I'm a week into my 3 week staycation and it's been sunny, wonderful and productive. That is, until the injury! After 4 solid days of gardening getting the biggest jobs completed, I've "tennis elbowed" my right arm. Feeling pretty gutted as I was so happy and relieved to get on top of the mowing (although 5 bags of grass cuttings and very little grass left on both my lawns is a little irritating!), plum tree and buddlia pruning and wild garden clearing. I even built my cats a house and added a wooden stair case for them attached to the fence. This is all an attempt to make the garden simpler to manage whilst still retaining areas for the cats to play and climb. I am especially proud of my artificial petunia hanging baskets. I can never make a decent basket for the summer, so now I can enjoy these without worrying about watering and maintaining them.
My counselor pointed out something very interesting to me the other day. As daft as it sounds, I never just sit in my garden and relax. We explored this for a bit and came to the conclusion that it's because I view my garden as a workplace with chores constantly needing my attention. So, going against the grain yesterday, I decided to sit in my garden when the sun came round in the afternoon and read the paper / snooze for a few hours. God, it was lovely! I actually enjoyed my garden for the first time in ages. It really sounds so silly. I even practiced some mindfulness. That was until I turned around in my lounger to talk to my neighbour and the lounger collapsed underneath me! It was long overdue for replacing, mind.
Aside from gardening, I've had some lovely social contact this week. Again, it sounds so silly, but Covid is dragging on and on isn't it and we are only in Phase 2 out of our third lockdown here in England. I met up with a friend from my first stay in hospital in 2018 and we went for a walk and talked a lot about our mental health and how draining it is looking after ourselves. It was great to be talking with someone who absolutely understands everything I'm going through and can relate. Refreshing! I also had a 3 hour pamper at the hairdressers getting my hair restyled and coloured - long overdue from December thanks to Lockdown 3.0 - and yesterday morning, I had my back and arm worked on. I, like most people who live alone, have really missed human touch during this pandemic.
On the box this week, I've just finished binging Finding Alice series 1. As you know, I love to try out new dark comedy (I am a sucker for laughing and crying simultaneously) and I am always interested to see how characters are portrayed when they are grieving and how believable it feels compared with my own experiences. It's a weird show, I agree with the critics on that, but Alice is everything I hoped for. That desperate need to hang on to the person you've lost which borders on obsession. The craziness of grief. The impossible pain. It's all there. I look back now, four years on, and realise two things. 1) That you should give yourself time and don't let anyone define how long that time period should be. And 2) Don't make any snap decisions, or at least don't do anything you can't reverse later on should you need / want to.
Blogging is an amazing concept so here I am giving it a whirl. You'll get words. You'll get pics. Sometimes a vid or two. You'll get tongue in cheek, the odd humble opinion and an honest insight into my travels and writing life. Maybe even a few gems along the way. I'll be musing on home turf as I see more and more of the UK and sharing my experiences further afield on holidays and adventurous trips across the globe.