Prom/An Event I Didn’t Attend

Lifestyle

So tonight was my high school prom – the very end of everything – an entire 13 years of school over with one night of trashy decorations and boys who look like they’re wearing their dad’s suit. Obviously I didn’t go (explanation here) and despite the fact that I think the whole thing is overrated and extremely cringey, I’m kind of disappointed I don’t get to go. Prom is a rite of passage. You dress up in an expensive dress you’ll never wear again, get drunk and pretend you like all the people you’ve hated for the past 7 years.

I’ve been worried about this day for months. I’m at work whilst everyone else is celebrating their last day of school. I’m sat at home whilst all my friends are having the time of their lives enjoying teenage hood. I was invited as a plus one but I rejected the offer because, what I did I do to deserve prom? I dropped out of school, I didn’t make it to the end so it would have been wrong for me to go when everyone else had worked so hard to be there.

Anyway, I hope they all have a wonderful time celebrating their success and living as a 17/18 year old should, but I’m doing things differently. One day, I’ll be going to the National Television Awards every year (way better than prom). Missing this one event doesn’t make me have any less of a teenage experience, it just makes me even more motivated to create the future I want. I may have remembered this amazing night for the rest of my life, but remembering how ordinary it was for me is going to make my future achievements even more incredible.

I’m now going to eat a tub of ice cream whilst judging everyone’s outfits and watching them make drunken mistakes through snapchat stories. I totally, most definitely don’t want to be there.

Hugs and wishes,

Abbie

XO

How to: Ease Your Bad Mood

Lifestyle

I was going to call this post ‘How to: Improve Your Mood’, but I’m not a miracle worker and I feel like that would be false advertising. If we could all follow a few simple steps to ‘improve our mood’ we’d all be dancing on the ceiling. Instead, I used ‘ease your bad mood’ because no matter how awful I feel these always seem to take a little bit of the edge off.

  • Read a good book

A lot of people disregard reading as a way of making yourself feel better because when you’re in a bad mood, you often can’t concentrate on one thing. But I find that reading takes me away from my own thoughts; I am able to forget about the present and live in the book for a while. I recommend a lighthearted love story – cringey and cliché is usually best because who doesn’t love a book about predictable and unrealistic romance.

  • Watch a funny TV series

There’s nothing that makes me happier than lying in bed binge watching my favourite show. When I’m feeling a bit rough, I find it best to watch something simple that will without a doubt make me laugh. Whenever I feel down I know the cure is to watch Parks and Recreation. Over the past few months it has been my saviour. It’s so funny, no matter how awful I feel I can’t help but laugh – whether I want to or not. Hands down it is my favourite television show ever (and I am TV obsessed so it has a lot of competition). If we all lived like Leslie Knope in Pawnee, the world would be a much happier place.

  • Shower

I know this is really basic but to ease my bad mood I can do something as simple as have a shower. It shouldn’t be too long – so I don’t overthink and it shouldn’t be too hot – so I don’t get flustered. Usually I have music on when I’m in the shower but when I don’t feel so great I like it to be quiet (listening to the shower running is very theraputic, try it!) As ridiculous as this sounds, I always feel like a different person after the perfect shower.

  • Speak positively to yourself

Try to be more conscious of the words you are using. Trying to use more positive language always makes me feel better because I’m in control of how negative/positive I am. Treat yourself the way you expect other people to treat you!

  • Avoid:

It’s best to avoid doing anything that’s going to make you more stressed or aggitated. A lot of people suggest baking or colouring as a way of relieving a bad mood but personally, I think these could actually make it worse. For example, you bake cookies and they’re good so you eat one. Then you eat another and another and before you know it you’ve eaten the lot so now you feel like shit again. I guess you can’t generalise this to everyone, perhaps I just have no self control.

I have never understood the idea of colouring as a way of relieving stress; I’ve seen all these books saying ‘relaxing’ and ‘mindful’ colouring. I literally couldn’t think of anything worse. Imagine the pain of going out of the lines and ruining the entire picture because of one mistake… Maybe I’m just overly pessimistic.

Another thing I suggest avoiding is going on social media. I always feel on edge if I don’t check my social media often enough but honestly, what am I missing? A photo of someones lunch? Great. Another picture of that girl you don’t like? Because that’s going to make me happy. A lot of the time what I see makes me feel even worse. It’s so easy to compare yourself to people on social media. Realistically, everyone’s faking it, how happy can you be if you need to reassure the world you’re having a good time through a photo of a cocktail? I get that abandoning social media is easier said than done, but every now and again it’s good to forget about everyone else’s little performance and work on your own.

Failing all of those things, go on this website. It has helped me in the worst of times.

Hugs and wishes,

Abbie

XO

P.S. I published this post whilst in the worst mood ever – oh the irony.

 

Family Additions!

