Special mention and dedication:
Dori. H, Emme. P. Chanelle. P., Aisha.A, Kim. W, M. Molly.M, Georgia R, Georgia S, Amiee. R, Rosie.C, Penny. J. Adrienne.M, Margherita.B, Josh. M, Jake. S. Nick. L, Phoenix. G, Dean. B. Sam, N.
It’s the early hours of a Saturday morning. I am wearing mismatched pajamas, and I am in desperate need of a shower and solid food. The Strokes are crackling on a vinyl player behind me, and I leave a trail of destruction through my friend’s living room as I slide around in banana patterned socks dancing to “You Only Live Once” – my favourite Strokes song. I am utterly, and indescribably content and the feeling is somewhat foreign.
There are times in life, like this one that we are reminded that happiness can be generated from the smallest of things and as humans, we have the chance to be that source of happiness not only for each other but ourselves. I think this is a point I lost sight of this year.
This year not just for myself but for those around me could be best described as walking on a tight rope. There are moments of stability that have kept us grounded and focused. We have been reminded in these times of what happiness and balance feels like. Then there are times where we are unstable and our world feels as if it has spun off its axis, uncontrollable and at times unhappy.
It was over a year ago that I sat distraught with grief in the airplane bathroom with my fist in my mouth, trying to mask the hysterical weeps and sounds that were threatening to escape. How the fuck was I going to get through the next year of life back in Australia without nan, my best friend?
I have found that grief and heartbreak magnify your emotions and distorts your views, we ask far more questions and find reasons to doubt ourselves and our decisions more so than before.
I promised myself that I would work towards minimising the doubt and learn to love who I was, flaws and all because another year of self-loathing was another wasted year of life. I understood that no one but I can change my attitude to how I view myself both personality and looks-wise. However, instead of practicing what I preached, I spiraled into the depths of self-hatred and stress, which is the perfect combination for misery.
It was only recently that I was alarmed at the severity of my failings of loving myself. I was on a date, and I found myself scrambling to find an inch of self-confidence. The date had been well and truly overdue. We sat In the backstreets of Haymarket eating at the most perfectly unperfect dumpling restaurant, it was my idea of romance, and it would have been ideal if I let it be.
However, uncomfortable is an understatement on how I was feeling for the vast majority. I was mortified even to make eye contact, and when we did, I prayed, the ground would open up and swallow me whole. The scene was set, an incredible guy and date spot and I just sat there self-sabotaging myself because I was so conscious of how unattractive I must have looked at that moment. I became annoyed that I was not putting the fact that yes, I was probably not looking as flash as what I would have liked for the first date aside.
It was then that I tried to find the light in the dark. Instead, just focusing on trying to be happy that I was even there. At the end of the day, I knew deep down that we have an absolute ball when we are together, did I really think exposed dark spots on my cheeks, messy hair, and daggy gym clothes were going to change that?
I realise I have spent a tremendous amount of time my entire life focusing on the negatives of most situations like this one, instead of spending time on relishing in the fact that this year has been monumental in shaping who I am becoming. Which when I think about it is such an exciting thought.
Several key things have happened this year, one of the more important being the several new soul friends who have entered my life and have for the most part changed it and me for the better.
Sure, there have been a few hiccups along the way, for one friend, in particular, it has taken me a while to process what the friendship became before its inevitable ending. I know a few people have had similar experiences this year.
To be honest, I have not fought so exhaustingly for a friendship in the entirety of my life, from the minute I met him I felt like myself. Unfortunately, the friendship was a minefield. However, when there was a victory It did feel as if whatever was happening in my life or his, in our own weird way we had each other’s backs. I do wonder what I did to deserve the ending he decided to write for our story. All I had ever tried to do was be the best friend I could be, one that maybe he never deserved at all.
While I have tried to make sense of the breakdown of the friendship and attempted to comprehend how I must have meant so little to him. I have had to accept that waiting for an apology, an olive branch or even a compromise is wasted time with someone like that. A heart-breaking thought to the stomach, but the reality of a story where things just don’t end up how you wanted them to.
I can’t look back with resentment and hurt though, which is what I have been guilty of doing in the past. With people like this, I am trying to teach myself to be grateful and thankful that they even walked into my life in the first place. In this instance it was for a reason, it wasn’t a coincidence, and I know that for a fact.
I feel thankful for the times we did have together because they were the definition of a good time when I needed it most. I am mostly thankful that he opened my eyes further to what had become one of my life’s greatest passions all while attempting to instill some confidence into me when it was abysmally low; encouraging me to ‘back myself’. I deep down like to think that if I did finally get to tell him about the opportunities I have coming up in 2020 he would give me a dorky smile and want to say, “I told you so.”
While there were a few not so great people, I am constantly reminded that the most incredible souls surround me. The older you get, the more you understand the value of finding the right friends. The ones who can challenge you (Dori this part is for you), complement your personality and fulfill particular emotional needs and vice versa me to them. The ones at the end of the day who are going to be your biggest fans and support your passions.
So where does that leave us?
I think 2020 is the year of deserving and understanding. I think a lot of us are worthy of more and it’s time for us to go and get it, the first step is understanding our self-worth and not letting anyone compromise that.
I am ready to wake up and look into a mirror and be happy with the reflection I see back not only physical appearance wise but the person inside as well, and you should be too. I think some of us spend a lot of time trying to be the versions of ourselves that our peers may prefer when the only one that matters is the version of ourselves we like the most. It’s not an easy process, and habits can be hard to break, but it’s not impossible. I know for a fact I am going to have down days, and so are you but I am hoping the difference moving forward is finding the light within the darker days, finding the positive in the negative and going after what we want without hesitation or fear of rejection. I am ready to capitalise on opportunities I’ve created for myself and not feel as if I’m not worthy of them.
Please never undervalue yourself or your worth, never underestimate the power you may have in making your own goals a reality or the power you hold in shaping someone’s day or even life. If someone makes you laugh, you like who you are or you are becoming when you’re with them or you simply feel comfortable and entirely yourself, embrace the friendship because friendships or relationships built on love and adoration mean bucket loads of support and at the end of the day knowing someone has your back is the most comforting feeling of all. It’s nice to be wanted. It’s nice to feel wanted, and life is too complex not to harness and embrace those that make you feel this way.
As cliché as the Strokes may sound, they are right, “You Only Live Once” and it’s time we make it a life worth living.
As always, never be a stranger. Always remember, it’s cool to be kind.
– M xx
THANK YOU FOR 2019
Thank you to everyone in my life, I wholeheartedly mean it. Thank you to whoever reads this. I hope over the course of the year that even through the sadder posts, you have found comfort or answers that you may be looking for. Thank you for taking the time to read. I am very grateful.
I am especially thankful to everyone who played any part in my AFL passion this year, and I could not possibly put it into words how incredible the season was because of you. It changed the course of the rest of my life.
A special thank you to these unique souls, you whether you have realised it or not have changed my life this year for the better. I hope I can return the kindness one day.
Emme. P. Chanelle. P. Dori. H, Aisha.A, Kim. W, M. Molly.M, Georgia R, Georgia S, Amiee. R, Rosie.C, Penny. J. Dani. W, Josh. M, Jake. S. Nick. L, Phoenix. G, Dean, B. Sam,N.