Matthew’s Restart Plan

purple and blue flower

My last post was two years ago (almost exactly). I’ve written a few draft posts in the intervening time, but haven’t completed any of them or felt comfortable what I ended up writing. So let’s ignore the time gap and jump back into things!

Now that the COVID-19 pandemic is seemingly “over-ish”, you’re probably seeing a bunch of ‘restart plans’ out there as I have seen. They outline how we’ll all work together to get back to ‘normal’ or try to figure out how to do the things that we haven’t been able to do for the past two years.

In the early days of 2020, I was excited to finally start doing things again, especially after an excruciatingly painful previous year. My health was beginning to bounce back with my new treatments, my then-boyfriend was finally coming back for a month to visit and talk about plans for the future, I was moving back in with some of my family, and a few other positive things.

I was also looking forward to reconnecting with people that I hadn’t been able to keep in touch with while dealing with all of my physical, mental, and spiritual health problems. So you can imagine my disappointment, discouragement, and outright dismay after thing after thing started to go wrong after that.

Anyway, flash forward to now!

Since that time, I feel like I’ve been putting pretty much everything on hold; More than ever before, actually. To some degree that was required, as we all had to do our part in the pandemic response. But also, in my situation, things weren’t so great for the past two years… and I was essentially in survival mode.

It’s time to move beyond that! I’ve put in a lot of work to deal with my anxiety, depression, OCD, ADD, OMG, CPTSD, CFS, and other (seemingly unending) ongoing problems.

I don’t know why exactly, but I’ve been having this sense of– I don’t know exactly what word to use… renewal! A sense of renewal has been in the air, and I’ve been itching to act on it. Which brings me to one of the specifics of my “restart” plan!

What I mean by my “restart plan” should be fairly obvious by now, but I’d like to clarify it here as I’m using this post as a way to straighten out my thoughts and as one of the ways to document the journey for myself/others. Basically, I’m restarting my life after years of being sick (with my Crohn’s and related) and feeling disconnected from everything and everyone. I’m tired of watching things happen around me as I try to cope and survive instead of engaging and being involved. Having things happen with me or because of me, and not for the usual ‘health-related’ reasons.

So to that end, I’ve decided that my first step should be to transform my habitat to start transforming the way I live day-to-day! And I’ve decided to employ the KonMari Method of tidying to teach myself a completely new way to approach how I think about my things and my living space.

Through the process I’m hoping to reevaluate my life and figure out what priorities I truly would like to honour as I move forward. I’d also like to learn more about my past through the things I have decided to hold onto, then let go of those things with a grateful and kind mindset to make way for the present and the future.

This is the beginning of a new chapter. And I’m ALL IN.

M3

Let’s lighten things up a bit!

flying multicolored hot air balloon

I want to write about something serious and topical, but also, I don’t. Where’s the fun in that? I mean, a bunch of other more influential people are already talking about the things that need addressing—what will I add to the discussion? If I’m not meaningfully adding something with substance, then what’s the point?

Woah. Hold on a moment there, Matthew. Where did this all come from? You wanted to write a post about something light and fluffy because things seem so dire everywhere and you’re feeling crushed under the weight of depression, anxiety, and the crushing power of social influence and responsibility, remember?

Oh, yes. That’s right.

So, let’s do that thing then!

Seems weird to do it after that introduction, yanno?

Well…I suppose it’s weird to some degree. But we can still do it anyway? 🤷‍♀️

Okie dokie. Knock, knock.

Ugh, really?

Yes, really! Please, just say the thing.

Fiiine… Who’s there?

How should I know? I wasn’t there to answer the door; you tell me.

🤨

M3

Today…was a day.

ocean during day

This post was written after an intense Tuesday I had a few weeks ago. I didn’t finish writing it, but I decided to post it anyway.


Oh, my goodness. What a wild day I had today. Care to hear the tale? 😬

Allow me to set the stage. There’s been a lot of dramatic changes in my life recently, and they’ve all sorta happened at the same time. Add to that the global COVID-19 pandemic and you have a jolly good recipe for a fun time!! (Sarcasm is obviously overflowing from these words…)

Don’t get me wrong, many of the changes have been good, beneficial, and expected. But many of them have been big, scary, stressful, anxiety-inducing… you name it. Kinda the biggest thing to happen recently is that my dad left my mom, betrayed the entire family, and left us all with huge messes to clean up. Now I’m not sure that I’m going to have a place to live after the pandemic is over.

