Leaving school in 2020 during lockdown

As we all know this year has been a bit crazy with Covid-19 swooping in and changing our lives. But could you imagine being in Year 11 during this time and missing out on vital things such. Saying goodbye to your friends being taken away from you. GCSE exams being cancelled after all of your hard work. Prom that you’ve spent all year looking forward to not existing? I thought I would let you all see what it is like from the viewpoint of Harry my 16 year old, who had to leave a week earlier than lockdown due to his sister having a cough.

How did you feel when you had to go into isolation before school officially went into lockdown?

To begin with I was really annoyed at my sister as she had a temperature for one day. The school then wouldn’t let me return for 14 days due to the isolation period. My GCSE’s were fast approaching and I was panicking about having enough time to prepare for them.
My school had put a red carpet out and whilst all of the year 11 students walked down it everyone gave them a round of applause. I was sad that I didn’t get the opportunity to join in.

How about when all of the schools went into lockdown?

Not being able to say goodbye was a huge annoyance. There was a large amount of uncertainty and I wasn’t sure if I would get to see them again before we all went onto college.

It came on the news that GCSE’s were cancelled. Were you happy about this?

To be honest, I was feeling both relieved and disappointed. This was because I had spent the past 5 years of my life working for one singular goal. Just to be told it was for nothing. However I was relieved because I wasn’t doing too well in English and having a different way of marking them meant that my grade may improve.

Prom is yet another thing that you missed out on isn’t it?

Yes, It’s very disappointing that I didn’t get to go to prom. I had already been out with my grandad and bought my suit and was prepared for it. That is now hung up in my wardrobe waiting for some kind of occasion to wear it too.

What has lockdown been like for you?

At the very beginning of lockdown boredom kicked in and I found myself doing small jobs around the house to help my mum out. It was very frustrating not to be able to go anywhere or do anything especially when you’re as sociable as I am.
As we started to come out of lockdown I found my first proper job which was exciting. It allowed me to start having responsibilty with my own money.
During lockdown I had plenty of time to think about my identity and finally came out as gay to all of my friends and family which was a massive relief. Thankfully everyone was extremely supportive. I was surprised that not one person was homophobic towards me in anyway.

What are your plans moving forward?

Hopefully I will get into college and do an ICT level 3 after the plans for the first college I was accepted to got halted due to lack of contact during the Covid-19 lockdown.

I have also looked at and applied for some apprenticeships so right now I am just waiting to hear back from different places before making my final decision. Although time is quickly running out and it is starting to make me feel a little stressed.

August 20th I’ll be going to collect my GCSE’s so not failing any exams would be a bonus!

Thanks for chatting to me ( although it was painful and like trying to get blood out of a stone 😉 )

I went pole dancing!

When you think of pole dancing, what is the first thing that comes to your mind? Pretty girls in lacy underwear swinging gracefully around it? Men in strip clubs? As a whole pole dancing doesn’t have the best reputation.

I heard through the grapevine that it is actually a really great form of exercise and great for strengthening. As well as being extremely fun so I really wanted to give it a try. Baring in mind I’m a uk size 16 I’m not a small girl so never thought I would actually pluck up the courage to do it!

The beginning

I’d noticed a post for a company called Liberty Pole Dance Academy on Facebook about pole dance fitness classes and shared it. One of my friends Trisha spotted it and mentioned that she had always wanted to try it too. So a session was booked. There was no backing out now.

My first thoughts upon booking it was, Is that pole going to be able to hold this fat ass? What if I’m just too big for it? Maybe I’m just not strong enough. However Trisha is a very energetic and her zest for life is extremely contagious so I knew I’d just have to suck it up , put my ( extremely) big girl pants on and get on with it.

The studio

I’m not entirely sure exactly what I was expecting when I turned up but what I can tell you I wasn’t expecting was to find a beautiful dance studio complete with fairy lights!

As we entered I was a little apprehensive. There was a sign asking us to use the hand santiser upon entering due to the current covid-19 situation. We were then asked to fill out some medical forms and a special form with regards to the virus before being advised to take off our shoes and the class would start.

The warm up

The session was started with a warm up. This involved lots of stretching and some squats! Squats hurt and I commented how I was aching already when we hadn’t even done anything!

For a split second I felt like I’d been transported back to 1989 in Mr Evans PE class. Rolling my shoulders backwards and forward the only thing missing was the chariots of fire music he always used to play.

Walking the pole

After warming up it was time to start learning. The first thing we were taught was how to walk around the pole. Now I have to point out about now that I am not, nor have ever been remotely sexy or elegant so if you picture an elephant on tip toes stomping round it will probably give you some image of what I looked like.

Sally the instructor demonstrated how we should do it and I couldn’t help but just stand and watch in awe as she gracefully tip toed around the pole with ease. With crossing our feet in front of each other than gliding round the pole, we very quickly picked it up. Shock , Horror I can be graceful!

