self-awareness

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.

Advertisements

From Adult To Adult

“Ouch”. I moan, as my kitten’s perfectly refined claws retract out of my calves. He senses the tension between us and as an act of avoiding responsibility, performs a jump and sprint through the flat. All the while, I’m bent over falling bum first into my hallway wall, trying frantically to put my shoes on and tie my laces in a manner, I am sure is exclusive to the anxious and clumsy. As always I am late, which means I must perform the ritual of all my morning rituals. Check I have my keys, check again, run across the road and through the traffic lights, hold down my flying lanyard, wipe my watery eyes from the wind, keep the contents of my bag safe as I check that I have my card (and my keys). I try and hide my shame and my wind tears, as I sprint awkwardly to the station, past all my neighbours and takeaway providers.

They know, I will tell myself, that even as a fully grown 20 year old women, I still fucking hate mornings.

Growing up, I was never under the assumption that life was going to be an easy ride. As a child, I was constantly observing and going through the struggles of life, only from a younger perspective. Though I may not have been physically dealing with things like an adult would, emotionally I was. I became a worrier, a title that had rudely gatecrashed my life.

I didn’t know what I was expecting of adulthood, I don’t think anyone does. All I had to base it on was from watching my mother bring me and my sister up. From that, I guess I had already learned that life was unexpected, mean and incredibly unfair. It was full of mishaps and responsibilities and yet, it taught me an important lesson. I learned that opportunity is only an opportunity if you see it as one. As a teenager, I took this idea on aggressively, because I wanted nothing more than stability. I wanted what everyone else ‘had’.

This attitude was clearly one of the reasons people perceived me as odd during school. I was mocked for wanting to better my life. Mocked for wanting to get a flat instead of go to halls, laughed at for having a savings account. Posters about me and my ex stuck on walls for this that and everything else. It was ignorance on their part, for not being able to accept me as the person I was, and ignorance on my part for not being able to accept the fact that nothing I did would make them value me as their peer. I felt wrong, rejected, a people pleaser who was unable to please. A troubling time for me as far as troubling times can go. But I wasn’t different, just misunderstood.

I may not of expected too much from growing up, but naively, after school I had hoped it would get better. I was convinced that if I made a life for myself, if I set the foundations, surely the rest would follow. All this steamed from a difficult financial upbringing, I really just wanted the chance to feel what every other child, teenager or adult was apparently feeling. Stability, financial support, a home to run to when things got too hard. I didn’t have this option, I knew when I moved out that I will never have that option. So Instead I grew up with the understanding that I had to be extremely cautious in life. When I was younger I would constantly wish I had money, then when I got older, any money that I made I kept a hold of.  …Just in case something happens…  I would tell myself. I was so used to mishaps that it became an obsession. Security was all I wanted in the end right? Even when I moved out, I was repeatedly turning down, doing fun things with friends because I just had to save for bills. I knew I would be like this, at least I was prepared for that, even if they weren’t.

Security. The word glided through my nerves and slipped into my mind. It wasn’t a threat, only a mild sedative. I was simply programmed into this way of life now. I had to support the pressure and responsibilities I had created and I wasn’t willing to give any of it up. But the pressure became my host. In a panic I let myself believe that I wasn’t lost. Just more focused, more willing to do what I could, to build my life up to the pedestal I had set long, long ago. The word fun became a disease, I worked hard and I saved. There was nothing more to it. I had a goal, I would get that stability that I was so clearly deprived of.

But I felt overwhelmed, cornered with no where to turn. I soon understood that this obsession was unhealthy. Had society turned me into a monster, or had I? I finally understood that I was depressed, and instead of dealing with this issue, I had created a persona. I wanted to fit in so badly, be valued and recognised as an adult, that I became a different person, with a warped view on adulthood.  I managed to go years without really living, Instead I was a bystander in my own life. A faded shadow.

The moment everything began to change wasn’t sudden, it was a gradual process, a couple of confusing months, a couple of secret’s let slip, a lot of me began to change. I didn’t want to be the pressured idea that I had created, I wanted to be able to enjoy myself and see my friends and start living my life. I wanted to be me.

