Tag Archives: love

I am sorry.

I’m so sorry that I’m not
the sister you should have
The daughter I should be.
The mother that I wish I was
The friend I wish I had.
But I love you more than life
You’re all of that
And more to me.

Embrace your hunger for creativity: Slip inside my mind for 5 – by Antony Stevenson

You should read “Slip inside my mind for 5” on Wattpad. http://w.tt/1JBtAlL

My boyfriend wrote this today and just reminded me why I love him so much. I had to share and I hope you’ll read it cos it’s funny and honest and brilliant….wpid-wp-1441204288294.jpeg

I really hope someone, even just one person, gets some motivation from this to make the positive changes that will lead them to a fulfilling life. That’s what I strive for every day, at least. I think that natural creativity inside of some people can be a precursor to the addiction issues my boyfriend talks about here, maybe it’s an added sensitivity to our surroundings or maybe we feel too deeply, but if that urge to create isn’t fulfilled then it causes a hole deep within our soul, and eventually that hole can become an open wound. Some of the most intelligent and naturally talented people I have ever met have been addicts. I really believe that if we don’t fill that hole with positive, constructive hobbies then that can lead us to try and fill it with substances or other destructive behaviours; always seeking an external remedy for an internal, spiritual deficiency.

I don’t have any evidence to back up this theory, it’s just something I feel strongly based on my own experiences over the last 10 years, but I’m not alone in coming to this conclusion. I assume that it was a similar train of thought that led my mentor, Gary Staniforth, CEO of The Hidden Homeless and SMART Recovery UK facilitator, to create The Hidden Voices magazine and fill it with inspirational stories, pictures, poems, art of every kind, of people dealing with accommodation or addiction issues, allowing those who feel that they have been forgotten by society the chance to contribute in a meaningful way to something that really matters; shedding light on often misunderstood problems and bringing into focus the humanity behind the derogatory headlines, while also giving an outlet to people who have that drive to create.

Maybe everybody should be creating in some way. Perhaps I’m wrong in thinking that it is only ‘some’ people who have this artistic drive. Perhaps society in general has become so used to buying things cheaply, living in a consumer driven world where everything seems to be disposable, that we all suffer to some degree with feeling that nothing we do can make a difference. Maybe with so much emphasis on money and earning, with so many struggling just to survive, we don’t find the time to express what is inside us, we don’t place enough value on what we can create with our own hands beginning with just an idea and bringing it to fruition driven only by a need inside of us that demands to be met.

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So maybe I am over excited about my boyfriend finally connecting with his creativity again, it certainly isn’t the deepest, most insightful piece he’s ever written, but I know that those words needed to be let out, I know the talent that comes so naturally to him needs to be used, it was given to him for a reason and if he doesn’t use it then he will never be fulfilled. I value any expression of the inner self that is created by anybody just because they needed to get it out. So yes, it means a lot to me to be able to share this with you all. It is the sign I have been desperately waiting for that I have the man I love back with me, that he isn’t going to disappear again if I take my eyes off him, that there is hope.wpid-wp-1439233920356.jpeg

Thank F*ck. I’m Finally Over You. | elephant journal

http://www.elephantjournal.com/2015/08/thank-fck-im-finally-over-you/

Just found this article by Alex Myles on Elephant Journal and I identified with it on such a visceral level that I had to share it here.
The way she articulates clinging to the pain of a break up, the grieving for what could, should, have been is so familiar to me right now, as is the fear of letting go of that anguish.
How do you let go of something that you still desperately want, someone that you yearn for every night as you go to bed alone. Knowing you can’t have something doesn’t stop you from needing it. Knowing something will destroy you can’t stop you from loving it.

I cried out your name. I screamed so loud but no sound came out.

No one heard and no one came to the rescue.

So, I danced alone with our death.

I stepped in time with a shadow. Of a love I once knew.

I didn’t know what was there at the end of our line. I was terrified to let go of the comfort that holding our memories gave.

Then it hit me harder. The loss. Not just the loss of you, the loss of us, of what we could have been. And of all the “if only” thoughts that tangle and then knot my mind.

I had to stand up and open my eyes.

