Chorus:

Bloody hell, bloody hell, what a costly day, (HEY!)

Banking scam, what a sham, stole my cash away, (HEY!)

No win no fee. Apparently. What a load of poo…

Can’t believe I fell for that- too good to be true.

Verse:

Gullible that’s me; I’m a moron obviously,

Oh what fun it is to spend a whole day, practically,

On the phone to knobs, who are ‘just doing their jobs’

By lying through their fucking little vulture beaks to me.

(Oooh…)

Chorus:

“Litigate! Litigate: “claim back your PPI” (CRY)

WTF, no such luck, it’s all a big fat lie. (CRY)

Don’t be like me, don’t pay their fee, you’ll regret it if you do.

Christmas cheer? Not this year. “No Santa Claus? ….I’ll sue!”

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December? Already?

December 4, 2011

According to Chaucer, April is a fine month for a pilgrimage. According to T.S Eliot, April is the cruelest month. According to my calendar, it is also the longest:

 

So I was rather startled to find myself in December. Not feeling the Christmas cheer right now, Internet. In fact, all I want for Christmas is a completed PhD thesis. Sadly, it’s not the kinda thing you can put on a wishlist. Or is it?

Does it count as plagiarism if Santa writes your thesis?

 

 

Sunday Night Observations

November 28, 2011

1. Sunday nights are cack. Why is it that however old I get, I still feel as though the weekend has slipped by and I suddenly realise that it’s Monday in the morning and I haven’t yet done my homework. Oh yeah, because I’m nearly 29, still have time management issues, and (whichever way you dress it up) I still have homework. Progression fail.

2. Search terms: “fucking littlewoods advert” I applaud you, whoever you are – you restore my faith in the general public. And mostly I hate the general public. Hate them. Go away, general public, leave me out of your generalness. I infinitely prefer people who are both specific and private (clearly I do not practise what I preach since I am blogging publicly and indiscriminately about random crap. Gah! I AM the general public! Please excuse me while I have a brief existential meltdown).

3. M came over today and cleaned the flat. WIN. I am in the unusual Sunday night position of having a presentable flat. He didn’t come over specifically to clean the flat but that was a highly pleasing by-product of his visit. In the same way that chaos follows me, order and cleanliness follows him. He did however rebuke me for two cups of mould he found at the bottom of the pending pile of washing up. They weren’t always cups of mould. I think they used to be cups of coffee. Or possibly chamomile tea. I like it when M wears a hat because I can measure the frequency of his shock-disgust response by the number of times I can’t see his eyebrows. Without the hat, I have to guess.

By the way Internet, M is taking part in Movember which is now nearly over. I don’t usually use this blog to chug but it’s for men’s health, specifically prostate cancer and other cancers that affect men, and it’s a very good cause. If you feel you would be prepared to sponsor him (even a teeny weeny little bit) you would be doing a very good thing. You can see his moustache, and donate in its honour, here. Thank you x

(Almost) Fully Operational

November 24, 2011

[Notice: It seems my brain has been experiencing some technical difficulties. Whilst I am working hard to resolve these issues with the minimum of disruption, some services (such as coherency, quality, and bracket-impulse control ) may be limited. I apologise for any inconvenience or frustration this may cause.]

Good morning, Internet.

After several days of distress, things have vastly improved. Most of these days were spent playing Sims3 on my phone because the pixellated world of Lou, my sim-avatar,  seemed a far less shitty place to be than Real Life. Being new to this type of strategy game (which is apparently what we call them – thanks M!), it took me several attempts to work out how to prevent Lou from starving to death. On my final attempt, she was flourishing in health and got a promotion at work thus doubling her income. Sadly, on her first day in her new job, she choked on a pretzel and died. I couldn’t cope with the cruel irony of this latest demise and have now deleted the whole bloody game.

Nevertheless, after recent events (in Real Life. I am talking about Real Life now people), I think having limited autonomy of my own actions is possibly the way forward for me so I’m now accepting applications from people prepared to manage my life in this way. Duties include: reminding me to shower, take a pee, and eat; restricting my interactions with people to a friendly greeting; and managing my budget and life goals. The successful applicant must be patient, reliable, and willing to work anti-social hours. Time-wasters need not apply, (that’s one area in which I’m already fairly competent).

