Here she is, waving a (timid) little hello. Well, it doesn’t half feel weird putting pen to paper – or rather fingers to keyboard – again. Weird, but incredibly refreshing and oh so right. I feel like it’s been two ticks since I last pressed publish on a post, but in reality, it’s been the best part of this year. And I have to say, so much has happened in what has been the biggest rollercoaster of a year that I think I’ve ever had to face. To say that I’m nervous about pushing that blue button and putting my ramblings out into the world would be an understatement, but I just feel like I want (need) to have a little brain vomit moment and give you an insight into what’s been going on in the world of me.
Let’s start at the very beginning. So, fundamentally, the reason why I haven’t been blogging for a while now is because life has been nothing short of overwhelming and in a nutshell, I just wasn’t in the right place for it. As someone who firmly wears their heart on their sleeve, I can’t ever hide my emotions, and consequently that seemed to transfer over to ‘online me’ too. I’m extremely passionate about writing and creating content that I believe in – both on my Instagram and my blog – but struggle to find the balance between the pretty best bits online and allowing real life in.
Back in January I was all set for the whole ‘new year, new me’ thing – well, new year, same me, but with bells on essentially. I was starting a new job and felt so excited to take on a new opportunity and to see myself grow – I’d even created a ‘give a shit list’. But, it wasn’t all rainbows and butterflies. Joe and I had hit a difficult point in our relationship and my confidence was at an all time low – both mentally and physically. Thankfully, things smoothed out and now Joe and I are stronger than ever, but the same sadly couldn’t be said about the latter.
I’ve erased and rewritten this paragraph so many times, hoping that each time I’ll be able to word it better, but there just doesn’t seem to be an easy way to get it all out. Looking back, I think April was when things really started to come to a head, and from then on everything seemed to escalate at a rapid pace. I’ve touched briefly on my mental health in the past, but never really fully opened up about it. Not that I haven’t wanted to, I’ve just always been the kind of person who sticks their head in the sand and tries to act like everything is okay. By June, I was completely crippled by my anxiety and could no longer pretend to others, let alone myself, that everything was okay.
I spoke out about my family moving to America for the first time on Instagram recently, and how I’ve really been struggling to come to terms with it. I’m incredibly close to the clan and already find it difficult them living two and a half hours away, let alone in another time zone. My Dad says that he thinks I’m in complete denial about it, and to be honest, he would be absolutely right. On top of that, there’s been a lot of other personal issues going on – family stuff and the like – and without elaborating too much, no amount of holes in the stress bucket could stop it from overflowing.
Personal life aside, during all of this I was also having a really difficult time at work. By September, I found that I was waking up every morning feeling, well… nothing to be honest, struggling to bring myself to get up. I’d find myself crying on the train into London, and then breaking down to Joe as soon as I got home. Just completely and utterly beaten by it all. My weekly ‘sessions with Charlotte’ were a saving grace, and basically involved me crying into a bottle (or three) of wine, hanging off her words of wisdom (I swear she is the oracle). Truthfully, without my friends, Joe (who has been an absolute rock) and of course the clan, I don’t know what I’d have done.
There was a moment when I was out for dinner with some friends and we were all laughing, as you do, and I caught sight of myself in a mirror. My face was smiling, but it was my eyes that I was drawn to – they weren’t smiling, they were lost. That right there was the turning point for me. The point where I realised that I needed to start compartmentalising it all. And so I did. I started chucking what I could in the fuck it bucket, picked myself up, brushed myself off and cracked the hell on. Not easily I might add, but I did it.
After one monumentally hellish week on all fronts, I realised that something had to give. Now, I’m not one for taking risks – I’m absolutely terrible at making decisions and I simply love a good plan. I love routine, and I like to know that I’m in control of a situation. But, I decided that it was time (after a lot of coaxing from my loved ones) to take a leap of faith. And so, I decided to hand in my notice at work, with nothing else lined up. Without going into detail, the role just wasn’t right for me and was causing me relentless anxiety. Basically, I felt like I was in the deep end, just constantly treading water (and drowning a lot in the process).
Fast forward to the beginning of October and there I was, basking in the (f)unemployed life. Bar the one minor tizz at the start (insert the Phoebe ‘I don’t even have a pla’ meme here), the difference a month has made has honestly blown my mind. As someone who has worked since they were sixteen – alongside full time education until they were twenty-one – who then went straight into full time employment, I’ve never really had that ‘the world is your oyster feeling’. I’ve never really felt like I’ve had the freedom to do whatever I want to do, until now.
Until recently, I never really believed in the law of attraction, but from now on I’ll be flying that banner high enough for the people in the back to see. Positive thoughts attract positive things and all that (teamed with a lot of hard graft of course). The past four weeks have been a bit of a blur, full of throwing myself into job hunting and interviews, complete with many a lie in. I’ve lapped up a bit of me time too, doing all the ladmin that I just never seem to find the time to do, like clearing out the Monica cupboard and registering at the Doctors after three years of living here (oops).
Which brings us to the now. So, what’s the goss? Well, a few weeks ago I put a post up on my stories asking for advice on whether people believe that you should follow your head or your heart. Not to be all cryptic, just that I found myself in a position that I never thought that I would be in, especially if you’d have said it to me a few months previously. In just three weeks of (f)unemployment, I found myself with not one, but two job offers. Honestly, what in the Jeff?! And now here I am, following my heart and psyching myself up to start a brand new adventure on Monday. And honestly, I can’t wait.
I met up with my mega babe Beth recently, who has been one of my biggest advocates and just so supportive beyond words. From celebratory dinners and surprise bouquets of flowers, to supportive texts and a touch of tough love – basically everyone needs a Beth in their life. Just not mine, I ain’t sharing (I kid… kinda). Any way, Beth and I went out for dinner and she said that I looked nice (told ya she’s a keeper) and asked if I’d done anything different to my makeup, to which I said no. She looked quizzically at me and said am I sure, my eyes look really different. I laughed and said no, I’m just happy. She laughed too and said oh good, it suits you. We’ll keep that. And that right there was the money maker.
Truthfully, I almost don’t recognise the girl who I was just a few months previously. It’s not that I’ve changed – I’m still the same old over-thinker who is an unashamed cheese fiend – more that I’ve simply found myself again. And boy, is it good to be back.
This isn’t a ‘woe is me’, searching for sympathy kind of post, more of a gentle reminder that we don’t always know exactly what’s going on in people’s life. But above all, it’s a post to say hey, do you know what, it’s okay to not be okay. You are in control of your own happiness. So, if something or someone doesn’t fill you with joy or bring happiness into your life, then it just isn’t worth your energy. Take that energy and channel it into something good. And fundamentally, never be afraid to take that leap of faith. After all, fortune favours the brave.