For When Your Heart Is Breaking.

I started this blog to deal with every issue that I feel isn’t addressed often, correctly or as much as needed. Heart break is one, and one I have been avoiding until I felt like I could do it justice. 

Let me begin by addressing that it sucks. I will do you the favour of not pretending, like people who are just trying to make you feel better quicker, that there is some perk to heart ache. Not the simple, quick break up, but when you took a leap of faith and fell. When your chest constricts (scientifically because your brain has encountered a situation so emotionally stressful it is flooding your body both with hormones to speed and slow your heart), and tears constantly threaten to fall from your eyes because you can’t stop thinking of what might have been. If you hadn’t, if they hadn’t. I am so sorry for your loss. Whether you can avoid them or they live just down the road, there is no ignoring the link between your thoughts and your broken heart. 
I guess the revelation that came to me which prompted this post was simply that whatever it could have been, it wasn’t. You can shed tears, scream into your pillow and try and convince someone that it was meant to be, but it wasn’t. Your heart is broken because something else broke first. At least one of you thought it just couldn’t work, and a relationship can’t function on only one half trying. If he had just trusted me, if she would just try a little harder, if only I could feel for them what they wanted me to feel, it would have worked, but it didn’t. And that was to date the scariest revelation I have ever had. You may have done absolutely nothing wrong, but it still didn’t work. Life sucks like that, and if your heart is aching my heart goes out to you. Although the thought scared me, however, it helped. My second break up was much faster than the first because I was on the back foot. I was the one doing the convincing, and I came to realisation I am sharing with you now- that it was just not meant to be. Maybe in the future, maybe not, but right now with this person, it could not function. A Facebook relationship guru once said “break ups are just the universe telling you there is something better.” Your love isn’t enough to carry the weight for two, just as your lack of emotion isn’t fair on the one trying to carry you. A break up simply means this wasn’t meant to be. 
So it is at this point the anger has already rushed through you, and logic starts to come back as your brain adjusts to a new situation and the chemicals settle. Ignore the people who tell you how long it “should be” before you heal and need to get back out there. Do what you need. Watch YouTube, read another six articles, watch some comedy, bury their things. Listen to either “The One That Got Away” by Civil Wars or “The One That Got Away” by Katy Perry depending which side of the fence you are on (for both the accoustic version is better). Talk to those who can help and do not ignore the pain. Pain is like many bad things, including mould, dirty socks and mysterious lumps- the longer you ignore them, the worse they will get. Taking the time to deal with it means you nip it in the bud. As long as you know you tried your hardest, accept it wasn’t meant to be and there is something much better waiting. There is someone who will feel for you as you do for them- who will try as hard, love as much and make you feel like you deserve. It is not a cliche that you deserve the best, but the truth. If they didn’t want you or you couldn’t love them, they were not the best for you. Also consider they may be the best for someone else.

Food for thought.

Oh and some advice for free- food for your body needs to consist of less ice cream.
  

Choose The Right

I was in an antiques store today, and the owners were rather aloof. Paying special attention to the people who looked like their wallets were too heavy, I meandered through the store, perusing at leisure, but highly aware that I was being overlooked. There was, to be fair, little I could afford, but history fascinates me and I found myself drawn to a little basket of original cigarette cards- drawings with facts on the back that used to be used to promote Tobacco. They were each fascinating, and I found one I liked easily, but the thought crossed my mind that I could just walk out of the shop with this card. A dollar seemed a bit pricy, and there were any number of ways to do it without anyone noticing- wouldn’t it have been alright? No one was going to miss it, and a part of me wanted a bit of revenge, however meaningless against the people who had thought I wasn’t worth a second glance. 
It’s weird how many things we glaze over as they form cliches, but the inner battle should never be undermined, even if it’s over the price of a card. So much in me was saying that there was absolutely nothing wrong with it, and only once voice said, very quietly, that it is simply wrong to steal. We are taught it from a young age, it says it in the bible and no matter how little the card would mean to whomever I showed it to, I would always know I stole it, and it is not mine. So, to distract myself from simply walking out of the store holding the card, I went over to look at some rings, and one caught my attention, so of course I had to go and get the store owner to open the cabinet and she watched me like a hawk. Through my mind was simply running, “if I had wanted to steal something, i would have been a lot better at it. If only you knew.” As she watched me, the urge became increasingly stronger to take the card and leave. She was literally standing there staring at me as if I had done something wrong, and if she thought I had, why shouldn’t I? 
As I turned to go, and she was about to lock the door again, I saw a tiny little green shield ring, and on a complete spur, I picked it up and took it to the counter. She waddled behind me to ensure I didn’t run off, but now I actually had something worth more than a dollar, I wanted to make the purchase, so I bought the ring and the card. On the ring is stamped “CTR”, and the lady nor I knew what it meant, but I thought it was quaint, and so I walked out with my two legal purchases, wondering whether I’d made the right decision- it took twenty minutes trying to decide to do the wrong thing and one to do the right. Later on, I googled what “CTR” on a green shield means, and my mind was blown.
There was a campaign, begun in America in the 1970’s where every child in a Latter Day Saints Sunday school was given this very ring. It stems from an old hymn from the ’30’s called (you’ll never believe) Choose The Right. I have put the lyrics below, but in short, I was very, very glad I had not stolen that card. 
1. