Friday, 1 November 2019

The unbridled joy of pets.


I haven't written about my cat yet. I have a cat. We have had him for a month now and he has brought each of us unbridled joy every day.

I had forgotten that pets can do that. I haven't had a pet since I was about 16. That pet was a hamster called Hiccup who was, in fact, the sweetest hamster in the world. He also never failed to bring us unbridled joy despite being incredibly small and asleep in his cage for a lot of the day.

The pet before that was Tickles the rabbit who, to this day, I still dream about. Without any exaggeration she was the loveliest, naughtiest, friendliest little rabbit I ever met. Tickles became a member of the family because as a child I was poorly and she was a special gift to keep me company. And, without fail, brought us unbridled joy everyday and I loved her very much. At nearly 22 years of age, 10 years on from her passing, I still miss my little rabbit quite dearly.

Perhaps it is the unconditional love you have for a pet, and that you hope in some way they have for you. Perhaps it is their constant calm, their constant pursuit of play and comfort, their constant ability to be both extremely naughty and cute and annoying. Perhaps it is knowing you are never alone in the house, there is a little companion hiding somewhere. Perhaps it is friendship and trust across species. Perhaps it is the sense of responsibility and dedication involved in looking after a pet. Perhaps it is all of that which is so constantly lovely.

Alby, our kitten, is very loving and very cheeky and very clever and very cute. I did not know I needed him and I'll be the first to admit I resisted getting him and that I had a secret prejudice against cats, but here he is and how endlessly joyous it is.

Saturday, 19 October 2019

It's been a while.

Hello. I hadn't realised how long it had been since I had last written. My mind has been whirring in its worst way. Obsessive, unhelpful, pointless thoughts churning round and round and round. There is such a thing as overthinking, and I do it.

I am still in that limbo of life. The past still close enough to mourn its passing, the future still so far away I can't see anything in it. And yet knowing full well that both exist only in my mind, especially the future, I obsess over something entirely without substance.

Sometimes when I feel like this I feel as if I have floated away from earth into some faraway corner of my head. The world seems distant and unreal as thoughts about events that haven't happened cloud over everything. It is quite hard to anchor myself back down, my mind floating up and up and up.

I want someone (myself) to scream "Now is the only thing happening! Now is good! Pay attention to now!" because now is going to disappear and I will regret floating away from it.

This is why I haven't written. Writing plants me in the now, and I have been too cowardly to properly find an anchor. But here I am, I am bored of my mind. My overthinking has tired me.

Back to reality, I hope.

Sunday, 29 September 2019

Expanding

I used to write quite brazenly about my political views or the political news of the day. I suppose as a teenager those thoughts don't get filtered and it is a new and exciting thing to be able to form an opinion about something and share it with the world. But now writing about the divisive, bizarre, confusing politics of today seems, as I've said before, exhausting. Hats off to those who have the energy to work it out and put it into words.

Not only is it exhausting but, at the moment, I genuinely don't know what to think. What I thought I knew and understood is changing for me. I am having new conversations where the opinion differs from mine and we have to work out a path to each other's understanding. And in turn, like I have said before, this is making me stop and think and re-evaluate.

To be honest, I am having to admit to myself that I don't know enough to form a solid opinion. I am also learning that some opinions are not, and should never be, solid.

I feel like I might be repeating myself here but it is such an enormous thing to learn and I am so fascinated by it. To notice one's self growing and expanding in adult life is so different, somehow much more unexpected than it was when I was younger.

So I am taking my time. More time to observe, more time to think. It is really quite nice.
                                                                   

Monday, 16 September 2019

Conversations with myself.

I find myself writing much more frequently to this blog than to my diary. I like that way of saying it, "writing to", rather than "writing for" or simply just "writing" because it often feels like a conversation. I guess all writing is. I may not get a reply in return, or know who it is I am writing to, how large or (let's be realistic) how small the number of recipients is, but I know that in some way I am having a conversation.

In some sense my diary is also a kind of conversation, but with myself. I write to my future self and to the imagined self I address every time I start an entry. Maybe I even write to children who don't exist yet who might find the diaries when I am long gone, in a kind of narcissistic, morbid way. But I write much more carelessly because the audience or the recipient of that conversation is far away or even entirely imaginary. And now I am writing more and more infrequently because I don't have much to say or I find it boring, sometimes, to list the goings on in my life. I have noticed that when I am sad or distressed I have a lot to say to myself, but when I am happy I don't feel the need to explain or describe it all. Maybe I have grown out of it. Maybe I don't want to face a writing which is so secretive and honest because I don't want to find something in my subconscious which is unhappy.

