I woke up and thought about the fact that I needed to write a post today. I felt absolutely no drive. I had an anxious twinge in the pit of my stomach that in no way made me want to chat about beauty. I procrastinated for a while, then finally realized that this nagging feeling would be best served by explaining everything that’s been going on. There’s been a lot of change in my life lately. Discussing it isn’t always comfortable, but I want to lay it all out for you today and hear your thoughts.

Splitting Up
I should start with what happened five months ago. Me and my boyfriend split up. That was undoubtedly the hardest thing I’ve had to do. We were together for eight years and he felt like home to me. But we were very different people. We wanted different things and, as sad as it is, I don’t think our personalities were similar enough. It was especially painful because there was no fight to be had and I couldn’t feel any ill will towards him. It simply wasn’t right to stay together. I still think the absolute world of him, but it is what it is. So now I’m just getting used to being single. I haven’t done that since I was 17. Truth be told I probably skipped right over learning how to be independent and that’s something I’ve got to catch up on now.

When we broke up I was lucky enough to be offered a place to stay with one of my best friends. She had an extra bedroom in her place and I scooted right in. I don’t know what I would have done otherwise, because if there are any Vancouverites out there, you’ll feel me when I say that the housing/rental market is fucked right now. So, as per usual, I went about making my new bedroom feel like me. You know, I painted the walls white, put up prints and plants, etc. As my friend says “your bedroom looks like Bloomin’ Rouge in a bedroom.” While I’m not sure he meant that as a compliment, I’m pleased with it.

With everything that happened, my mindset was bound to be off, however I decided to make life even more difficult for myself. Genius here. I’ll be signing photos just outside in a moment. What I don’t think I ever mentioned to you guys is that a couple of years ago, when my anxiety got out of control, I ended up having to take medication. It was an absolute godsend at the time. I feel as though it gave me my life back and I don’t regret it for a second. But after our relationship ended, I wanted to go off the medication. I had gained a lot of weight on it and it was taking a huge toll on my self esteem. I’ll be honest, going off wasn’t easy, despite doing it very slowly. The depression hit me again for a bit and my anxiety levels have increased, but things are more stable now overall. Still no regrets.

The Pigs!
One thing I feel so damn grateful for is my guinea pigs. Having pets when you’re going through a rough patch is a beautiful thing. Sometimes when I’m holding them I feel like my heart is going to explode. They’re so perfect and wonderful and loving and sweet. I lose my mind over how amazing they are. My roommate can attest to that considering all she hears is “holy shit they’re so cute, I can’t handle this.”

When everything went down with the break up I couldn’t bring myself to write. I felt like I had no energy and nothing useful to offer. I instead took that time to redesign the website. I relaunched Bloomin’ Rouge about a month ago. I’m going to level with you. It hasn’t been smooth. A couple of years ago I felt like I had so much momentum with the site. It was growing, I had good relationships with readers and other bloggers and I really felt like I was part of a community. But when I started working for Sephora I had less and less time to dedicate to writing and everything seemed to slowly slip away. Taking time off after the breakup was almost like the final nail in the coffin. I lost touch and I can’t tell you how badly I want to get back in touch. I also put up a new Youtube video and that’s been a huge point of anxiety for me. Videos scare the crap out of me and I’m definitely worried about failing on that front. I think deep down I’ve secretly always hoped that I could have a successful Youtube channel and do that for a living. Facing the fact that that’s a one in a million shot it difficult.

I’ve now been working for Sephora for a year and a bit. When I first started it was fantastic. You get so much experience as a makeup artist – wing liner after wing liner – and you learn about so many products. I appreciate how much I’ve grown there, but working in a fast-paced, hectic retail environment takes a lot out of you. Who here knows that I’m talking about? You’re being shuffled from one client to the next, trying to help them find this foundation and that shade of lipstick. Often times you just can’t please people and, let me tell you, there are a lot of angry people in the world that just want someone to vent at. As Bilbo Baggins would say, I’m beginning to feel like “butter scraped over too much bread.” So I’m really not sure what the next step should be. Do I focus on freelancing? Do I think about working towards teaching at a makeup school? Do I look into web-design? Do I go unemployed and throw myself fully into Youtube/blogging and hope for the best? So many questions. Tell me one of you has the answers.

