Tuesday, 29 April 2008


I am so ashamed. For no good reason, really.

As part of my 'getting to grips with things' approach recently, I asked the GP if there was any help available from the Community Psychiatric Team. They offer CBT and that kind of thing, which I have found very helpful in the past and which B and I felt might help me with a bit of extra support now.

However, instead of offering me anything like that, I was given an appointment with a psychiatrist. It's peculiar, isn't it? I am happy with the idea of seeing a psychologist for talking-type therapies and I refuse to be stigmatised because I am suffering from depression. But being referred to a psychiatrist makes me feel dirty and ashamed and very, very scared.

I know that this probably comes from the period in my teens when I suffered from chronic fatigue syndrome and as a family we/I were/was referred for all sorts of bizarre and positively damaging 'family therapies' and psychiatry, which were no help at all. And I was repeatedly told by my family that if I didn't 'pull myself together' then the psychiatric people would 'lock me away'.

But, unusually for me even knowing all of this, is not allowing me to rationalise my emotions away.

We went to the appointment yesterday to see what help they felt they could offer me. I was extremely reluctant to go and literally had nightmares all weekend about being trapped and needing to escape from places*.

The young woman that we saw (B came with me) took a case-history for about an hour and then announced that she would want to see me after my twenty week scan to check that the medication is not affecting the baby; and periodically after that to 'monitor my condition'.

Pointless. Time wasting. Bollocks.

The GP is 'monitoring' me.

The Health Visitor is 'monitoring' me.

The Midwife-with-six-organic-compost-heaps is 'monitoring' me.

The Sweary Obstretician is 'monitoring' me.

Over the last week I feel** as if I have spent more time attending and travelling to and from doctor's appointments that I have at home; and it's making me very, very stressed. Absolutely the last f-ing thing I need is yet another person 'monitoring' me. Particularly since all the people at the baby-end of things are perfectly happy with the very-incredibly-startlingly-low possibility that the low dose of escitalopram might-may-possibly not-yet-be-proven to be safe for pregnant people in the producing-a-baby-with-fins department because it hasn't been around for long enough.

I feel truly fucked about by them all and I am not going to see the psychiatrist again. I have also cancelled my 'monitoring' appointment with the GP and am not going to make another one unless I actually need some help.

Because, you know what? B and I are 'monitoring' me, too.

For today, slightly irritably, that is all. Next post - something not related to babies, pregnancy or depression, as even I'm getting bored by it all now and everyone else has probably nodded off.

* And about human-sized badgers dressed in plate armour and wielding broad-swords, oddly.
** Unreasonably.

Thursday, 24 April 2008


So, Pa has Parkinson's apparently. It can be controlled with medication and people are now talking about him going to the local cottage hospital for a while and then going home. However, the only way to tell whether it *is* Parkinson's for certain is to give him the medication and see whether he improves. This seems rather hit and miss - but so far things are sounding cautiously positive.

More positive here, too. I am feeling more like myself - still tired, still weepy, still feeling a bit weird about interacting with Leo, still not really wanting to be left on my own. BUT - the physio has fitted me with a HUGE bit of tubi-grip, that goes from under my armpits to below my hips (whooo-hooo, SEXY!) and that is helping with the pelvic pain no end. I have even done some garden pottering. And today I cleaned the bathroom AND scraped the yack out from the bottom of the oven. Which is a tri-annual job, normally, and only prompted when the house fills with smoke when you turn the grill on. Oh. Wait. That's what happened.

We had a very pleasant afternoon earlier in the week, helping a friend kill her chickens. That sounds like we are some kind of bizarre Manson-family-alike ... but it was a lovely afternoon, she has a BRILLIANT plucking machine and it all went very smoothly. I even remembered to take a change of clothes to change in to before I picked Leo up from nursery.

Ah, nursery. He LOVES it. Thankfully. One whole day and two half days. Bliss for everyone. Tomorrow, B and I are planning on dropping him off and then visiting our bees for a few hours.

Tonight - chicken curry and an early night. B is working and won't be back until the small hours.

Things are, tentatively, looking up.

Saturday, 19 April 2008

correction and some positive things

After further investigation, Pa's problem swallowing is a 'slow swallow' rather than no swallow at all. Apparently this means that he can safely eat puréed food and therefore doesn't need a nasal tube.

Everyone is keeping very quiet about the prospects of him being able to come out of hospital and go home, rather than to a nursing home. Particularly as the ward he is on now has diarrhoea and vomiting as well as c. diff. His is slightly closer to his normal self, though:

Ma: Here, dear, you must eat the rest of this yoghurt, to keep your strength up!
Pa: (glum as a Marshwiggle) What's the point? The world is just going to be FULL of yoghurt from now on.

We are all very relieved that he is able to see the bright side of things.

In the meantime, Ma has had a tooth removed and is soldiering on on a diet of soup and soft things; my change of medication is making me as bats as a deserted tower in the middle of the woods protected by an force of elite shock troops from the Bats Protection Society; B has pulled his shoulder lifting Leo all the time; and the final straw - I have come down with a cold that has made my nose all red. This is not being made any better by the fact that there has been an east wind for three days now, which it seems to make the stove smoke like mad.

B has given our neighbour a lift to a hotel up near Lake Vrnwy for an evening out and I am about to cook something nice for our tea - Leo has been asleep for half an hour.

We are hanging in. Thank you for all the good wishes, some of which made me go all weepy. I passed them on to Ma, who is very touched. She doesn't read the blog and pretends that she is disapproving of me writing about them all - but I think it helped her that so many people are routing for her.

Also, remember this? Delivering flowers to these particular graves is an annual event for Ma - and she sent me a text earlier this afternoon to let me know that this year, it had happened without incident.

So that's a good thing.

