how i wish i could name drop every so often

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I wish that I knew those starry names

That I could drop into chats with friends

So that they fizz like tablets dropped in water,

Bubbling furiously, as I glow in a crowd

Happy in the knowledge that I

Am the ine that’s connected

The one that is worthy of love.

When I lived in London I very regularly stood next to a celebrity as I ordered a pint in a bar. And because I was drunk, I was never frightened to have a chat. It meant that I could name drop a lot. I loved telling people that I’d sat with Ricky Gervais in my local, or passed Emma Thompson coming out of the toilets. It kind of made me feel special.

Now, I spend every evening in with my cat. I suppose age is the reason, but I can’t be bothered with leaving the sofa.

My friend was telling me how she knows the writer of the book that I’m reading and I did suddenly feel a little sad that I have such a secluded life. Every so often, I feel like I would love to be able to rub shoulders with the rich and famous so I can tell those exciting stories; make me feel special for five minutes.

But then I get home to my crochet blankets and the latest episodes of the Crown – and I think, perhaps not.

Much Love

R xx

feeling that social exhaustion

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The coffee shop buzz still sounds

In my lonely, exhausted head,

The scratching and scraping

Will take some time to soothe,

A couple of days with my books

And my worlds on the TV,

A window outside, the battery recharged

And I can leave once again.

I went out yesterday and I don’t do that very often. I went to a coffee shop and met with a friend and her boyfriend and somebody who I will be working with in my new school when I start in September.

It was lovely and I had a nice coffee and a lovely chat, but it took every last bit of energy to do. And I’m feeling the effects today.

Everything has felt scratchy and I’ve felt like I just want to snap at everybody for nothing. For some reason I’m also ruminating on things that happened years ago and it’s like I’m deliberately trying to make myself angry.

The strange thing is that I don’t have any problems leaving the house to go shopping. Walking around town, amongst the strangers and just people watching is one of my favourite things. My issue is when I’m going to meet someone I know and I’m going to have to talk.

I’m sure there are other people out there who have the same feelings as I do, but it is bloody exhausting. I have to get myself ready to go again next week and so it will all begin again.

Much Love

Rachel xx

to live life like a child

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Wouldn’t it be wonderful to feel

The excitement of seeing your first bird,

A balloon on a string, bobbing along,

Or a field of wild flowers waving at you?

Wouldn’t it be wonderful to feel that magic

In all of the small things we take for granted?

Wouldn’t the world be a wonderful place

If we weren’t all in need of the latest phone,

We didn’t need those clothes with expensive labels,

We just needed hugs and sweetness and kisses?

Wouldn’t that make for a lovely new life

Without dark jealousies weighing us down?

how honest should i be?

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How honest should I be when asked

How do you feel or what do you think?

Do you let it all out in a river of bile

Or hold some back so as not to burn bridges?

Should I get angry, or play it real cool?

The last thing I want is to be made a fool.

I got an exit interview questionnaire today and the questions were basically asking me why I have chosen to leave the school and what the school might be able to do better in the future.

I did smile as I read the questions because I know that the Rachel from five years ago would have had a couple of drinks and filled it out with unfiltered honesty. These days my approach to ‘telling the truth’ is much more reserved as I realise that it’s not helpful to burn every bridge once it’s been crossed just so I can feel like I’ve made my point.

I did tell the truth about the kids though, and I’m glad I did. There are days when I don’t even feel particularly safe leaving my room because the kids are so aggressive and nasty and I think that’s a really sad situation.

And I think that the school probably need to know that there are members of staff feeling that way.

Honesty is nearly always the best policy – but you should probably give a few home truths here and there. Just down burn that bridge down as you go.

Much Love

Rachel xx

just wanting to fade away

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Just to fade into the air

A whisper on the wind before

I’m gone forever

While no one even noticed

I was slipping out of life.

I’ve always had this feeling that I’m not wanted in places and I always feel a bit surprised when people say they do want me to be somewhere, whether that be socially or professionally.

It has always led me to feel like I want to just fade away, and I realise how sad that sounds as I write it. I’ve never wanted to die, but to just fade out in a way that doesn’t draw attention and won’t make a fuss.

I think that was what my drinking was about; a way of being reckless so that I could slowly kill myself off. And then there was a time when I literally wanted to diet my way out of existence and I ended up struggling to walk up a flight of stairs.

I write this because I see lots of kids in school who seem to think in exactly the same way and I hope that they do learn to control these feelings before they reach adulthood.

I still sit at home, wondering whether I should go to parties where I’m sure that I’m unwanted. But at least my behaviour is less dangerous. I just need to find the guts to get out to a Jubilee gathering this weekend.

Much Love

Rachel xx

i froze up again

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Sitting on a sagging sofa,

My body just as deflated, staring

At the blank TV screen

Wishing it could give me answers

To all these questions swirling

Round my head, my arms, my legs

And freezing joints to solid stone.

