My writing voice

The thing that I like the most about my writing is that it reads exactly like my inner voice, weird sentence structure and rambling sentences and all. It sound like me. It can be a little unsettling sometimes to see my inner voice reflecting back from my screen, but mostly it’s comforting.

I’ll be very honest, it used to hurt my feelings when someone criticised my writing style because I saw it as an direct attack on me. I’ve learnt over the years that it is not a personal attack when someone doesn’t like my writing style, it is simply their opinion. Other people don’t know what is happening in my inner world, the only glimpses that they get is through my writing and the parts that I choose to share, my writing style being only one tiny piece of the whole picture.

Funny bones (or what makes me laugh)

Today’s prompt is “what makes you laugh?” I have a pretty dark, dry sense of humour, I’m not really in to physical comedy and I adore British comedies. The Husbeast on the other hand is a huge fan of physical comedy, so we have to take turns to pick the movie on comedy night.

Since the start of the pandemic, we have made a point of watching something funny on tv at least twice a month. Sometimes it’s a series, other times it’s a movie, or even a stand up comedy special. It’s been a fun way of discovering new comedians and figuring out what doesn’t make me laugh. And obviously my kids make me laugh, the girls are hilarious. They have such unique minds that I sometimes just have to laugh at what they come up with.

#Bloganuary prompt: someone who inspires me

I’ve been struggling with this prompt since yesterday. There are so many amazing people that have crossed my path that I couldn’t think of just one person to write about. It actually started stressing me out to the point that I had to take a break and walk away.

When I was a brand new, shiny and fresh faced graduate, I had a meeting with the Nursing Manager at the very first hospital that I was employed at. She told me that I had to provide a “golden moment” for every patient, a moment that will stay with them long after they are discharged from my care. It didn’t have to be something huge, but it had to be something real, something true. That is a lesson that I’ve taken with me. I try and look for Golden Moments in every interaction I have with the people who cross my path. Small moments that inspire me to be a better version of myself. It means that I have a lot of people who inspire me, which is awesome but is anxiety inducing when I have to pick just one.

There is the friend who shows me every day how amazingly resilient humans can be and how we can thrive despite setbacks. The social media influencer who has overcome incredible hurdles and is living her best life, the comeback-kid athlete who surprised everyone (but not herself) and made it to the Olympics…. I honestly can’t think of just one person to single out. My parents, sisters, coworkers, and family members all inspire me every day. Frustrate me, challenge me, but push me to be a better person.

My nemesis

For today’s #bloganuary post it’s all about something that I wish I knew how to do. Well , that’s easy. There’s loads of things that I wish that I knew how to do! The one that springs to mind immediately is that I wish I knew how to do a french braid. I have watched countless hours of YouTube videos, practiced on myself, practiced on my kids and I still can’t get it right!

It wasn’t a problem when the kids had short hair, but now that both of them are taking ballet lessons and growing their hair out, I have to get the freaking braid right! I can’t keep sending the girls to my mom to do their hair for photo days and ballet recitals. My fingers just don’t grasp the concept, I understand what it is that I need to do, but when it comes down to it my fingers get all confused and tangled up. Practice may make perfect,m but not when it comes to the french braid! I think that secret is hidden away from me forever!

My favourite childhood toy

I was really excited to be participating in #bloganuary this year. I didn’t even make it 4 days:(. I my defence, I didn’t forget to post, I was so exhausted after work that I forced myself to eat supper, took some painkillers and went straight to bed. I was in bed by 6pm last night. I had planned out my post during the day so I knew what I wanted to write, I just didn’t get there. COVID is seriously ruining my vibe.

When I was 11, I asked Santa to bring me a teddy bear. But not just any teddy bear, a teddy bear that snored. I have no idea why 11 year old me needed that bear so badly, but obviously I did. Snoozy Bear slept in my bead right until the night before I got married. The only reason he got kicked out is because my Husbeast was not impressed at the idea of sharing the bed with a tatty, slightly mangled Snoozy Bear. So he got left behind in my childhood bedroom, where he would have stayed if it wasn’t for my youngest daughter. She found him a few years ago and added him to the pile of teddies on her bed where she whispers all her secrets to him at night.

And he lived happily ever after

Comfort zones are comfortable!

I don’t like stepping out of my comfort zone. I’ll be honest, I hate it. I like what I like and that’s pretty much it. The only thing that I’ll happily change is my hairstyle, cause it’s hair and it will grow back if I wait long enough. My one and only big leap out of my comfort zone happened a few years ago. I applied for a new job. Now that doesn’t sound like much but I had been at my previous company since straight out of school. I grew up there, been there for all my big moments, and then I handed my CV in somewhere else. And I got the job.

