At first it always feels like
Coming home from someplace
Still I pull up short
Already a million miles away again
Don’t know why I hesitate
[I could fall apart]
Emotions they’re breaking
Over me like waves
Pull me under, push you away
Take my breath away, ‘way, ‘way
Come up clean anyway
[I don’t know how
You get to me like you do
Now I’m coming undone
It’s a sure thing (I could fall apart)
Tell me that I’m right
I could fall
But I'm far from a sure thing ]
Staring at the light now
Enough to make me believe
These memories, no where near
They’re killin me, killin me
Light em up anyway
[I don’t know how
You get to me like you do
Now I’m coming undone
It’s a sure thing (I could fall apart)
Tell me that I’m right
I could fall
But I'm far from a sure thing ]
A million miles away
I’m coming undone
It's a sure thing
Tell me that I’m right
It's a sure thing
I’m writing to tell you that I see you.
It’s possible you wouldn’t care in the least bit if you knew. It’s also possible this message will seek you out in a moment of need.
Either way I hope you come to know that YOU are not invisible to me.
I think about you and wonder who you might be, what you must be thinking and where you are headed. Sometimes you are an elderly woman waiting for the bus as I speed by to catch the light. At other times you are a child walking with a back pack miles away from the nearest school. We never cross paths (at least that I’m aware of), I never get to acknowledge your presence with a smile or even ask you what your name is.
But you choosing to BE has a magnificent impact on me. Even if only for a few moments at a time. For those moments I am truly thankful for you.
You see, you being you makes me wonder and wonder is the catalyst of life. You give my life context with the juxtaposition of your circumstance next to mine. You help me connect to myself and the grand design.
With that said, I hope these words find you when you need them most.
Reflecting on 2018 I asked myself what I was most proud of last year. Looking around in my mind I couldn’t find anything substantially rooted in the material that reflected an obvious accomplishment or even a token of some goal achieved (cuz umm honestly last year was not my year for goal setting, ya feelin me…) Anyway, the most beautiful answer came to me despite the nuclear panic in my mind. A little voice was brave enough to speak up and say, “I am proud of the friendships I have allowed myself to curate”.
I thought to myself “Damn girl! That’s some real depth! Good for you! That is so true!” Ha!
Although, some of these friendships have come and gone with the seasons (totally okay and normal). I think some are meant to be that way. Some have lasted a couple of decades and continue to grow. But the ones that matter most, no matter the time span, are in-explainable and leave a lasting impression.
It’s cheesy I know. But I don’t care. It’s the good stuff in life! Literally Gouda is one of my fav’s (hehe). Seriously though it can be really easy to dismiss quiet accomplishments that are not written in bold in your obituary, like getting that house or college degree, but they are just as important. Actually, I think the quiet little victories are more important but what do I know. lol
Keep your chin up darlings!
Today is January 1st, 2019 and I don’t feel anything like they say you are suppose to on this day…
I don’t feel like I’m filled with hope or positivity. In fact I feel the opposite. I feel hopeless and a whole lot of anger. Hopeless to my current circumstance and angry at myself for feeling this way on this day dedicated to new beginnings! Angry that I’m here. Angry that I’m not better even in this moment. Angry that I don’t feel like giving to those around me. Angry that I’m mad at them for not being there for me the way I want them to. Angry that I’m still needing the external validation despite knowing better. Angry that I’m taking this life for granted in this moment. I am just so angry for being HERE.
I felt moved to share these not so festive feelings so that those of you that are feeling the same way know you are not alone. Maybe these words will bring an unexpected comfort to a stranger half way around the world or maybe even to my neighbor next door masked in anonymity. I know putting them out there has somehow transformed the feelings inside me just now. Brought me an inch closer to feeling peace in the raging storm of my mind.
Just don’t give up on yourself. Not this year. Not today. Not yet. You are not alone.
I really do believe that I AM an optimist at heart. However, sometimes it gets really hard (like really hard) for me to remember that. Especially lately. And I know I’m not the only one.
You know that feeling you get when you pull yourself out of the dumps? It’s a pretty good feeling right! Do you also remember giving yourself a celebratory pep talk that went something like, ” I will never let myself come to a time like this again!” Fast forward a few years and here you are again in a similar circumstance and a similar mindset. Now your back to the bottom of Sisyphus’ hill.
