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A tale with no title

As promised I have began to edit a tale I’ve been working on for some time now, too long perhaps and while I wont be sharing the whole tale with you all here is the first taster from it I hope you enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed writing it.

The gentle, crystal resonant sound of the harp music filled the air mixed with a female’s song bouncing off the trees. Laughter mixed in the air with the smell of cooked meat. The suns warm rays filled the crystals causing colours to cascade across the forest floor, this was the city of Alanadell. A city hidden at the top of a hill by the thick trees and impossible to find and under its ground lay tunnels left centuries before. This peaceful community was led by Lord Aymon a tall elven male with eyes the colour of the sea, his skin almost translucent and long golden hair surrounded a kind yet at times stern face. At his side was Lady Eroan, her eyes the colour of sapphires filled with wisdom, and her kind smiling face the colour of pearls were surrounded by braided golden hair. They had ruled the lands of Alanadell for centuries in peace until the King had threatened to take that from them and the war began, they called for aid and it was received.

Today the Lord and Lady would repay their debt to Lord Thalgal Greyheart a dwarven lord from the North where the King had taken the land and mines and slain many, but still they came to help fending of the king’s army. Lord Thalgal was given the mountain under the elven city as thanks for their aid and together a new city would be created in secret. The tempers and differences where already beginning to show with Lord Aymon attempting to keep to elven traditions and Thalgal wishing for a great party and feast having no patience for the silliness of elves. The dwarf walked through the city slowly due his injuries, his mind wandering below the ground to the wonders beneath. As he walked, he thought how strange the land was where the children rarely survived past infancy and if it did, they were special when compared to the dwarven halls which were full of children playing there laughter ringing out into the darkness of the caverns of the deep. As the dwarf came into a clearing a single tree caught his eye its roots dancing in time with the music and under its branches there was a young woman with golden hair and pale skin, singing with a bird crimson in colour. The girl waved at Thalgal and he knew in an instant that it was Ayona, the daughter of Lord Aymon and Eroan, he had grown fond of her and the eagerness she had to learn about the dwarves and their customs.

“Ayona, what are you doing out here alone, shouldn’t you be helping your people get ready for tonight”

“and miss out on our chats my Lord I think not”

As the dwarf laughed suddenly there was a flash of fire, Thalgal grabbed his axe from his side and took a fighting stance his eyes wide and frantic as Ayona giggles rang loudly in his ears. Thalgal was cautious after his time fighting and scowled at the elf for her laughter, she took his arm and guided him over to find a small pile of ash laying on the ground, Ayona blew on the ash revealing a small beaked creature which she scooped up to show to the dwarf.

“A phoenix?” Thalgal asked.

“yes, my Lord, we have had many adventures the bird and I”

For hours the two talked of the customs of their people, Thalgal told stories of goat and bear riding warriors while Ayona spoke of healing and nature. Time moved slowly here and while the war had raged for many years Ayona had stayed young and witnessed none of it living peacefully with her people. As Ayona looked down to the axe at the dwarf’s side he smiled

“ever tried one of these?”

“no”

“well lass there is always a first time, here” Thalgal held out the axe

Ayona took it her arms dropping from the weight of it, the dwarf stifled a laugh this only caused her to become frustrated. With all her might she pulled at the axe lifting it off the ground and with one swing found it lodged in the tree. The dwarf spent some time trying to remove it not because of the strength of the swing but from his own laughter, it eventually dislodged and Ayona began using her magic to heal the tree.

“wait a minute…… I’ve seen that before the king uses it and I know what it can do to people” the dwarves face was turning red with anger.

“please my Lord Thalgal…. I would…. my people would never use it like that, the king whoever he is well he is not one of my people and we would never hurt anyone.” Ayona pleaded.

“forgive an old warrior lass, I’ve only ever seen the bad side of it all”

Ayona smiled and placed her hand on his shoulder, she was much taller than the dwarf, but she had grown fond of him. At that moment Lord Aymon came into the clearing.

“there you are, come we have a feast to attend my dear friend”

Ayona hugged her father then turned to the dwarf placing the phoenix on his shoulder with a smile.

“her name is Flono, and if you ever need help just call for her”

“well lass all I need now is an eye patch and a ship and we are sorted” said the dwarf

“It may take some time Thalgal, but we can arrange a ship for you and as for the eye patch I’m sure if you explain it could be acquired as well” replied Lord Aymon.

