. Lack of sleep will make you feel so much worse and will make everything seem so huge, so getting enough sleep is so importnant.

I think that’s all I can really say about it, don’t rush yourself, feel how you feel, don’t let others tell you how you should be feeling. You will feel ok again, no matter how dark and sad you feel right now, you will see that light again. But don’t rush the journey, its your path to take just know it will all be ok again. You are so much stronger then you think you, even if you feel like you’re not, you so are! You can do it.

Always honour your emotions.

Much love to anyone out there who have been effected by grief, hold on, the light will always be near.

Peace out

Zak

Coronavirus

Some years ago I met a lovely lady in a vasculitis group on FaceBook called Tracie Jayne Jacob. Even though we had never met she was always so lovely and super supportive.

Tracie was diagnosed with the coronavirus 2 weeks ago and on Saturday morning, she sadly lost her battle and passed away.

It’s beyond devastating and hits so close to home, she was only mid 40s’s and had a similar physical health condition to me.

This virus takes no prisoners, it doesn’t care who you are, how old you are, it will come for you.

If you think you won’t it won’t effect you, you’re wrong! eventually you will know someone who will be effected.

Please stay safe out there, do as the government advises you too, yes it sucks staying in and not hanging out with your friends, family but it will save lives. Especially those like myself who are at very high risk of this awful virus. If you don’t do it for yourself, do it for those in your life who are vulnerable. Now is not a time to be selfish, now is the time to think of your community, to keep everyone safe.

Tracie, I hope you are at peace now, forever in my heart.

Rest in Peace my friend

Peace out

Zak

A day in life of a trans guy- Acceptance of self is hard

I thought I’d post something that’s kind of a transition update but it’s also something that effects every aspect of my life.

It’s something I’ve been thinking about for the last few weeks, as here in the UK it’s been hot for more then 3 days! And whilst I’ve had days where I’ve been able to cope well with anxiety, dysphoria and disassociation and I’ve been able to have a good time, there’s been other days where it’s been incredibly hard to deal with and this is where self acceptance comes in.

So here it is…. (written whilst sat on a bus lol)

In my transition I’m finding it’s really hard to accept where I am and what I’ve missed out on living in the gender I knew I was always meant too and the fact I’ll never get those times back

I suppose it’s a kind of loss, a loss for a life you never had or could of had and what life may have been like if only I were born male.

It’s hard to accept my body as it is because I’m so desperate to look how I think I should look. It’s hard to accept the parts of my body that I absolutely hate.

I look at other men, all ages, shapes and sizes and just wish my body looked the same.

It’s ironic though living my life as my authentic self yet still craving to be someone other then myself.

I always thought I was good with dealing with change and good at accepting things as they are especially if I’m powerless to change whatever is it. But this transition has showed me I have a lot more to learn about acceptance, especially self acceptance and a lot more to learn about myself.

I want to get to the point where I feel comfortable and feel confident with how my body looks, yes surgery will ease things but I still need to learn to love, accept and respect myself and my body no matter what stage of the transition I am in, after all the relationship with myself and my body is life long and if I’m feeling happy, comfortable and confident then that will shine through the other aspects of my life and make life a bit easier.

I’m not sure I’ll ever achieve complete acceptance of self but I’d be happy just to feel at peace with myself, instead of this constant war between self and body.

Peace out

Zak

Stuck

It’s been nearly a whole week since I have sat down to write properly, I usually like sitting down to write but this past week I’ve either been too tired or I’ve just not felt like it. I’m only writing tonight because I’m not feeling too good at the moment, mood has crashed and my dark passenger is walking near. I’m struggling.

Hmm quick catch up I suppose…

Saturday – I had Leo for most of the day, L and the boy’s came down in the afternoon and we all went to a little park near me and spent the afternoon there. My bro picked up Leo and stayed at the park for a bit. L fed the boys at mine before heading home. Just chilled in the evening.

