So at the beginning of May we should have travelled to the Isle of Wight to complete a 50km ultra-challenge in aid of Sarcoma UK. Me, Pete and my brother Mike were doing this for Sarcoma UK and my friend Sandra was doing it for a charity close to her heart.
Obviously the pandemic has put paid to all of these events, however we had raised a substantial amount in funding already. So I came up with the idea of us still doing the ultra-challenge, but doing it in sunny Bury (North Manchester instead) – So this Friday we will be walking 10k, close to home, and then rest and re-fuel and take our positions on treadmills to do the other 40k on our driveway!
We have created a Facebook page to stream live some sections of our challenge, and for people to leave us good luck messages, give us a cheer etc.
If you wish to see us (albeit red-faced) or support us in anyway, please see the links below:
I know my blog is normally about sobriety and I’ve not blogged for ages, but wanted to do so today. I’ve been so busy in my role as a Procurement Manager for Northern Care Alliance – (Salford Royal NHS and Pennine Acute NHS Trust). I’m not on the front line, BUT we are business critical and still based on site to support at such a critical time during this pandemic. We are responsible for providing Protective equipment for the staff as well as medical equipment for patient care. In fact everything that is purchased to make a hospital run comes through procurement.
So how can you help NHS colleagues?
Clap on a Thursday
How heart-warming is this and obviously it’s not just for NHS staff, it’s for key staff, of which there are so many, all doing such a great job!
Goes without saying really! – Easter leave is cancelled for me and my team please don’t be going out for a day trip and making this pandemic last longer than it needs to!
Sponsor a Nurses Hands:
The nurse’s hands are suffering massively as a result of the extra hand washing and harsh hand sanitiser. I’ve seen lots of initiatives for sending hand creams into hospitals and our hospitals have benefited from having Tropic luxury hand cream, body shop products and faith in nature skincare – which is truly amazing. I thought I’d try and add to this and deliver some hand creams to the wards too.
If you would like to provide a Tropic Skincare Luxury hand cream to a nurse at Salford Royal – click here, and I will distribute to some of the wards. I will also write a hand written card with the names of the donors on so they know who has helped them in this time of need. I will post a picture of them being donated.
Tropic skincare is a very kind and ethical company and I’ve been an ambassador for a number of years. During this pandemic I’ve been incredibly impressed with them helping the NHS as well as promoting self-care. Currently they have free delivery on orders for £30 plus some limited edition pamper packages for self-care. The profits from the pamper packages is used for production of hand sanitiser for NHS Trusts. I’m already a distributor of the hand sanitiser for Salford Royal and Pennine acute – if you want to support this initiative by buying a pamper pack for you or a friend (obviously you can buy other products too: https://tropicskincare.com/pages/suetickle
Lastly, thank you for reading and supporting the NHS and for those of you that watched BBC’s junior doctors last year, here are the stars of the show with a short video on staying safe: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PcSo_ogM-tc
Take care of yourselves and your families and stay safe Xx
It’s been a while since I blogged and it’s been absolutely crazy!! A few things I’ve been doing:
Work, It’s crazy full stop, I say to Pete every day, wow work was dead manic today. I’ve said this every day for 2 years – so maybe this is my job, crazy manic madness!
Run club, Run Together Whitefield is going from strength to strength – for a while now we have been this bunch of 16 volunteers leading 130+ runners per week. As we are doing lots of new things, we needed more leaders. So we now have another 6. Wow! We never ever realised how big we were going to be. This is such a massive thing for our local running community. We are now running more specific programs which is super exciting.
Sobriety Group, I’m also involved in a sobriety community group and have been appointed events co-ordinator for arranging the afternoon tea’s around the country. Not a bad little job ha! These events are bloody wonderful and full of gorgeous sober people! We are even having a little walking break in Cumbria organised by yours truly.
Hiking friends, I started a little hiking friends Facebook page to arrange hill hiking as part of my ultra-training, there were 6 people in the beginning a few weeks ago and this week there are 60+ people in the group. We have hikes most weeks in the Manchester area and people absolutely love it! The great outdoors, getting fit and with friends – what’s not to love!
Parkrun Volunteering, I’m almost at 25 volunteering sessions! One more to go – when you reach 25 you get a free t-shirt. Let’s be honest I’m not doing all of this for the t-shirt. I’m doing this because I absolutely LOVE my local park-run. They are so supportive and welcoming and Heaton Park Park-run have been in my sobriety toolkit from day 1.
500 days sober, Well that feels pretty awesome, I reached 500 days sober this week – that’s 500 days without ‘hanxiety’, without drama, without me counting down the hours until I can put shit in my body for absolutely no reward whatsoever. I woke up! Honestly the best thing ive ever done for myself!
