Pause 

I’m debating on whether or not to stop blogging for a while. At the moment my basic needs are unfulfilled, so I don’t have the same focus I did a while ago. I need to get back into my routine–working out, doing what I love, making time for myself and my non-blog writing (I write random stories sometimes…), and getting the oxytocin fix that I need. Lately I haven’t been fulfilling these basic needs simply because I can’t. I’ve found that it’s nearly impossible to maintain a balance of all that you need when someone else is controlling the show. If there is one thing I’ve learned throughout my experience in France, it is this: being an exchange student tests your ability to adapt. There is no time for yourself, no time for uninterrupted self development (like reading, writing, etc.), unpredictable diet (the change also can alter your moods/ energy), minimal amount of time to get ready for the day (taking a shower, blow drying hair, etc.), never alone, required to be ready to leave the flat (apartment) in an instant once there is a new sight to be seen, constant switching of environment (because you’re visiting every area, which brings about staying at the family’s relative’s houses), a requirement to be constantly happy and social during all waking hours, and you must turn the other cheek when they begin to talk about how superior their country is to yours or another. Now I’m not saying that all of the french are like that, but the people I’ve encountered have all possessed the same haughty attitude. They like to compare countries as a typical pastime. Basically any comparison that is brought up must end in their country turning out on top, and if not, you won’t hear the end of it until someone finally declares that even with any illogic, they still “win” in the comparison. 

     Now I’m not saying that living this way, with these social habits is wrong, it’s just not my style. I prefer to remain unbiased when discussing things, rather than insult another country simply because my ego couldn’t handle losing something. I also don’t talk or debate for the aspect of wining–I think that’s truly a dead end–I like debating and conversing to spread knowledge, share ideas, and to broaden horizons. I’ve found that’s simply not the case here… Apparently every other country in the world must suck in comparison, or else we must be living in some parallel universe where i don’t know… We’re all viewed as different cultures doing things their own way? Imperfect representations of the imperfection in us all? No country is perfect, no country ever will be. Sure you may have your preference as to which you think is better simply because it aligns with your beliefs and views, but everyone else out there has the same disposition as you to believe that the country they favor is the best. 

Now maybe I’m simply frustrated, and my words are skewed in favor of my own beliefs/ preferences, so I’ll put that part of this post to rest for now.

     Back to what I meant to tell you all though: I may or may not discontinue writing (for my blog) until the end of this trip (which is only 6 days). 

I most likely will try to write, but if I can’t manage to, it’s because I need to wait for inspiration to strike again. 

    Onto another topic real quick, before I end: 

The other day I sat in a closet. Now you may think I’m crazy or at the very least, kinda odd, but let me explain. There wasn’t really anywhere else to be alone, but inside the closet. Honestly, I’m tempted to go back in there today (it’s a great spot to listen to music in my headphones without interruption). I loved it in there, cause it reminded me of when I was a kid. I used to do all kinds of random weird stuff when I was younger, simply because it made me happy. I’d find tiny little spots and I’d sit in them, I’d build forts, etc. I’d find a chair, sit on it backwards, and lay upside down with my legs against the back board. I was absolutely ridiculous, and loving life for the simple odd things it had to offer. 

Thinking back to how I was when I was younger got me thinking about how I want to make sure I don’t lose that part of myself. Sure those things are weird to do as you get older and older, but they’re fun. I’m sure those odd habits are part of the reason why kids seem so happy compared to us. They don’t think about what others will think of them, or if it is weird or not to lay upside down if they feel like it. They don’t bother to change themselves in order to conform to strict social norms. 

