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Beyond the gentle waves is where the real turbulence lies.

​I knew I needed time off work, but I didn’t realise just how much being there was causing these negative feelings I was experiencing every single day. I thought it was my just my general mood, because I was struggling to find my feet as a journalism graduate. I thought it was because of the mudane pressures that come with being an adult.

Still, a few days away was enough to put things into perspective for me. I went away to places I had never been before and I explored.It gave me a moment of pure calm as I looked up to the moody sky and realised for once I didn’t feel the same. I took a deep breathe and then watched the waves of Loch Lomond roll out and into the roots of outgrown trees.  As myself and my boyfriend crossed a wooden bridge we peered over like excited children, chatting about all the different kinds of pebbles. We discussed and challenged the easiest route to get around a slightly alarming puddle. We saw some ducks. I was content.

Walking is my therapy, so these trips became more than just your every day stroll. I ended up with the kind of soul-searching, outwith my usual boundries kind of walk which usually occurs when life is in the process of adapting around you.

Walking brought up feelings, and it was refreshing to break through the numb quiet I have become used to, a gentle reminder that despite my moment of calm, I am still struggling.

Most people in my life know this, that mentally, physically and financially I am drained. 

Though it may be unbelievable, I am still happy, I have very good friends, and I like coming home to my supportive and intelligent partner. (And of course my cats). But when i go to work, I become sad. It’s like a shift in personality. I stiffen, I expect negativity, to be talked down to, to be cursed at, shouted at irrationally. But I can handle that. It comes with the job and you find positivty and kindness goes a long way in dealings with these situations. But I become unbearably sad and it isn’t right. Work doesn’t give me any feeling of pride, I no longer feel a sense of achievement. I feel stuck, badly paid and unappreciated. I am not happy about the way things are run, or with some of the people “running it” I am unhappy not just because of me, but having to watch everyone else I have grown attached too struggle and feel just the same in varying ways. 

It is a workplace that is in no way shape or form forward thinking about the welfare of its employees, nor their livelihoods. Everything is a bother, or a problem. You request a day off weeks in advance and you are verbally called a pest. You work your socks off, you produce sales, instead of gratitude, you gain nothing. It is a still silence.

It is an expected silence.

And so you watch a manager get a hefty bonus for sitting in an office huffing about its awful staff and how everything is left for them to do, because we are incapable. While the staff and other management are hard at work serving, dealing with the everyday issues and nonchalantly working away, indifferent to the opinion of one on their individual abilities.

I spend most my time there, but this work is not my life, just my livelehood. And that is something I am made to feel ashamed of and restricted to. I did not spend 5 years studying journalism to be forced into a weirdly controlled working environment that tells you how to feel, or do, without reflection, a moment of creativity, a challenge or offer any prospects. It is not a happy workplace and I will never lie about that. 

So my time off has been very much a rude awakening. 

I already knew I was stuck and there is nothing I can do about that until I can find a new job.  While I never expected to be in this position, at least time off has confirmed what the problem is, that I need mental stimulus and respect. I need more than this and that is completely okay. It is a simple conclusion but a sign of a changing attitude, because if there is one thing I do best, it is that I believe I adapt well, even if I don’t realise at the time.

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Life unexpected

I sat there completely numb, staring at the red wax I had spilled on the carpet many years ago, an SNP car drove down the street singing through the gap in my open windows. The sound travelled through me as I listened to it screaming, away from eyesight. Powerful and together. I glanced back at the residue left from the blu tac on my bedroom wall, a sour expression shaped my face.

I knew deep down it was going to end up this way. But he’d always managed to escape unscathed. His mental well being was always his silent defence, except that the reality this time was that he wasn’t the same version of himself, the one that I used to know. He was together and then he wasn’t, and then he was everywhere and I couldn’t keep up, understand or help. And that was my father. I cursed my curiosity for trying to find him. For hoping he would be well. I was wrong and it hurt me more than I ever expected to. At least he was alive was the conclusion i took from finding out his whereabouts.

Change did it. He egged me on. My life was moving on to new a chapter and I was happy. “I am an adult now”, I would tell myself confidently as I wrote him letter’s I would never send.

But I didn’t feel powerful, only exhausted. I got up and shoved some of my old paper work into a bin bag and moved it to the floor. A slight wave of relief brushed over me as I stared at the newly clean area of my bed – the rest covered in various belongings. Trying to feel settled in chaos was overwhelmingly familiar.

