Thirteen Years...

At 12:21pm today, my precious Bethy will have been gone from me for thirteen years. On one hand, that feels like a lifetime ago, but on the other, it feels like it has only just happened.

This past year has not been great, and for some reason, that has made today feel more raw and visceral than the last few years, and I honestly feel like I am struggling to hold myself together - today is making that feel almost impossible.

In the early hours of the morning, I was sat in the dark missing Bethy, and my emotions ranged from sadness at losing her, anger at my inability to do anything about it, I smiled remembering all the funny things she did, and enormous love for her and how she made people feel.

But I miss her. I miss her every single day, but today I miss her more than anything.

Having a memory like I do, I remember the events of this day thirteen years ago almost like it only just happened. The voices, the words they were using, the expressions on faces, the sounds of machinery, even the smell.

Seeing my little Bethy laying there at the end of her fight was probably the hardest thing I have ever had to deal with. And it kills me every time it pops into my mind - usually unbidden, sometimes when I am thinking about her and her running around, invariably, my mind will slip back to that place. So much reminds me of her and of the hospital, but today, I am struggling to see the good times, the laughs, the happy little Baby Moo, the big cuddles with her tiny little arms around my neck and her breath on my skin.

Today, I am struggling. Today, I am missing my beautiful little princess, daddys little gorgeous, ever so much.

To my beautiful Bethy,

Holy hell am I missing you baby. Today more than ever. It has been thirteen years since you left, and time hasn't healed any wound. The wound just got different. But this year, it feels like it's been scratched open, and today it is ever so painful.

I miss you so damn much. I miss seeing you dance, I miss hearing you giggle, I miss you being naughty. You went through so much and were always the bravest person I ever knew, so strong and full of fight. Even today, I think about how amazing you were - sitting through tests and prodding and poking and having procedures done - always with more bravery than I have ever seen.

Thirteen years is a long time, but also no time at all. And I have missed you every single day of those years. I still cannot listen to certain songs. I still notice when the clock his 12:21. 

You would be so proud of your brothers and sisters. I wish they had the chance to meet you. And I see you in Poppy so much it's almost scary. So many people in my life now should have met you. Kellie would have doted on you. You'd have Dom and Molly wrapped around your little finger within minutes, and Nanny Diane would do anything you asked. 

Where ever you are my baby, I miss you. I hope you are still dancing. I hope you are still as full of love as you ever were. I wish I could see you again my gorgeous. And I will, in time, I know that. But I have people here that need me for a while yet.

I love you so much Bethany. And I see you baby.

I see you x

Happy Birthday My Bethy

To my beautiful Angel, Bethany...

I can't believe you would be 17 today. That number boggles and blows my mind, and I can't help but think what you would be like at this age. Seventeen. You'd be looking to the future; College, University, Work, Boys NO BOYS...

Would you still be dancing? Would you be as strong-willed and stubborn as you were when you were four? Would you still love to sit with me and have a cuddle.

I think about you every single day, think about what you would be doing, what you would be like, what you would be in to... Seventeen years old, and I miss you as much today as I did the day you left. 

I'm sure you would give me a cuddle at this point. See me upset and give me one of your little fangy-smiles, wrap your little arms around my neck and squeeze. I know you would hate to see me sad and missing you, but I can't help but miss you.

Just know that you are still very much loved - even by those that never got to meet you - and very much missed.

So happy birthday my sweet little gorgeous. I miss you very much, but love you so much.

With all my heart,


Is This Thing On?

So, turns out poor old 0ddness has been a bit neglected of late. A lot late. But, with yesterday being a momentous occasion, I figured I would appear out of lurkdom and grace you with my presence.

Yes, I still think a lot of myself. Go figure.

(FYI: Long Post Klaxon!)

Firstly, I was indeed 41 years old yesterday. Of course, I didn't realise it was my birthday this weekend until Wednesday when someone asked me which day it was. And when asked how old I was, I had to pause, and do some pretty complicated mathematics in my head to work it out.

So, with the freshest thing first, I'll start with yesterday - in which I became older, no wiser, sexy as ever, and generally continued to grace the world with my presence. As mentioned already. As is usual, I don't make a big deal of my birthday - I'm not into the whole party-hearty because I managed to not die for another year. Yesterday was nice and quiet and chilled out. My gift from Poppy was me tripping over her potty, and splashing pee all up my leg, so that was nice. And warm.

