I always think there’s a sacred space between two people — it’s your unique connection. It exists nowhere else in the world; only between the two of you. It’s really unique.
But the connection between two people only stays sacred if you treat it as such. Yes, you may be uniquely connected — have things in common, fire up different sides of each other’s personalities, talk about things you don’t talk about with others, understand each other on different levels (emotionally, sexually, spiritually, intellectually) and so forth. But this is just the baseline. This is the connection. It’s not the relationship.
The relationship is how you treat one another. Do you show up for one another? Speak kindly about one another? Take care of one another? Make good on promises to one another? Hold a space of love for one another? Hold each other accountable for being the best you can be?
In short, are you committed to treating one another as sacred creatures?
The truth is, most of us weren’t raised to treat other people as sacred. We weren’t even raised to treat ourselves as sacred.
I’ve interacted with a lot of religious people who, presumable, see life as a gift from God. Yet, they don’t treat their body as sacred. They don’t treat their friends as sacred. They don’t treat strangers as sacred. They don’t even treat their life as sacred.
And while most of us try to do right by ourselves and others, we all fail at some point. Our learned behavior wrecks havoc in various areas of our lives. We don’t even understand how some areas of our life will ever work out, because they never have before.
Sometimes, we’re so far away from treating ourselves and others as sacred, we feel like giving up. We think we’ve lost the battle and might as well succumb to our sins towards self and others. But each day holds a new morning. What you did yesterday is not as important as what you do today. And if you start a new life today, even with baby steps, imagine where you’ll be ten years from now. Also imagine where you will be ten years from now if you don’t start with those baby steps.
So honor yourself by treating yourself right. And honor others by doing the same to them. Because each connection is unique. Each person is a unique experience.
It’s important to remember though, that beautiful connections is only half of what makes up beautiful relationships. Beautiful relationships can only be created when two people see each other as sacred and treat each other accordingly. That’s why there’s a big difference between attraction and love; passing connections and deep friendships.
You can always honor another soul, but you can’t always have a beautiful relationship with them. All you can do, is ensure your side of the equation remains sacred by honoring them and that, no matter how they view or treat you, your view of yoruself remain sacred. And by viewing yoruself as sacred, you also know when it’s time to walk away — be it from a toxic work relationship, or friendship.
I’ve been thinking a lot about perspective recently. About how our focus creates our reality. And I really believe that looking upon yourself, others and life as sacred makes for a much more beautiful reality. Because then your purpose becomes to live a sacred life; one in which you respect yourself and the world around you. One in which you seek to uplift yourself and others. One in which you take actions that honor yourself, others and life at large.
Sacred dizzy blonde, over and out.
P.S. Yes, I stole the headline. I didn’t say I was a saint, just that I’m sacred… I see your halo, halo, halo…
Isn’t that what we do? We deep dive into a person’s soul, while touching their body? We wander all over them and in them. We seek. Explore. Find out.
It’s beautiful. Really.
The problem is that most people aren’t living the beauty of their soul, but the mess of their thoughts. And they’re creating havoc. But you don’t see that. You see their soul — glorious and alive. Beautiful. A mesmerizing light. Pure. Stunning.
I found this quote today. “Stop wondering. Start wandering.”
How many times have you found yourself wondering what life would truly be like if only? If only you called that friend, asked that man/woman out, explored that path…did something different?
I believe we’re the happiest when we give up on expecting people and life to give us things and start exploring them instead. When we truly know we don’t know what will happen next. When our own life turns into a journey of discovery as we are no longer afraid of our own thoughts, what other people will think, or what life will serve up. We accept that we don’t know. We have no expectations on the outcome beyond exploring the moment to the full. We go beyond our ego and into the present. We are wandering instead of wondering.
It may be a difficult quest, but it’s a worthy one. Because with each step you’ll feel better.
I used to be scared of my own thoughts. Used to fear the bad ones. But when I get curious and look at them instead of running from them, they stop hurting. Because I know they are not me. They’re just a thought I’m having.
I used to be scared of what other people thought of me, but when I start seeing people as interesting creatures creating their own form of reality based on their thoughts, I stop being afraid. When I stop needing them to treat me nicely, or loving me, I no longer fear them. I just see them for what they are: humans.
I used to be scared of not achieving my goals, but when I started thinking about life as a series of moments I’m creating, as opposed to a series of goals I need to achieve, I started living instead of constantly beating myself up, or planning to live “one day.”
