Living Through COVID-19 Pandemic – Weeks 24 & 25 – Saturday 29th August – Friday 11th September

Day One Hundred and Sixty-Seven – Saturday 29th August

Today I had a lot of downtime and yet I couldn’t quite make myself pick up a book. I think, my August reading has completely let me down. I had such a successful reading goal achievement last year that I thought upping my reading goal in this year to what I finally managed to read at the end of 2019 which was 130 books.

Perhaps I was over ambition in thinking I could read that many again this year! However, there are still 4 months of the year left, so I could still pull it out my arse and complete the goal I set myself.

It’s all about mood really. I know if I put my mind to it that I can read 16 books a month, but it is all about whether I’m in the mood to read what I have on my shelf. Heaven forbid, I’m in the wrong mood when I start to read a book! Then, regardless of what book I’m reading, everything feels like dust.

This afternoon I played Xbox with a friend for about 5 hours. Which I realise is a long time, but I think I just needed to unwind and do something fun for an afternoon. We ended up completing the game we had been playing and moved onto the sequel, so that was a good achievement.

I did end up with a nasty headache, I do blame the hours on my Xbox, but I also blame the cloud and change in air pressure.

Day One Hundred and Sixty-Eight – Sunday 30th August

Lazy day today, didn’t even wake up till 11:30am! It has been wonderful to sleep till my body is rested without the dogs howling outside my doors, but also, I miss the dogs!

I did actually find some time to do some reading today and though I didn’t finish my book, I did make some headway with it. I felt totally unrushed today because I didn’t have anything on my agenda and could just flop around the house and do whatever I wanted.

I think it’s important to have lazy days, or days where you follow what your body/mind needs. I try to have one day on the weekend promoted to this, because it benefits me so much and because I don’t sleep much during the week.

Today I put together my mini Kylo Ren spaceship I got from Sainsbury’s yesterday. I’m slowly adding to my Lego collection, it appeals to me because of the achievement of making something. Of course, my collection is incredibly small because the packs I really want are rather expensive. I obviously want to collect all the Harry Potter sets – of which I currently have 3: Hogwarts Express, Quidditch & Harry’s Patronus. My Star Wars collection is even smaller with only the above new one and Anakin’s landspeeder. What I really want is the Millennium Falcon but that’s £150!! So, that is definitely something I’ll need to save up for.

I can’t be the only one who has hobbies/obsessions outside of reading. What are yours?

Day One Hundred and Sixty-Nine – Monday 31st August

Last day of August already! Today is my best friend’s birthday and I miss her a lot. I haven’t been able to see her since Jan 2020 because she is a police officer and her schedule has been crazy busy since lockdown. I have managed to face time her a couple of times but it’s not the same as actually seeing her. I do hope she has a good birthday though and I’m sure I will get her present to her at some point.

I can already feel some nervous energy building in me for Thursday, which is when I have my personal development review, but it isn’t nerves in the sense of being worried or anxious. It’s nerves in the sense of I have a lot to talk about and I want to be listened. I know it will all be fine because I have a good boss who is capable of listening, understanding and helping to move forward but I suppose there is always that worry that you’re going to be misunderstood or things won’t go as you planned.

The British weather is still being unpredictable, changing from warm to dark and gloomy at a rate that I can’t keep up with. I am done with the summer now I want it to be jumper weather already. I’ve always preferred Winter to Summer.

I feel like this week has the potential to be busy, but also the potential to drag its feet slowly. I don’t know, I think I have a lot going on and that is just clouding my judgement on things a little.

Day One Hundred and Seventy – Tuesday 1st September

We have arrived in September already and while everyone around me is getting out their Halloween attire and feeling their spooky souls. I have only one thing on my mind: CHRISTMAS. I love Christmas. I have always loved Christmas. I will always love Christmas. What I adore most is spending time with my family, getting to give gifts to others and the commercial aspect of Christmas smashing into the religious aspect of Christmas. Even at 30, there is still magic in Christmas and it is something that brings me great joy.