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Switching filters

Just today I was scrolling through instagram’s main page, and I continued to see pictures of my favorite musician and his new girlfriend. The first time I saw a picture of them I was instantly happy for him; he finally was with a girl who he couldn’t stop smiling around. There has been lots of talk by the fans about how sad they are to see him with a girl (because they’re kinda obsessed with him…), how these photos were all supposedly stolen and then leaked, and how this new girl can’t possibly compare to the girl he was singing about in all of his previous songs. None of that really matters though. For someone who can resonate with the somber tone portrayed in a lot of his earlier work, it makes me happy to see that even when you’ve appeared to sink so low, there’s the possibility that there’s someone out there that could possibly change that–maybe not forever, and perhaps not the same way you’ve felt before–but at least enough to get by for just a while. Enough to change up your tone and give you the perspective you need to be yourself once again. I know we don’t necessarily lose ourselves when we’re depressed and introspective, but we lose that light in our eyes. Everything singes your soul so much that you’re numb, yet feelings still flood onto a page and appear as though you feel every inch of them. It’s not that you don’t feel them, it’s that you feel them so intensely, it’s hard to sense the change. Through this, the line between happiness and sadness seem to blur. You can feel glee one moment, and in the next, you’re unable to recall what it’s like to be happy. Then one day, something, or someone snaps you back to reality. For my favorite musician, it’s his new muse. For the mean time it appears as though his old ghost (old heartbreak/ ex) no longer haunts him. He’s been set free. He found a girl who seems to help him forget his past heartbreak. It’s quite fitting that he will be releasing a more upbeat album soon, because it is exactly the kind of music I’ll be looking for. In the next few months I’m going to experience some change. In about one month precisely, I’ll be settled and ready to make some changes in my love life.

Currently I’m still single, like you all probably know. I’ve had feelings for guys, but nothing has happened yet. Here in France, I have less than two weeks, so I surely won’t be starting anything with a french guy. Once I get home I have two more weeks before I head off to college. Who knows if anything will happen. If it does, it will most likely be a no-strings-attached goodbye fling of making out and cuddling. Who knows. All I know is that I’m ready for a new tempo. My last posts have been hinting towards a sense of not letting go. Well now is the time that I must. I’ve gone on too long with my unpredictable emotions affecting my choices (when it comes to dating) and my writing. From now on, I intend to simply focus on treating everyone with love and kindness and see where it goes. I’m going to purge anger, resentment, sadness, and any other negative emotions from my system.

Now I won’t make any promises that this blog will be purely all about thoughts of positivity and happiness, cause we all do still have our down days, but I’m going to make an effort to look at life through a new filter.  

 

A letter to my future kids and I 

To me: When they make mistakes and your blood is boiling, know this: you were like that once too. Remember that “one big mistake”? Remember how you only knew the stove was hot when you accidentally placed your hand on it for the first time? We have to make mistakes in order to learn, and these precious little people you call your children may happen to make more than one simple mistake. These posts you write now promote a little bit of rebellious thinking, so allow them to approach life fearlessly. When they do something dumb, don’t approach them with a judgmental glare, talk to them, perhaps give them the time to explain their mistakes through writing. You know you did your fair share of that kind of explaining in your teenage years. Maybe the letters they write will aggravate you just a tiny bit, maybe you won’t be able to sympathize right away. Think back to this time right now, the moment you wrote the post to your future self and kids in the back of your french host family’s car on the way back to France from some place near Vouvre. You talked big game, but your actions didn’t represent the rebellion your words promote. That’s a product of punishment. The first tiny mistake you made left a burn in your mind, remaining imprinted forever. Each time your rebellion begs for a chance to breathe you remember the disapproving looks and words. You remember the judgement. To you the judgement may have appeared a little uncalled for for the situation, but you still feel remorse for your actions the night of that one big mistake years ago. So from then on out you continue to live a little more on the safer side than you typically would. You don’t act without thinking first. Some may judge you for lacking the ability to just act on impulse and spontaneity, but they weren’t around when you heard those disapproving words. Don’t give your children the same visual that halts them from making more than one simple mistake. Their mistakes are what will help them grow. When they trip and fall while navigating this difficult time, hold your tongue when you feel tempted to say “I told you so.” 


