Vol. 40 - A Week In London
this week I discover new found empathy, useless drugs, and a cabin in the woods
Happy Sunday, everyone. I hope you have all had a lovely week and haven’t let the recent torrential rain dampen your moods. Despite returning home to a monsoon and a considerable drop in temperature after nearly three weeks in LA, I can say with certainty that I am very happy to be home. So, I thought the perfect topic for this week’s issue would be a week in the life to get back into the swing of things. With this format, there will be a good mix of musings, diary-like entries, product and clothing recommendations, as well as places to eat and things to watch! Instead of a playlist, I will be linking a song for each day — one that I think captures my mood the best foe whatever I’m writing about. If you are more interested in what I did in LA, I will probably post a separate mini guide as an interim newsletter so it will be easier to find :) Anyway, let’s begin the week with a good dose of heavy jetlag and overthinking.
As expected, jetlag had well and truly fucked me, so Henry and I woke at 3 am (despite me popping a melatonin a few hours before, which tells me I should up my dose) in a daze, trying to figure out whether it was worth getting out of bed or not. Eventually, Henry got up to make tea and watch TV, and I made the most of the new bed real estate to try and doze off again. The few occasions I find myself waking suddenly in the early hours can usually be attributed to times I am overwhelmed with stress and anxiety. I knew that on this occasion, I was only awake due to my recent flight; however, my brain’s muscle memory defaulted to those anxiety-ridden nights and went into overdrive. Not my ideal way to start the week, but this was the case, nonetheless. So, what was on my mind? The first thing that went through my head was a confusing combination of Taylor Swift’s Vault Tracks from 1989 and the current events in Israel and Palestine. The last six weeks have been an interesting time to be on social media, and I hadn’t realised how much of a toll it had taken on my mental health until I was alone with my thoughts and Taylor Swift at 3 am. This realisation brought me onto a second train of thought. I thought about how getting ‘softer’ (for lackof a better word) with age had made things so much harder for me mentally. Perhaps I didn’t have the self-awareness to realise that I’d struggled with my mental health previously, but it feels as though something I’ve become more aware of in recent years. I’ve spoken briefly about my childhood through to my early 20s when I was largely a very angry and self-centred person. I lacked empathy (which I put down to living in somewhat of a bubble), and I genuinely could not give a flying fuck if I upset or hurt someone because I didn’t have the emotional capacity to understand the implications. As I’ve become more emotionally intelligent, I’ve also become more empathetic than I ever thought I could be. In a job that relies on feedback from a large group of strangers, I’ve also become even more attuned to the thoughts and feelings of people I don’t even know. Prior to my trip to LA, I’d taken a short social media break for the sake of my mental health, which is something I’d never thought I’d have to do.
Initially, I put it down to the abuse I’d been receiving for discussing the current events in Israel and Palestine. The combination of reading and seeing traumatising images and stories, coupled with a stream of angry (and often threatening) messages, was consuming a large part of my waking life. I have a pretty thick skin and had always brushed off horrible message in the past, sometimes even finding myself amused by them, so why was it different this time? It wasn’t until I’d had time to reflect on this sleepless Monday that I realised a big part of my pain had actually come from feeling like I’d hurt and disappointed people — a problem that an old version of me would never have had. Old, stoic Tamsin would be saying get fucked to anyone who had an issue with how she carried herself. She certainly wouldn’t be losing sleep or mental space to it, nor would she even dream of explaining herself.
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