For readers of my last blog, you will know we recently moved to the country, and are finding our feet. This has brought up the realisation for me (and my wife but as she isn’t writing this blog we shall just talk about me) that I am a square peg in a round hole.
In our village there are lots of expensive houses with lots of bedrooms and big gardens. This is not including our house which is pretty small and one of the cheapest in the village. I could launch into a whole explanation of why we chose a smaller house than we could afford a mortgage for, but those of you reading this who are either minimalists or frugalists, you will get it, so I won’t waste precious writing space. However we find ourselves living cheek by jowl with lots of wealthy people who speak as if they have plums in their mouth and drive very big cars and wear the sort of country outerwear that would cost my whole month’s salary.
It would be a lie to say everyone in the village is like this, but it got me thinking. We don’t fit in (yet – as we won’t be beaten, we will make it our home) but actually I’ve never felt like I’ve fitted in, and is that actually a bad thing?
I’ve always been pretty overweight, I’ve always wanted my hair short, and lately it’s been really short. I came out as a lesbian at 34. I don’t have a TV. I tend to mix far too many patterns together on any outfit I wear. I don’t read newspapers, and I don’t follow popular culture although I do sometimes have a guilty pleasure of seeing what all the trashy celebs are up to on Facebook. It’s fair to say I am not the norm, and I have often found I don’t fit in. And actually that’s OK. I like not watching TV. I prefer not knowing what is happening in the news, because it’s all really miserable anyway and so it doesn’t make my life any better. I don’t need to know who’s broken up with who in the world of celebrity, or which Z-lister has had surgery when they clearly need therapy. Yeah I could probably take one less pattern off when I get dressed but would that be fun? I have tried wearing my hair long. I hate it. And I have tried every diet known to mankind and I’m still here, fat and no further on. This isn’t a negative for me though. As someone who ascribes to positive thinking on a daily basis, I think it’s OK to be different. In fact it’s to be celebrated. The media (OK I do see what goes on through the eyes of social media and the internet) tell us what size we should be, what we should wear, what we should eat, how we should look when we’re eating it, the places to go, the people to hang out with, and if we’re not doing all of these things we’ve failed. Really? There’s so much pressure to have the perfect life that we’re making a rod for our own back by even trying. So I gave up years ago after crumpling in an a heap having given it a good go and finding I am pretty much imperfect so I might just go with it. And actually life is much easier when you go with your own flow. You feel like there’s nothing to compete with, and the only person you owe an explanation to is yourself.
So I won’t be buying a barbour jacket (not sure they come plus size anyway) and hunter wellies. I will still tend my little plot of garden in my bright green shift dress and I will still smile and say hello to every person I meet as if we’re equals. Underneath we’re all the same; a soul with a purpose and sometimes when you feel a bit out of your depth it’s easy to forget that.