rain

Sometimes I hate the rain. Especially in the north of England it can be relentless and unending. It’s dark and it’s cold. It seeps right into the worst parts of you. It makes you shiver and it makes you sneeze. It makes you question whether you really need that shower if you’re  going to be getting one on the way to the train station anyway. It makes you ponder whether you even need to get that train or could fork out for a door to door taxi instead. And it makes you wonder whether you even really actually need that job if it means going out in that shit.

I feel you, and I agree. But I also think rain gets a pretty bad rap. I mean, it waters our earth and feeds our plants. It gives us drinking water. It cleans our cars so you don’t have to pay to. And if it’s really heavy it can cancel that football game you really couldn’t be bothered to go to and act interested in.

And yeah, rain is definitely not all good. It can lead to floods and other natural devastations. It can wipe out homes and memories and futures. But if we focus on the day to day, relatively calm but persistent downpour then I think we could give it more slack.  We could be nicer to rain.

Now for people with seasonal affective disorder, I see you and I respect you. This article is not about you. It’s for the annoying people you know who walk around claiming to be SAD for the sake of small talk, lightly peppering over the fact it’s a serious mental health issue. To those people I’d say: what are we all complaining about?

At the end of the day, it’s water. That’s probably the least offensive liquid on the planet. You drown yourself with it in your morning shower, you use it to keep hydrated and to maintain your pearly whites. You use it for cooking and cleaning but as soon as it comes out of the sky it’s a problem? That seems a little hypocritical.

I think rain can be cleansing and a little liberating. Now when you’re running to work definitely do that quick cos no one wants to be sat going damp in a miserable office. But if you’re on your way home to a warm house and you have a spare second I encourage you to just stop and stand in the torrential rain. Just let it soak you. Completely. Let it drench through your layers so that you feel it trickling down your back. Close your eyes and point your face to the sky, let the water roll down your face. Let any bad feelings wash off you. I challenge you not to smile at this point. You’re stood purposely soaking yourself in nature that laughing seems the only natural reaction. This is so bizarre and frowned upon my social norms. But you’ll feel refreshed and new. You might also feel a bit cold so don’t stay out there all night.

And if you’re worried about people staring at you. Don’t. Fuck them. They wouldn’t know fun if it rained on them.

So next time it rains you’re allowed to groan and swear under your breath. But also remember to enjoy it.

Black Water – Of Monsters And Men

tell someone you love them

Whether you’ve tried any of my other self-care ideas or thought they weren’t for you, I think we can all agree that this week’s is for everyone. It’s such a simple act but how often can we really admit to doing it? Maybe a couple of times a week or once a month? Maybe we never tell the people we love that we love them. We just assume they know. And maybe they do. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t say it. In fact, I think that means we should tell people even more. People should know what they mean to us. They should know that they’re the first person we want to tell our good news to. They should know that when we’re down all we want is a hug from them. They should know that they’re one of our limbs and we couldn’t survive without them. They should know that they make our life more interesting, full of curiosity and surprise. They should know that we want to have a pint with them, all the time. They should know that we care and that we’ll always be there no matter what they need. I think it’s important people know that. That they know their worth in this world and they know that they’re not alone. Everybody’s life matters and if we were maybe all a little bit kinder then everyone would know that. It’s not always that simple, but sometimes it is.

I love you, reader. I appreciate you for being here and taking time to read my ramblings. I think we can make the world a bit more interesting together.

Speeding Cars – Walking On Cars

why do people care about winning?

So I’m just not feeling massively inspired to write today but I didn’t want to leave you high and dry. Instead I’ve delved into the Sarah archive for you. I wrote this piece in my writing class when I was in America. It’s about the obsessive need to win and whether that’s healthy or necessary to living an authentic life. I think they’re questions worth answering, so enjoy:

People seem obsessed with winning, consumed by it. The simplest game of monopoly can cause chaos in friendships. Even walking into an elevator seems to be some kind of competition these days. Moving through life battling people we don’t even know. Are we hot-wired to have this unnecessary need to be competitive, to win? Or are we taught to be?

