Unbound Narrative

fiction and weird thoughts

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Push ups day 3

Yes, I know this post is 2 days after day two, I did however do the push-ups on time, my internet just wasn’t playing ball and it was taking a full day to upload MOST of the video and then crashing.

 

Day 3 was difficult, the pain was centred mostly in my shoulder and could just be due to my lack of exercise over the last couple of years, but the unevenness seen on day two was more pronounced, and the pain in my back has been growing since.

I also had to take a break to let my back and shoulder ease off before doing the last two (the dog also got in the way).

 

Push ups Day 2

It’s been a long day today, and I’ve not been looking forward to doing this, I’ve been particularly sore today, I managed to do the 22, but only just, it was pretty agonising.

 

Day 2

 

My Fight with Arthur

I haven’t published an article in two years, there are several reasons for that, though if I’m honest they’re really excuses. I have many reasons for why I haven’t been writing, mental state, busy with work, perennial tiredness, but it all amounts to the fact that really, I’ve just been too lazy to put the effort into something that I really enjoy doing. This is something I aim to fix, and I may have plenty of time to do it over the coming months.

 

The last few years have seen ups and downs throughout both my life, and the political world in which, as you may have seen from some of my previous articles, I am so interested in. We all know the political landscape has now quite potentially changed forever and for once the whole country has been involved in the discussion (Whether or not it was an informed discussion is the subject for a much longer article than I plan this one to be) so I won’t go over arguments that have been said by better writers than me.

 

My life has seen several upheavals of late, I got out of an unhappy relationship, which partly fueled my writing as an escape mechanism (why it is that I find it easier to express myself and be creative when I’m unhappy I will never know), left a job that I hated and moved back in with my parents. I subsequently got an old job back that if I didn’t like the job, I at least liked the people, and got a second job that I did enjoy, and I got into a rather happier, if distant, relationship with an old friend that I had always had feelings for. I moved back out of my parents back to the city, transferred again to a new job, that was okay if underappreciative, got made redundant, got a new job that I actually do feel appreciated (with a pay rise I might add) and got engaged to that old friend. It’s fair to say that I’m still a bit dizzy, but happy for once.

 

However, every silver lining is not without it’s cloud. I have suffered from minor chronic joint pain all my life, mostly in my knees and shoulders, which is mostly due to being hypermobile. Over the past several years that pain has spread in area and intensity, six years ago I would think nothing of being able to go to the gym five times a week and cycle at least five miles a day, three years ago I started getting intermittent back problems, but I would still not be troubled by the idea of an intense martial arts class, or a long walk up the Fells. After that point I started with the odd day that the pain would be so bad that I couldn’t walk unaided, but that was a rarity, and only when feeling unwell. I started taking painkillers every day, something which I had not done before, I always hated taking tablets, but at this point I no longer felt able to function without them. Around two years ago I started developing severe chronic pain in my right achilles tendon, left hip, lower and mid spine, and my right index finger.

 

I passed most of the increasing pain off as just more of the same I had always had, nothing could be done, I just had to get on with it, and then I decided I would do a charity 10k. Something you have to understand about me is that since my mid teens, I have always been relatively fit and healthy, and have always thrived on challenge, and to be unable was, and is, a thing of shame to me, I always had an issue with my body (as you may well know if you’ve read my previous articles) and so those issues started to come back and plague me when I steadily stopped feeling able to exercise. My thought process in doing this 10k was that it would be a challenge, and an achievement to build on, to get me back to where I was, if only I could get into gear, surely exercising would make the pain go away as it did before? Sadly no, never in my wildest dreams did I expect to very nearly come last, to not even be able to run half of the distance, and to experience more existential pain than I thought possible. You see, I had experienced pain before, appendicitis, broken bones, my regular chronic joint pain, but those were somehow separate, I could shut those pains out, and were always focussed. But this pain, mixed with the shame of not only not being able to keep up, but not even being able to run, seemed to be omnipresent, and, instead of the run giving me confidence, it removed the last confidence in my body that I had.

 

After the run I asked my doctor to refer me to a rheumatologist.

 

I had never wanted to see a doctor about the pain, it seemed too much of an admittance of defeat, but now I was defeated, I had to walk with a cane for a month after the run, and one day in 6 after that. I no longer felt confident in walking any distance, never mind exercising.

 

Work was difficult, my colleagues in the shop were understanding mostly, but still expected me to do the heavy lifting, the pub that I was working in less so, they always got me to do the heavy lifting, stacking full kegs on my own etc. It came to a head one day when I was in so much pain I could barely form sentences (I have never phoned in sick for the pain, I hope I never will), even breathing hurt, and the girl in charge of the shift openly said she thought I was doing it for attention, I quit not long after that.

