The many forms of Eleanor

I love Eleanor! And all her forms! It’s classy, regal, internationally known, has a whole pool of nicknames and forms and many great bearers – historical and literary. – Which one is your favourite? ๐Ÿ™‚

Onomastics Outside the Box

Queen Eleanor of Aquitane (1122 or 1124โ€“1 April 1204), painted 1858 by Frederick Sandys

The nameย Eleanor, in the U.S. Top 100 in 1895 and again from 1897โ€“42 (with its highest rank of #25 in 1920), is now quite trendy again. It began slowly rising in 1987, and was up to #32 in 2018. Itโ€™s not such a secret that more than a few parents choosing this name just want the trendy nicknames Ella and Nora.

Eleanor is also fairly popular in England and Wales, at #54, and New Zealand, at #76.

The name derives from the Old French form of the Occitan nameย Aliรฉnor. One of the earliest known bearers was the above-pictured Queen Eleanor of Aquitane, named for her motherย Aenor (of unknown etymology) and calledย alia Aenor, โ€œthe other Aenor,โ€ to tell them apart.

Itโ€™s uncertain if other early bearers were Aenors to whom theโ€ฆ

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Working On Us.

It’s week #4 of Working On Us at

Beckie’s Mental Mess

and I’m very happy to participate in this prompts series for the second time. Last week, I was answering the questions for prompt #1, but this time, I found prompt #2 really relatable. It’s a photo prompt, so I couldn’t actually see it, but Beckie described it and the image of a brain inside of a bird cage really spoke to me. I suppose I should include the photo in my post somehow, but since I have no clue how to do it, and am blind, so don’t need to have a clue about pics haha, I’ll just leave it as it is.

I was thinking about that prompt a lot last evening and thought I would make some piece of creative writing but since I don’t feel very creative at the moment it’ll just be a bit of a ramble.

I’ve been fascinated by brain for years, and it’s one of my main interests. But it’s not only that why I found this prompt so relatable. I could say I often feel as if my brain was locked in a bird cage, and unable to get out, just never thought about such a metaphor before. What does it feel like when your brain is locked in a brain cage? For me, among other things, it means difficulty in releasing emotions, there’s no way to get them out, whether you want it or not. Your brain fills up until it’s all full and all the feelings are one big mishmash, so that sometimes you don’t even know what you feel any longer. Things get mixed up, until finally the brain can’t contain anymore, and things start to leak out. But instead of leaking outside in a proper way, instead of being expressed, they spill all over the cage. It’s flooded with stuff that can’t be released otherwise, and the brain is swimming in all the intense feelings. That’s when overload happens, and I start feeling a lot of intense anger that gets turned inwards, so I feel like self-harming. Sometimes, when the flood is really strong, something will spill outside through the grating, but the cage is tall and thick so it’s really hard. The only way for me to get my brain out of that cage is writing. Then, the bird cage opens and it can fly out and feel more free.

Another thing that a bird cage makes me think of in the context of my brain, is the feeling of alienation, or feeling disconnected, or loneliness in the crowd, inadequacy, or however you want to call it. I like being different, and individualistic, and I like being on my own more than around other people most of the time and feel more comfy with it. But when it becomes a bird cage for my brain is when I do need to be with someone, but for whatever reason can’t make a connection with people. Sometimes it’s like you can see other people from there, but there’s no way of communicating effectively. You can only bang on the cage and hope that they will hear you, but even if they will, they usually won’t be able to help you out, or open the cage, or get close enough that you could communicate, or feel the way you feel. Even if they do get to you, you’ve been living in this cage for so long that you can’t even explain to them what it’s like, and what you need, and they won’t understand, because they live out there in the world which is so very different. So after a couple trials, you just sit in the corner of your cage and look out, watching people come and go. Sometimes they’ll glance in your direction in confusion, not understanding why you are the way you are and live in a bird cage, what’s wrong with your brain that you constantly keep it in there. As if it was your choice. Sometimes you might feel desperate, and try to jump over the cage, but that hardly ever ends up well and is risky, you can easily get hurt. Even if you do get out of there in one piece, you quickly realise that you don’t fit in, and lots of consequences come with it. And after so many years of living in a cage your brain just doesn’t know otherwise and has it hard to adjust and be just like any other brain living in the outside world. So after all, you put your brain back into the cage, voluntarily this time, ’cause a familiar enemy is worse than the one you don’t know anything about and don’t know how to deal with.

