I am trying to stay optimistic. Some days are better than others.
Last week was pretty awful but I am hoping it won’t be that bad again. It was a week in which I had business meetings every day, attempted to write numerous proposals, filled out job applications, talked to lawyers, was sick as a dog with a migraine and spent several days sleeping on the floor in the back room, surrounded by boxes, while a guest slept in my bedroom. After the guest left, he complained that ‘your guest room didn’t feel like a guest room and still had all your stuff in it’. It didn’t have ‘all my stuff’, it had a few books. All my stuff was piled in the back room where I was sleeping in conditions that I’ve seen easily surpassed in developing countries. I am not doing that again. It was worth about £40 in the end. If you ask me, it’s a triumph of effort on my part that he didn’t twig that he wasn’t sleeping in a guest room at all, he was sleeping in my bedroom, the contents of which had been evacuated as completely as possible while still leaving *just about* enough space in the back room for me not to have to sleep standing up.
Career opportunities that I have considered in the last week include prostitution. At least the punters go home after an hour and don’t sleep in your bedroom for days at a time while complaining that the room hasn’t been stripped as bare as a prison cell.
There is a tiny sniff of work here and there and this thawed my anxiety just enough that I was able to feel other emotions, and they weren’t particularly good ones. In particular, I was desperately upset that someone I thought was a close friend deliberately concealed from me the fact that he’d emigrated out of the UK six months ago, allowing me to think that he was 5 miles away down the road. Waited until I needed him, then finally revealed what was actually going on.
You really find out who your friends are in these situations. They aren’t who you think. People to whom I am terribly grateful: my loyal and long-suffering mother; my loyal friend C in Yorkshire; my former boss J who has really made a lot of time for me after barely seeing each other for 15 years; M who I briefly dated three years ago and have only occasionally spoken to since but who came over to comfort and help me the moment I needed him; my other friend C who is a doctor, who checks regularly on how I am doing. People in whom I am disappointed: S who lied to me about having left the country; K, who helped me by making a post on Reddit advertising a thing that I need to sell but who cannot make time for a 15 minute phone call or even a text message, despite being more aware than most people of my dire circumstances. I texted him about 3 days ago and said ‘It would be great if you could ask how I am”, but there was silence. I guess people are busy with their own lives.
I have been plagued by nightmares, which robs me of sleep.
Strangers have been kind. I have always believed in the kindness of strangers and they are not letting me down. Thanks to A who came over here two weekends ago, let me cry on him, made some excellent business suggestions, gave me a few good orgasms and bought enough food to keep me alive for a couple of days. I was so grateful for the food and the human comfort. He didn’t owe me anything, we didn’t know each other at all. I just liked his face, he looked clever and kind, and so it turned out that he was and I’m thankful to him for answering the call. Online dating is really something else. I am glad I am so good at it and have so much experience with it that I can use to identify decent, honest people who will help me when I have a problem that’s bigger than just having fun.
The Head Honcho is being kind as well. I have not furnished him with all the details but I told him that my life was hurting me and he was especially nice about it considering that empathy is not really his thing. He even suggested meeting up yesterday. It was a bit short notice and we couldn’t organise it in time but it was a nice offer and we are emailing each other and he is helping me think through some business ideas.
Things I have achieved, because I need to believe that I am getting somewhere:
– I have tried hard to raise work for my business and have a couple of briefs in. There is a big, huge gap between someone sending you a brief and you sending them an invoice, usually because briefs represent mere interest and have nothing to do with actual budget being available, but hey, briefs are briefs. Maybe ONE of them will magically turn into some actual money. Even one job would allow me to pay my tax bills, which are frightening.
– I have applied for some jobs. I had a phone interview that I can’t quite tell how it went, I have another job interview in June and I talked to a recruitment consultant who seemed really professional and has presented my details to a very high profile client with money to burn.
– I have been to numerous meetings in which I’ve sparkled and chatted people up and looked for freelance work. There is a little tiny sniff of work here and there.
– I achieved miracles with respect to making my house resemble a hotel, despite the petty complaints of the guest about a few books.
– Everyone who I’ve spoken to who knows anything about publishing says I’d be an idiot not to get a proposal for my book out to publishers right away, so I made time to write a chapter outline, write part of a sample chapter and start drafting a proposal because fuck it, I’ve got nothing left to lose at this point.
– I changed my broadband, gas and electricity suppliers, which will save a little bit of money.
– I returned my PC to the manufacturer.
– I didn’t die.
I am a bit tearful this morning but I am hoping that I will get over it in due course and then I can take a good look at the World’s Largest To-Do List and make a plan for the day and the coming week. I am trying to keep business meetings down to a bare minimum for the next week or so because I have more proposals and job applications to write.
Wish me luck. I am scared and I am juggling time and money like a circus perfomer but I am still here.
Let’s have some Church. I might have this whole album on continuous loop today, it has always given me strength.
Don’t ask me why I’m motherfucking stressed. Things done changed.
Notorious BIG: Things Done Changed.