I’ve carried this weight. I’ve taken you with me, all because I couldn’t let go. I wouldn’t.

I risked all for this love. I let you in. I sealed all the edges. I locked you in tight.

Now I’m letting it out. I’m letting you go.
Alex Miles

So I get it, and I hope to reach the place she has really soon, cos I often feel I am losing my mind, but in some ways, I don’t want to move on, I don’t want to get over the last seven years of my life that I gave up so much to have. I don’t want to be rid of the future I dreamed for us, the things I knew we would have, and soon, we were so close to finally getting to where we’d wanted to be for so long. I can still see that future we were supposed to have and I don’t want to give up on it. I want it. That’s how my life should look.
I’m getting there on my own, I’m still working hard and achieving everything I wanted, but on a personal level I am falling apart, because it isn’t supposed to be like this. I’m meant to be sharing it all with the person I first imagined it with.

Read Alex Myles’ article, Thank F*ck I’m Finally Over You, here, and I’ve just found her blog, Love and Other Stuff, that I can’t wait to have a proper read of as there looks to be some great poetry on there.

How I love that guitar!

I love watching the tuning of the guitar; watching the string vibrate at just the right tempo to get the line on the screen going dead centre, straight down the middle as the perfect note is strummed.
I love the segue between one song and the next; blended so seamlessly that it becomes the natural progression of the music, just the way it is supposed to be.
I love that good music is always just right; no matter what may occur in the world around me, the high notes and the low will always fall in just the right places in order to create the songs that move me.
I love to watch music being made, right in front of me.

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The best decision that I’ve ever made

In life coaching on Friday,  where i go weekly with the Hidden Homeless in Bradford, Nina asked everybody to consider writing a testimonial or something for the magazine,  Hidden Voices. A lot of the group wrote something there and then, but I couldn’t think of something that I hadn’t said before or already written in an evaluation sheet, so I said I’d have a think about it and write something later.wpid-wp-1437683979599.jpeg
I had a few ideas about what to write. I was going to write about the change in my life thanks to Gary (founder of Hidden Homeless)and Nina (amazing life coach) so I got out my notebook and made a list of the ten most obvious ways in which my life is different. Most were quite obvious, simple differences: I’ve started making a conscious effort to focus on the positives in my life, remembering to be thankful for my blessings rather than resentful of what I feel is missing from my life; I’ve developed love for who I am as a person, the me that is doing my best right now to be a person I can like, rather than focusing on the mistakes I’ve made in the past and the pain and embarrassment I’ve caused to my loved ones. Number 4 on my list was “I have gained the confidence in myself to make difficult choices.”

Today’s been quite a stressful day, and I’ve been so glad of a few tearful phone calls and IM chats with the amazing friends I’ve made in the last 6 months, my support network, which brought me to the conclusion that I have been quite a selfish friend recently because I’ve started slipping into old behaviours without realising it. I’ve been so focused on trying to drag somebody else through their dark times so that I don’t have to watch them self destruct or end up diving in after them, basically trying to control a situation that I can’t be responsible for in an effort to ensure that I didn’t throw myself into the abyss, and I didn’t realise I was doing a subtle, slow slide down into that despair filled pit without looking around and seeing where I was. I wasn’t paying attention. And I wasn’t any good to anybody because of it. I haven’t been there for friends who could’ve done with the support and I wasn’t helping the person I was holding onto so tightly.wpid-wp-1437683979620.jpeg
So I had another reminder that I have to take care of myself in order to be a good support to anybody else, and I’m glad I got it now rather than 6 months down the line.

Every week Nina gives us a small task to take home and reflect on. I maybe don’t put as much effort in as I did the first time I attended the course, just because I think more positively in general now after attending life coaching for 3 consecutive courses, and don’t often feel the need to really sit down and use my ‘homework’ quite so desperately as I once did. That frame of mind comes easier now, it’s a habit to analyse my thought rather than leading with my feelings. I couldn’t even remember what I had written down in the back of my notebook last week but today I felt like I really needed a a large dose of Nina’s ever – insightful, logical positivity!
As soon as I read my notes I knew instantly that this would work as a journal entry for my blog as it would be a good way to reflect on my emotional growth and I usually find writing therapeutic, and it would also be a good testimonial for the hidden homeless as without Gary and Nina I would never have learned the skills to separate my thoughts and my feelings and reflect objectively on my behaviour, or to stop beating myself up for the things I can’t change.

