Thursday, 24 January 2008

Ambulance and Irony

Ambulance and irony, sounds like it should be the title to a song. Now why I am suddenly thinking about Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder? If you 'googled' 'ambulance' and ended up here expecting to read about the history of ambulance services, my sincere apologies. However if you 'googled' 'irony', you may just want to continue reading.
I know there are times we struggle to come up with something to blog about. Believe me, this is most definitely a situation I would rather have done without. It is a scenario where if you didn't laugh you would cry. Thank goodness, that these days, I have mostly a positive attitude. For without it, I dread to think how I would have coped.
Friday night, January 18th at about 10:15 P.M. my destiny was a 'collision' course with fate. Fate called my name and there was little I could do. Never mind the 'what if' or 'if only', maybe in some bizarre way, the incident I am about describe was meant to be.
After coordinating a Changes meeting in Hanley, Stoke on Trent, I offered my good friend Steven a ride back to his home. Upon getting to the roundabout an ambulance in the left-hand merge lane came hurtling through. I stopped to let the ambulance go through unimpeded. Sadly, the driver did not continue on up through the roundabout. Instead, the ambulance smashed into the left rear of my 'mid-life chrisis', 'divorce mobile'. We were both stunned and shaken but we remained remarkably calm.
Luckily nobody was hurt. Steven and I were taken inside the ambulance, they made sure we were okay. That is when the irony of the situation truly took over in my mind. If you are going to be involved in a road accident, I suppose it is mighty handy that the other vehicle is an ambulance. So whilst in the ambulance, my more surreal nature kicked in. I think 'Monty Python' would have been proud. For a few brief moments, unbelievable I know, I became rather silly. "Can I have your name and address please?" asked the lady ambulance attendant. "You want my name and address? So what am I suppose to use?" I replied. I was given a rather quizzical look. You see, even at a time when hysteria may have overwhelmed me, I relieved my tension by desperately searching for some humour in an ironic mishap.
Despite all that transpired, I have attempted to remain positive and philosophical. The first two days after the accident, I couldn't sleep. Yet instead of becoming frustrated by my date with insomnia, I used it to my advantage. Keeping active was the key. Positive distractions were essential. I looked out my living room window. There was my garden, inspired, I went outside and prepared my 'santuary' for the rumoured Spring. With inspiration now gathering momentum, I set my sights on given my home a good old clean-up. I stay focused on positive outcomes. Keeping busy the last week has been tremendous therapy. Adversity will never get the better of me.
Not having the use of my car has caused great inconvenience. Yet through this inconvenience, I have, heaven forbid, gotten a lot of exercise. Where I live is some distance from the shops and buses. So I now have a daily 'safari' to the shops (yeah I know, 'safari' so good). However I am not that bothered. I will get by, I have much to be grateful for.
Right then, none the worse for wear, I remained undaunted. I recognise the irony of having an ambulance using the back of my car as a brake. I thank the fate that destined that event; didn't create a more traumatic outcome. I thank Steven for staying calm and collected. I am proud of how well I reacted to that whole sorry circumstance. Moving on from this, I am a stronger, more resilient person. In my life I look for all the positives, every cloud can most certainly have a silver lining.
So for those of you who may have been searching for information on ambulances, once again, sorry about that. For those of you who were looking for an example of 'irony', you may have just come to the right place. Last Friday I had a 'smashing' time. Just when I was considering what to blog about..hmmm. If I didn't laugh, I would cry.

Monday, 14 January 2008

A Bog Blog

Time depends on which side of the bathroom door you are on. ("Tristan! Get out of the bathroom..quick!"). With all the flu that has been circulating around Britain lately, my thoughts of bathroom visitations have been all the more frequent.
So as the sweat drips onto my keyboard, I present to you my very own 'Bog blog'. To those of you who may have wandered onto this site and wondered what I mean by 'bog', let me explain. In Britain a bog is not only a swamp, marshland or wet, spongy ground, it is also a colloquialism for toilet. So 'bog' is to toilet in Britain as 'can' is to toilet in North America. Thus in Britain, toilet paper may be called 'bog roll', whilst in North America the same product may be called 'a** wipe' (think I'd better leave it at that). I'm getting 'bogged down' here..I blame it on the fact I'm typing whilst feeling pretty darn awful. Well, that's my excuse anyway.
I was in the shop the other day and noticed a brand of bog roll that boasted it was 'new and improved'. I most certainly hope so. I mean, can you imagine a brand bragging about it being 'used and improved'? However, it has got me to thinking about what the heck they mean by recycled toilet paper. Yes indeed, the mind 'bog'gles.
Today I ventured out to do a few errands. I had a brief chat with someone that proves just how well we actually listen. As I stood there, sniffling, sneezing and coughing, this person proceeded to ask: "How are you?" I responded: "If the truth be known, I feel like I've been run over by a steamroller, an angry woodpecker is tapping on the top of my head and my stomach is like the spin cycle on my mashing machine. Other than that, I'm okay." The reply: "Oh that's nice, I'm feeling pretty good myself." Hmmmm....
This 'sick' blog is nearly over. I'm too knackered (tired) to do much more. So I leave you with, yet again, some random thoughts. I was watching a dating agency commercial on television. The ad assured me that if I did not get a date within six months, they would give me another six months free. Oh fantastic! Another six months of misery and humiliation. There you go loser, we're gonna' prolong your agony. Tomorrow, I am going to put £1o worth of petrol into my 'mid-life chrisis, divorce mobile'. That will fill it up to empty. In the good ol' days, £10 would fill it up to nearly empty. That's it then. My bog blog is over and I'm feeling kinda' 'flushed'. Sorry it was such a silly blog. The flu made me type strange stuff....which is, ofcourse, way out of character.
"Tristan!? Are you still in the bog, can, toilet, or whatever the heck we call it?" "I only just got in here Dad." Time does indeed depend on which side of the bathroom door you are on.