In August, I finally bit the bullet and started looking for a new doggo. Since I lost Sally Dog, I wanted something small and stupid with a wanky obnoxious name - but have been putting it off and putting it off. First we needed somewhere bigger. Then we needed money. Then with Poppy, we needed her to be less... Baby. So, last month, Kellie made some phone calls (and aside from avoiding a rather dodgy situation with what later turned out to be some travellers and puppy farming!) she found a lady with a couple of Jack Russell puppies. We travelled over to see them, a boy and a girl, and set to having a play.

The little girl - as a typical female - was probably just having an off day, and didn't seem bothered by us. The little boy was an idiot, wanted to lick my chin and eat my stubble, and seemed to like having cuddles. He also like being near Poppy (kind of important with THAT force of nature) and on top of that, didn't growl at Kellie - so he can't sense evil.

We took him home there and then, and since then, the little idiot has been charging around like a mad thing. Naming took a couple of days (He was just "dog" to start with!) and we toyed with everything from Dave to Kujo to Jeff to Gobshite... Eventually, however, remembering a dog my Great Uncle had maaaaany years ago, we opted for Lord Montgomery II. Granted, we call him Monty, but everywhere he's registered, the vets, his microchip, his insurance, his name tag - he is Lord Montgomery. Which the vets find hilarious.

He's such an idiot. No sense of how small he is, can't navigate a series of three steps without tripping over at least one of them, can go through a baby gate in one direction, but cannot work out how to come back through... He tries to leap up onto the sofa - but takes off about three feet too soon, so generally hits the front of the sofa face first. As I write this, he is snuggled against me, on my lap. Oh yes, he's a lap dog.

Him and Poppy get on like, well, a toddler and a puppy. I should sell the idea to Disney for their next Princess. A noisy troublemaker and a puppy, systematically destroying everything they go near - but everyone still loves them. For some reason.

Anyway... With Monty being my early birthday present, I didn't expect to get presents yesterday, but low and behold, a large box was produced. I was genuinely not expecting anything, so to unwrap it and find a brand new spanking shiny gaming laptop inside, I was shocked into speechlessness. I expected it to be a box with a brick in it. Or something explosive. Or divorce papers.

You see, last year, I made the transition from a PC Gamer to a PS4 Gamer. The PS4 was my birthday present last year. My old Aspire laptop - while still able to run a lot of things - was getting a bit rickety. It survived the Great Kicking of Kellie in 2012, it was resurrected after the Dropping Off Of Screen in 2013, and even last year, it survived the Great Coffee Flood...

The Second Great Coffee Flood, however, proved to be it's undoing. All seemed well for a week or so, then, in the immortal words of the great Nanny Plum, it went BANG. Literally, BANG. Complete with the Blue/Grey Smoke Of Electronics Doom.

I have no idea what died, though I suspect either the power gubbins or the processor, but it was Dee Eee Dee Dead. And that, I am afraid to say, was that for the laptop. Within a fortnight, my old wheezy Medion PC System also gave up the ghost, and has since been sitting on my desk staring at me like a corpse glaring at its murderer.

But now, I am back in the world of the living. I am still a PS4 Gamer, but am also once again a PC Gamer. And, MOST importantly, I can now get many many Gigabytes of data retrieved from my old systems. See, having no computer to speak of meant the laptop and the PC have been sitting there rotting, their four hard drives holding tightly onto lots and lots of photos from over the years - including a multitude of Bethy pictures.

Thankfully, after doing the Medion hard drives, all the photos from the last ten years or so are safe and sound and YES I've already backed it all up. Thank you Google Drive & Photos. Of course, the anally-retentive Dan has spent the last three days sorting the photos and putting them into the correct Month & Year folders... Because why wouldn't you?!

I've not had a look at my laptop drives yet - I have to confess, I am a little nervous to do so, mainly because of the spectacular way it exited the mortal coil... As long as there was no surge in electrickery or, you know, fire, I think they should be good.

So, moving on from the most important thing (Yes, still me), I move on to the wee little troll that is Poppy.

She is growing like a weed. All the new stuff we got her for the summer is already looking a bit little on her. Not that it matters too much, as she is currently going through her "Nekkid Toddler" phase and hates to wear clothing. And runs around without a care in the world. She looks so much like Bethany some days,it pulls at my heart strings, and she is SO much like her, from the trouble making, to the putting herself on the naughty step after intentionally doing wrong, to hiding her dummies, so when you take it away from her, another one appears out of nowhere! She is gorgeous, funny, stubborn and bright as a button.

