2018 has been one of the most incredible and transformational years of my entire life.
I started this year very slowly; by doing a tonne of inner work and really hibernating down in my own little world while I did so. During January especially I felt like I learned a lot. I did an incredibly deep inner work course that really set the tone for the entire year; over the subsequent months I really felt the themes of my shadow work resurface again and again in order to test me, especially during these most recent months. I also learned a lot during this time as well: I finally did my birth chart (apparently I’m in my solar return), looked into human design, learned about my dosha and got into a tonne of podcasts that I really jived with. I finally downloaded Netflix and set up my own little Pinterest account. Both of these seem like the smallest things however since I was actually pretty ill at this point and had real minimal energy levels they made all the difference to my life. I started running, I created so many lovely morning routines. I got really into music and in some ways it really saved me. I Kon Marie-d my entire house. (The process outlined in The Life Changing Magic of Tidying) and I just let go of a million things that I was ready to let go of (both physically and mentally). I feel for me, the act of letting go of such a high amount of belongings really propelled me into the next phase of my life. As soon as I did that, everything changed. Situations became clearer, different people showed up in my life, and things started to feel less stagnant. I found out I had a couple of nutrient deficiencies. Something which really helped me to understand why I had been feeling so low for the last couple of years. I’m pleased to say I have almost completely reversed them. They way I feel now is honestly incomparable and something I do not take for granted. I said goodbye to my beloved poetry night, the night I had run for 2 years and trusted that despite it feeling scary, it was the right thing to do. Rhymes & Records really made me who I am in some ways and is honestly one of my proudest achievements. I was fortunate enough that I was able to attend a LOT of weddings, hen nights and baby showers. Watching my friends carve out the lives that are perfect for them has been lovely to see.
This takes me to summer. We are so blessed to have had one of the best summers that England has seen in a long time. I have hundreds of pictures on my phone from spending my mornings in the garden and I truly believe that spending time outside in this weather is what healed me. I had some of the most loveliest times, just soaking in the sunlight: reading, doing yoga or eating. I’m lucky in that I wasn’t overworked this year at all. I didn’t end up making a tonne of money but I made enough and was really able to take some much needed time for me. I did a juice cleanse that really raised me up a notch and made a massive difference to my health – in fact it was the first time I experienced having some level of energy and I feel it was a real turning point for me spiritually. I drank a lot of cacao in this time and really upped my self care. (I think it’s important to always have some strong go-to’s in this area – tools you can use that you know will always work.) I found out some things relating to my adoption (including that I previously had a different name!) and I learned that I share a lot of similar traits to women with high-functioning autism (not sure what that means at this stage but it is something I would love to further investigate) My best friend came back for a few weeks after moving away and I also had a 28th birthday.
Portugal. Firstly I won a free holiday (thank you manifestation course from earlier in the year) who even does that?! Portugal was one of the most incredible, profound adventures I’ve had to date. I’ve written about this previously but that one short week was responsible for some real shifts inside me. As soon as I came back, autumn had seemed to set in, which was the start of a whole new season and phase of life for me.
Moving. I’m so lucky that I managed to move out into an absolute dream house, in a dream location, that is close to my work and filled with some really beautiful people. I’m close to the the park, I’m close to all my favourite things in the city and I feel like in moving I shed a lot of old stuff and really stepped into a new, lighter way of being. My home environment is really important to me and I am honestly so happy to be able to call this place my home. Every time I step into my room I have a smile on my face, no matter what sort of day I’ve had. My room in particular is a real solace and I work really hard to maintain it’s specific state of energy. At this point as well, my energy has almost made a complete return and I was feeling like life is full of possibility. I treated myself to some new clothes and really started to feel comfortable in my own skin and enjoy fashion again. I stopped being vegan for a short space of time, something I’m working my way back to. I also completed a year sober and taught myself that it’s okay to have a drink every now and then. I took on some really big poetry jobs around this time, I’d even go as far to describe them as “high-profile” (well they are the words that the organisers who booked me used at least) I also ran a tonne of events that I really was happy with: another Find Your Voice Course, a Rhymes & Records Revival and a Conscious Poetry Night being just a few. I’m really happy with the work I put out there this year, and the lovely people it connected me to. The next few months were full of synchronicities and powerful full moons. I wouldn’t be able to explain all of the strange, kismet things that happened during this time but I did start making a note of them somewhere private because there was too many not to! Watching Neil Hilborn, Rudy Francisco and Sabrina Benaim was a real privilege and really helped me evolve the way I write poetry. After feeling like I had outgrown some of my stuff, I was able to create new work that I felt accurately demonstrated everything I had learned up until this point.