I do, however, try to keep my Christmas spirit inside me until at least the 1st November because I’m fed up of people riding me about it. I seem to always find myself surrounded by ‘bah humbug’ people. If it continues to be especially gloomy, I might even crack a few Christmas songs out early.

I’m one of those people who listens to Christmas songs sporadically throughout the year. I do this because during the months of November and December, I hear so much Christmas music that I usually get irritated with it and don’t fully appreciate the songs I’m listening to. However, when I listen to them away from Christmas I seem to enjoy them more.

Day One Hundred and Seventy-One – Wednesday 2nd September

My sister was supposed to come around for dinner tonight, but she wasn’t feeling well, so I committed myself to a full day of working in comfy clothes and staying snuggled under a blanket. The air pressure of this week needs to take a hike, but I cannot wallow in self-pity for the entire time. I am just trying to get on with things and making sure my intake of water remains high.

Obviously, computer work and migraines aren’t compatible, but I make it work in a way that allows me to stay focused on what I’m working and not aggravate the crushing skull pressure too much. Other than dealing with the pain, one of the aspects of dealing with so many migraines that I hate the most is not being able to read.

I have so many books to read and I do want to read them. I just need to push myself back into that world I think and push all other distractions away in an attempt to enjoy reading again.

I have really enjoyed cooking for myself this past two weeks. It is much easier to stick to a diet and control what I eat when I am listening to my body and fitting a diet around what I need, rather than fitting it around someone else’s requirements. I’ve learned the limits of what I can cut out before I see an increase in migraines and iron attacks and while I might not being as strict as the diet would recommend, I am keeping myself healthy while doing it and really, I think that every diet should have the ability to mould to whatever difficulty or issues your body may have.

Day One Hundred and Seventy-Two – Thursday 3rd September

A lot of nervous energy in the air today. I’m tired, because my brain wouldn’t shut up last night and I actually had to be in the office for 9am. It was a tight squeeze, but I managed it. I had to swap my afternoon in the office for a morning because I had a scheduled VC meeting. It almost felt normal being in the office during the morning, it was quite surreal. There were actually a fair few people in and I found myself not enjoying the social interactions because they were disrupting me from focusing on my work.

The nervous energy came from the VC meeting I had scheduled for the afternoon. I have been due a PDR, as I haven’t had for in almost 3 years now. My new boss is wonderful and really understands the workplace and the people who work in it. For once, I really enjoyed having my PDR because all my points were listened to and I felt valued as an employee. Going forward, I got a lot of praises and a couple of project ideas I had have now been signed off on. The big point I wanted to address was career progression because I have been feeling like my journey had stalled in the last 2 years and it was very positive to be able to share my ideas about that and have my boss agree to the ideas and follow them with ideas of her own.

I now have a 6-month plan to work on that will hopefully allow me to use all of my skill set and propel me into a different area of the company. I have high hopes.

My sister and her partner came around for dinner, and I got to play a couple of hours Xbox with my sister which was a time filled with much laughter.

Day One Hundred and Seventy-Three – Friday 4th September

I have an oppressive headache today. I’m not really that surprised, it was dark and gloomy yesterday and ended up heavily raining in the evening and today, the sky is equally grey and it’s quite humid outside. At least it’s Friday! This week has actually been quite busy which has been a blessing but also a curse in terms of how tired I’ve been.

I’ve had real trouble this week with trying to get to sleep and stay asleep. My brain is obviously working overtime subconsciously and forcing me to remain awake or wake me up at all hours of the night.

I am looking forward to a semi-relaxing weekend, but as plans go, I don’t have any and we all know how much can change on a ‘free weekend’.

Contrary to what I’ve said before about not picking out any specific books to read in September…I seem to have accumulated a stack of books next to my TV, which has now morphed into a book list for September. There are 15 books stacked up which is rather ambitious. I know I can read 16 books in a month if I put my mind to things, so it’ll be interesting to see how I fare this month.

What do you think of monthly reading goals?

Day One Hundred and Seventy-Four – Saturday 5th September

To be honest, I feel like crap. I have a massive migraine from the air pressure, I didn’t sleep well last night, and someone ate all my avocados!

