That’s all the matters

I am sitting down at my desk with a cup of tea, embarking on a new post. The sky is midnight blue, at midnight nonetheless, and a cranked-open window in the neighbouring room slyly lets in a draft which kisses the back of my neck. The empty screen stares in front of me, full of expectation. As though it is asking me ‘What will you write today?’. I look back in disappointment; I want to be full of positive things but today was really hard. So I’ll write about that. *breathe*

Today was hard. I was faced with painful reminders at every step. Things I have seldom thought about started freely swimming through my mind every hour. As though it has every right to come and go as it pleases. Well, it does. But also, why? I can’t help but think that the universe is on a mission to make me dwell when I want to do anything but. I start to miss parts of them I don’t think I noticed fully when they were present. I start to miss the way they speak and say certain words. And the places we went together, even if it was a casual supermarket trip to pick up dinner. Or our walks. I miss our walks. I miss holding their hand. I miss our conversations. I miss everything. Every part of me seems to ache.

And I try to focus on me and bring my mind back to the present. But everyday thoughts cross my mind that they are probably fine. Not because they are heartless – they’re not. Because they left – despite saying all those things to me. Things we were to do. Places we were to see. People we were to become. Dreams we were to have. Lives we were to live. And now, it doesn’t matter. They left, in the midst of all those things. How am I to forget? Isn’t it cruel that I have to put to bed something so precious? Isn’t it unfair to be in the dark for so long? So long that all those dreams you had never really existed? And, importantly, how does a person make sense of this?

I am happy. But I am also heartbroken. And I feel like although I still believe in love, I don’t know if this breach of trust is normal. I don’t know if this is what I should expect in relationships? To be in the dark? To have someone over and over tell you this is what they want, only for them to snatch the rug from under your feet and leave you blindsided – which is an analogy accurate to how I’ve been feeling. I don’t know. I’m not sure. But I am sure that pain – no matter how brutal – is temporary. And that each day is not a battle I have to win. Not a destination I have to reach. I’ve given up fighting. I just want each day to be fulfilling. Where I can say that ‘Yes, I may not have ticked all the things off my to-do list, but I feel good and content and that’s all that matters’.

 

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Song

How do you know when you’re healing? When music fills your bones, and you can listen to a song without thinking of the pain. In the first two weeks, I couldn’t listen to any songs – or pretty much make any move – without thoughts and memories of them flooding my mind. It made me more sad that I couldn’t enjoy something to distract me without being reminded of their absence in my life. But after coming to terms with that, I sought out more than a song. A whole album. To me, there aren’t many better joys than listening to a whole album without skipping any of the songs and absolutely loving every single one. Each listen brings a new depth, a new meaning, a more enriching experience than the last.

The last album I felt this way about – coincidentally this time last year – was ‘ours’. And now I have my own. It liberates me to feel like I have some music with my own new memories. And to be honest, I’m kicking myself that I didn’t find this artist sooner – and one week after their UK tour has finished. It’s hard to express through writing, how gutted I am about that so let me reiterate: I am kicking myself.

The album is War & Leisure by Miguel, and I am currently binge-listening to ‘Told You So’. Which means plugging in and zoning out instead of studying – oops.  I love the message of this song. Usually I’m all about music pleasing my ears and the message is a bonus and nothing more. Probably because I’m a shallow person, idk. But this song just grabbed me. Because it was saying something to me that I have been saying to others for a long time. That our world is fucked up and the countless wars we have inflicted on our brothers and sisters abroad is just fucking wrong. Like, hello? Do you want to know how a chain of terror attacks are happening in the western world, lately? It may have something to do with that little ‘War on Terror’ thing. You know the war on terror that wasn’t actually a war on terror, but was really a war on Iraq.

Anyway, I think I’m going to save all that for another post. But this song basically spoke to me. Literally saying: “I don’t wanna say I told you so, but I told you so“. And if I am honest, there are many different interpretations of it. Like how we are also mistreating and destroying the planet. Yeah we’re really fucking this place up. On a lighter note though, please enjoy this song.

Live

Yesterday I cried. I seemed fine but then tears just poured out in the midst of a fight. Have you ever seen someone’s heart break? Have you ever looked into their eyes and seen them breaking apart? I did yesterday. In my younger brother. I told him off, and saw the despair in his eyes. It broke me, too. I was denying him of something he wanted. I saw myself in him. I was also denied something I wanted. I’ve come to terms with it, but seeing that look in his eyes, made me see myself. See myself breaking apart too. It made me remember what it felt like to have my dreams shattered. It made me feel the lump in my throat I felt on that day. The tears stinging in my eyes. The feeling of utter helplessness, as though I was sinking further downward. It reaffirmed to me that despite the fact that I can live in the present – in the now – the pain is still there. Heartbreak really never leaves you. And I don’t think that’s a bad thing. Because things like heartbreak shape us to be who we are today. And to have that event embedded in you doesn’t need to hurt you. Right now it does. Because it’s raw. But so far, I have come to realise that with time you can look back at what happened and feel acceptance that it led you to where you are today. That actually,  everything can be alright in the future (ugh, I am starting to hate that word, though). That it won’t deplete your soul, but instead give you the opportunity to renew it. And a renewed soul, is one that is open to love. One that is open to happiness. One that is open to seeing that life can be as worthwhile of a journey as you make it. And that thought, that one day I can reach that place – and look back on my heartbreaks with contentment – makes me want to live.

