I wake up early. It’s just how I roll. Whether I hit the pillow at 10pm or midnight or 2am, a 6am rise tends to always be what’s in store. Sometimes, sometimes, I sleep until 8 or 9am. When I do, I wake up grinning like I’ve just won the Lotto.
I always, not one exception, have the urge to go outside. Straight away. Most of the time I just open my big windows wide and let that be enough, stuffing down the desperate need for nature and proper fresh air. I always have the running dialogue of ‘you shouldn’t do that, you’ve just woken up’. Because I don’t see other people waking up and diving straight out their front door in their baggy pants and wooly hat at 6.30am, I think it’s weird if I do. This is one of the most annoying habits of mine – stopping myself doing stuff because I don’t see other people doing it – but it is beginning to gently break. And that’s such a relief.
This last week has been undescribably bitching and I have felt the importance of bringing myself back to the Now…constantly. And connecting to nature around me is the way I do this the most. It eases, inspires, nurtures, reassures and grounds. Or, when things are proper tits up, it at least just holds me. All the other things come with time.
So, one morning last week I listened to that urge to go outside, and went for a potter with my camera at 7am before the city had properly woken. The aim was to remind myself where I am, that it is 2013, that I am okay, that I am going to be okay. And it worked. I realised how, despite how much I soak up the beauty of my surroundings every time I go outside, I don’t realise how in the city you truly can connect with nature amongst the concrete. That morning stroll showed me nuggets of beauty that I hadn’t seen. I sat by a stream that I have always just walked past, wishing for the river or the sea. But that morning I sat by it for twenty minutes and realised that, despite it not being perfect – I couldn’t swim in it – it was still there. One of my most ultimate sources for resource – water. And now I have found some just down the road. Sure, I will always have a painful wish that it’s more, but at least there is some.
I am terrified of Spring. Because with spring comes the year mark of my overdose. And what follows spring comes the Summer – when the most trauma would happen with my mom. So, I go against the grain of the British world who are wishing the winter away – I have just been longing for it to stay. Because also, in the winter, it is easier to hibernate and feel like shit, because the rest of the world tends to be slightly dozey too. But come the summer I just have that painful longing for health. My chronic fatigue feels like a constant punch in the face, gut and heart. Every. Summer’s. Day. And now I’m living in a city, I fear this even more too.It’s a fear I can’t describe. It’s like a panic that runs through my bones – as soon as the sun comes out, I have to be in it, outside and in some form of water, or on some blustery hill with no block of concrete to be seen. The summer to me, means every waking minute outdoors.
This morning stroll gave me a blast of faith to all those fears I write above. It may not be perfect where I live, but there are many things about it that I need right now. And every day, most of my waking hours, nature is incorporated into it. So, despite it not being wild and free, it is still nurturing a big chunk of me. Compromise is one of my words of the moment, and I feel it quite fitting for this nugget of life too. As for the fear of the month it is, and the summer on its way, this is the year I am healing and releasing the trauma, so this is the only thing that seems to soften this fear of what is t come. Only just. I am still terrified, but it is so deeply stored in my body that all I can do is just notice it and gently prove it otherwise. And I know this is what works. That is all my body has known, but my soul knows otherwise.
Maybe Spring isn’t, and won’t be, so bad after all.
These are just a few of the treats I found. The chubby little guy in the first pic sits directly opposite my window every morn, greeting me with a ‘cuckoo’ whatever the hour, whatever the day. It’s lovely. I’ve named him Dave.