My art journey so far…

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Hi everyone! Story time!

It all started back in January 2016…

That’s the month I decided to start getting serious about life and start doing the things that I’ve always wanted to do. University was making me miserable and eventually, four months in, it finally pushed me towards where my heart was this whole time.

It’s kind of crazy that I had to wear myself out doing things that I didn’t care about in order to open a door which wasn’t even locked in the first place. In fact, there wasn’t even a door. It was just literally right next to me. I just preferred touching the things that were further away and not even real. All the while being fully aware that it was next to me and that I should have been giving my heart to it and nothing else. It is pretty silly, but I guess sometimes it takes what it takes…

So, I started a blog, I bought a sketchbook and all sorts of art supplies that looked appealing. And it’s also the month I bought my first left-handed guitar and started a healthier music journey.

Here is my very first sketchbook which I bought from a very French shop in Lille:

 

 

And I customized it as best as I could, dressing it up in my favorite people’s favorite quotes. (By the way, these Lynz quotes are like, so important!) And, I swear, everytime I would open it, it felt like I was opening a window on such a bright horizon!

And then, the magic happened…

I still remember the first time I attempted drawing anything, which was in fact, in a different sketchbook, and how it blew me away.

See, the thing is, I had always kept in mind this idea that I was simply really bad at drawing and kind of accepted it as my universal truth. When I decided to get serious at it, I was ready for all the hard work it would take me to get to a fairly decent level because I knew that I was starting really low..

So, when I put my pencil on the page and these happened:

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I couldn’t believe it. At first.

Then, I could totally believe it. And maybe it filled me with a little too much confidence which led to some disappointment when I tried out drawing again the following days and I was not creating masterpieces.

It was only a test to see how well I could follow a simple tutorial, and even my preliminary lines were a perfect match to the tutorial! Which I had certainly not expected since I had never been good at copying things. And I nailed it. So, I expected to nail everything from then on, which of course, was purely a fantasy…

However, from that moment on, I progressed on and on and faster than I ever thought was possible! Things just clicked so easily and I unlocked brand new patience slots every single day, I forgot the meaning of “impossible”!

The amazing thing is that, all the things in the first part of that sketchbook, even the most mediocre sketches are still so many levels higher than what I thought I was capable of at the time! The last time I had actually drawn anything before that was for my highschool drama group and it was far from that quality!

As I said in the video, it’s like my decision to dedicate myself to art pushed open a door from which skills just came pouring out, as if they had been held back this whole time, but never locked away.

I like to joke that it all just fell from the sky and hit me in the face. But I don’t believe this sort of things can happen that way. It had to be here all along, laying silently, patiently, waiting for me to call…

An incomplete tour of that 2016-2018 sketchbook:

 

 

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At the end of it, I wrote a little looking back note, which I read in my video. That was back in last December, which is when I finally finished this sketchbook! Phew!!!!

And that was a big relief, finishing it! Because I started it so long ago and it held with it not only the memories of all the places I went to and carried it with me, but also all of the storms that I had to keep running through. Which is both a good thing and a hard one. But I think that’s what makes it so precious… As you flip the pages, you can see the evolution of both, my mind and art skills. It’s the perfect document of my journey from & through Lille to Ireland.

I’ll hang on to this sketchbook for as long as I can, not because I need a reminder of where I started from so I can fully celebrate my growth, I’m not gonna lie. I think it is mostly because, as much as it hurts, these are parts of the past that I can’t let go of.

At least not yet.

Oh, how I’ve grown!

It started with a spark. Which didn’t come out of nowhere but from the depths of me. And I’ve been burning ever since. Different intensities, different colors. But, burning on!

Here’s a little side by side of “firsts” from that period and latests:

 

Both as an artist and a person, I’m in a much better place now. I am capable of more and willing to try harder. I’m happier and healthier! I’m stronger, more determined, more dedicated and focused. And, man, have you seen my last painting???

The road was long and dark and bumpy to get here. But I wouldn’t change a thing. I learned a lot about myself and the world. It sure hurt me, but it also forced the best out of me. Gotta learn the hard way when you’re born to be wild! hehehe

Now, I’m looking forward to all that’s to come. All the lessons and the learning. The new skills and the acquisition of all the knowledge. The creations and discoveries. The people and the things. The places and the moments. The smiles and the tears.

I’m grateful for all that’s past and all that is present. And I’m looking forward to more life.

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Literally best selfie of the day. He he. Looking forward!

And, I think that’s it! Proud of my progress and looking forward to more! Because there’s nothing like getting more and more comfortable in your own little universe. Being able to fly freely-ish in my music and art is a big goal! 😉

Until next post, keep working and keep believing! ❤

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Hard working rhymes with self-loving!

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Last week I took a break. Tried. And it was really hard.