Well my friend I’m here to tell you it is A-Okay! I mean I know it doesn’t feel like that, but that’s kind of the point. Let me explain.
After years of scolding myself for letting myself get down, I recently realized something. Contrary to popular advice of pushing through, sucking it up, and essentially ignoring my feelings because they were just a form of weakness that I needed to push through like a cross fit work out: I have arrived at the conclusion that it is OKAY to FEEL sad. In fact it’s more than okay, it’s actually probably helpful and maybe even necessary. I know, I know. You are probably thinking “what gives lady? How is being sad helpful? Clearly you must be abusing Valium or have never really experienced a crap life circumstance.” While neither of those are true… I understand the knee jerk, eye roll response. I had the same reaction. But hear me out.
As annoying and debilitating as the emotion of “sadness” is, don’t you think it too deserves a silver lining? Think about it. What purpose does sadness serve? I don’t believe that it is some perfunctory creation of our biology or consciousness. Everything in nature and its very design (which we are a part of) is amazingly efficient and highly organizational. Meaning that every thing and being and all of their cells have an efficient purpose and function. So why would our biology be any different? Assuming that emotions arise from biochemicals, why would they be an exception to the rule? And even if emotions aren’t created biologically, but rather come from some other part of us that we are not able to yet measure, they still function within our physical-ness (…biology). My point is we are not an exception to the highly organized and efficient nature of nature. See what I did there eh eh… Anyway my point is that we are not above it all. We too are nature. And somehow we as a species have forgotten and/or may have been actively fighting this fact. But why?
You see it takes way too much energy to produce emotions for me to believe sadness is just this storm of nonsensical neural activity driven solely by potentiality based on a meaningless influx of neurotransmitters generated by chance reactionary circumstances. Yeah.
What if our emotions, good and bad, are the equivalent to one of our other senses and not just residual from a reactionary process. Acting as feelers for when we are in alignment with what we essentially want to create and experience. For example, we use our other senses to help us navigate the world to either move towards or away from what we perceive to be good/bad, pleasant/unpleasant, safe/unsafe experiences. So perhaps our emotional states serve the same purpose and then some, creating a bridge between the physical and the inner mushy place(aka. soul, inner being, energy).
Now I’m examining sadness specifically, although I do suppose our many other emotions would serve us in the same way as well, but sadness is a quirky little feeling. People mostly find it annoying and it kind of gets neglected on the list of emotions to be grateful for. But what if it’s just misunderstood. What if it’s purpose is to let us know when we are creating or trending toward an overall emotional state that we may not be in alignment with. What if sadness isn’t so much a reaction to an event we just experienced but rather a reaction to the emotional reaction we feel to said event… still with me?
Let me break it down. Say for example you have a goal to lose X amount of weight before a tropical vacay because you plan on feeling fabulous in that super cute bikini that has been stalking you on IG. But then all of a sudden you feel like time decided to slingshot you to a week before the trip and you are no more fit then you were at the start. You start to feel uneasy, anxious, and maybe even resentful toward yourself for not having the will to get it together like you said you would…and now you feel sad. You think you feel sad because you’re not going to look like that IG model did in that bikini or because you essentially failed to meet a goal you had set for yourself. But what if the sadness was actually being generated in response to the negative self-talk and negativity you are creating for yourself in that moment. What if that is your inner beings way of telling you, “Hey! We are starting to go down a path that we don’t want to. A path far away from the truth”. And the truth is you are fabulous and you have a choice to feel amazing in that bikini regardless of how much you weigh. The truth is you are already whole perfect and complete and now you are forgetting that… and perhaps that is why you are feeling sad now. Because you are out of sync with that little inner voice that is a relentless cheerleader for all things made of rainbows,glitter, and cotton candy clouds.
What if we stopped fretting about the inevitable negative emotions, like sadness that we WILL experience, and embrace them instead as a hint or sometimes strong nudge trying to point us in the right direction. And by embracing them we can stop running from them. We can start recognizing the power behind them and learn how to utilize it to move forward instead of getting stuck in a ditch that we keep digging deeper. And if we stop for a second, then maybe we can collect our thoughts for a moment, that may just lead to a foot hold that we can use to pull ourselves out. And then maybe,just maybe we can start feeling better much sooner.
