I been runnin’

What I am listening to – Jack Garrett ‘Water’ and ‘Follow the sun’ by Caroline Pennell are currently on a loop.

HI FRIENDS,

I am currently sat in my bed, I’ve been here all-day, sleeping and thinking on and off. A rare day off when I have no plans I wasn’t really going to do much more. I have just had food shoved down my throat, as I hadn’t eaten all day today and most of yesterday and have just finished watching ‘To The Bone’ on Netflix.

The weather had also added to my want to not leave my house. You gotta love the great British summer. I feel I may be one of the weird ones though, I quite enjoy a heavy downpour; I find watching the rain calming.

Today I am thinking about running. Not as in the physical act of running – which I have not done for months (must.try.harder) and has contributed to my turning into a bigger lard than ever – but the running away we do in day-to-day life. Do you run away from stuff? I know I do, all the time. From people and problems. Uncomfortable situations. Embarrassing ones. It’s easier to be alone, it’s easier to keep to yourself. It’s easier to ignore things. It’s easier, but probably not particularly healthy.

I mean, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realise that running away and avoidance doesn’t help anyone or anything. Running away is an escape mechanism we use because we think we’re protecting ourselves.

 

“Ignorance is bliss”

 

but is it?

The issue you’re avoiding will still be there until you deal with it. If you’re really lucky, like me, it will sit in your subconscious and you’ll dream about it. We end up backing ourselves into a corner until we have no choice but to deal with it. How many people do you know that are in relationships not because they’re in love with each other anymore but because it’s easier to stay as they are? It’s comfortable so why rock the boat? How many of us stay in jobs we hate because the fear of failing at what we really want to do is too embarrassing?

I guess what I’m trying to say, and remind myself, is that until we acknowledge what we’re running from, until we muster up the courage to deal with what we’re running from it isn’t going to go away. It will just be a continuous circle in our lives. Similar situations will crop up, we’ll think and feel the same things over, over, over and over again until the day we decide enough is enough. We need to consciously decide to break the habit.

Facing these issues, these fears will help us grow as people. It may not be comfortable, it may be scary but it is essential. We can’t keep running from our pain and hope that when we stop and look over our shoulders it will be gone.

I’m not saying that I have the answers to finding this bravery, I just know I need to find it. So if you have the answers, send them my way.

 

Cheers all the best,

 

Micks xoxo

 

You can’t run away from your problems. They will just chase you and get bigger and bigger. If you stand and face them, they will shrivel and disappear.” -W.H. Fordham

WAKE UP

The last month or so has been tough emotionally and it has served a reminder of my own mortality. There has been a number of people passing away around me; their ages across the spectrum and most of them a massive shock.

I was at the funeral of one of those people last week and whilst I was sat there listening to his eulogy and hearing his son speak about what an amazing man his dad was, something clicked. It almost shook me awake to my own life and to how much I have to be grateful for; to all the wonderful people I have in my life and how I perhaps have been very selfish with my time and energy – what would my last memory of them be if they passed? What was theirs be of me if I did?

 

I do realise this sounds very morbid and is probably a bit heavy for a Tuesday night but these thoughts have been taking up a lot of space in this little brain of mine for a while so I figured it was best to get it out there and share it.

 

Being completely honest I have been a selfish mother****** lately with my energy and my time. I have been going through a ‘Why me?’ ‘Why is it always me?’ “Why can’t everyone leave me alone, stupid twats’ phase. I don’t throw pity parties often but boy, when I do! WOO! I have not wanted to talk to anyone, let alone be around them. Work is my perfect escape – with a new team in a new location there is no one that knows me personally to care to ask about my life. They just want Michaela the manager, not Michaela the person and that has suited me just fine. I’ve ignored calls, cancelled plans, told people I was busy when I wasn’t just because I wanted to be alone. I am a true Gemini in that there are two sides to me. I am equal parts introvert and extrovert. I love people but also hate them. This last while I’ve kept to myself because it is easier. There has been about 5 people I’ve been genuinely pleased to hear from in the last month – call me an asshole, it’s fine. I have been one.

