This post is a complete 180 to what I had originally planned. Whilst I hadn’t set out to bash my mother I can confidently say this wasn’t originally going to be a flattering post.
I don’t know if I’ve always been drawn to particularly tumultuous relationships because of my tumultuous relationship with my mother or if it’s an excuse I’ve recently added to my list of BS psycho analysis of myself.
I love my mother dearly but we’ve had many down days, many shouting matches and such pent up resentment on both sides sometimes the only resolve has been to stay away from each other which hasn’t been hard as we live continents apart.
I’m currently en route to Barcelona by air and as always the slightest turbulence is making my stomach turn. I’m thinking about my mother today because we took many flights together when I was a little girl and I remember how safe she always made me feel. It only really just hit home how truly brave you have to be as a parent and for that I’m grateful for mother dearest. Every time a plane would do something unfamiliar I would turn to her and ask if ‘we would be okay’ and whilst I can’t quite remember what her exact responses were, I remember the feeling of calm that inevitably ensued. I felt invincible. I felt that if mummy was close nothing bad would happen.
I didn’t find whatever epiphany that I was looking for on this solo trip. Maybe Barcelona isn’t quite the place for reflection and introspection. What I did find was that I enjoyed my own company more than I had anticipated. I felt confident navigating my way through new metro systems, figuring things out on my own and meeting new people. I’ve often said that I am my most confident surrounded by others, I wanted to be confident on my own two feet!
Now- back to Barcelona! What an amazing and vibrant city. I found that there was always something to see and the people were genuinely friendly. From the airport to the train station to the tourist sights, I felt safe and that if I was ever in a pickle there would be someone to help. I was however on guard at times and kept my valuables close and my wits about me.
Expo Hotel Barcelona
I stayed at the Expo Hotel Barcelona, a stone throw away from Sants Train station. I was initially disappointed to not have found a hotel smack on La Rambla but this hotel was quite the gem and only a 40-minute walk to many sights or a 10-minute metro ride. The bustling fair and free concerts at night right outside my hotel were also a plus plus plus! After a busy day walking and taking pictures I would retreat to my hotel and the party was still raging.
Hey it’s me, little old me just here changing the things that I see so I can change the things that I think. I feel like maybe I’ve been a little bit over bearing in sharing my new-found confidence and resistance to the status quo, particularly with some more …. shall we say ‘conservative’ friends. Whilst I haven’t been met with overt resistance- I feel it.
It’s in the subtle disapproving looks when I say things like ‘fuck who you want to fuck, be safe, be respectful and be ethical.’ It’s in the scoffs when I say things like ‘I don’t particularly like cooking, it’s not for me.’ It’s in the ‘aww you’re so liberal’ when I share my thoughts on rape culture and why I hate that women are policed so heavily and yet we still face sexual violence at the hands of perpetrators who still receive societal support.
Yesterday, Waterstones on Gower street hosted an evening with Grace Victory to launch her first book ‘No Filter’. I’ve been following Grace Victory for many years and can confidently say that I was one of her first subscribers when her YouTube channel was previously called ‘Ugly Face of Beauty’. When she announced that she was writing a book I knew I had to cop that shit.
The evening albeit brief was entertaining and very lovely. We took away a copy of the book and had the choice of a variety of body mists provided by the Being Sanctuary plus a cheeky glass of wine (those bad boys could have been filled to the brim though).
I feel like I’ve done many adulting type things this week for which I am extremely proud. I’ve said YES to a networking event for my job (I hate those with a passion), I said NO to biscuits because I was very full and didn’t need them (I knooowwww …. very adult), stayed on top of the news and I’ve also scheduled some events I would never have attended in the past.
Emotionally I’m continuing to navigate negative feelings even on days when everything in my being screams *HIDE MOTHERFUCKER*.
For me, getting older means getting sexier, cementing my individuality, finding and hopefully fulfilling my purpose. It also means speaking my mind and holding steadfast to things I deem true.
More important than being an AILF (Auntie I’d like to bleep) is the need to continually acknowledge that the bad days are part of life. We would not be complex wonderful beings if we didn’t have to navigate complex feelings.