The task that I brought home after last Friday’s session was to think about a decision I have made in my life that just felt right; where I have been my true, authentic self and made a choice for my life that took courage, belief, and determination.

It was obvious to me which decision I needed to reflect on.

A few months ago, my partner and I finally got offered a new flat. It was a bit smaller than we were already in, but it was off the council estate that we have bought and used our drugs in for the past few years and away from everyone who knew us for that. I fell in love instantly with the flat. It’s set back off the road in a quiet, tree filled area, with floor length windows in the lounge and a welcoming atmosphere. I could really picture our future there, it was our fresh start and I was beyond excited. I instantly started trying to collect stuff for our new home, so we could have it cosy and really make it our own. I planned scatter cushions and decided on the mural we would have on the wall, so we could face both that and the beautiful windows. We were going to get married. wpid-wp-1437683978883.jpeg

Then, after a long and painful revaluation of my life, due to various circumstances,  I decided not to move into the flat with my partner. It broke my heart and I still have to wipe away tears remembering how painful it was to come that decision. I still feel as though the future I was working towards has been violently ripped away from me. My partner probably doesn’t feel any better and I feel guilty thinking that he might be feeling like I am, but I had to dig deep for the humility to accept that there is nothing I can do to influence the choices made by others, some things I can’t solve, no matter how much I wish to. If I could do what’s necessary for him I would shoulder that burden in a heartbeat. Nothing I can do will solve this situation right now, because it isn’t mine to solve. I have now, after lots of soul searching, many filled notebooks, and too many tubs of icecream, got the belief in myself to know I have done my absolute best and there is nothing more I can do without any cooperation. I did not give up easily. I have done everything that is within my power. I worked hard at it, but ultimately I had to try to find the serenity in accepting the things that I can’t change. I was emotionally drained, and I can’t afford to invest so much energy into a black hole, getting nowhere with my efforts. I know where that path leads for me and I am determined that I will not stray too close to it, not for anybody. Because then I’m no good for anybody.

Now I have returned to faith. I’m trying to keep that connection strong, be it to God, the universe, fate; there is something stronger than me at play in this world, and I am trying to trust that whatever happens next will somehow, eventually lead to better things. I know I made the right decision. It hurts, but nothing worth having comes to us easily, as long as I do my best with the things I am responsible for, as long as I remain aware of the way I’m living and focus my energy on the right things, everything will come together. Maybe it’ll all work out so that I get to spend the rest of my life with the man I have idolised for nearly 7 years and sacrificed so much to be with. Maybe that’s not what’s in store for us. I have no way of knowing, I just have to keep working on my life and hope he does what he has to in order to get what he wants from life.wpid-wp-1437683977899.jpeg

This isn’t what I expected, or wanted, my life to look like at this point but this is the hand I have been dealt and I am playing it to the best of my ability. I can’t afford to lose again.

My broken heart will, slowly but surely, heal and I’ll recover but active addiction will, slowly but surely, kill me and break the hearts of my children.

There really is no choice in it.

Uchira Children’s Fund

Watch “Esther comes to stay… The first special needs child moved into the childrens village this week…”
John St Julien is a hero.  cropped-header1

He has become a massive inspiration in the way I try to live my life. He runs the charity Uchira Children’s Fund in rural Tanzania, saving children from going into child labour, helping mothers with HIV to support their families, providing  medical, nutritional, and educational support for families living in the kind of tough times that most in the West can’t even imagine. And he looks after stray dogs too!

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He seems such a spiritual person to me. He has a kind of glow around him, an aura of total love and selflessness. 

11:11; John St Julien’s story of synchronisity and consciousness. 

