So this week has been slightly more eventful, I think it’s probably best that I start from the beginning.
I may or may not have previously mentioned that I play for an 8 ball English pool team who are currently sitting in division 7 in our pool league. This week we played a Premiership team that won their division last season in the city’s Cup tournament. We fully expected to get our arses handed to us, and in some ways we were right (we lost 1-7), but overall we all played extremely well. We played above our league placement and matched them at skill. Although I lost in my game as well (a point I’d usually use to beat myself up more about) I felt I had played some of the best pool in my life and we should look at our performance that night as inspiration to climb the league table this season.
This started the week off with a positive note, and finding something positive in something negative is not something I am very accustomed to.
Last week I wrote about how I’m feeling quite anxious about my sleeping pattern continuing to be affected 12 months after being prescribed my current medication. This past Tuesday was my monthly GP (General Practitioner/Doctor) check up. I mentioned this time my concerns about it, whilst also noting that my mood/behaviours these last 4 weeks have been more of a low mood.
I’ve mentioned this before and I’ll mention it again, my current GP is a Godsend. My local surgery is generally used as a training ground for Student Doctors and as such I’d usually get lumped with someone who is unsure of what type of care they’re expected to give. My current GP is a middle aged seasoned veteran. Whilst I may disagree with her on occasion, I generally find her to be more clued into the medical world than most of the GPs I’ve had the misfortune of crossing paths over the last 5 years or more. So when she says she things it’s probably for the best to remain on the meds before considering coming off them I’m more inclined to agree, but I argued the point anyway. My sleep and regular life is still deeply disturbed by the medication. So the compromise is to reduce the medication from 45mg nightly to 45mg on alternative nights with opposing nights 30mg. I’m already noticing some effects. I feel like my anxiety levels have increased; and before you say “We’ll that’s because you’re worrying about coming off you meds!” it’s not. I can cope with that, and I wanted that. I had no prior anxieties going into it. The other effect I’ve noticed is on nights where I’ve had the 45mg dose my sleep has increased. Five days in all these could be written off as circumstantial, and I agree with that, so I think the next few weeks will be interesting to see if there is any correlation between dosage and my sleeping pattern.
Tuesday also saw the end to Active for Health, but also the restarting of it as well. At the final weigh in I was told I could be re-referred if I still met the criteria – which after only 3 months I most certainly definitely did.
So the final results after 3 months was:
- I have grown from 187cm to 188cm
- Dropped from 155kg to 153kg
- BMI 44.32 – 43.29
- Resting heart rate 104BPM – 76BPM
- Waist 146.5cm – 143cm
- Body Fat 43.3% – 42.4%
Small changes, but certainly noticeable. There was a lung reading as well, but that was compromised by a cold I had on the day otherwise that would have shown a big increase (along with my heart rate – y’know, because of my quitting smoking about half way into the course n’all). So I’m quite grateful for a re-referral. Getting some exercise has been quite beneficial I feel. It has given me some purpose day to day, as well as a goal to achieve. If I start taking this a bit more seriously I might see some more severe changes in my appearance that I’m desperately craving.
So Wednesday was the first time in a while I had seen a lot of my old close friends together all at once probably since Christmas. It was also the first time I really realised how much we had all really grown apart. Not just that we’ve had our own lives to live, but that the way we all think, and the way most of us behave are a lot different from each other. Some would argue that it’s diversity in a group and you see that in a lot of circles, but not with this one. It very much feels like most of these people are people who I wouldn’t really want to know today, and I’m really trying to understand how I became friends with a lot of them almost 10 years ago. Don’t get me wrong, I tried really hard to get to know (some of) them again, but I left feeling quite estranged from them. Even arguably my closest friend in the group now, Kate, is different. She’s currently going through a break up with her fella, which could explain the change in attitude and the craving for familiarity, but I felt a lot of alienation from her and others longer than the last few months. I’m not sure if it’s all just coinciding with changes that I’m going through internally, or if there’s a bigger picture I’m missing. To be continued on Saturday…
This was a bit of a wasted day, due to the hangover from the night before. Kate took me out after everyone else had gone home as we were the only 2 without work the next day. While she was fine, I suffered. I’m too old for this shit.