wizard sof waverly place one broken heart closer to happily ever after.gif

Luminescent

It’s hard to feel like you know what you’re doing every day. So often I have felt that I’m just fumbling through life. And stumbling. I’ve never really had this inner voice to guide me, but I’ve always tried to do what I think is right. What I think should be right. Mostly that just means being honest. Except now I have this voice. The only good thing to come from pain is that you can shed the layers of hurt every day. And each time that happens, it reveals a newer you under the surface of your past. Going through tough times only makes you stronger. But you can take those lessons and either let it burn inside you, or you can learn from it. I instinctively let things burn inside me, because as humans we often hold onto pain. When we are struck with hot iron, we then carry that piece of iron ourselves. And we can decide whether to burn ourselves with it every day, or carry our scars with pride and let it go. For so long I was carrying the hot iron. Holding it every day and wondering ‘why isn’t my suffering stopping?‘ The truth? Self-infliction prevents us from solving grief. Another truth? There are no problems with my life right now. I actually say that every day so that it sinks in. That despite many heartaches, I am happy. It’s important to try to differentiate your real problems from the problems in your head. And the remarkable thing is that when I think this way, I don’t think I have any real problems.

But there are often times when I slip up. When I dwell – even for a moment – on the pains of the past. And my cheeks flush, and my eyes well up, and my breathing quickens. And I think ‘why did this person do this?‘. In those moments, I tell myself to focus on the now. And focus on myself. How this pain is only a cloud that will dissipate. How sometimes people make mistakes, and you will not be able to prevent those mistakes from happening. How this life will be filled with countless more trials. But you are not a superhero. You can’t stop any of them. You can’t make someone be real with you if they don’t do it themselves. You can’t beg someone to stay if they don’t want to.

So don’t. Let it happen. Let your life fall to pieces, and surely enough the same pieces will align on their own. And when they do, you will realise that your life wasn’t in pieces. It was whole all along, and this is your journey, and that is okay. And so even in the foggiest of times, when you feel lost and confused, trust in your present. And trust in yourself; you are luminescent, and can radiate a positive energy that means you can still be happy, no matter what happens.

finding nemo everything will be okay.gif

Thwart

How do you thwart the pain that keeps resurfacing?

It seems okay for a bit, and then you see something that reminds you of that time. That person. That day.

So what do you do? What’s the best way to overcome it and push past this unfortunate uprising of emotions as though your feelings that were once so happy and on your side are now staging a mass-mutiny against you?

Don’t ‘overcome’ it. Don’t see it as a barrier in your life. Don’t think of it as an obstacle in your way.

Pain is a part of life. It’s not a pebble in your shoe, unless you think it is.

It’s not a restraint on your life, unless you want to be held back.

I used to think that life was crap, and some days pass me by where I just feel like pure shit – for lack of a more apt word. But now my outlook is different.

When shit hits the fan, I just brush it away. After all, isn’t that what life is? A recurring event of shit hitting the fan? And just when you think that everything is turning up – your work is going well, your family life gets less hellish, your body is getting fitter, or you seem to have figured out your career goals – boom. Life spectacularly bombards you. In one way or another, your ship starts to tank, and that immediate loss can be scary.

Bridget Jones - when one part of life.gif
Shout-out to Bridget Jones for getting me through life before my Buddhist monk days.

So here’s what you do: sit back. Watch all that shit happen. Because you have no power here. Here’s when I mention that book by that Buddhist monk – no seriously check it out here. It’s weird how one book changes your perspective on life, but I think it was more than that. When your mind wants to change it will, and when it doesn’t, it won’t. I have been prepared for my life to stop shitting on me for a long time now. In fact, I’ve been actively trying to unshit my life for a while. I was just going at it the wrong way.

Instead of fighting it, I roll with it. Instead of stressing, I relax. No, really, I really force myself to relax. And when it all goes to shit – oh it will, it really will – I relax even more. Obviously within reason.

So what is the best way to thwart pain? I don’t think I can give you the answer you want. It’s not a way to schedule your life. It’s not a way to become a superhero and battle all that life throws at you.

It is a way to ensure that no matter what unfortunate circumstances occur in life that you can take a deep breath, and still try to see the good surrounding you. And when I begun to make that realisation – that I am not my pain – it truly felt like I had started to win.

Stormy raincloud

Today was a day. I survived. I feel like it was the closest I reached to recovery and I can feel myself getting stronger every day. I am starting to have faith in the thought that I may not be a scary story posted onto a reddit thread one day. You know, that story where the person can’t move on after 3 years. I just need to not relapse. What’s a relapse? Right now it’s anything that involves me dwelling.