To them:

I want to start off with one thing, and that is this: I was never perfect, and never will be. If I ever pretend that I didn’t make the same mistakes you’re making at this age, I want you to search long and hard through this blog, because there will most likely be a post to prove otherwise. The reason I write, for others and for myself is to document a history. Sure it’s not monumental, and perhaps others have gone through these things, and it all appears to be yesterday’s news, but these stories need to be remembered. This is a testament to how I was throughout all of my growth. My good moments, but also my bad moments. When I had all of the confidence in the world, but also when I was breaking. The reason I show you this blog is because I want you to be able to read it before you go through some of these hard times, that way you’ll know when you’re going through them, that you’re not alone. I’ve gone through and will go through my share of experiences that perhaps I’ll forget at times, but they’ll be on this blog forever. You know your grandma and your grandpa, the ones I call mom and dad? I would have loved to read about their mistakes. It’s very simple when you’re a parent to feign perfection, but we all know it’s not real. Your grandma used to tell me that she made mistakes at my age too, and she thinks I should learn from them before I make the same ones. The only flaw in her preaching is that she doesn’t give me specific examples, she just keeps it vague. Though, I realize it’s not the easiest or most pleasant thing to attempt to remember your worst moments from your youth. Through this blog, I’ll spare my future self from the hassle of recounting some difficult memories, but feel free to ask me to elaborate on them if you’d like. 

When I was your age I respected my parents marriage, but at the same time was ever so curious about the relationships they had with the opposite sex throughout their life, before they met one another. But I never asked, and they never told. Sure I’ve gotten stories about the basic facts, but never in depth recounts of the emotions they went through/ felt towards those people. Here you’ll find more than you’d ever need to know about my past relationships before I met your dad. You’ll also find my thoughts about sex and other natural things we as sexual beings think about, but don’t always feel free to discuss openly. At this age I surely hope I will have explained the birds and the bees to you, but if not, I’d like you to make sure I do so. If I have, hopefully all your questions were answered in an open and accepting manner. I want you to know that no matter what you chose to do with your sexuality, whether it be to conform to society or not, I will love you as you are. Don’t ever feel you have to suppress your sexuality. It is one of the best things about being human. If your dad and I ever look at you and your boyfriend/ girlfriend with “disgust” as you’re making out, know that we’re simply kidding. Also, know that all of the “nasty” times you see me and your dad being “weird” (making out and grabbing on each other) in the kitchen, it is because we’re just as in love with one anther as we were years ago. 

Back to the letter though. The only time you’ll ever receive some tough love from me will be if you ever put someone down in order to build yourself up to be somehow superior to them. You’re my child, and my children don’t act like that. It is the one thing I detest the most, and will continue to detest until the day I die. Whenever you talk to someone, whether it be to your sibling, a friend, or a stranger remember that you are equals. No one is better, and no one is worse. 

By reading all of my old posts you’ll find my stories, my experiences, and my thoughts throughout my years. I hope that through reading these you’ll feel that you can come to me more freely, knowing I went through a similar thing. Lastly, I would like you to end this knowing that I will always love you no matter what. Perhaps it’s strange of me to be writing this so early, many many many years before you will be a reality, but I have a tendency to be weird and unconventional with what I post on this blog. 


BBQ sauce 

I’ve decided to switch things up a bit, so in this post, and possibly in some future posts, you will be reading some posts about the people I know.
I’m not sure if you still check my blog, but if you do, this one’s to you. Perhaps if you don’t read it before I get back from France, I’ll show it to you sometime before we part ways when we go to our separate schools this fall. 

