Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Words... and more

It is about time this blog got a much needed update. I have been reflecting a lot lately on why I write so much. I even wrote about why I tend to write so much.. Writing about the very act of writing either defeats the point, or alternatively strengthens the point. Either way, it has been a relatively clarifying process and has certainly helped make sense of why I write this blog, why my journal is significantly weighty, why I don't mind writing assignments, and why my emails can sometimes be so unnecessarily wordy.. Or otherwise, not unnecessary, but rather necessary in my case! So much of life passes by each day, it seems a shame to allow it to pass by and not to at least share the things we saw; the things we noticed, and the things that meant something. 

As I sit with my computer, raspberry and apple tea, and my work mountain, (the pile has now evolved to a sizeable mountain) I realise that it is fast approaching midnight and if time is indeed an illusion, it is doing a wonderfully timely job at manipulating my mind here. I couldn't tell you where the past week has gone, nor could I explain why I feel like it is Friday yet it is only Tuesday and the week is really not even half way through yet. This past week I have had to bid a reluctant farewell to my car following a fairly traumatic experience with a break down and explosion of smoke... The silver lining here, however, is that I have purchased a beautiful new car and get to collect it this week. No more driving a fifteen year old corsa for me...

I seem to be booking some more modelling jobs recently which has triggered my thinking of spontaneous living vs. structure. This is a familiar battle ground for me; and one in which it is never easy to gauge a preferred field. But what is emerging is my need for difference and freedom. Flexibility allows life to be lived in a much more fluid manner, and I believe that we were made as fluid beings. At least, I was made as a fluid being - I was not made for rigidity and settlement, at least not just yet. Here are a couple of new Polaroids... for the spontaneous, slightly undermentioned, but very important part of my life.

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Glasses, scarves, and energy

Today I managed to emergency stop (and skid) to avoid crashing into the back of an unsuspecting white BT van, I left my glasses on the coffee shop table, I left my scarf at the computer in the library, I lost wifi signal and couldn't respond to emails that I forgot I had already read, and I stayed out in York far too late and returned home even later. It is ironic that I feel more 'whole' and together today than I have done for a while, yet only today does my mind decide it is OK to start letting things get lost; that the universe will take care of them until I pick them back up.

On a positive note, I did share with people today my inner peace loving soul, and I experienced one of those eye opening moments of revelation. The kind that provides clarity and alters the way you view yourself within a situation. I also feel much lighter - the weight of the impending essay deadline is lifted, and the weight of the world is not so heavy. I must be bold and make a few changes in order to allow this kind of energy to continue...

Monday, 17 March 2014

submitted - the calm before the storm

Bath is running, assignment is submitted, my raspberry and apple tea is brewing, and the day is finally done (minus the pile of work next to me that I am ignoring...). Yes, it has been a long Monday; research meeting to a student to a second research meeting, to another student, to supervision across town. Many emails and people later, and finally home, to my essay, and coffee and peanut butter on rice cakes. Even my supervisor asked if I'd like to just sit with her and drink coffee and just chat today - I must have bought my whirlwind into the office with me.

Back to the point of this very brief post - my joy today is the temporary feeling of calmness before the storm begins tomorrow again!

Sunday, 16 March 2014

The double edged sword of perfectionism

I updated my Facebook status earlier this afternoon using the expression 'double edged sword' in the context of assignment writing and perfectionism. If I am certain about anything, it is that to my very core I am a perfectionist. It has both wonderful benefits and also costs me greatly. The trick is to use it in a way that means I can still achieve, and still live, but I don't somehow get my self concept or self confidence caught up in the picture. Then it becomes something a little more than I need.

The majority of today has been spent editing and referencing an assignment that has taken me a surprisingly long time to construct. There is something very challenging about editing an assignment when you know it will never be exactly what you need it to be (there's the perfectionist). At some point, I must put the books down and press submit, because this is like going round and round the same roundabout with no exit routes, and typical me, I am going round and round this roundabout at 100mph.

I took a break today.. So perhaps there have been exit routes afterall; at least temporary exit routes. Bryony and I went for a drive to the countryside and let the fresh air be exactly the medicine we needed. Now, back to the assignment and to relocate the final two references from which I seem to have lost the source... I always reach a point where my instinct tells me that the time is right to call it a day. I am still waiting for that moment!

