Tuesday, 29 November 2011


I've been dealing with a nightmare that has gone on for nearly 2 months and it looks as if it's going to still be weeks before I can finally put this 'episode' behind me.

I'd had a difficult few weeks, including a significant bereavement and decided I needed a bit of a pick-me-up! Anyhow, October 10th,  reading blogs, following links, and a small advert about a suburban woman who combined 2 anti-ageing moisturizers together and within weeks lost about 20 years in age and angered doctors as it was more effective than botox(?) caught my attention. There's loads of them about, but I'm not going to name any names. Why? Read on...

The free sample of the first of these, (you only pay p&p. looked everywhere, no catches) Looks good, just what I need, I'm a single woman, 59 in December, don't give up hope yet.... Anyhow, did some google searches on the product, loads of hits came up, was reading them, all seemed ok.  Paid the £1.99 p&p online with a debit card. Started looking for the second cream to make this magic formula, found it, googled it, all seemed good. This one cost a bit more, about £2.50 p&p. Still good. Ah, there's some terms and conditions... Damn, not recommended for people with high blood pressure or those with kidney disease, I have both. Was looking for a phone number and saw some very small text. Something about 2 weeks to cancel and then be charged the full price of £89 pm and you will automatically be sent a new months supply, every month?. Hang on! That's a bit steep.

Anyhow, the confirmation email of the 1st one has now come through. No mention of monthly payments, but there was a customer services number. Called straight away, told them I had seen the T&C of the 2nd cream and realized I couldn't use it as I have high blood pressure and kidney disease.... Blah blah blah, yes I know I can't get the p&p back, just wanted to cancel the order, don't want it as I can't use it. OK cancelled. You'll receive a cancellation email within 24 hours. Still waiting for that.

So the next day, I'm bemoaning the loss of the opportunity of using the miracle products, but relieved not to be paying £80 for it. So I start searching for the ingredients to see if I could find them in other products I could find sold in a more conventional way, like in a shop and come across a very interesting forum. A forum of people who have been scammed by this and similar companies. Most of them didn't get any products, most had £100s taken from their accounts, the performance of different banks to this issue, and some really informative people.

Basically, I've given my address, date of birth, email address and bank details to a complete and total thief and con artist.  To cut a long story short, I didn't get the product,  but within 6 weeks, nearly £260 had been taken out of my account. I've had to change my debit card, thankfully, as I informed my bank what had happened before unauthorised withdrawals were made, they are being really helpful. But the stress of checking my account every half hour for a couple of weeks was so high, it was almost a relief when the withdrawals were spotted. Then I found out all my friends on FaceBook were getting spammed adverts for all kinds of  so called 'health related' supplements and treatments, acai berry weight reduction stuff,  teeth whitening products, colon cleanse 'stuff', 'work at home and earn a fortune 'stuff' all with a personalized recommendation from me, all claiming I'm using and advocating the stuff and advising them to sign up for trials for the cost of p&p! I spent a week apologizing.

Last week I came back from a day in outpatients in my local hospital to find and email from my ISP to say they have quarantined an email for containing malware. Yep, saw a web mail image of it and it's the cancellation email from the company. By coincidence, overnight 70 emails from the same outfits/different companies flogging the stuff to my friends on FaceBook. All screaming to me to 'try' this wonder product just for the cost of  the return p&p. And the next thing I know is that my laptop has slowed to a crawl and I only have about 6% of free space on my hard disk it's so full of malware and spy ware.

I'm so pissed off and stressed, I can't tell you. I'm waiting for the delivery for a new portable drive and then I'll have to waste a couple of days cleaning, backing up and copying my hard drive before I wipe it clean and totally re-install Windows, and that's an extra expense I can do without at the moment.