I’d like to begin by saying that I treasure our friendship and couldn’t have pictured a better person to be my best friend. Ever since the day we met, I’ve always noticed that you’re truly genuine and completely real with me. You probably know more about me than you ever needed to know from our random night time confessions, but in a way, I’m glad you know how weird I am. We’re always ourselves around each other, and nothing else, and I love that. If someone would have asked me if I thought I was ever going to have a best friend like the ones portrayed in the movies, I would have said most likely not. I never thought this kind of friendship existed until we bonded over the weirdest things and stuck by each other’s side despite having such vastly different interests. In a way we’re kind of polar opposites that way, but I think we complement each other well. Just a few weeks ago before I left, when I spent a few days with you, it reminded me why I love having you as my best friend. Despite being around each other for hours and hours straight, I still didn’t want to leave. You’re the best friend a gemini could ever have. I love it when you ask random questions out of the blue. Your crazy spontaneity. Your adventurous side, but also your hilariously contradictory scaredy-cat side when it comes to spiders and strong thunder storms. These quirks make you exactly who you are, and that’s what I love about them. They’re random and silly, which is just the way I like it :). I remember when we started off as total strangers who decided to share a cabin at a camp out. There was no awkwardness at all because we were so excited as to what we would do that night: read the scary stories written on the walls, peer out the windows into the pitch black night when we’d hear noises outside, and play board games. Since then I’ve noticed that our ridiculous, nonsensical fear has carried over into the times when you’ve convinced me to try out new scary video games with you. It appears that there is a pattern of ours to try ridiculous things with one another, such as the crazy dares we’ve made. I don’t know who else would be able to convince me to get into an outdoor pool in the middle of winter…

I know we’re going to be away from each other for a long while soon, but I know this friendship is forever. Maybe one day we’ll end up in the same city again, where we can rekindle the friendship that we will always share. While we’re apart I plan to send at least 1 picture every day like we promised so we can keep up with one another. I know it will be hard to not have that familiar presence of one another, but I’m positive that this will only make our friendship stronger. I can’t wait to see you during the breaks when we’ll recount all that happened while we were apart.  

Random ranting 

I recently mentioned to you all that I’ve been writing a lot of things but posting very little, but after reviewing what I wrote, I’ve decided to post a few of them. 

So here’s my inner monologue from a week or so ago. At the moment, the tone of my thoughts is vastly different from the ones I wrote about below. This is a perfect example of just how varried my inner monologue can be day to day, and week to week. 

Typically normal instinct should lead me to talking to real people about my emotions, instead of trying with all my will to be simply be alone. But since I’ve been gone from writing for about two weeks I have been yearning to get back to it. To pour all of my thoughts and feelings into words and set them free. Over the past week I’ve found that I’m more introverted than I thought. I don’t enjoy constantly interacting with others from the moment I wake to the moment I sleep. I have found I’m very drained. I haven’t let my true emotions show one bit. If I’m feeling even a little bit upset while we’re in the car, while we’re at the dinner table, I hide it with a smile. 

       For those of you who don’t know, I am staying in France for a while with the family of an exchange student my family hosted the past few summers. I am very appreciative of the opportunity and the things I am able to see and experience, but my mind is elsewhere at the moment. So instead of writing about France, I’ll be writing about my thoughts that I can’t voice aloud. It’s not that I don’t think they would allow me the time to rest or be alone, but I doubt they’d understand what on earth could be troubling me right now since nothing appears to be wrong. 

      I will touch on one thing about France. They are a little more structured and formal than what I’m used to. There are typically three long meals in a day, and throughout these meals and at the end of the meal, you typically stay until everyone is ready to leave the table (you could have been done eating two hours ago, and still not be done at the table). Now typically I would try to be as social as I can, but when I can’t honestly voice what I’m thinking, it’s quite draining.

