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Forums / Long term support over the journey / Feeling down due to fatigue & undiagnosed health issues

Topic: Feeling down due to fatigue & undiagnosed health issues

  1. Croix
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    29 October 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Dear Elizabeth

    At least you would have had a physical rest, even help the back..

    That problem over money has come up before, apart from anything else there does have to be a practical limit as to what one can afford. And as you say if it just gets wasted then you are probably doing them no favors. What does your husband think?

    It's up to them to maintain relations wiht you, so if they are not there frequently it is their choice, not something for you to feel guilty about. If you all enjoyed each others company and did not have the specter of fiances hanging over everyone's thread it might well be different.

    Having described you DIL in the past I'm not sure anyone would enjoy her company.

    I'm sorry your project want awry, however knowing you - you fixed it.

    Croix

  2. Elizabeth CP
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    31 October 2018 in reply to Croix

    Thanks Croix. I think I need to get back to regular exercise to strengthen my back. I can't afford to let it go. It is fine except for odd twinges reminding me that it is a problem I need to keep on top of!! Sitting down on the phone or computer or just resting is bad for my back causing it to weaken & be susceptible to injury. Unfortunately I've had too much to organise lately & lots of phone calls.

    I had hoped as my son improved physically & mentally & started working again they would learn from their mistakes & improve their financial management. I guess I should know better!!!! I think it stands out more because the rest of my kids & spouses are very responsible & easy to get on with.

    I need to go I need to get some sleep I have been really overtired for some time.

  3. Doolhof
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    5 November 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Hi Elizabeth,

    It has been a long time since I have popped in here! Just recently I have started doing my stretches again for my back, I have some I can do at home. It has been so long sine I did them regularly, my back has really stiffened up.

    Due to my recent ankle injury, I can still not walk very far so am trying to persuade myself to return to the pool for some hydrotherapy.

    I have managed to get as far as writing down the phone number for the pool centre! Maybe tomorrow I can add that to my list of things to do, phone the centre and find out what sessions are available for easy aqua.

    Hope you can find some solutions!

    Cheers from Dools

  4. Elizabeth CP
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    5 November 2018 in reply to Doolhof

    Good to hear from you Dools. I hope your ankle is healing. I remember the frustration when my ankle was broken & didn't heal properly. Good luck with the aqua therapy. I remember after several disastrous attempts to get back to normal activities like walking I set a goal of walking every day but deliberately did very short walks. I made sure I only walked a such a short distance I knew I could manage; Each day I SLOWLY increased the distance. This is the opposite of my normal way of doing things which involves pushing myself as far as I can. My husband did the same. Initially he was olly allowed to walk the length of the decking. This method worked because we never risked overdoing things & further injury. Success boosted my confidence & mental health as well as physical health. Over time I increased the distance until I got back to my normal activities.

    Good luck Dools

  5. Doolhof
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    6 November 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Hi Elizabeth,

    Thanks for your comments and suggestions. Walking used to be my way of coping and having a sense of clearing out thoughts and emotions. Even the short walks in the time frame suggested by the physio seem to have aggravated my ankle so I need to cut back a little and maybe walk every second day a shorter distance.

    We are going on holidays in a couple of weeks so the lack of ability to walk far is going to be a bit limiting. I will just have to do what I can and use transport where possible. I have bought an ankle brace so hope that helps a little.

    I just need to be patient and careful, accepting my limitations especially while on holiday!

    Hope you have been able to catch up on your sleep!

    Cheers from Dools

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  6. Elizabeth CP
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    7 November 2018 in reply to Doolhof

    Hope you enjoy your holiday & are better at being sensible in looking after your ankle than I was in a similar position in the past.

    Tiredness continues to plague me combined with feelings of guilt for not doing better.

    I saw the psych today He told me repeatedly to get back to walking daily. I need to get into a routine again. I asked for advice re knowing when to push myself & how much & when to rest. I didn't really get a good answer. I need to plan for smaller chunks of time to tackle tasks rather than doing too much but I'm struggling to do much & when I push myself I'm not effective because I'm too tired. Doing nothing isn't helful as it makes me feel down but pushing myself seems to be winding me up so I'm more stressed & anxious & ineffective.

  7. Croix
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    7 November 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Dear Elizabeth~

    You've mentioned walking several times, and the fact it helps your back as well as everything else.

    What do you think might be a good strategy to get you walking daily?

