I know I am a writer! I have plenty of writings to prove that to myself! Last June ‘A Passion for Shoreham’ was performed over three glorious days and as I stood in the crowd watching the scenes of the stories of the life of Christ acted out before me I had to keep reminding myself that ‘I wrote this!’ I also have a couple of other pieces published in other writer’s books and plenty of writings that I stack up in my files and read at various occasions when they are requested….. so I know I am a writer!
So, what am I doing about it? Why am I not getting on with the process of getting my work ‘out there’ for others to read and appreciate?
I could blame the energy zapping M.E./C.F.S. that is part of my life’s experience, or the ‘busyness of life’ even!….And whilst these details do play their part and it is difficult to find enough time when a chunk of every day has to be spent sleeping so that I have the energy to live, most of all I think I must blame procrastination!!
So, on this day, this May Bank-Holiday in 2014 I am writing my first Post in this new blog and I am making a promise to myself that I will write!!…And I will share my writings with anyone who may care to read them in this blog.
!I would like to write my musings on life here, both poetical and prose.
I want to connect with people out there who may have experienced some of the same or similar, and maybe help make sense of the many complex feelings that arise from anything that happens from the cradle to where we are now in life…..and onwards, to our thoughts feelings and beliefs on the future.
I would like to share in my writings the upbringing of a girl born into a very devout Christian family whose denomination by it’s very title of ‘The Brethren’ was patriarchal to the extreme! On the other hand, my parenting was with a gentle and nervous Father who showed us love but was embarrassed by emotional outbursts of any kind and a Mother who was equally nervous and unsure of herself in the world, but very confident in her role of Mother and definitely ruled in the family!
My childhood years, I remember as secure and safe in the knowledge that as long as we kept the rules, God would look after us and all would be well. My place in the family was as the youngest and I was always referred to by my Mother as her ‘Baby’ which I felt later in life was her way of keeping me in my place! Later, when I began to form my own thoughts and make friends that did not suit my Mother’s unnecessarily snobby tastes, the relationship with both my parents changed and for many years I felt I was totally misunderstood and a misfit in my family unit.
My unusual name Chrystabell, caused me much pain with name calling in my school days. This poem was inspired when I realised in my 40’s that I had a beautiful name and I re-owned it proudly!
Bearing the name.
At infants school it used to be Susan Janet or Sheila who were picked
But never me.
The group that gathered in the corner house
That belonged, it seemed,
Chosen, I thought, for their smallness,
Their dainty feet and hands
So able to manage the tiny cups and saucers that held the tea
That Wendy served.
I was too big.
My hand span, so good for the piano that I did not want to play
But so clumsy with the tea sets made by dolls.
And Mother said that being tall was good
But never told me why.
And no one seemed to share the biggest thing of all,
The name I had been given that made me odd.
And I knew of nobody, in my school or anywhere
Maybe throughout the world
Who had the name of Chrystabell
That surely I bore alone.
At juniors’ the friends were Ann, Elaine and Jenny
For presents they had purses and hair slides with their names.
On holiday we looked and looked in gift shops over Devon
To find a mug or hair slide that may have borne my name.
Rosemary my sister, and even brother Paul
Could have owned a key ring or a mirror
Emblazoned with their title
But for me, the need for special order,
A huge pencil case…in wood…
With pink roses and CHRYSTABELL, in blue.
At senior school the teams were picked
By Linda, Mary, Sandra
But nobody chose Chrystabell
Her name just didn’t fit.
And when it came to needle work and naming in embroidery
The head band for next terms cookery ……
It took me all the year!
So Chrystabell became “Christine” as people found it easier
And “Chrys” to be more friendly,
More acceptable to all.
For years it was my title, and my desire for acceptance
Forced me to shun the name that parents so proudly gave.
Then I grew into myself and owned my name as Chrystabell
Not Christine, Chris or Chrystal but the name I had been given.
Meaning Christ’s beloved one and making me feel special
I resolved to use it and own it without shame.
And I am glad that here in my world of middle adulthood,
Among the Ann’s and Margaret’s there are few who share my name.
And to be unique with a name that causes comment
Makes up for the all the years of rejection from the team!