I have always felt life is a circus. Not just my life, but the lives of others, the lives of everyone. A dramatic pantomime, struggling to find the chord between success and failure, laughter and sorrow, hate and love. Too extrovert and you’re labelled, too introvert and you aren’t even label worthy. A circus should be a happy place full of smiling faces, enthusiastic performances and astonishing wonders. And most of the time it is. But just as with life- with its attention grabbing, enjoyable and colourful performances- it has a dark underbelly, a shameful, sordid reality that we desperately push beneath the surface. Small groups of activists will pull it to the fore, enticing and daring you to check in with reality. Subtle participation from animal rights workers remind us of the true impact, sorrowful eyes of underpaid workers scratch at our morals and yet we swallow it down, mask it with laughter, blend in with the masses.
I am at a transitional point in my journey, considering my stance, my abilities, my ambition. And I can visualise myself as part of the grand circus of life. Not as a performer, I have always been too withdrawn for that, shying away from the spotlight. But a participant in the crowd. Watching and cheering, enjoying it for what it’s worth on the surface. And now my stance is shifting. No longer content to remain one of the masses, I am stepping forward into my true comfort zone, the real me. In the circus, I am the silent activist- appreciative of the joy and entertainment the circus brings, happy to partake in laughter and fun but quietly embracing the sorrow, the reality, the cruelty of the show. I do not intend to transform into an ardent and outspoken activist for that would also be untrue to myself, but to stand my ground and vocalise my thoughts, my worries, my joys. The real me. I will stand, my own two feet supporting me, and I will sit again and rejoin the crowds satisfied in the knowledge that what I do is mine, and mine alone.