After finishing a major project on Friday, I felt a sense of loss and a huge hole in my life. Ten-plus years in the making, I had always found a way to extend the identity project in some way, always found another idea to expand. Enough is enough, and any more would be a descent into the stroking of my own ego. Now is a good time to let go!
The completion of this project was a time for reflection. When people asked me five years ago where I would be now, I wouldn’t have ever dreamed that I would be here, with this collection of new theory and creations; my personal story has expanded in a way that I would have never thought possible.
In a more abstract way, and one that isn’t immediate visible to people who have known me a while, I have changed as a person. The tangible products of ‘An Autobiography of Health’ are a Ph.D., a published book, book chapters and papers four novels and several related websites. In some ways I have taken the direct knowledge that I have filtered for granted, part of something that was always there in society but my task was to shape it into a way that brought new understanding.
However, the tangents of knowledge that have led outwards, like sunbeams burning a path through clouds and lighting up, have punctuated my experience and made my life different. Because they are an intangible way of living it is difficult to explain in language exactly what they are, but they are encased in the labels of quantum physics, postmodernism and social construction. I feel like I know the world better (whether I do or not is a different matter, but I have shaped my own experience and made sense) and I am thankful for that.
So now, the question of where I want to be in five years time? While I have a set of plans that I will try to carry out, I understand that I might be disappointed by not reaching some of my goals. But I also try to understand that these disappointments often turn to triumphs when, later, I find that they were blessings in disguise. In five years time I would like to be still writing, still painting, still growing flowers and vegetables, still cooking good food, still thinking about the intricacies of life and writing them down.
I always said that if one person (apart from me) benefited from my work on identity, then I will be happy. It remains to be seen if people will like the book, but I know that everything I do for the rest of my life will be coloured and shaded in the knowledge I have gained from other people who have shared it. So, AAOH is done, and it’s on to ‘Project: ME!’. Five years? I’ve got a feeling it will take the rest of my life…