That’s the way my brain feels sometimes. Well, regularly. Again, writing, for myself or with/to others, is something that helps, to some degree, especially blogging and penpalling is what I’m thinking of.

Also, I think the bird cage analogy works very well in regards to my sleep paralysis experiences too. It feels like my brain and me are locked up in a bird cage with all my dream monsters. I can see the outside world but they don’t see me, and I can’t run away because my dream “friends” are all over me. The only thing I can do is wait for the dream cage to open and flee as soon as possible.

What’s a bird cage of your brain? How does it look like and what does it represent? ๐Ÿ™‚

Fay Wildhagen – “inevertoldyou”.

Hi guys! ๐Ÿ™‚

Yaaay! Last month, I shared with you the last of my favourite songs of Fay Wildhagen’s last full length album – “Borders” – and just a few weeks ago she released a new single! I still really like her music, and this new single didn’t disappoint me, and I really hope for a new album sometime soon. From what I’ve been able to read, it’s apparently the most personal song that Fay has ever written. By the way, I find it interesting the way the titles of some of her songs are styled, like for example with some additional characters or without spaces and capital letters like this one, I wonder whether it has any meaning here or is just a quirk, in any case it’s cool in music I think.

If We Were Having Coffee… or whatever else you fancy. #WeekendCoffeeShare

#WeekendCoffeeShare at Eclectic Alli’s.

Welcome to another coffee share, quite an early one, especially as for me, but I haven’t been too regular with posting lately and I might not be for a few more days so I thought we’d have another coffee share as some longer, catch-up post.

I’ve had my green tea already in the morning as I woke up early and needed it badly so I’m now having sparkling water with lemon, and very yummy Polish biscuits called Delicje – they are round sponge biscuits covered in chocolate with a jelly filling, mine are with orange jelly and as much as I love Delicje, the orange-flavoured ones are the only ones I find acceptable, OK, raspberry ones are OK, but just OK. – Help yourselves! I’ve also made a cake earlier today – a sponge cake with jelly and raspberries – (wow I’m kinda monotematic today with sponge, fruit and jelly, perhaps someone has an idea why? :D). It’s my name day on Sunday, hence I made it. And Mum made yummilicious croquettes (I don’t even know if that’s exactly the same thing in English, but oh well) with rice and mushrooms. I love them, and so does Olek, so if you’d like to sample, you need to hurry as he’ll soon be back from work and there will be nothing left. ๐Ÿ˜€ And I guess that’s all really yummy food (in my opinion) we have today, and you can bring something you have to our coffee share to make it more diverse than just sponge with jelly. ๐Ÿ˜€ Get yourself a comfortable place to chill and let’s start our chat, shall we? ๐Ÿ™‚

If we were having coffee, or not coffee, I’d ask you how things have been going for you and what has happened in your life this week…?

