Sciencing the Resolution

HAPPY NEW YEAR! (I know, it’s a bit late) Ohhh dearest reader, what a wonderous time, the probability of hope, the desire to finally be a better me!!! And so, in this year of two thousand and seventeen I resolve to… ummm… well I’m not really sure. Towards the end of last year I saw, and read, a few articles that promised to help you ‘Achieve your goals in 2017’ or variations on that theme. Many people start the new year by making resolutions. I don’t. Digression: Resolutions always remind me of the story of my Dad sitting in our front room next to the hearth. Just after the bells he asked a neighbour what her new year resolution was. …

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The Other Side

Mental health issues can be violent, invasive and debilitating illnesses, chasing you around and demanding your full attention to the detriment of others. They can also be a gentle inhibitor, a subtle manipulator that sits quietly in the background influencing everything, all day, every day, even if we aren’t fully aware of it because it hides from view, somewhere just out of reach. The black dog versus the dark cloud. The black dog hasn’t been around me for a long time, but the dark cloud is never really that far away, floating around in the dark corners of my brain, dust particles captured in sunlight. One of the reasons I keep busy and push push push to do better do …

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My Own Christmas Carol

It’s early December, and I’m helping my Dad get the boxes down from the attic. Christmas music is playing in the living room whilst Mum declutters the everyday ornaments to make room for decorations and festive bits and bobs. We unpack the familiar glitz and glitter and start to untangle the fairy lights. One set doesn’t work and so, armed with a spare bulb, one by one I work my way down the chain to find the fault. Unfurling and clipping together shiny hanging ornaments that will hang in doorways. The Merry Christmas banner above the alcove in the back room. The step ladder is brought in from the cold of the garage and long trains of foil covered paper …

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Nosce te ipsum

I hate myself. I just ‘verbed a noun’ and I can’t un-see it and now I’ll have to admit it and tell you that the original title for this post was ‘Do you journal?’ … I KNOW!! So there you go. Please don’t judge me (too harshly). (Who am I kidding, I know all of you are judging me… and when I say ‘all’, I mean ‘both of you’ dearest readers) And yes, clearly the only route to salvation was to go for a latin title instead. Honestly, sometimes I despair. I digress. I wanted to ask if anyone else keeps a journal? Or a diary? If you do, why? What got you started, and what benefits are you seeing …

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Less to say

I’ve hit a strange point in my use of social media recently. I don’t know if it’s a good thing or a bad thing but I am definitely using it less. I don’t check Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram multiple times a day, and some days not at all, and as such I’m posting less and less too. In fact if anything I’m preferring Instagram these days. Why? Because there is too much and I don’t have the energy to sift through it to find the good stuff. Too many opinions, too many in-jokes, too many overlapping conversations I am not a part of, too much noise, too much hate, too much love, too much silliness, too much, too much, too …

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My own comfort

Despite what I might try to insist, to myself and others, I prefer my own company to that of others. That’s not to say I don’t enjoy being with other people, those that I love, and those that I like enough to tolerate (I kid, I kid!) but when I’m feeling in need of comfort I tend to look to myself. I put it down to spending the first 8 or so years of my life as an only child. Back then I learned to lose myself in my own imagination, later transferring that skill to reading and I revelled in the silence that that solitude brings, lost in a page turner, oblivious to the passing of time with only …

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I have a switch

The switch doesn’t make a sound. From on to off and back again. Proximity is all that’s needed to tumble the switch and I am who you see. Then when the world retreats again I switch back. It’s more noticeable, to me at least, when I’m tired. The music choices change, different tracks are skipped. If I’m tired I head to melancholy, long assumed to be my resting state, my natural place. I like it there, it’s familiar and comfortable. A soft blanket on a cold day. The soporific warmth of the summer sun carrying me away. I don’t see it as a bad place these days, I’ve made my peace with the quiet noise in my head. When well …

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Walking Home

The bell finally rings and as one we rise, chairs scrabble across worn tiles as the dull intonation from the teacher behind her desk – take your time and remember to do your homework – bounces and echoes round the room with no ear willing to catch it. We all want out. The first of us stream down the corridor and quickly overwhelm the metal door, with all its dull edges and cross hatched safety glass, that marks the boundary of our freedom. We spill forth; the thundering of feet on the ground where we play, a tumult of immature noises rising and merging as the classrooms empty. At the main entrance to the playground the parents await. Some are …

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Fake it

Fake it until you make it I feel fantastic. I’m great. I’m good. It’s a wonderful day. All good here. They are just words but they trip off my tongue easily these days, pavlovian responses to the standard office greeting “How are you?”. I glance outside at the blue sky, the sun is shining, I have a job, I have a roof over my head, what the hell have I got to be sad about anyway? So when people ask me “How are you?” I repeat my responses. I think I’m fooling them. I know some days I’m trying to fool myself. Thankfully those days are few and far between, as when I started this little training exercise with myself …

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Less is fewer is delete

It’s been a while since my head was in a ‘decluttering’ mood but it appears to be back. I look around my flat and marvel that I have quite so much stuff. I excuse away all the purchases with valid reasoning that I know doesn’t stand up to much scrutiny. I’ve been pretty good over the past six months, and new additions to my flat are few and far between. I’ve slowly chipped away at boxes and drawers, but part of me knows I’ve not been brutal enough. Not yet. Yet I still can’t, quite, make the leap to where part of me wants to be, some drawers remained crammed full of things that I could label ‘just in case’. …

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