The Month That Was

August 2021 Reflections

August 2021 Reflections

Hello Spring! And hello to yet another month in lockdown. Some of you are in a similar situation and I feel ya; this is dragging on. I guess the only good thing is the vaccine uptake has increased but who knows how long it’ll take for people to get fully vaccinated. I hope at the very least, things gradually open up for those of us fully vaccinated from next month. Anyway, as we spring into September, which let’s face it, will still be Groundhog Day, it’s time to look back at the month that was August.

What I Wrote in August 2021

My writing routine continued in August and I submitted a couple of short stories to competitions. I also participated in the YeahWrite Nonfiction SuperChallenge and was shortlisted after the first round to advance to the final one. The final round was this weekend and I submitted my essay with an hour to spare. It was slightly tougher than the first round but so worth it. I always love the feedback I receive from this competition which is one of the main reasons I enter.

What I Read in August 2021

It has been hard to focus on some books this past month whereas others have been easier reads. I read 8 books in total and I must say, the nonfiction reads and the one YA read were the winners. My highlight read this month was My Body Keeps Your Secrets by Lucia Osborne-Crowley. How to be Australian by Ashley Kalagian Blunt was another good read for book club, as was Insomniac City by Bill Hayes. I also really enjoyed The Boy from the Mish by Gary Lonesborough. Assembly seemed like a short and nice read but I didn’t review or rate it because my headspace was just not there but I will re-read it before the end of the year to decide. I buddy read No one is talking about this by Patricia Lockwood with an Insta friend and was kind of underwhelmed by it. Finally, I also read the Kill Your Darlings 2020 New Australian Fiction, a collection of short stories which were good.

On the Blog in August 2021

The blog was pretty quiet in August. I have some posts sitting in my drafts but I never ended up finishing them. Consequently, I only blogged my weekly gratitude posts. My engagement has been shoddy too but hopefully, in September, I’ll pick up my game. To all of you who read this space and comment, I’ll visit you soon. Apologies for my poor engagement.

What I listened to in August 2021

My Spotify playlists indicate comfort listening and post-rock instrumental I love. I finally caught up with all the So You Want to Be a Writer podcast episodes by the Australian Writer’s Centre and started Stay at Home with James and Ashley which is a podcast about writing, creativity, and health.

What I watched in August 2021

My focus for television shows was limited this month too and anything new was hard to get into. I pretty much had Friends and SVU in the background most of the time but I did finish Final Space this weekend.

Health in August 2021

Like last month, it feels weird to talk about physical health when Covid cases keep increasing. I am, however, really grateful I’ve been in decent health barring the occasional cold {for which I’ve gotten tested each time}. Mentally, I did hit that wall we call lockdown fatigue a couple of weeks ago. But, on the plus side, I know I am not at that depressed stage and it was more just tiredness and that languishing feeling. I guess an important thing to highlight would be I managed to get through this month without seeing my psychologist.

Life in August 2021

This makes me want to laugh. Life in August was within my 5-kilometre radius for the most part and 10-kilometres before the stricter restrictions. I went on a couple of hikes with a friend, did a few walks with friends and solo, took myself to the beach to de-stress, enjoyed the sunshine in the park, had personal training sessions weekly, chatted a lot with friends online, sent and received care packages, and well, stayed home. I occasionally made the effort to cook decent meals, otherwise settled for simple sandwiches or soups. I tried new beers at home, had online yoga with friends, wrote, read, slept, worked and repeat. I did attend the Writer’s Unleashed festival online – there were a couple of workshops in particular that I was keen for and glad I could attend.

Highlight of August 2021

All the love and kindness from friends and my sister – giving and receiving care packages has been truly wonderful.

Lowlight of August 2021

Lockdown. Lockdown. Lockdown.

Lessons from August 2021

Lockdown drags, the days blur into one. Time holds no meaning and there is such a thing as an afternoon slump. Friends are great, and lockdown fatigue is real. We are, after all, languishing and missing out on effervescent joy the longer this continues. It’s okay to have days when you do nothing and okay to have days of productivity. It’s okay to be grateful and okay to cry at the same time and want your life back to normal. As always, it’s helpful to take it one day at a time.

How was August for you?

Do share!

***Linking with Natalie for Weekend Coffee Share***

Featured Image by Nolan Issac on Unsplash

Until next time,

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  • Barbara Lofgren
    1 September 2021 at 9:44 am

    I hope you get out of lockdown here. We are now into week 3…I think…the weeks just blur together…but today at least where I live we hav dropped a level. The joke is ‘Level 3 is Level 4 with take-away’ – which it kind of is for most of us. Still like Australia, lots of people are going and getting vaccinated which is good. Ah well…we will get there! Kia kaha!
    Barbara Lofgren recently posted…This week’s small pleasures #248My Profile

  • Sammie @ The Annoyed Thyroid
    1 September 2021 at 10:08 am

    So grateful that you’re in our 5k – it makes lockdown so much more bearable! I think one day at a time is the only way to go right now. Here’s to small freedoms that will make a big difference later in the month 🙂
    Sammie @ The Annoyed Thyroid recently posted…Taking Stock – August 2021My Profile

  • Ju-Lyn Tan
    1 September 2021 at 1:43 pm

    Appreciate being able to catchup with you, Sanch!
    Roundup posts are so very important for us, the Reader – I love being able to see the month in highlight (and lowlight). In crazy times like this when the pandemic season never seems to break, we get to celebrate in every small way possible, and well as commiserate when things are tough. We get to wish you well and send lots of virtual hugs & positive energy.

