The A Word: Eat, Sleep, Relax, Repeat

“Eventually all the pieces fall into place.  Until then laugh at the confusion, live for the moment and know that everything happens a reason”. 

The first stage of our house move is complete, our “stuff” is in storage and we’re in Cornwall.  It was very tiring, and I didn’t sleep particularly well for the days beforehand, so I was ready for a rest when we arrived at the cottage.  They do say moving home is the 3rd most taxing life event and I completely agree.

The stressful nature of this move has been somewhat exacerbated for me as I had lived in the house for longer than I had lived anywhere else.  For the first 17 years of my life I lived in 7 different homes.  From 17 to 36 I lived in 8 and these last 20 years have been my most stable (only 2 changes) and I have really enjoyed the constancy.

We’ve had an offer accepted on a property in Hampshire, closer to our families and with a mainline station to London. If all goes well, we anticipate being able to complete the second stage of our move in August so for the time being we will enjoy our time in the beautiful South West.

I do need to make a determined effort to relax as I’m rubbish at it.  My Fitbit normally reports 13 out of 13 active hours per day which I know is crazy.  I need to allocate more time to “limin”, a Caribbean word I love which means to hang out or to idly pass time.  I first heard the word when we went on our honeymoon to St Lucia. 

It’s a long story – we were due to go to Antigua, but the resort over-booked and we were asked to switch resorts to St Lucia. In return for the inconvenience, the holiday company upgraded our room to a beach front suite with a concierge service.  The concierge service was completed wasted on Jamie and I as we’re so low maintenance.  Our bar was stocked up every day and, as neither Jamie nor I drink spirits we gave them away to the locals we met on the beach.  One chap, Daniel, used to come and sit with us daily sharing his wonderful stories of life growing up in Caribbean. We returned the favour by giving Daniel our rum and whatever else took his fancy from our bar which was then restocked in time for Daniel’s stories the following day.   I loved listening to his tales of life in St Lucia and the word “limin” has stayed with ever since.  I can never understand why people don’t interact more with locals on holiday, we’ve learnt so much about the places we visit which you will never learn from a tour operator.

The other gripe I have is the way people speak to restaurant or bar staff which I notice more when we’re away on holiday.  Growing up I’ve had many waitress and bar jobs and most people are OK, but there’s always a few who talk down to you. I’ve always disliked any form of snobbery and I’m not a big fan of social class.  The classic formulation of social class in Britain is to see us being divided into three classes: working, middle and upper class.

Simply put, working class is normally defined as those in manual work, often having lower levels of educational achievement.   Middle class is generally categorised as individuals having higher levels of educational achievement.  Typical jobs include everything from doctors and lawyers to people working in cerical roles. Upper class is described as being the social group that has the highest status in society, especially the aristocracy.

To me, everyone is the same no matter what their social class, colour, religion or wealth.  I was born into and brought up in a working-class environment in the North West UK.  My entrance into the world and the first 6 weeks of my life is a story for another day.  I often feel more comfortable with people from my working-class upbringing however nowadays I can pretty much hold my own in any environment. During my career I did face some snobbery because of my lack of University education which was mostly from other women.  I allowed it to worry me and it definitely affected my confidence.  It would always come at a time when I had been particularly successful or taken on a new, more senior role.  I could never understand it as I’ve always strived to help and support other women in my working life.   That said, some of my best working relationships have also been with women and I can’t speak highly enough about some of the female colleagues I have had the pleasure to work with over the years. 

So with that emotional brain dump done, the reason for writing my weekly blog is to raise awareness of autoimmune disease and this week I am asking for help.  I’ve had Sinusitis, an inflammation of the lining of the nasal cavity and sinuses since February, yes! 5 months.  I should have taken antibiotics (which I have done for previous bouts) but I am taking so much medication at the moment that I haven’t bothered.

Seasonal allergies or an upper respiratory tract infection can cause sinusitis and symptoms include headache, nasal obstruction, decreased sense of smell, facial pain, ear pain, toothache and fever, most of which I have.   There are some autoimmine diseases that are associated with Sinusitis, but not any of the ones I have.  If any of my readers have any information on their experience of chronic sinusitis I would love to hear your story, especially if you have any tips as it drives me mad.  I’m hopeful that being in Cornwall and breathing in fresh air will help.

Finally, for this week, I can’t believe its July.  I do hope it treats us better than March, April May and June.  I’ve always love July; it’s the warmest month in the Northern Hemisphere on average, similar to January in the Southern Hemisphere.   Sometimes the hot, long days of July are called the “dog days of summer” and it’s often called the Hay month when the grass dries out due to a lack of rain and can be made into hay.  July’s birthstone, the ruby, is associated with contentment, love and passion, something I don’t see a lot of on my Twitter feed 😊

Until next time, stay safe and #stayalert…

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