From my diary to your screen

I don’t consider myself a superstitious person.

I meet a woman.

The woman reads my birth numbers.

She tells me not to marry young. The stars say that would end badly for me.

She tells me I will fall in love.


I flinch a little. “I am in love now,” I think. “I have only been in love once,” I realise.

I don’t consider myself a superstitious person.

I brush it off.


3 years on

The woman who read my birth numbers told me I would fall in love twice.

The first time was with a boy.

He became a man and that love changed.

It became… different.

It was… less.

Perhaps this time I will fall in love with myself.


New Year

I leave behind the year I ended a long term relationship, took the first but important steps towards treating my mental health issues, started volunteering at an institution for mental health, continued incorporating yoga into my life, went on my first overseas trip alone, made new friends, strengthened old friendships, developed new hopes and dreams, and above all else, I survived.
I survived 2017 and became a much stronger woman for it. I loved, lost, and lived. 

I enter 2018 wide-eyed and hopeful. I enter 2018 hoping for more tranquility and joy, and for more strength when the tough times inevitably arrive at my doorstep. 

My wishes for anyone and everyone, including you who read this, are the same. I hope the new year brings you tranquility and joy, and the strength to face the tough times when they inevitably come to greet you.

Depression and the thoughts that don’t stop

People ask,

“Why haven’t you done your masters already?”

“What are you doing after this job ends?”

“When are you going to get married?”

I don’t know, I don’t know, and I don’t know.

If I were more certain about myself, my prospects and my abilities, these questions wouldn’t bother me. Unfortunately, depression does not exactly bring assurance and stability into anyone’s life.

I am floating quite haphazardly through this thing called life, and I don’t know where I’m going or if I am going anywhere at all. Things seem to pass so slowly and quickly at the same time. Time and sanity feel like they are slipping through my fingers like water from a stream I am so desperate to grasp…


Finding strength

“Talk about it. Even if it gets repetitive, if you need to, just talk about it.”

My friend gave me this advice the other day when I was opening up about coping with trauma and mental health issues. I am happy to announce to no one in particular that I have acted on that advice. 

It has been hard opening up bandages that have been wrapped so tightly for so long I chose to forget some wounds and scars were still there. 

I was ashamed of my pain – I always attributed it to poor decision making or an attitude problem. I am revisiting my pain and with each encounter I am removing a layer of guilt. I have let guilt and fear control me for long enough. Strength and courage have kept me going but it’s time for them to take the steering wheel. 

It took a long time – 6 years – to finally properly confront what happened. I am now prepared to recover. I am prepared to absolve myself of responsibility by doing the responsible thing – loving myself. 

I want to love myself. I was always afraid of giving myself any praise because even the smallest positive note felt indulgent. I now start with “you are strong.” 

You are strong. You’ve had to be to survive, to keep living. Every day you get up and continue living is a display of strength. You are strong. 


I try my best to maintain a generally positive tone, I do. Having dealt with some trauma and depression, I feel like I have had to paint my perspective a happy shade of rose simply to motivate myself to keep living.

But there are days where the backlog of emotions come crashing onto me. There are days when the ripples of bad decisions past become waves, and they often engulf me whole. That’s the problem with the past – it comes back. So long as you have the capacity to remember, it comes back. In recent days I have been reflecting on all the choices that have brought me to this point. It has been somewhat of a whirlwind. Some choices were made unthinkingly, some impulsively, some a result of having waited so long that the decisions made themselves. The emotional effects of these choices creep up on you, and before you know it your heart is completely in their clutches.

I am having a pretty rough time right now, sifting through the emotional backlog, and dealing with new obstacles – new decisions, new information. Through this process I find myself in a constant state of introspection. I find myself resenting the way I have been handling my affairs. I sometimes force myself to project happiness, in part influenced by the positivity cults I encounter in the virtual world. In doing this, I invalidate and often alienate the part of myself that is suffering. I do not acknowledge her struggles enough, I simply tell her to plaster a smile on her face and keep trudging forward because “other people have been through worse”.

