Numbness +

A year ago I was crumbling. If you asked me at the time I probably would have brushed it under the rug and said it’s fine. I’m fine.

What I didn’t realize was how poorly I was dealing with things. My dad’s death (among other things) were buried so deep inside I couldn’t even recognize them, and eventually I couldn’t recognize myself either. The hollow smiles and unspilled tears that settled at the bottom of bottles were feelings I had become comfortable with.

Emptiness and sadness weren’t unfamiliar to me, but I’d be damned if I let myself dwell in them. I was so afraid of falling back into the black hole I had clawed myself out of plenty of times before in my life, that I refused to let myself slip into any emotions I couldn’t control. Instead of working through my pain and being patient with myself, I felt that as long I held it together outwardly- I was making progress.

I was so wrong. Pain has a way of becoming warped when you hold it in. It’s subtle and powerful and will often allow you to think you’re in control.

And then you find yourself warped too. Unrecognizable. Questioning who exactly you are.

There’s a quote I like:

“Unexpressed emotions never die, they just come forth in uglier ways”

Which I was unfortunately finding to be true. I was doing things out of character. I was working for the weekend. Blacking out every single Saturday night and pushing through Sunday Fundays. Week after week.

My energy was so low and eventually it turned into self hatred. I hated how I looked, how I felt. I had no clarity. I was totally disconnected from my true self.

I can’t pinpoint exactly when it happened, but I was subconsciously building a wall around me. To keep my emotions in, or to keep others out? I’m not sure.

I didn’t want to be hard to the world. I desperately wanted to feel normal again. Or to feel again, but it just felt like a concept that was so far away. I was numb.

In a way, icy coldness or fiery anger are both easier to deal with than numbness.

They are outer directed and you might actually have some control over them.

Being numb just is. When you are numb you lack empathy. You lack heartfelt reasoning. People become collateral damage because your indifference is more hurtful than flames or frost.

It took months before I could come to terms with this. It took months of working on myself. Releasing old pain. Forgiving myself. Forgiving others. But mostly just focusing on who I knew I wanted to be and aligning myself to that.

Self development has always been a big part of who I am, but I learned (yet again) that the strongest lessons we take home with us are the ones we walk ourselves through and out of. We can read page after page of someone else’s life, but the lessons don’t truly resonate until we’re the ones putting out our own internal fires.

I had dog eared a page titled Numbness in a Rupi Kuar book. I found it today and reread it.

Reading it was so sad. Not because I could relate, but because at one point I did. There was a moment in time where I was so broken… I read this poem and identified with it so strongly that I marked it.

I had to read it twice before the memory of when I bookmarked it came back to me. Then it all flooded back in…

More than anything I feel relieved. To stand in a moment of time and feel the distance between who I was and who I am is powerful and humbling.

As days pass we don’t see change.

As months pass we feel change in what we see as microscopic increments.

But in the space of a year, the difference feels monumental.

Never doubt yourself when working towards anything. Ever. Those microscopic decisions pile up and eventually they’ll take you where you need to be. Just don’t stop. Be patient with yourself. Be gentle with yourself. Seek growth.

Guardian Angel+

Dad, without you there’d be a lot of squeeky, broken, unlit, cracked and chipped, overgrown, empty, and busted things in my life.

People often undervalue a relationship with their father. Aside from this person being one of the two who gave you life, Dads represent something strong on psychological level. And everyone has probably heard the term “daddy issues” at some point or another. Unstable women who “acted out” due to a deep-rooted relationship issue (if any) with their padre. I always thought it was comical, (a big thanks to Barney Stinson) more than anything… until I lost my dad.

After the initial shock wore down some, and I could accept the reality of what happened, I realized so many things. First, the entire world felt so much emptier. The presence that was always there, even when it wasn’t, was noticeably gone. It felt hollow. But what lined that hollowness, was a mix of so many different, new feelings. My backbone was gone. I never realized the amount of stability I depended on him for. Basically every ounce. My entire life I felt borderline invincible, that I could handle any and everything thrown at me. I’d go where angels feared to tread. But it was because I felt like my dad could too. Neither of us lacked in willpower. So where I fell short, I assumed he wouldn’t. Having that security taken from you is confusing, at the very least. It made me question my own stability (whereas I am typically adamantly self-reliant). I realized how my confidence in decision making was wavering. There wasn’t that someone there to catch me if I slipped badly, and that makes every minuscule choice seem so much more crucial.

