Creative mess of a life

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I lose everything (although I technically know where it is, it’s just impossible to find on my desk), I’m late for everything (or just on time), I get up late, I go to bed late, I always leave everything to the last minute. I cram for exams, don’t start an essay until the night before (I was writing a dissertation 2 hours before it was due in, getting that bound was interesting) and raise my eyebrows at people whose lives are organised; they can’t be living, why would you spend your one and only life preparing for stuff? I’ve got this far and achieved quite a bit. I haven’t failed yet.

I’m crap at being prepared, I don’t pack for my holidays abroad until the morning I leave (or if I’m leaving in the evening, the afternoon), my nail varnish is always chipped and I’ve currently got dead flowers on my desk (I say desk, I can’t see it as it’s littered with debris).

I’m currently working for someone who is my complete opposite and I’m continually amused/amazed by how she works. Her organisation is an art form, I don’t really understand how someone can be quite so organised: colour codes, notebooks, plans, timetables. My mum’s the same. I often wonder what would happen to them if you took it all away, would they crumble? I often wonder what I’d be like if I changed and became organised. Would my life improve? Would I miss the adrenaline? Would I achieve more? Or would I find more faults in what I am doing already? Needing a high level of organisation to function/live seems like a bit of a weakness; I have to think on my feet, to adapt quickly, I’m also never fazed by anything because I haven’t made any plans. When I go away I never plan my trips – I just ‘live’ in another country for a while, I like that, just ‘being’. Organised people plan lots of adventures – maybe I’m missing out; I often read the guide book after the holiday.

This has all come to a head recently because my academic work is never planned, leading to lots of drafts which is time consuming stuff. I need to bring some organisation into my life, but I need it to be simple enough for me to do it. I’m not prepared to sacrifice loads of my free time organising EVERYTHING. I just need an achievable system for an unorganised person. I need to stop winging it.

Tips?

‘We tried to sort your life out last night…’

These awesome shoes were available here.

My life’s fine thanks.

Isn’t it?

A lot of people think my life needs ‘sorting out’ because it’s not following a tried and tested route. Don’t tell me that this makes my life ‘exciting’, ‘alternative’ and ‘different’; it just makes it mine.

I’ve moved ‘back home’, though my family don’t live there anymore (I can see why) and my life choices and my organs are hot topics for conversation. Organs meaning womb. Just the one organ, no plural needed. They’re worried it’ll remain barren. I’m 27. People (well one person) decided that it was an appropriate topic of conversation at a dinner party (I use the term ‘dinner party’ loosely), I ended up raising my voice and telling him that any activity in my womb (present or future) was my business unless he wanted a text message every month (sometimes twice a month) describing, in detail, my period in a Dexter-esque style blood splatter analyst report. He looked at me like I’d brought the tone of the evening down.

Being single for nearly a year, a year of the single life rudely interrupted by a shall we/shan’t we get back together stage with my ex-boyfriend; a mini fling with a younger man (recommended – when do men get so bitter and boring as they get older?); and a ‘thing’ with an older-than-the-younger-guy man; and a good time on an extended holiday, I’m not looking for a relationship. I haven’t even joined an online dating website. I don’t want a boyfriend/girlfriend/pet/any commitment so why date? My friends groan and tell me that it’s fun and that ‘you could meet the man of your dreams’ but I don’t dream about men so it’s impossible. I’m not wasting up to £60 a month (yes, £60 – when does it become prostitution? In the more salubrious parts of any major city you pay less for a handjob) to meet someone that hasn’t even bothered to appear in my (often quite exciting) dreams.

Kate Bolick writes in the Guardian today that she ‘has come to a profound insight: that she – and many women like her – might never marry.’   First of all, bar the obvious sniping – why don’t we see articles like this from/about men which aren’t penned by the infamous Liz Jones? – thank you for all the facts and figures and the historical detail etc. It was so detailed that I got a little bored and skim read towards the end (my fault entirely, my Daily Mail habit is becoming out of control – wham! Headline annoys you. Bam! You find out the headline’s lying. Thank you and move on), I thought, I want to be like you.

I used to sit and read my Dad’s Times or Telegraph and imagine what I’d be like as I got older (Kate Adie if you want to know but I lack talent, finesse and journalistic ability – I was left treading water and panicking once I realised that I had the IQ of a gnat and no discernible talent – for anything), I don’t want to write like Bolick (well I do, but let’s be realistic) but I want that release from the marriage and family conundrum: ‘my problem, as I saw it, lay in wanting two incompatible states of being – autonomy and intimacy.’ Most of my happily-coupled-friends say that this isn’t an issue when you meet ‘the one’ (which I don’t believe in) so I’ll just wait for someone who doesn’t threaten my autonamy; if they come along, they come along, if they don’t, they don’t.

What could I be doing in the meantime (or for the rest of my life)? Well, what I’m doing now, completing a post-grad degree (whilst working full time – my advice? don’t do it) and planning my escape from the UK with a very good friend. Doesn’t sound like I need my life sorting out anymore, does it?

‘Summer has come and passed the innocent can never last’

Wise words from one of my favourite bands.

I woke up with a banging headache followed by the urge to throw up this morning. I’d been out drinking until 5am and it was only 10.30am when my phone rang followed by the the inevitable question ‘when do you think we’ll be sober enough to drive?’.

I spent my first summer as a qualified teacher in Bali enjoying my young(ish), free and single lifestyle a bit too much – nearly 6 weeks off work? AWESOME. Suddenly the stress and pressure of the last two years seemed worthwhile and a couple of weeks after my year 11s left I felt like me again – I did things in the evenings, I went on DATES, I saw my friends, I planned my trip to Bali (well, I booked the flights), life was good.