That doesn’t mean I don’t want certain things; don’t have certain goals. It doesn’t mean I don’t want to be loved, or don’t want to think happy thoughts. It simply means I don’t let my own expectations get in the way of leading a happy life.
I believe we are all fierce explorers when we are happy. That we go out there and explore ourselves, others and the world. That we are curious instead of frightened. Excited instead of afraid. Courageous instead of petrified.
That doesn’t mean we don’t have fear. Of course we do. We still have thoughts, after all. But we see beyond the fear. See that it is nothing but make-believe. Nothing but a thought in our mind. A thought we can move beyond. Because the thought is not who we are. Our soul is who we are.
Because you see beyond your fear, you give it all you’ve got, instead of a percentage of your being. You jump head-first into the waves as opposed ot just getting your toes wet. You love wildly. You pursue your dreams fiercly. Because you’re happy. Even if every person, or destination, doesn’t give you what you want, or you fuck up badly. That’s just life. Getting caught thinking about it is destruction. Focus creates reality. Focus on what’s working, where you’re going and what you’d love to experience.
Don’t wonder what it would be like. Explore it. Deep dive into it. Yes, you’ll walk on thorns. Don’t fear them. Don’t avoid them. Walk past them. Because on the other side are the roses.
Do you have precious people in your life? I do. Lots of them.
I have a myriad of friends and family I admire for a wide variety of different reasons. Feel a connection with for a wide variety of different reasons. Enjoy spending time with for a wide variety of different reasons.
Some of these people have been in my life for a while, others are fairly new additions. Yet, most of them have become part of the scenery. Part of the life I take for granted.
By that I mean that when I spend time with them, I’m not always completely present. My mind is engaged in things that preoccupy me that day. Nor do I always make the most out of a meeting. I get lazy. I settle for coffee with someone when I could be having an adventure with them.
Get me right — sometimes coffee is all you want. All you need. Or hot chocolate. Or wine. You know, sitting talking, looking someone in the eye. Really being there. Connecting with them. Exchanging ideas. Feeling their soul next to you. But there are times when you could go out there and experience life with someone. Partake in activities that blow your mind, or engage your creative spirit, or make you laugh till you topple over, or tickle your senses, or stir up your adventurous side, or let out the playful side of you, or…whatever it is you desire to experience with that person (what do you desire to experience?).
In short, I think there are times when we forget to live and times when we forget to truly connect with the person next to us. See them. Feel them.
When we go new places, or meet new people, they awaken our senses, but it’s temporary. Soon we become used to the landscape and the people. The temporary high fades away. We become complacent. Settle into routines, that aren’t as much healthy routines as they are lazy habits. It’s not the routines we desire, but the ones we ended up with. That exciting new bar is now our local bar. That exciting new restaurant is now the only restaurant we go to. That exciting new person is now just another friend of ours.
As the landscape and people become familiar, we forget to truly see them and feel them — experience them — because we’ve become used to them. We make the assumption we already know what they look and feel like. We grow numb. What’s worse: we no longer seek new people and experiences. We’ve become lazy. Forgotten we even can seek out new experiences in a familiar landscape.
I wrote a whole feature film script about this and, still, sometimes I forget to live. What’s worse, I forget to experience those around me.
For example, I get so caught up in worry about my child that I talk non-stop about her doing her homework, cleaning her bedroom, being nice to people, etc. I don’t truly experience her. I don’t really sit with her and feel into what she’s feeling. Instead, I’m caught up in trying to control her because I fear being raised in a township has left her with little morals and no drive. Control is my go-to habit. My autopilot switching on. I’m no longer present. I’m caught in fear. And I act in ways to try to resolve that fear. My way of resolving it is by enforcing control. But it’s not getting me the results I desire. Instead, it’s disrupting my life.
When fear, nervousness, panic…whatever you like to call it, kicks in, we’re rarely present to life, or the people in it. We just act in ways we think we should act, or whatever way resolves our tension (fear/discomfort/pain) the fastest. Be that swallowing a painkiller, acting clown, hiding away, eating candy, or enforcing control.
You don’t know what makes another person feel loved until you ask them. You don’t know what will help them until you ask them. You don’t know what adventures they want to go on with you until you ask them. Until you’re present with them. Feel them. Truly feel them.
We make assumptions. We make assumptions about how to handle people and situations. We even make assumptions about how we will feel when entering a certain situation instead of asking ourselves how we’d like to feel and what we need to do to feel that way? We make assumptions about how to handle our own life. We make assumptions about how the day will be and how people will react. We make assumptions about how the coffee will taste, so we don’t even bother tasting it. We’ve had it before. So we just drink it. On autopilot. We make so many assumptions about life we forget to live.
