When perseverance is wrong

I spent ten years in an occupation that was completely wrong for me, teaching. I always felt drained after a day of school. I needed to recharge and then I needed to prepare for the next day. I can see now why it was so wrong for me. Towards the end I would cry without reason. The life was draining out of me. The day I finished I never looked back. No regrets just relief. Relief. Followed by rest. Lots and lots of rest.

Perseverance in the wrong place can be disastrous. I didn’t want to give up my job. I didn’t want to admit that I had made the wrong choice. I didn’t want to fail. I persevered for too long. In hindsight I should have given up after a year. What other people think of you is really just in your head, your perception of what they think, not actually what they think. Most people are trying to sort themselves out and really don’t give a toss about you. I should have not worried about being a failure. Really I tried it. It wasn’t for me. I should have walked away sooner. I wanted to give it a chance. Why? How long is long enough to realise that it is not your thing? A day? A week? A month? Six months? A year? Depends doesn’t it? Sometimes we make poor decisions. We don’t always have to live with it for ever. We have a choice.

Analysis and research, shape and design are my strong points and with that in mind I should really have gone in that direction earlier. It is very difficult when you are young to know what you want to do. Especially when you have people telling you to be practical and chose subjects at university with a job in mind. It shouldn’t be that way. It is the time to expand your mind so it takes you in tangents that you didn’t know existed. Playing it safe is not stimulating for the mind it kills the mind. Boredom is the danger of playing safe.

If I follow the wrong path nowadays I turn back and take another one or make my own new one. Giving up time and effort can be better than persevering for the sake of saving face. It’s not worth it. You only have one life. Live it well.

Seven Nights

Seven nights sober,
A dry week so to speak,
No wine, no beer, no spirits near,
The evenings seem longer, the mornings lighter,
The fog is lifting,
Different risks are being considered,
The possibilities are endless,
And oh so worth it.

Took off

Took off, bag in hand,
Only seven kilos was allowed,
I whittled my possessions down,
Twice then thrice,
I was on the line,
Strode looking fairly confident,
No one checked,
I was allowed to pass.

My relief was short because we had not left,
The moving castle had safety checks,
Heads were counted, from back to front,
Twice then thrice,
A late-comer walked in,
She threw the numbers,
They carried on,
She was allowed to be seated.

Strapped down, windows uncovered,
Carpets dusted, the kettle put on,
Cross checked,
Twice then thrice,
I sighed, unclenched my stomach,
Rolled my shoulders,
And returned my seat to the upright position,
We were allowed to ascend.

Headphones on, noise cancelling on, check.
No idle chatter, no eye contact, check
Latest film already seen
Twice then thrice,
That’s okay, I came prepared,
I was a girl scout in an earlier life,
I plugged in,
And I transcended.

I hear scratching at the door

The wind is up.
Clouds are forming.
Trees are beyond swaying.
Cicadas are still singing, the chorus is loud.
All comforting yet unsettling at the same time.
Can hear the black cat scratching at the door, trying to get in.
It’s not welcome.
The meowing hasn’t started yet.
Can feel myself wanting to open the door, yet I know I shouldn’t.

Easier to open the door.
Letting it in.
Letting it jump all over me.
Demanding attention.
Demanding my time, my soul, my whole.

The black cat is a part of me.
Was roaring loudly for so many years that I couldn’t hear myself.
Found where the roaring was coming from.
From within.
Stopped feeding it.
Starved it.
It stayed silent.

The silence has allowed me to grow.
Finding myself.
Took me long enough.
Yet I still hear…
The door with the scratching sound.
It’s close.
I gave it a little attention a moment ago.
It grows hungry.

The black cat.

It is me, yet not me.
It is a part of me, not my best part, but still me.
I accept it now.
I see it face on.
I know it’s there.
I chose to walk away from the black cat.

It’s a part of me that craves attention.
If the black cat gets it’s way,
It would eat all day,
And demand more.
More food, more attention, more time.
And only sleep when I sleep.

It isn’t the me of now.
Of today.

Walk away.
Don’t look back.
Walk away from the scratching sound.
Ignore it.
Walk away.
Walk away.
Walk away.



©The Huffington Post

Contagion is the word I want to discuss,  the contagious mood of people; the contagion of warm through intelligence.  This contagion should be spread. It is not dangerous. Well in the wrong hands it might be but where there is warmth there is purity. I’m not talking about arson or dynamite here but curiosity.  Curiosity, the spark that lights the fire of intelligence.

I met someone yesterday that spread that contagion. She shone with her intelligence, her warmth. Her genuine delight at another’s good news. Her talk skimming across the surface of the pond, connecting and travelling without effort. The exchange lasted no longer than 15 minutes. It charged me for the entire day. I say exchange because I could tell that the feeling was mutual. It is such a lovely thing to feel the warmth of others through communication.

A gift given freely, openly,
A gift that costs nothing,
A gift that can refused or accepted,
The choice is yours,
What is your gift?

Call me neurotic, but I can’t help but analyse…. everything. It’s an obsession. It’s contagious. To analyse is to examine something in detail, to look closely. I think that’s a good trait.

The contagion of curiosity, of intelligence can be found in the natural warmth of people. People flock to their likeness. Bad people tend to congregate together, likewise with the good. Feel uneasy with your company then you are probably with the wrong crowd. Determining your place is a tricky thing. What you desire to be may be nothing like the real you and that path that you seek can be your own destruction that you blame on everyone else but yourself. Looking at your true self and forging your own path is a daunting thing to do in life. It is full of fear and leaps into the unknown, it is a journey that never ends, until it does, sometimes suddenly without warning, other times with extra play.

A good world needs knowledge, kindliness, and courage…
Bertrand Russell

I felt the contagion of warmth of intelligence. It washed over me in a gentle flow. It wrapped me up and lifted me to the crest of the wave, it carried me an ocean away, it gave me views and support for the entire day, until I could stay awake no more.  It was a perfect day.

I wanted to convey our thanks to her. I wanted to let her know that she made a difference in our lives. She was genuinely happy for us. Her face shone. Her eyes shone. Her heart shone. She was radiant in her warmth. She was contagious. Her warmth reflected back to her from us. I know that she knew that we knew that she knew.

The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt.
Bertrand Russell

An encounter with another person can lift or deflate you. A smile can turn someone’s corner. Not the maniacal grin but the genuine smile, the brief connection, the gift of no expectation, not the flirtatious glance but the genuine smile. The gift of just because you are there, nothing else.