Stumbling My Way Through Life One Glass of Wine at a Time

Stumbling My Way Through Life One Glass of Wine at a Time

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

What Do The Stars Have To Say Today

Oh my God. 

Because I finally wrote on my blog last night after 2 glasses of delicious Malbec, I decided to scroll through my history and see how far I've come since my previous posts.... and I stumbled upon one the funniest entries I think I could possibly ever have written:

Jade's Funny Blog Entry

It has been a loooong time since I have bothered checking out my horoscope.. but man was it accurate just over a year ago! So, I thought I'd check it out this morning while I sit here in my little rickety flat, my washing machine about to take off into space. I'm sipping on a black coffee with yesterdays make-up still smudged over my face (yeah, I know. Terrible.). I'm in a pair of laddering black tights and an massive woolly jumper because I'm in England now... and it's cold. Who would have thought a year ago I'd be in the freaking UK!?  
Anyway - I'm feeling a bit run down today to be honest. I've just started a new job and am up on my feet for 11 hour shifts each day. My sleeping is little to none - I'm actually thinking about popping down to the pharmacy downstairs and giving some CBD oil a bash! Obviously only because I've heard it helps you sleep better... of course ;)
I'm getting off topic already. You see! This is why I can't be trusted when it comes to blogging! 
So the point of this entry was to check out my horoscope a year later and see what fruit it bears for me this time around because last year it was nothing short of bloody hilarious. 
I can't remember which website I used for my previous horoscope and I've no idea which one is the best... but I've just gone for the first one that shows up on Google.
Here it goes.... I've just clicked Taurus.

JUL 8, 2020: Your friendly demeanor has been a huge asset for you, but today it may give someone the impression that you're not going to put up a fight if you get pushed. Keep your fight-or-flight impulses in check. You may have to step into a defensive position that requires a great deal of finesse. There is someone in a place of power who wants to work around you today. Make it clear that you know exactly what you're doing, and they will see that they need to include you.

Hmm.. this one isn't quite as funny as the one from a year ago. It was so much easier to poke fun at the other one. But lets see what I can do. 
Fight-or-flight impulses... well.... I honestly have absolutely no bloody idea what my impulse is. I THINK I tend to run away or cock things up intentionally when things get serious because I get scared... or, that's what I used to do anyway. And to be honest, I'm in such a different headspace these days. If someone tried to argue or fight with me I'd just walk away to be honest. Aint no body got time for that. 

It also mentioned someone in 'power' wants to work around me today. That makes no sense as I am finally in control of my own life and I'm not giving anyone else the power. I make the rules for my life now. I call the shots and make the decisions while I work out exactly what I want in life... and no body is taking that away from me. I mean, obviously one day IF someone comes into my life that becomes my partner there will be compromise and all that hoojab BUT for right now, I like living my life for myself while I'm still figuring out exactly what it is I WANT in life.
So horoscope... you kind of failed me today! That's disappointing really. I enjoyed doing a blog post about this kind of thing last time.

Right below is was this:
Is he cheating on you? Enter a Live Psychic Chat Now to find out!

HAH! Nope. No one is cheating on me for the very first time because I am single and no longer vulnerable to the games men play! Power to me ;)

There's a bunch of different Taurus pages below that like Finances, Love, Flirt etc. I clicked on Singles Love and it told me that I'm better off flying solo right now.
Under the beauty section it told me that I need to stop trying to prepare such elaborate meals (guilty!). It also told me to do ten sit-ups CORRECTLY instead of trying to hit one hundred hahaha. I suppose that's a little hint that I actually need to start exercising again. I haven't gone for my usual 5k run since moving to this little village but that's PURELY because I'm scared of getting lost! 
Oooh it's just taken me to a section where I have to pick a tarot card. Lets see how that goes............
Well that was boring.
I got the Wheel of Fortune card. Basically it told me that I'll be distracted today and it will be hard for me to sit still (umm, that's every day!). It told me to make a list and focus on getting things done. So I've been trying to write a new chapter for my latest manuscript but every little thing is a distraction so this is true.... it also told me once I'm done to take a walk and stretch my legs. OK I GET IT!!!! I NEED TO EXERCISE GOD-DAMNIT!!

