Wednesday, 31 October 2012

A plan...

   I had a terrible day yesterday, I felt like crap all day. When I get like that nothing really helps me. I know that my feelings pass, because today I have a plan and I feel a lot better.


   So here is my plan:

   1. This happens, it happens more that I'd like but this is something that I have to accept. Wishing it will go, has the opposite effect. Accept and be nice to myself. Beating myself up achieves nothing, in fact it makes me feel worse, when I am feeling like a black cloud has descended over me.

   2. Accept that I have been out of work for 4 years. This is obviously not the best situation to be in, but it is the truth. This is not cast in stone, things change and I want to get to a point where I can. This does not mean that I am a failure, the climate has been really awful for years, and also this has been a really big cause in making feel like shit for a long time. I can change this, I am able, I just need to get into a frame of mind where this is actually possible.

   3. One of the bonuses to being out of work, actually practically the only one, is that you have a lot of free time. At the moment, I am not really making anything happen with that time. I have gone swimming every week and I am part of a choir, but I want to do more, and get out more. This does mean making decisions, but I might as well get on the train of actually doing something that I would enjoy and want. Then that would be a stepping stone to getting stuff that effects reality.

   4. Creative things always make me feel good. That includes writing this book that I have always felt passionate about. This isn't really about anymore whether it gets published or people read it. It is about writing about a subject that I love. This is going on the list of stuff I want to do, and really devote time to do it, after all this is something that I love and I have all the time in the world at the moment.

   Creative stuff includes making things like blankets and clothes, having the idea is fine but I want to follow through and the stuff that I want to make. This will involve lists, but I am going to do it, as it is something that both makes me happy and something that I actually do.

   5. There are behaviours that I have that really make it difficult. One of them is that I can't seem to communicate what I want. I think this really is because I have no idea what I desire. I also realised at one in the morning last night, that I am deep boned scared. I am frightened all the time, and I have to be able to get past this or at least live with it. Trying to dampen it, or suppress it has not worked, being scared is not the same as failing. I am OK with being scared, I have my reasons.

   6. Doing things, that is the one thing that the therapy I am in has actually had an effect on. It is really looking at tasks and even if I don't want to do them, making a list of actually putting things into practise. I am now a big fan of lists, and I did do a lot of the tasks that I wanted to do this week.

   7. I am never going to be one of those together people. In fact the more that I think about it it is a myth that people are together, or at least very rare. I am not together, but I am strong, I have done things in the past, with every obstacle but I did them because I had the drive there. I forget that I have that, the majority of the time if I say I am going to do something that I will do it. It is time for me to remember that I have that in me.

   8. Acceptance is not the same as rolling over and staying frozen. Acceptance is about knowing the state that you are in, acknowledging it and letting it be. There has been scant of that in the past month.

   9. The thing that really pulled me out of my funk was saying that I loved myself. As Operahery as that sounds, I found that I really did love myself then, it is good to keep that in mind. I love myself at my worst and best.

   10. I have to live my life as I want it to be. I cannot try and please other people or try and make others like me. First it's exhausting and second this is not even based in reality. That is the one that gets me. There is not basis that trying to make people like you even works. This is surely the definition of insanity, trying to do something irrelevant of the result, or thinking that you can do something regardless of the what actually happens.

   My life is as important as anybody else's and is just as good/worse as anybody else. What makes it different is that it is mine, I might as well try an enjoy it, or at the very least fill the time that I have things that I do that I might enjoy.

   This is my plan, and I am going to try my level best to enjoy it, and be in it. Really be in the life I am in. That's the plan.

Monday, 29 October 2012

Exhausted

   I am really tired today, for various reasons including a very disjointed nights sleep. I swam 30 lengths though which explains why I am tired. There was something else that made me emotionally tired.

   I am not going to go into detail. The people in my life have not given consent to be written about on the Internet. It is not for me to say how these people are or what they have done to me, though if it something nice then I think that is OK. This however is not good.

   I usually like to buy things and this involved today buying something, but it came with a problem. There is nothing that I can do, I don't want to do this thing. The barrier will always be there I can't make it not be there, however much I want it not to be there.


   It is always be a tough thing for me to do, I know that it sounds cryptic but believe the errand came with a bomb emotionally. It really made me tired, hence being exhausted. I did it though, I can't help feeling at least today at what price?

   Sometimes we all have to do things that we don't like, it doesn't I have discovered become any easier really. Still it is done and over.

   The other thing that I realised today was that I only have two days left of the experiment. I will have posted every day for a whole month!
 

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Anti-love Songs

   OK to be really cynical for a moment I love songs that are basically I hope that we never meet again and it's over.


   In no particular order, No Children by The Mountain Goats. I love that this song is basically I hope that we kill each other. The way this is sung as well has a place in my heart. I do like love songs of the sweet variety but this one always makes me happy in how straight it is. My favourite lyric: I hope when you think of me years down the line, you can't find one good thing to say. This song is the opposite of yearning in every way, which makes me love it all the more.  


   Heart of Glass by Blondie. I like a lot of things about this song. That I feel like this is a woman singing and the point of view is all from her. I like that this is a song about being disillusioned. I also like how upbeat it is in comparison to what the song is about. My favourite lyric: seemed like the real thing but I was so blind.


   One night Stand by The Pipettes. I like that this about women not feeling love at all. It is about the only thing that the person only wants sex from the relationship. The Pipettes are one of my favourite female bands. My favourite lyric: I don't love you, I don't want you, leave me alone you're just a one night stand. 