Finding him in jail was unexpected. It was already shaping me. I thought about this as I sat amongst my disorder and pulled out an old shoebox, the sentimental sort. One by one I investigated and remembered, plastics cats I used to get on top of my birthday cake every year, various badges of childhood authority, letters, post cards, birthday cards. I found my dad’s collection of random pictures and cards. I looked through them, stroking the fabric on one, appreciating the moment of nostalgia.Full of effort, they were the put-together-art kind or one’s with cats on the covers. He knew me even if I didn’t see him. At the time, I would proudly place them beside my other cards, hoping people would see that it was from my dad.Hoping I wouldn’t have to answer any questions of his whereabouts. It was a child thing to do. Still I kept a hold of them because I knew the importance of the simplest of things. I remember the feeling of disappointment waiting by the back door to catch a glimpse of him dropping them off. I never did.

I am the way because of my parents, my many traits knotted together with theirs. Unintentionally intertwined. My determination most definitely stems from my disorder of growing up. The constant not knowing how his mind was when I started seeing him again. The constant reliance on the bare minimum. My mum being the best kind of support system growing up, always caring.

My parents divorced when I was only young. It doesn’t bother me at all. It never has, the absent father was the thing to do and I understood that. I remember being a toddler and seeing the unhappiness between them. I shouldn’t of known they weren’t supposed to be together. I shouldn’t be acknowledging anything other than my farm animals and my lack of juice in my sippy cup at that age, but I have always always been aware of other people’s emotions.

And emotion is what drives me every single moment of every day. Every decision based on the foundations of my life so far.

I packed my happy memories into a bigger box and wrote on the side of it. The bad news had been there a month and I still hadn’t had time to process it, or the true meaning behind his safety. I was finishing off all my third year assessments, most of which could only be completed at my university, a two hour journey from where I lived. I was working part time at the weekend, and was doing a full time internship for two weeks at Think Publishing. I was working for Sky News for the General Election in a few days and then moving to my new home two days after.

I was stressed, and this meant that my pain was concealed by my need to keep going. Right now as I write this. It hurts. I’m hurting. But I have never been more grateful and happy for having such a stable relationship with my boyfriend, friends and family. I think that’s probably why I can’t feel settled in my new home. My links to my past and my experiences have been left in my old home and for the first time in my life – my chaos has not followed and overshadowed me like before.

I’m used to feeling submerged by my problems and fighting through it. I’m used to the familiarity of striving for stableness but never achieving it. Slowly and with the right people I got there, I am living a stable life, Its hurts knowing he may never be able to, or even thinking about the possibility of him never knowing how if feels. Because it changes you and I wish he knew how nice it feels. I wish I could have what I have always wanted, which is a stable relationship with him. But I am not sure that is ever going to be a possibility. But life is unexpected. I guess I don’t know him anymore, he may become well again. It may happen. I remain hopeful – as any loving daughter would.

Honestly, I always expected trouble, because with illness, trouble follows like a twisted slave. I just never expected to find him in jail for something constructed by his ill mind. I hope they have moved him to a facility where they can take care of him. I hope they can help him become himself again. And then maybe, I can resume my role as daughter. I wonder now that my need to find him was because I am trying to sabotage my own stability and surround myself with chaos to feel okay again. After all, any negative experience only makes you cautious.

Learning as you go

I think what shocked me the most was the realisation that I wasn’t as emotionally invested as I had led myself to believe. The investment was real, but the long term effects of my unhappiness in the relationship meant that it was rather my image than my heart that I trailed after.

The thought staggered and swayed in my mind as I tried to ease the pain of my friends loss. Lost in conversation, I watched as it pointed the finger at old feelings, replicated from fresh conversation, newly born from my hurt friend, I tried the best I could to dish up healthy advice and that how she currently felt was natural and what to do about it. But it isn’t something you can really put into words. Your own experience is your own experience after all. And break up’s are fucking hard.

The truth is… Feel the way you want to feel. If you need time away from people, take it. If you need to get out and socialise. Do it. Everyone reacts differently. The first thing I did was breathe.

Once he had left the room to confide in his xbox friends and resume his game, I took a deep breath, my body and mind abandoning ship and shaking violently, I scrolled down, clicked my life with him away to single and saved the changes. I waited for the shock of people coming to terms with me finally letting go. I spent that evening planning a life without him, doing my finances, taking the dog a walk. I was free, was essentially my first thought – and probably his too.