Anyway, it’s Thursday, so it’s time for the second installment of Haiku for ADHD. This week, it’s a pair of haiku/haikus (how do we pluralise haiku please Internet?) for additional emphasis.

Conversation fail:

Speak, listen, speak, listen, speak,

Speak, speak, speak, speak, speak…

Let’s try that again. Go:

You then me, you then me, me,

Me, me, me, oops….

Making things worse

November 21, 2011

Sorry about this. Something appears to have gone very wrong since my last post. I think I am having some kind of breakdown that started approximately two hours after my last post (or perhaps that post was a way of me trying to talk myself out of the breakdown as it was breaking), and seems to have spun off on its own trajectory of crapness since then.

The whole story (which would involve me going back in time several months and relating a tale that would probably have you shutting your browser and reopening only once you were sure it was safe) is not for now. But it can be summarised in that age-old formula: Girl meets Boy, Girl and Boy break up, Boy has royally fucked up,  nevertheless Girl and Boy can’t stay broken up, Girl and Boy make up, Girl fucks up, Boy doesn’t break up with her, Boy fucks up, Girl does break up with him, which in and of itself is a fuck up. I concede that.

Still with me?

The point of this back story is this: Why can’t I just leave it? Why do I have to keep poking and prodding to see if this thing is still alive when I dealt the possibly fatal blow? I’ve never been able to cope with leaving things. It’s torture for me. I get that other people have to back off and calm down or figure things out or whatever and I can see why that’s probably a good idea but I just can’t do it. And it feels completely beyond me to do anything about it because even when told, repeatedly, that I am making things worse, I just keep trying to fix it. Nobody likes being unhappy, I’m not saying I have some extra-low tolerance for unhappiness, but when something is wrong with one part of my life, it consumes all of it. Compartmentalising is as alien to me as living underwater. Or putting things away when I’ve used them. I just can’t do it. Sticking with the compartmentalising metaphor, I want my life and mind to be made up of a series of secure chambers or boxes, all sealed off from one another so if the iceberg hits one, the vessel stays afloat. But I just don’t work that way. If one box springs a leak then we’re all going to fucking drown. That’s what’s happening now, with the hurt, but that’s also what happened on Friday with the anger. It sprung a leak and I just couldn’t stem the flood so I sunk the whole thing (apologies for this, I can hear how I sound, I just can’t help it).

And what do you do when you feel unhappiness so intensely? I can’t work, I can’t write, I can’t even put myself to bed, even though being awake is too painful. So I do anything I can to try to make it feel just a little bit better, promising myself that this will fix it, just hoping that I can get through and that the other person will see this pain and have enough compassion to let me mend it. And all I’m doing is making it worse. I’m trying to patch up all the leaks but using the wrong tools, axes and knives rather than …..whatever it is you’re supposed to use to mend leaks, something less sharp, I suppose.

I’m sorry that I go about clumsily trying to mend it. I’m sorry am making it worse. I am human, I am flawed. Some of those flaws are irritating, some are self-destructive, and some make me difficult to be with. There was a time I thought we were impossible, that it could never work, that you were too flawed for me to trust you with my feelings. You hurt me badly once and it felt like I would never get over it but I chose to believe in the person I knew you could be, and in everything I knew we could be together. And so yes, there’s that bit of me always waiting to get hurt again, and so when the red lights started flashing I shut down the system in a panic. And I wouldn’t blame you if you couldn’t take the risk again, but you have better insight that I did then because you know how good it can be, you know that there’s something worth saving. All I ask is that you choose to believe in that, and in the person you know I can be.

Even writing this, I know I’m running the risk of making things worse. But no more now. I really will leave it here. I’m putting all the sharp objects away, and keeping my hands in my pockets. That’s it. No more.

I just hope it’s enough.

 

 

 

Q: How many cups of tea…

November 14, 2011

does it take an ADHDer to write a PhD?

A: Not sure. Am on cup 5 and still counting.

Cup 1: Faff about.

Cup 2: Check blog stats. Notice that somebody searched for “restaurant bus” in russian. That’s автобус ресторан for anyone wondering.

