Adoration for the most average weekends

img_9213

I adored the weekend just gone (please come back) yet I did absolutely nothing special during it. I didn’t go out out, I didn’t do anything to my hair or put on much make up, I didn’t celebrate anything, go shopping, drink wine or try anything new apart from putting cheesy nachos inside a fajita which was a dream come true.

Happiness at the weekend can still be dancing until 4am, trying to phone the ‘Night Tsar’ on a help phone at Bank tube station and getting in round after round of Cafe Patron. All of that is still fun, I still like doing it and I get genuinely excited about the prospect of going out somewhere which requires me to think about my choice of shoe and sharpen my eyeliner, but there’s a whole new contented feeling in town come 5pm on a Friday.

These days, weekend satisfaction and all round happy feelings include:

-Cleaning things with bleach that smell like citrus fruits and then commenting on how fresh everything is for the rest of the day.

-Homeware shopping online until I realise I don’t need any of it, saving a few links and then repeating the next day.

-Walking. Walking anywhere with water, trees, ideally swans and maybe a nice photogenic bridge.

-Not sleeping in. The me of five years ago wants to slap the me of right now hard around the face and throw a glass of water over me, but it’s true. Being dressed, functioning and coherent outside of the house by 9am makes me feel like I’m coasting through life as opposed to the desperately treading water and shaking my head feeling I have most of the time.

-Drinking enough wine to feel warm and fall asleep easily and doing it because FRIDAY, but not so much that I wake up and need to stick my head out of a window at 7am and do the ‘phone, keys, bank cards, ID’ bag check that follows a heavy evening. (I haven’t actually had to do this in so long and I sort of miss it but also NO).

-Being able to get in on a Saturday afternoon and stay in where there will be no wind, no rain, no chance of being failed by public transplant, no queues, no general public and no need to have clean hair.

I know the ‘being a granny’ in your 20s thing is hardly groundbreaking but being a bit boring and predictable has never felt better. I also think that after a long time and very up and down 12 months, I’ve finally embraced a better mindset and a rosier outlook, which makes lovely weekend all the more lovely.

I had a really terrible day and I’m glad it happened

img_6690

Last week I had a succession of really bad days. They just kept on coming and even though it was only six days, it felt like months. I was feeling angry for my mum who’s recovering from a big operation and was stuck in a house without heat or a shower thanks to our boiler breaking and the insurance failing to sort it out. I had a headache from feeling stressed, I was living out of hotel rooms due to the boiler fiasco, I was trying to deal with house and mortgage stuff and I also had pain in every joint of my body from sleeping in uncomfortable beds and carrying heavy bags around. Woe. Is. Me.

The really bad day was the Friday. I hadn’t been able to wash my hair in three days so I was strolling round London looking like a greasy, sad alien and feeling VERY sorry for myself. I also dropped some chickpea stew on my brand new jumper, stubbed my toe on a desk and woke up with loads of spots. It was really, really glamourous and I am as shocked as you are that I’m now not an international super model.

I don’t like being in a bad mood, not that anyone does, but I just hate that feeling of being stuck in a grumpy rut when all you’re good for is being alone and going to bed. On this day though, after a really bad week, I revelled in this bad mood. I actually started to enjoy how many things were going wrong, stacking up more and more reasons to feel snappy and annoyed and not talk to people and buy really expensive coffee because I deserved it.

By the time I went to bed that night, having made no progress on all the things that had gone wrong that week (in a hotel, because still no boiler four days on), I had reached such depths of feeling unspeakably hard done by, that I thought I might never feel happy again. The next day though, with freshly washed hair and less lunch on my clothes, I started feeling more human and a billion times more refreshed and with that came an overwhelming sense of relief that the bad mood was over, but actually I needed that day.

I really needed to feel sorry for myself. I really needed to spend a day feeling exactly as I felt and not trying to hide stress and anger. I needed to be moody. I needed to be alone. I needed to not apologise for feeling like crap.