When I was eight my best friend told me about this football team she’d heard of. She was Elen, with one ‘l’ and her hair was strawberry blonde, not ginger. And we loved football. So did my dad. For the next seven years, Sunday mornings were just for us. Whilst everybody else slept peacefully in, we braved the north English winter. Sometimes the ground would be so hard the studs of my boots couldn’t even penetrate it. Like that would stop us. My dad was the perfect kind of supporter. Maybe it’s just because he’s a quiet guy, but he’d never shout instructions at me from the side line like other parents. Whenever I looked over after I’d missed a really important tackle he’d just smile and shrug his shoulders, ‘don’t worry, next time you’ll get her’. At half time he’d squish my tiny child hands in between his giant gloved hands and rub them until they’d warm up. He’d blow on them and make it look like he was playing the trombone or something, telling me words of encouragement so I’d forget about the stinging pain of my hands starting to freeze. When I thought not winning would be the end of the world, my dad understood that we were children. This was supposed to be fun.

And maybe it was because of the support I got from him or maybe I was just programmed to do it but I loved sport. I cared about it. I played anything I could. Rounders, hockey, basketball. I loved it so much I even played sports I didn’t care much for, just enjoyed the adrenaline of running around, being active. I played netball when I thought it a misogynists answer to women playing basketball. I played hockey even though I was legitimately afraid that the ball was going to knock my teeth out or my knuckles were going to slice across the concrete. And I even got bribed in to playing rugby. I was the kicker. And the 98% of the time I wasn’t in fact kicking, I spent at the side of the pitch gagging on my mouth guard hoping to Jesus that I didn’t get tackled.

And then I was asked to decide the future of what until now had been a major part of my life. Maybe it wouldn’t have come to such a catastrophic ending if I hadn’t been directly challenged to decide. They wanted us to take a qualification at my high school. It was a privilege they said. Just try it for a week, my dad said. But at thirteen, I wasn’t the same person anymore. I didn’t care about sport. I didn’t care about winning. I’d slowly dropped out of each team. I didn’t have any fight left. It’s not a matter of passion though. I still cared about things, music and reading. I even still followed our football team, Everton. I just didn’t want to play. I just wasn’t competitive anymore. Did it happen overnight? I don’t know. I don’t remember one defining moment at least. I just didn’t care about hitting, throwing or kicking a variant of rubber or leather. Not anymore.

But how can you just lose that? This is one of the only times in my life my dad and I had completely disagreed. He couldn’t fathom why I wouldn’t take this opportunity, yet he couldn’t see that I had changed. I was growing up. Everyone assumed for so long that I’d do the sport thing for the rest of my life – even myself – that when it all evaporated I think he was in denial. I’d been to the classes for a week and I whole-heartedly knew this wasn’t the way I saw my life going. You’re throwing away a brilliant chance, Sarah. He just couldn’t get it. I’d sit in my garden at night on the cold concrete and cry. I couldn’t have the conversation again but could I just say no? I was still a kid and this was uncharted water. Now my parents were even arguing, my mother asking my dad if he cared more about sport than his daughter. Whilst I listened to the fight through the brick wall my back was leaning against, I reevaluated my own life and what I thought were the important things. I realised I didn’t need to be competitive. It’s kind of self-destructive. Just listen to them in there! You constantly need to prove to yourself and others that you’re good enough, that you’re right. That you’re better? Who knows. But if people just stepped back and compared themselves to who they were yesterday rather than the hundreds of thousands of others in the world they’d probably be happier. Now I saw not winning as a casual thing, if it happened it happened. My dad thought it was the end of the end. But it wasn’t even the winning he cared about; he just didn’t want me to miss a good opportunity. And to his credit, ultimately all he wanted was my happiness so we closed the doors on that part of our history. Moved on to new things.

I used to get really annoyed when my brother would beat me at fifa. I was that sore loser who’d switch the game off with minutes to go because I was never going to win and it bothered me. Now he wins 9-0 and we laugh at the four own goals I managed to score. He doesn’t care; he just wants someone to play with. And I’ve got to say, it’s liberating. Not caring. It’s incredible. I’m not competitive. I used to be. Now I see the more important things: happiness, fulfilment, the fun of the activity. How can such a big part of you change, alter and even disappear without you even noticing? I have no idea. But I don’t think it’s a bad thing.

