I've been concentrating on me. On me doing things differently. There's the health thing - as you know I've been on that road for a while, but there's also the change in my attitude.
When I say lately, I guess I probably mean in the three and a half years since Sam died. Something about that whale experience, while incredibly horrible has also been life-changing in other ways: I've reassessed my priorities, my goals, and even my values.
That's not to say I've suddenly become s different person. If anything I've become more...me. I'm almost ashamed to say it but there are parts of me that I've kept hidden for a long time, but I needed to recognise that and make changes. No it's definitely not been an easy transition and I've got a long way to go, but I think I've made some real progress.
Let's take my health for example. As I've mentioned quite a few times, I have always struggled with my weight. And while I'm certainly not where I'd prefer to be, weight-wise, I'm healthier than I've been in a very long time. I willingly exercise at least 6 times a week, my skin is great, I eat pretty healthy most of the time (though I've still got a bit of work to do there, especially around the odd sugar/fat binge), I very rarely get sick - in fact I can't remember the last time I had a bad cold. 2011?
Sh'Bam has had a lot to do with it. More than anything, it gave me reason to enjoy exercising again. Oh it's been hard being a part of a group of fitness instructors that are a lot smaller and fitter than me, but they have all been so supportive and welcoming that I can't help but love it. And the people in the classes give me good feedback too.
All this has led to a real boost in my confidence. I can get up on the stage in a Sh'Bam class and go from vamp to ballet dancer to Jane Fonda hip hop 'homey' and it seems like it's coming naturally. I don't feel nearly as self-conscious as I maybe thought I might.
And the confidence sneaks into other areas of my life too: I'm seeking up more at work, voicing my opinion more and stepping up into more challenging roles (where possible), I'm trying new things and going out more and talking to more people. I'm actively taking myself out of my comfort zone. Last night, I auditioned for stage production of Footloose. Now, while I am not renowned as a shy and retiring type, this was a big leap for me. I love preforming, and did a lot of it in school, but haven't done anything since then. But I went and I SANG! In front of people! I made a general donkey of myself. I was so nervous that my voice sounded awful and I mucked up the accent (both things that I'm actually not too bad at), but it doesn't matter. I was just happy that I took that risk and did it. It's something that I definitely wouldn't have done 2 years ago. Perhaps not even 2 months ago.
These things have given me the strength and the courage to keep on this path. To keep improving myself. To test myself to see how far I can go. But to also do the things that make me happy, make me feel good.
Of course, one of those things is this blog. For those first couple of years after Sam died, this blog kept me going, gave me a place to get it all down, get it all out of my head. For the last year or so I haven't really known what to do with it. I've tried writing a few things, but there was always the thought 'why would they want to read about that?" But then I realised. That doesn't really matter. Because blogging makes ME fee good. Even if no one's reading it (although I do like it when they do!).
So in the interest of making me happy, I'm coming back to blogging. More soon!