you wake up when the sun sets and you walk to the mailbox drenched with yesterday’s sweat on your skin and grease on your hair. and all the little children down the street look at you. the only time the children see you is when you’re smoking on your balcony or taking your beer bottles to the trash can. you brag to your friends about having not eaten, and you have others laugh with you about it. people call you to ask you to go to lunch, you lie and say you already have plans with some other friends. you always go to restaurants alone and write thank you notes with smiles to the waiters because it’s the only form of connection you feel comfortable with. you try to find new ways to escape yourself. the home won’t do. the beer is strangely keeping you where you are. you’re unfaithful to all the books you’re supposed to read. being around people only accentuate how uncomfortable you really are. you go for a drive to try and find some semblance, and you cry. you never mean to, but that’s what always happens. and it’s an awful thing, it surely is an awful thing when you’re at the stoplight and the other driver sees you crying, and you want to tell him not to worry, but what you really want to say is that you’re sorry they have to see this. you come home and write some words strung with sad adjectives and call it poetry. the new year rolls around and you’re still 21, but you feel 60. your heart feels sore. and you swear you’ll never fall in love. you kiss the boys who don’t matter, and never the ones that do. you don’t allow them to grow close to you because it’s safer for them. you attract connection as much as you repel it. and you don’t care. you have your leftover cigarette butts to prove it. you buy drinks for everyone but you reject other people’s offers. you always look up or down but never straight ahead. someone at a club once asked you about this. you didn’t respond. your mom calls and you tell her you are doing fine. you talk to your brother and you realize no one can alleviate the pain. you can’t put yourself together so you avoid everyone. you let the phone go to voicemail but you keep in touch with everyone through text so no one worries. you trust the ones who don’t care if you never come back. you have a whole case of wine to yourself, again, and it’s somehow not enough. and so this is what you do. this is what you do all day long. you waste time by destroying yourself. you want to tell somebody you’ve made a lifetime out of feeling lost. someone once told you that you’re tormented by yourself, that your inner battle is like a pure darkness, and she told you it was mesmerizing because it reminded her of aurora borealis. you think it’s beautiful too, but you don’t say anything further. because you know once you share anything about yourself to someone, you start to miss them. you know people only come so they can leave. you don’t allow people to love you. you romanticize your life and people and fictional characters and you call it love. you are homesick for a home you never had. you don’t know if you will ever be brave enough to reach out your hand. you don’t know if that’s what you really want. you feel like road construction during traffic hour, and so you turned yourself into an open freeway at 2am. but then you sobered up. and you call this your so-called life. you tell yourself this is everything you’ve wanted.
you can tell what a writer values based on her themes. what she holds on to, what she lets run free, her deepest desires, her darkest secrets. it isn’t about what she writes on the surface, it’s about the tone. her themes are what she considers the focal point of her existence, whether big or small, it’s representational. it’s easy for a sad poet to write about depression. it takes courage for a writer to realize there’s more to her writing and her own life than her sadness. that there is meaning outside who she’s been, that there is substance beyond the pain.
writers are always trying to romanticize the ugliness of the world, unable to realize that for every moment they dip in glorifying negativity, they lose a moment of recognizing positivity. they live in so much pain that they have confused it for beauty. but pain is not beauty. there is absolutely nothing wrong with feeling pain, until they create a reality where all they see is sadness. it’s unhealthy the way people hold onto their sadness as if that’s all they have. you can’t trust sadness. you can’t make sadness your best friend, because it’s too loyal. that’s the problem with sadness, you need to walk away from it. people try to tell me their best artwork comes from struggle, that they are empty without it. it becomes hazardous at that level, because yes, amazing work can come from struggle, but amazing work can also sprout elsewhere. artists depend on their sadness and let it fuel them. it becomes an addiction, it’s true.
but true beauty is not spiteful, frustrated, hopeless, judgmental. true beauty is light, forgiving, accepting, loving, free. for all the writers out there who think pain makes their existence worthwhile, i want to hug you slowly, and aggressively, until you realize that you are only suffering as much as you tell yourself.
it’s hardest to hear, that the way we prolong suffering is indeed a choice and not an act of the world dooming us with bad luck. in order to create good memories, to be surrounded by people who accept you for who you are, to love life, and to have passion, one must actively search for it. is living in the past and holding onto hurt, but a lack of movement in some areas of our lives? there is a world of possibility out there, but it does not begin with someone else doing it for you, it does not continue with holding onto the past, and it most certainly does not mean holding a dim view of the future. it comes from the simple act that you believe you are worthy of value. true value. wanting to give yourself the life you deserve. people are so confused by the act of self-worth that the only kind we have prevents us from appreciating ourselves.
i want to tell you this. you are not a wilting flower in a harsh winter, you are a caterpillar waiting to become a butterfly. but one has to leave its cocoon, its comfort zone, to embrace its potential. one has to want to see what the world has to offer. but no one can make you transform into a butterfly, no one can make you realize that you are a butterfly. but you, you can already fly. you have the wings for it. and so, when is a better time to lift off, than now?
