Identity And Regaining Our Centre / by Laura Kebby

I’ve spent a lot of time this week trying to regain my centre. I think this time of year can be particularly crazy and a lot of tasks get thrown to the wayside. And now here I sit, buried in bookwork thinking ‘what is actually going on, please send help’. What do you do when you feel like you just can’t get on top of anything let alone everything in your life? 

If there’s one thing I am guilty of, it’s retreating. I’m not really sure when I decided that this would be the best way to deal with any or all of my issues, but unfortunately it seems to be a constant at the moment. I will forcibly create a closed and controlled environment, to remove any and all other variables from the equation so I can deal with one task at a time. This is by no means a practical solution, and I am attempting to work on this. But for now, I’ve been searching for solace.

I’ve talked a lot before, about spending time by the ocean, and what it really feels like to connect with a space. I think a part of me will always appreciate the openness. Until one day my Dad told me you can only see 15kms out to the horizon. As a matter of fact, it’s actually a whole lot less than that. But it’s always nice to pretend anyway.

Where are your places of solace? Where do you turn to, to get your centre back? Or more accurately what do you do? I think routine is really important for me in this sense. Returning to the same places, at the same times, to do the same thing.

-       Welsh Blacks for coffee

-       Skate on the break wall

-       Walk. Everywhere

-       Write. Everyday

-       Throw myself into a project

-       Happy Hour

-       Repeat

Routines are more important than we think. A lot of the time, our identity is our routine. The news is full of hate speech and awfulness at the moment. This piece is not really meant to be political, but I think it’s also humanitarian to say that no one person should have the political power to drastically affect the many. “It’s happening so far away though; we don’t need to worry about it”. But we do. Because the thing is, what would we do if we were faced with something similar here? I often wonder what the citizens of Newcastle would do in a similar situation. How would we react to the atrocities of Trump if they were committed by Malcolm Turnbull?

Have you taken the time to consider what it means to be a Novocastrian? Where does that identity lie for you? What is it about Newcastle that’s most important to you? Are there places that you go, people you see, activities that you engage in, that really cement this identity for you? I would really love to hear about them, because I think at the end of the day we can all learn a little bit from each other.

Back a little bit to solace. My true sense of identity is tied to being able to generate and create a place of solace. That controlling my internal environment in order to interact with my external environment is important, and luckily for me, Newcastle is the place where I can really do this. To take a chance to reset, sit back, find some coffee, breathe and get ready to face the world head on.