Worry

Older.

Older. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Older. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

I’m noticing myself getting older.

I keep seeing a metaphor of an old chipped tea pot.

Well loved, functional, stained full of memories, comforting.

There is no getting around time.

I’m not sure if I ever thought there was.

As I get older it becomes clearer that enjoying the spoils of lived life…well what other choice do I have?

To fight is futile. Isn’t it?

The risk of all this “acceptance” is that I subconsciously begin to accept other people’s ideas about what getting older means.

The world has a lot of ideas about all of this that hold no interest for me. But it is easy to start thinking in those frames when they are communicated so clearly and with such strength.

(I know I’m not ‘old’, I know I’m ‘in the middle’, I’m saying older…we all get older every day)

The remedy to all of this is being in this moment.

I am this being, right here, right now.

I can do and say and think the things I can do and say and think right now.

That’s it.

That’s all of it.

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,346

Show your support for Dear Self by becoming a monthly supporter of my work or by buying some stamp money. Your support

Beautiful but damaged.

Beautiful but damaged. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Beautiful but damaged. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

I had a bad dream last night.

A house that was haunted, but beautiful, but damaged.

We wanted to live in it.

Reimagine it.

Reinvent.

Restore it.

I felt frightened that the house was too damaged to regenerate.

But moved into it anyway.

When I woke up, I could feel the house was me.

That the haunted, damaged past was part of the beauty.

I could see that ghosts of events that happened through me are not me.

A kind piano to play,

in the corner,

sings the darkness away.

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,345

Show your support for Dear Self by becoming a monthly supporter of my work or by buying some stamp money. Your support means I can keep doing the things I do to make the world a better place.

The dread worm.

The dread worm. Drawing Luke Hockley.

The dread worm. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

I am holding in my left hand, which is thrust deeply into my left pocket, a sense of something. Weighty and foreboding.

I find that I can, occasionally, open my palm and take my hand out of my pocket and do what needs to be done. But this sense of heaviness remains stagnant in my pocket, nonetheless.

Randomly, more often, I take my hand out of my pocket and look at it. I sense the gross, dull life form squirming inside my clutched fingers. But I don’t seem to be able to will myself to unfurl my fingers and look at it directly.

Not yet.

Generally, it appears about 24 hours before I am able to look at it.

And so, for a day or so, I live with it.

For about a day, or a bit longer, or a bit shorter depending on the circumstances.

Uncomfortable and awkward and uncertain and icky.

When the time has passed, I take my hand from my pocket and stare for a moment at my fingers and then, like a dive into cold water, open them and place the thing on the table in front of me.

A grey, fleshy, smooth skinned worm squirms upon the table.

I can still feel the dread that it emanates seep into my now empty palm, into my pocket, through my bowels and up into my chest and back of throat.

It’s the dread worm.

And I don’t like it.

It wriggles benignly on the table and I look at. Eventually I do what I know needs to be done and I reach out and touch it.

In what is always a surprise, which means it should never be one, I’m taken aback by its response.

This time the surface where I touched it changes from its morbid grey into a late day sunlight orange.

As I continue to touch and get to know it a little better it starts to morph and change shape. It becomes playful. Joyful.

This transformation is rapid.

And accelerates, almost without me noticing.

Soon it has transfigured itself into an entirely different animal.

A new one every time.

In this process there are awkward moments, painful ones even, but also funny and light hearted and inspiring ones.

And soon enough it has run off and become a thing in the world that has little to do with me anymore.

Mostly it’s a good experience, mostly.

And then I wonder, as I watch it run away, I wonder…why don’t I remember this feeling of lightness and relief when the worm first appears clutched inside my hand thrust into my pocket?

How come I can only feel the dread at that moment?

What I would like is to be able to feel the dread worm appear and know, inside my bones, that this too will turn out ok, even if some bits of the experience are less than ideal, in the end I’ll probably have a reasonably good time.

That.

Next time.

I’ll work on that.

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,332

Show your support for Dear Self by becoming a monthly supporter of my work or by buying some stamp money. Your support means I can keep doing the things I do to make the world a better place.

Mean and funny v’s good and generous.

Mean and funny v’s good and generous. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Mean and funny v’s good and generous. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

I have a reasonably quick wit.

When I was younger it would get me into a bit of trouble at times.

Because, for whatever reason, the ‘immediately funny’ view of a situation can often be the mean view of the situation.

So, I’ve learnt to forgo the laugh in order to remain true to my belief that seeing the good, the possible…the generous view of a situation is the kinder, more productive and more appropriate approach to just about everything.

Occasionally I fail at this. Mean and funny out competes good and generous.