If you thought I didn't have a protected machine, you'd be wrong I had all kinds of anti virus and spyware on it and pay an extra few quid a month for my ISP to check all incoming traffic too. No the truth is I compromised all of the security I put in place, myself. The chances are, I was not buying anything worth having, even at the p&p price. A lot of people who apply don't get anything at all.  The products, if you do get them will not live up to the claims. The aim of the adverts is not to sell, it's to get your bank details, tie you into a bogus monthly rip-off contract and get your personal details, access to your PC and sell through you. The whole international industry (Utah, Cyprus, Israel) is set up from top to bottom by scammers, they write the adverts, they write all the other 'sites' that come up in Google that discuss the product, they manipulate google analytics to make sure you pass on to their sites, they have bent lawyers working for them, they lie to legitimate companies to get their adverts posted in legal sites that sell advertising to 3rd party ad space sellers. It's a mind boggling racket that put's James Bonds adversaries to shame. It's a boiler-room share scams for the health conscious. Don't believe me? Check out
and to find out how people are responding to being scammed

I gave out all of my essential information and contact details because at a moment of weakness, I was chasing a mirage. More than anything else I have trashed the image I had of myself as a prudent, careful, intelligent, savvy, well educated, confident,  intelligent, mature woman. How about gullible, stupid, irresponsible, not safe to be left alone online with a debit card, idiot. Seems to fit somehow.

To anyone who's wondering where I am, catch you when I've got this sorted out.  

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

I Love Reading Blogs

I've spent the last month glued to my laptop reading the blogs of others and I'm so much the better for doing it. On the surface it's been a bit of a tricky transition of a month and I've gratefully realised I'm not the person I was a month ago.

There was a lot going on. Elizabeth's death hit me unexpectedly hard, very hard. I was also in the middle of a flare up of RA, tried a new course of anti-inflammatory medication which had me doubled up in pain until I was changed to another one. I could also hardly walk. So a lot of time and energy was spent in pulling myself out of a deep 'pit'. Today things look a lot more promising. I walking loads better. Tomorrow I'm starting a course for people who have RA in how to live with it and manage it and in a few weeks I start a course of physiotherapy to improve my mobility. But best of all I feel really motivated to start living again, and it was the sensation of enjoying life I had totally lost and really missed. It felt at times as if it would never return.

I really feel that a lot of this credit has to go to the invisible friends I'm finding who blog. I've been intrigued, educated, excited, envious, entertained, inspired and enriched by all of their hard work and creativity. It has also helped me clarify and focus on my interests that will shape my future. The blogs fall into a few related categories, but I would never be able to get the feedback and support I need in my local real life community, There isn't the interest in women of my age or any links between the groups of people who may have similar interests her in Bristol UK. But on-line, it all seems to work out fine. Admittedly, it does make me wish I lived in the USA, I suspect I wouldn't be such a fish out of water there, as I probably am here.

One big interest is my love of vintage clothing from the Belle Epoch 1915-1920s, the Jazz Age 1920s, Art Deco  1930s WWII to the late 1940s. As I have never had much of a waist, I've never been that interested in the new look 1950s, that's not something I could or wanted to do with my figure, but put me in anything from The House of Elliot to Poirot and I'm a happy bunny. As I'm far too curvy to wear real vintage, (why are all real vintage clothes so small?!) It's this wardrobe I want to make for myself. So a number of the blogs I love are from a whole community of women who love and wear these clothes. Some make them, some sell them, some model them, all wear them. They are an inspiration. I've also discovered they come in different sizes, some of them are really curvy too. They do all seem to be a lot younger than myself, mainly in their 20s and 30s but you never know, this might change with time too. I think the top blogs in this section have to be This Old Life and Wearing History. They both make and wear vintage stuff really well. Thank you girls.

So that's the top 10 of the 24 blogs I'm following daily at the moment. As time passes, no doubt I'll lose some and add more, but it has been a revelation to me of how much they have impacted on my life at a time when I needed it the most. Now I'll have to start actually doing the stuff I'm meant to be doing. Making my clothes and going out and enjoying my life, doing the things I always intended to do when I started this blog. Tomorrow, I've a day in hospital out patients, but come on, get something started by the end of the week, please.

Then there are the blogs that are really informative about the culture of vintage ephemera. It's just interesting stuff about interesting stuff. It's addictive. I think my favourite blogs that do this are How Retro from Australia and The Vintage Traveller in North Carolina who also takes you on visits to her local museums and days out.

