Ghosting

The practice of suddenly ending all contact with a person without explanation, especially in a romantic relationship.”

There are different levels of ghosting. Sometimes someone might be messaging you and then just stop replying, which to be honest, isn’t really fair, but it happens. The worst type of ghosting is once you’ve been on a date with someone, or even worse, been dating someone for a while.

In my opinion, ghosting someone is one of the WORST ways you can treat someone. Do you not think that you at least owe that individual who has invested their time in you, some kind of honesty, even if it is rejection?

I know rejecting someone can be awkward, but when it comes to dating, communication and honesty is so important. If you’ve put yourself out there enough to go on a date, then I’m sure you can cope with being adult enough to tell someone if they’re not right for you.

The worst experience I’ve personally had of ghosting was during lockdown. I was dating a guy for around 5 months and aside from coronavirus, things were going really well (his words, not just mine). We had so many plans in mind for when lockdown was over and we couldn’t wait to be reunited. A few days prior he was telling me how much he missed me and he was sorry that work had been so busy and he hadn’t been able to talk as much as he had wanted to. Out of absolutely no where, on a day he was meant to call me he literally just disappeared and never messaged me again (and yes he is still alive). At first, I thought maybe something had either happened to him, or had happened to his Nan who I knew wasn’t very well… but nope, just a cowardly a**hole who decided to ghost me during one of the worst periods of my life!

I think one of the hardest things about being ghosted is it doesn’t give you closure, which so many people need. There isn’t an explanation, you may not ever find out what happened and more often than not you start to look at yourself and wonder if it was something you did wrong.

I can tell you now, it wasn’t something you did wrong. In fact, it was a lucky escape! The type of person who is happy to treat someone in this way is not the kind of person you want to build a relationship with. The closure? The closure is the fact they decided to ignore your messages, rather than have the balls to be honest with you.

Don’t devalue yourself by wasting a second more either trying to communicate with them, or by thinking about them! You are worth SO much more than that and trust me, one day you’ll look back and be thankful that it never worked out with them.

Smear Tests

In the UK, at the age of 25 women are invited for a cervical screening, also known as a smear test. Most people don’t like to talk about it but getting a smear test done is really so important. It only takes a couple of minutes of your day and it could save your life.

Just under a year ago I had my first smear test. I was kind of apprehensive, I mean, it’s not every day you have a random woman shove something up you and take a swab… but, in all honesty it’s nothing to worry or be embarrassed about. Firstly, it’s nothing the nurse hasn’t seen or done before, and it’s over very quickly.

I waited for my results to come in the post and it wasn’t long before I received a letter from my Doctor saying that I had an “abnormal result” and had to attend a hospital appointment and have a biopsy to test if the cells were cancerous.

I was BEYOND scared. I’m quite a chilled person and I don’t easily react to things but believing I’m quite an unlucky person some of the time I was petrified that I may have cancerous cells. I knew my friends had all received normal results and I didn’t want to discuss it with them. I went online, was googling abnormal smear test results and writing on cancer forums. What I didn’t know at the time was that abnormal results are pretty common and more often than not doesn’t mean any cells are cancerous!!

My hospital appointment came along and I had my biopsy. It hurt, it was uncomfortable, I came across faint and sick after (it’s a mental thing I have), but it was done. The biopsy gave me bad period pains and I came home, got into bed and curled up with a hot water bottle.

After that, there was another long wait to receive the results and they came back as all clear! I was so relieved! Because of the abnormal result I have to have another smear test after a year as they just want to keep an eye on everything. The whole experience really highlighted to me how important it is to make sure you have a smear test! The sooner they find out about any abnormalities or find any cancerous cells, the sooner they can be removed if necessary, meaning minimal chances that they’ll lead to cervical cancer.

Getting the all clear is so so worth it, so please don’t hesitate to go and get one!

My First Home

After a long and stressful process, in September 2019 I became the proud owner of my own little home.

I’d been renting for four years beforehand and thanks to the help of my Mum, I purchased my own place. Renting was a great decision for me at the time as I needed to move out of my family home environment and have my own space, however, the thought of paying for my landlord’s mortgage and his regular trips away pushed me into wanting to get on the property ladder myself.

I’ve now been in my little home (a ground floor maisonette) for just over a year and I love it. I’m not too far from family and friends, I can travel into Central London on the tube super quickly and I’ve still got work to do to make my home just how I want it.

Here’s to continuing to create lots of new memories in my home ♥

Dementia Awareness

Dementia is progressive and caused by damage to the brain, there are several types of Dementia including Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, frontotemporal dementia, and more. It’s sadly really difficult to diagnose in the early stages but changes to behaviour/moods and memory loss are some of the key symptoms.