    For us, the Writers, roundups are crucial for marking time & occasion. Especially as, like you say, days blur. So we do what we can to reflect and be mindful for what we are grateful for.

    Congratulations on being shortlisted and entering the final round for the Nonfiction Superchallenge … hope you get lots of constructive feedback!

    Keep sane & well this month ahead. May it hold sunshine and good days, even amidst the challenges. Peace.
    Ju-Lyn Tan recently posted…The Changing Seasons: August 2021My Profile

  • Debbie+Harris
    4 September 2021 at 9:12 am

    I hear you on the lockdown lows Sanch and even out here in regional NSW it’s hard but at least we’re not limited by the 5km restriction. I really feel for you but you sound positive and had a few good things happen, which help relive the boredom of it all. Take care and keep well. #weekendcoffeeshare
    Debbie+Harris recently posted…Why August wasn’t a very #BOLD monthMy Profile

  • Denyse Whelan
    4 September 2021 at 2:39 pm

    hello Sanch! Commenting today as unsure if you are linking up on Monday. Yes, August has been tedious. Not anything bad really for me (us) just not getting a sense of the state having a handle on Covid Delta strain yet. I’ve put into practice more self-care and twitter is limited …but I admit I did add a tweet about our awful PM last night. I am getting right back into art and creating. I am enjoying slowing down funnily enough so maybe lockdown has its benefits. Thank goodness for ease of access to nature and the water for me too.

    Take care, love your images from your uni especially. And hope the worries and more about aspects of your work slowly ease.

    Denyse #weekendcoffeeshare
    Denyse Whelan recently posted…Women of Courage Series. #70. Anonymous.107/2021.My Profile

  • Susanne
    4 September 2021 at 7:56 pm

    When you describe life in August, it sounds like you had a good month after all! One day at a time certainly is a good approach, and to accept that it’s ok to have low days. Here they are going to ease most restrictions during the autumn and I think it’s scary because we still don’t know where this is going. However, 82% of eligible people are now fully (I think) vaccinated. Time will tell but I will mostly be at home or extremely careful.

    • Liz
      6 September 2021 at 4:29 am

      Wishing you that lockdown stopps soon for all of you. Here in the UK all is open but I keep acting as if it was a lockdown because cases are rising and I do not want to add to another horrible winter for the NHS. Take good care of yourself
      Liz recently posted…If We Had A Lemonade… Sunday 5th, September 2021My Profile

  • Joanne+Tracey
    5 September 2021 at 10:04 am

    The sooner the vaccination rates are reached the better. We’re still in the early 50s here – I think partly due to complacency, partly due to resistance, and partly due to all the snap complete lockdowns. SE Queensland is the only region that seems to be aware – mainly because the rest of the state has been (largely) unaffected. It truly is a worry and I feel for everyone in extended lockdown.

  • Maria
    5 September 2021 at 4:04 pm

    One day at a time. It sounds like you did enjoy many good things, despite the hardship of being in a lockdown.
    Maria recently posted…Weekend Coffee ShareMy Profile

  • Alex
    5 September 2021 at 6:01 pm

    Good advice, one day at a time and stay strong

  • suzanne vosbikian
    6 September 2021 at 12:07 am

    Hi Sanch, I am a first-time visitor – found you at Natalie’s Weekend Coffee Share. I love your monthly recap, even though you are enduring the hardship of lockdown. Snippets of life say a lot about people. You seem joyful and upbeat, in spite of your situation. Congratulations on having your story ‘shortlisted’ that must be exciting. I’ll check out some of your writing later today. Just wanted to say hi.

  • Natalie
    6 September 2021 at 1:12 am

    Congrats on your writing achievements and thinking of you, Sanch. Keep up your good efforts. One day at a time is a good approach. Thank you for linking up with #weekendcoffeeshare.
    Natalie recently posted…Colourful Laneway Murals #SundayStillsMy Profile

  • Beaton
    7 September 2021 at 2:20 am

    here its like we jump from winter to summer or rather from cold dry season to hot dry season, spring is no more real than a figment of my imagination..
    All the best on your achievements and here’s to a great month
    ~B
    Beaton recently posted…Of Coffee With MushikashikaMy Profile

  • Julie Santos
    7 September 2021 at 3:47 pm

    I’m sorry about you experiencing lockdown in Australia. In California, it’s more like a lite version of lockdown but still we have to wear masks wherever we go. We’ve been in this pandemic for so long, I’ve been feeling fatigued. I think for a while I was fine and even felt lighter when things were slowly getting back to normal. But because I feel the goal post has stretched, it’s been very dispriting.

  • Kirstin
    8 September 2021 at 11:41 am

    Your post was beautifully written. I love how you worded the Lessons learned. So sorry it’s been so hard. I am in the states. I think we should be talking more about health right now. Here, you don’t hear anything about lifestyle changes, other things you can do to boost your immune system and work towards a healthier body inside and out. Instead you get free donuts if you get vaccinated. Anyways, hang in there. Always enjoy your updates.