Big School

It’s the opposite of being packed off to boarding school because you fell in love with the milkman’s daughter (the most beautiful girl in County Wicklow) and brought shame to the family for writing stories about the happy times ye both would have in the hills away from the gossips and the judges. It’s not like that at all. There’s no need to sew my name in my knickers for a start, and no one is dictating what I wear and how. Finally getting to Big School makes the centre of my belly flutter like wings and there’s a catch in my throat might mean my throat chakra is out of alignment again, or maybe it means I’m not expressing my needs clearly enough, but either way, this isn’t even like being packed off to England to train as a nurse.

Maybe it’s the lack of a uniform has me confuddled and a bit on edge. I could make one for myself.What sort of a uniform should a grown woman wear to University? NO, I can’t have a uniform, it implies an iron and I have an allergy to irons. There definitely is some sort of emotion struggling to make itself known.The problem is is that emotions and I don’t really know each other very well. It happens with badly abused and neglected kids, we learned to shut off emotions pretty young and as adults have a struggle identifying how we truly feel or what we need.

I know I need books. There’s a large pile of them here.I have fondled them, skimmed them, smelled them. I’ve read a few lines from each. And of course, it’s AL Kennedy has given me the blog notion, to document the next writing journey. The books came from all sorts of places. I put a call out on Facebook, with an Amazon Wish List. This was not my idea. This was Lucy Conway’s idea. I didn’t want to touch Amazon, I wanted to see what folk had on their shelves that they did not need. But I have to say a huge thank you to Lucy, yes, I got all the books I need to read before I start Big School. There’s another list for when I actually begin.

If it’s not the clothes and it’s not the books, then what has me all a dither these past days?

It could be the travel and accomodation. I do need the ad-hoc couch or polytunnel or bit of forest to crash safely in, and be held by the unseen forces of love and protection I know this world offers me.

Maybe it’s that. 

Or maybe I am just really really really excited. I’ll have to consult my crystal to figure out what’s going on.

Or maybe it’s nothing to do with Big School at all, and it’s all because I am pretty sure I just found my real father. 

I wanted to something big and grown up and all for me, in a creatively wonderful way. I wanted to study the art of story and poem and novel and style and flair. But all my life I’ve felt not good enough, less than equal to the girls with Daddies who pay for Uni and driving lessons. I’ve always felt inferior to the girls who went on family holidays or whose parents came to stay for a weekend.

I may be going to Big School in order to be equal to my half-sisters. What does the crystal say? No, the crystal says that’s wrong, it’s not that.

Maybe it’s because of the privileged white men who like to try and bully me, right here in my lane, while they are taking out their bins and yelling that I have a pile of wood in my garden. Yes, I do have a pile of wood in my garden, ready for chopping and yes, two men do not like my pile of wood and instead shout and scream at me about it. The pile of wood is not in their way. They seem to simply want to bully me. I never know what to say. I stand there with my mouth open, staring a bit. Maybe when I’m a rich and famous author of queer fiction or a creative writing professor, I can be as equal and as entitled and as privileged as them and then I’ll know what to say to the funny little bullies who desire my attention over stupid things. 

No, it’s not that. That’s not what’s making my stomach blip and turn. 

Maybe it’s excitement. I’ve wanted to go to Uni since all my friends from school in Wicklow did. That’s thirty years ago. It was not an option then. My Ma told me, over and over, I would never make it, that I’d be lucky if I ever got a job cleaning toilets, that I was of no use to this world. Yes, that’s it. It’s excitement. It’s not even proving the mammy wrong. It is genuine fuzzballs of adventure, like a new galaxy inside of me can be nurtured into opening up and revealing all the twinkling dancing shining lights I know live inside of me. 

No need to sew my name in my knickers, or shut off my heart, or try and be something I’m not. 

I’m going to Big School on my terms, to do what I always wanted and you lot who are holding my hand and nudging me onwards are gonna stay right here, right?

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1 Response to Big School

  1. innerlight111 says:

    Enjoy my darling Orla
    You are deserving xx

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