Nature Of The Experiment – Tokyo Police Club

the art of the letter

So today is just going to be a quick post since I’ve only just got out of work. Give me a break guys, I’m trying to keep to schedule!

Ha, anyway. So you may have noticed by now that I quite like writing. This affinity wholeheartedly extends into letters. I love receiving mail. I find it so exciting. Unless it’s a bill, obviously. But as soon as I see a handwritten addressed letter to me I’m super curious to know what’s inside. I think it’s one of my only qualms with the internet, yeah emails and Messenger are fine but you know they’re not the same. There’s something romantic about the care put into a letter and I’m all for it.

When I was away at uni I would exchange letters and cards with my nan. Sometimes she’d just tell me what she’d done with her day and other times I’d tell her how drunk I’d been the day before. Sometimes she’d send me news clippings and other times I’d tell her my dreams. That practise has kind of fell by the wayside now that I live so close to her again. But it’s a practise I really enjoyed so I want to start it back up with her (she doesn’t know yet) and other people I’m close to.

So the self-care task this week is easy: write someone a letter. Could be a sister or a best mate. Could even be to a stranger. Is there something you need to say, need to admit, but don’t want to tell anyone who could really judge you? Maybe it’s something too hard to say. That’s fine. Just write a letter, address it to somewhere and post it. I’ve literally just thought of this idea and I’m already excited to try it. I think it could be liberating. Maybe write some words of encouragement that you think someone needs to hear. Kind words from a stranger.

If it’s to someone you know, just tell them how your day has been. Or tell them your deepest fears. Of course we’re gonna have to take our heads out of our phones to actually find out our friends addresses. I know I don’t know as many as I should. So that’s it, choose one and get going!

Dreamer – Isbells

something men should know

So I’m going to write something a little bit different today. Usually I like to keep my posts positive and somewhat upbeat because that’s the type of energy I’m wanting to attract into my life. But I’ve realised that shouldn’t stop me talking about other things. Not when it’s something I care a lot about.

So here’s the situation. Yesterday I was making my daily commute to work. I walk to the train station, I get the train, I walk to my office. Simple. I do this every week day (and weekends if my office would ever offer overtime again!). But the point is that it’s my route, I know where I’m going and I feel safe. Yesterday I did not feel safe. The train I get into work is usually quite full as it’s the time a lot of people are actually coming home from work. As the train approaches I glance to see if there’s any free seats of four, there isn’t but I see one with a guy about my age in the corner and decide to head there. As I sit down diagonal to him, as train etiquette dictates, he looks up and stares at me. And I don’t mean glances at me when he thinks I’m not looking. He stares at me like he’s pissed off with me for a good five seconds. I kind of stared back for a second because I thought he was going to say something, when I realised he wasn’t I looked down in hopes he’d look away. For the rest of the journey he kept looking up at me but I didn’t look at him directly. I think at one point he was even taking a photo of me which made my skin crawl. When a girl moved through the door connecting carriages that was right by us he got really angry that she’d touched the door to the chair next to it. Baring in mind this wasn’t even his chair and she was just trying to fit through the door. When we were getting to my station I stood up early to get near the door, a few seconds later he stood up too. He obviously could have been going anywhere but he was in sweatpants and this was the business district so your mind starts to go to these places. When the train stopped I decided to hover and he did walk out in front of me, I wanted to keep him in front of me. It’s a busy station so I was trying to make sure I lost him. At the bottom of the steps he turned around and looked at me so I made sure I was stuck behind a small crowd that I could have walked around and then I proceeded up the stairs really slowly. But of course at the top of the stairs he was stood there trying to decide which way to go. Yeah, he could have just been deciding which way to go but at this point how did I know he hadn’t just followed me off a train. He finally turned left which was good because I needed to go right and I proceeded through the underground tunnel as quick as I could, frequently turning to see if he’d started going my way instead. I’d already decided on the escalator that if he was behind me I’d go and talk to the guard at the ticket gate and make sure he got away from me. He wasn’t there and I continued to work through the dark city streets turning round far too often, just to check.

