Updated: Feb 26
This year, I started sharing my ‘thoughts’ from the day onto my Instagram stories. And whilst not intending for it to become a ‘thing', I have been positively overwhelmed by the incredible response from you all - so much so that I have chosen to dedicate a blog post to them every week.
Each Thursday, I'll be expanding upon three of my thoughts from the previous week, acting as an extension of the shorter thoughts I share (a 'mid-week musing' of sorts, into how these relate to myself and my poetry). Please feel free to let me know if this is something you enjoy or are interested in, either by commenting below or getting in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org or through my socials.
14.02.20: ‘I needed a walk today.'
'Love Day', 'V-Day', 'Gal-entines', 'Pal-entines' or 'Valentine's' Day, I don't tend to celebrate February 14th; I don't think much of it and I don't remember that I ever really have. My partner and I don't 'celebrate' it, but instead do cards - and I get a cup of tea made for me if I'm lucky (I joke ;) thanks for everything you do Callum) - but it's not a big deal. It's essentially just another day and on this particular Valentine's, it was just another Friday where I was feeling pretty down in the dumps (Hannah? Miserable? What a surprise). The weather was miserable, and according to the Met Office, the uninspiring damp was set in until the evening. But I knew I had to get out after losing all sense of control over my routines and things I needed to do during the week. I needed to take some time out, do something I enjoy, be selfish and consume a good chunk of The High Low. So like every social media cliche there is around this holiday, I spent some time with myself and took myself out for a walk (a 'day-date' if you will). It ended up being a great walk, no one was around, and it was good to have that time where all sense of responsibility was really not that important (it also gave me inspiration for Sunday's Sit-down blog post, so look out for that)! And whilst I didn't 'need' the walk, in that I would have survived without it, I needed the walk to instil some sense of sanity into my relentlessly circular thinking. I feel I get to a point where I have to feed my search for grounding and certainty (or want for a better word, 'soul'); no matter how much we starve or neglect our natural desire for calm. we all have a limit - a breaking point - even if we can tolerate more than most and endure more hardships than we would want to bear. We all need to mend ourselves at different points, and this process can be lengthy, short, ongoing or a one-time-thing. Walking on my own forces me to confront my issues in relation to what is outside of myself. And I still have a long way to go. and a lot of selfish habits to crush, but I needed this walk to get away from the social media Valentine's traffic to realise that yes, in some ways, I am better on my own, and I have learnt to do things on my own that others may find more difficult. But I also the people I love and am close to, and I need to cherish them, show my love for them and be grateful. I need to enjoy my time with the people I care about and stop caring about the people who make no effort with me. In being alone on Valentine's Day, I learnt to further appreciate those around me, alongside not giving in to those I don't need.
17.02.20: ‘Buds are just as beautiful as blossoms.’
Firstly, don't get me wrong, I love a good blossom (and 'blossom snow' on a breezy day is very fun to be in);I have a great memory of being in Hove park with my Mum, sitting on a thick rug of pink blossom, under the tree the flowers were falling from. We had blossoms stuck in our hair, some falling behind her sunglasses and others in the heels of my shoes behind my feet where they were too big for me. I also enjoy a good garden visit, particularly with my Mum; she knows all the plant names I don't and often has a story or a memory she can relate them too. When we first got National Trust memberships a few years ago (in the Spring), she showed me an appreciation for nature that I had never experienced before - and this is the first time I remember her pointing out the buds to me. There is so much life in these buds and whilst, on first glance, they look grey, small, dull and barely indistinguishable from the branch they're on, they are just as beautiful, structural and textured as the more obvious blossoms of dainty pinks and yellows that also start to come out at this time of year. I think now when I notice the buds and I think of her pointing them out, it shows me that just as she has such an appreciation for all the less obvious parts of nature, maybe this can also be applicable in life. We should try to make an effort to look beyond the obvious, and appreciate the quirks and beauty in as many situations as we can. And whilst this is not always easy, or possible with our circumstances, it can help to get us through the day or whatever we're dealing with at the time.
18.02.20: ‘The best things in life are the memories and experiences you hold close to you.’
I am quite fortunate where I live to have the luxury of so many different types of nature within walking distance (I've got the South Downs, Seaford beach, the Ouse and Friston Forest just to name a few of the more well-know, and yes this is a boast). When I go out for a walk and I get to experience the feeling of having the place to myself, I feel rather delirious in the selfishness of it all; I get to devour a three-sixty view of unspoiled, lush beauty and it's all mine (it almost makes me feel mad with giddy-ness just thinking about it...). If you've been following my Instagram, or if you've known me at all, you'll be aware that I really enjoy taking pictures and being outdoors. So whilst I don't always want to take pictures when I'm out on a walk, sometimes when I can't get a good one, I almost feel happy about it. The moment I'm in is all mine. I have no 'proof' of the for social media, no evidence of the colours I saw and no ability to depict the calm that I felt (and when I say 'calm', I mean the kind of relaxed ease that can't be manufactured, no matter how many candles you have). I can't share this with anyone else; this view and this feeling is mine and that lasts longer than any photograph I could take. The feelings associated with my experiences are memories I can draw upon when I need them, for whatever reason, and having that kind of arsenal of peace, hope and beauty in my mind that I can just duck into, whenever I feel strong enough, is truly the best gift I could give myself.
Until next time, H.M.
References and Further Reading:
- All pictures taken by H.M. Reynolds and posted on the @hmrwrites Instagram account between 14.02.20 and 18.02.20.
- I listen to 'The High Low' on Spotify, but I believe you can find it on all good podcast channels.
- In contradiction to me being all 'don't take pictures, enjoy the moment', I did take a picture just to remind myself not to take my experiences in nature for granted. This is the picture below (and now imagine it 1000000X better, take yourself on a walk and enjoy the nature around you, you're welcome).
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