I didn't post last Wednesday because I was away from home and hadn't organised anything.
I've not returned now so I thought this week I'd share where I've been. Well, I had a half term adventure to County Clare in Ireland with my husband.
Newsflash! Can you believe I have been somewhere that isn’t Cornwall? How adventurous have I become?!
We went to the West Coast and toured some of the Wild Atlantic Way.
It was a tonic. We loved it. It was beautiful and tranquil and wild. Everything I had hoped it would be.
We have never been to Ireland before and it’s somewhere that’s always been on my list of places to go.
We had a warm welcome everywhere we went, and despite us going there in the middle of a national storm we ended up seeing some beautiful clear blue skies on our days out.
It was VERY blustery at times though, I'll admit. Still, the windswept vibe all added to the fun!
We stayed in some lovely accommodation near Doolin and Spanish Point and enjoyed our time admiring the many pretty views, eating lovely food and being just the two of us…wearing raincoats, standing solo in the sun. (Beatles reference there!)
The coast line was beautiful! Especially the Cliffs of Moher and the beach at Spanish Point, which was quite breath-taking.
I also loved Lahinch Beach and town, a lovely little pub in Ballyvaughan Fanore called Monks, a cute pub in Doolin which played live music, and Ennistymon where we bought some cheese from The Cheese Press that was possibly the nicest I've ever eaten.
Ireland gave me some of my smile back, I needed a break and it really did help to shake some of the cobwebs from my soul. We booked it quite last minute, and I’m so glad we went.
My Dad would’ve loved Ireland, he never quite got there, which makes me sad. I thought of him often when we were there. Especially whenever we heard live music or when we were in a pub, because pubs and music was his natural habitat! He was a good guitar player and loved to see a live band.
We flew to Shannon, Ireland from Birmingham Airport, which is kind of a massive deal for me because I haven’t flown for 15 years due to developing a phobia of it as a result of my generalised anxiety disorder and panic attacks.
I've been known to book a flight, get to the airport, have a panic attack and then decide to go home rather than board the flight. Yes the phobia has been that bad.
But something inside me shifted when my Dad died, and this time I was determined to get on the plane. I told myself that life is precious, opportunities to travel a little are few, and experiences are ours for the taking. I knew I was going to give it a go this time, there was no doubt in my mind that I was getting on that plane.
So, I did, and we took off in a storm, in very high winds and I felt very sick and nearly crushed Tom’s hand as we ascended.
But, we got to Ireland safely, and when we did I did a little cry at Shannon airport because I was proud of myself and all I wanted to do was to tell my Dad I’d finally done it.
I got on that plane for myself, but for my Dad, my Mum and my husband too. I wanted to show my Mum that we CAN do hard things and we are bloody amazing. I wanted to show Tom that I can still live and achieve things without my Dad here with us. That our life will be ok, despite my grief, I haven't given up just yet.
I'm so glad we did it, I've broken the seal, and now I don't fear flying as much. I used to have literal nightmares about it, but now I think I could even go long haul!
Here are some very quick photos of our travels around Ireland. I've put more on my Instagram and Story Highlights.
Now its back to our life at home, and back to the sewing machine for me!
Lots of love,