Sliding down

Get your minds out of the gutter! I know you’re sat there chuckling about sliding down poles and if you wasn’t you are now 😉

Again Sally demonstrated how you could elegantly wrap your hands around the pole before placing your leg out in front of you and slowly sliding your back down and ending up on the floor.

Now, I’m not going to lie, I watched her and immediately thought ” I’m going to wrap my hands around that pole go to slide down it and just fall down and give myself a dead arse”

Shockingly it turns out that I’m actually quite good at sliding down poles. ( stop sniggering!) I had this in the bag!

Being sexy!

After mastering how to slide down the pole the next thing to learn was how to get up from the floor using sexiness and elegance. Again I am neither!

Sliding first one foot out, then the other before sticking her bum in the air. Followed by her boobs and head Sally was just amazing! There was absolutely no way in this world I was going to be able to even get my feet out let alone stand up and be sexy!

I was wrong AGAIN! I easily managed to do exactly what I was instructed and thought for a split second that there was hope for me after all!

Spinning around

Next up was spins! now we’ve all seen it on films, tv shows and some people in real life. These people make it look so easy to glide around the pole like they’re on some kind of carousel. Let me assure you this wasn’t the case for me!

Whilst Trisha seemed to be a complete natural at spinning around her pole, I on the other hand just couldn’t do it! No matter how hard I tried, how many attempts I had. I just couldn’t seem to lift my feet off the floor!

Head Stand

When I was about 10 I was like the world champion of headstands. I could be up there for hours. One thing I have never done however is a headstand against a pole!

Our hands had to be placed into a triangle ( this is not a natural position or a head stand when you think you usually have your hands apart) before placing our heads down , taking a step towards the pole and pushing ourselves up.

Surprisingly on my second attempt I was up! Here I was at the ripe old age of 38 doing a headstand against a pole that was rested neatly between my bum cheeks and it felt amazing! Maybe I could actually be good at this pole dancing

Warm down

All too soon it was time to start stretching and warming down before ending the session. We were shown how to stretch the different muscle in particular our arms and shoulders. After all they had just spent the last hour holding our body weights. The pole was used during the warm down too. Somehow making it feel easier because you had something to lean against.

Overall view

From the start to the end every single part of the experience was exciting and fun. Our instructor was extremely encouraging and even on the parts we felt we couldn’t do she cheered us on and helped us get through it.

I genuinely feel like I worked out more in 1 hour of pole dancing than I do in an hour and a half at the gym!

My legs are covered in bruises but every single one was worth it. Once I’m in a better financial position I will definitely be returning! I can see how pole dancing can become extremely addictive and fun!

Thanks for reading

Well Hello there!

Hello guys. It’s been a while hasn’t it? How is life treating you all? Good I hope. After being given a talking to by my new(ish) partner Mark. ( I’ll tell you all about him soon) I have decided that I should probably restart blogging. I’ve so much to tell you all about but it would take possibly 100 years for you to read it all so I will ease in gently. Let’s start with a super quick update on everyone!

Harry

As you are all aware Harry was in Year 11 at school and sadly due to Covid-19 he was unable to finish school in the usual way. There was no signing shirts, no prom and more importantly no GSCE’s.
Harry felt like he had worked so hard for nothing. Not been able to sit his exams and say goodbye to his friends or have his prom was hard to swallow.
Now he has left school officially and is waiting on his results he has applied to college and is also looking at apprenticeships. He has even gotten himself a little cleaning job too!
He has also recently come out as gay and I couldn’t be prouder of him.

Ellie

Ellie is a typical teenage girl, full of hormones and attitude. Nah I’m kidding she is as usual golden. Lock down hasn’t really affected her because she isn’t the most social person in the first place so having to stay home has been a nice break for her. She has spent a lot of time focusing on her artwork , she even designed my new logo!

Annabelle

Unfortunately this was an important year for Annabelle too as she was due to sit her sat’s and leave year 6 ready for senior school. Again she missed the opportunity to say goodbye to her friends. I think it must be super difficult especially knowing she is going to a completely different school to most of her friends. She has handled it well though and has spent a lot of her lock down glued to youtube! She has however been inspired to start blogging herself and is looking to blog the trials and tribulations of being a preteen. What this space!

Freddie

Freddie has really struggled with being in lock down and you can tell he is missing school. He is really growing into a big boy now. Full of imagination and creativity. I never know if he’s Freddie, a magician or Dracula these days! He can’t wait to get back to school and to his friends.

Bethie

My little curly haired madam! Bethie has her own personality now. She can go from angel to crazy tantrum throwing toddler in 0.6 seconds. You can see she misses the interaction at nursery and is starting big school in September! Off to full time she goes!

Then there is me!

I’m actually doing bloomin amazing! I’ve met a new guy who is just awesome. I’ll tell you all about him in another post. I eat heathier, I’m constantly active and doing something. Recently I landed a dream job that I am waiting for the start date for and everything is slowly coming together. I even walk miles everyday now ( yes I know me!)