Easy

Something magical happened at the Gym this morning. For the first time, I saw the person I want to be staring back at me from mirrors that, for a long time, have been massively intimidating.

My ankle is still painful, but I jogged on it for nearly 10 minutes without issue, which tells me that this is the right path for rehab. Next time I will watch for holes and not be so dumb.

Today is a Good Day.

River

The last few days have been a struggle, but here I am at the end of a day when everything got done, and my authentic voice survives intact. That’s what matters most, in the end, to survive and thrive regardless. There’s a lot to do this week as well, and I need to keep on top of it all.

Duet

To prepare myself for going away, I’m writing this on my iPad. The WP app has always been notoriously flaky, and as it took three goes to load this after logging in, it is reassuring to see not much has changed in the five or so years since I did this last.

I wrote two poems today about what has happened in both brain and body this weekend. Both are surprisingly accurate. I hope that time away will result in me having some fresh ideas: space has been scheduled to allow some poems about the Lakes to form, in time for videos to be made in July.

Tomorrow I will begin the task of creating June’s work, based around the Estuary. The poetry in this case is very strong, and yes, I am confident in saying that. We’ll see next week if anyone else agrees with my belief…

A new Day at Midnight

It is taking a fair bit of time to adjust to my new routine. A lot has been altered, if truth be told: it is not just writing and creation. Exercise has been given a different focus. That’s been a bit of a game changer. Oh yeah, and after what’s probably been almost a decade, I have short hair again.

It was something that mattered for a long time, being that person. Now, however, it is not who I am any more. Accepting this is an important step forward, embracing it even more so. Only by reinvention can we challenge and redefine ourselves.

Only by doing the things that frighten us is there a chance to redeem the issues that have held us back.

Downtown Lights

Tomorrow, I read a poem in a Book Launch for the first time. It’s not just me, there’s nearly 30 other people involved in this, and my single poem is, as are all the others, about being neurodivergent. I’m still no further forward with a diagnosis with my Doctor, and it has been almost a year now. However, when I realize it took my daughter three years to get even seen for NHS treatment on waiting lists pre-COVID? I’m not sure when you start complaining, if indeed you can at all.

Anyway, it’s a busy week, and I am slowly beginning to readjust to a new way of working. The physical changes to a body that’s now accepting both intermittent fasting and more exercise, that there’s strength in places where it never really existed and that I feel more physically confident than I have for some time are all good, positive steps. Other things are still lamentably awful, though. You can’t have everything. The trick really is not to moan about it all too much, or you become stereotypically British.

I booked myself an open mic on Thursday with some new people in Coventry. It’s always good to see how other people do it. It’s not long now to June and having to do it in an actual physical space with real people, and that’s already looking a bit scary. We’ll cope, because we have to, as that’s the next logical iteration of the project. It is a project too. Some people might not like what I do, but that’s never my problem, and always their loss. Let’s keep moving forward.

Believe

For the last three weeks I’ve been working on a project which is (almost) put to rest now, there’s just the small matter of subtitling it and checking I’ve not fucked anything up terribly. It’s the next step forward in my poetry journey, too. A proper narrative. Actors, and locations. Big undertaking with only me as production team, writer and director. It takes me back to when it wasn’t video, but film production that was being learnt.

I have no idea how any of this will be received, either. Criticism is fine, there’s no worries about people telling me what they think. This isn’t just about the content after all, more whether it is possible to make something from nothing. Once upon a time, I’d struggle to be organized enough to get through a week as a mum without having the ability to do anything else. This is a whole different world, and I am so pleased to have had the time and space to inhabit it.

The timing of this couldn’t be better professionally, either, because a job opportunity has emerged where this stuff can actually be used as credit. That’s not why it was done, of course, but the point remains that if people are going to take me seriously, this is the kind of content I need to be able to output. For that alone, this might end up being the most important thing I do all year.

Making Plans for Nigel

There is a LOT on at the moment and juggling all that I have to do with the time available in which to do so… the stress is manifesting as it always does non my body. There are boils, and skin rashes, and generally this is pushing out bad energy through my skin. Each time this happens, how to deal with the issue gets forgotten. This is not the case this time: there are plans and organization and, late last night, came a realization.

A new project is, in this case, not new work. It is old work that never got to see the light of day, and therefore requires me to start playing around again with the old and new. As a result, a space is set and some work has begun, again, at getting the party started. Of course, it’s not ‘popular’ until other people play, but in this case there’s little or no fuss over that. I’ve given myself until July to make it work. That’s plenty of time.

There are a lot of people doing the same things out here right now. I do not want to be them. I wish to be me and nobody else. Time to see if that is conducive with the current climate.

Waiting for the Great Leap Forwards

December was simultaneously horrendous and acceptable. I could go into a lot of unnecessary detail, but the basic upshot from it all is that I’ve been the most productive in my entire life as a result. It all comes from making an hour a day free every morning to write and nothing else. The habit is likely to break at weekends come February 1st, for no other reason than I really do miss having a lie in, but on Mondays to Fridays this is an absolute revelation. It will stay, and I will continue to move forward.

For now, this space will also lie fallow until I can sort out how to move this piece of my life forward with everything else. For now, rest assured it’s on the To Do List.

It’s Not Over Yet

What I am has been different for most of my adult life. I have moved around extensively, and have altered undoubtedly as a result of understanding what I really am. That journey should, theoretically, never end, until I die. The point is to not be the same person if that is having a negative impact on anything and anyone else, and I can write that and then realize some people will assume it means one thing, when really the opposite is true. The reality of existence is to find your own space and thrive within it. When you struggle to fit the norms, what is the thrive plan going forward?

Well, that’s relatively easy. You’ll find the people who understand and care, you’ll seek out safe spaces in which that can happen, and when it becomes necessary to live in other places which don’t ‘get’ what you are, you can become very adept at camouflage. Except that is not the way it should be. Me being bisexual should not ruin the quality of anybody’s life, but amazingly it has. It has had a negative impact, and will continue to do so, because by not being normal, I am a threat to those who see this as power they cannot control or dictate.

However, these threat levels are nothing compared with my trans mates, who would just like to be allowed to exist but who are right now being hunted, derided and attacked. It’s not fair, and it’s not acceptable, and this is the beginning of a period of our existence as human beings that will define whether we survive as a race or not. History is unblinking and unerring, and will look at this time as the one where it either began to be a societal norm, or it was when it was outlawed. I’m not happy about it, but reckon we could still go either way.

That’s why its up to me now to start making a fuss about a lot of things: disability and accessibility, allowing true freedom of expression, weaning people off commercialism and back to the days where alive meant you just did your own thing and nobody else got in your fucking business. Of course, the rich people are gonna still want your money, but if you can make better, informed choices over what that actually means, that would be helpful. Mostly this is about being true to an authentic self, which is what matters more than anything else in the end.

My daughter’s listening to a lot of songs about death right now, as I did at her age, wrestling with the reality that nobody is ever likely to remember you unless you were the one who made things either massively better or hugely worse for everybody else. I know which side of that history I intend to be on, and we’ll keep plugging away at it until people pull their heads out of their arses and stop saying ‘but I can’t do that, it’s too hard.’ Living and thriving in a World that marks you a freak is HARD, fighting your own brain every day is HARD, please don’t tell me you are struggling when the biggest issue you have is not being able to go on holiday or do ‘normal’ things.

Except they do, and that noise is stopping the real work for taking place. It’s up to me to deal with that, and I will.

I see you people, and know you are part of the problem.