Oh Change, have your blessed way with me

If you’d have met me 25 years ago, you’d probably not have recognised me. At 17, I was obese. A childhood of being super-sensitive in a super-normal world and I’d turned to the thing that made me feel OK: food. And I chose lots of it.

I wanted to fit in and I so obviously didn’t. I wanted to be liked, which seemed so hard. I remember looking in the mirror and knowing that deep down, I was not what I saw. But I’d known no different, I’d been the fat girl all my life.

It took a lot of determination to shed half my body weight. In a way it was my making; it gave me the confidence to know that I can do anything I set my mind to.

***

If you’d have met me 15 years ago, you’d have found a young girl who’d apparently made a ‘success’ of her life. I’d lost 140lbs and at 27 I was married, working for Microsoft and driving a BMW. But I’d just swapped chocolate for red wine, cigarettes and shopping. My heart would sink driving into the football-pitch-sized car park to face another week’s work. I knew I had so much more to give.

Changing this one was hard. I turned away from comfort, security, and the lure of money to go after a feeling that I didn’t even know I would find. Support was thin on the ground…every big player in my life thought I was mad. 

***

If you’d have met me 10 years ago you’d have found a 30-something who was starting to feel alive. I’d ended my marriage, left the corporate world, taking a 50% pay cut and a job in a music charity in central London. I thought I was pointing in the right direction, and dreamed of having my own radio show.

But my body stepped in to show me the truth lending me 12 months out of society with a neck injury. Physical pain took me right back to my bones and I emerged from the darkest period of my life a changed woman.

***

If you’d have met me 5 years ago, I’d have shown you a whole new world: My boyfriend, Rob (the ‘unsuitable’ one, who is helping bring me home to myself) the business I’d built online by writing and sharing my story and my new home, Italy. And yet, somewhere in all this, I was doing what I thought I needed to, not following my deepest longings.

During the shake up that was needed to get me to let go of my coaching business and pick up a paintbrush, I felt as if my whole world was crashing down; consciously creating was what helped me build it up again, brick by brick.

***

And 5 years on you meet me now as an artist, a writer, a wife and a mother.

And yet as glorious these things are, I know there’s more.

Following self-fulfilment is like peeling away layers. There is always more.

The bodily pain I’m experiencing once again is here to guide me to the next stage of my life and I’m taking it by the hand.

Because I can feel the new space. It’s soft and feminine. There’s less doing, less ego, less striving. Here, rest is just as important as the act of creating and everything that ‘needs doing’ is way down the list. I’m slow, deliberate and drenched in trust.

I’m not sure how it’s going to happen. It seems far away from where I am now. But I can feel its beating heart desperate to get out.

Oh, Change, have your blessed way with me.

2 Comments
  1. Wonderfully put as always can I just say I feel woman similar to yourself are real trailblazers offering hope and courage to us (me) women who know our truth is out there somewhere , I’m not sure if I will ever find mine but I’m always full of hope x

    1. Thank you for your words, Helen. I feel like I’ve been patching it together for a very long time…each experiment and change being a small but vital part of it. Maybe if I continue, I’ll end with a beautiful quilt! Good luck with your journey. x

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Alison faith Kay

I am an artist
who creates with
foraged nature,
natural pigments &
hand-made paint.

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