Well that was a lot of info. I hope you guys don’t mind. Sometimes I like reading these posts because it gives you a little window into the hopes and dreams of others, as well as the struggles. I reminds us that we’re all more alike than we might think. Hopefully you’ll see that today. Either that, or you’ll see that I’m a total wanker.

  • ❤️ Oh Holly. I am both chuffed you are back online, and so sorry to hear about your breakup… As the (now lowkey proudly) single bud in my circle of friends, I really think being on your own is good for you, and it sounds like you are approaching things with a level head anyway. Sending you internet love boo.
    (PS Please can we have a room tour?! Pleeeease?! It would be my version of Christmas… Kk thanks.)

    • Holy moly it’s so nice to hear from you. And my god your site is looking beautiful. And your instagram.

      But seriously, thank you for your kind words. The breakup was really hard, but yes, at the same time I feel oddly proud of myself for doing something that was terrifying. I’m planning on staying single too. I don’t even want to think about dating for a full year. I can’t imagine jumping straight back into things, as some people do.

      As for the room tour, I really want to. It’s hard to photograph because it’s such a small space… I’ll work on it.

  • I’m sorry to hear about the breakup, although thats pretty close to home with me at the moment as I’ve split from my boyfriend of almost four years. Like you, I just don’t think we were right for each other and that was that. I’m finding it hard to cope at the moment, but I’m hoping things will get better. I also have two guinea pigs, who keep me smiling! Hope you’re doing well anyway!

    Lucy | Forever September

    • I really feel like that’s one of the hardest things – when there’s nothing overtly wrong or unpleasant, but you’re just not right for each other. Making the call to end that is so difficult.
      I’m sorry you’re having a hard time at the moment. The be honest it came and went for me. Like waves. But all I can say is rely on your friends. They’re what makes it feel better in the meantime.
      Good luck with everything. Give your pigs a smooch for me! I tried to find pics of them on your blog, but I couldn’t. You should do an introductory post for them 🙂

      • It is really difficult, and I just hope everything will get easier. I’ll just stick with my friends, and let them cheer me up when I’m really down (or the guinea pigs) haha! Now you’ve said that, I’m definitely going to do an introductory post on them, they’re too cute not to!

        • Excellent. I’ll be checking back for that 🙂

  • Danielle Sanford

    So I rarely comment on blogs…I’m one of those silent readers. =) But I love love make up blogs. Have loved them for years. And I just wanted to say I really enjoy yours. It’s one of my top favorites (I read many or have read many and stopped because I didn’t find them useful and engaging). So I think mostly I want to say you are appreciated over here. Also thank you for sharing your personal struggles. I never had any self doubt or mental struggles when I was younger (that makes me sound old…prekids?) and then I struggled with some post partum anxiety and it opened my perspective on that world. So mostly, like you summed up at the end, it totally makes us all realize how we are similar in so many ways. (Also, I have wanted to start a youtube channel or blog for YEARS and also realized I am semi paralyzed by doubt, semi paralyzed by lack of time, so I feel you there). Mostly, I love what you do and please keep it up. =)

    • Ah thank you so much for commenting! It’s funny because I’m also so often the silent lurker type on so many things too and I love the idea of you kind of… revealing yourself… for lack of a better term.
      I really appreciate you saying that. It’s honestly hard to feel motivated to write when you think people aren’t interested. So thank you so much.
      And yes, it’s a shocking thing when suddenly you’re exposed to anxiety. I’ve always been anxious, but when I wake up some morning with a really bad bout it’s still mind blowing. I hope it’s leveled out for you though. It really does change your perspective though. You feel so grateful when it passes and it also makes you infinitely more sympathetic towards those struggling with it.
      As for the blog/youtube channel, I agonized for ages too. All I can say is just get started. Tell yourself whatever you need to make yourself more comfortable. You don’t ever have to finish creating the blog if you don’t want to. You could just play around and see what you think. You don’t even have to make the blog public if you don’t want to. Imagine it as a practice run, and if you feel like taking it further then that’s great. Dipping your toe in is the hardest part.

