People are often surprised to learn that I haven’t got any tattoos, not a single one. Multiple piercings and scars, but zero on the inkage front; the main reason being I’m a bloody indecisive Libran.
However, there’s one thing I would consider having tattooed about my person – a phrase, in fact – to act as a permanent reminder when the going gets tough:
This too shall pass.
I know, I know, pass all the fromage, but as a professional worrier it’s a saying I find myself turning to more and more frequently in order to CTFD (Calm The Fuck Down).
You know when something bad, really bad, has happened and you start to get all caught up in a snowballing cloud of impending doom? When you get so worked up, you start ugly-crying, complete with mascara streaks and snot bubbles? When you can’t see the proverbial wood for the trees?
I try and claw back some sense of perspective by taking a deep breath and reminding myself that this shit-show shall certainly pass (alternative phrasing fyi).
It’s essentially a snappier way of saying, ‘will this stuff matter a year from now?’. I recently applied it when, upon landing back at Luton airport from a weekend break in Budapest, the (so-called) meet-and-greet car-parking company had (I quote): “Lost my car”.
I didn’t do too well at handling that particular situation, tbh, bawling like a baby for three hours then having to hitch a lift home, minus my own vehicle. But I managed to get a good night’s sleep by reminding myself that this will all be sorted in a year – month, week, day! – from now, by which point it will be quite an irrelevant detail in my life and I won’t even care.
It can give you a HUGE amount of much-needed perspective when dealing with adversity, from making a mistake at work, through to scraping your car, getting a black eye or leaving your handbag on the train (guilty as charged on all counts, I’m afraid).
So these photos were actually taken about a week or so after #CARGATE, when I met up with the amazingly talented artist, Ella Masters. We recently discovered that we’re practically neighbours in deepest, darkest Zone 6 so caught up over coffee. Lots of coffee.
It was so nice being able to have hangs with a kindred-spirit without having to trek 320589905 miles into East London and back. Instead, we covered a lot of ground conversationally, discussing everything from the future of blogging, mortality, imposter-syndrome and er, pleather skinnies, jewellery and jogging.
I was just getting over a chest infection when Ella and I met up and it felt so, so good to finally get out of the house and back into the real world. As you can see, the sun was shining and it was one of those balmy autumnal afternoons, perfect for picture-taking.
But as I said goodbye to Ella, I started to feel funny. I mean, it wasn’t that hot but I had a right ol’ sweat on and was feeling faint. I had to go home straight to bloody bed again. Turns out, my infection had developed into (a mild form) of pneumonia. FFS!
This, too, shall pass.
The world doesn’t stop spinning just ‘cos your shit’s hit the fan. You can look at bad situations as catastrophic and invest endless energy into worrying; by overreacting and blowing things out of proportion.
When something awful happens, it’s easy to descend into despair and to look backwards. Yesterday things weren’t like this! Why can’t it be then again, and not now?!
But it’s all about riding those waves in the sea of life. Yup, I totally just said that. Look for the good in the situation. What is the situation trying to teach you?
On an unrelated note, I just want to highlight the beautiful scarf I’m wearing in these pics, providing a welcome pop of colour to proceedings.
Handmade by a UK-based brand, Pendleton-Snape, and I love it because it’s a) super long and b) super skinny – two qualities usually sadly lacking on high street alternatives, meaning I can loop it casually round my neck like a wannabe rock star.
The best bit is that being an independent brand, you can talk to Matt, the owner, about your requirements and end up with something pretty much custom-made!
I discovered the brand through Instagram at the start of the year – remember this little leopardy number? – and have since added a fair few scarves to the collection, which you’ll no doubt be seeing more of now WINTER IS
Oh, and if anyone was wondering, I was finally reunited with my car the following morning. Turns out it had broken down and was in one of their other car parks. I had to pay for a taxi back to Luton, and get the RAC man out, but it turned out ok. Hours before, I thought my world had ended.
The moment, it passed.
Photos: Ella Masters