 

How many of us have found life through death? It’s a shame that it takes something as final and tragic as death to wake us up. To make us realise what a good thing we’ve got going on. It’s a reminder to live life to the fullest because tomorrow isn’t guaranteed. Truth is, none of us know what is going to happen so why spend your time being anything but happy? Why spend your time being anything but honest? Be kind. Trust Karma will meet those that need it. Don’t settle for any reason. Don’t be afraid to change your mind.

 

The pain and discomfort of grief will follow us everywhere we go – anyone who has lost someone knows this but we can choose everyday what we do with it. We can let it defeat us or let it strengthen us; fall apart for a while, for a day or a week when you need it but remember to pick yourself back up and start again. There is so much more for you to experience. Choose hope every day.

 

Tell the people you love what they mean to you. Hug them. Love them. Treasure them. Give them the one thing above all that they deserve – your time. Try to be grateful for every day; I know I will.

 

“Every day’s a gift, that’s why it’s called the present”

 

xoxo

Words to learn from.

Hi friends,

I hope you’re well on this beautiful, beautiful Saturday. I have had lovely belated birthday out with two of my most favourite friends. I’ve come home with slight sunburn, face paint and lots of memories and possible plans for the future.

So, fun fact about me; I don’t really like people but I am a little obsessed with what they all think. I love listening or reading about people and I adore them sharing their lessons and views on anything and everything. I truly believe that we can learn so much if we just listen. We very often listen just to respond, we don’t listen to learn. We just need to pay attention.

Another fun fact about me: since I was around 15 I have kept journals filled with my thoughts / lessons learnt but also with the words of others that have, for one reason or another, struck a chord with me. Sometimes it has been what I needed to hear at the time, others it has been that I just knew I’d need to hear it at some point in the future. I’ll jot them down in a notepad, other times I’ll take a photo of them with my phone or in the ‘notes’ app and I go over them from time to time.

Today, I did just that and thought I’d share some of those with you. The majority of these are from this year; some are from years gone by. Unfortunately I am not so great at noting down where I get them from, some you may recognise, others you may not but all rights to their respective owners. Some of them I have added my thoughts in brackets to, others I haven’t.

Here we go…

“Ruin is beautiful. It’s where transformation happens” (What a beautiful way to look at it)

 

“Real loss is only possible when you love something more than you love yourself”

 

“We all need someone who challenges us, someone who touches our soul”

 

“Some people can’t believe in themselves until someone else believes in them first” (This is me. 100% )

 

“We get to choose who we let in to our weird little world”

 

“Sure you’ll have bad times, but it will always wake you up to the good stuff you weren’t paying attention to” (PREACH)

 

“Part of growing up is learning to leave behind the nasty remarks and the hurt that comes with them and turning them into positives.”

 

“Ugliness is on the inside. Hatred and cruelty are what make a person truly ugly”

 

“The perfect marriage, just like the perfect wedding, doesn’t exist”

 

“It’s what marriage is all about: finding someone to love and love you back, through lifes hurdles. There should be excitement and fun but its how you deal with the tough times, how you get through the day-to-day and grow together that matters”

 

“We must take care of our family, no matter where we find them” (For someone who has always said family is purely blood, nothing more, this is super on point)

 

“The only way to heal is to trust”

 

“I thought too much, felt too much. I didn’t want to feel anything” – this should be engraved on my gravestone when I die.