I know I’ve written about my tendency to freeze before, but it’s been a problem again this weekend and I feel that writing about it is helpful to me, and hopefully to others – because knowing that you are not alone is so important.

I have so many big decisions to make if I get this job on Tuesday and rather than getting on with everything that needs to be done, I have found myself sitting on my sofa, not even watching the telly. I have literally just been staring at the blank screen and playing every possible outcome in my mind.

Some people run and some people fight, but I fall into the freeze category and I just do nothing. It is a horrible feeling to know that you have so much to do and yet you feel like you can barely move.

And it can be quite ‘dangerous’ to try and do things when I’m in this state. I have missed turn offs and gotten lost while driving because I’ve zoned out and I sometimes struggle to follow what people are saying to me as my mind is going so quickly.

I’m calming myself down as best I can, but I just have to accept that whatever happens this week, it’s going to be a bit of an uncomfortable one. Wish me luck.

Much Love

Rachel xx

oh, the awkward conversations

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I used to get so nervous in certain situations that I’d start to struggle to follow conversations and my teeth would chatter as though I was really cold. This hasn’t happened for probably three years – and it happened today.

The application that I filled out yesterday, came good. I received a request to interview this afternoon, but they also contacted my Head of Department for a reference. I really didn’t expect that to happen so quickly and it was a little bit uncomfortable when she came to talk to me.

I was then told that it may be a good idea to go and see the head teacher so that I’m being transparent with everyone. By this time, I was going into panic mode and the teeth were chattering. My friend literally had to walk me up the stairs and give me a pep talk on the landing so that I didn’t faint, be sick or just run away and never come back.

But the point is, I did it. I was brave and the head teacher actually said she rated the fact that I had come straight over to speak to her.

I didn’t need her to say anything positive about me, but it has made me reflect on the changes in my life over the past five years. When you are drinking you are not on the same plane as everyone else and the social and professional mistakes you make can be epic.

Those situations that once were baffling, are still really scary, but I realise I can do them and I come out the other end looking and feeling like a half decent human.

So, really I just wanted to toot my own horn and say that I wore my big girl pants and did something brave. And it felt pretty cool (although I’m emotionally wiped out right now).

Much Love

Rachel xx

the most perfect thread

Like a line of gold thread

Weaving through fabric

The perfect succession

Of hilarious Twitter comments;

The tonic for anything

But a drain on my time.

I just found the most perfect Twitter thread and I was literally crying with laughter. It’s amazing when you spot a little pool of people on the internet, so like yourself that you feel you all need to get together and form your own nation.

If you are interested it’s here. But it’s basically loads of people trying to decide which UK restaurant is the best to have a breakdown in. Given that I spend time at work wondering where is the best place to have a cry (in the cupboard at the far end of the staff room, if you’re interested).

But the fact that people are thinking so carefully about this question like it’s some kind of school project that needs to be answered, is just fabulous.

I won’t ruin your fun and tell you all the answers that people have given but I will tell you that I agree Wagamamas has to be the worst as you have to share a bench with strangers and that’s never fun when you have snot wiped across your face.

Much Love

Rachel xx

hitting the raw nerves

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We don’t even know where they are,

They get touched at the oddest of times,

When a musical note echoes through bones

Or the words in a book bring tears to your eyes.

I find it really strange when something really random sets off the tears and you have no idea why it’s proved to be too much for your nerves.

I went to Disneyland Paris when I was in a bit of a difficult place and the light show set me off, the drums at an Indian wedding and the lyrics to worship song at church. It can seem quite embarrassing but it must be something deep inside that has never been addressed.

I kind of imagine us a bit like those bodies in the Operation Game and when somebody says or does something to hit the metal edges, you can’t help but make a funny noise and give people around you a quick zap.

I just wish there was a little more warning before the buzzer gets set off.

Much Love

Rachel xx

bone achingly tired

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Everyone is talking about me, or so I think.

I can hear their whispers in my tired brain,

Pulling me to pieces, wanting me hurt

And scratching the brain that needs its repair

Like the burgeoning lungs need plentiful air.

When I run 100 milers I get very tired during the night and I find that I’m really susceptible to hallucinations. I once asked a tree for directions and I also once saw a group of people having a hot tub party on the side of a trail.

I don’t know whether this ease at which my brain fills in the gaps when I’m tired is transferable between running and working, but I do find that I get a little bit paranoid when the end of term is coming and my brain is getting tired.

The last few days, I have felt convinced that people are talking about me and that they know my inner feelings and therefore how to pick away at me.

The rational part of my brain wants to believe that it’s a load of crap but there is such a large part of me that’s convinced it’s true.

I know from teacher training, that the greater the cognitive overload the more tired your brain gets. And I’m in my first year, so I’m still learning – and that means this brain ache is inevitable.

I just need to be careful, give myself a bit of self love and then just free wheel into the Easter holidays when I can have all the sleep my heart desires.

Much Love

Rachel xx