These last few months have been some of the most challenging I’ve had to date. I don’t think it’s fair for me to go into them in too much detail just yet and to be honest, I’m still processing. Everything that I learned about myself at the start of the year looped back around in the form of a mirror and really caused me to take stock of how far I’ve come and far there still is to go. I’ve learned that I am much, much stronger than I thought and in many way’s I’m so proud of how I’ve carried myself during such a difficult time. The way I’ve dealt with things this challenging has actually been really healthy. I’m proud of myself for that. The purpose of this is not to get people to feel sorry for me or concerned because I’m absolutely fine. Or maybe I’m not, and that’s fine too. I think theres a really strong sort of beauty that comes from owning your truth. I know that everything happened exactly as it was meant to and it really helped me grow into the person I was supposed to. I used to think people were full of shit when they’d say things like that – when something bad happened to them and they’d they can see why & that it was all divine etc. I used to think they were completely bullshitting and too afraid to say that it sucks. However I understand now that its happening to me. Everything that happened was beautiful and divine and also kind of sucks a little bit and it’s fine for things to be both. I’m in awe and gratitude to the year that I’ve had. I’m glad that I’ve been able to have fires in my garden and burn away everything I no longer need and know that I most probably will be turning to that ritual a lot more in the upcoming weeks. I’m grateful to salt baths and to sage, to orange essential oil and the absolute angels of friends I’ve had around me. This year, I’ve learned that anything can be beautiful if you allow it to be.
What else? I’ve grown as a person, I feel like I’m acting out of alignment a lot more and my body confidence is higher than it has ever been. This year I’ve felt more like a woman than any other year. I’m so thankful that I feel more at home within my body and the feeling still catches me off-guard and feels like a novelty for me. I still have further to go in the world of self-love but I don’t feel like I have to force it as much anymore. One of the other things that got me through this year were my girls at work. I’m so lucky with work in general that it’s got to a point where it all feels like a very well-oiled machine. We just work together well and everyone knows what they’re doing. I feel real confidence there and I’m so fortunate that I’ve had some of the nicest, most caring, supportive, funny and intelligent people to work with over these past few months. Working in the grotto on top of my normal job over the xmas time also really helped; the santa’s & the elves! During a time where I was struggling, the small conversations I had with others really helped me, even if they were about absolutely nothing! I’m so fortunate to have all of the friends around me that I do. Everyone talks about cutting off the negative people in the new year but I honestly don’t think I would know who. I have some people who really do genuinely care. And I hope I can be there for them they were they were there for me this year. I didn’t get as involved with Alternative Fashion Fest as I would have liked to this year, that’s the only thing I can really fault out of my year really. But I know it will always be there for me. I had canal boat holidays with my family and worked the door on some burlesque shows. But ultimately this year has been one of intense expansion and growth. I’m so fortunate and so thankful.
Last year my word was “Stability” which I honestly do feel like I’ve been able to create more of for myself. I have a lot more things that I want to do this year and I can already start to see how the year is taking shape. This year I feel like I don’t have to force it as much. I feel like I want to keep my goals and intentions in real alignment with myself and that is why my word is “Truth”. Last year I entered the new year feeling fresh and full of hope. This year I kind of feel like I have been dragging myself across the finish line, covered in cuts and bruises and aching bones. However I’ve done it, I’m still here, I’m still breathing, even if my breath is ragged and my hair a mess, even if I barely know what day it is and have shaking hands. I’m here and I’m alive and that is honestly all that matters.
May 2019 bring you everything it’s supposed to.
*original photo credit not found. Please let me know if you know the artist so I can credit them.