I’m sure that I’ll figure out something with my brother to get the living situation secure for the future, and I do have some supports to access if it’s necessary. But the fact that I must face this situation at all is annoying.

I’ll quickly list off other things that have been going on:

  • I was admitted to the hospital a few weeks ago with severe stomach pain, caused by my Crohn’s disease.
  • I’ve had to help my mom move out of her place.
  • A lot of my mom’s furniture needed to be sold.
  • I’m still settling in from my last move to the current apartment that I share with my brother.
  • Because I’m currently underweight, I must pay extra attention to my diet and eating habits.
  • My dog Macy has needed to go into foster care, which means I can’t see her easily right now.
  • A bunch of other smaller things.

Anyway, you get the picture. Lots of things, most of them being big-but-not-too-big, not-so-fun things.

So yesterday, we were trying to sell the extra furniture and my body wasn’t cooperating. Even typing was getting to be too much for my wrists, so I had to take frequent breaks. My brain was all foggy and I just wanted to close my eyes, but even sleep was elusive when I tried to nap.


That’s all I wrote. I’m not exactly sure where I was going with this…but there ya go!

It’s a new season!

yellow petal flowers in clear glass vase

Welcome to a brand-new season of life here in the after times! What a time, eh?

I’m sitting here on the sofa; staring at the screen, considering what to write. There’s so much that I could write about, but where to start I don’t know. Much has changed in my life, yet much has stayed the same.

How about we start with the big changes!

Moving

I moved to the Vancouver area a few years ago and at first I was living with my mother and sister. It was pretty great! After a few months of job searching I was hired at the cafe where my sister worked, which meant we got to work shifts together a lot. Then I met my partner Steven and, because I couldn’t stay with my mom for too much longer, the two of us quickly moved in together. We made a wonderful little home for the both of us in that apartment over the past two-ish years. But Steven had to move back to the US and I couldn’t stay there by myself any longer.

This past January/February I had the opportunity to move in with one of my brothers, which was quite ideal as we get along very well and like to collaborate on creative projects together and play games. I also kind of need someone around to help me when my Crohn’s is being cantankerous, which my brother is good with.

So now I have moved across town and am enjoying a new apartment, a new neighbourhood, and reconnecting with my brother more! 😄

My tummy

In the fall I started a new treatment for my Crohn’s disease, which has been pretty okay. It’s been kind of a major change for me that’s taken some discomfort and adjustment, but my body’s been responding well to it so far. I’m still not 100%, but I don’t really expect to be since this is kind of just the way things are.

The new treatment is also to help with some other health issues I’ve developed over the past year, and it seems to be helping with those things as well. It doesn’t fix or reverse the problems, but it does alleviate the symptoms significantly, prevent further damage, and manage the inflammation in my body. Which is a huge blessing!

But the hugely good news is that my disability application was approved! 🙌 That has opened a bunch of doors to additional support for my healing journey and taking care of my body, so I don’t have to live with quite so much adversity day-to-day. I’m thankful every day that I’m able to take care of myself better with this extra support.

Oh yeah…

There’s also been this whole COVID-19 pandemic happening. It’s not been that big of a change for me so far as I mostly stayed home to begin with. (Physical disabilities and depression are too real!) But with my compromised immune system, it’s especially important that I stay quarantined from the rest of the world right now. I don’t want to deal with more health issues and be more of a problem for medical professionals to deal with! 😹

Otherwise, quarantine has been alright. There’s a lot of not-so-great things that have happened in my life because of the pandemic, but I’m alive and (mostly) healthy, I have food and a bed, so yeah… not too much of a deal for me. I’m an old pro at this.

Other stuff

You’ve heard of Murphy’s Law before? Yeah? Cool.

You know how when things start to go wrong, they all go wrong at almost the exact same time? Right? I can’t be the only one that’s familiar with that phenomenon (do do dododo).

Well… with the world going crazy, right now’s the perfect time for more things to go wrong! In fact, the universe is making almost everything go wrong right now! I mean, for the most part things are okay. But there have been significant changes in my life and within my family that have forever shifted the way my world functions.

I won’t go into specifics as this doesn’t seem like the proper place to do that, but suffice to say that things have happened and people have made decisions that have left me… hurt and confused, I guess. I’m not entirely sure what all the implications are yet. This whole situation is still fresh and developing so I don’t know what’s going to be happening tomorrow let alone next week. And some pretty big decisions are heading my way, along with some big challenges that are going to be difficult to face.

There’s more…

Here’s a picture of my dog, Macy!

