Settling Down

So I have gotten a lot done in the last week and I was starting to feel a little lazy! I’ve only been in the country two weeks and I thought I need to get a lot of stuff done but now I’ve mostly done it all! I’m not sure why I thought I wasn’t going to get much done seeing as I’m not working so I really have all the time in the world to do my errands and still chill out. I’ve been trying to get up with my husband when he’s getting up for work but there have been a few days where I’ve just barely opened my eyes as he gives me a kiss goodbye. I think a lot of it has to do with me still settling and getting my internal clock adjusted to the time zone. I’ve also bought some natural sleep aid to help calm my mind as well. It’s a mixture of being next to someone who can snore with cold weather and just getting comfortable. I’m used to only getting woken up to my parents getting ready for work and my cat who would want an early morning cuddle. Now I’m awaking up because one of us has rolled over or I am expecting his alarm clock to go off or I just can’t sleep. A few times I’ve had bad dreams where I’m back in a place I don’t want to be or I had to come home and now don’t have any money to get back to England and my husband. I know those will eventually settle down since sadly this is not the first time I’ve had to deal with weird dreams like that.

 

Anyhow what I’ve been doing since I am somewhat new to the country again is having to change a few things around. Now since this isn’t my first time living in England it was probably far easier than it should have been. What I’ve done this week besides work on my CV and chill out in the front room, has been phoning a few places to change some details around or get some information. I got a NI number a few years ago when I tried to apply for a job but was never able to work the job since the NI number came a lot later than they could wait for one. So what I did today instead of writing to them was to tell them a change in my personal detail which would be my name. I had all the information they needed in order to change it and it was simply “what was your name and what is your name now?” “Okay we’ll sent you info in the next week marking the change”. And then I had to call the old medical practice I went to in Leeds to get my NHS number since I had no idea what it was and the new practice I’m trying to register with (which I don’t have a registration appointment until the new year) has it as a requirement in filling out the forms so that was also quick and easy to do. Then today I went into town to change details with the bank I’m with and then get a library card from the local library. I was so freaking happy when I managed to get all this done by noon! So now all I’m waiting on is to finish my registration forms and go to my appointment and working on my CV so I can apply for jobs after Christmas/New Year. I worried it would all be a long hard process because well, the spouse visa was a long hard process why shouldn’t everything else be right? Now I did have someone I went to school with years ago tell me how he’s interested in my status updates since he has applied for a job in the UK. So if you’re reading this just let me tell you that if you do get the job, your employment should be the one getting you the NI Number but if they don’t you can find out more on it from gov.uk for the National Insurance Number. Now I’m not really sure how it works with getting a NHS number either but since you’ll be new the country they’ll probably apply for one for you from whatever practice you choose to register with but don’t quote me on that cause it could be different and I don’t know it. I’ve found looking on expat forums to be horrible because all the do is worry me more and tell me inaccurate information because every person and case is different when it comes to immigration and trying to get settled. I think I may have it easy since this isn’t my first time and I’m married to a British Citizen. I dread the day when I start taking driving lessons with a manual as well as on the left side of the road. But for now I’m happy to rely on my mother-in-law for a car ride or using the buses or trains or my own two feet to get me anywhere. (Taxis are special occasions when either the public transport is done for the night or it’s too far to get home on a bus).

So yeah I’m pretty settled now I think. We’re all getting used to each other and finding our own ways. Most mornings when Mike leaves I let the cat out and then sometimes let him in my room cause I miss my cuddling and the purring is very soothing. Sadly it does not work at night when we’re in bed cause there is most definitely not enough room for 3! Anyhow today is my husband’s birthday so I’m going to take advantage of the tv and PS4 while he’s still at work! ūüėČ

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My IUS Experience Day One

Oh what it is to be a woman sometimes.

