Ruin

As a young boy I loved delving into our bookshelves at home. My parents didn’t love me rummaging through our prized set of encyclopedias, but I didn’t care for much of it.

I remember how one particular day, a typical Cape Town-storm brewing outside, I was hunched in a nest of blankets and pillows in my room pouring over the pyramids of Egypt. For hours I stared at the pictures, trying to imagine how these behemoth structures were erected and ’till this day stand tall, peering over Egypt’s deserts and cloaking the tourists in their shadows or bathing them in sunlight.

One piece from the caption an illustration still stays with me today: “These ruins stand preserved as beautiful structures, being one of the most enigmatic, yet breathtaking modern wonders of this world.”

So, my fellow bloggers, ruin… How can ruin be beautiful?

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The realisation

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You’ll remember a few posts ago how I was telling you about the new person I met. The person who was able to restore my broken heart after the superstorm of R who took his own life and left me to deal with the aftermath of it all.

J… The one to put a flicker in my dying heart.

As the story goes, J and I both had a huge falling out and things just continued to spiral out of control. It was something ugly – tearing our hearts apart. Neither one of us meant it, but neither one of us really knew how to really deal with this.

So, this past weekend, J came to Cape Town again. After I pleaded one last time for him to fight for me, he hopped onto a plane to come fight for me.

Seeing him again, felt good. It felt like I was back home, in a safe space. Like I was where I needed to be. Where I was meant to be.

This all didn’t last.

As later the evening, during a Halloween party, I got a little bit drunk and saw him talking to someone else. A jealous rage swept over me like a red mist and before my tongue could stop itself, I was lashing out towards him. Blaming him for the mistakes of R’s infidelity (a story I will get to another time). It was irrational. He saw it, sat me down and tried to break through the walls I had built around myself these past months. After telling me how hard it was being around me when I was closed off, shutting people out and hurting people by being a stone wall slowly crumbling under the pressure of everyone’s troubles on my shoulders and more importantly my own troubles that I reflect inwards… I realised how bad it really was.

It wasn’t ’till he told me how R’s cloud had followed us from Day 1 and that he couldn’t compete with a dead man anymore, that I lost it. A little something inside me died and I got up. Luckily, my two friends Ancomien and Mienke, were at hand to intervene. Mienke stayed behind to talk to J and Ancomien swept a frantic, panicked me away.

Guys, I don’t remember much. All I know is that I had what could best be described as a meltdown. Soon, my friends also started telling me how they were tired of me not relying on them and slowly fading away in front of their eyes… I on the other hand, kept crying hysterically, feeling every emotion in me slipping away.

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The next 24 hours was spent with loved ones intervening.

On Sunday evening, J and I made a mutual decision to not force anything now, and that it would be best if I went to heal myself and that I stay away from him, to stop hurting him on the jagged edges of my heart. This on its own hurt me beyond words and broke the last broken pieces of my heart into dust.

Ultimately, as I laid in bed that evening, I realised that I was never okay. I was not over everything. I had never accepted what had happened to me. And I was losing a lot more than my life… My friends were ready to call quits on me (even though they love me too much to say that me).


And now?

I’ve been on pretty strong tranquilizers since Sunday.

The emotions are all gone from me for now. I think they symbolically left with my tears and washed away. I really do feel empty, for the first time in a while, I really am scared of how empty I feel.

It was one huge mistake. Me, taking everything that happened, the unresolved issues, emotions, pain, hurt, sorrow and plastering them up behind the walls in my head. The biggest lie I have told myself to thus far hasn’t been that R might still be alive, but it was that I was okay with everything and over it all. I was so desperate to be okay again, to be someone who I once remember in passing or even remotely a version of something that I could be okay with. In plastering all those stuff up behind a wall in my head, I did the greatest injustice to myself.

After my friends and people who love me walked in with sledgehammers, looking for that one wall where everything was hidden behind, I’m literally left in ruin now. I needed to be saved from myself. Guys, the worst thing is having being saved from yourself by friends.

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Ruin

Hi everyone, I’m David. And my life is in ruin.

The first step to me getting better and healing is for me to admit this.

Right now, like those pyramids in Egypt, I’m in ruin, but still standing. I’m a beautiful mess. And the great thing about a beautiful mess is that you can either choose to gather your mistakes and carry on forward and be who you are now or you can wipe the entire slate clean and start a new.