She's now entitled to her 15 hours a week of nursery, and so - realising both how fast she's growing and how little she is, she started three mornings a week at a little nursery near us. At first, she was, shall we say.... Less than impressed... She's never really been away from Mummy or Daddy or Siblings or Nanny - and the first few weeks she did to get used to it in August... They did NOT go well. But with the girls at nursery helping out, we persevered, and now she hates NOT going to school. She's still doing exactly what Tamsyn did was she was small and lovely, and refuses to speak except in her own language. Since starting nursery, she is coming on more and more.

For those of you that don't follow me on Twitter or Facebook or whatever, she also had her first proper injury in the summer - she gashed open her forehead beside her eyebrow. Typical guilty daddy moment, I looked away from her for a few seconds, and down she went. Because she was wet, the blood went EVERY-fooking-WHERE and she looked like Carrie. It was awful. It was touch and go for a while if she'd need referring to another hospital for the plastics team that rebuilt Jaysens hand as it was so close to her eye, but in the end, it was nice and clean and not too deep. Steri-Strips and TLC, and she now has a scar above her left eyebrow, but with copious usage of Bio-Oil, I'm hoping that it fades more and more over time.

As I mentioned earlier, she and the dog love each other, and are generally always running around together. Where one goes, the other follows. If she curls up for a nap somewhere, he usually curls up with her too, and it is exactly what we wanted - for them to grow up together and be best friends. They play with each others toys, play with each other, and literally bounce off one another. Until they both flake out and have a nap...

And it's at times like that, the rest of us can sit for half an hour, have a breather, drink some coffee, clear up the chaos, and wait for it to start all over again - because when one wakes up, the other wakes up.

As for the other morons children in the house - well, I say children... Dom is 19, has moved on from being one of the managers at McDonalds, and now works at some big financial place doing something... Financial. Jaysen is 18 (19 in a few months even!), still in college studying something with animals, while working at the Dogs Trust a couple of times a week - and now he's considering University. Molly is 15 and in her last year of school, getting ready for her GCSEs. Tamsyn is 12 (but seems older?) and is shooting up like a bloody weed as well. Both Molly & Tamsyn go to Army Cadets twice a week, and it's definitely doing them both the world of good.

Jaysen: Being Special

Molly: Probably Sulking

Poppys Other Great Passion: Water!

Tamsyn: Not Actually My Son

My Classy Kellie


Lucina (Doms better half), Molly (doing something with her fingers),
Kellie (squashed), Tamsyn (still a girl) and Poppy (trying to escape)

Tam & Mo with their detachment (Armed Forces Day)
Now, oddly, I cannot find any photos of Dominic that fulfil the following criteria. Firstly, I wanted a recent photo, and secondly, I wanted it to be of him fully dressed and not on the toilet. As it seems all the photos I have of him seem to be in his pants or on the loo, here's the next closest thing.

Dominic: Needs a Haircut
And so, after what can only be described as a wall of text and random photos (and a cauliflower) I will leave it at that... I can cover my medical rubbish any other time - probably at three in the morning when I feel shite, and all of Kellies medical rubbish is a blog post unto itself.

And yes, I am fully aware that while blogging has never been considered "cool", I still prefer it to most other forms of Social Media. And, while on THAT subject - while I might have things appear on Facebook, I do not actively go on there, and have not done so for a long time. Too much drama, bitching, politics, and what seems to be playground behaviour - so I continue to avoid that. I use Twitter now and then, and post pictures to Instagram occasionally. I am hoping - though I'm not making any promises - that now I am back with a screen and a keyboard and no danger of autocorrect, that I will manage to blog a little more regularly. Aside from that, if you play on PS4, feel free to add me - username is Danielson0

Until next time, you little crowd of nutters that made it this far!


I know that, as usual, I've not posted much of late, and truth be told, whenever I do seem to need to get my brain thoughts out, it's just me, sounding sad and tired and something wrong with me medically and everything else I always seems to moan and sulk about. 

And this post is nothing new. As usual, I feel like crap, and as usual, I'm fed up of feeling like crap. I don't know where to start, or how to form a simple coherent... Thing.

