“I love to sew. But you would never know that from my CV, those two pretentious sides of A4 that glorify my past work experiences to reveal a shinier me. Mine is filled with occupational clichés, it outlines my paralegal services in a rather well-written manner (if I say so myself).
Less visible on my current CV is my love of designing and making clothes.
In fact, this passion has now been forced into the three lines of ‘hobbies’ that I quickly shoved in above my references to make myself seem ‘versatile.’
But I’m not really. Not anymore. I just don’t have the time to be.
The consequences of ‘adulting’ have been steadily decreasing my creativity since college, the time when I got my first taste of stress.
I always tell myself that the pressure of A levels forced me to pick revision over recreation, but really I was just afraid of failure. I was afraid that prioritisation meant excluding anything remotely enjoyable during exam season, even Facebook, but even before the pressure of exams set in, I began to side-line my artistic interests.
If I’m honest, it probably began at my first interview for St Dominic’s Sixth Form College. There I received frank and restrictive advice:
“Remember students, you must choose the subjects that are necessary to get on to you preferred degree course,” the advisor droned, and of course – I listened.
Just what I needed to become a lawyer. My time constraints ensured I dropped design.
For the most part I found these A Levels to be fascinating subjects, but except for English they didn’t satisfy my soul. They filled me with new knowledge, facts and studies, however, I was often left longing for the sewing machine – even the lightness of a poet’s pen.
It worsened in university. I couldn’t see beyond my role as a law student – so much so that I could no longer see myself.
My happy, eccentric self that loves to walk around barefoot on the wet grass reciting poems and feel fabrics on my cheek.
And then I read the biography of one of my heroes – Amy Ashwood Garvey – a Pan-African feminist.. Her bold determination to defy gender and societal roles inspired me to write.
So now I do.
I write technical legal stuff and poems. And for the first time in years, I sewed a bag. It would be nothing special to a seamstress, but it was a work of art to me.”