But during the last few hours of it, I eventually had a breakthrough. And now I’m back on the road, at a slow walking pace, trying to catch up with the image of who I’m trying to be.

These four days were intended to be a “mental health break”, where I would let go of all the necessary and unnecessary pressure, and focus on feeling good. Relax, as Esther likes to say it. It was supposed to calm me down and help me find my way again. Kind of like a “spring cleaning” of my mind, sorta???

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It was hard to step away from work! Simply because “work” literally consists of all I’m passionate about. And also, it wasn’t easy to ignore the loud voice that always goes: “you gotta work harder or you’ll never get there on time”; ‘on time’ referring to my time, as in whenever I’m scheduled to die.

I had to resist the cravings to open up my books or pick up pens or bring out my guitar. And, at first, it was the hardest I had ever had to try not to do work!

But eventually, my body settled into a more relaxed, as in lazy, mode of life — which I actually used to be very used to, years ago.. And so I had four days that were very different from whatever lifestyle I had settled into ever since I got here.

Although they didn’t bring me the peace I expected, they really helped my sanity and body. I did loads of walking and watched loads of my favorite shows, and, most importantly, I let go of some of the pressure.

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If you know me, you know I’m not one to take breaks, and certainly not long ones.. But I’ve just been so stressed out these past few weeks that I had to do something about it. What motivated me to take action was that the small breakdowns just kept happening and it was both draining and frustrating.

Anything would be enough to make me feel defeated and get me on the floor. And it made it so hard for me to go through each day, accumulating disappointment and frustration. All I wanted was to make some progress, get things done and get better at everything. But I only got the opposite and it was down right irritating.

It created this crippling fear in me with the daily anticipation for the small struggles, disappointment and I-want-to-bang-my-head-on-the-wall’s. Every little thing felt a thousand times bigger and it weighed on my back, which was bending too much I was scared it’d break.

The last straw was fucking up my guitar restringing… I felt so heavy when I realized I fucked up. It was the most defeated I had been in a long while. I wanted to give up on everything!

And the thing is that I instantly knew why it made me feel that way. Which doesn’t happen all the time! You know, sometimes you need time to cool down and think back on a breakdown to realize which cat pushed the vase off the table and how that is why your foot is bleeding. what the hell did I just write

One, because I was so stressed out that anything that would come in the way of my work and “jeopardize” my progression towards my goals would freak me out. And two, because I was utterly disappointed in myself for failing at doing something I thought I was good at.

I mean, this was changing the strings on my guitar. Musician 101. And I thought that, even though I still don’t have that much experience, I could actually handle it and do a decent job on my own. It was kind of a slap in the face. Very small. But it was enough to throw me off my foot stool (which, with the edge of my bed, constitute my desk, aka working space, ha ha)… A small mistake, which can easily be fixed, and my whole career was annihilated!

And that was it, the moment I knew that I had to step away from it all before I would completely lose my marbles.

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I was overwhelmed that even breathing was too stressful

Now, I think that the reason that this happened is because I do not ever take real breaks. Small ones. And so I just keep pushing and pushing and pushing… And eventually, the tiredness and pressure accumulates and I only realize that I should stop and take care of myself when I’m so close to breaking. (Which is not that bad a thing! At least I know when to stop!)

I gotta work on that. I am working on it, as a matter of fact! I think I am finally starting to learn how to learn from my mistakes! Hip, hip, hooray!

I am thinking in a healthier way now, including breaks in my routines and allowing fun activities to relax in between the grind.

When I read what I just typed, I realized how silly it sounds. But my head is literally so focused on what is to come out of it, that sometimes I forget myself completely in my hardworking ways. And so I have to remind myself that I am a person behind all of those dreams and goals, that I have to take care of myself because without me, there is no me.

There you go, I made it even sillier! 😉

But what I mean is that I am at the bottom of it all, the foundation of the dreams. Healthy body, healthy mind. All of that. I sometimes get so absorbed by the idea of hard work that I neglect myself which is a big issue that I must work on fixing for the sake of all. If I can’t stand, nobody will drag me to the other side of the mountains and then nothing will be possible anymore.

There’s only one door to all possibilities and that’s me.

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I gotta take better care of myself for I am the only one that can turn my dreams into reality.

This is a hard concept for me to comply with because, like I said, the over-achieving-hard-working-gotta-make-it-happen part of me always gets the upper hand. And that hand is a hard ruling one; an imperious one, dare I say! And that little dictator has that unhealthy way of correlating “fun” with “slacking off”… So, I guess that is why it is hard for me to learn that working hard doesn’t mean “always beating yourself up and neglecting the poor little human that you are”.

You know, people always say “Don’t let them kill your spark!”. But I think that what we should say is “Don’t beat the dreams out of yourself!”. Have I said that before? (yes) Because sometimes, by dreaming too hard, we kill our own fire. And that’s one of the things I kept telling myself during these four days, this is not what music is all about.