 

Happily after that, I saw the rheumatologist, and very quickly got a diagnosis for Ankylosing Spondylitis, a form of inflammatory arthritis that affects 0.5% of the population, it affects mostly men (around 70% of patients are male) and generally starts in the mid to late 20’s. I got some long term slow acting anti-inflammatories and a regular prescription for Tramadol. I cannot state enough how even just having that kind of diagnosis can help, never mind having targeted pain killers that actually work. It gave me something to fight. You see, I had started to believe that it was all in my head, that maybe there wasn’t really a problem. Now I can actually go for a walk in the hills without fearing the pain, and the knowledge that that amount of pain is normal for someone with AS, makes it more bearable. I still have bad days, I still have to use the cane 1 or 2 days a month or so, and there are still things that I run into that I used to be able to do that I struggle with now that upset me, dancing at a friends wedding, doing push ups, and a few more, but I firmly believe that I can get back there with a little effort. Really the best support I’ve had is my partner, who gives me just enough sympathy to let me know she understands that I’m in pain, but also expects me to get on with it, and pushes me to do more.

 

The funny thing is, when I am having a bad day and have to use the cane, I always get people (mostly older) asking why I’m using it, and the responses when I explain are enlightening, they range from surprise “you’re very young for that!” to outright denial “Don’t be silly, you’re not old enough! It’ll get better in a few weeks!”. The one common theme in the responses is age, somehow it is unthinkable that a man in his late 20’s can have arthritis, despite the fact that in the UK there will be approximately 320’000 people with AS, and that is only one form of arthritis, some people are born with rheumatoid arthritis. It is no respecter of age.

 

Bearing this in mind, when a friend of mine nominated me for the push up challenge, I decided to give it a go, but not only raise awareness for the soldiers suffering from ptsd, a very worthy cause, but to also raise awareness of how difficult something so simple as doing 22 push ups can be for someone with AS, so I thought I’d do a running commentary on how I’m managing with the challenge.
And with that introduction, I give you day 1.

Day one was difficult, but not impossible, as you can see I managed to do the 22 in one go (with a bit of help from the dog at the end). It hurt my back but not overly so.

 

 

Death of Dreams

Why did I dare to dream,
And try to be unbound?
Where has my life gone?

Failure and self doubt cripple
I wanted to be found
Why did I dare to dream?

I have not been a wave, but a ripple
A face in the crowd,
Where has my life gone?

It won’t be long until I wrinkle
Am nothing but a mound
Why did I dare to dream?

And yet, I try and think
Until my head begins to pound
Where has my life gone?

I must see that this is just a kink
On this road, to which I am bound
Why did I dare to dream?
Where has my life gone?

My Fate

I am the master of my fate
The others shake their heads, they do not see
I am the captain of my soul

I scream, i hate, i rage
I want to be free
I am the master of my fate

Here i am in this cage
Down on my knee
I am the captain of my soul

I know i may be third rate
I know what i aim to be
I am the master of my fate

My life packed in a crate
I let them know, by and by
I am the captain of my soul

I wonder where? to which state?
I promised not to cry
I am the master of my fate
I am the captain of my soul

Calligraphy

Just thought I’d share

IMG_0212

Mental Health Day

So, it being mental health day I thought I’d talk about this taboo subject in a personal way.

I have been treated for depression, twice.

I have felt just as low after but didn’t want to talk to a doctor about it for fear that it might affect job prospects, let me tell you, it just isn’t worth it.

The first time I was treated for depression I was about 13 years old, I was a smart, chubby, asthmatic teenager who didn’t really fit into any of the social norms and so naturally I was bullied, from about the age of 6. My mother and older brother were in and out of hospital so often that sometimes I didn’t know which house I’d be sleeping in at night. I was unhappy, lonely, and didn’t want to put upon my already stressed family.

At about age 9 I really started to hate the way I looked (and still do sometimes 17 years later). I had a penchant for reading and although it was the best gift my mother ever gave me it did not make for much of a social life. Around this time I gained the worst memory I will ever have, I was forced to watch as a group of 20 children grabbed my brother and stamped on his back because they knew he had bad kidneys, putting him in hospital again for a week, and although my brother and I didn’t always get on he was the only person my age that I trusted to be there for me when I needed it. I became scared of everyone, and when my brother left for secondary school the bullying only became, worse so much so that I had pre-planned escape routes from school. This combined with belittlement and bad treatment from my teachers only taught me one thing, keep quiet, stay away and you’ll have an easier life.

