Sunday Seven: Things a Mum does that you might not recognise

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Here in the UK it’s mothers day! Now I’ve been incredibly lucky and won the luck or the draw with my Mum. She’s been absolutely incredible throughout every up and down in my life. I know I’ve probably added a few grey hairs to her head (sorry Mum!). There are a lot of things that Mum’s do for most of us don’t really think about. Here’s to all the Mum’s and everything you do for us.

They have literally wiped our butts. 

Yup, before we could do anything our Mum’s had to be there for absolutely everything, including keeping us clean.

They’ve cleaned up after us. 

Speaking of cleaning, our Mum’s have cleaned up after us. I know mine did! Even when we probably should have known better, they still cleaned up after us.

They taught us right from wrong. 

Someone tells you you’re polite? Someone compliments you? Chances are it has something to do with what your mumma taught you.

They didn’t give up on us. 

I know that I’ve been in places where I’ve given up on myself , but my Mum never did.

They also told us when we were wrong. 

My Mum definitely isn’t afraid to tell me when I’m wrong or when I’m being stupid, it’s definitely needed.

They fed us and kept us alive. 

And I’m not just talking about when we’re babies, Mum’s frozen dinners really made a difference when I was at uni.

They loved us unconditionally. 

Even when we were little monsters, they loved us, all day, every day.

Happy Mother’s Day ❤

Sunshine Clearing a Cloudy Mind

It’s known that sunshine, for a lot of people, is an instant mood booster. People feel better about life, there is literal light around you, it’s no surprise that summer is most people’s favourite season. As I write this my washing is in the garden, my back doors are open and I’ve been driving with my windows down in the car. The sunshine is a welcome addition to my life.

I’ve made no secret that since graduating I haven’t been feeling my best. I’ve felt lost, confused and sometimes let down from graduate life. Combining that with the winter months I didn’t feel like myself. A little bit of sun, a bit of real light, can change that. Now, I’m not saying that a little bit of sun can clear depression, it definitely doesn’t but the vitamin D boost is known to help those of us with depression.

Bring on the summer, bring on the sunshine for the helping hand that it gives.

Book Review: Without a Doubt – Marcia Clarke

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Overnight Los Angeles prosecutor Marcia Clark went from a hard working single mum dealing with a divorce and the cases that came through for her to one of the most recognised women in the world. In June 1994 O.J Simpson was accused of the brutal murder of his ex-wife Nicole Brown and Ronald Goldman. As a result of the celebrity nature and an infamous car chase, Marcia was a central player in the media circus that became ‘the trial of the century’, this is her story.

I had never heard of Marcia Clark until last year when I watched the American Crime Story series on the Simpson case. I was instantly drawn to this woman, played by the magnificent Sarah Paulson, and wanted to know more. I watched interview upon interview. I liked that she spoke her mind, she was quick, intelligent and most of all, human.

Clark’s account isn’t a glamorised version of the case, nor is it an autobiography. She goes into detail that is relevant to her reactions to the case and that is that. I was exactly the straight talking, honest opinion I expected from Marcia. There are no ‘woe is me’ moments, she knows that there were things that should have been done differently and things that impacted the case.

Reading about the trial from Marcia’s perspective made the case more real to me than ever. I wasn’t even born at the time of the murders, but Marcia’s detail made me feel like I was. She talks without hesitation about her frustration and anger at the ‘dream team’, Simpson’s defence lawyers, at Judge Ito and his quest for fame and the seeming uninterest of the Jury.

The book goes through evidence and, basically, breaks down evidence and why the team did exactly what they did at each point in time. She doesn’t shy away from the problems, the Fuhrman tapes, the infamous glove, she tackles them head on.

There is also a spotlight on the mistreatment of Marcia by not only the public but those in the courtroom. It’s easy to see now that she was the victim of rampant sexism and badgering. Every inch of Marcia was judged and discussed in any type of media, from many accounts she was mistreated by Judge Ito and Simpson’s lawyers, to the point that her personal life was brought up in court. This wasn’t a woman hungry for fame or with media savvy, she just wanted to do her job.

I devoured this book via Audible (I like listening to memoirs in the author’s voice if possible). Of course, I gave it a five-star rating. This book is more than just a tell-all about a celebrity trial. You can feel through the pages the responsibility that Clark felt to get justice for Ron and Nicole, her anger and frustration at the verdict. This is an extraordinary read and I would highly recommend it to all.

 

Success?