Now I do recognize there are major life events such as the loss of a loved one or a major tragedy that hits us out of no where. And naturally we feel sad at those times. How does this theory of sadness fit in here? Honestly, I am not entirely sure. Mostly because it’s hard to wrap this up in a neat explanation in the face of a tragedy and the ungodly things that people face everyday. So for now I will humbly say I don’t know. And that’s okay. Because really no one knows. We are all just trying to figure it out using our feelings mostly because logic kind of floats away when it comes to comprehending the big why’s in life. No one really has the rules or the answers to this game.
I realize this may sound overly simplified. However, it’s worth a shot trying on a new perspective even if all the details aren’t figured out ahead of time. Maybe somethings can only be revealed to us by the perspective we gain from participation and not from the sidelines.
Either way it’s an interesting thought.
” The campaign is aimed at encouraging women to challenge the belief that destiny is set at birth. The #INeverExpire campaign sheds light on the fact that age-related pressure impacts women everywhere.” – SK-II
I just learned about the #INeverExpire campaign by SK-II the other day while flipping through my IG account. However, its been going on for a year now since the campaigns initial launch in Asia with a short film titled The Expiry Date. The campaign showcases the impact many women feel from age related pressures. Specifically it highlights the societal expiration-date of age 30 placed on women. This “expiration date” eludes to numerous implications of what a women is and isn’t, should and shouldn’t be by the age of 30.
As a woman in her 30’s I can completely relate to this.
Growing up around my immediate family I was the eldest (female) amongst my baby brother and our cousins. Although being the oldest had its perks it also came with a lot of pressure. I had to be the first to break through parental blocks on curfews, attending sleep overs, and parties. As an adult that pressure translated to having to be the first to stand up against expectations of choosing a specific career path, accomplishing higher education degrees in a specific time frame, and the biggest one of them all… getting married by a specific age.Well lets just say I broke those expectations and the hearts of family members cringing at my so called failures.
But I didn’t care. This was my life and I was going to do it my way.
I have always done things at my own pace and to be honest I have struggled to keep up with the average timeline that people tend to stick to mostly because it never appealed to me and I thought it was a pile of S#!% 🙂 . You know the drill: graduate with a bachelors by age 21, meet someone and get married by age 25 and have 1.5 kids, own a home by age 30. I never felt the need to set goals based on an age related timeline. I didn’t understand why these societal goals needed to be tied down to any age at all to begin with. I have always done things on my own time and in my own way despite the pressure from various social circles. I have always followed my heart over checklists. Yes, I have struggled because of some of my choices but then again who hasn’t? I refuse to contribute to the notion that life goals and milestones are more meaningful if accomplished by a certain age. There is no expiration date for hopes and dreams and most certainly not for living your life…well except for death…maybe even then… I digress…
Anyway, it’s nice to see a brand like SK-II use their social platforms to bring dialogues like these into the mainstream light. Not only are they addressing real issues but they are helping to set a new president for brands in the beauty industry. Yes the beauty industry is based on superficiality but it seems that brands like SK-II are beginning to understand that you don’t need to degrade women into a cookie cutter package of worthiness and beauty to appeal to them. Finally!
I mean I might actually consider splurging some serious dough for a product of theirs compared to the next guy because of this marketing move. It’s kind of a win win. A win for them and a win for the voice inside every woman that believes she can and should live her life however she sees fit, regardless of her age.
Friend: I really appreciate your friendship with all my “wrongs”.
