I started the 31 Day Challenge in September last year and despite my best attempts, I was unable to continue updating my blog with images and food diaries. I completed the challenge and I managed to lose some weight. However, I was ill, stressed, exhausted and still slightly overweight. Last year, I stopped taking medication for anxiety and I also came off the pill.
The challenge which originally started as a sort of transitory detox, fitness and health kick became much more than that. I started questioning everything I was doing and why I was doing it. I realised that if you don’t like something, it’s your responsibility to change it.
Since then, I dropped out of my PhD (having successfully passed the first year and started the second), I’ve been working on a book, I became more of a digital nomad than ever before, I said goodbye to a lot of wonderful people and by the end of January this year, I moved from Warsaw to Tychy (a town in the south of Poland).
Whilst visiting the UK over Christmas and New Year, I felt as though I’d lost any personal identity I once had, as though somewhere between sixteen and twenty six my sense of self had disintegrated. I’ve been living my life worrying about what other people think of me.
Advice: Just be yourself.
I’m currently waiting for my 23andMe results, once they arrive I’m planning on making my first real vlog (sans unboxing) since my disappearing act in 2009.
Genealogy is something I’ve mentioned briefly in previous posts so a DNA test seemed like a step in the right direction for me. I’ve spent fourteen years out of twenty six living abroad, with my parents and without. I grew up in the Middle East but have also lived in mainland Europe and Asia. I feel as though travel is inherent, so I’d be interested in finding out whether or not I have the ‘wanderlust gene’ DRD4-7R. I could only trace my ancestry on my grandmother’s side (my dad’s mum) as they’ve been in England for centuries, my grandad’s family (so my dad’s dad) was harder to trace but ultimately, they’re Irish.
In terms of my mum’s grandparents, my great grandparents, there’s hardly a trace of them. I even contacted record offices in Ireland and once hired an expert to try to find answers but hit a wall. This could be down to the Irish Civil War (1922) which destroyed some of the census records I was looking for in the Record Office in Northern Ireland. My mum was born in Belfast but moved to the UK during the troubles in the 70s.
I believe most of her dad’s side of the family worked at and lived near Harland & Wolff but those records are tough to access. “We [Harland & Wolff] regard all manner of personnel records and related material as strictly confidential and it is our strict company policy to refuse access for general research purposes.”
I’m not sure about my grandmother’s side (my mum’s mum), though she was in the circus, which is interesting in itself. I’ve never been to Ireland despite such a strong ancestral link. Family history is often rife with rumours so now I’m looking for facts.