   Finally because I got really into old American folk, Frankie and Johnnie by Pete Seeger. What I really like about this song that it tells the story of a relationship gone sour (really sour). I like the way it sounds as well. It really is for me really good. My favourite lyric: This story only goes to show that there ain't no good in men. He was her man but he was doing her wrong.

  

  
      

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Scary, not for me

   I have a history of not liking things scary. I have it quite baffling why people want to be scared, I have a healthy relationship with fear, it's a very deep seated response for me.

   It is one of the reasons I have never been a fan of horror films. I once tried to anaesthetise myself to horror by watching something called the top 100 moments. The thing that finished me off was the clip they showed of Misery, where the women does something horrible to the guy. After she does this, she stands up and says that she loves him. That scene has made me feel ill ever since.


   I don't tend to get scared by lots of blood coming out of someone or an axe yielding murderer. It is the psychological stuff that really unsettles me. I think it is because people can really be like that, and that is something real that we can all be scared of.

   That stuff creeps me out far more than someone getting their arm chopped off. I also do not like the treatment of women in horror. The sexual undertone is really disturbing to me. Women tend to be the victims of whatever bad thing is happening, although I guess in Misery that is turned on it's head, though it is still something that I will never watch or read.

   There is something that I do like and that is songs and funny horror done well. Like Sean of the Dead (though in that film i don't think that women are really shown well), or something like The Adams Family, or The Munsters.

   There are a couple of songs that I like as well like The Monster Mash, and One Eyed, One Horned, Flying Purple People Eater. Really though horror and fear not for me.

   This doesn't mean that I don't like films though, and maybe I am missing out, but for my money if I couldn't hack Scream then I think horror and me are never to meet.

Friday, 26 October 2012

Periods

   I have always thought that people tend to think that women talk about their periods all the time. I don't but I am going to now.

   Considering this happens to half the population the amount that it is talked about seems not all that much. First of all blood coming out of your vagina isn't the greatest feeling in the world I have to say.


   My periods are regular, not when they come but how long they last and the pain that is associated with them. I get cramps about three times in the first day that I have a period. I'd say it is about two hours of really intense muscle cramp (that does not go away with drugs) and it is like waves of really bad pain. After that I get 4 days. It is like clock work as well if I start at 6 in the morning 5 days later I'll stop at 6 in the morning.

   I have to say this is actually a good thing in terms of planning. I also get really heavy periods, so it does limit things in that 5 days like swimming or wanting to have sex. I find that the amount of blood makes me feel a little uncomfortable.

    Really though I have got used to my body, after all I have been having periods since I was 12. I have gotten used to how and when my periods are and if they effect my mood.

   Also can we get over this myth that periods are dirty they aren't it is how the female reproductive system works, and has been like this for hundreds of years. Making women feel dirty has been one of patriarchy's biggest sins as far as I am concerned, especially when it comes to the things that your body produces.

   On a personal level it took me a long time to a) feel like my body wasn't punishing me and b) realise that most women go through this and that you can accept and understand your period.

   A couple of things people I feel tend not to talk about. First it it is a waiting game. My periods are not regular in the amount of days between them, good for those women who do have them regularly but mine aren't. So sometimes it can be a whole week of me looking at my watch thinking is it now?

   Second tampons and sanitary towels are not inherently bad things. Stop for god's sake (for me personally at least) putting them in the female hygiene section (my vagina does not need to be cleaned up so patriarchy can fuck off), name it something different. And third blood is not a bad thing. Your body should be respected for something it does month in and month out. Having a missed period for me is a sign that something is wrong with my health.

   And the final thing, it is inconvenient. That is the most consistent thing that has come out of me having them for nearly two decades to come about. It is annoying to always have a tampon on you when you go out. You have to make sure of a lot of things, but mostly it's inconvenient to buy these things every month, and sometimes it is not cheap.

   Periods lets take it out of the myth of dirtiness, and also lets stop thinking that this is something that women either take too seriously or too lightly. We are in a club that we understand. Let's talk about them for however long we want!

  

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Love Songs

   I have a few favourite love songs at the minute and thought I would share them.


   Kiss Me by Ed Sheeran is a real favourite for me at the minute. It really is lovely and encapsulates that unsteady first shine of love. A beautiful song (it's on youtube). In fact most of the songs that I am talking about are going to be on youtube. I think my favourite lyric is the chorus: kiss me like you want to be loved. His voice is amazing for me on this record.


   Whistle for the Choir by The Fratellis is pretty amazing as well. There is an acoustic version that I fell in love with on youtube. Also a song about young love but I really like it. My favourite lyric: oh my you caught my eye, a girl like you is irresistible. There is something very fragile about the song that makes me like it a lot.


   One Wonderful Night by The Honey Bees. I love how 60s this song is. I found this song when I was trying to find 60s girl groups and I have liked it ever since. I love that this song is so bouncy and that it makes me want to dance. My favourite lyric: we were in world all of our own.


   You make my dreams come true, by Hall and Oats. I never knew this band in fact until it was on of all things an episode of Rookie Blue. I have loved it ever since. I love how eighties this is, and how unashamedly positive this song is. I am not usually one for just cheeriness but this song always makes me smile. My favourite lyric: Thoughts and dreams ascatter, you pull them all together.


   Chariots Rise by Lizzie West, introduced to me through the film Secretary. I really like this song. Her voice really makes this song so poignant somehow. My favourite lyric: now I find in the end, with him I need not pretend. I think it's awesome.