The decision to leave was a lot easier that I thought it would be. I had been unhappy at work for a while, I loved the actual work, I just didn’t love all the office politics that went along with it. I had a particularly bad day at work, I came home and as a knee jerk reaction I sent my CV off. And then completely forgot about it. When I found out that someone else wanted me to work for them I was floored, my self esteem was so low for so long that I simply couldn’t believe that anyone would take a chance on me.

I took a leap of faith and I have never looked back. I’m mentally, physically, and emotionally healthier. I love going to work. I don’t stress about work when I’m at home, my work/life balance is perfect. I’m happy. It’s such a weird feeling that it took ages for me to realise that I can start taking care of my mental health because I finally have the space to breathe.

I haven’t had the courage to make another huge leap out of my comfort zone agin, but at least I know what’s possible if I succeed.

Road tripping

I love road trips. I guess it’s because my parents used to drives us everywhere, no plane trips for us. And we never took the shortcut, we often took the meandering road, stopping off overnight at little towns before continuing on our adventure. My Husbeast doesn’t have the same nostalgia when it comes to road tripping, his family was more the “take the quickest possible route” type.

Wide open spaces and loads of opportunities

My ideal road trip has no set destination and no planned route. Just hopping into the car and seeing where we end up, choosing to stop when we see something interesting and turning off the main roads when the byways call us. My life is usually planned out the tiniest detail, the thought of not having any plans and just winging it is thrilling.

I think we’ll start small, maybe a weekend trip? Picking a general direction, throwing some camping gear in the car (just in case) and then hitting the road.

Random thoughts.

Next month we will officially have a teenager living in this house. And I’m not sure how I’m going to deal with that. I was a terrible teenager. Not that I did any of the typical teenager rebellion like drinking and smoking, instead I wore all black and read really morbid poetry alone in my room while I wrote pages and pages of teenage angst in my diary. So I’ve been thinking about what I would have liked to hear when I was a teenager, what advice would have made my life easier?

1) “No is a complete sentence” and 2) “stop setting yourself on fire to keep someone else warm”. Those two little concepts would have helped me so much, it would have prevented so much pain and anxiety. Actually, I need that advice now, more than ever. I’ve spent so many years putting the wants and needs of other people ahead of my own, it’s been very hard to learn to stand up for myself and take what I need/deserve.

Grumpy octopus day

Covid is kicking my arse. I’m glad that I seemed to have skipped over the more serious symptoms, but the headaches and fatigue is really starting to get me down. My brain feels like it’s been stuffed with marshmallows, it’s not a cool feeling. I really hate not being in control and I’m definitely not in control at the moment. The tiredness and frustration hasn’t helped my mood at all, I’ve been struggling with depression and I’m just not a happy camper at all. Hopefully next year will be better.

Feeling very much like a grumpy octopus today

Covid jail

I have been stuck in Covid jail since before Christmas. First I was in contact with a colleague who had tested positive, so we had to isolate for a few days just to make sure that no one had any symptoms. Then, the Husbeast mentioned feeling fatigued and having eye strain. I immediately told him to go get tested cause it was the first day of my leave and I really didn’t want to deal with any drama. It doesn’t help that I am a hypochondriac who has been having “symptoms” for the past 18 months, so of course the Husbeast didn’t believe that he had Covid, but went to get tested just to keep the peace in the household. He tested positive. Within a few hours he was running a fever and had a rather nasty cough.

So Christmas (and my leave) was cancelled and he was banished to the master bedroom while myself and the girls got ready for the ultimate pajama day with movies and hot chocolate and just chilling inside for 10 days. The novelty wore off after just 1 day. The kids got bored and irritated with each other and I started feeling really tired and awful. That being said, I’ve been feeling tired for a few months now so I just assumed that it was the stress of the pandemic and the end of the year finally catching up with me.

Spoiler alert: it wasn’t. I took myself and the girls to get tested when I woke up with a really scratchy throat and surprise! 2 out of the 3 of us tested positive. So not only are we stuck inside for even longer, but now we have to mask up all over in the house, not just stay isolated from each other. We decided that only our bedrooms and the bathrooms are mask free zones and all common areas have to be well ventilated and fully masked. And of course the kids are completely symptom free while I feel like something that the dog wouldn’t even drag in.

So we had a quiet , socially distanced Christmas. If all goes well we will be out of Covid jail in time for New Year’s Eve, and we will be able to celebrate with our family and friends. As an introvert, I’ve never had a problem with staying home, but that has always been my choice. I hate the fact that I’m not allowed to leave the house, even though I get fatigued very easily and the very idea of going out and doing stuff makes me tired, I still would like the choice to leave. Now I have to go and take a nap and recover from typing this.