Saturday 28th May 2022

Being Me & The Month That Was April 2022. #WOTY. 28/2022.

Being Me & The Month That Was April 2022. #WOTY. 28/2022.

Word Of the Year Link Up Party.

Joining in with these kind bloggers:

hosted by friends Deb, Sue,  Donna and  Jo too.

You too can join in, clicking on one the above links:

Look for this image, and add your post.


April 2022: Being Me & The Month That Was. 

April started for ‘being me’  with less self confidence and some inner conflict.

I have been at odds with my perceived appearance (once a woman with overeating and overweight issues) that I could not shake. I needed evidence. Fortunately for me, and my current images, I now know my mind has been telling me stories. Who knew*? *sarcastic font.

And that was one of the reasons, lack of some self confidence,  I chose to make myself (and anyone who wanted to join in) a 30 Day Challenge via social media. Instagram specifically.

Being Self-Compassionate!

Dear Readers, I stopped the challenge at Day 20. I was getting little to no  engagement via my daily posts. And whilst I was wanting some likes and perhaps a comment, nothing happened. I like to engage with those who comment. So, I was a bit sorry that it did not happen. I was also taking part in a daily challenge from Fat Mum Slim about food, and using it to share knowledge and experiences from my head and neck cancer. And I stopped it at Day 20 as well.


Lesson learned: Perhaps I post too much and perhaps with an expectation of interest in what I post. But I can see, that having a private account, along with content that my on-line followers have seen enough of since 2017.

I am unlinking instagram from the blog as it truly was a nuisance with its updates. I am now just posting on Instagram when I have something I want to share. I have also unlinked Instagram from the Denyse Whelan Blogs facebook page. AND, in case you are not aware, I have deleted as many photos as I wanted to because Meta (owner of both FB and IG) own the images until you delete them. It takes a while to do it. But I didn’t want as much on line.

On Changing & Ageing…Being Me.

It’s all very well for people to say, “oh age is just an attitude”…and yes to an extent that is true but to deny the fact that we humans age in many ways (all different for each of us) but towards the common denominator called death, is for me and my husband, a non-realistic way to LIVE in the NOW, but keeping an EYE on our future.

What We Both Love About This Time Of Our Lives Is:

  • being together for parts of the day, week and so on
  • having some separate and private times
  • pursuing our differing interests and hobbies
  • coming together a few times each day, and at 9 p.m. to chat, laugh and listen
  • no one to answer to any more…no bosses!
  • lack of direct  responsibility for any other humans…those dear kids are in their 40s & 50s with our fast growing up grandkids as their responsibility
  • where we live now
  • having a limited but sufficient income with which to live our now modest lives

We went to Norah Head Lighthouse on Good Friday.

What We Accept Is Coming…one day…who knows when?

Our different and chronic health issues may impede some of our planning.

Already we have accepted that for two different reasons, both physical changes within us, we cannot travel or have a night staying anywhere. We both have eating and digestive issues that are managed with ease at home, and whilst we can venture to a cafe for morning tea or visit our family for a meal, that is it now.

My husband has a severely comprised spine – surgeries have helped him stay upright – and pain is with him 24/7 so he is most comfortable at home with all the needs met here. And of course, my reconstructed mouth means eating away from home is in fact, too hard!

I tend to want to know, research and read…(and listen if it’s via Audible) and “he” has learned so much in his University Counselling Degree and working as a Counsellor that he listens to me and nods ….because, dear Reader, is he WISE!

Mind you, we both do still learn from each other and he is understanding of my need to know and with my father’s age at 98 I have seen so much about ageing as it happens to him..I want to understand more about what it not only IS but what I can accept…so, learning for life me, learns! Here’s a few ways:

And this is truly BEing ME!

BEing Me.

Has changed considerably this year.

For the better.

I have, finally, taken stock of what was causing me some anxiety and worry and stopped being an always happy to say YES person.

I now have worked out whose health matters most, mental and physical and that is mine.

I know not everyone can see why I might now have changed but I have had to change.

I was being stressed over small matters that grew into big ones and they were, generally about people-pleasing.

It’s something I am more aware of now and seek to take a pause before I respond to something that perhaps I may have said yes to in the past.

On some occasions I wear my family circles but every day I wear this, a small heart within a heart to remind me of inner and self love.

Now, back to April: The Month That Was.

And some more:

I have visited Dad more often as the weather has brightened and he is needing company. I also bring little treats and food.

He no longer wants me to take photos of him but when he went to my brother’s for Easter, this image was taken and I love it….will be taking a copy “blown up” so he can see it next week. This is his youngest great grandchild and there is 97 years and 4 months difference in their age!

And that, my friends is April…..Word of the Year progress noted….and on Sunday it is May!

May, for many, can bring memories of Mother’s Days…and mothering, and grand mothering too if you get to do that.

It’s the month in which my oral cancer was diagnosed and my life changed from that time onwards.

Yes, there will be a post (or two) in May about it….

Take care,




  1. What a great comprehensive post Denyse, interesting (as always) and authentic! You have opened up about issues we women often think about and I learnt more about you! The issues we geo through as we age aren’t always good and our confidence can slip for the smallest of reasons (I suffered that way during the month too) but it’s also good to know we’re not alone in how we think and see things. Your posts are enlightening, encouraging and show your vulnerability and I thank you for that!

    Thanks for joining us for our monthly linkup, it’s a great way to see how we’re tracking on our WOTY and to gain inspiration from others.

    • Denyse Whelan says:

      Thanks so much for your kind words Deb. I don’t know how else we can learn from each other other than through opening up. The conversations I could never have considered having with my mother, but can have with someone closer to my age.

      I do find connections helpful and without many friends here at all of a similar age, I rely on my blogging friends for “chats” and I thank you for being one of those important people for me.

