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At the beginning of this challenge, I had a very Romantic image of what my day-to-day would look like. Perched on a bench at my local park, legs crossed ever so slightly to indicate I am in fact a ~writer~ as I scribble away in my notebook, ideas pouring out of me, roused by the very beauty of nature that stood before me! The sun would shine down, providing me with the perfect mixture of helpful illumination and inspiration – what a wonderful time it would be!
As you can imagine, the reality was very different, as it often is for writers.
My anxiety prevented me from going to the park, since I felt it would be too overwhelming of an experience. Not only that, but why would I take out my notebook to write, when everyone would be looking at me? And, well, we all know how UK weather is...
I think, part of me felt that if I were to push myself to walk to the park (which is about 15-20 mins one way), I would be setting myself up for failure. Disappointed and defeated, I may return home never wanting to go outside again.
However, that day my parents had decided to go for a walk and were taking the car. Point #1 – walking – eliminated. What excuse did I have? I had to push myself, and so I went.
My parents left me to sit by a tree whilst they did a round of the park. Not exactly the bench of my writing dreams, but it would do.
I’ve always loved trees. When I was little, I would strain my neck to look up at the tallest tree on my school’s field, and marvelled at how something could grow so big, when I was so small. I’m still very small, coming in at 4’11 (don’t judge).
But, out in the park alone, I couldn’t enjoy this tree. I looking down, acutely aware of everything happening around me: my jeans were becoming wetter due to the slightly damp grass beneath me, a group of teenagers opposite me were laughing loudly, two wasps darted in and out of my eyeline trying to attack me (I HATE WASPS!). Unfortunately, the latter of my expectations had been met; I was over-stimulated and unable to concentrate.
My attention was pulled in and out of my writing, and my inability to focus got so bad I couldn’t finish the poem I was writing and began writing another poem based on a conversation I was hearing. By the time my parents came to take me back home, I had not written much of substance.
Though, there was one positive, as there always is.
I had begun writing, I had begun the process of thinking about a poem, which meant the wheels were turning in my brain. Today, I was able to finish that poem so I hope you enjoy it – it has been sitting in my head, patiently waiting to come out for a while! ❤️