Externals

Today’s post comes with this quote in mind, which I mentioned in an earlier post while I was watching season 2 of Borgia:

If you are plagued by externals, it is not they who trouble you, but the importance you give them. (Marcus Aurelius)

I believe in this phrase so immensely, I repeat it to myself constantly, so that I don’t forget it and that I heed it’s message as much as I can. There are aggravations in my life right now caused by people who are not on my good side, but you know what, it’s exactly how this quote says – it’s not really them who are bothering me, but rather the importance I’m giving them.

And so, I have been practicing not giving a fuck anymore about what people say about me or to me if it is destructive or negative because it doesn’t matter. Let them have their opinions. Let them seethe in their negativity. I will not add fuel to their fire. I am nobody’s whipping girl.

Messages

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve noticed that my brain has this tendency to unearth Romanian words in place of really simple ones like car trunk. Earlier, a group of four very tall siblings walked into my store and the first thing I thought wasn’t wow they’re giants, it was wow, they’re uriaș – the Romanian word for giants. I have no idea why this happens, but it happens quite often. It’s like I simply can’t remember the English word for whatever it is I’m trying to say, but then I automatically remember it in Romanian.

Anyway, I don’t remember how exactly I had planned on transitioning this post, but I recently altered my body in a permanent way. I’ve been oscillating between loving it and feeling a horrible sense of regret and guilt. So much so, that the day after was conveniently Sunday and I went to church seeking answers. Thankfully, I got them.

I think I’ve mentioned it before, but it’s very hard to hear at my church cause it echoes. However, what I did hear, I firmly believe I was meant to hear: that we all have our crosses to bear and that God forgives all sins. Honestly, this made me feel way better about my decision because I take it to mean God doesn’t really care what I do to my body.

Funny thing is, like I said, I keep oscillating between loving and kinda hating it. The next day, I was painting and thinking about life and my recent decisions while listening to traditional Romanian music. While I was in a “I can’t believe I did that, why did I do that” phase, the following lyrics played: “păcate sunt pe pământ” which translates to “sins are of the earth”. It’s not necessarily that I go seeking these messages, but that whoever is watching out for me is sending them to me to make me understand that what I did isn’t the end of the world and isn’t something worth being condemned over. And it is such a relief every time.

Earlier I was feeling negative about it again. I sat down and scrolled through my Tumblr dash and found this: ”
Our culture teaches us about shame—it dictates what is acceptable and what is not. We weren’t born craving perfect bodies. We weren’t born afraid to tell our stories. We weren’t born with a fear of getting too old to feel valuable. We weren’t born with a Pottery Barn catalog in one hand and heartbreaking debt in the other. Shame comes from outside of us—from the messages and expectations of our culture. What comes from the inside of us is a very human need to belong, to relate.”

I swear someone is looking out for me. I have to believe that because it can’t just be chance that these messages are hurtling themselves my way. Also, somewhat ironically, this recent body change has brought me closer to God. Or perhaps broaden my spirituality. I’m okay with that.

Frank 2.0

Day 4. 

Today I am grateful that I feel the aches of physical pain because it means that I’m alive. I’m also grateful that I feel emotional pain because it means I still have my humanity.

I’ve thought long and hard about Frank all day (I also ran into him again today at the gym!) and what he said to me about his out of body experience – that if God let him come back to Earth, he was not allowed to help alter anyone’s life. I think this must be the reason we met.

I have a friend who is extremely unhappy – like legitmately suicidal unhappy. It is in my instincts to help people as much as I can and he is a case that I won’t give up on. I think meeting Frank is a sign from God or the universe or what have you that despite my efforts, I cannot change him. And I know that. All I can do is help him to see the change he can be.

But God, if I could, I would take away all his pain and misery and replace it with all the joy and happiness in the world because he deserves it. But I can’t do that. No one can change another person. All we can do is try to infuse our positive thoughts so that they may help themselves.

 

A couple weeks ago, Mini Boss and I were having some in-depth discussion about I don’t know what and she said “you know, I truly believe God helps those who help themselves.” And I sat there nodding, absorbing the sentiment of that statement. I think she’s right. Whatever forces are out there, I find that they are stronger when one has the willingness and positivity and state of mind to help oneself get to whatever point one wants to be at.

That’s the first step. Learning to be in a more positive state of mind. It’s hard, believe me, I know. But it’s possible. I just wish I could just plug my state of mind into others’ like a plug into a socket.

I’ma Break It Down For You.

I hate when I come up with great ideas for what I should write about on here and then I completely forget them come time to actually execute them.

Anyway, I just read this Thought Catalog article entitled I Want You Because and while it is completely and irrevocably relatable, it got me thinking.

Isn’t it interesting how we form these bonds with people? Like invisible strings, attaching to one person and to the next, forming this worldly web where somehow, your one link leads to literally the rest of the world.

Re-reading this article, however, makes me want to talk about just how damn accurate it is, instead of whatever my original derivative thought was. But all I really have to say is that it’s really damn accurate and I’m not sure just exactly how to expand on that thought. Maybe I should break it down by paragraph.

Sometimes I wish I could just remove the want, extract it, but I get the feeling the want is not one of those things you can readily extract, like rotten teeth or slow-moving venom.

Yes. Accurate. Never have I ever been able to simply remove the want. Whether it be for a person or an object or a situation. Every “just stop” repeated in my mind is a futile battle that my brain plays with itself.

And it’s not that I want you officially, like I want your last name or your Sunday mornings or your hard shiny promise, I just want to absorb you. I want to know what you know, want to hear your stories, want to filter through them gently and get lost in them, them and the soft hypnosis of your hands in my hair.

I just want to absorb you is pretty much the best way to put it. Because sometimes, that is all you want. It’s kind of this monstrously insatiable feeling. Like how I feel about Pumpkin Spice Lattes or shiny new electronics or Chinese food. It’s like the presence of that someone is never enough, because the absorption of them is like a wet sponge that wants to hold more.

And I know we can’t be anything, I know that, but when has knowing anything stopped me from feeling it? Knowing better stopped me from wanting it?

Possibly the most poignant part of this whole blog post. Because when has knowing better ever stopped anyone from not wanting something? The saying goes “the heart wants what it wants” right? Relevant. You can try to tell yourself to stop wanting someone or something. But just because you tell yourself to stop, doesn’t mean you have the willpower or the mindset to do it.

And just because you tell yourself to stop, doesn’t mean you actually want to stop. Because that want is the titillating part of your day. It makes you feel alive and maybe a little dangerous, like maybe you’re living your life momentarily on the edge.

I guess that’s all.