I hope that regular readers of my blog will not mind if I slightly deviate away from the topic of sewing for this post. The past two months have been extremely difficult. I have been suffering from an anxiety-related illness, have been struggling with insomnia, chronic IBS and general feelings of panic. Prior to this episode, I had thought that I was a girl who could cope with anything. It turns out that, ultimately, trying to cope with everything isn’t always the best plan. Sometimes, you have to ask for a bit of help.

As I’m a girl who likes working to deadlines and who could normally give the Energiser Bunny a run for his money, this change in my health has left me feeling extremely low. I have been struggling to undertake any of my normal activities and feel that I have to learn how to carry out basic tasks all over again. I haven’t been near my sewing machine since the end of September and therefore haven’t felt able to write an entry on my blog.

As writing normally makes me happy, my husband suggested that it might be therapeutic to write another post. I have been pondering what I should write about in this one and I hope you don’t mind that there aren’t any pictures. I could perhaps include one of sheep as I’ve been counting rather a lot of them lately….


Picture of sheep by Tim Green. Creative Commons license (via Flickr)

Rather than concentrating on all of the negative thoughts that have been circulating in my mind, I thought I would concentrate on a few positives:

  • I am truly grateful for the support of my friends.
  • I have learned how to make Cock-a-leekie soup. It turns out that it’s surprisingly easy.
  • I have a wonderful mother-in-law. Over the past few weeks, she has provided hugs, support, cups of camomile tea…and many lectures on the benefits of milk of magnesia.
  • I have a new found appreciation of the benefits of walking. Even if you’re feeling utterly dire, a walk in the fresh air (even in the rain) will always, always make you feel a little better.
  • I have finally watched the first three series of Downton Abbey. I always thought that I could enjoy Downton but never managed to watch it on television. Well, I didn’t know what I was missing. The end of series three however has left me a little shocked so now I’m not certain if I’ll carry on watching….

As you can imagine, I’ve spent a great deal of time thinking about sleep, or the lack of it. I thought I’d share just a few thoughts with you on this topic:

  • Reciting French verbs and trying to remember the various subjunctive forms is not a surefire way to induce sleep.
  • Repeating ‘I will go to sleep’ several times also, unsurprisingly, doesn’t work…
  • A warm bath might not send you off to sleep, but it does help to relax you.
  • Relaxation techniques are helpful. On the advice of a friend, I have just started to attend relaxation classes. I’ve also been listening to hypnotherapy recordings on Youtube.
  • Listening to BBC radio 4 is also good to relax to. Although there are some very odd programmes on quite late at night….

I am hoping that I will very soon begin to feel a little better, particularly with the approach of the festive season. Who knows, perhaps we will have snow this year. In the meantime, if any of you have any tips on sleeping well and general wellbeing, I would be grateful for your advice.