There is one thing I am loving about France though. In the south you can be walking down the streets and see cats quite often. Some are cute and allow you to pet them, others are unsure, and then there are the ones that I probably wouldn’t risk approaching given their demeanor. Anyway, the reason I bring up cats is because no matter where I am, or what situation I’ve been put in, if I see an animal, it can always bring a smile to my face. These furry creatures we’ve all domesticated and taken into our homes are living with us in society for a reason. Animals don’t expect a hello or a goodbye, a drawn out conversation, a hand shake, a kiss on each cheek, or a hug. They simply wish you approach them with a calm demeanor if you are to approach them. They don’t need you to explain anything, their calming presence they lend to us is as causal to them as the furr on their back. Most of us know why animals need us, but some overlook the fact that we need them too. Sometimes we find ourselves locked in our room with thoughts flooding through our minds and we don’t want anyone to see us this way. We are shutting down. Socializing with a smile on your face is no longer possible. If anyone were to come in right now fear would course throughout your body; what would they think of you unfiltered, how would you explain this, what explanation would they expect from you, would you be forced to tell them the truth? Does the particular individual even deserve the truth? Would they even bother to console you, or cause you to doubt everything even more? The next thing you know, you see the door begin to open at an eerily slow rate, your heart begins to pound, the door is opening slowly but surely…… Then there’s a halt, it doesn’t open any more than a crack. Next thing you know a soft, fluffy form jumps onto your bed beside you. It’s your pet. The one that doesn’t ask the hard questions. The one that’s there for you no matter what it is. Your pet doesn’t know what’s going on, but it can recognize the turmoil that is going on inside your mind. 

Let me just stop this train of thought to let you know that it hasn’t even been but 10 minutes since I’ve sat down to write, and I’ve already been interrupted. And throughout that time I was sitting in the same room as the person who keeps interrupting this alone time…Just to give you a bit of perspective on the amount of alone time I have.

So after a half hour break I am now back to writing— I was interrupted again after I had just written about getting interrupted…

I’m not exactly sure where I was going with this, cause at the point of the interruptions I was taken away from my writing for too long to get back into the same mindset in order to finish the train of thought. The reason I wasn’t going to post this was because I  felt it was unstructured and random. Today when looking it over once more, I realized I might as well share every bit of my journey in France, whether it be described well or poorly.  

Self love

Self love: accepting and loving the unique qualities that you possess that can not be changed. 
Many have their definition of self love, this one is mine. Recently I’ve been noticing that it’s not always so easy for someone to appreciate who they are physically, mentally, emotionally, etc. 

The problem that arises is not that others begin to point out flaws, but rather, you do the finger pointing yourself. When we act insecure, clingy, overly dependent on attention, and play the victim card every two seconds, we have basically told the whole world why we feel we’re not worthy. If we can’t come to love ourselves apart from others we can’t truly have self love. 

I was talking to someone once who had a deep insecurity about one aspect of their appearance. At first you couldn’t tell that the person was insecure, but then the bread crumbs began to fell and it was everywhere. When I wouldn’t get back to them for an hour they’d ask if they had done something wrong, and instead of laying off after that they’d press further and prod more into why I hadn’t answered them for a millisecond. This person continued to look for affirmation from me when he was truly looking in the wrong place. It is impossible to ever get the true affirmation you need from anyone but yourself. There is no one you are forced to live with for the rest of your life but yourself. If you can’t accept and love your qualities, you can’t expect others to see the beauty in everything that comprises who you are. Now you may raise the point that sometimes it’s too difficult to gain this assurance on your own—that you need the affirmation of others along with your efforts. The issue with that is that you place your worth into the hands and judgement of others who may not like what you have to offer—because we all have our own preferences. Just because one person doesn’t like you doesn’t mean no one will ever see the wonderful things you have to offer and deem you perfect for them. 

I have a particular taste in people both physically and mentally that even my identical twin doesn’t prefer. Even two people who are nearly the same genetically have completely different tastes in the people we prefer, so that can tell you a bit as to how preference can truly range from person to person. We all have that one type of person who can complete us in a way. For some it’s a soft compassionate energy they look for in perhaps a thinner, lankier person. For others it could be a stubborn, sarcastic, teasing energy in a thicker form. Some like dark features, others like light. Some love deep contrasts between the colors of features, others love a more subtle beauty. No matter what you look like, or what energy/personality you have to offer, someone will love you for you. Although, it takes loving all of your qualities first before you can ever expect someone to love them for what they are. People who are unapologetically themselves in every way are beautiful human beings, because they’ve conquered something some struggle with all of their life: self love. 

