2012: A Year in Retrospect

It is early morning on Christmas Eve and as I sit surrounded by reams of articles & chapters for an essay I have yet to start, my natural tendency for avoidance strikes again. I’m writing this from the cold exile of the spare room, the annual holiday tradition of handing over my room to visiting relatives for the Christmas period well and truly revived. As a result of all this festive nostalgia, it’s got me thinking about the past year and everything that’s come to pass. It’s maybe a week early for a retrospective but since I intend on being oblivious between the dates of the 30th and the 2nd of January, I feel this is my only shot. It’s been a long year 2012 and an odd one at that. But of all the post-2000s, I feel like finally I’ve had a really solid year.

You see, by comparison the latter half of 2011 was really difficult. When I moved back home after university pre-graduation, I wasn’t exactly in the best state. My anxiety was hitting critical mass, my self-esteem had taken various academic knocks (almost all entirely my own fault) and I was primarily existing in crisis mode. I’d like to think I put on a pretty good show of seeming on top of it but in reality I was ever so quietly freefalling. Would I ever get a job, would I ever figure out what I was going to do with my life, would my grandparents ever stop making pointed comments about my love life? Whilst the latter two still remain relatively unresolved, against all the odds, I got a job. And with that the tide began to change, little by little. By the time New Year’s Eve rolled around things were getting to an even keel. I also made myself an idle, unofficial promise: to love myself just a bit more.

At the risk of sounding vain or self-involved, I have always liked myself, both for my physical and personality attributes. I’ve always considered myself ‘alright’, nothing spectacular but generally positive. But I’ve never been hugely confident about any aspect of myself. For me, 2012 has really been about a good year for my confidence.

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The Blogger Also Rises

Like many young people, during my teenage years I had the unfortunate habit of trying to keep a diary. At the time of buying the notebook and selecting the pen, I always had such ambition: I would become a real diarist! A keeper of journals! I would have a meticulous emotional record of my youth, bound in neat writing and a lovely cover for biographers to pore over with intrigue in years to come.

Of course what actually happened were entries like:

“I TURNED 14 TODAY!!!!!!!!!!”

Truly, the mind boggles faced with such brilliance. Despite these illuminating entries every single one of those notebooks ended up abandoned within about three months – sporadically written in at best. Much like this blog. It has become something of a ghost town, tumbleweeds rolling gently across the front page as previous posts gather dust. I’ve never been good at sticking to promises I make to myself, especially not ones that involve writing. I tend towards forgetfulness or sheer laziness, unable to motivate myself to leave a record. This is not much of an excuse. So starting with this new(ish) academic year, I am not letting myself off the hook. I will put this place to use. I will have something relatively worthwhile to say. And instead of crying about television on Twitter, I will come here and use real paragraphs. Capital letters and everything.

All of this is to say: bear with.

normal service will resume shortly

intro.

slatternly: n. a uk dweller, gin drinker and big fan of a lot of things. otherwise known as isobel.

Now that I’ve got that out the way, I imagine I’m supposed to tell you what I’m really doing here. In all honesty, this is pretty much a ride-or-die sort of adventure. I’ve toyed with the idea of spilling my thoughts out to the internet in yet another venue for about a year but always got stuck on what it is I should talk about.  Or even where to host it. To demonstrate:

“I should do a food blog! There is nothing I love more than food, except possibly talking about it — oh wait. Maybe I should do it on television instead. Or films. Or music. Or…”/end scene

After chasing my own conversational tail on the topic, I’ve finally just thought, sod it, give it a go. So here I am, with nothing but the aim of talking to you about all those things.

Let’s see how it goes, okay?