Oh, how I’d wish he’d go away…

Have you ever heard the poem ‘Antigonish’ by William Hughes Mearns? I feel like it’s one of those poems that we encounter at some point in our lives, be it in a song reference, a movie/TV show reference or even somewhere on Pinterest/Tumblr/Reddit.

It’s quite an eerie poem and has such an eerie feel and while it sends shivers down my spine, I really like the fact that it’s the use of words that’s making me feel that way. It basically reinforces the power of words and how it can affect emotions, moods and the imagination.

Anyways, the point of this blog is that in the last week, I’ve been feeling rather bleak and empty. I feel like my emotions are best represented by this photo – we found a wreckers yard somewhere in the middle of nowhere. It was raining and misty and the yard was so empty, so abandoned and so creepy.

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Anyways, back to what I was saying; the nasty voice inside my head has been making frequent visits and I just find I hate myself and everything about me, physically and emotionally. The other day, we had a German couple stay with us on AirBnB and they asked me how old I was. When I told them I was 27 and they said they were 21 and 20, I lost my mind. They were travelling the world and were so independent and I’m living at home with my parents. Lol. I was so embarrassed I practically avoided them for the rest of their stay. That’s another thing; I find myself being so embarrassed about the way I look and wanting to look ‘normal’ and blend into the shadows, not stick out like a sore thumb in the crowd.

Let me just say that I’m never this hard on myself. Sometimes the critic rears his ugly head but it never lasts long and the power of positivity usually kicks him back into his cave. I love myself 85% of the time and while it’s not 100%, it’s damn well better than what it’s been in my younger days and I’m still working on my self-love. I also want to point out that I’m not embarrassed about my current situation of being at home with my family; it’s great being able to spend this time with them before I head off overseas for god knows how long. I also really like my blue/green hair because I feel like a magical unicorn and I like being different and being able to express myself with my style but today, oh today…

What does this have to do with ‘Antigonish’? Well, the man that keeps appearing but isn’t there reminds me of that negative, self-loathing voice that keeps appearing but really isn’t there. He rears his ugly head, says some nasty things, but at the end of the day, I tell myself he’s just a voice, he’s not really there and he’s only as real as you let him become. He’s also as present as you let him be.

I know it’s never an easy feat dealing with him when he arrives. This is what I do when he visits: I sit there, listen to everything he tells me, mope around, shake him off, make a plan on what I’m going to do to address his words so I can make a change and prove him wrong, sometimes I end up feeling helpless because I’m weak so I let his words linger and I mope some more but when I’m finally done with moping I get up and get on with it and do something I love, such as:

  • Walk/wander/run
  • Listen to some guaranteed happy tunes
  • Write
  • Harass my family
  • Play with my cats
  • Nap
  • Read
  • Practice a craft I’m trying to master
  • Chores
  • Have a bath
  • Binge watch something

Not gonna lie, some of these things I don’t actually love but they serve as fantastic distractions.

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It’s never easy when he rears his ugly head to belittle you and make you feel hopeless and ugly. But you gotta remember that he’s only as strong as you let him be. Have the courage to step back and say fuck off because while the man is waiting there for you and you’re looking for him in the hall, you won’t be able to see him at all.

So, go away, go away, don’t you come back anymore…

Go away, go away, and please don’t slam the door…

Do the dark days hit you as well? What do you do to get rid of the little man and his hideous words?

The deep end: Part Two

Scary situation #2

I’m going to sub-sub-head this ‘The Climb’. I think it’s worthy of a sub-sub heading because well, it was truly wonderful.

I woke up at 10.00am on a Monday off. I hopped in the shower (don’t judge me when you read on and realize maybe I should’ve just had a shower after, not first), put on my workout gear, packed my 1L bottle of water and raincoat into a daypack and headed out the door.

I was determined to climb up Mount Kaukau, which is the highest most visible point in the Wellington region. According to Wikipedia, it’s 445 meters above sea level.

Anyways, I parked up and made my way to the entrance of the park. I read the map, took a deep breath and went forward. While I knew EXACTLY what I was getting myself into, nothing prepared me for all the upward hills and stairs. Yerp, there were stairs.

Every corner I turned there were more and more and more stairs. I’m not going to lie, I felt like I was going to cry and give up more times than I could recite my ABCs repeatedly in 20 minutes (does this even make sense?). Oh and did I mention my calves were on fire because I went for a bit of an uphill hike a couple of days before and didn’t stretch? Yeah, that’s a thing.

Anyways, when I finally got to the top and there was a wide stretch of green with a picnic table and people lying on the grass, my god I can’t even begin to describe to you how happy I felt. I was so happy I actually started laughing. Yes that’s right, I was there by myself. And laughing. And as I continued to walk up, I continued to have a massive grin on my face.

