Saturday, 27 October 2012


Booze and grass, you'r on  your arse.  Never a truer word spoken, it has to be said.   Having spent 30+ minutes throwing up, I can vouch for it.   Haven't quite worked out the logistics, ie, if you smoke, then drink your ok, but if you do it the other way round you throw up.  I'm none the wiser, but will continue to experiment.  

It has the added bonus in that it could give me the incentive I need to develop bulimia.  Its something I've aimed for, for donkeys years.  I've always loved me grub, way to much to part with it, and besides it would a terrible insult to the chef.

I jest of course.  Some (those not wishing for my early demise) might empathise and be fighting the same battle. I have never actually got to February,when I have joined Weightwatchers or taken life much to seriously at all.  It takes an alarm bell, like a positive diagnosis of diabetes, to make you take things seriously.  You might be nuts and driving all those around you murderous, but it is not potentially fatal, in a physical sense.

I am sitting here tonight, with the mutt, Barney Bubble snoozing alongside me.  I always credit him as co-author my book, due to the number of times he walked across my keyboard whilst I was writing it.  He's never been bothered by fireworks in the slightest in the past, but now that he is all but mutton, they are making him jumpy and twitchy. He is known as grandad, to the other dog walkers, and automatically forgiven for being a grumpy old sod.  He always has been by the way, its not new.  Should he carry on?  When he is running after 'his' ball in the park, that he can only see out of the one eye, he is a pup again.  He can't for the life of him remember when he has been fed, so everytime he wakes up after a long snooze, he thinks it is dinner time, and no-one in the world could resist those soulful eyes.   

But back to my own diabetes.  Having Barney Bubble back in my life is huge incentive to get off my arse.  He's not in the least bit bothered about those 'all important DNA results' on Jeremy Kyle, when he could be out there picking a fight with a Bull Mastiff.  I kid you not, he has always had ideas above his station and cost me a fortune in foil pack dog food.  Probably getting his own back for all those years I made him watch Crufts.  I made him watch Dog Borstal too, but he never took a blind bit of notice.  

But back to the diabetes, I have avoided sugar (on the whole), and the transition from sugar lumps to fake sugar, has been quite painless.  I am programming (if that is the right word here) myself, to have a cup of tea and a carb when I get up.  Most days, I will eat toast with marmite, rather than marmalade, but also enjoying, plain old toast with butter.  

I have rediscovered the joys of plain old porridge!  Still giggle at the argument I used to have with my Scottish dad, for me, definitely NO salt!  But agree, should always be made with water.  One cup of porridge, two cups of water.  Easy peasy, and astonished, at the variety of simpler ways in which to make it.  

I am not 'being good' diet wise, by any means.  See opening sentence. But I am on the whole, avoiding, sugar, chocolate (sob) and cakes, especially.  I am half scots and have a sweet tooth, so going to invest in a cake mixer and experiment with bran muffins made with fake sugar.  Watch this space for results!

Happily Barney Bubble settled comfortably and snoring away,  

Wednesday, 17 October 2012


Being diagnosed with diabetes has taken all the joy out of watching Come Dine With Me - the puddings especially.  I just love this trend where they serve 3 little puddings, all different, and think the person who came up with that idea should be awarded a Nobel Prize at the very least.  

But I am not down.  A little of what you fancy, does you good, 'little' being the key word.  My diagnosis, coincides, with a very happy house move, and an opportunity for another watershed.  I will fortunately, have my beloved little pooch around again, and as old as he is, he still loves his walkies, Even if you spell it rather than say the word, he has his collar and lead in his gob and a pleading look in his eyes that says, 'get your wellies, I'm ready'.  

Have to say, nothing quite so invigorating as walking a dog.  It is one of life's pleasures, that is much underestimated.  

Getting the sugar balance right is still a struggle, I am vaguely finding my feet, though nowhere near there yet.  Unfortunately when your mood goes high or low, its fast or famine - which is not a healthy regime, and probably one of the root causes of Type 2, even for sane people. 

Anyway, have stopped buying chocolate, apart from one minor incident, when a bag of maltesers flew into my shopping basket and stayed in the fridge for all of 10 minutes.  I find if they are cold, you can suck them much longer and not finish off an entire bag in one sitting.  

I'm glad I shared, shocked at how many of us there are out there, and in awe at the ones who have turned it around. 

Anyway, I will continue to write about my experiences, the ups, the downs, the unauthorised cream cakes, and the attempts at exercise! 


Monday, 15 October 2012


I always knew that my laissez-faire, or should I say, cavalier attitude towards a healthy lifestyle, would one day, catch up with me.  

I did at one time regularly do the Jane Fonda exercise video, albeit with a half arsed attitude.  When she said 'lets go get a glass of water, in between the warm up and the aerobics, I would get a can of Stella, and then spark up a fag when they all went to get their mats.  I would have a few drags whilst we were all sat in the  Buddha position.  

Anyway, perhaps I should have entitled this, the occasional journal of getting used to diabetes, and probably going about it the hard way.