There are some really quite high brow sites which have a more academic artistic intent. The Silver Screen Modiste covers classic Hollywood costume design and it's relationship to fashion and culture. Enchanted Serenity of Period Films is a blog that recently closed,unfortunately, but he's kept the blog online and it has to be the most fantastic resource of period films ever.

Then there are the blogs that just make me laugh, Dairy of a Vintage Girl makes me fell all is possible, Va-Voom Vintage makes me feel my size isn't a barrier, The Retro Natural is a much appreciated (by me) young Black American woman. It's the only other woman of colour I know who has embraced vintage styling. Why there aren't more of us I don't know. But thank you for being there. Lastly, in my blogs of note, there is Vintage Black Glamour where for the first time I've seen the history of the cultural icons of the African Diaspora celebrated in all of their glory. It feeds my soul. I wonder if I'll see my Dad in it. Hope so. 

Friday, 14 October 2011

Enjoying Vintage Blogs

After over a decade of being on-line, it's only over the last week or so, I've really got into reading other people's blogs! I really have a love hate relationship with being on-line. My laptop is rarely switched off all the hours I'm awake. I frequently, like 20 times a day turn to it as a reference source, about a program I'm watching on tv, an author, looking up the fact a drama is based on, something to do with cooking, what's on the news, you name it, I'll google it. I've even considered having Wikipedia as my home page.

But there's also a lot online I hate. I'll often play a game of Mah-Jong which I down loaded, but the thought of practising genocide with someone living on the other side of the planet, leaves me cold. And as for FaceBook, Ugh. I'm on it but hate it with a passion I'm not able to explain. I have most of the options and setting turned off or for friends only. I use it only to find people I know in real life and send them an instant message which is formatted more attractively than an email. I would no more write on someone's wall as shout a private conversation across a crowded room, it just strikes me as soooooo gauche. Sometimes it seem, (and it seems only to me) the world has gone mad. All this strident screaming on people's walls about the great life, advertising your private life, tagging in photos and then allowing companies to use you, your photo and your wall to advertise their goods to your friends! Are you serious? It's why I call it FakeBook and I hate the culture it's creating. Can you tell I'm over 50? :)

In the early days of blogging I never knew what to look for. I tried reading blogs by journalists I liked, but often it crashed down to mumbling about the minutiae of everyday life and I really don't need to read the ponderings of someone's breakfast cheese of watch the collapse of their marriage.

But recently, this all seems to have changed and I'm finding my interests better reflected. I have always loved the fashions of the Belle Epoch. The time between about 1910 to the 1930s. When women's Edwardian fashion started becoming more practical. Currently you'll see the best of it well portrayed in Downton Abbey. It was a fashion created for mature curvaceous women, not skinny models. It is meant to be beautiful, flattering, erotic and sexy. Edwardian clothes sexy? You're so damn right! It was the first time lingerie was developed. This sudden jump from ankle length thick cotton  nighties with full sleeves and cotton mop hats to flowing gowns with matching peignoirs, all the better to be seen sitting brushing out your hair in with a come hither look. This is no surprise. As soon as motion pictures were invented, it's fashions went straight to the bedroom. One of the other reasons I love this period is that between 1910 to the 40s fashions were flattering for women with, big boobs. You may think the 20s were just about young boyish figures, and it was, if you were like that, but check out the photos of larger women during the time. How they celebrated being freed from looking like roosting hens. In fact the fashions from 1910 right the way through to the end of utility wear in WWII were the most democratic of womens fashions as far as body fascism is concerned. It's why I love it.

So here I am, this 5'4' rather dumpy woman with a love of serious vintage clothing, in the autumn of my years. One of the things I'm really looking forward to doing is making my own clothes adapted from the many vintage patterns I have from the time. I'll also be trying my hand at hat making as well, which should be interesting, but if anything, if I can nail this, it could become a bit of an earner. Who could resist a cloche hat with the winters being as they have been over recent years?

