Romance of the Sick at Heart

I’ve not made a blog for quite some time – mostly due to distraction and general lack of interest. But now that I’m sat down and able to think, I guess I could depart some of the events that have recently gone by.

To start, I’ve sort of found someone to love, at last, and this time I didn’t go looking for it; they found me. He messaged me on a gay chat site that I hardly use – you never expect decent people to hang around these things, but I somehow held out a hope. His name is Josh. He’s younger than me, but his intelligence burns far brighter. He’s studying to become a doctor. How unsurprising; I think most gay people I’ve met are doing something in the field of science, chemistry or nursing. The difference – unlike the other feckless lot, he was actually interested in me. Everyone else in the gay community (apart from a few good friends) tend to walk all over you and look out for ‘number one’ only. Josh, he actually showed a caring interest for me.

So we got chatting on Skype. Found out we have so much in common, even though we have obvious differences here and there. Eventually, we ended up spending days just chatting on Skype – seeing as the distance between us was rather large. London to Cardiff is quite the walking distance, and not exactly cheap on the train these days, even when booking in advance. We grew very fond of each other, so much so that (after burning out his parents monthly internet time) he came to visit me in Cardiff via the London Megabus. He’s been twice now. He’s even met my friends. They love him to bits. I love him to bits. It’s just a shame we can’t see each other more often. The long periods without each other are sometimes painful, but then we cherish the time we have together.

If anything, having Josh as my “companion” has made me stronger as a person inside. People have noticed how happy I’ve been of late, like a great hole has been filled in or a light’s been turned on. It’s still a strange feeling for me though, as for most of my life I wandered on my own, solving other people’s problems and being there for people when I can be. Having someone like Josh by my side… someone who actually cuddles and wishes and feels with me… it’s like getting something you’ve always wanted but still wondering when it’ll turn out to be a cruel illusion. But, this time, it’s no mirage. This time it’s real. And that makes me the happiest person in the world 🙂

In other news, aside from being happy, I’ve also been ill quite a lot. Regularly run down, and experiencing the odd pain here and there. I had to take time off work after collapsing in the bathroom one morning in my Cardiff flat. It was a proper “shit, am I gonna die here” moment when I thought I was going to black out on the bathroom floor; reaching out to grab either the sink or the toilet seat and drag myself towards it. Sweaty fever, dehydration, faintness, I’d never been as bad as this before.

So I ended up being off work for a few days. Then, after a week of being back, I had pains in my stomach and side cramps that prevented me from even walking properly without flinching. So I had another week off work, and a doctor’s note to cover it – some stomach virus or something. Just as I was recovering from that load of turmoil, I suddenly developed terrible night sweats, feverish shivers and a throat infection that topped the rest of it all together. The back of my mouth was so ulcerated it killed just to speak. I couldn’t eat. I couldn’t drink. I couldn’t speak for quite a few days, and I lost a lot of colour too. “Throat infection”, the doctor said. No shit, Sherlock! So he gave me another week’s worth of time off work and prescribed me some antibiotics… that didn’t seem to do anything whatsoever. As the days went by, I’d gargled everything under the sun and still there was no improvement; only pain and a sickly feeling.

Eventually though, the throat infection did start to recede. My mum gave me this throat spray that numbed the pain and did me the world of good. But then, as one thing went down, another came up – the pains in my side had turned to a lump. “Oh just great. What now?!” I wondered.

Another trip to the doctors’ surgery; it started to feel like a second home. This time it was a lady doctor, and after telling her everything I’d been through, she diagnosed me immediately, as if it couldn’t be more obvious. Glandular Fever. She was rather surprised the other male doctors hadn’t come to that conclusion already. So she gave me a blood test to make sure. It was at this point I’d realised that nurses are better at needles and syringes than dilly dandy doctors. It bloody hurt! I’ll get the proper results on Tuesday. Apart from that, and for the next 6 months, I’ve got to lead a rather dull social life and take it easy. No alcohol, no late nights, no pushing one’s self and above all… no ‘kissing’ anyone. WHAT?! NO KISSING??? Glandular Fever is what’s known as the ‘kissing disease’ because it’s easily passed onto someone else via that means.

Sorry Josh. Life sucks right now.

To add insult to injury, I’ve got to go back to work next week, against doctor’s advice, because the government’s “sick pay” doesn’t cover bills and rent. These days, people just can’t afford to be ill.

On a brighter side, work is aware of my situation, and is going to make it easier for me. I’m going to be constantly tired, but I must push myself just that little bit. I’ll even move to a cheaper place to save money in the long run. I will survive. I will make it so.

The Mariot

I’ve just got back from the gymnasium in the Mariot Hotel (Cardiff City centre), and what an experience it was too!