I have been too overwhelmed lately. Not just by work. Although, it is part of the problem. There’s been too much tension and frustration. And I was feeling miserable. Which is definitely NOT what art is all about.

Art is my safe place. It feels good and it makes me feel alive. And it should always feel that way. But I let my demons eat away at me again and I let them go too close to the fire and they got a bite out of my dreams..

But I’m bouncing back up now!

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My break didn’t really relax me. If anything, it stressed me out some more. I was just trying so hard not be stressed out at first, that I got overwhelmed. Took me a while to find back the “easy going” way.

But it made me remember something…

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I don’t exactly remember it, but I know I mentioned it in several posts last year, because that’s when this new point of view came and changed my life. And this, my friends, is a very crucial key for me to keep moving through life. Don’t let the fear paralyze you; instead, let it fuel you. Work through it. Work through the storm! Not because you’re scared means you shouldn’t even try.

And I realized that, lately, I had let the fear eat me up and this is not okay.

It’s time to kick those demons in the ass again, remind them where they belong. I know they can’t leave, and I’m kind of fine with them staying; that’s not what I’m asking. What  I demand is that they stay put in their place. I am in charge. They are tied to the tree while am roaming free!

So, I am ready to get my shit back together now. We’re two days after the end of my short break and I’ve been doing okay. I’ve been really nice to myself and letting it happen. I’ve not been pushing too much and my head is up. I’m doing my best!

I am happy because I know that I can count on me and knowing what I know about me, I’m glad to know that I’ve got my back. I know this is weirdly-phrased but what I mean is that it feels good to be able to trust yourself like this and know that you are enough, you’ve got all it takes to provide for yourself on this crazy adventure!

Now, this is a long post like we hadn’t seen in a while, ain’t it? I’m glad I got all of this out! I am so ready for a more self-loving hard-working life and I can’t wait for you guys to hear the new songs! Also, there will be paintings soon with my mom and brother’s birthdays coming in June!

Plus a special little BIG news…. hehe

Until next post, remember to be kind to you and to everyone else and do not let fear stop you! Coexist with your own storm(s?)! ❤

There’s nothing that I can’t do.

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I had a lovely weekend with Esther. Of course. Once more. I wish there could be many many more but, soon these won’t be a thing anymore and I’m gonna miss them! We had our usual hanging around on Saturday and on Sunday we studied (different things) together. It just feels so nice to have someone to share the little things with, someone that never fails to bring a smile to your face. Much love!

Anyway! Yesterday I was feeling rather proud and reassured. Indeed, on both Saturday and Sunday, before I met with E, I did a couple of things on my own, many of them who I’ve known to be anxiety triggers. But I did them, without a sweat, or almost, and it felt really good!

Lately, I had grown scared that I had lost all ability to things on my own again, as the storm has been messing with me again. I had had a couple tiny anxiety fits lately, even in the presence of E and in friendly environments. And this, along with the fact that I could feel my dependence to my friend, had led me to think that I couldn’t do anything anymore and that I was, in fact, doomed.

And so, on these two days, I set up tests for myself, and, I passed them all! With flying colors! Not only did I go and buy some guitar strings or go at a café alone, I interacted non-awkwardly with the cashiers and baristas, and I was pretty cool. From my point of view at least. And you see, that is the thing…

What the storm does, aside from eating up from within, is make me forget who I am and the things that I can do. Because, at the core, I am a pretty smooth talker that knows how to get her way, but because of all those years spent under the control of my own demons, I’ve forgotten my own ways.

This is not who I am. I’m not a scared, shy little girl. I am strong, funny, clever and unafraid. And that’s what this weekend was a reminder of:

I am the fire!

And there’s nothing that I can’t do once I set my mind to it! And, what the storm thought it had destroyed, I am getting it back, and there’s no stopping me!

I know I sound dramatic, as per usual, but I truly thought that some things I had lost forever in that familiar darkness. But I was wrong. The power is in my hands, and I get to decide what stays and what doesn’t. I choose. I build. I destroy. I am not the storm’s puppet, nor is it truly my enemy either.

This weekend, I proved to myself that I still got it, the strength, the will; everything. And today, it only got better!

Today, I walked to the city, then went to buy some acrylic yarn for my sister, and then I went to my favorite coffee shop to study some music theory. And, eventually, I took one more coffee which I drank on my way back home, walking once more. AND I was alone the whole time!

Sure, at first I was on the phone with my sister, which did help a lot. And then, my first thirty minutes in the café, I was shaking a little. But I was on the field, nonetheless, and I did not once chickened out!