But lastly, the most difficult aspect of these interests are at large being reflected 'out there'. By far most of the women on line who are interested in wearing and making vintage wear tend to be young (under 30), very slim and white. Nothing wrong with that at all, I salute my sisters and their individuality. I on the other hand am in my 50s, very rounded and a mixture of British and Ghanian (west african) descent. Yes I know, I'm more likely to look eccentric. Do you think I look as if I care?

But the availability of the vintage pictorial history of the Diaspora has not been well documented over here in the UK.  Sure you can find grim US images of African Americans (post)slavery, dirt poor in the deep south or urban decay in the depression. Apart from publicity photos of early jazz musicians it's hardly a visual history anyone would want to re-create. But now new images are beginning to emerge and it's this new emerging history I want to salute, of African Americans, happy healthy and beautiful and getting on with their lives. And they ore the ones I see myself in. I must add, more diverse images may have been more accessibly in the US, but are not widely available on this side of the Atlantic.

So for anyone who has ever wondered, what would a Black aristocrat look like on the set of Downton Abbey, here's a taster. And if ever I get to go to a ball, I hope to do her justice.


Friday, 30 September 2011

Saying Goodbye To Elizabeth

I've just returned from London, where I attended the funeral for a lovely woman called Elizabeth Fosgate, someone who I've known for about 30 years. She died a few days after a cerebral haemorrhage on 8th September  a month before she was 82, a good age, but it doesn't make it any better.

Elizabeth was the younger sister of a wonderful woman called Lorna, who 'took me in' when she realised the extent of my sufferings with my own family. Lorna and her family have done more for me than any member of my family did. My only regret is that I wished, at the time, I could have accepted their support with more grace than I did, but I think they knew that was down to the damage that had already been done. It's not easy having a mother who is a diagnosed psychopath, I just wish I had been told earlier. I would never have poured so much of my life down the drain, in an effort to meet the demands of a parent who could (unknown to me) never be satisfied, happy or safe to be around.

Back to Elizabeth, she was kindness itself. She spent her life caring for others, as a nurse, and as a carer. When she was around 30, she contracted a form of TB which left her an invalid for the rest of her life. Most people who knew her had more to do with her interests, meditation and various esoteric beliefs like the White Eagle Lodge. I don't engage in any of these types of activities, I'm just allergic to anything that offers someone the opportunity to engage with what's going on inside my head. (Ahh? I wonder what caused that???) But there were two aspects of her character that really impressed me.

She was a very attractive woman who never married and seemed content to be single. I asked her once why she didn't marry and we had a long talk about it one Christmas in the family cottage in Dorset. She explained that when she was younger she hated the attention she got from men because of her looks, her large bust, the fact she was a nurse and the fantasies that created. She ended up cringing in the face of a sensual approach, feeling like prey. At the time, I didn't understand it, but I sure do now.

The other aspect I so admired was how she conducted herself as a disabled woman. She always cared for her appearance, she pursued her interests, she did as much as she could with her life when she wasn't engaged in continuous service to others and did it all with a genuine generous smile. Over the last 5 years or so, since the development of kidney disease and rheumatoid arthritis which have forced me to live differently, Elizabeth has been a model of how to conduce myself. It could have all been so different. There have been times when I've been so angry at my loss of abilities and opportunities I cold feel tempted by the comfort of bitterness and resentment. There have also been occasions when I've found myself the object of exotic fantasies rather than a partner in a relationship. Do I stay around, just so I have 'someone', or become murderous in my fury at dishonest manipulation? Elizabeth was a model of how to conduct yourself when faced by such base motives. She did show me it was possible to look inside for what you need. And I'm so thankful for that.

I've never been much good at the funerals of those I have found difficult to lose. I was sobbing, I hope quietly. I never find the eulogies appropriate as they don't seem to reflect the deceased in the same way I appreciate them. I'm not a picture of grace at funerals of those I love. Neither would I have wanted Elizabeth to have struggled on with a more limited life after her stroke. She would have hated further loss of her independence which was so important to her. She wasn't without her faults. She should have stopped driving, and ironically, she would have really benefited from the social interaction of living in a warden assisted group home, something she really resisted. Her last year or so she found frustrating and isolating, unfortunately due to her stubbornness, so it could be said, she left us on her own terms. I'm grateful to know, just before she left home to visit her nephew for lunch, she had a stroke while walking there, (nephew's neighbour called an ambulance, hospital, died 4 days later without regaining conciousness) she was singing and dancing in her lounge with her carer to Abba.

