Friday the 4th January 2019
I woke up at around 7:45 am but lay in bed for a good half an hour longer, not wanting to get out from under my warm blanket. I feel sluggish in the morning. Bed feels safe and comforting, the outside world over stimulating and stressful. Eventually I got out of bed at 8:15 am, after telling myself at 8:10 am that I would allow myself 5 more minutes. I lay facing the clock, psyching myself up for the task of getting out of bed.
I then turned on the computer. I checked Facebook and twitter, and then the weather. I need to know what the weather is going to be like before I venture out. The computer’s light made me feel more awake. I find moving from one activity to the next difficult, so I have to mentally set a time frame. I told myself I would turn the computer off at 8:30 am, but I was still staring at the screen at 8:33 am. I then eventually decisively turned the machine off, and got dressed. Dressing is made easier by alternating between 3 garments. All my other clothes hardly ever get worn as I only wear them when I am meeting people outside of my immediate family. They’re my ”social clothes”, and they are the clothes that I want important others to see me in, because the 3 outfits I usually wear are not totally perfect in my eyes, although they are very comfortable and feel safe as they are so familiar: two jogging bottoms and a roomy pair of grey jeans, and three fleeces that I’ve had for over 6 years.
I finally had breakfast at around 9:30 am. Today I made a salty cocoa pureed chestnut porridge. I boiled some milk, added oats and cooked this for 5 minutes. I then added a tablespoon of Merchant Gourmet pureed chestnut, a teaspoon of maple syrup and vanilla extract, and the star ingredient… MARMITE!! Yes, call me mad. The recipe stipulated salt but I don’t buy salt as I like to be healthy and am not keen on overly salty food. But I do like marmite, and just a little goes a long way. So I added half a teaspoon. I gave the mixture a thorough mix and poured it into my brand new Katie Alice breakfast bowl. I have to say that the porridge was delicious, and I ate it with a tall latte mugful of gingerbread flavoured coffee from the Little’s company (well worth checking out).
I then washed up and brushed my teeth before settling down to read at 10:30 am. I switched on my laptop, put my headphones on, and went onto the Simply Noise site, which plays white noise to block out distractions. I carried on reading The Flavour Thesaurus, a book which I bought myself for Christmas.
At 12:30, I made my lunch. Today I cooked small pasta shapes for 6 minutes, which I mixed with half a can of sweetcorn, a small can of tuna, finely chopped spring onion, and a teaspoon of mayonnaise. I ate this in my new pasta bowl that I purchased from Cath Kidson; the one with a painted flower and deer design. After this I made myself a cup of Yorkshire tea, drunk from my vintage ”builder’s tea” mug, and ate a Nak’d company cocoa, date and nut bar with a slab of mature cheddar cheese.
After washing up, I wrote down my shopping list. I then changed out of my rough, lounging round the house clothes (a scruffy old blue jumper and jeans), into my regular outdoor clothes: today a blue fleece and the grey roomy jeans. I took my shopping trolley and ventured out. First stop the library to return and renew some cookery books. Then I popped into Lakeland and Dyas to ask if they had any espresso machines. They did but the machines were out of my price range. I would like to get a basic espresso machine as I have recently developed a liking for and interest in coffee in all its guises. I will look again elsewhere – maybe Tesco or Sainsbury sell cheaper ones?
I finished up at Waitrose, where I intended to buy my food. However, my OCD was triggered by someone repetitively coughing. This made me very stressed, and so I could not buy everything on my list as I needed to get out as quickly as possible. I managed to get my dinner for tonight (a sweet potato), but will have to go back tomorrow to buy the food for Saturday and Sunday’s meal.
Going out is stressful for other reasons, beside the prospect of people coughing and sneezing (yuk, germs, gross). Firstly there are smokers. Smoking is a disgusting habit that fills the air with carcinogenic particles that I really don’t want to breathe in. I’ve always been sensitive to the smell of smoke (it stinks!), but since my mum (a non smoker) died from lung cancer in 2016, I’ve become even more sensitive to cigarette smoke. Not only does it have an offensive smell, but every time I smell it I’m reminded of her cruel death and the fact that I really don’t want to get such an awful disease. I want to breathe clean air, and I feel contaminated by smoke. So every time I see a smoker, I cross the road. If I can’t avoid them, I hold my breathe or put my hand over my nose.
Secondly, there are those horrible vaporisers. The smell is not toxic like cigarette smoke, but it’s sickly in the most nauseating sense, so again, I hold my breath.
Thirdly, cars. When it gets dark, their lights beam like flood lights, and it makes me feel super stressed and even angry. Also cars are noisy and unpredictable. I need to use all my energy to stay alert and avoid collisions.
So I arrived home feeling contaminated and over stimulated. I decided to give myself some medicine: a slice of toast spread with almond butter and Meridian cranberry spread (all natural, no refined sugars). This combination was DELICIOUS!. I had it with a strong mug of tea, and felt so much better. I then walked to the familiar territory of my dad’s house, where I am writing this now. Very soon, at just after 5 pm, I will make my dinner. Tonight it will be mashed sweet potato mixed with pureed chestnut, with smoked salmon, egg and peas (a Merchant Gourmet recipe).
Then my evening routine: 7:30 pm, teeth and wash. 8 pm computer. 9:45 pm, lying in bed. 10: 40 pm precise, bed. If this order is not followed, I feel very stressed.