Feathers from the sky

Waiting, knowing.

Watching you, seeing your breath rise and fall, treasuring those movements.

This day last week, with stolen moments.

Time slipped away, slowly, painfully; the hours fell through our fingers.

Snowfall

Distorted moments play in my mind. That one day felt real…and then as the day passed into the next, it no longer felt like it happened.

In the days since, my eyes have sought words. Other words, from other souls, who have writ their grief onto the page. Yet, my eyes only go as far as my heart can bear; there comes a point wherein I just cannot read on.

Every grief is different, it is never comparable; our memories, little treasures, are now only ours.

You gave a wealth of love, of life. Where does it go, now? What do I do with all this love? To each person you touched, we can pass it on, we can carry it forward; but, oh, it hurts.

(How frail the human heart must be-
a mirrored pool of thought. So deep
and tremulous an instrument
of glass that it can either sing,
or weep).

Sylvia Plath

One week has passed and this thought still goes through my mind: I think I am going to miss you for the rest of my life. I know.

I love you, Granny – always.

That ol’ balancing act…

…of life.

In the gentle hum of the middle of the night, reflection comes easily. Candles burning, fairy lights twinkling, emotions drifting.

Most things in life require you to submit to a balancing act – yet there are going to be occurrences where you cannot help but wobble. Fall, even. If you are lucky, you will escape with only minor scrapes and bruises, and you can be on your way once again – continuing to hone your balancing skills. Other times? Other times you will not be quite as lucky, and it may take longer to pick up where you left off. That is assuming that you want to pick up where you left off; perhaps you will be bold. Run off in a new direction. And, why the hell not?

Playing a balancing act with your emotions is a hard one. It is often a battle between your head and your heart. Between what you know…and what you feel. Lately I have felt a lot of sadness – quite a few of ‘those days’ – and even though my head is telling me that this will pass, and I know it will, it does not subtract from the sadness in any way. There is just one thing to do – and I can do this well – ride it out. Ride this wave high and proud. Let it teach me. Listen to my heart, even though it hurts sometimes. In the middle of the night, damn, these emotions wash over me with a deeper intensity.

It is quiet. I like quiet; it’s calm. The candles flickering help to root me firmly in this moment, in the here and now that is eternally important.

The lessons I have learnt are precious. There is more to learn, of course…there is always more. The one thing I hope is that I always remember to keep my heart open to the things life wishes to teach me – to be courageous in my acceptance of life and all it’s teachings.

We must constantly pick ourselves up when we fall, no matter if it was a stumble or a tumble – always, always pick yourself up.

Balance, but accept that you are only human. Be okay with the fact that you do not always need to be the star of the circus of your life – walking on that tightrope is not all you can do, oh, you are capable of many, many things. If you are intent on trying to walk the tightrope, though, then just remember with comfort that there is a net to catch you underneath.

Sleep is luring me away, dreams are waiting to be dreamed. I bid you farewell.

Late night words, sleepily flowing out of me. Candles extinguished.

Goodnight. Dream sweet dreams.

As far as the eye can see…

I had a moment. I disappeared.

Last year, when I returned to blogging after a hiatus, I pondered about the future of this blog. I know deep in my heart that I do not want to shut it down, yet there are aspects of how it used to be that I do miss. I miss the anonymity. When I began to put my name to the blog, there was a sense of liberation, empowerment. My writing has evolved to be more raw, showing a lot more vulnerability, and the same has occurred in real life as well. Yet, I cannot shake that feeling of not being able to write from parts of my heart that cannot be free.

This is possibly not anything to do with the blog, and more to do with an internal battle I have with myself. Through ‘putting myself out there’, both here and in real life, I have exposed myself to a much wider range of people – this is both awesome and slightly terrifying at the same time. It is often a balancing act.

Time. It is all we need. It is certainly all I need at the moment. Accepting that time cannot be held in your hands is hard; then you get the beauty of knowing that some of time is yours, and yours alone.

It is impossible to look ahead further than the eye can see, but that gives you a chance to focus on the moment you are in. Create something that will make you smile.

Giving up on the concept of control will anchor you.

Moving forward. Allowing things to take shape. Doing what I can.

Hope is there if you know where to look.

Exciting things are yet to come.