Other than that, I’m doing pretty well. I want to blog a little more, maybe do some live streams with friends, play games, work on coding projects, and deal with life as best as I can. Oh, and I’ve also had another significant change in my life occur in the last month… but that’s a secret for now! I’ll share more later. 🤐😝

For now, I’m going to say goodnight to you and probably read over this post before I hit publish.

So…

Goodnight, friends! 👋

Note that the title of this post is a reference to a song from one of my favourite shows, Galavant!

Also note that I gave up editing this post before I published it. Cool.

Thoughts on my current health situation.

As you may or may not know, I have Crohn’s disease. This causes a lot of problems for my day-to-day activities and lifestyle, especially when the symptoms worsen like during a flare-up.

Now I can’t control what my body does as far as my Crohn’s goes and I can’t always control how it affects my life; that’s something that just is. I can, however, control my treatment and choose to make the best of the situations in which I find myself. That’s not always easy. Especially during and after extended periods of turbulence.

This past summer has been one of those extended times, and in a lot of ways it’s still happening. But I’m fighting to get out of it or at least take some control back.

An evolving treatment plan.

Because many of my symptoms worsened over the summer months, the decision was made to alter my treatment plan. Going forward I will be taking biologics on a regular schedule. This means that for the rest of my life, unless something changes, I’ll be injecting my medication every few weeks.

So that’s a pretty big change. Hopefully it’s one that will lead to a more stable state of health for me. That would be amazing and life-changing!

Wow. I reread that last sentence and it’s kind of… it’s a weird concept to wrap my head around.

More than just a physical problem.

You see, for the past year especially, my mental health has also taken a big hit along with my physical health. It makes sense for many reasons, but it’s something that needs to be treated promptly just as any other health issue.

Luckily for me, I was able to start seeing a counsellor and they’ve worked with me to help get me back on track. Doing simple tasks can be a challenging and that messes with my head a fair bit. I mean, I’ve been living with Crohn’s for several years now, but only recently have some of the problems really caught up with me.

I’ve always had a huge issue with energy levels. Often I’ll wake up with less energy than I had before I went to sleep, so it’s hard to do anything in a day. I’ve lost my sense of passion for doing things– for living life. Creative moments are far and few between. My drive to do things and complete projects or tasks is non-existent most days. And it’s easier to count the days that I…

Let’s pause here for a moment because I’m trying to remember where that last sentence in the last paragraph was going and I can’t recall what I was going to write. It’s one of the other things that’s been happening to me quite frequently; short-term memory loss. Which is scary and annoying. Sometimes mid-sentence I’ll just completely stop because I’ve forgotten what I was thinking about and thus what I was saying.

Anyway, the point is that I’m doing my best given the circumstances, but I don’t feel like it’s enough or that I’m keeping up with the demands of modern life. Everything is a drain on my well-being. I can’t heal fully in this environment. Which probably means I need to adjust my environment to help facilitate healing.

Yeah.

In conclusion…

While I’m trying to manufacture hope and optimism, I’m going to probably start posting my thoughts on here a bit more. This blog is meant to share my adventures, and the biggest adventure of my life is also currently my only adventure. Well, it’s my only big adventure at least. I have been having little adventures as I am able.

I don’t know if there was a point to this post. I just started writing because I wanted to and I actually pushed myself to do it. Which was difficult. But it doesn’t have to be… does it?


Edit: I forgot to mention that I added support to my blog for dark mode. So if you’re on a supported device with dark mode turned on, my website will now match the colour of my soul a bit better. 😹

**insert post title here**

When I can’t decide on a topic to write about, I’ll usually start writing whatever is on the forefront of my mind. The problem is that there are usually a multitude of topics being thunk through in my brain… so I’ll end up with a weird combo of subjects that don’t necessarily mesh very well.

Regardless, I’m going to write something. Get ready.

I smell (lol) something that is… vinegar-ish maybe? Almost like fermenting, though. Like apple cider vinegar, but alcoholic. I think? I don’t know what’s causing it, which is kinda annoying but there ya go.

In unrelated news, I have a pile of dishes with little bits of food that are rotting in little pools of water and stuffs.

Wait. You don’t think that… Mr. Roger’s wasn’t abducted by the Area 51 peeps, right? I mean, we don’t have proof that he wasn’t. Right? But why would they even want Mr. Rogers? Does he know something that we don’t know?

WOAH! I just remembered what I actually wanted to write about! 🙌 But I also forgot again as I was looking for that emoji which wasn’t really necessary. Aw, darn.

