4 days of little/no voice, this is the quietest I have been, like EVER


Most of you who know me, know that I can ramble for Britain. Sober, hyper, calm, dizzy, ditzy, tipsy, drunk, mad or whichever, I can talk. Most of the time it either makes perfect sense or no sense at all. But this is shocking to most of my friends, that I haven’t even been out since last Friday, I haven’t smoked, I haven’t drunk anything apart from squash, not even tea (dear God there is something definitely wrong here), I detest the smell of wine too (WTF IS GOING ON?!) and haven’t left my house since Sunday, to sneak to the shop, to get pasta, that I ended up throwing out anyway, but that technically doesn’t count being 2 minutes from my house, oh whatever.

Since a bad migraine on Saturday, a rather off feeling on Sunday and now no voice, swollen glands, a puffy face and no energy to move, I can’t talk, I have literally been the quietest I HAVE BEEN, LIKE EVER. My mum, for starters, is astounded. She’s the type of person who hears me talking on the phone, puts it to one side, whilst I chit chat away and she gets on with her life, then when she’s had enough, doesn’t even bother to say goodbye, then hangs up. A trait, I’ve noticed with all my family members. Maybe it’s because of me, or maybe they’re all just too busy in their lives to hear what’s going on.

Anyway, what’s the magic cure to get my voice back? I would like to get it back to a sound that is normal, my normal sounding voice, not like that bloke from that God-awful movie John Cleese and Rowan Atkinson was in, Rat Race, or whatever. You know the bloke, Vince Vieluf‘s character who has the very unpleasant infection to go with the tongue piercing he gets…

The piercing bit on his tongue, not the other piercings they all have.

Anyway, my face shape has changed, gone is the normal, I look half decent, now I just look puffy. Like bloated puffy. It’s not even a nice look. My housemates tell me, I look fine, I don’t feel fine. I feel horrible. I feel sore, painful, achy, puffy, swollen and just nasty. If I could sound a little more awesome than this, that would be great.

My bedroom is now my haven of all things ill-related. The curtains are drawn, I don’t even want to embrace the beauty that is the sun, because I can’t enjoy it, so why be part of it? That’s my dumb philosophy anyway.

So, here’s hoping before the bank holiday weekend comes, before my friend Rho has her baby and before the end of the week (come on – only a day to go), I get some part of my voice part, I turn back to normal and this, whatever this is, can fuck off forever and ever and ever and ever and EVER.

The end.

 

Insomnia sucks ass


Anyone who has a normal routine of the 9-5 working day or knows to turn off technology when they can, wouldn’t know the pain in the ass sleeping disorder that is insomnia. I’ve had it over the past 3 weeks and can honestly say it can fucking do one.

When I was a kid, my mum thought there was something wrong with me because I slept so much. Up to about 3 months ago I slept like a baby. Having 8 hours a night wasn’t unusual for me. I liked to get into my bed, read the daily mail app and fall asleep into a deep slumber, dreaming of anything and everything, magical and fun dreams or nothing, it didn’t matter, I woke up in the morning happy about the day ahead.

But since I’ve started running my own business, sleeping has stuck 2 fingers up to me and gone on holiday. Don’t get me wrong, I love love love doing what I do and wouldn’t trade it for the world, my sleeping pattern has slowly but surely deteriorated. I’ve gone from the standard 8 hours sleep to barely 1 a night – if that. I know what my problem is, I work both UK hours and work with a client who happens to be based in NYC and I’m a fecker with technology – never knowing when to actually turn it off and throw it under the bed, on silent, no where near me, but I’m addicted to my phone.

I lay here, staring at the ceiling, thinking, over thinking about the most random shit, ticking shit off my to-do list etc. No matter how tired I am during the day, even 5 hours ago I was feeling mega sleepy but as soon as I got into bed, my brain’s alarm clock snapped into gear and I thought, I might as well do emails because there’s no chance I’ll be sleeping tonight.
The funny thing is, I went to my doctor as a few friends mentioned I’ve not been myself, pushing myself at work a little too hard, losing weight and not eating properly or sleeping and she said “Danielle, I’m writing you a sick note and you need to take a few days off work for the next 7 days.” Erm, ok, that doesn’t make sod all sense, I RUN MY OWN BUSINESS, who the fuck is going to do the work?

