Topsy-Turvy

peel-off tags progress

I’ve been keeping myself out of mischief by updating all my gift tags to the new peel-off back format.  My arm really isn’t fully up to the job of cutting them out, but I think it does it good to be pushed a little.  I’ve been really pushing it with my physiotherapy exercises and it’s definitely paid off – for the first time in 3 months I’ve just managed to touch the tips of my fingers to my shoulder.  Another few weeks and I’m sure I’ll be able to bend it fully.  Extending my arm is a completely different matter – still way more difficult, but I have every faith in being one of the lucky ones who regains full use of their arm.  Yoga really helps, even if all my poses are a bit on the wonky side:  3-legged downward dog?

Actually life in general has been a bit wonky lately.  Some things feel like they are falling apart (my day-job) and some things are going from strength to strength (my health).  I like life this way.  An unpredictable, topsy-turvy roller-coaster ride.

Miss Mardy-Knickers

new cards

new cards just added to my etsy shop

Have you ever wanted to greet your boss with a flying kick to the windpipe?  That’s exactly what I’ve been fantasising about for most of the day (I’ve never claimed to be a sweet little angel, now have I?!).  I have spent the afternoon mostly being blisteringly angry, but also being thankful that my boss had to meet with clients all afternoon, giving me the chance to cool off and think things through.  You don’t need to hear the whole tale but suffice to say that the Universe has just given me another nudge out of the door as far as that job is concerned.  It’s becoming less and less viable to work there.  So annoying because things had really turned around there in the last couple of months.

So I have been thinking what type of person I want to be in this situation.  I’ve already done (to my discredit) the whole “shove your job up your backside, you big tw*t” speech to a previous boss, way back when – and while it was hugely enjoyable, warranted and oh-so-satisfying at the time, I really think I want to be the better person this time around.  My boss really is being a big tw*t and undoubtedly I really do want him to insert his job in his nether regions, BUT there has to be a more evolved adult way of dealing with him.  I just haven’t figured out what it is yet!

In the meantime, while I grapple with my day-job-dilemmas, above are the latest cards I’ve had made for my etsy shop.  They turned out way, way better than I’d hoped and make me even more determined to keep plodding away with this work until I find some real direction.

Getting back on track

watercolour hearts

simple little watercolour experiments

Yesterday I went to what turned out to be my last physiotherapy session for my arm.  It’s improved so quickly that they don’t need me to go back, I can do it all myself from here.  My arm is still a long way from being able to completely straighten or completely bend, but its improving every single day.  I can touch my neck now and I’m not too far off being able to touch the tips of my fingers to my shoulder.  The best bit is that I can now begin to stress the joint a little with weights, which opens up so many more forms of exercise.  It’s all looking positive and I’m feeling almost normal again.  I still have to go to regular fracture clinics but these are just to see that the metal in the joint is behaving and staying put.

My arm has not been too much of a problem at my day job.  I can do pretty much everything except cutting with a knife with any precision – I just don’t have the strength or flexibility in my left arm to support and manipulate whatever substrate I’m cutting.  But it will all come back eventually.

At home I’m just beginning to get back to my own design work and yet again I’m having to take a long hard look at my etsy shop – it’s been so neglected!  To be honest I haven’t the faintest idea what I’m going to do about it.  I’m dithering again.  That bloody shop has been the source of so much frustration and yet something inside me tells me to just keep going with it.  To that end I’ve got some new cards at the printers.  They are a mish-mash of old designs presented in a new way and I can’t wait to receive them.  Eventually all the cards that I used to print and cut out myself will be redesigned and printed elsewhere – it’s too time-consuming to produce them myself (and physically impossible at the moment).  The felting and beading side of things is history now as I’ve given away my vast collection of materials and equipment – too fiddly, too slow and too boring.  I’m also gradually going to change over from strung tags to folded, peel and stick versions and retire a lot of my existing stock altogether.  I have no idea what I’m going to replace it all with.

I’m entering a new phase on all levels of my life and it mostly feels so good (apart from being cat-less).  Let’s see what the rest of the year brings  :)

After the good times…

I’m so glad I kept this blog, because I need to use it again for a while.

Life is still going great career-wise, but as is its nature, life has decided to throw me another random test or two which I want to document and resolve here.

Random test 1:  To cut a long (and for once, quite entertaining) story short, I want to use this blog to plot my physical recovery from a really badly broken arm.

After breaking all the bones of my arm at the elbow 6 weeks ago (a complicated series of breaks where large chunks of bone were completely broken off and displaced) I was surgically pinned and screwed back together and luckily (thanks to the skill of the surgeons) I should, in time, have full use of my hand a fingers – something which was in doubt at the beginning.  So I’m stating right now that although recovery is going to be slow and frustrating, I am starting from a place of so much gratitude, as it could have been so much worse.