I'm also very grateful to write this about Elizabeth, because by doing so,  it's shown me, she taught me, and others, very well. I've realised we don't need her to stay any longer. Liz, I Thank You. I'll miss you. You don't need to stay. Your job is done.

Friday, 17 June 2011

I'm Waisting My Time

I've just spent ages trying, unsuccessfully to load images straight from my phone. It's just not working. It's a reasonably standard iconic Sony, but it's sooooo complicated. And if I can't post images from my camera phone reasonably easily or quickly, why blog? This is suppossed to be a relatively concurrent experience of real life isn't it. Bloody not the way I'm going.

Anyhow I've just cooked my 2nd cake this week. My first Hummingbird Cake, yes gluten-free and fat free. Need to amend the recipe, you just can't taste the pineapple, But I do have a photo, and very nice it is too. A project to be invested in.

I'm going to have to consider a new phone, one of those android thingies. Meanwhile, I'm going to have to figure out what's going on with my laptop. Even Avast has suspected there's suspicious activity going on. Sometimes I don't feel I'm being the techno wiz I sometimes feel I am, or am I only able to work with new and shiny toys. Hmm may be some truth in that

Monday, 6 June 2011

I know, I'm never here.....

I know I'm never here, and I'm always threatening to change and start doing stuff. But... things are moving in the right direction. At least I'm here a minimum of once a month now. That's good. More proof things are improving.

I suppose this really is the main issue of living with disease and feeling incapacitated. You don't get to do what you want to do.  I seem to spend all my free active time slowly doing what others do without noticing, cleaning, cooking shopping, putting things away, even grooming. I so wish I could put the clock back to the days when I jumped out of bed, showered, choose different clothes every day and seemed to pluck my eyebrows in a fraction of a second, slap on in 2 mins, spritz of perfume and hey presto, a fashionista for the West End. Now, at times, it's all I can do to sort myself out for the local supermarket. This isn't living a life. I promise myself, will be chic again. I tend to keep my promises.

Meanwhile, my search for the tools to inject new creativity, motivation and passion into my life have manifested a new toy. A Knitting Machine. I can't wait until it's delivered. I've always loved unusual knitwear. Large structural pieces. Edgy uncompromising designs with architectural forms. Well now I can make some of my own.

I contacted a lovely woman today who co-ordinates a knitters guild group in my local area. Some bitter sweet news. The woman who used to co-ordinate the group who professionally demonstrated knitting machines, is now seriously ill and will not return. The group, with no main knitter to hand, are now looking at the other crafts they do. At present handbag making. Well I'm still going to join. Loads of avid machine knitters and other crafters to hand, I'm sure to meet interesting and helpful people. You never know, I might be able to offer something about painting and drawing? So my life is expanding in a way I wanted it to. Meanwhile, I now have a really good reason to crack on with the cleaning. To make a new home for my machine knitting. So while I can't stand long enough to paint, I can sit to machine knit.  What a wonderful thing to do during the summer and autumn to make warm and beautiful winter wear. Now Bijoux,  I know Chanel lauded the 'little black dress' but, you have move away from your 'Greek Widow' wardrobe. At lease inject some dark autumnal toned knitwear.

Meanwhile I'm happy and optimistic. I'm still following the laws of attraction and truly grateful for every particle of good fortune and spirit I experience each day and I'm gifted with more and more. The quality of my life is good and getting better. I just have to be able to do more. And I will!

Friday, 20 May 2011

What a dull month...

I can't figure out where the sun has gone!

