Lessons That 2016 Has Taught Me!

2016 has taught me a lot…life decided to throw a number of curve balls in a very short space of time and it’s taken a while to get my head around things.  It’s strange but as you get older, the more life throws at you along with many more responsibilities.  These are the lessons that 2016 has taught me so far!

Lessons That 2016 Has Taught Me!

You Are Your Own Worst Enemy

And you will also be your hardest critic…and while you struggle to get your head around things you will get in a right strop with yourself at times and beat yourself up over the smallest and silliest things in life.  There are times when you feel utterly useless.

Things Can Be Going Swimmingly and Then Boom

Learn to expect the unexpected…if you told me at the end of April what was going to unfold in May I would have laughed and told you to bugger off.  G’s dad passed away from cancer…all within 2 weeks of finding out he had the disease…at times G’s mum and I still sit there and think, did that all happen?  Having the rug pulled out from under you isn’t a nice feeling and it can take a while for the adjustment to settle…hey maybe it will never settle…who bloody knows!

Two Ugly Words When Combined – Grief and Guilt

People deal with grief in very different ways and at different times…everyone is created differently and not all people understand this…actually ALOT  of people don’t understand this.  You can’t flick a button to turn off grief and everyone takes their own amount of time to deal with things.  Delayed grief is a real thing and it can hit you with no warning.  Never judge a person on how they are dealing with things…we are all unique.

When you combine grief and guilt together…it’s a right old ugly combination.  You can feel guilty for not being awake that final evening to feeling jealous of a work colleague that got six weeks with her dying father.  You will beat yourself up as you feel like a horrible monster at times.

There Is Nothing Wrong With Asking For Help

I will be honest…I hate asking for help and I’m pretty independent so it can be extremely hard to ask for help.  I had to ask G’s mum for help as I couldn’t cope with G’s mental health as his medication just wasn’t working…a number of GP’s don’t know their arm from their own arsehole when dealing with mental health…his current GP is marvellous.

It was a hard lesson to learn but asking for help isn’t a weakness or a failure…it’s the one thing that probably pushed me over the edge this year…that feeling of complete failure of not being able to handle the situation by myself.  Something clicked a few weeks ago in my own head that if I didn’t ask for help when someones life is in danger then I would have failed them regardless.

Learn That Today’s News is Tomorrow’s Fish and Chip Wrapper

I had a really good chat with my boss recently about the last few months and a few things that he said have really stuck with me…firstly he said that while people around you offer their deepest sympathy one day, they expect you to bounce back the next…don’t be a hero and take the time you need for yourself and then add a few more weeks on top.   People’s expectations can be totally unrealistic and while things have changed for you, they haven’t changed for the folks around you.  Until they walk a mile in your shoes…they will never have a clue of your own personal situation.

Sometimes You Need to Disconnect From Others to Reconnect With Yourself

Noise…it’s a weird word to use however I’ve just had way too much noise in my head to focus on anything.  I had to unfollow folks on twitter recently as the life that I led in April is no longer the life I lead today.  As I said above…while your life has changed dramatically, others around you haven’t and that’s why I had to disconnect and re-evaluate things.  Maybe I will reconnect later on…maybe I won’t.  There was nothing malicious behind the unfollowing…it was a case of the above two lessons.

I Have the Best Family and Friends in the World 

I’ve always known that I have the best family and friends in the world but this year just proved it over and over again…I can’t apologise to my folks enough for all the shitty Friday night skype calls when I was grumpy as hell and exhausted…I love you infinity plus more.  When I was having a right royally shit week a month ago…mum and Lisa sent me a funny photo or video each morning…they had me in giggles and to quote one of the ladies at work, it was the first time she had heard me laugh properly in months.

There Are Some Idiots That Will Try to Break You

Everyone hates the Finance Team wherever you go however it’s because we have to deal with so much crap each day and make decisions that nobody else wants to make (my favourite saying is: great so someone has done a huge shit and now I have to go and wipe their arse and clean up after them…fan fucking tastic!).  Unfortunately there are some idiots out there that will be the straw that will break the camels back…two broke my back in one day and I just lost the plot, walked out of the office one Wednesday and didn’t return until Monday.

It wasn’t the best place to have my major meltdown but hey ho, you can’t stop these things…it’s better to walk away then to struggle on for weeks on end…I think it was fair to say that the combination of everything just got on top of me.  It happens!

Don’t Shop at Tesco As They Are Trying to Kill You

Okay maybe they aren’t trying to kill you but their sliding doors are!  Seriously I walked into one with a shopping basket and ended up with a bruised fanny and whiplash…I had that major meltdown the following day…that was a fabulous week NOT!

Weepy Disease is Real

Crying is allowed…when you feel sad you feel sad…weepy disease is unstoppable and it hits you without a moments notice…fine one minute and then crying non stop for the next 180 minutes…normally one or two ladies catch the weepy disease with you especially if they are due for their periods.  I cry over feeling like a horrible person, G reminds me I’m one of the nicest people that he knows…I cry some more and then normally think…fuck this I’m going home.  Currently I can handle three days at work…and then by day four I’m a mess and by Friday midday I’m crying my heart out as I’m driving home…I find dealing with people exhausting.

Work Can Be Your Worst Enemy

I won’t say that I threw myself back into work as that isn’t true however I returned back to work after helping to look after G’s dad a week after his death…with the flu, on steroids and completely exhausted!  I did month end from home when he was in hospital and we had his funeral in the middle of the following month end. Looking back I have no idea why I even was at work…trust me, work will always be there but don’t let it be your escape.

They Say Time is a Great Healer

Bollocks…we had an interesting chat the other day in the office over this and we all came to the same conclusion.  Time isn’t a great healer…you just learn to cope better with the pain each day and you slowly rebuild after everything that has happened.

