Tomorrow I head off to meet new people who belong to book clubs. I had thought I would have plenty of thinking time, working out what to say, pick the right bit of kit to wear as a guest, make it all into a perfect circle, all thought through and ticketty boo.
Well, haha Old Mother Life laughs from behind her control panel, flipping a new switch.
Not being the sort of girl to find that a surprise at all, I begin to out-think the Old Girl with a ‘haha’ of my own. Ok, I am not at home, but somewhere else, helping my lovely daughter-in-law and being smiled at a lot by Miss Willow, aged nearly 7 weeks. I have the wrong kit, and the wrong shoes and no time to really think through what I will say as Guest. But that doesn’t defeat me one bit, because what I have discovered throughout my bonkers life is that how I am and who I am are what matters and if I appear in the wrong trousers, it is probably only me who gives a monkey’s whatsit. If I get fankled up inside that whatsit and all the disproportionate fiddle-di-dee that I could create as a result, it would make everyone else uncomfortable without even knowing why.
I need to lead. Not others, but myself and, in doing so, I make a calm, because I am not asking anyone else to work around my hang-ups. It’s a way of being in most of life. I am only responsble for me, expecting nothing from any other soul.
I know, I make it sound easy, but it is far from easy. In fact, it is the hardest work I will ever do in my life, the whole length of it, and I must do it on a minute-by-minute basis, every single day of every single week/month/year.
I have often been caught up in the ‘right’ way to be, the ‘right’ way to appear before the world. I say ‘world, but I have never had that big an audience, so don’t take me literally. What I mean could be one single person who may, through their own eyes, expect me to be what they consider the right way, and it has limited me into a right nicker twist. On the occasions I did show I was not going to be controlled by my own fears of upsetting whoever it was, I heard every tut, saw every raised eyebrow, heard every murmured comment.
Perhaps I did it wrong. Perhaps it looked like I was saying I’ll Show You, and perhaps I was. How to just Be is a real artform, without aggression, or defence; without a churlish chuck of my stubborn chin; without being confrontational.
Well, I can’t say I’ve got it right, even at my age. But I can say I can learn through my own looking at my own choices of behaviour. If my heart is right, then nothing else matters. If I can dance through a world all caught up in how things should be, how anyone should look in each situation, how I should react to any curve ball, and still respond as myself without expectation on others, then I am walking in love.
So, Old Mother Life……..flip your switches and laugh away at my plans, for I haven’t fallen off your stage yet.