Representation matters

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , ,

CC0NYSVVAAA97Vv.png

Image credit: TES

I read an interesting article on Facebook the other day. It was about the movie Rogue One and the effect the accent of Mexican actor Diego Luna had on a woman and her father, who is also from Mexico and has a similarly heavy accent. If you want to read the article, do so here.

I don’t have an accent, but as a brown person who, as a child, rarely saw people that looked like myself on TV or anywhere else that matters, I teared up reading this article. It might seem like a little thing but representation does matter. When children don’t see people that look like them held up in the media as someone pretty or valuable or even just normal, they grow up feeling like outsiders. They feel different from everybody else, like they don’t exist.

For me, the saddest part about this is that I grew up as a mixed race brown person in Australia where everyone (well, not everyone but the vast majority) was white. When we moved to Jamaica when I was 10, I thought, ‘Finally, I’ll be like everyone else!’ But the opposite happened. People in Jamaica considered me white. I wasn’t one of them. I was a white person as well as a foreigner. An outsider squared. The only upside was that I found other mixed race children to hang out with and also brown skin was considered more desirable than darker skin so I traded up in that respect. Still, I was too skinny to fit the ideal Jamaican body type so I suppose I broke even in the end.

I don’t know how much different my life would have been if I was born looking like everyone else. When you’ve never looked like everyone else, you can’t possible imagine what it would be like to fit in. In the same way I’d imagine that if you’ve always been one of the majority, you can’t really see the privilege your skin colour, your slim body or your accentless voice gives you. Not that this is anyone’s fault. It’s just the way the world is and it will be a long time before anything changes in a major way. But it made me smile that something like this got so much traction, that people were moved by how happy one person was made because he saw a hero on screen that looked and sounded like him. Imagine how a young boy or girl would feel if they saw someone that looked like them featured in a magazine or in a movie and as a major character rather than just the sidekick to the hero? And it’s not even just a race thing – it’s a gender thing, a plus size (not sure if I like that term but oh well) thing, a sexuality thing. There are so many ‘things’ that can automatically dump you in outsider territory besides just race.

Yet with all I just said, I like enjoy different nowadays. I like being ‘exotic’. I wouldn’t have it any other way. But then again, I can’t, can I? I’ve just learned to love the things that make me look different from everyone else. I’m sure some people with the same experience still wish they could fit in and look like the people around them. And I think that’s sad and I hope one day they can embrace the things that make them different. Because the world is a better place for diversity even if Hollywood and fashion magazines and TV shows are only just starting realise it.

I’m back and I ate (nearly) all the Tim Tams

Tags

, , , , , , , ,

funny-new-years-blogs_1388107169.jpg

Image credit: Dai Manuel

Happy New Year (12 days late, I know)!

I’ve been having a somewhat cruise-y time of it of late. I’ve had the public holidays off from any kind of work but have had to do a little bit for Jared on the days when his bars are trading and we need to confirm/take bookings.

During that time, we spent two nights in Merimbula for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. Not very relaxing but lots of fun. We then spent from the 2nd to the 7th up at this amazing house in Whale Beach. That was relaxing with a fair smattering of fun thrown in for good measure. Definitely didn’t want to come home but had a comedy show on the night of the 7th and then a music festival on the Sunday. Both well worth coming back for although I wouldn’t have agreed with that statement while I was lazing by the pool in Whale Beach. Glorious pictures below – first one is of a random beach we found in Merimbula while waiting for our flight and the second is the view from our holiday rental in Palm Beach.

Am on a break from my other bosses until Monday and have only had to do a very little bit of work for them – once a week at most – which has been nice. It’s sooo much easier to keep a handle on things when you only have one boss!

Now that we’re back home and returned from the places we spent our New Year break, it’s time to get my ass in gear and get productive. I’ve felt very productive work-wise. Been getting a lot of stuff planned and organised for the events and social media stuff for Jared’s bars. I’m trying to be proactive and think up ways to improve processes and make things run smoother. I know I’ll have less time next week when I start back for my other bosses so I want to get as much as I can done now, while I still have the time.

