It’s typical isn’t it, as soon as the school holidays start the rain shows up. After weeks of glorious sunshine to rival the Med, the crap Scottish summer stumbles into the party like the drunk dude at 5am when everyone’s asleep or gone home. My eldest kid finished up for the holidays a week ago and yes, it feels like an eternity already. By the end of week one I had some serious PTSD and flashbacks to the dreaded lockdowns of 2020. In a time when bread and milk are as valuable as gold, holiday clubs have been restricted to just one this year so there’s a lot of hanging about the house and good old-fashioned boredom on the cards for my little cherub. Cue the endless requests for snacks and a chorus of “I’ve got nothing to do” when sitting in what could be mistaken for an aisle of Smyths.
Oh such fun times all round, and that’s all before I pack my nuclear family into a Volvo, drive for hours, endure a ferry and land in the Emerald Isle for a “break”. Don’t get me wrong, I am seriously looking forward to a change of scene, okay, okay so it’s more a change of accent than an actual change of scene but still, we have to get on a boat to get there so that counts, right? And it means two weeks away from the computer which cannot be a bad thing. I am especially relishing the thought of reading a book. Remember when I told you about the one book I read last year – ‘Face It’, a memoir by Debbie Harry when I was on a solo trip to Sofia in Bulgaria to see a pal and play a gig, oh take me back... Well this year, I can’t wait to get down to my local library and go through the ritual of choosing a book and checking it out and taking it home and …. letting it sit on my beside until I get a notification that it’s overdue and I owe them twenty gazillion pounds when I eventually take it back. However, this year I am hopeful I may even get to read the introduction because we are going on holiday with my folks which means for at least ten minutes in the holiday I may even get to sit still and speed-read what my book is about. That’s pretty much how life works with kids these days.
The break can’t come soon enough though, it’s been a busy six months to say the least. Since January I have been releasing singles from my forthcoming album and boy is that a ride! Four singles in and festival gig later, I am jiggered. It’s only now I’m sitting down to reflect a bit and I’m not entirely sure how I have managed it. I do get asked a lot “how do you do it all?” and I have a terrible habit of shrugging it off and saying something like “oh I’m not sure, I must be crazy!” or something to that effect. Truth is, I worked really hard and gave up a lot of time and energy to make it happen. What a sexy answer. I spent many, many evenings, after the kids were in bed, in my garage/office/studio and worked things out as I went. I made mistakes, cried a lot, even threw some stuff, but then played to a crowd of thousands (in my head, also known as rehearsing) and Kept. On. Going. Am I proud of what I’ve achieved so far, of course I am! Is it worth all the aggro? 100% Am I shit-scared that I’m doing it all wrong, yup. Imposter syndrome is a bitch. But what I have learned on this weird, rollercoaster of a ride is to keep showing up, keep making an arse of it (and myself) in the hope that one day, it all clicks into place.
In September I release the album. Part of me is incredibly excited and nervous about it and part of me is on the verge of chickening out entirely and going back to my day-job (fyi I still work part-time in admin, can’t seem to shake an excel spreadsheet!) But you know what, every time I get a message or a comment, a like or share or an inkling that someone, somewhere is enjoying my music – that is what keeps me going. I write from my heart in the hope it connects with someone else and when it does, I'm all in.