Saturday, 4 November 2017

Sweet peas, anxiety, some crochet, anxiety & Spring!

I've been less bloggy this year.

Sometimes bloggers get a little burnt out. Or lose inspiration.

Maybe they get bored of blogging.

I have been none of those things.

I have had a busy year. I moved house. I went overseas. And sadly we lost a very much loved family member in August.  

I do miss my old house & suburb. How empty it looked in this photo from May.

Sometime around Autumn ( April) I started feeling not great.

I couldn't quite put my finger on it.

Then I felt very not great and thought I had asthma. 

Then I started developing chest pains and this awful feeling as if a vice was tightening around my chest.  It was pretty scary.

One doctor thought I had asthma.

But the ventolin made me feel a bit yucky.  

It got worse very quickly where I thought I was going crazy.

Another doctor said I could have a bronchitis thing and gave me antibiotics.

I went to a new doctor.  One who didn't throw antibiotics or ventolin at me.  She said I had Anxiety and Panic Disorder.

How ridiculous!  This wasn't me.  I'm no nutjob!  
I survived being married to a horrendous excuse for a human being for 10 years. 
I survived daggy hairstyles and pinafore dresses inflicted upon me by my mother in the 70s.
I survived being bullied through high school.  
I survived horrendous fashion choices in the early 1990s. 
I was a happy, optimistic chicky babe!

I believed I was one of the strongest, most resilient people I knew.

Apparently my brain had other ideas.  It started having a little melt down WITHOUT MY PERMISSION!  
And it wouldn't stop when I told it to.

I developed a phobia. I thought phobias were things that only affect people on current affairs shows. The type of people who ate cardboard and talked to walls.

I would wake up in the morning and struggle to get out of bed. I would barely be able to take Sonofagun No.2 to school.  

My new doctor was AMAZING.  She is this delicious portuguese goddess. I call her Dr Va-va Voom (or Dr VVV for short). She's like a tornado of exuberance and emotion. I walk into her clinic and she's like:



And then she grabbed my hands, looked straight in my eyes and said,


Do you know what it feels like when someone takes you completely onboard when you've been feeling like a lost soul in a stormy ocean with nothing to grasp onto?

So I was blood tested, inspected, detected and selected.  And whether this is the cause or just something else, it turns out I was very deficient in Vitamin D (so much for redheads generating their own!), magnesium and B. 

Now I'm on huge doses of those, I drink passionflower tea like it's going outta style and every couple of weeks take myself off to a psychologist who has entirely different ideas about what started this thing.

For some reason though, whenever I work in my garden I feel ok for a little while.

And the garden has totally benefited from my devotion!

Back in April BC (before crazy), and before I moved into Bears house, we installed a trellis and sowed Sweet Pea seeds.

They started to grow.

Months later Spring finally arrived and the sweet peas began to really move.

 The first flowers on the 4th of October...

Now these sweet peas are over 6ft tall.  The flowers are still slowly coming on but smell AMAZING!

We're only a week or two away from a strawberry harvest (under the netting), a month away from tomato picking, and are already eating the rainbow chard and lettuces.

And see this ugly patch?  Next weekend we will roll out some turf.

The Piggies get lots of fresh chard and weeds.


This morning I woke at about 6.30am.  I began getting that yucky feeling that usually means a panic attack was about to start. No reason why. Just because my brain is intent on pissing me off and being a jerk face.

So do you know what I did?  I started telling myself:

I am the Queen and this is my Queendom.

What a weird thing to think!

It came out of nowhere.

And by Queendom I was thinking of our house. Our garden. Our family. 

I ran that thought on rotation for a few minutes and strangely felt really good.
I don't think this is supposed to work that way. But this morning, on this occasion, it worked.

I got out of bed, had a shower, took Sonofagun No.2 to swimming lessons and felt like the Queen of today.
And then I bought some more seedlings.

 I am still crocheting everyday. I am currently working on a project with some beautiful variegated yarn. I'm making lots of lovely basic granny squares which I think may end up as a shawl.  I'm actually not sure yet!

I am also onto my 2nd pair of knitted socks!

But because some days are still not so great, it will take longer for me to publish patterns and be funny in blogland for a little while as I take things one day at a time.


The Red Haired Amazona


  1. I'm sorry to read that you're struggling a bit health-wise at the moment Louise. Hope things look up soon and you get back to normal. Pleased to hear that you're crocheting every day. I'd love to see another photo of those lovely sweet peas in a couple of weeks time. I have also been deficient in vitamin D and am on double dose of Osteolin till my next blood test. Don't know what the numbers mean but my gp would like me at 75 (50 is acceptable) and mine was 14. I'm also a redhead (actually a fading one now) and avoid the sun like the plague for fear of skin cancer. Its a vicious circle isn't it? Stay well. xox

    1. Thanks for your kind words Dorothy. I also cover up when I'm out in the sun as my grandfather used to get skin cancers cut out every 2nd week! But he used to ride his long board in the Manly surf back in the 1940s after coating himself in coconut oil!

