Updated: Aug 21
This year was already a bit kaotic for me when I decided to start doing a part-time Social Science degree with The Open University while still studying the Scottish level 6 NC in Psychology and Criminology at my local college full time.
I was hitting 40 and decided that waiting until the college course ended was wasting precious time after spending 4 years in full-time education.
It seemed to make sense at the time!
The previous year had ended with our epic Christmas in Barcelona so I was feeling rather positive, even excited about what 2020 would bring.
We had our first family trip together to see my Nanna, Aunt, and family in Kent which was booked for April 2020, where previous visits had been myself taking one or two of our children at a time.
This was another exciting family milestone!
One we needed with the court case against my daughter's abuser, an ex-family member, looming over us in the unknown distance.
I later compiled a visual emotions journal of 2020
Therapeutic Photography is a powerful untapped tool of therapeutic self-expression in a world where each individual struggles with their individuality, emotions, thoughts and their place in the world. Though I am a qualified photographer, you DO NOT NEED TO BE A PHOTOGRAPHER or have fancy equipment to benefit from Therapeutic Photography.
NB; [The following visual emotional journal was done entirely on my camera phone, using a simple Photo editing app downloaded from Play store, I simple chose a rustic filter and framing to present each visual emotion consistently through out the weeks so the focus is on the emotion of the image rather than distracting detail. Any one can use photo's in this way to express themselves.]
New-year was a nice social event with a friend and my adult kids, some crazy hairstyles and a little alcohol, all in all, my emotions were content and relaxed, even hopeful.
The positive emotions continued, the highlight of which was our trip to the theater to see the Circus of Horrors. The theater atmosphere is always an experience that creates a positive bubble of emotions and for an empath, it is quite a buzz of positivity!
Adjusting back to the routine of family life entwined with study while contemplating the madness of the Social Science degree workload starting in a week.
Trying to balance out the study, family and some self care like reading to ensure I did not burn myself out so quickly, whilst also attempting to get a head start on the university work while the college workload was slow. At this point, I was still feeling relaxed and positive about 2020.
The week I turned 40.
As a person, it doesn't feel as if age has impacted who I am, other than time and experiences creating life lessons that adjust how I perceive the world. Though I had begun to struggle with the idea of celebrating the anniversary of my birth when the biological beings involved in it couldn't care less. My daughter wasn't having any of that and threw a surprise party!
I spent most of the week musing in my spare time about the perceptions others have of me, how my exploration of self-awareness doesn't fit into these multitudes of little boxes of the perception others had. It had started to feel quite exhausting, and I expressed the concept that who I am does not fit into their boxes. After a birthday lunch and deep chat with one of my close friends, I began to feel more at ease.
In the background of the appearance of daily life as a mum and student, there was a lot of stress creating friction at home, these struggles had become a regular undercurrent in life over the past few weeks resulting in me going through one of my reclusive phases where 'peopling' just became extremely exhausting and my empath struggles were in overload.
The highlight of this week had to be that same close friends 50th birthday, she is always the life of a party, I had really missed the bliss of load music, dance floor, fabulous atmosphere and the encouragement of frie