I’ve lost count recently of how how many times I’ve tried to explain my world view to people:

“The corrupt 1% don’t care about the plight of real people, and we can’t make them care, so what we have to do is try to minimise our reliance on the elite and learn to take care of ourselves and our communities. Let the ruling class crack on and we’ll look after each other”

I’ve been trying to get #GlobalCommunity trending for months! Of course I don’t expect everybody to drop their whole lives and move to Africa,  we don’t have to go to that extreme.  We can all follow John St Julien’s example by sharing what we do have with those that are in need. Going out into our community and helping people who are struggling, in whatever way we can manage. We have to learn to share. Society keeps trying to brainwash us into thinking we’re all such special individuals that deserve to spoil ourselves, but what does it matter what shampoo you use when people in the world are starving?  The big corporations will just keep plundering the earth’s resources es, putting profits before people, so it’s down to us to remember that it’s our humanity we need to cherish. What kind of world do you want to leave your children?

Please try to find some time to catch some of John’s amazing videos on YouTube. Here are a few of my top picks:

Child labour, and why school is so important here in Uchira

A lesson in morality…

Why does humanity value pieces of paper over the life of a mother?

Why I Love Being Me

I love this post, as soon as I read it I knew I had to reblog!

I wish I had felt like this growing up. I was a wreck as a kid. I didn’t fit in. I didn’t trust myself not to say something stupid in front of people that I thought were much cooler than me, which was basically everyone. I was a complete try-hard and I got it wrong every time. I didn’t know who I was so I tried to be all thing to all people and I messed it up.BodyImageInfographic-1self_esteem

And now I have daughters.

I have nightmares about them going through school feeling the way I did. I try so hard to instil them with confidence, to explain the importance of being yourself without caring what anybody thinks. When I look back, the ‘popular’ kids at school were the ones who had enough confidence in themselves to act naturally. They never stuttered when they tried to talk in a group, they never blushed when asked a question in class, they never tried too hard.

But how to explain that to young girls whose whole lives revolve around what people think and how they are portraying themselves? I was trying to explain about the effect being confident has on the image you portray to those around you to my 12 year old daughter recently. Her reply, “Mum, nobody acts like that, that’s how you end up being bullied”. I think my heart broke.

I struggled at school. But at least I got to leave my try-hard self behind when I got off the school bus and could just be myself when I got home. Now, kids have smartphones that keep them constantly connected to their peers. They have Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and however many others I’m too old to have a clue about. And every single thing they post is scrutinised by everyone they know, or an attempt to reach the notice of those they want to know. Every thought they have and every picture they take is an effort to bolster their image.

So I found the post below so refreshing to read. The op is obviously quite young, probably not much older than my daughters, and it’s so comforting to see that some kids are coming through this minefield unscathed. I hope my girls learn this confidence much sooner than I did.

I’m only just coming to terms with the fact that I’ve been worrying myself sick for years over something that just does not matter. I love who I am. Nobody else’s opinion matters!love_yourself

If somebody else thinks I’m being stupid, so what? If I’m feeling boisterous and skipping down the street chatting to Charlie, my Staffie, or singing loudly along to Muse while playing air drums, then I’m expressing my contentment and feeling good, and I probably look a complete tit to anyone that sees me, but so what?

Happiness - Aristotle
Happiness is a choice we make, and it takes the same amount of work as misery. Make the right choice!

I suppose I have to accept that this isn’t something I can teach my daughters. They’ll have to come to the realisation that they are just fine exactly how they are in their own time, just like I did. I can bolster their confidence, praise their intelligence and wit, and make sure they know they are loved more than life, but ultimately they have to develop that self-love for themselves.

I only hope they don’t suffer in the learning as much as I did.

mychemicalflossie

Hey guys!

I recently noticed that most people hate certain things about themselves, or wish they were someone else. With me, I don’t. I believe that what I have makes me, me.I may not be the prettiest girl in the world, I may not have the nicest personality, I may be weird, odd, etc, but I am me.

I am a lot more comfortable doing what I want, rather than what the people around me think I should do. I hate dresses with a passion, and am a lot more comfortable in a tux. I HATE makeup, and am a lot happier without it. I am not girly at all. I don’t run around lusting after attractive people. I don’t keep myself in a shell so I don’t embarrass myself. I will laugh when I throw the ball in the complete opposite direction it’s meant to go in PE…

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What do geese and addicts have in common?