I’ll remember again later and probably write it out properly. We’ll see.

It’s been a long time…

…but not that long.

I’m back now and that’s what counts.

Besides, I’ve been unable to blog for various reasons.

Sounds like it’s time for an update!

What’s new with me

I think that I told you about leaving my job a few months ago due to health problems relating to my Crohn’s. Well, that’s been an ongoing issue with a bunch of other problems that go along with it, like mental health. That’s been a major struggle.

I have an app to track my mood and activities on a daily basis, which is really helpful for me. I can look back at the past and see trends in a colourful graph with information that connects activity and mood. The app is called Daylio; I highly recommend it to anyone who’s interested in understanding their mental health and mood. It’s not a complete solution, but it’s a great tool. The best part is that it’s well designed, free of ads, can be used for free, and when you pay for it, it’s a single, one-time purchase. So good.

Anyway, the past several weeks have been not so great-looking in my app, with some really bad days. Depression has been a constant companion for me, which isn’t fun or easy. Panic attacks, lack of motivation, and no interest in doing “normal things” have become the norm. Don’t get me wrong, there’ve been some great things happening too. But overall I’m feeling not so good.

Which brings me to another not fun thing that’s happened. My partner had to go back to the States for the summer. Which isn’t fun either. Especially in a city with not many close friends.

There’s also good news!

On the flip side, I finally FINALLY have a family doctor!! 🙌 It’s taken so long for this, but it’s finally here and it’s just so helpful and good for my continuing medical care.

There’s a clinic that is one SkyTrain stop away from my house that recently had two new doctors move in… and they have been accepting new patients! Which was such a relief, let me tell you. Although, the process was kind of underwhelming… I was expecting more issues getting a family doctor. Like it ended up being too easy.

I filled out the attachment request form, or whatever it’s called, they called me back, setup an appointment, and voila! I have a doctor. Simple, easy, peasy. Glad that it wasn’t more of a pain to do that. So YAY! 😸

I also have a counsellor that I don’t have to pay for out-of-pocket. Which is amazing and really quite timely with all of these long-term mental issues coming at me full force. Things really have worked out as I always believe they will. It’s just difficult to deal with my obsessive brain panicking and whatnot.

Good times!

So yeah, things have been very wild these past few weeks! There was also a little thing with my blog’s domain name expiring and I couldn’t renew it right away, but now that I have, I’m back to blogging weekly. Yay for rebuilding the writing habit!

I think it’ll be good for me to get back into my blog. Gives me something to focus on that’s not too strenuous and a good creative outlet that feels good on my brain. So get ready for more posts from me!

Oh yeah…

I also started recording a new podcast with a friend here in Vancouver, which just rocks. Every time that I’ve done a podcast it’s been with people across the internet, which is amazing—don’t get me wrong. It’s so wild that I can do podcasts with people who live across the continent from me. I love it.

It’s nice to be able to do a project like that with someone in person. So this has been a real treat! Especially since we record at the Vancouver Public Library’s studio space. Such a fantabulous resource.

We haven’t quite published the podcast yet… but it’s coming very soon. I’ll keep you update.

Anywhom!

That’s all for now. Tune in next week to hear me giggle like a hyena! 🤣

The mysterious odour.

21812.15.7

I was at work one day as I often was at the time. Washing dishes, deep in thought. It was actually when I wrote these very words in my journal immediately after they popped into my head! I thought it was amazing. Now we’ll find out soon if it actually was. Or is.

So there I was; spray wand in one hand, dirty dish in the other. Which hand was which, I don’t recall—and as I said before, I wrote this all down the moment after it happened. Either way, it was probably right and left respectively.

But that’s not important. What’s important is that I was getting wet while washing dishes when I noticed a faint smell of… something. Something that I couldn’t categorize. It was like burning… gas, perhaps? No. More like rubber that had been out in the sunlight all day—like tires! But more like rubber tires that were made of hard-boiled eggs that have been left on the counter overnight.

I really couldn’t figure out the smell, and I couldn’t determine the source. I looked around and everything was normal. Seemingly normal.

So I did what I always do when I can’t figure out what caused something or there’s no apparent explanation; I blamed myself.

“Blamed” may not be quite the right word there, but… well, yeah. That’s accurate. Besides… I was used to my body emitting odd smells. And my body had been doing that a lot recently.

Again, “recently” was then when I wrote these very words and not now. Now my body doesn’t do that anymore. Now my body is fine. I’m fine. I’m normal. My smell is normal. I’m okay. At least… I hope that it is okay when I read this story to you—which is happening now and not then… but now. (Although, you might be reading this?)

