Me at Fargo Village Coventry at night
A lot has happened in a decade and quite honestly I cannot believe how quickly that time has gone by! I knew I wanted to talk about this topic on my blog, especially as throughout those years I had a lot of highs and lows and it’s also when my blog was created.
I’m going to be talking about things that happened each year of the decade that come up in my mind straight away. Some of the years will be quieter than others and some will be more lengthy and chatty. I’m also going to be attaching profile photos I used for the years mentioned below as well… Because, why not! 😀
I really hope you enjoy reading this post as much as I enjoyed writing this. I’m not just writing this post for my readers, but for myself so I can reflect on what happened throughout the decade in one of the hardest points of my life, but also one of the best.
20 year old Natalee
21 year old Natalee on a night out… This was a good night!
A lot happened between this time. I finished university with a 2:1 in Drama and Creative Writing and ended a 3 year relationship with my ex boyfriend. I wasn’t particularly in a good place and my mental health wasn’t the best. I was also struggling to get work and instead tried to forget about how crap my life was by partying most days. I have zero regrets to be honest with you. I had loads of fun, did great at university and to be honest I left behind a toxic relationship.
22 year old Natalee – This used to be my old profile picture on my blog!
2012 was the year that There Might Be Coffee was born! Which is probably my favourite thing from that year considering 7 years on my blog is still going strong and where I finally want it to be!
It’s also the year I got work and I hated that fucking job. I really did. It paid for things I wanted to do… Mostly going out and getting pissed to be fair… 😛 Even so it did me good as I gained loads of confidence, had a laugh (sometimes) and earned monies.
23 year old Natalee with Dane – We’d been together 4 months at this point
This was a mixture of one of the best but one of the worst years of my life. I was still miserable in my job but was numbing this by going out and having fun with my friends.
It was also the year my gran passed away. I was heartbroken and it was a big shock to the system, which at the same time wasn’t something I dealt with properly. Due to this it fucked me up in a big way and it was only when I quit my job that I finally had time to let that shock process and it caused my mental health to be at a really bad point. The worst part of it all was that I never said goodbye to my gran before she died. My job wouldn’t let me have time off to go and visit my gran, but this being said my parents didn’t wish for me to see her so poorly. Sadly, the day after she was told she could go home she passed away. I was crushed and I remember keeping a front for everyone but going home on my own and breaking down. The worst part of it was that I had no support from my friends at the time. I mentioned in passing how I was putting on a brave face but deep down I was hurting. They didn’t care.
2013 was also the year I decided I wasn’t going to be messed around and spoken to like shit anymore. I was fed up of people treating me like I was the bad person, when in reality they were the ones who were bad. It was good to get the toxicity out of my life. Looking back I realise how much better off I am without them.
The best thing about 2013 was meeting Dane. We met through online dating and I don’t regret setting up that dating profile at all. I do wonder how I would be in my life right now if it wasn’t for us meeting and getting together. We went on our first date in Birmingham and visited a few bars, spoke about our mutual interests and agreed to go on another date a few days later.
We had so many mini adventures together and I still have fond memories of them all, especially when Dane took me to Hoar Park which you can read about here and here. That’s probably the highest read post on my blog to date.
In September I was finally diagnosed with anxiety and depression and at the end of 2013 around Christmas I started CBT counselling for my mental health issues. I also got myself a new job not long after I met Dane too… But 2014 was going to be a tough year.
24 year old Natalee
2014 was a tough year but looking back it was crazy and manageable. A lot happened with me continuing with my CBT counselling as well as counselling in general. My mental health improved dramatically and I finally seemed to deal with what happened throughout 2013.
I also befriended some people who I now call some of my closest friends, which is through Dane.
Me and Dane went to Bristol for our first anniversary and we loved it. It was perfect and I really did fall in love with the city. It will always remind me of our first year together.
After over 10 years without a holiday, me and Dane finally booked for us to go on holiday with my family for 2015 for my 25th birthday and my mom’s 60th. Very exciting!
Finally towards the end of 2014 I decided to go back to university and enrolled on an MA course for Critical and Creative Writing.
25 year old Natalee drawn as a manga character – from Hyper Japan
At the start of 2015 we also went on holiday with my family for 2 weeks. It was lovely to get away from everything and I didn’t use my phone for the whole time. However, the weather wasn’t the best and due to that I was a little bit disappointed by it… Even so, we still had a lovely time.
2015 was amazing in the sense of me and Dane really did start to come out of our geeky otaku shells that we had been hiding inside of for God knows how many years. We’re both massive nerds and we knew it, but we never really ventured into the Japan and geeky routes much until 2015.
We went to Hyper Japan in London for our second anniversary and also went to watch The Book of Mormon too. We loved it and that weekend was amazing!
I couldn’t wait to finish my MA… I don’t regret studying it but I do at the same time. The university wasn’t “professional” at all in my opinion due to half of the members of staff who were teaching myself and it pissed me off big time that me and my family had paid all the money for me to leave feeling disheartened. I haven’t written properly since finishing that course and the same can be said for reading too. 😦
At the end of 2015 I went on holiday again straight after I graduated from my MA and me and my dad had a great 2 weeks together! Just us two went because we had stuff to do whilst we were away and I was the only one who could go away with him for the holiday.
Just before I went on holiday I also left my job to start a new job. I was so excited for a fresh start but the worst job of my life showed some pretty shitty early signs. I wasn’t prepared for what the next 2 years would bring.
26 year old Natalee
This was another year where great things happened, especially life goals but also really bad things.
