The dark side of the Force is strong with me!

The dark side of the Force is strong with me!

Sunday, 29 July 2012

That Was The Week, That Was...

So, a week has gone by since my last blog and nothing much exciting has happened really... oh wait, I only went and graduated motherloving University on Tuesday didn't I?!

It. Was. Ace.

My official title is now Andrew Ward BA (Hons) in Media and Popular Culture. Fuck yeah.

I had two graduation ceremonies to attend as myself and one of my closest friends had bagged some prestigious awards. We were nominated by our tutors and won The Dean's Prize for Outstanding Student Achievement which was nice. I also bagged the Best Dissertation Award and The Alan McGregor Award too which is given to the mature student who has made an outstanding contribution to University during their time there - go me ey, a hat-trick of awesome!

We were slightly worried that our prizes were something like Boots or Poundland vouchers but instead we got a cheque for £50 each, and then I also got two £50 Book vouchers. Maybe I'll purchase 50 Shades of Bullshit or Twishite with them eh girls? Nahhh, I can't see that happening in all honesty so they shall go toward my impending Master's degree book buying activities. So all in all a good haul I think.

The main graduation ceremony lasted about an hour. University dignitaries congratulated us all and gave speeches and so on, then our moment of glory came as we ascended the main stage to shake the Dean's hand. This bit was really surreal as I think everyone was concentrating so hard on not faceplanting the stage and tripping up over their gowns that it now seems a bit of a blur looking back. This was especially true of the girls as most wore the most ridiculous shoes ever and yet they all managed to cross the stage without faceplanting (good skillz girls!). I scooted over without any mishaps too and gave the waiting audience and my family the thumbs up (classic celebratory stylee), before slapping a firm manshake on the Dean so he knew how I rolled and then went back to my seat.

After that, it was time to drink! I hung around for a few hours seeing tutors and chatting to friends for what will be the last time, or not for a very long time again anways and I was really chuffed to see everyone so happy and celebrating with their families. Once everyone had snapped and papped us all to death we ditched our caps and gowns (it was sweltering in them with the heat!) and we all made our way seperate ways home to prepare for evening drinkage in Leeds once everyone had gone for their family meals and such like.

I had a quick log in to Faceache once home and was chuffed to see friends from America had logged in to watch the ceremony which was streamed live along with countless congratulatory messages and compliments stating that I apparently looked handsome in my gown even though I was sweating like Katie Price at an STI clinic. Ewww, what a horrible comparison I just made.

So yeah, here's me being all proud and shit with my first class honours degree:

I guess I am really proud in all honesty. I had the worst time in my final six months of university which makes my final grade all that more special as I really doubted I would get there at one point. I split with The Girl right before New Year's Eve, did the whole heart broken thing, lost loads of weight (yeah, it happens to guys too) and was then struck down with a serious CF-specific virus in early May on top of all of that.

I remember when I was in hospital at that point, my lungs were down to 25% which for those that aren't aware is pretty serious and I was just finding everything a little bit difficult if I do say so myself. I wondered if that period of ill health at that time would drag my grades down and also scupper an exam I was trying to prepare for whilst I was in hospital.

But, thankfully it didn't. I somehow managed to write my dissertation from my hospital bed in 10 days with zero rewrites and I gained an 84 mark for it too. I also aced the exam I had to prepare for as well which was a shock as I thought I was done for and really didn't want to sit it. I remember walking into the exam room the day after discharge from hospital and thinking, ''there's no fucking way I'm passing this one after being a druggy mess in hospital for the past two weeks.''

Guess what though? I got a 74 mark for the exam. Fucking get in *victory fist punches the air*

I'm just glad I didn't give in and battled through. I worked hard in some of the worst circumstances i've had to endure, both in my personal life and my academic life and made that shit my bitch. Fuck yeah.

The night out round Leeds was more low-key than previous post exam drinkage, I think everyone was knackered as it had been a long and draining day but we still managed to smash some champers:

All in all it was an ace day. I even got a cheeky snog too from someone who I was supposed to go on a date with a few weeks ago as she was out in Leeds that night, which was nice. That reminds me of the Fligh of the Conchords song 'A Kiss Is Not a Contract' haha. YouTube it if you don't know what I'm talking about.

So, what else has happened this week?

