The healing power of scones

photo-3I am typing this from a guesthouse in Dublin. Next to me is a silver pot of coffee and a scone with jam that Sara, the lovely Spanish girl behind reception, has just brought up – I didn’t even ask for it, she just said that she thought I might like something to help me get on with my work.

Last night her colleague, Rhona, caught me coming up the stairs and asked me if I’d like a snack. ‘What kind of snack?’ I asked. ‘Well, I just made French toast for a fella and he’s still standing,’ she said.

I asked for a cheese toastie and it was delivered to my room, with a pot of tea and a plate of custard creams. I ate this feast on my bouncy bed while watching a Sandra Bullock movie. I fell asleep just after 10pm and didn’t wake till gone 9am this morning.

If there is a heaven I think this might be it.

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My mission statement

Be honest. Be kind. See the funny side. Exercise. Laugh. Lighten up. Have the difficult conversations and do the difficult jobs. Don’t run away. Speak your mind quietly, clearly and respectfully. People are not mind readers. Spit it out. Word hard and enjoy it. Take pride and satisfaction in your abilities. Have confidence. Go for the big things – why not? What’s the worst that can happen? Failure won’t kill you. Say no. Say yes. See the good in people, don’t judge. Listen, understand, forgive. Have fun. Be patient. Nothing is forever. Cherish the day and cherish the people in your life – you are so lucky to have them. Be humble: you’re no better than anyone else and no worse either. We’re all trying our best, we’re all the same, really. Love with all your heart and learn from everything. When things are hard know that it will pass and none of it matters that much anyway. Don’t be a drama queen and don’t take yourself too seriously. You’re just a little dot passing through so make the most of it. Sing, dance, look at the sky and be grateful. If in doubt tidy your room and make a plan – sometimes it helps to get out of your head and get practical. Most importantly though, have a cup of tea and remember this: You’re doing great. xx

A post about anger

Screen Shot 2014-11-26 at 14.49.39I am not an angry person, I am a repressed person. My tendency is to get down and turn inward rather than angry and lash out. If something p*sses me off I’ll tie myself up in knots thinking of the ways that the situation could have been my fault or how actually, I’m over-reacting.

I’ll try to think of reasons why the other person has behaved in that way. These days I’ll try to apply some psychobabble logic about how their childhood has made them behave this way.

I think this makes me a bigger person but, actually, it doesn’t. Not really. It’s patronising and a massive cop out. It’s just another way of denying reality, of not really feeling what you’re feeling or thinking that I don’t have a right to feel the way I feel. It’s not honest.

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Life is a Rollercoaster, to quote Ronan Keating.

Screen Shot 2014-11-24 at 12.45.49Oh dear, well that last post caused a bit of a reaction. My sister thinks I need medical help. She reckons I’m too up and down – one day I’m high as a kite and the next I’m in the depths of despair – and that it’s not healthy. Friends are worried too. On Friday I got a lot of concerned messages: ‘Are you OK? I’m here if you need to talk.’

I’m obviously coming off even nuttier than I realise.

It’s a bit embarrassing really but what can I do? I’m just trying to articulate my feelings honestly – including the bad ones – but I fear a picture is developing of my mental health and it ain’t pretty. More Jackson Pollock than a Vogue photo shoot.

It’s probably clearer to you than it is to me, just how much my mood goes up and down. One minute I’m crying with the beauty of squirrels the next I’m crying over decades old family crap. This is partly down to the intensity of what I’m doing this year but also, it is my natural tendency.

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A rough couple of weeks

I’m very sorry for the radio silence for the last ten days. I put up a post last weekend but it was too full on and raw and so I took it down again. It’s a funny old balance to get – being honest and real but also protecting yourself and your family too.

So this is a slightly less full on version of what’s been happening.

In many ways the last two weeks have been brilliant. The blog got a huge write up in the Irish Independent (thank you Leslieann and Yvonne) and as a result I was interviewed on three different Irish radio stations.

It was funny to see what they honed in on. The big main station, RTE2, seemed most interested in me chatting up the Greek and were a bit gutted that it didn’t end in love (‘if it were Hollywood you’d have married him!’ said the interviewer, a guy from Westlife. Tell me about it! ) Another one was very interested in me being naked (‘Hold on, we have Hugh Hefner on the line for you…’) and the final one seemed concerned for my wellbeing: ‘Sure, was your life so bad that you had to take such drastic action as this?’

Good question, really.

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I’m on the cover of the Irish Independent magazine!

Thank you VERY much to the Irish Independent magazine for running a big TWO page feature on the blog. Hurrah, hurrah, hurrah.

And here’s me in my blue frock. ON THE COVER. Did I mention it was ON THE COVER???!!

Click here to read the article…. Only if you want to, of course.

No doubt normal semi-miserable service will resume tomorrow… but for now I’m excited and delighted. THANK YOU to my Leslieann Horgan and Yvonne Hogan who made it happen.

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Last night I went to the pub

Last night I got the train from my mum’s house in the burbs back to my friend’s house in London. When I arrived, I walked past a bar and I told myself that I deserved a drink after the crappy day I’d had. I told myself that one fall off the wagon would not be the end of the world. I went in.

This is what I knew that a glass of red wine would do for me:

1) it would be an instant way to change the way I was feeling
2) It would allow me to feel properly angry and sorry for myself.
3) Then by the bottom of the first glass I’d feel calmer and better and things would matter less, it would be like being in a helicopter and looking down.

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I’m in an epically bad mood

God, I’m in a bad mood. A really really bad mood. Nothing’s right, everything’s wrong and I’m FURIOUS for no good reason. Right now, I’m venting all my anger at my poor keyboard. I’m positively attacking it with my fingers. And the funniest thing of all is that I’m angrily attacking my keyboard while writing a piece about how to be happy for a magazine. Ha bl**dy Ha!!

Here’s the list of my pathetic first world woes:

1) I got some virus on my computer which means that my search engines have gone weird and I keep getting pop up ads and then the internet keeps crashing. I’ve also lost some of the apps on my computer, including one called Things which keeps my master to-do list.  It’s the repository for every one of my ideas, thoughts and plans. Such as they are.

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How do you want to be remembered when you die?

funeral.cartoon

‘A skinny, pretty, billionaire philanthropist who had it all. Someone whose wit and warmth were as famous as her breathtaking beauty…’ that’s how my friend Sharon wants to be remembered she dies.

Joan Rivers aimed just as high with this quote: ‘One morning you’ll wake up and read a headline: Joan Rivers Found Dead…On George Clooney’s Face. Clooney Was So Bereft All He Could Say Was, “Xjfhfyrnem.”—’

More seriously, in her last ever interview, she said: ‘[Death is] inevitable. It’s no longer an abstract thing. It’s like, God, I’m in my eighties. Nobody, when I die, is going to say, “how young?” They’re going to say, she had a great ride.’

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Day 5 and 6 done – feeling sickeningly effective

A really quick one just to say that all good. Yesterday and today I did the full shebang – meditate, exercise, check bank balances (not good), planned my days (and stuck to plans), didn’t drink and all around got A LOT DONE. Seriously, this no-boozing business does wonders for my productivity. I feel like my brain has gone from this:

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