I’ve been to the doctor today. Nothing serious is wrong with me but I’ve been wanting to change the birth control I’m on. I’m not going to get into the details of why but the current pill I’m on was not working for me in many ways after being on for like 6 months. Unfortunately the nurse I saw about 3 appointments ago couldn’t put me on the combined pill again. It has to do with my BMI which I’m currently working on. Though this past weekend was a bad weekend for staying on track. I’m back on the wagon again. Anyway the nurse gave me some other options to consider. First there was the Implant in the arm which I would have for 3 years. I know I have a cousin that is using that currently but she got it for a trial thing so I don’t know if it’s actually available in the states. But since it was a trial and she has no health insurance she got it for free. Then there was two other options which were a IUD and an IUS. The difference being the IUS releases a bit of hormones and the IUD does not but they’re the same T shaped thing. They both last 5 years. When I was back in the states I had heard of them there but I was under the impression that you needed to be in a serious relationship for it for like 2 years and/or have had at least 1 kid. That might have been way back when it first came out and may have been based on a certain insurance company. I don’t know either way, I very well could be wrong but I was under the impression I couldn’t get one because I hadn’t been in a relationship (at the time at least) and definitely have never had a kid. So back to now when I’ve been told I can have it and don’t have to pay for it. That pretty much solves my worries over what I’m gonna do about birth control when I go back home since I won’t be covered on my parents health insurance anymore and as of yet don’t have any kind of job coming up that will.

So last week I went in and talked with someone and she basically talked it over with me in a bit more detail and got some information from me. And then we made my appointment. When she told me today was available I of course jumped at it because I seriously am sick of this stuff I’m on. On to today when I arrive for my appointment. I don’t know why but I almost always am nervous when I come to the doctor. I don’t think I was back home but I had been seeing that doctor since I was a kid and had a way of getting around. This place is about a 10-15 minute walk from where I live depending on if I have the energy to get up this massive hill. Today I kind of did. But I like I said I’m nervous when I go in because I don’t know who is waiting on me and when I’ll be called, a few times I’ve been early so they saw me early and other times I’ve had to wait a long time. I was booked for a half hour appointment and when I was called I actually had 3 people there for me. One was a nurse, one was the person performing the procedure and was a guest doctor of some kind. I think she came in only to do that and then a third woman who I think was also a doctor and was there to assist. So I was told the risks and talked about how it would go. It went alright though it seemed like it went for a lot longer than I expected. I’ve had exams down there and this was not as quick as I thought it would be. They had to apply a few things to let them take effect like a¬†cleanser and some kind of numbing gel. Though it sure didn’t seem like it numbed it that much. The nurse basically talked to me to keep me from focusing on what was going on and I guess to keep me calm. But damn did I get some major cramps! I actually had to do some breathing exercising from a Pilates video¬†I recently watched and basically lost all¬†concentration¬†on what I was saying to the nurse. They were really nice though. I did get to a point where I wanted to just get up but I couldn’t and wondered why they hadn’t put the damn thing in already. I got an IUS by the way. It seemed to be the best choice for me out of the three. But after the whole thing was finally done with. I got to lay there and relax a bit while the cramping died down. I was also told to take it easy and don’t move real quick or fast. I realized what they meant with the cramping coming back if I moved too fast. So I walked home with legs feeling like jelly, don’t know if that was from the walk up the hill or just the whole thing that went down. But I seriously wanted to die when I got home. The cramps were so bad and I basically had to lay on my back perfectly still until they subsided a little. I seem to be okay now though the right side is kind of sore and giving trouble every once in a while. I’m thinking the right¬†ovary¬†is like “WHAT THE HELL IS THIS THING?” While the left has seem to accept it has a wall up. Either way I feel loads better than I did this morning. Ice cream helped as well as laying in bed watching movies. I’ll probably be taking more painkillers until I go to bed today but right now I think I’ll make myself a late lunch and see about working on one of my papers like I was wanting to.

