I’m tired, really bloody tired.  No, I don't have children and no, my life isn't particularly stressful.  I don't have a ton of worries, well, at least nothing earth shattering, no ones dying, I have a roof over my head and I can afford to eat, drink and be fairly merry.  But I'm still entitled to be absolutely fucking knackard sometimes.

The fear of sleep


For the longest time I was so easily able to fall asleep on the sofa.  Almost every night, Adam would shake me awake and send me on my way.  I would gracelessly ascend the staircase, fumble in the dark, trying to locate my bed and fall, oh so elegantly into my pit, falling deep into a wonderful slumber. 

Just after my dad passed away, I developed real problems sleeping, every time I closed my eyes, I'd see such horrible things, I would often stare at my phone most of the night, until I fell asleep out of sheer exhaustion, slowly, overtime, I got better, my mind got better and my sleep went back to normal, until recently.

Sleep paralysis, was something I had never actually heard of until one night a few years ago, when I first experienced it.  As horrifying as it was, it didn't happen again and I put it out of my mind, however in the last 6 months, I have experienced sleep paralysis approximately 14 times, with the most recent occurrence at about 2am on Tuesday 14th November.

I woke up in a pool of sweat, I was so hot, feeling claustrophobic and completely wrapped up in my duvet, I saw something move on the ceiling, my eyes flashed to the dark figure, floating above my head, just to the right of the light fixture.   I tried to move, but I couldn't, I tried to speak, scream, anything, but I was numb. I knew exactly what was happening, so I closed my eyes and began to breathe, rationalising what was happening to me and telling myself that I was fine, 'you're fine, you're ok, this has happened before, you will be fine!'

Finally I could move, but the figure was still there, it looked like a Jellyfish, but it couldn't be, could it? On the ceiling? That’s ridiculous! The rational part of my brain concluded it must be a spider, so I ran to the light switch and flicked it on, I was suddenly jolted awake by the bright light, there was nothing there and I was completely and totally confused.  I couldn't really remember, why I was out of bed, or what I was doing and it took me a few minutes to recall what had actually happened.  I climbed back into bed, looked everywhere incase the 'Jellyfish' had fallen onto my bed and eventually I fell back to sleep.

When I woke up the next day, I had completely forgotten about what had happened in the night, until Adam asked me about the Jellyfish and if I remembered, I did, it all came back to me and it was fucking horrible.

 
Medical Definition of Sleep paralysis

Sleep paralysis: A frightening form of paralysis that occurs when a person suddenly finds himself or herself unable to move for a few minutes, most often upon falling asleep or waking up. Sleep paralysis is due to an irregularity in passing between the stages of sleep and wakefulness.
The symptoms of sleep paralysis include sensations of noises, smells, levitation, paralysis, terror, and images of frightening intruders. Once considered very rare, up to half of all people are now believed to experience sleep paralysis sometime during their life. Sleep paralysis is not considered to be a sign of a serious condition, although it can be frightening.

Sleep paralysis occurs as a person is moving into or out of REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, the deepest part of sleep. During REM sleep, the body is largely disconnected from the brain, effectively leaving the body paralysed. Sleep paralysis is the result of premature (or persistent) mind-body disconnection as one is about to enter into (or exit from) REM sleep.

Sleep paralysis occurs most often after jet lag or periods of sleeplessness that interrupt the normal REM patterns, or after changes in sleep patterns. It affects both sexes equally and occurs at all ages but is most common in teenagers. Medically, sleep paralysis is sometimes called waking paralysis, predormital (before-sleep) paralysis, postdormital (after-sleep) paralysis, and REM sleep atonia.

Medically reviewed by Martin Zipser, MD; Board Certified: Surgery

Is Sleep Paralysis a Symptom of a Serious Problem?


To put it simply, no. In most cases, sleep paralysis is simply a sign that your body is not moving smoothly through the stages of sleep. Rarely is sleep paralysis linked to deep underlying psychiatric problems.

Over the centuries, symptoms of sleep paralysis have been described in many ways and often attributed to an "evil" presence: unseen night demons in ancient times, the old hag in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, and alien abductors. Almost every culture throughout history has had stories of shadowy evil creatures that terrify helpless humans at night. People have long sought explanations for this mysterious sleep-time paralysis and the accompanying feelings of terror.

Who Develops Sleep Paralysis? 

Up to as many as four out of every 10 people may have sleep paralysis. This common condition is often first noticed in the teen years. But men and women of any age can have it. Sleep paralysis may run in families. Other factors that may be linked to sleep paralysis include:

Lack of sleep
Sleep schedule that changes
Mental conditions such as stress or bipolar disorder
Sleeping on the back
Other sleep problems such as narcolepsy or nighttime leg cramps
Use of certain medications, such as those for ADHD
Substance abuse

How Is Sleep Paralysis Diagnosed?