Cup 3: Send some self-pitying texts about how much work I have to do. Modify plan.

Cup 4: Faff about. Check washing machine for napping cats. Put washing on. Realise once it’s too late that I forgot to add washing powder. I am reminded of the time I made biscuits and forgot to include the flour. But my childhood baking catastrophes are a tale that deserve a post of their own someday.

Cup 5: Open Word document upon which I have 800 of the 1500 words I need. Have some kind of minor brain melt and somehow accidentally disapperate and end up on WordPress relating the whole sorry tale.

Gahhh (or as oooshiny might say ‘shitpissfuckandbuggerybollocks’ – hi shiny!), I really need to sort myself out. Need to send work to Supervisor P by tonight latest. Need to get started now. Right this minute…

 

 

 

 

…I better just nip and pop the kettle on.

 

You Got Fail…

November 3, 2011

Good morning afternoon evening, Internet.

It’s 9.13 am. Today I am going to achieve the follwing:

1. Blog post – about things I’m going to achieve today.

2. Exercise – 30 mintues of entertaining mid-morning passengers on bus routes 36, 136, 171, and 177.

3. Shower – no explanation needed.

4. Go to Post Office to collect parcels that postman should have delivered but didn’t because he couldn’t be arsed to ring the doorbell so left “while you were out” cards instead. (I feel like crossing out the “while you were out” bit in angry red pen and changing it to “while you were in your flat patiently listening to door bell, not having a bath, or playing music, and generally postpoing all activities that could pose an obstacle to successful receipt of parcel.” And then posting said cards back to Royal Mail.)

5. Write 800 words of PhD thus attaining 8 points towards weekend reward.

12.19 pm: Haven’t yet achieved any of the above. Could’ve achieved step number 1 had it not been for reading new blog posts by other people and getting distracted. However since then, I’ve drunk some coffee, brushed the cats, and had a think. Thinking resulted in realisation that I might have got my priorites muddled and should maybe reorder list before embarking on it. Have now decided that list should read as follows:

1. Write 800 words of PhD

2. Go to Post Office

3. Exercise

4. Have shower (whichever way you look at it, this one needs to come after step 3)

5. Write blog post so can include paragraph on sense of achievement to be had from successful completion of five-point plan.

12.48 pm: Have just looked at Royal Mail cards and realised Post Office shuts at 1pm. Bollocks. Will have to go tomorrow. Have also realised that M is coming over tonight and therefore I will need to do the washing up and collect up the contents of my study from the living room and return them to the study. Revised list:

1. Write 800 words of PhD

2. Tidy Up

3. Exercise

4. Have shower

5. Write blog post.

14.43: Realised I had no coffee, cat food, or lightbulbs, and was quite hungry so went to Tescos. Forgot to buy coffee, cat food or lightbulbs so had to go back. Still achieved none of the above aims for the day. Am going to skip steps  2 and 3 due to lack of time. New list:

1. Have shower

2. Write 800 words of Phd

3. Write blog post (so far this is the only thing on the list that I have made a start on. And this has definitely not been the post I was planning to write).

 

15.15: Have successfully changed lightbulbs in all lamps. Haven’t managed to change ceiling lights due to possibility of injury/death etc. M can do this when he comes over later. This wasn’t on the original list, which is a shame as represents an achievement (have been carrying around old lightbulbs in handbag for a gabillion years).

 

16.15: Internet! You’ll be glad to know I have had a shower!  1 goal down, 2 to go.

 

16: 24: Went to make cup of tea. Couldn’t decide whether strange flashing I saw out of corner of eye was lightening or something wrong with one of new lightbulbs. Further investigation proved distracting but inconclusive.

 

16.30: M just text to say he’s got to work till 18.30 so I have an extra hour to write these 800 words. Have decided therefore to publish this blog post thereby achieving 2 goals from the updated list and getting rid of the temptation to blog rather than PhD.

 

16.37: Just counted number of words in this post – 611. That’s 189 words off my daily PhD writing goal. OUTPUT FAIL.

Progress (anticipated)

October 31, 2011

Morning, Internet!