Now this may seem like a small situation to you. But the point is it was a situation. It was something I had to think about and even fucking strategise about when I should have just been reading my book on my way to work. And this happens to women every day. In all different types of variations. The thing I have a problem with is that I should not have to feel unsafe or uncomfortable just trying to get to work. Just trying to exist in every day life. It’s not fair.

And a man may have looked at this guy and thought yeah, bit of a creep. But then they probably would have moved on with their day. I doubt they were turning their head the rest of their way to work in the dark. If you were, I apologise for belittling your experience. But speaking from the majority, men wouldn’t need to care about that small scenario because that’s not been their experience of life.

Boys aren’t often told to carry their keys between their fingers if they’re walking in the dark alone. Boys aren’t told to not make eye contact with someone you think is suspicious but make sure you always have them in your peripherals. Boys aren’t told that never mind walking in the streets, taxis definitely aren’t safe either! Boys aren’t told to text when they get home, or not to take that shortcut even though it would get you home fifteen minutes quicker. So it is different. And you have to understand that.

Anyway, I just felt a bit spooked out for the rest of my shift and I told people in work about it and I was not surprised that the other women started drowning me in their similar stories but I did notice the look of surprise and horror on some of the men’s faces. These are good people, I assume, so they don’t even consider that as something that happens to people every day whereas the women gave me the ‘I’m sorry that happened to you, what can you do’ look. We’re all familiar with it.

So I thought I would talk about it because I’ve seen a lot of people think that sexual assault is rape and that’s it. They don’t realise or haven’t thought about where behaviour like that begins. You may think something as ‘innocent’ as a catcall should be received with flattery but usually you’re actually just making someone uncomfortable and even angry. But again, you wouldn’t know that because not many women are going to stop and shout at you because you’re usually a big group of men.

And they want to take guards off the Liverpool trains.

Something to think about.

Creep – Radiohead

dance like no one is watching

If I have to see this cliche in floaty white text over a sunset or the bikini-clad arse of some woman one more time I’ll probably vomit. Having said that, it’s perfect for this week’s self-care post. So we’ll go with it.

Yeah you’ve guessed it; this week’s challenge is simple. Put on your headphones or airpods or google brains – whatever the kids are using these days – set your volume to a level you know your mum would tell you off for then blast any song that is going to get you moving. I don’t discriminate based on genre. If you want some heavy metal that’s cool with me or if you need some Ariana Grande you do you. I’d probably go for some ska or rock and roll or even some eighties dance. I’d leave the folk and the prog rock at the door but hey, that’s just me. If it’s some weird Kate Bush dancing you’re going for today then something slower might be perfect.

It just has to really get every bone and muscle in your body twitching til you’re pulling some moves that no one should ever have to witness. Make sure you’re in a room alone, wait til it’s dark and close the curtains if you’re really self conscious. But just get into a space where you can be the best freak you know how.

Now singing at the top of your lungs is not mandatory but it’s enthusiastically encouraged. You might want to make sure there’s no one in the whole house for that one though. My dad doesn’t need to hear that.

And that’s literally it guys, simple.

Dance until you’re red in the face and needing a shower. Or dance til you’ve got out all your stress or anger. Dance til you’re laughing at yourself and just living your best life. Dance til you realise life is short and we need moments like this. Dance til you’ve exhausted your playlist. Oh and look at that. I’ve made you a Spotify playlist to get you started. That’s convenient.

https://open.spotify.com/user/sccoleman1911/playlist/3F0UVQ5MvGi0q2hQTVDcBd?si=C5N9tgKrT6SX-uxvKrFlEw

Now go dance, my little weirdos. Unapologetically.

favourite books of twentyseventeen

So just a quick post today about my favourite books from last year. I aimed to read a lot more in 2017 than previous years since I’d finally finished my English degree. But life got in the way and it wasn’t an excellent reading year for me. I started a lot of books but finished barely any. This was a running theme in my 2017. But through the distractions and lack of momentum – I either read two books in a week or nothing for three months – I found a few gems. Some that I’ll keep coming back to and others that I’ll always reference and recommend. I’m keeping these blurbs super vague since I know how much we all hate a spoiler! And yeah, I read only women last year. Cos why not?

