Sunday, 12 November 2017

The Beauty Of Inspiration

A few days ago, on a normal Friday, I found myself talking about the simple importance of inspiration. "Inspiration is a big word, tell me more about that" said the man who was leading this discussion. He was right, it is a big word. In fact, it is so big that it takes up a huge portion of our lives. As I am writing this in my home, a rural cottage surrounded by silence bar the noise of the roaring fire and a snoring Shih Tzu, inspiration is everywhere. It is in photos - The smiling graduation photo of my sister, the photos of both my Grandfathers (one of whom I never met so imagining what he was like constantly feeds my imagination, and my other Grandad who's mop of white hair I can still see over the top of the newspaper as he peers over at me with his oversized reading glasses while sipping his mug of tea) and simply, inspiration is in the Halloween pictures on the wall when I was nothing more than three foot tall, a witches hat, a Plasticine nose and limitless dreams.

Wrapped up in my dad's cosy cream jumper it is hard to believe that he is usually the one who encourages me to buy the bright yellow boots in shop windows or tells me which 80s icon my outfit resembles today. Right now though, my outfit is completed by a pair of Disney pyjama bottoms, something I have adored ever since I was a little girl - it may just be make believe to most people but to me it was my mum's way of showing me that if I dream enough I can transform from normal girl to Princess and years later it is giving me the belief that Prince Charming is out there. I was raised by one after all so they can't all be just fairytale characters.

Inspiration is important to me, my mind and my soul. From the sentimental writing of Taylor Swift to my brother's love of fitness and dedication to the gym (Ok so maybe I'm still working on that one!) I think everyone would like to know they're inspiring people, and while you may not think you're inspiring masses of people, maybe you have inspired just one. One person who now holds the key to inspire more people. Or maybe you have inspired many and they haven't expressed it. When I started thinking about it, I realised that every person, place or thing you know holds the power to inspire. If it wasn't for beautiful architecture, different food or the impact of nature, why would we have the desire to travel? If nobody ever did anything wonderful, daring or completely terrifying then how would we know we want to try it?

Inspiration is one of the most underrated things in the world because it isn't even taken from everything positive. Sometimes you can take a negative situation and inspire yourself. A bad day may inspire you to dream bigger for tomorrow and a heartbreak makes you realise you never want to feel that way again because you deserve greater things than the soul destroying feeling that you're not good enough. Maybe today the only person you need to inspire is the voice inside of you. And funnily enough, I have just realised that one person and one discussion inspired me to write out all of these feelings and share them with others.

Everything we know is inspiring someone in some way. Fashion, films, music, media, politics, landscapes, the size of my jeans, the style of my hair, my love interests and my moods are all symbols that the world is constantly changing and motivating one person to change their own life. Inspiration is huge and if you can't recognise any of that outside of yourself then look inside of yourself because I can assure you that you will discover an entire library of minor characters and major, sometimes rocky, stepping stones that all came together to give you the heart and mindset you possess today.

At the end of the day, it is both our right and our responsibility to inspire, so go and do just that because even though it is everywhere, and at times scary, I think the world needs more of it.



Thursday, 19 October 2017

10 Things I Find Scarier Than Halloween

1) My bank balance - Ah, when you think you have notes to throw at peasants but in fact you are the proud owner of €4.52.

2) The alarming rate my jeans shrink at when I spend that €4.52 on sausage rolls. 

3) "Opened 2 minutes ago" It's gone past the minute mark, there is no way he is going to reply now. No matter how good the lighting was, how much makeup you have on or if your cleavage was pushed up to your eyeballs, it's time to inform the bridesmaids and cancel the wedding. No looking back.



4) Seeing my ex on a night out after I've had a full bottle of prosecco to myself. A Halloween costume in itself to be honest.

5) Wearing spanx on a night out. Okay so my organs are all being squashed and I'm pretty sure my tummy blubber has nowhere to go but up to my 45 chins, but this is completely fine.



6) Life as an adult. Look, I refuse to ring the doctor or the dentist. I'll just let this toothache take me and if this is how I go so be it, nice knowing you all xx

7) That time I voluntarily let some fella pierce my nipple.