A thunderous laugh burst from the dwarf’s mouth “you elves really crack me up you know that”

The elves looked at each other in confusion, while Thalgal who had never really looked at the beauty of Alanadell each house was crafted into the trees and the jewelled canopy made the lights brighter and a warm white glow grew through the trees. The city was illuminated with a sense of calm and peace with the sound of animals and water filling the air.  As the light of the mid-day sun began to fade the group joined the table where dwarves and elves were sharing stories and laughing, a sight unheard of in the history of the world and so the new story of the elves and dwarves was beginning. As the merriment grew into the night Flono found her way onto Ayona shoulder and shaking nuzzled into the elf, as she turned to comfort the small bird a chill filled the air and the smell of smoke filled her nostrils. In the distance of the crowd came a scream and panic soon followed as Ayona gazed up a shadow fell over Alanadell.

To be continued……….

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Page update

Hi everyone

just to let you guy know I have created a page on here called the diaries of home schooling, yip I know obvious what that is about but I thought it would be fun to share our journey through the scary adventure of the unknown world of home schooling so enjoy if you wish.

Stay safe everyone.

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crazy

Hello dear readers I apologise for my lack of content recently life has a weird way of just consuming you. So I have made the choice to put Targa and the gang on hold for now (I know im sorry) I don’t have the time to keep going, however after weeks of thinking I have decided that due to writers block it is time to begin an edit on something I’ve been working on for over 10 years and I’ve become rather attached to the characters and I hope you will too, now while I wont share the whole story with you all (let’s be honest I want you all to buy it when I take the leap to publish it) but I want to share it with you in the hopes that it sparks some fire for writing again. So keep your eyes on the page because it will be up soon.

Please feel free to feed back and comment.

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After the dawn

It came as a whispering in the air at first, the cold air blew towards the forest, the spider queen ordered her slaves to work through the pain and mend the hollow. They felt it then, that cold air filled with grief and anger the queen hide with in the funnel web as day by day the frost took hold of her webbed kingdom and slowly her children came to her feet crying for shelter.

The dragonborn watched Nadora sharpening her knives, it had only been a few hours since she last screamed at him after he had asked if there was anything he could do to help her feel better and dared not to ask again but he would not leave her. In the hours that passed an anger began to take over him, he meditated but he couldn’t switch off, like an internal fire it burned seething to the surface and slowly he lost control. It was subtle at first the air around him grew colder as he fell deeper into a trance the cold air spread causing Nadora to look around, she got up worry crossing her face she walked over, Targa felt her presence and a smile raised in the corner of his mouth but he did not open his eyes. Nadora sat beside him looking out towards the woods her heart broken, through the cold she reached up to her cheek finding a tear frozen there.

“they don’t deserve to live after what they did” she said

“and they won’t” Targa slowly got to his feet as a blue flame covered his arm “get inside”

“no, you can’t go alone”

“don’t worry and don’t argue with me get inside”

“Targa…” the dragonborn turned his once blue eyes now white as snow and filled with malice,

“no one must leave that house until my return” he said

“be careful” Nadora retreated to the house as she slowly closed the door she watched as Targa disappeared into the trees.

The darkness retreated from the soft blue glow from the dragonborn hands, the spiders had retreated deeper into the forest sensing the anger that had entered the forest. Targa reached out his hand touching the webbing causing it to freeze spreading rapidly. He had witnessed and admired may spiderwebs in a thick frost in the years of hunting, but those feelings were not here now. As the frost took a life of its own Targa continued walking inwards. Until in front of him stood a mighty wall of black, only it was moving, and thick hairs moved around, he had found the spider queens burrow.

“COWARDS, I should have known that you all would be hiding, and where is she”

The swarm burst forward and the spider queen came scuttling out of the burrow, venom dripping from her fangs and her face full of fury.  She ran straight at him, using her long front legs to knock him to the ground and there she held him.

“how dare you? May I remind you that you came here into my woods and that girl insulted me and now you come back to do the same”

“We came in peace you and your so-called children attacked us”

“my children are hungry, and that girl would betray you before the end so really I did you a favour”

“you don’t know that”

“it has been written since before you were born”

“what was written?”

“that before the king’s death there will be a mighty betrayal from one who knows the king so well”

“That could be anyone you had no right to do what you did”

“I had every right to kill her…”

Targa had pulled his blade and sent it plunging into the queen’s abdomen, she screamed in pain as the dragonborn spoke

“she isn’t dead” pushing his arm up and the blade deeper she was gone.

