Monday, March 06, 2023


Antibiotics are obviously wonderful but I do wish they would come without the side effects. My combination of pills this last week has given me the usual nausea, but also aching muscles, sleeplessness and when I do get to sleep - nightmares. 

On Saturday night I had three. One was of that unpleasant man Clarkson heading a new craze for skateboarding on downhill pavements, facing backwards, and counting any knocked down pedestrians as inconsequential collateral.

Then I woke up and read the news. Real life contains sufficient nightmares -  Rishi Sunak, planning to detain and deport all those desperate people arriving by small boat; the settler violence against Palestinians in Huwara, which I notice that neither the "Labour Party" nor Keir Starmer has yet condemned.

On another tack...I realised on Friday night that every time a friend or family member had asked me how I was, I had moaned about how bad I felt  (as well as saying that Dave has been better than Florence Nightingale in the caring stakes.) So on Saturday morning, the first time I showered and came downstairs for the day, I decided I would try to improve my stoicism rating. Now I just say to everyone "I am getting stronger everyday, thank you." It's not so hard.  

In any case, I have no right to complain. I don't live in a war or earthquake zone, I have a good GP, a caring partner, a warm sitting room and enough to eat, when there are plenty of people even in this country with none of those.

Since Saturday morning I've been sitting by the fire in the daytime mending my second favourite patchwork quilt. It looked like this when it was new: a classic Shaker design. 

I think it's about 18 years old. Whatever, a lot of the white pieces round the edges are badly worn because I used an ancient family counterpane for them. I thought mending it would be a nice convalescent activity, sitting by the fire, and that it would probably take a couple of days to complete. But the more I unpick to replace, the more worn pieces I see, and it's turned into a big project. I can't deny that I've been inspired by The Repair Shop. But also by Dave, who has been making clocks with wooden faces out of discarded new worktop pieces for the three children. He sees them as ‘legacy items.’

Yes, that is his stained glass on the windowsill behind him.

Thinking of ‘legacy items’ made me realise that I am fond of this patchwork, because it’s pretty even though it's faded, and I couldn't bear to leave it in such a poor condition when I die that no-one in the family - or even a charity shop - would want it and it would be thrown away. 

I’ll be continuing with the work on it today. I’m hoping to be well enough for a walk by Friday. 😊 

How am I doing in the stoicism stakes?


Anonymous said...

You are leading the way in stoicism. I hope your planned trip to see your family can take place soon. Your posts motivate and bring perspective in equal measure. I am on my third rereading of Days are Where We Live - it is officially my number one comfort read when the world just feels too tough. Thank you for all you create - wishing you a good steady recovery x

Sue Hepworth said...

Thank you, whoever you are.
Your comment means a lot. xx