If you find yourself unable to move or speak for a few seconds or minutes when falling asleep or waking up, then you may be experiencing sleep paralysis.
Check with your doctor if you have any concerns, or if your symptoms are affecting your sleep or day to day life.  My doctor asked me to keep a sleep diary, to check for instances when I experienced any problems with my sleep and also to note down the time I went to bed/woke up and also when I experienced feelings of stress or anxiety, as feeling anxious often triggers my sleep paralysis.


Taking action


I don't enjoy feeling fearful of falling asleep and I certainly don't enjoy feeling knackard all of the time, I have been on various prescribed medications, which have not only, not worked, but have also made me feel even more like a zombie, which is the exact opposite of how I want to feel.

Over time, I have taken myself off of various medications and found alternative ways to help with my sleep, which in all honesty, I haven't been doing lately, which is why I’m having so many problems falling asleep, so I've decided to take action and look after myself, to ensure I avoid any ceiling Jellyfish in the future.

My tips and tricks


Exercise - I know, I know, exercise is bullshit, I for one, am only up for running if I’m being chased, but here’s the thing, its good for you! Up until recently, I went to the gym at least 3 times a week and was a member of a running club and I felt great! I was losing weight, getting healthier, feeling better about myself, making friends and sleeping like a young pup! (I never understood when people used the phrase, 'sleeping like a baby' Like, do they even sleep? I thought they just cried?) anyway, I digress, I felt fucking fabulous! But it is a truth universally acknowledged that when one part of your life starts going okay, another falls spectacularly to pieces and that is when the exercise regime went right out of the window and work took over, as per bloody usual! So here it is, numero uno, of my feel better, sleep better, plan of action:

- Start exercising again, you fat bitch.

Water - Just drink it, for fuck sake, I’m not banging on about this, because you're not an idiot, are you? Drink the bloody water!  The human body is made up of 50 - 75% water, without it, we do not function and that’s when things start going wrong! Things like our ability to sleep properly.  I drink approximately three litres of water a day, on a good day, but I know I’ve been neglecting that lately.  No, three litres is not too much, I'm not going to drown, are you going to dry up from lack of water? No, stop asking stupid questions, your skin will look shit and your liver and Kidneys will hate you, but you wont dry up, the same way, I wont drown.  If you Google how much water you need to consume for your weight, height and activity level, you should easily find the answer.

-Drink more water!



Sleep aids - as I said I’ve been put onto prescription medication to aid my sleep, anxiety and in the past, even depression.  I’m now off of all of these medications, because I didn't want to be on them anymore and they made me feel like a zombie!  I am by no means saying there is anything wrong with these types of medications, they helped me in my time of need, but I personally didn't want to be reliant on them.

I’ve tried various herbal sleep aids and natural aids to help with anxiety, I couldn't really tell you which of these work the best because at one point I was literally taking them all at once.  There is a very helpful aisle in boots which stocks an array of sleep and anxiety aids, you can get drops for your tongue, pastels to chew, tablets, sprays, all sorts.  Lately I have been using a sleep spray and roll on balm, to help encourage sleep, this one from this works, is a cute little combo of a spray for your pillow, which is supposed to be calming and also a roll on balm, for your pulse points, for when you're feeling a bit stressed, I believe the oils are frankincense and eucalyptus, but I've lost the box, so I may be wrong, but anything like this is really helpful, I also find diluted lavender oil sprayed onto my pillow is very relaxing and helps me fall asleep.

- Use more sleep aids


Other people - Don't let other peoples issues creep into your life, if someone has an issue, or is causing unnecessary drama in your life, try not to sweat it, try to remember, its their problem, not yours, its not up to you to make everyone else feel good, especially when you're feeling like shit, yourself! Obviously be a good person and help out people when you can, just don't let people walk all over you and don't put other peoples stresses onto yourself.  To quote a quote that Adam stole from someone else - 'Don't set yourself on fire to keep other people warm'.

- Step away from the drama

ASMR - Finally I wanted to talk about something, I use every single day without fail before I fall asleep.  You're going to think I'm a nutter now, but stay with me, I am an OG ASMR watcher.  I know what your thinking, 'what the fuck is ASMR?' or 'ASMR is so creepy' and yes, you're partially correct, but if you have tried everything else and you're on the verge of knocking yourself out just to get a decent bloody nights sleep, then you'll try anything and Im so glad I did! Honestly, the best part of my day now, is laying in bed, putting in my headphones and finding one of my favourite ASMR videos to watch, or even just listen to.

Autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR) is a term used for an experience characterised by a static-like or tingling sensation on the skin that typically begins on the scalp and moves down the back of the neck and upper spine. It has been compared with auditory-tactile synesthesia.  I don't really get the tingly sensation, but I do find the videos relaxing and they nearly always send me off to sleep.  Generally I wake up with headphones tangled around my neck, so there is a partial risk of death, but for a cracking nights sleep, I'm willing to take my chances.

Here is a link to a video, with a short explanation of what ASMR actually is and also a few of my favourite ASMR artists, its weird at first, but give it a chance, especially if you've tried everything else.




The decision to re-do the bedroom came to me at about 4 o'clock in the morning, when I was rudely awoken by a horrible dream, one of those ones where you’re falling and are suddenly jolted awake, this time, however, it turned out not to be a dream at all.  Effing and blinding, I dragged myself from my pit, Adam and the dog were virtually on top of me as I dragged myself free from the ruins of the collapsed bed.  We all clambered out from the crumpled structure, sleepily struggled to lift up the mattress and returned the slats to their correct position.  Cursing Ikea, for their shoddy quality, I grumpily returned back to my slumber, utterly pissed off for being disturbed.

Our bedroom is an array of missed matched furniture, bedsheets which have seen better days and curtains, which do not protect my corneas from the bright white street lights, placed directly outside of the window.




This afternoon has mostly been spent dog walking, eating mince pies and sitting by the fire pinning things to my bedroom homewears wishlist, I thought Id share with you a few of the things I have my eye on at the moment!  Honestly guys, I am so excited to buy a new bed, never knowing when you're next going to fall through the bloody thing, does not make for a restful nights sleep!

Beds

First up, beds, these are a few I have my eye on, I’m thinking of investing in a king size bed, as we would really love a bit more space to spread out, this would involve buying a new mattress though, which would really bump up the price.  My favourite here, has to be the Argos bed, I love everything about this one, I really like the other two as well, obviously we haven't been very impressed with the ikea bed, but this one is an absolute bargain, so its definitely up for consideration.



BRENT BED - MAISONS DU MONDE
LEIRVIK BED - IKEA
HEART OF THE HOUSE NEWBURY BED - ARGOS

Bed side tables

As you can probably tell, I'm loving all things Maisons Du Monde at the moment and that especially applies to their bed side tables.  I haven't firmly stuck to tables specifically for the bedroom here, as there are a lot of tables designed for the living room, that would fit perfectly within the space, below are a few of my favourites, Im not really into matchy matchy, so we'll probably opt for two different styles for each side of the bed.
VINTAGE TWO DRAWER BEDSIDE TABLE - MAISONS DU MONDE

COPPER FINISH SIDE TABLE - MAISONS DU MONDE


GLASS AND GOLD SIDE TABLE - MAISONS DU MONDE


MARBLE AND GOLD SIDE TABLE - MAISONS DU MONDE

Accessories

Im really loving pink, gold and green at the moment, so i think these accessories would set the room off perfectly!

BLACK AND GOLD PLANTER - MAISONS DU MONDE
PINK HANGING PLANTER - MAISONS DU MONDE
PINK PATTERNED CERAMIC PLANTER - MAISONS DU MONDE
MILLICENT MIRROR - PERCH AND PARROW
PINK LAMP - OLIVER BONAS
PINK CHAIR - MADE

Artwork

Finally I really want a feature wall, above the bed, full of prints, here are a selection of my favourite picks from Dessenio

ALL AVAILABLE FROM DESENIO



After an incredibly long week, I had some much needed wine time with my colleagues and it occurred to me just how important the people in my professional life are to me.

From my ‘work besties’ to my ‘work mums’ each and every one of them plays an important role in my day-to-day working life, especially when I am forced to spend an entire week with them.

From the ‘stay up all nighters’ to the ‘Bedfordshire dwellers’, each and every one of them plays an important role in my professional working life.

First off, the ‘work besties’ the few and far betweeners, without whom, we would simply fall apart.  They entertain our constant bitching with appreciation and empathy, their meme tagging game is on point and they stand united with our new found tendencies to become functioning alcoholics whilst away on a work week, or as I affectionately call it, ‘hell week’ Thankfully there is always more than enough wine stuffed into our oversized handbags to satisfy our thirst and fuel our evening dialogue (ahem, gossip)

‘Work mums’, the type of women, that always have your back, but wouldn’t hesitate to pour you that 3rd glass of wine, whilst simultaneously discussing something rather rude and crude.  The glam squad who don’t look a day over 30 but have a son, who ‘would be perfect for you!’ I am constantly shocked at how any of these women could possibly have children the same age as me?! What is your skin care routine? I must know immediately!  




Good colleagues are hard to find, but great ones, are fucking mythical, like unicorns and I can safely say that mine are absolutely bloody superb.