Maybe I should try a different page instead of - all that site wants me to do is get off up my ass. While it may be right, it is finally my day off and all I want to do is stay off my feet today. I'll make a promise to myself to go for a run tomorrow - how's that??? :)
Oh oh oh! Ok. There's a Lets try that one instead....
FFS. This one told me not to be 'smothering' today. Smothering?! I am single and live alone HOROSCOPE! I have no one to be smothering to!!! I think this thing is broken. It worked so well for me a year ago :( 
It has told me to spend my day not communicating with others but rather focusing on special tasks that have been on the backburner that require my attention. Ahem.... my manuscript. And to be fair, that IS my plan for the day. 
I don't really like There's too many pop ups for me. But, I checked out my tarot card of the day before exiting it. It was actually pretty accurate to be fair. I got 'The World' tarot card. It signifies a long journey coming to an end..... and lets face it, I've been on a hellish journey for so long now The cards depicts a butterfly in its last stage of life, fully transformed and ready to fly! I LOVE that. The card is a clear indicator that you have lived, you have loved and you have learned. OK. Considering just over a week ago I was so utterly lost and today I'm in this little flat and have a job to go to and am making things work for myself - I like this card!!! For everything that card symbolizes is definitely true. 
I have lived
I have loved.
I have learned. 

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Tuesday, July 7, 2020

I'll Probably Write Again One Day


Listen to this while reading this. I'll be themetuning all my entries from this point on. Hah.

I'm not going to pretend and say I'm going to make a comeback onto my blog. I'm not going to tell you this will become a new regular thing. I'm not consistent anymore when it comes to this blog so don't stick around if you want consistency here.. if anyone even reads this anymore. I don't know anymore. This blog was literally my first slice of social media way back when. I loved it. I interacted with so many people. I put SO much work and effort into it... but as the years have gone by and life has hammered away at me, my lust for blogging has slowly chiseled away. 

I mean, the last time I wrote here was in January 2020... and my GOD life couldn't look more different now. I have been through HELL. I guess everyone has, thanks to Corona Virus. 
Back in January, just to recap, I was writing about how I'd just accepted a job on a yacht and was expecting a year of travel and getting this incredible income I could just ferret away and just get back onto my feet financially. Oh how bloody wrong I was.
I headed off in February, one day before Valentines Day, leaving behind my absolute cunt of an ex who was on Tinder the entire relationship, lying, cheating, aggressive and threatening to kill himself with a GUN because he was the unstable one in all this but made me believe I was completely in the wrong the entire time! Who does that?? I know how to pick them, right!? 
I have proof of all the above by the way. And the horrible thing is I've been told all the nasty things he's saying about me behind my back which is NOT true - so therefore, I shall prove it wrong unapologetic-ally. I'm done with being the nice girl. Now, it's my time. My time to shine.
I jetted off to Spain in search of a new life. In order to find my feet. 

It wasn't long before Covid-19 took it's virusy grips on the world and forced everything to go into lockdown.

I hot-footed it to the UK before the borders closed and ended up staying on a friend's sofa for around 3 months. It was agony on my back and I cried long and hard trying to understand how my life had gone this way. I was literally homeless, penniless and completely out of my depth. I was sinking.
During lockdown I took my CV out to every grocery store I could but had no response. For 3 months I drove myself up the wall attempting to crochet, knit, macrame, paint in watercolors, learn the ukelele, sketch and try out vegan recipes. I very quickly learnt all the things I'm completely useless at... and that made it (hilariously) worse. 
I was an absolute mess trying to figure out how the HELL to make my life work. I had plans, goals.. ambitions. By 30 I wanted to be married and be getting ready to have a baby (that ship has sailed obviously haha. 30 is ten months away. There's no way I'll meet someone, get married and fall preggers in that time limit). It honestly broke my heart when I realised I wasn't going to get the life I always dreamed of having. I didn't know how to alter my mindset and I guess in a sense, I'm still struggling with it. Everyone always says not to worry and that I'm still young.... but they don't understand. I want to be a young mum. Before my mother and I became estranged we had the most amazing relationship.... before she got ill and wouldn't help herself get better. She used to be my best friend. I loved our age gap and how we would go away on girl trips to Thailand and Singapore and go for weekends away on Safari in South Africa. Once I hit 16 we just knew how to have fun together. I'm sad I'll never have that again. But it's something I would absolutely adore to have with my children one day, whether they be girls or boys. So the older I get, the more I just think I'll be a frumpy old mum instead of kind of a bestie.... because that's what my mother was to me before she broke my heart and fucked everything up. I'll never forgive her for the things she's said and done - but I'll always look back on those photos of our time together before she changed, with fondness. 
So............... eventually, after DAYS.. hours of END of scouring the internet and retyping my CV to every bloody website that wouldn't just allow me to send my actual PDF CV to them.. I got lucky. I got a job working in a high end hair salon. Directly after that I got offered a little flat of my own. 
I mean, it's a run down rickety little place but I love it. It's a work in progress that needs some serious TLC, but I did it!!