Stop looking in the mirror with hate, disgust, or disappointment at the unique beautiful body you’ve been given. We all only get one body, one soul, and one personality in a life time, appreciate it. You’re beautiful, those surrounding you are beautiful, those deemed “ugly” by society are beautiful. Everyone is perfect in their own way. Not everyone will like you, and perhaps you will go some time when no one does. That doesn’t mean that you aren’t perfect to someone, somewhere out there. 

A life full of hating yourself is a life wasted. Now that doesn’t mean go kill yourself, or that you’re worthless, or that you’re somehow imperfect because it’s taken you this long to begin doing so. Stop falling prey to self victimization and appreciate all your qualities. I know, we’re all human and it’s a difficult task to overlook what we deem imperfect, but it’s one small task that will bring you closer to an existence you’re proud of. Unburdened of the trivial, petty things that hinder others from living their lives to the fullest. 

A letter to an ex 

I wrote this one day, while I was torturing myself by reminiscing about old flames. I considered not posting it, but after reading it once more, I realize that perhaps it’s not my best work, and maybe I was caught up with my emotions for that time, but this blog is my “journal” after all, so here’s what I’d write if this blog were still anonymous. For those of you who know me past my blog, I recommend you proceed with caution, cause perhaps the things I’ve written may upset you (if they’re about you or not about you). There’s no slander or anything of that kind of sort. Though I’m giving you an out now, before you begin. 

*unquestionable extended*

One time you asked me how often I think about you. At the time I had actually purged you from my thoughts for quite some time, so the answer was infrequently. Recently my answer has changed. Thoughts of you have popped into my mind time and time again. The memories are painful to me. It wasn’t long, and we didn’t even go that far, but I know we could have been great and that’s what leads me to be upset. We never ran our full course. Though I want to write a billion things in a somber tone, I am determined to give this post an upbeat vibe. So here are the things I miss. 

When you and I’d talk I remember seeing your smile. I’m not sure if I ever told you this, but I loved that smile. It was infectious. It also reminded me of what your personality would look like if boiled down into a smile. Stubborn, cute, obnoxious, and playful all wrapped into one. 

Your personality. I’m not sure what it was, but for some reason your presence always left me content. At times a bit agitated possibly, but that’s only because you were being your extra obnoxious self that day. Along the way, I came to love that. You were only you. You told me your real thoughts on things, not just answers you’d think would align with mine. You teased me back when I was being my usual playful self. It made me happy—I had finally met my match—someone finally understood that I’m simply looking to receive the same smart ass replies that I’m giving out. Your charisma attacked me every time I saw you, it was magnetic. I remember thinking to myself before we got together that just by simply talking with you (as friends), I felt more fulfilled than I ever had, compared to how it was with my exes. Sure I had physical connections with guys, but never truly mental connections. 

It frustrates me to think of the last day we had together as a couple, cause it makes me miss you. It was overcast and rainy, and you were wearing a maroon ish sweater. I’m not sure if I had told you this either, but that was my favorite shirt of yours. In it you were perfectly cuddly and soft and it made me want to nap in your arms all day. 

As I’m finishing this post I’m tempted to delete it all. I’m feeling ready to give up, because it just dawned on me that if you really felt the same I wouldn’t be stuck here missing you all alone. I wouldn’t have to think of you with her.

You know, funny story. Ever since we’ve been apart I’ve been close to starting fresh with some other guy, but I can’t bring myself to follow through with it. There was one guy who I truly wanted, possibly still want, but I don’t think I can continue wanting other guys with you in the back of my mind. It’s surely not goodbye yet, but I’m afraid that’s coming soon. I need to know what your feeling or else I may have to disappear for good. I know you don’t like talking about your feelings—you’ve always been really secretive about that—but just this once I’d like you to go out on a limb and attempt to tell me whether or not I’m simply wasting my time.