A few years down the line, mistakes learned and memories faded, I can say with my feet firmly on the ground, my head held high, that I survived. I made my peace and I moved on. Everything has changed for the better. I am over it, but of course I still feel it, and that is what I remembered today talking with a friend. That everybody moves on but the mind stays frozen. It re-enacts distant memories from your closed box, fresh and gut wrenching all the same. The hair at the back of your neck raised. Now it is nothing more than a warning to older times.

I feel it when they pop up on my timeline on Facebook. I feel it when we past by one another back in my adolescent home town, embarrassed looks exchanged and then forgotten about at the end of the street.  It doesn’t bother me anymore but I still feel it. It is a reminder of my failed relationship, One I am grateful for finally ending. I am reminded of the hurt I felt for the betrayal, and what we both felt for probably a good portion of our ‘perfect’ relationship.

The reality is that I was not an innocent bystander. I was part of a team, and as much as him, I failed to turn up. In this past I have acknowledged this, but I have learned from that one conversation that sometimes you just need a little bit of time, and a little bit of change to fully appreciate how different things could of been, and how great they can be. Which is how I feel things are for me now.

Reflection is key for me becoming a better person, and I can finally put my hands up and say ‘hey, it’s also my fault that our relationship broke down’ and ‘hey, I also let it get to a point where we both felt trapped and helpless’. It is a horrible feeling owning up to your own mistakes but life has taught me to deal with it and move on. Which I gladly did.

None of this is new information to me, it is something I have thought about over and over in many moments alone. In my many moments trying to overcome bad habits. I am only human after all. But one thing is for sure. A new perspective, a different experience and a new mind are all important factors in understanding your own.

Time Heals You

I have always been quite skeptical with the whole idea of “time heals you.”

This is because I have spent a great deal of my life watching people I love follow a familiar circle of self-destruction over and over again– never learning, and never moving on. I’m not going to lie, myself included. It’s hard not to, especially in the world we live in. How are we to stay happy, when there is sadness everywhere? How can we live, if there is nothing to live for? That’s what the pessimist in me would of said only a year ago.

Growing up I was a terribly negative person. I used to let everything bring me down, I took everything to heart and fired back like a rusty old cannon, throwing a negative vibe back into the path of my ‘enemies’. I felt as though no one was on my side. So I spent a great deal of high school swallowed up in self-pity and insecurities, of course I had some reasoning to it. I did have an incredibly hard time in high school, but doesn’t everyone?

Sometimes I was nasty, irritable and selfish towards my friends and then boyfriend. None of them deserved that, all for the simple fact that I couldn’t control my own emotions.  I assumed that nobody cared for me and my problems – not even those closest.  To be honest, most people didn’t, and that was quite hard to accept growing up. But I was wrong about those who cared for me, and instead of opening up and sharing my issues, I bottled them up and I held on to them for dear life. I was too consumed in my own self-pity to pay attention to anyone around me. And that was a terribly negative state of mind to be in. I was in a bad place, just like 99.9% of the teenagers surrounding me at the lunch table.

Whenever I was in a bad place, the same patterns and behaviours that I developed during school would re-emerge and it became so frequent that it knocked my self-esteem and my desire to live. I didn’t want to do anything, I didn’t want to see anybody, but I hated being by myself because I see now that I didn’t like who I was. I was already losing myself before I even had a chance to find myself.  But that’s all about growing up isn’t it? The struggle to find yourself and what you want out of this world.

Once I moved away from the Isle of Bute I assumed everything would get better, that the mainland was my magical patch of green grass. I thought that I wouldn’t feel alone anymore and that maybe, just maybe I wouldn’t be so damn miserable. And for a while I’ll admit I did feel happy, but even that was short lived. I had thrown myself head first into ‘adult life’ and I had so much responsibility on my hands that I didn’t know how to cope. I was depended on and I spent a long time feeling as though everything was up to me, I ended up being more of a parent than a student.

Looking back at how I lived only a year ago scares me.  At the time, I brushed both mine and his bad behaviour aside, I accepted it rather than deal with it and this was all because I was too afraid to let go. More importantly, I was scared that if I let go, I would lose a part of me that I based my whole self on. Maybe I can go as far as saying, I had no idea who I actually was because I got so caught up being someone else’s ‘person’, that I really believed there was nothing left of me. I was very wrong of course.

