You are not your age, Nor the size of clothes you wear, You are not a weight, Or the colour of your hair. You are not your name, Or the dimples in your cheeks, You are all the books you read, And all the words you speak. You are your croaky morning voice, And the smiles you try to hide, You’re the sweetness in your laughter, And every tear you’ve cried. You’re the songs you sing so loudly, When you know you’re all alone, You’re the places that you’ve been to, And the one that you call home. You’re the things that you believe in, And the people that you love, You’re the photos in your bedroom, And the future you dream of. You’re made of so much beauty, But it seems that you forgot, When you decided that you were defined, By all the things you’re not.
Can you believe it is a New Year’s AGAIN??? Where did 2017 go? Actually, I don’t really care where it went – I just want it gone. It was a pretty dreadful year. Seems like everyone had it tough, in one way or another, and that the Universe was plotting against us by making kooky, crazy, scary and random things happen. To be fair, the Universe does that all the time, but this year it seemed to just say “Ah, to hell with it!’ and just chucked everything it could at us. Probably serves us right – maybe we needed some more wake up calls. Especially me, I always sleep in 🙂
This was, until five seconds ago when I deleted all the text I’d spent ages typing, a very long post about my resolutions for the new year. The usual stuff about losing weight, being more sociable, being a better housekeeper etc. But I am actually feeling that those things are all part of the bigger picture of me just trying to be better than I am now. And the majority of the things I want to change about myself all hinge on one thing, or my lack thereof : bravery.
I’m not very brave. I am basically scared of everything. In some ways, I guess that makes me braver than I think I am, because instead of curling up in my bed and staying there forever (which is what I really want to do pretty much every day lately), I get up and go out into the world. Which is scary for me. Always has been. I don’t understand the world and it doesn’t understand me.
This week was hard. I had to make decisions that were difficult and upsetting and made me feel horrible about myself and my judgements. I don’t like hurting people, but this week I had to do that to someone who was hurting me. And then it made me question whether or not they actually were hurting me, or if my fear and lack of courage was affecting my perception of the situation. But I had to stand up for myself and that was hard. I don’t do it often and it is not a comfortable feeling for me. I am generally more at ease backing down or tolerating things, even if the other person is in the wrong. So instead of feeling good about standing up for myself, I feel horribly sad and guilty and keep wondering if the other person is ok.
I had another situation where I had to be assertive (a man had left his dog in a hot car and he he did not take kindly to me suggesting that he move the car, or preferably the dog, into the shade) and it ended up with me in tears and, frankly, afraid that I was going to get punched in the face. I did not feel victorious or proud of myself. I felt scared and small and again questioned whether I was in the right.
I had to assert myself at work too – in front of a bunch of colleagues – and that was very difficult also. Again, I was in the right, but it felt very wrong to stand there and say “Excuse me, but that is my responsibility I have to ask you to let me handle that”. I ended up apologising to the person afterwards because I felt so rotten about it, even though I was only stating what was true and defending my own job.
So, if I am to pick one resolution for this year, it is to be brave. And to stop apologising for having feelings and opinions and ideas of my own. And to make the hard decisions when I have to, and stand by them. And not let my fear of losing people stop me from standing up for myself and my own needs and values. And, most importantly, to embrace change and not fear it. I feel like this year is going to be a year of change and I have to be ready for that, one way or the other.
So, here’s to bravery and self-belief. And to standing up for what you believe in. And to not letting someone else tell you how you should live your life.
Thank you for reading – Happy New Year to you all. May 2018 bless you with many wonderful experiences, and the courage to embrace them all. Be kind to one another and yourselves this year.
Dr Seuss has the best quotes. In all the silliness of his stories, there is endless wisdom and truth, much of which makes far more sense than anything else going on in our world right now. Sometimes we need reminding that we are all unique and different – and that that is a GOOD thing – not something to be hidden away or changed. Who wants to be like everyone else? Not me! Although a little bit of “normal” would be nice from time to time. Just so I can interact with people on a regular basis and not have them wondering what planet I’m from, ha ha.