Every Day Care

As the disease progresses, the individual will need help with every day care such as washing/bathing, preparing meals, taking the correct medicine etc.

There are so many different types of care available whether that be, a care home, a live in carer, regular carer visits or moving in with a family member, it really does depend on the individual and their wishes/ability.

I personally used care.com and was lucky enough to find some amazing private carers who looked after my Dad. I found that the agency carers I came across were just in the job for the money whereas the private carers we found really genuinely cared about my Dad, were so personable and soon became part of the family. We also a couple of times used night carers, which were surprisingly usually sent from Marie Curie. One of the night carers we had that came a few times was great, really attentive to my Dad and changed him in the night etc, however, one we had just fell asleep in the corner and didn’t attempt to even keep him hydrated.

End Of Life Care

The majority of people who suffer from dementia usually die of another cause before reaching the severe stages of dementia. When the individual is near end of life a “palliative care team” will be involved in the care. End of life care can last for weeks, months or even years in some cases and it’s all about supporting the individual to live as well as possible with the best quality of life up until they die.

DNR Decisions

One of the recurring discussions that came up was regarding whether or not to have a DNR (do not resuscitate) on my Dad’s record. This was a really really difficult decision for me and I found myself getting really annoyed at anyone who mentioned it. The few times he was admitted into hospital they put it in place for his hospital stay without even mentioning it to us. I wanted any medical staff involved to do their best to keep my Dad alive for as long as possible!! In reality, being resuscitated isn’t like it is in the movies with a few chest compressions… It wasn’t until I carried out research and spoke to a palliative care consultant that I realised that there was very very little chance that resuscitation would even work, and if it did, the quality of life would be next to nothing due to the disease and the frailness of the individual. In fact, it would have been almost unfair to not have the DNR in place and the senior consultant took charge and applied it to my Dad’s record, much to my mum’s dismay.

The End

I would be lying if I said that seeing someone dying with this disease, especially a parent, is one of the most heart breaking things to go through at any age. The general assumption is that if you know that someone is going to die, it makes it easier – it really doesn’t. You have to prepare yourself that one day, this person you love isn’t going to be able to even eat or drink any more, they’re not going to be able to talk and they might not remember you, but what matters is making them as comfortable, happy and as pain free as possible. Look after yourself, be the best person you can for them, if you’re rundown then you’re not going to be giving them the best version of you.

It’s your responsibility to show them all the love in the world right up until the very end. You’ve got this.

For more information and support please go to www.alzheimers.org.uk.

In memory of my Dad I have been raising money for Alzheimer’s Society, a care and research charity for those with Dementia/Alzheimers and their carers. So far I am proud to say I have raised over £850!

If anyone else would like to donate please click here.

Sexuality is not a choice

As a straight female, I’m not going to even pretend that I know what it’s like to be LGBT but believe me, if sexuality was a choice then there is no way I would still be straight.

Some of my closest friends are Lesbian, Gay or Bisexual and I honestly cannot wait until there isn’t a homophobic bone left on this earth! I absolutely admire the LGBT community and Pride is one of the most fabulous events I have ever attended.

The fact that there are still people out there that take issue with someone’s sexuality is frankly quite shocking. It makes me wonder whether they’re just caged unhappy souls who are afraid to be the real them??!! I personally think there’s nothing more inspiring than someone who isn’t afraid to show the world who they really are. You were born as YOU, love yourself and love who you are. Your happiness should always be your number one priority and you will only truly be happy if you’re living life as the real you.

Love is love

Real Men Cry

In England and Wales, as of 2020 male suicide is at it’s highest rate in 20 years with figures showing that men are three times more likely to die from suicide than women.

Sadly, there is still so much stigma surrounding mental health issues, particularly for men. Society has made men feel like they need to always be “tough” and that showing emotions is “weak”. This is a typical case of toxic masculinity that is causing many men to suffer in silence.

Men are put under huge pressure from a young age. Being told to “man up” or “grow some balls” are prime examples of this stigma.

The truth is, men can have a mental illness, they can have eating disorders or an addiction, they can have insecurities, they can feel emotion and that is completely ok! It’s beyond brave to take the necessary steps to get the help you need. Would you personally look at someone else and think, oh they went to the doctors about their mental health issues, that’s kind of lame? No, so why do you think you doing the same makes you weak??!

I’ve seen men that I’ve dated cry and did I think there were any less of a man because of it? No way! For a long time, I used to think that men were generally emotionless monsters, so for me seeing that men actually do have emotions was an eye opener. Having them open up about their feelings made me feel unbelievably connected to them. The fact they had chosen to share their feelings with me was beautiful and just made me love and admire them even more.

