Good Morning. Here I am, sat at my computer writing a blog. I’ve written a lot of those lately. It’s been fun, some of you have written to tell me how much you’ve enjoyed them. Thank you! I’m so pleased. I aim to be funny and enlightening through the prism of my own experience. If I am succeeding, then I am overjoyed. I have found myself questioning whether some of this blog writing may, however, be a particularly sophisticated and pernicious form of procrastination. I am very good at procrastinating. I always used to think that was because I’m lazy but a very interesting article that I read, lately, tells me that’s a manifestation of my anxiety.
You see, sometimes, high functioning anxiety can look like someone who is achieving a great deal and working very hard, someone who is very organised and helpful. It looks like this because that person is so anxious about ****ing everything up that they are working their socks off to avoid that ever happening. I take that to another degree, I do nothing, because if I don’t start then I definitely can’t **** it up and if I start but don’t finish then I can pat myself on the back for trying without ever actually having to face the problems that might arise if I truly follow through. I have an amazing imagination, I can float on a fluffy cloud of fantasy all day long, imagining my dream life, while utterly failing to keep my head in the game of what I should actually be doing with my time.
Did you know I once self-published a novelette? I mentioned it a few blogs ago as something I’m not altogether proud of anymore. I wrote it while I was at university (started it anyway, it took a while), I’m a very different person now. It looks immature to my grown up eyes, it’s poorly formatted because I really didn’t know what I was doing and I think it sold about twelve copies worldwide. Mostly to people I know. The reason I bring it up is that the week before I published it, I was that anxious that I genuinely stayed in bed all day, every day, reading Miranda Hart’s autobiography, because the thought of the path I was hoping on taking scared me so profoundly that I was overcome by a kind of paralysis. Eventually, I threw it out into the world like a kind of literary grenade and ran for cover. It was more of a splutter than an explosion.
At the moment, I am trying to write another book. It’s an amalgamation of several short story ideas that I’ve combined into more of an epic. It’s near future fiction but, because I’m girl, it’s actually covering topics of loneliness, intimacy and consent. Just in a near future setting because it gave me more interesting ideas to play with and I am, at heart, still the nerd that I was when I was sixteen. The Official Test Reader of Aby’s Crappy Fiction thinks it’s actually started quite well and she’s really interested to read some more. Good to know it has a hook. Nothing worse than getting two pages into a novel and discovering that you’ve already lost interest. I have, a first for me (I usually throw myself at a page and see what comes out), plotted out sixteen chapters, I’m a little hazy about how it’s going to end with regard to the action. I know where the relationships are going, you know, because I’m a girl. The end is a long way away though and I could just plough on with the beginning because I know exactly where that’s going but am I doing it? Nope. I’m writing about all the reasons why I’m not doing it. Those are some pretty epic procrastination skills right there, if I could be paid for procrastinating, I’d be living in the Cayman Islands.
Ultimately, we all cope with our lives and our mental health issues, in the best way we know how. We get up or don’t. We soldier through or don’t. We throw ourselves in blindly, or we don’t. Some of us are compelled to chase our dreams and some of us will hide under the covers. I am trying to become someone who chases their dreams. It’s a daily battle of hope over insecurity. It’s not easy. If someone out there is hiding under the covers right now, I feel you. It’s okay. We don’t mind if you hide, it doesn’t make you bad or lazy or hopeless. It just makes you scared, it’s okay to be scared but, if you want to poke your head out, just for a moment, I will hold your hand. I promise. We can help each other. Every day is a fresh opportunity to do something different.
Anyway, another morning gone, another blog written, time to get Mum’s breakfast and morning wash sorted. I’ll go for a run, have a shower, grab some lunch and squeeze in maybe an hour for my book in the afternoon before the school run. Like I do every Thursday. It’s not much, but an hour is better than nothing. Each little bit more that I write is a little more of a triumph for hope. My Auntie always reminds me to travel hopefully. We should all aim to travel hopefully.