29.1.16

Her

Some days I am too afraid to touch her. For fear that she may break.
Some days I am too afraid to wake her. For fear that she may not cope with the day ahead. The challenges she may face or even simple tasks.
Some days I put her to bed early. She struggles to relax, she struggles to settle, she struggles to switch off but I know it's the best place for her.

Some days I just want to hold her. I want to embrace her so tightly and to not let go.
I want her to pour her heart out to me. I want her to let those tears that are built up inside her out.
Some days I wish I could convince her that she is doing a good job. And that eventually everything will be ok.

Some days I want to shake her. I want to tell her that she is ok as she is. That she doesn't have to try so hard. That it's ok to not be liked by everyone.
Some days I want her to just sit back. I want her to just be quiet. To just take stock of what is around her. And if people ask what the matter is, and to ask why she is quiet, for her to not feel she has to be anything else. That she can just be having one of those days when she doesn't need to be in everyone's face.
I want her to know that she doesn't have to live up to this expectation others have of her. This false expectation.

Some days I want her to know that if people are talking behind her back, if people are judging her or saying things about her, that it's ok.
I want her to know that she can't do anything about it. She can't stop them.

Some days I want to take her away. I want to take her away from everything so she can work on herself, without influence from others.
So she can work out who she really is.

Some days I want her to know that those tears she sheds, the ones she is unafraid to show others, doesn't show that she is weak.
In fact, the fact that she is able to let them fill her eyes slowly and then fall down her cheeks, wiped away by her index finger where it will sit for a while and soak into her skin, it shows her strength.
The strength that she can show others her struggles.
Her strength to let others know that she is not ok, that she feels like she will break at any moment.
The fact that maybe she needs help. Maybe she needs a bit more praise, maybe she needs to know that she is doing ok.

Some days I want to grab the weights on her shoulders, all of the things that are piling up making her feel so heavy. I want to take them and throw them away. Or temporarily put them in a pile, so we can gradually go through them and decide which ones matter and which ones belong there. Which ones we can throw away and forget about.

Some days I want her to know that I am here. And that she doesn't need to feel scared. She doesn't need to feel like she has no one.
Because she has me.
Always here, always fighting for her.
Always wanting her to be ok.
Always loving her for who she is, no matter who that person is.
Don't forgetr to love her. The little girl you used to be. Perhaps she lies within you. Untucked, sleeping peacefully.:
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18.1.16

This Coming Year...

Make more time for...

Reading. Isn't this such a cliche?! I think on a lot of peoples resolutions list you will find "Read more" or "make more time for books". I have so many books I need to read. A Kindle full...well not full but with a lot of unread books which I need to make time for.For years I haven't been able to sit in bed and read because I was always governed by whenever my ex wanted to sleep. I couldn't stay up a little longer and read in bed whilst he tried to sleep, and as a result I lost my love and passion for reading. Now I have my own space, and a chance to sit up as long as I want and read then I need to take advantage of that.

Hope for...

I went for coffee with a friend recently and we were discussing being single. Our marriages both broke up within weeks of each other so it's been nice for us both to be there for each other.
It's especially nice to have someone who says what you want to hear. So often people say "You don't need to find a man. Concentrate on finding you, on being single. There's a lot going on. Forget about men" and it's just not that easy. 
My friend and I both said we are "needy". Not in an obsessive kind of way but in that we need that comfort and affection from another human. Just to have someone there. 
I don't want to feel ashamed or be made to feel ashamed for wanting and needing a man. For wanting to have a mans company.
I spent a lot of last year "finding myself" (cliche number 2!) so that's not necessary for this year. I don't need to do that anymore. 
I'm not that kind of person who enjoys being by herself. I'm not saying I want to find my life partner, but to find someone would be quite lovely.

Remember...

Click here for Blog: Sometimes our #Grief is so big that all we can be expected to do is Breathe. http://www.texansunited.com/freddadavisjones/2012/12/23/grieving-how-to-measure-your-success/:

Be ok with...

Not being perfect. I put so much pressure on myself to want to be perfect or to make everyone else happy. I assume everyone has these expectations of me, when maybe they don't. 
I feel like I have to be perfect as a mum, as a daughter, as a twin, as a friend, as a work colleague. I need to be ok with the fact that I'm not going to be perfect. I'm going to make mistakes, there will be days when I can't cope, when I'm not capable and that is ok. 