One of my good CF mates I've gotten to know on Faceache only went and got her call for transplant on Thursday which is AMAZING news as she was seriously ill indeed. She's ace and has been fighting so hard like a trooper to stay positive despite being so seriously ill at end-stage, so it was brilliant to hear she had recieved the call for some shiny new lungs. She is recuperating well and her blog can be found here which chronicles her journey:

It is definitely worth mentioning that thoughts go out to the donor's family who had to lose a loved one in order for this to happen. If you want to join the organ donor register and help save lives then here's the link:

Saturday was a mixed bag. I attended a soiree at my good friend's house in Wakefield. A family BBQ to celebrate her achieving first class honours and the award I mentioned earlier. I had to leave earlyish as my back was aching from my chest being bad at the moment which pissed me off a treat as I was all set to party for a few more hours. I'd already necked some painkillers at the party and they didn't even touch it so I knew it was best to go home and get some rest. Fuck you CF.

It is SO frustrating at times when it starts fucking over you doing stuff you enjoy and I was in agony by the time I'd got back to Leeds so I necked more painkillers and hit the sack. In bed for just after 11.30pm on a Saturday night. Fuck my life!

I'm feeling pretty vile mood-wise today as a result so think it is time for more IVs as I am in need of a boost. My spirits and energy levels have been flagging for weeks now so I should be admitted to recharge my batteries. I have my checkup on Friday so I'll get that sorted then. Handy timing so I will be back to my normal cheery self and ready to party for my 34th birthday in September which is another achievement, and then the start of my Master's degree which I'm gonna' rip that bitch's panties off and ride her on the love length train to success - fuck yeah!

Whatever that means.

Peace out motherlovers.

Sunday, 22 July 2012

To Know Me, Is To Understand Me. Maybe.

Wow. One blog in and I'm suddenly a combination of Oscar fucking Wilde (without the bum sex) and ol' Bill Shakespeare (god rest his soul).

So many thoughts and things to write about. Here's hoping I can keep this up and not fade into obscurity ey, because you know, internet fame is the shit these days, right?

I was inspired to write this blog as I recounted the countless times people often get the wrong impression of me which in all honesty I find hilarious.

If you know me 'in the real world' or even have added me on Faceachebook then you'll probably have thought I'm a cunt at one point or another due to the things I say and post. Which is great, because I am. Not in the negative, tossy, fuckwittery sense like most people are these days. I mean, let's be honest we all know a cunt don't we and their masses seem to be growing exponentially daily at an alarming rate, whereas genuine, decent people seem to be on the decline.

Maybe society is in a state of devolution. Behold the Cuntocalypse. Hmm.

Anyways, back to me.

I am brutally honest in all areas of my life. Always have been, always will be. I can hands down say that is one of the most beneficial things which has come with being born with a terminal illness such as Cystic Fibrosis. I am truly grateful for that outlook too. I just cannot be arsed lying or pandering to people, or their expectations of how they think we should all act and behave. The older I've gotten the less I've cared about offending people too. Life is just too bloody short for tolerating fuckwittery in my book.

Fact is, most people are full of shit and lie their arses off daily about the most inane and stupid things, and that kind of stuff boils my piss as I just don't see the point in it. There's even some cultural theory that backs this up (one of the reasons I fucking loved my degree).

In 1959, a sociologist called Erving Goffman wrote a book called The Presentation of  Self in Everyday Life in which he proposes that human beings use theatrical performance in their daily face-to-face social interactions.

Goffman proposes that we all have two distinct regions, a stage managed front and back region. For example, say a well-known celebrity projects the image of being a clean living, happily married man or woman and then they are revealed via the press to be a drug addled cheating fuckwit which is often the case for most of them. Ugh celebrities, definitely need to write a venomous blog about why I hate most of the pointless oxygen thieves at some point.

If you think about your own social interactions for a minute with people I guarantee you can think of occasions where this theory rings true. I mean, just look at how much women bitch about their mates or other women as a shining example, or how much you have to tolerate that cunt you work with who you secretly despise and wish dead on a daily basis. It is human nature.

I guess what I'm saying is that I have a truly unique perspective on the world and life in general. Even more so now I'm getting older with CF and face a very uncertain future. I rebel in the face of normal expectations, assumptions and just the general mind-numbing boringness of most people these days (boringness is totally a real word by the way).

I seem to have very little of a front or back region (sorry Erving mate). I don't have one of those switches in my head that stops you saying what you think. Mine seems to be permanently on 'speak your mind' mode. Often with offensive and hilarious results.

I love life, I love taking the piss out of myself, people and situations every day as it is true that a day without laughter is a day wasted. Inappropriate humour is the best kind of humour for me and pretty much most things are fair game to be poked fun at.

