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A new year

As everyone has almost definitely noticed, it is now 2016. On new year’s eve, Kadek popped over so we could open the happiness jar we started last new year. I just got a standard Korken jar from Ikea and put in nice things written on Post-Its. It was nice to go through them again and see some of the things I’d forgotten about!

New Year for me has traditionally been celebrated on Samhain (pronounced “sow-in”), celebrated as Halloween in the modern day. We usually make a traditional Breton Kornigou cake shaped like a stag with antlers, although last year I just used stag-shaped chocolate moulds. It’s honestly my favourite day of the year and even though I now believe in Judaism, I’m not letting go of Samhain and Halloween. I even want to get married on October 31st because it’s such a joyful day.

The Jewish new year is Rosh Hashanah, which is on October 3rd this year, which is closer to Samhain than the Gregorian new year, but still fairly confusing for me.

I don’t normally make resolutions, but I have written a list of goals for the year.

  1. Put money in a savings account
  2. Make contact with a Rabbi (to ask to begin conversion)
  3. Finish my Russian certificates on Busuu
  4. Keep the house at a base level of clean (I do actually love cleaning, but I lack the energy to do a lot, so if I don’t keep wiping things down when they are mostly already clean, it will become impossible to do)
  5. Get a tattoo. Seriously, finally do it. I took a print of Freya’s paw two years ago and have been aiming to get it tattooed ever since.
  6. Get a part-time paid job.
These are all things that line up with the 5 year plan I wrote a while ago. I couldn’t sleep one night, found myself looking up templates, and before I knew it I had planned out the next half-a-decade of my life.

The online degree I want to do is Healthcare and Health Science, (or Health Sciences) and then I’d need to do an MSc (most likely Professional Science), because what I want to do in the long run is a PhD in Living with disability and long-term conditions, and I’d like to see if there is a measurable decrease in pain felt by disabled people who have assistance dogs do thing like pick up dropped items and pull jackets off. We all know it hurts a lot less if we don’t have to perform those movements ourselves, but it would be nice to write a paper about it and have some evidence.

I’m hoping to be matched to my Canine Partner really soon. I really need the dog before I can go out to work (lest I drop my phone or keys on the ground in the street) but I’m applying for jobs already because I really need to contribute to the household income. I just need something simple that’s about 14 hours a week because I don’t have a lot of energy to spare. I hope getting the dog will reserve a lot of my energy and allow me to stay out of the house for longer, but I also have to be realistic about the way my body functions.
I’m already running a charity from home and this leaves me quite mentally exhausted. We’re still waiting for our CIO number unfortunately, due to the disastrously incompetent process of having to get DBS checks through an umbrella company.

Something else I need to get into work, is a new electric wheelchair. I can only self-propel for short distances and on a very flat surface (i.e. inside my house). My current powered chair, Calpurnia, is an Enigma Energi Plus. I didn’t realise at the time when I bought her second-hand, but she’s technically a bariatric wheelchair and much wider than she needs to be. She just about scraped through our new hallway and doesn’t really fit well anywhere else. She’s taken me on a lot of adventures and I love her, but she’s just too big.

I need to kill two birds with one stone, so to speak, and also get a much slimmer chair that will get through the downstairs doorways more easily. I know exactly what I want; a Sasaki iPower. It will double as a manual chair indoors or if I run out of battery, and be slim enough to be my electric chair in all other situations.

Electric wheelchairs are very expensive, and while this one can thankfully be bought on a payment plan, I’ve still got to save up for the deposit, which I’ve also got to do for a stairlift so I can stop butt-shuffling.

I’ve been with Will for 5 years already, but I can’t imagine us actually being ready to plan a wedding until another 5 have passed!

I’ve long wanted to live in a rural bungalow, but we have quite a lot of connections to the city centre, and knowing that stairlifts can be effective, we might just stay around here. It would be lovely to get a house like this but that might be a bit ambitious!!

Kadek and I are planning to go to the Finland Worldcon in 2017, and hopefully I’ll get to do other travelling.

I have to stop planning and start putting things into action!

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