Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Lesson 103. Do something you love.

I was rehearsing with a friend today for a performance tomorrow night. We walked down the corridor, took the last left and landed by the piano. We went over the song multiple times and by the end my heart was lighter. I realised how much doing something your heart is in can change the state of it. Losing yourself in a moment, being captured by something else, following your feelings through and singing your heart out 'til your voice has stripped back to your soul. It's such a release to sing something you feel.

For a moment, forget about where you are. Forget about the dizziness of the day or the weariness of the night, and lose yourself in something you love. Write about it, sing about it, talk about it, dance about it, do something about it. Do something you love.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Lesson 102. Appreciate Bebo.

I've just spent the last two hours browsing the oh so awful bebo in order to dig up some dirt on a dear friend for her 21st. Apparently it dug up a lot more. I found two of my closest friends now that were 'down for whatever', a best friend from highschool who wrote to me and asked what conditioner I used because my hair smelt so good and a private message fight with another friend from intermediate who I haven't spoken to since leaving my hometown. I laid eyes on banter between me and the first boy to break my heart. It's a strange alternate reality that I used to call my own.

I can see where I used to stand and I can see traces of the things that walked me here. Things that felt like the world as I knew it was crumbling are the things that have shaped the way I am today. I didn't know it then but all the tears and the nights spent sobbing into Snoosans shoulder because I feared that my heart was too broken for tomorrow to come have paid their dues. I'm believing that life works like this. That in a few years the tumbles and falls I've taken through this season will seem but blimps that built me better. I can see that now, and I know I'll see it again.

If we never tried we'd never know, if it never rained we'd never grow. Growth can be painful, it can stretch us and bend us to near breaking. Hold on tight friend, you're in for the ride of your life. Have hope in the fact that although hard things have happened, you're better. They've made you better. Appreciate bebo.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Lesson 101. Work as a team to carry the groceries

My flatmates and I just braved a supermarket trip from the firey pits. Oh what it is to have first world problems, to be petty and whiney and complain about the bags we had for groceries. Nonetheless, much like everything else in life, I had to find a lesson in it. There has to be something good about lugging 11 flimsy plastic bags filled up with less than flimsy groceries to our apartment.

Louise's finger turned purple, my milk bag dropped on K road, I couldn't stop laughing and this made the task slightly more strenuous particularly because I'm not much of an exercise fan. We were shrieking and stumbling in a less than ladylike fashion but I suppose it bonded us. It forced us to work together to carry the things we couldn't carry alone. Maybe we'll be able to do that a little more in life, maybe forgetting our eco friendly sturdy grocery bags was something meant for metaphorical purposes. It's possible that God's putting these cheeky little physical metaphors for what our hearts are longing to discover all over the place if we'd only start to notice. 

Darling, if I'm honest (which I am because as afore mentioned we've reached that level of intimacy) me and my flatmates have been a little, well, flat this week (excuse the pun, except don't really because now I've realised it I'm thoroughly enjoying it, I'm also enjoying brackets and my fan heater right now.) We've all shed a few tears for our homes, all been wading through winter just trying to see the sun. Life feels better when you don't walk alone. When you carry things together, reshuffle things together, work out just how you're going to make it home together, you actually manage. Don't try and carry things on your own. I know it's glorified, and perhaps you'd like to be the dark horse mysterious lady who carries the weight of the world in her half smile but let me assure you, that's less than healthy and only works in films with extremely good looking brooding males. Work as a team to carry the groceries. 

Lesson 100. You're making progress.

This post is a milestone. You and I have walked from sweet strangers to dear friends and dare I say tumbled into a slightly romantic entanglement. We talk everyday that I manage to keep up with. I'll share my secrets in hope that you'll recognise yours. I'll tell you what I know in hope that you realise your wisdom is greater.

I fell into this whole thing feeling somewhat foolish. I didn't know if anyone would bother with my thoughts or if they were even of true value. But here we are, you are reading. And you are important, you are so important. Because without you reading I wouldn't be writing. Without you reading I wouldn't have the motivation to keep doing so on a daily basis. I started writing out of a need for a change of heart and a shift of head. I needed to see the good things. I needed to learn the life things. And being typically female I had a deep need to discuss in hyperboles and riddles the exact rhymes and reasons behind my feelings and their movements. I didn't realise it 'til now but everything has changed, it's only when we reflect that we see outcomes better than what we desired.