I didn’t even care that all the people that passed me while walking up had already had their moment of bliss and were heading back down while I had just made it to the summit. It didn’t phase me one bit.

I was so happy. I soaked in the 360 views and spent a solid 5 minutes around every corner with a huge smile on face. I was truly taking everything in and I thought to myself, is this what true happiness feels like? Cause if it is, I bloody want more.

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It’s hard to believe that I was experiencing a once in a blue moon moment where I was truly happy and I was by myself. What are the odds! I smiled for a while longer and decided to keep walking rather than turn around because these treks usually take you back to your starting point right?

… Right?

I was pulled into continuing the trek by the hills and an inviting pathway. I kept walking and stopped to read a map and signs that said ‘Johnsonville this way’. Meh, it’s indicating Johnsonville is that way but it doesn’t mean it’s going to take you to just Johnsonville. Right?

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I kept walking… nearly stepped on dog poop and fell off the cliff because I just had to take an incredible photo. I drained my battery – from 99% it was sitting at 12%. Who cares? I won’t need it for anything other than photos.

IMG_1623IMG_1624 I just kept walking and walking and walking and suddenly, I was at an exit point. To Johnsonville. The opposite of where my car was parked.

Fuck.

Scary situation #3

Same day. Same place. I was in a cul-de-sac in the middle of fucking Johnsonville. Might I add, I know NOTHING about Johnsonville. I mean this was a place where my friend had to be google maps and guide me to Nandos (it’s a pretty small place kinda). For a place that’s literally a 10 minute drive from where I lived, I knew NOTHING. Like Jon Snow, I knew NOTHING.

So naturally, I checked google maps. Wahoo, 10% battery. Fuck. Google maps told me it was going to take approximately 30 minutes to get to my car. Okay cool, easy enough. With my dying phone and dying map and dying GPS. Screenshotting the map isn’t going to help, given by this time I was sitting at 5%.

I started walking through the wild ‘burbs until I got to a roundabout with a dairy in the corner. I decided I needed electrolytes or caffeine or just something. I bought a Loaded drink. Mm electrolytes.

Then my phone died. I kept following the main road, with my backpack, feeling like a right tourist and actually reading signs. To cut the story short, I made it to my car parked in Khadallah. It took me about 40-45 minutes (hard to tell when you don’t have a phone because it’s dead but judging by the approximate time of 2.35pm just before my phone died and it being 3.15pm or whatever from the top of my head).

I was so happy to see Georgie (my car) from a distance. I ran to her and hugged her like the true weirdo that I am. There was a couple sitting by the train station and I could feel their eyes piercing into my back. But you know what? Fuck them. They didn’t know my struggle. They didn’t have to endure what I had endured.

FUCK. THEM.

So in the space of one day, I:

  • nearly gave up
  • nearly killed someone/thing
  • nearly cried in pain
  • felt pure happiness and true bliss at the same time
  • loved life
  • felt content
  • felt assured
  • felt lost
  • felt nervous and anxious
  • felt relieved

I totally think I’m ready to travel alone.

A day in a current and past life.

  • 8.00am wake up
  • 8.02am shower, brush teeth
  • 8.15am get dressed, do make up
  • 8.30am go to work
  • 8.50am make a coffee and some oats for breakfast
  • 8.55am sit down in front of my computer and start scanning through my work for the day

It concerns me that I’m so used to my weekday routine, I know it off my heart down to the minutes. I do things in order and usually count the minutes.

Seemed like a relatively normal weekday for me but then it hit me. Hard.

I started questioning what I was doing? what was I planning to do in the future? what have I achieved so far? did I do the things I had thought I’d do by the time I hit 26 and if not, why not? And then the ultimate question hit: am I happy?

I spent the rest of the day pondering. Least to say, I didn’t actually get much work done. I went home and kept reassessing my life and worrying about how I’m going to be turning 30 in three and a half years and I have nothing to show for my 20s. I think 18-year-old me would be very disappointed. My flatmate told me I was going through a ‘quarter life crisis’. Hmm… it can’t possibly be…

I googled ‘quarter life crisis’ and interestingly enough, Wikipedia describes it as ‘…a period of life ranging from twenties to thirties, in which a person begins to feel doubtful about their own lives, brought on by the stress of being an adult’. Okay so he was right.

It was in that moment that I think I completely woke up. I needed to do the things that I wanted to do for so long but never did because I used the excuse of ‘I’m poor’ or ‘I’m too tired to care’. I mean, let’s be honest here, I’m still relatively poor (whopping $19 to last me til payday in 5 days! Woot!) but I’m not going to let it stop me. Not this time anyways.

  • I’m going to create a life that isn’t going to be measured by time.
  • I’m going to do things that scare me one at a time.
  • I’m going to travel. Fuck yes.

Hello. Join me as I prepare, plan and navigate my way through whatever the world throws at me. After all, life’s an open book waiting for you to fill its pages.