You alright, hun?

You really don’t know how hard this has been. Every time I’ve thought about writing a blog again for the first time since September last year, my brain has frozen over. It sounds ridiculous, but I’ve felt frightened to put pen to paper, or the digital equivalent thereof. I wouldn’t care, but if the blog is read at all, it’s only by two men and a dog (“Hello men, hello dog”).  

Without wanting to go into tons of self-analysis, I can only think it’s something to do with not knowing what’s been going on in my head. I feel as if over the last twenty months or however long it has been, the wiring in my brain has been reconfigured and some of it has been put back into the wrong plug sockets. An alternative reason might be that I’ve become a bit of a lazy so and so.

In reality, it is probably a bit of both.

What the pandemic has forced us into doing, isn’t natural or healthy. Isolation from other human beings generally isn’t good for us ( even though my head is saying, “well what about monks?”. They seem pretty rounded people. Or maybe we just assume they are because after all, they don’t say much, do they?’).

Life for this individual has settled into plenty of work (grateful I’ve got it), running every day, walking the dogs, doing the Guardian crossword with VW at lunchtime, tons of reading (now wading through all the Harry Bosch novels), phone scrolling (a dreadful but addictive habit), watching some cricket on the TV and occasionally one of the lads playing live, and thereafter taking in a few decent Netflix and Amazon dramas.

Add to that my constant moaning about everything this dreadful government is doing; ranting about the state of the nation and why so many people seem to be racist, xenophobic, cold-hearted, hard right-wingers who voted into government some dreadful people who are all incredibly wealthy and elitist and went to the same few, uber elitist schools (odd that) and who are nothing like most of the people who voted for them in any way, shape or form and who don’t give two hoots about them either. A government whose ministers and MPs seem to have a penchant for being economical with the truth and who just want to make the country fit for themselves and their cronies, so they can all make lots of dosh and who when the shit hits the fan, as one expects inevitably it will, are going to run away to their mansions, or second homes in Mustique, Bermuda or Wells next the Sea!

Hmm. If all of this doesn’t sound like the product of a healthy and peaceful mind, it isn’t. In fact, it has all the hallmarks of a head that has had too much time to itself. For this recovering alcoholic, when the mind has too much time to roam of its own device, it will resort to stinking thinking. It’s not that I don’t broadly stand with what I’ve written (or ranted about), but if I was in a healthy headspace, the mind wouldn’t be dwelling on those things. It would be looking for ways to be kind, thoughtful, helpful, and compassionate to others in these difficult times, because if I can’t be those things, why should I expect others to be the same towards me? Be kind, and mean it, and the world is generally kind back.

A healthy head would be telling me there are things I can change and things that I can’t and that I should recognise and focus on what I can change.  I can change the way I perceive the world – after all, there are some really lovely people both nearby and far away (and all places in between) all doing wonderful things. I can work on changing myself – for the better. I can work on thinking of others before myself.

I’m glad that I have broken the habit of not writing blogs. It’s a start. Maybe it’s time to break a few other habits too.