I have written in a lot of diaries over the years. Sometimes they hardly even define a point in my life as anything in particular. Sometimes I will look up a bit of my life I have strong memories of, and be disappointed that I didn’t write much down at the time that tallies with what I can recall. Sometimes when I read them all I can see is my little canoe getting closer and closer to the Niagara Falls of the soul, over and over again.
But on reflection of certain times, I do think it is possible to be positive about something that was negative.
For example, consider the English phrase “look on the bright side”.
When things go wrong, we’re often encouraged to consider the positives to try and make the best of things. Looking on the bright side of a bad situation.
Sometimes when it’s not even possible to define a point in your life as anything in particular, it still presents a reality. In these situations it is interesting to reflect on what it wasn’t when you are trying to work out what it was.
For example I can now nostalgically look back to a time in my life when the entirety of how I spent my time was best defined as how I didn’t spend my time any more. Ties had been cut in my life and I had moved house a long way away from everything that I was familiar with, and I could not go back.
I still had to be alive in that moment and when I look back, so much of what it was about was what it was not, and what I wasn’t doing.
I was not where I was familiar, I was not really where I wanted to be, I was very much out of time and out of place. Just because of the sheer difference in life between what I knew and where I was, I ended up doing a lot of things that weren’t what I had done before.
Slowly, from what it wasn’t, what it was revealed itself as something new, and looking back I can see how I was building something new by not being able to be who I was before.
It’s an odd thing really – I feel both sad and proud of what was going on. It’s just life I guess, getting on with it and all that.
Maybe you just had to have been there.