So here we are, already in the second half of 2022. I’ve been appalling at maintaining my blog this year. It always seems to be the first thing to go on the backburner when life gets busy. The irony is, that’s probably one of the reasons I ended up seeking therapy earlier this year. My blog has been my therapy for the last (almost) 4 years, and it’s when I’m not writing that my mental health starts to suffer.
Anyway, here I am on a sunny afternoon in July, with some time to sit down and write. It’s a gorgeous warm summer’s day here, and I’m looking forward to heading out to one of my favourite local spots this afternoon to read my book in the shade of the trees.
June was a long-awaited month of adventures. We celebrated the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, and I was lucky enough to squeeze in not one but two trips abroad, either side of visiting my family for Father’s Day.
Although there was plenty of adventure in June, it was the month I had least been looking forward to, as it marked the 10th anniversary of losing my best friend.
We also said a sad farewell to one of my cousins last month. Although I couldn’t attend his funeral, my thoughts were very much with my family, especially as my Auntie (my cousin’s mum) was admitted into hospital the same week.
My parents were also due to go abroad for the first time since lockdown too. However, my brother picked up an infection just days before their trip, so they had to remain at home instead. They handled the disappointment far better than I would have done.
Although June was tricky to navigate in parts, I was grateful to get back on the adventure trail, leaving the country for the first time since December 2019.
Here’s a little look back at some of my highlights from June.
Back to the Island
In the first week of June, my boyfriend and I headed to Ibiza for four nights of sun, sea, and, well, you can probably guess the rest.
With a busy and challenging start to the year, we were excited to get away together for some much-needed sun and relaxation. Although it wasn’t our first holiday together, it was our first trip abroad in our three-year relationship, thanks to lockdown.
I had been to Ibiza around seven years ago and loved the vibe there. I knew my boyfriend would like it too, so it was an easy decision to head back.
We stayed in a beautiful beachfront hotel in Es Canar and treated ourselves to an all-inclusive stay.
We stayed in Es Canar for the entire trip, although we eventually left the hotel to visit the famous Hippy Market. We also took a little boat trip and swam in the Mediterranean Sea.
Everything we needed was right on the doorstep of the hotel. It was just what we wanted and just what we needed.
A perfect little getaway – if it hadn’t been for delayed flights and flying from Stanstead, which we’ll never do again 😅.
A Break and a Breakthrough
Due to my holidays and my therapist having some time off, I only had one therapy session in June.
It was nice to have a break as we were coming up to the halfway mark of my block of 12 sessions. It also gave me time to reflect on what I had learned in the first few sessions.
As well as enjoying a break, I finally let go of some of my resilience. In the session I did have last month, I finally let go. There were tears. Not many, but I needed tissues. My resilient side moved aside for long enough for me to show some emotion.
I’m still figuring stuff out, but as I become more aware of what sits behind my anxiety, I will no doubt be blogging about it, so watch this space.
The Italian Job
Whilst my boyfriend headed off to the other side of the world to see his family, I used it as an excuse to book a week in Italy.
I’d never been to Italy before, but a friend moved there last year, and it seemed like a great excuse to go and visit her.
It also happened to coincide with the 10th anniversary of my best friend leaving us, which made the timing even better. It was a case of moping around at home or heading away on an adventure.
So I somehow found myself at Stanstead airport again (seriously! Never again!) to catch my plane to Bologna. I would then get the train to Ferrara, where my friend would be waiting for me.
I spent a lovely long weekend with my friend, exploring and laughing and drinking coffee and eating lovely food, before heading back to Bologna, which would be my base for the last four nights of my trip. As I would be flying solo in Bologna, I decided to test out how easy it would be to do my job abroad.
It turned out it was incredibly easy, so I spent my mornings working from the comfort of my air-conditioned hotel before heading out into the blazing heat (don’t let the cloud cover fool you…it hit 40C one day!) to explore Bologna in the afternoons and evenings.
It was my first time exploring a city abroad on my own, and whilst I enjoyed it, there are lots of things I would do differently next time (I can feel another blog post coming on about this)!
I loved Ferrara, and I’m keen to go back to explore more of Italy soon.
A New Gig
Work has picked up this year, and I feel privileged to work with some fantastic clients.
Although I keep telling myself I’m maxed out with clients, just before the end of May, I was approached by someone I’ve been following online since I turned freelance last year.
And you’ve guessed it! I couldn’t say no, although it’s led to the first bout of imposter syndrome I’ve had since I became freelance.
You can’t ever take things for granted in the freelance world, so I’m going to sit back and enjoy riding this wave for as long as it lasts.
That’s all for this week. I’d love to know what you got up to in June. Why not let me know in the comments below?