It’s just a constant painful realization when you miss someone, but they aren’t here to miss. From the beginning to the end of a normal day, things flow smoothly. But over the long run, you look back to realize time is putting distance between your memories that were once so fresh. It’s hard to fathom this world without your dad.

So far, it hasn’t been Father’s Day or on my dad’s birthday when it hits me. It’s always in the little moments, like when I hear a song he would always play, or see a car like one he drove. Those moments when I have questions and the person I trusted to have answers is no longer here. It’s those times I’m not prepared for that make me withdraw and have to regather myself. It’s easily a lonely feeling, and it’s capable of making you feel a little smaller in the world if you let it.

But I’ve realized there is no right way to handle a parent passing. You are still forced to stand up on your hind legs and carry out your plans- you just do it with a little more vigor and a little more tenacity. That love isn’t replaced by motivation but accompanied by it. And each time you find yourself wishing they were here, you can look up and know that somewhere they truly are.

A journey, not a destination+

There’s this misconception that if you do all the right things, the right way, in the right order, then you will be rewarded and fulfilled and will experience eternal happiness. Or if you make 6 figures a year, everything else will fall into place. Or finding your soulmate will be the cure to all your problems. I feel like these are all such delusional beliefs. Some of these may uncomplicate certain aspects of our lives to an extent, but by 21, I’ve definitely found that genuine happiness comes from within.

“People tend to think that happiness is a stroke of luck, something that will descend like fine weather if you’re fortunate. But happiness is the result of personal effort. You fight for it, strive for it, insist upon it, and sometimes even travel around the world looking for it. You have to participate relentlessly.” -Elizabeth Gilbert

“People can only love you from their own level of consciousness.” Understand that everyone has a different script in life. Everyone evolves at a different pace. But the bottom line is that the way people treat you is truly a direct reflection of how they feel towards themselves. How much time someone has invested in themselves & their growth process can be obvious. When this resonates, it becomes easy to let things go.

“Love yourself” is advice you’re swarmed with so much that it can easily lose it’s true meaning. You hear it, and you’re like “Uh, I’m me and I do love being me. I’m super blessed.” and so you write it off. Me being the stubborn person I am, any hint of advice goes in one ear, and out the other. And those are two words I gave no true meaning of my own to for pretty much forever, and I didn’t really know it. The reality of not loving yourself is destructive. To yourself and others. “Hurt people hurt people.” It doesn’t easily differentiate right from wrong. It clouds you from your own better judgement. It settles. It chases. It’s sometimes hostile. It’s unstable. Just being aware may never initiate growth. I believe there are times that life will break people down to nothing, to give them the opportunity to become the person they want/need to become. When those moments happen to you, you’re given a chance to redefine everything you thought you knew. Most importantly, outlining what you will tolerate and let into your realm of peace. I believe happiness begins with loving yourself, and knowing what you want.

Striving for happiness means there is no room for resentment. Forgive others…this has nothing to do with them, but it’s necessary for your well-being. And while harboring that negative energy can destroy you, it’s only half as bad as holding onto negative people. Let people go. 

“I will not make space in the cracks and crevices of my heart for people who don’t belong. I won’t prioritize someone when I’m not a priority to them. I will not apologize when I’m not wrong. I will not spend money on a person who can’t spend time with me. I will not be there because you are alone. I will not be a shoulder to cry on because you push others away. I will not give you advice you refuse to take. I don’t need any more people taking away the substance from my heart, downsizing it, and leaving me with nothing. I refuse to allow myself to feel numb because of the carelessness other’s show to our hearts. I will just remove myself from the equation. I’m absolutely intolerant of these things.”
-2014

Getting to a place of inner peace is only half the battle, while maintaining it is the other half. This is something I have had to come to terms with myself. Being genuinely happy in a given moment can feel unshakable. It’s easy to have total confidence in your emotions when they are so overwhelmingly positive. It just radiates from you. But inevitably there are twists, and turns, and curveballs that all have the power to discourage you. And there are people out there who will totally deplete your energy. Maintaining this sense of peace by dedicating yourself to being an ever growing and ever changing soul, is vital to your happiness, and it requires conscious effort. Emotions are temporary and unreliable, and knowing this will help you find balance.

 And that’s how you live. You wake up every morning with a choice. You choose to adopt a positive attitude. You choose to find beauty in the small things. You choose to set your standards high, and your goals higher. You release any bad energy instead of bottling it in. It’s so important to be self aware. Happiness really, truly is the result of personal effort. Let go of negative thought patterns and replace them with kinder, more gentle thoughts. When you consciously make the decision to be happy, and choose other happy and loving people to surround yourself with, you’ll find yourself more easily maintaining that level of energy. It only takes effort on your part.