8) Trying to be sexy in a bodysuit. "Sorry, it's a bodysuit, let me just open that there. Sorry, hang on a second, sorry." *falls off bed and ghosted into oblivion*



9) When you've been texting him again and your friends find out. He's changed gals, promise. You know what they say, 746th time lucky.

10) Tinder. I constantly feel like Jane arriving in the jungle and have yet to find Tarzan.




Wednesday, 18 October 2017

My 24 Hours Without The Kettle

I woke up at 8:25am on a much anticipated Monday morning. I stayed in bed listening to the start of the howling wind until the words "Feeeee, tea!" made my body get up and hurry down the stairs, similarly to a child on Christmas morning. I sipped away like I would any other day and stared out of the window at the darkening skies and swaying trees. As I took my final sip, and this was actually final, unlike many others I always finish every bit of my cup of tea, even the last drop. So, as I took this final sip I placed the mug on the tea-stained coffee table and kept on living as normal - Snapping friends, arguing with my brother, communicating with my cats through the window, etc. However, as the clock struck 9:30 (ish, the details are all a blur) and the glow of the lamp beside me fell into darkness, it suddenly hit me - The power had gone. Storm Ophelia hadn't even fully arrived yet and she had already taken the power... my power. "What now?" I pondered as my wifi disappeared and my 3G failed to load. "Oh, yes! I'll make a cup of tea." I decided, but it was not that simple.

I then spotted my dad braving the walk from the kitchen to sitting room, carrying a pot over to the fire. At this point I realised that this was our kettle for the day. And you know how they say a watched pot never boils, well the creators of that saying had a bloody valid point. As everyone became engrossed by the sheer power and beauty of mother nature, I watched this pot and the raging flames beneath it. Wrapped up in a blanket, I stayed on the couch snuggled up like a human sausage roll and waited. The teapot was becoming more and more lonely on the coffee table. I lifted the lid, all that remained at the bottom of the teapot was a trickle of warm water from an hour ago and two used teabags. Nothing else was going through my mind, I no longer cared about the lack of phone service or the lack of light in the room, I just needed a fresh, easily made cuppa. Was this addiction?

After three pathetic (great effort though) cups of tea, by 8:30 that evening I had my hat and coat on, ready to brave the remainder of the howling winds and head into my dad's workplace. Did I bring my phone charger? No, the only thing in my arms was a flask which I was protecting with every maternal instinct within me. Our neighbours were also without power, so my dad's shop was our only salvation. After the 15 minute journey, I prayed to every saint, god and deceased pet that the power would be on here. When the lights worked I made my way towards the kitchen area and I stared at the kettle for a moment. How beautiful it looked, so curvy and inviting, offering a warmth for all. The boiling sound increased and filled my ears like a beautiful melody composed by one of the greats. As the water poured into the flask, the steam rose and my imagination brought it to life, making it seem to grow into blissful shapes and pictures - Biscuits, doughnuts, puppies, Zac Efron topless, you name it.

On arrival home I realised that every cup of tea that day had a strange taste to it. It did not sit as well with me as tea usually does, but it had to do. It was the usual no sugars, bit of milk and nice chunky mug, but something was different. This tea was not made with tender loving care, it was made out of necessity, the desire to feed the addiction. I went to bed at 10:30 that night, allowing my thoughts to fall out of craving and into a blissful slumber.

The next morning I got dressed in darkness with a dead iPhone beside me. As 9:15 arrived and a lamp began to flicker, something inside of me also flickered. I think this flickering was hope. Hope kept me going through my 24 hours without the kettle, and as the lamp turned on for good, I ran out onto the landing, my ears expanding to hear the sound that I knew was coming - The boiling, the beautiful boiling. I smiled to myself and continued getting ready. When I was a little bit more glam and ready to go, I made my way downstairs, and even though my phone was still dead, the fire unlit and there was a slight chill in the air, the four cups of tea in a row on the coffee table seemed to put everything back together again, as if Ophelia had never come near the Fox household. I know this storm changed me and I can't explain how, but all I know is this house had once again become a home and four mugs awoke four souls. Oh, I also found out that a watched pot NEVER boils so don't even try making eggs on the fireplace mid mini hurricane!


Tuesday, 10 October 2017

The Unexpected Darkening Of My Brightest Days

This is my third attempt at writing this blog post. I have never been afraid to write a post for my blog, until now, and even at that I don't know if this will even get posted. However, when I discovered that today is World Mental Health Day I felt it was important to share my story because I believe every story, no matter how big or small, is an important story... So here goes.