I write this blog with honesty as well, but in a much more structured way. I think a lot more about what I am going to say, I want it to be written well, I want it to be understood. It is not an incessant record of heartbreak or frustration or confusion. It is a much more interesting conversation, even if I might really be having it with myself.

I suppose the other reason for writing a diary is to remember things you might otherwise forget. But sometimes I don't want to force myself to remember pain, and sometimes I am having so much fun, or I am so contented, that I don't want to come out of the moment and write for a future self I do not know.

But I will always want to remember the thoughts I had when writing to this blog. Often it is braver, more interesting, more telling, than the private things I can only tell myself. It is much less lonely, I suppose, to write to another reader. And no matter whether they respond directly to me, knowing my words are taken in, knowing I am part of a larger conversation than my own, is an undeniable comfort.

Friday, 6 September 2019

Fluffy and cosy.

I have just bought a new pair of jogging bottoms. They are so cosy and warm it feels like my legs are being hugged. In a good way. And now I am tucked up in my brand new bed, with a candle burning and the sky turning grey and I can't help thinking that I was really, really looking forward to this.

Funny, isn't it? How we (this might be quite specific to Brits) crave the warmth of summer all year round until suddenly August has gone on "a bit too long" and sweaty nights with the windows wide open letting all the creepy crawlies set up homes in your room is to be done with. The sooner autumn can come the better. Let the people snuggle indoors with fluffy blankets, for crying out loud!

Maybe I am speaking only for myself. I always find the transition of summer to autumn quite hard. I wish it to either be one or the other so that my goodbye to the hotter months may not be so sad or prolonged as I think of all the things I did, or didn't, do. Like summer is always a hot fling you grow fond of, always knowing it can never last, and that final transition causes a minor heartbreak. Autumn brings new smells, surroundings, cosiness, different food, fires, actually being able to cuddle in bed rather than lying as far as physically possible from your partner. Autumn is a distraction from the sad end to summer and is so full of life, albeit a life coming to its end, that the darker days don't seem quite so depressing as they might feel in February. And, as we all know, February has absolutely nothing going for it.

So finally, after months of sweating and throwing the duvet off, I am cosy and warm in my bed and it is blissful and great.

Thursday, 29 August 2019

Outrageous.

I don't really know how to respond to the news of the week. I am too tired to be outraged. The news that reaches us through the media is nearly always bad but now everything has that little tinge of being completely bizarre. I have no idea what is going on. My Government and Politics AS Level has been of absolutely no use to me. I am starting to admit to myself that some of my political stances were sometimes subconsciously based on the most popular opinion. Not in a necessarily unthinking way; I am inclined to agree with policies that are non-exploitative, support the needy and are not self-serving for a lucky few, but I did find myself getting outraged by things I had absolutely no proof for and often quite little understanding.

And now the Amazonian forest is on fire and our Prime Minister is on some sort of power trip because he's decided he can't be bothered to manage any deal for Brexit. I understand that much. I'm just quite tired of it all. What can I do? The constituency I vote in is a safe seat for a Tory MP who I don't trust and don't like. Not that that matters anyway because no one I know (surprisingly I don't know any Conservative party members) actually voted for this Prime Minister so apparently it really is just a bit of a free for all when it comes to democracy. And by "free for all" I mean it's really brilliant for the very small amount at the very, very top and a bit shit and pointless for the rest of us. I might be being a bit defeatist here but at this point the only option may as well be to sit back and watch it all crash and burn. I have signed the petition to stop the early prorogation of Parliament but that has currently made me feel about as useful and powerful as a dry wet-wipe.

God, maybe I am outraged. Maybe I do understand in as much as you can make sense of what the hell is going on. I need to re-evaluate and refresh how I form political opinions, I need to be careful of the information I read, hear and see every day but I can also give myself a break because apparently no one else has a clue either.

Friday, 16 August 2019

In the future

Imagine being able to live in the present all the time. To be someone who can think of only what is directly in front of them, taking in every surrounding of the current moment. Are there people who can do that? Who don't spend hours worrying over tiny little details of a hypothetical future?

How does one just completely know and see themselves in the present? I am certainly old enough now to know that the future is never how you imagined it, that the future is and always will be entirely made up. And yet I obsess over it.

What if this or that happens? What if I never do this? What if I can't do that?

What a silly thing to worry over the future like that and not notice every great thing happening right now. Maybe one day I'll get over it, in the future...