I don't know if many of you remember this. Within 24 hours, my world had shrunk. Subconsciously I knew it would come. I knew it was a blessing in disguise. I had a 'break up' haircut. Supportive friends and family were reassured with soothing tones that all was okay, when underneath the waterline I was paddling like mad. Eldest child syndrome perhaps. Stiff upper lip maybe.
Well intentioned advice sent me into a blind panic - searching for the nearest bucket of sand. It was only when Mr M pointed out that it was okay to take time out, to find that 21 year old who had entered the big, wide world back in 2000, that I was able to breathe. Long, deep, lung-filling breaths. Breaths that healed as I walked - along the river, down well known roads and up paths I had never walked before. I discovered the therapeutic qualities of baking, cleaning, sewing, knitting, creating, blogging and sleeping. Grinding my teeth became a thing of the past.
Slowly, I thawed. I remembered my dreams, aspirations, my direction. There were moments when I pined for the consistency of my past - the commute, routine, friends old and new. Gradually, I rediscovered my strength, drive and motivation.
Along the way, I've met those who have inspired both online and off. Those who have faced far tougher challenges and made so much more of their lives than I. The chance to reflect - on the life I have led, the life I will lead and the opportunities out there for me to grasp, with open arms - has been so very important.
Why the need for so many words?
Well, I have exciting news. I finally have a job and I start on Monday. It's not a permanent role, but nonetheless I am thrilled. My first interview in almost 9 years. I couldn't quite take it in when I received the call. I feel so incredibly lucky because I had no idea that getting a job would be so hard. I had become used to recruitment consultants not putting me forward for roles that I knew I was capable of doing. My elation was confirmed with the contract being signed and posted on Thursday. And my celebration? A mad dash into town to pull together a work wardrobe - and reassure my credit card company that I am indeed still alive.
This was one of the first things that I did with my new found freedom back in November - a marble cake. It was heavenly, and about the only thing that I could do when my mind was elsewhere. Funny how the swirls perfectly reflected my world at that time.