So how could I know that I’m okay and normal and “odour neutral” now—in the future, which is now—the present—now, when I wrote this then and not now, when I’m actually saying this to you with my voice (maybe?) in the present? Well… best not think about that too much. Let’s just accept the fact that right now (the actual present, not then) I’m okay and everything—me—is/am normal.

So the smell… I assumed that came from me (that my body had emitted)…

**pause for dramatic effect**

Yanno, let’s talk about the word “emit”. That’s a really weird word, isn’t it?

~fin~

Four things to encourage a healthy mind.

I struggle with fatigue, pain, motivation, and bunch of other things on most days—a lot of which is related to my Crohn’s disease. Over the past couple of years I’ve discovered and developed different tools and methods to keep my mind in a good place. It’s not easy, but it is doable!

One of those tools is to have a handful of things that I try to do every day, however good or bad I’m feeling. I once made a list of those things, but I kept adding to it until it became too much. Your everyday self care list shouldn’t contain everything—you can’t do everything all the time.

After some time, I came up with four main things to do every single day, especially when I’m not feeling so great. These are some of the most basic things that you need to focus on so you can feel better. Using this list as a starting point, you can develop habits and find simple ways to help yourself actually take care of you.

Here are my top four tips to help maintain a healthy mindset!

1. Move your body!

Fun fact! Your body needs to move—a lot. That’s what keeps you in working condition. If you don’t move, then you’re body isn’t going to work properly.

I’m not sure where, but I remember reading about some research that suggested your body can’t keep completely still for very long. Some part of your body needs to move at least every minute, even if it’s a simple blink, twitch, or breath. If you don’t move, your body will try to make you! Otherwise, you’ll die…which isn’t good. 🙁

So get moving! It’s not always easy, I know. But once you start moving, you tend to keep moving. The trick is to take small steps and move your body in smaller ways. If you’re not feeling great you don’t want to add pressure. So start small; get out of bed. It’s as simple as that!

If you do have the energy and drive, then do more! Take a shower, go for a walk, play Just Dance! Everyone needs a workout of some sort. Your workout can be anything you’d like! Just get moving! Let go, and your body will do the rest.

2. Go outside!

The inside is nice, I get it. Most days I don’t want to even peek my head outside let alone go for a walk or get that ingredient I need from the market. The thing is that you need a stimulating environment to get your mind going. Every one of your senses need to be activated. That’s not gonna happen if you stay inside!

You want to feel the movement of air around your skin, take in the warm rays of the sun, look at the colours of things around you… Maybe even interact with some people! Who knows? Just get yourself outside somehow.

If you don’t have the energy to actually go outside, then you can open a window or sit on the porch. Even opening the door and stepping outside for a minute to see what the weather is up to is better than nothing.

3. Engage your mind!

You need to do something that takes some sort of thought or requires your creative thinking. Something to express yourself or be passionate about. Your mind is a powerful system and needs to be stimulated and engaged so it can do its thing.

Maybe you call a friend to talk about you lives, or put together a puzzle that you have on the shelf. Mayhaps you pull out the finger paints! Whatever you do, get obsessed with it and really get into it.

Engaging your mind will help focus your thoughts. It’ll give your brain time to process things. You’re looking for points of disconnect where you’re not just letting your mind veg. You want your mind to actively wander while you focus on completing some sort of task. (If that makes sense… 🧐)

4. Eat flavourful, whole food!

None of that processed stuff…just good, whole food to wake up your taste buds. That could be as simple as having a banana, apple, or other ready-to-eat fruit. Dried fruits are especially good and just like candy!

Eating anything is good because your body needs energy and nutrition. So if you can’t get the best, most fresh foods, that’s okay. You need to eat something at the very least. But try to have at least one meal item that’s not just a packaged edible food-like substance.

Make banana bread, or fry up an egg. Make oatmeal and top it with PB&J! Get creative and try new combos. And when all else fails, just grab a jar of pickles. Nothing wrong with that. Eat!

Anything else?

The best part about these tips is you can combine a lot of them. Put your mental focus into making a little picnic for yourself, then take a short walk to the park and enjoy the outdoors. If you’re having a good day with lots of energy, that might be the perfect solution! If it’s a harder day and you just can’t muster up anything, that’s fine. Do what you can. Maybe just take a shower, doodle in your notebook, grab a slice of bread, and open a window. That’s all you need to do.