    Croix

  8. Elizabeth CP
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    7 November 2018 in reply to Croix

    I need to prioritise my walk. I need to try to do it early so that means working out an effective routine. I've been trying to get into a better routine doing the things to help my husband but that pushed back the time to walk. The other issue has been this ongoing tiredness caused by doing too much & competing pressures so I've needed to stay in bed later than normal when I get the chance which has messed up routines. I have found the warmer weather harder as I hate walking in the heat & later in the day I've been too tired so I need to schedule walks early in the day.

    I don't think it will be too hard to get back to walking as it is important for me. I think my real issue is sorting out the rest of my life so I'm not feeling like I'm under constant pressure & can relax & enjoy myself instead of finding even things which should be fun are too much pressure.

  9. Croix
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    7 November 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Dear Elizabeth~

    OK, what does that mean -a pretty set routine for when you wake up with a walk before breakfast?

    I'm not sure that trying to fix all your routines for everything all at once is quite practical, maybe just getting this bit sorted might be a good base -what do you think?

    Croix ( who is always perfectly organized :)

  10. Elizabeth CP
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    9 November 2018 in reply to Croix

    I'm really struggling. the over emphasis on the daily walking has tipped into me feeling pressured & guilty. I'm trying to remind myself that the advice was given with the best intentions & my reaction doesn't change the fact that it is good advice.

    I don't cope with feeling pressured at all. Once I reach a tipping point I tend to be irrational going the opposite way to the way I'm feeling pressured & this can be self destructive.

    I'm feeling like my life is out of control at the moment. I'm trying to fit everything which comes up into my schedule but then feeling overwhelmed. I need to work out what is the priorities & plan for them so other things fit around them instead of taking over. I am unsure how much my level of fatigue is due to my constant worry & stress & how much is due to lack of sleep. Do I need to push myself so I get more done so I feel more in control & therfre better or will that make me even tireder & less effective. If I stop & rest am I giving myself chance to recover or do I risk feeling worse because I achieve less & have more time to worry so become more depressed & anxious.

    My attempt to get advice from my psych failed. I tried to talk to my husband to plan priorities but ended up with lists of things which need doing yesterday!!! This has left me feeling really negative & giving up. I am struggling to motivate myself at all today.

  11. Croix
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    10 November 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Dear Elizabeth~

    I can see how talking about the walks is extra pressure, so I apologize. I guess when I find something that helps me I want to share.Trying to order your priories is an excellent idea , and if on this occasion it did not work out there are always other times.

    A pity about your psych, do you mind if I ask what went wrong?

    Croix

  12. Elizabeth CP
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    10 November 2018 in reply to Croix

    Thanks Croix, I know that both you and my psych had my best interests at heart when encouraging me to get back to walking. When my psych first spoke about the daily walks it was a needed reminder & felt encouraging rather than pressured. Later when I tried to get advice on trying to get control back in my life it changed. Commiting to a set time to walk might be good but being pressured into that commitment without considering all the other things I need to do means it may not be sustainable. If I try to walk every morning before breakfast that makes it really hard for me to help my husband get ready when he needs to go out or I get up really early & risk becoming more tired. I need to work out an effective weekly routine so my activities including walks fit with the other essential tasks eg the 2days my husband goes out in the morning I leave for my walk when he leaves or i stop on the way home from dropping him off.

    I feel like I'm either busy with appointments & things that have to be done which take up a lot of time & then the rest of the time I'm either pushing myself to get things done or I'm so tired & overwhelmed I can't get motivated which leaves me feeling feeling guilty & useless. The psych didn't seem to understand what I was asking so he kept pushing the walking & then implying if I rest I'll just fall into a slump & get worse but I know in the past pushing myself too hard just causes me to crash.

    I need help to learn to find the middle ground & to know when to push myself & when to relax so I can be more effective. I also need to find a way to be clearer in what is important for my husband & I & to better schedule things so we can do things we want to do rather than just fitting everything around appointments & everything else.

    I'm not sure if I'm explaining myself very well.

    On Tuesday I see a different counselor. If anyone has ideas of how best to get him to guide me so I can improve.

  13. Croix
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    10 November 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Dear Elizabeth~

    Yes you have explained things fine, and I quite agree it is very difficult as so much depends on you.

    Perhaps with your new psych you might talk about where the previous one went wrong, putting on too much pressure? What do you think?

