HOWEVER IT COMES TO PASS

The Christmas and New Year period can be a difficult time for some of us.

This year has been difficult for me personally. It’s the first year I’ve been alone.

Aside from that, it’s a strange week regardless.

Everything is weird.

There is significantly less traffic on the road.

My gym has been closing early each day. Much to my despair.

The supermarkets are jam-packed as if the apocalypse is upon us.

The days seem to drag on whilst we wait for the “new year”.

The “new year” where we make promises to improve our lives in some way or another.

Last night, as I sat in bed, I was overcome with a familiar feeling that I so often push away. A feeling that a lot of us are too ashamed to admit to at times.

Loneliness.

The feeling that no one cares.

I decided to meditate, and focus on bringing love into my life. Desperately pleading with the universe to send me a sign that I’m not all alone.

At the end of the meditation, I had a notification on Facebook.

From my friend overseas.

She had replied to a question that was asked. About her most memorable travel moments of 2014.

Here it is below:

image

I don’t know what happened to me when I saw her comment.

I was completely overwhelmed with emotion, and I broke down.

And then I had a realisation.

The other day, on my private Facebook wall, I shared a video from the actor Jim Carrey.

And there was one sentence that really resonated with me.

“As far as I can tell, it’s just about letting the universe know what you want and working toward it while letting go of how it might come to pass.”

Now this is exactly what had happened. I had sent my wishes out into the universe.

And I got what I was looking for.

The validation that I am loved. That I’m not all alone. That someone in the world cares about me. Even if we are separated by oceans. However it came to pass.

Like the author Haruki Marukami says, “whatever it is you’re seeking won’t come in the form you’re expecting”.
We truly have to open, not only our eyes, but also our hearts, to what is right in front of us.

Now I do have to say one thing.

I am deliberately a recluse. I’m one of those “creative types”.

It is maddening to a lot of people, that I often shut myself away in my little world, and protect my delicate, and sensitive heart from a lot of things.

I am a difficult friend to have.

My aloofness masks the overly sensitive woman I am. The brave warrior that I allude to be.

The over-thinker.

The drama queen.

The one who cries way too much for a grown woman.

The one who judges herself harshly.

The one who clumsily falls, and often stubbornly refuses to ask for a helping hand. And even when she does, she won’t take the advice offered.

The one who wears her heart on her sleeve. On her forehead in fact.

The one who is a marshmallow at her core. Who is afraid of rejection, to the point where she locks herself away in her safe little bubble to avoid the possibility of it at all costs.

The one who pretends that she is strong. But is anything but.

This evening, as I sat down outside to write this piece, my next-door neighbour called out to me, and asked me to join her, and her family for dinner.

I declined, as I am the first to admit that I suffer from shyness, and often feel like a bit of a pain in the ass.

My neighbours husband comes out now, and tells his wife that I’m just “too polite”, and that I do want to come over.

I insist that I need to sit this one out, and finish working on my article.

A few minutes later, their teenage son brought me a chair to sit on.

I always write outside. One of my many quirks.

And I sit on the ground to do so.

“We don’t want you to ruin your spine”, my neighbour informs me, as I begrudgingly accept the chair, my eyes welling up with tears, that I am so thankful for my sunglasses at this point so they don’t know how much their kind gesture has moved me.

Because I feel as though I don’t deserve it.

And then I had another realisation.

It is only ME, that holds me back from seeing the love all around me. It is only me that feels as though I don’t deserve kindness, love, or compassion. Even though I offer up all three traits quite freely.

And I have to come back to the two motivating forces that I so often write about.

Fear. And love.

It is my own fear, and perceived inadequacies that hold me back from not only recognising, but also accepting the love that is all around me.

That prevent me from allowing people to “take my hand” (or bring me a seat), and show me how much they care.

So my message today, is to open your eyes, and hearts to what is all around you.

It’s there.

If only you don’t let fear take the helm of every experience, and twist it into something else that is so far from the truth.

To the friends that I “count on one hand”, that my father often reminds me are so precious, I thank you to the moon and back for not giving up on me. For not judging me, and continuing to love me. Despite all of my flaws. Real, or imagined. You mean the world to me. In fact, you are my world. My weaknesses are also my strength, and I thank you for reminding me on a daily basis that I am loved. You are loved more than you could possibly conceive.

To the people who have crossed my path during this year, I also thank you. For revealing hidden layers of myself that I didn’t even know existed. You all have a place in my silly, overly-sensitive heart.

And so the improvement that I personally plan to make in the “new year”?

Man, there’s so many.

But the main one is to let love be the motivator.

Not fear.

To understand that I do have love all around me, and to start accepting that love, and stop being so hard on myself.

To know that the effect that I do have on others is the most valuable currency I have. And that I should continue to remain light-hearted, and forever youthful and wide-eyed, and continue to share my story.

And to take that seat when it’s offered to you.

However it comes to pass.

 

“The effect you have on others is the most valuable currency there is. Because everything you gain in life will rot and fall apart, and all that will be left of you was what was in your heart. So many of us choose our path out of fear disguised as practicality. What we really want seems impossibly out of reach, and ridiculous to expect, so we never dare to ask the universe for it. You will only ever have two choices. Love, or fear. Choose love. And don’t ever let fear turn you against your playful heart.” – Jim Carrey

 

 

STAY FOOLISH

I feel as though I can’t write lately.

Well, that’s a lie. I feel as though I can’t publish anything. I don’t know why that is.

Probably because I feel as though I have nothing “inspirational” to offer in terms of the written word. And I’m meant to be this “inspirational” writer.

Today, Christmas Eve, I sat down and went through a bunch of my old articles going back a year ago, as well as some photos, and videos from the year.

Probably because Facebook sent me that “year in review” thing.

My gosh, how much my life has changed in the space of 12 months.

For over a decade, I spent each Christmas Eve with my ex-husbands family.

Yet, today, I’m alone. But I’m oddly, totally OK with it.

I look back on the past year, and realise how many things are now different.

I look back at all I’ve achieved, whilst taking an almost sabbatical from life as I knew it. To not only grieve, but to restore myself in solitude.

I’ve cultivated my garden, like we should always do.

I’ve met beautiful, inspiring people that burst my heart wide open.

I’ve severed ties with a lot of people that are no longer a part of my world.

I cried. A lot.

I drank. A lot. Like, A LOT.

I bought a tonne of cute outfits.

I had countless sleepless nights.

I learnt how to be alone. But not lonely.

I mastered the art of compassion. Of non-judgement.

I learnt how to reach out to people.

I discovered that bra’s aren’t always necessary (even though my Aunty has warned me that “even tiny tits sag sweetheart”).

I’ve learnt that cooking pasta for one is an extreme error, unless you are committed to eating it all week.

I have travelled alone. As scary as that was for me. And I realised I’m totally fine with it. And that strangers are very kind.

I’ve learnt how talkative I am.

How generous I am.

How hard on myself I am.

That I carry a lot of guilt for being me.

To the point where I’ve been told by a fellow writer, that they’ve never met anyone who is so shrouded in guilt for simply being alive.

How I offer great advice, yet simply cannot take it.

I have also discovered how independent, and stupidly stubborn I am. To the point where I won’t even accept a helping hand when it’s offered.

I’ve learnt how sensitive I am. That I am deeply moved by everyone, and everything.

And I’ve learnt that the only way out, is through, and how a sense of humour can pull you out of most things in life.

As I trawled through my photos and videos of my year, I kept coming back to a video of a day when I was travelling in Thailand.

And I had a realisation.

That my light-heartedness, my youthfulness, and my eternal, childish innocence is what has helped to keep my sensitive heart afloat.

That I am unapologetically me.

And I’ve chosen to attach a clip of that video to this article.

Of a day when I was completely myself.

Without the mask of makeup that us women often hide beneath.

To a day where I was dressed how I felt like dressing. And being the jackass I often am. Of being able to laugh at myself.

I realised that being happy is infectious.

We infect those around us with our disease.

I recall reading a book a few years back now on disease.

And to break down that word into what it really is.

“Dis-ease”.

Have we become so disconnected from what joy really is, that we find ourselves in a perpetual state of “dis-ease”?

