So recently in circle we were asked to tell the rest of the group who we were, to describe ourselves briefly. Thinking back on this later I realised that A) I could have brought out more about myself then I reviled but sadly my anxiety got the better of me and I forgot some of what I wanted to say. B) I could have talked for a good half hour then the min or two we had.
I started off that night saying something I have said before. That if everyone I’ve known came to my funeral they would have different views on who I was. They would sit there and describe me in different ways. Yes there may be a few common things. That I always tried to be there for people, that I was able to take whatever banter was thrown my way. But there would be so many things reviled that others wouldn’t have known. So many more sides to my character.
I’ve suffered from depression on and off for years. I’ve thought of suicide and I’ve self-harmed in the past. I’ve questioned my gender, my sanity and my place in the world. Why am I here? What is my purpose? Who the hell am I?
Over the years I’ve studied psychology, philosophy, religion, mediumship, life coaching etc etc in a lifelong quest to figure things out and to find answers. Often the answers have led to even more questions. Sometimes they have led to me pushing myself in directions I never thought my life would take.
Those poor people sitting there reminiscing about my life, remembering me. “Happy go lucky.” “Carried the weight of the world on his shoulders.” “Lots of friends, very outgoing.” “Loner, secluded, kept himself to himself.” Hell even my hair colour isn’t consistent. Ginger, blond, brown, red. What chance have they got getting to the real me?
I use to be someone who would post uplifting inspiration quotes on Facebook, The last few years have found me in a slightly more cynical frame of mind. However many of the quotes I’ve used over the year in my blog are ones that have spoken personally to me. Maybe I should get back to posting such things. Not only do they reinforce those ideas into my own mind but they allow others a little insight to myself. A little glimpse of things I believe. I’m certainly not the same person I was twenty years ago. Or ten, five or even two.
I would like to think, at that wake that people would not so much be mourning my lost but celebrating my life. Recalling many stories about me as they do. I like to think I’ve had an interesting life. It’s not all been plan sailing. There have been a lot of hard times that I’ve had to overcome. Walls thrown up in my way. It’s not always gone the way I would have liked and there are regrets, missed opportunities and things I would love to be able to do differently. But I’ve also been a student, been to uni, got a degree and spent many hours with friends in the SU bar getting drunk. I’ve been Captain of my skittle team, trying to get high scores and having a laugh whilst getting drunk. Been out clubbing, (badly) dancing up on the dancefloor whilst getting drunk.
I’ve been a paranormal investigator, walking around derelict buildings in the dead of night waiting for something unnatural to happen and usually wishing I was drunk. I’ve studied martial arts, mediumship and creative writing. I’ve wrote a novel (and will hopefully get that and others published before my end), marched at Pride. And there is so much more I want to do.
Three things occur to me. 1. There has been a lot of alcohol in my life. No doubt the character of Bernice Summerfield has had a bigger influence on my life then I thought. 2. I have done a lot so far and meet so many wonderful people over the years. Some have disappeared into the past although I’d like to think they know I’d still be there for them if they needed me.
3. That it would be impossible to pin down my entire life. I have secrets even more than those I’ve reviled here. And how can anyone out there really know me when I still don’t know myself who I am? It’s a question that I may never get the answer for but it has led to many adventures trying to find out and I hope for many more. It’s one of the reasons I’ve never found myself able to settle down. I’ve always wanted more, to get on to the next thing and experience something new. Had I settled down with my girlfriend a few years ago I’d never have found time to write my novel and I wouldn’t have spent the weekend dancing in a gay nightclub with friends in Cardiff. But had I not been in that relationship at that time I wouldn’t have got my degree.
I’d like to think overall those people will be thinking fondly of me as a friend, a confidant, a hard worker and a good person. A shoulder to cry on, a helping hand or someone to dance the night away with. I’ve been told I’ve been thought of by people as lovely or sweet.
Student, paranormal investigator, transgender, writer and consumer of alcoholic beverages. What else might be added to that list before I’m finished? What more stories can I provide for people to remember me by?