Hands

Redemption, Ruins, and 75

Food for thought, Gratefulness

Drake’s Redemption was on Views, but for some reason, I only listened to it for the first time a few days ago, on a random playlist, but now I’m obsessed.

My grandma turned 75 today.

♪ Oh please give me time, cuz I’m searching ♪

 She doesn’t like flowers or Raffaello-s. She likes seeing me drive and telling cute waiters that they’re cute.

She’s had a rough life but managed to stay warm, loving, kind, despite all the odds.

The women in my family are so unbelievingly strong, and they’ve managed to keep their struggles to themselves, sometimes for years, even decades.

♪ Just ignore all the skeletons in my closet ♪

I think I want each of these posts to contain some kind of lesson or something new that I learned or needed to be reminded of. Here goes today’s: toxic masculinity and heavy-set gender roles can ruin relationships, families, lives.

♪ I’d rather listen to someone else, I gave your nickname to someone else ♪

Just because you can make something work, and work well, at that, doesn’t mean you should. Being with someone should feel effortless. Something that makes your life better, simpler, happier.

♪ Who’s gonna save me when I need saving? ♪

Women aren’t rehabilitation centers. Women deserve better, more, the world.

Coffee-flavored water doesn’t taste good (learned it the hard way).

♪ This year for Christmas I just want apologies ♪

Inspiring quote on white background

God

Gratefulness

I rushed to the balcony, the closest place to the sky and said out loud “God fucking bless”. First of all, I’m not even religious. You know what they say,

No one laughs at God when their airplane starts to uncontrollably shake.

I see God in beauty, in the faces of the people I love, in this range of feelings I am grateful enough to feel and witness and be part of and feel one with. I see it in the tens of unlikely chances I have been given by strangers, friends, lovers. I see God in moments where I find myself uncontrollably smiling about too-good-to-be-true-but-actually-true things that have happened to me.

I felt it this particular day when I was in the kitchen doing the dishes and started crying in awe at this song, which I decided in a matter of moments was now my favorite song of all times. A string of sounds made me cry and in that, I see my God.

My God is nature, but not limited to landscapes and weather. My God is art and in my art and other people’s art, I find and refind God. In books, for which I would happily sacrifice days of my life for if asked to do so. There’s no sacrifice and there’s no compromise with my God because the days I’d sacrifice and this piece of art and God and me are one. There’s no ultimate separation. I see God whenever the sky turns into a color I can’t fathom, I can’t name, I can’t fully comprehend or hope to comprehend.

I see it in recovery, from eating disorders and mental health disorders, from toxic people and relationships and feelings and substances, from fear of the past and the present and the future. Recovery for me is a second chance and in the endless second chances and twelve thousand second chances I’ve been given, to recover and keep living- and so I did- and in that, I find my God.

I find God in truth and in work and in authenticity and in vulnerability and in little and not so little synchronicities. I find God in pennies I find on the ground and in the way that immediately puts a smile on my face. I see God in the people I could’ve easily never met if the circumstances wouldn’t so magically allow for me to do so. I see my God whenever my friends are flourishing. I thank this God for their existence, and selfishly, that our existences are intertwined.

I find God in dancefloors and kisses and flowers and smiles. In knowing that I can find answers to so many questions and I can quench my thirst for the unknown just by typing a few words into a device who is never selfish with its knowledge. I find God in photographs that can so vividly bring me back in time and make me relive experiences which would’ve otherwise slowly started fading from my mind. I find it in movement and in ocean water and in sex and in the way two people who love each other can create another human being.

I find God in conversations so satisfying they feel like accomplishments and in accomplishments themselves. In how lucky I’ve been in so many cases that now I almost expect good things to come my way on a daily basis. They so often do. In humanity’s neverending quest to do better, love better, work better, be better- and despite what you believe in or whatever/whoever your God is, as long as it’s helping you better yourself (and hopefully others), isn’t that what matters?! 🙂

“Life is fleeting. Ideas, inspiration, and love endure.”

In that truth, I see my God. I truly like what I see.

La Vie en Rose

Gratefulness

I recently got back from Kosova, where people speak the same language, have the same traditions, national holidays, songs, food as we do, but we’re geographically separated. Only by law though, we’re still secretly together. So close, so far.

I went to meet my best friend, who I feel such a deep, intense connection with. I met her at uni, and we both knew when we saw each other, that the other was a cool person we had to be friends with. Not a lot of words were exchanged, but vibes don’t lie. Nor hips. I digress… Shakira Shakira

I got to hang at this cool place that gave off such 90s vibes, the posters, the tiles, the fonts used, the way food was served, the bathroom sign to not take your time in there. My friend got off early from work and just seeing her filled me with love and joy and smiles and bliss. La vie en rose impersonated.