As if all that is not enough, a few things I have coming up
Ultra-Marathon training – yeah, I’ve not really done much apart from the hill hikes, but it’s still not enough miles. I really need to get my arse out more!
Charity Clothes swap – I’m throwing a clothes swap for charity and hoping to raise hundreds of pounds for Sarcoma UK. The research they carry out, saves people’s lives, like my sister! The clothes swap and Ultra Marathon are to raise funds for Sarcoma UK – https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ticklesandclarke
Sarcoma UK Ball, my sister is arranging the event in London tomorrow and I have a gorgeous new frock. I cannot wait; I’ve never been to London for more than an hour. I’m so excited.
Hike and Yoga Retreat – me and my friend Lesley (a yoga teacher) decided to put together a yoga retreat and I popped a post on to see if anyone fancied coming along. What I didn’t expect was 45 people ask for the information and complete a survey monkey. That’s crazy and exciting in equal measures! Watch this space for more details on that.
‘Inspiring Women’ awards – March is the month I will find out if I’ve been shortlisted for the above awards that I was nominated for back in December (and again in January) fingers crossed I get through to the next stage.
Phew I’m tired just writing all that, so much exciting stuff – all of it I’m certain is as a result of my sobriety
Have a wonderful weekend people – I’m off to get ready for London Xx
I’ve said it before that writing this blog is a great way of working through my thoughts and feelings, a type of therapy. This type of working through feelings is still all new to me, I never dealt with the feelings before, I just drank to numb them and block them out.
Almost 4 years ago my wonderful Dad passed away, quite suddenly. This left a massive gaping hole our family and our lives.
Personally is I absolutely used it as an excuse to hit the bottle even harder than normal, I cried more….every single day, I was incredibly sad as you would expect. So for 2 years I was even more out of control, by the day. My alcohol consumption increased massively and I was a complete and utter knob by this time. You’d think watching my dad drink extremely heavily for years would have made me steer well clear of the life destructive poison, but no! I wasn’t the type of person to be sensible.
Anyway, today I went to Kenmore in Scotland where Dad’s final resting place is, I’ve been here a few times before and each time I’ve been incredibly blackout drunk and out of control. We had a family wedding up here in 2015 my brother got Married when dad was still alive, he passed away a few months later. We then came up again to scatter dads ashes here in 2017, we came back up the year after to visit…. all 3 events extremely alcohol fueled. Today I came back to Kenmore 15 months sober, no poison left in my body and absolutely in the best place of my life ever!
I called just to say ‘Hi’ today and see this beautiful place that will always remain one of my favourite places I’ve ever been. However, It did get me wondering…. did my Dad know how much I’ve completely turned my life around? did he know I’d graduated from my Degree and have letters after my name? did he know I was now a Procurement Manager? did he know I was an ultra-marathoner and that I’d co-founded a massive running club for all abilities? Did he know I still raised thousands of pounds each year for cancer charities to help others and did he know I’d been nominated for 2 ‘Inspired Women’ awards this year?
My thoughts are yes he will know, and I suspect and like to think that he’d be very proud of his little girl! Xx
PS. Thanks to Pete for taking a 2 hours detour to say Hi to Dad x
So I’m always banging on about my shiny new life and rightly so. It’s pretty amazing and I wouldn’t change it for the world. ❤
However…I’m still normal …I still get stressed and over commit like I used to, only now I can cope with it so much better. I used to get stressed and head straight for the bottle of wine or 2. Although to be honest, I did this if I wasn’t stressed too.
I used to say I was stressed and drink helped me to cope, but actually drinking heavily every day and being awake from 3am suffering from anxiety was making me stressed. It was a viscous circle. A horrible stressy horrible viscous horrible circle. (You get the gist)
I’m currently stressed, I know because I cancelled a run tonight….that not like me! Work is friggin crazy, outside work is …well normal but hectic. Its ‘sue crazy!’ I’m training for my ultra challenges, organising charity events, running club stuff is mega busy, parkrun every weekend, exercising most days. How do I fit it all in? I certainly dont know how I used to fit it all in whilst drunk all of the time!
Some people would say dont do so much (very sensible advice) But, well I love it…most of it. The being busy, making the most of my sobriety and I’m certainly living my best life!
So what am I going to do to deal with all the stress. Well tomorrow I’m off to a gong bath (no idea if I’ll like it – never been) I’ll let you know how that goes! Saturday morning is park run (obviously) and then an alcohol free festival in Manchester in the afternoon. I’m going with a sober friend who is celebrating 12 months sobriety on Saturday. So proud of her and looking forward to a really lovely time.
Next week I’m having a few chilled days accompanying Pete on his work travels. I’ll be in Aberdeen for a few days. I’m going to go for long walks along the seafront whilst listening to podcasts and then sit in cafes on the front reading my book. I might be kidding myself, but this is certainly the intention.
