“Write like it matters and it will.” The poster on the wall above my desk looks at me as I try to find something interesting to say.
I call my daughter for inspiration and still I lack that spark that wakes up the inner author. I decide a cup of coffee is in order and as I go through the office door I set eyes on the poster I have put up.
“Open Books not Thighs, Blow Minds not Guys.”
Today I have my office back. Not because Mark is back to work or that things are back to normal, but just because I have asked for it. I’m writing, not because things are back to normal, or because I can, but because my call hasn’t answered.
What do I write about? The virus that has changed our lives, the riots and protests, the sheer stupidity of people. “Write like it matters and it will.”
What matters can only be what is real and here and now. What matters to me today is doing my job well and being the best me I can be. Yes, it all sounds wishy washy, but how many of us and how often have we said, “that will do,” and walked away. Ok a job well done and all that, but sometimes you just have to be realistic.
I was scared when the lockdown began. Scared that the agoraphobia would be the only thing left in my life. I was doing really well and had started to go shopping by myself. I always had the woods, and the walks, then suddenly I didn’t. I called the office, I am a qualified caseworker, but expected to be put on befriender or delivery service. Instead I was thrown in as a telephone case worker and I think I’ve done quite well. I’ve delivered prescriptions and food and been frontline on the phone to those that have lost loved ones. I’ve been useful.
That usefulness is coming to an end. I am going to have to go back to where I was before. I have seen the poetry written by those that support the Black Lives Matter and The NHS. I’ve had The Poetry Societies Newsletter, I have even during this time written “a” poem, but I feel that I just can’t find the right words right now. I haven’t been writing this blog. Mondays have been for Case work and helping the homeless and bereaved has mattered more over the past four months.
Today I’ve started a new project, a project to Thank a very special person for everything she has done in the past twenty years. It matters to me because without her I think I would have given up over the past four months.
I am grateful to my boss for allowing me to get back to work, grateful for the support of friends, new and old and grateful to a very special organisation called Stable Lives that allowed me to join a respite day on Thursday.
Thursday, I spent with Nurses, Doctors, Police Officers and a Surgeon. I felt humbled and insignificant, the work I do didn’t quite measure up. Then I took a good hard look at myself.
I matter. Everything I do matters. Mandy has had her self-worth sorely tested as have others. But everything she has done matters. She has shopped for others, talked them through the hard times and shared food with those that are struggling to get what they need. Mandy matters.
My future is unknown. It seems that Mark is enjoying working from home and his company are in no hurry to get any of them back in the office. Will I continue to do casework, will I go back to writing poetry, will I ever stop being an agoraphobic? These questions are not for today.
The Country has a lot of healing to do, and I need to focus on the Here and Now. Out there somewhere is a man that needs help and is not answering his phone. I have a sink full of dirty dishes, nothing different there. I’ve done as much as I can on the project I’m working on. Today I matter. I not only want to write as though it matters I want to be more mindful of the things I do. The future is scary and the past has changed me, here and now I just want to do what I can, if it’s not perfect, it’s not perfect, but that will only matter to me, and I think I am a realist so what does it matter if it’s not perfect.