you have to realize butterflies are not meant to be trapped in cocoons. cocoons are not homes. but when you hide there, no one can see your beauty that way, especially you. you have to know that you can be beautiful without having broken wings. we can’t always write about the winters we barely survive, because there’s always spring. there’s always room in the journal to write about how you can soar, about how you will.
you don’t want to be remembered for your pain, and you may tell me that’s not what you want to be remembered for, but we always write what we can’t forget until it becomes us. please, instead, want to remembered by how you overcame the pain. when you heal yourself, your story is always remembered. it’s always remembered, because healing is contagious, and your courage will inspire others to heal themselves. create a revolution.
i was watching him play league of legends as his health was depleting and the enemies were closing in on him. and in a second he says “don’t fear” and i look at the screen and he jumps into the enemies and survives the damage. i wish i could explain with precise detail what happened in the seconds that followed when he said, “don’t fear” but there is no way. you just had to see it for yourself the way he launched his character into a crowd not expecting whether to win or survive or die or damage the other, he didn’t anticipate any result, but to just do it for the sake of taking a risk. for living. / we are most alive when we recognize our fear and let it motivate us. / because he once told me, “the answer is always no if you don’t try” so that’s what i immediately thought. and i mumble to myself, “don’t fear, don’t fear” and i think that’s perfect. i think that’s a perfect metaphor for him. if we were part of a logo, he’d be “don’t fear” and i’d be “love more.” and i think those are so complementary. so complementary of what we stand for and of each other. i am still someone without him, but i am not the same without him. he complements me. he’s the other half of the whole. we are two wholes of another whole. the concept only expands. i’m always daydreaming about how our messages will be received in the world. i’m always daydreaming about who he’s going to be, because i know the world is looking forward to encountering someone like him.
the worst way to listen is ignorance.
the other night i went on a coffee run for my boyfriend and i at midnight, and it was the first rain of the season, and i began to think about how the roads are dangerous during the first rainfall. and that naturally led me to think my car was wearing ice skates and the ground was the ice. and i’m poor at ice skating and i’m always terrified of falling and so that’s what i was afraid of, my car slipping and veering out of control. but then that fear didn’t last long because i began to think how windshield wipers are a metronome and how rain will always remind me of santa cruz. rain brings me back to the first time i bought rain boots and jumped in a puddle and realized i was invincible. and then i moved on from that thought, and i looked at the ground and saw the way the street lights reflected onto the wet road. there were streaks of red and green with smudges of yellow here and there. it looked like dripping paint. it reminded me of pollock’s work. and i began to think that if rain was the paintbrush, the pavement was the canvas. and that i was part of a watercolor painting. that i was part of a painting. yes, that. that i am part of art.
this is one of the most beautiful things i’ve read in a while and i’m publishing this on my tumblr because i want to be able to go back and read it. i haven’t cried on the outside but i’m completely melted on the inside. this was much needed for me today. i think words like these are much needed for everybody, all the time. i know i’m not just talking for myself, but life gets a little hard you know. and others call this generation the entitled ones, the ones who are known for being petty and being overly but poorly opinionated. but i think there’s so much more to humans than the evolution of the problems we have had to deal with. i think we are the generation we are now because the rise of technology has allowed to explore our inner selves more, to become more reflective, more aware, rather than focusing on external circumstances. we can now reach internally. we can now see ourselves under a magnifying glass. this is sort of a tangent but it’s relevant, i promise. i think we all forget who we are sometimes. and when life gets sort of stressful, and then it gets really stressful, my response is to hold it all in, to drink it away, to sleep it away, to keep myself from anyone that could be exposed to my negative energy. that’s just how i am, and i know that by holding in my negative energy, i am still staying within my negative energy, but that’s the best i know how to cope as of right now. in these moments of stress, i forget myself, i lose sight of the future, and i am extremely uninspired, unmotivated, and somewhat upset with myself. i know these moments aren’t permanent, and i know these moments don’t define me, but they do define how i approach the future. moments like these swallow my heart and leave a space. but then someone like this comes around, unasked, completely by surprise, with words about you, and dedicated to you, that fill that heart with a warm space again.
thank you for these inspiring words, i have taken them deeply to heart :’) and i am sending back all the love from california to you. there is something magical about writing letters to strangers online. i think it’s like the verbal form of heartbeats. and when we recognize each other’s heartbeats, we create a bridge, and an invisible string becomes conscious. and i think that’s beautiful. we are always uncovering secrets. maybe we will always be playing hide and seek with each other. maybe childhood never ends, but is found in metaphors all around us if we look and listen closely. maybe that’s what hide and seek is all about - finding others when they don’t want to be found.
this was much much much needed. i really can’t thank you enough. you deserve the best weekend ever and the best 2014 and the best everything.
things that stress me out:
1. not being able to go through my dashboard in one day
do you ever start to read someone’s writing and you can feel their emotion rush right through you in the first sentence?. and you think it’s just you, but it’s really their emotions taking over. and then you’re sad over their sadness. and it all becomes clear what kind of life they’ve been living, even if you may not know the details. somehow they’ve become a friend. like a faraway penpal. like someone you want to take care of. and you want to write to them, "i get you. the loneliness is hard. some people have lived with loneliness their whole life, they don’t have a home. i don’t know you but i can and will and do love you. and those words are cliche, but there is nothing else that can encompass what i’m trying to say. and i hope one day the world appears sunny to you on a dark day. someone once told me that a stranger’s kindness is sometimes the most important, it rearranges our reality, so i hope this sparks a light in your heart that you’ve made a cave. i hope this turns your heart into a home."
there are a million books to read, songs to lose yourselves in, different kinds of tea to drink, wine to sip. how can you ever be lonely?
