Saturday, August 28, 2010

My winter blues have turned sunshine yellow.

I used to hate winter. Every time the season changed my mood would change with it. I never felt like myself until the cherry blossoms came out and the weather warmed, warming my heart along with it. At the end of last winter I decided I needed to make a change, learn to love all of life, not just the parts that were easy for me. And so this winter I changed my whole outlook on the season. I started venturing out as often as possible, going to cafes or pubs with friends and sitting by fireplaces. I started to take walks and enjoy the feeling of the crisp winter air in the mornings. I watched the season change, and learned to appreciate all of the little things I had never noticed before. The trees becoming bare, and looking so romantic against the sunset. The frost transforming the world, every leaf and blade of grass covered in tiny diamonds.
Now, though it's not my favourite season, I have learned to love winter.
I love the big cozy jackets and jumpers, the tights and boots, the scarves and old 1940's style hats. I love drinking tea or hot chocolate curled up under a million blankets. I love feeling my nose tingle and my cheeks turn pink as I walk gloved hand in gloved hand with Joel. And I love sitting in pubs with friends, drinking cider and watching the rain. Now I can't wait until next winter to do it all again.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

unconditional like isn't always the healthiest option

Lately there has been so much talk about self-esteem. Learning to love yourself. Learning to like yourself. YOU are perfect. And this talk can be good. It can help people who have difficulty accepting themselves. People who hate themselves. And I do agree with it... to some extent. But this talk completely misses another important aspect of life: self improvement. Yes, people should love themselves. Everyone deserves love, you no less than anyone else. But not everyone deserves unconditional like. And that’s the problem. You can like yourself as a whole, that’s healthy. It’s just as important to like yourself as a whole as to love yourself. But you don’t need to like everything about yourself. If you like everything about yourself, then how will you ever grow as a person? How will you ever change? How will you improve your life? How will you improve other’s lives? I am not saying don’t like your imperfections, imperfections can be much more beautiful then perfection. But what about those things about yourself that make you (or others) unhappy? You don’t need to like them. You can look at them and say: ‘I don’t like this about myself, I want to improve’. It doesn’t mean that you need to beat yourself up over it, or hate yourself, or dislike yourself as a person. But there’s nothing wrong with recognising that you’re not entirely the person you have a capability to become.

This doesn’t mean being that person all of the time. No one can do that. If you are, in general, a nice person, then you do something nasty or hurt someone’s feelings, this does not mean that you are a nasty person. But (for example) if you are consistently feeling sorry for yourself and/or ignoring other’s feelings in light of your own, then maybe you can try and improve on that aspect of yourself.

There are aspects of myself that I don’t like. I am not ashamed or guilty about it. I used to be, I used to try so hard to change, then become extremely depressed when I did not act like that person 100% of the time. It felt like I became worse, and messed up more often, when I strived for perfection. So now, I just try to improve on the things about myself that are adversely affecting me. And the people close to me.

And I mess up. More often than I’d like to admit. But I’ve come to accept that it’s ok. I pick myself up, forgive myself, and try my best. I’m not trying to fix everything. I can’t. But I chose the aspects of myself (both consciously and unconsciously) that did make me feel like I didn’t deserve to be liked. And by slowly working on them I am much happier, and have much higher self-esteem, than if I just sat back and believed I was perfect exactly as I was. Because I'd know deep down I wasn't. And I would hate myself for that.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

How I knew he was the one

I have worn makeup for a long time. A LONG TIME. It was the easiest thing to hide behind without..well without actually hiding. Whenever I stayed at a friend's house I would make sure I woke up earlier than them, just so I could brush my hair and put on a full face of makeup and pretend I woke up like that. I could not bare for anyone to see me for how I actually was.
The first time I stayed over at Joel's house I made sure I woke up early so I could hide my face. I woke up and thought about reaching for my bag. Then I changed my mind. I fell asleep again. And when we woke up together I let him see me for me. And he told me I was beautiful.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Rocket Science

I know, I know, 2 posts in one day. But I just had to share all of the many many beautiful reasons why I love the movie Rocket Science:

'That years national debate topic was farming subsidies. And if you don't know how farming subsidies could inspire all this commotion, then you don't know life. And there's nothing that can be said about it. Suitcases end marriages, and farming subsides cause cataclysms.'  

'Can a voice travel from one person to another, like yawning and mono. sure it can. The will to speak traveled that night across the dark new jersey highways, until it arrived on this very block. where it would take up residence, or try to, in someone new.'  

'Do you want to hear your problem? You have no agenda. Strictly head in the ground material. Look at me. Look at me. I wake up every morning and what do I do? I create an agenda for the day, which is a sub-agenda for the month. Which is in itself a pie-slice of my agenda for life.'  