 

 

I hope this has just been a few weeks of me not used to my new timetable, but at this point, at 4 nearing 5 in the morning, I don’t think I will get out of it, unless checked into some sleep clinic or given the strongest sleeping tablets possible. Kalms don’t work, whoever invented those for people to try and relax before sleeping, need a slap, herbal teas taste fowl, hot milk or hot chocolate make me feel sick a few hours later and building a bed fort with a teddy for extra measure does nothing either.
Maybe I my anxiety is playing up way more that normal and that’s the reason for my incapability to drift off or the fear about something happening that I’m yet to be aware of.
My mum says it’s better to read a book or paper before bed, but I find reading those addictive. If I read a really good book, I can get so involved with it, I will want to read it to the very end.
Sometimes I like the idea of having a TV show, movie or program from on demand or iPlayer on so I have something in the background as a comfort. It’s weird. I love my peace and quiet but sometimes having some noise in the background makes me feel safe.
I think tomorrow I may go to the doctor’s to get some sleeping pills but would be keen to hear other people’s suggestions on how to try and get some sleep. I don’t want to intentionally make myself sick but I know working too much and sleeping little/none doesn’t help and this could do more harm than good the way I’m going at the moment.
Any suggestions, would be much appreciated. x

Call me a grumpy old twenty something, but I’m not doing the ice bucket challenge


Well done to those who have taken part in the Ice Bucket Challenge.  To the hundreds of celebrities and people who have raised awareness for charities across the world. To be honest I didn’t even know what ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) was before, I mean I heard about it, but I didn’t understand what it meant fully.

What is ALS? 

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), often referred to as “Lou Gehrig’s Disease,” is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. Motor neurons reach from the brain to the spinal cord and from the spinal cord to the muscles throughout the body. The progressive degeneration of the motor neurons in ALS eventually leads to their death. When the motor neurons die, the ability of the brain to initiate and control muscle movement is lost. With voluntary muscle action progressively affected, patients in the later stages of the disease may become totally paralyzed.

Why am I not doing the ice bucket challenge?

Call me an old git, but I refuse to do it. At first  the whole point about the ALS ice bucket challenge was about raising awareness but now it seems to be people pouring buckets of water on their heads for a laugh and that’s just not cool. Yeah I’m a spoilsport, an inconsiderate individual that has no sense of fun, who has no idea how incredible this movement is because “did you know Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Jamie Dornan and even Victoria Posh Spice Beckham took part, so why aren’t you?’

I’m not doing it for the following reasons:

Peer pressure 

I’m all for people raising awareness through whatever campaigns, go wild with that but I don’t think people should make you feel guilty about if you do or don’t take part. Everyone helps donating and raising awareness their own ways and nominating people to pour a bucket of water over their heads when it’s seriously fucking cold outside or outing them on whichever social media channel is a bit pathetic. If someone wants to raise money, they shouldn’t be told how much they should donate and shouldn’t feel like they have to take part in this challenge.

Charity can happen in many different ways – why does it have to be through ice and water? 

Anyone can choose to donate to a chosen charity how they want to, whether that is through spending time with those youngsters who patrol our high streets at the weekend and donating a fiver per month, running in a silly costume in a race, spending time with your elderly neighbour who has no one to spend their evenings with – why should we be made to choose who we donate to? The time I would have wasted a bucket for of water over my head (I should just stand under the rain and get soaked for an hour willingly for a laugh – natural and I didn’t waste any water – oooh a plan!) I think anyone who wants to donate should be able to do so, through any method they want to and have the choice of who they want to donate to.

The whole point is not to see how many people ‘like’ your video

Thanks to the likes of the God-awful Kardashian clan, it’s all about self promotion these days – ‘oh look at my butt in these super tight jeans’ – this challenge shouldn’t be to see how many “likes” you can get, it should be to raise awareness. Out of the 300 friends on my Facebook, probably the 25 out of the 50 people who have done it, have actually donated. Shame on the rest who thinks it’s now just seen as a fun past-time.

You won’t catch me in a bikini top flaunting my curves in this weather

If you’re English, you’ll get me on this one, it’s personally too friggin cold to stand outside in my teeny ting shorts and bikini top showcasing my figure that should only be available to blind people on the beach, whilst I pour water over myself. Let’s just save that image from all your minds and watch people who are stupid do it this way:

My donation, my choice

Personally my donation is going to two charities. I couldn’t choose 1 in particular because, well, I feel strongly about 1 and now understanding the full ins and outs about ALS or MND, I am donating to this charity as well.