Reply: We all have “wrongs”. Continue reading message if you’re in the mood for a positive rant… lol
It’s easy to get carried away feeling guilty when we aren’t operating at our best or when we fail at something. But the good news is each of us has a choice to try to move towards or away from the person we want to be every minute of everyday. And ALL of us fail and succeed at that every day. And we all have our own unique battles. And no one battle is better than the other. B/C it’s all subjective if that makes sense. And the battles we fight don’t define who we are and or our worthiness of friendship/love/and compassion. Neither do the things that happen to us b/c of the choices we make. So basically what I’m saying is keep your chin up and lover yourself and believe in yourself matter what! You will fail over and over, but you will also grow each time if you let yourself. Don’t waste your time being mad/upset/sorry for yourself (I know easier said than done cuz I do this shit all the time 😛 #workingonit). Those feelings don’t serve you. You can have the support of an army but it won’t do a damn thing for you if you don’t love yourself and believe in yourself. There is no reason to believe that you aren’t a powerful badass being. You just have to allow yourself to be 🙂
…end rant. &hearts ♥️
First let’s break it down.
L – Law
O – Of
A – Attraction
Due to the recent mass popularization of the topic by movies such as “The Secret”, the idea of what exactly LOA is has become a bit muddled and reduced to some magical process in which you just declare what you want to the universe and “BAM!” it’s there. Then again it is kind of magical by nature because we really don’t know at this point how to explain the powers at be behind this mystical process. Nor do we have a way to qualify any evidence in favor of it. So I am going to take a stab at explaining it from the perspective of someone who is open to the concept and looking to explore it.
What: The Law Of Attraction is basically the principle that like attracts like. However, it is referring to vibrational frequencies in terms of energy. Furthermore the vibrational frequencies relate specifically to emotions and feelings which in turn translate to our realities that we experience everyday… Wait Whaaaat! Yeah I know. Let me try again. Basically what I’m trying to say is that according to LOA you attract into your life and to yourself experiences that match the emotional frequency you are vibrating at. These emotional frequencies are activated by thoughts and beliefs that we choose to engage with on a day-to-day basis. Thoughts = Emotion = Create Our Reality. Or maybe its Emotion = Thoughts= Create Our Reality. Um that’s kind of a psychological chicken and egg situation that I really don’t want to get into here. You are welcome haha. But basically we create our realities based on the vibrations we practice and engage with errrday.
For example, if you feel and believe you are healthy, then in theory you would be attracting experiences that reflect the feeling and state of being healthy. If you feel and believe your life is filled with financial abundance then you most likely will attract experiences that reflect that state of being and continue to attract more experiences that yield financial abundance. Conversely the opposite is also true. If you feel you are lacking prosperity then you will be activating that vibration and therefore attracting more of the same into your experience. The key words here are believe and feel.
That’s basically all I’ve got right now and as far as my understanding of the topic goes. But I’m eager to explore this subject matter further and can’t wait to see what I discover. I think I’d like to give it a shot and a journey I would like to share with you all. So lets see how this goes shall we 🙂
Peace, Love, and Namaste,
Please know I love you to the moon and back. Where do I begin. You have been a strange wonder to me since the first moment I held you. I remember looking at your face and into your eyes and thinking ,”What are you going to be like when you grow up? What will you create? Will you be nice? Will you like me?”. My relationship with you is a unique one. And I am sure that it is like non other that I have ever known before or will come to know on my journey here. We have shared a mother, a father, a family, a micro-community that created experiences that have collectively defined each of us.
I know I haven’t always been the best sister. And if I ever did anything that left a permanent scar on your heart I am sorry. I am even more sorry for the ones I can’t apologize for b/c I am unaware of them. Perhaps one of the hardest things to come to terms with when you are in a position of someone looking up to you is that your best will inevitably fall short of their expectations. In some shape or form you will fail them because they will either outgrow you or surpass you. You most likely would agree that disappointment is the natural product of holding any expectation. lol. But I do want you to know that I have always tried to do my best to be a good sister. I try because you matter a great deal to me.
I know my love is tough at times. However, it is not without a great deal of thought and always with the best of intentions. At times I know you feel like I don’t get you. Just know that, even in the face of our many disagreements, I see you. You may not think that is true at times. But it is true whether you like it or not haha. I love you so much. And I see your beautiful little soul every time I look at you, the same one I saw when I first held you. You are my baby brother: A beautiful gift from the universe that I with out a doubt am constantly learning from. Thank you for choosing to be here.
The most important thing I have to say to you is I LOVE YOU. I’m not sure that you believe this or recognize it as the truth. But it is. Everything else below is just noise. Noise that matters. But still noise.
