There’s been a lot of change since the last time I wrote here, and especially since the last time I wrote about my general life situation.
At the end of Jan 2023 I moved house. Before that I’d spent the best part of 10 years living in situations that were either temporary, bad for me, or both. Now I live in a nice, spacious house with two lovely housemates that even has reasonable rent (in Bristol in 2023, surely not!) The best thing is, I didn’t even look for the house, it just happened to me! We met at the 40th party of a mutual friend.
From Nov 2022 to March 2023 business was very slow. Slower than it has been at any time since I started in 2014 (including 2020) and my financial situation got progressively worse and more stressful. Then at the beginning of August, my van died and my full time admin assistant left in the same week. At the time I thought this sequence of events was catastrophic, but then I did the maths. I realised that without a van and a full time member of staff, my overheads were now drastically reduced. So if I did the admin myself and supplemented the commission I make from my other drivers with occasional longer distance work that it was worth renting a van for, I could just about make ends meet.
A couple of weeks later, in the middle of August I went on a bike ride that caused me to feel quite unwell. After a longer time than was sensible (definitely not nearly a week) I sought medical advice. Within 5 minutes of speaking to NHS 111 an ambulance was at my house, and because my blood pressure was insanely high they took me into hospital where I stayed for two and a half weeks. After 6 different scans, the conclusion was that I have reduced heart function (38% when 50% is considered healthy). The reason why my heart function is reduced, or why I suddenly felt ill is still unclear, but I’m now on quite a bit of medication and my blood pressure is at a healthy level. The technical term for reduced heart function is unhelpfully “heart failure” which isn’t as alarming as it sounds. Before I learnt this I would have assumed that if someone had heart failure they would be abruptly dead.
I’m still struggling with fatigue more than I was before my hospital visit but it’s a lot better than it was when I first came out of hospital. I have struggled with fatigue due to anxiety since my breakdown in 2012, so now I have a second cause of fatigue it’s hard to know where the line is as to what’s causing it.
I’ve written quite a bit on here about my device addiction. In mid October I went away without my phone for two nights to the same hotel in Tewkesbury I went for the same reason in June last year. This time the withdrawal was more difficult, and I had a pretty unpleasant time as a result, but that just emphasised for me how much I needed to do it. It really helped and I’ve been feeling much better as a result, although I have been slipping a bit the last couple of weeks, so need to watch myself.