Where I Was, And Where I'm At

28 December 2018

Where I'm at right now.

Literally: on the sofa at my boyfriend Will's house with a hot water bottle on my lower back (hi, period) and a cup of tea that his lovely twin sister just made for me.

Figuratively: it's all a little bit up in the air, to be honest.

If you saw my recent video entitled Why I Stopped Uploading, you'll know that this year (and last year also) haven't been the easiest. Mental health struggles crept their way into an otherwise happy mind and life, and my seemingly never-ending stream of positivity surrounding my chronic illness ran out. Throw in a few traumatic life experiences, and I've been left feeling battered and bruised both physically and emotionally. 

Keeping up with work, relationships and being an adult in general felt impossible a lot of the time - Kacey Musgraves's lyrics "it's hard to breathe when all you know is the struggle of staying above the rising waterline" sum it up well - and as I'm finally (thank god, finally) coming out the other side I wanted to update you on where I'm at right now.

On the date that I'm writing this, it's exactly one month until Will and I leave our lives in the UK and embark on a nine-month trip around the world. The flights are paid off, the travel vaccines are booked and we've only a few weeks left to pack and sort any remaining life admin before we say goodbye to our loved ones. The decision to go was a very spontaneous and liberating one, and one that I'm equal parts nervous and excited about. Life has become monotonous for me and the thought of hopping on a plane and experiencing new places, cultures and people alongside my best friend has been a constant source of hope through the recent darker days, but it always felt so far away and now that it's so close, the reality is starting to set in!

I'm a homebody who won't be at home so there'll be that to contend with, and understandably it's weighing on my mind that I am chronically ill and it's an ambitious trip to undertake. I've been living a 'half-life' of sorts ever since I became poorly however, and it feels right (and necessary mentally) to shake up an existence that has been relatively unshaken for far too many years.

In classic Meg fashion I don't have everything ready (my inclination to leave everything until the last minute is something that annoys myself as well as everyone around me) however the basics are down, and we've both been saving our pennies since we put down the deposit on our flights in December of last year.

In terms of work, the industry I'm in is ever-changing and I don't think I could leave for that long and expect to come back and still have an audience - nor would I want to! As a textbook over-thinker I've let my second vlog channel fall by the wayside for worry that it's not interesting or fast-paced enough to warrant any interest, so the idea of being in a new place virtually every day and getting to share that is really exciting. Will shall, of course, be my partner in crime and suggested we do weekly vlogs together (cue great surprise from me, as he isn't a 'social media person' at all!) as well as updating our accounts along the way. I guess my channels will become travel-focused, but I'd still love to keep doing my usual chilled videos on YouTube about random lifestyle topics and chatty beauty content.

Here's to the adventure, I guess! See you on the other side.

Well, hello from the other side! If you managed to read that without your brain immediately belting out an extremely similar Adele lyric, I salute you. When I started writing this post ten weeks ago at Will's house I intended to take an accompanying blog photo and post it up before we left, but life got rather crazily busy and it got lost in the mayhem. Rather than letting all these thoughts be lost with the quick click of the 'delete post' button, I thought I'd let you know where I'm at right now - again!

Literally: sitting propped up on the pillows in bed, having just got back from the emergency room, in our little bungalow in a backpackers resort in Pai, Thailand.

Figuratively: it's still all a little bit up in the air, but I'm on the right track. And it feels so good to be able to say that!

I'm really not very well (hence the hospital visit) and it's four sleeps until Christmas Day so the timing isn't perfect to say the least, but our trip so far has been wonderful beyond words and throwing myself into the deep end in such a way has forced me to confront a few fears and let go way more. It sounds ridiculously cliché, but owning only what you can carry on your back and meeting new people from all walks of life every day puts certain things into perspective and makes other things crystal clear. Will and I are absolutely loving spending so much time together and know each other on a whole new 'argh, I've just realised there's no toilet paper in here, can you pass me some please' level - plus we just announced some exciting news over on my Instagram...

It'll be the big day on Tuesday, and I'm not sure whether it's the lack of family or the hot weather, but it doesn't feel like Christmas at all here. For the first time in my life I don't feel merry or jolly (in a Christmassy way - if you know me you'll know that I'm practically half-human, half-elf) so that's a little strange, but we're planning on making it a cute one anyway by finding somewhere that does a roast dinner, playing games and watching our favourite festive films. We'll miss home, of course, but it's only one Christmas out of a lifetime of family ones so yolo, and all that! I haven't actually bought anything for Will yet which, I won't lie, is stressing me out - I know he'd understand as I've been bedbound, but I'm gonna make it my mission to find him something lovely to unwrap.

Will told me earlier that there's a friendly joke in the resort that he's made me up, as we've been here for a fortnight and nobody has met me yet. At first it made my eyes prick with tears, as obviously I'd love nothing more than to be by his side making friends and enjoying our time rather than being stuck in bed unable to join in, but it quickly passed as we chuckled about my 'grand reveal' when I'm finally better and everyone can see that I'm actually real and not a figment of Will's imagination!

Life is, as of right now, quite a boring cycle of trying not to be sick, being sick, sipping tepid water with rehydration salts, painkillers, sleeping, turning the fan on because I'm in a hot sweat, turning the fan off because I'm in a cold sweat... you get the gist. However, in the spirit of not ending this post on a negative note (and let's hope I'm not ending 2018 on a poorly note!) I'll focus on five positives.

1. We're staying in this lovely airy bungalow that's got high ceilings, with a big cosy white bed and an en-suite. Imagine if we'd decided to book into dorms instead - a tiny bunk bed, people constantly coming in and turning lights on, a big communal shared bathroom... yep, thanking my lucky stars for a private room right now!

2. It's quite clear that I've been doing some serious self-sabotaging and feeling quite lost when it comes to my YouTube channel and blog, so today I made a 'content calendar'. I started pencilling in ideas that truly excite me, came up with a realistic schedule and can't wait to get cracking.

3. Even though I feel utterly awful (and you're allowed to feel sorry for yourself when you're this unwell and Christmas is just around the corner - ain't nobody having fun with that), I've got so many things around me that are helping and shouldn't go unappreciated! Netflix now have every season of Modern Family, I've got my favourite VS pyjamas on, I have water and medicine and snacks... it could be worse.

4. Will. Oh, that lovely, lovely man. He's always taken the best care of me but when I'm poorly the Florence Nightingale in him really jumps out and I couldn't be more grateful for him. People say they don't know what they'd do without their partners but honestly, what would I do without him? I haven't been able to step outside in two weeks, and there's him: fluffing my pillows, sending my photos of menus on WhatsApp to see if there's anything I fancy then waiting for it to be cooked and bringing it home, watching cheesy films like The Princess Switch without complaint, still calling me 'beautiful' when I know I look like a tired old hag... he's a saint and I don't know what I did to deserve him.

5. Being able to go through life's experiences and share them with you - whether they be good, bad, happy, sad, mundane, exciting... writing has always been my favourite thing and I often realise that I love it so much that I'd genuinely still do it whether anyone read or not, but the fact that you do means the absolute world. I hope this little 'sharing' thing we've got going on brings you something, whether that be laughter or entertainment or joy or comfort (or a tiny bit less boredom on your commute).

So, that's where I'm at!

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