I went, I stayed and I worked through the very minuscule anxiety waves pulsing through me. And I did it! I even managed to go to the bathroom, which is a really HARD thing for me to do, unless it’s like a public bathroom in a shopping center (….don’t ask, I don’t even know! ). And I did it all. I was shaking a little, and all of that. But I did those huge things on my own, and it makes me so happy.

Now, I’m exhausted, but happy!

I did loads of walking and not enough of eating. And also, the little bit of anxiety still took a lot of energy from me. But I am happy! Happy that I did things and happy with the little rewards that the Universe scattered on my way.

I got so many surprises today and I just don’t know what to say. It was little things, like, you know, a dog smiling at me or my mp3 playing exactly a song I wanted to hear. And, it was silly little things, that I desired to happen which happened and left me shocked and thrilled. It was sweet little rewards that felt like a warm hug, saying “I’m proud of you for trying and succeeding; you’ll get there”. And it was comforting.

Still, on my way back home, I stopped in a shop, feeling the need to reward myself with a new dress or something. But the need faded quickly and walked out of it, empty-handed. However, the Universe, in Its infinite generosity wasn’t done sending love my way! When I got home, I checked Instagram, only to find out that the fifth season of Arrested Development is coming this 29th on Netflix. And I am ALIVE again!

I feel so good…

IMG_20180507_185303_710.jpg These were such empowering days! I had let fear feed of me instead of using at a fuel, as I usually would, and that led me to forget how bright I can actually burn! But, I guess that the fighter in me had had enough and finally gave me that little jolt, for me to go out there and find out for myself, that, yes, indeed, I’m still good.

Also, today, I got to taste some sweet little surprises which filled me with both, hope and inspiration!

I’m really tired now so I am simply going to lie in bed and watch something! I did finish my music theory chapter today, so I don’t have to worry about doing more work. I can just sit back and relax, and pat myself on the back over how I’m a big girl!

I will publish an original song over the course of this week. So, look forward to that! Also, probably another video on channel #2 at some point; I want to be more active on there also because it feels good to speak out some things! And, hopefully, some art too!

Until next post, remember…

When there’s no one else, look inside yourself

Like your oldest friend, just trust the voice within

Then you’ll find the strength that will guide your way

You’ve got this! You can do anything; you’ll get there! ❤

Uncage the Night, Chapter XI

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First chapter: here

Previous chapter: here


It was 11:30 in the night. Everyone was asleep; all but one.
Leslie was roaming the house. She had been for the past hour and a half, rummaging through cupboards, drawers and moving furniture around as if she was looking for something. Nicolas came to her, moments before, angrily begging for a peaceful night. But all she did was groan at him. Admitting defeat, he went back to bed, back to his wife, and they resigned themselves to sleeping with earplugs.
She kept pacing up and down until something stopped her in her tracks. Leslie stood still, two feet away from the fireplace, on top of which was a golden picture frame. It was a family portrait; a fresh memory.

Continue reading

I am the Fire||Looking (back) forward

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Hi! Today’s the last day of this long-ass month and I think it’s the perfect time for some introspection by looking at my past-self all the while focusing on the road ahead. So, let’s jump right in!

Following my post about frustration&cie, I tried recreating this picture of me taken when I was 16 and with my sweet Lady Revenge (on the right, obviously).

 

Note: I remember taking it myself and then pretending my little brother took it for me because, sometimes when you’re sixteen, it’s hard to admit that you took a selfie… Ha ha!

I’ve come a long way…

The other day, I had just finished my vocal practice of the day (half-assed) and ended up singing a little bit longer just to record my progress. And as I skipped from song to song, I ended up singing I Don’t Love You by My Chemical Romance.

I have a very sensitive relationship with this song and have actually rarely listened to it, especially since the break up. It makes me feel lots of things and I can’t handle it. But it’s one of my favorite songs by MCR. The melody and lyrics and the riffs are just beautiful. And as I sang it, it reminded me of my sixteen year old self. I remembered the struggles of my younger self and how I always had hope overcoming them. (When it comes down to singing at least.)

And I did.

I used to not be able to stay on key so well and let’s not even talk about my range or projection. My voice wouldn’t come out at all, it was a lot of throat, a lot of tension and so on. You get the idea. And now, as a not-so-far-from-22-year-old, I’ve learned so much and I’ve gained more control over my voice, and honestly, now there is really hopes that I can become a singer in this reality. he he

I am really happy to see and feel the progress that I’ve made! Even without working every single day nor as hard as I’d wish. Proof that no matter how little you do, you’re still doing something and still moving forward in the end!

And just yesterday, I was looking for an audio draft of a song that I recorded at some point when I was living on my own in Lille last year (and I found it, and I’m gonna finish writing it this upcoming month!) and oh, what I found! Gold.