The horde of spiders had regrouped and were headed straight for Targa, as the rage began to build the blue flame streaked down his arm as he pleaded with them to stop, but it was unheard, and they advanced. Unable to contain the rage it burst from him in a bright white light causing him to blackout.

When Nadora and Lorcan opened the door again the woodland was gone and, in the distance, they could see Targa laying motionless in its wreckage, they called for the others and took off running.

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The power of dreams

Now dear readers don’t go thinking that I am talking about those wonderful images that dance through your mind while you sleep where you don’t want to wake in the morning or those ones that terrify us so much that all we want to is wake ourselves up. No what I am talking about is those dreams that we have for ourselves, those hopes and aspirations…. Those dear readers are the most powerful of all.

It has become a bit of a bee in my bonnet lately, words are the most powerful tool we have. Seriously think about it for a minute…. You can literally say something, and it can make someone’s day or ruin it, words stick to us for a long time and they can manifest in a person’s mind long after they are said and with the power to do the most damage.  It seems that it is more likely that we will say what we think with little thought for how it might affect someone and why are we putting pressure on people to live or do things a certain way? Why do we poke fun and make people the butt of our jokes? Am I being too selfish with my dream? Am I being unrealistic in what I had hoped for?

Here is the thing I believe in the power of the dream, it is what drives us, empowers us and well just fills us with hope…. So maybe it is a little selfish but that is ok and hey other people are entitled to their opinions, but they should learn to keep it to themselves. Would I have made it this far without those dream… probably not.

Growing up for as long as I can remember was I dreamed of was moving to some far off land, being a wife and having kids, I also remember being laughed at in school for those hopes and dreams because well “its not a real job” (try telling that to any parent on the planet) As I got older my dreams didn’t change but expanded I wanted to help people and here we are today. I still have those -Lets call them hopes not dreams- only now I see things a little different I will help people through my business, and I have the absolute pleasure of being a mum to the kindest, thoughtful and just awesome kids ever. My son is set to be a football star with writing skills that will far surpass my own and a daughter who is nothing like I dreamed because she is far superior to that, seriously she makes me beam with pride. I still dream of the fairy tale ending after all these years but now it gets to with my best friend, my biggest supporter and side kick, and while it might be a big expense to some people followed by a party to me it will be a complete expression of love for that person and a celebration for what we built together… and I sit at my laptop with tears of absolute joy in my eyes at the very thought of that hope and I challenge anyone to tell me any different because who are they to tell me not to live for that dream or to change it to fit their needs and expectations.

I guess what I am trying to encourage you to think about is this… life is too short and fragile to care what other people believe our only true limit is ourselves, if there is something out in the world that you want then you reach for it, no matter how long it takes keep reaching, wake up each day with the thought of today I fight back and the universe is sure to open those doors for you. Go on try it I believe in you.

I don’t know what is in the future, but I can’t wait for it.

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The inner voice

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Have you ever thought about doing something, I don’t mean an everyday things no I mean those things that are hard enough that there is a strong possibility you would stay in you pyjamas in bed instead, but you go through with it because you know it will be beneficial in the long run. That my dear readers is the inner voice or gut instinct and we should all be paying more attention to it, as I am a geek let’s call this Yoda, however there is a dark and nasty side to the inner voice who we will refer to as a gremlin who’s been fed after midnight.

You see everyone will have a Yoda, but for some people someone in their head has left the fridge door open and unleashed the gremlins. They take the slightest smallest doubt and expand it… dress it in fruit…. put some red lipstick on and sing New York. Yes, I know I watch too many movies, but it fits.

When I think of this time last year, I had no fridge just gremlins in full swing of musical numbers every hour of every day – I know exhausting – it got to the point where getting out of bed was getting harder by the day. In full swing the gremlins are easier to listen to than Yoda, shut yourself off from the world and forget who you are and just in case you have forgotten:  you are strong, caring, loving, determined, compassionate, and a fighter. Here is the thing while those little horrors can take over every thought in your amazing head, give that good side (Yoda) a little nod and boom your whole thought process can change you need only a little spark to set that star shooting through your thoughts.