One thing I have learned is that the pressure you feel is your own, most of the time. Something my partner has taught me is that you can take control of what you can control, but you need to let go of what you can’t. And being able to adjust to that attitude has been a breakthrough in my own growth. Being able to finally find joy in things and spend money on myself (responsibly) is a blessing, and something I never thought I could ever feel without fear of judgement.  Still, I wont deny the fact that adulthood is tough, feeling overwhelmed and having no over option than to deal with it is a way of life as an adult.  But I have found a healthy way to deal with it. (Except mornings, that shit will never get old).

It’s funny that we allow ourselves to be told by society what is right and what is wrong, there is no leeway. It’s basically ‘Here’s the guide book, follow it or be deemed socially different’. In a nutshell, I tried and I failed and then I thought to myself. After years of trying to fit in, all the pressure from caring too much of what other people thought. I am so done with it. Because that’s the beauty of adulthood, at the end of the day, it is your life.  Unless you let them, no one can do or say anything that is going to stop your emotional growth. You make your own mistakes, and you decide if you are going to take it as an opportunity to grow. You eventually learn that you can rise above it all. You can rise above depression, you can rise above hardships and you can most certainly rise above yourself. And in the end, I did that. In the end, I allowed myself to have a happy life.

 

And I love my life…for the most part. 😉

 

Kyra xo

 

 

Finally I understand

“It has made me better loving you … it has made me wiser, and easier, and brighter. I used to want a great many things before, and to be angry that I did not have them. Theoretically, I was satisfied. I flattered myself that I had limited my wants. But I was subject to irritation; I used to have morbid sterile hateful fits of hunger, of desire. Now I really am satisfied, because I can’t think of anything better.” -Henry James, The Portrait of a Lady.

I have never come across a bundle of words so accurate to how I feel in this moment, how I have been feeling from the very beginning. I didn’t know how to express the fact that I finally felt Satisfied. And not just with you, but more importantly, with myself. It is not something you can pinpoint out the very back of your subconscious and be like, ah! that’s what I’ve meant to say all along. This quote reminded me of myself and it helped me understand.

Words helped me see, so I’ll let you see my words clearly.

When my mouth moved I was slurring out cheese-filled vocabulary which made me sound like an overused valentines day card. I was coming across as your average girl in love. I found it hard to express vocally without sounding the same as everyone else – but I have the ability to write about how I feel, and that is a powerful thing, even as powerful as how I feel about you. I may not be able to say it without tripping over my words and taking about three years to get to the point, I may go off on a tangent, and accidentally forgot what I was trying to say. I get distracted, but at least I can write about how I love you.

And I’m sorry for saying I love you,  without really explaining why. With everything you do for me, even the smallest of things, they can have the biggest effect.

I love you for how you calm me, how you carefully challenge me when I’m too anxious to step up, how you make me see that I am stronger than what my self-esteem likes to think it is, even in my most vulnerable moments. How you have taught a highly strung, overly cautious girl to have fun, in ways I like having fun and introducing me to ways you like having fun. You have taught me how to be bold.

Falling in love with you, was one of the best experiences I have ever had. There was not a moment where I doubted that this wouldn’t work, despite having reasons to be careful. But it felt far too right to ignore, and what is life if you are not living, if you are not taking risks. And us falling in love was one worth taking.

It can be curious thing love, it is especially curious once you aren’t falling in love anymore. Instead you are just in love, it doesn’t sound as glamorous but once the constant rush has settled, everything is so much clearer. You are committed to each other in a way that seems like friendship, but stronger – like a overlapping bond. Tight, secure, and safe. I am happy, Satisfied.

I have passed that heart pounding, anxiety driven feeling that I had with him while I was falling like I was about to leap off a tall cliff. It was a leap of complete and utter faith, of giving myself over and letting my emotions lead the way. For once I carefully ignored any signs that this could end at any point because I was lost in a happy place, everything was so easy, so carefree, so different. And it still is. Why would I ever think that it could ever end?

Oh, you! I laugh as I playfully nudge my inner-self, for thinking such a silly thing. But sometimes you can stop thinking clearly, not matter how happy you are. It can be easier than you think to let your insecurities slowly take control.

All of my worst thoughts creeping into skin.What happens if it does end? Will he still love me? Is he going to get bored and move on? Am I going to be alone, worse abandoned?  Every time you Shake them off violently, stomping at the foul creatures and remind yourself that insecurities are not who you are unless you let them, they are not how they make you feel, unless you let them. They are powerless unless you give them the wheel.

