Tag Archives: change

What if?

 

On paper my life looks almost perfect.  I know this because I have carefully constructed it over the years.  When I wake up in the morning I have a pretty good idea what I will be doing that day, and most likely the next 3 days (and weeks if we’re being honest). I have a good job and a beautiful house.  I have enough money to live pretty comfortably. I have great friends. I can just about manage my relationship with my family.  I am relatively fit and healthy.  I have 101 great stories to tell of my experiences in this life. I have a cat for affection and spontaneity.  I’m single because, quite frankly, relationships generate too many emotional ups and downs and these aren’t good for me in terms of managing my depression.  Everything is stable, consistent and safe…or at least I thought it was.

Earlier this week I had my eyes opened.  It was in one of those pesky therapy sessions where they help you relax and then drop a bombshell.  Perhaps it was this lack of excitement and opportunity that was now feeding my depression?  What if I could shake things up a bit?  What if I started to make some changes?  What if I started a relationship? Obviously, the thought makes me a little hot and sicky, but seriously, what if I did start a relationship?  What if it actually worked out?  What if it didn’t? Would it actually be that bad? Or, could it actually be as good as it sometimes looks?  The thing is, I won’t know until I try.  

What I do know is that on my current route, my future self will be asking ‘What if I had?’.  That somehow seems scarier that asking now ‘What if I do?’

How about you?  Are there any ‘What ifs?’ you can apply to your life?

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Beautiful Things

Today I’ve been inspired by the ‘Daily Post’.  It provided 5 ideas for future posts one of which was ‘Ode to an object’.  I’ve taken the object part, but this isn’t quite an ode.  Most of my posts are about the human experience so I thought this might be a nice idea for a change.

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This is part of my ‘beautiful things’ collection. It’s from a collection by PIP Studio: a Dutch designer based in Amsterdam.  Her motto is ‘‘Happy products for Happy People’.

It’s a modern twist on a classic.  I love that it retains a delicate form, natural art work with a bit of an English feel. At the same time, it has a modern shape, style and colouring.  A cup and saucer is traditionally associated with an English afternoon tea.  Elegant ladies sipping on steaming tea, little finger gently pointing out.  This cup and saucer reflects today’s world.  Big enough for a good coffee held with both hands wrapped around it.

Buying my ‘beautiful things’ was a real change of direction for me.  They are completely superfluous to need and purely for my enjoyment.  I am generally careful with money and find it hard to be wasteful.  Other than my mortgage I have never been in debt.  I’ve had the same toaster, plates, bowls, cups, glasses, cutlery etc for over 15 years.  I believe in keeping things until they are broken or worn out.  I hate throwing things away whilst they are still functional.  I really look after things and get upset if I break something.  I pride myself on only ever having broken one plate in my home.

This all changed whilst I was browsing through a magazine.  My eye fell across an image of the beautiful things and I was hooked.  In my eyes they were perfect.  A bit quirky, a bit traditional and a lot beautiful.  I loved them on sight.  I made a note of the designer and the range so that I could invest in some when my existing items were broken. 

Over the next few days I kept thinking about the beautiful things and imagining all the occasions I could use them for.  What a shame I would have to wait.  And how long would I have to wait when I look after things so well?  For the first time ever, I just thought ‘Sod it’.  I love them and I deserve them.  I have nothing beautiful, nothing that I can cherish.  Everything I own serves a function.  And so began my collection of beautiful things.

I keep them in a cupboard rather than on display.  This is partly down to a lack of display space, and partly due to them being mine.  I don’t want to share them with just anyone.  They are for my enjoyment.  I will show them off but only to people that I know will appreciate them for what they are.  Every time I open the cupboard I smile.  Every time I use my cup I smile. My drink always tastes so much better.  I take in the whole experience, the smell, the heat, the taste, the clink when I put the cup back down.

I haven’t gone too mad.  I have a small number of items that I love.  The only thing I still want to get is a set of cake plates.  I haven’t quite found the perfect set (or even individual plates to make a set).  I know if I buy impulsively they will never feel the same so I am content to wait. 

So there we are.  My ‘ode’ to an object(s)…and yet again I have fallen to the human experience.  All is right in the world 🙂

Does this resonate with anyone else?  Do you have beautiful things just for you?  That one special possession or collection?

 

A change is as good as a rest

When was the last time you tried something new?  Not something ‘big and exciting’ new, but just a little change to the norm.

This morning, I got a text from a friend, asking if I wanted to go to the ballet to see Swan Lake with her this afternoon.  Her husband had decided he just really didn’t fancy it anymore.   Ordinarily, my immediate response would have been to think of an excuse and politely decline.   I don’t generally ‘do’ spontaneity and especially not for a social event in a busy environment.   Today though, I knew I needed to get out and mix with people.  And I knew it was up to me to make it happen.  I quickly said yes, and arranged to meet outside the theatre.  What a great decision it turned out to be.

I’ve had a bit of a downturn this week and found myself really struggling.  At times it has felt like I was going right back to where I started, but I have continued to try all the techniques I have learnt.  It’s been really hard, especially given how well I have been doing.   Nothing has really seemed to help, but I have kept trying all the same.  Hence my decision this morning.  I could have stayed at home and not spoken to no one all day, but as tempting as that sounded I knew it wasn’t a good idea.

It was the Vienna Festival Ballet and was being performed at my local theatre.   I’ve never been to a ballet and have always wanted to.  I used to love my ballet lessons when I was younger.   I remember getting a white knitted wrap around cardigan and I would wear it all the time.  I had the special ballet bag with a separate section for my shoes.  Before each exam my mum would scrape my hair back into a bun and I would be so happy.    Despite this, I had never seen a proper ballet performance.

The theatre is about a 15 minute walk from my house so I decided to leave early and look round the shops first.  There was a sale at my favourite shop, so I had a look round and ended up buying a new dress.  I had seen it a few weeks earlier and tried it on.  It looked lovely on but it was just a bit too expensive, so having my size in the sale seemed a little too good to be true.  The market was in town so I took in all the sounds and smells, and the amazing range of goods on offer.   There was a stall selling homemade sweets, so I picked up a few bags to keep us going during the ballet.  I was running a little early, so stopped off at Pret a Manger to get latte and found a seat outside the theatre to wait for my friend.  I spent the time people watching and making up stories about their lives.  It was a lovely way to pass the time and to focus my mind on something other than the whirling thoughts.

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The ballet was just fabulous.  I loved it.  I had expected to enjoy it but wasn’t expecting to find it so absorbing.  The dancers can only be described as beautiful.  I don’t necessarily mean in the traditional sense, but the way they hold themselves and move like water.  It’s mesmerising.  On the surface, you don’t quite appreciate how much talent they have.  But the lines they create, how they hold poses on one leg, on their toes, for so long…and without shaking or wobbling.  The height of their jumps, the speed of their movements, the flow of their arms.  I’m smiling again remembering it all.

So that was my day.  One small change, saying yes, instead of no.  I’m not feeling a huge amount better, but I’m definitely not worse…and now I can close my eyes and see the dancers again.

Try it, and let me know how it goes?