Favourite Books Read

Room – Emma Donoghue: I read this back in January last year and it was soul-crushing whilst constantly picking you up right before it crushed you again. It was very interestingly narrated; I think the kids voice is what brings it charm. It kind of restores your faith in humanity even when so many singular characters do the opposite.

The Hate U Give – Angie Thomas: If you read one young adult book for the rest of your life, let it be this. Warning: try not to read it in public too often. I tried reading it on two different flights and kept silently and discreetly crying until I had to put it down. This book is everything you should be reading right now. You can’t pretend you’re not part of the problem, you have to own up to it because Black Lives Matter.

A Darker Shade of Magic – V. E. Schwab: If you’re more into fantasy then I’d say this is a great book for you. Whilst it’s of the YA genre it’s a bit darker and more new adult than others it gets grouped with. What I love about the story is that adventure and friendship and finding oneself is at the forefront of this plot, not a shit love triangle.

Homegoing – Yaa Gyasi: I’m tempted to say this is my favourite book of the year. I read a lot about race this year, kind of accidentally when I was just reading women. This book taught me a lot about an experience that isn’t mine but that I think we should all be aware of. It follows the life of a family through centuries and it is endlessly intriguing. Fair warning though, it will also break your soul multiple times.

Favourite Rereads

Milk and Honey – Rupi Kaur: I often reread this just in one sitting. I’ve done an article about this book before but I just think it’s boss. This collection makes poetry-haters love poetry. It touches on love, friendship, rape, abuse, family, race, identity, feminism and so much more. It’s so quotable.

Along for the Ride – Sarah Dessen: So when my life changed beyond repair in February I couldn’t really watch anything or listen to music or see people. I couldn’t really function. And I just needed something safe, something to make me feel normal. Dessen’s books are I think some of my most defining adolescent reads. This one in particular was always my favourite and I always loved Auden. Rereading this was therapeutic and nostalgic. It was just the YA fix I was looking for.

Harry Potter – J. K. Rowling: Come on, do I actually need to say anything about this one? I find them comforting and feel-good. When I’m waiting for a bus or waiting for a friend I just whip one of these out on my phone. I’m never not reading one.

Favourite Partly Read Books

Just Kids – Patti Smith: This book is a love story to New York and to friendship and to art. It makes me want to keep writing and never stop. It makes me want to write not for what it could bring me but singularly for the joy of writing. It makes me want to get up and win the green card lottery and move to nyc to live forever and follow my dreams until I die an early death after a whirlwind life.

Citizen – Claudia Rankine: Dude, this book. You just need to go out and buy it right now, trust me on that. You know the type of book where you’re highlighting passages and then you realise how redundant that is cos you’ve literally highlighted the entire book? That is this book and so much more. It’s about race, it’s about America, it’s about identity. It does not apologise.

Yes Please – Amy Poehler: If ‘laugh out loud’ was ever going to get quoted on the cover of a book it would be this one. Again the highlighter has come out several times. It’s not just jokes, obviously. It’s life advice, it’s essays about learning who you are and what you want. It’s pretty great.

Big Magic – Elizabeth Gilbert: I started this one at the very end of 2017 because I’d heard so many people talk about it. I don’t often read ‘self-help’ type books but this seemed like something more. It’s about living creatively and beyond fear and whilst I don’t love everything about the books voice, I’ve found myself thinking about different passages days after reading it. It really inspires you to ignore the voice in your head that tells you no.

Now I don’t wanna jinx myself but I’m on to book five of 2018 so send me some good book vibes to keep me going for the next fifty weeks, please and thank you!

