Tag Archives: Happiness

Deserving

10 Jul

Again I apologise for my long absence. I’ve been busy with acting, finishing school, traveling and avoiding adulthood. I’ll try to get back into posting more regularly though. I swear.

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My university did not have a lot of partnerships with english speaking universities and my one and only choice was to go to Sweden but the placements there were few with many applicants. However I was one of the chosen ones and got to go to my dream university. From there on out my love affair with Sweden began.

Why am I telling you this? Because I just got back from my holiday in Sweden and it was marvellous; I wish I didn’t have to leave. I got to spend time again with my Swedish Friend Family. That’s a program my host university in Sweden was offering, you write a little bit about yourself and the nice lady in the office tries to match you with a willing family to experience some life outside of campus and university. I don’t remember what I wrote but as my biggest hobby is doing theatre I definitely put that down in my text. And what do you know? I got matched with this brilliant family that is into music and theatre themselves. I had a splendid time when I hung out with them and now it’s three years later and we are still in contact.

Sometimes I wonder though, how did I get so lucky? I mean, I always wonder that when something extraordinarily good happens in my life like the things I mentioned above. Where did I go right, why do I deserve this? Or do I actually deserve this? I am not special, fairly mediocre to be honest and I live too much online but somehow I have these people in my life that I can only be grateful for. My life has not always been peanut-butter and fluff but it wasn’t bad at all either. Through some random happenings though I was blessed with lovely friends and great people. I have no idea how that works and why things work in my favour like this. Don’t get me wrong, it makes me eternally happy but how?

HOW?

Tell me what I did right in my 25 years so far so I can continue doing it. I don’t really believe in karma; do good things so they will come back to you. I’m trying to be a decent human being but that surely cannot be enough, can it? I make my fair share of stupid mistakes and wrong choices but here I am, having great things happening to me. This whole thought-process is probably very weird but it was on my mind so here ya go. If any of my dear readers has any wisdom on the subject to offer, I’d appreciate it.

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(And now that I put this out here I will probably have a horrible time finding a decent job but okay)

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Internalizing Thruths

22 Mar

I’m an awful liar aside from the little white lies I may be using to get out of whatever kind of event you invited me to because I’d much rather sit at home in my pyjamas and watch TV, thank you. Other than that though, I suck at this as I most recently was reminded of again while I was selling Mom’s car. However I am good at lying to myself; this blog is in some part a testament to this.

I didn’t want to be gay so I tuned out what every part of my being yelled at me and moved on until I was ready to accept this truth about myself and since then I came around full circle; I couldn’t be happier about that but I regret the time it took me to get here. There are still other parts of me under heavy construction though. Well, I will always be a work in progress and so is everybody else. As our lives change, so do we with them; we adapt and move on. This is a good thing. It would be atrocious if we ever stayed the same person; same as we were when we were 15 or 7 or…you get the picture. The circumstances of our lives deeply influence who we become as a person.

The last year may have almost broken me but it didn’t because I am strong, I may struggle with things but I can also keep my head above water even if it’s just barely. This is important to know. I’m strong and not afraid to be alone but that last part is a lie. Many post can tell you so because I do mind  being unattached even if it’s stupid. Even if it’s stupid and I know better! I’ve had my problems with this for years, many years!

I used to (and to some extend still do) believe that I’d be happier, more successful, not as lazy, a better person…if I’d:

  • loose wait
  • looked better
  • fell in love
  • finished a certain task (mostly uni related)
  • and many more things I can’t even remember right now.

The truth is, nothing falls magically into place just because one little unimportant thing changes. That’s not how life works because happiness comes from within! If I loose 5 kilos it would be nice, of course, but it wouldn’t mean I will know for what job I’m going to apply in June or when/where/if I meet the love of my life. I’ll probably still be as insecure in a lot of ways as I am now. It doesn’t make me get my shit together any more than not loosing weight, growing long hair etc.

Usually, things don’t magically fall into place, opportunities arise and you take them if you’re lucky, but constantly looking for what you think is missing, is bad and not helpful. The thing is, I knew that all along. This is not news to me, not at all but I never internalized this truth, never accepted it. Still haven’t done so completely. So this is where the heavy construction is currently located; trying to make myself believe the things I know to be true.

I am good enough! I don’t need anyone to define my life for me! I love myself (most days, because sometimes even I find myself annoying)! I am strong! I am extraordinary because I’ve been weak but also know my way out of a hole! I am not alone!