I'm... Something? Down. Sad. Fed up. Miserable. Unhappy. I hate feeling crap so much - both physically and mentally - and the effort of putting on my brave face and trying to not be all those things... Well, it's almost as exhausting as everything else I have to do. I hate my brain. I hate my physiology. I hate my body. I hate the pain, the exhaustion, the constant feeling like shit... I hate that I feel like I am constantly struggling... Either to look after myself, or the house, or the family. I hate seeing stuff pile up, and after nagging for people to help, I do it all myself, and end up in more pain, feeling more exhausted... And the crap builds up again. 

I hate thinking that people either don't believe me when I tell them how shit I feel, or they do believe me, but aren't bothered by the fact I feel so shit. I've given up for the most part. I tell people I'm "ok" or "tired" when inside I'm a mess, and my tiredness is pure, unadulterated exhaustion. I hate that people still don't get how much anxiety I deal with getting ready and going out. How the acts of being social, of travelling, of standing around talking... How all these things cause me actual physical pain, and my brain to scream and shout and batter on the inside of my skull. 

A few hours of housework, a trip out, hanging with friends for a few hours, sorting stuff out... That might not sound like much to you, but that is a FULL ON busy week for me. I can go to bed at one in the afternoon after all this, and be a wreck in bed for 20 hours - only to have to pop-up and rejoin the world. 

I feel so alone with all this in my head so much of the time. I can't talk about it much as I am sure people think I'm just droning on about poor tired me. People think I'm lazy as I would rather stay in. That I'm a slob as I wear lounge pants and not jeans. That I'm messy because I haven't brushed my hair or shaved. I'm not droning on, I'm trying to get people to understand how me (and people like me) feel when we are having a rough time. I'd rather stay in because the act of getting ready and going out hurts me both physically and mentally. I wear lounge pants as the material from my jeans hurts my skin, and they're heavy on my body. I haven't brushed my hair or shaved, because I simply don't have the strength in my arms to do my hair or facial hair after brushing my teeth or pulling on a tee shirt.

I would give almost anything to not feel this way. To not have people exchanging glances at one another when I try talking about being awake for 30 due to pain, despite being exhausted. To not have friends suddenly disappear on you because you know you've either bored them to death with your moaning, or because you didn't reply to a message and they think you're ignoring them. I want nothing more than to not feel like every anxiety and stress in my brain is going to suffocate me. 

I hate how I am. I hate how I feel. I can't not be this way, and I can't not feel how I feel. I can't "think positive thoughts" and be better. I can't "just push though it" or "tough it out" or "man up" or whatever to not feel so shit. 

If you don't get me, fine. But don't expect your not-getting-it will on any way change how I am - if you think it's just me being lazy, just me not putting in the effort, or not being bothered - that's your problem, not mine. Your thoughts & beliefs won't change how my body or brain react to anything. 

I thought by the time I was 40, life would be easy, simpler, happier... I just feel like I've been stuck in the same shitty reoccurring dreams for seventeen years, and instead of life getting easier, and me coping with my issues, the opposite is true. Physically I'm useless, and mentally I'm just a bundle of neuroses and stress. 

I'm sorry to sound like a broken record. I just don't know what else to do with myself. 

Old Girl!

Believe it or not, the wee little thing we call "Molly" is another year older today, and somehow, the little moo-bag is fifteen years old!


I'm sure it wasn't that long ago that I was sat in Kellies living room meeting these two little blonde kids, one of which was a seven year old girl that just wouldn't stop talking and asking questions about me... Who I am, where I'm from, what I do, what I watch..

I mean, she just would Not. Shut. Up.

And now, eight years down the line, she still talks and babbles and rambles on, still bombards me with random questions, though, being she's A) a girl, and B) a teenager, most of the babbling on is "and she said blah to him but I said no way to her then she said ugh to them and when he came in it was like oh my God what is he wearing but then she went up to him and tomato fruit basket lemon pie glass of apple cider rainbows lollipops oh my God is she still talking what the hell do I do I know just smile and nod but carry on watching the TV out the corner of my eye"

Again, she simply does Not. Shut. Up.

But, none the less, despite her not appreciating my wishing her a happy birthday just after midnight, not liking the words to a happy birthday song I sent her (below), nor seemingly appreciative of my "Birthday Dance In Just My Boxers" - let alone the "Cuddle In Just My Boxers" afterwards - here's to my no-longer-so-little Roley Moley, Chief Butt Scratcher, She Who Watches Me Pee, The One With The Sulks Of Doom, the female that generates more laundry than every other girl on the damn planet, and the girl that whose mood swings are so epic, even her teachers refer to her as going FULL MOLLY!