We have a complicated relationship… or at least it is in my mind. Im sure you find it frustrating too. I know it is very possible that I’m not the daughter you had hoped I would turn out to be. Mainly I feel like I am this huge disappointment to you. But to live my life the way you see fit would not be a life worth living to me. Not that the things you want for me are terrible and I’m not upset at you for wanting these things either. But it just so happens they are just not as appealing to me and I wish my preferences didn’t upset you either. But they do. And thats where the resistance comes from between us.
I like ME. My life is messy, yes its frustrating, but I understand how I got where I am. Could I have made things easier on myself by choosing different things at different times along the way in the past. Probably. But I take ownership of this messy life that I call mine. It’s not perfect. Im not perfect. And I’m ok with that. Im ok with not being a doctor. Im ok with not settling down at 25 and having 2 babies already. Im ok with still pursuing my dream job and being in school as a result of it; even though my piers have all the things mentioned above and are “on track”. Im trying to create my happiness. I realize that the way Im going about living my life could possibly be the biggest fuck up ever and I could wake up one day realizing what an idiot I was. And you are always telling me this is the case. But I am really hoping I get to prove you wrong. For both of our sakes. Because I know at the end of the day all you really want is for me to be accomplished and taken care of. And so do I. We just don’t agree on what those things look like or how I should get there.
I would love more than anything for you to adore the person I am. And I’m sure nothing would make you prouder than having me look up to you as a dad and as a person. We had that when I was younger. I miss my dad that used to be my buddy that would play with me in the park when I was 5. But somewhere, somehow things changes between us; not exactly sure when it happened. But since then we have been like two pieces of drift wood cut from the same tree, separated by a fork in a river, uncontrollably floating farther and farther apart. It seems as though we disagree on just about everything under the sun. But for what it’s worth I do try to understand your perspective. Im hoping someday we will flow back into a common body of understanding.
Please don’t think that the lack of substance in our relationship does not effect me. It does. I spend a lot of time and energy constantly trying to mend, understand or even just letting be. Know that you are not a passive figment in my life. Your life is important to me. You are someone that I care about very much. No matter the grand canyon worth of differences between us, I will always have love for you. Im stubborn like that. And I get that from you. I get my big heart from mom, so thank her for that.
I know most of the time I don’t make you feel loved even though deep down I do… This is especially hard for me to take ownership of. Especially since it is not in line with how I treat people in general. Showing compassion and love is actually something that comes easy to me. So it is especially hard on me to know that I have difficulty sharing this with someone that I care far more about than some rando person I met on the street. I try to show love and generosity to you. But it’s a frustrating experience when I try because it is never received or reciprocated the way I would like for it to be. And I know that doesn’t mean that you don’t feel love for me. I believe you do. And I am thankful for that. I am thankful for you.
Im going to preface by saying I will never be able to compose myself or articulate completely all the feels you make me feel. Also, every time I think about how you make me feel I legit cry. Uncontrollably emotional. I am turning into you!!!!!
It’s actually really frustrating because time after time I fail to fully convey all of the love and gratitude I have for you. But it is a wonderful problem to have 🙂 You are just sooo incredible Mom. You are my real life super hero, earth angel, guardian, or whatever you want to call it. And if all I had to show for at the end of my life was the relationship that I shared with you then honestly I would be content with that. I would go with a smile on my face knowing I was loved in the deepest and best way possible. And I don’t take that granted for one moment…ok maybe sometimes when we disagree…but the other 99.9% of the time I bask in the comfort of knowing I’m blessed to have you.
Maybe I have some unhealthy attachment going on here but I’m not sure Im actually interested in fixing that. Because I’m scared to let go. My instinct is to hold on to you as tight as I can. Yes Im having a hard time standing up on my own two feet, and hopefully I WILL get there soon. But you are always there for me, perhaps even too much, but that is in your nature. Your heart is a generous one and for you to operate in any other way would be a disservice to yourself.
You are my lifeline… literally and metaphorically. In my lowest of low times I am able to think of you and your love for me and find my strength again. Honestly, your love for me is the only thing that has stood in the way of me and some pretty reckless life choices that would undoubtedly make you gasp. Trust me ya don’t want to know 😉
You are the best thing in my life mom and I love you so much. I hope I am able to make you feel loved more days than not. And I say that because I am aware that as your child I am completely capable of and do operate in incredibly selfish ways that can leave you feeling otherwise at times. Just know that I am trying my best to show you love and compassion even when Im not at my best.
