Monday, 22 July 2019

Holiday blues.

Coming home from a holiday is always a funny experience. You've spent however long it was suspended from reality in some beautiful place distinct from your own home and then, suddenly, you have to launch back into the swing of things. It's even weirder when the holiday bridges the gap between one chapter of your life to another. In this case I went to Italy still vaguely clinging onto my status as a student and I've come back as someone who is... unemployed.

I feel nostalgic and displaced. This isn't like every summer before where there was something starting in the autumn, so every free day was a precious paradise away from responsibility. This is... well I don't know what it is.

Of course, it is exciting. The world is brimming with possibility and opportunity and the unknown pathways of my life start from here. But before I went on holiday the possibilities and choices were far enough way they still seemed attainable and now, back to reality, it all seems a bit out of reach.

There was also so much going on before. So many big milestones and adventures and challenges. And now what? I'm still trying to process it all. That's why I haven't written for a while. Couldn't get my head around it. I still don't think I have yet. So I guess it will just have to be a summer of working things out.

Sunday, 23 June 2019

Mad or brave?

I’ve written a play. Well, it’s the play I wrote last year. The same play. Only, this time, I’m doing it on my own. In less than two weeks. In a London fringe theatre. 

I have never done a one woman show before, not least one that I have written or one which concerns my personal experiences. 

I am so scared. I keep wondering if I I’ve actually lost the plot. Was I sober when I planned this? Was I thinking straight? What if I get on the stage and just burst into tears? Or, worse, I dry up completely? 

With a cast behind you, to interact with, to rely on, they have your back. You dry up and they come in moving you onto the next bit or covering over silence. This time I have nothing. I dry up and I just have to stand there, gaping at some poor audience wishing they were somewhere else.

This is an enormous challenge I have given myself. I wrote this play when I felt very sad and very alone. And now I feel much less sad and much less alone. Frankly, I feel almost like a different person to the girl who wrote that play. I'm even in love with someone! So I am tapping into some of the worst things I have ever felt, revisiting them, and acting it all out. It’s actually a fucking bizarre experience. Actually having to act yourself, but a different self, someone you once were. 

On Thursday I had a rubbish rehearsal. My poor director sat with me for a few hours whilst I went through every line without any feeling, apart from dejection and a sudden dip in confidence. I had the very terrifying thought that maybe I couldn't do it at all. I'd tricked myself and now it was too late to do anything about it. 

But, then again, I have got to trust people's belief in me. No one so far has told me to stop before I embarrass myself. They've said "cool!", "well done!", "how exciting!". Unless everyone I know hates me and would like to see me suffer in a theatre above a pub for a few nights, I think I should trust their judgement. 

Bad rehearsals happen, they just feel more spectacular when you're the only one performing. I may be completely mad, but I have a feeling it will be okay. 

And having said all that, come and see it?

Wednesday, 5 June 2019

Whatever happens next.

It has been a week since I finished my final exams and my degree as a whole (a week!). 'Freedom' isn't quite what I thought it was going to be. I have been so tired that my average bedtime has been 10:30 pm on the dot. My emotions keep swinging wildly between relief and excitement and a sudden, overwhelming dread of the unknown that is to come.

What am I supposed to do now?

I feel like I am existing in a liminal space. Floating between two different parts of my life, waiting for graduation to cut the cord between me and the comfort blanket of education.

I feel a bit aimless, or without something to anchor myself to. I haven't got a fancy grad scheme set up for September, just the strong desire to write and create as much as possible. Really, that could mean anything.

I'm not complaining. It is a wonderfully exciting space to be in. But also terrifying. And weird. For now I am just floating, pondering, curious about whatever happens next.

Saturday, 25 May 2019


Hello. I'm here. 

It has been weird not writing for a while. I mean, also I haven't noticed. I've been crying in libraries and spending hours cramming information in my head. You know the drill. 

I haven't had much to say. Well, I could tell you quite a bit about Greek tragedy but my expertise is limited to a formulaic answer to an hour long essay question. So I won't bore you. 

But I just wanted to say hello. I'm still here. I'll be back soon. 

Hope you're well.

Friday, 26 April 2019

Outside world.

We do not live in isolation. I sometimes worry that I have not interacted with the outside world enough in a day, or a week, or a month.

Times like this, when I am revising and stuffing information into my head, I want to ignore the outside world because it is full of information I cannot handle.

Like, I just got myself into the deep dark hole of a Men's Rights Activist comment section. I came out shaking and potentially having lost some brain cells.

Sometimes I regret venturing into the outside world.

But we do not exist in isolation. We share the same world as people who think denying rape culture is a legitimate political movement.

I can become a better person by learning patience and tranquility in the face of wilful and aggressive ignorance.

Compassion is key, even for those who make you angry. We become ourselves through our interactions with others, good or bad.

But sometimes, I really do regret venturing into the outside world.

Saturday, 20 April 2019

Nothing to say.

I feel awful for not having written a post for two weeks. I feel awful for no one but myself. I think the world can keep on turning without my blogposts.

But it feels like breaking a good habit. A good routine. Even now, when I have nothing particularly interesting to say it feels good to put words to a page. To work out something, if anything, to write about.

I am busy, to be fair. I could write about Extinction Rebellion or the beautiful weather or the Notre Dame or the peace I felt yesterday sat by the river Cam in the sunshine. But my mind is reserving its energy for my finals. I must think Greek tragedy, Shakespeare, close reading, and feminist criticism.

And then it's done. I can think for myself again. Exams are a place to think for yourself, but in a very, very narrow way.

I have a huge list of books to read when I have finished. I can read them for myself and for no other reason. For pleasure. And then, I'm sure, I will have more to say.

Saturday, 6 April 2019

It will go.

Have you ever felt that inexplicable sadness?

It is not painful, it is not overwhelming. It is just there.

Perhaps it makes you cry. Perhaps it makes you need to be held. Perhaps it makes you want to put the saddest songs you know on and wallow.

There is no rhyme, no reason in this sadness. It is what it is.

Sometimes the world is sad. Sometimes humans are just sad.

It will go tomorrow. Or in an hour. Or just before you go to sleep.

It will go.

Sometimes sadness is just passing through. It is good to sit and notice it. It is only fleeting. Inexplicably so.