    Croix

  14. Elizabeth CP
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    10 November 2018 in reply to Croix
    Maybe I could ask for help to work out strategies to organise my life better perhaps trying to keep appointments etc so one or 2 set days so other days are free to plan other things rather than having things all over the place so getting any routine is impossible. Trying to think it through by myself just seems to get too hard I need strategies to help me be more effective in discussing difficult things with my husband so I don't get triggered & give up
  15. Croix
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    10 November 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Dear Elizabeth~

    I think those are excellent suggestions, as you say working out strategies is a very necessary base to start from and any help you can get to work them out has got to be a help

    Croix

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  16. Elizabeth CP
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    25 November 2018 in reply to Croix
    Sorry I haven't replied for a while. I'm still really up & down. I struggle with so many conflicting demands on my time Currently I'm feeling very unwell which is making it hard to move forward.
  17. Croix
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    25 November 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Dear Elizabeth~

    Don't worry abut not posting, it happens, particularly when one is struggling. We are simply pleased to hear from you when you can make it.

    Do you mind if I ask about your feeling unwell, is this being overwhemed or is there a back problem or similar to make things worse at the moment?

    Are you still looking forward to dance classes with your husband when things are a bit more sorted?

    Croix

  18. Elizabeth CP
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    26 November 2018 in reply to Croix

    Thanks Croix I have a faith a bad headache which is making me feel exhausted. It also makes me anxious because I worry about passing it on to my husband. Based on past history that could be disastrous Minor infections cause important muscles to stop working so he can't protect his airways leading to life threatening form of pneumonia. He also becomes very reliant on me because he doesn't have the strength to do simple things. I am also feeling overwhelmed with competing demands without the physical or emotional energy to cope. My attempts to move forward seem to constantly hit roadblocks leaving me feeling useless & out of control. These are both very negative feelings leaving me feeling like giving up.

  19. Croix
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    26 November 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Dear Elizabeth~

    I'm sorry you are unwell and that things are piling up. The worry over your huband getting an infection is a very draining thing.

    Sometimes I need an escape and really have no time or opportunity to do anything. Then I take a few minutes to retreat to a calming scene from my childhood. You no doubt have heard me rabbit on about it in the Happy Memories thread.

    I cast my mind back to the grassy cliff-top, wind, rain, grey seas, gulls and sheep. The phrase 'tears in the rain' comes from a movie, but does depict the rain washing care away, or being blown away in the gusts of wind. The grey sea vista reminds me of all the world, not just my portion with all it's cares and difficulties.

    I've been doing this for years, and can slip into this place without great upheaval.

    Why go on about it here? Well, sometimes inner resources is all one has until things improve. Can you think of something similar that is unique to you?

    Croix

  20. Elizabeth CP
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    27 November 2018 in reply to Croix

    Croix I really appreciate your suggestions & constant encouragement. Sometimes remembering things from the past helps me. Your description took me back to Wales & coastline in England. I have Welsh relatives & love Snowdonia particularly.

    Unfortunately I sometimes find those same memories that are pleasant at times can trigger feelings of loss. I have a large framed photograph in my bedroom of my husband thigh deep in snow on a mountain in the Peak District. It brings me memories of a beautiful but challenging day together exploring & eventually sliding down hill as the soft snow gave way with each step. These can be good memories but sometimes it reminds me of the loss of those experiences for the future.

  21. Croix
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    27 November 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Dear Elizabeth~

    My safe/retreat memory was selected over time. Like you there are many that have the black edges of sadness or loss lurking, however for some reason that particular one does not prompt negative feelings.

    Another is being all snug in a bed listening to the rain and wind roar through the branches outside the window, with the distant sound of canons (yes canons, later replaced with a fog horn) to guide the ships.

    Why these memories do not spill over into other thoughts I've no idea. Perhaps you will find one too.

    Croix

  22. Elizabeth CP
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    10 December 2018 in reply to Croix

    Thank you Croix. Sorry I haven't replied for so long. I have been pushing myself to get things done. Nov Dec are busy months for me combined with some bad memories. Both my parents dies this time of year & we have had a number of other stressful events. I struggle with the hot weather & high fire danger & other reminders of bushfires trigger anxiety. This evening I feel particularly anxious/stressed. Yesterday may husband was sick & although it wasn't serious he became very worried about what happened & the high risk of complications. I need to spend time working out some strategies to reduce the risk of repetitions. This left me too wound up to sleep properly. I woke early but tired. I got up to start my list of jobs needing doing. My husband had 2 appointments. Both were useful but left me feeling more stressed trying to work out how to fit in the extra things I need to do to follow the recommendations of the therapists. I don't see any way of getting help for these tasks. They are too important to not do them. I already had too much to do.