There seems to be a movement among millennials (particularly the social media savvy) to really push positivity, to own opportunities and seize productivity and make good stuff happen, but it can’t be like that all the time. No one feels that way all the time.

Bad days aren’t anything to shout about usually, but sometimes just accepting them and owning the mood is all you can do. Coming round from a crap day and awful mood makes you realise all over again that actually, things aren’t so bad and it could be much worse.

This is what I’ve learned about humans and healing in the last year

IMG_2273

It’s not particularity straight forward to just decide one day that you feel better after going through something hard. We can’t track exactly how long it took to feel more or less back to normal. It kind of just gradually happens. If I’m having a bit of a rough time I sometimes try to predict how long it will all last so I can countdown to being back on track. Of course this is not possible. Being human is a lot about not knowing, and you just have to learn to be okay about that.

When my mum got diagnosed with cancer I remember it being weeks of worry, then weeks of limbo, then some relief, then just this period of time when things slowly started to piece back together but there’s still this strange feeling that clings on around you. It’s weird when something bad happens how everything just changes. I think the best way to describe it is being thrown into a pool, with no warning, straight into the deep end. Once you’re in, you test the water and just try and keep yourself afloat. Then you have to deal with staying in the pool for as long as things are hard. You keep swimming but you never quite reach the sides to have a rest, and sometimes you can barely even swim because the water is too thick to get through.

Cool story right? But that’s my perfect interpretation of dealing with hard stuff. That’s how I think me and my family felt for a good few months, how we still feel a bit even though we’re now holding onto the sides and starting to climb out. Getting over thing isn’t straight forward. There’s no simple way to help someone. After my experience, I felt more empathetic to people around me having a shit time of it. I felt less inclined to tell people to man up or get over it, no matter what the problem was.

We’re complex things, us humans, and we have complex, detailed, busy brains that keep us floating, sometimes make us feel like we’re drowning and sometimes makes us feel like we’re back to normal. It’s just a thought really, drawing on the last year of my life, but we should probably all help those who can’t reach the sides yet a bit more if we can.

If I could live one summer over again…

I’m writing this staring at a distinctly grey sky. I also feel cold, which is nice considering it’s June 23rd. Who needs sunshine eh? I saw a post similar to this a few weeks ago and it got me all nostalgic and what not and I suggest if you need a blog post idea, do this. It gave me an excuse to pore over old photos and get all smiley and happy and so on. I’ve been blessed with lots of pretty good summers over the last few years, and picking my favourite is hard, but it has to go to the summer of 2010. Five whole years ago. HOW DOES THIS HAPPEN? WHERE IS MY LIFE GOING? HELP.

So let’s set the scene. I’ve just turned 20, I’m still a student, I’m doing a really cool digital marketing/advertising work placement, I’m going on holiday to Cyprus and I have a ticket to Bestival. Pretty good summer line up. I also met my future boyfriend on this work placement, thought I didn’t know that for a while back then, who is still putting up with me now. Many congratulations to him. I also remember the weather being MUCH nicer than we’ve had in 2015 so far. So yeah.

Still being a student made this year what it was. Remember the glory days of having those long couple of months stretched out in front of you with your main worry being scraping together some pennies from overtime so you can afford to go wild when freshers rolls around? The dream. Anyway, this particular summer, after spending two weeks in Cyprus laying on various beaches, going up mountains and eating everything, I came home and joyfully reunited myself with my uni friends who were back in Kingston, or those who just never left.

We drank in gardens, we drank by the river, we laid around all day reading HP, we walked around town aimlessly (buying nothing because we were broke), we went on impromptu nights out, slept in until lunchtime, drove around in my half-broken KA, never spent any time thinking about essays or anything remotely grown up or scary and wore sunglasses to Oceana on a Monday night. I remember having endless sessions of sitting on floors painting nails various shades of coral and bright blue and playing a LOT of Cranium, the best game ever in case you were wondering (made better by hilarious friends).I think we also chucked in a day out at Thorpe Park at some point, maybe at the very start of summer, because obviously.