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“I love the abstract, delicate, profound, vague, voluptuously wordless sensation of living ecstatically.” – Anaïs Nin, from a letter to Henry Miller

Refocusing and Redefining

There is a profound difference for me between speaking my thoughts and writing them out. Throughout my life, I have always preferred the latter. It is not so much that it is easier, it just flows more naturally. Growing up I would try to find meaning in this; was it because I was deaf? No matter how many times I would be praised about my voice and it’s clarity, it did not change how I felt about speaking up. Although different now, I occasionally still have moments where my voice dulls to a quietness that cannot be deciphered by the listeners. I used to wonder at this a lot, and mostly put it down to shyness and a lack of confidence in certain situations. It is more than this, though, and it took me until the last few years to realise it; yes, I may have doubts in my speech ability (although I needn’t have any, I am told), it is more than just because of my deafness. Of course, being deaf plays a big part in it, but as with most things other factors are involved.

One of the biggest things I took away from 2014 is this: I am a very good communicator. Whether that be through speech, sign-language, the written word, my photography…or on the stage. I can effectively get complex meanings across to others, once I understand the complexity of the ‘thing’ myself. I have always wanted to change the world, through helping others. Yet at the very same time, I have often felt like I am a lost spirit. It is clear that I am not one to like being held down by anything, my heart wants to be free.

Another thing I have learnt is that if I believe in something enough, I will be committed to the cause wholeheartedly. When my heart starts to give up, that is when I need to listen to myself. My intuition is fierce. I will get a sense of unease about something, often before I am even aware what it is trying to tell me. The fight or flight instinct will kick in, and I will do whatever allows me to stay true to myself. When my deep-set morals are abused, and my sensitive heart is warning me that nothing can be changed…then I withdraw. The only thing you can do sometimes.

If you open your heart to all the things that life is offering to you, there is a lot that you will learn. If you remember to observe, you will see things for how they are. If you experience things with a genuine curiosity, life unravels itself to you in a myriad of ways.

Even though 2014 taught me something I have known with strong certainty for a long, long time, it was reaffirmed: life is hard, but oh so beautiful. It is up to each and every one of us, individually, to seek the beauty of life. To persist in this quest for beauty, even when we are having to say painful goodbyes to souls who are taken from our lives. To still believe it, when life is trying to drag you down. To carry on seeking the beauty in others, because you know in your heart that there is good in every person.

A friend said to me this week: ‘We all make our own choices.’ – and how true that statement is. Decisions and choices are what pushes our lives forward. Follow your heart. Have faith in yourself.

The start of the New Year brings with it opportunities to refocus on things. To do this, you may have to fully let go of things that are not healthy for you. Even though it is hard to remember things from the past, I must remember what certain things taught me. I need to remember to put myself first occasionally, as this is often the only way I can help others. It is all very good to talk the talk…but we must walk the talk as well. That is immensely important to me.

Stand by what you believe in. Listen to others, but do not allow them to dictate your own thought processes. Put yourself out there. Be…you.

“Just be yourself. Let people see the real, imperfect, flawed, quirky, weird, beautiful, magical person that you are.” – Mandy Hale

This weekend is giving me the much needed space to think; refocusing and redefining what is important to me.

2012

Closing doors, opening windows…

I often have to stop myself from letting my thoughts run away with me; they will sometimes dip into a territory that I do not wish to delve into frequently. We all have a part of us that is capable of thinking thoughts that we will not willingly talk about; a part of ourselves that is darker than what we feel comfortable with.

Then again, when we feel as if we have to behave in such a way so that others around us are happy…it may not always make our own hearts happy. To live in a society that often expects you to be the best version of yourself…it can be draining. There may be times when you feel painfully alone, even when surrounded by people.

To have the courage to recognise when you need to take a step away from things is admirable, I feel. Looking after yourself should be one of your highest priorities. This is something I have believed in for years – and repeated many times on here: if you do not look after yourself, how can you be expected to be there for those around you? It is not selfish to feel the urge to retreat, for however long. It is usually necessary in order to function efficiently on a daily basis.