Today is a bad mental health day. There is no real way around it. It’s the kind of day that makes me want to tell positivity to go screw itself. Today I feel bad. Yes, it will pass. Yes, “it gets better”. And you know what? In a few minutes I will likely “suck it up” and carry on with my life as if this never happened. But I need some time to simply be overwhelmed. Because that is what it is – I am overwhelmed by thought and emotion and it is only fair to acknowledge it, and allow it to have a moment.



A year older.

It’s funny – today I was thinking about the arbitrary feeling surrounding birthdays. If we were following a calendar other than the Roman one, today would not have been commemorated as my day of birth. We create and reinforce structures with the ritual of the birthday, and as clinical as that can sound, birthdays as ritual are really quite beautiful.

Birthdays are an opportunity to show love to the people whose existence and presence we appreciate. Birthdays are also a chance to reflect on our growth. So much change occurs in the span of 365 days, and it can be a wild, emotional ride. People always tell me that their birthdays are a “good break” from routine, and stress. Birthday rituals are a rupture in the flow of everyday life. It is good to have a fixed point in time which allows us to step away from the fray and look inwards; appreciating where we are, where we came from, and where we want to be.

Having said all this, I have been bitching uncontrollably about the negative effects of birthdays i.e. the sense of entitlement and excessive consumerism cultivated by birthday culture. But cynical ol’ me can be sentimental too.


Healing is Hard Work

When we sense a void within ourselves, we look externally to fill it. We turn to all manner of vice, we turn to people we love, we turn to a Higher Power…

The pills, drinks, sex – those things are no remedy. They are merely distractions.

The people we love – there is only so much we can expect them to do for us.

A Higher Power – simply asking for a quick release cannot bring peace back into our hearts.

Each and every time we turn to these things we are asking “Please, make me whole again.”

But how can they?

We look outwards for support, for validation, when really we need to turn inwards.

It is inevitable that in our lives we experience pain, we experience loss. The love, support, and solace we receive from outside of ourselves is important, and likely necessary, but healing is an inside job, and it is hard, hard work.

It takes work to confront the experiences that have scarred you. It takes courage to face the guilt and shame that haunts you. It takes work to accept our daily realities. It takes courage to get up every day and simply live.

Sometimes we just need to give ourselves some credit. We have bad days, difficult days, but we choose to live through them anyway. We may not match the image of success we have in our mind’s eye, but every day that we continue to try is a triumph.

If you struggle with these things, know you are not alone. Know you are a success even if you don’t feel like it sometimes or at all. Give yourself some love because you deserve it. You have been through hell and you deserve to give yourself time and space to heal. It is hard work.

Making a home within yourself

I had a conversation with a new acquaintance a while ago. They made me consider many things I hadn’t thought about in a while. In the early part of the conversation something struck me as familiar. They shared the concern that in doing the work that they do, living the way they need to, they sometimes feel like they might lose themselves – the values that ground them.

This person has been to so many places, had so many homes, lived more lives than the average person. From the outside looking in it must look like the only constant for them is change and movement.

I think their spirituality, their connection to something bigger and beyond this life is what grounds them – or at least has to potential to ground them in times of moral or emotional haziness. That’s the beauty of spirituality isn’t it? So long as you maintain that connection to something bigger than yourself (whatever that may be, and through whatever means) you can make a home within yourself anywhere in the world.

That part of our conversation reminded me of a time I was lost, almost completely. It was a difficult time, and I was making bad decisions. It may have looked somewhat exciting, but it was a dull, monotonous routine of pain. It acquired a stale rhythm devoid of real connection to the people around me, and more devastatingly, to myself. I remember one night catching my own eyes in a mirror and for a second not recognising the person looking back. It was such a surreal moment of internal displacement it left me horrified. One night as per my routine I went back into my room. The windows were wide open and the wind touched my face. I looked out through the open windows and for the first time in a long time felt something. I felt ready to begin making a home within myself again.

Talking to someone new about spiritual journeys triggered some deep feelings on the subject. Not because I don’t have these conversations, but because I felt a spiritual resonance, and recognised something in them that I have not in another person in a long while. I wonder if I can find more like-minded people elsewhere. I wonder how that might feel… to find a community of spiritual resonance – of people who feel they belong within themselves.

Must feel nice.