I think this was my favourite summer mostly because of how care-free I was, partly because it involved lots of doing my favourite things and a lot to do with having found the best friendship group I had ever had. I remember one friend rolling into a garden drinking session when we were all notoriously poor and announcing a holiday to Morocco, because why the F not? Life.

I also got to finish this summer doing one of my favourite activities with my best ginger pal: attending Bestival, where we made some friends for life, drank jelly shots while dancing to Chic and did midnight Tai Chi in a field. It might not have been the richest, busiest, most inspirational time, but it was flipping amazing regardless. I’m not saying life with no responsibilities is better than life now, because I love how good I have got it currently, I’m just saying, freedom and friends and the summer of 2010 was bloody fun. 2010 2010a 2010b 2010d

Shall we all just have a little moan about commuting? Yes? Good.

tube_map

Commuting is really, super amazing and fun. Said no one. Ever.

This is a blog post about basically nothing other than my strong feelings towards getting to and from work. I moan a lot about my journey to the office. You might have picked up on my negative feelings (of extreme hatred and venom) towards the tube and my arch nemesis, the district line, if you’ve read this blog before. Don’t get me wrong, when the tube works, and it’s not so packed you have mold yourself to the shape of the door, it’s great. Like, totally efficient and the easiest way to get around London for sure.

However, when it doesn’t work how it should, which is fairly often, I just can’t deal. How does anyone deal? WHY CAN’T LIFE BE ONE GIANT HOLIDAY? I mean, we could arrange some sort of commuter uprising. Of course we won’t. We’ll continue shelling out an obscene amount of money for a sub-standard service and putting up with touching and smelling the breakfast of fellow commuters while apologizing when we accidentally fall into someone or elbow someone square in the face. Sometimes as I squeeze onto a carriage at Fulham Broadway at about 8:10 in the morning, I feel my emotions change from ‘tired and a bit confused?’ to ‘I feel like I could spit fire.’ It’s an emotional rollercoaster.

Some days the extreme anger and injustice turns into hilarity. I love nothing more than a cracking excuse as to why I can’t get where I’m going or why I’m being turfed off of the train at a random stop because the service is terminating for no apparent reason. My favourite one of late was being told the driver had gone missing so the train couldn’t leave the station. Totally reasonable. There’s also a fond place in my heart for the morning the driver announced that the service was terminating for reasons unknown and there may or may not be another tube along shorty. That’s fine babes, I’ll just lay down on the platform and wait for death.

I mean, what is life? My journey to my current job is a good 11 tube stops shorter than my previous but still often takes the same amount of time. It’s so great. The other day I saw a man punch a train because he couldn’t fit on it, and I’m surprised people didn’t clap. I could see a sort of mutual respect from the other commuters as they watched a man assault an inanimate object. This is what London commuting does to you. I could get a bus, but it takes about an hour and a half. I could walk, but it’s bloody far. I could cycle but I have really dodgy hips and bad knees and I’m terrified because LORRIES. The struggle is real.

This morning I watched a man shoot snot out of his nose onto the floor of the carriage I was in. Happy Tuesday. Pass the wine.

16 situations that regularly occur in the morning

ed68ff85513c68fce902e9113443dee1

Print from Minted

1) You drop your phone. You drop it because you’re tired. You drop it on your face because you’re trying to snooze for the 11th time. You drop it because you’re holding a bag, coffee, work badge and a free newspaper while dodging slow walkers and tourists with 9 suitcases.

2) You question humanity. People breathing into your ear on the tube like dragons, people attempting to  get on an already dangerously packed train with a ladder, people shouting gleefully down the phone at 7:30am so everyone in a 5 mile radius knows what they did last night. Shut up. Go away.

3) You pay an obscene amount for a hot drink you could make for free at work. You continually do this, because there is something about holding a cup of hot coffee from a coffee shop and you do not know what it is or why you are that person now.

