Well the weather forecast looks ok for tomorrow’s day of celebrating friendship in futility as a bunch of like-minded, slightly past their physical prime (I’m afraid that even you are in this bracket now John) folk conjoin. I will be preparing rules for the day later on today and one of them will be any use of the word ‘aspiration’ except in a derogatory sense will be punished.
I said to Kate yesterday that I will kill the next person I hear who uses the term aspirational, Kate thought this a little extreme, but I am already fed up with the line that Labour didn’t appeal to the aspirational. It is such a small-minded mode of thought. It can be added to the lexicon of mangementspeakbollocks. Peter Wilby in the New Statesman is also troubled by the term and thinks politicians use it to mean anyone who wants more money or perhaps is more ambitious. And yet in olden times it’s meaning was of a less ‘materialistic’ nature and more about aspiring to be good.
Another New View session yesterday, they are really helpful and on reflection today the sessions really highlight how much we crabby victims are affected in oh so many ways. A piece by Elizabeth Wurtzel and her cancer and how she doesn’t want cancer to change her life, something I know I felt and articulated as I’m sure so many others do. Unfortunately, especially if you have heavy duty treatment, the cancer combined with the treatment will cause irreperable changes, as the New View programme recognises, we are changed. Of course there is still the essence of the ‘old me’ but as we talk in the sessions it becomes more evident how much we have all changed. And it is the mental and emotional changes as much, perhaps more, than the physical changes.
We did a brief mindfulness exercise at the end of the session and I enjoyed it and will try and use it regularly. I emphasize try as there are so many different aspects that come with the ‘new view’ it is difficult taking them all in and managing them effectively. One step at a time, trouble is even balance and walking are affected as we all talked about yesterday. The therapist and doctor who run the programme, along with a nurse who works at the cancer centre who joined for the first half, were given a few new insights by us yesterday.
So I fired off another email to those in some authority at the company who run the school, I wrote it in the middle of the night as for the first time in a while I couldn’t sleep for worrying about my pension being sorted. It’s hard as this anxiety causes other stuff which exacerbates my physical and mental condition. I pointed out that it’s now been 14 weeks since I first began proceedings and still haven’t reached the first stage of having the forms ready to send to teacher’s pensions and wondered whether people thought this an acceptable state of affairs. Of course they don’t reply to the question, point out individual aspects that aren’t directly connected with the company such as the delay in my consultant replying, and putting the onus back on me by asking me what more can the company do. I call my consultant’s secretary today and she says he will sign his response today and she’ll send it off, I then feel a little embarrassed about my most recent ranting email but now writing this simply return to my question: is 14 weeks to get a couple of forms sorted acceptable?
Question: which is better to fire off an aggressive email or do some mindfulness exercise to cope with anxieties? Or maybe do both, but in what order?
Grace called me while I was at ‘New View’ yesterday, the doctor asked me after I’d told him her age whether she was worried about exams. I though about this later and it is an appalling state of affairs that our children are subjected to what is now commonly accepted to be the most testing education regime in the world. And it is the cohort that Grace is in that has been subjected most to this testing madness. The poor girl and her fellow cohort will be the last to take AS level exams. I have gently exhorted her to do some revision, but it is done with extreme reluctance and understanding of the pressures we heap on our young folk with our shit education system. But if we don’t aspire to our kids being aspirational then we’re crap parents. How did we get into this mess?
As an antidote I am looking forward to the newly dubbed ‘Friendship in Futility Day’ tomorrow.
Made me laugh.
Keep on aspiring to keeping on, love Duncan
PS Duncan has killed himself for above.
Also farewell BBKing, a bunch of us saw him at Knebworth many years ago, we drove up in my old mini and we got away quickly at the end to get back to London, I drove for a little while through fields before I realised we were going the wrong way. I did a u-turn to see a long line of cars following me, I was saying sorry driving by all those cars!