I found my several attempts at an audio journal and also too many singing clips (much cringe). Now, I didn’t listen to all of it as I had something else in mind at the time, but… Wow. I sound much younger, even though it was only last year. And that, to me, is very surprising. But it’s not just that, I hear every subtlety of my suffering, struggling and the Act. It’s like watching a movie you wrote the script for. I’d guess. I don’t know.

It’s just like when I go through my pictures. I don’t know if it’s as obvious to others as it is to me, most probably not, but I see the change. I hear my voice and I hear all those differences. Not only technique-wise, but just, you know, my soul? I hear my soul. And I hear the wounds that were still so fresh and oozing out of my every sounds. And I see my face, and I see a completely different person. Some pictures even look like a complete stranger to me. And those smiles… G**, those smiles..

I know this is extremely obvious, so pardon me for saying but I need to…

I know exactly what I’ve been through. Obviously. (told you) And when I look at these pictures, when I hear my voice, it takes me straight back to then. I know it, I remember it but I also can feel how it is in what some would like to envision as “the past“. But what I feel most intensely is empathy or maybe even pity (??) for this young girl that I see/hear.

I used to be such a…. mess. And when I sit down now and look at her — me — I feel sorry  (?) for that person.

I feel the pain, I see all the cracks and I smell the decaying hopes. I see how miserable and desperate she is for some light, some love, anything. I hear how she fights but to what end? I know how she feels but I feel it in a different way now that those feelings aren’t truly my own anymore. And I feel so sorry. Because no one should feel like that and no one should be alone to face storms like that. And I wish I could have been her friend instead of my own enemy. But self-destruction has a way to seduce me, no matter how strong the warnings.

And, you know, all that empathy and humanity that I feel when I look at past-me? I realize as I type this, that, this is exactly what should be one of the pillars of self-love (like any other love), but it is hard to be like that to your present self though, isn’t it? I feel as though the only reason I actually am able to feel it now, and only now, is because she feels like a stranger now, she is in another chapter of my life, and therefore, I can see her for the human that she is. And I believe I must strive for this, a humanization of my own self. Dear ***, what have I become? Ha ha

Now, as much they hold heavy amounts of darkness and brokenness in them, I must hold on to these audios and pictures (and I think I aslo have a couple video journals somewhere). Not as an anchor to “the past” but more as reminder of where I’ve been. I gotta keep that weight on my feet, not on my shoulders, you know what I mean? I think it’s great to have these remnants of “the past” around and to be able to check them out whenever you need to.

Humans are very emotional creatures and I’m not gonna pretend that I am not attached to who I used to be and the memories. I must never forget. So I won’t lose myself. But also because, almost like a mother, I enjoy re-living the growth of that little girl that’s made me who I am today.

I’m really glad I made and kept these because, documenting my progress both as an artist and as a little human trying, is what keeps me progressing. Because, if I couldn’t look back and see that I’ve moved and I’ve become more, wouldn’t that kill the fire?

I know where I’ve been, I know where I am and I know where I’m going…

There is strength to be found in all “past” weaknesses and some more to be found in the uncertainty of whatever is to come. I remember everything and I pray I never forget, no matter how heavy it gets. Everything is fuel and I shall take as much as I can because it’s a very demanding journey.

Now, as much as I’m proud of all the progress I’ve made both as an artist and as a person, I’ve gotta keep looking forward and keep harvesting for fuel as I keep on blooming. I realize that I am constantly growing, even when I least expect it, and I must keep trying my hardest to get to where I wanna be.

I’ve come a long way but I’ve still got a long way to go. Good thing I’ve got a tank full of fuel, some good souls on my side and my loyal & dedicated self.

I’ve got my back!

 

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Until next post, keep at it whatever it is you love and remember who you are. You’ll get there! ❤

“Don’t beat the dreams out of you”

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There’s so much I want to do, big things I want to achieve and I do realize that the only way to get there is to work and work hard. And you know what they say, with great dreams come great… frustration. Yes.

I’ve been prey to frustration for a while now so I’ve learned to work through it and I’ve got my ways to cope with it and overcome it. But these first three months have brought me a big wave which I wasn’t expecting, me being a hopeful cookie at the start of this new year, and it got me down a bit. And so, I’m writing this post as a reminder…

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I always hear people telling me “I’m being hard on myself” and I’m always like “uhh, no?…” I see where they’re coming from, and from their perspective, sure, it kinda seems like it. But from my perspective, I could use some more self-discipline! It’s just because I’m setting the bar high and I can’t be satisfied until I reach it (SPOILER: hasn’t happened yet) and go beyond.

I’ve got big goals, big dreams. And the frustration comes from the fact that, in all the bigness of ‘my life as I intend it to be‘, I am so small. I’m barely getting started and I’m only taking baby steps. Even my big steps end up feeling like baby steps when I look back. And that’s frustrating because I can’t seem to move as fast as I would like to.