 

“Getting older means accepting loss; it’s a fact of life. Some people will stay forever, some wont. It’s the heartbreak of being on this planet”

 

“My friends are my human wonderbras. Supportive, uplifting and they make me look bigger and better” (Thanks to my human wonderbras. You know who you are)

 

“There are people that you have that you cant bullshit and you have to be honest with them. Whether you want to or not”

 

“To be of service to other people is a purpose of life”

 

“The centre of the earth can be anywhere you want it to be”

 

“Sometimes closure arrives years later. Long after you stopped searching for it. You’re just sitting there, laughing this laugh that is unapologetically yours. As it trails off, the corners of your mouth hugs your face and it hits you “I’m happy”. It’s just like that. With no fanfare or epiphany. Suddenly you are grateful for the goodbyes that carried you to this moment; to the space you are now holding” (LIFE GOALS)

 

And the last one… a lovely one to finish with

 

“You’re always someone’s hero, whether you know it or not”

 

There we have it… just a selection of those I’ve noted down this last while. Those that know me may be able to guess which ones struck a chord with me and why – possibly even ones that I haven’t yet figured out myself. Anyway, I hope you enjoy them, I hope that maybe you might have had a moment of clarity when reading one of them.

 

I know I have.

 

From me and my hippy heart

Big love xoxo

Micks

The year of 27.

Where I am: my bed

Listening to : Paramore ‘After Laughter’

Wassup dawgggss!!

WHAT A YEAR. Next week marks 3 years since I started sharing my word vomit with the world. It is also my 28th birthday. I seem to have made a tradition for myself in sharing lists around this time of year – normally things I’ve learnt. This year though I am going to share 27 things I loved about being 27; it’s a great way to say goodbye to my 27th year.

I started 27 off the saddest and have ended up the happiest. Life will throw all sorts of things your way but it makes you tougher, it makes you funnier (we all know I’m hilarious) and it makes the good times exponentially more magical.

So here it is, 27 things I loved about being 27.

I SAW PAUL MCCARTNEY AND RINGO STARR IN THE FLESH

I just so happened to be in Leicester square the same time they were. I was going to the theatre, they were there premiering their movie ‘Eight Days a Week’. I had to jump to see them, but I did. Be still my beating heart.

PRAHA

Since 2010 I have wanted to visit this magical city. An old friend had studied there for a year and his tales made me want to go. This year I did. Leanna turned 21, so we made a special trip. Such fun.

ARLO RALPH BOULTER

Nuff’ said

I FELL IN LOVE WITH MY OTHER 2 NEPHEWS EVEN MORE

Oscar has been the main man since 20/11/2011. He is the best kid, I laugh so much when I’m with him. I could cry with pride at the person he is becoming.

Mason-James – we started the year hating each other. We finished it as best friends. He is the dreamiest little guy.

I WAS VERY BRITISH AND HAD AFTERNOON TEA AT THE RITZ

Momma Sophs asked to go for her birthday so that’s what we did. I was far too common to be allowed in a place like that but I somehow managed to sneak in.

FRIENDS FEST

Naughty Norman made it happen last minute. I love that girl and loved that day.

OK LADIES NOW LET’S GET IN FORMATION

Beyonce pt 2. Croke Park, Dublin. Ain’t no party like a Queen B party.

NICK THE TIGER WAS IMMORTALISED ON MY WRIST

Many of you know we lost our boy Nick Lashaway in May 2016. This is my tribute to him.

I HAD A MENTAL BREAKDOWN

I liked this, huh? Well, yes. It gave me clarity, a different outlook and a better direction. As a result of this…

I LEARNT WHO WAS TRULY RIDE-OR-DIE

And who is ‘ride until you do something I don’t like/agree with’

THE BOOK OF MORMON

I’d read the reviews, I’d seen snippets on Youtube but was yet to go. Was it worth the wait? Abso-fuckin-lutely. Hilarious, I laughed from the opening number right through to the finale.

CLIMBED THE 02

Miranda and Stevie had a little day out. Such fun!

I FELT THE LOVE

When I needed it most, even when I didn’t ask for it, I felt the love from my pals. When I felt like I was free-falling and couldn’t find solid ground they were there at the side saying ‘It’s right here’. Biggest shout outs go to Sophie, Leanna, Dalbs, Rachpal and the BFG.