Emotions have no gender and it’s time we closed the gap between Men and Women when it comes to Mental Health Issues. Encourage boys to be able to healthily express their emotions and let’s stop wrongly teaching men to mask their emotions. Talking saves lives.

Book Review: Untamed by Glennon Doyle

I’ve had a lot more time to start reading again due to lockdown and after seeing the review from Adele pretty much claiming the book changed her life, I thought I’d give it a read.

I personally loved this book, from the quotes on the front cover “Stop pleasing, start living” and back cover “Who were you before the world told you who to be?” to the super honest content from Glennon Doyle on how she escaped her “cage” and the social conditioning she (and we all) experience in life.

Her story is inspiring as she explains how important it is to put our happiness first, forget society’s expectations and be who we really are.

“If you’re ready – this book will shake your brain and make your soul scream. I am so ready for myself after reading this book!” – Adele

Four years ago, Glennon Doyle, author, activist and humanitarian, wife and mother of three—was speaking at a conference when a woman entered the room. Glennon looked at her and fell instantly in love. Three words flooded her mind: There She Is. At first, Glennon assumed these words came to her from on high. Soon she realized that they came to her from within.

Glennon was finally hearing her own voice—the voice that had been silenced by decades of cultural conditioning, numbing addictions, and institutional allegiances. She vowed to never again abandon herself. She decided to build a life of her own—one based on her individual desire, intuition, and imagination. She would reclaim her true, untamed self.

Untamed can be purchased online for around £12

Creating Confidence

Growing up, I was far from confident. In fact, I was shy, very quiet around people I didn’t know and cared far too much about what people thought about me. In fact, I can probably still tell you to this day many of the comments people made about me at school, and who said them!

It wasn’t until I left school and started work that I really gained confidence in myself. I was lucky enough to leave school with an amazing group of friends and a year or so later it was almost as if I woke up one morning and decided that the opinion of others really didn’t matter any more. Of course there are still times when people’s opinions bother me (I’m not a robot) but the less I cared about people’s pointless opinions of me or what I was doing, the more confident I became.

I think it’s so important to do what you want to do in life, to live for you and not to live to prove yourself to others. People will always have an opinion, so you may as well live life the way you want to. It’s exhausting and impossible to be everyone’s view of “perfect”. You are enough, and anyone who doesn’t see your true value, doesn’t deserve to have you in their life.

You don’t have to have life figured out yet

Whether you’re 20, 30 or even 40, you don’t have to have life all figured out.

Why do we put so much pressure on ourselves all the time? I have been guilty of this and it’s so so easy to compare ourselves and our lives to others whether that be on social media or within our friendship groups.

Many of my beautiful friends have settled down into long term relationships, two of them are now engaged and one of them is expecting a baby. I am extremely happy for them but naturally these events got me thinking, why am I so far off this? Should I be actively trying to keep up with the stage they’re now at?

A few netflix series, podcasts, a book and a staycation later and I realised that rather than worrying about what everyone else was doing, and the typical pressures of society i.e. settling down, getting married, having babies etc, I needed to focus on me. That’s their time to be getting into relationships, getting engaged, having babies or whatever else, and this is my time and what’s right for me at the moment is different – and that’s completely ok!

Right now, I’m happy to focus on me, to love and care for myself, surround myself with fun positive people and to take life as it comes.

You will bloom when you’re meant to, and everything you need will come to you at the perfect time. Don’t stress. Just enjoy the ride.

Ps, no matter how it may appear, no one really has life figured out – we’re all just winging it!

Losing my Dad to Dementia

29th August 2020 at just after 9.30am my heart was broken as I watched my Dad take his last breath. The 48 hours that led up to that moment were the most horrendous and heart breaking moments of my life but I was thankful that he was then finally at peace and not in pain.

My Dad went undiagnosed with Dementia and Alzheimer’s for many years which sadly affected our relationship whilst I was in my teens. I had no idea about dementia then and wasn’t sure if it was just me being a stroppy teenager and him being an old fashioned and totally unfair adult! We had the worst arguments and after I moved out we went for really long periods of time without speaking.

Just over 2 years ago my dad was officially diagnosed, I began to understand more about Dementia, how his actions/words which I never understood were caused by him having this horrible disease which slowly kills off part of your brain until you’re unable to function any more (I’m going to post a separate blog post about Dementia because I think i’s really important to raise awareness).

I am so thankful for the last few years where I managed to have my Dad back, the beautiful moments we spent together and almost daily during lockdown. The way his face lit up whenever he saw me, us cuddling up or holding hands watching TV, getting to tell him how much I love him all the time. I finally felt at peace that our relationship had been mended. ♥

Rest in peace Dad, I love you always xxx