2017

Spring? Is that you?

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It is said there are flowers that bloom only once in a hundred years. Why should there not be some that bloom once in a thousand, in ten thousand years? Perhaps we never know about them simply because this “once in a thousand years” has come today.
(Yevgeny Zamyatin)

Spring has come and some trees are still bare. There’s not one leaf, not one fruit, not one flower… Just dryness. What happens when spring comes but I’m not blossoming? Come on now I’m on a deadline. I have to be in full bloom by the age of 25. Or I have to have a boyfriend because what the actual heck is wrong with me if I don’t? All my friends have boyfriends. I don’t think trees look at the trees next to them and judge themselves wondering oh my actual word why don’t I have apples? Honey you’re not an apple tree that’s why you don’t have apples.

I am guilty of putting pressures on myself and deadlines that fit in my mind set of life. “Get all A’s” “Get a full bursary” “Get a degree by 21” “Get a license” “Buy a car” “Get a boyfriend” “Buy a house” “Get engaged” “Get married ” “have two kids by 35”. I used to put my entire life on a time line. I had a five year plan. Heck I had every second planned. The pressure of continuous planning is that when winds come to sway your branches you get upset because the plan didn’t include the wind. The set back. The drama. The break up. The tears. The plan only includes what we want to happen… It doesn’t include the reality and misfortunes of life. We get so frustrated with ourselves and when someone comes along and breaks our heart we get upset because it wasn’t part of the plan and it was unexpected… We put our internal pressures onto the external and try and force all the trees to grow in this way. Not every tree bears fruit in the same season… We were all planted at different times and some need to establish roots before they can bear fruit and provide shade and shelter. Is the tree dead? No. The tree is in full swing and it’s important that the tree has a good root system so it can withstand future storms.

 

 

So… Now the fact that we aren’t currently blossoming and that we feel like we are in a whirlwind of storms… Well you see pruning is important to a tree – when we hold onto the dead and give no space for the new. We hold onto that thing that happened to us and put it into every pain we have because letting go feels like we are saying that we are okay that that bit of our life is gone and let’s be honest if you loved your friend or boyfriend or girlfriend so dearly just letting go isn’t the simplest task? We refuse to let go because then we are accepting and moving ahead and eventually the chapter closes and we start writing a new one and “rather the hurt we know than the one to come” right? No no. Prune. Cut those dead things because this encourages growth. “How will cutting things off me make me grow?” Well you see pruning is actually beneficial to a tree because it helps it grow in the way it was supposed to grow. The hurts and pains are all important to our growth but holding onto our rotten fruit just brings flies and who wants flies?…

 

You don’t need to be blossoming and thriving right now. You can take your time. Do your pruning and take yourself to the true vine… The ultimate Gardener. God will prune you and develop you and bring the sweetest fruit out of you. Don’t put a deadline on yourself. Take the pressures away and R E S T in Him and trust him.

No it’s not easy. It hurts. Telling yourself that everything is a okay isn’t easy when you keep seeing the blossoms around you and you look at your feet and all you see is dead leaves… But the wilderness is a sign of the promise land coming. Be easy on yourself but be strict at the same time. You’re growing so allow yourself the time to grow but encourage growth and not setbacks. Trees don’t pick up dead leaves because they know there’s no life. They let it blow away in the wind… Let the hurts, distractions and worries blow away in the wind of resting in Him.

You don’t have to remind a flower when its time to bloom is near; it has been preparing for it all of its life.
(Matshona Dhliwayo)

Prepare yourself.

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2017

Cherophobia

IMG_5553“And there it was. Happiness just a shot away from me but here I was overthinking it to the point of being miserable.”

My writing is mostly fuelled off of experience and how I managed to deal with what was given to me and lately I have been… happy. Genuinely happy. However, I have not been enjoying this happiness. I have been figuring out how this will all leave me. How I did not deserve this or that maybe this is too good to be true. No not in a I walk around with a cloud of darkness over my head but if happiness was a couch I was merely sitting on the edge getting ready to be asked to leave my seat.

I did not rest in the comfort of happiness. Still struggle with that. I realised that I view breakthrough or joy as something that will be ripped from me and be yet another challenge I must face. But when the couch of happiness is in your face you really cannot keep ignoring it not allow anyone to sit on it in fear that it will be taken away. The what ifs will ultimately be the death of some of us. Changing your view on happiness is important. I know I have been guilty of not enjoying a breakthrough, good times and utter joy because if I did not enjoy happiness as much surely I wouldn’t be in the same amount of pain when sadness comes? I know right how sad are my thoughts sometimes.