Life, and all it’s going ons, can overwhelm me at times. Over the years it would get me down – why were things affecting me so deeply, when many others around me were able to just carry on? Recently, I have realised what the answer may be to this: I am most likely a Highly Sensitive Person. Everyone is sensitive, in their own ways; some are just more sensitive to the world than others are. Me? Yeah, I’m one of those really sensitive ones – and I accept that, it is part of who I am.

We are each rich tapestries, designed with our memories, how we grew up, our life experiences, the people we meet, the people we allow inside, the way we process the world around us… The more I live, the more I connect, the more I experience this world; the more I understand. Life is a journey, filled with lessons in every corner.

As I close the door on the last year, I am opening windows; letting anything flow out of me, as it needs be.

Thanks to my sister, I came across Neil Gaiman’s New Year’s Wishes. At various times over the last few years, I would stumble across one of his wishes – and the man himself has collated them all together into one post, and how beautiful they all are. The very first line spoke to my heart:

“An old year ends, and takes with it people and sorrows and joys and memories, and a new one is on it way.”

On the first day of the new year, I feel a slight sadness; for there were beginnings – and endings – that will now be locked away in 2014. This new year ahead holds just as many beautiful – and beautifully heartbreaking – moments, I am sure of that, but a whole year of memories is now behind us. Such is life…it goes on. Into the new year we must go.

The kindness of others meant a hell of a lot to me in 2014…and I know that will continue into this year; I will pass it on, in as many ways as I can. There are experiences to be explored, hearts to bond with, smiles to grow and tears to fall. You can do anything you want with this year. You can do anything you want with each day. Each hour. Each minute.

Let a fire grow within you; let it move you to do great things with your life.

Close doors, if you need to…just don’t forget to open those windows.

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Happy New Year to one and all…

Life is constantly changing, yet it is both endearing and comforting to know that there are always a few unchanging constants. This year has been…well, I do not even know fully how to put it into words. That happens scarily often at the moment, and then again, it is not scary. It is rare for me to not have the words to easily give. It has just been one hell of a year, that much is sure.

I hope you all keep safe on this NYE, and are spending it with those that you truly want to be spending it with. Squeeze every drop of goodness out of the last moments of 2014. (Of course, for those who are already firmly planted in 2015 – squeeze the goodness out of the new year!)

IMG_0968The lady who took this photograph in 2013 (of yours truly) is a special one, and she knows it. 

How lucky I am to have people around me who see me for who I am, not who they want me to be. How lucky I am to be able to give to them what they give to me; each and every person in my life helps me more than they will ever know. There are a handful who are aware of just how much they have helped me this year, and I never want to lose them.

To all of those I love, and to each and every single person in this world – I wish you a Happy New Year.

Go safe, go happy – and only you know what your own, unique brand of happiness is, go, seek it.

Once in a lifetime.

There are certain things in life that have such a rarity that they cause your world to be turned upside down.

Moments.

Words.

People.

…connections.

To be able to share these feelings with another? Life-changing. Scary. Euphoric. Momentous.

Questions often go unanswered in this life; to learn that this is okay, and to accept it, helps us.

We all travel through life with different purposes. Occasionally, your life may collide with another’s in such a way that makes your breath catch.

A sweetly unexpected encounter over the summer has led to such a close, strong friendship – one in which I am inexplicably consumed by, in the loveliest possible way. We are both able to speak our minds, with no fear of judgement; to speak straight from the heart, when the words are there…it is something I am forever grateful for.

When you have learnt immensely about yourself, you may be able to relate to others in a way that may have perhaps been unattainable before. To find others who understand things in an incredibly similar way to you? It is a feeling that is difficult to put into words.

Words. They are still coming to me. Slowly. I know that for this gentle soul that I now call a close friend, it is the same. Words do not come easily. That is okay, more than okay.

“There are those who know and those who don’t know. And for every ten thousand who don’t know there’s only one who knows. That’s the miracle of all time–the fact that these millions know so much but don’t know this.” – Carson McCullers, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter

I hope with every inch of my being that you find the connections that mean more to you than you can ever possibly hope to put into words. We all deserve to feel connected, to feel love.

Hold those you love close to your heart.

Keep those once in a lifetime moments tucked away in a safe corner of your life.

If there ever comes a time in your life when you feel exposed, in such a way that you never before have felt – well, that is when you are doing something right.

“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.” – C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves