After posting my last blog post, I was touched to hear from my friend Lydia McNeil that she had been inspired to write a similar reflection based on her own year. She asked if I would be happy to publish it on my website, which, of course, I was. So here you go – the first guest post I’ve had in a while. Enjoy.
I want to mention that it’s Adam and his bravery who inspired me to write this. Although it’s been a year of lessons, I feel that overall, it has been a good year and I feel positive and look forward to 2023.
This year, I’ve learnt that stating my needs in a kind, compassionate way is important if I want to have real and meaningful relationships with others. It has been a year of spiritual and therapeutic revelations, growth within relationships and confidence to start new hobbies.
I felt disconnected from myself at the beginning of the year. Feeling like I was coming out of restrictions, little time to flex my social muscles and then having Covid for New Year in 2021 was a difficult blow. I think I thrive being around other people who react to me kindly and gently and this was not one of those years. Then in 2022, my yoga course got off to a great start, despite my cat dying and dealing with some of the worst C-PTSD symptoms I’ve ever experienced.
The yoga course mitigated some of the other negative things I was experiencing. Going to a safe space, with incredibly brave individuals speaking about why they decided to start the yoga course was healing. Everyone then was incredibly understanding regarding my hypermobility, and just wanted to know more about it and supported me throughout. I’ve made some great friends on this course. Unfortunately, I had to quit in May due to my hypermobility, but will be joining again in January, focussing more on the meditations rather than the yoga. During this time, I also joined a reiki course, which allowed me to meet some great people and let out some old emotions.
The yoga course led me to a retreat in Italy, in April 2022, where I met my friend Natalie- who I went to visit in Berlin in November. This course also led me to seeking out a different kind of physical support, and I couldn’t have gotten through the year without my ongoing osteopath, Clare, and my new personal trainer Bobby! Bobby is amazing, and my body is feeling so much stronger with his help.
My other friends have also been supportive throughout the year. Sarah leaving in the summer was difficult and I know that I am trying to fill big boots in creating my house as a space for us all to let off some steam. But so far, all the board game nights have been very fun, and I look forward to more. I must thank Freya for providing some hilarious games and mad Articulate skills.
My ex-partner and I had some wonderful times together and I hope we get to reunite as friends in the future. He helped regarding my new ADHD diagnosis and was supportive regarding my C-PTSD symptoms. Under a caring eye, it’s been a place where many triggers have come up for the both of us. A mirror of each other’s shadow selves. Like an intensive therapy course.
Speaking about the ADHD diagnosis, it’s been up and down the last few months, trying out different medications. I feel like Goldilocks and the three bears, but with pills. I have a new therapist at the end of this week, and I think I want to try non-medicated methods like meditation, exercise, and therapy to get me through these symptoms for now. Vanessa was great at sending me ADHD material to give to work, and then I can’t help but mention that she wrote a book on speech and language therapy for kids. Woah! Vanessa and I always said that we would write a book together- she would do the illustrations and I’d do the writing- but I wouldn’t have sat around waiting for me either! It’s an incredible book, Vanessa is so talented and I’m so proud.
I couldn’t not mention that the last few months have been amazing because Hester took me to her singing on Monday’s, where I met Robbie, and we did an improv class together. I’ve met some great people through this improv class and improv is again very healing. You can just let out your silliness in a safe space and meet new friends. Next year we will be doing more of this, and I absolutely can’t wait to head down for more nights. Additionally, Hester looked after me through the worst of the breakup and I am grateful for this love and support.
There are so many more amazing things that have happened this year, not to say that it’s all been easy. It’s been a tough year emotionally, and I’ve been feeling open and raw like a wound that hasn’t started to scab. But it’s also been a place where I can let people in and be more transparent about my emotions (for the most part). Thank you to everyone who has made this year great. TO MORE ADVENTURES in 2023. Love Lydia.