Eagle- eyed readers may recall that my last Blog on this subject was back in April 2017, when I wrote about Friends Without Benefits.  As we are still in the sanity-testing maelstrom, that is applying for disability benefit in the UK, it seems timely to have an update ( spoiler alert: I am not smiling or looking relieved).

To recap- I had applied in September '16 and was refused benefit. I did a Mandatory Reconsideration ( to add more evidence), and was refused again. This would have been easier to deal with if it had not happened during the period when I was struggling to accept my disability and learning to adapt to do some things and not to do others.

I am writing this propped up in bed- where I spend (at least ) 80% of my time. Within my eye-line, is a walker with wheels, a trolley I can push along when I can't carry things, and an over-bed trolley like you get in hospitals. I am propped up a little by an electric pillow raiser.

In short, I am disabled.

Around 6 weeks ago, after waiting over a year, I was notified that they had finally found a date to hear my Tribunal and it would be heard in the next town, in a courtroom. I spent the weeks leading up to the date, struggling with anxiety and other increasing health issues ( would I be well enough to go? Would I be having one of the relatively 'good' days, and would they think I was not that ill? ). So far so totally predictable.

2 days beforehand, I received a call from the clerk to the court telling us the lift ( to the room where the case would be heard), was broken, and asking if I would be able to climb and descend 8 stairs. In shock I said 'No' ( DOH! IT'S A DISABILITY CLAIM!!!!), and she said it would probably be fixed by then, and if not she would call the following day. She didn't call us.

The following day our CAB rep who was helping us, rang to  tell us the lift had NOT been mended! We asked if he and my husband would be able  to speak on my behalf, as I would not be able to access the lift. They said a very firm no...

So now we are back to the stress of waiting.....Only 8 steps stood between me and getting this whole thing over with.

So, as you may imagine, Mr H and I have not only been somewhat flared-up from the stress- we are two grouchy and disappointed Pachyderm!. Our stiff upper lips are floppy, and our English reserve has been cruelly tested...but onwards we must go!

SO...it was with a great deal of reluctance that I agreed to do a led meditation for a good friend, who wanted a short relaxation to do with an autistic group she belongs to. We spent a bit of time together trying different things, and it became apparent that
a) the group really needed a guided meditation done especially for them,
and b) I was REALLY in need of calming down MYSELF!!!.

I have not led a meditation for some years, so was a tad nervous. After several false starts and a technology malfunction, it was sorted. 

 CLICK THE LINK TO OPEN OR DOWNLOAD THE AUDIO RECORDING - you don't need to sign up for anything..

5 minute relaxing visualization

My voice sounds SO posh and SO calm, I absolutely can't recognise it as my own, and have therefore been happy to use it quite a bit, as has my friend.... The group really enjoyed it,  so I hope you will permit me to add it here, for any readers, in need of 5 minutes of relaxation, can make use of it.