Not working, and not looking for work, is not sensible. I am clear on that. Why am I like that? Well, because I can be, just for the moment. There are advantages. My nails are stronger than they have ever been, this time of year, because I am actually going outside in daylight.
Subconscious motivations are possible. A woman I knew, who when pretending to be male had shown physical courage, got a job in a shop. People regularly went into that shop for a game of “Mock the Tranny”. She gave up the job, and drank herself silly every evening, in a gay bar ten miles from her home. So am I creating the crisis which will force me to act? Much more slowly than she did. I may be.
I could really be just whistling in the dark when I say to myself, things are percolating within me. And yet. Everything is alright.
Here is an example. I park behind the office where I volunteer, and walk a hundred yards to the back door. This is what I see beside the office:
It seems I have a choice here. I can see it as ugly, and see it; or ignore it and concentrate on something beautiful, like the tree; or I may see it as beautiful.
I faced that question twenty years ago, when I walked regularly along the Union Canal. I was distressed by the litter by it; then thought I can concentrate on that, or consider the beauty of the countryside, that glorious aqueduct, the birds, the trees. So I blocked out the litter.
Then I saw photographs, starting with an exhibition at the Lowry centre, where the photographer had seen something beautiful in what might be thought ugly: an angle, a texture, an unusual perspective, a reflection, a juxtaposition, light, and so had created a beautiful image of an “ugly” thing. That is not what I am doing in the above photograph: I sought to represent the building, though I made the conscious choice to include a bit of sky above it in the picture.
These pictures began to liberate me from classification: these things are ugly, those beautiful. What I seek to do now is see beauty in everything. That building is beautiful. See the universe in a patch of rust, and heaven in concrete.
This is part of a readjustment I wish to make in myself. I have a grotesquely overdeveloped sense of threat. I find threat everywhere. Then I block my feelings out of consciousness. I seek to see things clearly as they really are, rather than blocking them out, and I seek to reduce my sense of threat. Rather than inhabiting the world, I camp out in it, fearing everything, when my fear restricts me and is the bigger problem.
Because there could be real threats, with the global financial crisis and my current jobless state. I need to be able to face any real threats.
So the adjustment is to see what is around me, to be aware of what I feel about it; and to know that everything is alright. Then to be aware of the alrightness in my world. Part of that is seeing things as life-enhancing and beautiful.
My bathroom is not well heated, and I was cold, uncomfortable and rushing. Then, by- an act of will?- I felt, I am OK, I am sufficiently comfortable. I relaxed tense muscles. I ceased to hurry. I am not sure how far this goes, but- can I Decide to be comfortable enough in a situation? Then respond to it creatively, rather than panicking? What is going on, here, now?
Relax. Everything is OK. What is it I need to do, now? Up pops Johanna the Inner Critic and says yeah, yeah, sounds wonderful, you are not really doing that in any context which really matters- and I say, maybe not, but I am playing at it, and may do it seriously sometime. Playing at it can only be good. Try it in easy places first. Be able to fail at it without imagining that it is impossible.
We talk like we know what’s going on. But we don’t. We don’t know anything. We’re young and we’re gonna screw-up a lot. We’re gonna keep changing our minds and even sometimes our hearts. And through all that, the only thing we can truly offer each other is… forgiveness.
Take chances… a lot of them. Because honestly, no matter where you end up- and with who, it always ends up just the way it should be. Your mistakes make you who you are… you learn and grow with each choice you make. Everything is worth it. Say how you feel- always. Be you, and be okay with it. It doesn’t matter what any other person thinks.
Never regret anything that has happened in your life, it cannot be changed, undone or forgotten so take it as a lesson learned and move on.
If you spend your life regretting things in the past, before you know it… you will have wasted your life on regret.
I never regret anything that has happened to me in my life, whether it is making a bad choice, deciding to do something I shouldn’t have, saying the wrong thing or not doing something I should have done… because all of these things have given me the knowledge I have today and helped make me who I am today… and that is one thing I will never regret.
The best thing that you can do in life is follow your heart. Take risks. Don’t just take the safe and easy choices because you’re afraid of what might happen. Don’t have any regrets and know that everything happens for a reason.
There comes a point when you’re more important than your past.
I have now been blogging, and posting daily, for six months.