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Last post of 2021

Looking at a country road from ground level as it goes into the distance. There are tall trees either side of the road, with sunrise coming through the trees.
From Pexels

So, it’s the end of the year. I was all prepared to write something deep and meaningful. I thought about a specific topic as I was on my walk this morning. It was a long walk, I had lots to think about. But now when I come to it, it’s gone.

Rather than try to remember what it was or to try and put it into words, I’ll sum up with a few things I’ve learned this year.

  1. The pain of losing a pet is real, true and horrific. And you can only get another pet when you are ready. Even though new pet is awesome, you still miss your previous one at times.
  2. After having made the lowest amount of money in one financial year in my freelance career (OK, it’s not technically finished yet, but …) know when to say ‘no’ and to have the confidence to say it without fear of repercussions.
  3. Learning how to value your work and your time is essential – you are worth more than you know (and that goes for fees too). It’s an ongoing process, but the process has started.
  4. Knowing when to take time out from anything / something / everything is also vital – without good mental health, everything else suffers too – and the people around you too.
  5. Being gay in the UK is becoming increasingly uncomfortable, what with the rise in homophobic attacks, abuse and bullying – however, there are people and organisations that have your back. (As I am not trans, I cannot comment on the level of transphobia in the UK, but I support the trans community as part of the LGBTQIA+ community – there is no LGB without the T).
  6. Arguing with strangers on social media is pointless and unnecessarily upsetting.
  7. Nordic walking is the best form of exercise for me – both mentally and physically. I have done more exercise in these last two months than in the whole ten months prior. And I intend to keep on going. Gyms are not the place for me; get me out in nature.
  8. Nature is healing – and must be protected. And people who put dog poo in plastic bags and then just leave them in the countryside are c***s.
  9. Learning to love your body is a long, long process. There may be times when you think back to those terrible negative feelings – but they will go and be replaced by non-negative feelings, and this is a start. To be continued.
  10. Body size and attitude to it is a social construct. In general, you will not see many people who look like you in the media or in adverts – but you still exist. It’s way past time for society to change.
  11. I have a new found love for hats, both woolly and pork pie. They look good with my scarves.
  12. No matter how much you think you have lost yourself, there is always a chance to rediscover yourself – and take that chance. And those who think they know themselves perfectly, there are always more things to learn.

On to 2022. Have a good one.

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