carrying on surviving the past year

Carrying On: Surviving the Past Year

Hello, hello, hello

I know, why am I talking about the past year when it’s April? You see the past year has been tough, really damn tough. It was unexpected and difficult and at times I didn’t really know how I was going to get through it all. I wish that was me being dramatic, I really do.

Career Changes

Aaaaaand this is where it kicked off. In April 2017 I was let go from a Marketing job. To be fair I wasn’t happy in it and now I know it was a good thing, a really good thing. So I did some temp work, some more work which turned out to be temp work before I found my current job. Now I do what I wanted to do when I graduated, I work in Social Media. I love doing extra research, looking at stats and people listen to what I have to say! That said my confidence took a really bad hit for a chunk of the year but I’m back guys!

 

Relationships!

So, Ali is a Sound Engineer and back in April 2017 he hadn’t done much travelling for work. We also hadn’t spent more than 2 weeks apart since we were 13 and 14. Everything changed in that regard this year. Now we’re used to spending time apart from a few nights to two months after a busy summer and his first tour. When it first came around I panicked, I cried and I was petrified of sleeping alone. Now? I miss him but hello, double bed for one? Yes, please.

Personal Challenges

Only a few days after losing my job, I lost my second Dwarf Hamster, Hamski. That was heartbreaking, we knew she was old but the timing just seemed cruel. Because of everything that was going on my mental health took a hit, I became very anxious and depressed, I thought that everything was destined to fail in my life. I was in a lot of pain which, I found out was going to continue to be a constant in my life. I really had to work hard to overcome my personal issues to succeed.

But it wasn’t all bad…

Of course, I’m going to throw in a cliche. It has to rain for flowers to grow. I believe that everything happens for a reason in your life, this year reminded me how resilient I am. I’ve been knocked on my arse and got up again. I’ve got a job that I love, that I feel so passionate about. I have my little Hamster, Wickett. Ali and I are actually closer since he started working away and then coming back. I started to get comfortable with how ‘boring’ I am. I know I can be fully independent if I need to be.

Long story short, it was shit but I got through it and I bet you could too.

 

Homeowner Dreams www.chloemetzger.com

Homeowner Dreams

There was once a time when owning a home was a milestone that the majority of people reached. It was a milestone of growing up, something you did before starting a family. When my Mum and Dad bought their house in 1996, this was the case, they’d never even had to rent before. Skip forward more than 20 years and meet me, their eldest child, and part of generation rent.

Think back to when you’d ask people what they would do if they won the lottery. Buy flash cars, luxury holidays etc. Now, say you won 20K on the lottery, in the South East of England that might get you a deposit for a small house. Not the whole house, just a deposit on a house. This is what young people like us are facing.

Will Young People Ever Be Able To Afford Their Own Homes?

The majority of you reading this are in the same position, the prospect of being able to save enough to merely put down a deposit on a house is more than most 20-somethings make in a year in their area. But, don’t forget people think if we bought fewer sandwiches, we could make the sacrifices to find that money…I’m not kidding that’s a genuine article I’ve linked to.

I don’t know when, or how, owning a home became something seemingly unachievable for most young people. While some are able to live at home until they are in their mid-twenties and save, that is not the case for the majority of us. That and we want our own space, not to live with our parents until we’re between 25 & 30. I don’t go on expensive holidays, I don’t drive an expensive car (I saved for 3 years while at uni for my current car), I take lunch with me most days but I am still paying almost double a mortgage to live in a 1 bedroom flat.

While my partner and I try and work out how we will be able to manage to try to scrape together money to put towards our own home, the prospects look increasingly bleak. A lack of affordable housing and sky-high deposit payments are just the tip of the iceberg. We’re told to give up any luxury, move out of certain places where it’s cheaper etc, this is completely ignoring the issues at hand. Most of which centre around greed.

I know this might have come across as a rant but, truly, this is a post born out of frustration. It doesn’t matter how good you are with money, we’re going back to a state of working people missing out. If you are able to get help from wealthy relatives, you might make it. Although for the average person Homeowner dreams have become just that, dreams.

What are your thoughts on becoming a Homeowner? Have you managed? Let me know in the comments below!

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

Sunday Seven: Things That Always Happen When You Start A New Job

This week I started a new job in a turn of events! Here are 7 things that always happen when you start a new job!

The panic of what to wear. 

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When you start in a new place there’s always a panic (for women anyway) of what to wear. I only met two people in my interview and I had no idea how formal you were supposed to dress, luckily after a day I could tone it down.

The Linkedin search. 

I like having an idea about the company and the people so I do a frenzied Linkedin look before I start, I’ve also found that in my new job and my old job other people looked me up too, proving to myself that it’s not just me being super nerdy.

Setting multiple alarms to make sure you’re awake. 