Paperback Writer – The Beatles

self-care: yoga

So we’re very much still in this ‘new year, new me’ phase so I thought yoga would be perfect for this week’s self-care series. Now don’t get me wrong, you are sublime the way you are. You don’t need to fit in to some unachievable box of beauty that the world would like to put you in. Fuck them. They don’t understand beauty. They can’t open their minds to the vast and unknowable bounds of the human experience. To what we look like on the outside, which yeah is great, but also what we look like on the inside. It shouldn’t be news to you that beauty is everywhere within you so why are you not treating yourself like you deserve love?

This post’s song is especially important for this article. I don’t know how many of you usually listen to the songs but I enjoy adding them; I always have. But these two songs are heartbreaking and raw. They speak to people’s insecurities and sadness and loneliness. Yet they tell you you are perfect, if you’re willing to listen carefully enough. She literally says the lyric ’my body is home’ and that is so important to remember. This body of yours carries you through life even when you show it nothing but hate and contempt. It looks after you even when you refuse to look after it. Because it believes in you and it knows you can do better. You just need a bit of self-love. And self-care. (See I knew you were wondering where I was gonna throw that in this week!) So take the time to incorporate that in to your whole ‘new year, new me’ thing. It literally says ‘me’ in the phrase so don’t forget about it. Any change should be about yourself not anybody else.

So anyway! Yoga. You can obviously use this as an excellent way to get fit – if you want to, not because you think you have to. But it’s so much more than that and that’s why it’s my favourite exercise. Because it’s not just exercise. It’s a way of life. It’s meditation and spirituality. Now stick with me here. If you’ve never done it before or never felt this energetic connection that everyone always talks about you may think I’m talking garbage. But I’m not. You just have to give yourself the patience and time to try. I’ve been doing Yoga With Adriene’s videos on youtube for a while now and I think they’re an excellent guide. Every January she puts on a thirty day series to help you on your yoga journey. She uses a lot of mantras which are a great way for new yogis to bridge the gap between simple exercise and the more spiritual side. But she can explain it a lot better than me and you’re not too late to jump in to the challenge. We’re only on day four today so you can easily catch up.

Doing these videos will really make you come away loving your body a little more and want to work with it instead of against it. It will also allow you to slow down. Once you step on that mat nothing else is relevant. At least not for those thirty or so minutes. Push everything else aside and give yourself that time to connect to yourself. Or at least just give you that burn in your thighs if that’s what you’re looking for.

Anyway, happy January, friends. Take care of yourselves.

Body Love Part 1 & 2 – Mary Lambert

Tattoo Origins: oneeightzeroeight

I haven’t graced your screens with a tattoo origins for ages so I thought it was about time.

Now, in all honesty I’m at this impasse where I cannot for the life of me remember the order of the next four tattoos because they were all done on the same day. This was less than two years ago but I was hyped up on adrenaline and excitement so it’s a bit fuzzy. If I even tried to work it out it would just be a lie so I’m just gonna go in an order that makes sense to me.

But why did you get four on one day anyway? Simple, at uni I could never justify it over rent or, you know, vodka. But in September 2016 I’d been made permanent at my then job and I decided if I didn’t do what I wanted now then I’d spend a lifetime waiting for tomorrow. It’s the little things.

Sarah, hurry up and get to it. What does oneeightzeroeight mean and why is there no spaces? Simple, it’s my PIN number.

I’m totally joking.

It’s a date. The eighteenth of August. On this date in 2014 I ventured on arguably the biggest adventure of my life. At least it was at that point in my life. My first big adventure. I moved to America. George Mason University, to be specific. For my exchange year.

But why does that need to be tattooed on you? Well is was one of the most mad things I’d ever done. Since I was sixteen sitting in IT classes looking at university courses I knew I wanted to do a year in the States. Believe me, I’m super glad it was Obama’s America cos I couldn’t have gone now.

But it was something I had wanted so I worked hard to get myself there. I worked in sweaty kitchens in the summers and I took up any shift I could at the bar during my semesters. It definitely wasn’t coming cheap. Even when my uni said I wouldn’t be able to go if I didn’t start going to lectures, I made sure I was there bright eyed and bushy tailed at nine am for a full semester to show them I was serious. Yeah, some of you are probably thinking I should have just been at those classes anyway. But that’s not who I am. So that was a big thing for me.

