Home is where the new start is (part1) has had the most impact of any of my blog posts. Queer people and people who have felt disenfranchised with their past have told me how much it has resonated, this is why I write honestly even when it scares me. This isn’t the part 2 I expected but it’s a part 2 all the same. From love, honesty, courage and me.
Touching base, getting back after a hell for leather sprint around the rounders pitch. I remember that feeling in PE. When your bat just hits the ball perfectly ( I actually bat with my left hand even though I’m right handed #precursor to how my life has been since) . It’s that chance that perfect hit that induces a run like no other! You run for the team and you run for yourself. As you leg it past the first base you start to imagine that feeling of getting a home run and how that will feel. I always resisted the urge to stop early at one of the bases for safety, that’s not part of my nature, rightly or wrongly. I’d have rather been out than give up, the prize is worth more than the hurt of failure. As you run you have no idea where the ball is or if you have someone a second behind you about to ruin your glory..... I just RAN!
I waited a long time in my younger years to hit that ball just right. That connection that means you can let rip and just go for it! When it finally did I ran! The perfect pitcher and the perfect batter (charged gay metaphor not lost). That perfect hit where you don’t look back is what I yearned for and got, and when I did I went FOR IT! My instinct not to stop kicked in and there wasn’t one thing I didn’t go for!
I felt I had so much catching up to do in my twenties that I didn’t let myself stop going for my dreams or stop in general, even through my struggles I got up and carried on. I was striving for the other/prior version of myself, the lad that didn’t speak, stuttered and wasn’t brave. I had to make his loss worthy, I had to prove a point. I was told by many loved ones that it was unhealthy to pursue dreams that are impossible, but I achieved most of them. Perhaps this was a bad thing, it made me make more dreams to chase. The chase was what I adored and when I got there it was worth nothing, often it bored me and I made a new goal. Now I chase different dreams the main one being, to be content.
Like so many queer people I went for a grandiose curtain call. I wanted my fade to black to be epic, powerful and be a strong legacy. It’s rubbish to think that daft thinks like career, shoots, being in telly, abs, being thin, posting hungry pics for fake adoration means anything. I can’t believe I used to think it all mattered. It is a running theme for gay people, not being happy with the mundane, the “normal” or the calm life. (This is put perfectly in the book “Velvet Rage”). When it’s all done what matters is who’s hearts you have touched. Nothing else. I know this now as fact because I live with only the memory of someone now.
My home coming was greeted in a way I could never have imagined nor expected. There are moments in your life that set up camp forever in your soul. These can be beautiful seeded flowers that you revisit in times of love, connection and happiness. A new brief feeling of beauty reminds you of every beautiful memory fuelled flower that is still there in your heart from before. When I have a new euphoric moment of pride, love or fun I live every blissful memory from my past again, all at once and it’s blissfully encompassing. Each moment exists at the same time because those moments are with me forever. It would be a better world if these beautiful permanent gardens you are forever attached to were the only things that are planted within you for life. Unfortunately this isn’t the case, some moments that stick with you forever are dark and the infinity of them is all too real. The nature of these moments are the same as the happy ones, one new spark of sadness, meanness or coldness (and the rest) means they are again at the forefront of your mind (I’m not sure if everyone feels this way, perhaps it’s just me). These inner tattoos are not enjoyed like the flowers, you have to learn to live with them. I don’t believe there is any way to pull them out of your ground and dispose of them. Maybe it is part of the human condition, a balance that keeps us safe and level. There has to be winter in order for summer to bring the best colour. One without the other simply doesn’t work. That’s how I have tried to rationalise things that seem utterly horrid and unacceptable. Things I have had to process and face in the last few months.
I have been welcomed with such love from the people I have always cherished but through necessity, been unable to face to face with on a regular basis. When I came back we were all reunited for awful reasons that made us lean on each other like never before. I’m so lucky that our bonds were never severed by distance, each of these wonderful people were linked via thought, FaceTime and middle of the night “I need you” phone calls. When life was beautiful or turbulent we connected. There’s that old chinched quote.