It hasn't cured loneliness or homesickness. It hasn't rid me of self-doubt or fear. I'm honest with you, we're at that stage right? I don't walk on fluffy rose marshmallow clouds nor do I sing birds into being. I'm still guilty of the occasional snappy comment or self-pity sobbing session. But I'm moving, I'm growing, I'm learning, and it's more than I ever knew I could. Because now I'm aware of my attitudes and I'm ever so willing to slap myself across the hand for them. Now I'm seeing the beauty in everyday even when it's the last thing I feel like doing. Now I'm learning what I hold dearest in my life, and how to express it to the world. It's better than a quick fix, it's better than waking up one morning and feeling like a 1930's musical character, because I feel in my bones that I'm growing. I feel in my heart that I'm changing. I know in my head that my attitudes are shifting. It's not instant and it's not always perfect but  it's progress, and it's progress I'm prouder of than anything else in my life.

Sometimes when things don't quite reach what we thought they would we neglect to notice the road that got us there or the even more breathtaking one that lies ahead. We're so stuck on expectation that we lose our chances for now. You know what? You might be feeling like you're sick and tired and you've gotten no where but I can guarantee you you're moving as we speak. You're where you're supposed to be and you're moving in the direction you were always made for. I'm so happy to share this journey with you. Thank you so much for taking the time to read my somewhat scattered thoughts, I'm looking forward to the next 117 lessons we've got to learn. It's lesson 100, and you're making progress.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Lesson 99. Take it from baby blue.

I witnessed the most spectacular display of Gods goodness at about 10.48 this morning.
At 10.48 this morning I saw the beating heart of a child not yet to see daylight. I saw the beating heart of baby blue, a testament to the brave heart of a woman I love dearly.

I realised just how breathtaking life is. At every stage. And just how overlooked its true value is.

Wake up with a happy head because you were blessed enough to see the morning. Look in the mirror and instead of doubting the size of your jeans, find beauty in the state of your heart. It is beating, you are beautiful, and you are valued. You were a little blueberry in a belly once, but something in you grew to be greater. By the grace of God you became something rather wonderful, and that's not something to be overlooked when one used to exist as only a thought.

Life is so beautiful. Take it from baby blue.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Lesson 98. Ask honest questions.

I was talking with a dear friend tonight and we had a relatively blunt conversation. It was good, really good. We didn't sugarcoat or pander around the place, we just talked. Too much time is wasted tiptoeing, sometimes it's necessary to go to the heart. I think you'll get a refreshing reception. Ask honest questions.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Lesson 97. Trust.

Sometimes when things fall apart, they fall into place. Sometimes we don't understand why we are where we are. Sometimes we don't know how things are ever going to change or get better. Well, trust.

Trust that life is not all bad. Trust that there are greater things. Trust that this might just be a process in making you a little more beautiful. You are right where you are for a reason. Trust.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Lesson 96. Bring your Snoosan.

Life changes. It's inevitable, it's tough, it's beautiful, it's the way it falls together when sometimes things fall apart.

Sometimes we lose sight of the comfortable completely, and although I'm all for healthy growth, I'm also for holding onto things that encourage us. Sometimes it's something as simple as a card someone once wrote, or as special as friendship that's stood the test of time. For me it's Snoosan.

When I've had a rough day, no one knows my tears like he does. It's familiar and secure holding him close when life hurts, and it brings sense of comfort. It's been that way for as long as I can remember. He's travelled to the UK, China, Thailand, jumped the ditch a few times and he's kept a sense of familiarity and consistency the whole time. When you're trying something new, it's okay to have something old to bring comfort. Bring your Snoosan.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Lesson 95. Sometimes change can be healthy, move your bedroom around.

So often we cling to the familiar that we miss out on the bright shiny newness. Sometimes change can be healthy, move your bedroom around. 

Lesson 94. We've got a lot to learn from Peter.

Peter Pan, you heartthrob.

I’ve just realised that one of my favourite films is actually the story of bittersweet heartbreak. See instead of the usual boy meets girl, fall in love, big drama, fall back in love, marriage, babies, roll ending credits, Peter Pan goes: boy meets girl, fall in love, big drama, fall back in love, boy leaves, girl never sees him again, boy watches from afar, roll ending credits. It’s quite the revelation, my storybook shattered; this realisation has taken me to a place of deeper appreciation for the beloved tale of Pan. Do you know why?

No, you don’t, that’s a bit silly of me to assume because you’re not actually inside my relatively topsy turvy jumpy roundy headspace. So I’ll tell you. It’s because I still believe that Peter Pan has a happy ending, it’s just not the one we’re used to. It’s because in spite of the fact that Peter and Wendy are a little broken hearted when the ending credits roll, it’s an internationally celebrated story. It makes me believe in beauty in brokenness. That even though something didn’t work out perfectly, it inspired many and still does today. It brings hope to all, because it awakens a thought that things do not have to be perfect to be monumental to the world. Don’t lose hope because life hurts, have hope because it is then that we learn to go forwards. We've got a lot to learn from Peter. 

Lesson 93. Make sure you’re in the right before accusing others of wrong.

