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Meeting new people, doing new things.

Another very busy weekend.

This time I made my way to the Lakeland Comic Festival. The Lake District is very beautiful even in the rain. Here are 2 views, one looking out onto Lake Windermere and then the view 180 degrees behind, entrance to the Market Place at the Festival.

So here is one account of my weekend: I drove over (hired a car), had lunch with my godmother, met up with a friend for a walk, then went to my guest house. Next morning I went to a talk, introduced myself to some of the people from L D Comics as I have signed up for a course with them, wandered over to the Market Place, bought some books, then started making my way home, very satisfied with my weekend trip.

Ok, here is a fuller account:

my hypervigilance was in overdrive for the whole weekend. I could say that me and the Octopus travelled as a team! Huge anxieties about hiring and driving unfamiliar car. Huge anxieties about getting to my godmother’s, how it would go, meeting up with my friend, would the arrangements work etc etc, finding and booking into the guest house.

Once I had successfully navigated each potential hurdle I was able to enjoy myself at each meeting up on that first day. When I was booked into my comfortable and pleasant guest house however, I had to wrestle again with the Octopus. It took me a long time for the stress mode to wind down to a more relaxed mode. And in the middle of the night I was awake for a couple of hours with abdominal discomfort, (my IBS really kicking in) nausea, muscles aching in my jaw and scalp. I gave myself a body massage with a prickle stick which was helpful, the sensations of it distracting myself from my abdomen and head.

The next day I enjoyed the talk and interactions but after a quick wander around the stalls I was desperate to leave and return home. This was the major event and I had only been there 2.5 hours!

It is exhausting, frustrating and ridiculous being me! Next time I’m leaving the damn Octopus behind, no more hypervigilance, excessive anxiety, worrying about every little thing!!

What have I learned from all this?

Firstly, I knew it was a big deal for me heading off on my own for this weekend and I am glad I did it, proud that I followed through, especially with the social interactions, all of which I enjoyed and were worthwhile making, although tiring.

Secondly, the Octopus is trying to help, none of my anxieties were unrealistic or unlikely. Just dialled up too strongly. I did get lost trying to find my godmother (it is hard to find her house) but not drastically.

So working through all those potential anxieties beforehand was helpful. I could work more on settling the Octopus better. I last had IBS strongly as a teenager. At that time I did ask for help (medical, parental) and the help I received was.... not great. This time I need to be my own loving support. Overall I didn’t do badly, maybe next time take more of a “tool box” to use. A list of things to use or do that help. I DID take the japanese green tea I like and some chocolate, and a hot shower was nice. I had packed my yoga trousers, but in the evening was too stressed to consider yoga!! There wasn’t much space anyway. Maybe I could force myself to do some guided meditation which doesn’t need space or special kit and just hearing a calming voice should help.

And on returning I’ve had 2 days of exhaustion, migrainous symptoms, no music practice possible but I’ve just accepted it, not beat myself up and done simple jobs like laundry.

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