I also want to start a new photo board for our kitchen wall. I redid it all last year and it would be nice to make some updates to include the various entries and exits our social life has seen. I had also planned to create some photo books with the pics from our wedding and possibly distribute those to our family and maybe the bridal party (depending on costs). Also, I still need to get cracking on those digital marketing and content creation courses I was going to do instead of my usual studies. They’re definitely not as time consuming as my uni degree but I still want to get started.

Oh yes, and the gym. Back to pilates and training I must go. I’m in the process of getting my wedding dress altered (cut shorter) so I can wear it again and, when I went to try it on today, it was more than just a little bit tight around my Xmas stuffing (i.e. my tummy). Thankfully, it was able to be fully zipped up and clasped but it was touch and go for awhile there. So yeah, exercise and better eating is something that’s going to have to happen soon. Why oh why did I find that packet of Tim Tams in the cupboard? That was a very unfortunate event.

So while I do have a decent sized to do list, I’m also not putting any pressure of myself to make any radical changes. 2016 me is still totally acceptable to me although of course there is always room for improvement. 2017 me is ready to go – although I do need to have a quiet word to her about moderation when it comes to eating any sweets she finds in the house. That bitch has no chill.

my-new-years-resolution-is-to-stop-kidding-myself-that-im-going-to-make-a-lifestyle-change-this-year-no-one-likes-a-cheap-skinny-sober-bitch-anyway-39365.png

Image credit: somelife

Goddammit, brain, you’ve got all day to think of this shit!

Tags

, , , , , , ,

2e506c3b6c62d4d95541d0a71dacd9db.jpg

Image credit: Pinterest

It’s 6.11am and my brain has been whirring away since 4am. I had a bad dream and then a mosquito attacked me and I haven’t been able to get back to sleep since. Oh yes, also my pug was panting  all night. It’s hot so I can’t really blame him but that didn’t stop me from putting him down on the floor around 5.30am. He seems to prefer it though (or at least the panting has calmed somewhat).

Aside from all the little disturbances, it’s mostly been my brain that’s been keeping me up. Despite having plenty of awake time, it seems to think the hours between 4am and 6am are optimum spots to consider things like: social media posts, things to raise in today’s management meeting and what/who’s been annoying me lately. While I agree that these are all valid things to think about, I definitely don’t agree that 4am – 6am is the best time to do so. I mean, come on. I went to bed around 11pm, and, thanks to my over-active brain, I now need to operate all day on 4 – 5hrs broken sleep. Thanks for nothing, cerebrum (not sure if it’s actually the cerebrum’s fault but I have no patience to run a google search right now on what part of the brain is actually responsible for this travesty).

This doesn’t happen to me all that often but, when it does, goddamn it’s frustrating. I can only imagine how maddening it must be for people with insomnia. There have been times when I’ve felt it coming on where I’ve popped half a Valium just so I could be done with it. Tonight (or should I say, this morning?), I realised too late that I wasn’t going to be getting back to sleep and a Valium at that point would have left me groggy all day. If those are my options, I’ll go with tired and cranky 99% of the time. Don’t know why. Sucker for punishment maybe.

Then again, maybe I should be grateful. After all, some of what my brain is throwing at me is actually useful stuff it hasn’t been able to come up with during the day. Perhaps what I need to do is have a chat with it about how to take notes (so it doesn’t forget) and then it can raise all these great ideas with me in the morning, when it’s a reasonable time to have these discussions. Surely this is something the brain would be open to? I mean, we all have to get along in this body of mine. No point pissing one another off unnecessarily. Of course, this assumes my brain is benevolent and interested in helping me and working together. If it’s not… we’ll, let’s not consider that.