I had a tanty today. I couldn’t find my CD that I’d created for my drive home (entitled “Lonely roadie”) and I was not a happy chappy. I demanded at everyone who had entered or exited my vehicle that they explain their whereabouts at the time of the CD’s disappearance. Today, I’m a little embarrassed. I opened my handbag to put my keys in today and discovered that lonely roadie had travelled the whole 3 hours by my side. Not in my CD player but by my side. -5 points for negligence, +3 points for title of CD. I’m still in the negatives because I didn’t look to myself when the musical delight disappeared, I shot accusatory questions towards others. It’s a natural reaction but it’s certainly not a healthy one.

The way we work quite seems to be one of embracing our own flaws and frowning upon others. Instead of first checking if we’ve done the right thing, we turn to our neighbour and point the finger. It should be the other way round. Where does responsibility lie within our situations? Did I put my CD in the right place? Did I remember to bring it? Did I stupidly stash it in my handbag? Had I asked myself these questions I would’ve A. found my CD. And B. Avoided unnecessary accusations towards the innocent. It would’ve been a simpler solution. In future, double check yourself. Make sure you’re in the right before accusing others of wrong. 

Lesson 92. Keep up.

Forgive me, I’ve been without internet for the last two days. Today is the day of the most blog posts yet; I owe you four. Four blogs. Thus begins my first lesson: Keep up.

Although my excuse is totally legitimate and there is not really a way round it, it’s given me cause to consider the times where I’ve induced unnecessary stress in my life. Late night assignments, blogs, bill payments, conversations, realisations, and so on and so forth. It seems to me the suggestion brought to my glorious table by he’s just not that into you (great film, so many excellent points) that some subconscious peculiar part of me thrives on it may just be an accurate one. I don’t understand quite why or how it works but I do seem to end up doing it an awful lot. Last minute Lydia comes out too play too often and to be truthful I don’t half fancy her. So my solution, you ask? Well it’s quite profound, keep up.

Pay bills when they’re due. Start assignments when they’re given. Blog before midnight. Have conversations at the appropriate times. Come to realisations that aren’t brought about by lack of sleep and excess worry. Put little timely mechanisms in place to secure sanity. Keep up.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Come watch my video. Then come find me on facey and twitter.

Here's a wee bit of shameless self promotion, I released a music video today.


Also, you can look me up on twitter or facey if you likey!

Love to you precious readers xx

Lesson 91. Button up your pajamas properly.

I just pulled on my pj's in a scurry. It's a little chilly which makes the process of changing a race against the clock.

I sat down to find that my buttons were a little, well, askew. My top one had met it's less than correct neighbour and they'd all partnered up with strange matches. It was like some strange far out town where everyone is married to their cousin- there's no desirable outcome. I stopped and realised that this was a lesson that may have great significance to my life and yours. Why didn't I just do things a little slower? Why didn't I take 30 more seconds and ensure that I'd done things right the first time?

Don't rush. Don't muddle your buttons in a hurry. Save a little time and distress and breathe. Just take your time, do things right, do things purposefully. Button up your pajamas properly.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Lesson 90. Do one thing everyday that scares you.

We're all just a bit timid aren't we? We enjoy our safe little shells. We cling to the routines and the well knowns. We hide behind schedules and familiarities often to find we aren't really moving forward, just around comfortably. Have you ever considered that life takes risk?

This thought has been triggered by a card I have on my desk. It simply states "Do one thing everyday that scares you" and initially I thought "Good heavens Mother, why would you encourage such irrational frightful activity?" and then I realised that hallmark do have a wee bit of a point with this one. Comfortable is hardly living. Comfortable is simply accepting a state of mediocrity and to an extent laziness. We have to strive to be a little uncomfortable, not purely for the discomfort of course, but because comfort never taught anyone how to grow. Comfortable never gained anyone greatness. Go on, I very much dare you. Do one thing everyday that scares you.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Lesson 89. Tap to someone.

On pondering some of life's sweeter moments, I concluded that tapping has played a rather major role in my existence. Late nights in Africa when sleep was hard to find, I'd lay awake and listen to my friends Matt and Hannah tapping through the wall as if to communicate their conflict with the things we were seeing. They'd tap out their sleeplessness, their frustration with injustice, their happy thoughts in the middle of the night. It was a comforting sound although occasionally slightly frantic, it was safe. If Matt and Hannah were tapping, things were okay. Late nights in Auckland when homesickness takes its toll, Louise and I tap on the wall. I tell her all sorts of things via the hardwood. I discuss my day, my ups, my downs, my fears, my flaws, my dreams. She tells me similar things back. It's a comfort. It's the knowledge that someone is simply there, listening and constant.