Be more...

Brave. Last year I feel like I was brave in so many ways. I pushed fears to the side when I went to Isle of Man, by flying by myself, going on the back of my brothers bike and being centimetres away from superbikes going at super speeds! I was a room moderator at Britmums Live which was scary! I took part in two 5k races. And made a decision that changed my families lives.
I want to continue being brave because beating those fears and experiencing all that I experienced last year made me this new person who I quite like.
Bravery is the ability to look fear and hurt in the face and say move aside, you are in the way.:

Be less...

Of an over-thinker. I am a terrible over-thinker. I am over-sensitive. I bully myself and am far too hard on myself. This has to change. It is part of me though, it's how I'm built I guess and it's hard to get out of that but I know that I do need to calm my head down and back off. 


Try to...

Document life a bit more. I need to pick up my camera and take more photos, make more videos. I think this year will be a big one in terms of family and adjustments and I think it's important for me to document the tough times but also the times when I am doing a good job and when life is going well.

Don't be afraid to...

Take inspiration from others. When it comes to video making I know I am not amazing but I like to try. I'm proud of what I have created so far. And everyone has to staet soemwhere. I absolutely adore Claire Marshall on YouTube and so many of her videos inspire me. The way she edits, the topics. 
Also....utter babe and TOTAL tattoo envy!!
Claire Marshall:

Improve on...

Time management and keeping on top of things. I am a nightmare when it comes to housework and I get distracted easily. I think being aware of this is at least a good start....


When things are tough...

When things go well...

I have never been afraid to praise myself, or to shout out "Hey! I did well at this. Praise me please". I don't want to feel ashamed to celebrate and to be proud of myself. 
At the same time, I think that when things go well, I need to stop doubting that there must be a catch. I have to stop waiting for that bubble to burst and to accept that sometimes I can have good luck and can have amazing moments.

Robert Rodriguez
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17.1.16

Your Words

You might be joking.
You might not have meant it the way it came out.
You might not realise how your tone can come across.

You might think she is over-sensitive.
You might think she over-reacts.
You might think that because she likes a joke and a banter that she can take it.

But what if those words you call her, those criticisms, those little knocks, those moments that make you laugh...what if all of that actually hurts her? She tells you to stop it and you think she is joking.
She is telling you to stop for a reason.

You are making her doubt everything.
You make her doubt her confidence.
You make her doubt her ability.
You make her doubt the way she is coming across.

She gets defensive.
She gets grumpy and snappy.
You tell her she is over-sensitive.
You tell her she should know what you are like.

But after a while, it becomes too much. Those jokes are no longer funny. "Banter" becomes more than that.
She see's you and she doesn't want to approach you.
She is stand-offish. She doesn't know how to be around you or how to talk to you.
You ask if she is ok, because she "isn't herself".
You don't realise that your words have made her feel uncomfortable.
She says she is ok, because she is.
But you still question her, you push her, not realising that actually the problem is you. The problem is your words. The problem is that she worries about what you will say next.
What will you criticise next.
What will you point out about her looks, the way she dresses, what she has or hasn't done.

So next time you see her.
Next time she pops up on a text, whatsapp, or on a social media account.
Just think.
Maybe it's time you accept that she is telling you she is a nice person for a reason.
Maybe she is offering herself as a friend because that's really how she wants you and everyone else to see her.
When she tells you to stop, do it. Because maybe she isn't joking.
Maybe she doesn't want to hear it anymore.

Think about your words before you spit them out.


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13.1.16

Dear 2016...Part One



Let’s face it. I’m not expecting you to be the best year of my life.

In the first quarter I will be going from a Mrs to a Ms. I will officially be ticking the divorced box. Ok it has all happened sooner than I expected but I knew that at some point this would happen so it’s fine.

At some point in the year I will accept an offer on my house (hopefully) and will then be looking for somewhere else for me and the boys to live. I will solely be in charge of bills.

I will have my own space. The opportunity to start afresh and make memories somewhere new. But I will be saying goodbye to somewhere I called home for 8 years. The place my children called home and the place they felt safe, warm and comforted. But we get to build that again.