That is not a good thing because I usually end up turning that frustration into a stick to beat myself with. Well, that sounds weird!.. But what I mean is that I end up getting mad at myself, or just intensely disappointed whenever I feel like I didn’t work hard enough on everything. Which is pretty much everyday lately.

And that also leads me to feeling unworthy of things like a movie or a little snooze in the morning. Because of the whole work/reward thing, you know? My brain is very good deed-treat orientated. You gotta deserve your fun, you know what I mean? As much as I think that’s the way to go, that is not okay and I’m working on getting back the right balance of discipline and necessary down time.

Anyway.

The thing is that, I’m trying. And I am working. Maybe not as much as I’d like, because I can get lazy or distracted, I run out of time, of energy, etc. (Or I get sick or it snows all of the sudden and we’re all locked in the house. Ah, life and its many surprises. I’m still not over it… >w<) But I am working. So I gotta stop saying and thinking “I didn’t do anything at all this week” because I did. And I have proof.

I have an “action tracker” in my bujo which is basically here to track what I do. There are many things in here like some skills I’m trying to develop (left-handedness or Italian for example), habits I’m trying to EX-TER-MI-NATE (like snoozing or endlessly scrolling down my social media feeds) or vastly decrease (my chocolate and dairy intake… 😦 for the sake of my voice!), or things that I know I gotta do to keep healthy (working out and socializing HAHAHAHAHA). And, of course, I track my investment in my big pillars. They’re the ones right at the top of the page. Guitar, music theory, voice, sight reading and art.

Side note: I also track my interactions with my family. Just to point out how terrible a sister/daughter I am. Lolzor

And so, last night I was just about to beat myself up once more until I opened my tracker and looked at it as I was filling it for the day. Yesterday, I knew that I was wasting my time, just fooling around and did not work on the things I had planned seriously enough. But when I looked at my tracker, it made me realized, I did something. And I’ve been doing things, even when I feel like I didn’t do anything. Because, I have such high standards and such violent dreams that I’ve started to see whatever is under a certain amount of work as NOTHING.

And that, my friends, is some big fucking bullshit and it has to be stopped.

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I posted this picture of my tracker on my Instagram last night as my thoughts merged into yet another reminder to celebrate every victory. I’m pretty sure I’ve written a post about that already (HERE).

No matter how small a victory might seem, it’s still a victory and, in fact, it’s always bigger than you imagine. Baby steps are still steps. At least you’re trying, and at least you’re moving, even if slower than you’d like. It’s still progress. And that is something. Because some people only spend their life dreaming and wishing. And you, even if you’re not the Usain Bolt of dreamers-achievers, are moving closer to those goals of yours by the hour.

Back in December, I had a quote right next to my tracker to remind me that success is indeed found in the act. It might not have felt like much but my tracker shows I’ve actually been doing something. It wasn’t much but it sure wasn’t nothing either. The quote is from one of Robin Clonts’ painting videos when she speaks about the book The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck by Mark Monson and how it helped her. I think you should watch that video by the way, because it touches the subjects of perfectionism and failure and has really nice advice in it!!

Use action as [your] motivator. And find success in the simple act of creating.

It gets hard sometimes. I know. It can get really dark too and frustrating. And sometimes you might even feel like giving up, no matter how much the thing you’re working for matters to you. But I’m here to tell you, don’t put so much pressure on yourself or you’ll get burned. You’re only human. Sometimes it’s hard to find enough energy to work as hard as your hope-filled mind dreams of. Sometimes emotions take over or life gets in the way. You can’t always be 200%. Don’t expect all your days to be filled with intense work and so much sweat you’d drown in it. Because they won’t. And they don’t have to be.

Progress is a process. And it’s fine sometimes, especially when you’re still at the start of your journey, to go slow and take small steps. I know it’s hard and frustrating, we all want to be super good at it already. But it doesn’t work like that. The key is perseverance. Keep at it. And don’t let go. Some days will be more productive than others. Just don’t lose hope and don’t lose sight of that bright horizon. Keep swimming towards it.

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It’s more than okay to have high standards (and only people with low standards will tell you otherwise… like, no, don’t aim too high because I don’t so why should you? Screw that and aim over the moon if that’s high enough for you.). But don’t beat yourself up too much. A little kick in the ass goes a long way. But you’re still human and you can’t expect yourself to keep working on something if it only brings more struggle and negativity in your life. Know that it’s okay to rest and okay to take a break. And remember to celebrate every step because, big or small, they are all part of the journey that leads you to wherever that is you wanna be.

Don’t lose hope and remember what you’re fighting for and why you’re fighting for it. Don’t lose sight of the goal but don’t lose sight of the flame inside either. The second worse thing you can do, the first being giving up, is let your journey to turning your dreams into reality become a hassle and a must-do, have-to, self-torture one. It is not easy but make sure it is still enjoyable. Because you’re doing it out of passion not obligation.