After several arm casts, my arm is finally naked, except for a wound dressing and a sling that I have to wear for at least 2 more weeks until my next assessment at fracture clinic.  Now that I can begin gentle physiotherapy and take my first steps back to exercising, I want to record my progress to give myself even more determination.  The nature of the injury means – according to the consultants – that I’m unlikely to ever be able to fully straighten my arm again and although that is hardly the worst thing in the world, I still feel this ridiculous need to prove them wrong.  They told me there are actually very few times in day to day life that you need to fully extend an arm, but what if I feel the need to do a handstand?  I have to confess I’ve often felt that need and often done one!

So that’s the aim, to get back the full use of my arm and hand, to FULLY straighten it, to be able to do handstands and just for good measure I’ve decided I want to get my whole self into the best physical shape of my entire life.

Random test 2:  The Universe saw fit to send my beloved 4-legged companion into renal failure the very first day I came out of hospital.  She spent 4 days at the vets having the toxins flushed out of her system, while I organised her special diet and new medications.  We tried everything, but despite everybody’s best efforts, after a glorious week of her seeming in perfect health (and happiness) again, she suddenly deteriorated and I had to make that horrible decision that all pet owners dread.  I immediately unfriended the Universe.

It’s been a month since I lost her and gradually I’m able to see some of the wonderful bits of synchronicity that were so helpful.  For example, if I hadn’t been off work with my arm I would not have been able to provide her with the round-the-clock care and companionship right when she most needed it.  Also although at first I was so pissed off that I only had her for one more week after she came back from the vets, I now see that as the Universe giving us back that week that we missed when I was in hospital for the first 3 days and she was at the vets for the next 4.  I now view that extra week I had her as one of the most precious gifts I’ve ever received.

I know I will get another rescue cat one day, but not yet.  I’m gradually getting myself used to life without her – you don’t realise what a huge part of your life and routine they are until they are gone.  I’ve gained so much time in my day, but it’s time I didn’t want to spend any other way than with her.  Soppy eh?

So there you have it, that’s why I’m back to the blog for a while.

Swerving onto a different path.

Actually it’s more like a u-turn.

I’ve spent the last couple of weeks beginning to get to know the latest inner me, in an effort to understand what I really want to get out of life and what kind of better human I’d like to become.  More than once I have actually found myself sitting cross-legged, silently communing with the Universe (a fact the younger me would have mercilessly ripped the piss out of!).  But it’s all really helped, so as much as I’d like to, I’m not taking the piss out of myself this time.

It’s OK, I’m not going to blather on about my findings (you can breathe a sigh of relief now) but the upshot is that for the moment I don’t really have any specific use for this blog (another sigh of relief!).  I’m off to chase my heart’s desire now that I know (some of) what that is.  And luckily for you it isn’t really something that I want to document here.  I’m keeping the blog up for now just in case I want to use it in the future.  The shop will remain open for the foreseeable, but there will be changes in content a little further down the road.

New opportunities have come my way and things are really looking up.  At long last it’s time to break down some of the protective barriers I’ve spent my life building around my self – I don’t need them anymore – they’ve been holding me back and now I’m breaking out of my comfort zone.

See you around here from time to time, take care and be happy  :)

Lazy Sunday

almost finished ankhs

Ah this is the life: sitting in a toasty-warm, sun-filled studio, coffee in hand and the firm intention to do very little with the day.  All my weekend chores are done and now I can be a lazy as I want.  And I WANT.

Yesterday, in an unexpected burst of energy, I finished beading the felt Ankhs and now I just have to sew the fronts to the backs (a boring job best left for weekday mornings).  So today seems like the perfect day to break out the watercolour paints once more and make the most of this beautiful winter sunshine.  I may even venture outside into the freezing cold and get some much needed vitamin D (though the neighbours had better watch out as I’m having a make-up free day too – eeeek!).

Sundays are fast becoming my favourite day of the week.

Spring

daffs

OK I know it’s not Spring yet, but it already looks like Spring in the studio.  It’s part of my drive to be more positive.  Instead of complaining about the snow we’ve been having, I bought Spring flowers to brighten up the place.  It helps me concentrate on the coming season instead of the doom and gloom of February.  And you know, I think it’s working.  Who could be miserable faced with this burst of happy yellow?

I haven’t much else to say really and you know why?  Yes, that’s right – I’ve been really bloody lazy!  As much as I’ve been positive about the snow, there is no denying that mere sight of it brings out the hibernation in me.  Each evening has been spent curled up with hot chocolate, a glowing fire and a purring cat.  I’ve done absolutely nothing but watch whole series of comedy programs to keep my spirits up.  I’m watching all the stuff that my brother and I loved and often watched together.  I like to think that he is there with me, watching it over my shoulder, throwing back his head and letting out his roaring, hearty laugh once more.

I’ve got a feeling the weekend might entail more of the same, but once in a while you’ve just got to surrender to the cosy.