I guess I don't know when it all started, I just woke up one morning and realised this lingering sadness wasn't going away. I rolled over and checked my phone hoping no one had contacted me. They had. I put it back onto my bedside table and pulled the quilt back in towards me. I stared at the ceiling, weighed down by the unfamiliar feeling in my heart. Was it sadness? Numbness? Was I empty? As familiar tears rolled gently down my cheeks, I heard footsteps and prayed they weren't walking towards my bedroom door. I wiped away the tears, but there was nothing gentle about that. The door sprung open, my mum throwing her hair back into a ponytail - "What's wrong?" she asked. "I just feel sad all the time." I mumbled through blubbers. This was the only way I could describe it - the pains in my chest, the love for my bed and the frenzied thoughts in my mind - I just felt sad. There was nothing dramatic about it. There was no major cause or occurrence. I just felt sad. I still feel sad as I am writing this in the same place I was that morning - my bed, my safe haven.

In general I am a very social and sensitive person. I love getting involved in conversations, I am always open about my emotions and I am never afraid to cry. Recent times were different though, I would wait until late at night when I was alone to cry because I didn't want to worry my family or burden my friends, and the thoughts of social media made me feel anxious. I became unmotivated and lost that zest for life. I wanted to be alone, I wanted to go unnoticed for a few days, maybe even weeks, in order to come back to a world that felt enjoyable for me to be in again. Eventually I did cry, I cried on an average Wednesday in a room full of people. I didn't want to cry in this setting but it was something I had no control over. I then went home and cried some more, and I have been crying ever since.

 I feel sad, I feel lost and I feel confused. Very confused. I felt my identity drift away as my confidence and happiness did. Even coming back to my blog now, I feel guilty. I feel guilty for the absence I needed to take. In my head my wisest words are covered with dust and my smiley pictures are a little blurry. While I want all my dreams to come true, I want to pause life for a while. As my plans and to-do-list built up, I became overwhelmed and everything else shut down. I cannot explain how or why but for some reason I feel negativity fall on me every day.

This feeling is new to me and pretty scary. Although I have always been an anxious soul, not being able to lift myself out of this gloomy phase makes me feel powerless... I used to be able to throw on some music and a nice outfit and instantly feel lifted.  I worry about life, I worry about myself and then I worry about every other thing I have absolutely no reason to worry about. I have always been a worrier, but right now I really need myself to be a warrior.

I have no explanation or cause for this feeling, and the thoughts of sharing this story scares me even though it is minor in comparison to the stories of many others. It scares me because I feel alone, it scares me that other people may not understand it and think I am strange or making it up. My only explanation is that lately I go through periods where I just feel overwhelmingly sad. However, there was something about today that needed to be the day. As I walked through my local town this morning, I was met by a man working on the road, he looked at me, the warmth of his smile beaming onto my face just like the sunshine was. "Beautiful morning!" he said. And he was right, there is something beautiful in every day and even though darkness can linger for a long while, the sun will always appear again eventually.

I wanted to write this because it may have been unexpected. You may not have seen it coming if you read my blog or meet me during the day. You may only hear my humorous, disastrous night out stories or see my over the knee boots and denim jacket strutting past you down the street while I'm holding three Penneys bags. That is okay though because this feeling was a surprise to me too. I think it is time to take care of my body on the inside just as much as I take care of my body on the outside.

And how about the fear of sharing this here even though I share hundreds of other stories about my life with my followers? Well, I guess that all comes down to the stigma around mental health, but my mum advised me to do what I do best even if I just wanted to keep it to myself. Of course she was right as always, because writing is what I do best and it turned out that writing this was a refreshing form of therapy that only I could bring to myself. So from me to you, whoever you are and wherever you may be, here I am, a physically healthy 21-year-old woman with an endless love of laughter and socialising, pouring my heart out from behind closed doors onto my most public platform. At the moment I am not feeling okay, but that is okay. A problem shared may not always be a problem halved, but I would definitely prefer to cry with a cup of tea and a friend by my side, so I really hope you do that too.