   Bir Mir Bist du Schoen by The Andrew Sisters. I really feel in love with The Andrew Sisters that were a group during the war a long time ago. I love how the melodies work in this song, it kind of reminds that love as a theme for music has happened for ever. I love how old fashioned this song is as well. My favourite lyric: and so I rack my brain hoping to explain all the things that you do to me.  

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Sin part 3

   The final instalment about sin.

   1. Sloth. I don't know whether or not that this is a sin that is applicable to the modern age to be honest. I know that I can be lazy at times. I once had a teacher that said this was the stealth sin. That is sneaked up on you because it didn't have the fire and brimstone of lust or wrath.

   Maybe this is just me but there is nothing wrong as far as I am concerned with taking it easy and doing things on your own terms. This to me seems a little like it is a sin that is aimed at making people feel bad at not working. it seems to try and make people feel guilty.

   I feel that considering in the UK compared to Europe we have the least amount of bank holidays. I think we all forget that there are people working on those too especially in retail. I don't think forcing people to feel bad for taking their own time to do things is a good thing. So I don't think it's really a sin that I feel does anything in the modern age at least.


   The animal looks pretty cute to me though. So there is that.

   3. Wrath. Definitely not a stealth sin in the least. Anger I feel serves a purpose though. Getting angry about things can be constructive. Though if all it does is make you feel like there is no way to solve it that can be a bad thing.

   I think the worst thing that can happen when you don't get a chance to solve the underlying issue that got you angry in the first place, it leads to resentment and for me at least if that festers then it goes downhill from there.


   I don't think that wrath itself is necessarily all that fire and brimstone. I also think  that there is a weird relationship between anger and gender. Women tend not to be given credit for being legitimately angry. I also think that people are taught to fear anger in people.

   It can be a useful emotion I feel and after all bottling up something only leads it to coming out in another way. Wrath not all that scary in the end.

   As this comes to an end I don't think I really feel any of the sins are really all that bad, but I think they are useful to discuss at least.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Giving Blood

   I know that I was going to finish the sins, but it needs to be a quick post as I am leaving to sing a choir soon.

   The reason why I'm going early is that I am also giving to give blood. Now I am not squeamish about needles, so those who are hopefully avoid this. I don't really care, about it to be honest. I also have had low iron before so they don't want to take blood from you if that is the case.


   The process isn't that bad, so to get into it, they first have a small test to see your iron levels. They take a drop of your blood then if it drops in this blue filled tube then you get the blood taken.

   The process basically is you leaning on a bed and they take the blood. It does take some time with me as my veins have always been hard to find. That is the most weird part for me, people feeling my arm whilst I clench it and trying to find a pulse.

   Good news no one has found me dead yet. They put the needle in (and for me it really is a small scratch and I never look while they put the needle in), and then the process really takes care of itself. It is a strange feeling of having of the tube on your arm flowing with your blood and it feels warm against your skin.

   It really actually takes not that long in total from getting in the door to leaving. It is about an hour or an hour and a half including filling in a questionnaire at the beginning to make sure you are eligible.

   I feel that I am happy to do it. I have done this over twenty times now, and I think it takes practise to be comfortable in the process.

   One thing that I find funny about it though is sometimes you get a bit of a bruise and I always have to say if I am not wearing sleeves that I am not a heroin addict I just give blood.

   So giving blood it isn't that bad and I feel like I am doing something useful and am happy to do it. I have to go soon though to do it!

Monday, 22 October 2012

Sin part 2

   OK as I am going through the seven deadly sins alphabetically lust and pride are the next ones that I am going to discuss.

   1. Lust. I can't really see that much wrong with lust to be fair. It is kind of essential in romantic attachments after all. I think when you grab something or someone that you lust for without considering the feelings of others involved then you obviously have a problem. Lust though itself I can't personally see as a thing that is going to bankrupt the world.



   I do lust after things that are unattainable personally but that really only affects me, though surely. (I love the picture above by the way, and not just because of her hair and hair band). I have a warm feeling towards lust, it makes people feel good and I think as long as we consider other people then you are fine.

   I also feel to certain extent that women get slammed with lust as a bad emotion much more than men. That we have to control it, or the patriarchy gets threatened. Women as much as men feel lust, and that is not threatening not does it need to be controlled, let us let it be. Sex can be had for pure enjoyment and I say lets celebrate it without berating anyone else for it!

   2. Pride. Ahh pride, it is considerably more damaging I think here. It can really hinder how you interact with other people I have found. To have pride in what you do i think is a good thing, but when it effects how you judge other people I think then it can become a hindrance.


   To have too much pride implies that you judge others, I think at least. Pride in your own achievements is great. I think trying to get other people to feel proud of you can get you into a sticky situation. I think pride sometimes pits other people against each other. You are in a way saying that you are better than others. I don't think that this has to be true, or that you have to better. I do think that you can be as good as you can be on your own. To pit your own achievements against each other I think makes a certain amount of sense, without judgement hopefully.

 
   Only two more to go. Sloth and Wrath. Then the sins are over!

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Victoria Wood and Me and Mrs Jones

   What a three weeks it has been! This is really hard, and writing when I don't know what topic to write about or not feeling that I have anything to say has been a task. It is though a great rhythm to get yourself into, to sit and write. It also I have to say is great practise on my typing skills :) and it has been a great experiment for me.

   I am not sure that I will carry on posting everyday here, but I hope to write everyday after this. It has been a pretty up and down month (including my therapy) but this has always made me happy, so I am going to continue on to write. I wanted to make a couple of recommendations today.