Blankets and bed-wetting. I would say it gets better but I don’t like to lie

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

d12d5223b0d1843d39f077281b351e38.jpg

Can’t believe there’s a meme for this! Image credit: Pinterest

Did you ever have those hyper-realistic bed-wetting dreams as a kid? The ones where you wake up convinced you’ve peed yourself and start feeling around the sheets only to find it was a dream. Like that isn’t the worst idea ever. Yes, of course, I want my hands to be covered covered in pee. That’s exactly how I want this story to end. But then again, I suppose if you’ve peed the bed, you’d know instantly because you’d be in a puddle of your own making. And the very next thing you’d do would be to call out “Muuuuumm!” Ahh childhood, isn’t it grand? I suppose it’s even “better” if you’re the parent that has to clean all that mess up (not that I’d know, being quite happily child free for nigh on 34 years now ;)).

Anyway, as usual, I’ve gone off topic. I had a point and it was that I still get those dreams as an adult every now and again. I never actually wake up to find I’ve peed the bed (thank god) although I have very slightly poo-ed the bed once when I was very sick and I have to say there was no fucking warning dream for that! Sorry, too much information, I know, I’ll carry on with my bed-wetting dream story (cos that’s sooooo much better). But yes, the body seems quite good and interrupting the usual programming to tell you you need to get the fuck out of bed to relieve your bladder. It’s right too. Every time I wake up in a panic thinking I’m going to have some ‘splaining to do, I never actually do but I definitely need to go pee. It’s a handy little alarm system really.

I think I have a bit of a weird relationship with my bed and sleeping in general. I always, always, always have to sleep with a doona/blanket/duvet/whatever you call it in your country of origin/residence. This is regardless of how hot it might be. In Sydney, we’re currently experiencing one of our hottest summers on record (in over a century, I believe). Yesterday was the hottest day in I don’t know how long. Yesterday and today were both 36 degrees (you Americans can figure that shit out yourselves as punishment for Trump). It’s fucking HOT AS BALLS (a ridiculous phrase seeing as balls are biologically designed to keep cool) down here and yet I had to sleep with at least a piece of myself under the doona. Hell, I started off with the whole of myself under there because that’s the only way I can fall asleep. I weirdly don’t feel safe otherwise.

My child mind is convinced that whatever grim creatures slither out into the darkness when the lights go off will only be able to grab me if I’m not under the doona. Cos that’s how night time works. Blankets are your protection, your talisman against unwanted advances from the Boogie Man. And, fucking idiot that I am, I listen to my child mind and say, ‘Yes, that makes total sense. Let’s sleep under this fucking doona in close to 40 degree heat (we have no aircon, just a stupid fan that circulates the hot air and fucks with my sinuses) because monsters will get us otherwise and – fuck it – I grew up in Jamaica, what’s a bit of night time roasting if it means you don’t get snatched by the demon from Paranormal Activity?’

Are you still following me? Basically, I’m an idiot. Carry on.

7696d8440bc9b47b6beb755832c0b967.jpg

Also this. Image credit: Pinterest

Well, here we are again. That didn’t take long…

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , ,

87eafe9893f84dfba48e30d49e2b7b3b.jpg

Image credit: Pinterest

So, this is my sixth week working from home and, to be honest, I don’t feel like I’m anymore on top of it than I was when I last posted nearly four weeks ago (wow, that’s a pretty shit effort. I apologise). Between the new role with Jared’s bars (event and social media management) and my existing job (albeit with reduced hours) AND my uni work, I feel pretty frantic the majority of the time. I also end up going into the city most days either to take photos for social media or for meetings and site visits so the whole work from home thing isn’t a 100% reality (although I do most of my work from there and I don’t really mind the occasional break and chance to socialise).

That being said, hospitality in December is always hectic with xmas parties and bookings and so forth so I would expect that to be taking up a lot of my time but who knows how much it will drop off after that? I have time off from my other two jobs between 15 Dec and 16 Jan so that will be nice but I have some serious doubts about how sustainable this all is. Granted, I’m usually quite stressed the first two – three weeks of uni so this could be totally normal but part of me is also more than a bit over it.

