How are things? It’s almost May at the time of writing this and, at long last, things have gotten a whole lot more relaxed here in NDS Jewellery headquarters. In fact, dare I say it, quite a bit of fun was had! At least I did have fun. My long-suffering family has been probably wondering for weeks now if or when I’ll ever leave them be with my renovating enthusiasm which, as far as they are concerned, leads to more jobs being delegated their way. While my reluctance to stop until it’s really done is not news for anyone around me, I’ve noticed that my infamous hyperactivity has been contagious for a change though. And I relish in this no end! Finally I can tell everyone what to do and they DO it, as well as coming up with more DIY jobs for themselves. It’s great altogether to see everyone get busy, all hands on deck. The positive: we all sleep a whole lot better, and loads of jobs around house and garden are getting done. The negative: there’s literally no real end to it because the list is indeed endless. So yes, it’s been good fun but also exhausting and we’re a bit knackered.
Being allowed some county-wide freedom has motivated us to take things up a notch even more before another kind of dynamic distracts us, and my two main concerns, my study and workshop, are now in fully functioning working order. YAY!!! I am so pleased, there are no words. Except that I will wax lyrical to everyone how well things turned out after all the hassle. I am not hiding my delight for anyone and, you guessed it, nothing can stop me now. [just keep singing it, you know you want to] Of course there are still some decorating jobs like framing artwork and painting the outside of my workshop, amongst other things. As it is, I can work though, and it already looks pretty good. I have put my study to good use also, writing more than I have in ages, fuelled by a lot of bottled up energy uncorked. It may be the sunshine, the extra bit of long craved freedom, the blooming spring energy from my garden, or just the fact that every day now brings me closer to seeing my family again [they’ll soon be fully vaccinated]. Probably it is a combination of all these things and then some…
My self-care regime of daily yoga and weekly sea swims, paired with a renewed joy in various creative pursuits just for the sake of doing it is certainly boosting my mood and settling my nerves. Anxiety still creeps up occasionally but I am able to channel this into healthy outlets at present. This may not seem so noteworthy except that, for me, it is. I am still learning to look after myself better, to not become collateral damage of my work, family or lifestyle choices. I am claiming a lot of my time back these days, showing up for myself as I would for others.
Back to those boxes and unpacking though… I purged not only my shelves but also my mind and attitude. There was still a good bit to unpack. I left behind a further chunk of my harsh criticism towards myself as I realised that the nagging perfectionism was the voice of someone else rather than my own. That crippling, unwelcome voice is no longer given heed and I will attempt to make my own one heard and come through instead.
You know how “better” is the enemy of “good”? I will try to not engage in that pointless fight with myself anymore because it is draining and leads to neither good nor better. In my two designated workspaces I am once again my own, on my own, taking charge. I have regained my space to think and work and create as or when I see fit. For that, I am incredibly grateful and I intend to hold on to that feeling of being at ease once more. It’s a peaceful state of mind, active rather than reactive. It’s a space to be contented with my "right here and right now", as is. A place where I can truly come and be as I am. Here, I can be snug yet free which is all I am craving right now, in this perpetual pandemic limbo.
As I am writing these lines, more good news are transpiring to lift plenty of people’s spirits though. Trading seems to be allowed back really soon, so I am mentally preparing myself for market days to come… Yes, overall, things are looking up, I think. Despite a bit of a head cold that has me getting some rest now after all the hustle and bustle, I am sneaking in most of the things I care about and it feels good. Maybe I really managed to pack and bring along only the healthy mindset, this time around? Long may it last, because I don’t know how many more times I fancy moving, (un)packing etc to get to that point. It always is a bit traumatic, too, I find. There inevitably are some emotionally charged findings, sentimental meltdowns, bits that are hard to let go, even when you know it’s the right thing to do.
One arrangement that has helped me to focus on where I want to take my mind next was a rather random yet brilliant thing I found myself lucky to be part of. On a spontaneous whim, literally in the middle of the night, I applied for a writing workshop that [serendipity!?] I came across by mere chance. Funded by the Arts Council, led by Maeve Higgins, and also attended by characters such as Patrick Freyne, Jon Ronson, Kevin Barry, and May Jeong, together with a handful of newly fledgeling writers such as myself. [I may or may not have had a slightly deranged fangirl smile pasted on my zoom face but that is beside the point, OK?] I was only delighted to be given the opportunity and it certainly had me recover my poise as regards what I can do. While you had better not hold your breath for immediate literary award action [I wish!], I might pick up my pencil for more specific projects in the near future all the same. It’s the process, the actual daring to do it again that matters to me first and foremost at this stage. To be continued…
Now so, I guess that is my news in a nutshell. Before I next write on here, I might see many of you back at the markets, fingers crossed. As always, don’t be shy, stop by for a browse and a chat, it’s good to talk and meet in person again! Or, if you’d rather err on the side of caution for another little while [which I totally understand, too], feel free to connect via my social media or all the usual modes of communication available these days. I’m right here for you either way!
With lots of love and warmest (germ free) hugs,