2019: Worst and best year of my life

Hearts and flowers

So, there you are, thinking that life has gotten as good as it can get (by which I mean that you count your blessings and… avoid watching reality TV shows about people with perfect lifestyles, perfect bodies, and, hmm, perfect problems), so you’re coasting along, reasonably satisfied with your lot in life, looking forward to, like, an upcoming resort holiday or the next season of The Witcher.

And then life suddenly sucker punches you. And kicks you into a very deep pit. And rains a little bit, just enough to muddy up your new prison cell but not enough for you to have a nice swim. No resort holiday for you!

And that about sums it up.

Through the decades, I’ve had my fair share of ordeals. Been messed up, screwed around, damaged. But 2019 pulled an already mangled rug out from under me and left me in that pit, bruised, battered and broken.

The TLDR is that my marriage fell apart and so my whole life fell apart because of all the reasons people fall apart over failed marriages, and then some.

If you had been following my bullet journalling on Instagram during that time, you would have seen the despondent scribblings in my January 2019 pages.

 

A daily page from my bullet journal - January 2019

 

If you can’t read my writing, it basically says, “Sad. Sad. Sad. Sad.”

You would also have noticed that I stopped updating my journal after a while because things got worse and I couldn’t be bothered anymore.

I would go on to wallow in pain for another two and a half months. I was in the worst state I’d been in, ever.

Then, in the middle of March, something happened to me and it was the best thing in all my life.

I experienced God.

I had been alternatively agnostic and atheistic most of my life, so I’m really saying something when I say that I felt God’s presence and, in that moment, I knew without a doubt that God was real and that He was letting me know that He loved me and that I didn’t need to be broken anymore.

I mean…!!!

 

Cross on a heart

 

I could tell the full story over and over but it’s very long so I will tell it here another time. Now, I will just say that the experience changed me. Depression, pain, grief, fear, despair, all went away, just like that. It’s like God waved a magic finger and poof.

There I was, hurt to the power of infinity, and then, just… peace. Like I was on a drifting cloud. And then overflowing joy that made me weep because my heart couldn’t contain it.

Nine months later, now, I’m still that changed new person. I’ve never been better. When you understand what it means to have a relationship with Jesus, you don’t have to do anything, have anything or be anything in order to wake up every day with joy in your heart and an energising purpose in your life.

You are, simply, a child of God, loved by Him, and that is all anyone needs.

 

In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, O Lord, will keep me safe. - Psalm 4:8

 

I’ve spent the last six months busy settling into my new life in Singapore, trying to fix some health issues, and getting to know God better. That’s why I haven’t been doing my Insta-bujo thing.

But, 2020!!! A special year! I want to start journaling again, but this time I have a different focus because I’m not depressed anymore. Thank you all for your encouragement and support while I was going through stuff, and I hope you will journey with me again.

Scoot on over to Instagram and refollow me for updates!

Thanks for reading and please have an awesome 2020! May God bless you with his love, peace and joy.

December bullet journal theme: Self-care

Keep Calm and Journal On Because It's December

 

This month, I start with a double-page cover because it’s a crazy month! It’s December, the month of Christmas, of holiday stress, of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Therefore, my theme and message to everyone is: As you prepare for festivities and the new year, don’t forget to breathe deeply and take care of yourself!

Here’s a self-care plan to help you (and me) along. I’ve tried to pick activities that don’t take too long to do because I know everyone is busy! Of course, my lists are customised for me, based on what I know will work for me, so you should swap some things out and choose items that work for you.

If you need more self-care ideas, just google “self-care ideas”, lol. There’s lots of lists out there you can take inspiration from!

 

Self-Care Plan

 

Have a great December and take care!

 

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Journal – November 25-26

Journal - November 25-26

 

Transcription

25 Sunday

Would anyone believe me if I told them I got this ugly purple bruise on my knee simply by kneeling ever so gently on the carpet? I made sure to do it gently knowing my body’s propensity for bruising. And, yet, the moment I laid the knee upon the carpeted floor, pain shot through it. A bruise was born thus!

I was photographing my desk and had moved the chair outside because it was in the way of lights and cables and me. So, when I needed to view and edit the photos on my iMac, I had no chair to sit on, hence me kneeling. In the end, after faffing about for hours, I decided to make the chair a part of the photo after all, so all that kneeling and bruising had been completely unnecessary!

26 Monday

I’ve had numerous requests over the months for bujo process videos but haven’t had the time to figure it out. Plus I didn’t want to scare all my followers away with my ugly hands! Still, the pressure to make videos continues and I caved. I would make a handwriting video today! Right when I’m at my busiest with December fast descending! I roll eyes at myself.

I spent all day fiddling with equipment and apps, battling with the tripod, which refused to do what I wanted. It got in the way of the frame and my bujo and my writing arm. And then I had to contend with my fingers getting stage fright and writing like a five-year-old. I’ve never liked my handwriting so I’m baffled when people say they love it and even ask me for font sheets. So, against, my better judgement, I made this decision I hope I will not come to regret terribly!

 

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Journal – November 22-23

Journal - November 22-23

 

Transcription

22 Thursday

Maybe running in 5 degrees Celcius temperature in a drizzle wasn’t the best idea. The next night, I felt a sudden throat irritation which bordered on pain by the following morning. That always meant one thing: a cold was sneaking up on me.

I had gotten up early this morning despite having only slept 4 hours because I had a C25K session to run. But I felt so fatigued and my throat hurt. I knew I had to take care or the virus would have me. So I took a Vitamin C tablet and went back to bed. Success! I only managed to sleep two more hours but I felt better and the throat stopped hurting.

23 Friday

What is it with ladybirds and curtains? I found one on our bedroom curtain this time. (The family of five are still living on the bathroom curtain.) I just read that the right thing to do is to put them outside but I feel bad exiling them!

Gratitude

I’m grateful for the rest day I was forced to take to fight a cold virus even though it ruins my C25K schedule!

Today I Learnt

British pork sausages used to be called Little Bags of Mystery because Victorians suspected the presence of horse meat. After WWI, fillers were used in them, causing them to hiss and pop when cooked, resulting in them being called bangers. I love Bangers, Beans & Mash, the song as well as the dish. Russell Brand is hilarious and the dish is easy to cook and tasty!

 

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Journal – November 20

Journal - November 20

 

Transcription

20 Tuesday

It’s getting very challenging for me to do my C25K sessions now. With my sleep problems, I’m waking up around 12 pm. I have breakfast around 1 pm. The sky starts to darken about 3 pm, which is when I should start running, before it gets pitch black. But then my breakfast is still not done digesting!

Or, if I do eat breakfast early enough, it starts raining when I’m able to run! It’s funny, how, from July to September, everyone in the country prayed for rain. Now it’s virtually raining every day! I have really picked the wrong season to start C25K!

Yesterday, the rain finally slowed to a faint drizzle when it was already quite dark. I decided to proceed with my session because I already missed Monday. Never mind the dark, it was freaking cold! I was wearing 3 layers and gloves but it wasn’t enough. My nose, hands and feet hurt. And for the first time, I didn’t have to remove my hoodie in the middle of a run/walk.

I did manage to complete the session but it was really horrid and miserable and the actual running wasn’t even the challenge. How will I survive the next 7 weeks?

 

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