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I’ve legitimately had nightmares where I’ve massively overslept for work and woken up thinking it was real. Ok that happened yesterday…*sigh*

The dread of learning everyone’s names. 

I’m not the best with everyone’s names, luckily I had a little sheet made for me so that I can check it every now and again to double check who’s who when I get confused.

The awkward nice to meet you handshakes.

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Or, you know, just feeling awkward as the new girl anyway..

Getting lost. 

My new office isn’t big but I did spend a few minutes trying to work out how to get out of the building until someone told me…whoops.

Wanting to tell everyone about the slightest cool thing about your job.

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I get so excited about my new job that I just want to tell everyone everything that’s cool.

Growing Up and Letting Go

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I didn’t know a year ago that such a large part of growing up meant letting go and, sometimes, walking away. In the past year, I’ve learnt more about those things than I have in my entire life. I’ve had to let one of my precious girls go for her sake, I’ve walked away from friendships that I didn’t feel were working and I’ve had to let go of who I thought I was while trying to work out who I think I am. I might sound like a clichèd 20 something, ‘ I don’t know who I am’, but I really don’t. There’s the person I thought I was at university, there’s the person I am after leaving. I’ve had to let go of a sport I lived for, something which I never thought would happen and breaks my heart more than I’d like to admit. Growing up is full of changes and evolution

Growing up is full of changes and evolution. I guess it’s how we learn and all adds up to the person we’re supposed to be, but that doesn’t make it any less exhausting or any easier. The amount of time I’ve spent just wondering ‘what do I want to do?’ because that has certainly changed since I graduated. People say that being young is easy but this is certainly the most confusing time in my life, even more confusing than when I was a teenager. Theses ideas of what you should be doing, thinking etc compared with what you want to do.

I don’t have a grand plan when I write these things, maybe I should, who knows. I just get it all out on a page, because I do know I’m not the only one who feels this way. We’re all young and confused and that won’t change for the generations to come, to quote one of my favourite bands ’22 is like the worst idea that I have ever had, it’s too much pain, too much freedom what should I do with this?’ Hell if I know.

Pondering Life and Bridget.

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I’ve been 22 now for 3 days. I know that one day doesn’t make life miraculously change anything but it’s made me just think about where my life is right now and what I want to do with it. I wrote on Sunday about 7 things I want to do this year, but it goes deeper than that. It’s been a big year of change and challenges, it’s taken me a long time to admit that I can’t control everything and life’s going to do what it does. It doesn’t mean that I sometimes get a little down because everything isn’t 100% how I thought or wanted it to be.

It’s funny because last weekend (on my last day of being 21) I went to see the latest Bridget Jones film. While growing up I loved Bridget and for a period of time I watched the first film almost every night. Even as a teen there was something I saw in Bridget, that she wasn’t perfect and she messed up from time to time but she just got on with it. In the latest film, watching as a 20 something, while Bridget is a 40 something, I felt comforted again. Bridget may seem like an odd person to be cheered up by, but the fact that life didn’t go perfectly but she made the best of what she had filled me with hope.

A lot of people look at my life and think what do you have to complain about?! You’re in a loving relationship, you have a good job and you passed your degree. All those things are true and while I acknowledge that I am in a good position it doesn’t mean I don’t worry like every other 20 something. I worry about how my career is going to go, whether we’ll be able to buy a house or will we just rent? Will we want children. I think I’m pretty normal in the fact that sometimes my brain goes into overdrive and I think WHAT IS THE FUTURE WHY IS IT SO BIG AND SCARY.

I’m hoping that while I know that life is going to do what it does and I’ll try and steer it the right way. I don’t really know what this post is about or if there was a big reason. I guess I just needed to write about how I feel because like all the songs say, 22 is confusing as hell. Let’s hope I can look to Bridget for a little more inspiration and understanding the older I get.

Sunday Seven: Seven Things That 20 Somethings Are ‘Supposed’ to Do

I’ve spent a lot of time thinking this week about what is expected of 20 somethings. People have a lot of opinions about your twenties, what you should be doing, what you shouldn’t be doing, how you should feel, how you shouldn’t feel. It’s both exhausting and annoying. While some people are truly trying to help and pass on wisdom after the mistakes they made, it is SO hard not to roll my eyes most of the time. Anyway, I’m hoping that I’m not the only one who gets these!

You should travel, all the time, everywhere! 

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Now, don’t get me wrong I enjoy visiting other places, seeing other cultures and their history BUT I’m not someone who’s into travelling. The thought of just having a backpack and all that jazz doesn’t appeal to me, it never has. I have a list of places I want to go but you won’t see me heading off for weeks or months at a time to share a room and a shower.

You should get experience, lots of experience! 

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I’m lucky enough that I’ve had some great opportunities, but very early on I learnt that coming from money can really help get your career kick started. There are so many industries where you are expected to get experience by working for free or on minimum wage. I know for a fact most 20 somethings really do want to get experience but simply cannot afford it without support.

