Monday 3 December 2018

Best (and worst) of November

Happy December! Before we start looking back to last month, I want to take a moment and acknowledge that the holiday season isn't fun for everybody. I know from own experience how hard December can be for people with depression, or if you've lost someone, or if there's a riff in your family, or for whatever other reason. 
Christmas is a tough one to avoid because it's so in your face, but if you struggle, here are a few suggestions for you:

Stop watching TV for the month. The sugary commercials showing fairytale-like Christmas scenes of happy families are hard to swallow, even though we know that it's fake. Spare yourself the pain and stay away. That's what Netflix is for, right?

Stay away from social media. Facebook in particular can be a trigger, because you will see lots of hashtags of #cheer and #blessed and see photos of people you know seemingly having the perfect lives. Remember: the photo of smiling faces doesn't show you the teenager's meltdown an hour earlier, it hides the tension that's caused by uncle Gary's inappropriate remarks, and it doesn't tell you the story of the hostess' late night tears from the night before due to sheer exhaustion. 

Try to enjoy parts of it. Since it's impossible to completely avoid Christmas (it's being shoved into our faces whether we want to or not), I suggest to try and appreciate at least some of it. You may hate the commercialism, but at least the twinkly lights and decorations are pretty, no?
Maybe you love hot mulled wine, or like all the food? And then there's the extra chocolates at work, and in my world, extra chocolate is always a good thing.  

Please know that you're not the only one struggling, even though it may seem that way. Take it one day at a time, it will soon be over!

Okay, let's take a look back to November. Here is my 1-second-a-day video:

The good:
We went on vacation!
It was a last-minute decision, entirely dreamed up by my husband, and it was one of the most relaxing vacations we've had in years. No fights, no tears (I'm not the only one who's cried on vacay before, am I?), no disagreements - it was 7 days of bliss.

Honestly, everything else about November pales in comparison - but I did write a post about little joys, which we can find every single day if we look for them. For me that included a group of deer crossing the street on the crosswalk (I smile just thinking about that), lots of tea drinking and reading, and spending time in my happiest place in the world: my little cabin.

The bad:
I failed NaNoWriMo, the writing challenge where you try to write 50,000 words in 30 days. My final word count was 10,224 words, which is just over 20%. I could blame it all on going away, but even if I would have stayed home I wouldn't have made it. I'm more a turtle than a hare when it comes to writing, and I couldn't hack that crazy speed.

But that doesn't mean I've given up, oh no! I'm still working on my next book, writing a few words every day. I'm at that stage where I can't stop thinking about it, where it's easier to write down the nagging words trying to claw their way out than ignoring them. That's what happened when I wrote Let's Pretend This is Normal, so I know I will finish this one too!

And that was November! For the formerly least-favourite month of the year for me, it was a very, very good one.
How was yours?

xoxo Miriam

P.S. Do you have a book lover on your list? I have the perfect gift for you! (It's 22% off right now!)


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