Oh and if I was too graphic in my¬†explanation¬†of what happened. Try having it done to you! There was plenty I left out. I can say now though that if this was that painful, I’d hate to see what I do in childbirth. I really wanted to be knocked out or sick from how bad it felt. It didn’t last long though. And it’s good for 5 years so it was worth it. I hope. lol I go see the doctor again in about 6 weeks to make sure all is well.

Oops I forgot a title…

Well another week has gone by for me with school.

I finally heard something about the new class I was trying to change to. I’m signed up for it and already trying to figure out what to do. I’m thankfully not behind because they just decided this week to do it. It’s also a distant learning class so I only have like 2 days next month that I need to go in and beyond that it’s all self-study. Yay! Pretty much a similar schedule to last semester though now I have my dissertation to worry about. I think I’m pretty much on schedule with things though. I do need to get a general idea about what I’m writing about for 3 classes, and then figure out a presentation for my dissertation and a group presentation (which I am loathing the idea of. I prefer to work by myself because past experience has told me I can’t rely on others for help. And I get total control over what I’m doing.)

Anyway a few things to talk about. A weird encounter with a new classmate from last week. Today’s rejection of being on a bone marrow donation list and an update on my cold. Yeah the cold thing is so exciting…but now I feel I must share.

So first with last Thursday. It was the class I’m having a group presentation in and it was near the end of class. We were finishing up meeting with our group and talking over stuff. When a classmate came up to me asking me some stuff. A few weeks ago he had come into another class late and then later that week asked me where a class was. I figured he was a January starter so I told him what the thing meant by G and where to find the room. I also told him where the next class would be and that I would be in that one. I was there once so I¬†sympathized¬†and it was obvious he wasn’t from England. Last week he started asking me more questions about stuff that really wasn’t for me to answer. I told him he would have to check online or check with his course leader. He then started asking me a few questions about myself. I was used to it because it’s not common to have an American in the UK for grad school at least in Leeds that is. I had given him my email cause he asked for it, I honestly can’t remember the reason why but now I regret that I did. So as we were walking out of the room (we ended up being the last ones, don’t know how that happened). He started saying we could study together and that he was singled and lived alone so it would be okay. And asked if I go out a lot during the week. I then realized, oh crap he likes me! So I immediately and¬†nonchalantly informed him that I don’t go out much during the week and I spend most weekends with MY BOYFRIEND. And he was like oh, this is okay, we can still do work or something like that. By that point I had stopped listening and was just thinking how fast can I get away. Of course he followed me and then started saying he drove and had a full¬†license and could give me a ride home. I declined and said I pay for a bus pass. He tried to ask me where I lived too and I gave him a general area. He had no idea where that was PHEW! It then got to the point where I was wondering if he was gonna follow me to the bus stop and I said, Where are you parked, I just want to make sure you’re not going out of your way, and he informed he was going to the library. We then parted ways and I tried to legged it to the bus stop. It was kind of pointless because I had already missed my bus but I was honestly creeped out. His obvious way of saying he was single and asking me personal questions was one thing but for him to offer me a ride when I don’t know a thing about it really bothered me. I told Mike about it immediately and he said he was probably just trying to be nice which I understand but I being where I’m from. You don’t accept rides from strangers (honestly I think that the standard all over but maybe he didn’t understand that.) and I didn’t like all the personal questions after a while. I’ve been taught from a young age that you need to be careful and prevent any kind harm to yourself and it has probably made me a bit paranoid especially around strange men I don’t know. But I’d rather be safe than sorry. Anyway since that incident, I’ve seen him twice. Earlier this week he was in another class and we had to be in a group together. I made as little eye contact as possible and barely talked to him. He kept asking questions about where we were in the discussion. I was starting to realize he barely speaks English or understands it from others and is probably struggling but that isn’t for me to deal with. Today I didn’t have to worry about being too close to him and pretty much booked it out there asap. I was eager to get home too because I had been at school all day and I really didn’t want to miss the bus this time. There’s a half hour wait for the bus I get and it’s been pretty nippy lately. This reminds me though, I have a third story to tell!

