If you saw me and asked, I’d say I was fine. For as long as I remember, writing here was a normal, somewhat quiet pursuit for me. People would enquire if I wrote and re-wrote, or heavily edited what I published, and the answer was usually ‘no’. I wrote about my life, and later, about my studies, and writing books. My personal circumstances were in the foreground; no one writes on the internet and maintains absolute secrecy, it comes with the territory to be open. I realise now that writing in this way was all fine, as long as I was fine. If the ebb and flow of my life made me introspective, there was always something to write about to bridge the gap. As such, lots of people read along for years, and many of them have become my good and precious friends.
Of late though, I’d say that some shit has gone down in my life, and it’s caused everything to tilt on its axis. I realise how opaque that sentence sounds, and how irritating it is when those of us who curate an online presence clam up, and won’t share. The unspoken contract in social media is that honesty should prevail. But I have come to see that when life deals you a blow, you abruptly become aware that there’s a big audience watching. Something in human nature provokes us to lean in to the lives of others, and watch closely, especially when something bad has happened. I’ve done it before, for sure. But then I was part of the audience, whereas now I am an unwitting actress, in the main act.
Therefore, I might not write here so much, for a while. Let’s not be overdramatic, this revelation is hardly going to break the internet, but for those who wondered or who are interested, I am still here, still writing. The novel I previously wrote, in conjunction with the concept I’ve been carrying around in my head, has now been pumped full of oxygen, and I see that I have a book to write by Christmas. This feels as if it has been building, and my hesitation and inaction is turning to an urgent need to get what’s happened down on paper (or on screen at least). It was Hemingway who said; ‘write hard and clear about what hurts.’
Know that meanwhile, there are the dog days of summer, travel and reflections, teenagers and exam results (she smashed it). Bare feet, a fading tan from Thailand, white-washing my house. Amsterdam nights. A new puppy, arriving soon. There’s a crumpled linen feel, good and true but not perfect, as my children and I forge towards September; an impending sense of there being a new season ahead.