Enough to say, the first job I had on leaving school at 15, was receptionist/clerk/typist.  I had a school certificate that said I could type at 35wmp, and a very servile attitude.  I had spent a long time in a convent.  But back to the story, the job was at the Council Offices of Dartford Rural Borough Council.  I would walk to Swanley Station, with my 65 year old companion, who would thrust her handbag at me, and shout back 'you bring the bags, I'll run on ahead for the tickets'.  I kid you not, she was one of those lovely, sprightly, Joyce Grenfeld types, so not necessarily a prophesy of a lifetime of lethargy on my part. Have been chanting 'I will wash the lightshades' for several weeks now, in the hope hope, it will eventually sink in.  I have deliberately bought new white ones, knowing that I could not live with the shame of the nicotine stains - My inner Mrs Bouquet.  Possibly, due to my new best friend, being Irish, Catholic and get this, tory!  Suffice to say, I am presently bedazzled by these new lightweight hoover, come duster thingys, they keep advertising.  Anything that allows me to spend a wee while longer on my fat arse is worth a try.
I feel like the advertisers have probed me and discovered the secrets of my desire.  I used to have a cupboard full of defunct, labour saving devices, and I am shameless enough to say, I doubt any of them gave up the ghost through overwork. Have you ever tried selling 10 broken vacuum cleaners at a bootsale in November. Especially, when you know full well, you cannot lie, because you throttled that nagging little Jiminy Cricket on your shoulders yonks ago and your red face would melt a snowman.      

Anyway, Stage One, lose weight I guess.  I am presently thinking of the divine Stephen Fry and his amazing weight loss achievement.  Walking.  Simple as that.  Oh, and also extreme housework.  Nowt like having a good clear out.  Presently do not know if I am high or low, as have been skipping meals, so I can have tea with sugar in.  I know I must follow a rigid 'eating' regime.  Its gonna be a struggle....... 

Follow my ups and downs as I get used to things, bearing in mind, that I have officially been diagnosed with disassociated personality disorder too, so there will be ups and downs, and probably a few giggles.  One of the 'me's' is bit like old Ada, and loves a moan. Would appreciate hearing from others, and learning how they have coped? how it has changed their lives?  How they found out?


Sunday, 14 October 2012


All the signs were there, I should have known, but sometimes you cannot see what is right there before your eyes.

My son has had Type 1 Diabetes since he was 13.  It is something we, mostly he, have struggled with for many years.  The immediate response, was 'learn everything about it'.  I recognised it in my son, because of his weight loss, and the stickyness of the toilet seat.  As a mum, I would have given anything for it to have been me, instead of him.  

But I digress, I should known, recognised it in myself.  I have had a good doctor these past few months, and I have been a good patient - I've turned up.  I blamed my ill health, my sheer exhaustion and fatigue on being overweight and depressed.  I accepted my athritis with good grace, and put my heavy sweats and pounding heart, down to an extended menopause.  My mother's went on forever, and I guessed I had inherited that along with her Irish love of an illness.  Seriously, when I asked her one week if she had been to see Dr. Shipman (her pet name for him), she said, quite seriously, no, because she hadn't been well.  

My own dear doctor, didn't patronise me, by explaining the ins and outs, and I was grateful for that.  I wasn't in the mood.  Still haven't been, daren't even google it, too much in depth just now. To be controlled by diet and exercise which is not in the least bit conducive to my lifestyle - although it could be.

I do at least know now, why I feel so ill at the time, and have gained an insight into the reality of the disease, more than I had ever imagined.  I am on the list for a one day course at my local hospital. Meanwhile, I am starting to recognise, when I am going low and need to snack.  Haven't accomplished the 'going high' end yet (that I know of) and can still polish off a bag of 'tropical mix' - my nod to living healthily, in lieu of a box of maltesers, with the added danger of my perilously loose teeth thrown in, to up the ante.  

I thought I would share my news with you.  Lots of us out there, sadly.  Will give the ins and outs of the early stages and, I am sure, the laughs.  I am already seeing the plus side.  Anything I do, or say, wrong I can put down to the diabetes, in a hushed Les Dawson's Ada Shufflebottom voice, to evade further questions.  

Meanwhile, if any 'old hands' out there can offer any tips and advice.  The 'reality' stuff as to the government approved advice, it would be great if you could share it with us. 

Wednesday, 10 October 2012


I noticed several of the speakers at the tory conference made references to our own particular demographic.  Ie, old birds who are basically burned out, or who have realised that that they are collapsing under the burden of caring for their parents, as well as their kids and trying to stay polite as some jobsworth penpusher, is asking them to touch their toes, so they can get them stacking shelves in the Pound Shop.

I can see where this is going. We clapped out ones, are a huge drain on the economy.  Even those with zimmer frames are suspected of having pole dancing lessons in their front parlour.  Everything will be investigated.

The rest it seems have achieved that lifetime dream of afternoons with Jeremy Kyle, Foxy Bingo and a litre of strong white cider.  And they get VO's to visit their kids and grandkids, ever 6 months, which makes a nice day out.  I can never understand why the faithful become so incensed with that particular perspective?  Is it a lifestyle they would prefer to the one they have?  Is it not pitiful?

