I wanted to go around Hastings and talk about the fabulous local art scene and some of the amazing galleries that we have. Sadly I got side-tracked with a new love for my home town and just how beautiful it can and is at times.
Years ago I moved away, an angsty eighteen year old that desperately needed to get out of a situation that was holding no hope for me. Too much booze, too many men, far too many bad decisions. Loitering on a beach with vodka, hazy decisions. I don't remember much from that time, but that was because I was so very rarely sober. I didn't even think to the next week, let alone to where I am now.
Then I ran away, 250 miles to go and pretend I was someone else, an anonymous face in the crowd. I craved it, and the first year I was away I continued to destroy my life, a plethora of psychiatric stays and terrible feelings. Eventually though I began to become a person again, a functioning person. I completed my art degree and began to think about my future. I WANT TO BE AN ARTIST.
I had to come back to Hastings though, and I did so with trepidation. This town held so many bad memories for me, and I felt like I'd left the person I was here, so scared of fitting into that guise on my return. I haven't though, and two years down the line and I am settled in a town I can now see so much good in. I have made beautiful friends again, re-connected with those I thought I'd lost. I'm also becoming a person I want to be, I get to create installations, and enjoy living by the sea.
Yesterday I was lucky enough to go for a walk with one of my best friends, we had a break in the storms to enjoy the sun and warmth. Sitting in the pub on a Sunday afternoon, a few too many drinks but I'm being an adult now, I get to go cook dinner in a bit, everything is exciting.
This town is full of artists, writers, creative people in a variety of different ways, an eclectic mix of young and old, willing to help each other and to learn from each other. I see a whole new side of this town now, because I'm a whole different side of me.
Yes, I will still sometimes get ill, but I'm not trying to destroy myself as much, I don't think the town has changed so much as I have. I remind myself that we have to grow, and sometimes we have to go to that bad place to learn about the good place.
I see a future in art, I see experiences and so much adventure. There is so much to see in the world, and I look forward to it.