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I’m feeling like rubbish today. Not the most optimistic note to start a coffee share and a weekend in general but what can I do. I don’t even know why. I woke up feeling OK, like near the baseline, but things have started spiraling down since early afternoon. I can’t get to why that is really. I feel depressed, and even a bit anhedonic, which is not my usual definitely, even if I am badly depressed I can often still feel the pleasure from things I love to some degree but I just feel kind of apathetic and sort of disconnected and don’t care about things too much, I also feel lonely because I feel disconnected, and don’t know what’s going on with my brain. Not like it would change a lot if I knew, and like it matters to me at the moment very much, but it’s always nice to be able to have a clue at least about your brain. I’ve also been having extremely sad and emotional dreams for a couple days which I don’t get either. I mean, scary dreams – yes, – intense, in whatever way – definitely, – strange – all the time, – but I don’t normally have plain sad dreams in which I’d feel all emotional and vulnerable, and yesterday I actually woke up crying. Today I had a sad dream too but it wasn’t quite as unsettling and I mostly remember the emotions of it, not the plot, so I didn’t think much about it, but the phenomenon of such an abundance of sad dreams is interesting. I get emotional dreams like this sometimes around the periods of time that used to be difficult for me in the past but now it’s not the case. Sometimes I wish my brain could speak, or write, or something. I’m so used to bottling up stuff that now I often don’t understand what it’s trying to tell me, ’cause I suppose it must want something from me if there’s no straightforward explanation.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you we’ve had another hot week here, but thankfully today it’s very nicely fresh and chilly, apparently only for a while, Dad says we’ll have another hot day on Sunday. But it’s a relief for all the people I think that at least now it’s cooler.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that at the beginning of this week, my router died. I had to get a new one and installing it and configuring was quite a pain, and I had a whole long boring day and a half with no Internet and not much to do, but now things are back to normal.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that Misha has a new hiding place, and this time, it’s a really good one, ’cause we still can’t figure out where it is, after over a week. He just disappears every day for a good few hours and then suddenly comes back out of nowhere. It’s amazing how after 3 years of living here, he still hasn’t ran out of ideas! ๐Ÿ˜€

If we were having coffee I’d tell you that I’m going to another meeting – like the one I went to earlier this month, in that sort of foundation or association that Zofijka’s friend’s mum works in – this time with a woman who used to live in Ireland, she’s Polish. That’s going to be very interesting for me for sure, since I love Ireland! I’m quite anxious again, even though I’ve already been there and it went well. It’s going to be on Monday.

If we were having coffee I’d also tell you that Zofijka’s friend’s mum was supposed to visit us yesterday, and then today, or on Sunday, but it seems like nothing will come out of it. While I’m happy for her to come over, I’m also secretly relieved that she won’t be coming today, as I’m definitely not in the mood for socialising whatsoever and wouldn’t be able to do it right the way I’m feeling now, just normal smalltalk feels so depressing and exhausting at the moment. As if I ever was good at smalltalk hahaha.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that we’re most likely going to the beach on Sunday, which I’m quite glad about, the sea usually makes me feel very good and I feel a strong connection with it, and I love being by the sea. We have our very special beach that is quite far away from us, it’s situated in a village in Sล‚owiล„ski National Park, and it’s really clean and tranquil there, there are few beaches that are that quiet and clean. And we had a plan of going there, but because it’s apparently going to be rather hot, and the ride is long there, and then you have to walk 2 km through a nature reserve back and forth it would be quite tiring and time consuming compared to how much time we’d actually spend on the beach, so we probably won’t be going there and somewhere much closer and filled with people. ๐Ÿ˜€ In any case, I hope it’ll be cool and I’ll feel less depressed by then. Also as I said it’s my name day on Sunday so that’s going to be a nice way of spending it I hope.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee? ๐Ÿ™‚

 

Question of the day.

Where is your favourite place to read?

My answer:

I can easily read anywhere that is not too loud or not too many stimuli that would either distract me or make me uncomfortable/anxious. I don’t like reading when there are many people around me, even when I don’t have to engage with them or even care about them, though sometimes I’ll do that if I’m bored. But I guess my favourite place is my room, especially my bed, it’s where I read the most and most often.

You? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day (27th June).

Do you read a book in one sitting or over multiple days?

My answer:

It really depends, but I guess it takes me a relatively short time compared to most people I know to read a book. Probably because I read more, because I have a possibility to read more, paradoxically. I read before falling asleep, after waking up, when riding/commuting, when I’m bored and have nothing else to do, waiting for anything, sometimes even when I’m eating a meal or having a bath or anything basic like that. And if something interests me, I can just sit with it until I finish it, or sometimes I will relish it as long as possible, though I rarely can read a book longer than a week, becauseI simply read too often and in too big chunks I guess.

How about you? ๐Ÿ™‚

Song of the day (27th June) Cornelia Jakobs – “Late Night Stories”.

Here’s one of my more interesting discoveries of this year – Cornelia Jakobs. – I really love her strong, hoarse voice, and her expressiveness! She’s from Sweden, though all of her music so far has been in English, but I’d love to hear her singing in Swedish. And this is one of my favourite songs by her.