Sunday – Slept until midday, I definitely needed it. Had a shower and got myself ready, spent the afternoon at my brothers, had dinner, played Lego with Jack. Had a good time. Chilled out in the evening.

Monday – I chilled out, cleaned the flat, spent 3 hours colouring in my new adult colouring book, went to the trans* group social in the evening, which was good.

Tuesday – Had a boys day with Harvey, spoilt him a bit but had good fun hanging out with him. Chilled in the evening.

Wednesday –  Didn’t get much sleep because I was so sore and achy. Woke up feeling like utter crap. So just stayed in and slept. I did manage to clean up a bit.

Back to today Thursday – Actually slept ok-ish last night, was up at 7 am did the usual morning things, was out by just gone 9 am. M picked me up to take me to a meeting for Mindout. Meeting went ok. Met L and the boy’s for a bit before group.

Group was good, had some commissioner people come in wanting to know what we thought about the mental health services, as they know it’s flawed to say the least. It was SOOOO good to be able to get it all off my chest and there will be a opportunity to help reform the mental health services, which I really want to do because it is so flawed and people have died as a result.

Met L and the boys for a bit after group. I headed home, got dinner on the way as I’d forgotten to put my dinner in the slow cooker before I left this morning.

Just been relaxing this evening, tried to do some colouring, couldn’t really get into it though, so gave up and started on this instead. Going to get to bed after this, I feel that crap that the best thing I can do is just go to bed.

I found out today that a fellow blogger died over a year ago now. She’s been on my mind in that time but for some reason today she was more so and I read the comments on her last blog and yeah a few people wrote R.I.P and stuff. She had bipolar but was very tormented by the loss of her baby and she never ever came back from that trauma. In some way I’m pleased she’s now no longer in the awful awful pain she was in every day, but just so so sad that nothing helped. No amount of medication, therapy, counselling etc, nothing helped her move on. I just hope that now she’s at peace with her baby boy ❤

My health has been it’s usual crap this week, been really achy, really sore leg muscles, felt a bit sick a few times, really tired. Usual shit, I can’t wait for my appointment with my new bone doc next week. I want off this fucking methotrextate, I want my condition to be looked at again and look into either another diagnosis or whatever. I just want some fucking answers as to why this yr has been so shit and I’ve gone down hill. I think this is part of where my anger is coming from.

Mentally not been doing great, just been faking it really because I’ve worked so hard to get to two yrs self harm free and to be as stable as I have been and I really don’t want it all to fuck up now. Because I will fucking hate myself for it and I will be so disappointed in myself and if I do cut, if I do fall to pieces it will be like starting all over again from the start and I just haven’t got the strength to do that. But neither can I carry on like this. I don’t know what to do. I’m irritable and angry, they are BIG warning signs that something is going to kick off. Like FUCK do I want to up the fucking quetiapine! I HATE THAT SHIT! I’m stuck. I don’t know how to get this all out without it being totally destructive. Constructive ways feel like it’s not getting it all out properly and it feels trapped. I feel trapped. But good old me has got this because I fucking have too!

I’m fucking done, I need to go to sleep

Peace out

A lil bit of everything

So I’ve not blogged for a while, mainly because I’ve been busy with my buddy J who was down Fri-Mon and sort of because I’m doing well and haven’t really had much to talk about…or not needed to write about. But I thought I would do a bit of a catch up now, enjoy.

I sit here once again and it’s mid week, it’s crazy how fast time is going.

