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Embracing Chaos

November 18, 2013

A man of my not-so-tender years ‘should’ now be learning how to avoid the chaos that often accompanies the younger years. I should be slowing down, relaxing and taking my time. ‘Should’ has never been a word of my liking. The coulda woulda shoulda doctrine does nothing but apply excessive external pressure upon us in order to dictate our values. This can be stifling to say the least.


Yes, there must be a however when one is still in recovery from a nervous breakdown – I have learned how to enjoy the chaos of others without being embroiled within it. Sort of. Allow me to elaborate….

For some weeks now I have been working for a club night/indoor festival and a big part of this is to sell the night to young people, mainly students. Fresher’s Week at the local Universities brought with it extravagance, excess, loudness and heavenly chaos. During one of my flyering shifts (handing out flyers to the masses of students whom were passing by on the busiest bus route in Europe) I was, at one point, hounded by elderly drag queens riding giant motorised shopping trolleys. My body literally buzzed from head to toe and I began to envy the student life – the fun, the trepidation, the excitement. I then became very aware of my age – forty – flyering alongside people half my age and screaming sales pitch: ‘It’s gonna be a wicked night! We’ve got stilt walkers, angle grinders – the lot! … Cool man, wicked! …’ I loved every buzzing minute of it. When I returned home a good friend of mine took me to dinner (I’m a writer, I never have any money!) and I could hardly speak, my nervous system was so over loaded. So… did I really embrace the chaos and observe from a place of maturity?


Did I have a great time anyway? And did I manage to ‘ground’ myself afterwards, that evening, so that I slept well and felt recovered the next day? Yes! I did. So I have learned something from the events of the past few months (and maybe even over the course of my life and from some of that therapeutic training) and that something is about balance. It’s okay to get (slightly) high on the energy of others, it’s not okay to stay high. I need to feel more solid and grounded for more of the time. It may be because of what has happened to me this year, it may also just be a sign of my development. I can be anything I want to be. I can be a trained psychotherapist who flyers for club nights, I can be a forty year old who goes to University (I’ve booked myself on an open day – watch this space. I’m thinking an art degree but who knows??). I can allow life to unfold in whichever way it chooses – I can be me.

It seems, to me, that the best laid plans lead to the opposite of what I ever intended them to be. It looks like fairer weather when I drop the expectations and run with the flow of water that trickles beneath my feet. Yes, that is a play on words, something I do often, think about it.

I can – be the unexpected turn in this tale of life.

What about you?

Matt xx

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