Question of the day (26th June).

Hi people! ๐Ÿ™‚

Here are some more bookish questions for you. ๐Ÿ™‚

Can you read while hearing music?

My answer:

Sure. I am a multitasker, as long as it doesn’t require coordination or other such skills, and I like listening to music while reading. I almost always do, and it actually helps me to focus even more and feel more absorbed by a book. I like to listen to music that could work as a soundtrack to the book I’m reading. I love both listening to music and reading so why not do both at the same time.

How is it for you? ๐Ÿ™‚

Feline interview with me Misha!

Hhrrru? to all pets and peeps! ๐Ÿ˜ป

Just a short note to let you know that an interview with my Mishness has beenย  published by Scrappy Doodlepip over at

A Guy Called Bloke And K9 Doodlepip

I’m excited about it! One step closer for me to become a real Mish celeb. Hope you’ll enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing. ๐Ÿ™‚

Mishpurrs!

Misha ๐Ÿ’œ๐Ÿ’™ ๐Ÿ’š

My gratitude list. #TToT.

I recently wrote a gratitude list and I thought I’d do this again, but this time I’m linking up with

Ten Things Of Thankful.

So without further ado, here’s my list.

ย ย  1.

Eating my Mum’s meringue with whipped cream, raspberries, strawberries and peaches. We had a bonfire today, and while I didn’t took part in it, Mum left some yummy food for me, including the meringue. We all like it most with blueberries, but blueberries seem to be very expensive at the moment and Mum didn’t want to make it with blueberries for all the guests not knowing if they will actually eat it. But it was still very good. And as we are at it, I appreciated that I didn’t have to be there too, I could hear all the noise from my room well enough. ๐Ÿ˜€

2.

Spending a lot of time with Misha. He wasn’t keen on sleeping with me every night, but still, we spent a lot of time together this week, and as especially the second part of it has been difficult for me, it’s greatly valued.

ย ย  3.

Green tea. Perhaps you recall my recent coffee dilemmas. It seems like I have the solution. I’ve been trying different kinds of green teas and other drinks like that that could get me going, but wasn’t particularly convinced as they either weren’t working much or I didn’t like the taste. Now I found the right green tea for me as it seems and I use xylitol with it to make it taste better.

4.

(Slightly) cooler weather. It’s still rather hot, but it’s manageable and cooling down which I am very happy about and desperately hopeful that this tendency will keep for a while.

5.

My family. Yesterday was the funeral of my Mum’s acquaintance’s daughter who died tragically in an accident. It was shocking, and made me feel grateful that I do have my whole family.

6.

Long walks with Mum and Jocky. That always helps me to clear out the brain a bit.

7.

Crisps. I’ve got a lot this week and liked them a lot.

8.

Music. I’ve been listening to plenty of fabulous music this week, including right now. Music helps me greatly in so many aspects of life and I can’t imagine my life without it.

9.

Eating pasta with broccoli sauce yesterday for dinner. This is such a ridiculously minimalistic meal we usually have it when there isn’t much time or not many things to eat at the moment or lack of creativity. But we all love it anyway.

ย ย  10.

Sleep. It hasn’t always been the best for me this week, but I did have some very restful sleep and I appreciated it very much, and I’m soon going off to sleep as it’s already past midnight and hope tonight I can also be grateful for good sleep.

What are you grateful for this week? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

Hi people. ๐Ÿ™‚

My another book related question for you is:

What is a book you can always reread?

My answer:

I like rereading books I love. Those that mean a lot to me in this or that way, that are very pleasurable or that just evoke a lot of emotions. Or even just those books that maybe even don’t have that much of a power over me but I read them during some good time previously and want to refresh the memories while reading, that’s also a good motive for a reread for me. My most most most favourites I can reread even once a year. Like the Jeลผycjada series by Maล‚gorzata Musierowicz – I know all books in it and even remember fragments of some of them by heart, I’ve read them since I was maybe about Zofijka’s age, but still rereading them makes me laugh at the same things and I still love them no less. –
Or “Emily Of New Moon”. Or another author that I love rereading is Sigrid Undset, I don’t even know why, I love some of her books but not the way I love “Emily” for example. It’s also very true that each time you reread a book you’re very likely to look at it from a different perspective, which is an interesting experience for me to observe.