As time went on I realised that my inability to grow was all down to the fact that I did not believe that I deserved these changes, I did not believe in myself. I think that sometimes we fail to recognise that losing a certain aspect of ourselves is not a bad thing but rather a good thing. We are not losing ourselves, we are simply adapting to our circumstances, we are growing.

For a long time, I was carrying about with me the attitude of a negative person. Quite frankly I guess I still was, and I have unknowingly been holding onto it until this spring. I started to really watch my behaviour and pay attentin to how I was reacting with people. Was I being rude or was I being nice? I knew that I had a tendency to project my mood onto others and I realised that I did not like that about myself.  I did not like me and I knew I had to change that if I was going to get anywhere in life.

This was my turning point, this was when I finally allowed myself to let go of everything I had been holding onto for a very long time. All the stress, all the anger, all the tears. I felt ready to move on and I knew it was time to concentrate on myself, because I didn’t want to be associated as someone who brought you down. I wanted to make people feel better, I wanted to have nice conversations and most of all, I wanted to be a better happier person.

In the end, time is important, you need it to grieve, you need to love and you need it to live. And sometimes time is all it takes for you to realise what is best holding onto and what is best letting go of.

Kyra xo

Why I believe keeping things private is actually pretty important

Now I know what you are all thinking, you are looking at my title in disbelief. You were just having an innocent scroll through Facebook or Twitter and then bam. I hit you with this ‘keeping things private shite’ and you’re just sitting there thinking. Like, is she being serious right now? How can she even say that? I get where you are coming from random citizen. I mean lets be honest, one of my last Facebook posts was about having a sex dream.

Maybe you think my title is misleading, because I’m not exactly the most private person out there. I talk about sex far too much, In fact I love talking about sex nearly as much as I love having sex. You could say I’m obssessed, I could probably agree.

Just ask my….ha! Image

But this is who I am. Everyone in my life knows I will always be an open person. That will never ever change. I will always openly discuss my issues to people I trust and I will always give my honest advice with theirs. 

And I will always openly discuss sex.

Some people get that, others don’t. That’s fine, we are all different people, with different views on what is morally acceptable in this society. But c’mon now. We live in a world filled with prostitutes, drugs, murder and unfaithful partners. (just a small list of what’s wrong in this world) Give a girl a break eh? This isn’t the 1950’s. I’m an independent women. (cue me dancing ridiculously to Destiny’s child)

But all I can say is that, if you are intimidated by the fact that I am confident discussing what I like and exactly how I like it, then..well? What are you expecting from me? I won’t apologise for who I am, I won’t apologise for being more comfortable with myself than you are. I just don’t expect you to make public digs at me about what I say. You feel me bro? No? Ok then, how about you and your negative attitude go stand on an unexpected piece of lego. Doesn’t feel good does it?

 

You’re are probably thinking I have some warped sort of view on sex, like it’s no big deal. But if you read my previous posts you would know that I respect relationships, and that I’m not really into one night stands. And I have no problem with people that like them. But In my opinion, sex with someone you care about is and always will be a big deal. Something private between the two of you. Something you wouldn’t hear me openly chatting about on Facebook or with acquaintances. It is important to respect that kind of privacy. And that is what I have learned from the past few months.

I have taken that level of privacy on board, and put it towards certain aspects of my life. I know for certain that it’s best to be a little more private about a new relationship. Maybe I should stop telling everyone how much I love cat’s. Maybe I should stop blogging about everything?

Now if I stopped the last two, I would be trying to suppress a part of me that cannot be suppressed. I like expressing how I feel. I like being me. I’m just learning to be a better version of myself.

Image

 

Nobody Else Can Heal You

Worth a read!

Thought Catalog

I’m not saying you have to have it all seamlessly together to be loved. I actually think that real love grows when someone finds unspeakable beauty in the place you’ve been cut open. But the thing is, you can’t expect someone else to heal those wounds. They can love you and that love can facilitate healing, but you are the only person who can heal yourself. Nobody else will ever be able to alleviate your burdens. It may seem like it for a little while, but the brokenness of your foundation will always show eventually.

Yes, love is transformative and enlightening and humbling and probably the most real thing we can experience. It is responsible for a whole slew of miraculousness, but romantic love will not solve your problems. The high you get from the newness of someone will eventually subside, as it always does, and you’ll be left even…

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The feeling you get before a night out

This will just be a quick one because I’m currently en-route to Glasgow for a night out, so I’ll just get straight to the point.

