Musings // What I’ve learnt this summer…

Good morning! Currently writing this on a Monday morning before starting work with a fresh cup of tea in hand. As its now the first week of September and now officially Autumn, summer seems like it’s now well and truly over. After the most magnificent warm weather this summer the days are now getting shorter and closing in and the weather has gotten much cooler. Gone are the days of shorts and skirts and the days of leggings and tights are now back.

How can I explain this summer… thrilling, busy and overwhelming… it took a lot out of me. Lets start with the hard stuff and end on a high… (I’m definitely one for getting the tricky things out of the way first and ending on a positive) 
This year in general has taken a lot out of me and I’ve learnt that I now need to prioritise myself and my health. For a while now I think I’ve been using work as a way to distract myself from what’s been going on outside work. It’s hard enough for me to talk about it with those close to me but I’ll do my best. My mum has been ill for a few years now (nearly as long as I’ve been with my husband) and in the past couple years it’s come to a head a few times and in July she ended up in hospital. Mental health is a difficult thing to comprehend and I’ve found it hard to understand especially in the past few months. As I’ve said I used work as a way to distract myself, but this year it just built up too much and with jobs at work being delayed ended up with me working obscene overtime. 
Why am I telling you this all? Firstly I needed to get it off my chest and also as a way to let anyone else going through this to know they’re not alone and you’ll get through it. For years I’ve bottled a lot up and tried to brush it all under the carpet in a very British way! Without even realising, for years I’ve made excuses for people’s behaviour in a way to try and protect those around me from others remarks/ judgments. This summer it all got too much for me and I finally cracked under all the pressure. It has made me reprioritise a lot and finally put myself first. In regards to work, the days of overwhelming overtime will be a thing of the past – this year I did the most overtime I’ve ever done – in 6 months it worked out as over 200 hours which is over 30 days extra work I won’t get back. You can imagine it had a huge effect on me. I was an emotional wreck and was not a very nice person to be around. I’m still feeling the effects now 3 months later and have recently discovered I have a vitamin B12 and folate deficiency which means oxygen can’t get around my body properly which means I am knackered all the time and just want to sleep! This is all as a result of me running myself into the ground without realising it.
So there’s a few things I’ll be doing differently going forward…
  • Step away from a situation when it gets too overwhelming. I’m a good listener but need to stop getting so emotionally involved.
  • Cut back on the overtime at work. I will be putting my foot down going forward and putting my wellbeing first.
  • Put my health and wellbeing first. As much as I hate running and exercise it does a great job of taking my mind off things and helps me relax. So I will be hitting the gym at least 3 times a week. 
  • Being present. What I mean by this is not cracking out the work laptop at home in the evenings or being on my phone all evening and instead spending time with my husband. We’re going to try and go for a short walk after dinner every evening.
Although it’s been an emotional summer, it did have some highs too! The first 2 weeks in July I spent traveling California with my husband on a road trip. This holiday was a long time coming and I wouldn’t recommend going 6 months without a holiday… it was hard going. You can see some of my previous posts on this here: some of my favourites: Yosemite and Carmel. I didn’t want to come back but it was nice to get home and not live out of a suitcase. The whole trip reminded me how much I loved travelling and taking photos. The time out from everything also reminded me there is so much more to life than work and getting stressed out! 
I’ve been wanting to start a blog for a while and finally decided to take the plunge about a month ago. So far I’ve just touched on travel but will expand in lifestyle and will try and do monthly recaps of which this is the first. It’s always important to remember that life isn’t always like those perfect instagram squares. It’s a constant rollercoaster with ups and downs and it’s how we deal with it all that shows who we really are as people.
This has also been a summer full of sunflowers and hydrangeas! I hadn’t realised how much I loved sunflowers until this month and they had a constant presence on our dining room table. 
Hydrangeas also have had a front place in our home…
There’s something about flowers that just cheers me up 😊
It’s also been a summer full of cocktails and tasty drinks.
This has been quite a heavy going post but thanks if you got all the way to the bottom! It was hard for me to decide how much information to divulge as I’m a person who worries about what people think and am a constant people pleaser. 
Can you relate to anything I’ve spoken about?
I also need some help from you…
I’ve wanted to get myself a proper camera for a while now but it’s a big purchase to make and get wrong! Does anyone have any suggestions?

Cathers x