Saturday 25 February 2012

To You, My Friend In The Great Blogging Community.

I put up the above photo to enhance the inspiration that fills every fibre of my being.   The golden glow of the setting sun.  The birds of freedom, symbolic of the new life that beckoned me.  Beckoned me to fly, to fly far above the dark and dreary clouds of  doubt and disillusionment.  
The photo above is symbolic of the gratitude I have for you, my friend in the great blogging community.  My last post and the replies you graced me with, are testimony of the powerful magic that we all can share.  We truly are all in this together.  Here for each other and helping each other to make this world a more caring, more compassionate, more understanding place.  This is the positive power that surges through the souls of all of us.
Yes, I am transparent and through such transparency, lies the hope, the dream, the desire, to be as supportive as I can to you.   We both know that through discussion, through better awareness of mental health issues, that the stigma, the stereotypes, the misconceptions, can finally be laid to rest.  We have a long journey ahead. Yet I have witnessed, over the past five years, more and more people reaching out and understanding that there need be no shame in being mentally ill.  Mental health concerns impacts us all.   For the ripple effects spread far and wide.   And that is why we must be here for each other.
I want to thank Delores over at, thefeatherednest, for having that virtual blog party as a celebration of my fifth year blogging anniversary.  It was a kind and touching gesture by Delores.  I am grateful that she also did a follow up post that pointed out various links to mental health resources.   It was a great virtual party with great virtual friends.  Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet star, my son and myself were pleased to see so many folks and creatures attend.   We feel blessed by such an open display of kindness at the virtual party.  I remember afterwards having virtual jet lag.
And during some trying times, when I could barely string a sentence together, two dear friends honoured me by submitting a guest posting.   And thus, I wish to thank David, over at, A Day in the Life , a good friend and another champion of seeing the unfair stigma that still surrounds mental health issues, eradicated.   I wish to show my appreciation to Kim, over at,  CindyLu'sMuse , a dear lady with a noble and caring passion to see the precious creatures of our planet treated with the love and respect they truly deserve.   Indeed, Kim a lady who shares with me the gift that is empathy.

Through the wind chimes, ring outs nature's symphonic chorus of peace.  We are all a part of a special orchestra.  The birds of freedom tell us all to fly above the dark and dreary clouds of doubt and disillusionment.  A positive environment starts from within.   From there, we spread the music to all who will listen to the wind chimes. 

Tuesday 21 February 2012

Five Years Ago.

Five years ago, to this day, my blog was born.  Born out of hope for a new beginning in my life and born to demonstrate that those of us who have mental health issues, have an important message to share.  For we are more than just our illness, so much more.  
My mental health concerns were caused when a series of events conspired to nearly destroy me. Physical, financial and worst of all, psychological bullying at work that I endured for over eight years, reduced me to a quivering wreck.  I knew I was losing my mind.  I began to drink.  Drank to oblivion to blot out the pain of the bullying and blot out the fear of losing my mind.  And the evil irony was that the drink that had become my best friend, became my worst enemy.  There I was, a pathetic, incoherent man, barely clinging onto the remaining fragments of his sanity..  A spectator in some bizarre play watching my life fall to bits.  
And then there was the woman that I loved, the women I was there for in her time of torment, the lady that I rescued from a life too horrible to talk about.  Yet when I became ill, when she'd had enough, my wife, my beloved wife, got pregnant and I wasn't the father.  Then she left, pregnant with another man's child and took our little eight year old boy, Tristan, to start a new life, a new family, with her new man.   I was left to rot in our house.  
And then, out of work, out of hope, I spent night and day drinking myself into a drunken stupor as the memories of a now empty house, embraced and choked my remaining shreds of dignity.  I drank until that day, in one last act of compassion, my now former spouse, contacted my doctor and I was stretchered off to hospital.  That first week I nearly died.  I spent five weeks in hospital, alone and scared.   
Of course, I survived.  A tale of freedom and optimism has ensued as I do my utmost to turn negatives into positives.   

And after the job had ended and after the drinking was no longer a part of my life, I rekindled a dream, a dream of a little boy who always wanted to write.  Through the power, the magic, the therapy of the written word, I have tried to express the wonder and pure innocence that speaks within from the 'inner child'.   Thus, the 'wee folks' became a profound and poignant series of enchanting tales on this blog.  Their message of rejoicing in diversity and that no judgement must be made.  Their message that true love has no boundaries.

Then we have the true talent on this blog.  Yes indeed, Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet star.  Penny, despite her fame, has remained truly humble and even the pesky pursuits of the 'puppyarazzi' have not stopped her from pawblishing pawstings providing pleasingly pleasant prose.  Penny even has her very own award, "The Gold Framed Dog Blog Award", which has brought much joy to the lucky recipients, the world over and beyond.   Penny, when you read this.  I want to thank you for the times you have taken over my blog and tried, in vain, to show me how to become a better writer.  

Here is my son stroking the head of Penny.  Such moments warm the heart.. Yes, my little boy, now a young man, who came to live with his dad when he was twelve.  All I ever wanted for him was to live in a house where he was happy.  And a brave little boy had to finally tell his mother that he wanted to live with his father.  

