August 2020

A much better month, even with a ridiculous heat wave. I feel August was when I really tried to listen to my body and really am still trying to figure out why I do the things I do. I’ve been finding sleep and rest quite difficult and actively trying to tire myself out to get some sleep has resulted in some pained muscles! Clearly this ratio is something I still need to work on. I realise in August I’ve been reacting both to external factors (weather and achey pains) and internal factors (overthinking), and need to try to be more proactive than reactive.

Having entertainment and media as an outlet has been a good form of escapism, and has also kind of helped me figure some things out. Having deep conversations with people has also helped me this month. It’s good knowing that some people absolutely have my back and will do what it takes to help me out of a rut. I realise more and more during pandemic and semi-lockdown that we really are social creatures that need support and human interaction. So, here is my up and down August:

1 Hubby: grateful for the hubby today. A morning full of chores and location research managed with this man and I’m grateful that we have now whittled the list down to three potential locations – progress!

2 Ukulele: grateful for the uke today. Played a little this evening and it was nice being present and enjoying the moment.

3 Exercise: actually managed to get up at a decent time for some exercise this morning. Grateful for the work out and endorphins, really felt like I had a productive morning before I booted my laptop up for work.

4 Hubby: grateful for the hubby today for being the best cheerleader. I’ve been overthinking a lot today and my mind has been racing round worrying about things that may not even happen. So a lot of inconsequential thinking. The hubby was very helpful on providing tips on how to stay present and to be more mindful, always there to pick me up when I’m feeling down. So I’m grateful for this adorable soul raising me up.

5 Calmness: grateful for calmness today. Setting an action plan and writing it down has settled my mind. Lately thoughts have been racing in my mind so I’m actively trying to calm those cars of thoughts so there is no traffic building up in my head and it is just open smooth roads so I can focus better.

6 Birdsong: grateful for birdsong today. Not sure where these birds are but they were singing and chirping loudly this morning and it was lovely hearing some nature.

7 Air conditioning: grateful for air conditioning today. The heat wave is quite stifling and it was very muggy outside today, so we closed all the windows and set the AC on. Grateful for portable AC to cool us down in a flat that retains heat like no other.

8 Writing: grateful for writing today. Finding the time and flexing some dusty creative muscles was just what I needed in this heatwave. Grateful I’m able to get back into the swing of writing.

9 Good story telling: grateful for some good story telling today. We have started watching season 2 of The Umbrella Academy and I’ve forgotten how much I love this show: the characters, the relationships, the intrigue. Just wonderful and just what I needed.

10 Taking things slowly: grateful for the day off today for an extra long weekend to take things slowly and to chill. Recently I’ve been finding it difficult to relax and get to sleep, possibly because of the heat wave. But I’m grateful for an extra day to slow down.

11 Air conditioning: grateful for the AC today. Had it on practically all day and the hubby moved his work station to join me on the dining table so we were makeshift desk buddies today. It was nice having a desk buddy today – I’ve been hogging the dining table for months.

12 New Girl: grateful for this hilarious show today. I started watching this show back in my uni days but never stayed with it and now we have restarted watching from the beginning and it’s almost the end and wow what an emotional rollercoaster it’s been so far. Grateful for this show showing different multicultural couples too.

13 Rain: grateful for rain this evening. It has been stifling and muggy lately so I’m grateful for the breeze and grateful for the rain breaking the hot weather.

14 Breeze: grateful for breezy weather today. Lovely having a cooler flat and not feeling like I’m melting. Also grateful to be able to have the windows closed so music from neighbours isn’t blasting away. Grateful for a normal temperature again.

15 The future: grateful for the future today. Although 2020 has definitely not been the year anyone was expecting, I’m grateful for some birthdays coming up ahead in the near future giving me a little joy to plan and think ahead to. I’m grateful that we still have a future, even if it is still not quite back to normal, it’s still something. And something is better than nothing.

16 Art: grateful for art today. We visited The National Gallery and saw some beautiful paintings by some awesome painters. Saw my favourite Van Gogh, some interesting Hogarth, some sublime Constable and seascapes by Turner. It was lovely taking in these sights and reading about certain scenes or sceneries. Just what I needed and throughout the visit I was surprisingly fully present too.

17 Muscles: grateful for working muscles today. After the epic walking yesterday my legs have been aching all day, and annoyingly they ache more this evening than when I woke up this morning! Grateful for working muscles and working legs, I suppose the achey feeling shows I’ve worked the dormant leg muscles yesterday.

18 Sleep: grateful for sleep today as I had a lie in this morning. Really nice waking up a little more rejuvenated that usual and great not being sleepy through most of the morning.

19 Pain free muscles: grateful to be able to walk and move around today absolutely pain free. It’s the simple things.

20 Conversations: grateful for a conversation I had with someone today. It felt like a therapy session and it was rather eye opening afterwards. Some great advice was given, some insightful commentary, and it’s amazing how good it feels to feel really heard.

21 Autumnal weather: grateful for what seemed like autumnal weather today. It was super windy today and I also saw a leaf fly onto our decking – the first sign of autumn. It may seem really early but I am over the summer heat to be honest and grateful for some autumnal weather.

22 Vicar of Dibley: grateful for this classic show today. We have been watching it a lot lately and I’ve forgotten how charming and funny it is. Just wonderfully heart warming.

23 Napping and musicals: grateful for these two today. Had a lovely couple of hours napping in the afternoon, I was just so tired and out of it for some reason. Just needed to recharge I guess. Also grateful for musicals, we watched Hairspray, which is absolutely brilliant. A nice way to chill for evening.

24 Muscles: grateful for muscles today. My legs were super achey yesterday but a lot better today, so I’m grateful for my muscles healing and no longer sore.

25 Friends: grateful for conversations with friends today. Caught up with a couple of friends and talking about the small world we live in and how people and places are so connected.

26 A few things today: grateful for opportunities and the hope and prospects they might bring after a phone call today. Also grateful for animals as we had a furry little visitor hang around the decking for a little while, surprisingly a cat that wasn’t too shy and didn’t run away as I approached. Also grateful for art, as I was reminiscing about our trip to the National Gallery recently.

27 A few more things today. Couldn’t pick just one today. I’m grateful for a lie in this morning as I’ve been having trouble sleeping lately. Also grateful for the hubby in persuading me to chill a lot more tonight. Which leads me to being grateful for the ukulele as I listened to the hubby and had some more time this evening to strum away. When I haven’t played in a while I forget how muscle memory is quite a great thing!

28 A few people today. Grateful for some really insightful feedback from a potential mentor, it was interesting hearing things from a different perspective. Also grateful for a friend reminding me of my value and worth, she is such an amazing cheerleader that completely has my back. And grateful for the hubby supporting me and letting me bother him chatting away many times today.

29 Perspective: grateful for perspective today. Read a few articles about some things making me think that the grass isn’t always greener. Also grateful to pause and evaluate my life, seeing how some aspects of my life could potentially come round in full circle. Weird how things turn out.

30 Friends, good conversation, and exercise. Grateful for friends as I had a nice yet cold picnic with a friend today, who I haven’t physically seen in months pre-lockdown. We chatted and it was lovely catching up and discussing our experiences of this tumultuous year so far. Also grateful for exercise, as I’m trying to get back into the swing of things and using exercise as a preventative measure to improve my general mental health.

31 Rest: grateful for an extra day for the weekend. Had a lovely lie in as I was completely exhausted this morning. Also took things super slowly today as I felt a bit dazed, perhaps due to tiredness. But I’m grateful I’m able to listen to my body and rest when needs be.

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