Well today is the first day of my week of unemployment before I start my new contract. The plan was to get up at 7am, do some exercise (healthy body, healthy mind blah blah) and then sit down at my desk and not leave it until 5pm Friday (or until this chapter draft is finished, whichever happens first).

Needless to say, that didn’t happen. I woke up two hours late. Or maybe just one hour late depending on what time it actually is. I do think that the fact that the clocks change twice a year is time’s way of mocking ADHDers. If it wasn’t for the fact that, after six months of having to mentally add an hour to the clock on my microwave, it now reads the same time as my laptop and phone (which I think update automatically) then I would be totally confused. So really, it’s a good thing (yet not a particularly astonishing thing) that I never got round to changing it. Actually, I think this should be included somewhere in the ADHD diagnostic self-assessment. If your microwave clock is wrong for six months in every year, there’s a good chance you have ADHD.

Anyway (predictably), I digress. Despite the (probable) lateness of the hour, I am going to be a good little PhD student today and make some Progress (note capitalisation – that’s how much progress I shall make). I have devised a points system with M, who I think is as desperate for me to finish this PhD as I am, and so has become my unofficial second supervisor. For every 100 words, I get 1 point. I have to get a minimum of 30 points by Friday or I can’t go out. I know this sounds like a Primary School Approach to Getting a PhD, but at this stage, it isn’t just the ADHD causing the inertia – I’m just feeling a bit stale with it all. Making good Progress this week will help get me out of this rut and hopefully see me to the finish line. Thank you, M, you’re definitely going in the acknowledgements (if I ever get that far).

So today is likely to be a bit slow. But I did have two very late nights this weekend. Oh, Halloween drinks on Friday were good, btw. I still have Halloween decorations up, but all food and empties have been disposed of. I’ll get round to packing the Halloween decs away this week at some point. But if not, they can just stay up. It’ll be Halloween again next year, and that’ll save me a job.

Now, to work!

Happy Halloween, Internet.

Good morning, Internet.

It’s a chilly autumnal morning here in Wonderland. I have had an uncharacteristic (and entirely involuntary) early start to the day, having been woken up by the postman who delivered my Halloween costume. I forgot to take off my make-up last night and had been in a very deep sleep so the poor guy could be forgiven for his barely concealed surprise when his knock was answered by a creature for whom the donning of a scary Halloween costume could only represent an improvement. A creature who resembled this chap:

Anyway, I digress. After a shaky start, I am determined to remain on-topic today without hesitation, repetition or deviation. I need to talk to you about my decision to go back on the Ritalin before the rapidly loosening ball of wool that is my life unravels completely. I’m feeling completely incapable of getting things done and it’s always the PhD and my blood pressure that suffers most.

For example: I have so much to do today, and I am desperately trying not to panic. I am having people over to the flat tonight for a halloween gathering. Ideally, my itinary for the day would go something like this:

1) Blog about my ADHD meds (or lack thereof).
2) Despite lack of said meds, nevertheless, produce 3 or 4 hours of quality writing towards my PhD, thus sedating the little monster of PhD anxiety so that he has a good long nap.

3) Clean flat from top to bottom without breaking off at any point to explore the Internet or check that the dietary needs of chinchillas have not changed since the last time I conducted this research. Pay particular attention to the removal of cat fur from surfaces that guests are likely to want to sit on.

3.i) Decorate flat with cheap Halloween tat purchased from poundshop.

3.ii) Do so without sustaining injury from climbing on furniture.

3.iii) Dispose of all packaging and rubbish associated with cheap tat. Do not
leave on living room floor.

4) Go to Sainsburys and purchase food, alcohol and suitably proportioned pumpkin.

5) Carve pumpkin (may require sudden and spontaneous increase of artistic ability)

5.i) Do so without sustaining injury from big sharp knife.

5.ii) Should injury occur, at least have presence of mind to collect blood into
suitable container for incorpration into Halloween costume.

6) Shower, apply scary make-up to face, put on scary costume and wig.

7) Admit guests to flat without any indication of preparation hell. Probs attempt smile if poss but if not, pass lack of smile off as costume-appropriate expression.

