Deaf geographies, and other worlds.
Some of you will know that, on the 19th January 2017, my wife moved out to live with someone else. I’d known it was coming for a while and had pretty much come to terms with the situation, but that didn’t make things any easier. I took the decision, at that point, to pull right back on most of my areas of non-crucial interaction. I needed as much energy as I could get for what was going on inside my own head, family and life. Some of us cope and grieve in public, some in private. I’m one of the latter.
At around the same time, we (in the research group) heard that we didn’t get a grant that we’d applied for, and my job as a researcher also came to an end. Without a partner to hold things together while I looked for alternatives I needed to find a job – quickly, locally (since I now share the children with someone who won’t move with me), and well-paid enough to allow me to secure the house on my own! I was offered some part-time academic work, but not enough, and not quickly or long-term enough, so I had to turn it down and spend most of the year stitching a variety of other work together into a more stable contract.
That took most of the year. In the meantime, I had to learn how to live by a new rhythm; in which I was a single parent half the time, and a single person the other half, and work out how – in the midst of that – to fly solo on not only all the normal day to day things, but also school holidays, and summer holidays, and after-school clubs, and birthdays, and Christmas!
And wait… until my head came back into shape, and I found mental space to work out what my expectations and aspirations should be, and then think about how to start working towards them again in very different conditions, and from a very different starting point.
It’s been a year, to the day. And, having had ups and downs, I’m in a much better place than I was last January.
And so I’m taking some small steps to re-engage with some of the things that I gave up a year ago. And one of the things I want to do is start to gently breathe life into this blog.
I’m not quite sure what form it will now take.
If it’s anything like me, it’ll be quite different.