Friday, 29 June 2012

A funeral.

My Grandad died, rather suddenly, on Wednesday. Obviously, it has been a horrible time, but today was the worst. He's Jewish, and so I had my first experience of a Jewish funeral.

And seriously, I don't mean to offend anyone who is Jewish, but I hated it. Funerals in general are obviously horrible, but I hated these traditions even more. I hate the fact that they are all about misery and sorrow instead of celebration of their life, and all symbols of happiness (colour, flowers etc) are forbidden and I hate the fact that the people who go to the funeral bury the coffin. It was horrible, and so unlike my Grandad. My Grandad would have wanted a big party with everyone laughing, having a good time, singing and wearing silly hats, and instead we had to go for 45 minutes and wallow in self-pity. It was SO unlike him, he always loved to laugh and make others smile, and I hated it.

On the other hand, even though they only had 48 hours notice, best part of 100 people showed up. This does go against Jewish tradition, which states only close family should be present, but my Grandad would have wanted others there. They all had such lovely things to say about him, and it was wonderful to see how many lives he touched. He was a very busy man, involved in so many things, always helping others and it was such a tribute to see so many people there.

We then held a small wake, with only very close family, again against tradition, but my Grandad always loved a good buffet at a funeral. I think we did him proud, eating lovely food, not touching a drop of alcohol, and sharing lovely memories. We've all had a cheerful afternoon actually, after the funeral, sharing memories and playing silly games.

We even invented, what sounds like, a pretty sick game, but it is so typical of my family to turn sorrow into joy and laughter. We play 'snap' with the sympathy cards - we have over 60 and so are now getting many duplicate cards. The first person to spot a duplicate card when my Grandma opens a new one, points at it and yells "SNAP" and gets a point. It sounds quite inappropriate, but if he were here, my Grandad would be the first to join in. We always want to laugh in our family, and we're probably the only family in the world who could sit and laugh when opening sympathy cards. It really is what he would have wanted though, he was such a positive and vibrant person. There was never a dull minute with him around, and we will never lose that.

I miss you, you batty old git. I hope you liked my eulogy <3

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Seriously, ladies, why do we do this to ourselves?!

Men are actual assholes.

Now, this may not be a revelation to most of you, but it is to me. Don't get me wrong, I've had my fair share of idiot men treating me like rubbish at times, but last night I saw what other people talk about.

To cut a long story short, my Grandad is ill. Really ill, and I'm going home this weekend to see him because, realistically, it will be the last time he is in any fit state to see me as he is already on a lot of pain medication, if not the last time at all. So, because of this, I rang my boyfriend and asked if, on Sunday night when I get home, he would come over and spend the evening with me to cheer me up, keep me company, give me a cuddle etc after a bad weekend. He said no, the football is on.

And the worst thing is? After sharing this story with a couple of friends at school, their response was neither shock nor horror. Nope, something I can only describe as acceptance. This is, apparently, "what men do".

Seriously girls, since when has this kind of behaviour been acceptable?! Why is it ok for guys to treat us like that, to talk to us like that, and more importantly, why do we let them? Why do I know that I should tell my boyfriend where to shove it (because, let's face it, we haven't been together for long enough for me to be putting up with this crap), yet don't? Why do we all just shrug it off as "what men do"?

(Not that I shrugged it off, I was actually upset. And then angry. And then settled on a combination of the both.)

But, let's face facts for a moment here girls: this is why they do it - because we don't call them on it. We don't tell them to piss off when they treat us like crap, therefore making the behaviour 'acceptable', and we all write it off as 'typical'. Typical doesn't mean it is ok. This is really not ok, and we deserve better than this, girls, we really do. We wouldn't get away with treating our boyfriends like this, so why is it ok for them? Fuck double standards, it's not good enough in this day and age.

Moral of this story: worship the ground I walk on and treat me like I'm the most important thing in the world or fuck off.

Your call, assholes.

Oh, and, if you are a guy and reading this, for the love of God, learn from the mistakes of your fellow man. And do not think that a box of Jelly Babies will suffice as an apology. I mean, are you all this thick?

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Being organised.

I have always considered myself a very organised person, to the point of being slightly obsessed. It is something I am now known for amongst my colleagues, and the staff that work in my room are almost afraid to touch anything in case it gets moved out of place.

To go with it, I have a full-blown obsession with lists, post-it notes, notebooks and diaries, although I generally change my current organisational method/equipment at least once a month and so have notebooks and diaries all over the place which get picked up and used for a bit, before they are discarded in favour of something else. I also have meal lists on my fridge, as well as a meal planner running in one of the many diaries/notebooks I have to hand, and I have a constant 'life timetable' drawn up somewhere which I change everyday. I have a 6-week calendar in my classroom with all my arrangements and dates for the kids to look at, and write a 'weekly timetable' for my class each week, even though 8/10 weeks it is the same.

Ok, ok, I am obsessed.

Despite the aforementioned, I do, however, try to reign it in. I would quite happily have a different notebook each week, spending most of my disposable income in Paperchase, and could quite happily spend hours of my week making to do lists, rather than actually doing the things I am trying to do.

But, this week, I have decided to embrace it. I read another blog of a girl who has the same obsession and, as a consequence, has pretty much every diary/planner on the planet. She actually keeps 3, and whilst I always try to find one and keep that, because it doesn't give me room to do the obsessive things I like to do, I always wish I could have more than one. So hell, if other people do it, then I can too.

And anyway, I actually enjoy doing all of those silly things! Whilst it is an obsession because I feel very anxious if I don't have something written down telling me how to live my week, I don't see the harm in it. Being organised is a positive trait, right? It's definitely something I would list on my CV and it is something which has always helped me to stay in control.

If I want to have a bag full of notebooks to organise my life, then I'm going to do it. Keeping control of my life is difficult enough right now, if this is what I need then I'm doing it.

I will also be organising my classroom to within an inch of its life over the summer. My new classroom, that is (although that story is another post entirely, I shall blog when the 100% official confirmation is through).

I'm so going to Paperchase next weekend...

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Everything is going well.

In a complete change of events, everything is going really, really well for me at the moment. In the last 4 days, everything has changed and things which I struggled with this time last week have seemingly resolved themselves and improved.

And I mean, everything is going really well. Career, relationships, friendships... Everything seems to be great right now, possibly too great. Something has to go wrong soon, right?

Who knows, maybe forcing myself to think in a more positive way and becoming proactive about changing my life has actually, for once, worked.

I have this above my desk at work and thought I'd share the advice. (By the way, check out the website - this is a great source of inspiration for anyone in the need of a boost.)

Friday, 8 June 2012

Sorting my life out.

Today is the start of sorting my life out.

This means sorting out my career, my classroom, my flat, my friendships, my relationship.

I have until the end of the month to sort everything, otherwise I will go mad. This post is the evidence and the promise that I will sort all of those things.

It must be possible to do everything...

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Haircut time again.

Hair cut time. Every 8-10 weeks it comes around, and each time I still hate my hairstyle and decide I want a change. Since the age of 16, I don't think I've had the same haircut for more than 3 months before changing it/growing it out/cutting it short and even when I do find a hairstyle I like, I soon get bored of it and go hunting for something else to try. I have never been able to understand those people who have had the same hairstyle for years, even when it suits them really well, how do they not get bored of it? Maybe I just haven't found a style I like that much yet, or maybe it is symptomatic of my indecisiveness.

So, tomorrow, true to form, I'm going to have my hair cut, want a new hairstyle and inevitably and will end up looking a) the same or b) horrible. I'm going to indulge my current serious girl-crush, Katy Perry, and go for this:

Seriously, I have a massive girl-crush on her. She's so beautiful, she brings out a seriously jealous streak in me. That is, until she opens her mouth and reveals the most irritating voice. Anyway, getting side-tracked... Hair.

Now, I do realise that none of you know what I look like as I don't post personal photos, so couldn't tell me whether it will suit me or not, but I love the choppy layers and the side-fringe. It's so different to the normal smooth, plain and boring hairstyle I go for so I'm hoping it will appease my constant desire for a new hairstyle. Or at least do so for the next six months...

It's part of my plan to sort my life out and to make some changes, which I'm kick-starting next week. I will get a life, I will not sit and wallow in boredom...

Monday, 4 June 2012

How do you make friends?

When you're a kid, making friends just sort of happens. You turn up to a new place with a load of other new people and you just start talking, play together, go to each other's houses etc and soon enough you have a group of friends and a 'best friend' you can share all your secrets with. This might last for a week (on holiday, for example), a year until you move into different classes or even last until you're both grown up and spend all your time talking about relationships, weddings, babies and the cost of milk (or rather, discussing how you should be talking about those things but are still out getting drunk every weekend).

But, when you are an adult, friendships don't fall into place that easily. Even at work, where I joined as one of 11 new staff last September, it still takes a lot of effort for any of us to meet up outside of school and our friendships, although good in school, aren't quite at that stage where I could just text someone today for a spontaneous cup of coffee or a cheeky drink down the local. It still takes planning and the whole "who else is coming?" conversation, because it has to be a group thing when you're still forming new friendships, at least a week in advance to make any sort of plans. And it sucks.

When the weather is nice (for example, last weekend), you want to be able to plan a quick picnic, drink in a beer garden or even a trip to the beach. You can't plan it in advance, because let's face it, the British weather isn't that predictable, but you need to have those sorts of friendships where you can just ring people, get in the car and go. The same applies when you suddenly find you have a spare afternoon: you want to have someone to ring and meet for a cup of tea, lunch, any sort of activity but without those friendships in place it is hard. You don't want to be the only one trying to make plans or the only one who is seemingly sad enough not to have anything to do so you just stay quiet.

I don't think it is just me being socially awkward? I do wonder if I am finding it harder because everyone else I have met has pre-existing friendships from their life before this year, whereas I don't have that. Not here anyway, and it is starting to bother me now. I thought things were turning around for me, I thought I was getting to know more people but it turns out we're only really friends as part of a group and the group has pretty much fallen apart this last week. Things have gotten too messy.

I'm feeling quite lonely here now, and it's only Monday of half term. I have another week yet, and then only six weeks in which to change this situation before I have a very lonely six week summer holiday.

How the hell do you make friendships as an adult?

(Although I have realised in writing this that maybe I need to be more organised with making plans in the first place. Something to focus on next half term...)