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“Keep your feet in the clouds”

Self-discipline is required. But don’t beat the dreams out of you. Make sure you have a healthy relationship with yourself and your work. Keep your body healthy, keep your mind sane enough and then do as much as you can but don’t drain your own spirit. Don’t let frustration take the good away from you.

This post is more for me than for anyone else. Really just speaking to myself. But I’m sure some of you needed to read that anyway. If you did, don’t thank me, thank yourself. And feel free to share your frustration in the comments (nobody will read them anyways hahahah jk).

Until next post, embrace the baby steps! ❤

P.S.: here’s my Facebook profile picture from when I was 16 with the quote that accompanied it (followed by a “Until my fingers bleed <3” haha cute

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“Get frustrated, cry… Then pick it back up and prove to yourself that you can do it anyway!” – Lzzy Hale

The Fighter in Me

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I’ve been a waste of space lately. Let’s be honest; this isn’t an overstatement. A piece of shit. My demons have gotten me really down and I’ve been a lazy leech just feeding on nothingness.

I got down and I stayed down, figured “hey, I’ll just bury my head in the ground for a few decades, no big deal” because I just couldn’t take this life so I just tried my best to ignore the fact that I exist. I was having an existential crisis and I just couldn’t be bothered to actually deal with it or with any of the storm’s bullshit so I just looked away.

However, yesterday (which is now two days ago) as I got out of the bus (I took the wrong one) and walked (while texting my anxiety away, narrating my stupidity to my bff) in a haste (I was late) to my therapist’s office (what a pretty messy morning, I swear), I heard a tiny *click* coming from the back of my head. As I raised my eyebrows and my eyes grew to be the size of the moon, I realized something.

Somehow all this early morning anxiety and lack of sleep had managed to trigger the right switch and unlocked a tiny little door from which came a revelation. I didn’t have much time to actually even begin to touch it with the tip of a finger that day because I was so tired. When I got back home, just slipped on my good ol’ depressed pants and trustworthy “what’s the point” shirt and faded to black once more.

But today; I mean, yesterday (what is time, I ask, what is TIME), I was getting really excited about going outside to explore a nearby place which I pass by when I take (the right) bus to see my therapist (who’s actually a nurse??). So, as I waited for the sun to just stop being so sunny so I could step out and do the adventure thing without burning to my death, I actually had time to let the revelation sink in. And just as I was ready to walk out the door, I had to jump on a piece of paper and pen to scribble all the words that just rained on me as it suddenly hit me and I saw it.

I saw the fighter in me.

I’ve been hiding, running away and just bathing in denial, forcing myself to ignore pretty much all that there is to life. I had completely given up on trying and was looking very seriously into giving up on everything and settling for a life into the nothingness. And yet, even as I, on the surface, was giving up, it was here in me and still doing its job. The fighter in me, that part that just doesn’t know how to give up and always fights for my life, even when I feel that I’ve indeed given up.

When I sat at my desk that morning the day following the *click*, I realized that, even though if not as intensely as I was supposed to, I indeed thought about those things that I was trying so hard not to think about while I was “wasting my days away”.

I was convinced that I had managed to give up for once and that I truly was on my way to that impossible reality where I don’t bother nor believe in dreams, light and a greater use of my time on beautiful Mother Earth. I truly thought that I had manage to kill all the light left inside of me and to be honest, I was actually happy about it. Because, let’s face it, this whole existence and fighting against the current to do things that you love and be a bigger “you” it’s just so exhausting and frustrating; so, managing to give up was actually a relief.

Now I wouldn’t have to worry about energy. I could be tired all the time and it wouldn’t matter because nothing would matter anymore. I could just bathe in darkness all year long and just lie on the floor, wait for the lightning to strike me and put an end to the joke. Nothing mattered. I had succeeded in taking away all of the anxiety triggers, all the problems, all the overthinking, all the horribly demanding efforts to go against the storm to do all those things and also all the good stuff like love and vegetables.

I don’t wanna be a musician, an artist with four arms that do all these different things and doesn’t suck at them. I want to be a mashed potato without seasoning and extra extra extra cheese and a nice side dish of “nope; I don’t life”.

I FUCKING WISHED RIGHT?

Turns out that I was right when I thought that it was truly impossible for me to give up and that time I said that even when I was giving up, I wasn’t. I just didn’t know HOW RIGHT I was.

I tried my best to keep my mind busy and not think about real questions and about me. I managed to satisfy the apathetic monster inside, feed him all the junk it wanted and become it BUT in the mean time, I also managed to keep fighting in the right direction in a way! Of course, it wasn’t a super effective fighting as there was so little of me involved in the war which is why the *click* took so long to happen. But it was still fighting.

