#NewNowNext by Adexe

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Moxy Hotel Stratford, London

22nd November 2018

NEW There was the time before healing, and there is healing. There was the time before recovery, and there is recovery. There was the time of the scars, and there is the time for scarring over.

A year ago, when anorexia had reached its peak and left me no choice but to be an inpatient at the hospital, back somewhere a little lost in the middle of France, far from the life I’d started to build myself in the UK, I would never have thought getting out of this mess I’d put myself into.

In November last year, I was preparing to spend Christmas, that wonderful time of the year where magical things always seem to happen, and which I deeply cherish, between the four dull walls of a hospital. I hated that idea and even though I thought it’d be worse, I can’t pretend it was nice to spend the festive season on my own. It wasn’t nice, but it was necessary. Because a few months into 2018 later, I started to get my head above water and was able to leave the medical environment and go home – well… not truly my home, but something that most people would call that way anyway.

“The most important day is the day you decide you’re good enough for you. It’s the day you set yourself free.”

 – Brittany Josephina

It took another few months of weekly appointments as an outpatient, and a lot of work on myself somewhere I didn’t know nor recognised anymore, to become the NEW me and be reborn.

There was the time before healing when I was afraid to live – afraid to be alive. There was the time before recovery when going to parties, having a few drinks with my favourite British person & partner in crime, mingling with a crowd, and even dancing to the sound of just one song, would have been completely impossible and only a source of anxiety nourishing my deeply-rooted insecurities. There was the time of the scars when tears would have flown like water. But that was a different time. That was the time of the past version of me, the me who hadn’t yet decided she was good enough for herself. Until she finally did. Until I finally did set myself free.

NOW NOW is the time for the NEW me. NOW is the time for healing, for recovery. NOW is for scarring over.

I have been to & through hell and I am back. More alive than I’ve ever been. More confident and happy. More in sync with myself than ever before. It’s like learning about who you’ve always been and becoming who you were meant to be all along. I had a taste of some of those things in the past, took a few sips of them even and I remember they always felt so sweet, and right too. 

NOW, I’m not getting samples of who I am deep to the bones anymore and of what my life should be – I am finally owning my life. And I am finally being me – unedited, unrestrained, fully bloomed, no shame, no fear – just me.

“I don’t know who I am. Or maybe I do know who I am, and I just don’t want to be [that] anymore.”

– Gayle Forman

NOW I am not afraid to live anymore. I am not scared of feeling alive. I go to the parties I’m invited to wholeheartedly, even allow myself a few glasses of prosecco because I get to share them with someone who means so much. I don’t find myself suffocating in the middle of a crowd, I may actually even quite enjoy the constant and flowing hubbub – it’s lively, it’s the furthest thing from death… and I can tell you it is a much better friend. Life is a much better friend. And NOW is a much better time.

“What are you afraid of?” my acolyte asked away when trying to push me on the dancefloor, as I was reconnecting with this life I had started to build but left hanging for a while. “I don’t know,” I thought, resisting the best I could until… this naturally came to my mind, “Nothing actually.” I am afraid of nothing. And I enjoyed my five minutes on the dance floor, thinking about nothing, forgetting about everything, and simply living the present moment. It was like finally being able to spread my wings… It felt like taking off.

I wouldn’t compare myself to the other girls, feeling insecure as I gaze at their sparkling confidence, envious of their bursting joy shining all over their faces, and only dreaming of proudly showing off my love for my body as it is, just as they do. No, I am not this girl anymore. I stopped being my own worst enemy, and I am not admiring and yearning for life from a distance any longer – NOW, I am living it. Unchained. Brave. And unapologetically me.

© Left: Video by Tom Cullingham 

© Video by Tom Cullingham & Photos by Michael Atkinson Photography

 NEXT In my rock ‘n’ roll princess look, mixing a sparkly black dress featuring a tulle skirt and rocking a black perfecto on top of it, and ankle boots with golden-coloured metal bees, this has been one of my ground-breaking achievements at the #NewNowNext event, organised by Adexe at the Moxy hotel in Stratford, to launch their new packaging and celebrate Christmas!

This great night of fun went by so quickly! But that’s the sign for good times, isn’t it?

And like after all good times, you sit back, relax, stop being hungover (maybe), and you feel this little warmth that’s come to make a nest in your chest. You feel it and you smile, recalling the past night.

And like after all good times, there are always things you wish you’d said. Things you wish you’d done. More of or better.

NEXT is for all that was left unsaid and all of the things that were left undone…

NEXT time, I will let things go and enjoy life as it comes even more – serendipitously. NEXT time, I will collect more proofs of my happiness shining through and radiating an entire room, just as it was testified this time by the messages saying, ‘you look so happy, Marie!’ or ‘it’s so nice to see you being this happy!’, that I received following the stories I posted on my Instagram during the event or in reaction to the photos I shared afterwards. But mostly maybe as it was testified by the glow in the eyes of my plus one for the night and London partner in crime, glad, proud and maybe a little moved too, to witness his friend had come back to life, better and stronger than ever before.

“What you have to decide… is how you want your life to be. If your forever was ending tomorrow, would this be how you’d want to have spent it? Listen, the truth is, nothing is guaranteed. You know that more than anybody. So don’t be afraid. Be alive.”

