Ten things about now

Another Saturday, another blog post. This week has flown by but it also feels very long when I think about everything I’ve done. No big questions or philosophising this time, just ten things, as they pop up in my mind. Little things, which is what this blog was meant for in the first place.

ONE
I still haven’t been on Facebook, and I couldn’t be happier about it. I have no interest in going back. My anxiety levels are lower, I am calmer, and it feels like I have so much more time in my days.

TWO
Now that I have so much more time I’ve been reading a lot. I read two novels in the last week and a half  – I haven’t done that since I was a child!  They weren’t high literature, just nice, easy stories: The Rejected Writers’ Book Club and Rejected Writers Take the Stage. These novels follow the adventures of a group of women who live on a small island. They love writing but suck at it and take pride in that fact, so they started a “rejected writers’ book club.” They have regular meetings to celebrate the rejection letters they get from publishers. Until the founder of the club gets a book deal… To avoid having to dismantle the book club, they leave on a  road trip to San Francisco to demand a rejection letter. The stories are unrealistic but they’re funny. It’s pretty over the top at times but in a subdued way. I’m not sure if that makes any sense? It represents a range  of women in a variety of ways – quite cleverly so, if you ask me – and provides interesting and recognisable insight in human relationships and in what makes a home. If you did want to give them a try, the first novel in the series is definitely better than the second one.

THREE
I’m considering buying a Kindle. I’ve always LOVED paper books and generally dislike reading on screens, but I’ve been using the Kindle app on my iPad with a free first month of Kindle Unlimited, and it’s been a very enjoyable experience. Stranger things have happened, I guess… If anyone has any suggestions about which Kindle I should get, I’d love to hear them.

FOUR
The other day, I was working through a particularly difficult bit of critical theory for the PhD (Butler and Foucault on critique, ethics, and subject formation, for those who know what I’m talking about) and I got really emotional about it. I pretty much teared up. Not because I was freaking out, but because the ideas were absolutely brilliant and it was just beautiful.

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FIVE
Sydney’s heating up, and I absolutely love it. Every year since I’ve moved here I’ve struggled with the transition from a winter wardrobe to summer clothes. I feel like part of me is missing when I’m not being hugged/compressed by layers and layers of clothes, so it’s usually a very slow process. This year, though, I packed up all of my winter clothes as soon as I could, and practically jumped into oversized dresses. I love the way the wind touches my legs, how the fabric moves across my skin, how my body just feels free. I realised that spending time outside makes me feel good, so I’ve been trying to sneak in little moments outside whenever I can.

SIX
Now that I’m Facebook-less, I’m making a conscious effort to connect with people. Not because I feel like I have to out of fear of becoming a recluse (which could happen!), but because I want to. I don’t want my relationships with people to consist of liking status updates and photos and memes. What I want is meaningful conversation with access to someone’s face and/or voice, to show people that I care about how they’re doing and what they’ve been up to. I want to know what makes people happy and sad, what they’re passionate about, and what helps them get up in the morning. I want connection. By all means, send me memes and photos, but talk to me as well. Connect with me. Be here. With me.

SEVEN
I think I’ve finally developed some routines that work for me. Who would’ve thought it was possible… I’m switching off my internet modem every night and don’t switch it back on until mid-morning the next day. I’ve been sleeping so well and feel refreshed in the morning. I was able to identify when getting work done gets hard, and now take myself to the uni gym for a BodyBalance class at those times every day. I stick around for a couple of hours afterwards to work from the library. Result: improved productivity, renewed excitement about and confidence in my research, and less of the aches and pains I’ve been having for the last year.

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EIGHT
I’m crocheting a blanket for a soon-to-be new addition to our family. It’s a very, very slow process, and I’m not sure I like what it looks like. I felt this way as soon as I was a couple of rows in but kept going anyway. Should I forget about the hours and hours that have gone into this already, toss it aside and start something new? Something that’s not as painfully slow and that I will love? (It’s more blue-ish in real life, and will need to be blocked once its finished so the cut-outs are more even.)

NINE
I realised I don’t know people’s birthdays! I mean, I know those of my closest friends I’ve known for ages, but there are other, newer, people I care about, and I just have no idea! I’m going to have to plan a Facebook session at some point to write them all down. Which makes me wonder, do people still use birthday calendars and address books these days? Do kids still have these friendship books they pass around to their classmates who have to answer questions like “What’s your address and your phone number?”, “What’s your favourite colour?”,  “When’s your birthday?”, “What are your hobbies?”, “What’s your favourite food?”. I think we need those for adults!

TEN
All week I’ve been stuck trying to find the right music to suit my mood. I have my favourite artists and music genres, but somehow nothing worked. Until Spotify suggested this song by Josh Ritter this morning. I hadn’t listened to his music in ages! But it’s exactly the right thing for now. It makes me want to go on long road trips through the desert, windows open, heat and wind on my face. Who’s coming with me?

Ten things. A pretty accurate snapshot of my mood and my week. Did you have a good week? Or are you just happy you made it through?

See you next week, friends!

 

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