If anyone is feeling unsure or in a funk with their creativity, I highly recommend a weekend with ‘Big Magic’, by Elizabeth Gilbert. It’s essentially a book of essays, musing about the magic and origins of the creative process. Something in there may well stir something inside of you.
When I was a kid, I could knock a rounders ball right out of the school grounds, over the road and into the beyond of a neighbouring property. We would never see that ball again. I would stand poised, present, and believe in my heart how far the ball would travel. I just knew. I was accused of doing this on purpose by the teachers. ‘Of course I’m doing it on purpose, you fucking idiots’. I wanted my team to win.
The rules meant I didn’t need to move from my place. It was a clear home run. The decision within the second I’d watch the ball arc it’s trajectory had already been made. I wouldn’t just run, but sprint. My friends thought I was nuts. My attitude was like this about everything in life. Whole hearted, feet first and confident I can learn. I’m all in.
Then life started happening to me. And I stopped believing.
I got sick. Really sick. Eventually, I knew I had a tumour. I knew my brain was affected, my kidneys, heart and my entire metabolism. The doctors did what most doctors do when something is rare or presents with too many symptoms. Nothing. You either have a virus, or you’re mentally ill.
I was not listened to. I was ridiculed, humiliated, lied about, gossiped about, betrayed, dismissed, abandoned. It’s still happening in fact – on one level – passively aggressively.
My trust in others dissipated. Eventually, so did the trust in myself. Still, something in me kept fighting, despite these doctors
wanting to wound me so I would stop speaking and not be a threat to their reputation or well hung egos.
It turned out to be cancer and paraneoplastic syndrome. Excuses were made for themselves, for each other, by eventually saying it was because it was so rare. Perhaps rare diseases really aren’t all that rare. Perhaps what is really rare, is finding a doctor that isn’t a cold, arrogant, incompetent and judgemental c—t.
Initially, I was so much better after the cancer surgery. However, I’m still having to be my own doctor with the aftermath of the remaining metabolic disturbances, which could well be genetic, on a cancer drug that makes you feel like you wish you’d died of the cancer. Hypoglycemia makes you feel like this too. You’re on your own when this happens.
If any of you have lost your voice, or had it stolen from you by undeserving people who have no place in your life, I urge you to persist. Stay absolutely resolute and honest in how you feel. Feelings frighten egotists. Explore and express your feelings around them as much as possible and watch them flee. Your true friends will not make excuses. They will reach out and be delighted to be there, even when you don’t want to be. Those are the ones who actually lift you, as you have lifted so many others.
Back in school, I wasn’t even that amazing at rounders. I could just hit a perfect shot if the ball was delivered by a low slow bowl. By the time my opposing team recognised this, I had left. My strengths outweighed the remote possibility for my weaknesses to be exploited.
When you do inevitably experience being exploited while you are vulnerable – by doctors, bullies, users, lovers, friends, family, jealous people, employees, employers and bullshitters, you can turn that rightful anger into art. You can preserve your self respect – which they will hate about you – and you can speak and shout and sing and draw and paint and do whatever the fuck you want. Create. Be wise. Misdirected energy – with play and ultimately skill – can turn into something far more powerful than the sum of all of your experiences. This will annihilate them.
You deserve to be heard. You can still knock it out of the park. Retreat and create with every beat of your electrically fucked or un-fucked hearts. Listen to the voice within. Then listen for the satisfying sound of the crack to the bat as you show everyone how to go home.
Copyright © notontherocks.com 2021 All Rights Reserved.