Yesterday I didn’t have any classes and I did my laundry the night before because the laundry room/common room was closed because of the¬†accommodation¬†staff doing some kind of training. So I went grocery shopping. I’m trying to be a bit better with my money so I went down to the local market where they have all kinds of stalls and stuff is usually cheaper. I got some stuff and decided what else I needed I would get at the supermarket because they have a bigger selection. Well I stupidly thought that the bus I took to the market wouldn’t be that long to take me back around to my place so I didn’t bother getting on the other side of the road to get the right bus (actually I did but I didn’t find my bus on any of the closest stops so I gave up because the bags were heavy). I ended up being on the bus for over an hour and a half. I luckily had a week’s metro pass so it wasn’t an issue for me to be on the bus that long. But I had school work to do and the bus driver noticed at one point and asked me if I knew where I was going. I did but I didn’t know where I was at the time. He was so nice though, I actually feel for the bus drivers now because of the fact they need to be on top of it to make sure people are paying the right price for their ticket and not lying. And for those parents that don’t know how to be a parent. Near the end of my journey, a woman got on the bus with a pram and 2 other children. I think she was trying save herself some money and was vague about the kid’s age in the pram. It’s free if they’re under 3 years old if I understand correctly. She then parked the pram, sat next to me and let the other two kids sit on the other side. They didn’t stay there though. They kept moving around and she wasn’t paying attention to them and one of them opened the emergency door in the back because she was too busy looking through her bag for something. The bus driver got maaaad! He stopped the bus and got out of his seat and then told her she needed to keep an eye on her children for their health and safety because if the one that had opened the door had fallen out he would have been dead. He secured the door and got back in his seat when she suddenly decided to seat in the 3 open seats on the other side of the bus (the kid in the pram was fast asleep and secured) and make the kids sit where she would see them and not let them get out of their seats for 2 seconds. Honestly was that so hard to do? I’m sure they’re a handful because they definitely seemed like it but she was lucky nothing bad happened. Thankfully I got home okay and the bus driver made a joke saying I had been on the bus as long as he had been when I finally got off.

I think first I’ll talk about the bone marrow thing from today. Since moving to this country I have discovered a few things. Smoking is banned here. Driving is the exact opposite to where I’m from and roundabouts are common but they still scare me from driving here. Certain things are spelled differently or have different words used, like eggplant is aubergine and corn starch is corn flour. And overweight people are reminded it’s not okay to be overweight by the NHS. WTF? Now back home the whole body image thing was an issue because of the American societies warped image of what a woman should look like. I’ve been battling a weight problem since I was young and over the last several years I’ve come to accept who I am. I’m overweight, I’d like to be a bit thinner but I’m not gonna kill myself doing it and I don’t want to be stick thin. I just want to be happy and to be honest I am. I have my down days at times and everyone does. I basically choose not to listen to hateful people talk about how I need to lose weight and do this or that. I know what I need to do in fact I’ve done it many times. I don’t eat a lot, I try to eat healthy, I like sweets though and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with eating something enjoyable sometimes that isn’t “good for me”. I didn’t exercise as much when I was at home because to get anywhere I used my car. Here I pretty much have to walk. The only times I don’t walk is when the weather is bad, it’s too dark out for my liking, I’m running late for meeting my boyfriend or a class and I’m just tired or I have a ton of bags from shopping. Even when I take the bus,¬†the majority of the time it doesn’t take it directly to where I need to go so I am walking a lot. But since coming here it seems like I’ve been made to feel bad about my BMI not being where it “should” be. I’m on a birth control that doesn’t have estrogen in it because apparently it’s bad for overweight women. I’ve been told my acid reflux that is because of my weight. Now I know that is one of the many causes of acid reflux but not the only. Like I said before I’ve been overweight since I was young, the majority of my¬†existence¬†basically. I didn’t get acid reflux disease until I started at a 4 year university because my stress level went way up I was in my 20s by then. That is a cause of acid reflux, stress. I don’t handle stress well either and it really hasn’t gone down since I’ve been here so I don’t think my weight is to blame completely. Do I think if I lose weight it will help and maybe make it go away. Of course I do but it is so hard to lose weight right now. I can’t afford a gym membership and the one I had briefly last year didn’t help me and the trainer I worked with made me feel like shit so I didn’t want to do business there anymore. I like having an exercise buddy too which is hard to come by. I was on the Atkins’ Diet back when I was 19 or 20. I lost 40 pounds, it was great but then I hit a¬†plateau¬†and couldn’t lose any more after that. I was living with some other girls at the time too so I didn’t have access to the junk food I would get at home because we couldn’t afford it. I never got to the point where I was supposed to maintain my weight and I had so many people saying, you’ve done a good job, treat yourself a little. Then I made friends with someone who only seemed to care about when she was gonna eat, plus I moved back home because it wasn’t working out for me living with 4 other girls in an expensive rented house for many reasons. So for many reasons and my lack of self-control I gained it back and then some. The thing that bugs me though, looking back I didn’t realize how good I looked, how different I looked and felt. You only notice the bad. And then I think it got around that Atkins’ Diet wasn’t that good for you (I didn’t eat a huge amount of meat like some people thought that meant) and I couldn’t be bothered to take the South Beach Diet seriously.

