Transition Girl

Why transition girl?... Best answered by a quote from the Iliad....."The soul was not made to dwell in a thing; and when forced to it, there is no part of that soul but suffers violence."

Sunday, October 31, 2010

procrastination moment number ninety nine

I have had a short stretch off work (the day job) and had planned to spend the time editing the drafted second novel to take into account feedback from my test readers. I have done many things during this length of time except adhere to this plan.

My chillaxing staycation (two new words finding their way into the annual Oxford dictionary additions this year...and then folk wonder why I am critical about the dynamic nature of language when words such as this enter into the common vernacular) has been spent in cathartic Spring cleaning, being lectured again by the doctor several times about the need to come to him more regularly when I am experiencing pain rather than being a stubborn stoic blokey girl biting my stiff upper lip, exploring options to deal with a broken oven, printing out a collection of 2010 photographs to offer the traditional "show and tell" to Mater when she comes and spends a few weeks around Christmas with me, catching up with various friends to listen and provide sage thought provoking pearls over food and coffee, and sharing with a good friend some music that coincided with a difficult period in my life which helped me to "process" some seriously raw emotions at that time (and hopefully will provide that friend with similar benefit).

This last offering was a big step for me (to share something so personal) as that time coincided with the ending of my marriage. Among other things, I wrote a short piece at the time called Crossroads reflecting on the emotions, an excerpt of which is provided below:

My trust betrayed, the despair seemed to engulf me. Starting the year suddenly single opened a floodgate. The despair was a festering wound that seemed like it would never heal. There were reminders everywhere serving as tiny prods amplifying the aches.

How far does a person fall when they feel this way? There’s something about drinking a half a bottle of scotch, several cocktails of champagne and rum and (perhaps too many) tablets to help me sleep without which I would not have crystallised the notion that I really did need to recognise and hold on to life.

I did not want to die; I just wanted to learn how to cope better with the pain that ebbed and flowed inside of me. And much as I tried to hide it, sometimes that pain seeped through; sometimes it oozed; sometimes it gushed. The bleeding had fed my fears almost to the point of no return.

Ultimately, a wound that had been reopened by his departure had nothing to do with him at all. While his leaving had been a catalyst, the reminders were not about missing him. I realised that I had spent years holding back - trying my utmost to suppress a range of feelings and it created the background noise that had come to define a marriage built on lust alone.

And because I had spent so long pretending – being something that he wanted me to be - I had lost sense of who I was. I had no choice but to acknowledge those feelings and attempt to understand why I had chosen for so long to ignore the noise. I had not only been sleepwalking, I was doing so without any direction. Little girl lost. I had to find myself.

This was about the time I moved cities for a seachange. Music and writing and my friends helped me through (even though I readily admit I am still covered in scars from that moment in history). I would have remained entirely lost without these things. At least now, I only wander through the fog intermittedly.

It seems I have not spent the last few days relaxing at all and I have filled the time with anything but writing... Truth be known it has been a nine week long procrastination moment. I will go for a walk to clear my head and when I sit back down at this desk, I will be ready to write...


Blogger Ergo Alt said...

Wow TG. I shed a tear after I read that piece. A haunting reminder of exactly how I felt at the end of my own marriage. Identity, defined by a single relationship, lost. And the chilling realisation of the need to 'awaken' from the mental slumber and really live life.

For me, I learnt to take heart in two things. One, that persevering through suffering makes us stronger. Much stronger. Two, that from great suffering comes great expression (or art).

Thanks for sharing this TG.

6:08 PM  
Blogger Transition Girl said...

thanks Ergo Alt. I totally agree on the point about persevering. Far too many folk give up too easily when things get even a tiny bit challenging. (Aside: Then there are governments who don't know when to give up on a white elephant - think Myki...)

Why is it that our art is better when we are emotionally facing inner turmoil?

10:10 PM  

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