Source: Albufeira, Portugal 2013
Source: Albufeira, Portugal 2012
Source: Blue Monday You Say?
After making a brave and bold mutual decision last Friday to move onto pastures new, I have embraced today’s Blue Monday with gusto. Although social media has been awash with various articles on this particular topic, I have to say that other than the New Order’s 1980s hit Blue Monday, I’d never encountered this phrase before.
So what exactly have I been up to? Housework and laundry, taking my pooch Oscar for a brisk walk, and I have to say, that the walks are becoming easier. Afterwards, I headed into the town centre, for a guilt free window shop, a bite to eat and a cup of coffee. After picking up some groceries for this evening’s meal, I bumped into my former drum tutor, who was surprised to see me in town during that particular time of day. We had a chat for about 5 minutes or so, and it was really good to see him. I resisted the urge to accompany him around the shop he was heading into, and thus resisted the urge to buy more stationery, and cheerful but cheap artwork. He has always encouraged me to keep playing the drums, despite the lack of confidence I’ve suffered over the last year or so. And in the coming days and weeks, I will have time on my hands, and I can practice to my heart’s content. Providing Oscar doesn’t try to eat my bass pedal. Or snare. Or floor tom. Or drum sticks.
My next career move as yet, is undecided. However, there are a few volunteer opportunities that I’m hoping to explore. And I am looking forward to handing in my homework for my Creative Writing class on Wednesday and also have a better idea how to approach my next assignment for my OU course, which is due in the next few weeks, having attended the latest tutorial on Saturday. I’ve always said that we are masters of our destiny, and that only we can change our circumstances, and sometimes that means taking calculated risks. After the few goodbyes that I did manage to say, through my tears, the tears stopped on Friday night, and after breaking the news to close friends and my parents, I know I’ve made the right decision long-term. So, I am looking forward to each and every day, filled with possibilities. And for the first time in a long time, I am happy.
Those who know me rather well, will know that since October 2013, the last couple of years have been quite challenging, especially the last 12 months. It takes a lot of strength and determination, to get up each morning and try and face each day head on. Some days I manage to do so, and other days not so much. I generally don’t make resolutions at the start of the year, as they are hard to follow through, if like me, your willpower waxes and wanes within the first two weeks. So it’s new goals all the way.
My first and foremost goal of this year, is to continue with my DipHe in Humanities course with The Open University, and aim to pass my first module. My second goal, is to become a calm-assertive pack leader for our dog Oscar. He has brought so much joy into our lives since adopting him in June 2015, and along with the joy, there’s been a lot of drama, however he’s worth it all. So in order to become such a calm-assertive pack leader, I’ve been reading Cesar Millan’s Cesar’s Way, getting to grips with canine psychology at its most basic level. Our new mantra at the moment is ‘Excercise, Discipline and Affection’ in that order and our other mantras are ‘Rules, Limitations and Boundaries’ and ‘Nose, Eyes and Ears’. And it’s slowly beginning to work. I’m seeing a much more calm-submissive dog, and we’re slowly regaining our house back. Our next goal is to introduce him to a local class where he can socialise safely and properly with other dogs.
My third and final goal for this year, is starting a 5 week Creative Writing course, which is aimed to promote wellbeing for those who have experienced mental health issues in the past or in the present day. The course starts next Wednesday, and I am really looking forward to this. I’m looking forward to getting the opportunity to meet new people, and having the chance to express myself freely and openly, and learn new techniques in doing so. If all goes to plan with the course, there are classes in stress and anxiety management, and also mindfulness, which I hope to join. After hearing the ever so popular buzz word for so long, I thought it’s about high time that I start putting it into practice. I just have to remind myself that life is a marathon and not a sprint, and like Bill Murray in the film, What About Bob? it’s babysteps every day.