'Resolved, that Hal Hefner should really stop letting the world tell him what's possible and try and figure it out for himself.' 

'Before this, there was the nothingness of Plains-borough New Jersey, but now Hal Hefner suddenly had only one thought. And it felt like all his life his brain had been waiting for this thought. So comfortably now did it fit in, and take up all the room there was.' 

'Hi, do you want to sit down and listen to an old couple work through their marriage through music therapy?'

Ginny: 'Have you ever felt like you could burn the world down?'
Hal: 'Every day' 

'It was like he was pretending. Pretending that it could all be what it was. But it can't. You can only pretend for so long before the forces that be take that away from you. Just like that it took off. And he found himself sprinting. It was ridiculous but he did, he sprinted. You don't let love collapse all around you and not put up a fight. You punch back. Unless you can find someone else to throw the punch for you. Then by all means, do that.'  

'Have i got this right? Your contention is that we should debate as a team. You; an inexperienced kid with a bad and unpredictable stutter. Me; not have debated at all this year and having no knowledge of the resolution. In support of this you basically offer up that you threw a cello through someone's window. It's charming, no doubt.' 

'I swear, I don't know what you'd do without someone in this family who could steal and then organise.'

'Come and visit me sometime if you want, we'll reminisce about this, what it means'  

'Well, ahh, today was not my day, OK? But some day will be. And on that day, you will be sitting at home, alone, at home, and you'll think to yourself..when you're alone, that I knew him when. Him, being me.' 

'Don't you dare go thinking that this was easy for me, or simple. If you think that my feelings on the matter were clear then you'd be underestimating my complexity. And while i see that you don't recognise this now, you actually have me to thank, in part modesty forces me to acknowledge, but in large part for your newfound zest of competition and gamesmanship. That was very clever of you to find ben. Surprisingly clever, and very painful, which means that I upped your game little man. You're welcome.'

*about love: 'Well i guess there comes a point, see when you reach a certain age and.. you're in jersey, or someplace just like it, and you stop trying to figure it all out, you just..are glad for what you have.'
'Eventually all of this would pass, and the memory of it would give way to embellishment, and fantasy and outright distortion, until it was hard for Hal Hefner to remember what he was really like back then, when he still carried in his head the sound of a made-up perfect voice, the voice that could speak it's heart. The voice he used to wish he had. Until the day he stopped wishing he sounded like anyone else, and just started talking as he was.'


I was going to post all about the beautiful wedding I went to yesterday. I went on here with every intention to do so. It was amazingly gorgeous, colourful and happy. But I sure don't feel gorgeous, colourful and happy today, what with this nasty cold I got late yesterday, and so I will save that post for when I am feeling a bit more...human. Instead I will eat avocado on toast, drink tea, and bid you adieu. 

ps. I am watching Rocket Science and I strongly suggest you do too. It is about a boy who learns to accept himself for who he is, imperfections at all. It is very cute. It makes me feel like I'm ok too. Everyone I show this movie to thinks that it is depressing. They think it's sad that the boy will always be imperfect. But isn't that what makes life beautiful?

That years national debate topic was farming subsidies. And if you don't know how farming subsidies could inspire all this commotion, then you don't know life. And there's nothing that can be said about it. Suitcases end marriages, and farming subsides cause cataclysms. - Rocket Science

Friday, August 6, 2010

Sometimes happiness is giving yourself a break. Even if it's from trying to be happy.

Since Christmas last year I have made a concerted to make the most of life. Take chances, do things that I would normally be afraid of (like flying a plane!), say yes to socializing when all I want to do is crawl into bed. This had led to some amazing memories (and some not so amazing awkward ones!). But on the whole saying yes to life has been worth it. However, what with this whole 'seizing the moment' attitude I have been trying on I have started to feel really guilty when I'm not doing something. I have been filling up my days off with lunches, nights out, and using the spare moments in the those days, and my night off, to practice dance and piano.
On Wednesday night I came home after work completely exhausted. I was dreading practicing piano and dance. I was starting to hate the idea of it. So I stopped and looked around at myself, my life. And I realised: I DON'T HAVE ANYTHING TO PROVE. Not to myself, not to anybody. There was nothing wrong with having a lazy day. A lazy few days in fact. It didn't mean I was wasting my life, and it sure didn't say anything about me as a person. And so I grabbed a packet of burger rings, some chocolate, my computer and a book, and I crawled into bed with the electric blanket on and read blogs and my book until I fell asleep at 9:30. And do you know what? I woke up with a bigger smile on my face the next morning than I have in ages.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

the little things that make life grand

Today was a good day.

The sun was shining as only the sun knows how,

The world smelt, felt and looked amazing,

And I made my connecting bus.

That's right.