Fakebook and the mettle maker.
Before you start reading the elongated, overly wordy and 'drively' dribble below... you might want a little context... depending on if you're reading this recently after publishing - or a fair while on the future.
It is 12th April 2020, I am living with my boyfriend Damian (DJ) - in the annexe of his parents beautiful house, in the tranquil (albiet very left wing) village of Earls Colne in Essex. We've had the most incredible weather; it's been 3 weeks of 1 day glorious sunshine, 1 day slightly overcast, but dry. I have a proper tan - so much so the freckles on my face have built up a wall of pigmentation, that wouldn't look out of place on a campaign about the risks of sun damage.
I have a super cool little outdoor gym on the patio outside the annexe - so I can train at home, we have food in the cupboards, I am able to lay in if I like and I don't reeeeeally have to go or be anywhere at all. DJ and I have spent more time together than ever before, as he too has been working from home.
We get up, we work, we eat, I train, I shower, we work some more, we eat, I train some more, DJ trains, we shower, we eat, we chill and we go to bed. It's lovely.
Except it isn't.
It is a fake dream world and we are scared.
There is a Worldwide pandemic happening, that currently equates to more than 1 Million deaths and Great Britain is fast set to become the country with the MOST DEATHS in Europe.
We (the less selfish among us*) are isolating in our homes. DJ's mum is vulnerable and we have had to try and protect her best we can. It has now been 21 days since I last left the house (28 for DJ), except to go on a run for exercise. I haven't seen my family, my best mate, been to the shop or anything - we have had 3 family birthdays in this time period and DJ has 3 weeks worth of holiday he has to take before the end of May...
(*I absolutely exclude the people who are so bravely continuing to work in jobs that are front line and essential; shop keepers, police, hospital, firemen, carers, teachers of kids who's parents have to work, prison officers, etc...)
This detailed context is needed for future reading I feel as it'll help us to remember properly what was going on.
I wrote the below copy on Facebook very late one night when I couldn't sleep (standard) in response to seeing another blog moments before.
It had such an enormous and touching response (left) that I wanted to blog it 'properly', or officially... or, whatever. I was so grateful for the responses - they definitely made me feel a little more normal, whatever the fuck that is...
People privately reached out to me in their droves too - expressing their guilt at feeling the same as me, and being relieved "that
someone spoke out".
I will leave this introduction here now and let the rest flow as it did before, but first - you need to read the blog that inspired me to pick back up my metaphorical pen and put the fluctuant words flying about my head onto 'paper'...
This. Just this... shorturl.at/fHKPW
The whole of this has resonated with me.
This post is designed to make anyone who isn’t ‘feeling whole’ at least feel that they’re not a freak. It is not a post to make anyone feel sorry for anyone. FAR from it. I want to try and be as open and transparent as I respectfully can be - if it helps one person, then bloody job done tbh.
If people DO feel motivated and driven to do new things that’s fucking awesome! And I seriously applaud it. To be totally honest, I would LOVE a bit of that right now.
But we all deal with things differently...
If you don’t have that motivation... don’t you dare beat yourself up over it. Ok??
On the surface I bet it looks like I have my shit together... like I’m crushing this ‘iso life’... perfecting my espresso skills, training in paradise, being the perfect girlfriend, tanning hard and looking lean* 'cause I eat clean and train mean' (gag)... but don’t forget the internet can be a cruel and mystifying place full of false ‘faked’ activity and bullshit news.
Guess what... here is an insight...
It is all a big fat lie...
I have had days... many MANY days where I simply cannot get out of our bed without crying...
Pretty pathetic really.
(*TRIGGER WARNING: I admit I am struggling a lot with an historical ED at the moment, but it is under control and we are monitoring it closely.)
Damian (who has usually been up over 2 hours already) opens the curtains and sits on the edge of the bed next to me... he then proceeds to tell me what I’m going to do next; take my temperature, sit up, look out the window and look for the birds, get out of the bed, make the bed, go to the kitchen to make a drink, go to the bathroom to wash my face, switch the coffee machine on etc...
Some days... most days... I’m floating about in a useless, helpless and pathetic daze.
I’m struggling to attach this bizarre dream world I am living in to any sort of reality at all... I feel like a failure.
I can’t seem to get my work done, I can’t dial my thoughts in and I know it’s gonna hit me like a tonne of bricks. The only thing I seem to be just able to get my ass into gear to do is train.
Just as well really... as then I’d also be a flabby little sausage... as well as a space cadet.
THEN I feel unbearably guilty about it all - that I feel like this when I have such an incredible facility or set up available to me and therefore I should be MORE productive and MORE grateful and MORE brilliantly switched on and ‘together’...
Composed and together in a world where we don’t really understand what the shit is happening or going on... but fuuuuuck me, am I making sure I’m being sufficiently punished for it.
Old familiar ‘comforting’ habits creeping in... harsh food restrictions, sleep deprivation, self harm, deliberate isolation from loved ones and very unkind shit self talk. My night terrors are more frequent than ever... I’m scared to sleep tbh.
My focus is gone - I didn't thing it was possible but I’ve become MORE clumsy and forgetful than usual; I’ve fallen down the stairs, burnt myself twice, stubbed my toe countless times, dropped anything droppable... and not droppable... I am a fucking calamity.
It’s week 3, or is it 4... anyway, it’s starting to be pretty uncomfortable you know...? And yet I know I am a lucky one... I have so much... I want for so little... I have ‘no right’ to feel like this... I am not having to go and work on the front line like some of my incredible friends... I don't have to work 16+ hour shifts on a COVID-19 ward... in constant fear of contracting... I am safe, in my home, with everything I need.
So I tell myself again "I have ‘no right’ to feel like this!!"
So where do I go? How do we deal with that? Keep punishing ourselves? And then get told we are selfish for doing that too? Ok, so instead we should fake being ‘super ok’ and be seen to be oozing gratitude (which can sound braggy) which then in turn makes other feel like crap as well...
So around we go...
Round and round in circles not knowing what the fuck to do... knowing one way or another it’ll probably piss someone off somewhere.
I guess the only thing that comes into my head now is “those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind”... but that’s hard to implement if you’re an empath, like me... and everyone matters.
I’m just gonna keep trying to base all my actions in kindness, shower my rock of a man in love and at the very least, shower daily.
My best is enough... at least for now, it’s gonna have to be.
FYI - Damian, thank you. I really fucking love you.