I went into this week a little apprehensive, a little annoyed and a little fed up because I knew our kitchen renovations were due to start this week. It has already been a tough few weeks physically and mentally, so I was hoping for it all to go smoothly.
Day 36 – Monday 12th November 2018
I was awoken by a loud banging at 6.30am. I jumped out of bed, bashed into my bookcase (yes I read; it is why my intellect is so high), tripped over a shoe and stumbled into the wall, just to look out the window. My suspicions were confirmed, it was the unannounced arrival of the skip ready for the ripping out of the old kitchen. However, he was taking it upon himself to dump the skip on my driveway, but it was meant to be put on the front lawn. I quickly threw on some jogging bottoms (I always wear socks to bed because I am cool) and ran down stairs to stop him. After the skip fiasco, the girls were already awake, so we had a nice easy slow time getting ready for school. Once home, the builders arrived to begin ripping out the old kitchen and to remove a wall. Ember and I hid away upstairs. I was concerned she wouldn’t like all the loud banging, however Ember did not mind one bit.
It was leg day, but with this weeks’ subject, mindfulness in mind; I decided to break the leg workout up. I did the first half whilst Ember was engrossed in Ben & Holly’s Little Kingdom (anything is better than that spoilt pig called Peppa). I then did the second half later that evening. I think doing it that way was a lot better than doing nothing at all. After all, it is about concentrating on what you CAN do. I also had another migraine, which I’m pretty confident was stress related. Stupid life.
Day 37 – Tuesday 13th November 2018
Tuesday was the second day of rip out and re-plaster; or it was supposes to be. The planners had not communicated effectively with the builders. They did not know they were supposed to remove some radiators and install a new one in a different place. Neither of the two builders were plumbers so they could not do this task. This also meant they could not re-plaster. So I sat patiently (impatiently) for a plumber to come and sort out the new pipes. When the plumber did arrive he sorted two new pipes but did not remove the old ones, fantastic. After all this, I had another migraine; for anyone keeping score, that’s two for two this week.
After the brief visit by the plumber nothing was happening. I was a little frustrated that their bad planning had wasted a day, so I turned that frustration into ab training fuel (like the Waterboy’s tackling fuel).
Day 38 – Wednesday 14th November 2018
Wednesday was supposed to be the first day of rebuilding the kitchen, but because of the previous day’s delays, that was moved to Thursday. They just did what they were supposed to do on Tuesday.
I decided to go see a doctor about my migraines because I have had around five in the last seven days. I have a tablet for them but I felt it was not doing its job (just like the builders). They prescribed a different one so let’s hope this one works; actually, let’s hope they just stop happening.
It was bicep day which is my favourite of all the workouts. It is also an area I am seeing a change in my body. Seeing the change is a really good motivator to keep on going.
Day 39 – Thursday 15th November 2018
What a wasted day kitchen wise. I had a kitchen fitter but no kitchen to fit. The company delivered the small bathroom parts but not the kitchen. How ridiculous! As you can imagine, I was pretty peeved. I had been trying to keep my cool about the situation until the end of the project, but I had to air my grievances about this terrible planning. After being fed lies and stories they told me they had sorted it. The kitchen parts now due on Friday and the fitter was rescheduled (along with a plumber to sort the radiators) for Monday. So Friday will also be wasted.
It was balance training today. This was such a positive pick me up. I am finally able to do these exercises unaided (not leaning or holding onto something). Being able to do this showed more progress. I was feeling pretty pleased with myself.
Day 40 – Friday 16th November 2018
Yay!!!! My kitchen finally arrived! Having a day off from the builders was actually a blessing in disguise (a day off from overweight butt cracks is always a good day). It gave me a chance to sort out the house a little (a tidy house equals a tidy mind) and get a little rest. Also, as the kitchen wasn’t being fitted until Monday it meant I got to paint the ceiling and walls without the worry of splashing it on shiny new kitchen units.
It also meant I was able to smash out the upper body workout to the best of my ability. So overall, not too bad.
