Day 57 – Happy birthday, ma

Life isn’t always perfect but with you by my side, it has been nothing but a joyride filled with highest of highs despite the lowest of lows. You make us feel so safe and grounded, even if that means pushing yourself an extra mile or sacrificing your own wants and needs. I have never fully understood putting someone else’s before your own. I have never fully understood the grace of being selfless. You are.

From visiting the grave everyday after daddy passed away, to being our fortress and starting a new chapter for us and yourself on your own, you have come a long way. People have seen your smiles but we have seen the tears and the fight. I am so grateful to have been a part of your journey. A journey of transformation; a journey of strength and love. A journey of a woman so fearless. A journey of a woman who always believed in kindness and in love.

Happy birthday mum. You are and will always be the love of my life.

PS. Funny, the day is also your age.

Today’s tune: The Power of Love by Céline Dion.

Day 57 – 11 October 2017.
309 days to go.

Thanks for listening and if you relate, say hello, please and thank you.

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Day 55 – Life in limbo…

…and the last quarter

Life feels like it is in a kind of limbo now that the semester and year is almost coming to an end. There is something about the end of the year that feels most promising but also uncertain. With university especially, twelve weeks felt like a year with so much done and yet nothing accomplished.

I’m looking forward to 2018 now more than ever because it feels like the perfect excuse for a “clean slate” — from adulting, men that drag you down and a mind that is in a state of constant confusion and denial.

Till then, limbo-o and a quarter of tequila?

Today’s tune: Tequila Sunrise by Eagles.

Day 55 – 9 October 2017.
311 days to go.

Thanks for listening and if you relate, say hello, please and thank you.

Photo by Rachael Crowe on Unsplash

 

Day 51 – Change might be the only constant…

…but that doesn’t include your heart.

In a world reminding you of everything that is wrong, hold on to and fight for the good within and around you. Spread love and kindness in a world filled with a war of words and terror. For when the world ends, you will remember the love you shared not your fear or hostility. You will remember the hearts carved on barks in the wilderness or the strangers that moved you. You will remember the times that made you smile and the people who were there for you. You will remember your childhood and its innocence, not the obstacles that made you doubt yourself. When the world ends, you won’t remember the heartless moments but those that were honest and full of soul. No expectations, just smiles. In a world trying to change your heart, fight for you.

You are your hope, you are your light, you are your heart.

Today’s tune: Awoo by Sofi Tukker teat. Betta Lemme.

Day 51 – 5 October 2017.
315 days to go.

Thanks for listening and if you relate, say hello, please and thank you.

Photo by Eric Ward on Unsplash

Day 46 – I need rest

I should’ve been on a caravan in the middle of nowhere in the country side, resting this mind and body, away from all the things that distract me. Instead I’m here staring at my screen with a sore neck and shoulders with too many things on my mind.

This has been a good but tiring week. Some nights with no sleep and some with too much. It’s ridiculous how drained you feel with the lack of any physical activity, let alone a strenuous day. You would think two coffees could fix this virtual fatigue but my eyes are giving way, so maybe I really should retire into the comfort of this bed cum study spot.

To sweet dreams and some rest. Hope you get some too.

Today’s tune: How Does A Moment Last Forever by Céline Dion.

Day 46 – 30 September 2017.
320 days to go.

Thanks for listening and if you relate, say hello, please and thank you.

Photo by Natalie Collins on Unsplash

Day 44 – Bitter or sweet love?

Love is not meant to hurt. It is not supposed to make you feel sad or cry. Love is not meant to make you second-guess yourself or wreck your life. Love is supposed to make you feel joyful and at home. It meant to be glorious and beautifulWhat if in all this time, it wasn’t love but an infatuation with the idea of love?

Whether it is new or old, when it comes to love, you give each other everything you have. There is no shame in where you come from or where you aspire to be. With love, there is no room for a third wheel – be it doubt, misunderstandings or another person. With love, you give it your all in or nothing.

As millennials, we find ourselves at crossroads because we’re told or seem to believe that love is hard and impossible. Sure, it involves compromise and is a work-in-progress. But when you think about the person you share this love with, it meant to feel and be beautiful. It is the people you share this love with that often make it bittersweet. If you or they didn’t find to make it last, maybe it wasn’t love. It may have been something good, just not love. So don’t give up on love and don’t give up on yourself.

Someday, someday, maybe.

Today’s tune: Someday by Michael Learns To Rock.

Day 44 – 28 September 2017.
322 days to go.

Thanks for listening and if you relate, say hello, please and thank you.

Photo by Alisa Anton on Unsplash

Day 43: Is grief a new-age fad – what do I know?