Lifestyle

So this weekend I met family that before a few months ago, I barely even knew about. Chris, Rachel, Lexi and Jonty have finally come to the UK after 17 years of my life spent not knowing them. They live in New Zealand so coming round for coffee and cake isn’t really an option but instead, they are spending six months travelling around Europe! They will spend most of their time at my Grandparents’ house in Leeds. However they will be going to Paris, Spain, Greece and to the Midlands to stay with us.

I didn’t really know what to expect when I first met them. Would we act like family? Or just acquaintances? They are actually only distant relations; Rachel and Chris are my second cousins and Jonty and Lexi are my third cousins. But nonetheless, they are family and that’s sure as hell how we acted. We all instantly became best friends and I can honestly say I have had the best weekend getting to know them whilst also feeling like they have always been a part of my life.

I’m a big kid at heart so playing with the children came easy – I absolutely loved it. I’ve spent the past couple of days colouring, playing Jenga, watching children’s TV and spying on our parents. They told me all about New Zealand and the things they do/don’t have there. I was absolutely horrified to find out that they had never been to Build a Bear Workshop – they had no idea what it is! As a child I was obsessed with the place so I took it upon myself to make sure we went and when we did, they loved it. Lexi went for a dog that looked like her dog back at home (that she had been crying about for the past couple of nights) and Jonty went for a Troll. I had so much fun showing them what to do and seeing how happy they were when they came out with their new friend. It actually all worked out perfectly because it’s Lexi’s 10th birthday tomorrow so it was an early present for her!

I never dreamed that meeting these guys would be as good as it has been. I’m so glad that I can say these wonderful people are a part of my family, from the moment we met I absolutely adored them and I really hope that even when they’re back home we can still be as close as we were this weekend.

Hugs and wishes,

Abbie

XO

P.S. I am actually wearing my pyjama top in these photos – don’t judge me. And yes, I do have a birds nest on my head (naturally curly hair sucks).

This Morning Live

Lifestyle

 

So today I went to the This Morning Live event at the NEC in Birmingham! The primary reason for wanting to go was because my mum and I love the show so I thought it would be a nice and different day out for us. Although, I also went in hopes of finding someone that could help me get into the television industry. Since about the age of 12 years old, I have wanted to work in TV. I started thinking I wanted to work in children’s television but now it would be an absolute dream come true to play a part in any of it. Going to see an event for one of my favourite programmes just made me realise how much I want I want a career in this sector.

We met a fair few stars from the show, Phil and Holly walked past us (they’re even prettier in real life), we met Rylan and I had conversations with both Dr Zoe Williams (previously on Gladiators) and Dr Ranj Singh (previously on Cbeebies show Get Well Soon). I spoke to them about my blog in hopes that they might be interested – a long shot I know – and asked them how they got into television and if they had any tips for me. Everyone was so genuine, helpful and lovely. Obviously I knew that these guys wouldn’t actually be able to land me my dream job, but I did manage to find the editor of This Morning who is a very big deal in television. It was the perfect opportunity for me to ask some questions so I did, at first he laughed and I was so tempted to say ‘ok, thanks bye’ but I carried on, I told him about dropping out of A Levels, being desperate to work in TV and how I’d even be happy to make drinks because I know I just need to get my foot in the door. Despite the crowds of people waiting to have a photo, he stood and talked to me, answering all my questions and trying to help as much as possible. By the end of our chat, he gave me his email! I’m so glad I sucked my nerves up and went over to him – this could be the start of everything!

My Mum and I spent the rest of the day shopping and doing girly things. We had afternoon tea at the Monarch coffee hub, went shopping, got a free manicure at the eBay stand, marvelled over the guide dogs and found as many freebies as we could fit into our bags. I’ve had such a successful day! I may have a small lead to getting my dream job and my Mum and I had a much needed girl’s day out. If you’re going to the show over the weekend I hope you enjoy it as much as we did. If not, fingers crossed it’ll be a yearly occurrence.

For our next adventure, we’re going to see Loose Women filmed live in London. Bring it on!

Hugs and wishes,

Abbie

XO

High School Dropout

Lifestyle

When you hear ‘high school dropout’ rebellious and carefree springs to mind. But my story isn’t quite like that. There is so much judgement around not completing school and not getting A Levels or equivalent qualifications. Immediately you become this stupid, incapable person that’s ‘never going to get a real job’ (as I have been told).

School life wasn’t overly traumatic for me; I had friends, I was never bullied and I was fairly bright but still, I hated it. From Year 10 onwards I rarely completed homework, I didn’t concentrate in lessons and I didn’t revise for exams; I simply just didn’t care. At the time I knew it wasn’t just school that was the problem, I used to cry every night and have thoughts that a normal 15 year old shouldn’t have. The first time I spoke to someone about how I felt was on the Childline website. It was a way of talking but not having to face anyone. This helped for a while but eventually my teacher noticed a change in my attitude and asked me what was going on. I told her everything and I was put on the school’s counselling waiting list. However, the teacher I spoke to didn’t keep what I told her confidential. She told my parents and friends about how I was feeling. To make things worse, I never actually got a counselling session at school; they just forgot about me. School is supposed to be a place where you feel safe, my teachers had a duty of care but they made me feel violated and alone.