I hope you are sitting comfortably.  Yes, I'm talking to you.  Oh, I took the photo myself.   Well, nobody else was brave enough.  Anyhow, before I wrap up this anniversary blog, I have an announcement.  Delores, a remarkably kind lady, over at this site, thefeatherednest , is having a virtual blog party to celebrate the fifth anniversary of my blog, yes my blog, my shy, humble and unassuming blog.  It would be great if you attended the party over at her blog.   I'm sure you will wear your best party clothes.  Or no clothes.  I shall be wearing my white dinner jacket that was purchased in Nassau, Bahamas.  I should also inform you that there is growing demand that I star as the next James Bond.
Five years ago this blog was born.   Five years on I remain resolute in my determination to show that mental health issues are just a small part of who I am.  I have done my very best to live with, rather than suffer from my mental health issues.  We are all in this together.  I rejoice in the diversity we share.  Further awareness brings further understanding.   Truly, we can live our lives with realistic positive anticipation, rather than negative speculation.  Here's to a kinder, caring, more understanding world for you, for me, for all of us.  

Saturday 18 February 2012

Three Years Of Tears, Fears And Cheers.

The other day my son mentioned that it had now been three years since he had any meaningful employment.   I had no idea it had been that long.  Three years of frustration, rejection, heartache and the inevitable tears from the ongoing fears.
I have seen a young man in the prime of his youth, lose the twinkle in his eye and the smile upon his face.   Day after day of relentless despair.   It takes every fibre of my being to see the light beyond the dark.  I praise him and reassure him.  I tell him it's not his fault.   My son , my very sad son, who dreams the dream of what seems to be a fleeting dream, of moving on, of living his life, that lies beyond our front door.
His plight, his pain, is all consuming.  I have been told to get on with my life and focus on what I want to do.  Yet  I will not be able to breathe again until I see the twinkle in his eye and the smile upon his face.  When your child hurts, you hurt.
And what of his mother?   She has started a new life with her new family.   I so wish that all three of us could sit down, talk it through, mother and father, united in a common cause to be of as much support, as we possibly can, to a son who wishes to see a  glimmer of hope.   I have asked to meet up, discuss my growing concerns about our son.   She refuses and the only communication she will have with me is via private messages on Facebook.   And no, we are not Facebook friends.  I don't care if she has an intense dislike for me.   This is not about me or her.   This is about our son and at times, I feel so all alone.
Of course, his situation is not unique.  These are brutal times in a brutal economy, dictated by brutal men.   And through it all, he is now considering applying to join the British navy.  At first, this was considered a last resort.  Now, despite my worries about him joining, we both see the opportunity to further his education and the rewards can be a young man who finally realises that beyond the dark clouds that surround his once cheerful demeanour, may just be that wonderful realisation that he is finally living his life.
Yes, it has been three years of tears and fears.   Three long years of watching my son and myself, fall apart.   I do feel alone, yet I'm not alone.   Your ongoing support to this man and his son, are embraced with sincere and heartfelt gratitude.  And thus, my friend, despite my tears, despite my fears, it's cheers to you.

Tuesday 14 February 2012

A Plane Load Of Post.

Ah yes, Valentine's Day.  Each year I have to contend with an enormous amount of post that is dumped through my letter box from all my many admirers.  This year, due to increasing worldwide adulation, the post office has contracted 'Blog Air' to brings cards of love and admiration from my frantic, fawning 'followers' from the four corners of the globe.  And just when you thought the world was round.  
So, I now await the convoy of postal vehicles that will arrive outside my house.  I'm just hoping I can get through my front door.  What with the mountain of mail that descends through the letter box, down the hallway and cascades into my living room, it could prove a tricky proposition.   And yes, then I woke up......

Of course, the dream sequence is now over.   Note one of Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet star's feline followers, gazing lovingly through the photo album of Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet star.  

Fidelina, the beautiful fairy princess, married to Geoffrey the garden gnome, are the epitome of true love.  Playing blissfully in between them, is their cherished, much loved son, Einahalk.

To end this posting on one more loving note, I have been bestowed this very special, highly prized award, that actually makes scents...okay, sense.    I have been honoured to have received, "The Thumbs Up From Skunk award", because evidently, "we all feel like stinky, stinky skunks some days" and there are people who, "make us feel (and smell) a lot better", from this fine writer and neat lady who is another big fan of mine, I mean, Penny.   So here goes, I wish to thank, Nancy S. Thompson , for forwarding this award onto me.
Quite suitably and kind of in theme with this posting, I'm supposed to name one thing I love about myself and then pass on this smelly award to anyone I have the inclination to do so.  One thing I love about myself?   This should be easy................Okay, I always try to turn negatives into positives.
Now I forward this award onto anyone who deems themselves worthy of such a scentsible, sorry, sensible award.....That's it then.  Must go now and admire myself in one of my several full-length mirrors.......

Wednesday 8 February 2012

Shirley You Gist.