"Grow through what you go through" 

Love Fenella, 
aka that girl who is still that fashion loving disaster magnet who drinks tea by the gallon.
xx


Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Me, You and a Ghost or Two

There are too many negative dating terms lately. I've been benched, breadcrumbed, cushioned, ghosted and bloody french toasted more times than I can count at this stage. Ok, so I don't think french toasted is an actual dating trend term but I'm sure it will be eventually. You heard it here first, folks. Funnily enough, anytime I read about the latest dating trend it seems it is happening to me at this exact moment. Whether he is sending the odd sexual suggestion every few weeks or cancelling every date we plan, when rain begins to fall on blossoming relationships in 2017 you can guarantee that Fenella Fox has been hit by gale force winds, severe floods and a flying trampoline or two.

I can't keep up with my own hunt for love these days, anytime I start to develop any sort of feelings I feel like I'm going on some deadly expedition with Frodo and that dodgy ring. To be honest, for me the amazing excitement was taken out of dating once I hit man number 7 who told me he didn't want a relationship and my mum's "There haven't been that many, you can still count them on one hand!" logic went down the toilet quicker than my phone on a night out.

For me, love comes with too many limits these days. Unfortunately, my alcohol intake doesn't though, nor does my cheesy pasta consumption. In more recent years, this little girl's dream of her wedding dress has definitely morphed into the dream of an outfit for a second date. Actually, even a first date because I don't know if we can consider spooning with one eyelash hanging off after 3am or vomiting out of his car door as a first date. I'm kidding of course, I don't vomit while in the presence of potential love interests, only old ones who shook me off a long time ago and I begin to feel lonely after that third shot of tequila sets in and they start to look like a great idea, similarly to the platefuls of cheesy pasta.

I had to change my music taste recently too, I soon realised eighties love isn't welcome in 2017 so I feel perhaps it is more appropriate to listen to the music from the Conjuring or Insidious instead whenever I start to develop feelings. I mean, you can't say you've been too badly ghosted by a man if you're being dragged out of bed by the devil, can you? Surely that's worse? Although sometimes these supernatural forces are less scary than the ghosts from my romantic past and at times I wonder whether I would prefer to be dragged out of bed by the devil rather than happily climb into bed with him.

My nan asked me whether my hair frightens men away, but to be honest, in my dating life the excessive volume of my scrunch dry is the only thing that keeps protecting me from the force of the blow. And as for the ever changing colours? I like to keep them on their toes.

So many people don't want labels on their dating life, so why do dating trends have so many names? Why do people think it's normal to have a ghost in their life rather than a boyfriend? Why do I have to scroll through Cosmo anytime my love life goes pear shaped and I need to put a name on what has happened this time? Or more importantly, how can I be told I've been benched when I wasn't even aware I was sitting on it? Why are we allowing men to treat us as subs when it is quite clear we're wanted out on the field by the real players who have no intentions of playing us at all?

Time to get off this bench and stop the ghost hunting because this woman has got a life to live and dating trends are harder to keep up with than Game of Thrones when you've missed the first three seasons. No, don't bother texting me in six weeks time because all you'll find is a dusty bench and strands of my old hair colour. Byeeeeeee.

Ok I'm bored and desperate for attention, maybe I'll just reply the once...


Monday, 4 September 2017

Am I Going Crazy?

There is something surprisingly comforting about the moment when you hear girls talk about the lads in their life who have referred to them as "psycho." As a female, you can often feel like you're in it alone when you're storming around your room and blaring Dua Lipa New Rules. Sometimes things can build up to the point where you can actually feel yourself gradually going insane. You want nothing more than to text a load of boys who couldn't give a crap about you while you mentally attack the master of mind games in your life with a shoe. Yes, there is something comforting about the desire to fall into the arms of men who will only hold you for a moment while you're on the mission to get over the arms who act like they want to hold you but somehow always end up letting go of their grip.

Tip toeing around your problems is about as elegant as a Saturday night dance floor grind. I am curious about how many girls are currently staring at their phone only to see plenty of messages from the girls saying "Don't text him!" but there are no texts from him. Not one text has been sent from the phone of that man who had sent you so many sweet texts previously. No matter how many squad members try to help you keep the psycho in (bless them the sweethearts, they always mean well,) sometimes you need to take control of your own life before your own thoughts suffocate you or convince you to do stupid things to intentionally try and ruin his life because you believe that is the answer to long term happiness. Example 1 - Hitting on his best friend. Example 2 - Eh, only to be looked into if example 1 doesn't work well enough, but it might be an idea to have a supply of eggs ready to go. Also, if you're anything like me, every group needs that bold member who always sends that third unanswered text to determine whether Saturday night needs to be a vodka or wine night.

