three

Well then. I’ve gone and done it again.

3 years straight of blogtober – and for what? Mostly, I think, to prove it to myself. When I’m determined, I seem to figure things out. To encourage myself to continue writing, to be able to look back, to catalog another year. If nothing else, this always feels like an accomplishment. Even if I don’t say anything profound, even if my blog will never get a million views. I accomplished this either way.

Without getting too deep into it, this month was not easy. There were days I didn’t want to post anything, and there were days I felt like my heart wasn’t in it anymore.

My emotions were all over the place in October. I was really struggling in this new environment, and my anxiety felt debilitating some days. I’ve dealt with this long enough to know that it comes and goes – though I’m sure if you’ve had a good streak too, you really want to believe that you’re past it for good. I know for me it always feels like a huge step backwards. I have to tell myself that it’s not. Or if it is, what does it matter? Life goes on. Sometimes I just won’t have it in me to ask a salesperson for help.

Still out here dancing in the rain.

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If you read any or all of these posts, I hope you got something from it. And – thank you. For hearing me out.

xo

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the summer

And now, the last season I have to catch myself up on.

We already know that my summer was spent in a long distance relationship, but I haven’t yet shared what else went on in those months.

For the first time ever, I went back to a job. This was kind of a big deal for me. This also meant I was in a familiar place where I felt comfortable, and for once, I wasn’t throwing myself out of my comfort zone. It was interesting.

My summer months were spent in the woods again, hiking, biking, swimming, climbing, breathing in fresh air. In some ways, it felt like going home. Or returning to summer camp (not that I’ve ever been to summer camp).

Tobermory, I know I’ll see you again one day.

xo

journal entry no. 33

 

 

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This one could have also been included in my imaginary #writtenindirt series, since I wrote it on the back of an envelope by a lake somewhere probably.

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I got my headphones caught on a tree branch while I was hiking and they broke on me, so for a couple of days I couldn’t listen to music while I was out and about, and I got real introspective. I genuinely spend nearly no time without some sort of distraction whether it be music or podcasts or whatever, and it really threw me off to have to be in the moment for once.

When I was in group therapy a few years back our leader gave us the challenge to go the week without blocking out the world with our headphones, as she took it as a social crutch and at the time all I came away with was the fact that I really enjoyed having background music while riding the bus or walking to school, but I know now that it truly is a crutch. I wish I could feel comfortable without it, but it’s hard. Though I wrote so much those few days where I couldn’t zone out to whatever was on my Discover Weekly playlist.

 

xo

the spring

Back to our little catch up – let’s talk about spring.

For context, the ski season ended the first week of April and I was “on vacation” from that point on, for all of the spring. Needless to say, I had quite a lot of time on my hands. Not that I did much with it.

pictured: Canmore, Capilano suspension bridge, Banff, West Edmonton Mall, Jasper, Calgary etc. 

This first segment looks a lot like winter, because apparently, in Alberta, it still was. But driving through the snowy mountains wasn’t something I’d ever complain about. I seem to start every spring with a road trip through the mountains (3 years in a row. Not planned) and they keep getting better. I don’t think those views could ever get old for me.

And then I took my girlfriend home with me! To meet my family! And drag her around my hometown for a while! So the rest of the season was spent browsing thrift stores, drinking coffee, riding bikes, hanging out with my family, and gazing at waterfalls.

Pictured: Dundas, Hamilton, Kingston, Turkey Point, London, Niagara Falls etc.

As always, feeling the warmth of the sun again was a treat, and getting to lounge around in it all day every day, well, who could ask for more?

I am realizing I don’t live a very standard type of life, and sometimes even I get my own timeline mixed up. Organizing my photos helps.

xo

temporary

Still making my way through my drafts – here are some thoughts from the beginning of last year.

A few months ago I got the word “temporary” tattooed on my leg..

When asked what this word meant to me I gave the surface level answer that I thought it was funny, because tattoos are permanent. And that is 100% my sense of humour, and 100% why I got it.

I spoke to my older sister on the phone and she asked if it was because I moved all the time, because I travel, and sure, that’s true. But if I were to look deeper, that wouldn’t be it.

Temporary is a comfort. I find peace knowing that nothing lasts forever, the anxiety, the pain, the confusion, nothing is permanent. Not really. Not even the good times.

So maybe it’s about living in the moment. Maybe it’s about breathing through the sinking feeling in my chest late at night when my brain is a deep sea of sadness. Everything is temporary. And right now, even if it’s fleeting, I am happy. And I will not waste my wishes hoping that it’ll stay, because I have more to feel.

Madisen Kuhn wrote,

“the thing about feelings is that they change yesterday, you may have been completely infatuated with someone or entirely immersed in sadness, but that doesn’t mean that’s how you feel now or how you’ll feel forever and I fear that people forget that, I fear we fail to remember that emotions are not permanent”

Everything is fleeting! Nothing matters! Get tattoos that you think are funny! Bleach the crap out of your hair! Love people while they are there and don’t worry so much when they’re not anymore. It’s all temporary, so enjoy the good moments because they’ll be gone before you know it. Same goes for the bad stuff. The only thing that is constant is change or however the saying goes.

xo

behind the scenes

A couple months ago, when I hit a low point, I wrote this whole thing because I so badly wanted my partner to have some understanding of what I was feeling – something other than me repeating “I don’t feel good” or “my brain is on fire”. I made it organised, I made it sort of nice to look at. So here it is, my kind of explanation.

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These bad feelings come and go. Sometimes I know why I feel the way I do, and when I don’t, it’s even worse.

Something I often dwell on is how good my life is. I’ve had full control of my life since I was 19 – for almost 4 years now I’ve been doing whatever the hell I wanted. And still, I feel like this sometimes. I know the 2 things don’t correlate, but damn I wish they did. Not to say I’m not happy, because I am. I’m the happiest I’ve ever been. My Instagram isn’t all that curated – my life is a dream.

We all know by now that I’ve just moved to England. Which has been a dream of mine for a while, and now I’m here. That didn’t stop me from having a breakdown a few nights in from the stress and anxiety and doubt of it all. Logically, I know that anyone would be a little anxious in this new environment, but my head tells me I’m weak, I question why everything feels so difficult for me, I completely shut down when I deem my bad feelings unworthy of existing. Which is fun.  I definitely notice this stuff the most when I’m doing something especially exciting or anticipated. I hate myself for not being able to enjoy things the way I want to, hate all my experiences being clouded with anxiety. Some days are just harder than others, you know?

I’m still going though. Nothing can stop me doing what I want to do, even if I have to shed a few tears or lose a few nights sleep over it. I refuse to live any other way. It’s not fair to myself.

xo

a list

A LIST.

A LIST?

A LIST OF ALL THE THINGS I’VE MISSED.

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(written august 2017, then lost in my drafts until now)

You know, I love a list.

Sometimes when you’re sitting by the lake on a particularly sunny day in August, you wish the person you spent 6 months straight with could be by your side enjoying the view, too. And you realize it’s somehow been 6 months since you’ve even seen them at all. And then it’s been a year and a half. Life goes really fast and things change constantly and suddenly you find that memories are fading. All these moments, meant a lot to me at one point. Why do I have so many all or nothing friendships? Non-stop to full-stop? I’m getting whiplash.

Xo, Rachel