It is a really nice feeling to know that my tribunal is nearly out of the way. Taking your case to tribunal is emotionally exhausting and prevents you from moving forward. I have also learned that should I win the tribunal I still have to go through the process of fighting for how much compensation I should win, a further battle. It therefore feels as a victim of rape, as if from the moment you do get raped you are constantly persecuted by all and everyone around you. This includes the authorities and the government who are meant to be there to protect you. So the reality here, is that although I may win this part of the battle, there is still a further battle to be won.
For this reason, I see 2018 as being a slow year for progress for me. But this is something that I am prepared for and have acknowledged early on. And with that realisation that it will be a slow process this year I have set myself some targets, you might say baby step targets to help with a feeling of self achievement. It is safe to assume that having been through this whole situation, I am lacking somewhat in self-esteem, so baby steps are the ideal self-medication. I had hoped to find the confidence in myself to tell the rest of my family what had happened to me. I had hoped to find this confidence at the beginning of 2018, while my family were around me during the holidays. This was not to be, and I was not able to find the courage to tell them at this time. But it is only January. What I did manage to do, which I felt was quite an achievement was tell one family member that I have voted Brexit. It probably seems quite laughable that a person would be so worried as to tell family members they voted in such a way. However, it is also worth considering that some of my family currently live in other European countries. And that is where the problem lies in my vote.
Again it was only one person in my family, and they did not react. This is obviously a positive thing, but I do question if they think that I might have miss spoken. However, if you look at my bookshelves which this family member did it becomes all too clear what I likely did vote Brexit. Therefore, their lack of reaction is in my opinion a very good thing and quite encouraging for me to speak about the unspeakable- the rape. I guess it is quite reasonable to expect family to not get irrate with regards to other family members politics. But it likely depends on the devotion and loyalty of those you speak to not to mention other members need for your vote to benefit them (like my family living in Europe).
I am not sure that this is something I've ever mentioned, but I struggle with agoraphobia. I think I can safely say that my fear isn't so much leaving the house, but rather returning to it. My fear for returning home is due to the possibility of being followed and what might come of that. Obviously, I have bared the brunt of such a thing. It therefore currently in my mindset, seems far more logical option to remain at home and only leave when necessary. Thankfully I am self-employed, and with door-to-door services these days and the ability to do a lot of things online my work is quite achievable under such circumstances. However, as you can probably imagine, this is not an enjoyable life to live for myself or for my young son. For myself I would probably find it bearable and not aspire to fix this problem. However, for such a young child to be put in such a situation whereby their parent fears going outside with them, this is a problem. It is therefore a problem which needs fixing.
It was last year; my driving license was removed due to stress which caused seizures as a symptom. When I had learnt to drive, it completely changed my life and my sons life. I felt safely cocooned by this piece of protective machinery, safe in the knowledge no one would walk behind me and follow me home. The stress which caused my seizures, has been put down to the ongoing case with regards to the tribunal. So, I will be very happy when this tribunal does end, which will hopefully be this year. And it will hopefully be by the end of 2018, when I will be able to drive again and enjoy the freedom in my safe cocoon. But until then, it is my duty to my son and also my own health to ensure we both enjoy the world around us. We do go out occasionally, but I restrict my area, and it is not as frequently as is healthy. Of course, I take him to school and pick him up as well as pop to shops and local amenities. But these are within my restricted area and even still cause great anxiety on my part. But at least I am pushing myself. And pushing yourself is by all means the best remedy.
When I learned to drive, I was also dealing with great anxiety. I constantly feared that I may have a seizure while driving and possibly kill myself and the driving instructor. Yes, pretty extreme! But it is quite incredible when throughout your childhood and adult life you have experienced seizures every day, to suddenly experience none. In fact it is quite surreal and with it comes the questioning. So, to push myself into driving, I bought a Satnav which for me was relatively expensive and therefore came with an expectation to push myself in to having to use it and not waste it. It definitely had the desired effect, and although learning to drive with that kind of thinking in the back of my mind was hard, I still managed to achieve it. Bizarrely the fact that I had learned to drive is one of the key points being used against me in the tribunal. Well much of my health records is being used against me but that is a story for another time.
So now, I have bought myself a fancy camera which I intend to use with the expectation of using it outside of my home, and hopefully beyond my restricted area. The intention here is to encourage me to go to new places with my son and help take my mind off my anxieties while I learn a new skill. I don't know how effective this will be, but I'm not willing to let my son down. I had brain surgery to have that tumour removed on the basis that it would ensure my sons safety and bring him a better life. I was certainly able to live with the daily seizures and the life limits they brought with them. But if I have the ability to change someone else's life, someone I love dearly, for the better, then it is my job to ensure that positive change. Even if that change is made only by me changing myself.
On reflection that is quite a dramatic statement to make. But reflecting on it further it is obvious that this little boy has himself brought incredible positive change to my life. That, in my opinion needs rewarding and acknowledging. So, I hope to embrace the wonders which Britain has to offer and records that with my camera. One day all that history, represented in castles and architecture could be demolished. All those green rolling mountains, could be built upon. I don't think it's safe to assume anything these days. But I do need to ensure that my little boy gets to enjoy his country before it is destroyed any further.