HELSINKI

I finally got to go and see my bro and his hoe in their city.

ICE HOCKEY GAME

Y’all know I have lots of friends in the US of A. The only American sport I was really interested in was Ice Hockey. It may have taken 4 years but I finally got to a game. Thanks, Wilf!

I REALISED YOU DON’T HAVE TO RUN AWAY TO CHANGE YOUR LIFE

What is probably obvious to some was not so to me. I felt very stuck this time last year. Very unhappy with an injured heart. An old dream came back to me and I thought it would change everything. Until I realised it wouldn’t and the dream had changed. I was running away. It’s not necessary.

DISNEY

The most magical day.

DIANE ALICE LORRAINE GOT BOOKFACE

Many of you will not understand the significance of this. It’s HUGE..

I CAME OFF MY HAPPY PILLS

Happy pill free since Aug ’16.

I REDISCOVERED MY LOVE FOR MY WORK

It feels different this time; I’m so much happier. Sure there are still days I want to put my head through a wall but overall it’s all gravy baby.

INDIA WITH MIRANDA AND STEVIE

So this is happening. Our boss authorized us to be off at the same time saying “Please both come back in one piece as I can’t be down two store managers”
Michelle “Oh I’ll be fine but if she pisses me off too much I might sell her for a camel”
Charming.

FRIENDS AND FOOD

I found those friends that find it acceptable to eat dinner in one place and then go somewhere else for dessert. Hashtag winning. Next time we’re going 3 for 3 – starter, main and dessert at separate places.

DELETE

If anything is too much effort, delete. This goes for everything from Social Media (see ya, twitter) to friends.

NEW FRIENDS

I’ve spoken about this before but this year I made some new pals, ones that I wasn’t looking to make but now I wouldn’t be without them. Big up yourselves.

NICK LASHAWAY DAY

It was magical from start to finish and the most perfect way to remember him, big love to my American Fam for including me. I’m sure he would have been rolling his eyes at all the fuss haha.

ACCEPTANCE

The road to self love, and accepting yourself is a long one. I’d been unhappy for a long time. This year I feel like I have accepted myself more. It will no doubt always be a battle for me but I feel like I’ve made my biggest leaps down that road this year.

I LOVE LIFE

For someone that was unhappy for so long this is a big statement to make. 27 will always be the year that I fell back in love with life, I’m excited for the future.

Final thoughts:

Make the most of every single second. Be nice to people. Never go to bed on an argument and never mix your drinks!!

Thank you to anyone and everyone that has impacted my life in the last year, thank you to those I have learnt from. Thank you to those friends that have been there for the good and the bad, I am lucky enough to call some of the best people on the planet my friends. Thank you all for believing in me and seeing my light when I couldn’t see it myself (Amy Jayne, especially you here. You never stop telling me). I’m not quite sure what I’ve done to deserve you all but I am so grateful. I’m going into 28 with so much joy and gratitude in my heart.
Thanks for the adventures. Thanks for the laughs (Byng, especially you. Please never, ever change)

THANK YOU. THANK YOU. THANK YOU.

It’s been magic!!

Xoxo Micks

Opinion Overload

I have recently realised something about myself; I have a lot of opinions. I know, I know – state the fucking obvious Michaela.

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When I was in Ireland a while back I remember looking for an article to show my friend on my Facebook wall that I had shared previously and that’s when it hit me – a lot of my posts had been politically charged or about sensitive issues such as sexual abuse, being part of the LGBTQ community, feminism, sexism… you catch my drift; all topics that easily divide opinions.

The first thing that ran through my head was “wow, I bet my friends roll their eyes at all my posts and shares.” I was sorry that I had opinions. Then when I really thought about that knee jerk reaction I had to seeing my own posts I became annoyed – at me. I was sorry? WHAT NOW? Why would I not share something that I find interesting just because someone I connect with on social media might disagree with it? It’s more likely that they just scroll right pass it and don’t think about it.

