The Future Freaks Me Out

…A song tattooed on my arm now holds more meaning than ever…

I sit here, alone, on Monday 11 May 2020. I have mostly been in these same four walls for almost seven weeks now. I have struggled my way through this lockdown and am facing my greatest fear, isolation and loneliness, every day. Anxiety has crept back into my life. It moved in with depression to begin with, but now they’ve decided they need more room so are building an extension through me.

I sit here knowing that this Thursday my life changes forever.

Life is a Four-Letter Word is available to everyone worldwide.

I am once again faced with something I said to myself when I started all this. It’s something unwritten. It’s a promise I made to myself. A promise that I’d struggle through and survive to see this book published. A promise that no matter how much pain I’d feel along the way, no matter how arduous and troubling the journey, that I would see this through.

Three days.

Is that when my life ends?

So much of this last year has been about this book. So much of my life is in this book. So much of me IS this book!

It feels that by this book being published and open to everyone that I am somehow waving it goodbye. I talk about the book as ‘a legacy I am happy to leave behind’. I may never have children. That’s a fact I faced during my worst times. This book, at least to me, is that child I’ll never have. I’m now waving it goodbye as it heads off find its own place in life. It’s no longer mine to nurture. I must watch from afar and leave to grow and develop on its own in the wild. It’s a nice image.

My problem is that this book is also me, my life and my story. Am I also waving goodbye to a part of myself? It feels like it at times. Maybe that’s even a good thing in a way. I know I’m not though. It’s still part of me. The past is written. It’s my history. It’s just not my present anymore.

But I made it here, to the present.

I survived this journey; living on borrowed time and stolen moments in a semi-colon existence that almost wasn’t.

I am now looking towards The Future.

I am now looking at life beyond Life is a Four-Letter Word.

And I have no idea what that life looks like at all.

Will it be much the same? Struggle through to write and publish another book that may. Will it be the old? Return to accounting and running businesses. Or will it be something new? A new business. A new venture. Maybe a new city. The possibilities are endless!

I have no idea at all.

The Future Freaks Me Out.

It is equal parts liberating and terrifying!

And that is okay too.

Whilst my future is most certainly uncertain right now, as it is for many of us in the light of Covid-19, I want to take the time to acknowledge all those people who have stood by me over the past few years and who have made Life is a Four-Letter Word possible.

As with much of what I write, I won’t name names. Each of you can speak out if you want, that is your freedom. For now, I just want those people recognised for everything they have done.

To my family; those that didn’t get a choice.

To my oldest friends; those that keep me honest.

To my newest friends; those I never knew I had.

To my best friends; those that keep me here.

Here’s to you!

None of this would be possible without you in my life. You have all played such an important part in me writing and publishing this book.

This isn’t my achievement at all.

This is your achievement.

Andy Salkeld

just another guy

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