Posts Tagged ‘Benefits’


On being English

April 29, 2010

[This post has been written over the course of a week or more.. so excuse the inconsistencies/ramblings/brain fog etc…]

This academic year, there has been a frustrating response to LST Intranet posts concerning St George’s Day and Remembrance Day. The comments have been anonymous, which is frustrating, but whoever it is seems to think that these two days in the English calendar are pro-war, pro-invasion, pro-violence. Which seems a bit crazy. I can kind of understand it for Remembrance day, but it is in no way endorsing war.

With the risk of sounding rather like my father here, but I was brought up with the rule ‘when in Rome, do as the Roman’s do…’ rule. It makes sense, follow the countries laws, don’t impinge your views on another culture etc etc. So why is it that in our now multi-cultural Britain, there remains very little of Great Britain left to celebrate. As the previous paragraph mentioned, immigrants seem to have such a strong view on our British culture that it’s now diluted. It frustrates me immensely.

Land of Hope and Glory [I can’t quite remember why I wrote this, but something made sense in my head at the time, I’m sure… I’m thinking of the hymn… being all British and that.]

I doubt you would have escaped the forthcoming election and all that comes with it… or if you have, you live in more of a bubble than I do!

Of late there has also been controversy over the 2010 Westminster Declaration. I have yet still to make up my mind on the matter, along with my friends David and Phil, there seem to be much that isn’t said, leaving too many gray areas?

The last three weeks we’ve had the leadership debates. I wasn’t able to watch the first or the last, but from what I did see and have caught up with, they have really helped me to understand some of the party policies and compare them.

Here’s Steve Chalke interviewing the three party leaders;

At LST this week, we also had a debate with some of our lecturers; Anna Robbins, Tony Lane, Robert Willoughby and Simon Steer. It was interesting to discuss politics within the Christian community, what impact we have and how vital it is that we vote.

On which note, I am not registered in Northwood, as I only returned to LST in February and they sorted it out in the Autumn. So I decided that I’d go for a postal vote at home, as I’m definitely on the Electoral Role at home. Both constituencies have previously been very strong Conservative seats, but my vote still counts, right? I sent off my form, having downloaded it from Rushcliffe website, where there was no mention of a deadline for applying for a postal vote, in fact, on the form it said I could register for a postal vote at any time. Yet today I received a letter from Rushcliffe telling me I cannot vote, as my application for a postal vote was received after the registration deadline of 5pm 20th April. Again, I say, they didn’t have a deadline on the website or the form… AND they write to me now saying there’s no time… well, there clearly is, because if they’d just sent me the darn postal vote instead of that letter, it would have been in the post this evening. They did however say I could vote by proxy, but, get this, the deadline for registering for that is 5pm Tuesday 27th April… it’s gone.
I debated with the idea of driving home and back to LST next Thursday in order to vote, but, I don’t want to be missing more lectures and I have a rehearsal in the evening and it’d be 240 miles round trip and well, fuel isn’t exactly cheap these days…
To put it lightly, I’m gutted that my voice won’t be heard. I just hope and pray that enough other people’s will be to make a difference to our country!

And, I am worried that a very friendship my be in trouble because of my inability to vote.

As I said, I apologise for my distinct lack of coherence and clarity of thought in this post… My girly blonde brain just can’t cope 😉


Well this doesn’t make sense.

January 7, 2010

I was liking the fact that we have a new postman this week and that we get our post before midday.

I had an assessment for ESA – Employment and Support Allowance in August, don’t know if you remember? I found it really hard emotionally, mentally and physically, and came home completely pooped and in lots of pain. And this morning I get a letter saying following from your ‘recent’ assessment in August and form you filled in, you’re not entitled to ESA anymore. Doesn’t make sense. Especially when I was intially declined ESA, I was told if I was eligible for DLA -Disability Living Allowance (which I have until December ’10) I’d automatically be eligible for ESA.

I have CBT appointment at the hospital this afternoon and it’s going to take ages to get there ’cause of the snow. I’ve just called to check that they’re in cause of snow, they are… I’m part frustrated as I was hoping it might be canceled… I can’t face it.

I was waiting to post a blog until I’ve finished this essay, but I’m still 500 words over. I really want to play with my new computer. But stupid letter and CBT are wiping me out, so doesn’t look like I’m going to get very much further with it today 😦 I’m now one week, or one piece of work behind in the plan.

I did, however, get my Cello out last night for the first time in a month. It was good, we made a nice sound I feel 🙂 But I only managed about 15 minutes before feeling rubbish. Mum said I looked really ill once I’d put it away… 😦

I need to talk to you. I really need you. I need you to tell me I can get through this.


