Life is too short not to surround yourself with beautiful things…
Last week’s personal post took a big leap of faith. Sometimes sharing something so personal can backfire, and I was prepared for the sneers and sarcastic comments. But they didn’t come. In fact, oddly, it just made people reach out. People who I didn’t even realise remembered my name; old friends called, strangers tweeted, and ex-colleagues flooded my Facebook page with kind words.
If you’ve ever been so low that you can’t imagine anybody missing you, if you’ve ever been so afraid of something you can’t put into words, paralysed with fear but too ashamed to ask for help, then you might be able to imagine how it felt to turn on that computer screen and see messages of support, and love.
So Much Love.
This is why I believe it’s so important to speak up and tell your story. You can inspire people, show them life can get better.
In light of the little happy this gave me, I wanted to share with you some of the things I keep near me, to help me when I feel low.
I used to sneer at ‘sayings’ and ‘mottos’, like the chalk signs proclaiming ‘family rules’ or the office mugs telling you to ‘keep calm’ whilst angrily slurp your tea. But in my new home, I’ve changed the rules. I’ve accepted slogans into my life. This haven is my breathing space, my hideaway and, therefore, it is where I am alone most. And when my brain is alone, it doesn’t tell me nice things. It certainly doesn’t tell me to keep calm. So now I have words shouting at me from every space; reminding me I’m human, I’m safe and I am loved.
I found these coasters in a little craft shop last August. I was staying with my parents, licking my wounds after having my heart broken; I was barely eating, not sleeping and crying all the time. But even then, despite the hurt, I knew I was better off. And when I saw these, a purchase which I’d previously have laughed at for being so twee, something about them made me stop and consider. I had been squashed, the best and weirdest things about me had been stuffed in a box; out of sight, out of mind. Now I was free to be myself again.
I DID want to follow my dreams, I DID want to enjoy life, I DID want to go back to the me who tried to enjoy the little things and who didn’t have to have a ten-year plan.
When I showed the set to my mum I saw a little hope come back in her eyes. She read them, nodded vehemently and said yes, yes you should buy them. The colours, the slogans, the mismatched oddity of the finish; they each resembled what my new life would look like. I snapped them up, and four months later they were the first thing I unpacked.
This poster hangs in my bedroom. It is the first thing I see in the morning, and the last thing I see at night. More importantly, it is what my eyes rest on when I am taking my tablets in the morning. It reminds me to be strong, and to be proud of who I am and how I got here. It’s just one of the many flamingo adornments around this home. I’ve begun to admire how unapologetic they are: “I’m weird and I’m fabulous”.
I like that life.