Incident at London Marathon 2017

I watched the London Marathon not far from Buckingham Palace with a friend. We had free tickets.

I saw an incident near Buckingham Palace at the end of Pall Mall when I saw two males run across the road where the leading runners were and it looked as if some people were trying to knock a runner off course. It was all very sudden and chaotic, and spectators looked round and wondered if it was going to be another terrorist attack.

Some event staff tried to grab them and that was all I saw and people went back to normal. It was quite weird.

UK: Being newly estranged from the Family

I have been estranged from my family for a few weeks. This has been my own choice.

I have had periods of 6 months previously, but this looks like it’s going to be ‘a long one’.

There are times when we have to do the best thing for ourselves and our well being. When you belong in a dysfunctional famlly, it is hard to try and keep out of the dramas,the lies and the mind games.

My own case occurred with a family member who has Narcissist Personality Order, She is extremely abusive and untrustworthy. The other family member betrayed his family with family secrets and it is a job dealing with that type of person, without suffering yourself. There are times we can only take so much.

Some people run away from their families, but others like myself,  will try to keep a distance from them as much as possible and blocking them off social media and trying to develop a new life, it could take weeks, months or years. Sometimes it will be permanent.

 

When you are a Newbie Estrangelista, it is challenge to find where to get help and information from and you can feel alone.

In the UK, 1 in 5 families in the UK will be affected by estrangement and over 5 million people have decided to cut contact with at least one family member.

These are things  that helped me deal with estrangement from my own family. I don’t  have much family so it was a big thing for me.

  1. Talking to close friends (however, they can only take so much)
  2. Contacting the Samaritans just to off load
  3. Contacting Relate.org.uk – they have a Free Live Messenger Service
  4. Going for a Walk or sightseeing
  5. Having time on my own to process things
  6. Going to a local City Farm and stroking the animals. Animals are brilliant for therapy
  7. Doing some practical work to keep my mind occupied
  8. Thinking it through and yes, I did try, and get angry.  It needs to be processed.
  9. I set a Countdown dates on Apps so I would target family events ie Easter that I would try and avoid. It was really important to miss these family events. Your absence will be noticed and there will be no photographs of you on that day for posterity.  The more events you miss, the more of an impact your absence will be.
  10. Sign up to Standalone.org.uk the First UK Charity to help adults to have been estranged or cut off

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Toxic Famillies & No Contact

I have come to realise my family is toxic. They have some good points of course, but their toxic points break trust.  I don’t trust my family. They can say one thing and do another. If they go quiet, you wonder if they are ‘up to something’ behind your back.  Quite frankly, you never know where you are with them, the mind games are getting too much. They take you for granted.

There is no point to dealing with them anymore. They won’t understand you. They will continue as they do. Yadda Yadda. You have to have boundaries.

I have started to go No Contact.  I didn’t get involved in any arguments but I calmly stated that ‘what they did was hurtful’ . (I kept it simple). (Then I blocked them instantly. They have already noticed). What they did will affect their family forever.

My main aim is to ‘get them to see what they did’ and that it is wrong, and apologise. I don’t think this will ever happen though. My plan is No Contact for as long as it takes, marking of ‘family events’ that normally I should be there. It will go from 30 days, to six months to up to a year and then tnen we will see.  If there is still nothing, then I will know exactly where I  stand. It is going to be interesting as I live near them and it will be ‘awkward’. However, they made their bid. I am going to have a dignified silence.

I am trying to distract myself by meeting new people, doing new things and being with nice people and learning a lot about Self Care.

Let these toxic people not take our minds

Self-Care: My Visit to Hampton Court to Recover from Personal Trauma

DSCF7078I have been having difficulties dealing with family trauma recently and my mind was full of obsessive thoughts. I found it very difficult to escape them. 

For a few days I tried to process them, keeping my distance from the trauma and speaking to friends.

One of my ‘self care’ ideas was to do something I enjoy, which would be interesting and relaxing  and nothing too taxing. So on Bank Holiday Monday I went to Hampton Court, a place I haven’t been for years.It also brought out fond memories of good times, rather than times I am going through now.