Happy Birthday my sweet (ish), little (ish), lovely (ish) girl. You're not as terrible as I tell you you are!


I have a feeling birds are all insomniacs*. My theory is flawless, being that its five in the morning and I'm yet to sleep, I've had plenty of time to think it through.

My reasoning? The birds so-called "Dawn Chorus" isn't them singing and greeting the sun... No, they are screaming in frustration that the sun is about to come up, they're exhausted, and have yet to sleep!

My theory is scientifically sound.

*except Owls... Those bastards are up all night hassling rodents through their own choice dammit. F$ck owls.

I Wish People Understood

At four in the morning, pain and tiredness do funny things to my brain. Well, funnier than usual at least. My current train of thought relates with how people treat me, act towards me, of their opinion of me...

Now, these are not the usual things like "do they think I'm fat" or "do they think I'm boring" but more towards my physical and mental issues.

It's no secret that I hate how I am. I hate that pushing myself makes me worse. I hate that people don't get how different things make me feel. I hate that situations cause me stress and anxiety. I hate that people seem to expect me to do things and run about. I hate that people - still to this day - think I'm faking or over-exaggerating how I am.

And at four in the morning, all that seems worse than normal. Here's my train of thought...

People believe and understand that I am ill... But still expect me to do This, That and The Other without question. When I do do these things, they get funny when I talk about how bad, rough, sick, stressed or generally crap I feel.

Alternatively, people don't believe I am ill... And that in and of itself makes me more fed up, that there are people that call themselves friends or loved ones that simply believe me to be acting this way for... I don't know what.. Attention? To claim my meager Support Allowance? To get out of work?

I hate that people don't get me. I hate that people don't understand how things affect me, how different situations cause me physical pain, physical & mental exhaustion, and mental stress & anxiety. How I have to decide if I'm going to spend energy on making myself some tea and toast, or save that energy to cut up some vegetables at dinner time. The lack of will to do anything, as every day makes me struggle to just get out of bed - either physically or mentally.

I would love people to understand how I feel on a regular basis, of the things that upset me, stress me out, the pain and hurt I have to deal with to do day-to-day things that everyone else takes for granted. Some of you might be reading this thinking I'm dropping a Drama Bomb. That I'm "just tired" or that I'm "over-complicating" things. It's just the pain, the tiredness, the depression...

If you're one of these people that think I'm just doing it for attention or a laugh, I would rather you said so, and just stopped being in my life. I know you can't please all the people all the time, but some days, I'm sure I don't please anyone... But I'm fed up with saying the same crap over and over, to people that just don't give a f$ck. It's my energy I'm wasting.

I hate how I am. Some days, I hate WHO I am. I'm sick of feeling horrible all the time. I hate trying to explain how I feel all the time. I hate knowing there are people out there that will nod and offer hollow platitudes, only to turn around and poo poo me.

It is all too much so often - but I grin, bear it, and carry on plodding as best I can. But it is so difficult to keep going. Especially when I feel like this.

I don't want sympathy. I just want people to understand.

Sweet Sixteen

It's hard to imagine, and hard to write this - hence the delay in posting. But today, my beautiful angel, Bethany, would have been sixteen years old...

I can't wrap my head around it. Today, I've been flashing back to the day that she was born, and my memories are as fresh as they've always been. But those memories were intermingled with the day she left.

For the most part I've kept to myself today... Been watching TV, playing on my tablet, trying to keep myself busy. But now at half one in the morning, I'm laying in bed trying to keep my mind out of the bad places, remembering my Bethy as the beautiful, mad, funny, slightly mad little girl that I miss so dearly.

My beautiful girl, Bethy... 

Happy birthday my little angel. I can't believe you would be sixteen today. Where ever you might be, I can only imagine how gorgeous you must be, let alone the sort of person you would be. 

I am sure you are as brave and strong as you always were, and I know you are a beautiful girl. Friendly. Happy. Cheerful. Nothing phasing you as ever. 

I imagine you dancing, and doing every single thing you always wanted to do, without any limitations, nothing stopping you. At sixteen, I know you would be planning your future, college, work... I dread to imagine how many boys you would have wrapped around your little finger - the way I always was. But know that all those boys would have to go through your daddy first. 