A wise, fictional dude called Dumbledore once said:

It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.

Now I know the true meaning of those words, from experience. All the thoughts of the past and what could have been were only holding me back. Keeping my mindset in the past. That doesn’t mean that I shouldn’t think of the past. After all, reflecting on the past has always helped me be a better person and improve. But I need to live in the present; I can’t change the past so any pain that has been caused is not worth mulling over at 1:30am when I should be sleeping. Similarly, I shouldn’t be thinking too much of the future and not what could be. It’s futile because it’s out of my control. The only thing I have any semblance of control over is right now.

The other realisation that helped me that I will be talking (a lot) more on, is the separation of negative energy. I know…it sounds as though it was written by some Buddhist monk. Yeah, that’s because it was. At least, I think he’s a monk. The book I bought last week only skimmed the topic of consciously separating yourself from your pain. But it was enough. Enough to make me feel that in order to ensure I heal fully and in the best most healthy way, I need to accept my suffering. Befriend my negative emotions. Make peace with how I feel. I was incredibly hurting from what happened and it was interfering with my ability to function. I still am hurting. But I’ve come to terms with it and now know that I am not my pain. If I perceive it as external to me, and not interfere with it – or dwell on it unnecessarily – I can watch it shift and change and eventually dissipate. This is just the crux of this one part of the book. And I am pretty sure I’m missing other important elements that I’ll clarify in future posts.

Also there are other factors I’m not taking into account, like the many YouTube videos, podcasts, people I have spoken to, and countless forums I have scoured for recovery advice. All in all, this complex and hefty haul of information has given me the push I needed to move from a helpless place to a not entirely helpless place in two weeks. Which is some form of progress that I am glad to receive.

Despite the still-bleakness of my current situation I feel as though the bleakness is out of my control. So I’m basically just chilling and waiting for this dense, stormy raincloud over my life to (please) clear and diffuse away. Until then, I’ll be documenting my journey to that place, on here. I hope that it can be of use to someone who may be in a similar situation, or who is simply waiting for their stormy raincloud to pass, too.

Peace and love,

A x

Feelings

I don’t mourn the loss of our love; love never dies.

I don’t mourn the loss of your presence; you’re always in my heart.

I don’t mourn the loss of companionship; I am not attached.

I mourn the loss of truth, that has made me broken.

I mourn the doubts that arose, that I was not aware of.

I mourn never seeing your radiant smile and laugh again, like you did when we made stupid jokes.

I mourn the unfinished conversations; I was supposed to talk more about Joss Whedon with you.

I mourn the loss of your kisses; they held so much passion for me.

I mourn the quick goodbye; I wanted to hold you for longer. Just so I could feel you properly one last time.

I mourn the memories of the way you’d roll your eyes at me, before I’d proceed to get mad and squeeze your cheeks.

I mourn not touching your face again, and gently stroking your cheek.

I mourn the places we never got to go, isn’t it weird that on the day you sent that message, I chose a weekend break for us for my birthday?

Oh and they asked me to tell them when my exams ended so they could do something for me – it’s the 8th of June by the way. I had it all planned; we could finally go to stay in some B&B that I would choose after scouring only about 50 reviews and planning everything. Even though I wanted them to plan it, I just didn’t care ’cause I wanted to be away with them so much.

Goodbyes don’t hurt because I can’t live without them. Goodbyes hurt because the trust is broken. An accident, but it’s costing me. I am getting by, just about. I’m searching for healing in every place I can. Podcasts. Books. Friends. Family. But I can not heal the ache in my heart. The ache that I was open with them and they weren’t with me. They weren’t sure. But they said they were.

They weren’t sure – but they said they were.

If only they could understand these words, and look in the mirror and tell themselves never to hurt someone like this again.

They didn’t mean to? I know, and I understand their predicament. But they did it anyway – and it affected both of us. They – my love – did this. Hid their doubts, from themselves and from me. In the name of love they did this, but that doesn’t make it okay. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t preventable. That doesn’t mean they didn’t sever my trust. Do you now understand? I’m not sad to lose them; they went on their own. I am sad they left and took a piece of my trust, too. Doubts. That word. Just swirling in my head. Preventing any other thoughts from coming in.

The pain is piercing me through the shield of positivity I am constantly reinforcing every day. Trying to strike a balance between ‘letting it out’ and moving forward without unnecessary dwelling is difficult. Initially I tried to move forward and maintain some positivity. But I forgot to mourn. Having gone through a couple bereavements this year, this feels exactly the same. Mourning for the death of your life with someone.

Tomorrow I will be positive. Tomorrow I will show myself that I can get through another day. Tomorrow I will show resilience, and love, and compassion. All qualities that I need to remind myself of, when life appears to take a turn for the worst. But tonight, I will cry. Because I’ve tried not to, but I think I have to. I love you, after all. I love you so much.