Monday, 28 June 2010

Some Sad News

I received an update email from Jeff, who emailed me back in May (see previous post). Very sadly his partner Bryan passed away last week after a brave battle against NHL. It is so sad that this cruel disease has taken so many important people away from their loved ones and families, its all so very unjust. What made Bryan's story even sadder was that his body was fighting the Lymphoma as it was responding well to a new chemo regime. Sadly the chemo had eradicated his body of all strength and along with it Bryan's immune system. He caught an infection and it spread fast.

Jeff informed me that he was there holding Bryan's hand at the time of his passing, and that must be of some comfort to know that he was by his side til the end.

Rest in peace now Bryan, and no doubt you will now be supporting Jeff from the other side as he tries to stay strong without you.

God bless x

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Bryan & Jeff

I wanted to share with all of the blog readers an email that I recieved yesterday from a couple going through a similar experience to myself and Richie, and hope that we can all send out positive vibes for them both that the outcome of Bryan's treatment is positive.

Thank-you for the letter Jeff, it means so much to know that Richie's words can still reach out and help people.
Dear Sam,

I want to start off by saying how truly sorry I am for the loss of your Husband Richard. My Partner Bryan and I are now going thru a similar battle.

Bryan was diagnosed with NHL a few days before Christmas 2009 and is currently undergoing treatment.

Your husbands site was one of the very first blog sites I read all the way thru that dealt with NHL and the toll it takes on the person with the cancer as well as the care giver. Bryan and I are in our early40's and we are both in great health (or so we thought) Bryan's Lymphoma expressed itself in what he thought was an impacted tooth. It later turned out to be a cancerous tumor.

Bryan was a smoker (now an ex smoker) .. long story short, we are in the middle of the battle with NHL, and The blog you and your husband started and update made me start one with Bryan. The site is not nearly as well thought out as yours but we are also trying to be open and honest.

The Site is . I would like to just tell you how much your site has meant to me. While I am deeply sorry for your loss I can also "see the writing on the wall" and while I hope and preyfor success in his treatment, I can not be ignorant to the possibilityof a similar outcome.

The strength both you and Richard write about and the passion you have for each other is very similar to the relationship Bryan and I share.

In closing, thank you for this site, thank you for continuing to update it and thank you for sharing the special man in your life.

Warmest Regards,

Friday, 14 May 2010

James Adams

One of the things that we are all very much aware of is how unfair life can seem at times. I have another example of this as sadly my personal trainer and friend James Adams was tragically killed in a car accident last weekend. James was just 26.I wanted to talk about James here on Richie's blog as he was instrumental in my grieving process last year and helped me out a lot.

I first met James when I joined the gym in my office at Cable&Wireless. James was the gym manager and signed me up and walked me round the equipment available in the gym. part of my initial routine in the gym was to pull the punch bag out in the studio when it was free and give it a good old whacking! I can't remember how long I had been going in, but it must have only been a few weeks in, I was in the studio and James walked in and said something like 'come on then, come and show me what you got!' He gave me a pair of gloves and he held the pads and we had a fab boxing session. I immediately signed-up for personal training!
Over the next few weeks myself and James got to know each other a bit better - he understood my fitness levels and had a regime to get me fitter which was ace. I also told James about Richie and everything that had happened. When I was having a bad day and feeling a bit emotional about everything James would happily don the pads and let me take it all out on him!
He was always encouraging me to do more with my boxing - he use to call me his little animal and pair me with guys in the boxing classes as apparently I punched too hard to be paired with a girl! He was also very proud after one of our training sessions when I left the gym with bleeding knuckles after he made me work really hard!

"Get in and get it done" was his motto and words he would shout loudly at the beginning of any session. Throughout a session he would be constantly shouting, calling me lazy as I wasn't working hard enough and adding more weight/resistance to make everything a big a challenge as possible. It sounds horrendous but mostly use to make me laugh, and there would always be lots of banter! When a session finished 9 times out of 10 I would get a text later on in the day telling me well done, good session today! I'd always say that I was saving the message to show him next time he shouted at me!
James was also always telling me off when he would catch me outside the office smoking a cigarette - and would often tell me he wasn't training me anymore if I was smoking. It took a while but I eventually gave up and have been nicotine free for aprox 2 months now. James was definitely instrumental in this as well.
I've been into the gym everyday this week and even though he's not here with us anymore I can still hear his words in my mind, telling me to push myself and work a little bit harder.
James - you were an inspiration and a legend, and I will miss you very much. Its so sad that you had to leave us so young, I guess the angels needed a work-out too. Make sure you hook up with my Wildo and teach him some new boxing moves.

James, Spencer and myself - happier times on a Xmas night out.

Monday, 26 April 2010

Sam & Ruth's Wedding

On Saturday Ruth Armstrong, one of Richie's friends from University (or known via Ruth's brother John at University, one or the other anyway, my brain is never good at keeping up!) got married to her fiance Sam Mayer. I was invited to the wedding, which was lovely.

Sam and Ruth had the official ceremony in the Guildhall in Bath and then had a reception at the Limpley Stoke Hotel afterwards. Firstly they were blessed with a very beautiful and sunny day - perhaps Richie put in a good word for them to ensure the sun-shined! Secondly they were blessed with having one of the most fun weddings I have been too - lots of lovely people, fantastic food and then some cracking dancing in the evening with a Ceilidh band (hopefully I have spelt that correctly!) - oh and of course this was all mixed with a few glasses of Fizz and perhaps a few cheeky glasses of wine!

Congratulations Sam and Ruth, wishing you all the best for a happy and long future together.

