“I’ve had an idea!” the mothership usually recoils when I say this, she rolls her eyes, sighs and lights a fag ready for my next crazy adventure! The thing is my mum is used to this and as much as the words fill her with dread she also knows that really there’s no stopping me. I can understand her worry, my “I’ve got an ideas” have usually been followed with trips half way across the world with a visa and backpack in tow, a cement mixer and spirit level, circular saw and tool belt, a full tank of petrol and google maps or a extensive reading list, strict word count and wine glass! I’ve always had a habit of getting an idea and rolling with it.
I say always, I went through a phase of losing a sense of this adventure, this sense of spontaneity and confidence. I lost the part of me that jumped on a plane with a few dollars and a passport, a rough plan and not a soul that I knew, and repeated this on several occasions. It was fun, I was safe (apart from the time I slept on a bench in Central Park but I neglected to tell mum that for sometime…) and I had a ball! I’ve always been a bit impulsive, in my professional life and personal, I get ideas and I just go with them, sometimes a bit like a bull in china shop… But like I said I lost a lot of it for sometime, not completely, I did still study my masters whilst moving house, getting married and having a baby (literally writing 12,000 words sat on a birthing ball) I did still have small doses of it and make some bold career moves but I lost mainly the confidence and urge to stick to my guns and follow my “got an ideas” through. For a time they just remained as ideas, intentions. But I’m not just an intention person, I’m a doer, I’m not my dad, I’m not I were gonna.
More recently I’ve been building this going with gut back up and as many of you will know, a lot of it came back after landscaping my garden and building a patio. There’s also been other things, because you see I shoot my mouth off with these wild ideas and then next find myself with a good friend, knee deep in mud, trying to hurl ourselves over a rotating giant snickers bar in a tough mudder race, wondering why the hell no one stopped me when I started on another one of my bloody “ideas!” It’s fun though having this sense of me back, I’m suddenly throwing myself into things that I stopped doing, saying to myself and anyone close by, “what’s the worst that can happen?” and seriously what is the worst that can happen?
Ok so my latest things such as laying flooring and building a garden have involved power tools and large amounts of caustic building mixes (I know for experience that you should wear gloves) but I’ve been careful-ok apart from the lack of gloves when cement mixing but it was THAT bad. I’ve watched tutorials and asked for help and advice off of friends and as my best friend always says to me, “what’s the worst that can happen? It goes wrong and you either fix it or put it back how it was! There’s always a solution” which is true, albeit some maybe expensive solutions it’s always fixable. Plus he bought me a handy Girl’s Can Do DIY book for Christmas so I can turn to it when things go pear shaped!
I think I just like that I’m going for it now because it’s the worry and fear of something that’s the hardest part. That’s the bit that holds you back, that’s the bit that stops you from doing something, not the actual carrying out of the task or event. Take today, my first attempt and measuring, sawing, angling and fixing together floorboards, took my forever or even really get started, I went back over the things I’d read and watched, talked it through with the mothership, made her watch me, made her double check stuff, then finally laid the first strip (of boards you filthy lot). Once that row was done, I was cooking on gas, I was able to get in a rhythm and cut, click and lay down rows at a time. I just needed to start, I’d done the prep work.
The thing is, I’ve now got the bug and I’m having lots of grand ideas for my house, ideas that I thought I need a fortune to put into fruition but actually are now becoming a reality…even if my mum panics at my next crazy arse suggestion! She does actually also love it, she encourages it and gets fully involved, even if it’s just to laugh at me whilst on the phone to National Gasworks (that’s whole other story). We make quite the DIY team, although I don’t think she’ll be jumping on a plane to go back packing with me anytime soon!
Which gives me another idea…oh come on what’s the worst that could happen?