Friday, 10 October 2014


I had a hard day yesterday.

Yesterday, I was reading a report which brought up a whole host of memories of very difficult things. And then I looked at the calendar, and all of a sudden realised that those very difficult things happened exactly six years ago today. 

I emailed my boss (who sits opposite me), and told him I was struggling. He pulled me aside, told me off for apologising for the tenth time that day, and told me to "put away the damn report" for the time being, and deal with it at another time. "Look at something else, Alice. While we have a particular affinity for issues that have affected us directly, I do not need you doing this today, certainly not tomorrow, or until you are ready to do it."

My boss is a very compassionate man, and for that, I am incredibly grateful.

But in having this conversation, I realised how far I have come. How much stronger I am now than I was six years ago. Mama spoke to E a few days after I saw him, and he told her that I'm "the best I've seen her in a long time". I am so much more capable now of dealing with the things life throws at me. Before, I completely shut down. There was no part of me that could cope with the things that were going on six years ago. But now I can at least try to deal with the things life throws in my path.

And while I will never again be the girl I was seven, ten, fourteen years ago- now, I know that even when things get really, really difficult, there is a now small part of me which will not give up. I have dealt with some incredibly incredibly difficult things in my life- as we all have, really- but I am still here. I'm still walking tall, and smiling, and laughing. I haven't given up on the world. I may be cynical, but I still believe that people are good, that things can change, and that the world may be a difficult place but nothing so far has been insurmountable. 

I am so much stronger than I ever really knew I could be.

And if that night six years ago had not happened, I would not be who I am today.


  1. You've got to just keep your chin up and keep on going! I think we are all a lot stronger than we think we are, and its just the recovery process we undertake that proves it to us - events, whether they may be good or bad, really do shape us, mould us and you should never forget that even though we may not be in the best place, we can always be the best versions of our selves. Strong, happy and still smiling, just like you said. You rock lady, don't forget that!

  2. What a beautiful quote, and I can't believe I've never heard of it before despite loving Albert Camus' work! I really love your posts like this because I can often relate to them myself and find them really helpful. It's really great that you can look back on the past and recognise the strength that you feel now. I think that we are all stronger than we believe we are, but it takes times and experience to recognise this strength.

    Imogen // imogenscribbles

  3. I would like to write something supportive and insightful and optimistic here, but I'm still in my shitty place, and while I can see that you've said is right I'm not anywhere near there yet. Looking back at past shitty places I've been in, I do get what you are saying though.
    This is a vague comment isn't it.
    I like what your boss said. I think I need to remember that.

  4. This is such an honest and touching post. It's lovely to hear that you've come so far and that you feel so much stronger and better now. And it must be so nice to have such a great boss.

    xx Mimmi, Muted Mornings

  5. This post made me want to lean into my computer screen and give you a hug. I honestly don't think we are ever given more than we can handle and sometimes, it is only by going through the toughest of times, the worst of experiences, that we truly come to understand how incredibly strong and capable we are. You are truly far braver and stronger than you perhaps ever realised. xx

    Alix // Oui Je T'aime Aussi

    1. I beg to differ. Coming out stronger doesn't really make up for going through the crap to start with.

  6. A beautiful positive post. You are very lucky to have such a caring boss too x


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