Nostalgic for a time that hasn’t been

Let’s resurrect this blog, shall we?

If you’ve forgotten who I am, that’s okay. Cos I have too. This year has been… This year has been. Right? Let’s leave it at that. We all know what we’re doing here. Though if I’m honest, it wasn’t a world pandemic (take a shot) that ceased my writing as it’s clear I’d fucked this blog off in January. I don’t know what it is. I love writing. With every fibre of my being. I feel alive when I write. Yet I don’t write every day. Certainly not here, but also not to myself via my journal. I don’t always feel the need to, or feel I have anything to say. Which is okay. You don’t need to bash out three thousand words of a novel every day to be a writer. You don’t need to post a new poem to Instagram every other day to be a writer. You don’t need to write for three years to be a writer. It should be fun. There shouldn’t be pressure. So it’s okay if you haven’t written in a while. I’m telling you this but I’m telling myself too.

Sometimes things happen that are a shock to the system. We feel lost or baffled or sad or elated or fucking fantastic. The feeling doesn’t matter. What matters is that sometimes you just need a second to process it. And I mean like in your brain. Some writers process everything by actually writing it down. But there’s no one size fits all here. If you journal when you’re sad but let things slide when you’re having great day after great day, then that’s excellent. Go and enjoy the right now. If you ignore the bad because you don’t want to ever look back on it, but like to blog the happiest moments of your life, that’s boss, go do that! Just do what you need to do. The words will be there when you need them. Respect them. Don’t force them when they’re trying to rest.

And maybe you’re sat there thinking, Sarah, please, I write every single damn day. Five thousand words for my novel, an insta poem, morning and night journaling and oh, I then usually have fuel to write ten blogs posts a week too. Well, friend, that’s perfect. You too are valid here. Life is not a contest. But you should also feel pride when you accomplish personal goals. I envy you, that you have so many words up there in your mind. Honestly, sometimes I’d love that for myself!

So what are we doing here today? Dude, I don’t know. I haven’t written anything outside of a journal for like ten months. I don’t know how it works. I guess part of me wanted to check in. How are you doing? I’ve been wanting to check in but a lot has been happening this year, covid (take a shot) being just the tip of the fucking iceberg. And I want my words to be authentic and genuine. I don’t want them to appear reactionary. And I fucking certainly didn’t want to be another voice in the shout to make a loaf of fucking sourdough (take a shot). No diss if you made sourdough during lockdown (take a shot). Good for you, looks like a lot of work but seems to have delicious results. Personally, I just fell head first into reading. (I’ll update you guys on my yearly goal at some point but let’s just say we’re doing unbelievably well, don’t jinx me.) I’ve read and I’ve read and I’ve read, books that is. I’ve been trying to avoid news as much as possible because no good can come from it. (I’m aware that’s a very privileged thing to say. But honestly, the news is overwhelming even pre-2020 (take a shot). Just be kind to yourself and know what you can handle.)

But yeah, I wanted to see how you were. How are you? Has anyone asked you that recently? More importantly, have you asked yourself that recently? Have you told someone you love them recently? Have you told yourself? Have you drank water today? Have you taken time to do something rejuvenating? Have you moved your body? Have you eaten a celery stick? No? Thank god, don’t. Have you eaten something comforting and nutritious? Have you eaten a donut? Have you smiled? Have you decided you don’t want to smile and therefore not let anyone change your mind (fuck the patriarchy)? Have you spoken out loud today? Even to yourself. Have you gotten away from your desk and danced around? If you spend the majority of the day on your feet, have you sat down and rested your weary body? Have you worn your goddamn mask? Have you had a coffee? Have you admired the beautiful autumn leaves? Have you had a staring contest with the sun to express your annoyance that it doesn’t allow an autumnal climate in your area? Are you happy? Do you know that if you’re not happy you won’t always feel this way? Say it to yourself right now. Out loud. I don’t care where you are. Whisper it. Have you had enough sleep? Me neither. But one day we’re gonna have to learn to survive without five coffees. Have you blasted a good song today? (My brother sent me a song a couple of months ago and I’m now obsessed with the album it’s from. It’s called VHS by CASTLEBEAT.) Have you showered today? Have you brushed your teeth? Have you asked yourself how you are recently? Did I already say that? Oh right, that’s cos it’s an important one.

These are the questions that have been floating around in my head the last few long long (take a shot) months.

