28 Feb 2018

The February Edition


I refuse to let the intro to these Editions turn into alternations of: BOY THAT WAS A LONG MONTH and HOW IS IT *insert next month here* TOMORROW?!

*bites fist* 

What I will say is: cold. Wow, so cold. Snow. SO MUCH SNOW. Minus temperatures. MARCH TOMORROW. MINUS SIX TODAY. MARCH.

Despite the cold, February was full of stuff. Quite big stuff. Until you really reflect on a month, you don’t realise how much you can do, and how much things can change. I always wish away the first few months of a year to get to the warmth and holidays (like we all do, right?) but I… won’t do that now. As much, anyway…

What I did

I started my new job! I’ve been at Anthony Nolan for three days and I am NOT OVERWHELMED?! I am shook, as the kids say. Even with terrible commutes of two hours each way (thanks to snow and the-trains-are-affected-by-the-mere-THOUGHT-of-snow), I’m pretty chilled if slightly tired. Everyone is lovely, I’ve successfully used the printer by myself, I’ve not locked myself in the toilet, and there are multiple office dogs. MULTIPLE. Thrilled.

I ran two races this month. A 10k at Victoria Park courtesy of The Race Organiser, and a 10mi at Lee Valley VeloPark courtesy of RunThrough. Both runs were in the freezing sunshine, and both runs I smashed. I wanted my sub60 for the 10k and I ran it in sub55. SUB55! I didn’t put so much pressure on the 10mi (it was 10 laps of the course. TEN. Torturous) but I managed it in 1hr34. A whole 24 minutes off my last 10mi run. I know the PBs aren’t going to last - I know they’re the result of joining a running club, losing weight, and natural serious progression since last year’s long runs. But I’ll take them while I can!

Lee Valley VeloPark 10mi medal, feat. new snazzy leggings from Tikiboo

What I thought

I’ve been worried that I’m a bad mental health advocate because I haven’t written anything anywhere about mental health for a while. But, do you have to talk about mental health all the time to be a good advocate? Isn’t that… bad for your mental health? Possibly? Do I have to have opinions on everything? Do I have to write about mental health a certain amount of times to prove I care?

Am I overthinking this? Yes. Probably.

Also: fuck wine. I’ve fully decided that I don’t want to drink wine anymore (bar the odd glass at events or dinner, y’know). It does terrible things to me and makes me very depressed. No thank you.

Also also: shall I bite the bullet and buy a Mooncup? 


Where I went

Um, Brussels. I’m going to do write a full post about this, but I fucked off to Brussels for the day during my week off between jobs. I took the week off with the intention of actually chilling out for once… but this is me, so I imagined what it’d be like to go to another country for the day aaaaand did it. Of course I did.

The most important part of my trip

We went to Portsmouth at the start of the month for Ryan’s cousin’s son’s (dog’s aunt’s postman’s etc) Christening. I like going down to Portsmouth. I love Ryan’s family - they’re massive and very close and all live down the same roads. Completely different from my family. Logan is the baby and I made him a cross-stitch as a Christening present, keeping the tradition of my family to create cross-stitches at any given moment. 

What I read

I finished reading Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock and loved it, and read TWO other books. Smug, yes I am. 

I read The Girls of Ink and Stars by Kiran Millwood Hargrave which was utterly wonderful. A slightly younger YA and fantasy, both factors which would usually put me off a book, but this was so beautifully written and a great little story. Five stars.

I also read The Names They Gave Us by Emery Lord. This book was a journey. I hated it to begin with. I couldn’t stand the protagonist and hated where the plot seemed to be going. But, I ended up falling in love with other characters and, by the end, the protagonist too. Ish. I’m glad I stuck with it. Four stars.

In terms of other readings, this blog by Simon Thomas - of Blue Peter fame for my generation - on living with depression, anxiety and bereavement is an emotional, raw, and brave one.

What I watched

Friends, mostly. Still. I’m already on Season 9 and have had to slow right down because I don’t want it to end! Yes, some episodes and themes really grated. They love bringing back ‘Fat Monica’ for a good old laugh, don’t they? Jeez. That was tiresome. But overall I love it. 

We watched The Cloverfield Paradox and couldn’t work out if thought it was terrible or genius. We watched Philomena and The Big Sick, both on Netflix. They were very good films. 

I stuck to my goal of going to the cinema at least once a month and saw The Greatest Showman with my mum, whose love of musicals and Hugh Jackman knows no bounds. I wasn’t completely fussed on it, to be honest, but I love the soundtrack.

I went to Union Chapel for the first time with Ryan and friends for a comedy night raising money for Anthony Nolan (it was a coincidence, I swear, I just saw it RTed). Union Chapel is BEAUTIFUL, I highly recommend, and it was so great seeing some of my favourite comedians (Sara Pascoe, Nish Kumar, Josh Widdecombe…) for £15. Steal of a night.

What I was thankful for

My brain, again. I really struggled with PMS for the first half of the month, which I think was exacerbated by the upcoming change of leaving my job, and I wasn’t sure if I was dipping into a bad head time. My period coming and going clarified that I wasn’t, but I was still very nervous about the new commute and colleagues and location and office and WHAT IF I’M A FRAUD. But instead of letting that worry take over, I dealt with it. I’ve been incredibly mindful and had a lot of conversations with myself this past week as I’ve been navigating this new experience. I’m allowed to not understand, I’m allowed to feel awkward, I’m allowed to mess up a bit, I’m allowed to be tired and feel a bit overwhelmed. It’s part of the process. 

Pattern and kit from NiaCrossStitch on Etsy

I’m also thankful for the tiny part of my brain that loves cross-stitching and is completely focused on it when I do it. It’s the one thing that’s guaranteed to calm and distract me at any moment. I’m usually terrible at concentrating but if I’m cross-stitching, I’ll notice how many times Chandler has frowned in one episode of Friends without even looking. I miss nothing. I don’t get it!

Anyway, I'm hoping for more warmth and less coughing in March. I don't ask for much.


  1. I say yes to the cup! It's genuinely a bit of a revelation and not as difficult/gross as you imagine. And you get to feel all smug that you and your fanjo are doing your bit to reduce plastic and such. Win.

    1. I like hearing positive stories! I'm definitely gonna do it, I just keep putting it off. I have a few friends who love it and have said they'd never go back. But then I started watching YouTube horror stories and thought, "Maybe next month..." Maybe it's the first thing I should buy after my first new payday...