Thursday, 3 January 2008

A 'Summery' Summary.

Warm greetings and welcome to a new year. 2007 was a year when I made positive progress towards a better life. With sheer determination I discovered that elusive glimmer of hope. No longer would I be subjected to a negative environment. For a glimmer of hope is so much better than a dimmer of hope.
Negative speculation once strangled me. I attempted my own form of 'fortune-telling'. Perhaps I should have called it 'misfortune-telling'. Yet I finally began to realise in 2007, that predicting a worst-case scenario was most unhealthy for my mental wellbeing. Why not dare to believe in a best-case scenario? With slow, cautious, tentative steps I progressed to a more fulfilling life.
It is with tremendous delight that I submit this 'Summery' Summary. I am so pleased with my progress, that I am tempted to do a 'summersault'. (Summersault over with...just a moment..right..I'm back on my chair now). I have begun to understand that when someone tries to hurt me, undermines me or dismisses my validity; that is their problem. Instead of lying awake at night worrying about what has transpired, I try to move on. For if I don't, their problem becomes my problem. I know that little good can come from hurting folks. So I wish no ill will of those who have misinterpreted my good intentions. At times we all need to reflect upon our actions and reactions. I believe that in this past year I have become a better person.
The depression that I experience has the ability to torment me. My 'inner-voice' often told me that I am smart. Smart enough to know how stupid I think I am. This distorted thinking process had dominated my life for a long time. In 2007, that inner-voice grew fainter. I kept myself busy, the 'doorway or duvet' dilemma was challenged. It has not been easy, yet I emerge from my reclusive shell more often. I dare to be a part of society. I have turned perceived negatives into triumphant positive solutions. How fantastic is that?
In the past year I have been involved with rewarding, thought-provoking projects. It has helped so much to be empowered by doing volunteer work for 'Changes'. Being a part of the 'Mind Bloggling' community has been more rewarding than I would have ever imagined. I have become a 'voice' amongst many empathetic voices. Mind Bloggling has given me the chance to express myself in an open, honest, transparent manner. I mentioned in my first blog that I would try and verbalise from the heart. I like to think that I have proven this to be true.
The past year I have focused back on some wonderful memories. Memories, that during the height of my depression, blurred into insignificance. I had forgotten what a fortunate soul I was. When the depressive 'fog' began to lift, I used my past events as a source of positive inspiration for a better now, a better future. I have so much to be thankful for. There is a choice and positive possibilities call my name.
This new year will see me continue on in my challenge to be happy. I know there will be times that loneliness will dominate my world. Yet I will use that solitude as a time for positive reflection. If it means going for a walk with the dog, then so be it. If it means going online and interacting on the Changes website, well I know that will be worthwhile distraction. Indeed, in moments of solitude, I can always do a blog.
Over the last year I have have become less of a spectator. I have come off the bench, walked onto the field and became more involved with the 'game of life'. I would call that a darned good result. I now look forward to 2008 with positive anticipation rather than negative speculation. I shall continue to challenge my 'inner-critic'.
In closing, let me share with you a special moment. I have lived in my home through seven 'festive seasons'. Each Christmas, despite being cynical about the whole thing, I adorned my home with loads of Christmassy stuff. Each year I would put up the lights, hoping that someone other than my son Tristan would see them. Each year, I sat alone staring at the twinkling lights. I invited people to see them. Nobody ever showed up and I was very sad. This past New Year's Eve, I had two people visit me. Two people who are my friends. They saw my twinkling Christmas lights. In my life, that was a significant event. How about that for a 'Summery' Summary? A positive and peaceful New Year to you all. Warm wishes Klahanie.