Damn it.

I’m sorry about that. I really am.

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,310

Show your support for Dear Self by becoming a monthly supporter of my work or by buying some stamp money. Your support means I can keep doing the things I do to make the world a better place.

I lack perfection.

I lack perfection. Drawing Luke Hockley.

I lack perfection. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

I lack perfection.

I don’t know why this comes as a surprise to me.

Over and over again.

I’ve always lacked perfection.

It’s never been any different.

Would I even like how perfection felt if I did, miraculously, achieve it?

I don’t think I am actually in pursuit of ‘perfection’.

I hand sew things because I love the imperfection of it…but I do try and sew as perfectly as I can…whilst choosing contrasting fabrics and cotton that highlight any imperfections that exist.

Hmmm.

It’s imperfections in my personality that I find the hardest to manage.

I appreciate how my hand sewn imperfections can be endearing…but my quirks of personality?

I find those much harder to highlight and embrace.

Could I, possibly, highlight and embrace all the things that make me imperfect?

It sounds good in theory, but the reality…

I wonder.

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,301

Show your support for Dear Self by becoming a monthly supporter of my work or by buying some stamp money. Your support means I can keep doing the things I do to make the world a better place.

The only way to find out is to ask.

The only way to find out is to ask. Drawing Luke Hockley.

The only way to find out is to ask. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

Sometimes I have imaginary conversations with people in my life.

It’s usually when things haven’t gone well, or I haven’t heard from someone in a long time and I seem to be trying to fill in the gap of what the other person might be thinking.

The problem with these thought experiments is that, even though I’m in charge of both sides of the conversation, I can find myself believing the other person has said or at least thinks the things I have imagined they are thinking or saying.

Of course, none of this is real. I am filling a gap here by making up both sides of the conversation.

The only way to find out what someone is thinking is to ask them.

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,292

Show your support for Dear Self by becoming a monthly supporter of my work or by buying some stamp money. Your support means I can keep doing the things I do to make the world a better place.

I wonder what it is?

I wonder what it is? Drawing Luke Hockley.

I wonder what it is? Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

I’m ready for bed now.

Problem is it is 6am…which is not the ‘ready for bed’ end of the day!

I woke up very early today, which is great…but not really.

I would have rather slept another couple of hours and then I may not have felt like going back to bed when I should be getting up.

I went to sleep ok, that’s a bonus. Progress, even.

But waking up so early tells me there is something on my mind that I’d like to deal with.

I wonder what it is?

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,288

Show your support for Dear Self by becoming a monthly supporter of my work or by buying some stamp money. Your support means I can keep doing the things I do to make the world a better place.

Looking at now.

Looking at now. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Looking at now. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

When things don't work out the way I had imagined it is easy to know what I should have done but not so easy to imagine what I should do next.

I think it is profoundly unhelpful to churn over all the pieces for the sake of churning over all the pieces…but what to do with all that stuff?

Is looking forward even helpful?

Maybe it’s about looking at now?

Maybe that’s all I can do with all that I have done?

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,282

Show your support for Dear Self by becoming a monthly supporter of my work or by buying some stamp money. Your support means I can keep doing the things I do to make the world a better place.

Frightened of buttonholes.

Frightened of buttonholes. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Frightened of buttonholes. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

I’m frightened of doing the buttonholes on the shirt I am making.

They are kind of irreversible.

Once the fabric is cut (which you do as you start making them) then there is no going back.

It feels like I could really stuff this up.

What if I get it wrong and all the hours of sewing this shirt are for nothing?

Ah, that’s interesting.

I’m worried about the outcome…which is the opposite of how I approach making a shirt.

When I make a shirt I’m most interested in the process. I encourage myself to let go of the time it takes me to do make it and how the shirt will look in the end…and just do this step, now.

I find making shirts such an interesting metaphor for my life. I avoid getting things wrong, which means I find finishing things I really care about can be difficult. It’s ok to get things wrong.

Ok, it’s time to make the buttonholes. 

If they don’t work, they don’t work.

At least I will be moving forwards.

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,281

Show your support for Dear Self by becoming a monthly supporter of my work or by buying some stamp money. Your support means I can keep doing the things I do to make the world a better place.

Not on my feet.

Not on my feet. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Not on my feet. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

I am not on my feet.

I feel all disoriented, discombobulated.

I don’t understand how all the bits fit together.

I don’t get how to make sense of it all.

I just don’t get it.

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,275

Show your support for Dear Self by becoming a monthly supporter of my work or by buying some stamp money. Your support means I can keep doing the things I do to make the world a better place.