You know it gets tougher to write new, innovative, non-repetitive and funky blogs. I guess when you have a routine of work, and (unfortunately) cannot travel every week, this is unavoidable. On the flip side, with random events, news articles and the variety we have in the world; the task is not impossible either. So I turn to the personal, the political and the possible…
On a personal level, I need to mention an ailment (this is for you Lena!). Off the back of my first reggae concert and indeed big night out since winter, I felt rubbish last week! I ambled into Thursday with a cold when I had to take a train to Wakefield for an inspiring work meeting. That night, my second of the ex Austrians, Lena, visited for the weekend. With a delayed flight I collected her from the airport around midnight. Fortunately my semi cold subsided Friday morning to allow a really nice few days with the Viennese vixen. With food and wine Friday in the flat, a visit from Billy for his birthday Saturday in Camden and a drive around the sights of London Sunday night – it was a good weekend.
The reason I mention blog topics and ailments is Lena pointed out my propensity to mention on martynsibley.com when I feel tired and unwell. I know I do this to share my winter worries and how some days are a struggle. Despite my positivity, it wouldn’t be honest of me to not share my limitations, difficulties and concerns. She also noted my arms looked tighter and a bit weaker. This is something that comes with the SMA territory, does play on my mind and is something I debate how to lessen. However I appreciated the fact I sometimes worry/stress myself into feeling under par and can do more to maintain my physical well being. Honestly, I really appreciated this observation.
Therefore while winter will always be hard and my SMA may cause me to get a little weaker, I have a current aim. Which is to not dwell on illness/tiredness and begin my swimming and stretches again. With the clocks having gone forward, spring in the air and good times coming – there is no time like the present. Plus it is easier for me to swim in warmer temperatures and my muscles loosen up in the heat too.
Having had a kind of personal epiphany and a ‘new season’ resolution, I turn to the political. For those who wondered about my views on last week's budget (I know, it has been a while, but I was out Saturday night in the Jazz Café and my hangovers last longer now) and for those who didn’t see my live tweets for Scope. My executive summary would be that the budget was surprisingly better than expected. However, it was off the back of some hard and harsh cuts last November, which are hitting disabled people particularly hard.
My view is we need cuts to reduce the deficit and inject confidence back into our economy. We should expect those better placed to bear the brunt of this. Disabled people need to know their standard of living will not decrease over and above the already challenging situation of inflation, unemployment and cuts, just because of their additional needs. I really hope the government will not make disabled people scapegoats alongside alleged ‘fraudsters’ and ‘benefit scroungers’. With this said and done, last week's budget seeks to gain business and economic growth. If disabled people are included and supported appropriately with this agenda, I will be happy. Let's just hope the plans to kick start the economy are fully inclusive.
Lastly, the possible! I have some interesting opportunities this week around the blog work I do. There may be the chance to work on some other social media projects, there is a relaunch of ‘seminar in your slippers’ (my online seminars around managing care packages and for wheelchair travel), the launch of mine and a friends online magazine, and even a disability app!!! Stay posted for more information on this.
Coming up, I am seeing my good mate Rich from uni at the weekend. Then Rico, the German lad, is over next weekend. All before I head to Cyprus for a week in mid April. With spring here, more exercise, enjoyable projects at Scope and new blog-related activities, I am very excited about the coming months...