    Sorry I am being negative I need a break!!

  23. blondguy
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    10 December 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Hey Elizabeth

    I didnt know about your parents. I'm sorry

    Wildfires also cause me anxiety too as I am in a bush area in Vic and its always a concern for me. This time of year can be a pain. I didnt even start my Christmas 2018 New Years Eve thread as I am spent and also need a break too

    You are not being negative at all....just human

    My best for your husbands health and you too Elizabeth

    my kindest thoughts always

    Paul

  24. Elizabeth CP
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    11 December 2018 in reply to blondguy

    Thanks Paul, My parents died years ago. My dad died when my youngest was a baby & I then became a fulltime carer for my mum. We had needed to move to a house with a granny flat for mum. She was in a wheelchair so it was a major upheaval for us as a family I was very close to my dad so even though I was glad he died peacefully & I knew he was free of all the ailments which had been affecting him but that doesn;t stop the grief from missing them. Even when not conscious of the time of year I notice each year around the time of his death my mood drops.

    I no longer liver in a high bushfire risk area but I'm still easily triggered. I'm not sure if you are aware I have been diagnosed with PTSD from being caught in a bushfire as a child. In those days no emotional support was provided. I remember my mum being told to send me back to school (I was unwell) so I could forget what had happened & give mum a break. I learnt from that one comment to never speak about what happened and it was my responsibility to make sure I never upset mum by talking about the event. The rest of the family were not caught in the fire so I never talked to them as it was too hard to explain what it was like. I learnt to cope on my own. Unfortunately on Black Saturday & the weeks after there were 4 separate fires with the potential to affect us. This combined with the graphic accounts on the media of the Black Saturday events stirred things up badly & led to PTSD symptoms being triggered even from things which previously I coped with. As a result Summer is a difficult time of the year.

    Christmas stirs feelings of inadequacy. I'm not very creative so I'm not good at decorations. My dad was really good at this so mine seem pathetic compared to my memory of his decorations. I struggle to think of what to get for presents. Because of my self esteem issues I tend to try to fit in with everyone else. This makes it complicated & I feel like I'm stressed trying to meet competing demands.

  25. Elizabeth CP
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    14 December 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    I had a very intense session with my psych on Tuesday. I have been struggling with competing demands & feeling exhausted & overwhelmed. Guilt inevitably creeps in because I'm not getting enough done.

    Monday was speech therapy in the morning which lasted 2 1/2 hrs rather than the 1hr we booked. The extended time was due to my husband requiring advice to manage a recent escalation of distressing symptoms. Focusing on the negative & noticing the deterioration is very distressing. Sunday had also been a bad day for my husband which impacted on me. I now have to keep a diary of my husbands symptoms giving me even more pressure. I had a lunch run for carers to go to which was nice but I was running late due to the speech session running over time. Afterwards I returned home doing some food shopping on the way & then out to a physio appointment for my husband. Once again it was obvious my husbands condition has worsened. I'm feeling guilty for not doing more to help him & then get a new program of exercises requiring close supervision by me each day. I was exhausted & feel like going out to the lunch while nice at the time just left me even further behind.

    After explaining this to my psych he suggested listing all the things I do for my husband now. 4 full pages later I felt totally overwhelmed & still can't see how to cut down anything so I can cope better. The aim was to help me see how much I'm doing & 'cut myself some slack' when I don't get everything done. Unfortunately I just feel overwhelmed. I feel like a failure because I can't improve. People including those on this forem make good suggestions but i seem unable to move forward. Little things seem to tip me over the edge. The rest of the week has been ridiculous with 2 specialist appointments each of which involved lots of time both there & travelling. There have been other appointments & phone calls to organise things I feel out of control.