Opinions. We’ve all got one, right?

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Opinions are healthy, opinions mean we are interested and engaged in what is going on around us; in our lives and in the world.

We don’t all have to agree on everything; it isn’t natural for us to. That doesn’t mean we should stop forming, having and expressing opinions. There is nothing I love more than a healthy debate so I personally really enjoy when people have differing opinions. I’d like to think that my opinions are based on a healthy mix of common sense, education about the topic at hand and perhaps a dash of empathy where necessary. I’d also like to presume that everyone elses opinion are based on this mix but one look at the comments section on pretty much ANY online article and I find myself realizing that this is very, very wrong.

You can learn a lot from people who have different opinions and in turn you teach them a lot. What cannot be condoned though is ignorance and, to a point, stubbornness. Opinions are changeable but without that willingness to learn and communicate or process new information in an objective way you will never grow and will probably end up quite a lonely person – I mean, who wants to be around someone who thinks they are ALWAYS right? Not me, sister!

I have always been an opinionated little ratbag. I remember people giving me shit in school for it when I was about 10 years old. Back then it bothered me, now not so much. Why would I chose to stay silent about things I feel strongly about, especially on my own social media? Perhaps more importantly, why should I feel I should keep quiet?

One day I may become so un-bothered by the world and not give a hoot anymore but until then if you dislike me and my opinions then please remove yourself from my social media profiles.

Right, I’m off to sign up for opinions anonymous.

Ciao for now

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The one where Elsa was the inspiration.

How often have you heard the phrase ‘let it go’?

Not including all the times you sang along with Elsa, obvs. How many times in life do we tell ourselves, and the others around us to ‘let it go’?

When you’re having a bad day, life is getting you down it seems to be people’s go to phrase.

“Let it go”.

It’s a great message in theory – accept life and situations for what they are, some things cannot be changed. There is definitely an argument for it being a cornerstone of a happy life.

I just have one problem.

It’s hard.

It’s really fucking hard.

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When we’re being asked, or told, to let go of something, it’s usually something (or someone) we’re very passionate about, something we’re deeply connected to. It almost seems like we’re being told to forget about the past – forget about the person or event we’re connected to. Letting go is something very, very different to forgetting though.

If we’re all honest, we all have things we need to let go of. Myself included. If anyone reading this can so “no, I don’t” then I’m really very jealous.

As I previously said, it’s really hard to let go. It takes a lot of work on our part. We have to really look at the situation and work out what it is we’re attached to. Is it really the person or event? Or is it how it made us feel? Is it idea of them and/or it?

Only when we’ve been really honest can we start the process of letting go. When we let go of what’s holding us back and whatever is tying us to the situation then the healing can begin.

“We must be willing to let go of the life we planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us” said someone, somewhere at sometime. I know, it’s cliché af and basic but there is actually some truth in it.

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We need stop over thinking everything. We need to stop projecting how we think the future is going to pan out – that doesn’t mean don’t have goals, don’t have drive and ambition – it means get rid of that image in your head of how you think it will be, get rid of the “I’ll be happy when…” phrase.

If you’re on the “things should be this way for me to be happy train” GET OFF NOW; you have reached your final destination.

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Staying fixated on how you think your life should be not only stops us from letting go but also stops us from appreciating what we have now – we all know I’m a big believer in gratitude.

The reality is, and I know it’s hard to hear at times, and even harder to accept, everything at this time is exactly as it should be.

 

Learning to let go of things that aren’t bringing us happiness will free up energy, time and resources and we can begin to reap the benefits of that. We can put it towards things that are productive, that will make a positive difference and have real, impactful change in our lives.

Let’s all make like Elsa – it’s time to let it go.

 I’ll try my best to do so if you do too.

Pinky promise?

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The One With The Nostalgic Traveller.