I created this collage for a special family member who celebrated a birthday last week. I worked on it for a few weeks, in between doing other things, and got it finished just in time. I hope she liked it. And can ignore the dots I smudged after the last word 🙂
Hope you are all having a good day – thank you for stopping in x
I am a bit obsessed by crows. Crows, ravens, any black bird really. Don’t ask me why, because I don’t know! I think part of me loves them because they can sometimes be the outcast, shunned and unpopular. People say all sorts of nonsense about crows. It wouldn’t be like that if they were pure white, or even brown. But black somehow makes them evil and cunning and bad to have around.
Working with them in art work can be tricky, because they are so dark. It can be hard to design something around them that incorporates that darkness. They will naturally be the focus of whatever you put them in, and tend to suit more monochromatic colour schemes, or darker hues at least.
To me, they suit a somehow spiritual, almost religious theme, and symbolise strength and self-belief, opportunity and thought. So, this collage came together with that in mind. Mr Crow here could almost be wearing a monocle and a top hat (damn – why didn’t I think of that earlier?!) – he’s very dashing and proud. He is definitely his own higher power. Ain’t nobody making him do anything he doesn’t wanna do – he makes his own decisions and has faith in himself! He answers (caw caw!) to no one but his own inner being. He is clever and brave and inventive.
He will, however, feel no shame at all about going through your rubbish bins, or eating gross, dead things off the road 🙂
Thanks for stopping by – have faith in yourselves today x
I have been writing this blog for almost 5 years now (wow – it actually feels like much longer…not sure if that is a good or bad thing…) and there are days when I feel really pleased about what I’ve posted. But then there are other times when I read over posts and cringe inwardly. Because I tend to overshare. A lot. Also, I tend to not really think about who is reading my blog, and whether anything I say could be damaging, either professionally or personally.
I recently discovered my fourteen year old niece reads my blog. At first, I was delighted. My beautiful, amazing, teenage niece is reading MY blog and telling me it’s “awesome”. I mean, for an old fart like me who has never been cool a day in her life, that’s pretty rad.
Then I thought about it a bit more and went into panic mode. There’s stuff on here I don’t want her to read. Not because I have lived the life of a reprobate (far from it – I am LITERALLY the most boring person in the world. I am certain if you look in the dictionary under the word “dull”, my name is there in italics somewhere) but because I am sometimes a bit too quick to spill my emotional beans and reveal things I shouldn’t. And there are things I am not proud of. And there are things that I should be more careful about keeping to myself. Not because they are things to be ashamed of, but because they are private and personal and not meant for the world at large.
I’ve always been pretty open about stuff. And while that is a good thing in relationships, I don’t know that it is necessarily wise when you are creating a blog that could potentially be read by millions of people. Ok, so it’s unlikely that THAT will happen, but I still have to protect those closest to me and not share stuff that is really meant for private conversations.
When I was going through my marriage breakup, I spewed forth “woe-is-me” tales of my broken heart and feelings of abandonment. I said more about my ex-husband that was necessary. I don’t want that to be “out there”. I don’t want to be that bitter and twisted ex-wife. And I was, for a long time. I tried really hard not to be, but this blog was an outlet and I needed to be heard some days.
But that need has diminished and now I just want to move on and not dwell on the darker days. I don’t want that to be part of my story. And the easiest way to prevent that, is just to delete it. So that’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to go back over old posts and remove anything that is no longer relevant or appropriate. I want this to be an authentic blog, but a mostly uplifting one. I’m not going to pretend I am full of the joys of Spring all the time but I am going to try and leave the gloomy, personal stuff out, as much as I can. Because I think it will help me. And I need to learn to be less over-sharey. Or, at least, learn to open up more to the people around me, rather than sharing with strangers on the internet. Because y’all don’t need to hear it.
So, anyway, I am going to changing some stuff and removing some posts. I’m going to focus on good things and the stuff that makes life better. I am doing it to protect myself, but also to project a better image to the young ones who are very dear to me. Not lying or presenting a fake face, but focusing on the lighter side of life. The world is so dark right now, the less misery and gloom we can bring into it, the better.
Hope that is ok with you all. Feel free to send me a cyber slap if I regress 🙂
And to my gorgeous niece, and her equally amazing sister – your Auntie loves you to the moon and beyond. Be yourselves and be proud of who you are x