Anyone easy scared by unexplained phenomenon be warned, this is spooky. So, Thursday night I had an absolutely delightful time shopping for cakes for Brooke and Ember to take to their school/nursery for Children in Need. I paid with my bank card and went home. Now I could not find said bank card. I looked high and low, it wasn’t anywhere. I rang Tesco’s; not there either. I had no choice but to ring my bank and have it cancelled. On the phone to a lovely young lady, I explained what had happened. She went through the security checks which I eventually passed, confirmed it had not been used since my last purchase and proceeded to cancel. Whilst on the phone I gave it one last crack at searching for it; still nothing. The lady pressed the button on the cancel and it was done. I stepped out my bedroom (where I had been looking) and something drew my attention to my Brooke-Haze’s room. I went in, turned the light on (as the curtains were closed) and right there in the middle of the floor, not covered by anything was, yep, you guessed it, my bank card. Now I know what you’re thinking “oh he didn’t look there”. You are wrong people. I did, I looked in there first. Anyone who knows me knows I am not someone who, as my Nan would put it “can’t see for looking”. You can ask my wife or brother they will vouch (probably won’t) that I have a little girl ghost haunting my landing. Anyway, whichever spirit was playing tricks on me I’m sure they were laughing.
Day 41 – Saturday 17th November 2018
Saturday for me, was the best representation of the pleasure pain balance. Ember had another ballet taster session in the morning which meant getting up and having the girls ready to be at ballet for 8.55am, which is the pain in this example. Watching her dance and have fun with her sister was most definitely the pleasure. Then, kill time from 9.30am – 10.00am waiting for Brooke’s class to start = pain. Watching Brooke dance for half an hour = pleasure. Once again balance was restored; for now… After all the ballet had been danced, we headed home. I settled the girls in with snacks and a film so I could crack on and paint the ceiling before the kitchen fitter returns on Monday with actual kitchen parts to fit. I hate painting; it’s the worst DIY job in the history of DIY jobs. It’s slow, repetitive and tedious (once again, pain). But it needed to be done. Once all the painting for that day was done, I felt a sense of pride that I had stepped up and got the task done(ish) (pleasure). It was then time to go to my brother in laws for dinner. They live around 45 minutes away from us, but to get there you have to drive on the longest, most boring road in all of Lincolnshire. After the long tedious painting, I got to drive for almost an hour on a long tedious road (aarrgghh more pain). It was all worth it because I got to eat a splendid roast dinner with all my fussy quirks with food taken into consideration (about time for more pleasure). But then that journey had to be driven one more time to get home, but home has my bed, pain pleasure balance once again restored.
Day 42 – Sunday 18th November 2018
I woke up feeling the worst I had all week cold wise (not MS wise). I dragged my butt out of bed; well the girls did. After a couple of bowls of Weetos (girls not me), we went to Nan’s house as it was my nephews birthday this week and we had to drop off some presents. It was actually a nice morning and we stayed there longer than anticipated, which meant I brought no food for the girls; terrible father. But they found courage inside them to stick it out and eat pizza and birthday cake; they are brave little beings. It was so nice for Nan having her grandsons there and most of her great-grandchildren there. Unfortunately, cheeky little Freddie is poorly and has lost his voice, which my brother finds devastating (not really), so he stayed home to rest and hopefully his voice will return swiftly as I’m sure his father does too (not really again). After getting home, I finished the last bit of ceiling painting and as promised/bribed the girls this weekend, I made them an incredible hot chocolate as they watched The Incredibles 2 movie. Roll on kitchen building Monday.
The subject this week in the MS Warrior programme is all about your mindset. Funnily enough this is where I feel I am quite strong. Dom asked “what are your core principles?” What is most important to you? Family is top of my list like I am sure it is for many of you, followed by my health and being happy. Dom’s family story isn’t too dissimilar to mine. Ensuring my girls have a stable happy family is imperative to me. They do not know their Daddy has a condition. I refuse to let my MS get in the way of their childhood. That is such a powerful motivator for me. I enjoyed this subject; it is one that is constantly on my mind. I try to reach out to many of you wonderful warriors to hear your stories, what you guys do to ensure you’re happy. If you ever want someone to talk to or to listen, or even have a laugh (I am quite comical you know) you can always message me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or email me on firstname.lastname@example.org. This community is so strong; we have to be there for each other. I am officially half way through this programme, next week I start phase 2, I am both nervous and excited to see what Dom has in store.