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A while ago, I was speaking to a friend when he surprised me, he told me I was successful. It stopped me in my tracks, because I haven’t classed myself as that in quite some time, in fact, since graduating I’ve felt more ordinary than I ever have in my life! At times, I’ve even felt like a failure.

Part of this is the struggles I’ve had with my confidence (it took a large dip after breaking my spine) and the other part, who knows? On paper, and to many people I know, they do believe I’m a successful 22 year old. I have a job, a degree, a home and a stable relationship.It ticks all the boxes, doesn’t it? Which I why I feel so bad whenever I say the words out loud, I’m not doign well enough.

I’ve always had a problem where I both want and need to be one of the best. I was talented both musically and academically growing up, apart from driving I found a way to make things appear as if they came easily (they didn’t). Despite my struggles I didn’t want people to feel sorry for me, for the things I’d gone through, so I worked as hard as I possibly could. I won awards, competitions etc. I felt like I was going places.

After graduating, for the first time in your life, your achievements aren’t given prizes or certificates, you’re not given feedback and a grade on things you spend hours on. So I guess in that respect, it isn’t unusual for someone to feel that they’re not doing as well, because you have to jugde it for yourself (particularly hard when you are an anxious person).

So I sit here and I try and see that I am successful, I might not be where I want to be at the end but it doesn’t mean I’m not. I think for many of us, that may be it. We confuse success with where we want to end up. I can only speak for myself, but that’s where I think I’ve been going wrong. I don’t have a house, a book and my life sorted out. Who the hell does in their 20s?

Maybe this is where I say something cliche like ‘success is a state of mind’, maybe it is. All I know is that it means so many things, to so many people. I’m flattered to think that my friend think I’m successful, I hope that someday soon I feel that way too!

What does success mean to you? Do you feel successful?   Let me know in the comments below or tweet me @chloemetzger

Hello Spring!

If, like me, you’re currently in the UK it didn’t feel too much like the first day of Spring today with torrential rain, wind and cold. That said, I’m SO excited that we’re finally entering Spring time, we’ll have lighter evenings soon, flowers will start to bloom (which may or may not be a good thing for Hayfever sufferers). More than anything I know it will help my mood improve and hopefully my lows. Here’s to Spring time!

 

Sunday Seven: Living With Chronic Pain – Tips.

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For some of you who have been following my blog for the past few years (firstly, you rock) you will know that a few years ago I broke and damaged some of the vertebrae in my spine, along with some nerves in my leg after a horse riding accident. I’ve come a long way in the past two years and live a relatively normal life, I still work full time, I still see my friends, I still go out but I just need to be a little more careful. Of course, it’s a challenge and a case of good days and bad days.

After two years I’ve come up with my own ways to deal with the days where pain is a problem and although I’m no superwoman and struggle I’ve learnt to live day to day.

Acknowledge that your body is doing the best it can 

It’s incredibly frustrating when your body doesn’t play game. It’s easy to hate on it and get angry, upset and feel that your body is failing you but, it is doing the best it can. My body healed from serious injuries and it will take time for it to go back to the way it was before.

Celebrate the little things 

I love when I can do things again that show a little step in the right direction. Having a good gym session, going for a walk, losing some of the weight that appeared after the accident etc. These are all things that I try and celebrate as it shows my body healing little by little.

You know your body, make sure doctors understand that 

Doctors appointments can be battlefields. Know your body, know what you need.

Accept that life is full of good days and bad days 

Some days I feel brilliant, other days I’m in a lot of pain and struggle with my body and my happiness. These are unfortunately both parts of living with chronic pain.

Find a release from your pain 

Listen to music, write, make art, write blogs. There needs to be a healthy outlet for your pain because it is a real and valid emotion.

Talk to others who know how you feel  

I’ve found the Twitter community amazing when I’m having a bad pain day. There are so many others who can understand what you’re going through and give you a little support when you need it.

Remember you are more than your pain 

It’s easy to feel locked into your pain on a tough stretch, that this is your life and you’ll always feel this way. You’re more than this and you’re stronger than this!

Feminist Friday: We Should All Be Feminists- Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

 

Chimamanda Ngozi’s talk ‘We Should All Be Feminists’ is a perfect watch to get into the spirit of feminism. Why? because it’s not bashing men, it’s not focused on one type of feminism. Chimamanda is a strong woman, a confident speaker and from what I’ve been told, a brilliant writer. The talk is based on the importance of equality between the sexes, of bringing up young girls. This is the perfect video to watch and watch again.