Feeling much less sick, dizzy and faint today. That is because I have made an effort for actually eat! The last few weeks I’ve lost so much weight without really doing anything and my appetite has just vanished. It’s good because I’m now not far off a healthier weight, I feel better, look better. When I my appetite lessoned I wasn’t eating much because I wasn’t hungry but that didn’t make me feel too good. So now I have been eating little and often and I’ve been trying to eat more healthy things as well, I’ve ditched drinking Pepsi when I’m at home and I’m only going to try and drink lemon squash, I need to consume more water. I’ve been eating fruit and veg and proper dinners. They’ve only been small portions but it’s better then nothing. I think my body just had a hard time adjusting from wanting to eat loads and being fed all the time to not being hungry and not being fed as often. Going to try and keep this up as I know a good diet will definitely be my friend when I stop my bipolar meds altogether. I’ve lost 16lbs so far want to loose another 14lbs that will take me down to pre quetiapine weight.

The first part of my day was spent laying on the sofa with the pups, sleeping, watching tv and just being lazy. I did get my lil butt into gear and cleaned the whole flat, which felt like it would take FOREVER because it was so messy! But it took about the same time as usual so not too bad. Ooh and I have planted my sunflower and some peppers, I want to start growing stuff out of my lil balcony 🙂

I made the pups loads of ice treats with some stock and their treats, that was a bit of a balancing act getting it all in the freezer without spilling it all everywhere lol oh and making space too, it was like tetris! They love playing with ice and licking their ice treats 🙂 lucky pups.

After messing about I got myself ready and rush out to get the bus, just made my appointment with like 1min to spare…phew! I was cutting it fine lol. But I had a great appointment 🙂 I am going to be lazy and just copy and paste what I put on fb, saves writing it all out again.

Facebook status

Ah man binding hurts and I can’t wear it for too long… Hoping it gets easier.

Good doctors app, he’s agreed to let me continue to take doxycycline for the next 50 days, the plan after that is to have a break for a month and if I get a sinus infection after then he’s going to refer me back to my ent specialist for further investigation.

He’s going to chase up the pain clinic for me and it shouldn’t be too much longer till I get a letter to book an appointment with a new bone doc at Poole hospital.

He’s happy with my weight loss and he’s glad I’m doing really well coming off the quetiapine.

He’s been on the Charing cross website and found it extremely helpful. He’s half way through the referral as he said it’s huge! But I should hear from them in the next 8-12 weeks and after my initial appointment with them he’s happy to talk about me getting a full hysterectomy. And he’s just so happy that I’m doing well

So yeah! Here is to the future, I cannot wait for the next steps in all of it.

And binding does hurt, I can’t bind for too long. It makes me back and chest hurt… It can be very dangerous, so I’ve got to be really sensible about it.

Spent some time out with the pups this evening, just sat in the sun on the grass, watching them run about playing 🙂 wish I could stay in those moments forever. So at peace, happy, content, bliss ❤

Been thinking about my dad lately, he’s been on my mind. Maybe because he’s close with me right now, I don’t know. But I miss him so so much! My heart hurts when I think about him not being here, I hate not being able to ring and talk to him or see him. The pain never goes, it just gets easier to deal with. I would do anything to be with him again. But he will forever and always be in my heart and soul ❤ I love you daddy and I miss you so much that words just can’t describe it.

I’ve just been putting some new music on my phone, as I was getting bored with what was on there.

Group tomorrow, so looking forward to it 🙂

Over all this boy is good 🙂 super nervous and excited about tomorrow being my last day on quetiapine…Hopefully I can do this without meds.

Peace out

Batman

Fab weekend <3

Well as you can imagine I have been pretty busy with my boo bear. He’s been so good. Last night he slept right through 🙂 but today he’s been a bit poorly with his teeth.

Not going to write much as I am shattered and am soon off to bed. 

I’ve had a great weekend with Albie bear and my lovely friends 🙂 my mood has picked back up again, despite being really tired. I don’t think the extra 100mgs of meds are working just yet, but hopefully it will soon.

Taking boo boo back to his mummy tomorrow. I can’t wait to give his big brother his birthday presents after school 🙂

Today is my dad’s bday. He would have been 54, I can’t believe its been 2 and a half years since I lost my best friend.  I love you so much dad and I miss you so much more. Wish you were here ❤ 

 Albie and I just chilling ❤

Peace out

Tank girl

 

Off the wall!