If we want a sofa covered in cushions we can have just that. If we want to leave our beds unmade, leave the dishes until the morning then we can. If we decide to leave our pyjamas on the floor as we kick them off in the morning, no problem. It will just be us, with no one else to please or worry about.

But in amongst all the hard times I can’t wait for those good times you will bring.

Those new evening routines of getting the boys ready for bed, in their pyjamas and snuggling on the sofa under the warm, fluffy, snow leopard blanket watching You’ve Been Framed. Laughing, having the usual comment of “ooooo that’s not funny” and those moments where we hunt for the lost remote so we can rewind and laugh again at our favourite funny moments.

Those moments when I accidently fall asleep with one of the boys as I’m putting them to bed. And those moments when I let both of the boys sleep in my bed with me….just because we can. Even if I happen to sneak out of the bed in the middle of the night, moving into one of their beds just so I can get some sleep.

I get full responsibility of how we celebrate their birthdays. And this year, we WILL visit Colchester Zoo. 4 years ago me and Charles made this goal that we would see an Orangutan. We haven't seen one yet and we know there is one at Colchester Zoo.
As for Harry's birthday...we will plan that closer to the time.

I would love, 2016, if you could somehow fit in a holiday for me and the boys. I want to take them away. On a plane ideally. To spend a whole day, or two, or three, by a pool. Doing nothing but splashing, enjoying the sun and making perfect memories. Memories that remind me of holidays I had when I was a child. For the boys to have those moments they can talk about when they are older, just as I do.

There’s June. Oh the flirtiest month of all with all it’s beautiful plans.

The 8 day/7 night stay at the Isle of Man…once again
I get to spend 8 days with my brother. I get to make new friends and once again reunite with amazing friends we made last year.
I get to ride on the back of my brothers bike again.
I get to see the beautiful island that I fell in love with. The island that stole a piece of my heart and made me discover so much about myself.
I get to watch men wrapped in leather, sat upon the amazing machines riding at the most ridiculous speeds. I get to feel that adrenaline rushing through my body. The most adrenaline I have ever experienced, so much that it becomes overwhelming and it feels like my body is going to shut down because it cannot cope.

And maybe 2016, just maybe, you will be kind enough to let me meet a Dunlop. Michael will be fine but ultimately, if I could meet William then my dreams will come true.
Last year I was lucky enough...thanks to my super amazing brother...to speak to William on the phone. In Williams own shy, reserved, beautifully sexy Irish accent "I haven't done this before. I don't really know what to say"...yes it was awkward. I kept repeating "I wish I was there. I wish I was there". He wished me a happy birthday. I giggled.
I have 8 days to fulfill my goal. Well, not the main life goal of getting William to chuck me on the back of his bike and then ride us off into the sunset but to speak face to face and get a photo with him....well...that would be enough...I guess.

Once the TT is over, and I return home to celebrate a 7th birthday and return to work I have the excitement of a weekend in London as I once again attend Britmums Live. This year the conference celebrates it's 5th birthday...I'll defintely be using that as an excuse to dress up.

2016, I just want you to be kind, and although you will have tough tough times, just please try and be gentle.
Please let me be able to look back on you in 2017 with a smile. Let me feel successful and brave, as if I can do anything,
Let me feel like I have survived.


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9.1.16

Identity

She felt she was getting somewhere.  She felt she might finally know who she was.
She felt that, after a year of growing and changing and getting to a place where she might finally feel like she could blossom and become the real her...with nothing or no one to limit her.

She started to walk with her head held a little higher, feeling a bit more confident about herself.
She felt like maybe she was finally being accepted more from those around her.
She felt that maybe, just maybe, she could finally feel ok about liking herself and to allow other people to like her too.

She dressed a little more confidently. She acted a little more confident. She was feeling better about herself than she had in a while.

And then. Out of nowhere.
It went.
She didn't know who she could be anymore.
This woman and person she was, the true her, wasn't good enough. She was too much.

She sat and analysed her behaviour. She analysed the way she looks, the way she talks.
She analysed everything about herself.