Wherever you are, my sweet girl, whatever you are doing, I hope you are happy. That's all I have ever wanted for you. I just wish I could see you dancing, see the girl - the young woman - you would be turning into. I am absolutely sure you would be leading Poppy on with her shenanigans as well, and she would love her big sister. 

I miss you so very much my Bethy. I think about you all the time, I miss you, but love you so very much. 

Happy birthday Bethany. And remember, no matter what, I see you baby. 

I see you. 

Lots of love, 

Daddy x


There is something about pain that is so hard to deal with. Anyone that suffers from any kind of chronic pain condition might understand what I'm saying, but of late, it's something I've found to be has to deal with.

First off, when you tell someone you're in pain, straight away there's the whole faith part of it. You can't see pain, so when you tell people you're in agony, they either believe you or they don't. I find that one of the hardest parts to cope with - thinking people don't believe me. You wonder if people think you're just making excuses, or trying to get out of something, or just trying to get sympathy...

I hate feeling like that. I hate it wondering if people are inwardly rolling their eyes, "Dan's claiming to be in pain again..." or that they think I'm being lazy and just want to stay on the sofa. Then there's the "Well you've just done X, Y or Z - it can't be THAT bad!" attitude of people. No, my pain isn't gone. More manageable at that point maybe, or I'm just pissed off and NEED to do something, and pushing through it... That doesn't mean I can do it all the time, and usually I end up feeling even worse than before.

Trying to explain pain to someone - be it a friend, family member, or medical professional - is so difficult. The 1-10 scale is kind of bizarre. The type of pain is really hard for me to explain in terms that it makes sense. I sometimes try to explain one of my pains like "hot water being poured down my leg" but that doesn't cover it. If you poured hot water down your leg, yes it would hurt, but it wouldn't be what I'm feeling. Cramping pains, stabbing pains, sharp pains, throwing pains, burning pains, shooting pains... If you think about it, none of these make sense. But then, if I try explaining it like someone is crushing my muscles, or grinding my bones together, that's literally the only way I can describe it, but it's never accurate.

The worst part is how pain affects a person - and I'm sure it is different for everyone. Pain is tiring. It wears you down, gets on top of you, and affects you mentally. Some days, I hurt so much, it makes my cognitive jumble seem worse. I used to be a healthy, active person, and the pain I feel reminds me I never used to feel like this. I could go somewhere, charge around all day, get home, cook, have friends over, play games til the middle of the night, have a few hours sleep, walk to work... And on and on. Now, my pain is always there, always on, always reminding me that I can't do what I used to do - let alone, I can't do what I WANT to do. Getting out of bed, getting dressed, walking down a half dozen stairs... My pain adds to my exhaustion. And yet, despite how I feel, I worry that people see me sitting on the sofa as a sign of me being lazy, that I did X earlier, therefore I should be able to do Y...

This last week-and-a-bit has been rough, which has made me sleep less than usual and be busier than usual. Today, I am literally running on fumes. I have been dropping stuff, spilling things, bumbling and bumping into things. I'm tired and feel like crap.

But, despite this, I'm upright, sat on the floor playing with Poppy, while My Little Pony is on (again). I just wish people understood a little better that when I (or anyone that suffers) say they're in pain, there is so much more to it than just an achey limb or whatever.

End Of My Rope (Again)

So, assuming I've done it right, the image above sums up how I'm doing of late. And, if I'm honest, it's not what you'd call "great" or anything in that general area.

Tonight's insomnia is less insomnia, more my M.E being its usual wanky self. The last couple of days have been slightly more active than usual, and because I took extra spoons out of my week, I am now suffering. I am exhausted. Full-on, completely and utterly exhausted. I've even swapped from my tablet to my phone to write this post, as the tablet is too heavy.

I just want to sleep. That's not a big ask. But I am in more pain than usual tonight, thanks to the aforementioned busy days. My legs and back are pulsing in time to my heart beat. My shoulders ache. My hands feel like they're two sizes too big. And I'm fluctuating from "brrr chilly!" to "holy f$ck heat!" which is great fun too.

All this is taking its toll on happy old Dan. I know I'm moody and grumpy and short tempered and tearful and miserable... And the hardest part is trying to get people to understand and to realise that I am struggling as much as I am. "Oh Dan hasn't been in contact, and when he is all he does is moan" No, I haven't, but that's because I can't focus on any one thing. I can wake up and think about all the simple things I need to do, but by the time I've struggled into clothing, made my way down five stairs, and performed the miraculous tasks of Making Coffee and Poppy's Breakfast, I am tired. Anything past that is little more than pushing myself...

