I have mid-length, dark, thick hair, my various types of fringes have finally grown out, and I think I have gone an entire year without cutting it off myself or damaging it through box-dye, bleach or just a lack of due care. Well done Theo. It feels nice and soft, but could look better, I want to get it cut a little shorter and styled properly. I ought to learn how to make it look nice with minimal effort… that’d be good. I tend to just throw it up in a half bun, it looks kinda edgy sometimes when paired with my oversized round glasses, but I want to do more with it too.
My face has lost some baby fat this year, f i n a l l y. I now have cheekbones to emphasise with makeup rather than having to draw them on to a blank canvas. That’s a thing I’m into at the moment: makeup. I like that it’s a temporary form of disguise, whilst also a way of art and self empowerment. I don’t feel like I need it to be seen anymore, but I now love it in itself as a way of expressing my feelings and personality. I love strong brows, matte lips, and fierce eyes. Sometimes I catch my own reflection and realise that I look determined, it’s a nice feeling. My eyebrows are growing, it’s a relief that shaving them half off as a child was not in fact a permanent bad choice, even if the repercussions are still being felt fifteen years on, they’re getting there.
I took my helix piercing out, it was a rather toxic relationship and quite frankly I couldn’t be bothered fiddling around with it every time I went to rugby, but I want to get back into wearing earrings. I currently have five tattoos and they are so special to me, I know which one I want next, I’m currently mid-draw of it. I know my family don’t all approve of them, but I love them, and it’s my body. I want my back to be a montage of my inside.
I like striped tops, skater skirts, and pinafores. Velvet is amazing. I still live in my Doc Martens (old habits die hard I guess), but some comfortable Vans have made their way into my regular shoe collection too. Braintree socks are my constantly hugging my toes at the moment, they are a happy balance between sustainable and comfortable. Elizabeth’s athleisure-esque style has finally impacted my wardrobe: Ellesse sweatshirts are the bomb. Hats are here to stay, and always have been, with my collection ever growing. I got a pink dad-cap from Oslo, and it’s beautiful, in a bizarre way it’s quite tricky to be sad with it on really. I’m trying to wear more colour, I invested in a yellow handbag and I’m finding this trickle of brightness does actually effect me, even if it’s just because it looks good in photos. I sleep in random tops from events and gift stores, and at the moment a pair of boxers are the best type of pyjama bottom.
I live in a house with five big bedrooms, an over-couched living room, and an awkward kitchen. My housemates are incredible people. There is always a little bit of drama going on, but when you take a step back it is quite easy to see that we all love each other and that actually the fighting is kind of hilarious. I’m the worst for it too, in twenty years time will I really care that Ruth left her washing in the machine too long? That Chloe always needs coercing out of her room? Or that Josh sings so loudly I can hear it over my own thoughts, even with the door shut? Will it still bother me that the house work is not done in equal parts? No. What I will remember is the family outing to Walling’s, the obsession with Gilmore Girls, 1am McDonalds trips, and the non stop need to go to Asda for flavoured milk. I love these people; they are incomparable.
I am still stupidly tidy, I recently got a new make-up organiser and honestly it was a life changing product. At the moment I like to have things looking neat, almost too tidy one could argue. I remember once Imogen said to me that my area at school was too neat as it looked like nobody actually lived in it. That kind of tidy calms me down though, I love looking at lines of things that compliment others in length and shape. I guess I feel like my room is my own personal game of Tetris, and keeping it tidy is my way of winning.
Wilfred if my transport mode of choice, but I do need to use him less. Taking a car out on finance seemed like such a good idea until I managed to clock up so many miles so insanely quickly. I’m hoping to do fewer in summer though, I like being outside when it’s warm so walking will be more appealing, and hopefully I’ll be working festivals, even if that means missing Wilf.
I currently work for my Aunt, caring for her is such an easy job because I’d happily do it all anyway. Knowing that I directly contribute to a better quality of life for her on a daily basis is honestly mind blowing to me. I feel honoured that she trusts me in the way that she does.
I was doing an ‘apprenticeship’ – it’s in quotations because I wasn’t learning anything and essentially just got used for cheap labour, but it was a learning curve. Now I am struggling for hours, but I have a job interview on Saturday and that may go well, if not I’m confident I’ll find something. I only really need something to tide me over until the festival season starts anyway.