I'd also admit that my cunty demeanour is a test. If people can hack it and give as good as they get then they are pretty much in my awesome book. And those are the type of people I want in my life.

Those with spirt. And passion. And vitality. And most of all the sheer balls to say what they think.

I know so many people who have so much shit going on because they choose to surround themselves with shit, weak and dodgy people and I'm fucked if that is ever going to be me. I have an extremely low tolerance for bullshit, drama and just the general stuff that we all hear people bleating on about everyday and think, ''who fucking cares you stupid cuntnugget?''

So, in closing statement to the court, yes I'm a cunt your honour. I may well be the cuntiest cunt to ever cunt a cunt in all honesty. But, before judging, take some time and think, or attempt to understand that in the face of insurmountable odds I just want to enjoy life and embrace it. as we all should but so often so very few of us actually manage to.

That's not an excuse by the way, I more than welcome criticism and appreciate being told off sometimes as we all need it.

In short, I'm a good cunt and if you're like me then you're very welcome in my life.

Greetings and Salutations.

So, I finally decided to get off my lazy ass and start writing something on here. I'm feeling particularly reflective today and I find that those times are the best times to write. But first, a little bit about me. Why am I doing this? And why should you waste your time reading this blog?

As some of you who are following me will know, I was born with Cystic Fibrosis (CF).

Some of you will be wondering what that is and what the hell it means. In an effort to dissuade those of you that don't quite know what CF is from quickly Googling it and probably reading something which is wrong then I guess I'd best start there and break you in gently (ooh Matron!).

Here's some basic facts from the CF Trust website:

Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is one of the UK's most common life-threatening inherited diseases.

It is caused by a faulty gene that controls the movement of salt and water in and out of the cells within the body.

Cystic Fibrosis affects the internal organs, especially the lungs and digestive system, by clogging them with thick sticky mucus. This makes it hard to breathe and digest food.

Over 9,000 people in the UK have Cystic Fibrosis.

If two carriers have a child, the baby has a 1 in 4 chance of having Cystic Fibrosis.

Over two million people in the UK carry the faulty gene that causes Cystic Fibrosis - around 1 in 25 of the population.

Over 95% of the UK CF population is Caucasian, but CF affects many ethnic groups.
Each week, five babies are born with Cystic Fibrosis.

Each week, two young lives are lost to Cystic Fibrosis.Currently half of the CF population will live past 41 years of age, and improvements in treatments mean a baby born today is expected to live even longer.

In a further attempt to show you what having CF feels like, grab yourselves a straw and undertake this quick experiment. After all, learning is fun! Right?

Knackered now aren't you? Ha! Welcome to my world.

So yeah, in layman's terms having CF is pretty much having fucked spazzy lungs that sometimes stop you doing the simplest of things, or making them extremely difficult for you to undertake.

Me personally? I'm not like that all of the time so I manage for the most part when I'm moderately well even though the days of me running like the wind are long gone so it's not too bad for the most part. Then you have those times when you're breathless getting a bath, walking up some stairs, or having a wank which is frustrating as hell. And so not sexy.

Things have started to become more difficult over the last few years for me, but that's as a result of exposing myself to various bugs caught from the general populance because of studying at university. That definitely sucks but fuck it, I'd rather try and do something with my life no matter what my situation is, or how much of a risk to my long-term health it may be.

What is also mega important to get across is that: EVERYONE WHO HAS CYSTIC FIBROSIS HAS IT DIFFERENTLY.

This is why when people Google it, it pisses me off because they inevitably end up finding, and reading the doom and gloom stories, or blog posts about it via media news, or that are written by people at end-stage which is just inaccurate, but lo and behold due to the power of the internet the information is absorbed and judgements are formed.

End-stage I hear some of you say? Yeah, about that there's no current cure for Cystic Fibrosis. It is fatal. Eventually. As mentioned above the current life expectancy is 41 years of age.

Again, I have to stress that this is just a statistic and by no means I'm going to croak within the next few years. Fuck that if I have anything to say about it.

The only hope for people like myself is a life-saving double-lung transplant as we will eventually get so ill that our lungs will be pretty much useless. I'll write more about that in a later blog though before I depress you all and you go emo and get the razors out.

So yeah, this is pretty much going to be my story. How I live and survive with CF. How I love, laugh and strive to succeed with it.

I'm writing this blog in the hope that it will educate, inform and amuse those of you out there that don't know what it is like living with CF, and in the hope that it will help people understand myself, and my fellow disabilists because we're awesome. And modest about it too.

Happy reading.