Making connections

Today I met someone who’s gender identity is similar to mine and feels the same way that I do about Veganism, social justice, the binary, yoga, polyamoury, fertility, feminism/equality… the list goes on and on and on.
It blew me away and I don’t remember a time I’ve connected with a person on so many levels so quickly (and agreed so much!). We chatted for two hours in a coffee shop before I had to get to another appointment, but I feel like we could have spent all day discussing our views about the world.

Making connections with various people, each of whom feed a different aspect of your personality is so important. I never really realised how important this was until today. Obviously this connection comes in many forms, from having more than one friend through to having more than one sexual partner.
The conversations I had with this person today really opened up my thinking on not only having multiple sexual relationships but emotional ones also. It made me see it was possible. Possible in terms of ‘it can be done and done successfully’, but also possible personally for me and my relationship.

I have much in common with the partner that I live with, we laugh constantly and share much of our lives together. We aren’t sexually monogamous and whilst this is something we’re both very happy with, the idea of one of us falling in love or having the intense emotional connection that we have with each other, with another person is a concept we’ve both found difficult to get our heads around.
Today made me see though, how vital to our wellbeing it is to have these different connections because our individual personality is so multi-faceted that one person alone is not able to meet all of our intellectual and spiritual needs. As much as we may sometimes wish that was possible.
I’m not saying that having intense emotional connections with more than one person is what every individual needs. You do what’s right for you at the time. There are many many many forms of non-monogamy and relationships come in all different shapes and sizes. We gain connection from our platonic relationships as well as our sexual ones.

Make connections that get your brain excited. Have conversations that thrill you. It really is ultimately liberating.

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Whirlwind.

The first few months of 2017 felt so manic thinking about it now seems like a distant memory. Here was always where I was headed. I have found my partner in (crime) life.
The person I always hoped was round the corner, but never dared to dream…

And we’re cooking some amazing food together! We love talking about food, cooking food and eating food. He’s embraced the vegan lifestyle with an open mind and an enthusiasm that matches my own.

We eat big meals and have a balanced, nutritional diet but lately we’ve been feeling like we’re just not eating enough. My body mass index has just slipped to ‘underweight’, which is something I’m keen to address and need to gain around a stone. We’re planning more protein smoothies, less skipping lunch (which happens way too often in our household) and more cake.
26 is according to some the year you reach and have formed much of your personality, but for me I also feel I’m noticing aging physically also. Nothing too drastic, it’s just I had a wild early 20’s (yeah right)…

I’m posting as on a study break till October, therefore can sit and type something that isn’t an essay without giving myself a hard time. But I also do feel that this is a particularly important time for me in terms of personal development. Looking forward to beginning my next module, just as much as I am to finishing it in April!

My ‘current’ interest lies in social research. Education and Healthcare mainly; more specifically in the fields of Sexualities and Gender, but I’m also just sat here wondering if there are any Vegan groups that educate school-age children about the meat and dairy industry? Doubt there would be time on the curriculum for that..


 

#iamwhole

The changing of the seasons can be very difficult, and basically very annoying for people who love the outdoors but dislike the dark and the cold. It makes you want to stay in bed more, sleep more, eat more.

However, sitting in your garden to meditate fully kitted out for the crisp and sometimes breathtakingly cold sea air is certainly refreshing!
Cooking and baking and yoga are things I’m hoping will help me get through the next few months of dark, cold evenings. So far we’ve enjoyed hummus, falafel, lemon cake and lentil curry. (Not all at once!) Currently looking for more vegan recipes and bakes to add to my list!

As part of World Mental Health Day (10th October) the project I volunteer for, along with the NHS kickstarted a campaign to break down mental health stigma, and encourage young people (and those who come into contact with young people) to be more aware of mental health issues and to feel more comfortable talking about them. It was commissioned by the CCG in response to poor statistics regarding mental health awareness and the feeling of being stigmatized that young people were experiencing.

The tagline #iamwhole champions the fact that no matter what your mental health status, or how much support you may need, you are still a whole individual.

As someone who has always found it near impossible, who still finds it pretty difficult to open up about how their feeling and accept support, this campaign is one I would have benefited from at a school age. Learnt behaviours like ignoring the problem; not being honest with yourself about how you’re feeling take their toll and are challenging habits to break. I had a mentor a few years ago who’s favourite saying (that I shall re-appropriate) was ‘Be kind to yourself.’

It’s good to remember on days when the nights drawing in are getting to you; that it will pass, it’s okay to not feel your best and to BE KIND TO YOURSELF.

What things do you do to keep you going through winter?

 

 

When nothing is certain, anything is possible.

It certainly seems like I have come a long way since my last post. Almost a year. My exam for the end of my first module at the OU is in 10 days. Revision is going well.

What I have learnt academically is nothing compared to what I have learnt personally. I have learnt that no amount of therapy, medication, self-help books or yoga/meditation is conducive to a healthy body and mind, if that body and mind do not want to make positive changes. I didn’t want to make these changes for a long time.
Not long after my last post, I started volunteering for a project called Right Here. The project supports young people to develop resilience to all that life throws at them, creates awareness campaigns about mental health issues and conducts research into free and paid support networks. The people I’ve volunteered with during my time with the project have been wonderful and engaged and I feel we have made a small but vital impact within our community. It was also immensely helpful to have an external project on which to focus on whilst so much else around me was uncertain.

I’m also now vegan. It took me a while to get ‘there’ but I am sure with all my heart that I will never look back. Veganism and the concept of healthy, sustainable, cruelty-free living are working their way more and more into my consciousness, an incredibly welcome lifestyle and attitude adjustment. Tomorrow I will be attending my first ever Vegan festival and I could not be more excited!

Working hard, studying hard and volunteering hard have kept me deliciously busy. It’s good to be busy. Everyone in their 20’s should be busy! Meditation and yoga have assisted me to keep a healthy routine of self care, one I hope I stick with. Progress photos of some of the more challenging (for me!) yoga poses helps me to challenge and push myself physically. I have serious backbend envy at the moment, and so saving for a¬†Dharma Yoga Wheel…

 

Turns out, this adult thing just takes a bit of getting used to.