‘Til next time,
I love you so much ❤
Sooooo the past couple of months ( 6-ish) I have been talking to this guy. Let’s name him “Roger” for the sake of anonymity. I met him on a popular dating website and right away made it very clear that I was looking for more than just a hook up and was aiming to find something more substantial. He said he felt the same and so with a leap of faith I jumped into the untested waters of Roger.
In the beginning it was great. We had great chemistry over texts and the conversation was easy and flowing… and so we texted, and texted… and texted… and wait its been a few weeks since we started talking… shouldn’t this guy be asking me out by now? At first I thought it was nice that he wasn’t pushing anything on me but then quickly the thought became frustrating. Like why the hell wasn’t this guy trying to make plans to meet up if he’s so in to me? So naturally I asked him, “Dude? Why haven’t you asked me out yet?”. His reply, ” I didn’t want to seem pushy and figured you would ask to hang out when you were ready”. Damn I hate it when I can’t argue with someones reasoning when it makes sense. Initially I thought wow thats so sweet and considerate. But at the time I had also fallen victim to the rose colored glasses I put on a week ago. You know the ones, obnoxious heart shaped sunnies that blur all sense of intuition and well reasoned judgment.
Anywhoo we ended up meeting up ( a plan that I initiated) and had a great time and blah blah blah. We continued our conversations and stayed in touch until one day I found myself so annoyed at the realization that this guy had literally never put in any effort to initiate any meet ups or dates. Although he made himself available to me when I initiated conversations or made plans to hang out (which by the way always ended up being at his place) he never made the effort to make plans or move the relationship forward in any way.
Shortly after a two week span of not hearing from him (yes I was testing to see if he would reach out if I wasn’t the one perpetuating the conversation) I decided to put an end to this game. I explained to him I wasn’t really getting what I had hoped for out of our interaction. And so we ended it. And that was that or so I thought.
About two months later I get a text from him explaining that he missed our interaction, and that he would be better about giving me what I wanted and so on. I made a case for my hesitation to jump back in. BUT being the hopeless romantic that I am, I decided to give it another go.
I should NOT have done that. Hind sight is always 20/20 right? Going forward the second time I made it very clear what I wanted. And by no means were my expectations unreasonable. I explained I expected the same amount of energy being put into the relationship as I was investing. No one sided crap where I was always the one doing the work to make plans. I wanted to feel wanted and missed equally. These are not unreasonable expectations people! And he said he totally understood and promised that going forward things would be different. But were they? Nope. During the second time around I was scheduled to have a minor surgery for some health related issues. The day before the surgery we were texting and I was talking about how nervous I was. Forward to the day of, and the day after, and the week post surgery; I had not received a single text from him asking how I was doing. At this point I felt like I could have been dead and this guy would not have cared. Where was the friendship, where was the interest, where was he?
You see Roger is the type of guy that is always there when you want to hang out. Does wonders for your self esteem when you are talking to him. He makes you feel like your the only girl in the world when your with him. He’s not titling around on his phone, makes you laugh, can hold intelligent conversation, likes to talk about his family, and definitely knows how to give you all those warm wonderful feels that you mistake as proof of a building relationship. Yet he is also the type of guy that never initiates plans, somehow always manages to steer the conversation so it ends on a sexual note, and when you do hang out it always ends up being at his place where he cleverly mixes the right amount of hanging out that inevitably leads to “netflix and chill” time. When your with him every thing feels great. But as soon as you leave a giant “WAIT WTF IS GOING ON?” hits you smack in the face in the form of a face palm. And since you agreed to a casual interaction with a “lets see how things go” clause, you never really can justify your irritation. But when someone can’t even extend you the common curtesy of following up with you post surgery to see how your doing, that says something about their level of involvement with you (not a high bar dude). And that was the moment I knew where I fell on his social ranking list. It was an interaction of convenience for him. If a good time in the form of me came his way he wasn’t going to reject it, but he also didn’t see the worth in working to keep it going.