When I arrived in secondary school myself my brother had his own set of friends and being scared of people meant that I was only surrounded by the same people I had been to primary school with, and nothing much changed, with one exception, I had taken my father’s lessons to heart and decided to fight back. This of course earned me a reputation as a trouble-maker and meant more poor treatment from teachers (I don’t blame those particular teachers like I do my primary school ones, all they saw was a kid who didn’t talk to anyone much and got into a lot of fights) with two exceptions, my form tutor and my geography teacher, they saw who I was and did their best to help me.

Age 12 was when I first contemplated suicide as a way out, I had begun alienating myself from my family too and as a consequence was lonelier than ever. In my head I thought everyone else was shutting me out and that I was an unlovable, ugly retard. I had a plan, jumping under a bus would be quick and painless and if it was a school bus then those arseholes would get to see what they wanted first hand (or so the twisted logic went). What turned it around was a very timely intervention from my dad (he had gone through similar things when he was younger and I think he recognised the signs), we had a fight and I scared him half to death with the words “you wouldn’t care if I jumped under a bus!”.

Fortunately for me, my dad did care and spent the next 6 months persuading me to the doctors, then the counsellors and then finally to take my anti-depressants. (or rather as is my dads way, talking to my mam and making her do the bad guy things, while he constantly tried to make me laugh, or was my confidante)

You see I was one of the lucky few, my mam and dad had felt the same as me, had been to counseling, had been on anti-depressants and told me what every depressed person needs to hear from someone they love.

“There is nothing to be ashamed of, I love you, will always love you, you need help, and if you ever do again just ask, we’ll always be here for you when you need us.”
To this day my mam and dad know if I’m feeling low within the first words out of my mouth and seem to be determined to never let it get that bad again.

My second round of anti-depressants only lasted 6 months instead of a year and a half, because my mam recognised the signs early even though she only saw me a weekends.

If you are feeling low then talk to someone, trust someone, they might not understand but they will be there for you and if you don’t want to talk to family or friends then here are some links.

Also family and friends, if you think someone needs help, don’t wait, these links will help you too.

Samaritans – 08457 90 90 90


Breathing Space Scotland – 0800 83 85 87

Mental Health Foundation


NHS – Live well

Or if you don’t want to talk to them, talk to me, email me at kit.myers6@gmail.com my emails go straight to my phone so I should pick it up straight away if I’m not at work, within 4-6 hours if I am.

My experience as an Englishman voting in the referendum and why Racism is killing our Nation.

The lead up to the Scottish referendum on Independence was an intense time to be living in Scotland, everyone was vibrant and animated and politics was the only thing anyone wanted to talk about for once. The average man on the street could remember and quote policy and economic data. Everyone was engaged, and it was fantastic.

One of the main concerns voiced during the campaign was “Isn’t this just scotland being racist against the English?” the answer to that is no, categorically no, and I can honestly say that is something that I have never experienced in Scotland, except for some mild stereotyping around the vote “oh you must be voting no because you’re English.” (I actually voted yes). Racism as a whole is fairly uncommon in Scotland, especially in the bigger cities which have a more metropolitan population, and Scotland is a fairly liberal country and generally finds any form of inequality abhorrent. The rest of the UK however has a real problem.

I’m going to talk about racism in general but really I’m talking about all forms of bigotry (misogyny, misandry, ageism, classism etc…)

The UK has two main problems with racism:

the unchecked growth of the uneducated neo-nazi fascism shown by the existence and popularity of groups like the EDL, the SDL (like I said, rare but not non-existent in Scotland), the Orange Order, UKIP, and the BNP.

The grasping of liberalism which makes people afraid to appear racist or secular.

I know these reasons seem to be at odds but lets look at them in more detail.

You only have to look at the resent violence in Glasgow to see how bad the first point is


The groups that perpetrated the violence were part of the No campaign (although a part that the core tried to distance themselves from) and this was a form of celebration.

Let me just restate that, this was a form of CELEBRATION for these groups, and the worst thing is that these aren’t isolated events.


A somewhat more dangerous movement is the political authority that people like this are granted within groups like UKIP and the BNP.

The BNP are a racist organisation, that we have known for a long time and their mild popularity was worrying but not major. However, a few years ago UKIP seemed to be a normal party, a group that wanted less control from europe over British matters (funny that Farage came out on the side of the no campaign but oh well). However, over the last few years the links with the BNP and openly racist comments from the party leader have piled up, and for some unfathomable reason they have become MORE popular.

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/danhodges/100261889/ukip-are-now-a-racist-party/

http://www.standard.co.uk/news/politics/nigel-farage-faces-racism-watchdog-probe-over-romanians-remark-9404024.html

and the reason is number 2

Happily in the the UK we do seem to think liberalism is a good thing, but the way we do it is wrong on a fundamental level. We believe that everyone has the right to an opinion, good, but we also seem to believe that no-one can challenge those opinions, which is wrong, anyone has the right to challenge any publicly expressed opinion.