I am SO freaking proud of myself. How I went from being a hopeless, homeless, penniless and jobless person to this I have NO idea really. I guess all I can say is even if you're going through your roughest patch, it's OK to break down - but try to persevere.. because I did. And look at me now. 
I've hardly slept since I've been in my new place to be honest. I didn't realise quite how hard it would be to be alone again. Not in a romantic sense..... but this is literally the first time I've been completely alone since before Australia!! How bizarre is that!? And after what happened to me in South Africa, when those 2 men who THANKFULLY got caught broke into my house and held me down in bed and did stuff while the other robbed the place, it has left a pretty nasty emotional scars. It's my 2nd week here now and I still sleep with the lights on. I jump and stir at every little noise. I'm up at least every hour... but it comes with its perks as I have watched the most gorgeous sunrises at 4,30am because of it right from my bedroom window. 
I published my 2nd novel and I was OVERWHELMED by the amount of sales. Wow wow wow!!! I'm really thrilled with how it has gone so far and have already started writing my 3rd novel. Who knows if there's something concrete in there yet. It's early days. But I am now a published author of 2 novels. I am alone for the first time. I am taking my time, Discovering what is right - where as before I jumped into things and into people who were so so wrong for me. I needed this so badly. To discover not only myself but who I really want in life. But right now, for the very first time, I can tell you I'm happy alone. I'm focusing on building up my friendships. I'm focusing on work and being able to afford this little flat I got that's all mine. I'm focusing on the things I should have prioritized so long ago... but we live and we learn. 
Am I still a hopeless romantic?? I don't know anymore. 
I don't want to say I've become a cynic... that I don't think it will happen for me. But I don't know anymore. Lets face it. I've had so many failed attempts. The biggies being my ex fiance that knocked up my maid of honor and left me with a wedding dress collecting dust in the cupboard, an ex in Spain who shagged 8 women I know of behind my back (probably more), an Aussie who had me spend my entire life savings on a life with him in a foreign country only to one day tell his best friends mother to come over and tell me he doesn't love me anymore (he'd already clearly met someone else at his new job and was too much of a coward to give it to me straight), to coming back to South Africa and turning down the freaking Bachelor South Africa to pursue someone who I consider to be the most fucked up, insecure, neurotic and emotional mess of a man I have ever come across! My taste of men has needed a serious shake for a while. Thank GOD I realised that before I was in too deep. I'm living my best life now. I honestly don't know if I can or even WANT to be affectionate anymore. I don't know how to do it. I've tried. I've failed. Slowly, one by one, these dudes from my past shred me of every ounce of affection I have, really. It feels awkward to me now. I can't do it anymore. Perhaps I'm broken. All I know is that me reaching out to touch someone or to hug someone doesn't come naturally to me anymore. In fact, I recoil at the thought.
I don't know if I have it in my heart to actually do it again... not because I'm bitter. I'm just tired.... and for the very first time, I'm honestly happy alone. This is the very first time my life is on my terms.... and I'm reveling it.
Chat soon..... maybe. Probably not. Who knows.
But if you stick around, I'll probably write again.
One day. 

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Sunday, January 19, 2020

Journey to Self-Love

It's a stormy Sunday morning. I'm snuggled up under the blankets with a black coffee in my hand - trying to figure out how to get back into this blogging thing.
Truthfully, I don't really know where I want to take it. What is this blog, really? Lifestyle? 
What do I want to focus on? Books? Recipes? Matters of the heart? Travel?
It seems I'll be having a lot of travel coming up this year as I've just accepted a job offer on a yacht (yip, I did it!). I have mixed emotions. On the one hand I know this is finally me making a wise decision to become independent and get back on my feet without relying on anyone else or putting someone else before me. On the other hand, I know there is someone I want to put before everything else. However, if it's meant to be, it will find a way. It's an 8 month contract. Not long at all in the big grand scheme of things. I'm trying to have faith. I'm trying to be positive. 
It all feels very surreal. My whole life I've given up everything for relationships - so this feels daunting and unfamiliar. But I think it's going to help me grow so much as a person and maybe pave my way to really discovering self-love. 