She thought about those around her. The people she thought were her friends. Maybe, maybe they didn't really like her. And maybe they find her too much.

A sleepless night.
After being able to close her eyes long enough to be able to class it as a nap, she woke up confused.
Who should she be today?
Who can she be today?
Because she isn't good enough.

Just as she felt like she was someone who was good enough. As soon as she felt she could confidently say "I have friends" "I am liked" "I like myself" she is back to questioning it all.
Does she have friends?
Is she liked?
Does she like herself anymore?

Her identity again has a question mark over it. After so long of searching for it, discovering it and learning about who she is she is back to the beginning.
She wondered if she will ever be accepted for being the real her? If she will ever be liked for being the real her?
Because the real her, once again, doesn't seem to be good enough.

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4.1.16

Five Things | 2015 - The Highlights

I know with a marriage break up people would be shocked that I can look back on 2015 and be pretty pleased with a lot of it. 
I'm someone who is negative a lot but I am learning to see the positive in things, and I think so far I'm doing quite well at that.

2015 was amazing in so many ways. I can confidently look back and say that despite the marriage breakdown, and tough moment around that, it was a good year for so many other reasons.



Isle Of Man 
I'm not sure there is anything I can say about the Isle of Man/TT that I haven't said already. One of the most beautiful, amazing places I have ever been to. A place that pretty much changed me and was able to make me realise who I wanted to be, what I wanted in life, and what I deserved. 
I didn't expect it to affect me as much as it did. I didn't expect to enjoy it as much as I did. And I didn't expect to find leaving as hard as I did. 
Roll on June 2016!!

Somerset 
One of my big achievements of 2015 was driving to Somerset. We had booked a barn to stay in so we could catch up with my brother, my nan and my aunties. It was the most perfect week. Not only did I feel really proud of the driving I did but I also felt so relaxed and so happy.
I think this week was another one which made me realise that other areas of my life weren't as they should be. 
I had some really special days out and then just days relaxing at the barn. My morning coffee in bed was always a lovely treat, along with dinner in the garden with a glass, or two, of proper Somerset cider.


Tattoos
At the beginning of 2015, if you told me I would end up with tattoos I would not believe you. And here I am, sat with 9 tattoos. I know they're not all to everyone's taste but for me, they all mean something. They are all special for their own reason and all have a meaning, something personal, and even better is that my twin surprised me by getting a semi colon in the same place as mine. I wanted us to have matching tattoos so that meant a lot.
This year.....I will definitely be getting more.

A Job
I never wanted to be a "working mum", The idea of going back to work filled me with dread and fear and made me feel sick and angry.
My marriage breakdown meant that returning to work was a necessity, I knew that and accepted it. After applying for lots of jobs I almost felt like it was never going to happen.
I had a job interview which I turned up a minute or 2 late for, and spent 55 minutes pretty much laughing and joking my way through.
I left thinking that I had no chance at the job. When a phone call came a few days later the conversation went one way and I was sure I was going to be told that I didn't have the job. Instead, I was told that there were actually no positions going but one had been opened especially for me.
Two days later, I had my first day. A week later I was given a different role and although throughout the business I am in I work with some super super lovely people, the team I work in are extra special. Straight away I felt accepted and like I'd known them all for so so long. 
I feel really lucky to work with amazing people, and to be in a job that I pretty much always dreamt of. 
I keep waiting for my bubble to burst.


Attention
Oh I know, I know. Way to personal but come on. I'm an open, honest person and if I can make someone else in my situation feel better then it's worth it.
When you come out of a marriage, or long term relationship, it is so hard to accept that anyone will ever find you attractive. That you will ever have any interest from anyone.
I think for me, other than.....you know....the things I have craved the most are just talking to men and being around them. I am a flirt, I can't help it, and working with men helps to cure that craving in a way really. 
And then there are simple hugs and kisses. And these are probably what I really really miss. And yeah, in the last 4 months I have had a little attention in that way which has been wonderful and although I still can't help but to miss the constant affection from a proper relationship, having someone to rely on for a spoon, a cuddle and a kiss.
But just knowing that, even if I'm only good enough for a one off kiss, I'm not completely off the radar and maybe do have a chance at that romantic love thing at some point in my life again.
 :
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