4) You feel a selection of emotions about your hair. Regret at not brushing it. Regret at not washing it. Smugness about how magnificent you look. Upset about how awful your up-do braid thing has turned out after all the practice you put in. Serious thought into shaving it off because when is it not windy these days?

5) Pizza Express email you about BOGOF pizza or a free dessert.

6) You read an email that makes you roll your eyes so far back into your head that you fear you may have lost them forever.

7) You end up on the Instagram page of someone’s sister’s boyfriend’s friend from uni who recently went away to Bali and oh Bali looks nice, let’s just look that up.

8) You either eat something that makes you feel like an Olympian in training or eat something that makes you feel like you need  a nap.

9)  There is a brief moment where you stare out of the window and see some birds flying around and a man walking up the road then realise 5 minutes have passed and you’re still half naked.

10) The shower decision. Do I? Don’t I? How late am I already? What exactly do I smell of?

11) Approximately 4 minutes after arriving at work, you know which way the morning will go. Productive or BuzzFeed.

12) You see someone in gym gear and wonder what on earth motivates them and where you can find it.

13) You realise as you sit down at work that you forgot your lunch so immediately begin planning what you will have instead and things get out of hand quickly.

14) Someone has Instagrammed, Tweeted or Facebooked something involving an avacado and you can’t help but be pissed off with it. Avacado saturation is peak.

15) You talk about the same three things with colleagues as everyone trickles into work- transport, food and tiredness.

16) You think about getting back into bed at the end of the day and how much of a good time to be alive it will be.

21 ridiculous things people in their 20s have said to me

20s

1) He wrote a song about Anne Frank. It’s one for the wank bank.

2) Are wolves mythical?

3) what’s the Vatican?

4) I accidentally liked one of his Instagram photos from 2 years ago and panicked and just deleted Instagram completely then got drunk.

5) I haven’t heard back from any jobs so I’m just concentrating on men adoring me.

6) Who was that black guy who sang r&b songs in the 90s? Had a few hits?

7) I got the job and immediately went out and spent £100.

8) I had to get up at 3am and just finish off the block of cheese. So hungry.

9) I took my knickers off because I couldn’t breathe and now I can’t find them anywhere. (In a club)

10) Do you want to go eagle handling? I’m not joking.

11) The nurse asked me what I had to drink last night so I told her about the port, the tequila and the beer and then she gasped, so I just didn’t tell her the rest.

12) The gas man came to fix the boiler and there was a champagne cork wedged in there.  So yeah, that’s why it broke.

13) I came downstairs really hungover to get some water and the letting agency man was changing the wrong light fixture but it was really awkward and I didn’t say anything. The actual broken light is still broken.

14) I got to the airport and when they searched my bag they found a knife and two forks and I just denied they were mine. They are mine though, for my lunch at work.

15) I thought seahorses were only cartoons, like in Little Mermaid.

16) I washed and tumble dried an asthma inhaler. Can you imagine if it exploded?

17) My friend’s brother went on a date and didn’t realise until an hour in that the guy had one arm.

18) Starwars is the film where they all wear grey wet suits and there’s a bear? No?

19) When boys stay over I just make them wear my mouse pyjamas and then they have to leave at like, 5am.

20) I woke up on my doorstep and my landlord had to step over me to get inside.

21) I attempted to make toast four times and failed. I just give up. What’s the point?

22) I got a new job and cooked an amazing dinner with vegetables and I’m so proud of myself I just cried a little bit.

16 funniest memories from student life

1) Knocking Dean Gaffney off a stool in Oceana nightclub in 2008 and then repeatedly apologising and calling him Robbie. Only really entertaining if you a) watched Eastenders growing up and b) have any idea who the man himself is.

gaffney

2) Taking an immensely hungover friend to the shop in her fleece Primark Christmas pyjamas, only to bump into a man inside the shop wearing the same pyjamas and buying vodka.

3) Going to a house party armed only with money for the bus, a bottle of tequila, half a lemon and a knife (for the lemon, not for crime obviously)

4) Watching friends use their tumble dryer in the shed, in the dark and slowly losing all of their underwear for a whole year, only to then discover a light upon moving out.