I’m doing the social media stuff I wanted to be doing. Wasn’t that the goal? I suppose getting a degree was also the goal but I’m so. damn. tired. Maybe I just pause and do a social media/digital marketing course? Or am I just making excuses because I’ve hit a rough patch and there’s too much change in my life and I just want to take a step back and not feel so stressed all the time? I had a look online and my census date (the date after which I get penalised if I pull out of my units) is Monday so I have until then to decide. Of course, I can withdraw after that but it will show on my transcript, which is not ideal.

I really don’t want to quit yet another thing I said I would finish but part of me no longer sees the relevance. I just want to be a normal adult again! I keep getting little tastes of freedom here and there but then it’s so hard to go back and, every time someone asks me what I want to do with my degree, it just reinforces how little I’ve actually thought about what I want to do with this damn thing. *sigh*

I’m liking the variety of what I’ve currently got going on, even if it is a bit of a strain switching between the various roles. The events stuff lets me be organised and have some customer contact while the social media stuff allows me to be creative – writing little snippets of text and taking pictures, which is something I’m definitely improving at with practice. My other roles with my existing bosses is more of the organisation style stuff, which is ok and boosts my hours and brings in more money, which is never a bad thing.

I’ll ponder things this week. I already looked at some social media courses just to see what’s out there plus I have access to this online platform that has a few good social media tutorials so I might have a play around in there and see if anything grabs me.

Why is it so hard to decide what I want to be when I grow up?

iyz_study_motivation_quo.jpg

Image credit: Best Daily Quotes

#workfromhomelife continues

Tags

, , , , ,

Plan-your-work-for-today__quotes-by-Margaret-Thatcher-45.png

Image credit: Shawn and Emily Stoik

This week marks my second week of working from home. I have one more week (next week) to get used to everything and start managing my time in preparation for *da da da daaaa* the return of uni *shudder* So far I’ve been doing things willy-nilly, not really thinking much about hours and the response times we put in place, mainly because I didn’t really have that much else going on so I didn’t mind responding to non-urgent emails at 9pm. I’d see a notification flash up on my phone and I’d be curious so I’d read it and then think, well, I may as well answer it. It’ll take two seconds.

And that’s all well and good for now but it’s not going to cut it when I’m back at school. I need strong boundaries in place so I keep enough time aside for my studies. I’m also finding that I’m not spending as much time on work for my other bosses, especially this week. I’m getting everything done that’s necessary but I’ve been pushing a lot of non-time critical stuff back. Not the end of the world by any means but I’m definitely not giving them the time I’d allocated. One boss is fine, she doesn’t need all that much but the other had a significant reduction in his hours. Not that I think he would notice but I do and he certainly will when he sees my timesheet at the end of the fortnight.

I chalk it up to the fact that one of Jared’s bars launched a new cocktail menu this week and so needed more than usual social media. Plus I had to be in the city for a second day to do some site visits with potential event bookings. So I spent a lot more time than what I can only assume is normal (after two weeks of this role) with one particular venue/business. We’ll see, I suppose I can always try and get more done on Fridays when I don’t work for my other bosses. Next week my goal is to do a dry run and stick to my hours and manage my time as if I am already studying so that, when I do actually start, I’m already halfway used to it.

On the upside, I’m pretty chuffed to report that I’ve been going to pilates (three times last week and another three times this week, including tomorrow) and we had a session with our trainer on Wednesday (oh my god, my legs hurt so bad after this and yet I still went to pilates the next day like a goddamn fool). Jared has been sick and busy so I’ve tried to book myself into pilates for the days we’ve missed at the trainer so I’m at least doing something.