And then I end up here again. Laying in bed at 3am feeling crap, listening to Kellie snore, Poppy fidget, and the cats marauding around the house. Five o clock rolls around, and I flake out, only to have to be up again within a couple of hours.

I've tried a routine of being awake in the night and doing stuff - reading, watching TV, listening to music, playing a game - instead of trying to sleep, but all that achieved was me being more awake for longer. Object defeated.

I know I need to get back to my GP. I know I need my med dosages - all my meds - increased. And I try to stay positive that "these are the ones that will help" but know in the back of my mind, I'll have a few months of them taking the edge off, until my body decides they're crap, and to metabolise them quicker than they can help me.

3am is quiet. Mostly. Aside from the snoring/fidgeting/marauding. I hear the occasional but of traffic. Oddly, I just hear a load of seagulls bitching somewhere about something. Occasionally I'll hear a fox screaming somewhere, or cats rowing over territory. But 3am is mostly just quiet. Which you would think is nice. But my brain doesn't like the quiet. If it's not showing my streams of random flashcards (I don't know if I've explained that before...), it'll be going over everything it thinks I need to think about. Conversations I've had. Situations people are dealing with. Arguments and how I should have responded. Conversations in the future. Plus I random check the doors are locked because, hell, why not have some random paranoia too.

And so, I lay here, wanting nothing more than to sleep, but knowing full well the pain, the miserable mood, the anxiety - all these little things conspiring to prevent me from sleeping..

I know I'm getting worse as time goes by. That's not new information. But I wish I could get worse BUT manage the pain and mood better than I am. And to sleep. Again, it doesn't seem like an unreasonable request...

I know I've been radio silent for a while. I've not been on Facebook in over a year. I occasionally use Twitter. I sometimes post to Instagram. My poor blog is neglected. But despite this being my little corner of the web where I can prattle on about whatever I want, I feel like I'm just moaning and being very much "woe is me", knowing full well that some of you reading still believe there's sod-all wrong with me. That I'm being dramatic. Attention seeking.

If that were true, I'd like my Oscar now please.

The Tasmanian Devil

So, yesterday evening, I decided I'd chill out with a mug of green tea. It - and chamomile - are the only "herbal" teas I enjoy. Of course, Poppy being Poppy, she wanted to try some, so I let her try a little.

And of course, Poppy being Poppy, she enjoyed it. So I tried a little more, and she still liked it. In the end, being the wonderful amazing daddy that I am, I made her her own cup of green tea (in one of her sippy cups, duh).

I had no issue with her having it. She likes caffeine-free tea now and then, and so I figured with green tea being naturally caffeine-free, she could have it without any issues.

Just over an hour later, Kellie and I decided it was bedtime. I was exhausted, and so we took madam to bed too. We tried to give her her bottle, she didn't want it - she was happier beating the crap out of me. I put Adventure Time on for her, but she didn't want to watch it - she was happier beating the crap out of me. I put on some music for her but, you guessed it - she was happier beating the crap out of me...

She was all over the place. Bouncing and jumping and rolling around and literally - no, LITERALLY - trying to climb the walls.

We could not figure what was going on. I thought she might be over-tired as she had refused to nap all day. Maybe it was the single bite of biscuit she had just before bed that Kellie gave her. Maybe she was hungry..

For nearly three hours, that child was literally the child of the Tasmanian Devil - she was a little whirlwind of destruction. Finally, she literally dropped where she was, three quarters of the way down the bed, pointing the wrong way, between our legs.

This morning, out of curiosity more than anything, I checked the caffeine content of green tea. I figured that there must be some sort of leftover amount - maybe that caused her to be mental?

Turns out, Green Tea and Normal Tea come from the same plant. Turns out, it's not caffeine-free. Turns out, if you let it steep for a while and agitate it (you know, like I do...) it increases the caffeine content. Turns out, if you give a baby a cup of Green Tea, they go bananas and end up jacked-up on an obscene amount of caffeine.

Today, I am fully, completely, utterly exhausted. I'm going to have some Green Tea to wake me up. Poppy is going to have some milk...

The Moral? If your wife says "Yes it should be ok" but that SAME person, only hours earlier, makes the comment "I didn't realise Egypt was part of Africa", check with a professional first!

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