It’s Been A While…

Who else started singing the Stain’d song in their head from the early 2000s when they saw the title?? Just me?? Oh okay then.

I have to warn you, this post does not have any structure. I’ve just written it and scrolled back to the top so I could write this little disclaimer. It’s almost like I’ve verbally vomited all over this, so bear with it – if you make it to the end, good on you! If not, don’t worry about it – I’m a bit scatty tonight.

So it’s been a while since I wrote on my blog. And I just wanted to go through everything, maybe to clear my head, maybe to reassure myself everything’s fine, maybe it’s just because I have a stinking cold and D is playing COD (serious COD widow over here!), so it’s something for me to do. I’ll let you choose.

Towards the end of the year and into the beginning of this year, I think I was pretty depressed. I know the term ‘depressed’ is probably overused in today’s society, but I really think I was the lowest I’d been for a good old while – probably since my Dad died. I look over my posts, my old Facebook statuses and compare it with how I am now, and I think I thought I’d hit rock bottom. There was a moment before Christmas where I took my Nan to Tescos and just cried the whole time I was there, which is not particularly a highlight of my life. I was exhausted, I didn’t know what I was doing with my life and working crappy hours in two different jobs (one of which was the one of the shittiest jobs I’ve ever worked), with not a lot of social life on the side. But now, dear readers, I am feeling much more like myself again. And it feels amazeballs.

I honestly think The Redundancy of February 2014 had hit me harder than I thought it did. And seriously, it’s taken me this long to sort of get over that, even though I’m back to where I was again with teaching swimming lessons for 15 hours a week (instead of the 7.5 hours in my last post!).

I have been thinking, especially recently, that the problem with where I’m at in life is that I never had a plan of what I wanted to be when I grew up. I still don’t. And, when I was working in the Sports Centre the other week (the other job that I’m holding – I can never have just one job like a normal person!), I saw an old school friend who was now a teacher at a private school, and I wondered to myself, “How and when did she know she wanted to do that?!” I never had the ambition (maybe that’s the wrong word…) or the motivation (definitely the right word!) to figure out what I wanted to do when I was older as I’m so laid back, I’m nearly horizontal; and this woman, at the same age as me, had an inkling of who she wanted to be, decided to major in a subject at university, convert that into secondary school teaching and was now in a really good job, instead of coasting from job to job throughout life – completely what I feel like I’m doing right now. I know you shouldn’t compare to other people, but it’s hard not to when you see those who are successful whilst you’re trying to wrestle with the Sports Centre till. Stupid computers.

I’m not saying that coasting is bad though. I was completely honest in an interview the other week and when the interviewer asked me where I wanted to be in five years, I answered, “Well, wherever I end up. I just want to be happy and, if that means still in this job should I get it, I’m happy with that.” Needless to say, I didn’t get the job. But if they don’t want happy employees, so be it. I don’t think I was really sold on that job anyway…

I really do love swimming teaching. Yes, it’s something I didn’t really need to go to university for, but I’m good at it and it makes me happy. I could’ve woken up in a really bad mood and an hour of teaching some babies or toddlers and seeing them confident and progress through the levels is great. Do I think I’ll be doing it in five years? Maybe, maybe not. Honestly, it sort of depends where my head is at, really. Swimming teaching is making me physically sick – I was off work today and I’ll definitely be off tomorrow, and in my last post, I was sick from swimming teaching then too! – so it also depends on if my immune system bucks the hell up and gets on with it or not. I think it’s one of the pools I’m teaching at, and I think my bosses think that too, so hopefully the owners will change their ways and sort it out, so I (and the other instructors, because they’ve been sick there too!) won’t be sick anymore.

I have more exciting plans this year that are developing. I’ll probably divulge on them a little more when they’re more cemented. The three sort of main things that are going on are a) my holiday to Mauritius (in less than 50 days! Not that I’m counting…); b) a weekend away in Dublin (I’ve never been before and I’m really excited!); and c) The Color Run in London with D this year (which I wanted to do last year, but found out about it all too late, so didn’t end up doing it!). The problem is that they’re all happening within a month, so I’ll need to find something else to look forward to after that, but I’m still really excited.

It’s quite good not to have a plan in that respect, I guess. It’s nice to have aims of what you want to do over a year. And these events are really the first ones, even though they’ll be happening nearly half way through the year. But it’s still something to look forward to and I’d rather that than nothing at all.

January Update

So I decided to give up with my franchise adventure. The seller was forcing me too much, so I decided to bow out. The weird news is now I’m back to baby swimming lessons! I sort of fell back into it. I started by covering an instructor who was abroad in the New Year, so I was covering her lessons. And now, I’m teaching for 7.5 hours per week, alongside covering teachers (which there has been a lot of recently, due to laryngitis, perforated ear drum and just general flu!) and I’m currently in Greenwich, helping this Water Babies franchise with their admin stuff. I covered for 14 hours at the weekend, so I’ve actually lost my voice…

I did miss swimming teaching and it seems like this is the direction my life is going into now, so I have inquired with my franchise about any courses that can help further my career! Cool, eh? I’m basically hoping to be the most qualified swimming teacher the world has ever seen :)

In terms of weight loss, I actually lost 6lbs! Go team. I decided to break down my weight loss goal into small, achievable goals. So the first goal is 10% of my actual body weight. I have a way left to go, but I’m hoping that I’ll reach that in a month and a half, ish. Here’s hoping anyway. In a couple of months, I’m going to Mauritius, so I am more determined than ever to get my bikini bod on. I’m tempted to take a progress picture tonight and see how much my body changes up until April (I go in May).