I just started birth control and it’s got my hormones acting all funny, and I am seeing sadness everywhere. I feel 11 and 14 and 19 and 21 all at once, and I wake up crying. I even dream in sadness. I feel like a puddle, the downside of water, where I don’t know my boundaries but everything seems to be a limitation. I feel like the water in a water bottle sitting in a car on a hot day just about to explode. I want to flow like water. I want to stop feeling like there is a hail storm inside of me and rather feel the rainbow. this is a horrible nightmare
i look back and read these entries about B., and i don’t know who that girl is. i know what those feelings are, i know what point i’m trying to get across, i know who i’m talking about, i know all the moments i’m trying to dearly hold onto, but that girl seems like a lifetime ago. it’s strange, the way time warps our perception. i’m not going to make this scientific because that’s not what this is about, what this is about is that i thought i loved a boy for a year and 7 months but it seemed like a lifetime ago. a lifetime that never happened to me.
B., i’m not sure if this is for you, if this is for me. i’m not sure if this holds any meaning. you did, once upon a time. your meaning will always still alive in the time that it happened, but like most memories, they don’t carry over into the future.
perhaps the most courageous thing i have done for myself is let go of someone who was not meant for me, but i didn’t do this alone. i would have never done it alone, because daniel is the one who has shown me how to come to peace with him, my self, my life. i would have never had the courage to free myself from someone like B., because i subconsciously made him my reality. but then daniel showed me my reality.
i stand corrected, this isn’t for B. and this isn’t for me. this is for my boyfriend, who gave me bravery.
what you have to remember is people aren’t here to belittle you, degrade you, judge you. they have done it so much to themselves that they’re unaware of where it all goes. it’s outstanding how much is tangled in within us, that we even hurt the ones we love, because it’s always the ones we love that see our pain. vulnerability is messy. pain has a way of leading our lives, and in order to end this vast phenomenon of pain, you must not reciprocate it. when pain reacts to pain, we poison the air. when you meet pain with understanding, you create the opportunity to revive.
i was the child at a fair desperately holding onto her balloon that was double knotted around her wrist, because i needed to know that my life was in my control. i am still that child, still anxiously and stubbornly holding onto needless baggage because i tell myself it’s light, but i don’t realize the freedom i could enjoy.
i need to let go. i need to because it’s best for me.
i need to let go of microwaves, overpriced drinks at clubs and even decently mixed drinks. i need to let go of the memories of running around with my 14 year old heart, telling myself that’s the closest i can achieve to freedom. i need to let go of darkness, social etiquette, uncharged phones, my dad’s tone, my irrational fear of being unable to connect, my deeply irrational fear of spiders, unfinished books, cuticles, blowdrying my hair, the fact that i miss everyone i’ve ever met, counting in sevens, uncertainty, california, my tendencies to admit defeat before i even try, feeling unwecloemd, my fears about attachments, heavy anxiety at a park a 2am in 2006, the need to connect, and instead sinking, money money money and more money, things left unsaid, the constant need to converse, the times i felt forgotten, lost items, waiting, people who don’t contribute to my positivity, the fear of not being good enough, chores, unanswered questions, the overwhelming awareness of my sensitivity, everything i used to believe in before and during and after bryan, and … the idea that being alone was better than ever opening myself up to love.
the world is full of monsters only because we have been told to be scared of our lightness.
what matters is love. it’s not the conflicts, the separation, the arguments, the seemingly lack of change, the seemingly lack of hope, the judgments, the seemingly lack of feeling heard. what matters is love. it’s the laughter, the hugs, the long conversations late at night, the good memories, the soon-to-be even better memories, the growth, the appreciation of one another,
the very aspect that you are able to
feel love, to give love, and to
be alive in that love.
don’t let yourself be consumed by the negativity because if you do, you’ll let it fuel you. but don’t forget about it, because it’ll come back to haunt you when you least expect it.
don’t let yourself grow hard from love. please don’t. so many people live this life wondering if their live will play out the way they want it to. well here’s
it will, if you stop worrying.
the silver lining:
it already is
your life already is playing out the way
you just forgot
every moment we worry about love, we lose a moment to love the other, ourselves, and the world.
don’t let love make you serious. don’t. because then what does it become? it becomes a chore. let love make you soft. silly. passionate. wondrous. that way love can enrapture us.
love conquers you, so let it happen. let yourself remember.