Facebook ‘on this day’ kindly reminded me that this time last year I was in NYC having a fucking ball.

This year I was on a train at 6:20am. That got me all nostalgic for adventures before and excited for travels to come.

One thing I realised as I was scrolling through was that I travel differently now, that the reasons I visit places has changed. When I was in my early twenties I travelled because I could, I travelled to places so that I could see what was out there and maybe find my place in the world. I would never have dreamed about going back to the same place twice, why would you? There is so much world to see, I was always worried that it would never live up to my previous experiences. That view worked for a while, until it didn’t.

I’ve become a much more nostalgic traveller, I long to visit all of the places I’ve been to before BECAUSE I know they will rarely live up to my previous experiences; normally they surpass them.

When you first visit somewhere you’re a little bit blind to what to do, where to go, what is a must see vs what is a tourist trap. The second visit is a much truer version of the place – you know where you are, you know the things that you want to do rather than the things you feel you need to do because of the numerous ‘things to do in….’ lists in travel guides and on websites.

Travel has always given me a new perspective on things, there is something about being in a new place where you don’t know anyone that makes me reevaluate my life. The anonymity and no expectations of anyone that you meet or see (except those you’re with, but even those relationships feel different) give you a sense of freedom; or at least they do for me.

I have travelled a decent amount, not a much as some but definitely more than others. I’m so grateful to have those experiences and those friends that have come with me.

Here are a few of my favourites.

Valencia – The One That Changed It All

There is no way I could start this list with anything else. This temporary move to another country in 2010 with 3 girls I didn’t know is the one that changed it all and makes my heart smile the most.

I met my best friend in this city, realised that the Spanish really make everything better, fell in love and left a part of my heart behind.

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Derry – The One With The Hangover

This city is a home from home now as my Irish brother and mama live here, anywhere they are is home for me. The trip to celebrate St Patrick’s day way back in 2012 reminded me why I don’t drink much and that the Irish can party like no other. Highlights of this trip include me dancing by myself in a club with the flag wrapped around me and having to sit down in the shower the next morning because I felt like death.

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Barcelona – The One Where I Remembered How Much I loved Spain

When I got back from VLC after a week everyone, in the most passive aggressive ways possible, told me to shut up talking about it. When I went to Barcelona in 2011 with Momma Sophs, Jade and Wilf I remembered that all the reasons I kept harping on about Spain and the Spanish were valid and real. IT IS THE ONE OF THE BEST COUNTRIES IN THE WORLD AND YOU WILL NEVER CHANGE MY MIND ON THAT OK.

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The American summer – The One That I Needed.

June 19th – Sept 10th in the USA with some of my favourite people. This trip was the one I needed. The break from life we all crave sometimes I was lucky enough to have. I realised a lot about myself, what I wanted, my limits and it gave me time to reflect on things that had happened and let go of things that were never meant to be. The house of Rincon Ave became my safe place that summer. We saw so much that summer it is hard to pick just one thing that makes it stand out. Without a doubt the best trip I’ve ever taken. Just wow.

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Paris 2015 – The One With Disney.

 That’s all you need to know really. 2 of my best friends. Disney. 5 days. It was perfect, I laughed so much, rediscovered my inner child (which is never really far from the surface) and met Peter Pan. Life was perfect at that moment.

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Cape Cod 2014 – The One Where I Realised Family Really Is Everything.

 The best part about this is that I wasn’t even with my family. Mark and I hijacked my American fam’s vaca and it was the best. They are such a big family, and their love for each other is bigger. I love being surrounded by them, hearing their in jokes, laughing at each other and being let in to their homes and making memories with them. They remind me that family is what really matters, the world may be chaotic but so long as you have that little hub to come back to it’s all ok. I just need to remind myself of that when my family piss me off!

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There are so many more trips that I could list but unfortunately I am running out of time as I gots places to be. I’m off to make memories with my family in the best country of all, the one I call home.

Happy Easter, pals

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