Do you ever feel super nervous before heading out for a night in the town? Maybe it’s just me because I’m naturally the most anxious person you will ever meet. It’s a flaw and it’s a gift. Because it could be the reason I chose not do something reckless because I’m worried about the outcome or it could be the reason why I’m having a mild panic attack other absolutely nothing. Now, what I’ve realised is that it doesn’t matter how confident I am feeling while i’m in my flat. I could be strutting about my flat like i’m beyonce, but as soon as I step out on to the street, I feel an over-whelming sense of fear. Normally, the thoughts that are rattling through my brain are..Did I forget something? Shit, do I have my I.D? to which I check my bag every 10 minutes on the way incase it has somehow magically reached out, unbuttoned my bag and fallen out. I get worried when I walk past people, I believe they are mocking me because MAYBE I have too much make-up on, or perhaps I forgot to do half of my face. When I know fine well I have, because I spent most of my train journey as naive as could be, looking into my camera to check it’s not smudged. And then there’s the fear of the actual event. I know the people, I work with them every week, I enjoy their company, yet at the back of my mind I wish I could run back home and crawl under my duvet.

Anyone else feel the same sometimes?

Frustration and learning to control it

In the past, me being frustrated would lead to me doing something stupid, something I would later regret – I would overreact, lash out to the people who were by my side, rant on social media and genuinely just be a little immature bitch about it. I wanted what I couldn’t have, therefore the most logical thing to do as a hormone-raged teenager was to lash out for not getting my own way. If life wasn’t happening fast enough, I would blame those around me. I never took any responsibility for anything that I did or said because I refused to believe that I was in any way wrong. I was frustrated and therefore my personal issues were mine and everyone else’s problem. I expected everyone to fight my battles and to stick up for me, to make me happy, to make me enjoy myself. I expected and relied on everyone else but myself.

But in a way, it’s ok to be selfish and expect things, because sooner or later you will learn. You will find yourself stuck in the middle of the road and the biggest truck you have ever seen will be parading towards you at 300 mph, knocking it’s way through the walls you tried to build around yourself and then hitting you right in the chest. Yep, that’s how reality feels. You will start to realise that although your life is important, you are not the only person in this world and sometimes we need to remind ourselves that someone has already gone through everything you are currently experiencing. We all have problems, we all have insecurities and we all let them control the way we think and act. 

And i’m not saying I’m perfect because I’m far from it. But I at least I am able to accept that my past-self was stupid, and at least I can accept that I am only human and sometimes, when i’m at my most vulnerable, my old habits sneak back in.

Sometimes, I even welcome them with open arms, like i’m expecting it to be different this time – as though these negative patterns are acceptable. I tell myself that I’m just having a hard day, or a difficult week so I let these negative thoughts in, I let them circulate in my mind and chanel themselves into frustration and anger. I still do it every now and again, just in a more controlled environment. I have control over my thoughts and so do you – remember that.Image

 

Weekly fix of animals being cute and doing weird shit

I told you I would be embracing my inner-cat and producing a cat video at one point. And by producing a cat video, I didn’t actually direct this, because if I did that would make me beyond awesome (obv) and also that would mean I have two cats. And I don’t – cue violins while I weep in the bath about it. You know what I mean, bringing you the joy of this video and all that!
Anyhoo, back to my point. My friend Craig showed me this video a couple of weeks ago via Twitter, and of course I got super emotional watching it because:
1) I love cats
2) It was the best thing to have graced this earth
3) I really fucking love cats
Who doesn’t enjoy pretending animals can speak? NOT ME! It makes the video even more hilarious.
Hope this brings you eternal happiness!

Kyra xo

10 Moments That Make A Best Friendship

Couldn’t of put it better myself! Just fantastic.

Thought Catalog

Though there are many moments that construct a friendship over years, through all kinds of shared experiences and emotions, there are 10 in a best friendship that make you realize, whether in the moment or with the perspective of time, how lucky you are to have them.

1. Telling a secret and knowing it’s not going anywhere.

It’s hard telling a secret. We keep all of these ugly, unfit-for-society thoughts and feelings bottled up in us for so long — convinced that telling another soul would be social suicide. After all, what is a juicy secret for many if not the chance to pass a piece of gossip? It’s hard not to feel that telling one person would be telling everyone, no matter how much you emphasize that it’s for their ears only. That is, of course, except with your best friend. With them, you can be honest about your…

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