Friday (the 13th)
A day filled with small errands and finally getting to the gym! Unfortunately I’d worked out my money incorrectly and didn’t have enough money to go to the gym and get the bus back (I think I dropped 50p some where). Luckily for me their system hadn’t updated correctly that there was an extension on my account so as to allow me to continue using the gym whilst the re-referral goes through. After some to-ing and fro-ing between admin and the front desk, the front desk just waived me through all without taking any of my money. Free gym session and a bus ride home! Win! On paper this really shouldn’t have worked out in my favour, but I’ll take a check in the win box any day.
So this brings us to Saturday. It’s only like Wednesday, except for everyone getting a little drunk, except for my friend Andy (who doesn’t drink), and goes a little bit too serious. Andy is someone who I don’t have an awful lot in common with anymore. He got together with his girlfriend/fiancée around about the time I met both of them. Since then they’ve gone on to move in together, buy a house on a mortgage, and at weekends he works on his hobby – building cars – which coincidentally (or not) is also his full time job. His view on life is very narrow-minded. He’s a person who likes things to be very simplified. “You work hard, you get a job, you get a wife, you get a house, you have kids.” That is how Andy lives. That in itself is oversimplified for how he lives, but you get the jist. He doesn’t understand the nature of the world, nor does he especially care to. If there’s something he can’t understand or refuses to understand he’ll make a joke out of it. Which is fine. It works for him, and it doesn’t normally bother anyone else. Last night he made a comment towards me whilst another friend of ours was looking through Twitter for something I had posted for everyone to watch. He’d been building up to this for awhile, and he usually likes to make a comment out of how much I post on Facebook (which is a relatively small amount, compared to other friends of ours), but I’d normally let it slide. This time he decided to take a crack at me for how much I post on Twitter and, “How do you look for a job when you post so much online?!”
Granted, he has no idea of what my life has been like for the past 18 months, and granted as his friend perhaps I should have told him. And I kind of did, and I kind of snapped. As my friend maybe he should have asked me about it before deciding to give me a dig for being unemployed during a time of austerity. So with hindsight I really don’t regret how I responded to that. I think he needed to know that you don’t say that sort of thing to someone who hasn’t worked full time in nearly 2 years unless you’ve got something to back that kind of comment up with. True, those who have followed this blog know that for the last few months I haven’t really been looking for work because I don’t want to jeopardise my placement at college. I have no money. I have no means of being able to afford an education unless I get a free ride through. Part time work would barely meet the money I’m surviving on at the moment with Job Seekers Allowance. When I start college I won’t have JSA to fall back on as that will be taken away as well. I will have to look for part time work when I start the course, but I can’t do that whilst claiming JSA because I’m supposed to be “Available and actively looking for full time work”.
So when you hear someone say “You haven’t been trying hard enough to look for a job.” Someone who’s supposed to be a friend, you get quite defensive. So I told him to “Fuck off” in the strongest of terms, and that then made the next half hour in that room one of the most tensest environments on the planet. Later he tried to apologise without really apologising, and I kind of brushed off that we were cool, but in my mind I think we’re the furthest from it. Which is where we tie back to Wednesday and I say I don’t know who these people are, and I don’t particularly understand why I’m still friends with them. I’ve been drifting away from Andy for the longest of times, and every time we meet I feel as if we’re becoming further and further apart. I think maybe Saturday was the elastic giving out on the friendship and saying “You guys are done.” And I really believe that. I think there is no real friendship there anymore; it’s more about being courteous like you would with an estranged member of your family. You’ll say “hi” and exchange pleasantries, maybe ask how work is going, but that’s all there is. To be fair, really thinking about it, maybe that’s all it has really been the last few years. So that really makes me wonder where a lot of my friendships are going. I feel further away from people I’ve known the longest, yet closer to people I’ve know the shortest amount of time. I really hope that I’m not looking back in 5 years and wondering whatever happened to Kate, or Mike, Michael, or Sarah, but the way life is going I’d be really surprised to be friends with anyone in 5 years.
So rather than leave on a rather depressing down note, I’d thought I’d try and mix things up a bit this week and start posting pictures of something each week that makes me laugh, but also has an important life message. This isn’t one I found this week, but I found it a few weeks ago and I think is particularly relevant in this day and age where social media is so prevalent. Enjoy.