I’ve just woken up from a nap and I’m feeling slightly reminiscent.
I’ve always been one of those reflective people – looking at what I have achieved and how life has shaped me over the years. 2019 has been tough.
It was the year I really struggled with my pernicious anemia. I was diagnosed with it a few years ago but I never really felt any of the side affects until this year. Exhaustion and fatigue were my biggest enemy, especially during my dissertation research, where I lacked the energy to get out of bed for a week. I literally had to force myself to get up, get dressed and go to work. I didn’t touch my uni work though.
I’ve kinda come to terms with it now; I’ve started napping a lot. I’ll nap even when all I’ve done all day is walk my dog. I also stay in bed a lot of the time. If I’m not in work, you’ll find me under the duvet with a book. I need a good and long night’s sleep to properly function otherwise it’ll affect my energy throughout the week.
I also got out a bad relationship. I was in a relationship with this boy for three years. It wasn’t right, you know? We weren’t good for each other, but we stuck it out because it was familiar to us. I wasn’t the perfect girlfriend, I’ll admit, but all my issues sprung from insecurity and doubt. He wasn’t a very good person – emotionally abusive, a bad temper, irrational and manipulative. He felt attacked if I raised issues. I had to change – not him.
I’m glad I’m went through with it, though, because now I know how to be treated. I know not to settle for less, and I’ll voice concerns if I need to. I’m very lucky I found Carson this year. He listens and respects me. I don’t feel insecure or jealous. We can have time apart, but still want to spend time together. I’m allowed to meet his family and friends, which is something my ex wouldn’t let me do.
2019 also saw me finish university for good. I graduated with a Master of Arts degree in Victorian Literature. It nearly killed me,
and it definitely killed my love for Victorian classics, but I’m so glad I stuck with it. Victorian literature is *very* special to me. I had the opportunity, the grades and the money to study it at a higher level; I would have hated myself if I didn’t take the chance. It was hard work. I really struggled with the workload, with writing at “a higher level” and with adjusting to a new university. But I did, and I’m proud of myself.
I also worked towards getting a full-time job in publishing. I’ve been applying for jobs since September but haven’t had much luck. One publishing house got back to me, but it wasn’t the right fit (you can find out more here). I’m still working in my current retail job, applying for entry-level jobs, apprenticeships and work experience in the meantime. I got offered a weeks placement at UCLan Publishing house, which I was ecstatic about! I got to nurture my love for editing whilst trying out some different areas of publishing.
I’m hoping 2020 will be the year I finally get a job in publishing. Finger’s crossed!
This year I also travelled on a plane for the first time where I visited my boyfriend’s family in Belfast. I took myself on a solo day trip to York, where I wandered the Shambles and visited a Victorian street. I visited the Brontë Parsonage to celebrate 200 years since Patrick moved the family to Haworth – I even bought myself the limited edition copy of Jane Eyre which cost me (
and my mum) £250! I holidayed in Edinburgh, stopped off in Skipton, saw Alnwick Castle, moved from and then back to Liverpool.
I’ve had a slow, eventful year. I’m hoping 2020 will bring me enlightenment, a reason to leave my current job and happiness. I hope 2019 has treated you kindly and 2020 will be even better.
What’s your favourite memory of 2020?
Thanks for reading, Lauren X