We got home, put on some good music, and as I waited for her to finish her bath, I thought of how excited I was to tell her everything. We can’t talk much when we’re apart, so a lot had been happening she needed to know about. With her, though, it feels like she already in some way knows

She’s me and I am her and there is no other way besides feeling completely heard and loved and understood. 

We had wine from a box and talked and talked and talked. The next morning she made us Turkish coffee, which I don’t usually prefer, but damn that one was good. We walked from the suburbs, where her place is, to the city’s center. The suburbs felt pretty, well, suburbial. And I don’t get that suburbs vibe often, if ever, where I live. Again, we talked and talked and talked and it was just one of those days. It felt like we were in high school, the hanging around for hours, not really worried about work or projects being due or anything really. We felt like we had plenty of time then and full ownership of how we chose to spend it- and that’s what it like felt that day.

You’re too young in middle school to enjoy yourself, too busy when you’re in college, and life after that is well, just merciless, whereas high school hits that sweet spot.

(Talking about high school years, high school itself represents all that’s evil in the world.)

    

I spilled espresso on someone’s jeans, hugged my friend a hundred times, never complained about the cold, cherished the fact sandwiches there always come with the yummiest fries and sauces, then went somewhere with a lot of musicians photos in the walls, where they played old, gold music. Watched a thriller, meditated, tried and failed to sleep…

Later that night we went to the place my friend works at. On Saturdays, they played music at the underground bar, which was filled with beautiful, well dressed people enjoying their dinner and drinks. My friend’s colleagues and boss were so nice and caring, to me and her.

I felt extremely proud seeing her making it all effortlessly work. I drank wine, smiled and was in awe at the amount of people that would actually sing along when the singers told them so. The way it should be!

Another friend joined us as we went to a club opening, clouds in the ceiling and discoballs and tequila shots and mirrors. We danced and danced then drove to a high point (mountain?) and admired the city lights and laughed a lot and sang screamed along to all the songs on the drive home, we actually drove around the block again (and again). I fell asleep as friend nr 2 touched my hair and I hung out with her the next day. We talked about life and spirituality and growth and Hunther Tompson, almost had three coffees in a two hour span, ate some delicious food, was mesmerized by her little sister’s hyperactivity and enjoyed Paolo Nutini and overall amazing music on the way, as the now covered by snow mountains in front of us saluted us. 

Lessons/Reminders:
  • cherish those people in your life that feel like sunshine
  • more spontaneous decisions
  • more singing along lalalalalalaaa
  • tequila makes you feel good
  • only say things you really mean or keep quiet
  • you should feel proud at how good you feel when you’re alone (means you’re in good company)
  • bring a book

Enjoy your weekend bbys, I know I enjoyed this one 🙂 🌹

Some days it feels unnatural to write only three things you’re grateful for

Feminism, Gratefulness

Some days, it feels unnatural to write only three things you're grateful for in your journal, so you write down way more. Other days, you get in a fight with your friend, your partner's being insensitive, you eat chips before lunch then you fall asleep and don't have a proper lunch or dinner, you lose the finished draft of an article (only one you had), listening to the politicians you're supposed to vote for on Sunday makes you gag, two different people from the same company wrote to say your article was rejected, you see this too-cute-to-be-a-stray* dog alone in the street meaning he's lost or was thrown out- all on the same day.

I'll go ahead and say what you're thinking**: children in Africa are dying.

However, as you might (or not) have noticed, there's no transitional word there. No but.*** That's the secret.

If you mention others sufferance to someone sharing their struggles with you, it's not to compare or diminish their pain. It's another problem on its own. If you say but men get raped too as an answer to women getting raped, you're part of the problem.
Tumblr postIf you say but white people get killed too, you're making it about you; white people get killed and men get raped, but that should be your entire sentence. Women get raped and POC are killed way more disproportionately, so your point isn't valid.

I consider myself a pretty grateful person. I think I'm way happier and kinder to the people in my life -and strangers!- after I started paying attention to all the little (and huge) blessings in my life. Like everyone though, I have my moments. They're way less frequent, but if you try to diminish my pain (or happiness, for that matter) because someone out there has it worse/better, you kinda suck.
Likewise, if a queer person is sharing their experience as a queer person with you, you should listen to what they're saying. NOT the moment to say straight people get beat up too. They do, but not because they're straight, catch my drift?!
Something that took me a long time to learn is that pain is not a competition.

White shirt black textPeople across the world are suffering and people across the world are having the time of their life. They say "comparison is the thief of joy", I agree. Be happy, or sad- yu don't own an explanation to anyone for how you're feeling. Especially don't be hard on yourself saying other people could have it worse. Also, to anyone who only brings up certain issues when being confronted about other ones? Check yo self  'fore you wreck yo self. You already know what I stand for.

 

P.S. No, I didn't forget to include my sources, I simply believe some research is better done yourself.

