I’ve been reading. A lot. Around 8 books so far and, if I so choose I will read for most of the day. My passion is for a beautifully written novel with an interesting back drop such as war or abuse or some other big struggle. My interest lies in the ways a person, usually a woman, pulls herself out into a new daylight, learning many big life lessons en route. Yes, she will have to have courage to take every step of the way, fight for her freedom, fight for others, keep the song singing in her heart, reminding herself, in the face of derision, the rattle of old chains, menace and physical threats, why she is doing anything to rock HMS Polite Acceptance in the first place. She will face loss and pain and sadness. She may risk poverty, danger, loneliness and a lot of fear, but something so strong will not be denied from way down inside of her. Nothing drowns out that voice, the one that says Only You Can Do This, Only You.
Well dammit. Can’t somebody else hold this hot candle for a bit? I wish I’d never started any of it. Life wasn’t so bad, was it……..living under someone else’s regime/tyranny/control? Prejudice and domination are acceptable, aren’t they, for those who don’t challenge, like most of the rest of the world, or, at least, a lot of the women I know, those who stick to the man-made plan and just grow great tomatoes underneath their glass ceiling.
Trouble is, this isn’t living for she who will not be kept down, she who has a gift to offer and a subsequent duty to lead by example. She has chosen herself, and now it’s way too late to go back to straightening the antimacassars. She doesn’t have to be Joan d’Arc of course, cutting swathes through armies, trees and kingships, but she does have to keep going. It may be on a bike, or on foot, or crawling at times, but she can not give up.
I know this all sounds like a historical drama but I believe that, in this age of consumerist suicide, there are women, and men of course, out there who see how isolation is slowly draining us of our life blood. High earners live skyscraper high above their real needs, the things in life that aren’t things at all, such as time with family, no mobiles on the table, no TV blaring out sugary princess tales of utter nonsense. I love the pixar movies myself, but they are no teachers of the truth if they are the only truth. If parents are always too busy or too stressed to give time, play and teaching to the little ones, then nobody else will either. I’m super glad my kids had the freedom from all of that, even if I was often too busy to play with them. The toys they had were few and often made from whatever was kicking about the farmyard, waiting for them among the trees or washed up on the shoreline. For them as parents, it takes considerable effort to divide their time between workload and family needs. There is so much distraction and way too many lonely children, teenagers, adults as a direct result.
Instant fame is unattainable to most of us. Glamour and a size 8 body, impossible in reality without starving for months and a big bank account, and yet just look at all those compelling images air-brushed into racks of glossy magazines. Being the fastest, the brightest, the thinnest, the best, is not all it seems. Just count the numbers who kill themselves on the way. What brings us the most glorious contentment lies at home, among loved ones, friends, neighbours, sharing time and certainly not just at Christmas.
And, like those who said NO MORE in the face of huge pressure to retain the status quo, who risked derision and unaskedfor advice, who had no idea where to go, nor how to go there, we can all make such a choice. We may be only human, but we are more powerful than we imagine. All we have to do is to ask ourselves this:-
Am I running my life or is my life running me?