      Anyways. I can’t say thanks enough. Your kind words made me feel some hope. If there’s anything I can do to help you start a blog of your own, please let me know.

  • Girl, I really do feel you. Sometimes it feels like life takes all the wrong turns at once and you’re left puzzled and scared of the unknown. But I’m a firm believer that pain, tough inevitable, better stems from change than from staying in your old, dreadful routine. It might be a struggle now but I’m betting you’ll feel way better in a while, just give it some more time <3

    I'm actually going through much of the same stuff – I recently broke up with my longtime boyfriend (and have no idea who I am without him), having to move back home because of it and no hopes for a place of my own just yet, and the pressure of work got to me and caused so much anxiety. I feel like shit most of the time but at the same time I'm grateful all these things are happening at once. At least I know now that if I'll survive this, I'll get through anything in the future. Here's to us and being brave enough to make these changes!

    • I’m sorry crappy stuff’s been going down for you. I thoroughly agree that this all will make us stronger, better, more grateful, etc. It just sucks for now.

      I really do understand how you’re feeling. I go between feeling sad and also feeling proud of myself for making change happen. I know things will feel better for you soon enough. It’s just sort of the way life works. Highs and lows. You’re strong though. You’re still plugging away even when it’s not easy. You should be proud.

  • I’m so sorry to hear it’s been a rough time for you, Holly. Breakups are never easy and the added stress of mental health, work and just general life stuff doesn’t make it any easier. We need pain in order to grow though and one day, you’ll back on this time in your life and feel proud of yourself for getting through it all. Life can be really scary and hard sometimes! I’m really struggling with work-related stuff myself and I’m also trying to get out of retail, but it’s a tough job market out there and even though I’ve been to uni and done internships, it’s impossible to get even an entry level job unless I have a thousand years experience! I’ve thought about blogging full time too, but I often think the disadvantages outweigh the advantages. I’m so used to a social work environment, I feel like I’d get bored and lonely at home all day, everyday and unless you have a massive following, it seems impossible to earn a sustainable income from it too! As I’m going through work woes myself, I’m sorry I don’t have the answers, but if you ever found out, be sure to let me know. xox

    Tenneil | Like Neon Love

    • Tenneil,
      It’s so damn nice to hear from you! And thank you so much for being so kind.
      The job thing is such a clusterfuck for our generation. It’s honestly terrifying. Like you were saying, you’re essentially as eligible as you could possibly be for a job and yet somehow you still “lack experience.” Who are these magic people out there that are qualified enough? Where are they getting their experience?! I think that’s the thing that’s stressing me out the most right now. I don’t know what my options are realistically.
      And like you said, I think we all have this odd fantasy that somehow our blogs will blow up with a massive following, but even then, do I want to work from home? I’m like you, I need the social aspect. Everything is very up in the air. If I find the answers I’ll be sure to let you know!
      Excuse my word vomiting.

  • Princess Mía ♕

    I love reading life update posts. It shows us that not everything is writing and taking pictures and that life is more chaotic than a pleasant white picture. I went a few months without writing too, I moved miles and miles away from home and family and just wasn’t feeling myself, nor was I comfortable with my blog, design or content.

    I’ve always wanted to work for sephora or any makeup brand, but reading this makes me second guess. Anyway I have applied and never heard back from them so I guess they’re looking for really good and experience makeup artists. I though it was only difficult to please people in the food & beverage industry, but I guess I was wrong. I totally feel you.

    Im sorry you went or are going through a rough patch. I hope this gives you more energy, ideas and enthusiasm to keep writing.