I’ve not been to the gym for ages, due to the fact that living within the city centre is expensive enough in itself and I’m too lazy most of the time to get out the house and just run. I figured, seeing as my younger brother Chris is, by far, a damn sight more buff than me, it’s time I actually pulled my finger out and got fit.

Picture Me in Speedo’s. “Ah yeah” *cool expression* XD

So how did it all begin? My friend, Lauren Entwistle, joined the gym yesterday evening, at the Mariot. After discovering she gets a number of of VIP tickets – allowing a friend to come along for free – she decided it was a great idea for me to come along with her. We’re like brother and sister, although most of the time she plays mum. (Yes, I’m a lot older than her, but it’s funny half the time).

So this morning we arranged to meet at 10am at the Mariot and use it’s illustrious facilities. We were each given a towel and a locker key, and then made our way to the changing rooms. I expected a scattering of hot young talent – you know the type; smooth pecks, tasty looking shoulders and a cheeky smile to die for – but the place wasn’t that busy at all. In fact it was slightly empty apart from a few middle aged guys. Well, it was 10am in the morning. Shame, I thought. I was hoping for some eye candy!

After locking my stuff up, I joined Lauren in the main gym room. We started on the treadmill, which was great fun, and I got up to a fast walking pace. Didn’t fancy running – it was only the first day, and I’d be running up and down stairs for 6 hours in work (Nando’s St Davids 2) later on. I got up to quite a pace and even increased the height considerably – well, I am a ‘valley boy’, so I should be used to steep inclines. I used to sprint back and forth to school as a kid.

We completed a 20 minute workout and the machine came to a stop, though my legs still felt as if I were moving forward at great speed, even whilst standing still. Next up was the walking peddle thingy machine… I think people call it a Gazelle. It was slightly tricky to stabilise on it, as it felt like I was hobbling from side to side, but I managed to get the hang of it eventually. We didn’t spend too long on it though, as apparently (according to Lauren) you shouldn’t push yourself too hard on the first day. So we moved on to do some stretching and sit-ups with a medicine ball.

I’ve not done sit-ups in a long while, and it’s not one of my favourite things to do. But doing them with someone else is a lot better. We used the medicine ball to give some weight and Lauren stood on my feet to help me. I really don’t have much muscle in my stomach. I’ve never had a six pack or even a four pack. I’ve just been thin and pretty much average. Being a guy who detests violence, I figured I’d never need to be built like a brick shit-house. But then, it’s important as an actor to keep in shape and refine the tool that is your body. I’d better get started then!

We then got changed for swimming. Now, I’ve not been swimming for well over five years – since way Way WAY before I came out with my bisexuality. Hence why I didn’t go swimming much at all. Apart from the fact that I can’t swim (I sort of splash and float like a concrete brick), I just felt very conscious about the fact I’d be surrounded by other hot guys with amazing naked bodies – I was never too pleased with this incarnation of mine. But that was back then, and not now. Though I still can’t swim (much) I’m a lot more comfortable with myself and sexuality. (Bit of a daft reason not to go swimming in the past, to be honest)

Before we hit the pool, Lauren and I entered the Sauna – a hot steamy room that I’d never been in before. God, it was hot in there, but it felt brilliant. Apparently the heat is meant to detox your body through sweat. The tiled seating was hot to sit on, and you could feel the condensation going up your nostrils when you breathed in. It was relaxing though.

We then used the pool, which wasn’t deep at all. In fact it only came up to my chest, in the deep end, so there was no worry about drowning. No diving either (for obvious reasons lol). I did a couple of lengths back and forth and realised I can sort of swim to a certain extent. It’s the breathing I have trouble with. Sometimes it’s like I panic in the water, short of breath, which causes the heart to go mad and you naturally wanna breath faster and whatnot. I just need to control my breathing and it should be fine really.

The last time I went swimming was at some mad boring ‘Christian camp’ called Hebron (which was in Cardiff), where they keep you in for a couple of days, sing songs, do activities and whatnot then have mass praying sessions and the odd “conversion” evening. It was alright at the time. But when it came to using their pool, some idiot called Damian (no, not the Anti-Christ) decided he’d be a show-off by performing a backward somersault off the side of the pool into the water. Well… he ended in the water alright, right after he smashed his skull open on the concrete side. Blood poured into the water, spreading outwards. He was rushed to the hospital and bandaged up. But they sterilised the pool, after, with enough chlorine to blind a horse! My eyes stung like mad.

Luckily, this pool at the Mariot was nothing short of pleasant. And the fact that we used the jacuzzi afterwards (I’ve never been in one before!!!)… it was like being on holiday! The best holiday ever!! I’ve not been that relaxed in a very long while, and after all the stress, and that mental breakdown I had last week – yes, it’s a hard life being an agony uncle (or as I like to call Doctor) to so many people – this was just what I’d needed to relax again.

*Leans back in the jacuzzi and sighs to oneself in relaxation*

Am I going to come back? Very probably! XD