“ A strong friendship doesn't need daily conversation, doesn't always need togetherness, as long as the relationship lives in the heart, true friends will never part.”
Apologies for using the basic nature of inspirational quotes but I bloody well LOVE THEM!
This quote is true. I am lone wolf, always have been, always will be. I’m stronger alone and do not often look outward for reasoning or approval. Me and mine need each other when we NEED each other. We never force it, mainly because we are not in to posh meals or mindless chitter chatter. We have insane fun or we get down to talking about where the other is at, we are intrinsically linked and, although wildly different in many ways we are the same on this point. Our distance has been broken when a mother is in need, a break up, panicked worry about money, heartache, successes and every other poignant moments we have all encountered (many and various believe me).
Now distance is never permanent and only fleeting. Seeing them often has lifted my experience like it hasn’t been for years. My friends don’t ever falter, their values and morals I have never called in to question, I’ve never been presented with even the chance. That has mainly been with the friends I have cemented for years. We simply believe the same things on what we believe to be right or wrong especially regarding people and behaviours. Believe me many have come and gone but never ones that I ever really trusted or respected. They’ve gone because I always kind of knew that they would, they didn’t match my standards (not ivory towering it, standards are personal) ever and we’d have fun but ultimately your not my tribe. I also respect the time I had with these people, somethings start the hourglass off and some things are the actual hour glass and not the lessening sand within. The main thing with this long lasting circle is that they are strong. I don’t believe in good and bad people but I do believe there are strong and weak. Weakness can sometimes be so beautiful in a person but for respect I can’t invest fully in folk that will choose to lessen themselves because of fear or ease. God bless you but you’re not for me. This has made my life more difficult but more worthy and I believe more full of truth and love than most.
I started my business late last summer and I owe my encouraging entry in to the business person world to my lost friend. I threw myself in to the floral world because it distracted me, I projected my whirling emotionally charged mind toward that instead, and it got me father than I would’ve. It’s not a comfortable realisation of myself but it’s a real behaviour of mine. My mind had to be as full of other things in order to maintain itself, I needed to encompass myself in the trivial. Grief is a funny beast that has many different and unlikely hats and each hat needs to be accepted for what it is, a stage that needs to happen, be understood and put to rest when it is right to do so and to be left exposed when it is right to do so. As soon as I stopped in the evening I would become angry and sad (often both) and try and dull it with a wine, never works! My intense focus on my business has slowed now and I’m pulling of the floral peddle in order to concentrate on my other creative endeavours, as was the plan when I moved back and wrote part 1.
I really couldn’t have done what I have without my cherished true friends. I have had to use my old bosses premises to make up jobs I didn’t believe I would get and I simply didn’t have the resources to execute without her support. I have had good nutritional meals cooked by my family, a van to use and unconditional support and sooooo many shoulders to cry on. You can cry on a true friends shoulder like no one else’s. This comes from you knowing they cry on yours, there’s no judgement. If you can fully and honestly melt in to a puddle of tears with them then they’re yours. True connection doesn’t come in fair weather, sure you dance in it together but it’s like a night club, you can dance with anyone there. Truth of bond comes from someone dancing when you need to watch someone dance because you don’t have it in you to put your dancing shoes on. Or it comes from both of you choosing not to dance because there’s no music at that particular time, instead you listen to the one in need and just support till the speaker works again. Most won’t be there, “when the going gets tough...” the good timers get going. I have such important words to those people.... truly poignant.... “goodbye”! As Sia states “I’m the one for a good time call phone blowing up ringing my door bell” when your not a good time boy lots don’t ever ring your bell. My bodies door bell is for invited, universally empathic folk now. I have who I need and the gates are shut.