As I mentioned, my blog is going to go onto a new course. And I still stick to that promise. From here on out, no more bars hold. I’m opening the doors of my life wide – it’s time for a major spring cleaning and I’d like to invite all of you to walk with me.

For the one thing that ties all of us together is that we all feel pain. We’ve all been through hardships, broken hearts, loss and grief. And we’ve all stood up from ruin to either rebuild our lives.

Let this serve as a reminder to us all – never, EVER, convince yourself you’re okay and then try to bury non-resolved feelings and emotions. Face your demons, fight them and move on to the next battle.

And this time – I won’t lie to anyone again. I refuse to be the Boy Who Cried Wolf. I’m not okay and I’m okay with that. Because I know I have amazing people in my life and supportive readers who will see me through this hardship.

Upwards and onward.

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Most importantly, just find yourself

As I was sitting in the room, I stared over at the couples who were leaning in to on another, whispering sweet nothings and cradling their hands in each other’s. Like many times before me, I felt the familiar feeling in my gut: You are missing out big time on this feeling. A feeling called love.

Later, as the party was in full swing, I saw a couple outside the ballroom fighting. The passion in their eyes alight like the fire of a thousands suns. Words being flung around carelessly. Anger making way for what use to be love. As I was staring at this fight, I realised how there is always that one person who will be left with nothing. Have it be after the fight has subdued or if the fight leads to a breakup. One person is always left with nothing.

It’s sad.

In these modern times, I have found too many friends running to me with the same crisis after a breakup. They suddenly disembowel the entire relationship and breakup to try and find why they are an empty shell now. A full autopsy is performed to see where the core of their being as a person went lost and how they can try and revive it. It’s almost an impossible task at times, while others sometimes have to start from scratch, having lost everything they were.

I’m more than happy to help them. Not because they are my friends, but because I was once/ am now where they are and it’s easier to have someone plot a course and trajectory for you than having yourself stumbling around in the dark, blindly.

About 11 months ago, when my boyfriend passed away after a battle with depression, I was the one who was disemboweling the relationship, trying to find the point where it all went wrong. It’s more excruciating than it sounds. Trust me – relieving every moment in your head, trying to put the broken puzzle pieces together, is not for the faint of heart.

At one point, I remember waking up one morning. It was a normal morning, with me having slept nothing at all that night. I had been up, tossing and turning, trying to make sense of it all. Questions still remaining without any answers. As I was slouching to the bathroom, I looked at myself in the mirror. Something like this, is a normal action for many each morning. No second guessing it. Automated. But this morning, I caught a glimpse of my eyes. What followed terrified me.

They were dead. My eyes were lifeless and hollow. I could see it shine through. Like that couple who were fighting, passion shining through their eyes like burning suns, the lifelessness shone through mine. Like a fist to my chest, it hit the wind out of me. I can say, it’s safe to assume it was then that I knew I had lost me.

Like the person I am, a full postmortem followed after this. Soon, it was becoming clearer to me, that I was the one who had to be left with nothing. Being the nothing, rather.

I think most people’s sadness after a breakup these days, are because of this reason. That they become the nothing when their something is ripped away. I resent that this even has to be something you have to go through, upon losing the one you had/have loved. No one deserves this at the least.

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Now, I want to appeal to you: You can find yourself again.

Even at the point of losing your everything, your core, your being, the thing that makes you, you… At that point you can start finding yourself again.

It’s not easy, but it’s doable.

When all is lost, you have so much to use again to build yourself up from scratch. Go out, explore life, yourself and do something unexpected and new. Life, cry, laugh, smile and disappoint yourself ’till you reach a point where you have found yourself again.

Knowing who we are in life, is one of our greatest strengths. When challenges and potholes come our way, this is what we use and fall back on to get to the point of ultimate conquest or strength.

If you are reading this right now, thinking that I am speaking about you or to you, then you should probably sit down and start thinking about things. Just know, you are not the only one going through this.

Will you ever find yourself completely? No. You do however discover yourself across your life. Many facets reveal themselves and equip you even more in dealing with things.

Just for now, be proud of yourself for conquering that mishap, heartbreak or tear in your life and still being able to stand.

But most importantly: just find yourself.

Travel.