Cancer Research UK

No other charity anywhere in the world is doing more to beat cancer than we are. We’re the only one fighting over 200 cancers, including the one that matters most to you, and here in the UK we’re the single largest funder of cancer research. All this is only possible with our generous supporters and hard-working scientists.

Cancer Research UK has been working on pioneering life-saving research for over a century. These pages tell the story of our groundbreaking achievements and the real progress we’re making in preventing, diagnosing and treating cancer.

The Motor Neurone Disease Association 

Motor neurone disease is a rare condition that affects around 2 in every 100,000 people each year in the UK. There are about 5,000 people living with the condition in the UK at any one time.

Most cases first develop in people in their early 60s, but people as young as 18 and as old as their 90s can also develop the disease. Motor neurone disease affects slightly more men than women.

In 5% of cases, the person has a family history of motor neurone disease or the related condition frontotemporal dementia. This is known as familial motor neurone disease, and relatives of the person may be at an increased risk of developing the disease in later life.

Thanks to the ALS challenge, I now understand the full meaning of MND and the difficulty people face on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis.  Both these charities have done a significant amount to raise awareness and my donation will hopefully make a difference, even though it’s small.

Final note

I hope that anyone who chooses to continue to take part in this ‘challenge’ actually continues to raise awareness for the charities they have hopefully donated to. Anyone that wants to donate should donate to a charity that they relate to and you should choose how you want to donate. Your difference makes a change, however big or small.

Neknominate: Stop the craze, save a life, grow up.


Alcohol awareness charity DrinkAware has called on parents to take the lead against extreme and dangerous drinking challenges like Neknominate on social media channels. Since this craze has gone ‘viral,’ three young people have died taking part in the challenge. The apparent ‘craze’ involves participants, young, old and stupid encourage each other to film themselves consuming large amounts of alcohol in one go, nominating someone else to continue the game, wherever in the world, via video on social channels including Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

I’ll be honest, I do like a few glasses of wine in the evening after a long day, or meeting my best mate at the pub for a jolly old knees up, but this happens over a long period of time. Ok, probably the amount of alcohol units consumed would be enough to give most doctors a heart attack, but with food and being sensible with my alcohol consumption, I am being careful.
This Neknominate crap, was mentioned in my local the other day, with some daft twits nominating each other to neck a pint of lager, whilst filming themselves and posting it to Facebook. Over the course of a week, the nominations bounced back and forth between the 8 that took part and it seems their *crazy viral idea* has fallen off the face of the earth.
This online chain letter thrown in with childish games seems to be the talk on everyone’s lips in the press recently. It is believed to have started in Perth, Australia. The trend swept across the country, faster than you can say Jack Robinson and everyone from teenagers to fully grown men are getting in on this stupid craze. The friggin craze has its own Wikipedia page for Fuck’s sake. Some people are saying it’s the craze to get involved with, whilst others are trying  to stop it and campaign for young people’s safety.
Those who are getting involved with the campaign to stop it includes a horrified mother who went public with a picture of her unconscious son who was covered in his own vomit, in a bit to spread awareness. Nikki Hunter found her son passed out on the sofa, after a night out with mates, drinking three bottles of spirits. Her 19 year old student son, had accepted a dare to film himself downing a horrendous, unbelievable deadly mix of vodka, whisky, Southern Comfort, Barcadi and Sherry, BARF.
After the twat worried his mother into position thinking he was unconscious or dying, she put him in the recovery position and took a picture to warn others of the dangers of Neknominate.
I hate being there when people are sick, damn I hate when I’m sick, it’s disgusting, makes you feel totally gross and generally shit, so having a photo catapulted across newspapers and social media channels should be a lesson to 19 year old Kieran and all the others out there.
Some of the dares are just unimaginable. Girls dressed in their underwear parading round the local supermarket, drinking live goldfish (yes you read that right), eating and drinking the contents of a fridge, riding into a store on a horse, or running up a motorway semi-naked drinking huge quantities of alcohol, for the fun of it.
Everyone who drinks, likes a tipple. Whether your drink of choice is wine, like me, a cold beer, a perfectly poured Guinness or something a little stronger like a good spirit. Christ, I’m not judging you, everyone has their own little pick-me-ups but this type of game is really stupid. This game is letting children and young people believe it is acceptable in our society to do this. It’s not. Drinking is dangerous if not done carefully. I’ve been an idiot in the past, at 21 drinking my body weight in vodka & red bull, because at £2.50 a pint, I didn’t see the wrong in it – until the next morning when I felt like I was having a heart attack. The truth is, you have to know your limits.
This game is sick, it’s encouraging too young people to get involved, exploiting kids of all ages, promoting something that really isn’t or shouldn’t be promoted and harming those around them, including animals, which is completely fucked up.
The Daily Mirror reported a few weeks ago that the RSPCA has got involved to stop animal cruelty.

