Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Life is blooming tough…but thrilling too

The side effects of lies

I am currently dealing with so many issues, I feel like my head is about to explode. It's tough being on your own. We all need a sounding board but we don’t want to sound like we're moaning all the time. 

One of the side effects of Meniere's is lack of self-confidence. It's tough to know when the next attack will strike. Do you stay in? Do you venture out? Do you tell people about your illness? Do you keep it to yourself? Will people understand? Will people misunderstand when you can't attend events? Whilst I try to get on with life and, I think, I do quite well most of the time, I do have days when I can't breathe from the fear within me. This fear has also been fed by the terrible monster unleashed by peoples' lies about me. They have killed my self-esteem and confidence many times over.  I am trying to come to terms with years of being told my instincts were wrong and I was paranoid, only to discover and prove beyond any doubt, my instincts were 100% correct and I wasn't paranoid…EVER!

I am not angry at the lies. I'm angry that I spent all my life second guessing because I believed I couldn't trust my own instincts. When people I loved told me I was wrong, I was paranoid and stupid, I genuinely thought there was something wrong with me. For years, I have avoided relationships and friendships because I thought I was incapable of being loved or loving back. Can you imagine that? 

When I finally had irrefutable evidence, I was angrier with myself, than the perpertrators. I had allowed myself to be manipulated. I couldn't work out what I had done to deserve the treatment I received. Now, I don’t think I did anything wrong other than denying it was happening and not turning my back on it years ago. 

From day to day I get flashbacks of events that happened many years ago – my reactions to them range from anger, sickness and floods of tears. It is all part of the healing process and I am so thankful Wes has been helping me to come to terms with it. Some days are better than others but I have no choice other than to work through this while keeping my head held high, bring the boys up, support them, the house and forge a new career for myself. I realise just how strong and determined I am. 

Lies MUST be uncovered and called out but more importantly, people need to accept the consequences of those lies and the bullying and manipulation that follows when trying to cover up the lies. Honesty is the best policy. Own your mistakes, apologise where you need to and most of all, LEARN not to repeat. 

I am impatient. The trouble is, the enormity and emotions of the events take over every single aspect of your life. The fight to stop it taking over creates another conflict to get over! Some days, I feel like I am on a constant cycle of pain between a broken heart and broken ears. In between all this, I am trying to live my life and build a new career.  I want to wave a magic wand, get over my past and move on. If only it was that simple! Instead, I am fudging day by day and know one day, hopefully not in the too distant future, the fudging will be replaced with calm acceptance of my new, peaceful life.

Until then, I accept the struggle but won't give up on my children or my dreams. My enrolling on a Masters course is part of the process of getting out and not hiding away. I love being around like minded people and if I can get over the fears instilled over many years of abuse, I know I can succeed in all of my dreams. I refuse to give up!!

Before anyone reads this as self-indulgent wallowing, it most certainly is NOT. So many people are lied to or lied about; so many people are bullied by the people who pretend to love them. I just want those people to know, you are not alone. Message me. I can't promise I have the answers but I can lend you an ear so you are not going through it all alone. 


I confess, I have not written much over the last two weeks. I have been reading up on writing techniques and reading many writers' works. It's important to me to pick up the craft of writing and extend my knowledge but now it is back to finishing the work I have started.

The Nanny

This is progressing well. There is lots of research involved in this project which I absolutely love.



Is out in the market place, still.

Beyond the Past

Have you had the chance to read it yet? Would you like to review it for me?
Read the first three chapters FREE on my website
Available from:
Pegasus Publishers
Amazon UK
Amazon US
Or you can order from your local bookshop. The ISBN number is : 978-1-84386-789-0


I am looking forward to going back to University to study Information Technology. People are surprised when I tell them I am not doing a Master in writing but I want to broaden my horizon and my career prospects. Nothing wrong with having more strings to your bow.
I can’t wait to get stuck into my new challenge and know I can do this and write. I will still be pursuing funding for my PhD.

I am off to get ready for the first pre-season football training session this evening. I do love the summer holidays but autumn is my favourite time of year. Good luck to all the students getting their A level results tomorrow. I do hope you get what you want. We are anxious here but it's not the end of the world or life and death!!
Have a fabulous week and please, be kind to everyone.

Much love

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

It's good to talk

This week I'm in the process of re-writing the end of Beyond the Lies and not because I didn't like the ending I had written. I have lost my favourite ending! Yes, LOST IT - vanished from my laptop! I wrote two endings and kept them saved separately from the manuscript, only now I can't find the ending I wanted! Typical! And the one phrase that sprang to mind – KISS – keep it simple stupid!!

Serves me right really! I should not have been indecisive – that's what happens when people plant doubt into your mind. 

