For the first time in ages I am actually enthusiastic about something.
Not ‘I suppose I could’ or ‘I might be able to’, all said with a heavy heart, but that bubbly feeling I haven’t felt since…. (ever, maybe, come to think of it).
I want to do this.
I’ve started writing a proposal for a book I have had in the back of my mind for a couple of years. It’s a good idea, I think there’s a market for it, and I will enjoy it and learn from it and possibly even be happy to put my name on it. I really want to do this.
Writing the proposal is interesting and a bit hard. I’ve never done it before, and know little beyond what I can Google. And there are many questions I am not yet able to answer about the book itself, which will require research and depend on contributions from others. But I am loving it. And I think I can do it, which is a weird feeling in itself, since my de facto attitude is that I can’t do anything and am basically shit.
All good, in other words. (I am resisting the temptation to focus on how it does not solve my financial woes.)
A teeny little weevil is burrowing into the back of my mind. though. Not about the money (which is a real problem as I have virtually no income and my former husband has reverted to type and is not even paying child maintenance). I suppose one might call that weevil ‘the habit of a lifetime’ or ‘Natasha’s lenses’.
What the weevil is whispering in an insistent whine is: What if you fail?
I do know the saying ‘What if I fall? But oh my darling, what if you fly?’ of course I do. (Not only have I read it in enough self-help books and schlocky posts in social media, but the boss referred to here had the poster on his wall at Saatchi’s.)
Weevil-voice is evil. It makes me realise that a part of me never really tried at anything, for the perverse and stupid reason that I then wouldn’t mind too much if I failed. It’s like when you fall in the street, and on rising, adopt an attitude of ‘I meant to do that.’ What if I give it my best shot and fail? I realise I have never much given things my best shot. Seems so stupid, and I don’t know where it came from, but it’s been with me all my life.
When I was engaged to be married, I had one friend who said he didn’t think I should. ‘He doesn’t stretch you’ was his reason. And I thought: ‘I don’t want to be stretched. I want to be happy, comfortable and safe’. That is bad enough, I know, but the hilarious thing is how catastrophically wrong I was in thinking that man would be the one to do it for me.
What I think I am saying is, while I want to be 100% full steam ahead, I recognise that a teeny, weeny weevil is applying the brakes.
High time I grew up, I suppose, and took responsibility.
Photo: not a weevil but there are some bugs on this flower; they’ll do.