But yeah. Life is going on. I am still exercising all of my possible options, but if this is all I’m getting for now, that’s all I’m getting. And I’m happy with that. For now.

See ya later, 2014.

Happy New Year, readers. We finally made it to 2015 and, honestly, I probably couldn’t feel more relieved. 2014 SUCKED. This is going to be a more reflective post about my year and what I want to change for the future, so bear with me – it probably won’t have much structure…

The beginning of the year, I was faced with redundancy of my perfect job. A job I believe I should still be doing now, which provided me with variety, highlighted my skills and revealed my passion, alongside linking my degree and all of my work experience all in one. Regardless, I continued to work for them under a different role, but found that the lack of variety and the non-exercise of the knowledge I learned at uni was not what I wanted so I quit, not knowing where I wanted to go or what I wanted to do.

Still, as one door closes another one opens – or so I thought – and I started the on-going struggle of trying to buy a franchise, together with working a shitty job that I hate. And that has been my life since September. I’m actually pulling the plug on everything now, as I’m so tired of it all.

My weight in 2014 hasn’t changed as much as I thought or in the way I thought it would. I put on. I’d like to say stress was a factor – it probably was, but the fact is I didn’t stop eating junk and I didn’t exercise as much as I wanted to. Something I seriously NEED to change for 2015.

A strain was emphasised in 2014 – I won’t go in much detail but I don’t think things will ever really be the same again. With this though, I discovered who the people were that I could really count on and, as I grow older, these are few and far between. I realised that I really don’t have many friends around me, which makes me extremely lonely.

The one thing that didn’t really suck in 2014 was my relationship with D. In fact, that grew stronger and we’re now planning things that I didn’t think I would. More on that in another post, I think.

My resolutions for 2015 are to lose weight (again!), find my happy place and to find a job that I’m happy in. I’ve completely lost sight of what I’m actually doing here. I don’t really fit in and I’ve got to make a change to make me happier. I don’t really know where to start but something’s got to give because I’ve not even been sleeping properly and that’s terrible when even your subconscious knows something’s up!

And so today, I’m going to write a huge list of what I want to do this year. And I’ll stick to it. For my own sanity and for a better year.

100 Days of Happiness Challenge

Okay, so I know I wrote about this before ages ago, but I’ve decided to restart the 100 days of happiness challenge, to help get me out of the slump.

It’ll also encourage me to tweet more, as my Twitter account has been neglected somewhat since the beginning of the year, unless it’s an automatic My Fitness Pal weigh in.

So all my readers are tagged and you can all follow me @frannooooo on Twitter and Instagram. Let me know your deets and I’ll follow your progress too!

It’s Okay Not To Be Okay

I’ve had a rubbish day. Nothing really happened. I had a day off, tidied the house, watched a film, got up to do more chores but found myself sat next to the radiator, crying my eyes out, with Ozzy’s face completely perplexed and wondering “what do I do?”

I’ve been feeling like this on and off for a week now, today was the fourth or fifth tearful episode. I decided not to tell D – he has had enough on his plate recently – but today, I felt isolated, alone and like I couldn’t cope. I texted him – he had finished work for the day and was local to me in the pub – he came home and cuddled me. We then proceeded to pig out at our local chippy after I’d calmed myself down (not even a shower helped) and we have spent the last two hours, napping, which is something I do not do on my day off, because that’s a waste of hours.

The worse thing about the current emotional state I’m in? I don’t know why. There is no particular trigger. My current work state right now is driving me mad; I am not enjoying working in the pub and I just want to get started with my business (training will be starting mid-January and I’ve been talking about it since August). I am tired, not through not sleeping but through caring too much about what is just a stepping stone in the right direction. I haven’t many friends around where I live (in fact, I only have maybe two that I’d consider close friends) but I haven’t seen them for ages and I just feel on my own.

I feel ugly, I feel fat. But those, I’m 95% sure, are feelings that most women feel at one time or another. In fact, at work, a couple of customers told me I looked like I’d lost weight, even though the scales haven’t budged a single pound for the last month. I feel worthless, like I don’t deserve to go out and live. I feel like I’m just existing on a poor wage, paying my bills, sleeping and getting up for work the next day. I feel like I’m wasting days.

The fact is, I have nothing to really complain about. I have a roof over my head, food in my belly. I have my health, I have a job. My family are all happy and healthy. I’m in a loving relationship, with someone who loves and cares about me (enough to leave the pub, ha) and I love and care about him. I’m not ungrateful, I’m just in a funk. I don’t know how to fix it, because I don’t know what’s causing it. But maybe I just need to cry. And that’s okay too.

