Permission to wish. Permission to really, really want something. I find this difficult. I have a superstitious conviction that letting myself really, really want something will alert some contrary-minded force to my desire, and I won’t get it.
It’s a defensive little monster in my mind, promising me that if I manage not to want something then I won’t be disappointed when I don’t get it. It’s first cousin to the Angel in the House (who has been quieter of late, but is still in there somewhere) who sits in my head telling me that whatever it is that I want cannot possibly be as important as whatever it is the other person wants, and that if I get it instead of the other person, it will all go wrong and will all be my fault.
Of course it doesn’t stop me wanting it. I catch myself thinking, ‘well, if I get it, I’ll…’ – or, more dangerously, ‘well, when I get it, I’ll…’ Wear this. Say that. Be able to do the other.
There’s nothing that I can do at this point to make it more or less likely to happen. These little mental tricks will make no difference to the outcome. All I can do is wait.
I tried forgetting about it, but it hasn’t worked. I’m still watching my emails, listening for the letterbox. (There’s a lot to hear from the letterbox at the moment, but it’s mostly Labour and the Lib Dems fighting for this marginal seat.)
Let’s try an experiment. There are ten days left of uncertainty. Let’s try really, really wanting it for those ten days, and risk the disappointment. Truth is, monster, I’ll be disappointed anyway.
Very well, then. I close my eyes and take a deep breath. I wish…
Just for a second, I manage to really, really want it.