Be present. Experience your day. Experience yourself. Experience people.
Ask yourself what you’d like to feel and experience, instead of making assumptions about how you will feel and what you’ll experience. See the opportunities instead of hiding in the habits.
Experience the people in your life. Ask them questions instead of making the assumption that you know them. People change. People need to be experienced daily. Even just reminding yourself that the time you have with every single person is limited, will help you remember to experience them. To be fully present with them.
I bet if you know me, you make assumptions about what I feel. You make assumptions about what I think about you. You make assumptions about what I want to experience with you. Don’t. Ask me. And don’t assume that I know what you want to experience with me. What you like about me. I don’t. Because you’re constantly changing. I’m constantly changing. And we need to get to know each other every time we meet. Experience each other every time we meet. Get naked with one another every time we meet. Metaphorically speaking.
Life’s an experience, but to experience it, you have to become present to it.
It’s hard, isn’t it? Getting to the bottom of an issue. We all have these defense mechanisms. We start thinking certain thoughts as if by default. Thoughts that have nothing to do with what the real issue is.
Personally, in personal relationships, my personality goes wacko (you see what I did there? Couldn’t resist. Apologies…). I micromanage. I manipulate. I demand. I provoke. I tease. I do everything but facing the fear that I might get hurt. This can be with the kids I raise, the men I date, the people I work with, or close friendships.
First, I think I’m doing the right thing. I’m planning. I’m thinking ahead. I’m setting boundaries. I’m enforcing rules. I’m managing. Call it what you like. I’m caught up in solving one problem, or another, using one tactic or another, refusing to face my main fear: that I’m not good enough. That I’ll lose all the people I love, or projects I care about, because I’m not good enough.
Yesterday (now the day before yesterday), I said something so incredibly stupid to one of the kids I raise I’ve spent 24-hours beating myself up about it. She wanted to stay with her grandmother, like her brother, just coming home here and there when she feels like it. I told her that was not acceptable and she needed to come home to do homework. Of all the idiotic things I could say. Homework. Really?
I’m worried about her attitude, her friends, that the township has done a number on her, but as my head has been stuck in “if I only had the money to get her out of there…or hadn’t spent all my money on her brother, we wouldn’t have these problems as we’d live a nice life in a nice house and she’d be in a nice school.” In short, had I at least gotten her into a better school, she’d be better off and we wouldn’t have half the problems we now have.
In my mind, the future scenario of her tanking school and ending up miserable using drugs, played out. The scenario everyone around her have been fretting about. In my head another scenario was playing out as well: the past couple of years of visa problems and issues with her brother and feeling inept as a mother because of it.
She wants to be loved, not lectured. She has over and over again said she wants to stay with me, but I’m “too strict.” And hearing those words on the phone yesterday I flipped. Fear. Panic. A sense of failure.
I understand she wants to be with her biological family too. I have never prevented that. She has always been allowed to stay in Hangberg for that reason, but in the past I didn’t like it because of her carer’s adult sons being drug addicts and she never having any rules, resulting in hanging out with the wrong people in the middle of the night. So I enforced rules.
Staying with her gran is different. There are no crazy drug addicts there. They still live in the thick of gangsters, addicts and thieves, but the house is relatively safe. And as there are so many of them, her brother can’t cause much harm.
Parenting kids born into a drug den, one of them being on the autism spectrum with severe behavioral problems and aggression, without the financial structure to support it has been hell, frankly. I’ve done everything I can and usually it hasn’t felt like enough. I’ve been stuck in other countries swearing and panicking about losing the children. I’ve awoken at night hearing them scream my name. I’ve cursed the fact that I couldn’t afford enough therapists and special needs schools/better schools. I’ve cursed not having enough money to take them on stunning adventures. I’ve cursed the fact that I have to work twelve hour days to survive instead of spending time with them. I’ve cursed the fact that I couldn’t afford investing five million rand straight away to get a permanent residency. I think I cursed the whole of South Africa in the process. But somewhere along that road I woke up. I decided to take charge of my life and do what I can. And ever since that day it’s been a journey up a mountain instead of falling down a mountain. It’s been hard. It’s been so fucking hard I’ve wanted to kick down walls and sometimes I’ve felt so overwhelmed I didn’t want to live. Not like I wanted to kill myself, I just didn’t want to keep going. I didn’t know how to find the power. But every time I did. And life changed.