(I could not not include this scene from one of my all-time favourite shows and I didn’t just spend what felt like eternity on tumblr to find these gifs. Here’s also the link to the full scene as I only took a couple of lines from it.)

If I don’t learn to internalize the things I know I will get lost in misery faster than I can switch on the light and the darkness of my thoughts would swallow me whole. I know that because I’ve got close to it until I couldn’t take the sadness anymore. Being sad is exhausting, I’d much rather be happy which is what I’m trying to be. Happy and at ease with myself. I’m already doing better, I know as much even though the last two weeks were weird and set me back a bit.

I’ve been lying or at least not listening to myself for far too long and it’s time to stop it. I’m on my way and I can only hope that this serves as a reminder for when I am not as confident with my abilities and emotions as I want to be, should be. There will always be truths I know but don’t have accepted yet, I suppose. This shaping of a human into someone I am proud of will always be an ongoing process. Not saying I’m not proud or happy with myself now, only that there is still room for improvement. There always is.

Thank you, Doctor!

‘What You Wish For’ by Kerry Reichs

23 Jan

After Christmas I went on a shopping spree on Amazon because I got a gift certificate and was more than ready to use it. Hell, I’ve been born ready to spent money on Amazon. One of the items in my shopping cart was she newest novel by Kerry Reichs.

You’ve read my gushing on and on about her previous book and if you haven’t, well, you must be new around here. I was excited to finally read this and also a little bit worried if it could live up to my expectations.

The style of the book is different from her previous ones. It’s a multi-character story, so every chapter focusses on a different character. What unites them is their wish to become parents only they are not what anyone would call a traditional family. Far from it. There is the 40-year old actress named Dimple, 50-year old Wyatt who is a high school principle and Maryn the breast cancer survivor who is now sterile. All of them are single and struggle with the prospects of a society that sees family as a mom and dad and kids. Not a single mother. Especially not a single heterosexual man trying to adopt a baby. He surely must be a pedophile, why would he want to have kids?

Throw a couple of other characters into the mix, like Wyatt’s cousin who is healthy and fertile as you can be but never wanted kids and doesn’t change her mind and you’ve got yourself a story. Just imagine, there are women out there who don’t want children, it is possible. Then there is Maryn’s ex-husband whom she is suing for the right to use the eggs they harvested, fertilised and stored in a cryobank before beginning chemotherapy. Andy is against it for reasons I don’t quite understand. He also starts to run for city council and that turns into an ugly mess soon. Last but not least we have director Julian who challenges Dimple to go out of her comfort zone in order to get a role.

In the beginning I struggled a little bit with the jump from one character to the other. I’m not used to so many players in the mix but once I settled into the story I was fine. I really liked the story, the characters and the message it sent. There is more to a family than a mom and a dad. Also, I just love Kerry’s writing style.

There were just some minor things that irritated me, mostly for personal reasons. First of all, when Dimple refers to her libido or inner whatever as LaMimi I’m instantly reminded of 50 Shades of Grey and Ana’s inner goddess. So that’s a dealbreaker. Then there is the legal aspect of Maryn suing Andy over the use of their embryos. Eh, I read about that at length in ‘Sing You Home’ by Jodi Picoult even if it had different circumstances. Also, I’m not that into legal matters. As I said, minor hiccups.

What I liked though was the mention of one character from Leaving Unknown, Laura/Lola, the girl that works at the studios in LA. She is mentioned once but I saw it as a treat and was happy that I recognised her. It’s just a funny occurrence. Then there is the matter that the Reichs women must think Summer is THE name of the rebound wife. Andy’s second wife is named Summer and if I remember correctly, so is the fiancé of Pete who is Tempe Brennan’s ex-husband in the novels by Kerry’s mother, Kathy Reichs.

In the end, all characters come together through different circumstances. It’s heartbreaking and bittersweet but also a good ending. I liked where the book went and not everything turned out exactly as I expected which is always a plus.

There is a Q&A at the end of the book and there is one excerpt I want to share with you because it’s so nice and sad and great and… It’s a letter from one of the characters. It’s not a part of the book but something Kerry envisioned for the character.

I had a second chance to do everything I wanted, but that is rare. Never wait to be asked twice to dance. Dance. Laugh often. Be noisy. Hug your father. Do something every day that doesn’t make rational sense. Be joyful, though you considered all the facts. Love freely, and love those who don’t deserve it. Do a selfless thing each day. Every day won’t be the best day in your life, but that’s okay. If someone were to tell you the world would end tomorrow, plant a tree. Most of all, don’t be afraid of risk. If you open yourself to opportunities, fortuities will land on your shoulder like birds. The only thing that holds you back in life is yourself. I give you permission. Go for it.

