Bloganuary Tag: Day 1 – 4

Bloganuary tag header image day 1-4

Brand new for 2022 – come join me for Bloganuary!

Hello Twisties and welcome to Bloganuary!

By now, I know how much many of you enjoy my TMI Tuesday posts and so when I saw this brand new blogging opportunity come up, I just had to jump on the bandwagon! Every day and for the rest of this month, I’ll be posting and answering a new question or prompt for you lucky, lucky people!

I’m a little bit late to getting involved with this challenge but to make up for lost time, I’ve compiled my first four answers below. If you want to read more, be sure to check back tomorrow or if you haven’t already, sign up to my emails in the form at the bottom of this page and never miss a post again! 

What Is Bloganuary?

A fun and quirky amalgamation of ‘blog’ and ‘January’ (obviously), Bloganuary is a brand new tag award run by WordPress. Every day, a question or prompt can be sent to you for you to answer on your blog, however you so please. Why wait? Get involved with other bloggers, make new connections, reach new audiences and drive more traffic to your site today!

Fancy taking part in the Bloganuary tag? Click here

And now, let’s begin…

Day 1: What advice would you give to your teenage self?

Stop chasing the boys and focus on your studies. Seriously, I was in a long-distance relationship with a man from Al Sharjah, UAE and I focused so much of my time and energy on him, writing cutesy stories about us for my English coursework, creating artworks showing how our love would traverse the miles for my art GCSE and everything. I was completely besotted!

But my focus was all wrong. Instead of focusing on my grades, I was more focused on him. I was set for A* in all key subjects, but I let myself get distracted and ended up with five passes instead. It still got me into college, but it wasn’t the grades that I was meant to get and we broke up a few months later anyway. Ironically, I met the man that I would later marry when I was hellbent on not finding love and wearing a gi. Love finds you in funny ways!

Day 2: What road trip would you love to take?

Call me boring, but I wouldn’t be leaving the UK. Scotland and Ireland are both on my list, but basically anywhere where there’s castles and history and landscape and… I love walking, exploring and sightseeing. There’s a little folly near me and I just love going up there for basically no real reason. Take a look! 

A picture of Blaise castle folly with a lady walking her dogs

When I was younger, my parents were members of the CSMA, or Civil Service Motoring Association, and we used to get to go on five-night camping breaks for probably not more than about £40 at a time. I can remember so many times when my school would break up for half term and we’d get home to “go in, get changed and pack your bag, you’ve got an hour”. Nine times out of ten we wouldn’t even know where we were going, just that we were going, but I can safely say that I have camped in some absolutely beautiful locations: Next to the River Avon in Wyre Piddle, exploring the picturesque scenery of Oxford, watching the cruise ships come and go in Southampton, along the River Usk in Chainbridge, Wales. I’ve explored the historic (and equally beautiful) village of Moreton-In-Marsh and camped among wild ponies in the New Forest. I could go on, but I think I’ve made my point… 

Day 3: Write about the last time you left your comfort zone.

Ack, it’s probably any time that I pick up a sharp knife. I have “Pure O” OCD, or more specifically, Harm OCD, so unlike most people that can shrug of a weird and twisted thought, my brain is going to hold onto it and analyse the hell out of it. What does it mean of me? It must mean something!

“What if…?”

What few people tell you about therapy for OCD, is how OCD is treated. Along with more conventional methods of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, therapists also use something called Exposure & Response Prevention which means to say that, gradually, you face up to doing the thing you were too afraid to do, without carrying out the compulsion that your brain wants you to do. For me, my biggest fear was preparing food with a sharp knife in the kitchen with my husband around, just in case I flipped out and hurt him. I still don’t like it now, but the anxiety that might have been a “high nine” before is now about a 4. Of course, not using sharp knives or asking my husband to stay out of the kitchen would be giving in to my OCD, it would be rewarding it with the compulsion that it wants which sadly, only makes OCD worse. Basically, I have to accept that maybe there’s a killer hiding in all of us, and all that sets me apart from a true killer is how I choose to conduct myself in any given moment.  My thoughts can’t make me do something that I don’t want to do, no matter how powerful they may feel sometimes! 

Day 4: What was your favorite toy as a child?

I’ve still got him:

My childhood teddy bear, a white teddy bear with a red hat and scarf, called Snowy

Meet Snowy, or “Uncle Snowy” as he’s become in more recent days. Snowy was a Christening gift from my maternal grandparents. I still love spending time with Snowy, it’s a place of childish wonder and vulnerability for me. Around Uncle Snowy I don’t have to be mean and tough, my world can fall to pieces and me along with it if I want to. Snowy is also the perfect size for a good cuddle! He fits perfectly in my arms, no matter how old I get. 

Funny and cute story: Note under Snowy’s right arm, he has a little dimple in his fur? Something sticky got on Snowy and having seen my Mum trim the dog’s fur before, I decided to carefully give Snowy a little trim, too. Hey, he’s a real bear, right? His fur will grow back… 

That’s it from me for today Twisties! Don’t forget to come back tomorrow for my next Bloganuary post!

Until next time, 

Stay safe & have fun, 

Helen xx

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