A friend of mine once told me that she looked upon her children and realized they weren’t hers. They belonged to themselves. And that’s what I’ve tried to remember, while also remembering that children, as much as they kick and scream, sometimes shouldn’t get their way. Because what they want isn’t good for them. Being a parent is sometimes not about being loved, but about doing the right thing.
What this journey has taught me is that you can’t allow circumstance to dictate how you feel. I often get stuck in my head (I mean I’ve been berating myself for twenty-four hours by now — see the post about Your inner dominatrix…), but I’ve learned that if I pay enough attention, I can unstick myself.
Today I wasn’t feeling happy. So I decided, instead of running around thinking manic thoughts about things to distract myself, or simply feeling miserable, to sit down and ask myself what’s truly going on. This is going on. This and a sinus infection.
Every day is an opportunity to grow. To face our fears. To face our pain. To grow beyond them.
Still, when I came home yesterday, after writing this, I was sad. I was tired. I felt depleted. The toddler was gorgeous. He wanted to fall asleep on the kitchen sofa, so we were both lying under a blanket there, on one end each, so my toes faced him. He decided to play dog and bite my toes. He was hilarious. And so goddamn cute. And I just felt sad. Because I was worried about his siblings. I felt lonely without them. I was worried about his mother who sometimes thinks she can handle raising children, until she forgets to pick them up at daycare within two days. We’ve been discussing adoption. I’ll be able to soon. Six years late, but still.
And I’m scared man. I’m fucking petrified of losing the kids. For six years my life has been about finding solutions to get a visa. To find a way to launch my career and be with the kids. Permanent residency. Adoption rights. Movies. Magique. From time to time I’ve also decided to approach topics like men and friends. Sorting out my dating life and social life. And I’ve made every fucking mistake under the sun during this time. If only I’d known back then what I know now. If only…
But I didn’t. And as the post Your inner dominatrix… explains, there’s no point with regret. The best we can do is from now on live as we want to. To honor the people we fucked up along the way by making the mistakes we did. Honoring them by being better people. Honoring ourselves. Making the world a better place by doing better.
That’s the best we can do. And as I’ve barely had time to breathe in the past six months, maybe I also need to honor the fact that now that things have finally calmed down a bit, I’ll feel the stress. I’ve been sick twice in two weeks. Four times in three months. And throughout it I’ve been pulling 10-12-hour days six days a week. Sometimes I’ve been in the office with a fever.
The past two weeks I’ve allowed myself to blog. Just that gives me feelings of guilt. Time to process emotions instead of work. I always try to teach the whole world my learnings through this blog. Teach myself. And it’s only when I write that I truly process things. And by writing down my learnings I avoid lecturing everyone in sight. Because people need love and encouragement, not lectures.
I feel like a big ass failure at the moment, while also feeling like I’ve come a hundred miles since last year this time. But as the story goes, I never stopped fighting because I was bleeding. If there was one thing my father taught me is that you get up, and you go. You keep going. Till you get there.
I’ll go see my kids. I’ll talk to them. I’ll explain. I’ll live. I’ll learn. And the truth is, just because something doesn’t pan out the way you wanted it to, doesn’t mean you can’t be happy. Maybe there’s a better plan. For one, I’m putting resources in place in the township to help the kids. Maybe this will work better. Maybe we will spend time together in a more functional way. And I finally have time to spend time with all the other kids I mentor too, as I’ll spend more time in the township. That’s where my heart is.
Plus, I’m gonna take dance classes again, because the mentor I’ve put in place for the kids is a dance teacher. That alone is worth celebrating. Seriously. There’s nothing much that makes me happier than dancing. I’ll be the fool with a big grin on my face. I’ll be happy.
Happiness is a choice. A damn hard choice. A choice to be the master of your thoughts. To make the most out of what you’ve been given. To let go of guilt and regret. To learn. To move forward. To flow with life. To constantly grow. It’s not always easy, but it sure as hell is worth it.
And remember, you are beautiful. We all are. We just get a little bit lost sometimes.
Ships dance on ocean waves, caressed by the sun and made love to by the wind. The stars shine the way, as moonlight makes the navigator’s life easy. Then comes the storm, when upset winds, shake their lover with a fierce force. And what seemed like an easy bit of sailing to reach the shore, has turned into a mad dance where everything seems to be moving; not even one’s mind appears to be still.
