It is fair to say that normal service in my head is starting to resume now. Hopefully it is showing to some people at least, with less desperate attempts for attention, and slightly less weird and unpredictable behaviour. Obviously some of the above will remain to a degree, as it's who I am. But when depressed it's just all of that on steroids, with side effects.
It's true, no matter what is going on in your life, what has happened, if you are paying attention or not, time waits for no man (yes, yes, or woman!).
It takes a glitch in the routine, a break from the norm to make you realise where you actually are right now. Like the monotonous daily commute, from time to time we look up and think "how the hell did I get here?" In reality we do that a lot, and think nothing of it.
However when something bigger happens, a change of job, a death, a break-up (well of course I was going to squeeze that one in somehow), once we get control of the spinning and pull out of the impending spiral of doom, suddenly it becomes apparent that things have changed around us.
This could be in many different ways, people, things, places. A bit vague maybe? Then I shall dig a little deeper.
For example, the people around us. There are those close to us, who we engage with daily. We know them well, and they form part of the structure of our daily routine. As simple as a shopkeeper, as important as a partner, they are all the fabric of our reality. Then there are those we tolerate. People we don't get much of a choice but to interact with, however wouldn't if we could help it. Co-workers are the main category here, although friends of friends can fall into this one quite often too.
Then there is "the rest". The background noise so to speak. We can come across the same people day in day out and never really pay any attention to them whatsoever. Or very little at best.
The crazy thing is, in times of confusion and need, all roles are reversed, and priorities change. In our routine, the background noise settles, and almost goes away, and we focus on the other two categories. But when routine is gone, all the noise returns.
An example if I may.
A busy underground station, full of faceless people making their own noises, all adding up to a crushing bombardment of sound. On a good day, in good company, engrossed in conversation with the friend, the sound is barely there, we are cocooned in our safe, happy world. Take that person away, and add a simple niggling concern to your mind, and the platform is suddenly deafening. So much noise, hard to think, the mind goes into overdrive.
Thankfully, finding ourselves out in the wilderness of the outer circles of life, isn't too common, and in general we don't go through it too many times in life. Depending on what sort of person you are will no doubt dictate how you cope out there. Overthinkers beware! It's is a minefield packed with booby traps and potholes. That said, there is a way through, so don't panic. For most, it is a simple journey finding their way back into the security of what remains of the inner circles. Supported by our caring friends, normality returns quickly, and we are back on track.
All that said and done, there IS a point to this, so let me see if I can find it in the mess.
How can I put this without sounding too stupid. Who am I trying to kid, most of my blogs sound a little bit daft at the best of times.
We are like cogs, and to operate properly we need a certain amount of corresponding cogs to work with. Being like this gives us support, and allows us to support others at the same time (nice eh!). So when something changes, we need to ensure the cogs keep turning. For some of us we prioritise ourselves, and some of us focus on the others. Either way, the time we spend paying more attention to our surroundings is important. It gives us time to appreciate that its not all just background noise, and that some of it is good stuff. It's almost like an intake of new friends.
Be it, socialising more, and realising what people bring to the table, taking more time to talk, and appreciating just how much you have in common with others. Or sometimes that stark reality, that you were living a lie! Whatever it is, to coin a phrase "It's good to talk".
When we talk, we listen. Well that's the idea anyway. I seem to excel at talking, but listening is a weakness at times. In fact talking is important to me, it's almost like a release valve, getting all the excess pressure out of my head, and just out there. Doesn't need deep, intellectual conversation, just a sounding board to blurt it all out to once in a while. As you might have guessed, occasionally I use my blog for this purpose, and this could actually be one of those times.
Anyway.... When we listen, we engage, and connect with people, and this is the key to it all.
From time to time when these encounters happen, we realise we actually enjoy the interaction of a person, and wonder why it was so hard to have bothered with this before. Then, before you know it, they are part of the routine.