Eventually, I got an appointment with a psychiatrist at CAMHS. Unfortunately they lived up to their awful reputation and didn’t help me whatsoever. Despite everything, I passed my GCSE’s with the help of a hypnotherapist who encouraged my motivation.

Afterwards I went to Sixth Form. I thought the change in scenery would help and I’d be able to cope with another 2 years at school. I spent my first year hiding in the toilets, in the counsellor’s office or walking home. Still, I passed my exams and went onto my second year. I only had 5 months left until I could leave forever but even that was too long. Everything that had built up over the previous 3 years suddenly caught up with me and it was best for me to leave. A lot of my friends and peers couldn’t understand it, but it was what I had to do and my parents were really supportive of my decision.

After I left, I went to a private psychiatrist and I was diagnosed with clinical depression and anxiety. I now have to see a therapist every week and take antidepressants. It now makes sense why I couldn’t cope with school; I was coping with a much bigger issue. I honestly believe that if I stayed in school and continued keeping everything in I wouldn’t be here today. I may not have qualifications and be able to go to Uni but I am alive.

As much as your teachers, parents and friends may say it is, school isn’t everything, your health is. If in any way you feel like I did when I was in school I urge you to speak out. Even if your parents aren’t as supportive as mine were, just telling them how you feel will help them to understand and appreciate how hard it is for you. If your parents aren’t an option, speak to an understanding teacher (preferably one more professional than mine) it might make school easier if someone there knows what you’re going through. Also, you are not alone! 10% of children and young people suffer from a clinically diagnosable mental problem. Lastly, Simon Cowell, Richard Branson and Jay Z dropped out of school at 16 – I think we’ll be ok.

If you ever meet someone who has dropped out of school, wait until you find out what they’ve been through before you make judgements!

Hugs and wishes,

Abbie

XO

I Love: London

World

So i’m not one for big days out. After being somewhere for approximately two hours I am exhausted and ready to get back to the comfort of my bed. But London is always an exception. I love the individual shops, the fashion, the fresh flowers and the general buzz.

Fancy Food: As a surprise for my Mum’s birthday, we booked to go to The Ivy for lunch. This was my first fine dining experience and it’s safe to say I could get used to it. The service was incredible and they made us feel so welcome – as if we didn’t look out of place. I had ‘Spaghettini’ – pasta with crab, chilli, wild garlic and bottarga. Stupidly I didn’t expect ‘Spaghettini’ to be spaghetti (I should have stayed in school). Despite managing to order the most ungraceful dish to eat in a fancy restaurant, I enjoyed it. I think it’s fair to say i’ll have to marry into money to be able to go to places like The Ivy regularly. Here’s hoping.

Theatre: In the evening we went to see Dreamgirls. We booked the tickets about 5 hours beforehand and managed to bag central seats five rows from the stage for £25 each (so if you’re going to see a show I recommend going to Leicester Square and booking from one of the agents on the day). I can honestly say it was one of the best musicals I have ever seen, the vocals were incredible and the costumes were a dream. We were also lucky enough to see Amber Riley from Glee in it who was absolutely phenominal.

Outfit: What I love about London is how fashion forward everything is – anything goes. There’s something about that city that makes everything seem so effortlessly chic. I layered a frilly high neck top with another floral frilly top. To make it look a little less girly I wore ripped straight leg jeans – my go to jeans at the moment because they’re so comfortable but still look cute. Tragically, I ended up walking round in fluffy sliders – not exactly the epitome of fashion – but I was in so much pain with the heels i’d been wearing I didn’t care. Anyway, in the end I kind of came to love them, it was like walking round London in slippers.

All in all I had a wonderful day. Even though I felt aggitated and anxious with all the people, I had my family around me, laughing and making memories. We spent quality time together which we rarely do. I love days like these.

 

First Impressions: Me

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If you have found your way to my first ever blog post, you’re probably lost, let’s be honest. Perhaps you’re looking for answers or hoping for some entertainment; I can’t promise that i’ll provide any of that. But I intend on being real and talking about real life things.

I’m not going to sugarcoat my life to seem perfect and fulfilled because it’s not. Why lie to myself and anyone else on the internet? Not that I really expect anyone to read any of this. Honestly, i’m using this page as a way to be pretty damn selfish – to talk about my interests, my wellbeing and trying to find myself.

Despite always saying and thinking I don’t care for anything or anyone (sounds dark, I know) i’m starting to realise maybe it’s the little things in life that count. See, I love to shop and styling is something I like to think i’m good at. I also enjoy reading or finding a good TV series to rant and rave about. My passion for flowers and afternoon tea is said to be unusual for a girl of my age but who cares? This is me. No filter. No fake smiles. No clinical depression to hide behind.

This blog will be a journey through my thoughts, feelings and interests. Hopefully i’ll find a way to start enjoying life along the way.

If anyone’s reading this, thankyou for taking the time to make my world a better place.

-AG