  2. Louise.. you are brave to share your struggle. But I think you're on the right track and putting your mind to the positive is excellent. You are the captain of your ship and I know you'll steer it off the rocks and back into smooth sailing. So, keep on gardening and crocheting! Love that bright yarn! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

    1. Thanks Teresa xox That's another mantra I could use: "I am the captain of my own ship!"

  3. I am so glad you accepted the help offered to you. I know you will get better, just take life a day at a time. Small bites are easier to handle.

    I just like so many others thoroughly enjoy your blogs. You bring a smile to my face.

    Remember to love yourself as much as you do the little sonofaguns.

    1. You're so right Donna: Small bites are easier. Thank you for popping by for a read and to say such lovely, kind words! Xox

  4. Wow Louise - I'm sure you live inside my head.
    All those tumbly bumbly thoughts and feelings - ditto!
    I don't have time for gardening unfortunately and getting past the doberman receptionist to get a doc appointment is impossible but I will get myself some vitamin D and see if that helps. Thank you for sharing your struggle with us all and I send you happy hugs. In return could you send me Dr. Va-Va-Voom LOL ? xx

    1. Oh gosh Max, I'd like to think it's just vitamin D! I'm a practical person who needs practical answers. It may not be that straightforward! But apparently many of us are vitamin d deficient. I may not be able to send you Dr Va-Va-Voom, but I will send you lots of positive vibes and cyberhugs! Xoxox

  5. Reading your blog is as if you were here with me about 2 years ago. I found out that I have PTSD. It was triggered about the time of my menopause and the death of a family member and I could not get out of bed one day. All I can say is keep the positivity going it is showing you that you are capable of getting through the dark days. I too put all my energy into gardening and crocheted everyday and found it a great comfort to see that despite my mood I could still be productive. I love to read your blogs and enjoy your wit. More power to Queen Amazonia. X

  6. Hi glad you are getting better being in the garden takes your thoughts away remember you ahve the queendom

  7. I think the entire Population of THE GREAT WHITE NORTH suffers from lack of enough Vitamin D! Which, is why I've been taking tablets for years! Besides, after the record breaking rain & snow and DARK DAYS up here, we should ALL be main-lining the stuff!!
    BTW, as for "posting" numbers... Have you checked the DATE of MY last one! :->
    My "drafts" are currently EQUAL to my "posted"! - ONE of these days, I might actually get around to PRESSING-THE-BUTTON!
    Anyhoo, the garden looks lovely. [As does seeing Mr. BEAR "clawing" at the dirt!] The Peas look yummy! - My taste buds are currently fantasizing about them being stir-fried with some ginger...

    Meanwhile, take your Ds, always know WHERE your Hooks ARE, take a deep breath, and channel your "inner squirrel"! And, if none of that works, just remember, you could be ME! Decades older, grey instead of red, herding the dotty, practicing my glacial-relocation skills on the remnants of the recently departed EVIL-TREE, and FREEZING my woollies off in our non-working-furnace abode! [still have to clear up the place so the Tech Guy can come in to fix it! Going down to -8C by Thursday maybe..? #What'sOnMyScheduleThisWeek!]

  8. How brave of you to tell this to us! Being strong ( or being strong for too long ) can cause a severe depression or anxiety. I know what it is. I only got better at the beginning of this year. Sometimes I'm very scared that it will come back.
    Your doctor is doing a great things with the vitamins, but the psychologist will also help you, trust me. And otherwise, you can also take another psychologist, because there are good ones, bad ones and amazing ones too. I believe that being bullied leaves a very great scarf in the soul. I was bullied in highschool too. I'm still rather insecure as a result of that and it has been more than 20 years...
    Gardening and crocheting/knitting is a very good therapy my friend. Take all the time you need and more. Take good care of yourself. We will be waiting here, with loads of patience, until you're ready. And know I'm thinking about you!
    Hug, Sigrid

    1. Thank you beautiful Sigrid. I too was bullied in high school. However I thought that made me stronger. Perhaps it has contributed. I don't know! Love and hugs. If you are feeling better, that gives me hope!

  9. I'm just a passerby, on my way to becoming a regular reader. Your post was so positive with all your problems. No giving up and pity party for you!
    Wonderful garden.
    Amazing crochet and knitting.

    1. Thank you for passing by! I may feel like hiding under a doona sometimes, but definitely not giving up! Xox