Are You OK?

Random fact about me #13846

I hate being asked if I’m OK.

Even if I am perfectly fine, the mere act of someone asking that simple little question, results in the immediate formation of a lump in my throat and the sudden, barely controllable urge to burst into tears.

Musings from a Dark Room

I do not look forward to the day that I never feel sad, or embarrassed, or disappointed, because that is the day that I also won’t feel happiness, or excitement, or hope.

In other words, I’ll be dead.

That’s not to say that I am scared of death (although I can’t state unequivocally that I am not, either).  We humans always want just that little bit more time, don’t we? To do, or say the things that we thought we should, because fear is the ultimate instigator of procrastination, and humans are tragically fearful creatures.

We think too much.

I am definitely guilty of that.  I let fear stop me from doing a lot of things.  I allowed it to condemn me to an entire day holed up in a sunless hotel room, deliberately avoiding the possibilities and interactions that might await me in this city that is both foreign and yet somewhat familiar.  Fear has kept me sitting here, languishing in the comfort of my own isolation, not because it is enjoyable, but because it is known to me and therefore I am less wary of it.

I am conscious of this, and yet still here I sit, in silence, containing myself within boundary of my own skull, indulging a perpetual cycle of questioning my worth and weighing that against my worthiness.

Sometimes I just don’t have the strength, nor the will to argue with the more destructive voice.

Sometimes, I need to conserve my energy for another day, and a battle that I may have at least some chance of winning.

Volcanic Alien

Some months, for a day or two my body feels completely alien to me. Not just my body, but my thoughts, my emotions. 

A word of advice to all young hopeful, well-meaning lads out there.  

At your own careless risk, do you advise a woman about her body, and what she should/should not do with it, at a time when she scarcely recognises it herself. Such advice, no matter how heartfelt upon offer, is seldom received without ferocious repercussion. 

Volcanoes explode before the ash settles and silences the landscape. 

Let Go, Ego

If you insist on calling me out on things and telling me I must accept these “calling outs” because to do otherwise is to allow my “ego” to harm only myself; then, by the same logic you must accept it when I call YOU out.

You can sulk all you choose, but by your own logic, I am right.

So, who is more childish and egotistical:

  1. the person who sulks in the first place, or
  2. the person who feels being right is somehow an argument won?

Both, equally, of course.

 

Bus Stop Musings

Shapes and shadows danced in distorted cacophony making it difficult to focus.

Although bright lights of stores trimmed with Christmas decorations and twinkling street lamps would have painted a far more joyful scene beyond the glass, the water streaking down the pane cast a sobering edge from where She sat in darkness.  Deciphering exactly what lay beyond the bus was made more difficult by a grubby smear at her eye level – perhaps from a child who had occupied the seat earlier in the day – distorting her view.   She fancied a child may have knelt up on the seat, rested their face and hands against the window as they peered out, absorbing every detail of the outside world in gleeful anticipation of their arrival at a destination.

It would have been sunny then.  The weather had turned very rapidly this evening.

Eventually, the shifting colours and shards of light began to take shape and materialise as human forms.    Young women in heels, arms laden with shopping bags, handbags, gym bags, laptops, umbrellas and more. Men striding confidently along, raising arms and umbrellas sporadically to avoid colliding with those who, finding themselves without umbrellas at an inopportune moment, were running blindly for any type of awning, regardless of size.

A trembling hand appeared in the forefront of the bustling scene, and She observed an ageing woman seated at the bus stop just outside Her window.  The woman was replacing a cap on a small bottle, but her hands rattled so violently she could barely bring cap and vessel together.  In one hand was an electronic cigarette. The device resembled more an elaborate pen than a modern-day smoking implement.

As She raised her eyes to rest Her gaze on the woman’s face She was surprised to discover, at second look, features much younger than expected.  That’s not to say the woman was young, but rather, the stoop of her shoulders and the haggard poise of her fingers belied the youth of her face.

Or perhaps it was the other way around.

Would She prefer to have a youthful face, or a youthful body? What a strange thing to wonder.

The image of the older woman melted into a blur of shadow and shards of light as the bus pulled forward onto the road.

Perhaps, neither, She pondered. A youthful mind, is surely far more important.

Dance in the Face of Your Fear

uncertain

“What do you want?”

Why is that such a difficult question to answer? Decisiveness, it seems, is not one of my strengths.  As I get older, it becomes ever more difficult to make a clear decision and feel comfortable about it.  Strange really, when I think about how I always assumed that decisions would come more easily with age and experience.

What I hadn’t counted on, was the fact that seemingly wrong choices can make you fearful to trust your own judgement.  Is that my gut talking? Or my old companion, Fear? I don’t know.

People often say there is no such thing as a “wrong” choice.  I would like to think that is true, and I do hope it is.  But you never really know until later, do you? Until you have found comfort down the road, that you can look back and feel good about what you did to get there.

So, if you can’t know until later, then even seemingly RIGHT choices can wind up being royal clusterfucks – where is the comfort in that???

And then of course, there are the disasters that are never chosen at all, but forced upon us anyway, despite our best efforts to keep them at bay.  Illness, unemployment, freak fatal theme park accidents…

And that there my friends, is just a very mild example of my escalation to catastrophic thinking.

*deep breath*

All I can do is keep going, one choice at a time, and trust that I will one day wonder “why did I waste so much energy worrying?”.

Calm Down, It’s Only Survival Instinct

When we aren’t where we think we want to be (or worse, the dreaded “should be”), it becomes so tempting, so easy, to romanticise the past.  We look back at jobs we had (and left), or relationships that we had (and left), and strangely only ever remember the good things, and before we know it, we are craving to go back to an old life, with our known comforts (an discomforts).

But not only is going backward not an option, it is also not recommended.

I do remind myself, however, that when things are seemingly going well for me and I am confidently striding along my desired path, that I also have a tendency to belittle my past experiences.  “I am so much happier now”, “This is so much better than where I was/who I was with before”.

The truth- I know- is that neither of these scenarios is actually correct.  They are both false representations of my current situation (and my past).  It is my mind playing [a rather nasty] trick on me.  Maybe it is somehow linked to our survival instincts, i.e. when things are good and we are safe we should roam far and wide and gather food, etc. vs when there is danger, we retreat to a place that we know to be safe.

The problem is, our mind only perceives things, it rarely ever really knows things.  So, for example we only perceive that last job to be “not so bad after all” relative to the stressful situation you might find yourself in this moment. But in a moment of clarity, you might realise that there are so many different reasons why the current position is better and might help you move you closer to your goals.

So, I am trying to not let my mind play tricks on me, and I am going to try to plunge through that veil of false perception in those moments where I begin to demonise my current trajectory.