5) Having 15 mini Yorkshire puddings for dinner on several occasions.

6) Watching an entire series of True Blood in one sitting (a full 12 hours) with housemates, ordering the next series on Amazon with next day delivery, and repeating.

7) Becoming obsessed with a TV show about ‘extreme fishing’ because everyone had far too much free time, dressing a housemate up as a fisherman, going out and watching her successfully pull someone while still wearing the fishing hat.

8) Hearing someone come in to do a house inspection after a heavy night, hearing her open a door and exclaim ‘Oh my God’ before swiftly closing it again.

9) Spending the majority of a post-exam house party in a bath with four friends probably discussing deep topics like poverty and love while drinking champagne.

IMG_0658

10) Wine tasting in 10am lectures with people who were virtually strangers and immediately becoming friends for life.

11) Becoming completely obsessed by the lady who runs the Uni canteen deli bar and as a group talking about her at all social events.

12) Getting a cab home with friends and crying over a cut hand while also singing the whole of Enrique Iglesias- Hero to the driver

13) Trying to deal with a leak at 2am, phoning other housemates who are in a club to get hold of Graham the plumber, only to realise the leak is actually a tap that just happens to be on.

14) Going to the library with good intentions, rediscovering Kinder Eggs with everyone else trying to do the same essay, writing nothing, going home.

15) Learning ALL of the words to an Eminem song with a friend, then meeting up to practice rapping just as regularly as meeting up to do work.

16) Requesting Britney- Slave at all club nights, no matter the music or the DJ.

Oh to be a student again.

25 Completely random things I’m glad I’ve done in life

header

1) Read all of the Harry Potter books. All of my closest friends grew up as obsessed as me, so it’s worked out pretty well. Mass crying in the cinema in third year of uni just finished off education nicely.

2) Watched Broadchurch. It’s amazing. It’s back. If you haven’t watched it, do it. Murder, affairs, creepy men, weird women and a mysterious slug.

3) Visited Railay beach.

10171787_10152021400851787_6148582555870717152_n

4) Listened to Serial. I never thought I would get in to podcasts, but this is amazing. If you love true crime stories and a good whodunnit then try this out. It’s gritty and interesting and you change your mind over and over again.

5) Lived with friends. Mostly I like the hungover kitchen debriefs, but it’s also nice to just swing by your best friend’s room when you need cheering up and always having someone to crawl into bed with to watch Bridesmaids.

6) Owned a pet

7) Started a health blog. I’ve learned so much from just writing about my condition and it’s boosted my career and CV massively.

8) Went to uni.

9) Learned to cook. Like really cook, as in curries from scratch, roast dinners and all manner of cakes.

10) Snorkelled in Aqaba. Saw a manta ray, saw some electric pink jellyfish, saw some flashing eels. Found Nemo repeatedly

11) Became a Bestival regular. The best memories and the least sleep.

12) Worked for a good cause

13) Learned how to properly use Ebay. Making enough from selling stuff that was clogging up my house to pay for flights to South East Asia and all manner of travel jabs. Try it if you have a lot of unwanted clothes, you could be sitting on a small fortune.

14) Had a go at being blonde

15) Had a broken heart. Character building and a seriously good life lesson, no matter how grim it was at the time.

16) Started a mini break tradition with my oldest friend.

17) Invested in good trainers.

18)Played the Sims a lot as a child. Learning that babies cry a lot and you need a good job to have nice things early on can’t be anything but good, I reckon.

19) Given presentations to lots of people.

20) Found red wine

21) Lived with my boyfriend.

22) Went on lots of family holidays. A lot of my favourite childhood memories are from beaches on the Greek Islands or exploring Cyprus.

23) Went on a ridiculous, drunken holiday to Magaluf with my best friends.

24) Took up pilates.

25) Avoided becoming prematurely old. I often say ‘God we are so old now’, when I’m with friends, but really I think the fun is still flowing, along with the wine and vodka.