handling grief

2017, lifestyle, student


I feel like my content has been sporadic and worse for wear recently, but in myself I’ve been a bit worse for wear too.

While I was on my BBC Three placement I got a call from my mum to tell me my nanny was very poorly. I ended up going home the next day and resuming my commute from there, so I could spend time with my family and finish my placement with BBC Three from there.

It was an emotional week but it was really nice to spend time with my family and make my nan’s last days happy.

She passed away on Saturday March 11th. I was on my way back to Southampton at the time. I knew it was coming so I was okay, at least I thought I was okay.

I powered head first into carrying on as normal – I had work on Sunday, uni all day Monday (as well as an All Time Low concert in the evening, they’re my favourite band and it was my second time seeing them on this tour) and work, uni and dance on the Tuesday. It was on that Tuesday that I realised maybe I wasn’t okay.

When walking from uni to dance my chest felt tight and I was getting really breathless really easily. But I continued; that was the problem. I went to dance training and I found myself getting really worn out surprisingly fast and I just felt weak and on edge.

That was when I had my first full on panic attack in a while, sat on my own in a university sports centre.

I calmed myself down and went back to dance – literally walked back into the room and stepped immediately into the routine as if I hadn’t been gone – but from then on I knew I had to step it down a notch. From there I was okay, I made sure I kept my friends close and my family event closer.

The next time I really broke was when I was editing together the montage video with the Ed Sheeran cover I made.

The song, about Ed Sheeran’s own nan passing away, came out three days before my mum told me my nan was ill and it was all so painfully ironic – so I had to cover it. Watching the video in it’s entirety when I’d finished making it, that was when the crying started again.

But I uploaded it and I’m so proud of it.

Today is just over a month since she passed away, the funeral was a couple of weeks ago – I thought I’d be okay because I thought I’d really come to terms with it all but I broke before we even went into the crematorium – my cousins read my nan’s favourite poem and my uncle wrote an amazing tribute to her, very bravely read by all.

It was sad, of course it was sad, but it was actually a really lovely day. The wake was a really nice commemoration of who my nanny was and it was the first time I’d seen my step-cousins in nearly four years and it was genuinely lovely to see them and catch up with them.

I don’t know if I’m handling my grief in the best possible way – it happens that March has been the busiest, most hectic and one of the saddest months of my life. I feel like I’ve not been myself for a while – I’m the saddest I’ve been in a very long time and sometimes I feel like my body isn’t mine? Everything feels distant and irrelevant and

This might sound mad, maybe it’s a sort of subconscious coping mechanism, but I don’t feel like she’s really gone – I felt like she was watching over us at the funeral and the in the consequent time I’ve spent with my family, it didn’t feel like there was anyone missing because it doesn’t feel like she’s gone.

I’m not a religious person and maybe it’s just that I’m not used to it and I’m still grieving but I feel like she’s watching over me and keeping her in my thoughts and living for her is my way of looking out for her even now.

“Hallelujah. You were an angel in the shape of my mum. You got to see the person I have become. Spread your wings and I know that when God took you back he said Hallelujah – you’re home.”  Ed Sheeran, Supermarket Flowers

Sophie xx


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Monthly Music: March

2017, music, student


I love writing about music – it’s no surprise that music is a huge passion of mine and especially studying a music journalism unit at uni right now, I want to write more about music.

I know I already do a monthly favourites post but I thought separating music and doing it in a separate post where I can talk about each album or song in more detail than I would if it was in my favourites.

So I’ve picked five songs and albums that I’ve been listening to a lot this month – not just music that’s been coming out this month, it’s just stuff I’ve been listening to and thoroughly enjoying.

But first I have picked something that was new in March:

Divide, Ed Sheeran: I have made no effort to hide how much I love this album – obviously there are songs I like more than others but there is not one single song that I dislike. I talked about Supermarket Flowers in my March favourites and it’s one of my favourites, but also Eraser, Galway Girl and Nancy Mulligan are so much fun and I just absolutely adore this album. It’s so fun but also so lyrically poignant and heavy and important. I love the placement of Happier (a song about seeing an ex happier now that they’re with someone else) and New Man (a song about seeing an ex going a bit of the rails now that they’re with someone else) following each other on the album, that has actually made me laugh a lot, probably more than it should have.

I love the lyric in New Man ‘He’s got his eyebrows plucked and his arsehole bleached’ – again, because it’s really funny and it makes me laugh.

I loved listening to this album on the underground when I was commuting into London for my BBC Three placement, even when I started commuting from home into London to be with my family this album cheered me up more than it made me sad, it was a bit of a nod to normalcy before everything went to shit and this album just fitted into my life at a really convenient time.

I have literally no bad things to say about this album. Literally none.

Dirty Laundry / Last Young Renegade – All Time Low: I might make it a personal challenge to put All Time Low in my monthly music post every month because they’re my favourite band and I can’t go a whole month without adoring them.

So with a new album coming out in just a couple of months and new songs being released fairly regularly, there are two new songs from the unreleased album ‘Last Young Renegade’ and they’re so good and I’m so excited about it.

They played ‘Dirty Laundry’ when I saw them live in London and Southampton in the beginning of March and hearing it live made me fall so much more in love with the song. I’m still trying to figure out exactly what kind of meaning the song has but I’m thoroughly enjoying listening to it on loop while I try and understand what it’s meant to say.

Last Young Renegade I haven’t listened to as much, I’ll be honest, even though it’s the lead song on the album. I was listening to Ed Sheeran and I was grieving and I just didn’t connect with the song but I adore the video – I love the idea that the first video for Dirty Laundry and this video for Last Young Renegade may be somehow connected but I also just really appreciate the representation of love where it’s just dealing with something bad happening to just go and enjoy a concert in the most basic sense of the word. Music really does bring people together and going to a concert with someone you love is a really different kind of concert and I loved being reminded of that when I watched this video.