Full disclosure, I had a day in bed. I didn’t wake up till 11am anyway. I spent half my afternoon reading and the rest of it napping.

Sometimes it is just good to listen to your body and behave accordingly. It doesn’t bother me if other people want to judge me or call me lazy because at the end of the day I’m listening to my body and my health comes first.

Day One Hundred and Seventy-Five – Sunday 6th September

I actually slept better last night, despite being awake for so long and when I woke up at 11am this morning I did feel more recharged and alert. I started off this morning with a clear head and it stayed clear until about 3:30pm when the clouds started to come in and the sky turned grey. It’s not a complete migraine but it’s bordering between a level 10 headache and a migraine.

I still managed to get out to Sainsbury’s with my Mum. Since we’re not really going anywhere and don’t feel comfortable going into the town at the moment, a trip out to Sainsbury’s is the highlight of the weekend!

It was actually a lot of fun. We just walked around the supermarket at our own pace and checked everything out. It was rather empty which was good, and we came away not just with food but a couple of books as well! Actually, my mum got a book and I got two books for my nephew’s birthday and 1 book for myself.

I don’t know if anyone else has found this, but Sainsbury’s has a lot of good book bargains for half the price you’d pay at a bookstore or on amazon.

I finished my first book of September today, ‘Save Her Soul’ by Lisa Regan and I reviewed it to my new reviewing structure. I’m always trying to improve the way I present my reviews and to keep the reviews fresh, so I spent time revamping the process and have made a new one which I like – for now!

No COVID conversations this weekend, which was actually a relief. I’ve started to give very vague responses when people ask me about it at work. This is partly because people seem to think I’m sitting on a big secret’s, and partly because I’m bored of the conversation. COVID is still relevant and it is still something that is affecting a lot of people, but it isn’t something I feel I need to discuss at length with others. I’d rather focus on keeping myself and those around me safe than listen to other people’s conspiracy theories.

Day One Hundred and Seventy-Six – Monday 7th September

I felt a little overwhelmed this morning upon the realisation that it was a ‘September’ Monday. I suddenly felt daunted with how much of the year had passed and what I had accomplished within that time. I generally look forward to the seasons changing and Winter is my favourite time of all, mostly because I love wearing jumpers and having snuggle days in watching TV or reading a good book. I’m also a big fan of Christmas, I love all aspects of it. My favourite part, however, is giving back to friends and family and gifting presents. I love giving presents to others, it’s a highlight for me and something I plan all year.

However, I keep my Christmas and Winter feels under wraps until the 5th November has passed because over the years, I have had an unexpected amount of grief from others for enjoying Christmas so much. Humans are weird right?

Where I am in the UK at the moment, the weather seems unable to make up its mind in what to give us. It’s cloudy and grey, yet muggy and warm. First there’s a big gust of wind, then there’s no wind at all. It’s making me feel like I’m one step away from the tornado that swept Dorothy away from Kansas.

My outlook on life has become more positive again. I don’t know about anyone else but there is an element to lockdown life that has made the shift of my moods more prominent. I think that in some way, before COVID I was more focused and had more things to occupy myself with that I was able to keep a steady control on the majority of my emotions. However, being in lockdown and now, as I continue to work from home, there has been a shift in what I have to occupy myself with, which in turn, has led to more fluctuation in positive/negative moods.

Day One Hundred and Seventy-Seven – Tuesday 8th September

Today was just one of those days where I knew it was going to be a bad day from the moment I woke up. I didn’t walk around like I had a grumpy gnome on my shoulder, but even my positive attitude couldn’t save the day.

I seemed to float from one disaster to another and the day became quite stressful and anxiety inducing. I managed to keep a clear head and not fall into a panic attack – of which I am quite proud of. In this instant it was the ‘disasters’ in the wrong and not me, so I was able to manage myself in a much better way. I have however, accumulated a lot of anger.

Anger is hard for me to get rid of because I internalise a lot of my emotions – which is a very bad trait to have – and instead of talking through the problem that has caused the anger, I tend to obsess over it and pull myself down into a negative void.

I try not to let my anger take over and try to get rid of it before I go to bed. It’s a work in progress. That’s not just me saying it, it generally is. It’s hard to relearn behaviours as an adult but I’m getting there.

