Afternoon all! As per last weekends update I said vlogs would be up on Sundays (which you can watch here) and edits will be up on a Monday. It has been a weird week, I have felt very up and down but seemed to balance out over the weekend.
Monday - I went back to work (snazzy new office chair from Made.com comes in other colours) but decided to take it slow and tackle a few emails, I can't believe some peoples attitudes that I have been dealing with. Several wedding photographers submitted weddings, or were waiting for them to be blogged. I replied whilst in Stamford that my mum had passed away and I would be back to emailing soon but if they don't want to wait then to send the content elsewhere. I have had so many emails chasing me up asking if I was accepting the wedding or when it will be up. I replied again stating that I explained my circumstances and still...I had a chase up email again just over the weekend (ON A SUNDAY) saying "Hey, hope you're well, do you know when the wedding will be up as this is time sensitive". The last email I got from this woman was "so sorry to hear that Phoebe, take all the time you need". Anywho, I got arsey with her and told her I wouldn't be blogging the wedding anymore and I hope she has more compassion moving forward. Don't need that shit in my life.
On Monday evening our joiner came round to finalise everything for the office/wardrobe and bedroom. It involved measuring shoes and handbags so that we have the right height and space in the drawers, arguing over how much hanging space we need and if we should have 4 or 5 doors. All decisions made and work starts on the 30th, finally!!
On Tuesday my stomach ulcer flared up (I had run out of my meds since Stamford) and I spent most of the day in bed. I watched a lovely documentary on Capability Brown, James Acaster's show and Greg Davies on Netflix which was fantastic. I also started watching The Investigator (think it is ITV) following the real life investigation in to some unsolved UK cold cases. And finished with Beauty and The Beast.
Wednesday and Leeds was basked in glorious sunshine, this was the first time I had properly used the terrace since we moved in, it was one of the reasons we bought the house and it made me feel so calm and at ease whilst out there reading. It was also the first time since being back that I went for a wander with the dog. My anxiety has been quite bad since getting back here, for some reason I felt more at ease in Stamford? I am sure I will calm down. The walk was lovely and we spotting lots of blossom.
On Thursday the sun continued and I carried on getting the garden looking decent, a potting table arrived and I mastered the flat pack in under an hour. It was just a cheap one from amazon but I think it looks great and is sturdy.
The deliveries continued just in time to enjoy the sun as my book arrived by Aaron Gillies (you may know him as @techinicallyron on twitter) the book is wonderfully funny and all about surviving and dealing with anxiety through his own experiences.
I am also still reading The Goldfinch which has been quite a difficult read. I found the intro quite the wade to get through namely because New York and art don't particularly interest me, then *spoiler* the main character's mum dies and I am still in the chapters of them dealing with that. Everyone keeps telling me to persevere so I am but it is a real slog, and I feel a good book shouldn't feel like an effort?
Whilst it was lovely reading and distracting myself, every now and then my mind would wander and I kept thinking how much Mum would have loved sitting up there. A few people have sent me links to videos or articles over the past few weeks, which I do appreciate, I much prefer it to being asked how I am constantly. To sum up one of the Ted Talks from a lady who lost her husband was that "the cure for grief is motion". She had read this herself but expanded on it and in her experience that has helped her a lot. If you'd like to watch it then here is the video. I do agree in part, I have found that on that Tuesday when I felt unwell I also felt mentally low because I wasn't keeping myself particularly busy. Another link I would like to share is something Dad shared with me just after mum died, I really feel we shy away from the topic of death and dying but it's something that is guaranteed for all of us and to be a bit wiser about what happens will help the healing process. Please only watch this if you are in the right head space. Dying is not as bad as you think. This was exactly how mum died, so even though she was ill, her death was normal and this is actually how most people die and it is probably the best thing I have seen to help my grief.
On instagram this week I put the link up to our petition that finally went live and I really need you to sign it https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/217190
The screening in Scotland for bowel cancer is age 50 and they have one of the highest survival rates. In England and Wales it is 60. Wales has one of the lowest survival rates in Europe for bowel cancer when actually, if caught early it has one of the highest survival rates as far as cancer goes. Had mum been screened at 50 she would be alive right now. She would be pottering around the garden, she would be at the end of the phone for me to send gifs of cats and paint swatches, she will be here to see my sister get married, to grow old with my dad. But she isn't. And I would hate for the same to happen to you so please sign it and share it with anyone you know.
Mum's surgery in January removed all of the cancer and she got the all clear, survival could and would have been possible had she had this surgery 6 years ago.
On Thursday evening a friend popped over for gin on the terrace and we checked up on the magnolia tree she bought me as a house warming gift. It has its first flower!
By Friday we had reached about 250 signatures and Dad was really pleased with that as was I but it isn't going to go anywhere and make a real change unless we can get that 10,000. I worked for the day whilst popping outside for breaks in the sunshine.
On Saturday I decided to walk back to where I used to live via the local farmers market. I was feeling really anxious about it for some reason. Probably because I hadn't walked that far yet (and you know I like to know my comfort zone) and in general was feeling a bit meh. Well I did it, made it to my neighbours who had been plant sitting my roses, Michael picked me up and we popped them in the car to bring home and plant up before the predicted rainfall.
Sunday was a chill day, we went to M&S and I felt less anxious. I really miss walking everywhere and having to rely on the car again. It makes everything much more stressful for me. I spent the afternoon weeding the front of the house then took the dog for a lovely magnolia hunting dog walk, Michael cooked burgers for dinner and we watched a film (the final Maze Runner, meh).
Ok so some happy things? I am off to tackle that walk again tonight as I meet a friend for a drink. I have got tickets to my first EVER festival/live music gig and I am very much looking forward to seeing Jimmy Eat World (as is Michael, they are his faves). I am happy the work is finally going to start on the house as I think it will help me feel more settled. I've agreed to a few of those brands (as discussed last week) and I'm looking forward to working with them. I am back to vlogging!
Have a lovely week and I will see you at the weekend!