Here in the UK we also have an ingrained form of racism, called national pride, the belief that because we were born here, we have more right to express views on our country than those that moved here. I was actually on the wrong end of this during the referendum, English people telling me that I shouldn’t be entitled to vote (despite scottish people saying that I was entitled) and also that I wasn’t allowed to voice my opinion because “It’s for the people of Scotland”.


I actually had this last opinion myself throughout most of the campaign until some scottish friends actually persuaded me that I had a responsibility to do both, because I live here and it would affect me as much as anyone else.

Unfortunately we also seem to have convinced ourselves that the people that run our country are better than us, that we don’t have a choice in how our country is run. Even though we complain bitterly at how awful our government is, we don’t try to make a difference because of the thought that our voice won’t count, shown by the decline in voter turnout at elections. How many times have you heard the phrase “oh I didn’t vote, how can my one vote possibly make a difference?”, a lot of difference, thats how much.

Vote. Campaign. Shout. Scream. Write a letter. You can make a difference.

And remember, everyone is equal, no matter what Race, Creed or Religion.

A rant from my Mam!

Hi guys, so my Mother has asked me to post an article she wrote. My response? Why the hell not!

Kit

Ok I hate racism,

If you were trapped and needed help from a fireman, how many of you that have put racist comments on Facebook, would refuse to take the hand of the Fireman, (who has risked his life to save your sorry arse),  because he or she is Black, Asian, White, Muslim, sky blue pink with purple dots,  I’m thinking none of you!!!!! So why the hell do you think it is appropriate to spread HATE, it’s not nice, it’s not acceptable and it’s just utter bullshit.

All Muslims are NOT TERRORISTS, All Christians are NOT SAINTS, if someone looks different, IT DOES NOT MEAN THEY ARE YOUR ENEMY. This county is a Bastardised nation; we have been invaded by every county, race and creed since history began, so tell me if you are white British, what are you? Are you a Celt, Roman, Finn, Swede, French, or German?  Over the centuries we have accepted people of all races, cultures and religion in to our lives; it’s what makes Britain GREAT.

As the British Empire we enslaved half the world and accepted that world as part of our culture. HOW DARE you now decide, because it doesn’t suit you, not accept those into our county and culture, those who we have enslaved in the past, and who I might add, have fought for this county.

I hate the fact that I work hard and the government takes my overtime pay because I am a low wage earner, and gives it to the social state, I hate the fact that jobs are available and third generation Britons have never had a job and never intend to get one; I hate that our soldiers come home and do not have a place to live, I hate even more that the Gurkhas  who have fought for this country for over a hundred years have had to fight to be British. Unfortunately this crap is not isolated to them, Asian, Muslim, Jew, Catholic, Protestant, Buddhist or any other Race, Creed or religion; this is the reason we have a social state, if the shit hits the fan THE STATE WILL KEEP YOU. I have worked all my life, but I have still needed to claim when times got tough. Get a grip folks, PLEASE

I love a joke; Black, White, Irish, Muslim, etc… It’s a joke people, I laugh.

But RACISM with HATE is not.

The Propaganda that is being advertised on Facebook, is what got HITLER and the NAZI party elected and we all know what happened then!!!

Please think about the abuse you are spreading and if you don’t like my post, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO IGNORE ME, I won’t be upset, I won’t lose sleep at night, I won’t mourn your loss

Rant over

Tracy Armstrong

This makes me so unbelievably angry

https://wausaunews.wordpress.com/2014/01/18/big-hospital-finally-telling-the-truth-about-cancer-johns-hopkins/ 

 

Spreading misinformation like this makes me so unbelievably angry, this is as bad as the anti-vaccine brigade. Cancer is not caused by a nutritional deficiency it is caused by genetic mutation, sometimes by an environmental Mutagen, sometimes by genetic pre-disposition and sometimes by simply age.

Raw food cannot cure cancer people, for one thing, eating food raw sometimes gives you less nutrients than cooked food (eggs for example), for another CANCER IS NOT CAUSED BY A NUTRIENT DEFiCIENCY!

This is how people die of treatable cancers people.

Edit:  I just talked to my friend who is a doctor and he mentioned something I should have thought about. Most people will do both, chemo and these “non-medical remedies” which is even worse an idea. Chemotherapy is an immunosuppressant  treatment, which means you are more susceptible to bacteria while on it, so eating bacteria contaminated raw food is a very BAD idea.