I am currently sitting in a café in Glastonbury drinking an Almond Milk Turmeric Latte. I must admit, it is delightful. Which, I can assure you, surprises me. I am not sure what I was expecting however, this little golden warm delight of deliciousness is not it. I am off coffee. Not because I don’t dream of coffee. Not because coffee isn’t the medicine that soothes my soul in the morning but because coffee in the UK so far has been complete and utter rubbish. Rank in fact. Harsh I know. Except in London. It was lush. But I am not in London. I am out amongst the wild. Sorry England. I love you with all of my unicorn heart and I am determined to find a way to stay here for as long as possible however, your coffee does not float my boat. Hence, I am pushing my boundaries to the limit and having a turmeric latte that I am thoroughly enjoying.
This might lead us to the theme of this blog post. Because to be honest, I am not exactly sure what to say to you or what to write about. I have been a little reluctant to write again after the bomb dropping of round one. That and it took everything in me to wrap up my life in Australia and get on the plane. I just made it. Fairly ungracefully I think. But I made it. So now I am ready to sit down and attempt to let out some of the things that have transpired.
Blog #1 had a clear purpose. To announce I was closing the studio and explain why. Now, the response this little post generated, I was not prepared for. You delighted and flawed me with your beautiful embrace of praise. Your encouragement and well wishes. You threw your hats in the air and declared me brave and courageous. You came to the party on all levels and it felt beautiful. I felt supported. It inspired you to tell me your stories of loss, hurt and pain. You opened up to me in such vulnerable ways. You melted my puddle of a heart. It was a wonderful exchange that left me in awe of you all.
So with this new found openness, on we proceeded. I slowly began to dismantle the studio and wrap up each part of my existence. Now, if you follow my Instagram stories, you saw the tears. But may I just say, that was not even the half of it. Fuck. Me. Dead. I did my best but I do not feel I navigated it gracefully AT ALL. It was messsssyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy in all ways. Thank goodness for the power of the people or I would not have made it. People helped me pack. People took belongings to Vinnies. People gave me cake. People threw me going away parties. People did all manner of unbelievable and remarkable things. People forgave me for being late to everything and many a time not even making it to said occasion. Or making it to said occasion and crying the entire time with snot running down my face. I was given heart felt cards and gifts and sent on my merry way brimming with well wishes and love.
I must admit, I started to feel the pressure. The pressure of all the ‘you go girl and conquer the world’ mantras....What if I mess it up? What if I give up in a week? Because in all honesty, I don’t actually know what I am doing my loves. No idea. I am following my intuition like I have never allowed myself to do previously which I am discovering is a magical thing however, some days I would like to throw my hands in the air and yell fuck this shit o'clock! I am staying as I am, in the comfy nest I have built for myself. I do not actually have the answers and at times my resolve and faith waivers and I have no choice but to wing it. Just call me Maverick. But with more sparkly accessories.
Sharing everything so openly has two side. On the whole, my experience has been that my openness in our interactions has inspired you to be open with me in return. Many of you have spoken to me of the safety my vulnerability gives you. It allows you to feel ok to say the things that you have not previously been able to voice. What a beautiful thing that is! That was never my intention. Well, not consciously. That is certainly something I always searched for. I went looking for that space from a young age. The space where I could just say the things I needed to say. The things that roll around in your head that make you wonder if you are the only one that feels like this. The pondering that keeps you awake at night. The heart crushing feelings that bring you to your knees. I don’t want someone to fix them. Or to even take them away. I just want to express them. For another soul to look me in the eyes and say without judgement that they hear me. And in exchange they share some of their own depth. Many years ago I stumbled across "The Invitation by Oriah Mountain Dreamer" and for me, it summed up EXACTLY this concept. When I read it I had an Oprah Ahaaaaa moment. I cannot remember precisely how old I was but I was a very young teen. I remember being in the library at school. I cried with relief. Then I looked around me and thought, yeah, but now what? How am I meant to discuss this shit with the people around me? My relief at reading something that clarified how I felt was then quickly flooded with more isolation and that dreaded feeling of being from another planet. So here it is...
Oriah Mountain Dreamer
It doesn't interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing.
It doesn't interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.
It doesn't interest me what planets are squaring your moon. I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life's betrayals or have become shrivelled and closed from fear of further pain.
I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it, or fade it, or fix it.
I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own; if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, be realistic, remember the limitations of being human.
It doesn't interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself. If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. If you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.
I want to know if you can see Beauty even when it is not pretty every day. And if you can source your own life from its presence.
I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand at the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, 'Yes.'
It doesn't interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone and do what needs to be done to feed the children.
It doesn't interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the centre of the fire with me and not shrink back.
It doesn't interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.
It has taken me many years to take this understanding and shift it into a way of living and communicating. Personally, I have found the space to express and interact like this is not easy to find. So then I decided to just create that. If I couldn’t find what I was looking for, then I may as well just create it. To just say what I wanted to say. To express what I wanted to express. To be who I wanted to be. In any given moment. And if you do not dig it, keep on walking. I am not willing to paddle around in the shallows any longer in order to make you feel comfortable. People tend to have two reactions to this. They love it and dive right on in. Or they run screaming in the other direction, unable to get away from me fast enough. Over the past year, I have become very comfortable with the runners and I try and roll with the water of the ducks back method. Yet at times, it still stings. I am not immune and some serious tear shedding can follow. Depending on who the runner is. In the airport on my way to London, I saw a book. A book titled “The Courage To Be Disliked” Now I don’t need to read this book to know that this is a good philosophy to roll with here. So I am rolling with it.
My loves....I need to be honest. All of the above was written 4 days ago whilst sipping that famous turmeric latte. However, mid manuscript, I ran out of computer battery and I did not have my charger with me. I then disappeared back into the ether and went on some magical adventures and have not written another word until this moment. I am now in another café but this time I am eating a club sandwich. With really bad hair. I have spent 10 hours on a bus today and I feel rank. I am also missing my hair dyer. When you consolidate your life into a backpack, only essential items can come. The hair dyer did not make the cut. So I constantly feel so unkempt. My eyebrows need waxing. My legs certainly need shaving. Make up is a thing of the past. My appearance should not matter. Yet it does to me. So this is just another layer of the process. I am meandering....what I was saying is...I do not think I can finish this blog post. Well, I am finishing it. I am wrapping it up. But I can’t finish the line of thought I was on about. The fleeting moment has evaporated and so many things have shifted in the past four days that the landscape now looks vastly different. I have discovered that when I write these love letters to you, they need to come out all in one go. In one sitting. It pours out effortlessly but I have to sit down and let it out and not interrupt it.
So, goodnight my loves. I have learnt my lesson. Always pack the laptop charger and always write my love letters in one sitting. Do a pathetic job at spell checking. Do an even worse job at grammar checking. Post. Start birthing the next one. System discovered. I am on it.
Sweet dreams and unicorn kisses xoxo