      That said, about 3 times I year I meet with a very long time friend who is a little older than me and she just happens to be my eldest 3 grandkids’ Granny….despite the fact the my daughter and her son marriage broke down in 2003, we stayed friends…and as she lives on the southern end of the coast now.

      When we get together we have many current situations in our lives to chat about and to the adult grandkids’ immense disappointment, no it’s not about you!!

      Working on my confidence AGAIN…and doing that wardrobe cull is higher on the list now too.

      Thanks for the link up.


  2. What a great post Denyse. Wishing you all the best.

  3. April kept you busy, and something about Easter in April makes it more so, but precious, in that you spent wonderful family time, Denyse! The image of your father with his great GD is truly amazing. How nice to spend such quality time with your husband. You look healthy and I do enjoy seeing the occasional Instagram post from you 🙂 Coming to you from #WOTYlinkup

    • Hello Terri, lovely to hear from you too.

      Thanks for those kind words and heartfelt sentiments.

      I know I am not ‘on social media’ as much but it is nice to be seen by people such as you. I like that a lot.

      Take care, and I look forward to catching up with your post soon.


  4. Hi Denyse, I know exactly how you are feeling and it isn’t easy to identify why we feel that way, in order to make changes. We all go through phases of not feeling good about our appearance so you aren’t alone there but you smile is always sunny to me. The IG or other social media challenges can become a disappointment can’t they? I feel that way about my FB Group – should I keep it going or not? When I decide to close the group I seem to get a flurry of comments which is probably giving me a false impression to keep going. Time will tell. Thank you for being so honest as always and you and Mr B are very lucky to have each other and such a strong but independent relationship.Do what is right for you Denyse because no matter what others think, we really know deep down what is the best for us. Thanks for linking up with #2022WOTY and have a lovely May. xx

    • Sue, your insights are very telling and kind.

      I appreciate you taking the time and interest to cover some of what I wrote about.

      Sometimes we can value “what others think of us” far more than our own well being.

      I am mentioning this because of the group…which you have written about before, in terms of closing.

      Recently I had to stand firm on a decision I made last year to no longer attend head and neck cancer meetings or events in person as it was becoming a source of inner stress for me. My body told me, back in late 2021 that this was so.

      In making that change, and telling people, it was just as hard to convince myself but over time…and that’s the big secret for me… T I M E..I found no-one, mostly, even notices! I unfriended close to a 100 people recently for one reason….they were not connecting with me at all and I wondered why I hadn’t done it earlier!

      Take care and I hope life can treat you and M well over these next months… as you plan your OS or other trips.


  5. HI, Denyse – Thank you for sharing so honesty, openly and authetically. Your post made me feel that I was right there in your living room with you, I greatly admire your candidness and your courage.
    Thank you for linking up with us to share your WOTY reflections. I am delighted that you have been joining us,

    • Thanks so much Donna, I can feel that warmth and engagement from across the oceans.

      I know I blog with candour and honesty because I can’t do it truthfully for me. I guess, though, as it’s only “Me” I refer to then I am OK with that.

      I only hope my readers don’t find this something a bit uncomfortable.

      Take care, and enjoy your Spring while we continue to have a (sigh) wet Autumn…


  6. Thanks for sharing this honest post about ageing and the reality it is for you, and I love how your love for your wise husband shines through in it! I’m glad you’re making progress with being you, and what it means right now.
    The photograph of your father with his young great grand child is wonderful! Talking of which, thanks for reminding of those disadvantages with Meta…I’m very conscious of what I post there and try to not post any high quality photos (if I even have any, haha). I’m very passive on social media at the moment. It’s simply not enjoyable most of the time.

    • Denyse Whelan says:

      Thank you so much for your kind and caring words Susanne. Telling it as it is helps me to share the realities of life for us. Not the glossed over and IG worthy ones!! You know what I mean.

      I don’t like other media ‘owning’ my pics so have been slowly removing the personal ones as they mean most.

      I admit social media can be a negative experience too.

      Hope the move towards Summer goes well.

      Take care,


  7. Hi Denyse – I can totally relate to the people pleasing and saying Yes ‘gene’ – I think a lot of mine stems from being an oldest child and a sense of obligation to always try to keep everyone happy. I’ve learnt over the last decade that keeping everyone happy comes at my own expense and the people that need the most placating are often the ones who we need to say No to the most often (for our own good – and for their’s).
    I think it’s healthy to do a little introspection now and then to see if we’re out of balance and what needs to be adjusted – you seem to have done that through April and come out on top (wise husbands are a godsend for listening to us work through these types of issues aren’t they?) I hope May proves to be a restful and restorative month that settles your heart and soul. x

    • Denyse Whelan says:

      Thanks so much Leanne. We are/were the “good girls” weren’t we? I understand family dynamics well but between us we cannot change our birth order or sex but we can be much more self-compassionate about the “why” parts of behaviours that no longer serve us.

      100% agree we have the men in our lives we are meant to have and they are so helpful..but I also add we give them colour, life, love and fun to share so, it’s a partnership of long lasting friends as well as marital partners.

      Now May is here, I am in many ways relieved…and I will write about that too. I feel like I have been waiting during the past 4 months for the 5 years since my cancer diagnosis on 17 May for a very long time.

      Take care,


  8. Oh I just love that photo of your dad with his youngest; what an age span and they both look so equally taken with one another. It sounds like you are doing great work being you!

    • Denyse Whelan says:

      Isn’t it the best? I got to give it to Dad yesterday and even with his very limited sight, his eyes lit up when he saw it. Thanks Joanne, this being me is finally coming good!!

Denyse values & reads every comment written, thank you. There is always a reply.