I just got off the phone with Lou, our Nanny/housekeeper/hurricane. She’s a lot is our Lou. And I Love her dearly. She works and plays hard and Loves with the ferocity of that red spot storm on Jupiter that has been raging on for millions of years. Her daughter and my son are in a very real sense siblings and her family will forever be a part of his life as we’ve raised him together and he considers us both to be his safest and most favourite humans. He adores his dad too, but Lou and I take up the biggest parts of that sweet, quirky, chatty, cuddly boy’s heart.
She’s cleared out 20 years of memories and mayhem from the Greenhithe house since we left in rather a rush because my mental health again took priority and we found a rental property in Pt. Chev. Most of the stuff she’s sorted through is in perfectly good nick, some of it is boxed up in cupboards never opened or touched since being purchased at some tourist stand somewhere on my many adventures. From Los Angeles to Lima, from Whistler to Whitehorse, Nice to the isles of Greece, Reno to Rome… I’ve been all over this beautiful planet and now I am settled in, snug as a bug on our island nation of Aotearoa.
I so deeply cherish all the memories and I have a rich tapestry of them to keep me company in my imagination during the very limited down-time I have lately to day-dream. I have known romances, wild rides, adventures, misadventures, friendships, faux pas, and some moments of pure magic. Now I am tired and crave comfort and calm. My circle is small and safe and my focus is on hyper-local and meaningful connections. Miss my old friends, old networks, old life sometimes. But I have been able to maintain wonderful (if not all too infrequent) connections with the true kindred spirits I have found and held space for and over years. There’s always a way to reach people if you really want to connect with them.
So, back to the story. During a conversation Lou, in an attempt to be kind, said she’s proud of me. Huge trigger. There is nothing to be proud of, I indisputably barely survived all those years of chaos, people pleasing, attention seeking, binges, battles and heart break. To be proud of me for walking away from nearly everything I knew, not necessarily because I chose to, but because I had to, is nothing to be proud of anyone for. It’s an incredibly sad story. I opened my heart, home, and life to basically anyone and everyone. The level of Love, trust, and hope I had in so many interactions was ludicrous. The fact I am even alive today considering the blind faith and trust I had in humanity for most of my life is… well it’s a great source of shame now that my rose coloured glasses have melted off and I am thoroughly broken and jaded. I have no option anymore but to live a safe and simple life rather than driving myself completely loopy again. And goodness. I was loopy.
Today there is less loopy and more healthy and happy. Incredibly calm and content and I genuinely do not have the bandwidth for drama or shade. Not every day is a good day, and I’ve had a slight but persistent headache that basically doesn’t go away and has been with me since my second severe nervous breakdown. Perhaps I did some irreparable damage during the suicide attempt. Whatever the cause, a slight headache is a small price to pay for the dangerous levels of cortisol and other stress hormones swirling around my brain in the days I was crashing around engaged in the glorification of busy and being seen.
All that travel, excess, and chaos of my former life also resulted in a huge house filled with a bunch of stuff that weighs a person down. Stuff and ostentatious spaces seem to encourage negativity, gossip and boring or mean people who suck the colour from our canvas. We were stuck somewhere we are not appreciated or respected and it ate away at your soul and attacked our mind until it got so bad we just had to leave.
We did. It’s better. Not perfect, but better.
So. We are all managing new normal and navigating new territories lately it seems. I am not sure how you feel about or handle all the weirdness that is life these days, but I have noticed that I spend a lot of time feeling torn between my Love/appreciation of people and the fear/exhaustion that comes from human interactions. I adore people, they are fascinating, and they are so scary. I am equally scared of the effect I have on people as they have on me these days. How are you dealing with your stuff? Are you having less to do with humanity these days too? Is this a shift that would have happened without the pandemic I wonder? Who knows how much of any of our new beginnings are our choice or out of necessity.
Anyway. It’s now been well over a month since we moved into our rental and it is so far from set up still. It is a new beginning after a sad ending and I am happy that I have the opportunity to pursue new beginnings at all.
The metaphor of the farm being cleared, planted and nurtured is in total parallel to what’s happening internally. Because we both (Damon and myself) still have kids between the ages of 7 and 17 who still need us in the city, we need to be based in town for a few more years yet. The farm is our core and key passion and project, and luckily the kids are at least moderately interested in what we are up to, as they were with the work their dad and I did in building the electric vehicle charging network.
So that’s it. New city pad, new passion project. Sad endings and still striving to be the change I want to see in the world, only this time, without placing basically every single person who crosses my path as a priority. Every day I prioritise only myself and my most important people because that’s all the bandwidth most of us have these days.
Hope you are coping well with whatever sad/happy endings and new beginnings you are navigating.
Thanks for reading.