I looked in the mirror

December 30, 2009

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not one to spend hours in front of a mirror. But just lately, along with noticing a gradual improvement in myself.. I’ve also caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror as I leave my bedroom. Without sounding vain, I’ve noticed I have more colour in my cheeks and look healthier, and, dare I say it, pretty. That’s without make up, or effort of any kind. I like.

Today, despite not waking up till late, I got up and was motivated and I wasn’t lonely; because I’d received a text message from someone very lovely.
I found some breakfast, and packed the dishwasher. I made biscuits to take to Hope when I visit Lizzie. I washed up. I got dressed (yes, I made biscuits in my PJ’s). I fed the neighbours cats. I cleared and laid the fire. I emailed a friend a recipe. I transferred money into my new bank account. I rang DLA and ESA people and have changed which bank account they’ll be sending my money too. I watched ‘Why Beauty Matter’s’ on iPlayer, and made notes while watching it, as it’s relevant to Arts and Worship. I prepared tea ready for Mum and Dad coming home from work. I read 4 chapters of McFadyen’s ‘Bound to Sin’ and am not sure those chapters were that relevant to the essay, and I found some of them hard going, personally 😦 I’m hoping the last four seem like they will be more relevant to the essay… as I’ve missing out the middle two… Mum and Dad came home, I made them a pot of tea. And then I crashed. So, I spent my evening in front of the fire, watching films. I’m physically wiped out and feeling pretty tearful, but, today has been a good day. I’ve been home alone all day, and I haven’t felt lonely. All because I had a plan, and I received one simple text message that reminded me I’m loved.
Then I tried on pretty dresses, as Mum said I ought to sell my old blue ball dress, as it’s too small, so I proved to her that it fits better now than it did a year ago! I then tried on my new ball dress I got in a sale, and then my dissertation recital outfit, shoes, necklace and all – that is my inspiration for my project. I am going to wear that dress this year. And, I am going to play as well as the dress looks!

And now, two hours after I went to bed, I can’t sleep. I can’t get my brain to switch off, my heart won’t slow down. I’m excited about returning home, to LST! I want it to be now. For all the work to be done. I’m nearly ready. I want to go home.


Protected: Relief

December 21, 2009

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Protected: Here I am, again.

December 14, 2009

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Current Perspectives in ME

November 28, 2009

Dad and I went to a conference today ‘Current Perspectives on CFS/ME’ a talk by Professor Anthony Pinching, Associate Dean of the Cornwall Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry & principle medical adviser to Action for ME.

One of the main things I took away from the talk was that no matter what I call my condition; CFS/ME, Bob, Sheila etc… I need to have respect for it. Have a relationship with it; ‘okay, that was too much, how about this?’ etc. [I’m in debate as to what to name my M.E. so, suggestions welcome!]

He gave an overview of ME, various hypothesies and explaining how there still hasn’t been enough research to fully understand this condition. The XMRV virus that was found in the US with patients with ME hasn’t had enough research done, so essentially the media just built our hopes up over that. But I remember doubting anything would happen at the time.

He said how there is a possibility that there may be genetic factors that may make an individual more prone to CFS/ME following a virus, trauma etc.

He also mentioned something about Rheumatoid Arthritis and CFS/ME which Dad had when he was my age or so…

On the way home, Dad and I talked about my ME like we’ve never have done before. It was amazing. I think the talk really helped Dad understand what it is I’m dealing with and that it is real.
He thinks my ME started when I was 10, after a serious Gymnastics accident involving a concrete floor, my lip and the death of my two (adult) front teeth.
He also thinks he is to blame for the predisposing likelihood of getting ME as he now thinks he’s been battling with this illness since his rheumatoid arthritis episode.
I was honest with him about how I find things hard emotionally, like being in a crowd, lots of people, unfamiliar places etc. Like tomorrow, I really want to go to church as it’s Advent, I want to go to the Minster in the evening, but I know I wont cope on my own, or if we’re in the middle of the Nave. In an ideal world, I’d like to be there and hang out with the Vergers… so I’m in control; I know what’s happening. Dad said ‘you become more like me everyday, I don’t like these kind of things unless I’m playing a leadership type role.

The biggie was when I said that over the last couple of days I’ve been beginning to think I’m not going to be well enough to return to LST as planned. That was SO hard to say, to admit to Dad. But it wasn’t met with anger or frustration, rather ‘I’d been thinking that for the past couple of months.’ Wow. and Ouch. all in one.

So I feel so relived that things are out in the open with Dad and I can talk to him without worrying; he’ll understand. Yet at the same time, he’s feeling really down and guilty about the whole thing too.

I’ve just been on the phone to Ed for 45 minutes. It was good to catch up, but there were a lot of silences. They ones where no one knows what to say anymore. Words can’t help. And yet they can.

It hurts so much.


What was I thinking?

November 25, 2009


Why was it a good plan to come home?
Not to graduate
To be left behind

I can’t believe all this is actually happening.