I did a bit of photography and walking. I also took notice of the flowers, in particular the wisteria and tulips. Inside I enjoyed the paintings and stories of the people who lived there.

The landscape was gorgeous. I sat in the ground having a picnic and fed the birds.  It wasn’t very crowded despite it being Easter which made it less stressy. The rooms were nicely done and some even had some relaxing music in the rooms which was very helpful. The staff were great too and helpful.   Being near the water fountains was also great for the mind.

I came out feeling a lot better than before and I highly recommend a change of scene,  a bit of mindfulness when you are going through a hard time, and visit Hampton Court.

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You can get a 2 for 1 offer if you go by trains and you pick up a leaflet at the train station. (I didn’t get a free tip with this article)

Prince Harry talks about his Mental Health

I think it is really great that Prince Harry has been talking about his own issues after the loss of his mother.

I knew he was having difficulties in his twenties as he was also having issues at Sandhurst as people there talked about it. There was clearly a problem with him, but there was limited media talking about his problems at the time. It seemed to be hushed up.

I myself lost my dad at 14.Our bond was very close.  Both my dad and Princess Diana were amazing people. Nice people can make the bereavement ‘worse’.

It is really  hard to deal with a sudden death, and in childhood too. Though it is recognised that some people go off the rails like Prince Harry, not all of them do.

I just grew up quickly and wanted my dad to be proud of me. He wouldn’t be proud of me if I was doing drink and drugs. I don’t think I was too affected by anger like Prince Harry was but his bereavement was ‘unnatural”. My father’s death was of a stroke.

We do need to talk about our feelings a lot more in this country, particularly in upper class and upper middle households where feelings are still very hidden. Coming from an upper middle background, there was nobody around to talk about this issue.  One thing I learned was that these types of people were not the types of people I wanted to mix with.  If I was Prince Harry I would move into  more emotionally aware environment where you can be yourself.

I’m an Aunty, and I am not happy!

Last week I became an Aunty.

I come from a ‘super child-free’ household with a child-free attitude so the whole thing was a bit of a shock.

You see all these Youtube videos of women screaming, delighted that they will be an Aunty, but it is taboo subject, that  some new aunties, are not pleased. Even some child-free aunties are delighted for various reasons.

I also felt sad that the new parents would now have to fork out £250,000 over 18 years or more and have all the stress of having a kid and not have any time for themselves.  It would be a drain on the planet and resources. 

Anyway, it turns out that my supposedly childfree  brother, who in his late forties, secretly married his girlfriend overseas a few months ago, and last week, I was presented with a* secret* baby! Yes, is like something out of a soap opera.My head has been going round in circles ever since.

Apparently the baby was born early in Spring and they kept it quiet for a month.The grandparents knew about all of this but no one told me, the sister. They mumbled when I asked when they got married. When asked why they didn’t tell me, they just said ‘they couldn’t find the right moment’.

I couldn’t believe the baby was theirs at first. The ‘girlfriend’ wore baggy clothes throughout. I thought my brother was joking, but they showed wedding photos and a photo of his new wife in the hospital. So I have a new sister-in-law too. I am supposed to be suddenly ‘delighted’.I have a lot to digest

I am still very hurt that they failed to tell me about all this earlier and the secrecy was very cruel.They only told me ‘when they had to’ and that was when the baby was born. I mean, who does that?

After our get together over a coffee,they reminded me when his birthday was and ‘suggested’ that I should get the baby presents.They also said I could make booties. (Perhaps if they told me earlier, then I would have had some ready). Now, I feel they want to ‘use me’for freeloading presents. I am not really a bootie-making person and I am not maternal whatsoever. Maybe I will take the child out doing something interesting when they reach a toilet-trained age, ,but I can’t think of what else I would do.I am a busy person… agggh!

They  also knew my thoughts of babysitting and I always said that I wouldn’t do it. I am just not baby-minded, not every woman is.

I know I will I have to do something as an aunty, but I am not really sure what that will be, I just hope that will be a lot less than most aunties!