Food for thought from one of my favourite humans, “Why does figuring and coming up with what’s wrong in our lives or even creating situations that make our lives seem bad come more easily to humans?”

I don’t know. It just does.

Lately, I have become more cynical about everything and everyone around me. My recent posts have even urged people to worry for my well-being. There’s the occasional “I think you are depressed”, or the “don’t do anything stupid”, or “why do you need a counsellor, things can’t be that bad”, or “calm and be positive” and so on.

Maybe it’s me, maybe it’s not. Maybe it’s to do with being human and our unsaid attachment and love for pain. We’ve got a million things to be grateful for. I know I do. Yet, beneath that surface, there is always that one thing that upsets you. And as much as we crave for happiness, pain stings and stays a lot longer with us (with me). One thing I’ve realised is that most of this pain stems from comparison. With oneself, with others. It inevitably sets this foundation to set ourselves up for disappointment no matter the good.

Coming back to the question. Are we really unhappy or is grief the new rage? Does our generation succumb to peer pressure when it comes to feeling sad?

Yes it is in everyone’s faces at all times. Insta stories are canvases for our woes, and Facebook an excuse to vent. Snap filters a reflection of our emotions every now and then and captions a gateway to the daily dilemmas. As you read this, you’re aiding my path to sadness. Or maybe, this has to do with the content we read or the conversations we have. We tell ourselves to be grateful for life as we know it to shelve other emotions. Are we being grateful because we truly are or is it because we want to avoid feeling like shit instead?

What do I know?

I bought a gratitude journal a few months ago and I haven’t written a word in it. Not because I don’t have things to be grateful for. I do. The list doesn’t end as they flash before me right now (including “urgent” texts from my mother at this very moment and through the day; hi Ma). It’s because it comes more naturally to me when I wake up every morning or when I’m about to call it a day. Growing up in a Catholic family, we prayed before getting out of bed and before tucking ourselves to sleep. Short prayers thanking God for everything that happened and was meant to happen. The concept of prayer was a conversation in our home (it still is), and again I have my parents to be grateful for for the liberty of practicing my faith in a way that has only strengthened it over the years. That book is blank because my gratitude journal is my daily conversations with God every morning and night. Shorts prayers of gratefulness and affirmation.

It is better to be happy than to be sad. No doubt there. Be happy for those around you and be happy for yourself. And I am. But writing about things that bother me also makes me happy in a strange and twisted way. My recently pointed out that I should write about happier things. She seems to think I’m using my words (and talent) in a dark place and I know she means well. I seem to think that my words resonate with others in my place. This isn’t talent or love for literature, it’s pure honesty.

For over seven years now, my blog has been the bonfire I burn my secrets, confessions, struggles and joys in. During one of my confessions in church, the priest suggested I write things that still hurt me and burn it in flames. This blog and you are those flames.

“Why does figuring and coming up with what’s wrong in our lives or even creating situations that make our lives seem bad come more easily to humans?”

I don’t think it is about making our lives seem bad. I think it about voicing out what upsets us because, whether we like it or not, pain is more powerful joy. Pain can be motivational. Occasionally, it can be aspirational. Pain is what draws us together. I think it is about seeking out voices of assurance that we are not alone and that life’s obstacles, no matter how big or small are common to all. I think it is because it is easier to complain about the rocky road ahead than it is to accept the bed of flowers. Maybe grief is the new-age fad, maybe it’s not. Maybe it’s an escape or maybe it’s comforting. Maybe it’s easier to feel insecure than it is to feel confident. Maybe it’s is easy to be a victim than to wear a cape.

What do I know?

I also don’t think my opinion should have a bearing over anyone else’s. I think it is great to be grateful and happy or to share our lives in all its greatness with the world. I also think it’s okay to cry over the smallest fears. Some days we’re wrong, some days we’re right. Either way, most days, we’re getting through because we have each other. We always will.

You and me, and my soulful (WhatsApp) groups. You know who you are.

Today’s tune: What Do I Know by Ed Sheeran.

Day 43 – 27 September 2017.
323 days to go.

Thanks for listening and if you relate, say hello, please and thank you.

Photo by Luke Ellis-Craven on Unsplash

Day 29 – I’m yelling Tinder

I get rebellious every now and then, and download Tinder. I suppose it’s my way to getting back to the person who hurt me and letting them know that I could move on too. Who am I kidding? (but that’s besides the point)

The last two times I used Tinder, I was surprised with a few matches but none that ever led to a conversation. A lot of these guys seemed really good but not hearing from them crushes the little self-confidence you have left in you. Worse still, most of my other friends who used Tinder seemed to find dates, even if not a companion, and move on. What was happening here? Was I not good enough? I had my brave moments and even messaged some but I was left staring at my own message over and over (World 1 Chriselle 0). I would feel pathetic, and cry and complain over never hearing back from people. Being rejected by strangers suddenly felt so much worse. What do they know? Eventually it made me feel more bitter. I deleted Tinder and swore never to download it again, that was until the next time I felt alone and vulnerable and wanted a partner to talk to.