I've also been working on The Nanny now for just over twelve months. Development takes time and so does the writing. I'm not going to rush anymore work – I admit, I did with the first novel because I was a desperate, single parent. I still am but much more chilled about it all now. Thank goodness my boys are totally supportive and not materialistic. It would be nice to not have to juggle money around. I look forward to the day when the bills are automatically paid without worry! We all have dreams!

PhD Update

Until then, I am going to keep going. If I don't, the last five year's struggle would have been in vain. I've applied for a part time job to complement the Masters I am about to embark on. This will give me a year to find funding for my PhD. As a single Mum, I need to be close to home – to juggle school runs, football, rugby, illness and education. The research council has confirmed my research falls well within their remit but I they won't fund it at my nearest University. The whole system needs an overhaul in my humble opinion. Research funding should be provided to the individual not the institution – the institution should act as guarantor. The system hinders equality and prevents development outside the 'clique' establishments. 

My PhD study will provide invaluable research for the future delivery of Computing in High Schools. All I would like is an opportunity to give our children greater chance of success in life. If my screenplay is taken up by a production company, I would fund my own study but until then the research councils are supposed to be there to provide funding. I won't give up – I am annoyingly persistent when I am right! Let's stop inequality.

Mental Health

As exam results days' loom, this time of year always makes me worry about mental health. Mine know exams are not the be all and end all.  I have written about this before. Suicide is the biggest single killer of men under the age of 45 and mental health has always been a big concern for me as a Mum.  I have always created a culture of open discussion with the boys, to the point that, as soon as they get into the car after a day at school, they naturally tell me their full day – warts and all. Sometimes, their honesty surprises me but it shouldn't. If you teach children from a very early age it is perfectly normal to talk about your feelings and create an environment where it is very easy to express their emotions, it becomes second nature for them not to bottle things up. 

I get so many parents telling me their children never tell them anything about their school day. It makes me so proud mine will tell me everything – I mean everything! More importantly, they are not afraid to show their true emotions. 

My determination to ensure a fully open relationship stems from not having anyone to talk to when I was being bullied at school. I have had to overcome so much alone and know, sometimes how close I came to giving up on life!

I am so passionate about mental health of my boys. When Sheffield Eagles decided to end their Reserves side, I was really worried how Wes would handle it. To his credit, he handled it really well. We talked a lot about it and his feelings. Just knowing someone is there to listen, means the world.


Even if my boys didn't have the support system in place, I would hope they had somewhere to turn. #AndysManClub is an initiative set up by rugby league player, Luke Ambler and his partner, Lisa Roberts after the tragic suicide of Andy Robert's, Lisa's brother.  Their initiative is to provide a safe space for men to go and talk about how they feel and what is worrying them. 

Luke is raising money through JustGiving to provide #AndyManClub across the UK. Please support this cause. Please click HERE.

Luke has worked tirelessly to promote on social media through the hashtag #ItsOkayToTalk. You can get involved by posting your 'OK Selfies' and nominating 5 of your friends. There has already been global interest including Ricky Gervais. You can follow all this on Twitter at @andymanclubuk.

I wish Luke and Lisa all the very best. It is such an incredibly important initiative and highlights as always, MENTAL HEALTH MATTERS.

Family Time

I'm taking some time off this weekend to spend some quality time with the boys. We have one week to go before the A level results and Uni prep and two weeks before Lucas' 10th birthday – TEN! TEN! Where does the time go?

No matter how busy life gets, spend time with your children – you are their greatest teacher and role model.

Labour Leadership

Okay, I tried… but I can’t get through a blog without mentioning this. We had our nomination meeting this week and I am pleased my constituency nominated Jeremy again. I wish we were not having this battle at all but we are. There are three lessons I've taught the boys that are totally relevant to this leadership campaign.

  1. Always check the motive and source of any information. You only have to look at the twitter accounts of some of the rebel MPs to see their vile language and their motives. There was never any intention to make the new leadership work in spite of a democratic vote.
  2. Don't suffer from hostile deafness – you'll never hear what is being said if you already hate the messenger – no matter how much these words and subsequent actions will benefit you. That's what I believe some MPs suffer from.
  3. Always make your decision based on what's best for those who will be impacted the most by your decisions. 
We have been consistently let down by central Govt. That won't change by voting for the 'same'. We have to be bold. I want a Labour Government that prioritises education, health, job security and decent pay. In addition, mental health will NOT be a priority unless we have a Government who listens, understands and funds proper care. More talk, more funding, more action!

Have a lovely week – the UK is supposed to be heading for another heatwave – translates to my overseas friends as a 'bit of sun'. Keep smiling and enjoy life. 

Much love