Kent: Groups of feral teenagers have been targeting lone dogwalkers

A dog walker from Kent has spoken of  regular issues with groups of rural teenage males targeting him and others in the countryside of Kent.

The youths ranged in ages  from 15-18 and have been targeting vulnerable people out on their own, including adult men.  The dog walker says that they are all white.   They frequently wear hoodies and have their face covered. “They seem to know how to avoid capture”, the walker said.The males, who seem to be ‘bored with nothing to do’  are generally abusing lone dog walkers, as they are seen as ‘easy target’.

Kent Police are aware of the incidents but ‘nothing can be done without evidence’.

Some dogwalkers are taking personal safety equipment along with them and gathering evidence.

If you see incidents of this nature, dial Kent Police 101 or 999 in an emergency or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. For more details on Personal Safety contact The Suzy Lamplugh Trust (https://www.suzylamplugh.org)

 

Truprint – Review

I was struggling to find a company online to print out my iPhone photos but  I managed to find Truprint (www.truprint.co.uk) who can directly from Facebook and your phone .I used to use them over 15 year’s ago, and I was surprised that they were still about.

However,I found both uploading on Truprint on my mobile and PC extremely slow. The site also also a bit confusing and I ended up printing one photo instead of an album. It was also a job to get back the Home page and to find the Keep Shopping link.

Delivery is about a week which is reasonable for standard delivery. But the software is very slow, not helped by my own internet connection.

However it is great for good value photos and gifts when you do get in. Photos are from 5p and you get 20 FREE prints if you are a new customer.  You can also get some nice greeting cards made up for you.

Would I use them again? Yes, if I allow myself a few hours to get in

I have not been paid for this article.

London: Visiting Westminster Bridge days after Terrorist Attack

I visited Westminster Bridge last Sunday to pay tribute those who had died and reflect.

My own brother was there the day before, taking a photo of Big Ben as he does photography, so it came close for me too.

I thought it was going to be a bit eerie going up, but actually it was not. There were few police in the tube station and a handful of police outside chatting. I did see a police officer with a dog go past the station.

Generally things seemed to be ‘back to normal’, the bridge was totally packed with tourists, even the bagpiper was back again. The only people who weren’t there, were the Three Lady criminals who regularly con tourists in the area for large sums of money.

I did see motorists on Westminster Bridge driving with a handheld phone, despite the risk of getting 6 points on their licence. Now their behaviour, could also mow down people.

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Parliament Square

 

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“He was not a Muslim, he was a Monster”

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PC Keith Palmer was a Charlton Athletic football fan

Incidently, it was nice hearing from people round the world supporting London and sending in their own thoughts  over social media and having all the lights lit up round the world at various attractions was great. Thanks to everyone who made a stand against  terrorism.

Mother’s Day at the Remembrance Gardens, Rotherhithe

I popped into the Remembrance Gardens near Southwark Park this afternoon. It is one of my favourite spots when I need a bit of quiet and reflection and going there on Mother’s Day adds another poignant aspect to it.

It is a very pretty little garden, particularly in spring, with lots of memorials, flowers and pretty seats and even an ornamental pond with some koi fish. By the pond are a few memorials to some  men who loved fishing and there are photos of them with their large catches. I wonder what their story was. They seemed to have died before their time. In fact, there were a lot of premature deaths which seemed to be a bit of a feature here. Perhaps they died earlier due to cancer,  drugs, heart disease, suicide and recent wars? You can imagine a lot of children who have been bereaved early in their life with so any middle-aged deaths.

There were some middle-aged people bringing along their children paying their respects and talking along some  Mother’s Day flowers to their mothers who are no longer around but their family still thinks of them.

I noticed perhaps some elderly mothers visiting their children’s memorials, people who no longer could give them flowers and cards for Mother’s Day. A lot of mothers have lost their children.

Towards the end of my visit,  I spotted a memorial dedicated to Jade Goody, who died young on Mother’s Day after suffering from cervical cancer. It had a large yellow card with ‘Queen for a Day’. It was quite a simple gesture, for someone who was a popular Bermondsey local figure who raised a lot of awareness for women’s cancer.