2013, how did that go?

Happy New Year world! I hope 2013 was kind to you. I had a wonderful year. The first half of it taken over by preparations for the wedding – then in May, the most fabulous weekend of my life, followed by Como, and then the last half of the year – well. If I’m honest it was always going to be a bit of a come down. Work has been hectic. I’ve tried to do some work on the house in time for Christmas, and to give myself credit it’s a huge improvement (downstairs at least). But there was a major mood slip. And at this time of reflection I want to try and learn from the highs of the first half of the year to try and make more of 2014 similar to that than the deep depression of October.

So. Last year’s resolution post – wow. I’m not easy on myself am I! And that was supposed to be an improvement on the years that went before. Still. Did I achieve something in all of them?

1- Get Married.

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Well the ring on my finger says this one went ok 😉 No. More than Ok. I worked my arse off to get everything I needed to do done – and we had such a special day. Indeed two special days. We had a small ceremony at the registry office on the Thursday with just witnesses and parents (and an aunt, who was over from America). Was a bit odd – we had a lovely meal at the Shear’s Inn – then I went home to do more DIY, while my new husband went into town with his best man and my chief bridesmaid to buy belts. (and no doubt more beers). The weather on Friday was appalling, sleet, snow, – all in late May. So I was much relieved when I woke up on Saturday to look out of my window at the White Lion (most amazing Honeymoon suite) – to pink cherry blossom against a cerrulean blue sky. I like to think of the weather on Saturday and Sunday as gifts from my grandmas. Because come monday it was awful again.

That Friday night was awful. Not the meal with family or anything – but because it was the first time I didn’t have something to do – and I had to just stop – try and relax. Failed miserably. I was so worried. I was up all night tossing and turning. Eventually gave up and meditated for a couple of hours. Think I maybe slept for two. So it was a good job I had two hours of hair and make-up before the main event. Saturday morning Mark was up at the church cleaning and sprucing while the flowers were done by Claudette from Fleur de Lys. I was up with the lark and off with my A team to the Town Hall to set up.  People said, oh, you’re mad, doing all that on the morning – you should have got someone else to do it, but if the night before was anything to go by, I made the right decision. Keeping busy kept me sane. Plus, I’m too much of a control freak to have been happy letting someone else do it. I twitched that I couldn’t style each and every table exactly as I wanted it. But I am mighty proud of how I planned everything, down to the lanterns, vases and books on the tables, and the timings, to get everything ready just on time. Spreadsheets FTW!
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2. Creativity.

Well. I certainly got everything I wanted to done for the wedding. Made the invites, complete with hand drawn sketches for the illustrations, – hand bound, two different types. Made (with some assistance) a great deal of bunting, both cloth and paper. Made lanterns and lamps, table numbers, a table plan, and made bouquets for myself, the bridesmaids, a basket for the flower girl, hair ornaments, bouttonieres, and roses for the swags at the church.
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Haven’t painted as much as i’d wanted to. Though I have been going to occasional classes at Northlight – helped recently by winning a bursary from the Hebden Bridge WI to do five drawing classes. Done two so far. Plus an oil painting class. I will have to take some more pictures to add to this post as the ones I had I think were lost in the tragic hit and run which killed my phone.

Nor have I done the walking thing. We’ve been terrible this year exercise-wise actually. I’ve put on so much weight. I think since making the decision not to participate in the wedding weightloss madness – because I knew it would inevitably not succeed to the extent I would like given everything else I had going on, and I didn’t want that disappointment to spoil my day. – Totally the right decision, but since June I should have changed my habits and I haven’t. (to be continued…)

Poetry – well a few pieces have spilled out of my brain and onto this blog. But nothing concerted.

3. So the looking after myself one is interesting. Obviously haven’t done it physically. Nor did the veggie / treat day thing last very long. But mentally I think I have made a lot of progress. The beginning of the year I went through some CBT – I wasn’t sure how useful it could be – I had been referred 11 months previously when I was in a much worse place. I wasn’t actually too bad in January. But I know my brain and I knew the peaks would eventually give way to troughs, so it was worth giving a go to learn some techniques. I’m glad I made the effort.  I’ve learnt a great deal about diffusing some of my negative thought patterns, and other ways of soothing my anxieties. I’m exploring mindfulness meditation, and using binaural beats to help me relax and sleep. Sleep in itself is such a vital part of keeping on an even keel. I don’t think I realised how much my poor sleep was a cause of my problems rather than a symptom. Though of course it’s a vicious circle – no sleep = depression & anxiety = no sleep.

So i’ll give myself brownie points on my mental wellbeing this year. Added to which, I am now an accredited MHFA Instructor – and delivering the training regularly gives me a regular reminder of what i need to be doing to help myself win the battle over my wayward mind.  Of course – on the other hand, the physical side – I would probably take those brownie points and eat them, washed down with a pint of stella. Which isn’t good for body or mind. So must try harder for a gold star next time.

4. Rose tinted ribbons.

No. Haven’t put as much effort into this as I should. Any really.  I’ve kept making roses. I did one order for a lady at work. But it needs more energy and a strategy to stick to.
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5. Debt.

Ha ha ha ha haha haha ha ha. ahem.

No.

6. Novel

Hmm. Well. I did make progress. Tried to do NaNoWriMo again in November. Made a good start, but work got busy so I didn’t keep it up. But I’m about 115,000 words or so now. My plan is pretty good, but I will need to go back through and pad out, make certain things make sense. I don’t know how it will read to someone who doesn’t have all the backstory in their head. We’ll see. I also made friends with writing on the ipad – so that means I can pick it up wherever I am.

I’ll give myself a 6.5 out of 10 I think for the year.

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