I used to do pilates alllllll the time a few years ago and going back after such a long time makes me realise how ridiculously weak I’ve become but at least I’m doing something about it now, right? Plus, even though I’m from home, I do a bit more walking when I’m in the city as I usually have to walk between the various businesses. Not sure if that adds up to more or less walking across the week (probably a bit less if I’m honest) but I’m kind of using working from home as my reason to force myself to do pilates. It’s just down the road and my hours are flexible – there’s no good reason why I can’t get down there everyday or at least three or four days a week (if we don’t see our trainer).

So yeah, that’s me. Living the dream at home but still trying to figure it all out. Haven’t quite gotten to the nudity/peejay dream yet but I suppose gym gear is that little bit closer.

f2285a0ea47d100094a6cd48505c0ffb.jpg

Image credit: Pinterest

Working from home: definitely not as much nudity as I expected

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

801107bc62713863a92789089497ee7f29939bdc541e15ca1e0704c5602b1505.jpg

Image credit: Ovidiu Bokar Blog

So in an effort not to mention the terrible shit show that is going down in the United States right now, I’m going to waffle on about how my new work from home gig is going. As of Monday, I’ve been from home and, I’ve got to say, it’s pretty damn sweet. I’m not cutting around naked or in my peejays quite as much as I’d expected but I’m feeling very productive (which would have to be the main thing, I suppose). Now it is only the first week and I haven’t had any hiccups of any kind as yet so we’ll see how that pans out but so far so good.

As part of my role as the new “social media guru” (ha!) for two of his bars, I had to go into one of the bars to get some pics of the cocktails for their new menu (and give my valued opinion on the quality of the drinks, of course). The bar is one of Jared’s new ones and I don’t actually go there very often. As a result, I barely knew any of the staff so I kind of felt like it was my first day of school. Will they like me? Will they accept me as one of their own? Or will they shun me and pretend I don’t exist? Well, I needn’t have worried (obviously, some might say). Everyone was very nice and friendly as well as very patient when I had to get photos of the drinks before anyone could try them (at Jared’s insistence) so, overall, I felt very included, which was a great weight off my mind.

Through reading this blog, you may have guessed that I’m much more of a word-y person than I am a visual one. I can appreciate a nice photo but I’m much more active on Facebook where words are more important (says me) than I am on say Instagram where it’s all about the sweet snaps (don’t even talk to me about Snapchat, not interested). I hardly ever take photos unless it’s of something that’s going to instil jealously in all my friends (that or make them laugh). So, while the captioning is fun and feels a bit more natural, the photography is going to require a bit more work from me. Plus Jared is a hard task master with a very particular idea of what he wants and likes. That being said, by the end of the cocktail tasting, I had a few shots in the bank that Jared gave the tick of approval so I think I just need to get some practice. Oh and get over my incredible self consciousness at being that person who’s always photographing everything and has to get the ‘perfect shot for Insta’.

At least I can rest assured knowing that my being that person can be solely attributed to Jared’s desire to have a beautiful IG feed for his venues. Oh, and my desire to take on the job, I suppose I can’t forget that. Hmmm… this is all on me, isn’t it? Damn it. I hate it when that happens.

Life on the married side of the fence

Tags

, , , , , , , ,

I’m just going to put it out there and say I could do both of these things before marriage. But, on a serious note, has being married changed anything? I ask myself this a bit actually and I’d have to say no – aside from giving each of us the option to give the other one shit with the occasional “oh this is what it’s like to be married now?” or “I don’t have to ask permission anymore, you’re my husband/wife, you’re officially property” jibe. So yeah, nothing’s changed in any kind of meaningful adult way.

What has changed is my work situation, which I’m pretty excited about. One of Jared’s managers quit and I’ve cut back my hours with one of my bosses so I can take on the social media component of her role. Super chuffed about that (although also a little scared). On top of that, one of his bars has started taking event bookings so I’m also the new Events Coordinator (or Captain of Events as I have self-titled myself – it’s a 1940s French Liberation themed bar). I’ll also be going to the managers meetings to see if I can make things more efficient there and generally make Jared’s life a bit easier so overall a lot more to do with his bars and a bit of a step back from my office management role (including dropping some of the stuff I wasn’t enjoying there – win!).