I've read two books on self-love this month so far. 
I've made a promise to myself to really put a focus on that now... to not get blinded again.
Self-love and acceptance is something I NEED to learn. You can't have happy relationships with others and believe they love you if you can't love yourself. It's one of the many reasons my relationships have always failed. My insecurities destroy so much. So it is time to finally put the work in and heal my deep-rooted problems. No, I can't change the past... but I can change right now and that is exactly what I am going to do. 

The  two books I've read so far this year on self-love are: 
Jonathan Van Ness's, 'Over The Top: A Raw Journey to Self Love.' 
'Queer Eye: Love Yourself. Love Your Life.' 

Jonathan Van Ness's book I listened to on Audible. I'd lace up my running shoes and plug in my headphones and while on my 5k morning runs (thanks C25K!), Over The Top made me break down in tears!!!
The quotes, lessons and advice I took away from that book are endless.

I always go into memoirs quite hesitantly, afraid it will be a boastful tedious book to read or something so heartbreaking that it destroys me.. or get so personal into the persons life like Brene's Brown BRAVING THE WILDERNESS. I didn't connect with that book because I haven't read any of her other books or watched her on telly so Braving The Wilderness was hard for me because I had no real reason to want to know these stories from her childhood (this is not to say Braving The Wilderness isn't good!! Not at all. I haven't finished it yet because I feel like I need to go read some of her other books first and establish a bond first! So no hating. I promise.) - but I knew I had to get my hands on Jonathan Van Ness's book as a huge fan of The Fab 5 and the show, Queer Eye (I'm busy watching the latest season on Netflix right now and MY GOSH the tears and joy this show brings me!!!!!).

JVN is so eccentric, quirky and fun - I knew his book would be too. I knew I'd have delightful moments of laughter as he recounts his deliciously devious tales... what I didn't expect was quite so much raw emotion that spoke right to my soul.
This book could NOT have come at a better time in my life. I needed it and I know I will read it again and again and again. It's the kind of book you'll take something new away from it every time you pick it up.

I have been reviewing books for years for publishers and authors personally so I like to think I know what I'm talking about when I say a book is well written. Well, my darling friends, JVN really surprised me here with how beautifully written OVER THE TOP is. It flowed so nicely and the entire way through I truly felt like a friend was speaking to me. I cannot fault this book at all.

I'm at a place in my life where I have no idea where I'm going or how to make something of myself... at almost 30. I'm scared. But this book was so inspiring. Hearing where he came from to where he is today. Listening to him talking about all of his hardships and the stunning messages he learnt from what he's been through. It's perfection. I loved it.
I loved it so much I want to start it from the beginning all over again.

Read it. Now. 


Then I read Queer Eye and having just finished Jonathan Van Ness's book, Over The Top, and being a huge fan of the show Queer Eye.. I had to make time for this book in my life. I wasn't really sure what to expect from it, really.

I mean, is it ground-breaking? Earth shattering? Did it shed light on finally learning how to love myself? No.

I've been trying to figure out self-love, respect and acceptance for so long now. I'm stumbling my way through life making an absolute fool of myself more often than not. I try reading books by Eckhart Tolle and meditate, do yoga, light candles... you name it, I've tried it.
It's harder than it seems when you have the kind of insecurities and emotional damage someone like me has.
So for someone at my level, this book, while being absolutely lovely, just wasn't as uplifting as I was hoping for.
The fab 5 take you through their different areas of expertise. From beauty, fashion, emotions, food.. they guide you into how to becoming a better you while emphasizing the fact that you need to embrace yourself and not try to be someone your not. It's filled with little tips and tricks to make life a little easier for you.
It's a book you'll appreciate if you watch the show... if you know the boys.


I'm not sure what self-help book I'll pick up next... there are so many on my radar.
I like to think the right one will fall into my lap at the right time. 
I'll let you know.

