Shattered Dreams lead to a better place

My hidden world.

The time of reflection has arrived, at least for me anyway. I am reaching the end and I have an opportunity to look back over the decades and reflect on my life. 

The first thing I am aware of is the fact that absolutely nothing I dreamed of up to the age of 21 has remotely come to pass. At that age I knew with certainty where and what I wanted to do with my life, where I wanted to live and how it was all going to work. It seemed so clear, I had finished University (I thought) knew my career path, knew a job was waiting and I was about to get married (that worked out and still does).

Three years later my world had turned upside down and I was on a  completely different trajectory. For a start I was back at a University. 

The second thing I realise as I look back how many terrible things happened to me and yet out of them came great good. Before I had even finished Primary School I had been propelled into secondary education which was to me the worst thing to happen in my young life and then my parents decided to move and I had to leave behind my home and move to a new build. Oh I cried. I withdrew. It was awful. I never did like where we lived. My world was in utter tatters. It was a nightmare. Three years of hell. However without those two incidents I would never have met my wife. The first time I saw her in the school in the year below me I looked at her and thought I’ll marry her. Not that I was going to do anything about it, ever. But circumstances that came out of those two horrible events finally brought us together.

Out of the bad came the good. How foolish we are to think we have a clue what is happening in our lives. We don’t. We may think we do but we don’t.

The Break

I was in too much pain to continue the above and now I have lost both the flow and the thread. But what I am trying to say to all those younger than me is relax, looking back the biggest disasters brought the greater rewards something not obvious for many years sometimes and until now when I can look back and see the rich tapestry of my life. I should have of course trusted a lot more. I should have trusted rather than worried. This is particularly true of my multiple chronic conditions and disabilities out of that path which seemed like such a disaster has come the greatest good in my life.

Planning Ahead

The plan is to continue this blog until I die or become too incapacitated to continue, so that I can chronicle the end of life, the end of the journey, as I wait to start my real life. That was the plan but since I tap this out with a single digit of my left hand and if I recognise the signs my left arm is suffering the first signs of neuropathy. It is most unpleasant even the gentlest touch on the screen is painful. However I trust and will continue.

I used to Blog daily but when deciding to have another go at I decided weekly. That was wise.

Again I had to stop as it was painful. I am sure I had something else to say. But there you go it has all gone. However I have no idea how I would have coped with all that life has thrown at me without an absolutely unshakeable faith. Not in things unseen but real spiritual experiences of the divine. Ask and you will receive said Jesus. Tried and tested.

Augustine x

A black and white photo outside a caravan in the early 1950s. A man and his son (me)
An old Photo

Dragon Breath Kissing

I write this on an iPad an index finger away from my left eye. I am left handed so I am holding it in my right hand which is the side of my body that is weak because of neuropathy. It gets very heavy and very painful doing it this way. Still I must write I have had the compulsion to write since I was eight years old. Without writing life is strange, something missing. Fortunately my entire working life (ended when I was 47) had allowed me to write and study. Even the last twenty years have been full of writing. I’m not going to list all that I do and have done that would be boring and self serving. However that’s not what I wanted to write about today.

Things that annoy me. These are trivial but I do  object looking for Jazz Music on Amazon Music and finding The Rolling Stones listed. Trivial things like that. Lazy curating. Today The Times annoyed me by publishing a story about the Church of Scotland that talked about priests and showing a clergyman wearing Anglican robes. The Church Of Scotland is Presbyterian and has Ministers. It is the lack of even basic knowledge about institutions that troubles me. The Home Office also appears to employ several idiots. I read a story where they were questioning the authenticity of an immigrant’s claim to be a Christian. Asked to name the Father of Jesus he correctly replied he had no earthly Father, he was rebuked and told that he was wrong and that his Father was Joseph. If Jesus’ Father was Joseph then I have wasted my life following the Son Of God.

Oh that got a bit serious, sorry! It is the lack of basic knowledge that appears in our society that troubles me. On a trivial aside frequently we see on films and TV someone shutting a door and then leaning against to convey relief, shock, fear or another emotion. Have you ever done that? Ever? And why can’t they at least put a few bricks in the obviously empty suitcase? Or coffee in the cup? Or say goodbye when hanging up the telephone? 

I think I am tired and grumpy today because I didn’t sleep well and my body aches.

Ok one last gripe who wants to french kiss first thing in the morning? What about dragon breath? Messed up hair? It never happens! That Is So Annoying. 🧐

Grumpy Augustine x

Black and white photo of camels
Old Photo of the Day

I am a Prisoner

I am a prisoner. I am locked upstairs in the house. We have a painter in for two whole days. Now such an event would be of little concern to ordinary folk. For me it means pain, anxiety and discomfort. Let me explain.

Over the past few years I have had to deal with a great deal of pain partly due to neuropathy due to my diabetes and partly unknown but possibly decades of steroids haven’t helped. Prescription painkillers do very little to help. Think about an ordinary chocolate bar 🍫 and remove one square. This is the level of help my painkillers give. It’s not always bad it varies by day. I have a large electric recliner with an individually sprung seat this is what makes the day bearable. So just now I am perched on a tiny bedroom chair. It’s far from ideal.

Over the last two decades I have slowly disappeared from all public interaction. Partly physical as I can longer walk very far at all and not unaccompanied and I wobble my right side is pretty useless due to neuropathy so I lose my balance a lot. Now let me explain further diabetes runs in my family it is genetic but because of my other conditions this was missed as the symptoms were all assigned to other chronic illnesses. By the time it was diagnosed, a lot of nerve damage had been done. I also have lesions in my brain and some demyelination has occurred in those areas controlling my movement.

With a major depressive illness unresponsive to treatment I have had to find a way to cope and that means for me social isolation. Please note this is not me being depressed because of my other conditions it is a separate issue that began twenty years ago. I find any alteration to my routine day sometimes catastrophic emotionally. My interactions are now solely with my family in short bursts and domiciliary visits from health care professionals.

I am content however. This is no pity festival. I have all the time I am awake to be thankful for my life, to spend time in meditation and prayer. To prepare for death which for me holds no fear I will be with my beloved Lord whom I have served for fifty years. My faith not born out of need but from an encounter with the Divine. Now as a Catholic (recent convert) I can offer all that I am, all my pain, to the Lord and join it with his suffering. It is a joy to live and suffer.

Augustine x

Black and white photo of a pier walkway location unknown
Old Photo of the Day