 

I am here just to say that we should not have a fear of happiness and that we should jump onto that couch and cuddle right in it with a pillow of laughter, a blanket of love and be dressed in clothes filled with affirmation. Happiness should not be a guilty pleasure but it should be enjoyed. Fully. Happiness isn’t something that will stop coming around and while it is here I think we should be grabbing it with both hands.

 

” He fills my life with good things so that I stay young and strong like an eagle.” -Psalm 103:5

 

Take your happiness back into your own hands. Silence the thoughts and celebrate once again. You know that you want to. That relationship you have been so scared of because you fear you aren’t good enough? Sit on the couch of happiness because you are good enough and you deserve love. That trip you have been terrified to take? Sit on the couch of happiness because you deserve to explore. That smile you have been scared of smiling? Sit on the couch of happiness and show us those pearly whites.

 

Cherophobia: The fear of gaiety, happiness, joyfulness or rejoicing.

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2017, Uncategorized

I should be there.

“Personality begins where comparison leaves off. Be unique. Be memorable. Be confident. Be proud.”
Shannon L. Alder

The comparison game is a nasty game but a game so many of us play. It starts off with an innocent joke like “Oh I wish I had your hair” and deepens to a “let me destroy her image so I appear better”. I used to be a pro at playing this game. I was the girl you would compliment and I would immediately say no I am not pretty, no that is not true or no you are much better than I am. I did not want to say those things about myself but I unfortunately just began picking up this bad habit which took years to shake off.

What you allow is what will continue. I allowed myself to be treated badly (I am not saying that being bullied was my fault- I am saying that I could have put an end to it sooner). I had words thrown at me that apparently described me and I took these words to heart and basically repeated it to myself day in and day out. My primary love language is Words Of Affirmation. Meaning that to me – actions don’t always speak louder than words. Compliments mean a lot to me and criticism- when said harshly – can hurt me a lot. Unaware of “love languages” when I was much younger I did not understand why the words I heard hurt me so badly and why I took it to heart.  (http://www.5lovelanguages.com )

It took years for me to overcome these hurts and struggles in my life ( this is to come in a later blog post when I can properly retell the story) but insecurities do not just go away. Insecurity is like an addiction if you do not guard against it, it can come back and take control when you least expect it. The words you say to yourself sit deeper than words others tell you and fortunately I caught this addiction of mine early enough. I was sitting next to my mom the other day trying to take a selfie with my epic rainbow under lights hair and when I took the selfie I looked at it and immediately told myself, oh my word look how chubby my face looks, my eyes look funny… my smile doesn’t even look genuine. Sure the selfie would not have been put in a collection of my greatest selfies of 2017 book but it really wasn’t terrible.

Lighting impacts many things and when the source of the light is not from within the spotlight can taint your view.

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This picture may not show my face but it was taken the same day I felt very down and angry. Posting this picture was me taking a stand against all those negative words and this post is not just about me and me patting myself on the back. It is me showing you that bad days will come, you might have a sad day, sad month but do not tell yourself you are not worth it. Do not enter into the pit of overthinking. Treat yourself the way you would treat someone you really love and respect.

I should be further in my life, I should be married, I should be in university, I should be able to drive, I should be there… The reason those words are the title of my blog is simple. You should be where you are right now. You should be focusing on growth and happiness. Shower yourself with love and compliments without being filled with pride. You should not be where she is and you should not look like him.

…Who knows if perhaps you were made queen for just such a time as this?… – Esther 4:14

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2016, Uncategorized

Pain. Suffering. Agony-Ouch.

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“If the wounds on her heart and the bruises on her soul were translated on her skin, you wouldn’t recognise her at all.”

– Verona Q

“How could you hurt me like that? How could you say those words? How could you just hit me ? Instead of asking you these questions…I asked myself. The pain became so unbearable that I began to question everything I was. In my mind happiness resulted in sadness…Love resulted in heartbreak…Friendship resulted in loneliness and beauty was temporary.”

We all deal with pain and suffering differently and pain and suffering is different to everyone. Pain is a reaction to allow healing but we make pain the walls we build around ourselves. Pain becomes our bodyguard and the thing with pain is that it does not know who the VIPs are or who should not be on the list. Pain is the bodyguard that will not let anyone in thinking they are not welcome.

Pain is a funny thing because you feel it when you get a paper cut but you do not feel it straight away when you twist your ankle because of adrenaline. I think emotional pain works the same way… We cry when  dogs die in movies but when we receive the most heartbreaking news we sit in silence and become numb because we fear we will never stop crying.

“I felt so much pain, that I started to feel nothing…”

I think that is when we go wrong… We do not allow ourselves to feel and we just work through the motions of life ignore our emotions because they cannot be easily understood and the tears do not seem to heal the deep wounds but the ignoring of the wounds results in them becoming infected and never truly healing.