How is it with you? ๐Ÿ™‚

{CATEGORY Diary,Books]

Working On Us – Mental Health Prompt.

Beckie over at

Beckie’s Mental Mess

has a weekly series on her blog called Working On Us – Mental Health Prompt, and now is week #3 of it, and I thought I’d join in! Here’s the prompt for this week and my answers. If you haven’t participated yet, I encourage you to check out her blog and to do so. ๐Ÿ™‚

 

Here are a few coping statements, do you agree or disagree?ย  Even if your answer is yes or no, please explain:

  1. This situation of sitting on a fully packed train either makes you feel uncomfortable or unpleasant, but I can accept it? – Yes, I can accept it if it’s just the crowd. It will make me feel a bit uncomfortable and anxious and I simply don’t like crowds too but as long as I don’t feel overwhelmed by other stimuli, am generally doing well and don’t have to interact with those people I will deal with it.
  2. Can I ride out the wave of anxiety, or do I feel like I need professional help now? -I suppose I could benefit from the right professional help, as some things can be very difficult for me to deal with and figure out on my own, I’d been in therapy for many years but had to change therapists a year ago and stopped working with a therapist with whom I worked for many years and whom I really trusted. Since then I had two therapists and didn’t have the best experience with either, I’ve also had some experience before I started to work with that therapist whom I trusted so much and it also wasn’t particularly positive. So I feel a bit conflicted here. Part of me wants to reach out and figure out things and get professional help, but part of me is scared of trying once again and feels very sceptical, and there are other things that complicate it slightly. So I’m trying my best to deal with it on my own, with the help of my family, friends and some medication which I take on an as needed basis most of the time.
        1. Do you practice coping skills? If so, what works best for you? – I do. The coping skill that is most important for me is being around my Russian blue cat Misha, cuddling with him and spending time with him, he really helps me. Listening to music always works for me. Distracting myself with a good book. Good quality sleep if I can get it. Comfort food. Writing is the easiest way for me to express myself, so it helps too. Talking to my Mum or reaching out to friends, I think I’m gradually getting better at it, reaching out for support used to be incredibly difficult for me and still oftentimes is, I’ve always felt pretty uncomfortable reaching out to people or telling them about my problems because everyone already has plenty ofthings going on for themselves so I didn’t want to bother them, and I used to strongly disagree that talking about your problems makes things better and easier as many people say and thought that it can actually make things worse, now I can see it does help sometimes although it’s still a challenge for me to talk to people. Doing something funny that makes me laugh helps too, or listening to sounds that soothe me.

Question of the day.

What is a book you dislike that everyone else seems to love?

My answer:

“Harry Potter”, “Twilight” and other trendy stuff that people get mad about. I just don’t feel it one bit. I tried convincing myself to “Twilight” but I actually really dislike books about vampires they are so odd and I just don’t see what’s so appealing about them. Especially about the romance part, ugh, a vampire like Edward Cullen is certainly not my type of a guy. One thing is I simply don’t like most of the fantasy genre, so it’s just boring for me. And another is that if everyone seems to love something, I will most likely dislike it. ๐Ÿ˜€ That’s just how I am. There are exceptions, but I won’t like something, or even I won’t usually read something, just because everyone else does.

What is such book for you? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day (20th June).

What’s your favourite author?

My answer:

My favourite Polish author is definitely Maล‚gorzata Musierowicz, I’ve written about her loads of times on here, she’s an author of a lovely book series that I just love to pieces. And my favourite foreign author is Lucy Maud Montgomery. But I find “Anne Of Green Gables” slightly overrated. I do like her but she’s written so many other great books that are underappreciated because everyone sees only Anne who’s not as interesting as some other of her heroines like Emily Starr from “Emily Of New Moon” or Valancy Stirling from “The Blue Castle” for example. And I don’t like that people always think that her books are only for children. Well my Zofijka is a child, a tween, and she doesn’t even understand “Anne Of Green Gables”. I think with Montgomery’s books is a bit like with “The Moomins” or “Winnie The Pooh”, everyone associates them with children and reads them in childhood, but it’s only when you grow up that you start really understanding them and seeing them from a different angle.