I would consider myself a strong person, but you have still supported me through some of my darkest moments, even if you have not realised. You have, and you still pull me up when I’m sitting with you at half one in the morning trying to explain, trying to understand my own ridiculous and unnecessary insecurities. Sometimes, I let them take over, and I don’t know why. I guess I can get defense and I get scared. I do not want to lose the most important person in my life (besides my family). I am human and I feel protective, of course, I wouldn’t want to lose you. I have never had it better. And as for my insecurities, well no matter how much I have dealt with something emotionally, tiny fractions can sometimes still remain and there is nothing I can do about that, but soldier on and accept it as part of what has built me up, and what made me who I am. The me that I am today, and not the me that I was yesterday.

You have never given me any reason to doubt that this relationship was wrong, that this journey we were both on was timed.  Right now I could think of nothing better than to spend the rest of my life with you, to travel and experience life together. For with love you have all the time in the world. That connection I feel with you is just the same as how I described it a year ago when I wrote about you for the first time on here. Just as strong, only so much more now.

It has made me better loving you … it has made me wiser, and easier, and brighter. I used to want a great many things before, and to be angry that I did not have them. I was not satisfied with anything at all, I was learning to accept myself. But now I have myself and I have you, and I am satisfied in every way someone could be. You satisfy me in every way you can, and I can’t thank you enough for being you. For being the best influence in my life, for letting me in on your world. I love you more than you could ever imagine.

Kyra xo

Diary post #1

Before you instantly judge me for being so personal, let me raise my small tiny hands up to your face and stop you right there. Need I remind you that we are all guilty of being personal on Facebook, so much so that we practically go out. Y’know, like “ooh Facebook look what I had for lunch.” – Instagram’s photo of mediocre food to Facebook  (yes I am terrible for it) or “Hey Facebook, how’s your day been?..actually I don’t care, here’s a minute by minute reconstruction of when I nearly got hit by a car on my extra exciting journey to work.”

…Besides, I’ve misplaced my diary and my Microsoft Word has expired.

I’m not going to start this with so there’s this guy because that is the way my 12-year-old self would write and yes, I may still look that age, but I’m turning 20 this year, so let’s not. I’ll start this with a more serious tone.

I would like to have sexual relations with him…like all the time.

Hahahaha, joking!

That was a lie..I do, I really do.

Image

Anyway, it’s not about sex this time, i’m not looking for just sex. (Bet you’re all like, ‘interesting was she before?..what a slut’)  I wasn’t even looking for anything until I realised that’s what I wanted. Does that make sense? I think time to myself was what I needed, and I’m glad I listened to my friends and family and took it. It wasn’t a huge amount of time – just a few months. But everyone is different and it was enough for me to become my own person again, reevaluate and remind myself of my goals and my ambitions, remind myself that I’m not all bad and find a way to like myself again – I learned to embrace the positive things about myself and my life. And somehow it ended up with me cooing frantically over this guy, because according to my brain, he’s a positive influence in my life. Woops!

It wasn’t like I was spending my days actively searching for another relationship. I was investing my time learning how to be with myself – I was concentrating on improving myself and my flaws. I wasn’t on the prowl for a new boyfriend because as much as I love relationships I also enjoy being single – So I’ve learned.

But then once my mind was clear and I was more self-aware of my emotions, I kind of accidently fell for him. Funny how that works, it always seems to happen when you aren’t paying attention.

To be honest, I’ve always liked him, since we first started talking. I felt an instant connection with him, and it’s rare for me to come across that. I have come across a variety of different connections with people over the years.

  1. The connection that I have with my family.
  2. The connection I feel with my closest friends.
  3. And then there’s the connection you feel with someone, an ‘instant connection’, a strong chemistry between the two of you, a sort of deeper understanding of one another.

It’s difficult to explain, but that’s how I feel when I’m with him. I can literally feel the chemistry bounce off of us, and It sounds ridiculous but I get the feeling he feels it too. Could it be a lot of sexual tension, probably. But I also think it’s more than that. I like him on a much deeper level, I like him in a way I have never liked anyone before. It’s different, and I’m open to the idea of it because I know that if it does ever happen, it’ll be good for me. And not in the sense I’ll be in a relationship again and it’ll get me out of the single life, NO. Because quite frankly, I don’t mind being single at all, I just mean that I know that it feels right, and that if the opportunity came along I would gladly jump aboard..Literally too 😉 because I know I would learn a lot from him and maybe that’s what this connection is all about. Maybe he’s wandered into my life for that exact purpose.

Image