Caution – Landmine ahead

In a blur, almost 31 days of the first month of 2015 had passed by and I was still reeling and trying to hold on for dear life. This year had started with a bang and
I was probably still in perpetual bomb shock from the event. It still didn’t seem like a month later. Wasn’t it still New Year’s Eve?

Facing a stark reality, I was facing another one that was looming around the corner: Valentine’s Day. February the 14’th was less than a month away and in my current state this was even more of a shock to me. The day I had been fearing is rapidly approaching and I had no idea to cope with with might come, follow or happen on that doomed day.

A year ago I was in a relationship, happy, content and enjoying the company of the most wonderful guy. Now, I’m “widowed”, alone and partying up a storm around town. What a stark constrast and a prospect that could have anyone facing Valentine’s Day in the face think of emptying a bar just to numb the pain.

Fuck.

It’s 8 months later since R passed away and after a brief hiatus I’m back on the blogosphere to type away my feelings. Since my previous blog, lots has changed up inside my head. The emotional rollercoaster I’m still on seemed to have reached a brief pause and everything I was feeling has slipped away into thin air. The anger and resentment has now moved out momentarily and made place for a little of the Old David to just reclaim some normalcy and stability to his life. My life.

Somehow this had become my window to the world around me, magnifying it’s gaze on the empty shell that has been left to fend for itself since R comitted suicide. For the first time in a while I was asking myself: What is it you’re planning on doing now? A question with no easy answer, but one I was willing to investigate for sure.

This whole new outlook had something to do with the fact that it was a new year where I could embrace some sort of new beginning and leave a huge chunk of what had happened last year in the past and start writing off that chapter as a loss. Although I have not made much progress on adopting a new plan, New Year – New David, I had begun thinking what it is I want to get out of this new year and that alone seems good enough to me. The actual challenge was now to put this over in actions…

But why was I mortified by Valentine’s Day, you might wonder. Well… It’s not the fact that I’d be spending it alone as so much as being reminded of the fact that I was with R last year and now I’m not. It felt to me as if this reminder alone would halter the plans I was trying to put into motion to move on and reclaim a bit of my life back.

In each time period, there was a certain event or date that would seem like a landmine in my road to reclaiming myself, that would pop up and blow up in my face and also blow up any progress I’ve made. Each time I was left to just pick myself and the pieces of my heart that I had been carrying around and just try and venture on again.

You might notice why I’m scared shitless of Valentine’s Day aproaching… This progress I’ve made, that was so valuable to me, was going to be blown to smithereens and I would have to head back to the drawing board again, just to have the next big reminder and date explode in my face.

Another startling realisation: I’ve hence become scared of living. Hideaways and secret forts has become my solitude, keeping me safe and cushioning the nasty blow
each time. But, being so safe each time is what has been irritating me and pushing me to start making new plans and think of myself again. Was I being a misogynist? Was I doing this to myself and was I stuck in a viscious circle?

What I knew was: I hated being safe and hiding, making excuses and lying.

All I wanted and needed to do was to wear my scars with pride and keep my head held high. And with each landmine, I just need to keep going and leave whatever plans and progress I’ve made that’s been blow to pieces and just keep rolling with the punches.

It was maybe easier said than done, but I was done of hiding from life.

Life, with it’s drama’s, up’s, down’s and flair was something I was missing out on and the one thing I cried about really hard these last few weeks. I’ve mourned a dead boyfriend – I didn’t want to mourn the loss of my life as well.

Autopilot

[17 weeks]

I kept slamming at the dashboard. The light that indicated my plane was on autopilot had gone out and it was freaking the living crap out of me. Slamming the dashboard didn’t help and it sure as hell didn’t calm me down. It’s when the thought struck me: This is all on me now.

Using the metaphor of a plane on autopilot has been the best way to describe my life after R passed away in May. It was like a force of some kind had taken over my body and mind and had been directing me in the right way and making sane decisions that I wouldn’t ordinarily make under these circumstances.

Now, 17 weeks into this stint, my body had decided to leave the autopilot function behind. And it was becoming a torment and hell of its own.

Whilst on autopilot everything seemed more calm and collected than it was right now. Which to me and maybe to you could seem weird. Right after someone passes away, you shouldn’t be in the calm of the storm. The storm should be ripping you to shreds and tearing every inch of you apart.