Take Time For Yourself

Friends have mentioned it, work colleagues have mentioned and even G has mentioned it…having a day in a spa or a massage!  Up until this week, the thought of sitting in a spa or having a massage actually made me get even more stressed…I couldn’t think of anything that could stress me out more.  I used to love doing little day trips around England but just couldn’t face them in the last few months…I completely lost the knack of relaxing and having time to myself.  I know that while I’m not myself yet…it’s all about baby steps and when I’m ready, not when other people are ready.

Thinking of Others

Looking back I’ve become very materialistic and that is something that I am now rectifying.  Thinking and helping others is what matters most to me at the moment…from sending all my unwanted clothes and shoes to a Drop In Centre, to adding a present under the charity christmas tree through to contacting Age UK to find out how to volunteer to help people in the community…it’s the little things that you do that can make a big difference for other people.  There is more to life than flash holidays and fancy clothes…it’s called finding a balance.

I’m sure there are still many lessons to learn…and plenty of willy photos that Georgie and Mum haven’t sent me yet for a giggle.  2016 is a year that I am happy to see the end of…while it does hold some very special moments, there are quite a few horrible moments that I don’t wish to revisit.

What lessons has 2016 taught you?


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    • December 15, 2016 / 9:12 AM

      Tanja sending you big hugs…the first two lessons are extremely hard. It sure hasn’t! Let’s hope for a better 2017 xx

  1. Miss Kitty
    December 16, 2016 / 5:41 AM

    You must have an amazing boss! My boss needs to have a watertight reason (i.e. on death’s door) or a sick note from the doctor or a holiday booked at least a month in advance, if I want time off work. And I have a job where I’m dealing with people’s shit all day. Some days I don’t feel like I can keep going, and want to chuck it on, but I have to remind myself that I need the money, and hopefully I can find something else soon! Good bosses can make or break a job. Most of the jobs available have bosses the same as I have now. Ideally I would love to work from home, but have no ideas for that yet… here’s hoping that’s what 2017 brings me!

    • January 15, 2017 / 6:44 PM

      Hi Trudy, I do have a very understanding boss and I totally agree with you about good bosses making or breaking a job, I’ve left a few due to appalling management. Good luck for 2017 xx

  2. December 19, 2016 / 9:35 PM

    Wow, hasn’t 2016 been quite the one. I feel like it has taught me a lot, but bizarrely a lot of the lessons do conflict each other?? Like in general care more, but also care less? And find joy in your work, but also work really doesn’t matter? Ah I don’t know. I think the older I get the less I know!
    Rachel ¦¦ A Nesting Nomad recently posted…Travel habits I need to stop, start and continueMy Profile

    • December 19, 2016 / 9:37 PM

      it sure has! I totally understand what you mean about the conflicting lessons and yes the older you get the less you know! xx

  3. December 20, 2016 / 4:04 PM

    I feel like you are in my head, so many of the same feels. Grief is a funny one, I think you’ve nailed it on the head though, time doesn’t heal all. Since my grandma passed away this summer, it’s been easy to forget it’s even happened since I’m in a different country, but I was planning my Christmas card list, included her, and broke the fuck down. Some days are just hard! Asking for help is something I need to get better at too.
    Dannielle recently posted…Day Tripping :: Harewood House Part 2My Profile

    • December 20, 2016 / 4:23 PM

      Danielle, I’m so sorry to hear about your grandma! We were on the plane back from Madeira and I remember going through a check list of what I needed to do when we got home which included making G’s dad a cake…it was a fucking hell moment…I said to G does this happen to you and he said yes all the time. Grief is so weird, time sure doesn’t heal and when people say that they haven’t experienced a great loss to understand the feeling at all. Asking for help is really hard especially when you feel guilty as hell for asking which is so silly…it’s taken months for my brain to click that sometimes you do need to ask for help. Sending you big cuddles and merry Christmas love xxx

  4. December 20, 2016 / 8:19 PM

    Oh Kelly, sending you a big hug! That is a lot of tough lessons – bring on 2017 and some opportunities to practice the taking time for yourself and more time with friends and family! xx
    Jessi (Two Feet, One World) recently posted…36 Hours in Zürich for Christmas CheerMy Profile

    • December 21, 2016 / 9:57 AM

      Thanks Jessi, too many in a short amount of time. Looking forward to 2017 xx

  5. December 27, 2016 / 4:22 PM

    The end of every year is a great time to reflect and make plans for the new year. This past year has meant a lot of increased work time for hubby which interfered with out travels. Boo hiss!! We had to readjust several times to accommodate the schedule – once while in Hawaii we were up at 3 am for him to make a conference call. But, it is good for kids to realize you have to adjust for the needs of others. Great life lessons.

    I’ve taken a step back from saying ‘yes’ to every request the school has for volunteers. I just can’t keep up with everything and I was running myself ragged in doing it. I still have twinges of guilt here and there when I say no, but I have to take some time for me, too. You can’t serve from an empty cup, right?

    On that same vein, I write about taking trips that you want to go on and still take the kids. You don’t have to only go to water parks and zoos for holidays. It is ok for you to do something you want to do as well!! With planning you can make it a great experience for everyone!
    Natalie recently posted…Choose the best travel shoeMy Profile

    • December 29, 2016 / 4:00 PM

      Natalie there are so many wise words in your comment!
      Kids need to learn that hard work is required from us all and that is something that my dad always taught me.
      There is nothing to feel guilty about, as you said you can’t serve from any empty cup – the best saying I’ve heard all year and I will be using that one in the future!
      Exactly, there has to be a compromise with travel but you can still see a lot of things as a family, you sound like you are a fabulous mum! xx