Zone oo patterns & observations

2011 Observations Area of Life Service Historical Patterns Dedicated ‘activist’ from young age, started animal rights group aged 10. Long-term history of community organising, resistance & agitation. These interests have always dominated my life & been the focus of my energy. Fear of delegation from experience of people not doing what they'll say, general lack of trust in others. Maybe slight control streak! Basing self worth on how much community organising I am doing, therefore being very busy = happy Nicole (doing lots so its ok). Have often had to work hard to maintain a living wage e.g. paperounds as a child, working in a pub to pay for bus fayre to do AR, working at positive news and then when on bail full time in care work. Had numerous months of extremely low levels of income, some debt and state benefits. Positive Developed networks already locally. Reclaim the Fields totally snowballing at present! Lots of positive feedback from others. I've learnt what I really love: organising for change, writing, designing, connecting with people, being on the land & what I'm good at: organising, writing, documentation, 'getting things done', maintaining focus & vision Negative Questioning effectiveness & purpose regularly. Not animal orientated or radical in approach. License conditions! Often feel disillusioned with work I’m engaged with, questioning if it is ‘enough’ and how I can be more effective. Interesting No matter what job I get, what income it brings, or however many events I attend that are full of well educated, influential people, I am recalled over and over to my radical roots. I cannot loose hold of this vision.


Learnt more about myself & my focuses (see livelihood section). Was successful in getting well-paid part time job with Somerset Community Food! Getting closer to establishing Brook End as learning centre.

Don’t like ‘consultant’/expert mentality, designing just for rich people. Questioned roles in permaculture: e.g. as a social movement Organiser v design consultant, empowering people through popular education, community development etc. Continuously questioning permaculture’s relationship to social change. Cabin is still not moved & it feels a long way off until I can use the space commercially. Challenging extra layer in my time management. Some elements have pushed me to near burn out. Not enough time to learn & explore all that I wish! Organising work took over, didn’t do many rituals or celebrations for the solstices. No dedicated plant connection work. No other dedicated pagan learning e.g. history, improving skills.



Relationships Intimate

Relationships – Family

Found school environment repressive but always did well in exams & enjoyed the actual learning. Past experiences of open university & distance learning courses. My mum was always interested in different faiths & spiritual paths, which exposed me to diversity. Camps & alternative living brought me connections to paganism. Have been practicing craftwork since aged 13. Spirituality has also been a repressed element of my personality when engaging with others. All engaging passion affects romantic & family relationships as social change work takes priority. Relationship patterns: fear of commitment, don't want to hurt partners through me going to prison or letting them down, fear of rejection that if I did go to prison I would be cheated on, fear of hurting people I love through dedication & passion to animal liberation & social change, knowing they can never be number 1 in my life. Busy & full timetable can understandably intimidate & frustrate partners. Parents divorced at young age, brought up by my Mum. Very close to her & my sister. Regular though distant contact with other members of the family but are growing closer.

Started Diploma in Applied Permaculture Design Started with Gaia University! Massive learning curves & empowerment. Learnt about learning styles for myself. Living in Glastonbury with vibrant local pagan community. Amazing connection to the land at Brook End. Have done some celebrations & workings on the solstices. Oak Dragon camp took me deeper into my heart & spiritual self. Met Nerida! Have embraced the relationship & worked through my fears, feel deeply happy & fulfilled. Brings wholeness to my life, giving me the edge of play that I really needed. Feel healed from prison experiences, that I’ve let go of hurt & am slowly embracing forgiveness.

Don’t want to get involved in other projects until Brook End site is developed. Learnt that my role as a herbalist is that of a grower, kind cultivator and sharer of DIY herbal living I don't want to do designs for farmers or smallholders with animals, don't even want to be part of this world indirectly, these are oppressive systems Gaining new awareness about my learning styles e.g. kinesthetic, visual-spatial & logical are dominant No matter how much of a reductionist scientific angle I use through my design work, I still fall back on my intimate relationships with the land and my self. Didn’t realize how lovely it was until it’s happened!

Worked through some difficult emotions regarding my attitudes to relationships & my license conditions, through people hurting me in prison and so forth. Only element of new relationship I have struggled with is spending more time in the city & away from the land. However with effective communication this has now been explored & designed around (more balance). Contact between Dad & I could be greater. Miss my sister a lot & she is now engaged so I know she won’t be living in UK as much. Busy-ness has meant I haven’t been to see grandparents as much as I would have liked.

All fears of living back with my Mum & Step dad have dispelled, really harmonious & welcoming environment, better than I could have imagined. More regular skypes & email contact with my sister & have been able to spend more quality time with grandparents compared to when in prison. Dad, little brother & step mum visited in Summer. Also had great visit with my Uncle.

Still healing work needed around my relationships with my Mum’s partners, inner fears still surface occasionally.

© Nicole Vosper, Wild Heart Permaculture 2012


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