I know I’ll probably look back on this next week and cringe at the thought of my feeling down. But I think that sometimes, when things are getting on top of you, something has to give. And for me and my currently tight, red eyeballs, that’s the release of tears.

Renewing my Domain Name

Another month has passed and I’ve actually just got back from a family holiday in Tenerife. I had several emails from WordPress, regarding renewing my domain name. For now, I have done so, but I don’t think that the domain name actually goes in line with what I do on my blog anymore. Which is mostly about my life, my feelings and my emotions. So I’m having a rethink about the whole domain name. What do you think is a good name over in my little corner of the web?

Another quick update. So D and I are saving like crazy cats for our holiday. I am still working a lot, but I don’t really mind. The other week, I actually came down with gastroenthiritis, something I’ve had twice this year so, that alongside my week’s holiday, I suppose I’ve not really been working long enough to moan about it.

Some exciting news. D and I have also been talking about getting another dog! Ozzy is getting pretty bored of the pair of us – and it’s not through lack of walking or playing, because I take him out about four times a day. I just think he would love some other company to get him through the day and, with my working more at home in the future and D finishing work early in the day, it’s something that is definitely viable. It might be something we look into after Cancun though, as monies are a bit tight and we’re just saving for everything right now – we’re even hoping to save for a house after the Cancun saving.

Anyways, other than that, there’s nothing really going on. I might make it a mission to blog daily – there always seem to be these ‘daily vlog’ challenges, but it doesn’t really translate for a blogger. And, honestly, I always forget to vlog – I have the YouTube Capture app on my phone, but my battery life is terrible through its constant use for Facebook and Instagram, so it is very rarely that I get my camera out and film stuffs in my life. But I think it’ll be good for me to fall back in love with blogging again. I do enjoy writing everything down when I remember to, ha.

An Update: Buying A Franchise is HARD

Hi guys,

I haven’t written on here for ages, so thought I’d do a quick update on EVERYTHING that’s happened in my life. I can’t even remember the last time I wrote on here, but it must’ve been around 1st Aug and probably to do with my monthly weigh ins. This probably won’t focus around a weigh in post, but just a round up of my life as we know it.

So work. I am still looking into buying a local baby activity franchise, however there has been a bit of a spanner in the works. And that spanner is the cheeky seller asking for a higher selling price than her business is worth. How do I know this? Well, I visited the area managers last week for a chat, to make sure they like me and know the financial aspects of the business (the franchise fees, what sort of business I should be, whether a sole trader or limited, etc.) and they worked out how much I’d earn in my first year of running the business if I wasn’t to expand. It’s much less than I’d be investing. I knew it’d be less, but wasn’t expecting it to be that much less. So now, I have to get the business evaluated and start negotiating. Head. Ache.

In the meantime, I’m working at my local pub for most of the week. It’s my first real shift today after two shadow shifts last week. And it’s a Monday, so it’ll probably be dead. Which is fine by me. While I’m working there, I’m potentially saving monies on my car, as it won’t be depreciating by the sheer amount of miles I was doing when I was driving to work – I’m literally four doors down from the pub, so I don’t have to drive at all, which also saves money on petrol. Because some of my shifts will be in the evening, I also won’t be spending as much money on doggy daycare, which I’ve not been spending on at all whilst I’ve not been working! So, overall, I should be able to save while I’m working there.

I’ve finished a four week contract with Water Babies SE London, but they’ve now asked me to cover up until and including 13th Dec for 6 hours on a Saturday. So, again, more money coming in with an opportunity to save. I’m not on their payroll, so I have to invoice them each month, which is something I’ve never actually done before, so another skill to add to my collection – alongside pulling pints at the minute, ha. WB SE London also know I’m buying a franchise, so are being very lenient to my working there too, which is really nice.

Alongside this (yes, I’m still talking about work!), I have two one-to-one swimming lessons a week! One is a lady who has been advised to swim to help her back and the other is my friend’s toddler! So yeah. Super busy with work. Which is great, because I was getting so bored of being out of work, but now I have so much work that, even if it’s until December and the business gets up and going, I will still be saving enough money to even look into holidays! Ha.

Next, D. I’ve been with D for near on a whole year now. It has flown by and it’s still going really well. I am super sickeningly happy. Like, seriously. I won’t go on about it too much, but yeah. All good.

Next, weight. This has sorta been fluctuating the last couple of months. But I’m hoping, with all my running around, it’ll sort itself out. I have to learn to drink more water. Especially on my restaurant shifts and 6 hours in the pool. I’m aiming to walk 15k steps a day on my Fit Bit and Oz gets dragged around for two hours a day. I’m also running and swimming again from yesterday, and trying to squeeze in a five week running programme into the next three weeks before I go on holiday! Yes, holiday. For a week. Can’t wait!

Anyways. I have to throw some make up on for work in half an hour! Nice to catch up and I’ll promise to try and write some more when I have time :)