Moving on up, moving on out

OK, time for some cautious optimism. We are getting closer and closer to leaving London.

“What?!” I hear you cry. Oh, you didn’t know? Well, I haven’t really made a formal announcement (because it’s been so touch and go) but basically, we’re moving to Suffolk. Various reasons, but a big one being I REALLY want a garden. Some space. Outdoors.

Southwold beach, about 15mins drive from our future house



The details are sketchy (because clearly Ben has a job in London, so won’t be upping sticks entirely. Yet) but we have just received an email from the letting agent in Suffolk saying we can have the house we want. We’ve arranged a day to collect the keys in the middle of August – not as soon as I’d’ve hoped, but soon enough (“that’s not soon enough!”)

But moving brings with it heartache and change. I’m really bad at change. I think that’s what’s held me back in the past – fear of change. It’s kept me in stagnant relationships, it stopped me wanting to go to grammar school (I know, I know), but slowly, gently, I’m learning to let change into my life. This is a big one (all at once) as I will be moving away from everything I know – volunteering, choir, friends, my mum (ARGH that’s the hardest one). However, I like to think that this year is a bit of a break through for me become a bit more independent – I’ve got my own car, I’ll (hopefully) be getting a job soon, and my own place (it’s in my name, people! Booyah). Scary shit, right? Right. But I repeat: garden.

Also, it’s not all 100% scary – my choir master from the English Arts Chorale lives in Suffolk too (and commutes to Surrey every week for choir – mad I know) – he runs two other choirs there, so at least I have somewhere to sing. Added to that, Ben’s parents and sister live about 15-20mins drive from where we’re going to live, which makes it feel a bit safer.

Yesterday came the first “cut off” – I said goodbye to SANE and to the EAC. I’ve been a member of each organisation for 15months and 3years respectively, but it felt a lot longer (in a good way). But Suffolk is a long way away, so I had to say goodbye. It was hard, but the cake I baked made it a bit easier. I will definitely keep in touch with the folks at the EAC (I can’t get away from them – they do joint concerts with the choirs in Suffolk!!) and I will continue to spread the news of SANE’s good works. But it’s still difficult to accept that I am no longer directly involved – both groups have meant a lot to me in different ways. Both have helped me to grow.

Anyway, I’ve rambled enough (and I’m getting sad, like when I had to leave the Horniman). More news on the move as-and-when.

Oh, and as always – sorry updates have been sparse lately, but given the above (and the dissertation) I hope you’re happy to forgive and be patient.


5 thoughts on “Moving on up, moving on out

  1. We will miss you lots! (altho I know we don’t manage to see each other all that often even tho we are both in London!). You will absolutely love it tho, and I will love visiting so I’m sure it will all be hunky-dory. I don’t buy this garden thing (there are gardens in London!) but oh my, you’re going to live near the seaside! Lots of love and hopefully see you before the move xxx


    • And I’ll miss you too! But you’ll always be welcome up for a glass of vino and a BBQ. We’re not far from the station, and it’s a good line 😉

      As for the garden thing – yes, there are gardens in London, but they tend to be small and overlooked. And you have to pay through the nose for them. Yes, I know you have a garden (and LOVELY it is too!) but you have to admit, you have forfeited some convenience for outdoor space (getting into central London can be a pain).
      Par example – our 2-bed house w/ garden (front & back), conservatory & garage is about half the rent of your average 1-bed flat (no extra trimmings) in London. HALF THE PRICE. It’s madness. xx


  2. Hi Astrid

    I have been googling UEL’s MSc in psychology and your blog came up! I have just found out that I have a place on the MSc and have to admit that I’m really nervous, my mind is not naturally scientific and the thought of doing stats and psycho-biology scares me though I’m really keen to learn! How did you find the course? Did you really enjoy it? I get the impression from your blog that you did! Was the workload manageable? I will need to work three days a week whilst doing the course full-time and am worried this wont leave me with enough time to study!
    Anyway sorry for all the questions!


    ps. Your blog is lovely!


    • Hello hello!

      UEL’s psychology MSc has been overall a good experience. The majority of lecturers are brilliant, especially John Turner who teaches psychobiology, so no worries there. I won’t lie: it is a HEAVY workload with a lot to take in over one very short year (I still can’t quite believe that I’m almost finished ALREADY). You have to be organised, and you will be working hard. My advice to you is that if maths/sci doesn’t come naturally to you, then start reading up on stats NOW, because that is one of the weaker modules, and you will need it. I recommend “How to design and report experiments” by Field and Hole, or “Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology” by Coolican.

      Working part-time whilst doing the full-time course is possible, but difficult. I didn’t do that myself, but some fellow students did (I’m amazed at how much some people seem to be able to juggle!) – again, you just have to be organised!
      Oh, and nab yourself a supervisor for the dissertation project as early on as possible. If you get cracking (even if just the planning stages) from day one, you won’t end up fretting about deadlines, like a lot of us have.

      So what brought you to psychology? What do you find most interesting? Where do you hope to take it?

      Thanks for your lovely comments by the way – would be really interested to hear how you get on with the course in September!

      Best wishes


  3. Thank you very much for the advice – I appreciate it! I wish that I didn’t need to work but have no other way of doing it so I’m going to have to be super organised! I currently work in East Ham as an advice & advocacy worker for young separated asylum seeking minors. My interest in mental health stems mainly from my work, I’m especially interested in trauma and ideas around ‘home’, Renos Papadopoulos’s work is a big influence! Over the last few years I’ve been studying ‘psychoanalytic observational studies’ at the Tavistock clinic and alongside my main job I’ve been working one day a week as an assistant child psychotherapist at Newham CAMHS. However I feel drawn to psychology and really want to learn about it even though I’m sure the science and stats is going to push me very much out of my comfort zone! I’d love to do clinical training though the MSc is a daunting enough challenge! I’ve already started thinking about my research project… I’d love to base it around the work that I currently do and focus particularly on the experiences of adolescent males from Afghanistan (they are my main client group). But for now I should turn my attention to stats!

    Thank you again!


    ps. good luck with all your work and future plans!


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