How about your favourite author? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day (19th June).

What is a book you’re currently reading?

My answer:

Some time ago, my Polish blind friend introduced me to British author called Cathy Glass, who is also a foster carer and writes foster care memoirs, and we both loved them. The problem was though that few of them were translated to Polish and even fewer we could find online so that we could read accessibly. My ENglish wasn’t quite good enough for reading a book in it. But, funnily enough and coincidentally, some years later I started to be more active in the English Internet, way more than in the Polish part of the Internet as it soon turned out, and I joined a mailing list for blind people with mental health problems, and a lot of people there like Cathy Glass too, and other similar authors, so I started to be interested in it again, and learnt that Cathy’s books are on Audible. So I could have a fun way of expanding my English via reading her books, although truth be told I’ve never had many problems with vocabulary whatsoever reading her books, they areeasy peasy, so maybe now is the time to move on to Shakespeare for me, or something equally sophisticated. ๐Ÿ˜€ And I’m still catching up on books by her that I haven’t read yet, and I’m doing this at the moment too, and just finishing a book by her called “A Baby’s Cry”, which I find very interesting and engrossing. The next book I’m going to read is also by her – “Saving Danny”, and then I’m going to change the direction for a while and will read a delicious Polish book that I’ve been looking forward to read for quite a while but just got hold of recently, which is about my favourite patron saint – st. Hyacinth, I got it from my Mum. – His actual name is Jacek, he’s my Dad’s patron saint, and mine too, even though I am not a Jacek, I’ve just always loved him and felt a connection and was interested in his life. I’ve even got an icon of him in my room.

How about your current read(s)?

Question of the day (18th June).

What’s your least favourite book?

My answer:

I have no clear idea. Usually, if I strongly feel like I dislike a book, I won’t bother reading it unless I have to for whatever reason. Overall I didn’t particularly like most of the compulsory readings we had at school, like most people. I am usually not a fan of fantasy, sci fi, paranormal and crime stories, unless they’re about something very specific that I’m into or just have something that I can love about them, but I don’t like these genres as such mostly.

Question of the day (17th June).

What’s your favourite book?

My answer:

It’s hard to say because I like a lot of books, but I suppose my all time favourite is “Emily Of New Moon” by Lucy Maud Montgomery, the whole series. I identified myself a lot with Emily when I was a teen and there is still so much in this series that I can relate to and so many quotes I love, and it has helped me to look in a different way at so many things.

Yours? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day (16th June).

Do you prefer hardcopy or paperback?

My answer:

I nowadays only read ebooks/audiobooks or via my Braille display if I’m able to despite it really reserves to retire finally but I still try to read something on it, and sometimes I have to, so I don’t read physical books anymore. In a way it’s good because Braille books are of course very unpractical and large and expensive and difficult to access and not everything is printed in Braille, but on the other hand I regret because I actually do like reading physical books, it’s nice. But even when I did read physical books it didn’t matter to me that much if it was a paperback or a hardcopy, I liked both the same, unless they weren’t too flimsy.

You? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day (15th June).

Hi people. ๐Ÿ™‚

I’m back with some questions for you, and they’re all book related, here goes.

How many books is too many books in a book series, in your opinion?

My answer:

For me it simply really depends if I like the series. If I like it a lot, I really don’t mind if there are even 30 books in it or more, I’ll be always craving for more anyway. If I don’t like it, I’m not gonna care for it anyway, whether it’s a series, or not a series. If I feel kind of in the middle about some series, as in I like it but not love it and am not crazily involved in it, I guess more than 5 books in a series can be confusing, especially if it’s a family saga for example. You confuse people, or events, who is who, what happened when, that does happen to me sometimes anyway. Or if it’s a sort of series that you should rather read in order, I might be in trouble if I am not able to find all of the books in it in an accessible format, and then it gets even more confusing, so the smaller the series the bigger the chance I can actually find all of it somewhere, that’s most often the case.

What do you think? ๐Ÿ™‚