Until next time... 
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Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Blog About Breakups and Being Single

It happened a week ago... the breakup.
For days I have been wallowing in self-pity. Finding it the hardest thing in the world to get up out of bed. I could barely see through my tears every time I did manage to lace up my trainers and go for a run. Sweat it out. Try to get those endorphins flowing.
Pouring glass after glass of wine to numb the pain inside, but it hurts. So much. I have no idea what I'm doing.
The truth is, I've given up EVERYTHING for men my entire life.... while still somehow managing to be the most selfish, insecure person you could ever come across. I don't even know how that works!! What I do know is, I need to do some serious work on myself now. Learn to love myself, enjoy my own company. Become independent... and stop this crazy obsession I have with love.

So for what feels like the very first time, I've started to make plans where I don't have to consider someone else or put them first. That first step wasn't easy. Hell no. Cracking open my laptop and putting my CV out there again was scary... because it feels like the start of a very new, uncertain chapter that I don't know if I want. I want to be here, in Knysna, with him. But to put it bluntly, I stuffed that up royally. I don't get that now. I get to be alone and grow the fuck up. I should thank him for this really... it's going to be the most challenging thing I've ever done but I guess it needs to be.
I'm not applying for jobs in Knysna anymore. Some people can make it work here. Some people want to make it work here. But for me... I have nothing here really. I barely see my family, who are toxic as it is. I have no car, literally enough money in my bank account to afford one meal IF that.
I'm staying in a tiny flat of my own for about a week now. I moved in yesterday. I have no idea what I'll do or where I'll go after this seven day stint in my own place. All I know is I couldn't stay at home. My mother went to rehab a few months back and now she's back home and causing as much pain and destruction to everyone she possibly can... so I can't stay in that house. Not while I'm going through this amount of turmoil and agony. It's impossible to grow and process everything that's happening with that going on.
So this little flat is my safe haven for now. It's quiet, safe, on the water... and the best part is, it's free. I was able to strike up a deal with a lady who needs someone to walk her dog for her and in return, I get free board.
In this week I should find out if I get one of the jobs overseas I've applied for. There's two very likely positions which although is hard graft, will pay enough per month to really get me back on my feet. Not these ridiculous Knysna salaries. If I stayed here, chances of me being able to get my own place, a car and afford groceries would be frankly impossible. Starting from scratch isn't a realistic thing in a place like Knysna when you literally have nothing and have no one to rely on. And that's the thing... I don't want to rely on anyone anymore... because when they are gone, like now, I'm left completely on my ass.
The thing is, I would have stayed in Knysna and happily pursued a job here if my ex and I were together because we'd be a team. I wouldn't have the full blown financial strain purely on myself. We'd share costs. Take turns to buy groceries. Things would be easier as a team... but I don't have that option now and with not being able to live back home with my family I see no other choice.
The one job I think will possibly offer me a contract this week would send me to the Seychelles... the other would jet me off back to Spain.
I also made a profile on an Au Pair website and have been looking into options in the UK too. So far I have one family interested in me but it's a single dad and his two sons. It would be a live in position and pays peanuts compared to what the boats would pay. I don't think I could ever be comfortable living in a house with a single dad, raising his sons. But these are the options available to me.
I have to try. I have to keep wiping the tears away.
Every time I apply for something I burst into tears and a deep guttural sound emerges from my throat. It hurts more than I thought humanly possible.
I don't know if I'm doing the right thing. I really don't. I WANT to stay here and make it work with my ex, prove to him that I have changed and grown from this experience. It's been a huge eye-opener and has made me see why my relationships have never worked. It has made me see what needs to change. But what do I do?? Stay in the hopes that he will finally one day miss me enough and want me back? Or leave.... where I'd be tied to a minimum of a ten month contract (which is longer than we've even been together!). I don't see how that would work in the favor of our relationship.
I am so lost. So so so hopelessly lost.
And he's done some cruel things, too. He's deleted every photo he ever posted of us or of me. Like I never existed. Never mattered. The sting that caused was brutal. He's posting photos all the time living his best life, having fun with friends, off on his bikes and flying high in the sky and diving into the water off of his boat. He seems happy. Happy without me. I know he's struggling so much too and going through his own world of hurt but seeing how he's OK without me, that he doesn't need me.... hurts. I know I shouldn't look... but he knows I'm seeing it all. Seeing these selfies he's posting where he looks nothing short of breathtaking. He's shockingly blue eyes staring into the camera lens, melting me.
I miss him so much. I miss the fun, adrenaline filled, adventurous days we'd have together. I miss the good times.