Reading this made me cry all over again after I was done crying about the actual book. Maybe it’s wrong to measure the quality of a book by the fact if it made me cry or not but that’s juts how I roll. If I cried, it means the story touched me enough to make me care – to be a catalyst for the feelings I cannot let free on my own.

This is a story about wanting to have kids without having the opportunity to do so on your own. It’s about health that is not distributed fairly and most importantly, it’s a story about family values. A kid can grow up happy having just a single parent, or two mommies or two daddies as long as it’s cared and loved for. There’s nothing more that matters.

That Christmas Post

17 Dec

I effing LOVE Christmas but that wasn’t always the case. When I was younger and my parents were still married, Christmas was a hard time. The family gathered at my Granny’s place for dinner and gifts on Christmas eve and for lunch on Christmas day. On at least one of those days someone started a fight and yelled at someone else. THAT, I hated. After my parents divorced and some time passed, it got better.

By now, it is my favourite holiday because of all the great food, advent calendars, spending time with family and cookies. Oh, and presents of course! By now, I don’t even hate ‘Last Christmas’ by Wham! anymore. ‘Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer’ sung by Dean Martin, ‘White Christmas’ by Bing Crosby and ‘Winter Wonderland’ sung by Frank Sinatra make a huge smile appear on my face whenever they are on the radio. Seriously, I couldn’t grin wider if I tried.

I love the cold weather – when the sun shines but the air of minus degrees attacks your face, makes your nose and cheeks all red and gives you the gift of snow. I cannot get enough of it! We had all that last week. It was deliciously cold, it snowed, the sun shone and I was giddy for no apparent reason. Yes, I can be pleased that easily but please keep this to yourself. I wouldn’t want the word to get around.

Last year, my hopes were pretty high for Christmas, I wanted it to be the best celebration we ever had because I knew it would be my Mom’s last Christmas (no, she wasn’t even that sick back then, but some part of me was prepared for her death, even then). But it wasn’t as great as I hoped it would be. There is still the beginning of a post I was going to write about it in draft form on here. I don’t even know what went wrong, it just didn’t live up to my expectations. I foresee something similar happening to me this year but I don’t care. I am so looking forward to it despite the fact that Mom’s not with us anymore. I still have family though and I love them. I may not always agree with them and their views, but I truly love them. And I am thankful for my life, my friends and family – for the opportunities I had so far, the trips I was able to make and the places I got to see.

Last week, on the 13th (which is also my cousins birthday) was Lucia which is a Christmas tradition In Sweden. There are special Lucia-songs that are sung on this day, lussekatter to eat and many celebrations to take place. While I was In Sweden 2 years ago, I was part of the university choir and we did the Luciatåg that day. I actually only partook in the first concert in the morning since I had a final the next day or class later. I’m not entirely sure. It was a fantastic experience though. In the evening I met with my friend family and we went to see the big celebration in church, where High School kids perform like 3 concerts back to back. I was blown away by their talents. The atmosphere was fantastic and I miss not getting to see it year after year. I miss putting on my Lucia gown and singing the beautiful songs that are as dear to my heart as the Christmas songs I grew up with.

If you look real close, you can see the text I wrote on the candle holder because I wasn't able to remember all the lyrics to the songs.

If you look real close, you can see the text I wrote on the candle holder because I wasn’t able to remember all the lyrics to the songs.

On Saturday I bought my last presents. I’m not very good at gift giving but I tried my best, which is how I ended up with 3 different books and 2 gift cards. But hey, I thought about every one of those gifts long and hard even if it doesn’t sound exciting. I like to give gifts that I would enjoy and I hope I chose right. What about you? Do you already have all your presents?

As much as I love Christmas, I also cannot wait for 2012 to be finally over and 2013 to begin. Hopefully it will be better than this year but it won’t be too hard.

Wherever you are and if you’re celebrating Christmas or not, I hope you have a good time and great company. Here are some videos of my favourite songs from Sweden. Seriously, they give me chills! There used to be a video of SVT on Youtube with these songs sung in ‘my’ church in Växjö but it’s not on there anymore.

A Weekend Away

11 Dec

Last weekend I went to Frankfurt to have a little reunion with my german corridor mates from Sweden. It’s been almost two years since I’ve seen SB and one and a half years since I saw IM and it was great to finally meet again.