   I want to recommend first Victoria Wood, and in particular her series. There are episodes of Victoria Wood As Seen On TV on youtube. What I like about her is how observant and sharp she is in all areas that she writes in. Another thing that I have really liked about the sketches is how good the songs that she writes are.

   The underlying thing that makes her show a consistently good thing is that she is funny. I am in awe of what a good writer and song writer she is. The show is wonderful, and it is from the eighties but still holds up.


   I also want to put a word in for Me and Mrs Jones that is a British series and is currently on the BBC. I have written in the past of series getting me in their thrall and this one has. I love that it has a central female character at the centre of it. Mrs Jones is played by Sarah Alexander (you might know her from Coupling), and think she is wonderful in this role.

   I am not one for family shows sometimes, but this has real feeling in it surrounding all the other craziness. I think that the show has the right balance and the comedy in it always makes me laugh. I like comedies that result from character, and are not based on meanness. It also helps that this is a romantic comedy at it's heart. I have always liked romantic comedies, but I think they are quite hard to pull off, especially in a TV series. I can't recommend it enough, a show with a great voice, and really funny.   

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Sin part 1

   What I'm going to do is take the seven sins and write about them alphabetically. So, here I am going to be writing about Avarice, Envy and Gluttony.

   1. Avarice. (I like the way this sounds as apposed to greed, I also like the way wrath sounds rather than anger). Avarice the word even though I like it more than greed makes me feel a little gross. I think because for me it is drenched in the idea that you screwed people over to get money. The need for money itself isn't a human sin, it's the way the world's currency works.


   It does seem a little strange that the actual paper that money is printed on isn't worth all that much, but that argument always seemed weak to me, that money itself is useless. To a certain extent that maybe true but what money gets you like food, housing, and clothing these are all things in life that we need, and currency is the way we get them.

   There is no shame in buying things that you need, or indeed things that bring you pleasure like TV series or concert tickets. Avarice for pure money, I don't think I have the brain to just hunger after just money.

   I like what it gets me, but other than that I don't know if money is all that powerful. I like day dreaming about winning the lottery and backtracking around America or buying a cottage in Ireland and writing full time, or living in various places around the UK and moving every month. Those are all fun dreams but I don't hunger for them.

   Avarice as a sin seems a little removed from me. I don't think it's a sin to like what you do and spend money on what you want. It's your money, do as you will.

   2. Envy. OK this is definitely in my wheelhouse. I tend to envy things I think people have get. Sometimes I look at a group of friends laughing and wish I had that. Sometimes I look at great writers, and I envy how good they are. I wish i could be as great as them forgetting that it takes years to develop your voice as well as practise.

   Envy I think can helpful, if you use it the right way. I like this writer, so I am going to work on my own writing, not to imitate but to improve my own voice, to be a good as I can be. I can never really know what is going on in somebody else's life, that group of friends might well be hiding their own bitterness at each other, though I hope not. Those writers some of them dead and some never knew how many people would love them.

   Sometimes there is the trap of falling into wanting what you perceive you can't have. Really this is blame twisted, and self blame at that. People get good at something because they practised, because they believed, because they were able to hone their craft. I can do that too.

   Envy can be self destructive, but i think it can also get you to strive for what you want. I know that it has in my case, you just have to know where to line is.


   I have also envied beauty, but I came to the startling revelation (at least for me), that it doesn't last. This isn't a cynical line. Beauty, is great to look at, to wonder at, but for me there is a comfort or a certainty at least that we all age, and that works of art that hold beauty in it's grasp can be wonderful to look at but that will also leave us. Nothing can stay the same. There is something about the certainty that we all die, so to certain extent so will beauty, though fleeting, it is nice to look at. I have though come to conclusion that envying something that is so hard both to define and so brief is just silly. That is not to say that I don't admire pretty people but I think talent and curiosity endures.

   3. Gluttony. This is a tricky one. I don't think I have ever experienced eating something till I was sick. I also think that this sin seems to make eating a sin somehow. Eating is something that we all have to do to stay alive. I have said before and will say again, there is nothing morally superior in depriving your body of something it needs. Food is such a tircky subject for most of the population that having a sin about it just makes for more guilt. I like food, and I think we all have to like it.


   The sharpness of lemons, the creaminess of macaroni cheese, the bitter sweetness of chocolate, all things to be savoured and enjoyed. Gluttony can get bent.

   So I'll write about Lust, Pride, Sloth and Wrath in later posts.

  

  

 

Friday, 19 October 2012

Sleep

   OK I'm super tired today, not for any special reason I had a good nights sleep and haven't done all that much today. So never mind but I have made a promise so here I am.

   I have to say that I love sleep, I love being in bed. It is my favourite thing to do is read in bed. My two pleasures in life are being warm and reading. I love being out of mind when reading.

   Sleep has been allusive for me for a good couple of years. If anyone else has had insomnia I feel like it is being locked inside your own brain, and the prison you are in you made yourself.

   I have always been of the mind, that being awake at 1 or 2 in the morning isn't that bad you can still try and get some sleep. And being awake at 5 or 6 in the morning you can conceivably be awake and actually get yourself in the day. It is the worst for me at 3 or 4 in the morning. It is then that every bad thought and every thing that I have ever berated myself for comes from the depths and it is like an never ending slide show. 

   I am happy to say that this hasn't happened for quite a while. I also have come round to the fact that sometimes you have to move around or go for a walk when you feel like that.


   This hasn't made not love sleep any less, or my bed any less. It has been a great place to be. That picture is not my bed but have to say it's what it looks like most of the time, I like it it looks inviting.

