I have been trying this evening to think of decisions I have made that are singularly responsible for getting me to the point I am at now.
Clearly being born, the first steps and learning how not to shite my pants were a help, I am sure things would be far different for me now were I to still be wearing a nappy and needed changing every few hours. Actually, I was thinking more of those later decisions in my life which I can pinpoint that had they not happened a whole host of other things could not have happened either.
Learning to drive at 17 was one of them. I consider this to be the first major decision and turning point of my life, no pun intended (no matter how good). Had I not learned to drive then I would not have driven to Basildon and convinced myself that was where I wanted to live. I could not have then dragged my parents there to look at houses and ultimately move in 1981
In 1983 I barely consider it was my decision to begin a relationship with Neil, that just sort of popped up (pun definitely intended). This was to have an impact in my later life because it showed me the part of me I had, until that point, suspected but denied.
In 1985 came the next decision I made alone and that was to start a relationship and get married which we did in 1986. That choice lead to 4 kids. Actually, there is another choice involved in that one which also had a serious impact on where I am now and it is a little obscure because the choice itself was unrelated to the consequence. In 1991 I decided it would be a good idea to go to my Dad’s caravan in Norfolk for the weekend. It was on the way back from that trip that we were involved in quite a serious accident. This accident turned out to be the stick which broke this camels back and I went into quite a deep depression. We were without a car for a very long time indeed and my fighting spirit had gone. When Kris (my ex and then called ‘Lorna’) pushed me for yet another baby I conceded and our Daisy was born. Anyway, that accident left me with 4 children in a small house.
The following decision was in 1995 when I had totally given up ever achieving my objective of getting a larger house in Basildon, they just didn’t exist. I knew I had to look further away and one of those places was Northampton.
Things progressed very quickly and before long we were living in the town.
1995 also saw my decision to put aside some cash and buy my first computer.
In 1998 I made the decision to ‘come out’ and start seriously meeting some gay guys which changed me for certain. I started to become the person I had always imagined I could be and, for the first time in my life, I liked me.
By 2000 I was so ‘Out’ that I and the family (and not a few friends) were on national TV. This was also the turning point in my realisation that my marriage could not continue and I needed a divorce. Many years earlier I had decided that the kids were always going to be with me.
It was the decision to do TV which lead me to have all of us fall victim to homophobia. So serious was it that we had to move house to where we are now.
Indeed, here we ‘are’ now.
So, had I not learnt to drive then I would not have moved and all else which has happened, the people I have loved and lost would never have existed. Amazing when we think about it how one simple decision to better ourselves can have an impact on so many other people.
I would never have met Kris, Jermaine, Matthew, Zoey and Daisy would not exist. It is by no means certain but my Mum may still be alive. I would never have met Neil, Tony, Deej, Nick, Pete, Robin, Martyn, Simon, Ian, Richard and a whole host of others to numerous to mention and by no means diminished because I didn’t type them here. There are guys I know are alive right now because of me who would otherwise not have been had I not learnt to drive all those years ago.
So, anyway, if anyone reading this is thinking about doing something which will make a small difference to their lives, stop thinking about it and do it. Who knows what amazing things will happen just because of that one decision.