Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Being crazy.

I always thought a man should have a dream, to dig himself out when he hit the floor.’ 
– Martyn Joseph, 'People Crazy As Me'.

People Crazy As Me - Martyn Joseph

In my darkest times, one thing has helped me to pull myself up again: my dreams. There are a few things I want to do before I die and, if I give in, cash in my chips, call it a day, those dreams will never get done.

But what happens if you try to achieve your dream, and fail? Or, what if you achieve it and it’s not enough?

I wanted to write a novel. It was my big ‘goal’ and I’ve done it. But I guess I was kidding myself: it turns out my real goal was to be a paid writer and, in that, I’ve failed. My novel has been rejected by pretty much every agent I could find to send it to over the course of the last eight months. I’ve received praise from colleagues for my work but there’s no hope, really, that it will ever find its way to the printing press.

It’s a bigger disappointment than I thought it would be and, coupled with the disappointment of still not being able to move back to my 'home', it's tough to take.

Martyn Joseph sings a song I’ve turned to in the past: ‘People Crazy As Me.’ Its opening line is what I felt in those dark times. As I listen to the song again now, I hear a message of a better way to live, a way to make this world better, and it’s not rocket science; it’s a simple message anyone can live.

I need to adjust my goals, again, and there’s a danger I’ll have to reduce them, to minimize them until they’re no longer recognisable as my dreams anymore, just to make them achievable.

But Mr Joseph never says the dream has to be attainable. (In any case, I’m still breathing; the dream isn’t unattainable yet.) I think of another song: ‘Dignity’ by Deacon Blue (I'll warn you now, it's quite '80s!) or, indeed, one I wrote myself: ‘I Want To Be An Astronaut’.

In recent years, I’ve often said I want to make this world a better place, to improve each moment, even if it’s only in some small way. I think I need to get back to that somehow: to write stories just because someone, somewhere, might enjoy it; to sing songs and record albums just because one person might find some hope or entertainment in the lyrics. To live each moment to the best of my ability so others might benefit from my talents, whether in writing, administration, or just through a listening ear.

And, sometimes, I see people as crazy as me.

I wonder if you’re one of them…?

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