An Update on Resolutions

To esnure that I keep some level of focus on my resolutions, heres a sneaky update:-

* Stop smoking - its a filthy disgusting habit and will more than likely kill me if I don't - I am now cigarette free for aprox 6 weeks, so far so good!

* Run a half marathon - no times to beat yet, just dragging my ass round 13 miles will be an achievement in itself to start with! - I have started running again (much easier when not polluting my lungs with Nicotine!) however have not ventured so far as to register for a 1/2 marathon. Baby steps though!

* Visit Singapore - fingers crossed that C&W hit their targets so we get a bit of bonus which will go towards this one!

* Learn a new skill - not sure what yet but toying with Fencing - Doh no progress on this one! And still unsure what skill to delve into, maybe some kind of dancing.....

* Create a dream garden - this one is already started but needs more focus and a lot more work (and turf!) - ok so a slight improvement, but still require turf! I have had people round for quotes just need to follow this up!

* Re-ignite Summer Of BBQ's (Katy & Sarah will understand this one!)* Look after my financial welfare better (eg less shoes and more savings!) - the first BBQ was kicked off a couple of weekends ago thanks to our recent bout of glorious weather, next one is scheduled in for May!

There was also the point around saving money, but thats far to dull to mention! Especially when the sun is shining and new shoes are needed for the sunny weather hehehehe!

Sunday, 7 March 2010


Richie and myself have never really shied away from sharing pretty much everything on this blog since he started it a couple of years ago (seems like a lifetime ago sometimes). Therefore I thought I should share a recent experience with a psychic I had seen.

Myself and Richie were always interested in the spirit world, never really having a firm view on whether spirits/ghosts existed but were both mutually intrigued and would fairly regular join Paranormal Tours to see if we could find any evidence. I think we went on 3 tours together and I have been on an additional one that Richie missed out on as he was on one of his NLP courses. The first one was held in the Wycombe Hell Fire Caves, where the only 'spooky' event was the Psychic lady getting freaked out by the bats flying in and out of the caves! The other events we went on all had interesting things happen/noises heard etc but nothing concrete to cement our view anywhere other than on the fence.

So, to get back to the point of this blog, a few weeks ago I had an appointment with a Psychic - Stewart Keeys. I had actually met Stewart a couple of months after me and Richie got married, he was the assigned Psychic to a Paranormal Tour investigation we had been involved in in Wokingham. Stewart was a similar age to us and had a very calming nature, and you couldn't help but warm to him. I had attempted to book an appointment with him back in October last year (around the time that it would have been Richie's birthday) but I had bottled it at the last minute and never finalised the appointment. Anyway, this time I felt ready to go and see him - when I say ready I meant that I was prepared for the eventuality that could have been him having no information/messages/history etc to link Richie to me, something I was desperate for and hadn't really appreciated that until I was driving to this mans house.

I barely slept the night before the appointment, I was nervous, and scared, and also very sceptical. But I wanted to go this time and knew that I wouldn't be backing out. I slept under Richie's coat (something I do from time to time when I want to feel him close, odd I know but its comforting at times), which helped calm me down so I managed a bit of sleep. During the journey to Stewart's house I was very emotional, struggling not to cry and my heart was beating very fast.

When I arrived Stewart was over-running with another client and I therefore had about a 5 minute wait whilst he finished up. He then came and led me into his sitting room, I sat down and we had a quick chat around the way he 'worked' and what to expect etc. He would also be recording the session so I could take away a copy on CD with me.

He could tell that I was not overly relaxed and very nervous! But immediately said that when I walked into his house I was accompanied by a female and a male spirit. The female spirit was older and stayed close to me and sat with me whilst I was waiting, but the male spirit was younger and excited! He straight away centred on the male spirit saying that he had to keep saying I love You I love You, and then described a picture of yellow roses that this 'spirit' was showing him - apparently this is in symbol of eternal love in the spirit world. I immediately cried like a baby! He went onto describe lots of things about this spirit of a young man, who had died before his time. It all felt so Richie - he described symptoms of his condition before he passed, he described the moment of his passing (apparently peaceful but full of anger that it had happened too soon (and apparently this anger dissipated very quickly and moved to peace)), he described personality, appearance, humour, our children, the situation that I was left in financially and legally - it was spooky and comforting at the same time. I will not leave any more detail here than that but for anyone close to either myself or Richie and would like to listen to this CD then you are more than welcome. But please believe me that as emotional and upsetting as this time was with Stewart, it was also wonderful and heart-warming and whether this is the kind of thing you do or dont believe, I left his sitting room feeling happier that Richie was happy, pain free and still looking out for us all with his fantastic spirit, courage, humour and love.

Thursday, 7 January 2010

New Year, New Decade

So 2010 is here, another new year and a new decade............. it still feels very wrong that Richie is not here with us for it.

So it seems a good time to start thinking about resolutions etc, things to do this year or decade (gives me a bit of tolerance if I slack off!). Richie always told me to write down the things I wanted to do/achieve - apparently it made them more 'doable'! So here goes:-

* Stop smoking - its a filthy disgusting habit and will more than likely kill me if I dont
* Run a half marathon - no times to beat yet, just dragging my ass round 13 miles will be an achievement in itself to start with!
* Visit Singapore
* Learn a new skill - not sure what yet but toying with Fencing
* Create a dream garden - this one is already started but needs more focus and a lot more work (and turf!)
* Re-ignite Summer Of BBQ's (Katy & Sarah will understand this one!)
* Look after my financial welfare better (eg less shoes and more savings!)

That will do for a start but I might edit/amend the list as I have more inspiration!

Although I started this blog in January its now March so its a little late to say Happy 2010 everybody but what the hell, Happy New Year anyway!