01.09.2021 | “Deep down you’re just like everybody else…”

Lyrics: “Little Changes” ~ Frank Turner, 2018

After unsuccessfully trying to revive a bullet journal habit, I recently bought another planer / calendar. This one comes with some mindfulness tools and tips and all. Among other things to name three habits you want to follow this month. I noted down blogging more as one. Let’s see how that will go.

Though there isn’t much to report from my side at the moment. Same old, same old. I have some ideas I could write about, but I’m not sure yet if these are thoughts I want to share with the world or if that’s just stuff I need to work through for myself. Being an anxious mess, trying to be more mindful and to “work on myself” is complicated.

At work these days more often than not I feel like others have a much better grasp of their tasks and do their job much better than I do, even though they’ve only joined our team a few months ago, whereas I’ve been in this job for nine years. To the day today. I’m sure a lot of this is just my wrong impression, based on self-doubt and all, but still. It feels hard sometimes. I need to listen to “Reasons…” a few times a week to get over that feeling 🙂

I almost didn’t get around to follow the blog more habit, even though I was determined to. Being the first of the month and all. I finished work almost on time today as I know tomorrow will be another long day with a video call till at least 17:00. I came home and lay down for a nap, which I usually don’t, especially not at that time of the day. But my sleep cycle is so messed up. And I didn’t even nap, only dozed, but felt more rested after, which is the whole point. And I almost didn’t want to get up again, which would have messed up my sleep cycle even more, I know…

I sat down to read a few more pages of the novel, I’m currently reading: “The Secrets of Latimer House”, about a secret operation in Buckinghamshire in WWII, which started off all right. Unfortunately this evening the plot got ludicrous and I was about to just put the book away and not finish it. But I was already over half-way through. So instead of just tossing it, I decided to skim-read the rest so I could put it behind me today. Yeah, not sure if that was a sensible use of my time tonight. Here’s my short review of the book and here are some photos from Bletchley Park (December 2019), which was something similar to Latimer House. Only bigger. Or at least more well known afterwards.

I so miss travelling and spending times with friends. Taking silly pictures with a Frank Turner tour flag.

Mansion at Bletchley Park, 2019
Mansion at Bletchley Park, 2019
Hut at Bletchley Park, 2019
Hut at Bletchley Park, 2019
NML Tourflag at Women at Bletchley Display, 2019
NML Tourflag at “Women of Bletchley” Display, 2019

Anyway, now that I’ve finished that one, I can start with the next one tomorrow. I saw the Scottish prime minister Nicola Sturgeon tweet about it and thought it looked interesting, so I ordered it right away. “Great Circle” about a a female aviator whose plane vanishes in the 1950s and the disgraced actress who plays her on screen in modern-day Hollywood. It’s got stellar reviews and sounded interesting to me. Let’s hope it will keep me hooked more than the … ehm, dozen or more novels I started reading but put aside this year. There were more novels I did finish and most of them I did enjoy, but the amount of stories I aborted this year feels staggering to me. I blame my pandemic mind.

27.08.2021 | “So far from OK, tongue-tied and afraid…”

Lyrics: “Little Changes” ~ Frank Turner, 2018

Oh look, there is a blog I could / should write in. It’s been a while. A weird, exhausting, self-flaggelating while. I often feel to knackered to write something coherent here in the evenings. I’m awake early and sometimes think I should just write a post then, but that always just stays a fleeting though, while I dawdle my time away with other things in the morning.

I’m exhausted. I know being a carer – in whatever smallish capacity – for an elder relative, might be the main reason for that. It’s not even the ‘work’ itself, it’s the responsibility. The not openly addressed (yet) difference of opinion among us relatives who are taking shifts. I so wish we all through the generations had learned how to communicate more openly with each other.

Work is keeping me busy as well and overwhelmed. Mostly overwhelmed. I know I’m not doing my best work and not pulling my weight. My supervisor calls me out on it in the nicest way possible. It is their job to do so. But it still makes me feel even worse and makes me beat myself up even more. Which in turn paralyses me even more and the whole overwhelming cycle starts over.

What worries me most at the moment is, that I’ve lost interest in so many things. Or that those things that usually distracted me for a while or cheered me up or put me in a better mood, hold little interest to me. I have so many unread books on my shelf and I’m still buying new one regularly, always hoping that THIS one will be the one that keeps me hooked. Ok, not quite fair, I read my share of interesting enough books recently. But I’ve also started a lot more and put them away again, because I felt too meh about them. Which usually doesn’t happen to me all that often. I don’t know, I’m a bit lost. (“I’ve been lost more than found” would have been an apt lyrical title as well).

I had to run an errand this evening, stopped by the bookshop – unsuccessfully – and went out to dinner after. I feel like I need to force myself to do these kind of things, be in a room with other people, even if spaced far apart. A bit of normalcy. I was impressed that they asked for proof of vaccination or test at the door. Less impressed, that they didn’t ask for ID and barely glanced at my phone screen when I held it out. Still a long way to go, I’m afraid.

There is so much I feel I should say about COVID and how Germany handles (or not) the pandemic. About the horrors in Afghanistan. The climate crisis. Hello, anyone still remember Haiti? But… I’m exhausted and a bit grumpy and overwhelmed and at a loss.

The fact that autumn seems to be right in front of us, doesn’t help. I was seriously considering to turn on the heating when I got home tonight. Opted for a hot drink instead.

I can’t be bothered to look for any kind of image to go with this post. The post is all over the place anyway…

16.08.2021 | “It makes me feel like I’m an alien…”

Lyrics: “Fatherless” ~ Frank Turner, 2022 (?)

These past few days were a bit exhausting, emotionally anyway. All of us family members might have expected the situation – to care for someone who needs assistance with a lot of activities – to be easier. I don’t know. I still think we could and can handle it. Others are more doubtful. And it’s wearing on all of us. To different degrees maybe, but we’ve had some tense moments. At least I thought they were tense, and I’m so emotional these days and my eyes well up so easily. When I’m angry or disappointed, not necessarily when I’m sad. I really don’t want to dig into the sadness right now. But we really do suck at communicating. That became more and more evident for me. Communicate about what we expect and need from each other and from the one we care for. I feel like I’m the one holding it all together, which might be an unfair assessment, but I can’t help it. It’s how it feels to me and it’s hard. I shouldn’t be the one to be in charge. I’m the youngest! I know, that’s pathetic to say, because we’re all adults – have been for 2-3 decades in fact – and it really shouldn’t matter. But it does to me. Family dynamics, eh?

All this made me think a lot about family and how they deal with each other. Seeing how messy and uncommunicative mine appears to be, the first impulse always is to think “Other families have it together, why are we such a mess?” and to feel a bit weird and ashamed about it. I always need a stern reminder that other families have their issues as well. My head knows that, because I hear it from friends, who have their share of difficulties with parents or siblings. And then I was also reminded of the chat during the Youtube stream when Frank played the song I quote in the title for the first time. So many people could relate to the lyrics on some level. No family is perfect. We are all just living our various shades of messy, human relationships with each other.

There is not really a point to this post, I guess. But when is there ever 😉

The world also is a right mess at the moment: Afghanistan. Haiti. COVID. Climate Crisis. All not really helping with my gloomy state of mind these days.

An uplifting post to start the week on, isn’t it ? Sorry. Here’s a reminder of better times….

Rainbow at a harbour in Scotland, with a castle ruin in the background
Scotland, Summer 2012

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