“When you love what you have, you have everything you need”

A well know quote from a well-known Pinterest page! Don’t ask me the author or even when it was written however it’s a quote that’s stuck into my mind the past year or so. I used to say this to myself religiously every morning as I would wake up and every evening before going to sleep but I’m not sure who I was trying to fool. I had conditioned myself into believing that what I had in my life was good, healthy and successful. Love what you have Timmie, there are so many out there who would give anything for a fraction of what I have in my life! Of course, that’s true, but did I REALLY love what I had?

Like everyone, I glided my way through my twenties full of hope and promise and ambition but with very little maturity. One minute I wanted to be a television presenter, the next minute I wanted to become an actor, then it was a dream to get married then I just simply wanted to be famous. All these ideas of myself I tried to create into who I was without actually knowing who I was myself. I guess that’s youth. I went from job to job and although putting a great deal of energy into each career, I was never truly 100% focused. I always thought..What if! What if I stay here in this place for more than one year, will I be missing out? What if I stay with this person any longer, will I miss my place with someone else? What if what if what if! The what ifs were killing me when I should have just faced to myself and asked, what if you find out who you really are? What if you find something that brings a passion out in you instead of just going from pillar to post and with no end objective?

I had come out as gay to a very welcoming and open family so there was never an issue with acceptance. I never had the bad story to tell. I was never bullied. I was never picked on. I was never made feel different, I was always quite popular. I was one of the lucky ones. I had even gone public and came out to a local newspaper by doing an interview in a bid to help others and I went onto compete in Mr Gay Ireland. Coming out was never an issue for me. Where the issue lied, was where I was going in life and who was I going to spend my life with.

The sad thing about society is that we are made believe that unless you find a partner, buy a house and have children, you have never really made it, despite how successful you are. I began to realise this in my thirties and more so the past two years. I desperately looked for someone, I tried everything, I even tried going on TV on a dating show to disastrous results! I needed someone to tell me who I was, I desperately sought out validation from men. I watched my close friends walk up the aisle and have children and although happy for them, I was hurting inside. I was hurting because they had what I always wanted. They now had peace, acceptance and a happy ending. My happy ending seemed so far off. I was paying high rent, no savings, still going out every weekend and knocking the door down on every opportunity that would come my way to give me some sort of validation, even though I hadn’t a clue what that was. It was all just one big show and I was the main star. I always knew my friends loved me at parties and on nights out as I was always the centre of attention, the funny one, the one everyone loved but deep down I just wanted what they wanted. I always had a natural style about myself, however, dressing over the top or as little possible around men for attention seemed to be the route I was rapidly going down.

Men came and went through my life but many didn’t stick around for long. I was beginning to feel that whenever I met a friend, the focus of the conversation was my love life. One man did break my heart in two as I had felt that this was possibly my happy ending but it was not meant to be and looking back, I was selfish putting that pressure on someone. That’s when it all clicked! I needed to make my OWN happiness. I was working in an excellent job that I loved and modelling was really beginning to take off for me. My married friends had their own focus now and everyone around me was settling down. It was my responsibility to find my own happiness and stop following other people’s paths. It was time to drop the bravado and be a real man.

At this stage, I was drinking heavily. I was living alone and although completely refusing to believe that I was lonely and in the middle of a toxic environment, I drank my thoughts away. When I was drunk, I didn’t have to think about all those around me who had found their happy endings. I had scared myself briefly in my twenties with alcohol drinking excessively and sought help but never fully followed through as I put this down to just being young and stupid, I also didn’t want to give up drink as I didn’t want to take myself out of my social circle, heaven forbid that I was going to be alone in my thoughts for once! My life had gotten somewhat out of control in the last year as my modelling work began to flood through. I said yes to everything. This I don’t regret, it got me to where I am today. I needed to break my back to get in the door and it had worked. I was signed with an agency in Dublin and in Cork within 6 months of really focussing on my modelling career, I had produced work that some models would take years to make. It was all just flying for me. There was also great success in my day job and I was running one of the top beauty stores on Grafton Street that was achieving regular awards and recognition. I seemed to have it all. Everything except what I wanted! Happiness.

It didn’t take long to realise that I was surrounded by fake people. As my senses grew, so did my art for seeing through people. Finally, my clouded vision through life was becoming clear. I knew what I needed to do. I needed to move home. I needed to break away from all the madness that was swirling around me. When we had the big snow in March, I felt incredibly alone. I was back single and trapped in my apartment but completely cut off from the outside world or so I told myself, I just didn’t have anyone to share the silence with. Things had to change. I injured myself badly around this time when I was drunk and I then went to work in London for a few months. This period was all just a haze as I worked and struggled to heal my body and also took on regular modelling work. I was completely and utterly exhausted through every bone of my body.

I moved out of Dublin in September and returned to Clare. It has been the best decision I have ever made in my entire life. I finally found happiness with a circle of genuine people around me. I was terrified when I moved. I hadn’t lived at home in over 15 years but my experiences living away and trying to make something of myself have all opened my eyes to what truly matters and that’s being with family and being happy inside. None of us need someone else to validate us or to give us a happy ending, you are your own happy ending! I’m not working at the minute as I needed time to heal and be with my own thoughts and figure out where I’m going. I will return to the workplace very soon. I honestly feel like I’ve started my life over again. I’m back living with my mother, something I would have never been able to do when I was younger as I was still searching and creating myself. I feel I have come full circle and being around places and people I grew up with is incredibly refreshing. I smile every day at the people of Clare when I see their warmth and friendliness towards one another and towards me. It feels almost like everyone here has found what they’re looking for.

Never ever be afraid of going back to where you once started, your wealth of knowledge and life experiences will allow you to view the once small places into a huge door that’s opening in a new direction (and no I did not get that one of Pinterest!)

There is a direction for everyone once you see the path in front of you

T

2 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *