Today I have it all. Theoretically. Today I should feel like the guy who has it all. I’m financially comfortable, my business is successful & I’ve created a name for myself. This week I had a bunch of medical tests & scans which all came back negative. I spent the entire weekend in the arms of a beautiful boy who didn’t want to leave my side. And now I’m on a flight to Miami for a business trip, by that I obviously mean fancy vacation.
Now I don’t know whether I’ve just become extremely jaded, over privileged, or mentally ill, but I feel nothing. I feel empty. I feel like I’m looking at Sam Morris from the outside. He looks like he’s living the dream. Why isn’t he happy? Britney Spears’ lucky starts playing…
But the truth is when I have these rare moments where everything seems to fall into place, I know that like an Etch-O-Sketch, it’ll all be shaken up at the least expecting moment, and I’ll be dealing with those dreaded blues again.
Maybe I’m just a misery, I’m a Morrissey or a Sylvia Plath, but I often struggle to see the joy in life. I always have done. My parents used to drag me around crying in a fairground when I was child because I was too scared to go on any of the rides, they literally used to force me to have fun. ‘You WILL have fun!’ They would say. Now as an adult I feel like I’ve had to take the reigns from my parents, I now have to force MYSELF to have fun.
Am I happy? I ask myself. Are you happy? Others ask me. Not sure, I always answer. What does happiness feel like? If it’s calmness, then yes, I feel calmness when I’m in the arms of someone who is showing me affection & love. If it’s the laughter that I have when I’m with friends, then yes.
But my life is full of extremes. Extreme anxiety when I have a health issue. So when I get an all clear I feel like I can calm down again, but calm in a sense that you’ve just walked off a plane falling out of the sky. So not really calm, but relief from the idea that you’re close to imminent death.
I love in an extreme way. I fall hard and quickly without a crash helmet, and then when it doesn’t work out I’m left totally broken and I feel an emptiness that didn’t exist in me before.
I focus on creating art in an extreme way. I won’t eat if I’m painting or filming. I will plough through work until I feel like its completed, sometimes not eating for a whole day, and then I stand back and either feel slightly accomplished, or disappointed in myself for creating adequate work.
These extreme ups and downs make it really hard for me to understand when I’m ‘happy’. I’ve come to understand that maybe a sense of calmness is happiness. Feeling like you’re not in danger, or you’re safe, maybe this is happiness. We’re just animals after all. Maybe having no perceived threat makes us at our happiest.
Then I think maybe I have life too easy, and I’m a millennial with moany little bitch syndrome. Poor boy has it all and is sad about it. Release him from the shackles of his privilege.
But am I privileged? In the sense that I grew up as a cis white male in London and got a scholarship to a private school, yes. But my parents were working class, we struggled to afford basics when I was a young child, and my father worked very hard to provide for us and to create a comfortable life for his family. As an adult I struggled to find my path, find work. I wasn’t confident enough to find work doing what I was skilled in, I wasn’t talented enough to be given certain opportunities. I wasn’t good looking enough, tall enough, straight enough. And so I had to create something for myself. In a time of extreme financial difficulty where I was relying heavily on my parents in my late twenties. I looked at an opening, an opportunity. My Instagram was going to be the key to my living, it meant that I would have to make some sacrifices, and I’d have to disassociate myself with nudity & sex, but it was a way out, a way out of being poor and hopeless. I could create something different, exciting, sexy. It would give me a living, and a self esteem.
This was 3 years ago. And now here I am. It was a choice, and it’s changed my life forever. I’m proud of my work, but it scares me sometimes. Who is Sam, and who’s is Sam. I wasn’t clever enough to choose a stage name back then. So I’m stuck with the one. That’s scary enough, because that simple thing can make a big difference in differentiating two characters. Sometimes I wonder if the bleeding between the two is what’s causing me this sense of unhappiness. This not knowing, not understanding. Who am I? Who is he? Does he love me? Do I love him?
At the moment I’m on the brink of moving onto something new, because I’m getting itchy feet, in life. I can feel it. I’m not sure what that is yet, but I’m sure all will become clear soon enough. I’m 30 years old now, and if my thirties change me as much as my twenties did then who knows who I’ll be at 40. But hopefully I’ll have a smile.