The following is a long slog of a read, an uphill ride with a headwind. so be prepared for it, dont moan its too long if you want a condensed version just check out the main about me page found here
This is my life and I see it as ending one moment at a time so I plan to waste it very wisely.
My philosophy based on my life so far, is;
- Treat others how you would wish to be treated yourself
- If life isn’t tough its probably boring, no bounce no play
- Listen to everyone’s view because everyone will be right some of the time
- What goes around comes around
- Only after disaster can we be resurrected,
- Only when we have lost everything are we free to do anything,
- Nothing is static, everything is evolving, everything is falling apart and being rebuilt.
- I am not defined by the clothes I wear, my bank account, my house or lack of one, the contents of my wallet, the car I drive, the job I have, the degree I have, the sport I do, the holidays I take, how many people look at me in admiration, my favourite football team, singer of celebrity. I am purely a product of everything that has happened to me, everyone I have met and every emotion I have felt.
- This is my life one day I will die, I want to go to the grave with a well used body with scars and breaks that remind me of actually living, not a pristine specimen.
- Regardless of what happens in life, its important to continue to trust people, until they prove themselves untrustworthy. Fool, me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.
- Be honest to yourself, give yourself credit where its due, learning to love oneself or even liking oneself may be the most important lesson to learn from life.
For the sake of those that don’t me or friends that are not so close, please understand that I often struggle with things, some people will sometimes think I am unusually guarded and often can be viewed as a little odd, this can and has been frustrating for people around me, for which I would like to take the opportunity to apologise for. For years family and friends have been left in the dark as to the reasons why sometimes I don’t turn up to things, why I don’t answer the phone or get in contact, why sometimes I have disappeared for considerable periods and wanted to just be alone.
I have come to realise now that this behaviour is largely the consequence of the dark demons I have to carried around. I have always kept these demons tightly held in fear of being judged as being gay or a potential abuser myself or ridiculed by people who know. I lived in fear virtually my entire life with no one to share my thoughts or demons with, at times the pressure and need to constantly be guarding my thoughts, feeling and things I say has been unbearable. I have escaped my demons by isolating myself in remote places, sometimes with close friends, I have drank too much, was dependant on solvents and recreational drugs, undertook high risk sports, physically self harmed, thrown myself into main stream Christianity and organised religion (different from faith), put all my faith in a higher being, became addicted to weight training and exercise, was driven in my career chasing countless qualification, put myself in mental hospital and was sectioned, undergone electric shock therapies, tried countless streams of prescribed drugs and undertook countless other attempts to try and rid the thoughts or feeling of un worth. All of which I now see as a form of self abuse to either hurt myself or take my mind off the real problem, like putting a plaster on a bullet wound as one person used as an analogy. Unfortunately none have been lasting and generally only last as long as I am actually doing the thing, when it comes to day to day living, they have been waiting for me when I awake and followed me around all day like a perpetual stalker.
I have always preferred to be outdoors than in, this may well be a result a deep desire as a child to escape the abusive and toxic environment of home, camping in tents for weeks and months on end rather than deal with the crap that came from being indoors. I had always wanted to escape, to be away from anyone that I perceive to be a threat. I developed and expanded on skills to enable me to escape, to be self sufficient with only what I can carry on my back and ultimately be safe, over the years I have further extended these skills to be fairly competent surviving with minimal equipment, in the mountains, forests, moorland, rivers, lakes and the sea environments.
Along the way I have found enjoyment and indeed pure escapism from my demons in many forms of getting around, using feet and hands mountaineering and remote trekking, mountain biking, white water and touring kayaking, canoeing, white water rafting, paragliding, climbing to a competent level that I and have been fortunate enough to become an instructor or coach in many of them, having taken training, examinations and tests at some point whilst on a qualification quest.
Nothing I have done leaves me feeling accomplished though. I have been dreaming for many years of doing an adventure in which I feel that I will consequently feel like I have achieved something worthwhile in my life, a self-challenge of discovery.
So right up there on top of my bucket list is spending a reasonable amount of time in South America given my love for wild camping, mountain biking, adventure and remote mountain ranges the idea to undertake this adventure was born, bike packing in the Andes and remote deserts of Chile and Argentina.
I had planned to commence this adventure earlier in the year, I had no work commitments, no responsibilities that held me here, but like most plans men make the gods laughed and threw a chocolate spanner in the works, this time in the form of a woman, our intense relationship was like a meteor, shone brightly across the sky, causing a beautiful spectacle before burning out and ultimately crashing hard.
A week or so after the collapse of this relationship in a period of being particularly low with how my life had indeed been pretty crap up to now and was once again proving to be shite, I began writing to a cyclist whom was travelling around the world, inspired and touched by his story on why he was undertaking the challenge I began to describe the sequence of my life’s events that had led me to want to undertake a similar challenge. As I began to write about the things that had happened to me, things I had kept a secret and had only ever discussed with partners who I trusted and loved, psychologists and therapists, I mentally collapsed. I felt very alone with all of these thoughts, burdened by the weight of them all, overwhelmed by the pressure of holding them all in and keeping them a secret from even the closest of my friends and family. They felt like a stain, a disability, a disease, a foul smell, a monkey on my back, I wanted rid of, I wanted to throw off, I had been convinced that my demons and thought processes as a result of my past were the cause of the recent relationship failure, I had, had enough, something needed to change.
In a moment of pure irrational impulsive behaviour, like I have never experienced before I posted everything I was writing to the cyclists, on Facebook informing everyone what had happened in the past. I wanted nothing more than to rid myself of this shitty weight I carried and say screw it, let the chips fall where they may, I had hated myself for what I had allowed and how I had let that destroy so much of my life, relationships, jobs, opportunities everything, how I had hurt myself and worse unintentionally hurt people who I loved and loved me, I could never tell them why that was the case and that stung. I figured the only way to be free of my disabling fears, ones that have stopped me living a normal life, experiencing things people take for granted, like love, freedom, self respect, self like and most importantly piece, was to share them, face them and move on.
Posting what I did on Facebook was not so good, I struggled to see anyone afterwards, the thing that I had hidden for so long and so well, I thought, at least, was now out there, for all to see, I couldn’t hide it anymore if I tried. The down side to my spill is a new irrational thought process, in that in some way makes me less,’ manly’ and therefore less desirable to woman, I also irrational think that some people may even be concerned to have me around children, in the fear the abused becomes the abuser, I’m not of course, nor am I gay, I love kids and although I am still somewhat uncomfortable around male gays. I now understand that there is a world of difference between someone who is gay and someone who is a paedophile, sorry guys, I labelled you all the same all my life.
Given that I once again find myself fortunately in a position of having no work commitments or anyone relying on me I think the time appropriate to stop looking for happiness and contentment here, and go do an amazing adventure on two wheels over some of the highest mountain passes, driest deserts and most remote places in the world and maybe even beat to death these demons I carry and ultimately build self confidence and self esteem through acheivement.
…………………….more coming soon.
Peace, Jules xx