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Ups and Downs

Some people add extra danger, excitement and adrenalin to their lives, with rollercoasters, horror films, intravenous coffee and slapping people at the Oscars (seriously!). For us creatives, that’s just how we roll.

Winter is my least favourite time of year, not only because Christmas is hateful, it’s also dark, cold and miserable. Keeping busy helps counteract and push through the general malaise while the days gradually get longer. This has involved amateur dramatics (my lifeline), networking, Latin & Ballroom dancing and the occasional walk with nearby neighbours. Additionally there is part-time employment and freelancing. This is just about manageable, some do more, others do less. It’s not a competition: there is no judgement here.

While this life is one of creativity, some frivolity, freedom and little responsibility, for others it’s about the march of time, the pain of illness and the liability of dependants; including family dynamics, ageing parents and sibling angst. When these two worlds collide, life gets interesting. Needless to say, the last 3 weeks since I heard the latest family news have been a particularly full-on, up and down assault on my emotions. No horror films required for extra adrenaline here.

Fortunately, friends have been supportive, checking in, lending a shoulder, an ear and most importantly a safe space. I can’t thank you all enough, especially the reminder yesterday to ‘write it all down’ 🥰. Why I forget to write for myself is beyond me. There’s been some writing… okay texting – it still counts – and that’s also why these posts are important. One day, there may be enough gathered gumption to actually write it all down, as has been suggested on several occasions by different people.

The idea of an autobiography has always sounded self-centred, expecting a bunch of strangers to be interested in my antics. Then, realisation struck, authors nearly always dedicate their books to someone, or several people: that’s the way in.  It’s not about the masses; it should be about healing, a record of events, a sense of belonging and understanding for the next generation. I have nieces and nephews aplenty, they are a good place to start. The African Diaspora often has little or no heritage to pass down, financially or otherwise, most generations have to start all over again, unable to benefit from those who went before them. Food for thought.

In the meantime, life goes on, the delicate balance continues, emotions are up one minute and down the next but I’m holding on tight, the same as everyone else trying to ‘do’ life.

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