  26. blondguy
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    14 December 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Hello Elizabeth

    The therapy would have been very hard work....especially after 2 1/2 hours instead of an hour....That is a long period of time to have a counselor 'in our head'....so to speak. I was just about to write another Christmas thread for Christmas 2018 about the stress triggers and how they can have an impact on our peace of mind

    Can I ask if you feel any benefit the day after your appointment? I get it with 'little things' tipping us over the edge' . I have just started to get a 'handle' on how to say no in my 50's....(better late than never I guess) As you know when we have a tired mind we are prone to feel this way....including that dreadful feeling of losing control

    You have a ton on your plate Elizabeth...seriously. My 88 year old mum just called me...my brother and my 52 year old sister and said that she will be spending Christmas Eve quietly on her own. We respect her wishes

    Im sorry that your husband is unwell Elizabeth. Can I ask how much time you have to yourself...say every day?

    I know that you have been on the forums for a long time...and my apologies again for another question.....Do you have the support of your GP? I still see mine every month for a 'fine tune' as I am not really good at having too much on my plate either....Actually I feel like curling into a ball when there is too much happening...ugh

    Just out of respect for you Elizabeth...this is my 23rd year on a low dose of an SSRI and a sporadic benzo when I have difficulty coping

    I really hope there is something of help here. My Christmas will be my rescue dog and myself....I am okay with that now. I will visit my daughter and mum after Christmas

    Hugz if thats okay and my apologies for the delay in getting back to you. Please post back when you can :-)

    Paul

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  27. Croix
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    15 December 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Dear Elizabeth~

    This is another of my 'missing the point' messages to you. Yes those 4+ pages are overwhelming, basically becuse life makes you do so much, and I have confidence in you. Confidence you do not freighter away your energizes on non-essentials, if you judge something necessary then I'd expect it is.

    So where does that leave you? -Stressed, depressed, feeling inadequate and overwhelmed.

    When you can't change life you need to change you. You read before what I do, unashamedly retreat my thoughts to a calm place where wind and rain and a view of the turbulent sea have an effect on my mind. Where a gull crying as it is swept past seems almost real, real enough to wonder at that gull's past, its destination.

    Can I suggest if you add finding a mental refuge to your 4+ page task list it might pay dividends? I walk out of a taxing situation and reach for my scenario, it is a comfort.

    If you need a cd of sounds to help (maybe rain on a tin roof) , that's fine too.

    You are a very capable person Elizabeth, please turn your talents to your own welfare.

    Croix

  28. Elizabeth CP
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    15 December 2018 in reply to Croix
    Thanks Paul & Croix. I appreciate your comments. I will reply properly later but at the moment I need to sleep. I've resorted to a sleeping tablet after several nights of interrupted sleep. I hope tonight will be better as I need the rest so I can function & try to put in place some changes to improve things if possible. Fingers crossed.
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  29. Elizabeth CP
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    18 December 2018 in reply to Croix

    Paul You asked 'how much time you have to yourself...say every day?' That varies. One of my problems lately is even when I do things I normally enjoy I'm finding I end up so overloaded afterwards that it defeats the purpose. Because I can't predict what my husband will be li,e each day I'm finding it hard to adjust.
    Paul also asked'...Do you have the support of your GP? I changed GPs this year but recently had a negative experience with her so I'm not feeling able to open up to her. I've only discussed physical health issues with her. I see a psychiatrist monthly although I will miss the next 3 sessions because he;s on leave. I see a psychologist fortnightly but he has had some time off this year. Today's session was cancelled at the last minute as he was sick & then he is away for summer holidays. Not what I needed!!!! I really hoped to get some ideas to move forward.

    I don't use any ADs The side effects for each one I tried made it not worthwhile & none of them helped my mood. Thankfully my psych now accepts this & will offer me meds but understands when I decline. I take a sleeping tablet occasionally when needed.

    Croix, I really appreciate your suggestions, your humour & your care. I love Wales so your descriptions of your memories of Wales brings back good memories. I am proud to say I have a welsh granddaughter. My son lives near the border & they preferred the Welsh hospital to the English so his youngest was born there!!!!

    I try to think back to some good memories. I am still trying to find that one which will consistently work for me. I try to find that balance of doing enough of the important things so I'm not sinking without overdoing it but I often fail & too often things get in the way.

    I need to get some sleep. I know I sound like a broken record complaining & not helping myself enough!!!

  30. Doolhof
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    19 December 2018 in reply to Elizabeth CP

    Hi Elizabeth,

    It can be hard trying to help yourself when you are tired.

    I hope you can find some way to rest your body and your mind, even if it is for a short period of time each day.

    A lot of people recommend meditation, I have tried it a few times, then forget I am supposed to be doing it!

    Just want to let you know I am thinking of you!

    Cheers to you from Dools

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