“Numbing the pain for a while will make it worse when you finally feel it.”

J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Pain is something that needs to be felt. When we get close to fire we start feeling pain and that tells us that if we proceed we will harm ourselves but when it comes to emotional,spiritual and mental pain we react differently. But why? Pain is pain and acknowledging it makes  all the difference. I thought that  feeling numb was much better than feeling pain but in reality the pain still needs to be felt the numb feeling is just a mere cover up and prolonging the healing process.

When I was at the tattoo parlour the other day this guy next to me applied so much local anesthetic to the area he was about to get tattooed in that he barely felt much. The artist told him that the pain will still come even if it is delayed and that got me thinking to when I blocked out pain and pretended it wasn’t there just so I did not have to feel it until the pain demanded me to feel it. Pain or the blocking out of it results in one blocking a lot of other things out as well…When I decided to ignore the bullies words it did not mean that I immediately forgot all the things they said to me I just chose not to show them I was hurting but I was a hypocrite because in public I looked like I had it all together and then when I was alone I was a complete mess. The words of the bullies did not stop at their mouths it became the only way I saw myself. It took me years to train my brain to think of myself in a different light.

Acting like I had it all together resulted in  me cutting people out of my life and pushing people far away especially people who cared about me because in my mind they are the ones who will hurt you the most. That is true but they are also the ones who you can love and support you the best. (I know this to be true now). The words that I heard over and over again became the truth I lived my life by. The only truth I would accept. Pushing people away resulted in me pushing God away for creating me…” I was not what the world needed…nobody wants me here so why am I here?? “-Thoughts I lived my life by.

Pain demands to be felt sometime or another so when the pain hits I think we should fully feel it in the moment and we should not turn from God in those moments because when we block pain out -we block happiness out- we block love out and then we just become zombies that are numb to all things.

“While other worldviews lead us to sit in the midst of life’s joys, foreseeing the coming sorrows, Christianity empowers its people to sit in the midst of this world’s sorrows, tasting the coming joy.”-Tim Keller

Pain sucks but pain will always come… The way in which we choose to deal with the pain changes who we are. If I acknowledged  the pain I was feeling much earlier and cried and became angry and let it out I honestly think it would have been so much better. Pushing people away in life only leads to our own destruction- we need people and we need God.

“I DON’T CARE!” Harry yelled at them, snatching up a lunascope and throwing it into the fireplace. “I’VE HAD ENOUGH, I’VE SEEN ENOUGH, I WANT OUT, I WANT IT TO END, I DON’T CARE ANYMORE!”
“You do care,” said Dumbledore. He had not flinched or made a single move to stop Harry demolishing his office. His expression was calm, almost detached. “You care so much you feel as though you will bleed to death with the pain of it.”
J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Pain sucks I agree 100% but when we deal with other humans it will always be a factor we have to acknowledge. We cannot not have pain because then I do not think we would really appreciate happiness or healing… There is a term called “redemptive suffering” it is basically suffering for the benefit of others. Jesus suffered for our benefit.

“But resurrection is not just consolation — it is restoration. We get it all back — the love, the loved ones, the goods, the beauties of this life — but in new, unimaginable degrees of glory and joy and strength.”-Tim Keller

“Madge: I don’t know why I keep shouting at them.
The Doctor: Because every time you see them happy you remember how sad they’re going to be. And it breaks your heart. Because what’s the point in them being happy now if they’re going to be sad later. The answer is, of course, because they are going to be sad later.
~ The Doctor, the Widow, and the Wardrobe”

Steven Moffat

I do not have all the answers as to why pain happens or how to make it hurt less but just like getting a tattoo cover up- it can hurt really badly in the moment but it turns into the most beautiful thing if you put yourself under the hand of someone trustworthy. When we are in pain we should go to the ultimate Artist and let Him turn the pain into something beautiful.

“Turn your wounds into wisdom.”
Oprah Winfrey

 

 

 

 

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2016, Uncategorized

You don’t know what you are missing

“But to cry in front of you, That’s the worst thing I could do.”-Rizzo,Grease.

“How dare you show any sort of emotional connection to anyone?! This is not what we spoke about. Keep it together.” These are the words I told myself whenever someone said something mean. I was not always like this. When I was much younger than I am now I was a victim of bullying. Social media was not a very popular thing when I was in primary school which I am so grateful for. I never saw flaws in myself (I am not saying that because I believed I was perfect and a gift sent from the Heavens). When I say I never saw flaws in myself I mean that I did not think being skinny was wrong, being short was unattractive, growing up with a single parent was wrong… I never thought that being a late bloomer was in any way wrong or not enough until one day…

I remember the day as if it was yesterday… I was leaning over to talk to a little child and someone walked past me and said no wonder you do not have a father, no wonder he left you… I would have left you too. I stood up and was so overwhelmed by emotions that I did not react, did not say a word… I just stood there and told myself you better not cry. Before this moment I was told that it was not attractive to have a thigh gap, or to be skinny or to be short or to be clever or to be an achiever (I am a bit of an over achiever and have no shame about it). What I am trying to get at is that I did not see fault or see lack until someone else pointed it out to me. I was fully satisfied with who I was and I adore my family and I would not have changed it for the world.