To say the least Roger has been a mind F@!#. He made me feel like I was investing in a relationship/friendship that had potential. More importantly he made me feel like our relationship was of value to him. However, in reality there really never was a “we”; just a string of casual interactions that were no different than a casual activity to him. He was wrong in all the right ways, positively uplifting, making it extremely difficult for my ego to shut him out. At first it was light and fun. But then I started noticing the offset balance of attachment and the absence of an actual friendship between us. Once that became clear the interaction quickly spiraled downward and proved to be too taxing on my patience and the frustration ended up outweighing the fun I had when I was with him. Roger had to go.
From this experience I gained clarity on a very important realization that has been dying to get in the spotlight of my mind. I DESERVE to be a priority. And I will not settle for anything less from the people that want in on my inner social circle. Especially the someone I am considering being in a romantic relationship with. Don’t sell yourself short. Ever.
If you are an older female feeling a bit insecure and bogged down by age old standards of acceptable age ranges for suitable men then do read on. This conversation was spurred on by this nagging insecurity that decided to break though after recently dating a younger guy. Prior to this I firmly stuck to my belief that love is love and age is just a number. And I still completely subscribe to this belief. However, it didn’t stop the societal chatter from breaking in and introducing an intermittent feeling of self-doubt. I hope the following conversation I had with my cousin and his perspective as a younger man dating an older woman will aid in making one thing clear… You SHOULD always always always do whatever the frack you feel like doing (as long as you’re not some psycho serial killer type) 🙂
The only thing left to do now is to go forth and be unapologetically you ❤
So I am in an interesting head space lately. I just turned the big Three-O a few months ago and all of a sudden I’m beginning to feel all sorts of social norms and expectations being imposed on me. I am not sure if these feelings are entirely of my own making or if I am indeed picking up on social cues. I have a strong feeling it is a mixture of the two.
For clarity lets get acquainted with some facts that are fueling this fire. By the way this is going to make me cringe while I do this. Because these facts are precisely the parts of me I am far from being proud of. Also, they are the source of the flattening of enjoyment I experience when I meet someone new (a type of experience that I adore(d)). Incidentally these encounters have also become the primary source of the feelings of judgment I am experiencing. But inevitably these facts are necessary points that we discuss with strangers. And often times these are the typical facts we use to size people up to some arbitrary measure of “worthiness”. Because ultimately they do mean something…right?
- Age: I am 30.
- Housing: I have been living with my parents for the past 6 months.
- Occupation: Graduate Student/Misc. Job
- Transportation: I do not have a car.
- Relationship Status: Single.
- Financial Status: Broke AF
First of all let me say what a bizarre feeling this is to reduce myself to these categories. Like I really really hate it. Yes I would love to improve myself in ALL of these areas. Trying to do so is something I find gratifying. However, being measured up by social status indicators alone and not the journey, or the passion, or the effort that is being put into improving myself is truly disheartening. Looking at just the facts I amount to nothing short of a scrub (in the words of TLC). According to this game the only cards I hold are: I am pursuing a degree #ambitions, and my age is something I have no control over #life ;P. However, none of these external validators are constants. And to solely rely on them is detrimental to maintaining mental fitness. This is not a fun way to engage with myself or life. There is so much more to a person than there age, occupation, living arrangement, relationship status, and financial status. And these categories isolated out of the context of the life they belong to are far from the reasons we actually decide to build relationships beyond the first meet and greet with a stranger. That is exactly why even after knowing there is much more to me, I still struggle with shaking the feeling of inadequacy.
I have always sort of done things on my own time. Never really one to be motivated by external pressure. Don’t get me wrong. I definitely feel the anxiety pile up at times. But that usually happens when I get caught up in the comparison game (the most pointless game ever). I guess meeting new people as of late forces the dialogue of comparison in my mind. And it does not resonate well with me at all. And that is because I am not 100 % happy with myself. I can admit that. And when I’m not at my best, like most people, I enjoy the occasional pat on the back in the form of an affirmation from someone other than myself that I am on the “right track”. Walking on the tight rope of external validation can be tricky though: it’s easy to tip right off into the deep end.