This time last year I had a fantastic suntan, sitting out on the balcony sunbathing while I read 8 of the 9 books by Henning Mankel. The Wallander books as featured on BBC4. I could hardly walk so getting a suntan seemed the best thing to do at the time and I thoroughly enjoyed myself doing it. It was only later on in the year it was discovered I had rheumatoid arthritis.

Last Spring was glorious.This year it's ... alright. But I do have a set of books waiting by the balcony. The Stieg Larsson triology, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Can't wait. Better still, I was lent them by a friend I thought I had lost. We had a big falling out, actually caused by misunderstandings created by my failing health. So I'm really glad to be lent these books as a sign we are back in the pink again. That lunch we had was really good. No animosity, we just listened to each other and were both equally glad to put it behind us. Ah friends, what would we do without them.

So while I've been waiting for the heat of Summer, I have been dealing with the admin of my life. The biggest headache really is debt management. I sorted out a lot 4 years ago when I started a debt management plan but this month after re-assessments of my disability benefits, I can now afford to apply for an IVA which will see me debt free in 5 years instead of 17. I feel really pleased with myself for managing as well as I have. Of course it would be better if I hadn't got into this mess in the first place, but I did. Now I'm responsibly sorting it out without becoming a bankrupt. Everyone's happy. So I'm waiting for the paperwork to arrive and then I can start counting the months. 60. At my age they will fly by. The even better news is that getting a car with my disability benefits looks even closer. Once the IVA is up and running my DLA will be reassessed and if all goes as predicted by benefit advisers, I'll have a new car by the autumn.

But meanwhile, I want hot sun, and lots of it!

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Like A Phoenix Rising From The Ashes

Oh boy have  had a time of it since I was last here.

My health let me down again, Big Time. The difference is that now I'm getting far better medical support than at any time since I moved here in 1986! It seems that the reason my health has been deteriorating has been due to a faulty gene, resulting in the chronic kidney disease and associated rheumatoid arthritis I manage daily.

I'm now taking these odd DMARD tablets and they seem to be doing the job well. (The steroid injection I was initially put on sent me totally bonkers.) But now, I have a sense an calm, something that I had been totally denied for years. Unfortunately it feels very strange and alien, and sometimes it's scary. I can get sort of all "Oh if get ill again, it'll be a total collapse" panic sort of thing. I'm just hoping as the Spring grows, so will a deep sense of well being.

My energy is still totally unpredictable. Up down, on off. I don't have a base line, everything is so unstable it's difficult to plan a way forward. Is everything  a possibility? How am I going to live the rest of my life? What am I going to do? What can I do? If I don't know, how do I find out? Questions, questions, questions.

I now own the DVDs The Secret by Rhonda Byrne. Priceless. I'm reading her follow-up book now. The Power and I'm putting it all to work, so if this blog seems to be unfashionably upbeat and positive, thank Rhonda, she's been my inspiration. I also have the DVD the Tapping Solution, seemed a good way to donate to the Japanese disaster, but I haven't seen it yet. I've also come across a brilliant British business woman who's advice is making a future working life a possibility for me.  Now this really is something I thought due to my age and health was in my past. But you never know..... So if I branch out from painting and creating things into business management, here's a big thank you in advance to Nicola Cairncross.

So in the meantime, while I'm still rehabilitating I'll keep you informed of my creative travails and adventures that don't focus on hospital outpatient appointments and Dr.'s appointments, which has been my life since October. In case you're wondering, I'm still tapping (I find the best place is in the shower) and I'm still writing my gratitude journal. One brilliant lesson I had regarding blogging, was that I've watched all five seasons of HBO's Big Love, totally original and brilliant, highly recommended. But on the HBO site, one of the characters Margene, kept a blog going during the 5 years of filming. So now I've a better idea of what to do. I wonder how may other people start a blog but don't read any? I suppose one of the benefits of living alone is that you don't see how odd (or normal) you are, and live, although with less affirmation which is a loss, you also suffer less criticism. And that's a big plus.