I have said in a previous blog about speaking to my negative thoughts in order to stop them from manifesting, well I couple that with some Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) or tapping. Alright I’m getting there, so it is also known as the psychological acupressure and works by unblocking your energy system – I know it’s cool. The treatment involves using your fingertips rather than needles to tap on the energy meridian points, I have found it quick and effective for anxiety and stopping the gremlins from taking over, I highly recommend looking it up.

Here is an example so the other day I didn’t get the reaction I was looking for, I felt like someone had punched me in the gut and my mind started to race tears building in my eyes. Then someone special reminded me who I was and gave me a cuddle, it was enough to stop the tears and light the spark. I sat in the other room gremlins banging at the door and I started tapping within a short space of time boom there it was my next plan, you see I already knew what my next step should be I just had to unlock it or clear the path.

Your powerful mind can too remember you are braver than you think and today could be the day you fight back, if you wish it. I have no idea what today holds but I do know I will give it 100% because I have been in the dark with gremlins for far too long.

Wishing you all a great Monday from Scotland 😊

Posted in #dnd, #fantasy, short stories

Webs and fates.

The world has changed, I smell it’s despair in the air, my feet sense its pain through the earth. For many years I have lived here cursed and forgotten but now my dear children something is coming.

The group had travelled for days and now found themselves on the mountain surrounded by trees, exhaustion taking over them. Targa took watch Nereida approached him slowly still not fully recovered.

“You should be resting”

“I can’t, not when it is my fault, we are all here and we have no idea what we are walking into” replied Nereida

“well we need help and from what I can tell this is how we get that, so don’t worry we are strong together than apart”

“Targa what if I have brought us to our deaths? I hear this stupid voice in my head all the time and he isn’t a good person”

“That is doubtful Nereida, but if it is then I hope that our story will be heard, and more people will fight the king now please rest.”

Targa sat for hours his eyes scanning the treeline for movement, his mind wandered to times when he would hunt the thrill of it the calm he felt there, then he thought of his father and the times he had spent in the woods and his heart ached at his loss. It was at this moment when grief threatened to consume him that the halfling Lorcan broke the silence startling the dragonborn.

“Geez it’s clammy in here”

“Lorcan what are you doing awake?”

“ah well I am rested surprisingly and not being in my little house has me on edge if I’m honest I’m not one for the wilderness laddie so why don’t you get some rest and let me take over I think we have a busy day ahead of us”

Targa bowed his head and joined the group for rest, Lorcan fanned himself sweat running from his brow and his breathing getting shallow.

“it really is hot in here, alright focus Lorcan, focus” he glanced at the group and his eyes lingered on Nereida he smiled.

“what would a girl like that see in a little guy like me, focus Lorcan focus you have a job to do”

The air changed a sweet smell filled the halflings nose and he grew sleepy, his eyelids were heavy and drooping, he slapped his face shaking off the sleep, but it was no use sleep took hold.

Targa awoke blood rushing to his head, he was unable to move, his eyes struggling to focus through a white haze. As his ears adjusted, he could hear the faint mumbles from his friends, his heart took a leap he had encountered this before.

“No one move, we are in trouble”

“No way Targa I would never have guessed” responded Aidene.

“when I get my hands on you Targa your going to have a problem.” Replied Ravana

“Actually guys, it’s my fault I made him go and rest. So, if you must punish anyone it’s me”

As the group began shouting at the halfling, Targa focused on each voice checking no one had been lost, then he focused he fully understood the dangers they were in. He drew upon his energy releasing cold air into the thick sticky tangle and using his great feet he kicked himself free falling to the ground, he rushed to free his friends. Galurak grabbed Lorcan by the collar and lifted him, Targa rushed over.

“now is not the time my friend” he said

“listen to Targa, he is wise” Lorcan said in a panic.

“You, you’re the reason we are in the whatever mess we are in”

“what is this stuff it is so sticky?” said Nadora

“it’s a web” replied Targa

“don’t be silly Targa spiders could do that” said Aidene

“erm Nereida I wouldn’t be so sure of that, look” replied Ravana

As they looked around, their eyes were greeted by a dark and looming woodland some of the trees were dying and a think white webbing covered every inch of the tops. The air was thick, and the sunlight was blocked by it.

“It is spiders, I’ve faced them before” said Targa

“well what should we do?” asked Galurak

“stick together and don’t touch anything it will only draw them to us”

“erm Targa” said Nadora pointing at Nereida

The half elf was now in the middle of a stream of black tar like water, which was winding and twisting over her skin holding her in place as she swayed against it. The group rushed to her aid but as they drew closer to her a wall of water sprang up surrounding her, Targa tried to freeze it and the half orc tried to attack it both were sent flying backwards. The group watched helplessly as Nereida was held within its grasp, then as suddenly as it had started, she awoke for the trance and walked from the water completely dry.