So today, as I look back on my own year, I ask you to look back on yours also.

And to try to remain light-hearted, and to learn to laugh at yourself. And know that the energy that you exude is infectious.

Let people catch your “dis-ease”.

And know that this time of year is all about giving.

Give the gift of your authentic self to all. No matter how silly you look.

After all, it is the silly season.

And in the words of Steve Jobs, “stay foolish”.

Merry Christmas (and thank you to everyone that has crossed my path).

Xxx.

 

KEEP LOVE IN YOUR HEART

Have we become a throwaway society?

I pondered this question today as I vacuumed my car.
I use a broken vacuum cleaner to clean my car.
I love this vacuum cleaner. I should really throw it away. I have another one that’s perfectly intact that I use for cleaning my house. But I stupidly become attached to things. And cannot part with them.
I love a lot of my “things”.
I love my washing machine. I love my clothes dryer. I love my hair straightener (even if I seldom bust it out). And I love that broken vacuum cleaner.
A trip to my ever-expanding wardrobe  has a very obvious insight into my attachment issues. I have clothing in there from circa 1997. Some of it thread-bare. Yet, I hold onto it regardless. I’m sentimental like that.
But what about when it comes to the people in our lives?
It’s coming up to one year now since I’ve separated from my husband of 13 years. My partner of 20 years.
I will always love him. It’s the way I am programmed.
But I feel as though we have both come full circle, and are able to love, and care for each other from a distance now. Which is ideal for both of us.
So what does this have to do with attachment, and my question as to whether we have become a throwaway society?
You only have to look at the way that fashion changes. The way that appliances are now made. The way that on “tinder”, we swipe right or left (not that I’m on tinder – just a clarification right there).
Things are no longer designed to “last”.
There is always a new fashion trend to try. Always an updated model of an appliance to attain.
Until probably 10 years ago, my father still owned the refrigerator that his grandparents had gifted him as a wedding gift.
We worked hard for things. And once we attained these “objects of desire”, whether it be a home entertainment unit, or a person, we maintained them until it was “broken”.
As I looked at my vacuum cleaner this afternoon, that is pathetically held together with packing tape, I had a thought.
At what point do you accept that something is “broken”, and move on?
I’ve discovered that there is a breaking point for everything in this life. And it often takes everything you have to accept that, and to move forward. No matter how attached we are.
Acceptance of “what is”, is the key to living in the now.
We can’t hold onto things that no longer work, or that have come full circle.
Having said that, we should try as long as we can before accepting defeat. These days, we sadly treat everything as being “disposable”.
I think that we should exhaust every avenue before “giving up” on things.
Maybe I’m old-fashioned, but I also believe in fighting for things. Fighting for things until it becomes apparent that the battle has been lost.
But has that old-fashioned mentally made me attach to what is no longer working?
The broken vacuum cleaner is a profound reminder of what no longer “is”.
There is a quote in “Fight Club” that is a lesson in what attachment does to us as human beings.
“What you own, ends up owning you.”
And it does. If we’re not diligent.
So is the way to salvation, to disattach ourselves from everything we materialistically obtain?
No.
Because I’m a romantic. With my rose-coloured glasses firmly planted on the bridge on my nose. Permanently. Even if I’m powerfully naive most of the time.
Keep that romanticism there in your heart.
 Understand the lesson you have learned from it, and keep on moving towards your truth. Whichever way you happen to find it.
Just learn to comprehend the art of “disattachment”.
Learn to understand living “in the moment”. That everything is what it is. Everything is constantly changing.
That everything is what it is.
Have whatever experience you’re experiencing and move forward.
And love with every piece of you. Don’t judge. Don’t attach. Just live.
And when it comes to whether or not we are a “throwaway” society?
I personally think we are. And it’s a little bit sad.
But keep fighting for your truth. For what your heart really wants. From what you’re magnetically drawn towards.
Work out what is worth fighting for, and what needs to be let go, and fight for it from there. Fix it if it can be fixed. And let it go if it can’t.
And keep love in your heart. Never hold anyone else accountable for your feelings. And stay soft. No matter what.