Another positive thing is that we have made a list of meals that we are going to make this week and actually gone out and bought some vegetables to make that happen with. Vegetables! Cooking! Hasn't happened for a while around here - but last night it was chilli and tomorrow it is spinach lasagne.

For now, that is all.

Wednesday, 16 April 2008


Just a quick update. As of the weekend, the hospital were talking about Pa coming out this week.

However, yesterday it transpired that he has a problem swallowing. This is not going to get any better and is the reason that he has a chest infection - bits of food and liquid are getting down in to his lungs. The options are to continue as he is, feeding him normally and accepting the probability of continuing chest infections running him down; or for him to have a feeding tube inserted in to his nose.

Either way, he is not going to be going home - they are talking about a Community Hospital or a Nursing Home.

We have some very difficult decisions to make as a family.

I am a slightly better. The consultant has swapped me back on to my original medication as apparently the risk of foetal deformity is very small and it has become clear to everyone over the last ten days that the new thing they have put me on isn't helping me very much. They are also going to fit me with some kind of scary corset-type thing for the SPD.

These all seem very minor considerations at the moment.

I don't want to stop blogging, but I do seem to be writing a catalogue of woes at the moment, so excuse me if I become a bit 'gappy'.

We should hear about Pa's test results later today and we will then make a decision about whether we need to go back to Somerset.

Wednesday, 9 April 2008


Just had a phone call from sister Natalie. Pa was taken in to hospital last night with vomiting and dehydration and has been having tests all night.

Is the universe destruction-testing me, or something?

Tuesday, 8 April 2008

Saturday, 5 April 2008

oh bollocks

Things are marginally less stressful business-wise - the accountant reckons that we can keep trading. And he has worked out that actually, we should be claiming the maximum in Tax Credits, which is a huge relief. All our creditors are prepared to take staged payments and have been lovely. We are not out of the woods; but at least the trees have stopped falling.

However, in the interim, I think it's fair to say that I am a bit under the weather. I reckon that my new tablets aren't balanced very well. About mid afternoon the world seems to fall apart - I can't make decisions, I can't stop crying, I can't look after the baby.

Not ideal.

I have a appointments with both the midwife and the GP this week, so it's a case of hanging in there until then. The rest of the time I am more or less coping, the usual pregnancy-nausea and tiredness aside - although some of the time I am screaming inside. We went for a baby-scan yesterday - we have a due date of 7th October, which is what we thought ourselves. But I couldn't get excited about seeing the baby. I just felt exhausted and defeated and as if it's just another thing I have to cope with, that really, I don't want.

I do realise that this is not a 'normal' reaction and is because my brain chemistry is out of whack. But it's not great. I don't want to be left alone with Leo. I don't want to talk to anyone. I don't want to think. All I want to do is go to sleep and not have to wake up.

Yesterday, B and a lovely friend took the beehives over to their new home - they are going to live in another friend's field about five miles away. This is great, as it means that we have more space in our garden. Also, the friend has a couple of hives herself and she and I can help each other out with them.

Today we have some more lovely friends here helping us to move chicken houses and put up sheds. That will mean that all the kibble in the end part of the house can come out, and that part of the house can then be incorporated in to a self-contained bedroom/flat that we can rent out. B's mum and dad are lending us the money to move forward with that, to give us more income whilst the business recovers.

So everything is in train.

It's just, why do I feel so bad? I don't feel like a person - I feel like I'm being a terrible mother, a pretty bad wife and not a person at all. Just a lump of exhaustion.

It's not ideal.

Oh. And I have SPD again. It's worse than last time - but I have been taking tips from Kitchen Witch about managing it and have ordered some scary reinforced underwear which should help. In the meantime, anything which involved me putting my knees more than about a foot apart (stairs, walking, turning over in bed, er ... EVERYTHING) is Very Bad News Indeed.

I'm going for a sleep now.

Wednesday, 2 April 2008


Majorca was very nice, thank you for asking. Eighteen or so degrees all week, a couple of days of rain, we pottered round little towns, ate tapas and paella and slept. Siesta is such a civilized habit, isn't it?

Now, we are home. Which is lovely, particularly since Kate and Vic have been staying whilst we've been away and have gone through the house like a dose of salts - it's fantastically clean and tidy. We have also been left with instructions to ask them for help if we need it. B reckons his mother is a Chaos Demon - fantastic amounts of energy, so long as you have the right controlling spells.

Benign Accountant is coming round this evening for a Council Of War about the business. There is no change in our situation, but we both feel more able to cope with whatever is going to happen.

Currently we are having lunch and watching In The Night Garden on the BBC iPlayer.

Leo loves it. And B and I have become mildly obsessed. Did you know that it's narrated by Derek Jacobi? I keep having this terrible vision of him having to justify himself after each recording, in a perfect RP accent, saying something like:

"Did you see my Hamlet? It was acclaimed, you know!"

And I reckon that Iggle Piggle is having an illicit relationship with Macca Pacca. It's Zeddy and Parsnip all over again. Iggle Piggle probably shoots up in the Green Room before each episode, munching on a fat cigar and getting his sleazy showbiz lawyer on the phone to renegotiate his contract terms, whilst he drops ash on the dressing room floor and Macca Pacca manicures his toe-nails.

The poor old Tombleyboos on the other hand are having to dress in a cupboard down the hall and share a mirror. Macca Pacca is only trying to use whatever skills he possesses to climb up the showbiz ladder - but I think Iggle Piggle is just exploiting him and he doesn't have the worldly wisdom to see it.

It will all end in tears, you see if it doesn't.

Anyway. I'm out of internet time now, as B is about to switch off all the electricity in order to tail in the new kitchen sockets. If I don't post for a few days it's because my solar charger hasn't arrived yet.

For today, that is all.