I spoke a lot about my past in my first post and now I have the knowing of the importance of my choice to come back to base. The term “toxicity” is banded around these days and it’s important that it is. We worry about poisoning our body’s but we don’t worry enough about poisoning our hearts. I watched situations play out that were wrong and my tired self allowed people to get away with awful behaviour. Looking back I don’t recognise myself in those situations, I got so used to selfish/self-indulgent city life and folk telling me to tow the line, keep under the radar and for the first time in my life I fell in line for the weak and questionable. I remember one instance where a friend was in true need elsewhere and two folk that were people I liked chose to leave to go party and not rush across town to be there in an emergency my friend found themselves in. I knew it was wrong then but I had been around too many people like these two, I had accepted that that was ok behaviour for most. There we have it “for most”, I have learned (especially since being around strong people) that “for most” isn’t to be accepted. You shouldn’t turn the other cheek because most would, if a behaviour stimulates a judgement then act on it and don’t rush and get and Uber and deal with it all alone. The “for most” people are the reason trump and teresea are sat where they are, the “for most” people judge the homeless, the “for most” people feed stigma attached to mental illness, the “for most” people allow a child to feel uncomfortable for playing with a pink toy and the “for most” mentality needs to be fought or else our sad climate will never change. “For most” of the people I’m around now see a situation and have empathy and grace, not falsities for personal merit. Sometimes you are wrong but honesty can bring you back to resolution every time. Be what “most call” a loose cannon and watch the questionable folk as the leave your life with fear of a truthful, exposing aim toward them. I’ve been relieved to have made some toxic people weary of me and loved seeing the cartoon silhouetted hole shaped like them in the wall!
Being home has freed me to accept my skills, talents, bad toddlerish behaviour, mood problems, security and insecurities. I used the word “accept” by this I mean to acknowledge and certainly not excuse. Prior I felt I had to lessen myself and sometimes pump up my awful traits to get by (sadly it often worked). Now I work on them all, this is because I see them all as parts of me. Little beasts that sometimes need to be fed and sometimes need to be starved.
Being away from b#%^#+*t has given me clarity and courage to trust my feelings, instincts and thoughts on the world. My friends, family and overall calmer situation allow me to think more roundly about my work, issues with sexuality, health (mental and physical), fears ect. I’ve stated before that ones opinion of ones self cannot come from within, how the hell do we know how we are perceived. Who we are is what others think of you. It’s a mirror, generally if your a dick most people think you are (ahem) and those people’s consensus is who you are. I look around the garden now and then I choose to water only the particular flowers that deserve to be drenched in my time and support.
Being back in towns where I used to hide who I was was initially hard. I felt it all come back to me.
Is my voice too gay?
Are those men smoking outside going to shout things at me?
Will that person from my past ask me to accept Jesus ..... again?
The list goes on and on and on
But this is where I have changed, before I would adapt my behaviour. When i explained all this before (in part 1) I spoke about the feeling of being caged. Evolution has shocked me, I had no idea when I wrote part 1 that I would only deal with that fear for moments and not forever. I got a lot from my time away (I know i go in on it but I loved a lot of my time living in the south 💁♀️ it was that last year pffft) I got proud, I got self awareness, I got empathy for those who I don’t understand and who don’t understand me, I got wildly brave but most of all ..... I got the ability to rock a crop top down the streets I used to avoid whilst weaving through the empty ones to bunk off college. It’s not been without it’s comments but I can talk it out on the whole. Once everyone becomes human there isn’t much anyone can judge another on. Simply talk it out with people you don’t understand, you will have common ground, everyone does.
So many ill educated voices spouting about trump, liberalism ect. God it was like a constant frequency of venomous privilege, all the while these people were acting worse than the people they chose to fill their judgemental conversations with. I, now not only am confident walking past someone I used to be afraid of, I actively encourage using pro-nouns, talking about my boyfriend and my vintage 1980’s crop top (with under shirt at the moment, the north is cold). I’ll be there with a person and I’ll feel it, that cold fear of saying boyfriend instead of partner, referencing a Britney lyric (poignantly, your have to use them with care) and all the other “eating lunch in the bathroom” at school inhibitors.
Now I judge myself more on my view of masculinity and how much I place on it. I still feel proud of myself when driving a van, using a power tool and feel epic when some assumes I’m straight. This stems from such a horrible place that I don’t care for within myself. That is something that is still with me but, again fashion helps. I’ll drive my van feeling all manly then look down at my fabulous new creepers and turn Shania’s song right the way up! (You all know which song). Toxic masculinity is in every boy and its dangerous. I’m now working on those issues predominantly.
