I went for a 6 mile walk today. The main purpose of this was training for my Miles for Macmillan walk, which takes place in a week’s time (eep!) But it was also a great way to have a think, about a few decisions I’ve made and new challenges I’ve taken on.
Number 1: I’ve signed up to do a Creative Writing course with the Open University. This was something I was considering before I went on holiday, and after a chat with long-suffering hubby about finances and the time needed to study, I decided to go for it. Some of my family and friends have studied, or are studying, with the OU and highly recommend it. Also, a few writers I know have done the course and enjoyed it. So here I go: back to ‘school’ (as my American friends say. It’s called ‘Uni’ over here, you know). I always swore I would never do this. I last did University-style study over 20 years ago, so it’s going to be interesting… The course starts on 5th October, so you’ll hear more about it soon!
Number 2: With the aim of expanding the work I can do as a driver trainer, I’m going to do the highest civilian driving qualification there is. It’s called the RoSPA Advanced Driving Test – Gold standard. I won’t bore you with the details but basically, you have to drive to the standard detailed in the Police Driver’s Handbook, and the test is conducted by a serving or retired Police Officer. This will ultimately give me more work with companies and qualified drivers. Another challenge and of course, another source of income.
Unfortunately, I had a bit of a wobbly moment this morning, thinking “What have I done? I’ve taken on too much!” After all, I sadly still have one parent ill with cancer and one in a nursing home. I need time to do my current job, see friends and family and of course, hubby. I’m also one of these people who has to have time to themselves, just reading or listening to music. Aarrgh! Anyway, I’m glad I went for my long walk, as I had a good think about how I was going to organise all this stuff. Also, I saw 4 deer running and bouncing very fast through a field, as though they were racing each other, so that cheered me up too.
Ultimately, all this is part of my ‘If not now, when?’ philosophy. I don’t talk much on my blog about my relationship with my parents, as I find it really hard. I have often thought it would be cathartic, but the fact is, I just get really angry when I start doing it, and have to stop typing. Maybe the writing course will help unlock this block? For now, I’ll say this. My mother put her life on hold because my dad was ‘difficult’, and now she is too ill to do the things she always wanted to do: travel, join a choir, go walking all over Scotland, see old friends from her early years in Yorkshire and London. I NEVER want to look back and think “I COULD have done that, but I didn’t”. Hubby has the same philosophy. His dad died when he was just 10 years older than hubby is now. There might not be a ‘later’. So both of us are determined to do as much as we can while we are fit and able.
This whole post has turned out very serious! It wasn’t what I intended to blog about this week at all, but hey ho. I was going to mention the Creative Writing course, but the post was supposed to be more about writing in general. Never mind one’s characters taking off in unexpected directions, my own brain can’t be trusted to stay on course. Ah well, I guess this just needed to be written. Next time, I will try to get back to cats in washing baskets… 😉