I need to set one thing clear:My dad did not leave, he was simply just not any way part of my life. I do not have any childhood memories of him and I have no sort of hatred or disgust towards him. Having a child is not an easy task especially if you want to give your child the best of everything. He was not ready or capable of that and my mom stepped up and raised me with such love and grace and I would not trade her for the world.

Anyway back to my story. I did not see an issue with emotions or expressing feelings or anything until people made me believe that it is weak. I felt a rage build up within me and anger became my natural reaction to everything. You called me ugly? Okay here is some anger and sarcasm. You back-stabbed me and spread rumours about me? Oh here is some anger with a touch of insult and bad words. Anger was comfortable for me because I believed it made me look strong and as if I have everything in control. I never told my family about the bullying and torment and because crying is weak I never shed a tear about these issues so how would the have known something was wrong?

My mom is my biggest role model and she is my biggest supporter. I failed to recognise her sacrifices and her love through the years because I was listening to what the little kids said…saying I need a dad and because I do not have one I am not enough. You see I did not see myself as a beautiful creation for so many years and I did not see myself as worth anyone’s time. I did not see myself as a blessing I believed I was a curse and that I needed to have curves and all those things that made a girl worth anyone’s time.

Here is something I should have told myself instead of do not cry: You are enough. You are allowed to feel any emotion you choose to feel. You deserve love. This is not your fault. Recognise what is in your life currently and stop focusing on what you are missing out on.This is not called settling it is recognising that this is who I am and this is what I plan to do to improve myself and not try to be someone else. The featured image is an image of my latest tattoo. The inspiration behind it is instead of being  a Barbie that was “Made in China” I am a child of God “Made in His Image”.

 

“A rose can never be a sunflower and a sunflower can never be a rose All flowers are beautiful in their own way, and that’s like women too.”-Miranda Kerr

 

 

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2016, Uncategorized

The beauty of vulnerability

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“Vulnerability is terrifying. The courage it takes to reveal you heart is one of the most daunting…yet rewarding experiences in life. It will set you free.”

 

I never understood what vulnerability is, I always just assumed being vulnerable meant opening yourself up to get hurt. I thought making yourself vulnerable meant making yourself the bullseye and allowing people to target practice on you. I would be lying if I said that being vulnerable does not still terrify me. There has always been this one person in my life that being vulnerable with was such an easy task but unfortunately being vulnerable with that person caused more trouble than anything else. Imagine opening up yourself to someone only for them to listen say okay and then leave pretending as if it wasn’t a big deal. Exposing yourself to someone is not an easy task but I don’t think being vulnerable is necessarily for anyone else, I think being vulnerable benefits you more than anything else.

 

Being vulnerable means being honest and raw. I don’t think I was always honest and raw with myself. I used to be a very insecure angry girl that used to tell herself that she is pathetic, useless and not worth much. Now was this being honest? No. We are all worth something, we aren’t pathetic and telling yourself these things puts up a barrier between you and yourself and in return you ultimately build a barrier to the entire world. Vulnerability is confidence. I don’t think one can obtain true confidence without being vulnerable. Vulnerability is showing who you really are and valuing yourself. Showing someone my writing is me being vulnerable as writing exposes who I am and is something I truly cherish.

 

The dictionary definition of vulnerable is “Vulnerability is the quality of being easily hurt or attacked.” And I think when we see this definition we run away from anything that makes us vulnerable because who would honestly want to be easily hurt? No one. Being a human being opens you up for being easily attacked so why not be true to yourself? I would rather be attacked for the truth than a lie. I do not want to be a target because I was not true to myself. Brene Brown is one of the most brilliant writers on the topic of vulnerability and she states that “Vulnerability is our most accurate form of courage”

 

“Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy—the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.”
― Brené Brown

 

When avoiding vulnerability, we need to weigh up what we are giving up and what we have. Not being vulnerable leaves true love, strength and joy behind and we only have cowardice and regret which ends up hurting us anyway. The person I am so willing to be vulnerable with is someone I care deeply about and I don’t want to end up losing them because I put half of myself into the relationship. Vulnerability is giving it all.

“Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen.”

― Brené Brown

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