I’ve been to me and frankly paradise is more appealing

I appear to have been ambushed by life. It waited for me in a side street and then just jumped me, coshed me on the head with a sock full of sand and stole my va va voom. I have spent the last few months lying, dazed and confused in a metaphorical back alley trying to find the strength to get up again. I’m now half sitting, half lying, which is progress of sorts.

On Wednesday I had the day off work so I got on a train and went to visit friends who live 60 miles or so away. It rained constantly, so after a delicious lunch we trudged around a shopping centre, our sodden trousers flapping around our ankles and looked at things we couldn’t afford. It sounds dull but it was something to do and it enabled me to raise my mugged top half from the cobbles. I love travelling by train. I love the fact that you can get on a moving vehicle and sit down and do nothing and it will just whizz you into a new environment with no effort on your part. I thought it a good bit of marketing, the advert which said ‘let the train take the strain’. I had a rucksak instead of a hangbag, which always makes me feel like I might be running away: a good feeling. At the station I had to fight the tendency to just get on a train to London and have an adventure. I stood in front of a massive billboard advertising a performance of Madame Butterfly and I felt tears welling at the back of my eyes: I’ve never seen Madame Butterfly, I’ve never been to the Albert Hall and I want to. In fact, to subvert the lyrics of an awful song, I’ve never been to Georgia or California or anywhere I could run, taken the hand of a preacher man and made love in the sun, or been to paradise but I have been to me and frankly it was jolly hard work and a bit fraught. If I could, I’d write a strongly worded letter to the travel agent who sold me this damn awful holiday demanding my money back.

I’ve been a mother for almost 20 years, and for at least three quarters of that I’ve been going it alone and it’s made my world somewhat small and confined. As I bed down in to my 40s and learn more about destination ‘me’ I realise that I am a person who would like to put on a rucksak and get a train to London and see Madame Butterfly and that’s just for starters: Georgia, California and paradise here I come. But here I don’t, because I have a mortgage and children and a job in addition to ageing parents: the wild woman I feel chuntering away just below the surface, who at last has the confidence to start exploring, to have an adventure, to live out of a rucksack, to take a train or a plane to somewhere new and to talk to strangers along the way, has to find a less dramatic way to break free or she will hurt those that depend upon her.

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12 Comments

Filed under Musings on Life, Personal Growth

12 responses to “I’ve been to me and frankly paradise is more appealing

  1. OH how I have missed you Face!!! Be patient, your adventure is coming… and Love, please remember that you also are depending on you. You MUST live your life not only for yourself… this is not a selfish, vain, ego thing I talk about, no. But don’t live a life that others have chosen for you, yes be kind, yes do what must be done, but DO NOT forget yourself in the process… it’s far to easy to do… and no-one else will do it for you. *hugs*

  2. Where there’s a will there’s a way, even if it’s a virtual or eventual way. I too feel the sting of “oh, the things I could have done…”.
    Here is a beautiful place.
    Now is a beautiful time.
    peace–

  3. Welcome back lovely. I see that you have been doing some serious soul searching in your time away. I have not travelled life’s path alone for some time, though I did in the beginning, with my 2 girls when they were 11 and 15, for a few years. It is hard and as we age, we have the need to self discover – what have I done worthy? – what have I done for me? – what would make me happy? – what do I need? Trying to find a way to happiness without neglecting the ‘necessary’ i.e: your ageing parents, your children, your mortgage, indeed limits you finding yourself, your journey to feel free, before the responsibilities of ‘life’ simply got in the way. Yes, a harsh reality, that we know must be endured. I know exactly what you are saying, like others who have read this post. As Andrea said you cannot ‘give up’ on being you, self discovery hits us more when we ‘look back’ in our lives as much as it does when we look towards the future. So many places we wish to see, so many interesting people to meet. All I can say in closing and forgive my ramble, is your life though bedding into your 40’s as you have written, is FAR from over. Simple put, FACE needs to find things that will hold her interest whilst maintaining the equilibrium of how her life is now. Clubs – more blogging 🙂 writing that Novel – or simply saying hello to a complete stranger, opens the little world we live in. Try and do something for yourself now again, we all deserve to spoil our ourselves, if only for a weekend or you will crack under the pressure.
    Take that train to London – See Madam Butterfly…you only need to open your wings. Take Care. xxx

  4. Good you see you again, Face. You were missed but I understand the work you were doing. As Rambly says, do spoil yourself.

  5. I get you my amazing friend. I too have dreams of travel with a back pack, it WILL happen, and when it does we’ll appreciate every beautiful minute of it! Hugs xx

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