The RSPCA is launching animal cruelty investigations into pranksters who film themselves downing goldfish as part of a bizarre drinking game.

The animal welfare charity has received numerous complaints of footage being posted online of people drinking alcohol with fish in the glass.

The incidents appear to be part of new craze called NekNominate, involving people filming themselves “necking’ alcohol, then nominating a friend to do the same – and challenging each other on to do more extreme and outlandish feats.

In one clip posted on Facebook, a thug dressed in pants and a bow tie, proudly drinks THREE goldfish in a glass with cider, eggs, battery fluid and urine.

RSPCA wildlife scientist Nicola White said: “We are extremely concerned about this shocking new trend. We have had quite a few similar cases reported to us in a very short space of time – but this could be just the tip of the iceberg as there’s probably many more we have not been told about.

“Eating a live animal and posting of a film of it on the internet is not some light-hearted joke – it is unacceptable. It sends out a clear message that animal cruelty is OK as long as it is in the guise of entertainment.

“We urge people not to take part in this horrible craze and to report to us anyone who is taking part.”

 If you’re really that desperate to get noticed, to make new friends, or whatever it is you think will make you more popular, take a leaf out of these guys books, and grow the fuck up.

If you want to be noticed for doing something a little different, give up your Neknomination and trade it in for a RAKnomination, also known as Random Acts of Kindness.  Not sure what that is? Google it.

Hands up all you snooze alarm people… time is about to change [infographic]


Are you a morning person? Or are you a hit the snooze button, till it’s dead, kind-of-arm-workout person? I’m generally the latter. I’d rather have an extra few minutes in bed that get up and eat the most important meal of the day. Who can be arsed with eating when there is valuable minutes to enjoy sleeping in bed? I can quite happily stay in bed a little longer, get up, run into the shower, get dressed and make myself look presentable in a short period, when I know I need to get to work in a short space of time. Technically I should be a morning person. I should be a get up, make something of this world, kind of girl but snoozing some more is a tad more attractive some days. Agree or disagree?

This infographic by Greatest, the trusted health & fitness source for the young, savvy, and social, helps you become that all important, healthy morning person that you need to be in the morning.

I hate high heels


I absolutely hate with an absolute passion… high heels. I mean I would love to be able to walk in them but I can’t. I despise their existence and the fact I can’t walk in them. I’m like a constipated ET shuffling along trying my hardest not to fall over and break my neck. Every time I’ve worn a pair of heels, all I imagine is the slow and painful death I’m about to endure when my ankle gives way and I tumble down, ankles snap in half and I end up in hospital half dead. Dramatic I know but that’s how I see it.

Don’t get me wrong. I like the look of high heels. I think they’re pretty, elegant, sexy. There’s something about a woman wearing a pair of high heels that can make them feel sexy and desirable with an added kick of attitude. I appreciate their beauty and envy the millions of women who can walk, jump, hop, skip and run in a pair of 6 inch heels. I’ve seen my sister run in a pair of heels with my niece attached to her hip when it was icy outside. That amazes me but I can only watch in horror whenever that moment occurs.

I’m quite tall. I’m not statuesque and definitely am not someone who should be owned by a runway but wearing heels for me, it’s like torture. I prefer flats and most importantly I prefer my Converse. Chuck Taylor I salute you. When I go out, I generally wear jeans or skinnies much to the annoyance of my friends and family.

The idea of wearing a dress with a pair of heels makes me shiver. I don’t really want to look like the Terminator walking round stiffly whilst trying to dance to the sound of the music blasting in my ears in a club. Keep it real, keep on no heels. Safer that way, just saying. Comfort for me is key, why would you want to be uncomfortable when you’re out? I want to enjoy myself not feel achy and boring because I had to sit out that dance to the Macarena because my feet are two bruised balloons attached to achy legs. Feeling miserable all night in a pair of heels is not the reality I want to be living in.

