I’ve been trying and failing to get words down on paper lately.
Even my opening line isn’t right.
I’ve actually been writing a lot these days. I’ve got a new job where being a writer is now my title and primary duty. It’s right up there on my list of office/employed/8-5 dream jobs, and I am both proud and pleased for myself.
I’m also tired. New jobs, fresh relationships and house hunting have worn me out.
And yet I’ve realised something about myself lately. I’ll do the work if it’s worth doing. And all the new things in my life are worth it, hands-down.
However, tonight I just want to write for myself.
A little over a year ago, I started up this blog again because new beginnings were tugging at my fingertips.
Now my whole being is dancing with change – and yet in my day-to-day life I have never felt more grounded. I feel precisely and entirely like me, which is both the most familiar and most novel state of mind I’ve ever experienced.
There’s been nothing revolutionary really – not like the life-altering events that have come before. There’s been no big traumas or discoveries. No births. No deaths.
All the new things and people in my life have been a direct result of my own decisions, hard work and focus, which, if you know me at all, is a big fucking deal.
Like the title of one of my favorite books, I’ve long suffered from the unbearable lightness of being. I thought living light meant living free, which resulted in eschewing decisions, commitment and attachment. I often felt suffocated by the need to let go, even though I wasn’t holding on to anything in the first place.
All the new things in my life are helping me see things differently, and I am eager to make sure this point of view isn’t just a fleeting one. I am also wondering how I can continue to be the one who drives change, rather than change be the one to drag me kicking and screaming by neck.
So I’ve been trying to write because writing has always been my tether during times like these. But it’s been a struggle.
I learn the most about myself and how I perceive and value other people, places and ideas when I write – but writing requires more time, energy and emotional resource than any other activity. It leads me down rabbit holes, forces me to revisit sometimes unpleasant experiences, and compels me to pick myself apart with no promises to help put me back together again.
I often begin in one place, and end up somewhere entirely different. It’s the most fun thing about writing. It’s also the most daunting.
But today is the first of April, and I have finally got my figurative pen on the paper.
The day – Fool’s day, my dad’s birthday, the beginning of a month I will begin in my twenties and finish as woman in the fourth decade of her life – is about to end here in New Zealand, and is due to be born again (or for the first time) on the other side of the world.
It’s raining. Autumn is no longer whispering during darker mornings and cool evening breezes. She’s here. And she’s pounding on my bedroom ceiling.
A new colleague recently told me something about this season I had never considered before.
During this time of the year, the sun crosses the equator and both daytime and nighttime are the same length all over the world. Maybe that’s why Autumn always necessitates both reflection on what’s happened and focus on what’s to come.
I will always belong to both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. Not to say one serves as my past and the other represents my future, rather both parts of myself and the world will always be inextricably tangled in one other. It sometimes causes me strife, but that’s okay. There aren’t many people who have so many pies to choose from. I know I am lucky.
So, for the last two years especially, I’ve relished Autumn as a season of change but also as a time to restore balance between yesterday, today and tomorrow, find peace in elasticity and reclaim me.
Maybe there’s something more to think about on the matter. But sleep is hanging heavy on my eyelids, and I’m also not very bothered about exploring it further. It’s enough to know this season resonates with me. More than enough.