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Alone

   There are many words for being alone. Solo, one, on my own. I wonder if we all feel that we are supposed to be with someone to fill the loneliness that is inside us. It feels somehow like we are tricking ourselves that there is someone out there that will understand us, give us what we want.

   There are some things that I prefer to do alone, like masturbate (I'm smiling), or read, or walk, or swim. There are some thing that are better with another person, and sometimes silence can be lovely with someone else present, or laughing or just talking. I remember lots of whispered conversations when it was just me and a friend and everyone else was asleep. 

   I am selfish. I want time to myself when I want it. That is not a very good compromise as it is not just me that is there. The more that I think about it though I like being alone.

   I like turning up to something alone, as I force myself to examine whether I enjoy it. The experience of doing something I think you have to value on your own terms a lot of the time. I don't know whether that is just an excuse but I think it is important as least to me that experiences that I have I judge on my own terms.

   That isn't to say that community is not important. Connection, being understood is important, but I don't know whether it is all important. Human beings are social creatures. I can't deny that, but some are more so that others. That is not to say I don't want other people in my life and to listen to others. It is how I learn different things, how I get a different opinion or see something differently it is by connecting to others, seeing something that is other from myself. That is really important to me , but being alone is too. 


   (This is totally not me, but I think the picture is gorgeous of a woman alone).

   I have always been solitary, I remember one of the greatest holidays that I had, I was on my own, and went for a walking holiday right before I went to university. The thing that I remember most was that I had time to do things on my own, with nobody else to consult.

   One of the things that inevitable happens on any holiday that I have embarked on with other people, is that it is all compromise and none of the fun. It always means that no-one really gets to do what they want.

   Th romantic question of whether I would want someone in my life seems odd to ask. I have not been in a relationship for so long I think I have forgotten what the concept of being a girlfriend even means. It all looks good on paper, but I cant help that cynical voice in my head that asks the question that how often in reality are people really happy?

   For one so cynical I believe in the possibility of finding someone to make you happy, I just think looking for someone to live with you forever isn't all that likely. It's that idea of soul mates. I mean look at it logically what if my soul mate lived in Bulgaria and I never met them? Is the fault with the universe or is the whole soul mate thing not really a thing?

  Again it all looks good on paper, maybe it's why I like love stories so much. I like the fantasy, I love the connections that people build but they are between the pages of a book.

   Falling in love can be so thrilling. There is a reason why there are a million love songs, books, and poetry all waxing on that theme. I wonder though how many people fall in love together? It seems insurmountable odds. What I really think is that we should let ourselves off the hook. Maybe it's not in the cards for us, and that's OK.

   After all being alone and lonely are two very different things. I wish also admitting loneliness does not mean that I should try and get someone, it just means to me getting out more and doing things that I enjoy.

   Being alone is not some albatross that we have to endure. I like my own company (maybe a little too much), but it doesn't make me abnormal. Being alone doesn't have to be choice either.

   I think that is an argument designed to make you feel bad. Like you are the failure for not finding that mystical person (and let's face it as a woman the majority of people are going to think that I should look for man). I do believe in people, I believe that we have a capacity for brilliance and awfulness. I don't believe in destiny and soul mates. I don't believe you have to choose being alone or with someone. It seems so definite. I believe in doing things that make me happy. Being alone is one of the things that is making me happy, conscious choice or not. So I am sticking with it.

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

The body

   I have such a weird relationship with the mind and the body. i don't know if this is a human thing or a woman in particular thing. I am not talking about looking at a body. I am talking about being in it.

   I have always loved finding out more information, I value my mind a lot, I don't think I value my body as much. I don't know whether this is because I was brought up in an environment that valued knowledge. It just seems to me to be the thing that carried me from place to place.


   This is different when I swim. I feel I am connected to it, in some weird way linked to the body and movement. That I am at last working together with whatever it is that I am working with.

   I don't know if I feel so disconnected to my body, but it often seems a weird thing that I cannot quite understand. Maybe I'll never understand it but it's mine and I only get one. I should like it as much as my mind really. I'm working on it.

   I also like weird images, like x rays of a person or close ups of their skin. Hence the photo of a hand, I really hope that it's not creepy!

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

To finish and to love

   I have been reading Eat, Pray, Love it has been really great I have to say, I have not got to re-reading the Love part but it has been great so far. So many things that she says I agree with and understand. This is not a book for everyone, but I like the way she writes. This is not everyones journey, and I would love to have the money to travel internationally, but I don't at the minute.

   The two things that have stuck with me the most are unfinished endings, and really loving yourself. Unfinished endings i really empathise with, the thing that really gets into your skin about breaking up with anyone be it a friend or a romantic interest or whoever is that there is always something unfinished. The one thing that I know is that I wouldn't want to have the conversation anyway, as it will never go as I want it to.

   It got to the point of a hanging thread that I rang someone who I knew wouldn't be able to pick up the phone. This wasn't about talking to them, this was about hearing their voice one last time on the machine and at last being able to cut that thread. It was over for me, it really had nothing to do with them, it was about me really letting go of any expectation. I did it for me alone. 

   Of course this may seem crazy to an outsider. You did what? You hid your number from this person, rang them not hoping for them to pick up but to hear their answer phone? You didn't even want to talk to them? No in answer to that, I didn't want to talk to them, all I wanted was to put a line through my own need and want. I never really after that wanted to talk to them.