She looked at her friends a little embarrassed “I’m sorry I scared you all, water…. It lets me speak to him among other things”

“if we make it out of here you need to explain this” said Ravana

“the witch is near” continued the half elf.

“where, this place is one giant trap and we need to get out” replied Targa

“NO, we need to go in”

“in? you really are mad…. This is the home of giant spiders if we go in, we aren’t coming out”

“Targa, I know this is hard to believe but she lives in there at the heart of it all, we have come this far we must continue”

“I don’t like this…… and who is making that clicking noise it is annoying as hell” said Aidene

As she gazed around the group shrugged it off in protest and then they became aware of movement all around them, they drew their weapons readying for a fight as a strange screeched filled the air Nereida walked away from them.

“We mean no harm and we only wish to speak to the queen of these lands, the all mighty and powerful Ette”

A strange whisper responded “proceed but we are watching you”

The spiders kept hidden, but their shadows fell behind the group giving the impression that there was only one way they could go, they began walking saying close together with the clicking growing less as more spiders fell behind.

“we could go invisible and run for it” piped up Lorcan

“that’s an idea” agreed the twins

“we have come this far” said Galurak

“but….”

“if it is a fight then it shall be a good one”

“your orc kind always with the violence” replied Ravana with a smirk

“be on your guard all of you” instructed Targa.

Ravana in her gazing around stumbled over a stone causing her to lose her footing and landed on a web, it was tough and sticky she struggled to free herself. As she pulled herself free there was a thundering sound of feet scuttling across the ground in the darkness followed by hasty clicking and the movement stopped. As the dwarf and the rest of the party peered through the webbing, they caught sight of a glint of light lightly shining on several eyes, Ravana backed away slowly.

“this is a mistake we should go” she stammered

“we had no choice” replied Nereida

“there is always a choice” snapped Ravana

“the choice was this or death”

“Great we are probably going to die anyway”

“lets just keep going” stuttered Lorcan

The woods grew darker like they had always been that way and knew nothing of light, the web was thicker now and in the darkness the half elf could make out spiders above there heads now but they were only babies, the webbing extended in front of the friends and as they looked it they took in the complexity of it and fear grew of what lay within it funnel. Suddenly a female voice echoed from it

“who wanders so aimlessly into my kingdom, a group of self-proclaimed heroes I imagine… too bad that none of you will see the light of another day”

Targa drew his blade and the others followed, Nereida held her hands out

“great Ette queen of the spiders and the most powerful of your kind, please allow us council and guide us” she said

“oh, it begs to be spared and guidance”

“I do not beg your highness merely ask, after all we have the same goal in mind”

The web shook and again the sound of feet could be heard, the group could only stare at the web tunnel. The baby spiders disappeared higher out of sight, just as the tips of legs covered in dark spiky hairs emerged from the tunnel. Next came the body of the creature the hair thicker and as it emerged from the tunnel pulling itself up to reveal the body of a women, a menacing set of fangs sat just below the waist. Her arms were exaggerated by the long claws on the end of her fingers

“a mind reader, are you? Well let’s see what you can do”

In that moment Nereida dropped to her knees her hands clutching her head, her mouth open in silent scream. The group moved to help but the queen spoke quickly

“if you value your friend, I wouldn’t do that” she grinned

“let her go” said Galurak

“you know I’ve heard enough from you” she clicked her fingers and Galurak fell silent.

Lorcan had a thought through his panic, and he removed a mole skin from his pack and through the water from inside over Nereida causing the spider queen to laugh.

“how stupid can you be to think that would help” she shot a web at the halfling causing him to disappear into the trees.

Targa made the air cold in his building rage, and she turned her attention to him

“well what do we have here…. I haven’t…… what…. what is this?” she began to scream in pain her body curling up from it.

A blue aura of an octopus now surrounded Nereida and she was now floating her eyes pure white. Her friends just stared in shock as a male voice left her lips.

“listen to the girl Ette or you will….”

Nereida fell to the ground panting as the spell ended, Ette quickly recovered a confused look across her face.

“I am sorry that he has chosen you child….”