P.S.2 Kinda touched on all the subjects I wanted to, and if you're thinking, what does one have to do with the other, consider that the people trying to invalidate your experiences are doing so for a reason. Hint hint: status quo.

*Stray dogs break my heart, but breeders will probably die in the ~wild~

**Psych majors really DO read minds y'all.

***I thought butt almost immediately and winked ~out loud~, you know, like, to myself, in public. No shame in my game. jk, it was unconscious.

What I’m grateful for

Gratefulness

Read this first.

The odds of my coffee spilling on my laptop are 50 to 50. Even though it's impossible that it just falls,  it might as well. Yesterday we decluttered the house, I mean, we haven't thrown the stuff out yet but I was thinking yesterday that when we (I) will finally, it will feel like wow that was it. Great! We had pizza last night, the glasses of wine there are so lil, yet so full I thought I felt tipsy by the end of it... I worked out when I got home and that was an awesome decision- I was thinking how you (I) never really regret a workout. The sweat releases dopamine and what not. It's 8 AM and someone is fireworks-ing.

I feel grateful (23):
  1. that I got to celebrate my boyfriend’s mother birthday
  2. that my best friend noticed I was angry when there had been no visible signs whatsoever for her to find out
  3. for my cat: that he’s finally started “chilling” at his little house/cat tent which happens to be in my room
Yesterday I felt grateful:
  1. for the chance to workout, with my mom!
  2. for the farmers’ market, sometimes I overthink going or not, but I never regret doing it… a little bit like workouts that way
  3. for how comfortable/myself I feel in “fancy” clothes
Today *drumroll* I feel grateful:
  1. for the clinic: I love the doctor, his character, that he smokes a pipe* (*Albert Einstein did and said:  I believe that pipe smoking contributes to a somewhat calm and objective judgment in all human affairs), the secretary: she’s so sweet & seems so fair and smart, the books there
  2. for coffee… for real…
  3. for hot showers in the winter

 

I am grateful this day for:

  1. flowers and the phone I wanted coming from my man
  2. my dad getting “angry” at me for eating (what was left of) the brownies I made and not leaving him any (more), a.k.a he loved them *yay*
  3. discovering effortlessness secret #55: wear a dark chambray on top of anything and look great. Just like that!
Yesterday I was grateful for:
  1. alcohol, or to be more precise, the way alcohol brings people together (actually, I didn't get to experience this because my grandpa went to sleep and I drank rakija alone -watching Despicable Me and eating baked potatoes, oh yeah, but I'm grateful for when I do get to drink with others)
  2. how supportive my mom is regarding my workouts: every time she sees my working out she says such nice things, it’s so motivating!
  3. Brussel sprouts, I tried them for the first time with mushrooms&avocado, they’re like little tiny (and every other synonym for small) cabbages *awww*
Yesterday I was grateful:
  1. for my country! (‘s Liberation Day)
  2. for Friends’ episodes, they put me in such a good mood… (Except Phoebe though… Phoebe sucks!)
  3. that I got to spend the entire day (and the day after that!) with my love
  4. for how good I looked in those velvety leggings
  5. for how happy my boyfriend gets when he dances
  6. that my boyfriend mentioned really liking my photography skills!

This day I feel grateful. I feel grateful for so many things, but here go three:

  1. that my brother’s flight went alright (everything that rhymes is a bonus I know)
  2. that my best friend had a great time yesterday
  3. for choices, the fact that we make lots of them means we get a lot of chances to make the right ones

I am grateful for:

my father’s flight going alright (all the (f)lights)
official December: Christmas’ spirit, the red colors, the decorations, the lights, the city, the people!
Dr. Rajagopal Raghunathan’s Coursera course on happiness, seriously!
Grateful for:
my sex life atm… If you’ve ever heard “the secret to sex is love”, you’ve heard some wise, true (corny, but truuue) words, my imaginary friends
photos, how pretty they turn out in my new phone and how wonderfully they capture moments… I think I’d imagine photos as proof of magic if I were a kid (like kids need proof for that…)
the weather here… So damn sunny omg

Today, here I am, sitting on my couch writing these:
after my workout! I’m grateful for Fitness Blender, Kelli & Daniel are so great and it’s actually always a pleasure working out “with” them
I’m grateful that one of my best friends has been vegetarian for some weeks now, I feel so proud and happy for her🙂
I’m grateful for how easy it’s become for me to turn any morning in a good morning (sometimes with just coffee..shhh)
Also, my best friend, my beautiful inside out mother who I can’t wait to hang out with, my truly talented driven partner that makes me crazy about him *heart eyes here*, my cat even though he pays no attention to me whatsoever, my bro and dad and may the force (what?) what? what..?  be with those oh soo great guys in Israel

Holding a letter