    It would have been silly to me. I didn't want to carry on this neediness on only one end. The only person I discovered that gets hurt in that process is you. The more needy you get the further they pull away. It's devastating, it completely destroys you, or it did in my case. I went so far down the well, I forgot what the sun looked like. I did the only thing that would at last get me out, I finished it on my own terms of need.

   What made me remember this was reading about when Gilbert goes out to the roof and has a conversation of sorts with her ex-husband. For me it where in the book she finally lets go of the fact she feels so guilty in ending her marriage. She also talks about having a conversation with someone even if they are not there, that made a lot of sense to me. I ended the relationship that I wrote of above, and after several back and forths it culminated in me ringing an answer machine. Sometimes I think it is helpful to finish something on your own, as then you know there is a finality. It doesn't mean that I don't miss the person occasionally but it is finished, ended, done on my end.


   The picture about is of the sweets love hearts, partly because I really like them, and partly because well they are love hearts, what could be more appropriate!

   The other thing that she mentions is loving yourself as just you are. This is a book that I feel you don't have to buy in to everything that she says. I am not a religious person, I was never brought up in that way. Gilbert does talk often about God but this is not something that I have to be advocate of to relate to the book.

   She talks about God accepting the person you, not loving the person you twist yourself to be to be more devotional. I think this is true leaving the out the God bit for me. I want to love myself just as I am. 

   It is of course tricky. There are so many voices telling me but what about that time you lied? What about that time you felt ashamed? What about all the guilt you should feel because your life is a mess. What about the fact you can't make decisions? You seem to be a lazy privileged loser who can't focus on anything. Well all that might be true or not, but I still am here, and I want to love myself just as I am. With all the flaws, all the mess, all the dizziness.

   After all I only have one life, one blue flame (from an earlier post), who else should love me but me. I have been through everything that I have ever done. All the goriness. I cannot say it wasn't me. Who else am I but myself? It is time to realise that love is not scary. It is about loving the worst and the best, otherwise it is sham, something made of the likable rather than the real.

   I may not like the reality, but that does not mean you cannot love the real. Love is a very hard emotion to define, but really I think for me today a least it is about always being there. A steady, welcoming, trusting presence that accepts. It is not about approval or looking for that mystical period that will mean I have finally reached my potential to be loved. It about being loved in all things that i do, and to a certain extent feel. Love really has no limits, that scares me a little feeling there is no limit to loving myself. I might as well give it a shot. Loving myself it isn't easy but I am slowly coming round to the idea that it's possible. That is enough.

Monday, 15 October 2012

10 more things that are making me happy...

   OK blogger just deleted my post, I am extremely annoyed, it was about things that are making my happy today. Oh well.

   So I am going to think up 10 more are they are in no particular order:

   The Google Chrome adverts, I am a big softie when it comes to that kind of thing but I love them anyway, especially the one about the satchels.

   Swimming, everything about it makes me happy, and it is practically the only activity that gets my mind to switch off.

   Dictionaries, there are to me a well of knowledge. I even like wading through them when trying to figure out what something means.

   Listening fully. Sometimes even when it is quiet I do this. There is something about just focusing on one sense that is really cool.

   The smell of lemons. There is something about that combination of freshness and sharpness that gets me every time.

   Running my hands through my hair.

   That time in the morning between being half sleep and half awake where anything seems possible and where I have had the weirdest dreams.

   Lying down and watching the clouds pass. It really is amazing to do.

   Hearing other people's conversations on the bus. It really is amazing what people say in what is a public place, but I can't help it sometimes it is just fascinating!

   Infectious laughter, I especially love this when the other person has no idea what they are laughing at.

   So my post was lost, but you got a whole new set of things. So in a way something new out of something being lost. That is the positive way to look at it. I'm smiling as I write that.


Sunday, 14 October 2012

What I've Been Reading

   So it's been the second week of this experiment. I must say it's been quite hard this week to think of topics and try to keep on the train of writing.

   It has been a great motivator, and it has been a challenge if nothing else. I have also kept my word that I have posted each day.


   I am going to say what I've been reading this week, it's been mostly re-reads. Step by Wicked Step is the first one. It is by Anne Fine, and I read it first when i was a kid. The thing that I like about Fine as a writer is that she really understands how children think and how her characters are all really fleshed out. This is a book about how parents splitting up really effect the children. This is a book I have always loved.


   I have also been reading Smooth Talking Stranger, which is a contemporary by Lisa Kleypas. I like this book a lot, and for me I actually like the first person narrative. It is not always something that I like, but I got hooked by the heroine from the first, and it helps that I have liked every book of hers that I have read.

   Next week, I am going to re-read Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. I liked it a lot when i first read it. As it has been such a long time since I first read it that I think I have forgotten all that I got from it so I am going to read it again. And I have a couple of others including Bounce and Song of the Quarkbeast (which is by Jasper Fforde that I want to get started on.

   I am looking forward to that in the next week. So onwards and upwards to the third week of my posting till Halloween.

Saturday, 13 October 2012

The Blame Game

   For as long as I can remember I have always taken responsibility for other people's happiness. If someone was unhappy it was my fault, I thought for a long time that if it was my fault then I could fix it. It turns out that this is not true. Who knew?

   This kind of thinking has been with me for a very long time. It comes down to little things, me missing a bus, not doing what I said I was going to do. Me not going to town for cheese suddenly becomes this fraught goal that I could not accomplish.

   This spills over into how other people interact with me. In a way this is narcissism overboard, me thinking that I am directly responsible for everything is a bit of stretch to say the least. Not everything is about me.

   I feel that it is time for me not to be so overwhelmed with my own perceived weight over responsibility. I cannot fix everything, hell I am having a hard time trying to be OK with being me.