So what can I do now, that I couldn't do last year?
1. I can walk upright by myself.
2. I can walk up and down the stairs to my flat unaided, even carrying my shopping and pull a trolley up. (Last year, when I could manage to, for 5 months to leave my flat I was on my hands an knees to manage the stairs!)
3. I can stand long enough to paint at a canvas.
4. I can walk to the pub! Live Music! Yeah!
5. I can stand long enough to enjoy baking again.
6. I can sleep well enough to dream.

You know, this is a good enough place to start. I'm really grateful and thankful for making the advances I have. I'm in a good place to start looking forward. What was that song a few years ago, "Don't worry. Be Happy!"

See Ya!

Sunday, 20 March 2011

February 2011, A Month Like No Other

I just thought I had better write about February this year as it was a month like no other in my life and turned into a catalyst for change as I had never experienced before.

On January 6th I saw my new consultant rheumatologist. He gave me a long acting steroid injection, 40 mins later it was like a miracle cure. My ankles and knees started springing as I walked around some local shops near the hospital. I was waking better than I had for over 10 years. Sorted, I thought. (I'm still reaping the benefit of that injection.)

The following day the nightmare started. I had a severe reaction to the drug. Over the next 6 weeks, I sweated as if in a sauna day and night, became manic, had fits, couldn't sleep at all (2x2 hour naps in 10 days), passing out, in short going blinking bonkers. And there was noting that could be done to stop the reaction to the drug. I just had to sweat it out.

So here I was, at home unable to concentrate on anything and not doing anything useful and I got an email from Stephen Russell the 'Barefoot Doctor' inviting me to listen to 8 free webinars called  "Wealth Solutions to help you make 2011 a year of wealth and ease rather than poverty and hardship." (A webinar is like a PowerPoint presentation on an internet site with an audio of an interview of between Stephen Russell and his guest) For some unknown reason I thought I'd give it a try. Under normal circumstances, I'd have dismissed this as being a bit to esoteric and 'wacky'.

Unfortunately I had to miss the first 2 on 1st February, which included an evening session with Nicola Cairncross, a woman who's advice I've subsequently, seriously taken to heart. I was also really impressed with his interviews with Judith Morgan and Rachel Elnaugh from TV's Dragon's Den. All of these people talked about finances in a way I had never heard before. The Laws of Attraction, thoughts become things, the power of belief, the power of gratitude. I started reading The Secret by Rhonda Byrne and was totally blown away. But, I also felt strongly that this was only part of the picture but didn't know where else to look. 

Then a friend who I hadn't seen for 40 years contacted me on Friends Reunited in December. She told me she had the book The Secret, but hadn't read it. This really seemed to be more than a coincidence. No one else I knew was into anything like this at all. Then she sent me a link to The Tapping World Summit? Eh! Didn't have a clue. What was 'Tapping'? When I saw Bruce Lipton's explanation 'A Breakthrough Discovery That Combines Ancient Chinese Accupressure and Modern Psychology.'  I was hooked.

Between 21st and 29th February I listened to 18 further webinars, I learned to 'Tap' and tapped along with the practitioners. And as I gradually returned to sanity as my steroid injection wore off, and the new DMARD drugs started working, I significantly changed the direction of my life. It's really hard to say what's changed. I'm certainly more content. Infact, even though I'm often in discomfort with my joints, I can honestly say I'm contented, less frustrated, have a considerably more positive and optimistic outlook on life. These are changes that were not on the horizon at all before the steroid injection. Of course I'm more organized and getting more things done than I was through Jan and Feb, but then most of the time, I was bonkers and seriously physically impaired.

But if anyone ever reads this, thinks their life is going nowhere, that they have passed any opportunities to turn things around, are stuck in a cul-de-sac and going nowhere, I would seriously recommend
1. Watch the Bruce Lipton interview about Tapping
2. Read book or watch the film The Secret by Rhonda Byrne,
3. Start writing a Gratitude Journal (I can remember Oprah saying that was the single most powerful thing she did to turn her life around about 15 years ago but didn't know what she was talking about.)
4. Read The Power by Rhonda Byrne
5. Start Tapping. When I find a really good introduction to Tapping (other than an annual summit) I'll include it here.

Thanks for reading.

See you again.