Even the smallest effort to communicate is an encouragement. In a moment of sadness or fear or even just plain insomnia, a word or a tap or a touch or two can drain out loneliness. It can remind you that you don't stand solo in a crowd of cold, you have a hand to hold, an ear to listen, a neighbour to tap to.
Tap to someone.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Lesson 88. Get up and get on.

I awoke this morning an hour before I was supposed to with a sinking feeling that seemed to hold my belly to the bed. Holidays are over, time to face the music. I lay, I tossed, I turned, I squeezed my eyes shut in hope that I'd wake up 4 months from today in sweet summer bliss. Alas, I opened my eyes to watch the rain hit hard on my window pane as if to knock me out of my dreamy state. So I got up. I showered and put on my clothes, I ate my breakfast and I brushed my teeth. I packed my backpack and guitar and I went on my way.

Today I realised that sometimes brave isn't a feeling. It's an action. Brave isn't something you'll magically wake up being, it's what happens when you take a step forward even though your knees are knocking. Brave is fighting even when you don't feel it. Brave is a verb in my life.

If I'm being entirely honest with you, I'm still battling homesickness. I still wake up in the night after a bad dream and wish I could wake up my Mum. I still want to collapse on my couch at the end of a rough day and have my Dad sort out my life plan. But life has moved on and it's beautiful just as it's breaking. I'm doing brave right now. I'm not in a particularly sensible mood but in the morning I'm going to get up, fling my feet over the side of the bed and put one food in front of the other in the hope that not feeling brave is temporary. I feel as though I'll grow into it this time round. I'm believing for braver things. Don't wallow, get up and get on.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Lesson 87. Say yes to something you'd usually say no to.

I'm a stubborn young lass. I dig my heels in and jut my jaw out at everything and anything if I can find even a slight reason to. I don't quite know why, I'd like to blame it on my lawyerly father but I fear it's just the way I was made.
As we've discussed before, I'm an atrocious partaker in exercise. Put stubborn with that and you get a Lydia moaning and groaning on the couch about how I don't have appropriate pants but I'm afraid not to go for a walk with them because I don't want to have a repeat of the Mao Ze Tong incident of 09 (That's a story for another Saturday)

I caved, I buckled and got my boots on. I was pleasantly surprised. It was a breathtaking stroll around lake Wanaka and I would've been devastated to have missed such a glorious display of creation. I'll have to bite my tongue next time around. 

We so often employ instincts that although instilled in us from youth may not have much use right now. Don't miss out on something beautiful purely because of your own silly nature, you'll regret it guaranteed. Say yes to something you'd usually say no to. 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Lesson 86. Be good right now.

I'm currently sitting in Queenstown. I'm sipping the finest belgian hot chocolate and gazing over a misty Wakatipu crowded in by white peaked mountains, my family are beside me and I'm writing to you. I think it's an understatement to say I'm in a good place at this very moment.

I'm scared, I'm a bit nervous about going back to Uni and facing a stressful semester but at this very moment, I'm good. This is a moment to breathe in, to let seep under my skin, and I'm learning to enjoy right now. It's a hard thing to grasp, especially because my mind runs a million miles a minute and it heads towards my giants. But I'm trying, I'm learning and I'm getting there. Stop worrying about tomorrow, be good right now.

Lesson 85. You can be light.

You’re going to have to forgive me over the next few days. I’m currently on family holiday and Internet is scarce- it’s probably a good thing actually. I don’t mind me a few days with less complicated and less frequent interaction with the outside world. It's a slight relief actually.

Last night I had a bit of an episode. I have a sleeping disorder that is actually most commonly found in children, but because I'm a weirdo and I specialise in slightly out of the ordinary problems, I posses this occasionally entertaining but for the most part quite terrifying disorder. I have night terrors, maybe your younger brother or sister could tell you about them. The short of it is, I wake up screaming in a panic and display symptoms similar to those of an anxiety attack. 

Last night was no exception, I awoke in a frenzy and ran out of my room into the lounge. I had a wee weep and watched 23 minutes of Sleepless in Seattle before returning to my bed. I popped the light on in the hall and wedged a shoe between the door and it's frame. This is because after these episodes, I'm generally awfully afraid of the dark. That's right, I'm 18 years old, I live away from home and I'm at University and my knees knock at the thought of a pitch back bedroom. I generally flip a lamp on or sleep with fairy lights to shed a little light on my terror. 

I lay in bed and pondered the way that light works. The slice that streamed through my door and changed everything about the way I saw the world. What if you and I were that? 

We could change the world. That's what. If you and I created a little light, if we loved a little more and shed our self-absorbed skins I genuinely believe that we could change everything about the way people living in darkness see the world. It's not a suggestion or a simple what if this time round, it's a mandate and a burden that we must learn to carry. So many people are scared, lost, lonely. We could change that. Be excited, you can be light.