And the final and some might say greatest achievement – I GET TO WORK FROM HOME. Full disclosure: I do have to go in for a few hours on Thursdays and I’ll also need to go to the bars at some point to get content for my social media posts but, overall, this little piggy doesn’t have to go to market anymore. Woohoo. If this is married life, I’m digging it.

On the downside, my little puggy has been a bit more huffy and puffy than usual so I asked the vet to give him an extra look over at his monthly check up. Sadly, he has an enlarged heart which is putting pressure on his lungs and they don’t know what’s causing it. We leave him at the specialist on Wednesday for a bit of a closer look but basically, whatever they tell us, he’s just getting old.

The grumpy old sod is 12 now and, although he’s in pretty good nick (despite the missing eye and metal plate in his wrist), things are going to start failing him soon enough. Jared says I should feed him less cheese but I say let him live out his glory years in comfort and luxury. Although to be fair, he might have more glory years if I feed him less cheese. Note: I don’t actually feed him that much cheese, Jared just gives me extra shit on the few occasions when I do.

Additional but lesser points:

  • Back at training (more or less)
  • Back at uni as of 28 Nov (full time, no less)
  • Booked in for pilates tomorrow morning (we’ll see about that).

 

Now this is classic me

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

commitment.jpg

Image credit: Fiona Beck

I’ve been using this amazing smelling body cleanser from Lush. It’s called Karma and it smells spicy and exotic; it has sandalwood in it or some shit. Anyway, I love it but, when I went in there to re-up, the counter chick scared the crap out of me by telling me that my store is the only one in the whole world that stocks it (or maybe it was just Australia, the world seems like a bit of a stretch) and, once it’s done, they won’t make anymore.

Naturally, panic set in. How could I live without this amazing smelling body wash? Such a scenario was unthinkable. So today, I went back in and got four more bottles. I also bought some additional stuff that I probably didn’t need but fuck it, I’m going to smell delicious and be sooooooo soft (not that I’m not already). Everything was perfect. I wouldn’t have to be without my Karma body wash for a very, very long time. All my shower-based problems were solved, right? Right?

And yet… yet… the minute everything had been rung up and the check out chick started packing my big, brown paper bag, I thought, ‘oh shit, now I’m stuck with this stuff.’ Despite having been desperate to never, ever run out just seven fucking seconds prior, I was now questioning my logic:

Do I really need that much? There are plenty of other fabulous smelling shower gels. Mightn’t I want to try something new in the near future?

If so, I’ve fucked that up unless I plan on giving some away as gifts or letting them sit there gathering dust like deliciously spicy-smelling, gel-filled cupboard figurines.

Commitment. I’ve always had a problem with it. I love, love, love something and then – just like that – I don’t. Poof! You’re obsolete. I’m onto the next thing. Sorry. I feel bad for the countless face washes, lipsticks, hair products, perfumes, etc., that I’ve sworn by and then… just… not. Luckily, Jared is not a cosmetic or else he might have gone the way of all these products I decide no longer suit my purposes, despite being the holy grail product up until the moment they weren’t. I suppose it says more about me that I’d probably care to consider so let’s not dwell on any further.

Speaking of Jared, the marriage after glow is in full effect, no need to fear. Although I think the shock of returning to reality (read: returning to work) has plunged him into a deep post-holiday/wedding/mini-moon extravaganza depression. Meanwhile, I, on the other hand, am feeling excited to be back at work and being productive (although I have had a few exciting developments on that front – details to follow when things are a bit more solid).

Now if I could just get back to training; Jared couldn’t do Monday and our trainer can’t do tomorrow. I suppose I could go to pilates or do something on my own but… nahhhhhhh. That’s definitely not classic me (well, not at the moment anyway).

