Bringing You Home

My thoughts are scattered and my feelings, mixed. What was once a sure thing is now a blurry vision of what ‘might have been’.

Ever woke up one morning and realized that you were a different person wanting different things? No, hang on! Ever woke up one morning and realized that you were a different person whom you did not recognize? You did not know who this person was and what she wanted? Sure, it was YOU when you looked in the mirror; the same dark hair and magical eyes, but who was it staring back at your inner soul?

You can feel the fear, worry, confusion and you probably live in self-denial until you cannot take it anymore. Then you begin to retaliate, rebel and try to fight the force within you. Nothing really works because fighting yourself can never take you to a better place. At the end of the long dilemma, you give in and learn to accept that change is inevitable and self-acceptance is the key to bliss.

The process is obviously longer than two paragraphs and the emotional trauma you put yourself through is highly underrated. But life is such that if we ignore it, it turns us into wild weeds, however, with enough attention we can become deep-rooted vegetation which actually serve a purpose.

Dealing with such situations are never easy because they involve not only hurting ourselves but people who genuinely care about us as well. It involves random impulsive behavior backed by illogical reasoning and emotional confusion that are followed by regrets and self-trashing. Such phases in life also involve becoming numb and detached where nothing really matters and the ‘don’t-give-a-fuck’ attitude takes over your universe to such an extent that you even apply it to yourself because nothing makes sense anymore and sometimes staying that way is easier than doing something about it.

But it doesn’t have to remain this way. You have every right to behave like a total dickhead for a few days, then it needs to stop and you need to pull yourself together and learn to deal with what life has served you. Do you recall those Masterchef episodes where contestants were given a bunch of random ingredients and asked to whip up something Masterchef worthy? It is indeed the same story with life! You realize you are left in a mess and you have a bunch of random stuff you need to get done. Nothing may add up at first and things will feel so out of sync. You might not even be sure about doing what you are doing but hang in there and remind yourself that, “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.” and yes, things will get better and you will see the sun shine once more.

To get over the disastrous creature you have become, you need to start somewhere. It may not be easy and there will be days you want to remain in bed, close your eyes and hope it all disappears, but doing that is only going to make it worse. No matter how crappy you feel or how lost or changed or so-not-you you feel, your first step is to find the reason. It could be anything from a relationship to a situation that has made you feel this way. Identify it and accept its reality. Sometimes it may be unpredictable and confusing but tell yourself that ‘no matter what happens, it is all going to turn out alright – AND BELIEVE IT.’ In addition to this here are a few pointers that will help you find your way back.

1) Re-discover your goals

Make a list of things you wanted to achieve but could not because you were too busy obsessing over things beyond your control.

2) Find a hobby

Yes! Go distract yourself and find something to do. Find a skillet, paint brush, screw driver, rope, paintball gun, anything! It will make you realize how much time you wasted beating yourself up about BS.

3) Tranquility

You need moments of peace and quiet everyday. Play soothing music, listen to the wind, shut your eyes or keep them open. Live in the moment and experience all that is going on; it may not be much but really feel it. Quiet your mind and let your thoughts settle down.

4) The Imaginary Friend

Call it talking to yourself or talking to Doodles. You need to interact with yourself in order to understand how you feel about you. If you have never done this before try standing in front of a mirror and talk, “hey! how have you been?”. “I’ve been alright, enjoying the weather.” Does it sound odd? Try it anyway.

5) Challenge yourself

Never been to the movies by yourself? Try it! Always wanted to run a marathon but thought you did not have the stamina for it? Start practicing! Overcoming such challenges reminds us we are worth more than we think.

Remember, that in order to find yourself, you got to first get to know yourself and to know yourself you got to discover yourself and discovering yourself is all about putting yourself out there to see what you are made of. So don’t be afraid!

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Day Twenty-Nine: Mine Truly!

To every person out there who feels that it is necessary to keep up with the crowd, take a step backward. Stop, pause and breathe. You do not need to prove anything to anyone but yourself. Life is not what other people think about you but what you think about yourself. If you feel the need to prove something to others, make sure it is more important to you than it is to them.

Be grateful. It doesn’t matter if you won the lottery or found a dollar. When you are grateful you see life differently. Show people gratitude. Everyone wants a little appreciation, including you. When you give you will receive.

