Perspective – like hindsight – is a wonderful thing. I’m frequently lacking in it. But then I rather think that we all are. It’s just very easy to get so wrapped up in our own worlds and our own worries, and our own mini dramas that we can’t see anything but that. And I am abso-fucking-lutely not recommending a hierarchy of misery where you make yourself feel like shit because not only have you been dumped or not managed to get pregnant, but you feel like you shouldn’t complain about it or be upset about because you’re not a starving child in Africa, or dying of terminal cancer. I am UTTERLY against that sort of thing. If you feel shit, you feel shit, just because there are starving African children and people dying of terminal cancer, it doesn’t make you feel less shit, so don’t use it as a stick to beat yourself with.
I suppose my point was more that, in the past couple of weeks, it just so happens that I’ve had a bit of an insight into situations that, from the outside look enviable, but are actually anything but. And I KNOW that’s kind of obvious, that nobody really knows what goes on in other people’s relationships, that the grass always looks greener, that you can’t judge a book by its cover and all those other clichés…. But when one of my best friends, who only got married a couple of years ago, is telling me that they haven’t had sex in 18 months… And when I’m watching the breakdown of a marriage of another close friend – which, from the outside, you would think was golden: they don’t have money worries, they have two gorgeous children, she’s clever and funny and beautiful — but somehow the prospect of losing all that isn’t enough to make her husband act like the man he needs to be to keep her… It does kind of put things into perspective.
And not in a “I’m counting my blessings” type way, or in a schadenfreude type way, but more in a “there’s always going to be something” type way. Because that’s kind of life, really, isn’t it? If I weren’t worrying about my love life and whether I was going to have kids, and all that sort of crap, I’d undoubtedly be living another parallel life where I was worrying about something else.
Because life’s a bit like the weather, really. Sometimes it’s going to be irritatingly damp, and it’ll make your hair frizz, and you have to deal with that; other times there will be torrential downpours, and you have to try not to drown; maybe it’s surprisingly sunny and you’re wearing too many clothes and overheating; or searingly hot, and you need to be careful you don’t get burnt. But you can’t stop the weather from being the weather, you just have to dress for it as appropriately as possible, figure out a way to deal with it. But it’s not always the same weather. So you have to adapt.
I’m making myself laugh at the idea that there really can be no philosophy more English than one that compares life to weather.
Anyway, apologies for that ramble. I was rather feeling guilty for not having posted in ages, and now I’m not really sure whether I feel more guilty for having posted this than not having posted anything at all…