I know the end does not seem to be in sight right now. And if anything, it’s looking worse than a couple of months ago (take a shot). And I won’t lie to you, that’s because it is. But. We’ll get through it. You’ll get through it. You’ll be happy again. You’ll smile. You’ll make daisy chains with your friends and dance around the office. I’m joking, you’ll never do that. But, we’ll one day get to feel that sweaty aroma of the commuter squished up against you on the train. You’ll get to shake hands with that person who just sneezed before they saw you. You’re get to minesweep a drink off the side of a bar from an unsuspecting patron (shut up, you know you’ve done it). You’ll get to open the door of a public toilet after hundreds of gremlins before you have opened it without washing their hands. This is the future we’re dreaming of.

Okay, yeah, it’s totally not. But it’s still funny. I was talking to my friend before and I mentioned how I felt nostalgic for a time that hadn’t happened yet. And I think that’s exactly how I’ve been feeling for months now. I just didn’t know how to articulate it. But that’s it. And it’s okay to feel that way. And it’s okay to dream of future holidays and cocktail nights with the girls and date nights with your partner eating endless salt and pepper tofu and taking your nan for lunch and getting a train to work without feeling physically anxious and dancing all night in a club. It’s okay to want that. And you’ll have it again. Don’t lose the faith. We’ve just gotta get through the right now together.

So I just wanted to say hi. And whatsup. And howdy. And sorry. And hang in there.

You should all be sufficiently drunk off those shots now so I’ll leave it there for today.

I’ve missed you.

Heart Still Beats – CASTLEBEAT

journal prompts pt.2

So kids, we missed two weeks there. Also, yeah, it’s a Saturday again but if we wait for me to remember to post on a Friday then it may never happen. That’s my bad. Anyway! Onwards!

It’s another quick self-care task this week to follow on from our intention writing. I want you to get comfortable with journal writing. Cos I think it can save you. It can keep you safe. It can challenge you. It can let you feel your emotions, whatever they are. But it can be hard to stare at a blank page and wonder where to start. Something about the vast expanse of blankness can either ignite feverish scribblings or completely clear the mind of all human function. Depends on the day. So following on from a post I wrote last year, here are ten more journal prompt ideas:

1. What are you not letting yourself feel?

2. What’s one of your most treasured memories?

3. What’s one thing you’d like to have implemented into your life a year from now?

4. A book review.

5. Today you wanted to dropkick everyone in the face. Tell me why.

6. Give a stream of consciousness a go. Don’t overthink it. Just write anything and see where it 

leads you.

7. Write about a part of your physical body that you are just in awe of right now.

8. A little gratitude never hurt.

9. Are you working towards your dreams? Tell me how you are or how you could.

10. What are you most excited for?

Happy writing, kids!

A Living Human Girl – The Regrettes

 

It’s Okay

I love writing. It gets me out of bed in the morning, it drags me out of my Netflix void, it makes me feel peaceful. But I don’t force it. I never want it to feel like a chore because it means too much. But as I’ve watched these post-less weeks and months float passed me I’ve felt guilty. Guilty to anyone who actually gets something out of my posts and wouldn’t have minded another one. And guilty to myself for not sticking to a schedule or having follow through on a project. But then I just thought, you know what?

It’s okay.

I’m letting myself off the hook this time. Cos life is too short. I don’t want to sit here and worry about all the things that have passed but never even happened or stress about the future and all the things I’m sure I’ll want to apologise for. Instead I’m just going to focus on right now. Because I find staying present incredibly difficult and I think we all do. But it’s something I’m working on.

I’m not going to promise to be ‘back’ and posting every week, cos we just know that’s not who I am. But I knew I wanted to write to you today and I think that’s a good start. I wanted to check in. I hope you’ve been good. I’d love to hear what you’ve been up to, stranger or friend.

A lot has been going on in my life. Maybe I’ll tell you about it one day. But for today I guess I just wanted to say it’s okay. Whatever it is that is on your mind, whatever guilt you feel, whatever is giving you uncomfortable butterflies in your chest, anything, everything. It’s okay. It will be okay. You will be okay. So in the meantime just take care of yourselves.

Peace.

Legally Blonde Remix – Legally Blonde Original Cast (Random song today, but I haven’t been able to turn this album off recently!)

journal prompts for beginners

So I get that journaling can seem a little intimidating if you’re new to it. Or maybe you’re a practised journaler but sometimes just stare at the page wondering what to write. I’ve been both of those people. And it can be off putting. But I truly believe that the practise of writing your thoughts down can bring many benefits to your life so this week I’m going to give you some journal prompts to get you started. Simply pick one and start writing.