My routine with fucking everything is just off the wall! I can’t seem to get on track. Everything is just all over the place and I don’t really know why. Ever since I lowered my meds and felt all weird and spaced out etc. Nothing has been right. I don’t eat properly, I just can’t face it. All I can do is pick at food, rather then eating meals. My sleep routine is just gone out the window. Like last night I didn’t get to sleep till like gone 5 am! Like I just can’t seem to do anything. Everything seems all muddled up. Maybe next week when I have the week off I can try and get is straight and back on track. 

So yeah had a few hours sleep early hours this morning. But that’s better then nothing. 

Sammie pup got dropped off early this morning and we all snuggled up on the sofa for a few hours which was nice. It still wasn’t enough sleep though. I showered and dressed etc, took Sammie and Foxy for a wee. 

I went to see the nurse this afternoon, had a nice little chat. She’s given me for antibiotics for a sinus infection. But she said I need to book an app with my GP to talk about maybe seeing my chest specialist again. I think my wind pipe maybe needs widening again… So I’ve got an app for next Fri to see him. 

Got back into town and met up with my bestie @neverrespected 🙂 which was cool! She got some Lego movie mini figures! Woohoo. Then we got some sweets and I nipped to the bank. We chilled out at mine this afternoon and chatted which was cool. We went to the pub for dinner, so that was nice. Went and dropped my prescription into the chemist. Came back to mine for a bit before work. Had a nice afternoon with my bestie 🙂 Love her loads.

Work was good. Heavy going though, we had a company in called Body Positive, who support people with HIV. So our session was all about HIV, so it was a learning session for me as I’ve not done any training around HIV and AIDS. The guy also told us how he contracted HIV and that was really heavy and emotional, so that was pretty tough. 

Its now like midnight and I’m still awake. I’m tired but not sleepy tired…a bit wired and pissed off. Just can’t switch off. My head is pounding. 

 It’s been a year since these 2 beautiful butterfly brothers earned their wings and entered heaven. It hurts to know a young family are hurting over the loss of their boys. At least the boys are together and no longer in pain ❤ Harry ❤ Cody ❤ (the boys suffered from epidermolysis bullosa, so no rude comments about their appearance please)

Missing my dad so much, 2 and a half years has gone by and it still feels like yesterday. The pain gets easier to deal with, but its never gone away. Love you dad, I hope I am making you proud.

Peace out

Tank girl

Goodbye 2013 its been a hell of a year

So what can I say, its the last day of 2013. Just sat here eating cheese and drinking Pepsi thinking about everything that has happened this year.

It’s been a hell of a year, I’ve been in love, I’ve been happy, I’ve been heart broken and hurt, I’ve lost friends and gained friends. I’ve got new pets. I’ve pushed myself, I’ve been hard on myself. I’ve done voluntary work, I’ve dressed as a zombie, I’ve laughed lots, I’ve cried lots. I was there just after baby Albert was born. I’ve walked lots, I’ve rested. I’ve achieved so much, passed my maths, finished therapy. I’ve grown, I’ve fought through. I’ve seen Paloma and Russell Brand. I’ve seen old friends. People in my live have passed away *R.I.P BRUCE* *R.I.P HARRY AND CODY* *A BOND LIKE NO OTHER* I’ve worked hard and played harder. I am proud of myself and what I have been through. This haven’t always been so easy, but I am a fighter and a survivor and I will never give up. Every day I strive to do my best and make my dad proud! 

2014 holds so many new and exciting things, I go back to voluntary work, I am doing some fund raising work. I have many more things up my sleeve that I am going to put into place. But the most important of all I am going to continue to grow, continue to keep well. I am going to love myself, my animals, family and friends and do the best I can 🙂

The future doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom! You make your own happiness and success.

Keep strong, keep fighting, keep LIVING 🙂

Peace out

Tank girl x