Respect! Not just people but animals, the environment, your belongings, other people’s space, your own space….. pretty much everything. But remember to draw the line when respect turns into slavery, becoming a doormat or a victim of bullying.

Smile….. like you mean it. Laugh often. Its cheap medicine and does wonders for your soul. It also makes you a happy person and pleasant to be around. Within the blink of an eye you will be long gone so make your time on this planet a memorable one. No one may know you a thousand years from now but the fact that you lived probably does matter, if not to the universe then at least to yourself.

Learn everyday. It doesn’t matter if its about quantum physics, making jam, skateboarding or listening to someone’s experiences in the war. Everything we do or experience has something to teach us. Find the light and go after it.

Lastly, remember that everything in life happens for a reason. So don’t fret, curse the world or regret. Try to find the good, find positivism, find satisfaction…. and above all, ENJOY THE RIDE!

Day Twenty-Three: I Grew in 20 14

We have one day until we bid adieu to 2014 which the world will remember for the FIFA World Cup, the iPhone 6, Ebola and Robin Williams. These and other trending topics are what the year will be associated with by governments, industries and other organisations. But what would you associate 2014 with? A wedding? A promotion? Coming out of the closet? Maturity? Disappointment?

Today’s Daily Prompt puts forth a simple question, ‘When was the first time you really felt like a grown up (if ever)?’ It is hard to pinpoint the exact moment because I don’t feel grown up. I still play with play dough and can get high on sugar. I love playing make-belief and sometimes may ask too many questions which adults don’t always approve of (notice how I still say “adults”).But at some level, I did grown up. I may not have grown up in the “obvious possible way” but there were moments which defined me. And so, today I shall highlight my top defining moments of 2014.

Part I: Existence

Well, that is what most of us do. We exist! We wake up, go to school, go to work, come back, follow some routine accepted by society that includes eating, exercise and entertainment and finally at the end of the day we lay our body to rest. We rarely deal with our demons and an internal evaluation or self-feedback is almost unheard of.

I studied and got good grades to the point where I even received a scholarship (something to strike off my bucket list), but even that did not give me the lingering feeling of accomplishment. It felt great for a few hours but the excitement withered away. This is not how I am suppose to live; in fact, this is not even “living”.

Part II: Realization

It is that moment you realize that life sucks if you do not actively make an attempt to savor it. You think of all those missed opportunities, all the routines you aimlessly stuck to and all the moments that could have become memories if only you took a chance.

Mid 2014 was an eye opener which made me realize that life is too short to not do anything about it. Why bother about tomorrow when you have the opportunity to make the very best of today? And with that in mind, I let go of choosing what I liked and decided to try everything I wanted to.

Part III: Experience

That spark! It remains in you when you are happy with being you. It surfaces when you feel proud and accomplished that you took a risk or changed something or did something to impact yourself positively. It is not always an easy feeling but it is a promising sign that you are indeed alive and living as opposed to merely existing.

I experienced life towards the end of the year when I believed that I had what it took to become the person I imagined myself to be. Overcoming my social issues to volunteer in a collection drive for the SPCA was my first hurdle followed by getting a job, and putting myself out there as a confident and intelligent person. It was hard but it was worth it.

After all the explanation it is worth mentioning my key learnings from 2014

1. Believing ‘I can’ which is more important than someone else telling you ‘you can’.

2. Getting out of your comfort zone to try something new; definitely worth the experience.

3. Moving on from Facebook to facing yourself. If you think that line just sounded pathetic, you couldn’t be further away from the truth. If you cannot deal with yourself, you have bigger problems than you can imagine.

4. Solitude.

5. Quieting your mind. Amidst power struggles, society, decisions, expectations, first impressions, we forget to experience the moment and enjoy the ride.

And lastly, to answer today’s Daily Prompt…..

I do not know what growing up is all about. I see grown ups fighting over silly things like “he said she said”. I see them trying to mask their personality and pretend.They complicate life to a level that makes them come across as ‘stupid’. Have I ever felt that way? Perhaps! Would I be classified under that category…. NO!

Then there are smart grown ups who are calm, mature, understanding and concerned. Can I be classified as one of hem? I wish!!! But I am not all that perfect.

That leaves me as an in-betweener. I cannot be called a grown up because I never really did grow and calling me a kid would make me sound rather immature, which I am not.