Now my body is wrecked – broken toes, moped accidents, horrendous amounts of alcohol (when I got back to the UK I found that I couldn’t sleep without drinking, how horrendous is that?), lack of sleep, lack of routine, risky behaviour…I’ve had a great time but I need to make contact with reality. I turn 27 tomorrow, I’m finishing off my (very bloody expensive) MEd this year, moving closer to work and will be responsible for turning around (hopefully) this academic year’s GCSE results (they aren’t looking too promising at the moment) but all I can think about is my head. It hurts. My eyes hurt. It all hurts. I’ll be happy to leave 26 behind, it hasn’t left me with great memories, it’s left me with some pretty dire ones but there have been some highlights: I’ve learnt to ski and I’ve been to the Southern Hemisphere. I’m a lucky girl.



The holiday’s over until the exams finish next year and the pressure’s back on. I’m actually looking forward to it.

 

 

 

 

Easter fatty…

I’ve been 9.2-3 for a few months now but Easter has managed to throw a few pounds my way. I stood on my scales incredulous that a couple of days could affect my weight so much until I thought about how yummy Easter actually was.

Here she is…

Making the topping for the 'Mud' cake.

Strawberries + chocolate = heaven

I cannot take photos on my mum's camera. I was lost without my iPhone.

My Easter egg all the way from Greece (not really)

Inside...

Hot Cross Buns are an Easter must.

Hot chocolate duck pond.

Mud cake recipe.

Uplifting

Button lifts or drag lifts are pretty unpopular in the skiing community; no one liked them except me. Chair lifts were great, the views were phenomenal but you ended up chatting to two/three other people instead of taking in the scenery. You can’t really chat to people on button lifts, you can shout at the person in front of you or behind you (I got very excited when I saw a red squirrel run in front of me, everyone on the slope heard that) but ultimately it’s a solitary experience.

I did a lot of thinking in these short breaks from skiing and the views helped, they were magnificent. I was so captivated by one that I fell off and needed to be rescued by my ski instructor – that was embarrassing but apparently quite common. I didn’t repeat the experience.

I thought about the recent past, the good bits and the awful bits, I thought about the people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting since Christmas and how the path you take in life is rarely the one you planned on going down. I thought about Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz and ‘home’. I thought about the roles we accept in life and the roles which are given to us, sometimes without our permission. I thought about freedom and what it ultimately means and how decisions often leave you confused rather than relieved.

My overwhelming thought wasn’t that deep though, who can think straight after they’ve seen a 3 year old learning to ski??! My kid(s) are going to be that cool – I obviously like kids but I never had thoughts about motherhood on holiday before, more thoughts on freedom but they were so fricking cute. A guy did offer to father my children – I managed to politely decline, he could barely speak English.

I wanted David Tennant or Matt Smith to step out of one of these…

Making it all up: update

About 2 hours after I’d written this I wandered downstairs and picked up The Telegraph and the magazines fell out.

It would appear that being au naturel or ‘fresh-faced’ (their words, not mine) is becoming popular in the fashion industry (not the models, the women behind the scenes).

My favourite part of the whole article is the adverts; as if any of these women who are too cool for skool makeup would book a P&O Cruise and pack some fetching pink and mint green pure cotton nightwear in the place of their makeup bag…

I love The Telegraph, it’s filling my Lent induced Daily Mail void.

Making it all up…

My best friend convinced me to wear blue eyeshadow once. I havent worn it since...

I had a bath last night. I got out, pulled on some pyjamas and then accidentally fell asleep on my bed with the light on, my laptop next to me, my teeth unbrushed and my hair wet.

I woke up this morning, looked at my hair and tied it up, walked into the bathroom, washed, weighed myself, walked back into my bedroom, found a clean pair of dark blue skinny jeans, put them on and then found a t-shirt and cardigan to cover up my top half.

I sorted out my washing, painted my nails and toenails, drank a cup of tea and made myself a cheese roll.

I’m now sat writing this.

I didn’t put any makeup on.

I love returning from mini adventures. I always feel happier about what I look like, who I am and I smile a lot more. I feel freer.

I used to sail as a teenager, I’d go off most weekends and makeup wasn’t really an option until I had to face the world (school) on Monday. I went to Asia for a few weeks one summer, again, no makeup and happy, hair all curly and I wasn’t bothered. The feeling just doesn’t last.

I usually wear makeup. I rarely wear heavy makeup but I rarely go anywhere without it on. I feel ‘weird’ if I do. I jump slightly if I catch myself in the mirror without it on when I’m fully dressed. I once winced when a nurse told me I’d have to take it off before I went into an operating theatre. I always put it on before work, it’s a priority.

I’m not even (really) vain. I don’t splash out on fashionable clothes, I usually straighten (it’s very curly) my hair and then pull it off my face. I wear boots with holes in the sole. I’m happy wearing my sister’s ex-boyfriend’s jeans. I’m quite a tomboy, I stand out next to most of my stylish friends. I love buying clothes from charity shops, I’m vain lazy but…

I can’t cope without makeup. I know that in three day’s time day I’ll be back to moisturising, covering up, loose powder, bit of blusher, mascara (always black) and lip balm. Hardly a harlot’s face paint, but paint all the same.

I don’t know why I feel like this, I’m quite a perfectionist when I’m at work so maybe my face represents that but surely I’d be fussed about clothes as well?