How I Got Over My Damn Self and Became My Own Best Friend

Throughout my teens and into adulthood I’ve experienced periods of time where I’ve felt super lost, alone and quite terrified. With this has come responsibilities and problems which I’ve not always dealt with (in complete honesty I have dodged the shit out of them, not even deciding to deal with them later, simply hoping they would fuck right off) which has led to an invisible weight settling itself on my chest, getting a tiny bit heavier each day

Along with this came self sabotage, self harm, extreme emotions and a general dislike for myself as a person. Now the important part is this became my normal way of life. I’d rationalise it by telling myself I’m just going through a rough patch, things will get better. But guess what?! Nothing will ever get better until you admit there is a problem.

And mentally that is hard as fuck because you know, you just know the amount of time and real work this will take to start improving your life and you just simply aren’t mentally strong enough to deal with that right now. You might fight against this for a while longer and come up with a million reasons why you can’t begin the journey of self healing because we all know the saying is true….you can lead a bad ass to water but you can’t make them strip off and jump in….oh wait. You catch my drift though, you can’t help someone who doesn’t admit there is actually something wrong and who protects with as much ferocity as a lioness defending her really fucked up cubs Fear, Negativity and Paranoia.

When those closest to me, who I respect, love and fucking cherish I have tried to help me, I’ve pushed them as far as possible, going full blown defence mode. How misguided I must be to defend these behaviours but when you’re in that place you tell yourself “This is me, this is who I am, deal with it!”. But it’s not me. All of this has come about because in all honestly I don’t know who I am and have been letting my temper tantrum prone, completely insane inner child have the driving seat for too long.

Getting over myself is never going to be quick fix. I know this will take a lot of patience, kindness and time and after all that it will need to be continuously worked on. Something my Dad said to me once really struck a chord and has stayed with me.

“Happiness is not an end goal.”

He’s right, it’s a continuous, permanent flow of time and energy we need to give ourselves to ensure we are in the right place for what we need and want out of our life.

When you become more in tune with your own needs, you become more open to recognising things that could help you heal, be more motivated, relaxed, whatever it is you are trying to do for yourself. Currently on my journey I have been listening and talking to my friends and family, reading a shit tonne of books ‘n’ blogs, listening to self-love/belief podcasts, watching vlogs and documentaries of people who have struggled with their selves but have got over it to improve their lives and several things have really jumped out at me.

One of the hardest parts when trying to understand and love yourself more can be catching and checking yourself when negative thoughts or behaviours start to creep in. Below are some of the mantras I start speaking or thinking whenever I start feeling myself slip:

  • “We are all at different stages of our journey so comparing ourselves to others is futile” – Anon“You have nothing to be sorry for” – All my family and friends every time I lash out and say something I didn’t mean“A negative mind will NEVER give you a positive life.” – Anon

“A negative mind will NEVER give you a positive life.” – Anon

  • “You are enough” – The Universe

  • “My philosophy is that worrying means you suffer twice” – Newt Scamander, Fantastic Beasts

  • “You are the centre of your world, where we all orbit around you. You can either be a beautiful nebula or a black hole*” – Paraphrased from Fergus King
  • “If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell are you gonna love someone else? Can I get an amen up in here?!” – The Qween Ru Paul

  • “One. Day. At. A. Fucking. Time.” – Danger King

I’m still in the early stages of this new chapter in my life and discovering who I am, what I want to do, where I want to go and basically falling in love with myself. I am finding a big pull back to my younger days of working with crystals, tarot reading and connecting more deeply with my own power and intuition.

We can create so much background noise to distract us from the issues we need to deal with. This weekend I am taking myself away from my everything – my family, my friends, my life to try and get the out of control train that was my life back on the tracks of stability at a much more mellow and pleasant speed, starving the fire further of self doubt, pity and rage and replacing it with love, compassion and control.

We owe it to our own happiness to take the time we need to truly love, understand and care for the person we are, working out the kinks and allowing for hiccups as we go.

*disclaimer – I love space, planets, nebulas, spaceships and aliens, I think they are really f*king cool! However, I have no clue if planets can even orbit nebulas but I’m guessing you don’t either because space is freaking HUUUUGGGGEEEEE so somewhere maybe there is a Danger nebula, we just simply do not know.

That time I got a Dagger Axiom

After ordering my Dagger Axiom 8.5 from North East Kayaks and Paddles and waiting a few weeks for the ‘custom’ colour to be ready it finally arrived and is stunning!

My beautiful Axiom a really friendly kitten

Personally I’m really not a fan of the wavey two tone stripe on the boats and love the clean look of the boat in a block colour.  The colour is a buttery, strong yellow, a bit deeper than sunshine but not as dark as mustard, therefore she is called ‘Buttercup’!

When I got the boat home I set about outfitting the boat.   The foot plate in the Axiom is brilliant with adjustment screws which you loosen to move and angle the ‘foot cups’ to fill the space.  I adjusted the rail and positioned the foot cups roughly so I could get on with cutting the foam wedge to size and placed some small airbags behind the foot cups. 

Netflix and outfitting is now a thing…

Dagger have provided quite a lot of foam to help you outfit the boat.  I started with the with foam wedges that had Velcro attached to the back, placed in and cut to size, before overlaying with the foam pad which has the raised circles.  Although it comes with a peel off sticky sheet, I applied glue to the sheet before sandwiching together and I also removed the Velcro strips, aligned to where the strips are on the foot cups and reattached (with glue) to the back of the foam, waiting 24 hours then simply placing them in the foot cups ensuring the Velcro was stuck together.  I did move the rail back one when I had placed the foam in, but I would have needed to remove the foam and adjust the foot cups if I wanted to move further.

With the rest of the outfitting I didn’t have to do much apart from tightening the back band and moving the seat a couple notches forward which were all extremely easy tasks.  After our recent trip to Wales I did decide to insert a seat booster shim as I felt a bit too low in the boat.  All in all this has been the first boat I’ve actually enjoyed outfitting as it has been relatively straight forward and quite intuitive.

Surfing like a boss

My first outing with Buttercup was on the Awe, getting to grips with tailies and surfing a couple of waves.  Despite having a grapefruit sized lump on my bum due to a skating crash earlier in the week, we took the boats to Tryweryn for the weekend as it really was an ideal river to try a bit of everything (and there is like NO RAIN!!).    By the end of the day I was surfing, boofing, attempting slalom gates and eddy hopping my way down the river, exploring new lines with confidence.  It also means I am now not only an active (and most hilarious) member in the “North East Kayaks Crew” I have now become eligable to enter into the “Axiom Division” which is currently three strong and growing! 

Ronnie “Shop Goddess” Edwards, Danger “Head Rudder” King and Fergus “Tailies for Days” King.

I knew from previous trips in an Axiom that it is a fast boat and think this will do wonders for dialling in timings for those strokes and moves, without having to be as concerned with forward paddling to gain speed.  I’m looking forward to refining my skill set on the river, as well as getting monster tailies!