The reason we haven’t seen each other in such a long time is that they both used to live in south Germany and I am more located in the middle. Travelling there for just a night meant a long time spent on a train or in a car for me and also I couldn’t leave Mom alone. But thankfully, IM relocated to Frankfurt this year for her Master’s program which is not quite the middle between SB and myself but as close as we will get.

I hadn’t been to Frankfurt before, not really unless you count visiting the airport or central train station that is. Saturday was a beautiful day, it had snowed the night before, the sun was shining and it was the right amount of cold (about -3°C) for  walking around the city. We went up the top of the Main Tower and had a fantastic view of the city and its surroundings. We visited the christmas market, drank Glühwein, walked along the river Main, did some shopping (just a teeny tiny bit) and went home to eat and play Trivial Pursuit. On Sunday  morning we stayed in since it was snowing again and didn’t look nice outside. We ate and talked some more until we had to leave.

Everything looks so good in sunshine and covered with snow!

Everything looks so good in sunshine and covered with snow!

Of course we could have done a lot of sightseeing (I guess ?!) but what we really wanted to do was see each other again and that part was perfect. We got to catch up and it was like we picked right up from where we left off about two years ago. This makes me happy, knowing that it doesn’t matter how much time passes, we still enjoy spending time with each other. I can only hope it won’t take us this long until our next meeting.

Frankfurt Skyline and Main

Frankfurt Skyline and Main

Both of them were a big part of my life in Sweden, we will always share that. Together with my trip to Canada in August I now have successfully reunited with all three of my important german friends from Sweden which makes me all happy inside.

Hmm, so this post didn’t turn out as I expected it would, I thought I had more to say but whatever. This is what you get ;)

How was your weekend? Did you spend it with friends or family?

The Miracle of Snow

2 Dec

A couple of weeks ago I promised myself I would do a walk through the first snow of the season. You know, I *may* have gotten inspired by the Gilmore Girls there but that doesn’t matter. As I was at a Christmas Party of my University’s International Office, it started to snow like crazy. I didn’t stay long because I was a bit afraid I wouldn’t make it down the hill of the Uni and back up at home and I’m glad I did.

I took the long drive through the city, not because the streets were so bad but because it was so beautiful outside and I wanted to prolong the moment. At home I changed into more appropriate clothes and shoes and went for a walk in the snow.

You guys, it was sooooo perfect. It wasn’t even cold and it was snowing like crazy. Not many cars and people were on the streets – just me and the crunching snow below my feet. I glided through tire tracks, pretended I was an airplane with my arms outstretched wide, sang my favourite Swedish Christmas song and threw snowballs. Childish? -Maybe!! Worth it? -Definitely!!!

I tried taking pictures with my cell phone but they mostly ended up too dark or crappy but here are some of them anyway:

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Footsteps in the snow...

Footsteps in the snow…

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And this is what happened over night. According to my ruler it’s been 7cm but it’s thawing now.

Happy and Exciting Feels

9 Nov

I could say I’m sorry to be double-posting today but I’m not sorry so forget I said anything and let’s move on.

Exciting times lie ahead for this little blogger as I will start to work on my thesis on Monday!! Finally I’ll be doing something useful again instead of procrastinating while avoiding most stuff. My thesis will be on wind turbines. I have to re-write a program in Matlab and find an optimal characteristic curve for the small turbine on top of our department building.

I’m equal parts scared and excited but in a really good way. I haven’t heard a lot of lectures on the subject and haven’t done any programming in years or done real math with integrals and derivations either. But I’m optimistic that I’ll get into the matter and be able to understand what I’m doing. After all I survived 2 years of AP physics and math so why shouldn’t it work out? Right?!!

And really? After watching American Horror Story Asylum lately, not much truly scares me unless you throw me into a 1960s mental institution against my will, try to turn me into a zombie and throw creepy aliens into the mix as well.

This thesis is not what I originally wanted to do. I wanted to get a topic in the human factors engineering department again but since I already wrote my student research project with them it’s better to diversify my expertise and write my thesis somewhere else. I believe this to be the right fit for me even though it will be a lot of work and hopefully I am indeed equipped to handle all of it. My adviser seems nice so that’s a plus. At the moment I think this is the right decision, I can only hope I feel the same way in a month.

My insights are filled with all kinds of happy feelings which is awesome. Tonight I’ll be seeing a friend again who I haven’t seen in months! And some others that I haven’t seen in an even longer time span but I’m just really excited for friend #1. The others are just a bonus.

What’s going on with you guys? TGIF? I know I am even though this week flew by way too quickly.

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