Sounds like the setup for a terrible punchline, doesn’t it?

I just came across an interesting forum post called “Lessons From Geese” and it’s really made me think about both where I’m at in my recovery and where society is heading as a whole. I’ve heard a few people recently say that we’re heading backwards; all this censorship, inequality, terrorism and, even worse, our rights being gradually stolen in the name of anti-terrorism.

But I hope that the awakening I’ve felt happening around me gradually, little by little, for the last few years does take us backwards! I hope we can go back to a time when people looked after their communities; wherever we were when the NHS was set up and British people were proud that their taxes were paying for something that benefited everybody; when we did our shopping with locally owned businesses, with shopkeepers that knew our name and had time for a gossip, and our food was locally sourced and fresh instead of flown halfway around the world. Anyway, speaking of flying, back to the geese!

Society could learn a lot from geese, if we just look a little deeper

Lessons from Geese

Fact 1: As each goose flaps its wings it creates an “uplift” for the birds that follow.
By flying in a “V” formation, the whole flock adds 71% greater range
than if each bird flew alone.
Lesson: People who share a common sense of direction and community can get
where they are going quicker and easier because they are traveling on the
thrust of one another.

Fact 2: When a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and
resistance of flying alone. It quickly moves back into formation to take
advantage of the lifting power of the bird immediately in front of it.
Lesson: If we have as much sense as a goose we stay in formation with those
headed where we want to go. We are willing to accept their help and give
our help to others.

Fact 3: When the lead goose tires, it rotates back into the formation and another
goose flies to the point position.
Lesson: It pays to take turns doing the hard tasks and sharing leadership, as with
geese, people are interdependent on each other’s skill, capabilities and
unique arrangement of gifts, talents or resources.

Fact 4: The geese flying in formation honk to encourage those up front to keep up
their speed.
Lesson: We need to make sure our honking is encouraging. In groups where there
is encouragement, the productivity is much greater. The power of
encouragement (to stand by one’s heart or core values and encourage the
heart and core of others) is the quality of honking we seek.

Fact 5: When a goose gets sick, wounded or shot down, two geese drop out of
formation and follow it down to help and protect it. They stay until it dies
or can fly again. Then they launch out with another formation or catch up
with the flock.
Lesson: If we have as much sense as geese, we will stand by each other in difficult
times as well as when we are strong.

Lessons from Geese was transcribed from a speech given by Angeles Arrien at the 1991 Organizational Development Network and is based on the work of Milton Olson
community
smile at people in the street and chat to old ladies waiting for the bus; make your world a nicer place!

It seems perfectly obvious when you think about it but I, probably like a lot of people, sometimes need the obvious pointing out in order to think about it!
It’s something I’ve seen a lot from doing voluntary work with addicts and going to weekly Smart Recovery meetings. We’re quite often each other’s lifeline. There’s always at least one person in the group that’s struggling and everybody else naturally bouys them up; I do it automatically, without thinking, and then when I am struggling they will support me in return. It comes so naturally to us in recovery to ‘give back’ because we understand our own need for that support and we’re grateful for having recieved the benefits of it. I often think that if SMART, mindfulness and self awareness were taught in schools then the world would be a much nicer place!
Surely this is how the world should work? What comes so naturally to geese and to a lot of individuals in recovery should surely be the system on which our society is based? To look after those that are weaker than ourselves and to have the security of knowing that we, too, will be looked after should it be necessary, should be the foundation of everyday life; we must have understood this as a society at one point, it is what caused the formation of the NHS after all.
So until the world in general, or those running it, comes to its senses, let’s those of us that are self aware enough to know that we should always be looking at who we are as people in order to grow, and understand that we are all a constant work in progress, let’s look after those in our communities that need it, let’s talk to our neighbours and offer our support, let’s smile at people in the street and chat to old ladies waiting for the bus. Keep fighting to change your bit of the world, your community, for the better and show that we won’t submit to being worthless, easily replaced commodities with no individual spirit.

Let’s make the effort to spread positivity and hope that the message eventually spreads to those that haven’t quite got it yet!