With regards to my points in part one I feel I have addressed them above and my home coming has been the best thing I have ever done. Financially, physically (name me a yoga inversion 🧘♀️), professionally, for health (both mental and physical), gay issues, family issues ect ect there isn’t one thing that I miss nor long for. I’m happy to say my career now allows me to travel (next year in all over 😊). I love working in London and have a fantastic clients down there. But, I can’t quite believe how much love I was missing out on and now it’s all mine mwhahhha! My niece and nephews are around me, as are my crazy wonderful siblings and my beautiful friends. Its all I need and it’s given me a stable spring board to jump from. The sport has changed from rounders to gymnastics 😂. I’ve achieved more in the last few months then I did in years. I also want to speak about how much easier those achievements have been than what I thought they would be (believe me I don’t mean it’s been easy!). A lot of words are spoken from silver spooned mouths about how hard it is bleh when I have actually found out, when given time life is actually quite easy. That’s what most people don’t have, TIME! It’s nothing to do with talent ect if you don’t have time you can’t do jack! I now work sooo hard but I have time, time to adapt my screenplay, time to travel to see my boy and time to focus on my surroundings and myself, I’ve never had that till now. I’ve changed everything in order to finally get what I need, freeness of mind to create and make.
The above couple of paragraphs are pretty much all I have in me to reference the prior post. My veil draped over coming home has been loss, the loss of someone great. It has and will continue to fundamentally change me. It’s one of those moments that is just a tattoo on your soul forever. What’s been the most head spinning is the knowledge that my coming home and my regular face to face was supposed to include her. I know we all just missed out on that Christmas reunion. It was there, it was real but it was taken from one of us and that means it was taken from us all.
The reality of loss is (ironically) life. The planet spins as do we, with chores, money, relationships, alarms ect, it all carries on. Time means it has too. I spoke about this with my friend this morning, how odd it feels for the world and us to carry on and how awful it feels to do so when the tragedy appears again. It hits you and literally takes your breath away. It now hits mostly unprompted which makes it a hard cold shock, this is because time has passed. I feel it when I achieve something, when I see Christmas lights or children. All the things that are no longer for her. But, most of the time it is just BOOM! And it’s there and you deal with it the best way you can. The outside world can’t really help nor support. Me and one of my friends reach for each other when the sad reality strikes you, other than that I’ve made it an inner pep talk and self support dialogue in order for it to not take more from my life. My views on myself feel less now as I am lucky enough to be able to explore them.
A no “silver lining” situation is rare, prior to this I have never faced something that has absolutely no hope or light in it, it’s a scary thing to look in the eye. I thought I had faced it and often thought it within myself but I hadn’t even come close to it. Home is where I should’ve been at this time and it almost feels pre determined. Ultimately I have learned to look inward more and more as I’ve grown older, many may think this to be wrong but I don’t, I feel you can’t deal with anything unless you have dealt/dealing with it within. Very few can actually help.
I have watched my close friends be more epic through unimaginable circumstances. I never knew we would have to face anything like the sadness and true horror we have had to. I’ve watched something that has made me so humble, I’ve been lucky enough to see people be their best light in utter black. The power of people is overwhelmingly impressive. I haven’t ever had much faith in humans. I’ve seen them be things that go beyond adjectives. I hope me and mine don’t have to call on what some of these people have had to call on.
I have always let people in, wanted people to call me when they’re in need and others have told me how much of a strain it puts on me and it’s totally true. I was starting to lose it because of this advice. After everything that’s happened I know “for most” is not for me and mine. I will not change that side of me for anything, ease or anyone. It’s the only reason that I have the truest of connections. I give it and am lucky enough to have it back in bucket loads.
Where ever my new home in the future will be, whether that’s a shed in a field I. Cheshire, London again, Iceland, where ever! It will be built with the bricks of the past, the bricks of love, support, inner flowers and the inner tattoos. All of which should have a rightful place from foundation to roof top.
A home is having a framework around you that is more than bricks and mortar. Be a home for everyone you love, that’s my motto.
For Phlammy and the last beep