Fair enough, maybe your name aint Shirley.   What this posting is going to demonstrate is how to get the gist of a posting.  That way, you can skim through the posting that is basically a waste of your time, pick out a key word or sentence and perhaps leave some kind of comment.   This would come in very handy if those who write those blogs that are just too damned long, highlighted key words or sentences, so we could glance though their on and on and on posting and give some vague, insincere comment.

So to help you, here goes.  Although, thankfully this posting will not be one of those too damned long postings.   'Prick up your ears' and pay attention.  Although, a 'prick up your ears', may seem like a rather painful proposition.   And yes, I've used that one before in a previous posting that wasn't worth reading, either.

Sir Galahad and Sir Lancelot walked into 'Yee Olde Inn'.  "My good innkeeper.  We require a room for two knights.", said Sir Lancelot.  "That is fine.  You can pay for your lodgings upon your departure." replied the innkeeper.  The next morning, Sir Galahad and Sir Lancelot, approached the innkeeper.  "My good man" said Sir Galahad, "we wish to pay for our lodgings."   Looking rather perplexed, the innkeeper responded, "Oh, I thought you wanted a room for two nights?"   And yes, I've used that in a previous posting that wasn't worth reading, either.

Here's another repeat and one that has also brought great delight on Farcebook, everyone's favourite social notworking site.   So this dude tells me his hobby is 'racing pigeons'.   I asked him,  "Who usually wins?  You or the pigeon?"   I have yet to sell my Marcel Marceau CD.

Of course, my blog never resorts to crude writing.  This mean the following words must have happened in a moment of weakness.  Evidently, the band Dire Straits are teaming up with that singer, guitarist, Chris Rea.   The name of the band will be called 'Dire Rea' and they will be doing versions of 'Sultans of Shit' and Chris Rea's best known song, 'Road to Smell'.   Of course, if you are not familiar with those preceding recording artists,  none of this would of made any scents, I mean, sense...
I'm good at totalling numbers....'I hasten to add.'  'Conclusions, conclusions....' if I could jump over those two words,  I would be 'jumping two conclusions.'

You may well of done the right thing and skipped all the way down to this photo.  You could then forget about all the rest of the article and leave a comment such as,  "Neat photo.  Looks like Penny the Jack Russell  dog and modest internet star, is staring at one of her adoring fans!"

So there you go Shirley, or whatever the heck your name is.  You can get the gist of the posting by keying in on the highlighted words.   And with that, this posting not worth your time to read....will abruptly end!

Saturday 4 February 2012

One Lovely Dog.

I know, you're probably thinking that I, yes I, Penny the Jack Russell and modest internet star, has received yet another award.   And you, whether you be a human, a dog, a cat, a rabbit, or even a wayward iguana, would be correct.
My pawesomely pawlite pal over in the U.S.of A., Brown Dog, better known by the name, Hawk, has bestowed the "One Lovely Blog Award" to me.  If for some reason, y'all haven't visited Hawk's site, y'all can discover this wonderful blog right here---------> browndog cbr   
I want to thank you kindly, Hawk, for considering me for an award that exemplifies appreciation for fellow bloggers.
And in the spirit of this award, I shall now forward it onto seven notable bloggers.  I would add that these bloggers do not have to acknowledge this award and may do with it as they seem fit.  I have the great honour, along with my human, of interacting with many bloggers.   We try to share out these awards and hopefully bring further recognition to those you may not be aware of.

1:  Chaos and Kairos   Chris, the lady that writes this superbly written blog, is a highly recommended read.  I do hope you go and check her out.
2:  R. Jacob Post    Ray, the writer of this clever and varied blog, has graced us with some terrific interaction.   Ray's blog is well worth a visit.
3:  Count Sneaky's Journal    "Moral and refined, unique, and eccentric entertainment for ladies and gentlemen of all ages..."   A great place to visit for amusing and thought provoking musings.
4:  THE SNEE    If you want satire and surreality, then this is the site for you.   A very clever blog with some underlying truths that reflect the bizarre world we live in.
5:   Views From the Bald Patch    Ian, the writer of this fine blog, writes entertaining and varied articles.  I highly recommend Ian's site,
6:   Working 2 Write   Diane's blog resonates with the passion and the inspiration of a lady who truly embraces the magic of the written word.  I hope you find some time to visit her insightful and informative site.
7:   A Day in the Life    And my human Gary knows the writer of this site, David, very well.  David has an important message to tell.   A message that wishes to convey it's about time that the unfair stigma that still 
surrounds mental health issues, needs to be eradicated.  I would ask, if you have never been to David's thoughtful and profound blog, to kindly do so.

So there you go, my friend.  Whether you be human, a dog, a cat, a rabbit, or even a wayward iguana, I wish for you a peaceful day.   Please check out the worthy recipients of this meaningful award.   And once again, thanks Hawk.   Y'all is one mighty fine dog.   Oh my goodness, I seem to being saying 'y'all' a lot, y'all.
Pawsitive wishes and doggy kisses, Penny xx