Happy followed by sad

Tags

, , , , , , , ,

Today, we drove back from our four night mini-moon to attend the funeral of one of Jared’s aunts, Aunty Deb. She’d been sick for awhile and had just received a heart transplant but there were complications and she ended up passing away on Monday. We got the news as we were on the way home two days after our wedding.

Over the last few years, I’ve been to a few funerals for Jared’s family. His uncle passed away about two years ago. Then last year his grandfather had a series of strokes that eventually lead to his death in late October/early November. We watched him deteriorate just that little bit more each time. He was a wonderful man, someone I loved and admired much more than my own grandfather, and it was heartbreaking to watch him go from someone so strong to someone so dependent on others. On the day he died, we were on our way down to see him but got a text message saying he’d passed when we were just 30mins away.

Jared is/was very close to his maternal grandparents (he lived with them for awhile as a child) and it hit him very hard. Aside from not getting to say goodbye, I know he’d wanted his grandfather to be alive when he proposed to me and to be there on our wedding day. Sadly, his grandmother also couldn’t make it to the wedding as it was too far for her to travel. His poor grandmother has seen two of her children and her husband of 65 years pass away in such a short time. Sometimes I think the only thing that keeps her so strong is that she needs to care for her disabled daughter who still lives with her.

While I had only met Aunty Deb a few times over the years, she was always pleasant and friendly and was one of Jared’s extended family members that we saw most often as she lived in our area so we’d sometimes run into her. The service was held in a church and was hugely religious (as was Jared’s grandfather’s and uncle’s). I’m not religious at all so, during the formal readings and bible passages, I found myself feeling a bit awash in words that didn’t really make me feel anything. I stood up and sat down when told and was respectful throughout yet, even if the formalities themselves didn’t touch me, the emotion and sadness in the room was palpable.

For me, the tough moments always come during the eulogies when you get a feel for the person’s life and what they meant to the people they’ve left behind. Deb was a nurse and one of her nursing colleagues spoke about her dedication to her job and refusal to take time off, even up to the day before her heart surgery. Her son broke down during his speech and had to be comforted by his sister and Jared’s mum. He eventually recovered and delivered such a touching and lightly humorous remembrance of his mother that very few people were left dry-eyed (myself included). Back at the wake, we watched a photo slideshow of Deb’s life – her youth and her with her children and her grandchildren.

There were a few moments where I cried or struggled to hold back tears throughout the day. I even cried at his uncle’s funeral – a man I’d never met. It’s hard not to cry at these things. To see your partner cry, to see his family in pain, to imagine how it would feel if it were your grandparent, uncle, aunt, sister, cousin, mother, whatever – it would take a heart of stone to remain completely unmoved.

And yet for me, the religious part was the only time I felt cold. I know it’s a very personal thing and no one can tell someone else what they should or shouldn’t believe; we all use what we can to get through the day. I came from a very religious upbringing (my mum is still very religious) so I understand the peace you can get from believing in a higher power, someone benevolent watching over you and something better to look forward to when you eventually die.

I believe we just stop existing, which, to me, is not a terrible thing. It just means I need to live the best life I can now because this is it and I don’t think I’m going to carry on and meet anyone in any kind of afterlife (and even if there was, let’s be honest, I’m probably headed down, not up 😉 all the ‘good’ people will be anyways). But I can certainly understand the appeal of this life not being the end and having the chance to be reunited with everyone we’ve loved and lost. It’s just not something I can subscribe to.

Funerals always make me think about these types of things. I looked at the program with all the bible quotes and thought – what will they do for me? It will just have to be quotes from books and poetry and stories of my life, the things I’ve done and how people will remember me. That doesn’t sound so bad. Not that I’m planning on dying soon but we all do eventually, don’t we? Which reminds me, I don’t have a will.

Sorry for being so morbid today, guys. Things will be better tomorrow (I think).