Sometimes when I sit down to write a blog post, ok MOST times when I sit down to write a blog post, I’ve only got a vague idea of what I’m going to write about. I start to type and the words flow and my brain forms ideas as I go and more often than not I end up at a different place than I expected, writing about a whole other thing than the original premise. Most times I’m lucky that it kinda flows together and makes some sense and I can finish what I’m writing without too much effort.
But sometimes whilst the first few hundred words flow out easily, I start to get bogged down more and more as I head towards the end. I have about 6 posts sitting in draft at the moment and 5 of these remain there for exactly this reason. I don’t know how to finish them (the 6th is a list of iOS apps I recommend so that’s more a ‘can I bothered’ issue than anything).
Most recently, what started as a quick post about the ‘aftermath’ of my sisters wedding (which was wonderful) I, as originally planned, started to write and reflect on her future with a view to turning to my own plans for my life, and it was about then I started to get stuck. It wasn’t that I couldn’t find the right words (we know what our plan is for the coming years, that isn’t the issue) it was more that I couldn’t find words that didn’t make it sound like I was bragging or celebrating the fact that it feels like I’ve got my shit together. How very dare I!
Why is that? Why shouldn’t I be proud of being happy, of being in a good place in my life? It doesn’t negate any of the previous experiences I’ve been through, doesn’t minimise the impact others have had on me, and as Becca and I keep saying, we wouldn’t be WHO we are, or WHERE we are if it wasn’t for our pasts. We’ve both made mistakes, both gone through some horrible times, so surely we deserve the right to be able to talk about our plans with a smile and without any shame?
Examining why I struggle to praise myself, why I struggle to stand up and say, despite knowing I have fucked up in the past and will fuck up again and knowing that I still have issues to work through (self-image issues, money/debt issues, etc etc), that I feel so very happy and so very lucky and that that is a GOOD THING… well that’s an entirely other topic (and probably something I’ll figure out mostly in private if it’s all the same to you).
It’s an odd feeling, to be quietly proud and almost secretly happy of our life, and yet still feel like you can’t shout about it. So, frankly, fuck that attitude. We know we are happy and we know that life moves forward so it’s time to embrace that. Looking at my sister as she danced her heart out on her wedding day confirmed, above all, that love is the best thing so I’m gonna focus on that, and use that as a basis for our future.
Anyway, with all of that said and done, here’s the post as it stood round about when I realised I was struggling to finish it and then realised why.
It’s fair to say that my sisters wedding was a huge success, a joyous day all round and it was wonderful to see so many happy faces throughout the day; a testament to my sister and her (now) husband. The happiest of them all was my sister and, during the final songs of the evening when I managed to grab her for a dance, she professed as much. I hugged her tight, we both welled up (as we do) and I told her for the umpteenth time that day that I was just so happy for her, that I loved her, and she deserved all of the love in that room.
What a wonderful day it was, seeing friends and family come together, all the people there to help celebrate with Jennie and Steven, my gorgeous niece stealing the show at every turn, not to mention Bob the Shetland Pony who made an appearance too (the venue is part equestrian centre, I should hasten to add). The staff were superb, the food was good, the band were awesome, and the whole day went off without a hitch.
Emotions ran high, as they should on such a day, and at the end of the evening when Becca and I got back to our room it’s fair to say that the day caught up with me. Tears flowed, happy ones, sad ones, poignant ones, they all came tumbling out. Thoughts of family, my parents, of loved ones that weren’t there, or my future, our future, and everything we already hope it will contain, it was all in there. A wonderful stramash of emotions that reaffirm my belief in love and happiness being at the root of all good things.
The next morning we helped gather up the last of the presents, and the various items from the wedding ceremony that were lying around. As we did, the hotel staff busied themselves for the next wedding happening later that day. A marker that time does not stand still and that, all too soon, normality returns.
When you consider all the planning that goes into a day like that, the myriad choices made months ago, it’s a marvel that they all came together so seamlessly and gave us all, not just the bride and groom, a nice relaxed day with little to no stress for those directly involved.
And so it is with life, or at least so I hope it will be in the coming years.
I’ve never really been one for grand long term plans and as age/life experience starts to offer me what may be referred to as wisdom by others, certainly not by me, the futility of such things seems all the more imposing given how often life will throw in some curveballs just when you think things are on track. Conversely, it may be those very curveballs that define the direction of your life, even if you don’t realise it at the time, yet I still find myself striving for a plan, after all what is life without some sense of direction, some view of what’s next? The cliche stands; life is a journey.
As I started to wonder what was next for my sister (I have a rough idea!) it prompted that very question – what’s next? – to start rattling around my own brain although, truth be told, I know roughly what the next things are so my mind quickly turned to the more practical matter of how to make them happen. This is all very “5 year plan” of me and part of that makes me uneasy for I know those curveballs are waiting in the wings yet, despite that and for the first time in a long time, these things feel achievable.
I’m not really planning in great detail though, but having a clear direction of where I want to be, where we want to be, in a few years time makes things much easier to deal with, much easier to prioritise.