The more I look into this dialogue with myself I am quickly becoming very aware of the fact that no one can give me the validation I crave other than myself. People will have there opinions and share them just like I do. But at the end of the day the only two things that should be on my list of concerns in all of this are the following:
- Loving Me, Myself, and I.
- And showing myself compassion in the face of any perceived short coming.
The truth is you and I are already enough. I just need to remember that. Everything else is just embellishment. Do I think life would be more enjoyable if I improved all of the items mentioned in my list above. Definitely! And all I can do is try and try harder. Just not at the expense of loving myself. Loving myself is a much more fun and productive head game to play than the comparison game. And showing compassion to myself is key to healthy self-evaluation and self-improvement. And when I think about it, I only want those in my space that want to bring more love than doubt into my life. As a result of this attitude I find my list of “close friends” dwindling and my social interactions shifting from quantity to quality. It was scary at first. But when I realized this pruning of people in my life was actually a marvelous space for growth I welcomed it with open arms.
I learned that I love myself and the possibilities in life way too much to allow myself to give these insecurities too much significance. I still have days and weeks where I really struggle with applying this mindset. I can only trust and hope that it will get easier. Sometimes I wonder if I will “wake up” in my old age and think “well S%&t, we really messed it up this time around!”. For now I’m hoping that learning how to focus my energy on creating and cultivating the most joy that I can for myself will in time help the rest of the pieces of my life come together in the best way. Let’s see shall we 😉
I realize that my life is not vastly different from others when juxtaposed to the big picture of life. It’s kind of like placing a black and white anatomical sketch of dendrites next to a sketch of trees. Ok maybe thats not the best comparison (better suited for a discussion of fractal time and self-similar processes)…but you know what I mean…Right? I know I will most likely never be able to relate to the ups and downs in my life solely from the collective vantage point of “we”. Therefore rendering me almost completely incapable of being able to go through life with total understanding and non-reactive to the moments I experience… I will always and forever relate to the good and the bad in my life from an inevitably framed mind set of “Me!”. It’s a simple truth. My life is about me. As much as I try to humble myself by acknowledging the hardships others endure or am just in awe of some random persons $2k per day lifestyle. Someone else’s ups and downs will never create the same magnitude of waves as my personal up’s and down’s. And you know what. That is more than just ok.
Recently I have been dealing with a lot of stress and anxiety due to various “issues” that have popped up in life. Some re-occuring (I should look into that) and some new. But in relation to these obstacles I have been minimizing my feelings and beating myself up for feeling stressed, anxious and depressed. I keep telling myself to SUCK IT UP because there are a ton of people out there that have it way worse than you… Or GET IT TOGETHER WOMAN (spoken in the most dramatic voice you can imagine) because there are people counting on you (like myself, family &friends etc.) But that never helps. If anything it just worsens my mood. Because it’s not about “them” it’s about me. What I’m trying to say is. Im learning it’s ok to feel crappy. It’s ok to make it about me. That’s the only way to heal. Because when you start making it about you, that’s when you find out what works for you and what doesn’t. And when you give yourself a chance to get in touch with you.. well thats when you begin to make informed choices on the next best move in the game of life for you. And when you “do you” you feel good. And when you feel good that’s when your able to truly give from a place of joy. And that is the best kind of being in my opinion.
So in an effort to “do me” I’m learning what I am about. Instead of beating myself up like I normally would (which was a result of learned behavior and expected behavior from others close to me) I have chosen to show myself some gratitude and compassion. Gratitude being the key lesson this week. Just working on being grateful for the littlest things that are in MY life makes a huge difference in how I feel and relate to moments. And as crazy as it sounds I’m also working on being grateful for the things that stress me out every now and then. Because it forces me to see some sort of silver lining; right now it’s more gray than silver but it does the job. When I’m focused on the good it’s easier for me to come up with a constructive solution to alleviate the bad. And call me crazy but when I feel good I start noticing more good in my life. And the good keeps getting easier and easier to identify. And that my friends is a result of your brain strengthening the little roads in your head that the little Joy character (you know from the movie Inside Out) likes to visits in your brain. And when your joy on the inside (physiologically) then you can’t help but reflect being joy on the outside. And at the end of it all. That IS what really matters.