“well my fate is no different from yours, but I will not use the power against you I only come to ask for help if you will permit it”

“I will listen”

“we are here because of the king”

Anger grew in the queen as she sent vibrations through the webbing, Nereida spoke with purpose

“please we are not here to fight we are looking to destroy him is all”

“destroy him…. He deserves to suffer for what he did”

“and he will I promise or else I will give myself willingly to you to decide my fate”

The queen laughed “your fate is already decided little one and I will not cross the God of the deep. But I can help you”

“thank you”

“the key to his destruction can be found on an island to the East, a forgotten land where dragons once roamed. There you will find a temple and with training they can teach you all you need to know. Although the dragonborn already has the power if only he could harness it”

“that is your suggestion…. Go to an island” said Aidene

“child there are trials to be passed to prove you worthy first and you with your cheek I am unsure if you would be”

“HEY, I am”

The spider queen laughed, then pulling a stick from her hair allowing it to fall over her shoulders she held a vile which she held out for Nereida, the half elf took it looking at Ette confused.

“a vile of my venom, use it wisely a single drop is enough to kill a man”

Nereida bowed thanking the queen

“now you and the dragonborn are free to go, as for the rest of you”

“wait… what? no”

“my dear girl you two are pivotal to the cause, but I will not allow such insubordination to exit my woods.”

“I’m sorry” said Aidene

The spider queen smiled, at that moment spiders descended from the treetops white poison dripping from their fangs. They landed on the ground their hairy legs sweeping over it as they advance on the group, Aidene pulled her weapon and swung at the nearest one slicing through its fang. As she looked at her friends smiling in victory a great fang of the spider queen sunk into Aidene skin and foam escaped her mouth. Filled with rage Targa sprang forward the queen shrinking away from the cold he picked up Aidene and retreated to the group they were surrounded.

“HEY ugly, did you forget about me…. you need to learn some manners yourself.” Called Lorcan

The spider queen scowled at the halfling, and nodded at the spiders, they began to reel themselves like they were attached to a fishing line.

“LORCAN RUN” shouted Targa

“in a minute” the halfling danced around the branches waiting as the spiders got closer then just as their hairy legs began to tickle his feet he jumped down pulling the web with him, the spiders screamed in pain as the suns rays burst through the canopy hitting the queen who shrivelled up into a ball on the forest floor.

“what are we waiting for let’s get out of here” called the halfling and they began running the web still attached to his arm letting more light in with every step as the web was pulled away.

The group kept running until they reached the outskirts of the woods, Targa placed Aidene on the ground as her sister ran over cradling her lifeless body. Lorcan didn’t waste anytime and began to work speaking words with Nereida helping both worked together on the girl.

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I need your help…..

Good morning blog fans

I know it’s been such a long time frankly I’m a little disappointed in myself for that (sorry for the self negative talk) so here is the thing I have been a little distracted trying to start a business 😮. I know I’ve got all the emotions….

So in November I took a life coaching course which was amazing and really opened my eyes but I decided to wait until the new year and well here we are planning and organising everything to get stuck into a world of helping people.

So how can you help? I here you ask….

Alright let me get to it, so I’ve been doing some research and sadly what I discovered is that in my local area there is little support for mental health. Something I am looking to change, along side my business I would like to give back to my community and provide a sort of support group, hopefully offering ways to improve mental health or ways to support someone with mental health. Where I need help is if you were looking to attend something like that what would draw you to it?

What could I maybe put in place that would make you think you know what I’m going to go tonight?

The aim is to get people talking about mental health and support each other or find the support they need.

I know you guys are from all over the world but that’s the beauty of this platform it’s a chance to embrace another culture 😊. Also you dont need to have bad mental health to come along.

Any advice or suggestions are greatly appreciated and as always thanks for the support 😊

Speak soon Aileyb

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New year

Well my wonderful reader I can only apologise for my lack of content it has been a busy few weeks and I have a feeling this year is going to be even busier.

I just cant let this year end without saying a huge happy new year and decade 😊 this has been a hard year but I’ve made it and so have you.

Now I just need to time manage and make this more of a thing but I’m not going to do the whole new year new me thing because i kinda like me as i am so I’m just going to breathe and welcome whatever joy comes my way i just hope some you join me along the way and thank you for being part of this amazing journey.