– Sarah Dessen (‘The Truth About Forever’)

NEXT time, I’ll learn that bold doesn’t necessarily mean cold, and I will lay back my head on his, as it has come to rest on my shoulder.

NEXT time, we’ll dance together. We’ll laugh more loudly as I spill my glass on his shirt. NEXT time, we won’t be afraid of a longer hug. 

NEXT time will be brighter than NOW, crazier than NOW, truer than NOW, newer than NEW. And it shall go one ever more so as times come one after another.

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Based in trendy Shoreditch, Adexe offers luxury, designed-in-London watches for the new, non-conformist Londoners. The timepieces they make reflect the spirit of their wearers, as they distinguish themselves from the mass-produced, ‘more of the same’ products. Adexe prides itself as a master of the art of watchmaking melding mechanical precision with luxury and aesthetic, contemporary minimalist finesse.

Adexe focuses on celebrating individuality with fine, unique and affordable pieces (an Adexe watch is more or less worth £120) – “it’s about time we recognised the people around us who are on the pulse of what’s New, Now and Next!” they say.

In this spirit, they organised, a good week ago, their biggest event of the year – the #NewNowNext party at the Moxy hotel in Stratford. The ground floor of the hotel had turned into an Instagrammable heaven on the occasion. There were things to eat and drink, great music, goodie bags, and loads of different activity stations.

To kickstart the night, it was essential to get some fuel, and Adexe & Moxy thought of everything – there was a wide range of drinks (prosecco, beer, gin, Jägermeister digestive and more) and both savoury and sweet bites to treat to, like the little pots of soup we had, veggies and lentils for me and chicken for my friend.

Until 8PM, we could get a real tattoo by Konstantine Siegel (@Konstantine_Siegel), or a henna one with glitter by Huq That (@HuqThat). But as there never is enough glitter, Go Get Glitter (@GoGetGlitter) was also on site making amazing glitter body arts. After all, as the people from Moxy Stratford themselves said on their Instagram, “the best nights are made of Prosecco and glitter”! There were also some more personal-oriented stations to discover, such as those making illustrated watch straps or postcards, notably featuring artists Isabel Farfan (@Farfaning), or those helping you feel pampered, i.e. vegan and cruelty-free beauty brand Urban Veda (@urbanveda) offering a skincare range inspired by the principle of Ayurveda and free from parabens, artificial colours, SLS, mineral oil, GM ingredients, but also the Parisian and London-based jewelry brand MOOSJ (@moosj.official), among others.

At 8PM, Adexe went live; there was a room on the first floor where people could share their thoughts with a friend in the LIVE DIARY ROOM.

And until 9PM, there were many other stations to see, like the incredible 15 rig photobooth, where we could take an instant selfie on a comfy bed with huge pastel pink and blue cuddly teddy bears, or the watch & £100 giveaway arranged by Adexe and Prezzy Box, all this without forgetting the Adexe and Moxy Hotel Stratford HALL OF FRAMES, where we could share our new, now or next achievements, goals and groundbreaking thoughts with the hashtags #NewNowNext and #AtTheMoxy.

As for the end of the night, from 9PM until late, it was time to party with some butterfly-looking special guests, get on the dance floor with them (or not, as I feel a lot of people were intimated by these incredible dancers and were rather waiting for the end of their show to get back to the dance floor), and of course make sure cups were flowing, all the while keeping exploring the various activity stations, and dancing, dancing, dancing till we dropped & got home safe or stayed at the Moxy for free, like it was my friend’s case.

The Adexe #NewNowNext party was a wonderful way to properly kickstart the Christmas season and get treats like at a preview showing before the festivities of the end of December. On this occasion, as I imagine everyone is racking their brains to find all of the Christmas presents, why not join the new London crew by offering an Adexe watch to someone special and help them celebrate their individuality? You can get 15% off your order (including free international shipping) with my discount code, ONEWAYMARIE15.

Happy Christmas shopping!

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Organised by: ADEXE London (@AdexeWatchOfficial) & Moxy Hotels (@MoxyLondonStratford) // Sponsored by: contributors such as London Blogging Events (@LondonBloggingEvents), Prezzy Box (@PrezzyBox), Urban Veda (@urbanveda), Miss Beez (@MissBeez_App), MOOSJ (@Moosj.Official) and the naked laundry (@TheNakedLaundry); food caterers like brakes (@BrakesFood), popchips (@PopChipsUK) and Nusa Kitchen (@NusaKitchen) and drink providers like 10°C Cocktails (@10DegreesC), Jägermeister (@JagermeisterUK), Camden Town Brewery (@CamdenTownBrewery), Funkin Cocktails (@FunkinCocktails), Zonin Prosecco (@ZoninProsecco), Skinny Lager (@SkinnyLager), Matthew Clark for wine, spirits, beer & more (@MatthewClarkLTD) and The Alchemist’s Gin COPPER HEAD (@mr.copperhead); artists including tattoo artist Konstantine Siegel (@Konstantine_Siegel), henna artist Huq That (@HuqThat), Go Get Glitter (@GoGetGlitter), DJ Saliah (@SaliahGram), illustrators Isabel Farfan (@Farfaning), Luis Hernandez del Canto (@Lucho_The_Barber), and Erik Zabal (@Erik.C.Z), along with videographer  Cameron Prins (@TheBoyWho_Lives) and photographer Michael Atkinson (@MichaelAtkinsonPhotography)

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