As much as we hate to admit it, every girl has at least one guy, if not two, who make her blood boil like the contents of Mount Vesuvius just before it took out Pompeii. You try your best to act completely normal around him but all you can think is "Wow, here you are talking to me about your new job yet yesterday evening I was almost shaking backwards and forwards in the corner of my bedroom or about to come down the stairs backwards while my head was spinning 360 degrees." Yes, this is normal, it just means you care about this little peasant boy who at this moment in time just looks like the poo emoji in your mind. Mature I know, but whatever helps you to drag him kicking and screaming off his pedestal.

The most frustrating thing about all of this? The fact that you probably just stubbed your baby toe on a door or hit yourself on the head with your phone by accident while in a complete fit of rage (just me?) and he is probably sitting on his own bed laughing away about the influence he is having on you while he throws more junk into his bubbling cauldron.

Is it just me? Am I just easily wound up like an old fashioned music box or are today's men becoming increasingly good at making us question our level of sanity?


Sunday, 27 August 2017

The General Snap and An Eyelash Attack

I'M BACK! You're probably all wondering where I've been recently, right? Well, unless it's only my mum reading this, and if that's the case then sorry to break it to you mum but I haven't been in the kitchen packing the dishwasher so please stop getting your hopes up.

Since my last post in July I have been over to the Czech Republic, to my first festival and recovering from several absolutely horrendous doses of the fear... again...  No, but honestly, these ones were bad.

Example number one - I think one of my SOSU eyelashes is in some random fellas bed and I am waiting for him to be super creeped out when he stumbles upon it someday soon. No, don't get excited, there is nothing exciting to report there, not even a cheeky kiss. There were several of us in one bed and I dozed off fully clothed and without a spoon while chatting complete and utter nonsense. Actually raging though, don't really wanna be forking out six quid on a new pair of lashes when those ones were in mint condition. Here's hoping he has the cop on not to bin it since I can't really text him asking him to save it because, well how creepy would that be? Imagine receiving a text from a girl asking you to save her eyelashes? "Alright mate, lost me eyelashes in your bed, keep them safe on your bedside locker for me if you find them... cheers x" I mean, I know I'm probably a locally renowned nutter (borderline bunny boiler according to some past lovers I will admit) but that would be crossing the line a tad.

Example number two - I sent a guy a drunken "general" snap because I wanted him to reply, but I actually captioned it "General snap" Would you actually be well living on earth at the same time as me? I had to leave the snap below because for some reason I saved it, probably thinking I was an absolute HOOT. Honestly, I am so glad I did save it because no one can benefit from it fully until they actually see it. Just look at it. LOOK AT IT. Okay moving on... Oh, he did reply by the way, so god definitely exists or I have a very loyal guardian angel who wouldn't let this gal go down without a fight!


Back to the topic of lashes, the weekend before that one my Duo Glue worked so bloody well that I was unable to open one eye properly so I spent the night looking like I was winking at everyone. What could potentially look seductive on a huge portion of the world's female population did me absolutely no favours and I even spooked myself out, never mind any of the lads I encountered that night. Saying that, I missed half the room because I could only see past my scrunch dry on one side. I can never see sense on a normal night, so look, whatever mortifying things happened that night we can blame on one eye being stuck together and my inability to see things clearly. Ahem, general snaps...

It's only today that I could finally face blogging about my recent shenanigans. I have plenty of things to say but finding a way to say them is a different story. Mainly because nothing in my life has dramatically changed, including my attitude to junk food and unreliable men - both are still causing me serious problems but also providing comfort as summer draws to a close. Ah, the joys of being a hopeless romantic with thunder thighs. Below are some pics of myself and my reactions while heading in and out of toxic situations, please take a moment to enjoy them. Yes, food is always an important part of life no matter what life is currently throwing at me.





I will leave it there for today, although I do have plenty of things to update you all on so don't worry, I shall be back!

Talk soooooon xx