Now, after I’ve been left to pilot my own plane, it seems to me like I’ve been thrown smack dab into the middle of another storm.

Whilst R’s death has its own set of crisis and issues I’ve had to deal with, my life crept on forward. And that creeping action brought along more and more layers of crisis’ and issues to deal with upon everything else. In this storm, I was swerving from left to right just to avoid hitting something or causing damage.

Let me not lie: this was tiring. Exhausting. Straining.

At this moment in time, I felt really defeated. It was not like me to just sit down and claim that I’ve been beaten to the side, but it was growing more harsher to get by every single day, fearing at the same time that something might happen to add to the growing pile of bulltwang.

My plane, with damage to its exterior, hull, engines and fuel line was still miraculously in the air. Despite all my problems and the storm raging on around me.

While I was claiming “defeat”, I’d not noticed my plane still powering ahead. Why was I so hung up over a stupid “autopilot” phase?

Fine, It might have been less painful back then and I was wrapped in layers of wool and cotton to be protected from the world. But, why would I wanted to hung up over a phase where I didn’t really register what was going on around me and act like a robot. This was not what life is about. Life is about living, through all the bumps and nicks.

Although I’m no expert pilot, I’ve managed to keep powering ahead in the storms heading my way and I have a sinking feeling that I will continue powering my way through these storms, till I’m back in the sunlight and ready to face the world.

Lesser to the fact that Indiana Jones has nothing on me, I know this chapter in my life will just be one I’ll look back at in a few years and realise what lessons I need to take out of this.

For now, I’ll get up on my feet and not admit defeat.

As for Life’s punches: She hits like a little bitch. I’m ready to hit back. Or even, while I’m on the ground, I’ll tie his shoelaces together and watch him fall flat on his face.

I won’t go down that easy.

fangirl me~

Let’s blog about this one, shall we?

You know that moment you stand still just to take a breath and feel like you are breaching the waves that have been rolling over you consistently? It’s like something out of a Steven Spielberg or Nora Ephron movie. You get to have your own little cinematic moment, where you observe that moment, everyone around you and the world as it is.

These last couple of weeks have seemed like one giant wave after another rolling over me. And I’ve not had my moment where I could take a breath of fresh air, yet. It really sad and maybe even pathetic. But at the least it’s kind of important to note that I’ve discovered that April is seemingly my month of great change, every year.

When I turned 18, I had already faced a great deal of challenges in my life. I had overcome them and stood tall, and so I thought to myself: Jeez. Things could only be easier from here on out.

Whoomp. There it was. The ultimate jinx that changed a lot.

And tonight, I want to tell past David: Things were not going to be easier.

(I take a huge gulp of wine and ponder my next sentence.)

(The thoughts were stuck in my head, so I took another gulp of wine… And another. The glass was suddenly empty before it hit me.)

It was April. Why was I even surprised?! The crap always hits the fan in April.

In recent times, to cope with everything, I’ve become a little too obsessed with Disney. And then my thoughts began to wonder about and soon enough I was stuck with the idea that I might be a forgotten Disney princess, stuck in this crappy world with a curse placed on me by some b(w)itch. I know this might send of alarms that I’m a crazy person, but at least I’m not really dressing up like a Disney princess and asking people to call me “Your Highness”…

And through my obsession with Disney, I found a song from Tangled. “When will my life begin” became the anthem to my life.

In that moment I listened to the song again, I had my cinematic moment where I gulped an entire breath of fresh air.

I was being pushed into certain directions by the cosmos. Through all these troubles and problems I was being led to a point where I was going to start my life anew.

(At this point I filled my glass with more wine…)

Too many questions were still filling my head and the answers weren’t coming. I felt frustrated by this. Why was there no answers.

But then, I sank back into my cushion, thinking that maybe I’m not suppose to have all the answers in life right now. Maybe I wasn’t suppose to hang onto the moment. Maybe I was suppose to just entirely let go. Have it be with any thought of the future, problem I was facing or thing that was bothering me. Letting go might just be the right thing for now.

Seeing as the cosmos was directing my cinematic moment right now. I didn’t want to be a drama queen and give it notes on how things were suppose to go.

So, now, I’m jumping into the unknown and letting the universe take things to where they should be.

I’m afraid and crapping myself, but I think I’ll be fine.

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