1. What actually got you to this point? Why have you sat down and opened a notebook to write?

2. What scares you?

3. What is something you don’t like about yourself and how can you change?

4. List all the places you want to go in the world. Why do you want to go there?

5. Write about the movie you saw most recently.

6. Write a letter to your future or past self.

7. What it stopping you from being happy?

8. What are you grateful for?

9. What does your ideal day look like?

10. Write about someone who inspires you.

11. What do you day dream about?

12. Write about why you love yourself.

13. What do you need more of in your life?

14. Write a letter to a friend that you’ll never send.

15. Simply write about your day. Step by step, what you did.

Happy writing, kids.

Peace.

Did We Miss The Morning? – Seafret

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

The Nano Conclusion

So November is finally over and nanowrimo has finished. Did I get 50,000 words? Look who we’re talking to. I did not. But I did get 18,024. And for anyone who knows me we can agree that is a fucking victory. So I’m gonna keep going through December at my own snail pace. Fifty thousand will be reached eventually. And then it’s on to draft two and draft three and draft four. But let’s not think about that right now! What the month taught me was discipline and productivity. At least half the time. The other half I was watching Netflix or staring at a wall. I’m happy with the direction the project is going but it needs a lot more work and structure and some other stuff too. But feeling positive and I guess that’s all I can ask for at this point. Some sections have been fun to write and others incredibly hard. But I’m pushing through and I’ll keep you posted.

Peace.

Heart Attack – Wild Rivers

Self-Care: Journaling

This week’s self-care idea is another obvious one. I think it’s good to start with the obvious though, gives you a good foundation for building your self-care. But this one’s still very relevant because how many of us actually journal on the regular? We all know that journaling is supposed to be great for getting our thoughts and feelings on to a page and out of our head. Yet so many of us fantasise about putting pen to paper rather than actually doing it. I’m definitely guilty of this. Just look at my atrocious posting schedule. I always want to get the words out but I often pick a different pass-time instead. Okay, fine, we all know I’m watching Netflix. But recently I’ve been making a conscious effort to incorporate writing into my day. (Mainly this month for Nano, which is crushing me by the way! I won’t be defeated though; almost at the 15,000 word mark.) Whether that’s starting your day off right with Morning Pages or ending your day in bed with your journal. Or maybe it’s during those five minutes when you’re on the train to work. Journaling is about finding the time for you. Come on, don’t we understand what this series is about yet? So if you don’t want to carry a notebook with you on the train just type in the notes section of your phone. If you’re just starting out maybe try writing one thing each night that you were grateful for that day. Or try a one line a day journal. There’s plenty out there. I bought one in June 2014 and I’ve been filling it out ever since with something boss that’s happened each day. I mean, it sometimes gets to a point where I haven’t written in it for four months and I have to work backwards and all I write one day is ‘Sorry, mate, it’s four months later I have no idea what you did today. Probably watched Netflix’. But I love looking back through it and seeing what my mischievous self was getting up to. It’s something I see myself doing for years to come.

But if you are looking for something a bit more hardcore then maybe work the Morning Pages into your morning routine. The general idea of Morning Pages is that you write three pages every morning, first thing. Personally, I think you should adapt everything in life to fit you, so I sometimes write three pages and other times I literally write one word. But the point is that you wrote something. So even if you just write ‘carrot’ one day you’re still incorporating the activity into your day and in time you’ll start adding more words. Maybe you’ll create a vegetable medley or maybe you’ll stop being an idiot and actually address your thoughts and feelings. I think people get put off journalling because you’re constantly told to bare your soul. Or it’s ‘girly’ and I’m a big manly man. Or it’s for weirdos with no social life. But if you’re going to let the thoughts of others dictate your experience then you’re not going to get to far with this self-care! So just start small and work up. And literally nobody is reading this so allow yourself to be selfish. Write the things you wouldn’t say out loud. Maybe they sound hurtful or conceited. But if you’re feeling it you need to honour that so write it down. Another thing people do is write their thoughts then burn it. If you really think there’s something in there you’d hate people to see then just burn it. Personally, I’d never burn anything I don’t think, because I find it interesting to read back months or years later. Sometimes it’s hard to see where you were at a particular time in your life but it’s always helpful.

I’ve had a lifetime of half-filled journals and childhood diaries. It’s only been this year that I’ve really made an effort to write something every day. And it’s changed me. I think it keeps me balanced. Grounded. And I think it could help you too. It’s never too late to start anything. So maybe for now start with some voice memos on your phone, or write it on a sticky note and then bin it. Find what serves you.