To conclude, I would like you to picture you 2014 and leave a comment on what impacted you or where you find yourself. Are you an in-betweener?

<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/all-grown-up/”>All Grown Up</a>

Day Fourteen: Moments

What do I have in common with a bookcase, something cracked and a song I love? A lot actually!

Not too long ago when reflecting on my achievements, I realized that the past 20 odd years of my life could have been much more than what I had already accomplished. To add to it, the people I came across were either the pessimistic kind or they tried to put me down, while a few others were better off than I was ever going to be at my age. It almost felt like my spirit was cracked and all the happiness in me seemed to leak out and drain away.

But then, a week later, something incredible happened. As I walked around the local library I found a bookcase with an interesting selection of books. The one that caught my eye was a story about an old man who decided to go sky-diving at the age of 89. It was not because he was an adventure junkie but in fact it was the exact opposite. He waited all his life for the right moments and the right people; then nearly 50 years later he realized that there is no such thing as the “right moment”. The book also had a number of inspirational quotes which made me realize that life is much more than how we see it.

We fret about the little things everyday like, for example, how we look, what people think of us, how good we really are at what we do, how successful we are –  the list never ends. While this may not always be a bad thing, it does limit what we think about ourselves which in turn can limit our capabilities. As I sat on the couch thinking of ways to free myself from the clutter, my attention went to the music playing in the background. Quiet your mind. Soak it all in. It’s a game you can’t win. Enjoy the ride.

That was all it took me to realize that living is all about being content enough with YOU; that makes the journey worthwhile.

This post was in response to the Daily Prompt.

<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/final-trio/”>Final Trio</a>

Day Twelve: Christmas With Júlio César

Júlio César was cleaning his paw after his last nail had been neatly trimmed and filed while his mate Jack Sparrow had just received a mid-morning snack. Júlio was lolling about when he spotted the cat who was grumpier than the Grumpy Cat that day. Júlio cocked his head up as Jack Sparrow approached him. “What are you so happy about today?” asked the irritated cat.

“What is not to be happy about?” replied Júlio. “It is Christmas time a.k.a unlimited favorite foods, someone is always around unlike other days where you spend the mornings counting crows, now you get to eat, play and have someone give you a good belly rub when you need one.”

“No one cares you stupid old dog. All that matters to them is their presents and food.” whined the cat. “Haven’t you noticed that you are out almost the entire day and you cannot sit on the couch anymore? Their couch is more important to them than your comfort.”

Hearing this, Júlio stood up and shook the dirt off his back. He then asked Jack Sparrow to follow him to the garage. As they walked towards the door the cat continued to grumble about how the holiday was a crappy time because the humans seem to pay less attention to him and shooed him away from the beautifully decorated house and to cut a long story short; they didn’t care enough. The garage door was ajar and the bulb was still left on.

Júlio shoved the cat in and followed him. Around them were boxes of decoration, gifts and food. The cat smelt a range of aromas and tried to follow his nose to the prize but the dog was quick to divert his attention. He pointed out to a box in the corner which had a big chew bone, a squeaky toy, three cat teasers and a brand new scratching post apart from treats for both Júlio César and Jack Sparrow.

The dog turned to the cat and said, “Do you see all that there? That is for you, me and maybe the shelter. Shows how much they don’t care right?” The cat was scanning the box and finally replied, “That box means nothing. So they bought some stuff for us. How does that make a difference? We have been abandoned out here while they are in there.”

“You sure know how to bring pessimism into a room; don’t you?” said the dog. The cat ignored the growl and continued, “You are a fool…..”

“Oh shut your mouth doofus” said Júlio César. “Any human who takes the trouble to make sure you have a special Christmas meal and presents under the tree on Christmas Day cares enough about you. Did you see the lady of the house cleaning your pillow and my house? Did you see her hang our stockings on the tree? And you say they don’t care enough. If only you knew better….”

How often we ignore the little things that others do for us. It may not be much but they do it anyway because they genuinely care about us. This Christmas let us make it a point to recognize these little acts that otherwise go unnoticed. We are so used to comfort that we forget how important the simple things are. I’m sure Jack Sparrow would prefer a clean pillow and a new scratching post to the old and dirty stuff, don’t you think so too?