So I guess what I am trying to say, and I have to guess at this point as it has gone all over the place now... The point is, change isn't a bad thing. Yup, it's unsettling, sure it leaves us feeling lost and vulnerable at times. But the positive side is, it is like us having a review of our lives, and who we surround ourselves with. A short moment to take stock of what you have in life, and what you are missing from your life. And most of all, an opportunity to make changes for the better, and fill those gaps.
Maybe the opportunity will present, and you will shy away. Maybe you will try and make something out of nothing. Or maybe just for once you will throw caution to the wind, scream "FUCK IT" from the highest point you can find, and just take a chance for once.
However you have read this, please take great comfort in the knowledge that I have got all this off my chest, and somewhere in all those words, I have made sense of what is going on once more in my complex little head. Take a look outside once in a while.... It's really not so bad.
A question I clearly don't ask myself enough these days, but one that springs to the front of my mind right now.
Forgive the ramblings of a mad man, but its all bubbling up to the surface right now, so as you know I like to blog it before it starts to set and make no sense to me.
I am chatting to a few people tonight on my faithful BBM (I would be lost without Blackberry Messenger), while at the same time watching/listening to a 90's resurrection set on MTV Dance, and as things are said, and tunes play, I am slowly starting to figure out a few little things, like "who I am"
Adult life started in the 90's for me, so clubbing days, driving around like a misguided youth, and discovering myself, were all done with this music as my soundtrack. Hearing these tunes play while I am in deep though provokes all sorts of thoughts.
Tunes that remind me of first experiences, ones that remind me of friends who have since passed. Past relationships, watching my daughter grow, and so much more. You know what I mean. Music is like a smell or a taste, in an instant we are back 10 years, living a moment all over again.
Then the next thing I know I am reminiscing of days gone by, and comparing the me of yesteryear, and wonder what is real and what is the adapted me. The me that has shaped myself to fit in, or accept what I have before me.
We all do it, set out with dreams and aspirations, and before we know it they are changing. Changing because its easier to change our way of thinking, than it is to make changes to our life. Leaving the comfort zone, stepping forwards, moving on, and daring to think outside the box... All too daunting for anyone and everyone from time to time.
*Just to digress for a moment, N-Trance "set you free" has just come on, and my god that has gone from being a club banger, to almost a sentimental meaningful song... Anyway... Back to the other bit.
So our aspirations change, but in my case when I look back in reality, I think I have stayed pretty true to my chosen path. OK so I'm not successful, retired and living in Florida, but we can all dream eh.
But in general, certainly up to a couple of years ago I would say I have stayed on track.
Its the past 24-36 months that provoke deeper thought for me. I have not strayed, and I still know what I want, but my life has been put on the back burner, until recently at least. The past week or two have honestly made me realise I need to live for myself too, and stay in touch with my own realities, not just those of people who "need" me.
Achievements of recent make me stronger and more positive. Steps I have taken in different directions make me confident, and people around me empower me to strive for a better life than the ditch I seem to have slipped into over recent months.
So when I think about it, the answer to who am I is a simple one really... I am me, Michael. The deep minded, over thinking, complex emotional guy. The one who spends most of his life wanting to improve other peoples lives, and forgetting to take the occasional time out to focus on his own life. Yet here I am... Taking time to reflect and think about my own life. So maybe I'm not as set in my ways as I think.
OK so I said I was rambling, and know this makes no sense, so let me summarise...
Respect your own decisions, regardless of what others try to make you believe, or opinions they impose upon you.
Don't be afraid to do something different, new, unexplored. Just because you think it might upset someone. If it upsets them, then is their opinion that important to you?
Take time out for YOU. Regardless of how smooth sailing life may seem, there is always room for manoeuvre, and time for a quick sanity check. When you lose touch with yourself, reality becomes a blur.
Remember who YOU are. What you stand for, your beliefs, morals and goals in life. There is always room for compromise, but rarely room for total surrender.
After blurting all this out, I am making sense of the root of this all, and getting back in touch and in tune with my own thoughts and emotions (as those who know me will be able to tell by how much I'm writing)
So thank you for reading, thank you for inspiring my thoughts this way, and take care of Number 1
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