Shooting in the Moors

Despite battling an ear infection this week, a looming assignment deadline, and the general wear and tear of life, I still seem to have lived life at 100mph as has become the norm! This week I spent a day shooting in the  Yorkshire Moors. It was one of the most beautiful days of this year so far, and it was one of those jobs where I really enjoy working as a model. Sometimes I love it; I love the adventure and the variation and the people. But sometimes, as with most things in life, I wonder why on earth I do it. This job was a good one.. No pressure, chilled team, beautiful location, and lunch in the pub. I drove home with the car windows down and some good music on and there was no better way to de-clutter my mind.

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Variety of life

Recent work.. of the non-academic kind.
Credits to Garazi Gardener, Dale Hollinshead, and Becky Spencer

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Life is happening

Isn't it funny (and ironic) how once we stop trying to shift the universe and start allowing things just to be, things start to change from their own accord. Things just happen; things start to take their shape and decisions are made for you and suddenly the universe looks a little different. It seems to be just the way life works. We think the world stops turning just because we've stopped moving, but reality is that it keeps on going. Life just happens and we either jump in the drivers seat or we sit back for a while; either way, life happens.

Life is still happening right now, even though I have cut my hours right back so I can both 'pull my socks back up', catch up on all my assignments, and get my health back. The body has a way of telling us when it's time to do this. It is also fortunate that it is the first time this year that we have seen real sunshine and warmth. I am sure that has something to do with why the universe is looking different too

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Male ballet and the soul

It has been a less than ordinary week. Or rather more than ordinary might be a more appropriate description. It certainly has not been ordinary, although I always wonder what constitutes an ordinary week anyway. The more life happens, the more it seems to be filled with odd little extras and unexpected great big tasks and decisions.

It was my mother's birthday this week. It is always a little challenging with my Mother as she is not always enthusiastic about celebrating her own birthday and she was somewhat reluctant to come home from work early because her family wanted to celebrate with her. This being said, we managed to convince her, and we went to see Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake, which was incredibly beautiful. So beautifully performed, and I am always reminded of how much I adore the 'story'. In fact, it was more than beautiful. There were some scenes which absolutely moved the soul. There is something about strength and beauty that when integrated, is something rather incredible to witness. We also took an evening to cook dinner and drink wine and celebrate as a family. It is important to do these things even though it seems like there is no time. There was time... and it was a really nice break.

My body has done a wonderful job at communicating with the rest of me in that I am not very well and even a weeks worth of antibiotics have not worked their magic yet... I suspect another GP visit is in order. However, despite that, the week has still resembled something of a chaotic jumble of research plans and ideas, essay writing, catching up on other client case notes and write ups, transcribing research interviews, and now my bedroom might be better described as a very disorganised holding room for piles of books and articles and papers. Oh, and empty coffee cups and bags and more books. On both sides of my bed...

I complain but it is in the spirit of love and choice.

I came across some words... There is no better way to describe what we do when we look at and explore the development of another human being. A lot of my reading this week has been around concepts of attachment, which fundamentally is about love and safety and how we relate to others. How we seek care. But I like these words - I am always drawn to the idea of the soul - it is, in some respects, more of who we are than any one defining part could be. When we talk about us being more than the sum of our parts, I think the soul is what we might mean...

'We are looking at the foundations of the human soul'
(H. Krystal)

Sunday, 2 March 2014

'words are life'

'She would remind him how the sun felt on his skin, and what the air felt like to breathe, and that reminded her that she was still alive'

I took a trip to the cinema to see 'The Book Thief' this afternoon, and what a wonderful way to spend a Sunday afternoon. I have been given some welcomed words this week, along the lines of sitting still and allowing the universe to move around us. I chose to sit still this afternoon..

I feel quite saddened that I had this book on my shelf for so long and did not pick it up to read (oh, the guilt that comes from reading a non-academic book). Nevertheless, I have been utterly blown away by the story. Well, not the story, but the telling of the story, and the detail and meaning. A narrative which essentially follows a young girl through the rise of Nazi Germany in WW2 is given so much depth through the gentle reminders that life is about being alive. And part of being alive is living through our use of words and language. Once we use our eyes and notice the world around us, and once we assign meaning to our choice of words, we can share them with another human being. There is something very powerful about the written/spoken language, and something even more powerful comes from communicating from one human being to another. A story that engages with life, and discusses the 'lightness' of the soul, is a story worth sharing.