Catch-up With Me

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Hello lads and lassies. Well, it’s been a while since I have leisurely typed on my laptop! The last 6 months have been spent doing assignments and studying, so this sudden catapult into a life of self-isolation seems somewhat surreal. I have been absent from the blog due to the sheer workload I had over the course of the last few months, so I think it’s about time that I filled you in on what has been going on with me.

As some of you may know, I moved out of home last summer – which was fun, but tough! I spent the summer working, working and working some more, with not a minute spare to enjoy my hobbies (like blogging/recipe creating!). I was cooking a lot – but didn’t feel like I could commit enough of my time to sharing the recipes to my blog. September rolled by, and I started the Management and Marketing masters in UCC. Coming from an undergrad in English (Arts), which was very much a ‘self-led’ and isolated experience, I was nervous/excited to start this course. It was heavily reliant on group work, and I felt like the assignments were not subjectively graded (unlike in English, where you’re never actually right)! So, hard work was rewarded – which made me work harder. Our year got on very well, we all relied on each other. This definitely enhanced my love for the course.

The assignments were intense. I mean, intenseThey were practical though, in that I know I will apply the things I learned/wrote about to future work positions. Within the first few weeks of the masters, my life pretty much turned on it’s head. I started a new course, went through a break-up, moved home, graduated from my undergrad, made an entirely new group of friends and went from working 35+ hours a week to 12 (broke af!). It was genuinely the hardest adjustment I have ever been through. Moving home was helpful in ways (if I didn’t have time to make my bed in the morning, it was magically made in the evening), but anyone who has lived out of home and moves back after some time, knows that it’s not exactly a walk in the park! How busy I was with college work took my mind off of everything though. We were inundated with assignments come mid-October. I’m grateful in a way! I had no time to over-think anything, and it kind of aided in the healing process of it all (although, not dealing with it right away, meant that I got a fierce kick of reality as soon as Christmas break hit – emotionally unstable to say the least!).

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I have focused on myself a lot in the last 6 months (particularly the last 3 months). The gym has been getting DONE. Meal prep got DONE. College work got DONE. I made time for my friends, I made time for my family. I have truly come out of my shell. I don’t think that I was ever really shy, but I have always been somewhat reserved. Recently though, my confidence has been stronger than ever. It’s as if I finally feel like my life is on the right path (sure, you know I’m going to be dramatic). I have come to the realisation that I relied entirely on other’s for the creation of my own happiness. When I was alone, I would just over-think myself into oblivion because I couldn’t appreciate what I had to offer myself. I relied so heavily on others that I blamed them for my own unhappiness! However, this was to the fault of no one but myself. I believe that it is essential to learn how to self-love before loving anyone else (which is exactly what I have been doing). In essence, this year has taught me the importance of being able to rely on myself, rather than on the constant reassurance of others (about god-damn time). 

So, I was due to go on placement in a brewery in Kinsale in April, working as a brand ambassador. Due to the Covid-19 outbreak, this has been postponed until at least May (heartbroken), but sure look, things could be worse! I finished up my part-time job last weekend, and am now completely and utterly free for another two months. This has been a bit of a shock to the system! I was genuinely freaking out at first, but the more I have thought about it, the more I have realised that this is the best outcome for both my own health and the health of others at this time! I am going to use this free-time wisely. I have started scheduling my days to ensure that I am kept busy throughout! I’m constantly incorporating workouts, reading, cleaning and cooking. As time develops, I will start to focus more on my dissertation and the secondary reading required for that.

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Times are so uncertain right now, and I know that you may be stressed and confused about what is going on. Stressing over the unknown will do us no good. Instead of exerting so much of your energy on the stress of the global pandemic which is in our midst, try focusing on the things that you enjoy! Has there ever been something that you have wanted to do, but just haven’t had the time? Something you have wanted to learn, but just couldn’t dedicate yourself to it? Now’s your chance! Spend some (socially distanced) time with your loved ones and appreciate what you have, rather than what you are without. My sister and I were meant to go to Barcelona on the 19th of March, but some things are just not meant to be! Times will get better! We will be such a strong nation when we are through all of this. 

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To aid in this healing process, I will do the best I can to keep your mind occupied! For all you vegan curious individuals out there, I will keep you up-to-date with what is new in the world of plant-based eating. Have a recipe that you would like to be veganised? Send it my way and I will see what I can do! I will take you with me through my daily cooking regimes and will try to stay up to date with my blog and recipe posts over the next few months,

Chat to you soon,

Niamh.