So here I am today hoping to help out a group of people at my school today asking if I would like to sign up to be a bone marrow donor. I used to donate blood years ago but my iron level dropped too low to be able to donate so many times I just gave up. Apparently the low iron thing wasn’t an issue so I filled out the form and went into a room with one of the guys while he looked over my application. He noticed a few things like I didn’t have a home number, I only have a mobile number and I told him my address is a student accommodation and I’ll only be there until September (or maybe it’s August, one of the two). He left the room to ask about it and then come back and tells me while he holds a form that because of my BMI I can’t donate. My freaking weight was what stopped me from being able to donate. Not my low iron, not my address or lack of a second permanent address, my weight. Frankly I’m sick of it. It’s one thing for my grandma to ask me when I’m a little girl, who is struggling with being¬†bullied¬†at school because of my weight, “Don’t I want to be pretty?” to now being told I can’t do this and that because I’m fat and that makes me unhealthy and untouchable. I’ll probably be told I’ll die young if I don’t lose weight like two people from here have been told and they weigh less than me or around the same as me. It is so stupid and degrading. It’s like the banned smoking over here now let’s work on getting rid of the fat people!

I know I’m a¬†sensitive¬†person and part of that stems from my personally type and to how I was treated as a child. But I don’t think the NHS really thinks about how they make overweight people feel when they do this kind of stuff. Maybe they’re not to blame and maybe the got a good reason for it but damn, talk about making a person feel depressed. I was in a good mood today! And that just deflated me. I don’t know exactly how to make myself feel better when I’m being made to feel bad about myself by the government.

Beyond all that. I did feel a bit better today after that because I found some books today that might help with my dissertation and look like interesting reads. I got a family that loves me and knows better than to talk about my weight (haha but true, I go nuts if it’s even a suggestion about it is said), a boyfriend that loves me no matter what and good friends who care about what’s inside me than what’s outside. I’m sure the bone marrow thing had a reason for it but it would have been nice to know what it was besides my BMI being too high. Tomorrow I got a doctor’s appointment. My cold is now done with though I got an ongoing issue I want to address that’s cause of the cold and get some more acid reflux pills too. And maybe get that doctor’s referral thing done with so we can decide if I still stay on meds for acid reflux or if it’s something more. Anyway, best make my dinner now. It’s getting late.

Tata for now.