New Soul – Yael Naim

Nanowrimo

So yeah, it’s been a horrendous amount of time since I last posted anything. And I’m not even going to make any excuses. They wouldn’t be true anyway. What was I doing in those three months? We’ll never know. Writing brings me joy but I just haven’t been able to convince myself to do it for a while. But rather than diving into that problem I’m just going to jump with my whole being into something else. In the immortal words of Jake Peralta ‘eyes closed, head first, can’t lose’.

What am I jumping into, you may be wondering. Can’t you read titles? Nanowrimo, mate! I’ve known about nano for years now and I’ve even pretended to participate a few times, I think my most amount of words was like 800 last year. Told you I was pretending. And we all know how fucking good at procrastinating and falling off the radar I am. But I figure, like, people with eight kids, two jobs and nine other hobbies somehow manage to crank out 50,000 words every November so really, what fucking excuse have I got? I told you at the start of this post already, I have no excuses. Come on, keep up.

So I’m giving it the old college try and I’m really hoping it works. I need to prove to myself that I can actually fucking do something I say I can do. Not even that I can do but that I want to do. It’s just stupid to float through life never really committing to anything but having these grand ideas about what you want your life to look like. Just actually do it now or shut up. I mean it’s currently 1:02am and I have zero words. But it’s November 1st til I go to bed and the night is young! I’m feeling good about this which I guess that and a laptop and a load of coffee and good vibes from the universe is all I need.

What am I writing about you may ask? You may not cos you might not care. In which case, why are you here, really. Well I love creative non-fiction and what do I ever write about? I’m going to write about myself, about my family, about our history and our future. This year our lives were changed forever. This is a grief memoir.

Wish me luck. Don’t. Luck isn’t real.

Peace.

Golden October – All The Luck In The World (cos I’m so excited that they’ve finalllllllly got a new song)

Small Steps

So, it’s been over two months without a post but I’m just going to say: at this point who is really surprised? I’m here now though and that’s what is important. I’ve been pretty busy since January and maybe I’ll tell you about it soon but today I want to talk about motivation.

I find motivation really bizarre. Obviously, I lack it most of the time but it’s not that I don’t have it inside me it’s just that I don’t always execute it correctly and adequately. I think we all struggle with that. But I’d like to be different and I think humans are very adaptable.

I learnt about action plans today and realised they could be for the simplest task ever, the point is that you have a time scheduled for completion. This interests me because it suddenly makes the most dreary of tasks seem positive and doable. In just a few hours it’s twisted my thought process and I’m envisioning myself as more organised and proactive. Who doesn’t want to be proactive in their life? I’m pretty exhausted of just sitting around watching months of my life pass and having nothing to show for it. Sure, I’ve watched a hideous amount of Netflix, and read that book for class and I’ve worked a lot of hours at my job but what have I really done? What do I have to show for my time?

I don’t just want to float through life surviving.

I want to have adventures, and experiences, a great career and amazing friends. But there comes a point where you can’t just sit around waiting for it anymore. Instead of saying you love to travel, actually travel somewhere and get off Facebook. Instead of saying you’re not sure what you want to do, actively think about it, research it and just decide; you can always change later anyway. And instead of saying you love writing, just start writing the blog otherwise people are going to stop believing you.

So I’m giving the action plans a go and we’ll see if it works. Maybe you’ll get another post in a few days. Maybe you won’t. But hopefully you will.

Suburbia – Troye Sivan

 

sarahwilliamsandco

People are forever asking me what this means. My teenage self thought it was quite self-explanatory when setting up a gmail account but apparently other brains don’t function like mine. It’s simple really. Do you know quite how many Sarah Williams’ there are in the world? We’re talking thousands. We’re a truly endless people. Like, there is almost enough of us to warrant ourselves our own specie. So rather than sporting a hideously long number after my own name I decided to just join all the other Sarah Williams’ together in to my handle.

And why not.

I don’t know, it started as kind of a silly solidarity thing; we all know the hassles of being an SW. Obviously, it’s a kind of play on the classic ‘insert white man’s name here’ and co. business name. But then it just kind of became me. sarahwilliamsandco is who I am. So instead of thinking of some witty blog name, that undoubtedly would in years to come fill me with nausea, I just called it myself. I wanted it to be simple. I didn’t want a theme; I want to be able to talk about whatever the fuck I want. Random musings in my mind, injustice, my adventures, feminism, veganism, my family, music, books, existentialism, minimalism, my friends, inspiration, fitspiration, politics, things that piss me off, things that make me cry happy tears, movies, my hopes.

Anything.

I can be quite unpredictable so this will be interesting.

Wolves Without Teeth – Of Monsters and Men