After saving up for ages me and Dane finally bought out first home together. We loved it so much and it was in the perfect location. We still live here and we love it to bits. It’s really gone from being a house to a home and I adore it so much. It’s my favourite place to be and it was definitely a long time coming.
Sadly around the time that we bought the house my mental health went back downhill again and although my depression wasn’t as bad as it was in 2013/2014 it was still really bad.
It was so odd because I was enjoying my home but at the same time I was miserable as fuck. I had no support from my workplace at the time and I just hated it. I wanted out.
27 year old Natalee
This like 2016 was a year of highs and lows, but mostly highs 2 years on.
My mental health was still really bad and there was nothing that could be done. I just needed to get out of my job at the time. I was trying for new jobs all the time and getting nowhere. To make matters worse I had an accident with my car and damaged one side of it. This was due to a shit shift at work, where I got no thanks from anyone from going out of my way. It was then that I realised I needed to get out. It wasn’t just affecting my mental health but my actions.
I had tried for ages and been unsuccessful and then finally I landed a job in the career I wanted – admin. I was so happy and it really did make all the crap I had been through previously worth it.
I can’t really talk about 2017 much because I can’t remember. I just know that everything was shit until October/November when I finally got my admin career moving. That Christmas was amazing too. It was lovely for me and Dane to have the time off together, as well as New Year.
28 year old Natalee – this was at EGX 2018
2018 was a good but concerning year… Me and Dane were finally comfortable and happy and we definitely let our geeky sides go! We also started saving up for Japan which is pretty cool.
We decided towards the end of 2018 that we would either book and go to Japan in 2019 or book it for 2020. We didn’t book Japan in 2018, but we spoke about it a LOT.
I was also worried about my job. The summer hadn’t been great for the company as work was scarce and there was just many issues that I wasn’t 100% happy with. I decided towards the end of 2018 that I needed to get out of that job and get into a secure job that I would be happy doing. At the end of the day I wasn’t getting any younger and with a mortgage to pay for every month and more, I just had to make sure 2019 was to take care of myself.
One of the nicest things of 2018 was the fact that Dane became an uncle. We both love his nephew so damn much and every time we see him it really lights us up! It’s been lovely watching him grow up the past year and a half now. He’s such a little cutie.
29 year old Natalee – Photo taken by TV Trev
2019 has definitely been my year this decade. It’s the year my mental health has finally been in a stable place, I got my dream job and both me and Dane finally booked our dream holiday to Japan!
In April both me and Dane started our new jobs and we’ve been so much happier since! We both love what we do and love the people we work with too. My job has really taught me how capable I am of so many things, as well as being rewarding too. Honestly never been happier and the best bit? I work for a Japanese company! How good is that?!
Around our anniversary in June we decided to book our holiday to Japan for the start of 2020! We have been so excited in the run up to this trip, but anxious too due to money, where we plan to travel within Tokyo and the rest of it. I know though that we’ll be okay and have the time of our lives! We already know that we want to go again the future and I’m pretty sure that as soon as we arrive home from our trip, we’ll be looking to book our next one. 🙂
It’s nothing major but towards the end of this year I started to get my nails done with gel polish, which has really helped with my anxiety. I don’t know why but since I started my new job I’ve started to chew and nibble on my nails more. I think its more of a concentration thing during meetings and such. I cut my nails stupidly short due to this but I’ve decided to start letting them grow a little and leave them be. Currently I have my third set of gel polish on and it’s really helped with the chewing/nibbling.
Me and Amy at a Coventry Blogger event in April
One of my favourite things about 2019 is meeting my friend Amy (Writing into the Ether) through Coventry Bloggers. She’s a nerd just like me, as well as a blogger! We got chatting over both of those facts and have been great friends ever since! She’s usually the person I go to if I want to talk about geeky stuff, as well as blog related things.
I also worked with Coventry Bloggers and was given loads of gifted opportunities through my blog, which were all amazing! I’ve met some lovely people both bloggers, as well as companies and people who work there/own them.
These 10 years have really flown by and it’s makes me feel so old looking back through the photos on this post. I can’t believe what happened in those 10 years too. A lot of good and bad happened but most of all, I met the love of my life – Dane. He is my favourite person in the whole wide world and he is my life. I think about him every moment of the day and talk about him as and when the time is appropriate. It’s from meeting Dane this decade that I finally came out of my shell with my geeky self and embraced things I’d not done so much of before, such as reading more manga and watching more anime.
I’m also thankful to him for helping me throughout the 6 years we’ve been together so far. My mental health has been awful and he was there for every moment I needed someone to talk to, a cry and especially a cuddle. He’s been my rock and such a great person and boyfriend. I don’t know how he does as much as he does, he’s my little superhero. 🙂
Me at the Pokemon Center in London
So what does the next decade bring for me? Well 2020 will be the year I turn 30, as well as the year me and Dane have our trip to Japan!
I don’t know what else the next decade will bring but I can only imagine big things! Me and Dane might eventually look to move to a bigger home, I might buy a new car, we may try and look into getting a dog and the biggest one of all, we might eventually decide to start a family.
Me at a blog event at the Cosy Club Birmingham (read about it here)
So, here is to the next decade 2020-2029! I don’t quite know what the future will hold, but I hope it keeps going up from here. 🙂
I would love to hear about your decades and how they went for you, whether it be good, bad or a bit of both like myself. I want to know. I also want to know the best thing that happened to you in the decade too.
Until next time all, take care and I hope you’ve had a lovely weekend and are as excited for Christmas as I am. 🙂