   I am calling this the blame game, to name it something so I can recognise what is happening. I think the way to make my behaviour different is to first recognise what is going on. I am familiar with blaming myself over things that I both can't change, this then leads me to feeling shit, and never really feeling that I can overcome this. It is built in because it is something that isn't even my fault and something I can't change.  I once read that 90% of what other people do has absolutely nothing to do with you, good advice to remember when stuck in blame.

   The blame game, it is a familiar thing to me, being aware that I do it is the first step. Recognising that it isn't based in reality I think is the next, and I am getting there.

   I wish that I could substantially effect other people's lives for the better. I, however, am not all powerful, nor would I want to be. I am going to have to change my thinking to remember that I am a person worth caring about, and that starts with caring starts with me doing it myself.

   Those are hard words to write, but I am in game finding out what I want and getting to be happier. I once read somewhere that our lives are so brief in the grand scheme of how long earth is, it is like striking a match in comparison to how long the earths history is. To me that is actually comforting, we are all here for a snatch of time, we might as well make that fleeting strike count for us.


   That means for me putting my needs first and really being a part of life, and not being hidden, being if you like a bright blue match because I can. Fixing myself implies that I am broken, and I have been stuck in thinking that for so long. I am not, I am pretty awesome in my blueness.    

Friday, 12 October 2012

Hooked

   I have lately been obsessed by Leverage (the first two seasons). To the point that I have not really been out of the house for the past couple of days. Partly because the show is so good but also because I love story telling, but lately it has to be good story telling.

   Now good story telling is I think subjective to a certain extent. I like Burn Notice but did not lose 4 days to it. I like Quantum Leap but again didn’t lose 4 days to it. I have read Bet Me over 20 times and it gets better for me every time. I love the song Sloop John B by The Beach Boys. I got really obsessed with Due South when I was younger. I have listened to Bird and Ships by Billy Bragg a lot and I cry every time I listen to it. There are other songs I like that but lately the things I am obsessed by I have to find really really good.



   It is always subjective what hooks me to something so I can see it over and over again. A good character than I find engaging can make me obsessed. A good lyric can get in my head, one of my favourites that I think is gorgeous is: ‘I’ll find a quiet path, somewhere alone where the shadows won’t laugh.’ Setting Sun by Howling Bells. The idea won’t let me go and the song just makes me happy, and it makes me think.

   I find it good, more than good excellent. Part of why I find it good is that I keep going back to it. That is something in me that I know is a signal that I like something. I’m hooked, that thing I am enthralled by, whatever it is has me in its grasp. I fall out of it within a week (embarrassing as it is to say Grey’s Anatomy had me in its thrall, not I have to be honest necessarily because of the story but some character work over there had me fascinated).

   Then came this niggling feeling, I couldn’t quite recognise it, but then I understood it, it was guilt. Now I’m not missing important things, I’m still out in the world, not completely cut off. The guilt came from this feeling that I wasn’t engaging in the world. Then through a conversation with my sister, she told me you are engaging in the world (also through watching leverage I’m beginning to write a story about lies and truth, early stages and it may never see the light of day but it’s got me in its grasp).

   She told me you may not be doing it in the way other people expect you to, but you are. I realised that I am, in my own way engaging with story, engaging in the way stories are told but also really thinking about the concept of truth and lies. Honesty and dishonesty. What makes a character vulnerable. All of a sudden I felt so released and I have say happy. This engagement makes me feel so intrigued and surprised. I can’t wait to see what the next thing that gets me in its thrall.

   I’m excited about it, more than that I’m engaged in something real. No guilt needed!

Thursday, 11 October 2012

A Post for Cake

   So I have always liked cake. Cake is awesome to me, and should always be celebrated.



   I want to make more time to make cake from scratch. I would love to something crazy like the photo (although I would love to make that) but I think cake is deserving of taking time to really feel the pleasure of it's greatness.

   Cake it is an awesome thing in life.

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Knitting

   I am knitting a lot this week, I find doing stuff with my hands gives my brain an opportunity to day dream. I sew and write as well, but in knitting I have found the best method of really letting go of worrying about anything. Plus you get a nice thing out of it.

   I am knitting a blanket at the moment. It's nearly done, what I've decided to do is knit strips and then sew them together. I am on the 5th and final one at the moment. What I like about the stuff that I am knitting is that each strip is a different pattern. This has been a really good experience for trying out different pretty patterns, and graduating into trying different techniques.


   I also feel when I knit that I am creating something, that I made with my two hands. It makes me feel so proud of myself. I also feel that I am spending time with just myself and can be as quiet as I want to be.

   Knitting it is a wonderful thing. I love it.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Dyspraxia

  Dyspraxia, is something that most people who I have told that I have, they have no idea what it is. This is difficult to explain, with most stuff like dyslexia it is individual to the person that has it. I usually reference dyslexia as it is much better known, in trying to explain that dyspraxia is.

   So to briefly explain it as it shows in me, the written word, movement particularly balance and concentration are areas effected. What is in my head, is not the same as what comes out in writing. This really comes in effect for me when I am writing a CV or an essay for accademc purposes. I am not the best when it comes to selling myself, particularly for work I find really difficult to put that into the written word.

   This has really effected me, in relation to my intellect. I was told repeatedly that I never worked hard enough at writing, that I had let myself down. This was in reaction to the fact that I was good at explaining what I thought verbally. When told this over years, it becomes something that you internalise. When I got to University though I got tested and found out that I had this, and it made a lot of sense.

