Friday, 1 January 2016

New Year, Best Me

2015 has been an eventful year for me. I graduated from University with a 2:1 in Mathematics. I had to duck out of running the Market Drayton 10K, but I had the pleasure of witnessing my sister-out-law crossing the finish line and shared in her pure elation at her achievment. My parents moved out of our family home and to the other end of the country. I soon followed when I moved to London for a job a month after my graduation. I celebrated with my other sister-out-law when she announced that she was going to have a baby. Liberty's other half finally got down on one knee and asked my sister to marry him.

Of course it wasn't all happy. I suffered very badly with depression for a long time. Long distance and my depression put a huge strain on my relationship so it hit the lowest point it has ever been in the 6 years we've been together. Things only got worse when I moved and it turned out that my neighbour in my flat was actually crazy and my life felt like hell.

In my last post, I talked about how I finally decided to view my choice to leave London not as a failure, but as a win. My parents - especially my step-dad - worked incredibly hard to support me, and within a month and a half of making that decision, they have made it possible for me to now be living in my own house (well they own it, but I don't have to share it with anyone I don't want), in a much nicer place, with much nicer neighbours! I am so grateful to my parents for everything they have done for me: supporting me through difficult times, and helping me to now be in a place in my life where I once again feel hope and happiness about my future and the present.

I know that things won't be easy. I am now further away from Lampeter than ever, so my long distance relationship has gotten even longer. But it has also gotten so much stronger. With my emotions being more stable and happy, and a place to finally call our own that we can build together, I am pleased to say that I no longer have to use the phrase "the boyfriend" in my blog posts. Then again, I don't really like the word Fiancé... so for now, I am going to refer to my new Fiancé (blegh) as my Betrothed. Because I can. About time too!

As 2015 drew to its end, I have felt more comfortable and happy in myself than I remember for a long time and I want that to continue into the new year. So my goal for 2016 isn't for a "New Year, New Me". I just want to be the best me that I can be. To help me maintain that, I am going to set myself two monthly challenges - one based on physical health and one based on mental health. Keeping my mind healthy will help me keep my body healthy and vice versa, so I can take on all the new challenges that 2016 is sure to bring.

This month:

Complete 30 reps of my hip strengthening exercises every day: The main goal I am focusing on at the moment is to run the Market Drayton 10K in May and to hopefully do reasonably well in it. I haven't run properly in months because of knee pain caused by my weak hips, so the first thing to do to reach that goal is to strengthen my hips. A physio gave me this exercise to do everyday while I was at Uni last year. I did really well with it for a while, and even saw some improvement when doing the exercise, but as soon as I went back home for the Easter holidays I completely lost it. I want to get back in the habit again, so I am aiming to do the full 30 reps every day this month. To take the pressure off a little though, I am going to allow myself to call this a win as long as I average the correct number by the end of the month. I've set up a spreadsheet and everything to keep track of it all.

Write down one happy memory every day: This can be something big like completing a project at work, or something as small as enjoying dinner. The idea is to make the effort every day to think of at least one happy thing so that I know that not everything is bad. Writing them down means that I'll have something to look back and smile on too when I'm feeling blue. If I'm feeling too down and can't think of something good that day, I will just write down a good memory from another time to remind me that I have done good in my life.

I have a couple of big challenges this year as well. My mum has challenged me to complete the "50 things to do before you're 11 3/4" adventure scrapbook that she for some reason has. I know I've kind of missed the age deadline, but it's good to go back to being a kid from time to time. She's doing it with the kids as well, so it's an excuse for us to all go out together on random adventures.

My other challenges are to build a home with my Betrothed and to make a dent in planning our wedding! I am so excited to see what the new year brings, and hopefully being better at blogging all about it!

Happy New Year everybody.

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