You should/shouldn’t be thinking about getting married! 

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People are obsessed with when they think you should or shouldn’t get married. There’s a total divide on what people think in my life. A lot of people are like you guys have been together forever, when are you getting married? OR they will tell you under no circumstances should you do it in your twenties, I have to say though most people who say this are divorced.

Go out! Party and make the most of it! 

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I did a year of partying at uni, sometimes it was fun but it was never my thing. I’m quite happy to go to the pub every now and again or go out for some cocktails after payday but I’d rather save my money and do exciting things that won’t make me feel awful the next day!

Don’t forget to save!

Between all the travelling, partying and unpaid experience?

You’re in the best time of your life, remember that. 

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So far my 20s have been good, but they’ve also been pretty hard. I think people forget the confusion, the stress of trying to work out who you want to be and how to make that happen and all the expectations on you. Oh and not to mention the debt if you went to uni, so much debt.

What are/were you guys told throughout your 20s? Let me know in the comments below!

 

Settling in and Adulting Hard

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It’s been 35 days since I accepted my first full time job. In the past 35 days I’ve bought a new car, left my two part time jobs, started a job, moved out of mine and Ali’s first home, voted in the European Referendum, booked my graduation, got my results, released two new singles and played the main stage of the biggest free festivals in the South East. I get up, shower, drive to work, design, market and all that jazz, get lunch with some colleagues, maybe cuddle a dog or two, then I drive home and for the past few weeks I’ve always had something to do or somewhere to go. To say I’ve been busy is an understatement and so I hope that you will understand the reason the blog has been so all over the place!

More than anything post uni life has made me tired but happier. The end of uni was hard, third year wasn’t my best and I was terrified of what the future was going to hold. That’s not to say that everything has been easy starting my new job. I almost had an anxiety attack on my first day, I’ve been trying to understand the ins and outs of the company as well as working out how the hell I fit in. I’m lucky though, I have a great team of people who are genuinely nice and supportive. I haven’t found anyone who I don’t get along with (which is good because there are less than 20 of us).

Slowly and surely I’m finding my feet in the big adult world. There have been some wobbles and times when I’ve sat there and thought ‘I don’t know if I can do this’. I’ve had days where I’m so tired I’ve just cried for no reason and yesterday I got very lost in London (that was something I got very stressed about). The thing is though, knowing I have a team that I can ask questions to and rely on is a brilliant feeling. I’m still the new girl, I will be for a while but that’s ok. In the meantime I can work on this whole ‘being an adult’ thing…that might take a little more work.

Image from Pinterest

Happy 21st Joe!

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This is just a quick post to say Happy Birthday to one of the most amazing people in my life. The brother I never had, the most sarcastic bitch I know and just all around good guy. This is going to be your best year yet!!! Thanks for everything and here’s to getting through our twenteens together!

Fresher’s week 2015

After last weeks celebrations for birthday week, I am surprised I’m still awake after my second week of activities and shenanigans. This week was Fresher week and although I haven’t been out pounding the dance floor I have been pretty busy and, well, I definitely feel like a first year. I spent my first Freshers week being incredibly awkward and nervous and I spent a lot of time in my room, my second Freshers week I went out with my friends, signed up for societies and partied…for my third, I was actually having to be a responsible person.

I spent Monday in physio and working, Tuesday practicing with the boys and taking the Amp for emergency repair (not an ideal situation), Wednesday working with the newbies and taking them to enrollment, Thursday at Freshers fair and then straight to a show at the Fighting Cocks (quite possibly the best crowd I’ve ever played to, shouting, dancing, clapping and an encore!) and back to the fair again on Friday where we got over 100 sign ups for the Horse Riding Society! Get in!

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I’d be lying if I said that everything was completely easy this week. I’ve struggled a lot with both my spine and my anxiety. I’ve got a love hate relationship with Freshers, I love that it’s the beginning of the year and I’m excited to get stuck in, but at the same time I get so anxious with so many people around and everything going on all at once. I’ve met other people like that too, which makes me feel a little better. I’m also freaking out a little out third year, all the work I have to do, the thought of applying for my MA and funding and not knowing what’s going to happen once I graduate. It was also more than a little bittersweet not having Eleanor, Maisha and Alissa around this year to hang out with too.

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Overall, it’s been a good week, definitely challenging but I’m pleased with what I’ve achieved. Am I ready to go back? Yes. I can’t wait to get back into lectures and have something to get stuck into again. I know this years going to be a bit hard because of my spine and I’ll have to miss out on some things that I wanted to do, but maybe I’ll get to do something I hadn’t planned on. I have some great things this year, I love my job, I love my friends, my bands FINALLY getting somewhere, I have two lovely little hammies and the best guy around at my side. I think this year’s going to be a pretty good one.