Can you even believe that October has been and gone? We’re heading swiftly towards 2018 and every time I remember this I feel mildly panicked. Where did 2017 go?? It was a ridiculously busy year for self improvement so I kiiind of get how it’s flown by but that doesn’t excuse anything…
My September self made an accurate prediction: October was a good month. I’ve been especially happy these past few months, it really feels like I’m getting my shit together and learning how to forgive myself when I don’t live up to my own standards. It’s also been my first month this year without therapy – I went to Toronto and forgot to book in any more sessions for the month (so maybe on the shit-together front I spoke too soon) but since realising, I’ve dropped my therapist a text and we’re starting sessions again tomorrow. The break has been reassuring; I feel as though I’m able to stand on my own in a much stronger position than I could a year ago and whilst therapy was instrumental in getting to this place, it’s now a choice for me to work harder on myself as opposed to a necessity. It’s a good feeling.
So what happened in October? I think most notably, I went to a ton of gigs. I think the total is six, and they were all totally magical. At the beginning of the month there was Loyle Carner, then the week of the sixteenth I saw J Cole, Will Joseph Cook and Mura Masa, a personal highlight as I’ve been addicted to his music for the past couple of years. Then last week I went to Dodie’s Koko show in Camden and finally my friend Tom Tripp’s first show in Shoreditch. I love shows, they’re one of the few types of events that I feel absolutely comfortable not drinking in as I love watching artists perform so much. I find it super inspiring. Anyway, I’d recommend checking their music out as each act is amazing.
In terms of what I enjoyed this month, we’re talking a lot of television. It’s been a media month for me, not least with the release of Stranger Things 2. I’m only three episodes deep so far but I’m really enjoying it – in fact, “really enjoying” doesn’t quite cover how good it is. I just want to be as cool as Eleven, okay? I’ve also started House Of Cards; not sure how I feel about watching hours more of Kevin Spacey following the recent allegations but one man does not make a masterpiece, and that series is truly a product of unbelievable direction, writing, cinematography and production from some of the best in the industry. (If you don’t know what I’m referring to, please read this article. It’s super important for us to stand by survivors of abuse especially at the hands of such a powerful figure.) On a lighter note, I’ve finally finished series three of Jane The Virgin in time for the start of season four, but why oh why are they releasing episodes week by week?! It’s near impossible to avoid racing ahead and reaching an inability to satisfy my need for more.
Moving onto internet things, I loved this article about Neopets and how it shaped the way young women use the internet today. I was a massive Neopets fan – it was actually the first website I ever signed up to as it was recommended on the kids page of AOL (lol, throwback). Eight year-old me used it for a solid two years and became a master at Cheat and Ultimate Bullseye. I’ll beat you at either of those in a second, just watch me. I’ve been loving Anna’s blog The Anna Edit, she’s a master at writing inspiring posts that make me want to work my bum off. I had a bit of a cry (and took a pregnancy test) after watching Anna Akana’s ‘Take Your Birth Control’ short film, it’s perfectly emotive and truly encapsulates the sadness of dealing with an unwanted pregnancy. Onto something slightly less harrowing, Estee Lalonde made a half hour long video about her favourite stationary shops. I know. I was thrilled too. It’s perfect, soothing evening watching with a cup of tea.
To offline entertainment: two books have won me over this month. The first is our Banging Book Club pick for October, which was Come As You Are by Emily Nagoski. If you struggle with any element of apparent sexual dysfunction; not reaching orgasm, lacking arousal, pain during sex, etc, I’d really recommend giving this book a go. Emily basically talks you through how to work out what’s stopping you from enjoying sex and how to get through it. It’s a really interesting read, and a book I would have greatly benefitted from a couple of years ago. You can listen to our podcast on the book here – there’s lots of sex talk to don’t blast this one around the office. Finally, my friend Orion has published her first collection of poetry, called Flux. It’s beautiful and I couldn’t recommend it enough.
What’s happening in November? To start with, I’ll be seeing a lot of my family and friends in the course of the next thirty days. I’ve got my cousin’s christening, an Interfaith workshop and a bunch of coffees in my calendar. Also it’s firework night, my favourite holiday of the year (as exhibited above), so I’m going to dance about under a shit ton of fireworks and get warm as we burn effigies of the Pope on our bonfires. Just the level of controlled anarchy I can handle. I’ve done a complete content plan for November so we’ll see how the video making and blog post writing goes – my main goal is to take all of my weekends next month. I took my first two consecutive days off in a couple of months last weekend and it was great, but it has reached the point where I actively feel bad about taking time off. Seems like I need to get some practise in, so that’s my plan for November.
What’s your month got in store?