In the chaos that erupts, it’s easy to lose sight of the harbor. All one’s dreams of reaching shore. While the dreams beat inside one’s heart, the mind is furiously searching for answers. Why this storm? Why me? Why now? How can I continue when seasickness rocks me to my core? How can I see when winds are whipping at me and the rain cascading down? How can I stand another night by the wheel, steering my ship to shore when my legs are weak and my mind is sore?
When rough winds are making your boat twist and turn, and sometimes loose course, do you change course entirely, or do you simply adjust your sails to stick the course and reach the original shore?
Many times in life, I’ve changed direction. I’ve also had “false goals” dictated by my ego. Harbors I thought I needed to reach, but that were just places I wanted to go to prove something — not to be happy — and I had to change course because I was making myself miserable. But as the story goes, the Morning Star is always there — your inner compass will always point to true North. And you know where that is. Whether you make a detour, or you stick to your course, there is a place to which you will return. There is a truth which you cannot escape. And that’s the place you must find inside your mind, when waves crash against the hull and everything seems to be moving in odd directions. The ship can get rocked and storms will invariably delay you, but so long as you know where you’re going, you’ll get there.
There will come a day, when winds, once again, tease and play with your sails. When sunbeams caress your ship with its loving touch. When dolphins jump next to your ship and seagulls cry out their welcomes as you reach the destination you set out for.
It’s easy to get caught in storm winds and let the rain dim your sight. It’s easy to see no way out, when caught in fog. The more you think about it, the more lost you feel. You analyze, search for meaning, look for alternative routes, when all you have to do is step inside your heart and find true North.
If you want to read some of my ocean inspired poetry, have a look at Instagram… www.instagram.com/CarnavalDuDesir It appears I often sit in a harbor somewhere, looking for peace and answers.
I hung out with someone today. Someone I met nine years ago. At the time I lived in Los Angeles, but my dad gave me the gift of Easter with the family in Sweden and I decided it was the perfect excuse to stop by London to talk to someone there. That someone dragged me to a seminar as his “moral support.” And there was this other guy who was on stage that day and I guess we exchanged a few words.
Fast forward nine years. We’re chasing each other around an ice rink in Athens, laughing and sharing memories of how we ended up where we are. Today I texted him saying “You know, there was once a boy who used to say “it’s magical Maria, it’s magical.” That boy dragged me along to a seminar. That boy, in a way, is the reason I was ice skating the other day. And you know what? It’s magical. It’s absolutely fucking magical. The people we meet. The memories we make. The crazy and absurd. The wonderful and weird. Friends. Magical, indeed.
There are people we create beautiful memories with. Beyond that, there are people who have our back. When you combine the two, that’s when you know you’ve created something amazing.
As I look at my phone I see messages from a friend from around the same time. He also lives in Athens. It’s really his fault we’re all here, because he set off a chain reaction when my best friend went to visit him. I see like five hundred calls to my best friend. I see messages from mine and my best friend’s best friend from back then. One of the three musketeers. She’s in Africa, helping me with some movies and working to convince us the three of us will be in Senegal together for Christmas this year. I’m voting for Cape Town, but hey! It’s been ten years since our last Christmas together. And I get happy. Because those people, those people are magical.
And this blog, this blog that I rarely have time to write these days. This blog filled with sexual innuendo, swear words and all those things the woman who’s raising three kids in Cape Town really shouldn’t say out loud, this blog was started back then.
I do, indeed, help raise three kids today. I have responsibilities I didn’t back then. I still love the movies, my friends and driving down Mulholland. I still have a potty mouth and a dirty sense of humor. Some things change, some don’t. And I’d like to create more of the things that I truly love. The things that never changed. The stuff that make me come alive.
Moral of the story? People are fucking beautiful. They make our world. But they also form part of a chain reaction. Whoever you meet, whatever you do, it sets off repercussions that echo back to you, and sometimes lead to events years later. It’s as if we form melodies when our universes collide and the notes dance in the ether long after the music played, leading to encores and events a long, long time later.
Does it ever suddenly hit you what a word truly means or where it comes from? Like there’s this Swedish word “gift” which means both “married” and “poison.” Just like “vind” means both “wind” and “attic,” maybe because the wind blows through the attic?
Yesterday I wrote a blog called “Amusing musings…” which led me to ponder muse, musing and amusing. So a muse is amusing and makes you muse upon things?
I don’t think I’ve ever pondered that before. And let me tell you it took me over twenty years to realize that married and poison was the same word in Swedish. I used both words for over twenty years without realizing.
In the same way I’ve asked people how they are, told them I love them, said I’m fine, and a plethora of other things, without really putting any intention behind the words. It’s been empty words.
In a similar manner we tell ourselves stories all the time, without really noticing what we’re saying. I just caught myself berating myself for where I’m at with my life, thinking I should be further along with certain things and will life ever get easier?
In the past year my coach has made me think about what’s working and what I’d love to create more of, as well as what I’d love to create in general. I’ve had to switch my faulty thinking patterns around. And it’s worked wonders.
The amazing thing is, we’re only partly aware of what we’re thinking most of the time. Like you walk around feeling a tad irritated for three hours, but don’t even stop to ask yourself why you’re feeling the way you’re feeling and how you could think about it differently so as to feel better.
Similarly, one day you catch yourself having a thought only to realize you think that thought quite often, but you’re so used to thinking it you don’t even notice. Like when you tie your shoelaces — you don’t really think about what you’re doing, yet you have to think to be able to do it.
I used the same word for marriage and poison for over twenty years without realizing. I just never questioned it. Just like I never questioned some of my own thoughts, or the way I view the world.
Becoming aware is long process, yet it starts over night. Likewise, shifting one’s thoughts, or awareness if you so like, is a long process, yet it starts over night. You have to make a decision about what you’d like to think and where your focus should be.
I’m reminded of Trainspotting: Choose life, choose a fucking big television. Only I think you should choose your thoughts instead. Because really, that’s choosing life. The life we want to create. Personally I’m gonna go have a shower, pamper myself and curl my hair. Just so I can think I’m beautiful and sexy. I could contemplate my wrinkles instead, but that’s a lot less fun than thinking I’m hot as hell…
I remember when I first started this blog — I was doing yoga in Runyon Canyon and walking around looking for topics to write about as I had challenged myself to do a post a year for a year…and I did.
When I write on here I learn. It’s where I process what’s happened. The more stressed I get, or the more happy I get, the more I write. If I’m stressed I need to process what’s happened, if I’m happy I want to share my happiness with the world.
Today I was running around looking for an external hard drive for over two hours. That wasn’t fun (esp. as I didn’t find it), but it was hilarious because I kept looking in places where I’d already looked, thinking it should logically be there. Only it was totally illogical to look again, because it wasn’t there.
It made me realize that we do that a lot, don’t we? We look for things in places where we know we won’t find them. Ever had a friend who never showed up? The kind that cancelled every coffee you ever booked? Ever been in a relationship where you break up and keep getting back together? Ever had a boss who just never praised you when you did well?
These things are structures. Those people are living according to a structure where they will keep repeating a certain behavior. So why do we still go there looking for that coffee, that love, that praise? We’re looking in the wrong place!
Our looking in the wrong place is a structure too. It’s something we keep doing. And for no good reason. What we’re looking for won’t happen.
I remember that before I broke up with the guy I was with for over three years back in my twenties, I kept having a line from a play I was doing going round and round in my head: “The wonderful thing isn’t going to happen, Thorvald.” Meaning, Hedda Gabler would never be loved the way she wanted to be loved by Thorvald (at least I think it was Thorvald and Hedda this was about…I may have mixed up the character by now…but it was the play Hedda Gabler by Ibsen).
The reason that line kept going round and round in my head was because my ex would never turn around and love me the way I wanted to be loved.
This came back to me when my coach pointed out that I expect flakiness. That I think flakiness is normal in relationships, but it’s not. It’s what’s normal to me. It’s my dysfunctional structure to be around guys where the wonderful thing will never happen.
Now, sitting thinking about your past isn’t necessarily helpful — you want to be moving towards what you want to create, not away from what you don’t want to create. I’d like to create intimacy. To me intimacy is a big scary thing as I’ve hidden in clouds of aloofness to protect myself from flakiness, but it’s what I’d love. What I’d truly love to create.
I’m obsessing about structure lately, have you noticed? Because I had some big epiphany that your entire life is built around structure. You put the right structures in place, you can do anything.
It’s like building a house: for the house to do what you want it to, you need a foundation, the proper pipes, the right electrical wiring, etc. If you don’t put structures in place, the house collapses on you, or things don’t work as they should, or keep breaking.
If you think about your exercise regime, your daily schedule, the way you plan your week, how you organize your wardrobe, etc. it’s all structures. There are also mental patterns that are structures, like the way you view situations, people, etc. and therefore react to them.
Writing this blog I was also reminded of that year when I wrote a blog a day and doing yoga and running in Runyon Canyon. It was a structure. One that I loved at that time. Challenges work for me because I thrive on them. So I think I need to make a few more challenges now. Challenge myself to put a few new structures in place.
I’ve been grumpy (and exhausted) for like a week due to the fact that I raise one kid with behavioral issues and I have to wait for him to do a program before he can start school again and having him at home all day long is driving me up the walls. Because I’ve felt like I can’t put structures in place. But I can. And I will.
I’d also like to run into someone who’d hug me for an hour. The past few months have been challenging with his issues and the schools. I’ve met so many wonderful people through this who’ve told me I’m a special soul who is doing an amazing job (incredible given how grumpy I’ve felt but considering his behavioral patterns I’m possibly a saint after all). It’s hard to reignite your own flame constantly, but compared to how much better I am at it now than a year ago, I’m well pleased with myself.
Now I’m off to look for more work, it’s an exciting Friday night…
Oh no, wait, I’m supposed to put a sexual metaphor in here as is the style of this blog…but I’m too tired…no, I can’t say that. It would be like totally rude if I said that to guy. Uhm…feed me chocolate, pour me wine and massage my feet till I fall asleep we have sex. Or just take me to Runyon Canyon and let me feel the desert wind blowing through my hair again as I run in the sun.
It was maybe three years ago I was having a conversation with my best friend about death: what would we do if one of us died? Like how do you handle the death of the person that’s been the closest to you for an odd twenty years?
I didn’t have the answer. She didn’t have the answer. All I’ve really thought about when it comes to life and death is that you have to fill your life with as much love as possible. Some people are special — we don’t have a magical connection with everyone, but out of billions of people, there are several whom we can create great friendships with.
People die, love doesn’t. There is so much magic to be experienced in life with so many people. Sometimes all we have to do is open the door. Open the door to the possibility that someone might be magic. Open the door to our heart. Open the door to the beauty around us.
This conversation together with my constant traveling suddenly made me very aware of what I’ve often taken for granted. Like spending time with my best friend. In the past I just used to fall into the familiar feeling of being around her, now I’m aware that our time together is limited — not least because we live in different parts of the world.
Your experience shifts when you realize time is limited. It’s like suddenly you enjoy things more. You savor the moment in an entirely different way.
The other day, as a Facebook acquaintance posted about his son’s sudden death, I was reminded of this once more. That time is limited. That we really need to indulge in the moment and appreciate the people in our lives as we never know if it’s the last time we see them.
It also hit me that time with ourselves is limited. We make a point out of appreciating the time we spend with other people, but do we make a time to appreciate the time we spend with ourselves? Do we take care of ourselves, love ourselves, indulge in the things that make us feel good? Like do you appreciate your own talents, your own sense of humor, the little things that make you, you? It’s great when others appreciate us for those things — don’t we all love hearing what makes us special — but how about appreciating that ourselves? Even if our soul is immortal, our current incarnation is not.
Fill your life with the good stuff. I was telling a friend the other day that I’ve filled my house with important stuff — like poetry, wine, art, herbs, cooking utensils, laughter and love. It makes me feel at home, because it’s the things I treasure and I want my surroundings to be a reflection of what I love. That way I get to live the magic every single day.
Of course I also have to do what I love. I write the poetry that paint my walls, I make the charcoal drawings that fill this house. I live. Even if only three people read my poems, and five people saw my art, I know I lived that poetic/artistic moment.
This house is alive with who I am. And last week I even bought a bed for my bedroom so now I can fall asleep dreaming beautiful dreams too…
Slowly, slowly we can piece our magic together, but even while we are doing it, we can live. We can create beautiful moments before “everything’s ready.” Before we are famous. Before we are rich. Before anyone else sees, or appreciates our art.
Recently life’s felt like a whirlwind blowing in the right direction. Like climbing a steep mountain to get to the top. It’s been good, but very challenging. And at night I’ve been exhausted, but I’ve lit my candles, poured a glass of red and turned on the stove to let my troubles bubble away in caramel sauce. Because I love baking. I love the scent of caramel. I love feeling like this is my home and I’m creating magic. Even in the midst of the storm, just as I said in a previous blog.
There are times when I fail and I freak out about everything at once — then slowly I bring my attention back to what’s working, to what is slowly changing thanks to the structures I’m putting in place and to what is possible. I turn on the stove and mix whatever spices draw me to them that day, write a poem, or paint a charcoal painting. I live. If so just a little bit. And a spark of magic is created…a spark that sooner or later starts a fire.
Magic. Create it.
Love. Love as much as you can. Life is short and wonderful people are magical and beautiful and utterly tremedously amazing.