   There are things that help me find the argument of what I write, reading it aloud helps. It also helps if I ask people to read it for me, and people who know that I have this. It also for me effects my balance, I used to dance a lot when younger, and i get dizzy far more, and can't spin around.

   For me having Dyspraxia isn't about berating yourself. It's about understanding sometimes it doesn't take more effort to do something, you are not naturally stupid or that you never make enough effort, it is about accepting yourself as you are.


   On a side note I saw a website that listed some famous people including Florence Welch (from Florence and the Machine), and some other famous people that they suspected had it including Charlotte Bronte. So in a way I am in club with Florence and Charlotte (well maybe) and that's pretty cool.

     

Monday, 8 October 2012

Short Post

   As stated in the title this is going to have to be a short post (this is also going up quite late in UK at least). I am being diligent about posting but I am short on time. I watched The Hunger Games, as a movie it's OK. I think it misses a lot of the symbolism and the outright violence of the book. I am prejudiced though to read and like a book much more than any movie adaption. Though there are some good ones out there. Jennifer Lawrence is great in the lead, and I felt she did justice to the character of Katniss.

   Anyway I'm going to leave it there.    

Sunday, 7 October 2012

So what a week it's been...

   So it's been a week of my new experiment. I have faithfully blogged a post every day this week. So what have I learnt?

   That I don't know if I am all that interesting in what I am writing about. That I have no idea if I am just a tree falling in the woods without anyone listening to it fall. I think that analogy isn't true though as I am listening to what I am writing. It has been interesting to say the least of thinking up a topic every day. It has also been good for me to write every day (though sometimes I dread it!).

   Writing every day makes me sit at my computer, even it's only 20 minutes every day and write about something. This is an exercise in itself. I even have some more ideas about what I want to write about (dyspraxia, a love letter to Jennifer Crusie, sins, and the book that I am writing about romance). I have really liked doing this, and that is the thing that I am going to take from this.

   Writing to me is about really focusing on a topic and honing what you want to say.

   I also wanted to quickly give some recommendations I have been quite lax this week. So in no particular order here they are:


   The Magnetic Fields and the album 69 love songs, which has three Cd's in it. I in particular really like the version of The Book of Love and the first song on the album Absolutely Cuckoo (both are on youtube).

   I bought this album as i was reading a book about artists that you should know. I don't always like those books (especially when they recommend books because they tend to the literary rather than the fiction that I tend to like to read) but in this case it really yielded some great music that I would never have listened to otherwise. I also think with those type of books you can pick and choose what you like.


   I wanted to recommend the song Tell Me So by Edwina Hayes (also on youtube). I actually went to see her live a couple of years ago, and this song has always stuck with me, and is on the album above. I think it's because it's really about someone knowing that the other does not love them anymore. It seems so heartbreaking when love is one sided, and yet the person always knows. It almost always makes me cry when I hear it, a beautiful song about losing love, but there is strength to me in the way she sings it.


   I've been listening to quite a lot of podcasts, so I wanted to mention a couple of them, Pop Culture Happy Hour, I do really like. It always for me get me thinking and seeing things I would not have seen by myself otherwise. It can be a little elitist at times which I have come to expect from NPR but I am a faithful follower. It is a great source of trying stuff out and the people on are discussing popular stuff with a great eye.  


   I would like to finally recommend You Had To Be There, which is presented by Nikki Glaser and Sara Schaefer. This I really like because it has two female comics being funny and interviewing (though it's more just a conversation for an hour with another person). I only found this recently but I have liked almost every episode that I have listened to. I also really like that they have a chat at the beginning of every episode that is just the two of them, and they are to me just naturally funny. It's great and has a lot of episodes so I got to catch up on all of them.    

   So another three weeks of posts, and I have kept my promise of posting everyday, I feel quite proud!

  

Saturday, 6 October 2012

The Great British Bake Off

   I have not always been into this programme right from the beginning but over time I have become an advocate. I like this a lot. It is a reality programme and it does eliminate people, which are usually elements that turn me off. There are, however things about this programme that make me overcome this.

    This has people who are really talented at what they do. This programme rewards people who excel at the thing that they are talented at. It has almost a relaxed lilt to how the programme goes on. My favourite part of an episode is the technical bake not for the judging, but for how the people who are all making the same thing go about doing it.


   It also for me inspires me to bake at home. I am not being judged by Paul and Mary (thank God!) but The Great British Bake Off does make me want to bake at home and something that inspires people is always a good thing I feel.

   I also want to talk about the presenters Mel and Sue, I think they make the programme even more great. They are never mean which is something that I really value. They also always make me laugh.  As I write this, it's coming to a close (there is only one episode left to the final), but it has been a great experience to watch.

   The Great British Bake Off is for me popular for all the right reasons. It's good, celebrates talent and has a great formula. The Great British Bake Off, I can't recommend it enough.

Friday, 5 October 2012

Me and Winter

   Winter has always been my favourite season. My birthday is in winter, Christmas is in winter. I even like the weather. My philosophy has always been that in summer you sweat and you can't really do anything about it being hot (there are always be cold showers but not outside). I am one of those people that don't tan, I turn red then peel off whiter than before.

   Winter you can wrap up warm even outside. I love snow as well. I love looking at it, even being in it. I love the smell and feel of it.

   Winter has always had a great place in my heart. Even Christmas for all it's commerce and business it does get people together. I am also one of the those people that really likes buying presents for people.

 
   I guess I really am overwhelmingly British but I love winter and always will. Something about that picture makes me happy.