While there’s a lot of things that you have to do to take care of yourself every day, these four things are some of the most important areas to cover. But that’s just my advice… What are some of your own tips for taking care of your mind when life is challenging? Do you have your own priority list for self-care? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

My first sunburn of the year!

OUCH!!

Matthew’s brain

I’m on a boat! To be precise, Steven and I are sitting on the ferry heading back home to Vancouver after a long, fun-filled day. Oh my goodness it’s been crazy!

Why are we on the ferry?

I haven’t been out of the city in so long. That’s mostly because I don’t have access to a (functioning) vehicle right now to get out easily. I could totally take the bus to a few amazing places with hiking, rivers, and whatnot, but it takes a little more planning and usually a lot more time to actually get to your destination.

I guess that the main reason I haven’t gotten out is because of habit. It’s a lot less appealing to go out in the winter when it’s cold and wet. But you get used to it and have to get back into the adventurer mindset. Sure you have to put in a little effort, but it pays off when you get to be out in nature enjoying activities and whatnot.

Anyway, so I realized that we should get out and do something different this weekend. We should go somewhere outside of the city! But where? There’s so many beautiful and exciting places nearby, it’s hard to choose. 🤔

Grouse Mountain is a favourite of mine! And Steven hasn’t been there yet, so I could play the tour guide and show it off to him. I didn’t have the energy to conquer the Grouse Grind last summer, but we could totally do it this weekend!

Or maybe we could go out to Lynn Canyon Park to splash around in the stream to keep cool from this sudden warm weather that hit us. There’s a great suspension bridge there to cross over and access the trail system. I went with Sarah a couple of Septembers ago and we had a lovely time down there. Took lots of pictures and saw some fluffy doggos. ‘Twould be fun to go again!

Ultimately I decided that we should go to surprise my sister with a visit over on the Sunshine Coast! I hadn’t seen her in a long time so it was about time anyway. Plus I wanted to go last week before I started feeling bleh. It totally worked out! 🙌

Off we go!

So off we went to the ferry terminal this morning. Our first challenge? Our own timing. 😜 We both had a hard time with sleep last night (must’ve been the excitement!) so we decided to take the second ferry so we could rest a little longer. When we were finally on our way, our trip got derailed by a medical emergency at the station where we had to transfer to another SkyTrain. A little disappointing since we didn’t have any time to spare, but it was beyond our control and totally understandable. Hopefully the person who needed medical care was alright.

Now we were going to miss the express bus to the ferry terminal which meant that we were gonna be on the 2:00 ferry. Oh well! We jumped on another bus to find someplace to spend the next few hours and maybe grab some iced drinks to cool down.

It was at this point that I should’ve thought to purchase sunscreen, but in my head I had already planned to do that once we were on the Sunshine Coast. It was a minor detail at this point though.

Finally on the ferry!

After hiking around Horseshoe Bay for a bit, we boarded our ferry and were on our way! We took some pictures, enjoyed some snacks, and before we knew it we were back on land. Hooray! We made it! 🙌

After a short bus ride, we popped in to a library for a bit while we figured out where we wanted to explore next and to hide from the sun. I still needed to get sunscreen before I ended up more red than Mars! So that was the priority. I kept dashing between the shady areas as we explored the little shops by the waterfront, keeping an eye out for sunscreen but getting distracted by cute touristy things and potential ice cream.

Eventually we had to make our way up an incredibly steep and long hill to get to the bus that would take us to Rebeckah’s place. With the sun beating down on us and very little shade to protect us, the sun made the journey quite gruelling. And I could feel my skin starting to burn, though Steven didn’t see any evidence of burning yet. But I knew that it was happening. We had to get to the top of the hill and get sunscreen ASAP!

Eventually, after a painfully slow walk, we had made it to the top and proceeded to London Drugs to get the much needed sunscreen. The only problem? It was too late. When we got to Rebeckah’s house she immediately noticed that the back of my neck had turned really red. So very red. Much sunburn. OUCH!!

C’est la vie!

So there we go… my first sunburn of the year! I don’t think that I’ve had a sunburn for the past two years, so this is my first one in a long time. That’s actually a pretty good record! Especially when you take into account my ginger susceptibility to sunburns and stuffs. 😁

I hope that I don’t get any more this year because they can get painful and then I really have to avoid the sun. This one wasn’t too bad, and with a little aloe lotion it will probably heal pretty quickly too. The only upside to getting sunburned is that it’s proof that I’ve been doing awesome stuff outside. Like a badge of honour! I’ll wear it proudly.