The Month That Was

September 2021 Reflections

Hello October! The time when the clocks change, when daylight continues for longer and the weather gets warmer. For those of us in Greater Sydney, it’s a welcome month as in another week, the fully vaccinated will start to have some more freedoms. But before looking forward to October, let’s look at the month that was September and spent in lockdown. For those of you counting, it’s been fourteen weeks so far.

What I wrote in September 2021

I continued my writing routine in September, managing to write almost every weekday morning. I submitted a couple of short stories and an essay for competitions. I am attempting to work on a collection of short stories and am also outlining a nonfiction/memoir book I have an idea for. With plans to attempt NaNoWriMo next month, I hope, this will come to fruition.

What I read in September 2021

Reading was interesting this month. I lacked focus again but also managed to read one book in one day {thank you, Sally Rooney!}. I finished only 4 books in September but I’m also halfway through five others *facepalm*. My absolute favourite this month was, of course, the long-anticipated Sally Rooney – Beautiful World Where are you? I also really enjoyed The Banksia House Breakout by James Roxburgh and When Love Sticks around by Danielle Dayney {review to come shortly}. The other nonfiction read this month, Heartsick by Jessie Stephens was so-so.

On the blog in September 2021

Apart from my weekly gratitude posts on the blog, I shared a book review and an interview with the author, James Roxburgh. I also wrote about feeling overwhelmed with some work-related decisions. And finally, I tried a prompt and wrote some flash fiction on the blog after what seems like ages.

What I listened to in September 2021

My September music listening consisted of mainly instrumental post-rock and metal. I revisited old favourites Russian Circles, Sleepmakeswaves, We Lost the sea, and God is an Astronaut. On the podcast front, I listened to Dr Death. It’s one of those stories where fact is more compelling than fiction. I also continued to listen to episodes of So you want to be a writer and have just started the Daily Stoic Coffee Break.

What I watched in September 2021

I finished Season 3 of Final Space, which turned out to be the season finale because the show got cancelled 🙁 I also watched the final season of How to get away with murder which was a mindfuck and compelling all at once. I managed to binge-watch Clickbait on Netflix on a rainy Sunday morning and thought it was done really well. Other than these, I restarted Schitt’s Creek and finished Season 1 again and have been catching episodes of SVU.

Health in September 2021

Thankfully, my health – both physical and mental – haven’t been too bad this month. I only had to get one Covid test this month! I continued to go for twice-weekly PT sessions where I continued to lift stronger. I have started tracking my meals to ensure I’m eating enough protein given the amount of energy and muscle recovery I need for my powerlifting goals. Mental health-wise, I have had some anxiety and imposter syndrome flaring up about work but thankfully, my mood has been okay.

Life in September 2021

What can I say about lockdown life that doesn’t feel so groundhoggy? I walked, I exercised – with my trainer and on other days, with a friend, I saw the few friends in my 5 km radius and continued to walk. I shared beers with one outdoors because we can. I went to the beach after work and on a couple of weekends when the weather was warm. I went in the ocean and it was refreshing. I had my first fully vaccinated picnic with Sammie and David and Teddy. I spoke on the phone with friends not in my radius. I Facetimed my sister and my family. I tried to read, I wrote, I watched streaming shows. I procrastinated. I worked a lot this month including running some training at the start of the month. I attended an online writing workshop. I had coffees and beers, I had take-away a couple of times. I cooked. I cleaned. I cuddled my cats. I felt exhausted because lockdown fatigue is real. I stressed about my work future and how I want my life to look.

Highlight of September 2021

Winning second place in the YeahWrite nonfiction Super Challenge was most definitely a highlight last month.

Lowlight of September 2021

Ongoing lockdowns but also, anti-vaxxers and those protesting against both lockdowns and vaccinations. I don’t understand how they think we can get out of this.

Lessons from September 2021

While routine is good, groundhog days are tiring. It’s okay to take time and do nothing though and I needed some days where I just rested and relaxed. I also realised I don’t have to rush the private practice situation and can take it slow and work it out properly. There is no deadline. I also realised just how much more excited I get about writing than I do about my career and it’s important I prioritise that in the years to come.

Hopefully, my next monthly reflection will have more than groundhog days even though I plan on easing myself back into the real world.

How was September for you?

Do share!

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

Featured image by craveiro_ pics from Pexels

Until next time,

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  • Janet Alcorn
    3 October 2021 at 1:57 am

    Sounds like you had an interesting and productive September! Congrats on the writing win! And your lessons learned sound very wise. It absolutely is OK to take time to do nothing, though I have to remind myself of that regularly. Have a wonderful week!

  • Maria
    3 October 2021 at 3:48 am

    Sounds like a good time! Enjoy your weekend!
    Maria recently posted…Weekend Coffee ShareMy Profile

  • Joanne+Tracey
    3 October 2021 at 8:20 am

    Lockdown fatigue is real. I look at Mum and Dad and reckon Mum (in particular) has really suffered. She’s 80 in January but has always been fit and social. Because my siblings live either outside their LGA in a LGA of concern, they haven’t seen anyone. They don’t know how to FaceTime or Zoom, she’s a massive reader but can’t access the library, they don’t really have any streaming services so the only outings have either been to Aldi for the once every 3 week shop or medical appointments for Dad. It’s really aged them faster than it otherwise would have and my blood boils when I see and read about anti-vaxxers.

  • Natalie
    3 October 2021 at 8:58 am

    Congrats on your writing achievements, Sanch! Glad to hear your lockdown is coming to an end soon. Thank you for linking up with #weekendcoffeeshare.
    Natalie recently posted…What Made September SpecialMy Profile

  • Debbie+Harris
    3 October 2021 at 11:59 am

    What a positive month Sanch, well done on the writing award and for managing lockdown as well as you can. I agree those protesting are making it so hard for our future. I was interested to read your comment on Heartsick as I was thinking of getting it, and may still do, but I’m enjoying a vast array of other books at the moment, so will continue with them. #weekendcoffeeshare
    Debbie+Harris recently posted…A #BOLD takeover in SeptemberMy Profile

  • Kirstin
    4 October 2021 at 12:33 am

    I always seem to have more than one book going at a time and struggle to finish. I’m on vacation this week so I’m hoping to make a dent on one that I started awhile back and it’s sat on the shelf.

  • Gary A Wilson
    4 October 2021 at 12:14 pm

    Hi Sanch,
    Very cool – winning 2nd place at the Yea Write competition.
    With everything you do, I’m amazed that you find time to write at all.

  • Rowena
    4 October 2021 at 11:30 pm

    Hi Sanch,
    I’m also caught up in this Greater Sydney lockdown. I’ve largely been focusing on my history research during both lockdowns and it’s coming together well. I started a second blog to share my research into Ethel Turner, whose most famous work is “Seven Little Australians”. Have you read it?
    I am now starting to think about life as we come out of lockdown. I have lung issues and am immuno-suppressed so i have to be careful. Not too keen on the lack of support for vulnerable people and no priority access to the vaccine for young people. Wrote a few letters over that. Now, Gladys is gone. Not happy about that either. She has brought me solace during this terrible time. On the up side I’m starting to think about inviting some people over and hope to catch up with my parents soon who live in Sydney. I miss them so much.
    Hope you are going okay.
    Best wishes,