April April April, nearly May, may it be May yet?
Well that was April – and yes fine I did quietly pretend that it wasn’t April anymore for about a week, because going online all the time with social media not-all-good autism-related stuff floating around can be energy draining, frustrating and lonely – regularly making posts and putting them onto the internet to the echo chamber of mostly myself was putting me into a cycle of ‘why-am-i-doing-this’ plus exposure anxiety so I had to take a BREAK. but I lasted about 18 days, and returned – and it was good practice because now I think I will be able to post things as and when I want without feeling so afraid because NOTHING HAPPENS – people either see stuff or they don’t, I didn’t dissolve into the ground or burst into flames for posting something about my brain, and I’ll enjoy continuing to write about things as and when I want to without pressuring myself with TheAprilChallenge.
Goodness goodness goodness what did I come here to write about
What have I been doing? The other reason I disappeared from that stuff was because I’ve not really been on the planet-sphere, I went into hibernation, I can’t remember why (I don’t think there was a reason, I think I just got into a cycle of ‘out for two days and in for the rest of the week, out for another day and in for the rest of the next week’). By hibernation I mean not leaving this little room, which apart from for necessary recharging reasons isn’t always good thing because I can spend hours and days within a small space, which is fine until I realise I should be forcing myself out to get food or air etc, but the longer I spend in, the harder it becomes to leave. Very luckily, I have been well the last couple of weeks which meant it wasn’t ‘the world is going to eat me it’s painful to leave so I’m hiding’ kind of anxiety hibernation, more so the ‘hmm yeah I’m just here, in the goblincave, time is being weird, leaving the flat is optional so I guess I’ll stay here’ kind. Oh, and then what happened was I got stuck in my latest obsession-loop, which is one of my modules for my course.
By obsession-loop, I mean I cannot stop thinking about this module, I see everything through the lens of this module – and that doesn’t mean it’s always productive, because I will get stuck on just going over and over and over a tiny thought about it in my head. I want to write about it but it’s actually really difficult because I’m only just realising that not everyone can see and feel this which feels incredibly bizarre – it’s like all this time I have sort of expected everyone to know/be experiencing the last few weeks with me, as me – but everyone has their own planet-spheres in their heads and bodies and souls, it seems weird having to explain. but if I explain here it might help me to write about it, which I have to do tonight, so here we go. For this module I’ve been making a performance piece, an IndoorGoblin one, which at the moment is a combination of music and words and scribbles and fear and I’ll be playing with string because I like playing with string. I have never made a show like this before, so although I feel like I don’t really know what I’m doing, which is so very-terrifying, it so very-exciting to explore and play and see what happens – I don’t ever want to stop making stuff; I feel like I want to be able to climb into the song-spheres/scribble-spheres/whatever-else spheres, and have others climb into them too, as opposed to just standing there playing stuff. I have been spending time in the rehearsal room most days, which is interesting because I’ve spent so much time on my own in this tiny white room and then I go there and spend so much time on my own there in a bigger black room! Hours go by so quickly there, I feel so lucky to have the space to be creative in so I am making the absolute most of it while I can… and I figured out how to get (most of) the tech stuff working on my own which is VERY exciting for me – it took me so much practice of staring at the cable-spaghetti. I never know what’s going to happen when I go in, and something always does happen, and then I change the entire show – I’m constantly nervous because I know I keep changing it, so you’d think I’d keep it the same, but I’m constantly excited because I don’t know what’s going to happen (I think I get confused between the nervous and the excited…) There is just so much stuff I want to make, so much stuff I feel I NEED to make…
Okay, to explain the extent of my obsession with making this show: one thing I get stuck doing is writing out the timings – so I decide on how I’m going to split up the 30 minutes, and I write out the sections, and the timings of each part… and then I time them again and write down the individual timings, and then write them all out in a list again, and then I count all of the individual timings and write a total. and then I count them again. and then I time them individually again, and then I write them out again, and count them, (etc etc etc). This can go on for hours, even without changing anything about it… so when I change something about it, of course I get stuck doing this all over again with different numbers – over, and over, and over.
Another thing I count is days on the calendar until the performance. I’ll look at the calendar grid, and count the squares. Then I’ll count them with my fingers looking at my fingers. Then I’ll count them with my fingers imagining a vertical list of days of the week. Then I’ll look at the booking sheet and count the days there. Then I’ll look through the days and think about what I’ll do on the days leading up to it. and then I’ll go back to the calendar-squares again and count, and repeat the process. This fills me with nervousness-excitement, a kind of fizzy alive energy that feels like it’s going to burst me into space… but it’s not a very productive use of my time, I know that – I just get stuck doing it – sometimes it calms anxiety or helps me remember the existence of time and schedules, but it’s probably unhelpful to be stuck in the cycle for hours.
When I started going in to rehearse on my own, I had to go in every day (or, night) – because I couldn’t do anything else and couldn’t stop craving being in that space (the only reason I have not been there for 3 days is because I’ve been in a forced hibernation – I went into central London for about 3 hours and it honestly drained me as much as I expected it to). I would feel like I’d be in the space for about 30 minutes but about 10 hours would fly by… even writing about this is making me feel a bit sick because I feel like I need to be there right now… it’s a weird yearning, maybe a bit like the feeling when everything’s going wrong and you miss your cat, even though you know they’re fine getting on with their own cat-life/cat-after-life. Maybe it’s because I spend so much time with just me, that I latch onto the outer-places which make me feel safe or which make me feel some sort of purpose. I think that’s normal. I feel like that room knows me, so it’s so strange it being such an open and shared public space – it’s something that can never be mine, yet it’s somewhere I can be in and feel held by it for just a little while. It’s been interesting learning to engage with a space like that and to create in the way that I create in, whilst other people are contributing to the space, and existing as the space.
Trying to continue writing this, or doing anything, whilst thinking about the fact I’m going in to play with my show in about 7 hours is a DifficultCircus, by the way.
I’m sure I had so much I wanted to put here but I can’t think about anything else other than this show, but also I can’t stop thinking about how much I can’t stop thinking about this show, it’s just – it’s like, a spinning spinny thing, like one of those – I’m imagining this merry-go-round thing I went on about 11+ years ago (haha, 11+ makes it sound like an exam), it was a rolypoly-ride – I laughed so much on it that it was painful, it had these tunnel/tube things that you sat in facing someone else and they span round like you were roly-polying, and there were loads of these things on a big disc – and then the thing would spin the other way and I don’t even know why I ended up on this thing or why it was so funny – anyway, it’s like my brain is all of those discs on one big disc and every single tunnel-tube disc is channeled into obsessing about this one, tiny, probably-insignificant-but-at-the-moment-everything-to-me show…
Thanks for joining me in this tiny-telescope-tumbleweed… Here, have some end of March to end of April photos.
Since uploading the photos I realised not only how many other things I did before this show existed (honestly, it feels like it’s been my reality for years but it’s probably only been a couple of weeks). That’s kind of why I started this whole documenting game thing – because it’s so easy to forget so much, yet so quick to trigger those things back with a picture which holds many feelings. I get so absorbed that I forget other things used to exist and that there’ll be other things after that I’ll get absorbed in. Oh – I was typing this and my laptop suddenly yet peacefully died. It’s dead. Or sleeping. Just after I uploaded and deleted loads of photos from my phone, which isn’t ideal… but the ones in this blog post had saved within the draft post which I’m now accessing on my phone… I was just sat here typing on it and it died. These things happen. Impermanence. (Hopefully fixable, though…)