I want to start university in September, I think I’m ready now. The thought is still so utterly terrifying as there will be so many new things that I have no control over, but I also think it’ll be amazing. I am so ready to develop my writing style and learn even more about what I love and care for. I really feel like studying Politics and Philosophy can only help me delve further into my own psyche whilst nurturing my thirst to help the planet.
Career wise I am so torn. A big part of me wants to go into something fun and money based like advertising as I would have such a nice life and would be able to afford to help others, but really I know my heart is in working as part of an NGO. These jobs are so competitive and quite regularly I get afraid that I’m setting the bar too high for myself, but on second thoughts why couldn’t it be me? I hope it is me, I hope I help people.
I have learnt to take the time to care for and help myself. On a superficial level this is shown by having a night-time skin routine; I want to be my best and so I try to help myself in every way possible.
In a deeper way this is done by me writing down how I feel and making sure I tell people when I’m hurt, even if it’s hard. I guess committing to my blog comes under the same sort of heading; as nice as it is knowing that some people care about what I write, it is just a narcissistic way of making sure I don’t bottle up every emotion I feel. Practically, I’m taking my medication, but internally I know the serious spike of support from my friends has been the best thing to happen to me in a while. I never understood that letting people in was worth the risk of getting hurt because that offer of unconditional love and care is the type of gut-wrenching feeling that people over-act in movies.
In terms of self care I get the physical side now too: I go to the gym, quite a bit actually, that endorphin release you read about isn’t all bullshit. My muscles ache at least half of the week, and I annoy even myself with the complaints of “ohhh my back” but I feel improved afterwards. Playing rugby at Waterloo with so many fit people motivates me to get better and stronger, I want to feel a part of the strength of the pack, rather than someone who is using the strength of the pack. Of course it is always a compromise of give and take, but I would love to get to a point where I could give more than I take.
I currently love drinking water from my fruit infuser bottle, mint and lime will never get old to me it seems, somehow the water tastes like it’s giving me a revitalising hug when it washes through my system. At the moment I’m vegan, I don’t know if this will change in the future, but I love it and I could write forever about the positive effect this change has had on my life. I genuinely don’t understand how I hated fruit and veg so much before.
My friends have come to mean more to me recently than ever before, I’m so glad that I’ve held onto Eve for twenty years now, I feel like she is more truly my other half than anyone else could or will ever be. I am incredibly aware of how awful I am at staying in touch with people, but I hope those I care about know it. It’s hard having your heart in so many different places, 400 miles is a long way but I never stop caring about those I’ve left behind.
Relationships are strange, as is sexuality, and this is something I have had to come to terms with. This is the first year I’ve been properly open about being a bi-asexual person and it has had its ups and downs, honestly I think the more chilled I am about it the more chilled other people are, which kind of makes sense I guess. I have met someone (whom “love?” is written about), he has helped me a lot, it is sad that they cannot be around in a permanent fashion, but for now we are happy and I guess that’s what matters.
My relationship with my parents has changed a lot this past year, for a start my Dad got married. Letting not only one person in, but an entire extended family, was so difficult for me. I’m not sure if it was fear of judgment, rejection, or something else altogether but I put up such a fight. Emma and the rest of my new family fit in my heart now though as if they had always held a place there, and I wouldn’t change a thing. I have so much admiration for each of them as they have forgiven me for being far less than welcoming. It was a strain with my Dad too though, I have always been quick to admit to him being my best friend, but our war over him loving someone else was a turning point in our relationship. I hope we continue to grow positively for the rest of the time we have together, because ultimately he is still my number one fan as I am his, and that means so much to me.
I think this year was the first in which I saw my Mum and Steve as real people. I think it’s hard to understand as a kid that adults haven’t got it all figured out, and that they hurt too. I’m proud to be their’s, I think considering everything we’ve done okay together really.
My ever growing love and friendships with Elizabeth and Abigail are blessings, I feel like these years together make up for so many that were lost with me at boarding school. When I spend time with them now it’s quality time, no more getting in the way of each other, instead it is fun and looked forward to. However my relationship with Zara seems to be continually getting more painful, it’s sad really because at some point I know I’ll reach a limit and I won’t be able to excuse her behaviour with age or sisterhood. I worry about her, I don’t think she see’s how much she can hurt people. Each birthday to me marks another year in which Kirsty has drifted further and further away from me with no explanation, if there’s any chance you’re reading this: I miss you.
Recently I became very aware of the fact that I am going to die and be forgotten, along with the vast majority of the world’s population, and so all I want now is for me to be happy with the life I lead. I hope when I reach twenty-one I am proud to be me.