I own 3 pairs of heels. 3, they are:

The knee-high boots

These devishly annoying high heels I bought in Topshop when I was 19, in a hopeless bid to appear more sexy to my then dumbass boyfriend have been a permanent fixture in my shoe cupboard. I bought them to ensure that whenever I did wear whatever hideous outfit I deemed fashionable at the time, these bad boys would kick out the attitude and turn on the god-damn they’re sexy! factor. I once wore them to a party and wanted to stab someone within an hour. The pain, the agony, the excruciating feeling of hell pressed onto the balls of my feet caused all sorts of havoc and I really didn’t enjoy that party as much as everyone else. I still own them and they sit very prettily in my cupboard in my room. The last time I wore them I dressed as Poison Ivy and managed a shuffle to the pub before complaining I couldn’t cope and swapped them for my dollies.

The mary-janes

4 inches of heel power right there. Granted that’s not that high but wowser, feet hurt after a bit in them and don’t get me started on the calves. I still have them because I like them. I’m a dweeb like that.

The 3 inch ankle boot heel

I bought these for my birthday party and wore them the whole evening. Massively proud of myself. My friend Manie carried me home after though.  I now can’t wear them at all. Damn you heels.

As much as I own these 3 pairs of heels, I’m still hanging on tightly to my Converse and to my flats. As much as my rant here has probably gone unnoticed by all, I would like to flag up the hazards of wearing high heels.

Over and out.

Sod The New Year’s Resolutions. This Year It’s All About ME!


It’s 2013 and every person I speak to is banging on about their New Year’s resolutions. It’s that time of year where we all promise ourselves we’re going to do something good with ourselves and join that gym to shift those extra pounds we piled on over Xmas or give up booze to save money. Does anyone actually stick to it? Who can honestly admit they’ve ever actually stuck to a New Year’s resolution for longer than an hour, day, week, month or a whole year? Who? I’d love to meet you.

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I’m seriously intrigued. Because I think the only thing I’ve stuck to without fail is this no smoking lark because, well, my health forbids it and cracking onto nearly 2 whole months without those cancer sticks (as my Mum loves to call them) is as close as I’ll ever get to a resolution I’ve actually stuck too. I’ve spoken to 6 people in the past week who insisted they’d give up smoking and have so far smoked their weight in cigarettes because this week doesn’t count and they’ll start afresh next week because well January doesn’t really count does it? What a load of baloney. Give over mate, you won’t stop for a while now.

Who actually sticks to their resolutions? Who says, I will succeed no matter what anyone says? A friend said yesterday she’s given up alcohol because Xmas was expensive. She’s not ‘drunk’ for 5 days but she works in a pub and if it’s a special occasion, one drink won’t hurt. Erm ok. Yesterday wasn’t a special occasion but a JD and coke felt like a great idea at the time. Yes that makes sense. Confused? Me too.

After eating our weight in turkey, mince pies and chocolate, every person across the world vows they will spend the New Year losing weight. We all say we want to get rid of the Santa Claus midriff, Kim Kardashian butt and get in shape to a new younger looking healthier you. But who sticks to it?

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Who gets off their ass and joins a gym as soon as Christmas is over? Who wants to lift dumbbells, run 5k on that running machine thingy majig and do 200 press ups a day? It comes as no surprise that we all want to get fit and be healthy. Of course losing that extra stodge is a must after over indulging over the Christmas period but according to a study 95% of Brits will actually stick to part of it. What a surprise. Losing weight, keeping fit and being healthy are almost certainly the top New Years resolutions people vow to stick to but almost certainly give up within a few weeks and waste thousands on that gym membership they end up swapping for that episode of Eastenders for.

According to a new survey it was revealed that Brits are amongst one of the unhealthiest nations in the world. A shocking quarter of us are obese, while British women are among the fattest in Europe. Crikey, we better get our asses in gear and waddle up to the gym now.

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I’m not sticking to any resolutions this year. I’ve stopped smoking and I have goals I’d like to aim for but if I don’t complete them, oh well. I’m not going to scream and shout and cause a fuss about it. But I will focus 2013 on having fun. Isn’t that what life is about?