I think those kindly benefactors of free work have probably now got we old birds penned in for care work, when they get their mitts on the NHS.  Can't beat free labour or even outsource hands on care to third world countries. Lets just hope they provide cardboard boxes and a fast track ticket for the food banks?

LETTERS TO LYNN - Watching George Osborne speak

Am sat here watching George Osborne giving his speech at the Tory Party conference.  Was afraid to watch it, for fear of throwing things at the telly, so have removed breakables and transferred my juice into a plastic bottle.

However, found myself roaring with laughter, for all the wrong reasons naturally.  I just picked up on the bit about him taking away housing benefit for the under 25's, and he stressed the point by saying that there were many 'twice their age' still living at home with their parents.  Naturally, I presume he is talking about tory voters, and it has given me the right giggles.  I sort of picture Timothy (Ronnie Corbett) in that old sitcom wearing a sleeveless pullover.  

Or the heir apparent waiting in the ballroom, saying to himself 'one day all this will mine'.  

Eeeek, Francis Maude, now getting rid of union reps!  He's saying this is a 'new world' - one in which workers will have no rights, not that they have many now!  You would be on your soapbox Lynn, waving your fist, and shouting 'e're, thats not right'.  Now saying civil servants (hospital workers) to have their sickness, days off, scrutinized.  

They gave a nod to the volunteers who worked on the Olympics - not that they had much choice, it was do it, or have your dole cut, and btw you will be sleeping rough underneath an old railway tunnel.  

Gawd 'elp the nurses, wondered when they would start on them, it will include carers too, I despair.....

Tuesday, 2 October 2012


Watcha mate,

Really must get down to the opticians, just read an email that said, replies to ENQs and read it as UFO's for some reason, and wondered if I had joined some conspiracy ET cult when I had had a few?  

Anyway, it was nothing more exciting than curtains.  Such is life, its been my greatest joy these days. Lynn, you would have totally got the sheer bliss of redecorating a new home and starting from scratch. Of course, you can get almost the same kick, just by redoing one room, but I generally go for the former, not usually through choice as you well know, I hasten to add, and do you remember during one house-move, when 'you know who' remarked 'wouldn't it be easier to get the hoover out?  He could be very droll. I can hear your big old, booming cockney voice now, saying 'you what? bleeding cheek!' Then we would roar with laughter, and think he might have had a point.  What went wrong?  We both became hoarders - you more so than me, bless ya, more of which to come another time.

Suffice to say, the pair of us used to be so house proud when we were younger - you much more so than me, and I was in awe at that bejewelled cover you got for light chord in your bathroom!  You had been to the Ideal Home Exhibition  and you were deliriously ecstatic explaining every gadget you  could physically carry home with you. Must be said though, I have yet to forgive you for welding those false nails to the skin underneath the enamel of my finger tips- I knew you were getting carried away with that nail file!  Doh!  Do you have any idea of the agonies I went through getting them off? 

I'll take it as payback for when we were 16, and you let me perm your hair.  No, as I remember you asked me to perm it, I doubt we will ever agree on that one.  I know we would always got the giggles when we remembered it.  It had the kind of tight curls that not even a hacksaw could penetrate, let alone a comb.  Nothing quite like walking down to the phonebox as a teenage girl wearing a scarf to tell your dad you would have to stay with me overnight, as you couldn't travel home on the bus because you looked like Hilda Ogden! 

I miss you old fruit and I have imaginary conversations with you in my head and they make me smile.  Even a simple mundane piece of news, like the joys of frozen mashed potatoe, could lead to an in depth 3 hour phone discussion.  By the way, I am eternally grateful to you for recommending those round stainless steel ball thingys.  They have saved me from throwing out any more burnt saucepans.  

I want to tell you things that make me laugh, tell you about people who get on my wick.  When I see something out of the ordinary, I think, I must tell Lynn that, that would make her laugh, or Lynn would understand. 

I began to understand the pain of widowhood, and the sheer resilience of women of a similar age and older.  Both Lynn and I remained single, probably through choice.  Heterosexual, not that it matters, though don't think anyone would have had us to be honest - we were both barmy.   

For some reason, I still feel as though you here Lynn, I have no idea why. I change my religion and beliefs on an almost weekly basis, I don't know if its a spiritual thing, or maybe you were my soul mate, like a married couple.  I have just never felt as if you went away. And I never realised how much I relied on you.   

Then I remembered all those ago, when you worked in Italy, and the absolute glee of receiving your letters.  I would read them over and over, and would hoot with laughter all day.

You were in Italy for several years as an au pair and had learned much of the lingo, especially boys names (yes, we were once that young) oh, and how to order a bacardi and coke with ice and lemon in fluent Italian, albeit, very loudly and with a hint of cockney.

The point is, I feel as though I have had a bit of an epiphany.  I've just realised that I can chat to you, I can send you letters, like we used to.