The past couple of days have been quite constructive despite my mental health not being the best.

There has been a kind of fog in my mind over the past few days  and I think that it is all related to my lack of sleep.  This also aggravates my voices which of course is not a good thing.

Unless you suffer from very bad voices or very bad episodes and thus show signs of it I think it is very hard for people to understand how they can affect you or even that they are.

The sleeplessness is of course nothing new for me, nor indeed are the voices.  But the fog itself, whilst being something that I have experienced on several occasions before, is still something that I am not keen on and that tends to bother me.

I have also been very weak lately but again this is not really surprising given the lack of sleep.

But even so I am not going to dwell on this too greatly.  It is a slippery slope once you start to focus on the negative or the worrying and I am determined to try to remain positive regardless of my current mental health.

Over the past couple of days I have received a few visits from people who I knew from the church I used to attend.  The first were of course last week and came as a bit of a shock.

I do appreciate these visits and try to be friendly and hospitable but I can’t help wondering what it is about Christmas that encourages people to do what they should be doing all year round but don’t.  At the risk of sounding like the Grinch it really is a little sad that the warm and fuzzy sentimentality that is attached to the Christmas season motivates people to do things that actually we need to be doing all year round – such as having fellowship, considering the importance of Christ and taking time out to visit each other- to name but a few things.

Yesterday saw a visit from my old Pastor in the morning which went well.  We spent a little time chatting and he gave me a Christmas card and a small gift from the church by way of a thank you for my designing and managing the church website for them.

A little while after he left another couple from my old church turned up and stayed for a little while and again it was good to see them.  The too brought me a Christmas card and also some “feel-good ginger biscuits.”  I couldn’t help wondering if there was some sort of bad equivalent like “at death’s door digestives” or something.

Matt and Trish popped around yesterday evening which was good and they were kind enough to notice how tidy the house is.  This isn’t something totally new and it is nearly always tidy but since I haven’t been well for a week or two it has started going downhill a little.

Their visit also gave me an opportunity to talk to them about the three of us buying Matthew’s mum a small gift which they are picking up today.

Today I had to pop into town and pick up a couple of small presents that i had been wanting to buy and more importantly to purchase a fireguard for the open fire in my lounge.

Two nights ago whilst I was in my office a lump of hot coal had fallen off of the fire and landed on the flooring in my lounge.  Thankfully I went back in there before going to bed and noticed it burning into the flooring and managed to get it back onto the fire before it did too much damaged but it did make me think just how dangerous it could have been.  So buying a fireguard seemed like a very sensible thing to do.

I managed to get one at a very reasonable price and whilst it was slightly too big by removing one of the panels it  fits really well and is a great addition to the room as well.

This afternoon Ben, the friend whose books I edit and whose website I manage popped in just to catch up and to wish me a Merry Christmas and it really was good to see him.  Matt and Trish popped in again this evening and brought me some kindling and fire lighters for the fire. ( I had run out and needed some)

And so I am all set for Christmas now.  Actually I am not really celebrating Christmas  too much this year. There are good reasons for this.  Seeing as I am unwell and not very mobile the whole idea of decorating for Christmas just to take everything down a couple of weeks later is just too much and for me can be a little dangerous – getting up and down off of steps and the such.  When the kids were here it was different but now that I am alone I just don’t see the point of risking it and whilst Matthew and Trish would no doubt do it for me if I let them I am quite happy not decorating.

Addti0nally, for several years Christmas has pretty much focused around the Christmas morning service at church and whilst I will miss it I am really looking quite looking forwards to having a relaxed morning.

As I said before, unless your schizophrenia is very bad or you are going through a very bad episode I am not sure folk really know that you are struggling or how taking it can be trying to look or act “normal”.  Being in groups of people and social interaction can often be very stressful for me and so Christmas can be very tiring.

So whilst I have appreciated and enjoyed being with others on Christmas day ( I am usually invited out) I have for a long time been looking forward to having a very quiet Christmas on my own.

Trish and Matt will no doubt pop in first thing Christmas morning before going off to his mums.  We will open our presents together and then the rest of the day I intend to spend quietly relaxing in front of the Television and a nice warm fire.  I cannot begin to tell you how much I am looking forward to it not least of all because it means I don’t have to worry about the voices and my mental health and how this affects me around others.

I am going out tomorrow and spending Christmas Eve with friends who are very dear to me and this is always a highlight of my Christmas.

This means that I probably shall not blog tomorrow and it will give my computer and office a break LOL.

Of all the rooms in my house my office is probably the room which I spend most of my time in.  So being away from it for the day will do me good.

So tonight I am going to take a shower and try to rest.  My brain is so stressed with the voices and the fog and my body so weary with the aches.  Yes I probably have been overdoing things again.  I really do want to be at my best for tomorrow which will no doubt be a long day and so I need to do my best to rest up.

Just in case I don’t blog again before Christmas, please don’t worry, I am fine just taking a little break and I want to take this opportunity to thank all the followers of this blog and all the folk who have taken time to comment a very MERRY CHRISTMAS and to say I really do appreciate every one of you.