Totally rate these songs and thoroughly recommend them.

Keep Me Crazy – Sheppard: My boyfriend and I found Sheppard as a band on our way back from Weymouth at New Years (I think) – we listened to their album on the train on the way back to Basingstoke and their new song is just so happy and so much fun and I love it so much.

It’s so jolly and happy go lucky and it’s a really happy listen. It’s now on my bucket list to go to Australia to see Sheppard play live. They’re Australian, for context. I bet they’re fab live. I can’t wait. I just love Sheppard, a lot.

Little Shop of Horrors: Definitely not a new musical or a new release but I’m now in my university’s drama and performance society’s musical medley, which includes Little Shop of Horrors in which I have like a semi-main supporting-ish role and I’ve just really got into the musical, even though I refused to be in it in my school production when I was in year 11.

I’m loving learning the songs properly and also having a couple of solos is really fun because I’m a very needy person and I like attention in small bursts. Also I like that ‘Sing it child’ is one of my lines and the sass levels hit a hundred. I’m really enjoying Little Shop right now.

Also, I don’t know why, but at the end of Skid Row when Seymour and Audrey are singing about trying to get out of Skid Row and it makes me surprisingly emotional because I get really scared about being stuck in the same place for a long time and it scares me a lot and it just really gets to me. Not sure why but I love that song a lot.

Awake – Josh Groban: Bit of a last minute, weird one this – I got back from work and a stressful evening at uni on Wednesday night and had a craving to listen to ‘So She Dances’ by Josh Groban which is an astonishingly beautiful song and I am desperate to choreograph to it and it’s just really mellow and I was so stressed and I needed something really chill and I’m really glad I listened to Josh Groban.

He’s an incredibly talented vocalist and his music makes me very chilled and happy. He’s got a great twitter too.

How I want to end these posts is with something that I want to listen to over the next month and I’ve been meaning to listen to You Me At Six’s newest album Night People – I love Cavalier Youth and I just haven’t spared the time to listen to the song yet and it’s my aim for the next month to listen to it.

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx


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playlists: 2017 so far

2017, music, student


One of my resolutions this year is to listen to more music – I pride myself as someone who has a really varied but passionate love for music and recently I haven’t felt like that and I want that passion back, so I want to talk about the playlists I’m loving right now!

I’ll put links to all the Spotify playlists and albums where I can, follow me on there if you’re interested!

work – this playlist I literally designed to plug into the aux cable at work and play in the store, as well as keeping us entertained while we work but I’m actually really pleased with the bunch of songs that are on it, it’s pretty varied and great to just put on shuffle and have in the background.

La La Land soundtrack – if you missed my review of this movie you can read it here but I love the throwback to the older musicals that I grew up with and it’s really catchy. It also reminds me of my orchestra days. The Fools Who Dream is my favourite song without a shadow of a doubt, but the Epilogue is definitely my favourite piece of music.

Ed Sheeran’s new songs – I’ve still got them on repeat because I’m still in love with them. I’m the kind of person who can listen to one song (or two, in this case) on repeat for days and not get bored of it because I’m just enamoured by it, I hear something new every time.

Night Driver / Busted – we all know how much I love Busted, but I’ve had this one on recently because not only is it a brilliant album but I’m hyping myself up because it’s a week today that I see Busted play new music live for the first time and I’m so excited.

Okay, I didn’t really need the help with hyping myself up.

And the last thing for this post (might make this a regular part of these blog posts if you want me to make another one?) – to listen to:

Night People / You Me At Six – a band that I’ve listened to fairly regularly for the past five or six years I’d say, I’ve never been ‘obsessed’ with them in the same way I have other bands and I won’t listen to a release on the day it comes out (because I’m not involved enough to know about it), but I saw this on Spotify’s Recent Releases today and I’m going to give it a listen in the next week or so.

So did you like this post? I don’t want to make it a monthly thing because I’ve already got a couple of ‘types’ of posts that I do regularly and I don’t want my blog to become month on month of the same content, but I could do this every couple of months or so? Let me know in the comments!

Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoy the playlist!

Sophie xx


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‘Shape of You’ / ‘Castle on a Hill’ – Ed Sheeran Review

2017, music


After his year long hiatus, Ed Sheeran posted photos and videos all over his social media teasing new music on New Years Day, consequently releasing two songs ‘Shape of You‘ and ‘Castle on a Hill‘ at 5am on January 6th and making an appearance on BBC Radio 1’s Breakfast Show.

He’s come back with a bang!

Shape of You is very experimental and catchy song, originally written to be recorded by Rihanna and that’s very clear in the tone of the song. Personally I don’t think it’s very ‘Ed Sheeran’, but I don’t think that’s a bad thing. It’s very different to the other songs he’s released so far but it makes me wonder what the rest of the album will be like.

Castle on a Hill feels much more like the Sheeran sound we already know and love – there’s lots of guitars and it’s full of sentimental lyrics that are poignant and make you feel nostalgic in a happy and a sad way at the same time. I’m a big fan of this one and it is my favourite of the two, I’d love to see him do one of his loop pedal performances and play the whole song on his own.

These songs are brilliant, especially after a year of being completely absent from social media, fans and critics and everyone else seem to be really excited for the following album, even with no announced release date as of yet.

With the two songs that have been released so far, there’s not masses of indication of what sound the new album will have but Ed Sheeran being the very talented musician who’s written hits like ‘Thinking Out Loud‘, One Direction’s ‘Little Things‘ and Justin Bieber’s ‘Love Yourself‘, we all know the album is going to be incredible regardless.

I love writing about music and new releases, is there any particular music you’d like me to write about? Let me know in the comments!

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx


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