Distractions, Anagha said, you need distractions.

It is my lunch break at work and my mind keeps drifting to the boy. I open Google Play Store and at the risk of facing more rejection, I download Tinder again. I think it couldn’t get any worse than I already feel. And this anger might be better than the way I’m pining for someone I can’t have. So I set up my profile, and paste this description I had previously written and we’re ready go. I pick out pictures that I’m told look nice; not too much but just enough. I pick out my Spotify anthem and John Mayer is strumming the strings on his guitar in my ears, and I’m thinking, “Let’s go to wonderland“.

Swipe left.
Swipe left.
Swipe left.
Swipe right.

This goes on for a while and suddenly there’s a flame flashing in my notification bar. I got super liked (Heart 1 World 0). And it happened again. And for the first time in my otherwise failed attempts on Tinder, there is a message and I am beyond excited. Suddenly, all is forgotten because I feel confident and liked? I’m not sure why but I feel validated. I felt better the next day because I started swiping yes for people I thought were out of my league (something I never did before), and I was matched yes again (self-esteem 8503804803843, anxiety 0).

My close guy friends always mocked me being on Tinder because it isn’t meant to be an app for something other than a hookup. But I know of friends who have found love. Sure, the chances are one in a million or two, but it’s possible. Right? When I first joined Tinder, it was a distraction and to fill a void. That makes me a horrible person but I have to honest – that’s what it was. So imagine my excitement when someone is actually interested in having a conversation about me and about him, and the things that matter. It shifted something in me. I don’t see us turning into something just yet but knowing that I could have a conversation with someone other than boys from my past that I have been holding on to for years made me feel really really good.

There will always be a guy like you out there. Today, maybe not, but maybe someday you will find your match. On Tinder or not, just believe.

I don’t want to be just an option for people to swipe yes or no to. But being wanted felt bloody damn good, and no, it’s not the solution but it feels like a step towards finding one.

You want love?
We’ll make it
Swim in a deep sea
Of blankets

Today’s tune: Your Body Is A Wonderland by John Mayer.

Day 29 – 1 June 2017.
337 days to go.

Thanks for listening and if you relate, say hello, please and thank you.

Day 26 – I just wanna feel real love

I am trying so hard to forget instead all I do is remember. I feel like I am surrounded by darkness because I am focusing too much on the light. I am staring at the problem but with no attention to the remedy. I am not coping well, I am trying to shape a fate that is already twisted and set in stone.

Help me move forward, help me let go. Help me get out of darkness and into the light. Help me feel light.

I just wanna feel real love
Feel the home that I live in
Cause I got too much life
Running through my veins
Going to waste

Today’s tune: Feel by Robbie Williams.

Day 26 – 29 May 2017.
340 days to go.

Thanks for listening and if you relate, say hello, please and thank you.

Day 25 – Will I ever be in the now?

I am always inside my head, thinking about situations, people and places over and over. I shouldn’t be but I am. How will I ever truly live? How do I feel happiness and freedom?

Lately, I sense that I have been getting attached to the idea of something rather than the person or experience itself. I chalk out scenarios of how they should respond rather than allowing them to be and it is getting in way of me being my 100%. I put on masks to make myself feel something I won’t naturally feel. In reality, I am just trapped in my mind, unable to find the keyhole to the path to being free. Being trapped is the worst feeling. It is the worst because you are doing it to yourself. The mind is such a tricky place, one wrong move, and the switch could be flipped for life. How do you then cope? How do live in the now?

What now? I just can’t figure it out
What now? I guess I’ll just wait it out

Today’s tune: What Now by Rihanna.

Day 25 – 28 May 2017.
341 days to go.

Thanks for listening and if you relate, say hello, please and thank you.

Day 23 – Unforced errors

I have been trying too hard to make things work the way I imagine or expect them to be. I am not allowing them to take their own course. I am so used to control, it is making everything else spiral out of control. I must not force things, I will not force things, I no longer force things.

I told you to be patient
I told you to be fine
I told you to be balanced
I told you to be kind

What is meant to be will be — swim, float or drown, it will be, in its own time and course.

Today’s tune: Skinny Love by Birdy.

Day 23 – 26 May 2017.
343 days to go.

Thanks for listening and if you relate, say hello, please and thank you.