8)  Drink Halloween punch until I pass out and care not that my flat enjoyed approx 1 hr of tidiness before being littered with the debris of celebration and intoxication, debris that I will inevitably be too hungover to dispose of.

Oh crap. How is that the time?? Despite the carefully delineated 8 point plan above, I am going to have to jettison Step 1 and postpone my post on ADHD meds. Again. FFS.

Good day to you, Internet.

Today is the penultimate day of my current contract at work.  I then have nearly two weeks to make some significant progress on the PhD, undistracted (HA!), before I return to the same place (but a different department) in order to begin a new contract. In honour of my last day in this office, tomorrow I am going to make a concerted effort to arrive on time less than an hour late. I am making this promise here and now, in writing. Because, clearly, if I tell the Internet something that makes it true.

I am so fed up of having to call in to work at 9.05 and explain, in my sleep-hoarse voice that I have overslept (again), and then make a promise to be in by 9.30 even though I know that it takes at least 30mins to get ready and at least 20 minutes to actually make it from my flat to my place of employment. Add at least 15 minutes to account for ADHD, and it is clear to anyone with only a rudimentary grasp of mathematics, that it will be AT LEAST 10am before I make it to work, overheated, overstressed, and dangerously under-caffeinated. Why do I do this??! Why is being late for work once not enough? Why engineer the situation so that I am compounding the original lateness, by further tardiness so that I have to feel humiliated by my own inadequacies not just once but twice?

The thing is, they’re kind of used to it here. It’s not that the chronic lateness goes unnoticed but it’s tolerated. It helps that I seem to have accidentally cultivated this image of myself as a sort of lovable scatter-brain.  I think it might be an ADHD survival strategy that enables one to get through life being a bit crap but without incurring the same penalties as other people might. I think I’ve inherited it from my father who is anything but lazy but whose working days were a scramble of missed meetings, forgotten deadlines, and lost paperwork. Strangely, he was always well-liked despite these short-comings, and I am fairly sure that he retained the affection of his colleagues by the same means as I do now: 1) Apologise profusely, even when things aren’t your fault. 2) Be more cross at yourself than your colleague is – this results in their irritation metamorphosing into sympathy before your very eyes. 3)  Seem a little bit helpless. Instead of wanting to kick you in the face, they want to help you.  4) Cultivate an attitude of self-deprecation which encourages others to laugh affectionately at your difficulties and roll their eyes with a smile instead of a final written warning.

As I write the above, I realise that this sounds very manipulative and a little exploitative, as though I purposely deploy these tactics of defence. This is absolutely not the case. It is a defence mechanism in the same way that a squid releases ink in response to attack. It’s the ADHD equivalent. In the face of attack by completely normal, everyday challenges, it’s me rolling myself up into a little ball with my arms wrapped protectively over my head, shrieking ‘I’m not very good at this, it shouldn’t be this difficult, but rather than you take my shortcomings too seriously, I’d rather you just took me less seriously. I am therefore prepared to relinquish some of my pride and dignity in return for your forgiveness and tolerance’.  I don’t want to be seen like this. I would quite like to feel that people took me seriously. I would quite like to feel that people looked at me and thought, ‘there goes a capable twenty-something woman who is going places’ rather than ‘ Awww, how typical – Rose has fucked up again, bless her. How *does* she make it through each day without close supervision?’  Sometimes I feel like I am a joke of my own devising.

But when I move departments, I would really like to try to minimize the extent to which my crapness is immediately obvious to my colleagues. I want to start a clean sheet, a new leaf, and other paper-related metaphors for a fresh start. And this brings me to the thing that I was actually going to blog about today but which might need to wait until tomorrow now because I am running out of working hours in which to do some actual, y’know, work etc: Namely, I have decided that coming off the Ritalin was probs the worst decision I never actually made (I lost my repeat prescription and was too embarrassed to admit to it.  And as an(other) aside, by the way, the staff at the GP surgery are definitely not as susceptible to the whole lovable scatterbrain thing as my employers seemingly are). So that whole post is now going to have to wait until tomorrow. Tomorrow, when hopefully I will be able to report that my punctuality has (at least temporarily) improved.

Until then, Internet, I bid thee farewell.