Moving away from home: Three months on
It’s now been a few months since I moved away to start my job as a trainee reporter here in Eastbourne. If you want to check out my moving piece, click here.
Since then, the country was put back into a lockdown, my house has been in isolation, and I’ve turned 23.
As I write this we’re a couple of weeks away from Christmas, and although we’re in tier two, there’s still a lot we can’t do. Most importantly, we can’t mix with other households indoors so the festive weekend at home I was supposed to be on last week...didn't happen. Although it’s a bit rubbish that I have to wait for Christmas to see my family – and that will be the longest time I’ve gone without seeing them – it does make the prospect of going home for a few days all the more exciting.
So let’s go back to the start. I moved into a house share with five others and overall – it’s been great.
Until last week there was a nightmare housemate situation with arguments and a lot of slamming doors, but THANK GOODNESS that is sorted now and he’s moved out. The newbie is really lovely, so the house is in a much better place now – no aggressive tension or awkward silences.
I’ve really gelled with one of my housemates – something that I think we’re both grateful for, especially through lockdown and isolation. We go walking at the weekend on the South Downs, and both of us watch the same shows in the living room on a night time - something that never happened before I got here.
One thing that sold the house to me was the fact it had a separate living room. Working from home for the foreseeable means that - funnily enough - I don’t want to spend my evenings in my room too, so having a nice space to spend time in is really nice.
The weekdays here go really quickly as I do some form of exercise every day. I joined the gym, so I’m there four times a week for swimming, yoga, and general gym sessions. As well as this, I run twice a week and have a weekly dance class too.
This all means that by the time I finish work at 5.30, done whatever class I’m doing that day, come home to shower and eat, it’s usually about 9pm already.
This is where I though weekends would drag, but I was so wrong. Even though since getting here I haven’t been able to visit friends like I had planned, the weekend have still be filled with things to do and I haven’t once had a day of binge watching anything because before I know it it’s Sunday night again.
I have loved getting my independence back, and I’ve got much better at it too. At uni I wouldn’t meal plan, and that resulted in wasted food and repetitive meals. Now I plan the week ahead, and only buy what I need – saving a lot of money too.
I know it sounds boring, but it really helps. Especially when you get in late and hungry because it means I already know what I’m cooking and that I have everything I need.
Lockdown and isolation
This was announced on my birthday of all days, and I felt really down at the thoughts of it. The gym and dance was stopping, I couldn’t visit home for my week off, and everything looked very bleak in the run-up to Christmas – usually my favourite time of year.
Thankfully, it hasn’t been too bad. I managed to move my week off to 2021 – meaning I could keep busy by continuing with work. I’ve also got a new appreciation for home workouts. Live yoga classes with my teacher over Zoom, and dance workouts with my housemate in the living room have been a godsend.
Long walks followed by a takeaway and movie became our Saturday ritual too, and although it’s wasn’t ideal – we made the best out of a bad situation.
Isolation was a bit harder because it took away my ability to go running and just generally get out and about to do food shopping, but even that wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be.
We’re now in tier two so things are far from normal, but with the prospect of a vaccine early next year, and seeing family for Christmas in a few weeks, I’m feeling more optimistic.
Christmas is limited this year as it is for many people. I’m going home after an early shift on the 23rd, then working Christmas Eve and having a few days off before returning for limbo week and 2021.
It will just be five of us for Christmas which I am more than fine with. I'm just excited to see them again really and relax for a few days. I’ve got everything crossed I can see a few friends whilst I’m back too – socially distanced of course.
Didn’t really know what else to call this section, but although it’s cheesy it does sum up how I wanted to end this piece.
I’ve had one down night feeling a bit lonely, and I’m pretty happy with that. I’d eaten in my room that night, and although I had my weekly catch up with family, I got off the phone and just felt a bit flat. Although I’m happy in my own company, I think from that I’ve realised that I could never live alone, and I need to relax with others on an evening, not in my room alone.
I am so happy I went with private landlords. Any issues with a certain housemate, wifi problems, and even shopping for us when we were in isolation – they’ve gone above and beyond! I even came down this week to find the living room decorated for Christmas, with a box of chocolates too – these are things you would never get with an agency.
I’ve had a lot of moments of thinking:
· You’re a working adult now, this it is.
· You’ve moved away from home.
· You’re doing exactly what you’ve worked towards.
· Keep doing what you’re doing.
· I feel blessed to be in a job I love in this pandemic, and for that I’m very grateful.
· You’re growing up
On that note…Next week I’ll be reflecting some more, this time on my first three months as a trainee reporter.