When I finally got there there was this huge pressure to make it the best year of your life but what people forget is you’re really just moving your life to a new place, laundry still has to get done and essays still have to be handed in. And man, did I miss my family and friends. So it took a while to adjust but eventually I met some of the most awesome people and then I really did have one of the best years of my life. I won’t say the best cos I’m an optimist. There’s more to come for me in this life. But then I got home, to ‘reality’ and all of a sudden laundry seemed a lot less glamorous. I wrote a dissertation then graduated with no savings and no job and no real idea where my life was headed. And it got me thinking about my year abroad and how I made something happen.

And I had all your usual year abroad revelations. I learnt a lot about myself and I discovered a lot about life. I learnt a lot about friendships and people and I just felt so connected to the world. I felt like I was living a dream, yeah, what a cliche. But I’m just telling you what it was like. It was boss. It was so wildly different from my normal life that it felt like I was living someone else’s if only for a year. And when it ended I knew I needed that feeling of freedom and culture and fascination in my life again. Always, if possible.

So I got this tattoo to remind myself of that. I got this date because it’s tangible and I can touch it. But also because it’s the beginning and I think the beginning is important. It’s to remind me to always chase adventure and that feeling of adrenaline and fun and euphoria. It’s on my arm so I can see it. So I’m confronted with it every day. I can’t hide from it. So when I’m staring absentmindedly at my work computer wishing I was anywhere else in the world but in that office I can see it in my peripherals. And I can remember, oh yeah, I already knew that; I want more for myself. Then I feel a fire inside me to find the next adventure, no matter how small.

It’s also just to remind me of that year and of all the beautiful friends I made. And the fun we had together. I felt so connected to you guys there, and I hope you know that. I love that it’s almost unreadable, because it’s for me not anyone else. There’s no spaces so it’s almost in code. It’s also in numbers to solidify the code. Nobody else knows what this one means so you better all hush!

So, anyway, it means a lot of things. And people think you just aimlessly ink words on to yourself. Pshh.

Ritual Union – Little Dragon

twentyeighteen

We always make a big deal about the new year, our goals and intentions and how we’re going to be different in the new year. And personally I’m all for it. I know people disagree with resolutions being set this time of year because they think it’s superficial or fleeting. They think you shouldn’t need a new year to begin something or make a change. And that’s fair. The ticking of time is arbitrary and it shouldn’t be what makes you alter your life. But if without it you’re not going to change at all then what’s the harm? Yeah, if your goal is to not drink all year but you’ve already made plans to go to the pub on Friday then that’s probably not gonna happen. But if you’re looking for a lifestyle change and you completely commit yourself then I see no reason why January shouldn’t be an excellent time to start. I believe in you. And I want that for you.

So if you know you’re infamously lousy at new year’s resolutions then make that one of your goals. Consciously make an effort to have more follow through. This is me for this year. I’m keeping my intentions super short. I’m not going to complicate it because I know myself. It won’t work. I’ll blink and it’ll be June and I’ll be sat in bed watching Riverdale or something. And nobody wants that. So I’m focussing on only three words. Writing, saving and health. They all encompass many subsections and twists and turns but I’m not going to trouble myself with those right now. I’m concentrating on these three words because they’re simplistic and self-explanatory. I’ll expand on ideas as the year develops.

My only other intention is that this year is going to be about me. Because why shouldn’t it be? It’s going to be full of positive energy and good vibes. There’s going to be self-care and self-love and mindfulness. There’s going to be meditation and yoga and lots of new plant-based recipes. There’s going to be travelling and music and literature. There’s going to be hikes and coffee and long chats with good friends. There’s going to be me connecting better with my friends, in person, via messenger, through letters and even smoke signals. There’s going to be starry nights and sunny mornings. There’s going to be quiet and stillness and journalling. There’s going to be creativity and careers and spirituality. There’s going to be openness to new ventures. And there’s going to be laughter and I’m sure many tears. There’s going to be good days and terrible ones, but then there’ll be another good one. I’m jumping into twentyeighteen with optimism.

So peace out, 2017, you were a bastard. 2018’s looking better already.

Waking Up Again – Emily Hearn