Have you had one of those moments recently when, checking in on a friend (or those people that you follow and barely know on the internet), that you felt like life was happening elsewhere?
Yeah, me too.
I have to really remind myself sometimes that this time of year is particularly susceptible to the Highlights Reel. You know the one, right?
'We put the Christmas tree up and it was amazing!'
'We went to the Christmas market and it was amazing!'
'We didn't get out of our pis all day and it was amazing!'
Yeah, I've done that. Absolutely. Mostly, if I'm honest, I was just grateful no one lost an eye to an elbow at the market and my little one wasn't the one to have a hyperactive meltdown underneath the fairy lights (nor for that matter, was I). We share the Highlights Reel because in that moment, we nailed it. Maybe let's give ourselves that and stop panicking we're not living the best life every second of every day?
The past few weeks, I've been preparing for the return of the podcast and *things*. In the interest of being my best self when I do that, I decided to Come Out. It got a far bigger reaction than I was expecting. I just wanted to be truly me if I was stepping back in front of an audience, I guess.
Here's what you may have missed, for context:
On the surface we're that couple right? And yeah, if I'm honest it's the best life I have ever lived because my daughter and I are safe, happy and loved. My girlfriend helps me feel like I own my life at last and I love how she understands that some days, I'm holding on to that Highlights Reel like my life depends on it. To bask in who you are after such a journey is surely living your best life? I've made it!
The thing is though, this isn't all of it, nothing ever is. All those people who looked and felt less than extraordinary at the outpouring? I feel you, deeply. Yes, it's incredible and I'm grateful every second of every day since we stepped into our relationship. That moment was also just a beautiful highlight that I shared. Whatever the thing is that makes you feel alone in the world? I know that feeling too, trust me.
I started A Playful Day because I needed one moment in a day that I found delight and happiness. It's why I create the way I do. It's why I do everything the way I do. So now it's all whirring back to life after an online gap year of sorts, I'm stepping back out as fully myself as I know how to be. It feels like the right thing to do.
So I guess the headline is that the podcast, the blog and everything is coming back and I'm terrified about that. Do me a favour? Let's do it together, ok? We are not all living our best life 110% of the time and I'm ok with that if you are. Let's celebrate the mess and the joy of it all.
p.s. My house remains treeless and free of any Christmas decor as of today. No regrets.