I have messages I've written to him saved on my phone... unsure if I'll ever actually send them. I read them over and over again. Letting the words sink in. Reminding myself every day what I've done wrong to deserve where I am right now... and knowing that I will never, ever do those things again. I can't! The insecurity, the temper and the controlling issues have messed my entire life up. I have to let go. I have to believe the tattoo that I have on my thigh that says, 'she is at a place in her life where peace is her priority and negativity cannot exist.' I cannot be a negative person anymore. I have to grow up and change. I have. I feel the shift. I feel the weight off my shoulders that has pulled me down since childhood. I've always had that needy obsession with needing to be loved because I never felt that as a kid. I've always needed other peoples acceptance. That's NOT how I want to live my life anymore. I want to be enough. For myself. In fact, I am enough... I'm learning that now.

I don't want to be the person that begs for people back... but I also don't want to play games. That is why this is so very hard to figure out because if I stay, it will be because I'm hoping we'll be OK. And I'd be happy to get a job here and have the life here and I wouldn't resent him for it.... but if I leave, I'd be doing jobs I know I won't be happy in but financially it would get me back on my feet and give me complete independence that I know I can't get here. I don't know what to do. I really don't. I love him deeply. I feel like he is my person. So then surely he must know how difficult this is for me. Knowing that if I stay, I have no way of affording a place and I can't stay with family so the predicament is HUGE. If I stay, I have no means of transport. It would be a month until I get my first salary which I know would be enough to afford a months worth of groceries but not enough to start saving up for a car and deposits for a flat of my own. If I stay, I have nothing. If I go, living costs overseas would be barely anything because I'd be working and living on a boat for ten months straight. There would be no rent due, no food costs and no need for a vehicle. It sounds like the option I need to go for because I could save up an incredible amount of money to really get back on my feet... but I'd lose the hope of us being OK and together again. And that would break my heart more than it already is...

So I've written this here because I know no one reads this crap I write anyway. This blog has been my venting place for years. Maybe people going through something similar to me stumble across this page while they are struggling. Maybe they can relate. Maybe I even help them somehow.... and maybe by writing it down I'm somehow helping myself.

It's 7am now. I have no idea what the day will bring... but I guess first and foremost, I need to leave the bedsheets, wash out my coffee cup and go for a run.

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Friday, August 23, 2019

A New Chapter Has Begun

Hoots from kookaburra's at dawn have been replaced by the squawk of swooping seagulls. 
Lush green park-lands and treetop views changed to misty mornings overlooking a tranquil lagoon.
Like the turning of a page in a book with a cracked spine or the slide of fingers across steel strings during a chord progression... everything has changed. 

Everything must change. 

Where there was pain and struggle there is now a glimmer of hope. 

A new chapter has begun, a happier melody. 
While I may have less materialistically, I have more soulfully. 
What once was a door unlocking to a silent, empty flat has now become a house of bounding dogs, purring cats, nephew squeals - a place to be welcomed home. 
Even with it's smokey atmosphere, cluttered rooms and tainted memories - it is home.
The chipped and cracked pieces of me are starting to mend. 
With a chisel I am creating the life I want to lead and becoming the person I know I was born to be. 
I'm not saying this new way of life is easy, quite the opposite. 
Life has tested my strength. It still is. But each and every day I am learning to stand taller, keep my head held high. 
I am belly-laughing again. My smile is genuine.
And someone is smiling back at me.
Full lips spreading wide, blue eyes shimmering with something I can't quite name...
Not yet anyway.
Laced fingers and warm embraces.
A feeling of safety and warmth.
A feeling of glee.
I am lapping up books and researching true crime cases - discovering my passions once more. Putting my time and energy into the things that feed my soul... the things I had let go of when I'd let go of myself.
Now I am grappling to get those parts of me back, to put myself first for once. 
To be me.
There are still moments of sadness, of tears and heartache. 
Those are the moments that mould us into either the best or worst versions of ourselves. 
How we react to certain situations teaches us everything we need to know about ourselves. 
We are human beings constantly growing and learning... and I am grateful for each and every trial, tribulation, joy and deliverance. 

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