BLAZER: ASOS
TEE: TOPSHOP
NECKLACE: RIVER ISLAND
TROUSERS: PRIMARK
SHOES: ASOS




I really wanted to title this post 'Turtleneck and chain' for obvious reasons and for anyone who loves The Lonely Island, as much as I do, you'll understand the reference.



I wasn't sure about the double breasted blazer trend, but my inner sheep had to jump on the band wagon, especially as blazers are an essential part of any staple office wear wardrobe.  These have been all over the high street lately, with my stand out favourite being a gorgeous oversized checked blazer, I tried on in TOPSHOP, which I later went back to purchase, only to find it had sold out.  Fortunately I came across this little dupe on ASOS, so I bagged it, before everyone else did.  I love this blazer, its not very thick or warm, so I put a simple black polo neck jumper underneath, which I actually impulsed purchased, when I bought the blazer and I'm glad I did, because its absolutely beautiful, probably one of the nicest jumpers I own and so reasonably priced.


I'll be honest, I felt a little bit like my mum in the 80s today, a fashion era which ordinarily, I believe should be put into a box along with velour tracksuits and skirts worn over trousers and set ablaze, yet here we are.  

JUMPER: ASOS
BLACK COATED SKINNY JEANS: ZARA (LAST SEASON)
BLAZER: ASOS
SOCK BOOTS: ASOS
BAG: RIVER ISLAND





Today I thought Id keep things short and sweet, rather than rambling on and on, like usual and simply tell you what I wore today.  If you read yesterday's post, you'll know that I promised you some further follow up posts and amazingly, I've kept to my word!

Im really chuffed with these photos too, I'm still getting the hang of taking photos of myself, especially without my tripod! You know I like to keep it real with you, so to produce photos similar to these, all you'll need is some pretty terrible, dim hotel lighting, a suitcase stand, a massive pile of books, about 10 minutes and a lot of hope that your new camera doesn't topple from its precarious perch.  The things I do for these blog posts!

JUMPER DRESS: ASOS
BOOTS: NEWLOOK
NECKLACE: RIVER ISLAND

Don't forget to return for day three of the Office Edit tomorrow, which will feature pieces you wont have seen anywhere on any of my social media platforms before!













Arrgh, Monday! I really struggled to get out of bed this morning, I was rudely awoken at 6.30am by not one, but 5 alarms, which I had set the previous night to ensure I actually got the hell up!  Im one of those people that hits the snooze button and then promptly falls back to sleep, only to wake up naturally, 5 hours later, to 27 missed calls and the threat of unemployment.


But, Im getting ahead of myself, lets start from the beginning...

On Sunday night, I packed my suitcase, kissed my boyfriend goodbye and gave the dog several struggle cuddles.  I then traveled 200 miles to my current location, a fairly nice hotel, set approximately in the middle of fucking nowhere.

Every month or so,  I have to live away from home for the week, for the gloriousness that is work and being late is simply not an option, so unfortunately for me, getting up in the middle of the god damn night, (ahem 6.30am) is an absolute must!

One thing that gets me up in the morning and excited for the day ahead, besides coffee, is outfit prep.  Every morning, I carefully pick out my clothes, make sure everything is perfectly ironed and laid out on the bed.  I have my lovely morning power shower and a strong black coffee, whilst watching some shit TV, like, Good Morning Britain, where I usually argue out loud with Piers Morgan.


So this was Monday...The TOPSHOP Jamie jeans made an appearance, comfy but also smart enough for my job, especially when paired with my ASOS pointed toe sock boots, this super soft, pearl embellished jumper from ZARA and of course, my snuggly camel coat from ASOS.

And finally to finish things off, a simple gold necklace from River Island, this one is part of a set, but the other one was tangled and as previously mentioned, I cannot be late and had no time for necklace detangling duty today!

BLACK FLARED JEANS: TOPSHOP
SOCK BOOTS: ASOS
PEARL EMBELLISHED JUMPER: ZARA
CAMEL COAT: ASOS
NECKLACE (PART OF A SET): RIVER ISLAND
SKINNY DIP BAG: ASOS


Oh, hi there new Skinny Dip Bag! The shape of this bag, not to mention the silver hardware, gives me serious Gucci Dionysus vibes, without the hefty price tag, I haven't named her yet, so if you have any ideas, let me know in the comments below.

So now you know what I wore today.  I hope you don't mind my mindless ramblings, writing has not come easily to me this evening, in short my little sugar plum fairies, I'm bloody knackard and slightly delirious.  My shit dinner and small glass of white wine has well and truly finished me off!  Ill be sure to post everything mentioned in my little 'shop my wardrobe' widget tomorrow and don't forget to come back for Tuesdays 'Office edit' its going to be a cracker! (warning, writing may include expletives and poor grammar).

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