Today Mark and I spent an hour with a solicitor signing papers, and that left such a bad taste in my mouth that I went home to shower and listen to some uplifting music. Thing is, dad once suggested that Mark and I get a prenuptial agreement, and Mark latched onto that right away, and insisted that we go. We were supposed to do this ages ago, but we didn’t until today.

Idealis-RealismSo, in the eventuality that things go wrong in a few years time, and we split up, my stupid money is safe in the bank. Whatever is added to it after we get married is mine, and only mine. And of course, what is already there is mine alone.

The rational grown-up part of me thinks that it is wise. Maybe there will be a future where we will fall out so badly that it’s unbelievable now, and maybe there will be a time when my feelings are completely reversed. Maybe then I would appreciate this day, and the “wisdom of it”. But I also think it’s like building in a fail-device. The romantic in me thinks that we’re being crass and defeatist.

Mark of course is of the opinion that whatever we do together is ours. He thinks that whatever we’ll have only will have worth if we do it together.

What is done is done, I suppose. What don’t we do to keep the peace, eh? What don’t we do to keep the little comforts away from danger so that when it matters you have an easy way out instead of staying and fighting for that which is right and proper? I think I need another shower.

***

litanyoffearThe mind and expectation can be a prison. It can be as much of a prison as a bunker with iron bars across the windows and a huge padlock on the door. You can sit down in the bunker and think that you’re fine, that you’re safe, that you’re living the good life. But it’s still a prison, for which you have been conditioned.

I like Plato’s the allegory of the cave. I’m not arrogant enough to think that I’m the one who was released, and who has been allowed to walk around outside the cave to see the real colours, the real shapes, the real life. But I think the allegory is true, and the people in the mental prison of expectation and habit are the people who sit staring at the shadows on the cave wall thinking that all there is. At least, I permit myself to think, I know it’s just shadows.

The chief architect of our prison is ourselves, and our fears. Next to me on the cork-board we have, there’s a print-out of a rhyme from Frank Herbert’s “Dune”. The shallow interpretation says that it is a ward, and incantation, to stop myself from falling back into what I was when I was twelve: a delinquent, angry and hostile loud-mouth that masked a deep fear with attitude and aggression. Personal history I haven’t told, because I’m ashamed of it and because I want that part of my life to be over, says that

But, I think that over the years it has acquired a whole new meaning. It is a meaning that can be applied to a wider chunk of life in order to prevent the mental prison of habit and conditioning. Why am I over-thinking all the time? To second-guess myself so I don’t become again what I nearly was. Why am I obsessing over details? Because of this.

And in an ironic twist, I’ve constructed a mental prison of over-thinking and reasoning that often prevent me doing things, and which I have to push myself to overcome: become a singer, go to England, marry at eighteen. I’ve spent so much time thinking of reason not to do any of those things, laying awake at night chasing the slippery tails of the thoughts to no end. It’s time to break out and do, not just think. It’s time, once again, to stumble into the light, out of the cave.

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