I fed the monster and let it invade the foreground so that I could find a place inside where it was calm, oh so calm, and I could actually think of my life without any parasite.

My choice of distraction could have actually given it away that I was truly just finding a less direct and brutal way to face those questions. And it did. But just after the *click*. I realized that the things I was obsessing over in order not to deal with an overwhelming life, decisions to be made and that crazy wish of living life were, deep down, helping me think exactly about what I was running from.

The fighter in me, the part of me, the spark, that will never stop fighting against the coldest winds that assault me or that I will willingly let in to freeze my soul. That part that, even when reduced to such a tiny size and beaten up, can still stand up for me and what I believe in and resurface, always, and shush the monsters back to their dark corners. (For a while at least, just enough time for the soldiers to get back to their positions and protect that fragile soul)

Now, I haven’t completely gotten rid of the filth that I smeared all over my weak flesh prison. But I’ve been feeling that spark and it’s slowly melting the grime away and bringing some heat back in the main circuits. The fighter is swimming back up. Ha ha! And well, now my laughs don’t just sound like a sound that I send to bounce against the walls and fill up the room with some “nothing wrong here” vibes. I feel less dead. And ready to put myself back on track again.

“You live and then you die, what’s the point anyways, right?” That just doesn’t sound like me. Now, I don’t know if it’s depression or any other part of the storm and I don’t care. I know it’s not me. I don’t think this truly. I’m a stupid child and I believe that there’s more to life than slowly dying as oxygen poisons us. I believe in love and in making dreams come true. And I believe in light in the darkest places. And I BELIEVE.

I might be a fatalist to some extent but I’m what I like to think of as an absurdity, a convention of paradoxes. I always find myself at both extremes at the same time. I’m a fatalist but also an optimistic and a pessimistic and a believer and a skeptic son of a blurp. I’m everything and nothing. But I’m not a person that gives up or one that doesn’t see the magic and beauty in life and beyond.

And now that I’ve slapped myself in the face several times and am slowly waking up from a dead man’s sleep, I can see it again. These words that I spoke, thought, while I was this unseasoned mashed potato (Ha ha, I’m sorry x) I’m almost done, bear with me! :-p ) weren’t mine. I don’t know which demon spoke them but they weren’t mine.

The fighter in me is a real part of me. Those demons and the storm are also a part of me but they don’t define me. They are not me. They are what I believe to be essential parts of the weather in me, the rain that rocks me in bed and make rainbows possible. (You need ups and you need downs, light and darkness; there needs to be a balance in things, this isn’t a happy fairyland where all is well.)

They are parasites but I need them and I cling to them. I need them here but they aren’t part of my identity, they are just these little dark monsters that keep this universe running.  But I am not by any means them. I am not the embodiment of my disorders and, as much as they affect my everyday life and constantly torture me, they are not part of my identity. I consider them parts of me in a way, part of my universe but not me.

Anyways. It’s going to take me a few days to truly get back on my feet and get rid of the bullshit I’m covered in. But I’m getting back up and that’s what matters in the end. I think I actually really needed this time on the floor and horribly dark fake happy days! It’s funny I guess in a way haha

So, I think that’s it. I’m glad I finally managed to get all these thoughts out of my head! I started writing this at 1AM today (which explains the confusion with time at the start of it! 😉 ) and now it’s 6PM. No, I wasn’t writing all this time! I slept and I’m still having very slow days. Recovery is a process and honestly, I was really on the floor so it takes some time to get back up and this time longer than what I’m used to. But yeah, I’m finally done getting it out of my chest and I can actually even more internalize the information now. It feels great.

I’ll end this post on a quote from Fran Bow ( a video game I obsessed over during my little “holiday”, let’s call it this from now on!). I don’t remember which character said it but I’m pretty sure it came from the journal that she found somewhere Idk. I think it’s really fitting with this post and well, off I go fixing myself up!

I don’t need to hide from pain anymore because it’s part of me.

Love is everywhere and in everything.

I enjoy crying.

I enjoy laughing.

I enjoy being alive.

Until next post, don’t lose yourself and keep looking for the light. It’s always there. Even the tiniest spark is enough to keep you going. There’s always light, somewhere, look around, in someone, in something, in the sky, anywhere, anyone, anything. And if you don’t see any light, then maybe think about opening your eyes? Maybe you don’t see because you’re not looking at it the right way. Or maybe you are the light and it’s hard to see yourself shining as you stand in the dark.

Keep running. ❤

P.S.: I, of course, still haven’t re-organized my blog and the categories are still pretty messy. But I’ll get to it eventually, don’t worry! And also, the little walk I had in the “park” that I discovered near where I’m staying was truly refreshing. There were so many ducks and I found two cats that let me pet them and aw, man, I felt really good out there! And I’m planning on going there again, maybe making a point of going every Sunday or so. 😀