Posted in mental health, short stories

Unique like a snow flake

It is that time of year, it just kind of snuck on me I don’t know about any of you out there. For weeks now I have listened to every Christmas song I can, I’ve taken my kids to Christmas markets and talked of elves, Santa and the North Pole generally getting excited about the whole season but there is that darker side to the season that we don’t really talk about and it happens to a lot more people than we would know. Just the other day I was speaking to someone about Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and the effects that it can have on an individual and how un-Christmassy they were feeling because of it and I got to thinking. 

Yes, I love the season and yes, I get into it but let’s be honest it stresses us out, have I bought the kids enough? Will my partner like this? How will I afford that? I often find myself scrolling through my social media pages thinking that I’m doing something wrong and how can they possibly be affording that when I work so hard and know that I couldn’t (be honest we have all done it) in these moments I have to stop and reflect and remember life is not a competition and then I ask myself what is more important to me. This time of year also brings the pressure of this attitude that we are all happy all the time, because tis the season…… the harsh reality is that 1 in 4 adults are effected by a mental health problem and this time of year can prove to be the hardest. 

With all the festivities going on around it is easy for someone suffering with a mental health problem to feel disconnected from the joy and warmth – an individual can be left feeling like they are Scrooge left out in the cold looking in the window of the Cratchit family and the joy they have unable to take part – This societal expectation can increase the pressure on someone who has a mental health problem, and in many cases heighten the negative thoughts and feelings. So how do we combat these, well for me I use these techniques and like puppies they are not just for Christmas. 

 Firstly i acknowledge that all my thoughts are real…… yip 100% real and unique as a Christmas snowflake (see what I did there). The thoughts are real so say hi to them, next ask yourself are they factual, the mind is a wonderful thing and boy is it powerful, so is the thought factual? If the answer is yes and you can prove that it is then by all means carry on my wayward son, if the thought is not go ahead and shout STOP at it.  

Next I take time out, this one I stumbled upon at a really bad time and it turned out to be what I needed but it comes in many forms at that time it was a weekend away but as I look back I realise that it included time away from social media and staying in when I was supposed to go out. Now I find myself taking 10 minutes out of my work day just to breathe and recharge. 

Sleep – at this time of year late night prep and parties can steal our sleep from us and it is important to rest. 

Exercise – I know at this time of year it is the last thing on most people’s mind but think of the endorphins you know the happy chemical. I know… I know but what if you took a little walk like walk for 15 minutes then turn back there 30-minute walk barely a sweat. 

Relax – I know I laughed too, but breathing exercises, yoga or my new go to meditation. Yip recently I have zoned out so many times and it has been blissful.  

Step away – like I said previously I have in the past taken a break from Social Media and it was good for the soul, I’m saying it is an excuse to avoid things but if mentally you are not feeling up to it then don’t force it. I have in the past avoided social events and in the end felt worse so now I fight the anxiety and go or invite people to the house because let’s remember the thoughts are real but not always factual.  

It really is the most wonderful time of the year and it is sometimes lost because of the gifts but for me this time of year is about being together, for someone with a mental health problem that is one of the hardest parts but you my lovely people can make it easier, yip the wonder person that is you and I’m drawing on what I needed and wanted when I was at my worst. 

Talk – Let someone know you are there for them and then leave it. I know this might seem harsh but daily reminders of I’m here if you want to talk really are stressful. Why? Well for me I didn’t always have the answers why I feel the way I do and the fact I am unable to explain it adds to the pressure. I am not saying don’t speak to the person far from it they need the conversation so be there even if you only talk of the weather. 

Listen – try not to judge them on how they feel or think remember 100% real. 

Spend time with them – meet up for a coffee, pop round to their house even for 5 minutes it can change the whole day for someone.  

Don’t pressure them – so they don’t want to go on a night out, that’s ok you know and forcing them to go won’t make them feel good. 

Don’t draw attention to them – one important thing to remember is that alcohol can heighten emotions and if your feeling low imagine the effects it will have maybe not that night but the next day when it wears off. So, if someone is not drinking keep it in mind and don’t single them out adding to the pressure just be happy, they made it.  

Encourage them to take the time out – Not avoid, but step back and gather their thoughts and enable them to come back at it. 

Let me leave you with this thought in the hope that you carry it and you smile just a little: 

You are strong, passionate, courageous, more than capable and as unique as a Christmas snowflake and you know what…. That is just imperfectly perfect the way we should be, so be you send your energy into the world because it is amazing.  

Sending you love and joy while wishing you all a Very Merry Christmas.