An Aries Moon Perspective+

My moon sign (yes, moon. Not sun-totally different) is in 27º Aries. This might mean nothing to you, unless you’re also an Aries moon, in which case I’d be impressed if you read to the end.

Wherever your moon is placed, the traits from that sign will surface-the moon influences how you react emotionally. 

Assuming you’re somewhat knowledgable in Astrology, I’ll proceed. If not, then keep reading, but be sure to check back for future, more detailed posts on moon signs.

“Nothing quite happens soon enough with this position of the Moon. There is an inherent impatience with getting what they want. Life is a series of emergencies for Lunar Ariens. They live in the moment and have a hard time waiting for things to happen. Whims of the moment take absolute precedence in their lives.” –Cafe Astrology

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Aries Moon in Flames by Myra Oh at Diadem Tattoo

Impatient. I know I explain myself with that word at least once a day. On the road in traffic. Waiting in line at the grocery store. Unlocking my phone to reply to a text I haven’t received back yet. Counting down the minutes until a client’s hair is finished processing. Do you know how many times I’ve removed foils before they were light enough? Not proud, but it all stems from my impatience. It definitely requires a conscious effort to maintain any type of self discipline on my part.

My emotions have a driving force that can only be explained by the element of Aries itself, which is fire. That force can be overwhelming, & easily shift my priorities in the midst of a moment, if I let it. The sign of Aries often carries the traits “ruthless” and “careless” with it. In my opinion, it takes a significant amount of self-awareness to not let these traits control or define you. Young, insecure, or just with no sense of direction, it’s easy to let these powerful & fleeting emotions drag you in an unhealthy way, and hurt others.

Channeling these energies in a more constructive way is so important. Often described as “tireless for a cause”, it’s only beneficial to be conscious and in control of where those energies are going.  Directing my passion into my career, and also into a physical hobby is what I’ve found to work for myself. I’d have to say it worked for extremely successful people such as Steve Jobs, and Bill Gates, who both share an Aries moon. Running, lifting weights, and focusing on the body I want to have, releases so much of my innate restlessness. It gives me a clear mind, which allows me to have the logical approach I want in a given situation… especially since Aries is a moon placement that’s known for letting their heart rule their head.

Knowing and understanding your moon sign is a good first step for personal growth. Knowing and understanding the moon sign of people who are close to you can also be beneficial, helping you to relate to them better, and empathize with how they act/react emotionally. That deeper understanding always gives me a little more tolerance, and a softer approach in dealing with some of my annoyances in everyday life. We are who we are, after all.

Sometimes, the best advice you can take is your own.+

I have a collection of writings from previous experiences that I’ve been compelled to share for a long time. Writing has always been therapeutic for me when my mind is clouded with emotions. The purpose of sharing many of these is my hope in reaching someone who could relate, and thus making them feel less alone in their own personal journey.

Moon opposite Mercury + “There is a conflict here between the head and the heart. Your emotions tell you one thing and your mind tells you something else. The result is a see-saw effect: you can be emotional to the point of irrationality at one moment, and logical the next. How to blend the head and the heart is a constant struggle for you, usually because you have a tendency to resist blending them.”

What hurts today won’t hurt tomorrow. Time will fix everything, and God will put things back in order. He’s done so much for you spiritually emotionally & mentally, when you’ve needed it most He hasn’t let you down.  You did what you had to do and undoubtedly put in 1000%. Don’t mess up the rest of God’s plan for you, because you want to allow yourself to be weighed down by the past. That isn’t you. You’re a lover of new beginnings, and shouldn’t compromise that because you feel lonely. You’re not alone. The people who care about you TRULY care, and that’s more than most people can say for themselves. So just be patient. Relax. Give it to God. Lighten your heart up- there’s no person worth burdening you to the point of feeling like you aren’t yourself. You’re truly great, and have the power to do great things, while helping others do great things. Don’t let your purpose go to waste. Emotions are only temporary. Look at the bigger picture, stop being so blind by what’s in front of you. You’re selling yourself short.

2013.

First timer+

Well I hope everyone doesn’t think my blog looks like shit. I used to be super tech savvy, then somewhere down the line I got more involved with life, and less involved with my laptop…..Yet here I am. This is multi-purposing as a portfolio and a blog, but mostly to gain a little insight to my mind/heart. You ever feel like you had a second chance at life? I do. So this is where it begins.