So the difference in how I deal with stress now is to think about it (rather than hide at the bottom of a bottle) make changes if I need to and make positive steps in doing so. And hopefully learn from it 😂😂
What are your coping with stress tools? Do you reach for the bottle or assess the situation and go for a walk, exercise or talk it through with a friend?
Hi All. Ive been super busy and quiet, sorry! How is everyone? How is Dry January going? (if you are partaking)
I’d love to hear how you are getting on and shall be sharing this blog post on my ‘all shiny and new’ Facebook page. Let’s have a chat, share ideas, tell us your challenges and let us help. (Screenshot of my Facebook page below)
If you are smashing Dry January or sober 2020. Then you have my upmost admiration. Huge congratulations, and keep up the good work
The sober community, Instagram and Facebook community are buzzing with advice and inspiration. Get in touch if you want pointing in the right direction
So you thought it was a good idea and thought you’d be fine, but now you might be getting twitchy, anxious, bored and narky. Your mind might be wondering – ‘Could I just have one drink?’ It would take away the boredom right? So, I thought I’d be nice and come up with some suggestions to keep you occupied. You need to occupy your time, brain and body! Ready….
• Go for a walk, run or swim • Walk the dog, if you don’t have one, borrow one • De-clutter your wardrobe • Do yoga on you tube or from an app • Meditate • Colour in, buy an adult colouring book and some felt tips – I have seen sweary ones, rude animal ones, mandalas and unicorn themed colouring books! I bet you are on amazon looking at the rude Animals one now 😉 • Jigsaw, Board games, Sudoku, brain teasers • Join an online forum for sober people, or dry Januaryers, or such • Go to go ape • Sign up for a new challenge • Sort out your utensil draw • Batch cook • Go to the cinema • Go for coffee with a sober or dry January friend • Have a lie in and watch a movie in bed with a brew • Make a 30, 60, 90 day life plan • Start a blog • Keep a journal • Get crafty – Crochet or knit • Volunteer • Watch cheesy movies • Find a new box set • Telephone a friend • Go to the Gym • Try Boogie bounce or something that’s going to get you active but make you laugh • Go to a comedy show • Go to the theatre • Have a bubble bath with candles • Treat yourself to a new book
There you go, don’t tell me you are bored now! I know some of these things cost money and take time and effort, but this is what you will have more of as a result of not drinking, I promise!
Dont they haunt you!? I know memories are supposed to be a wonderful thing but that’s only if the memories are in fact wonderful and joyous. If you were a drunken prick like me, with daily pricklike behaviour and almost daily blackouts from excessive boozing, the memories are not so good.
Facebook memories are of course what I’m talking about, real memories wont exist because of the alcohol, but Facebook is there as a constant friggin reminder.
Each day’s memories, that I can tell were alcohol fuelled, ramblings that didn’t make sense and a million pictures of a glass of wine! I was actually such a prick!
There is a pattern in these memories. The ones from longer ago, about 5 or 6 years ago were posted late at night. The most recent ones from just before I stopped drinking, they were sozzled posts from about 8PM if not earlier. If you were friends with me then, I’m really surprised you are still friends with me now. I was a nightmare for drunken wittering!
I’m now starting to encounter some nicer memories from last year of me with alcohol free fizz. Usually with clear skin, bright eyes and mental clarity and enthusiasm that is becoming the norm. These are the kind of memories that I love. They really reinforce that I have absolutely made the right decision to change my life for the better!
If you are coming across memories frequently that you would like to change due to excessive alcohol consumption, reach out and seek help. Do it today….
There is honestly so much help, support and inspiration out there. I made the mistake of thinking I was totally alone with my problem. This really isn’t the case, let me point you in the direction you may need.
I hope you have had a wonderful festive season and looking forward to whatever normality has in store for you, I’ve spent the whole day in PJ’s eating copious amounts of food after doing 2 park runs this morning! Definitely not normality – but thats OK, my body needed a rest and some food and i’ll give my body what it needs.
I’ve had a life admin hour this afternoon too, still in PJ’s. I’ve booked the accommodation for the 2 ultra challenges i’m doing in May and June. I’ve booked a trail half marathon (my first ever half marathon) for February. I’ve booked an afternoon tea in a few weeks with my freind Aimi and after writing this blog I’m getting back on the couch for some more TV bullshit.
I have signed up for Red January which is about being active everyday to promote better mental health and beat any January Blues. I tried Red January last year and burnt myself out after 7 days so have plotted in my activities for this January but in more manageable distances / sessions. I’m doing walking, running, yoga and swimming.
I have a nice day planned for tomorrow, a bit of exercise, then the theatre with my Mum to watch the Bodyguard and then a little break in Llandudno for me and Pete. cant wait!
What did you today for you? Did you think about your goals for 2020 or will they wait until another day. I hope you have at least have had some self care time today.
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