I was in the office this afternoon and the topic of conversation was – you guessed it – COVID. There were a couple more people in the office today as some departments are trialling working on a rota in the office and at home. Luckily, I was still able to keep myself socially distanced and work in a way that would keep my safe and keep those I live with safe.

The general consensus around the office is that (A) COVID is over. (B) Does the 2nd wave exist? (C) Panicked chickens running around with no heads. Some poor people even have all three of those options floating around in their heads.

I can sort of advice and spout facts about A and B, but I can’t stop a headless chicken from panicking and frankly, I don’t think there is a cure for that behaviour. It’s trying to fine the line between acknowledging and talking about COVID and trying to continue with your life away from COVID.

It’s kind of like a very unbalanced tightrope. I’m not entirely sure that there is a right answer for any of the above that would satisfy all parties.

Day One Hundred and Seventy-Eight – Wednesday 9th September

It seems to be the week for recurring dreams as this is the third recurrence I’ve had. I always find it a little jarring when I get recurring dreams and, on some level, I am actually aware that is what is happening because I find myself trying to spot the anomaly or the difference/addition to the dream.

The dream I had last night I have not had in a couple of years and what made it particularly jarring for me was that it had clear vivid people from my school days in it. People I haven’t seen in over a decade. It made me feel all wobbly when I woke up this morning.

I’m prone to having bizarre dreams at the best of times, but I do wonder why I am suddenly revisiting dreamscapes I haven’t been in for a couple of years.

I am especially tired today but so far have escaped a headache. I’m resisting the urge to put my oodie on because I think the ‘snuggle’ quality will just put me to sleep when I should be working!

Lots of talk in the office yesterday about COVID, happy to have a COVID free day today. It gets to the point sometimes, when I’m not sure what people want me to say. Do they really want to hear my opinion or are they waiting for me to agree to their statement?

Day One Hundred and Seventy-Nine – Thursday 10th September

Today was really stressful. Not as in ‘having a busy workload’ but as in, ‘life has given me shit’ way. Not going to lie, I generally thought I was going to have a complete breakdown but I’m happy to report that I managed to hold my head high and keep everything together despite what was going on around me.

I’m not going to go into detail about what happened because I promised myself that I would let it go and thinking about it just fills me with more anger and disappointment. Let’s just say that I was let down by someone I hold in deep regard and it negatively impacted my mental health and kicked up a shitstorm of drama.

The main thing I’m taking from today is that I managed not to cry, and I actually found some time to do a little bit of reading. I also started playing ‘Journey to Batuu’ which is the most recent Sims4 expansion, and that soothed some of what I was feeling.

Day One Hundred and Eighty – Friday 11th September

At long last it is Friday! I’ve had my three rounds with fate now and want to do nothing but sleep and take ‘me’ days. Unfortunately, I’m busy over the weekend and there won’t be a chance for a lie in tomorrow morning. It is not all doom and gloom though, what’s keeping me busy on the weekend are good things, even if my brain is wishing for more sleep.

The weather is still being unpredictable, stuck between cloudy and muggy. Strange how UK citizens seek out sun abroad but can never handle the sun when it actually shines down on the UK.

I was snuggled up in my oodie this morning, but I got too hot! I’m hoping for a cold, traditional, British winter. Not the mild monstrosity we had last year!

I am getting in a bit of reading today. As I’m solely focusing on spreadsheets and the latest course I’m taking at work, my breaks today consist of reading a couple of pages of my current book. My current book is: ‘The Institute’ by Stephen King.

So far, I’m bored by it, but I’m sure it will pick up soon.

I think any time that I can find this weekend that isn’t taken up with tasks or reading will be taken up by painting. I’ve now designed (using stamps or my free-hand imagination) a set of 14 Christmas Cards to sell on my Etsy shop. There will be 5 packs of 14 cards. I just have to paint them all now!!!

One Comment Add yours

  1. I agree that it is important to have “lazy days” and to have some time for ourselves. Because most of the time we are all so busy, therefore it’s essential that we sometimes take a break.


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