sam cleasby blogger

Well, that didn’t take long…

So, I’m back. My ‘break’ lasted 12 days.

Honestly, I’m glad of the downtime.  I’m still not great mentally and emotionally, lots of things in my life are still totally up on the air, but I realised that staying away from this place wasn’t actually making me feel any better.  If anything I felt worse.

This is my sanctuary, my place to verbally vomit all the stuff in my head out into the world.  When I don’t have the ability to share here, my head feels very, very full.

Things aren’t great.  I’m still struggling health wise and waiting for my surgery date to have my Jpouch removed and a permenant ostomy.  I’m going to the loo a lot, having accidents and lots of crampy pains.  I know the surgery is the right way forward but I’m terrified. It’s a big op and I’m scared about all of it, not least that it’s just so permenant.

At home, we are still in the midst of a banking/mortgage/house stress nightmare!  I won’t go into it except to say that getting a mortgage when you’re both self employed is more complex than the Krypton Factor and Mastermind put together.  This is just leaving me feeling really anxious and unsettled.

Finally, the book thing. Well, I had a bit of a breakdown over that. I felt really disheartened, like I’d been found out as a fraud and that I couldn’t really write.  I felt useless and silly.  I felt that I needed to stop being stupid and fanciful and just get a proper job.  I couldn’t face writing anything, every word on paper made me shrink back and cringe.  That old demon on my shoulder whispered that I was stupid and foolish and that everyone was laughing at me.

The past couple of weeks have been hard.  There’s been times that I just couldn’t breathe, I felt so overwhelmed with sadness and fear.  I still don’t feel great.  I feel like I should get a fucking Oscar for the show I’ve put on for family and friends.  There were times when outwardly I was laughing that I felt like shaking them and screaming “THIS IS ALL AN ACT!!! IM DROWNING!!!”

But really, I think it’s actually done me good to force myself to get out and see people, to go to parties and have friends over. Because when I’m out, I can’t let the sadness take hold, I have to jolly myself on and that, if nothing else, is a lovely distraction.

Every time I have made myself be sociable, no matter how much I dreaded it beforehand, I felt a million times better after.  Every physical connection to others has benefited me mentally. And that’s something to take away, I think, that it’s easy to want to hide and weep when you’re feeling down, but making yourself see your favourite people, even if you don’t talk about how you’re feeling, is good for the soul.

I read all your kind messages on my Facebook page and Twitter and they meant a lot. Thank you and sorry for not replying to you all.

There was one message that caught my eye in particular.  It was from my friend Curtis Woodhouse, Curtis was a professional footballer and then he decided that he wanted to be a boxer.  He was mocked by so many who said that he would never make it.  He kept on going despite all that and he became the British Light Welterweight champion!  He never gives up and so his message made me think that I needed to be a little more like him and keep going.

curtis woodhouse

“Sam, just a quick message, an author called Donald McRae wrote a book called Dark Trade, it got knocked back by every publisher that he approached, he believed in the book so kept going with it, finally it got picked up, I think it was about 15 years ago, it’s still selling now, Its one of the best selling sports books ever, Don has won award after award for his writing, he’s the best of the best, go online and read up on the book and a bit about Don, might inspire you to carry on or it might not, you can’t just give up because publishers don’t think the book will sell, if you give up on it why shouldn’t everybody else?

Suck it up, still got a few more rounds of fighting left in you x”

curtis woodhouse sam cleasby

And so here I am back on the blog.  Because (and don’t tell him this, because he’ll get ever such a big head) perhaps Curtis is right, if I give up on myself, why shouldn’t everyone else?

This girl may be a little crushed, a little damaged and a little sad right now, but she definitely has a few more rounds of fighting left in her.


Sam xxx

4 replies
  1. Kath
    Kath says:

    Glad you got all that off your chest Sam. You have helped me imensely over the last year and i feel that i can see myself in a lot of your situations. The only difference being that i have my big op on Jan 19th. Hopefully getting rid of my stoma. I even feel funny for hating it because it saved me life. I wish you all the best in whatever way you choose your future to be. Will defo keep following you and recommending your blogs ect to anyone I think could benefit of your wisdom. Thanks for everything. Kath

  2. applequiche
    applequiche says:

    I’m glad you’re back. I’ve been reading your blog for the past few weeks and it helps a lot. I live in France and here, nobody speaks about ulcerative colitis like you do. Every word you say sounds just right and you should never feel stupid as you’re an inspiration for so many people. I would definitely buy your book and you shouldn’t feel discouraged by editors!
    I felt sorry when you said you needed a break, because I wish there was something I could do to help you, although we don’t know each other. At the same time, I totally understand the need to take a break.
    I don’t like to hear my friends telling me that I am brave (what choice do I have other than fighting?), but it surely takes a lot of strength to fight a disease, and we are strong. Being sad, frustrated, scared, feeling lonely is just normal in this situation.
    I will be thinking of you and your family in January.
    Take care, Lucie

  3. Donna
    Donna says:

    It’s ok to be angry, frustrated, sad and vulnerable. You are human and have been through a lot. You will be okay. I wish you and your family a happy and healthy New Year!

  4. Dave Pawson
    Dave Pawson says:

    That bit about not being able to write Sam? First load of twaddle you’ve come out with. You’ve proven you can write, look at these pages?
    It’s good stuff, eminently readable, not bollocks, spoken honestly and reads well.
    You can write. If you want to, do so.


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