Live the small moments. Create magic in everyday life. And run off to Paris or with the circus as often as possible…
“Sometimes a kind of glory lights up the mind of a man. It happens to nearly everyone. You can feel it growing or preparing like a fuse burning toward dynamite. It is a feeling in the stomach, a delight of the nerves, of the forearms. The skin tastes the air, and every deep-drawn breath is sweet. Its beginning has the pleasure of a great stretching yawn; it flashes in the brain and the whole world glows outside your eyes. A man may have lived all of his life in the gray, and the land and trees of him dark and somber. The events, even the important ones, may have trooped by faceless and pale. And then -the glory- so that a cricket song sweetens his ears, the smell of the earth rises chanting to his nose, and dappling light under a tree blesses his eyes. Then a man pours outward, a torrent of him, and yet he is not diminished. And I guess a man’s importance in the world can be measured by the quality and number of his glories. It is a lonely thing but it relates us to the world. It is the mother of all creativeness, and it sets each man separate from all other men. ” – John Steinbeck, East of Eden
So there you are. Now go paint someone with caramel, or chocolate sauce, or something. Make it good. Make it magical.
Do you ever wait for the perfect moment? A better home? A nicer car? And in the meantime neglect to make the most out of your current situation?
I used to be like that. I’d draw plans for a castle while living in a shack type thing. Instead of turning the shack into a castle I was waiting. Because it was just temporarily I was living there.
A lot of the things in my life were temporary. I was waiting for that magic moment when I had money, when I had visas, when I could settle, when I was doing what I love all day long… Then one morning about a year and a half ago I woke up and decided it was time to live life, no matter what.
So with no money I came up with things to do with the kids. I started writing poetry again. Happy poetry. I drew charcoal drawings again. I did everything I could to live, even if I couldn’t live exactly as I wanted.
Then it felt like life tested me. I got stuck in Europe with no visa. I was miserable being away from the kids. I was panicky. I’d wake up screaming in the night. But I realized that I had to find joy anyway. No matter what life presented me with. I had to enjoy the moment and put the panic and fear aside. And for the first time in years I took time to make new friends. To create a social life, even if I was just there temporarily. And I had fun. I still struggled with being away from the kids, but I created joy anyway. Because that’s the kind of person I want to be — I kept thinking if there was one thing I could teach people it would be that. To create joy and love, even when life gives you lemons. Because life will, in some way or another, always throw screwballs.
I came back to SA with a new visa plan, a great lawyer, more opportunities, but I’ve still battled. I found my dream home, but I had to live on a blow up mattress on the floor for six weeks as they did repairs (and it’s still raining in), the neighbor was loco, the furniture I ordered custom made grew mold, I finally had the kids but one of them has such severe issues my every day was taken up trying to sort him out and my work went out the window as I was running around to doctors, therapists, schools and golly knows what and the donkeys and still came home to tantrums, fights and nightmares. I couldn’t have babysitters, because they couldn’t handle him. I was never alone and I was losing my mind. But slowly things got better. Slowly my house became my home. Slowly my kid started finding his feet again. Slowly.
In the midst of the mania I decided to light candles. I was so run down — there were times I didn’t have time to shower for four days, because with a toddler and one kid throwing tantrums I couldn’t leave them alone. And at night I was so tired I just toppled over. But every night I lit candles. Even if it was only ten minutes to myself, I had ten minutes of calm and beauty. The kids asleep and only me and the candles.
A rare shot of myself on this blog…came across this photo a few days ago and found it apt for this blog…
Now I’m thinking I must do the same in the morning. Establish a routine that serves me. A routine that makes me feel happy.
Slowly I’m putting structures in place. Slowly my life is becoming a happy place to be. Even when it rains. Because I keep looking for the poetry. I keep looking for ways to make things work with the resources I have. And I try to be patient, because some things, like Magique have taken forever to sort out in the midst of the chaos. But for that too, I’ve put structures in place. I’ve hired people to ensure I sort out the things I’ve done wrong in the past. I’ve taken charge to put structures in place, both in my personal and professional life. And slowly we will get there.
I feel alive, because I have the sense that I’m finally living. I’m not waiting for some magic moment when I’ll receive an Oscar (though that’d be great), or Magique will be raining money on my head, or I’ll have fifty million to make a movie and decorate my home. I’m simply using my resources to create magic. In the now. And putting supporting structures in place. In the now. Because there’s so much beauty and I want to experience it. Right now.
It’s time to light a candle and crack on with today’s workload. A very happy me actually has some time to work.