It may seem a little odd that I am going to write the following, but really, sometimes things need to be jotted down so then they can just be normalised. I posted this morning on my instagram, about how this year, JK and I weren’t taking a holiday, because we have a wedding to pay for and a holiday isn’t really in the budget, and that is partly true. Being conscious of the fact that this year, and more than likely next year, we won’t be going on holiday, leaves us in a position where we think we will get no rest, and that’s somewhat of a dangerous slippery slope, but let’s get into it.
Last year, JK and I went on our first holiday together, to go and visit my father and step-mother who live in Italy. Whilst over there, we celebrated JK’s twenty-ninth birthday and also got engaged (subsequently also celebrating that whilst out there). Our holiday was cheap, we just need flights and spending money and it was manageable; however, making the decision to get married is what set the beginning of this into motion.
It quickly occurred to us, that although seeing my family over in Italy is something we will always strive to do, trying to make sure we can afford the wedding we dream of, on the timescale we have given it on, with other curveballs thrown our way, this was likely the last time we would see them unless they returned to the UK for their own short breaks (which they since have so that’s all good).
The major problem came when JK sold and bought a new car, which was faulty, and we had to pay for repairs before it was taken back off us, and we didn’t get all the money back on it. The same month, I crashed my car and had to pay for some of the work to it, and now, JK’s other new car has needed an expensive repair on it too. Meaning that money we had set aside, has since gone elsewhere. That’s not to say that we’re poor and we don’t have money to put towards our day, we do, but that was spare money we could have put to good use.
Now, these may all seem like first-world problems, but it really did dawn on me, that a holiday doesn’t necessarily need to be somewhere outside of the UK, or even outside of your own town. I have been an advocate of being a tourist in your own city before now, and you can do many wonderful things you wouldn’t normally turn to, when you’re short on money. This summer already, I have done more, and been more social than any other summer in recent history and that is something I am proud of, as someone who has anxiety and massive hang ups of being in public when it’s hot and I am sweating, because let’s not forget our recent heatwave.
I was, however, reminded that some people don’t get to go on holiday at all, because, y’know, money. So I started to not look at the fact that for two years, to be able to afford my one dream day, I couldn’t go sunbathing in a foreign land, and started to realise that I had to slow down – I know, this post is taking so many twist and turns.
Looking at all that I do, I balance my job, with this blog, my podcast, all my own stuff to brand myself and be the person I have worked so hard to project, and also balance that up with additional roles, with a local business and also the local Pride event, I realised I am very busy. I don’t even question not seeing people, I keep in touch over text or through social media, and I felt like that was enough. It isn’t, because I do a lot of things online as is, and I was just ending up approaching burn out so many times.
What can you do about that? You can notice it, and take stock of it, and plan accordingly. That’s what I did. Now, days off are split between doing some work, but not all of it at once, and actually taking some down time. That means, taking a trip for over an hour to go and grab donuts with my sister at Temple Coffee & Donuts in Leeds. It means going to a small event in a little arcade in the town centre to support local businesses. It means, going to one of the city’s biggest events, Humber Street Sesh, and doing an hours DJ set with friends from Pride which was a lot of fun, and it means going out for a friends birthday, drinking two and a bit bottles of wine and going to work with a hangover the next day.
Life is for living, and if my only escape to a tropical atmosphere is sitting in the guest room, taking selfies or chilling out, I’m going to use that to my advantage, because it may be the only breaks I get this year.
For someone who does get anxious, and for someone who sometimes slips into a realm of self-hatred over the way I look and the way that is perceived, going out and doing things is a big thing. I want to remember that, these things may seem small, but to me, they’re huge, and they’re positive, and they let me break out of my shell.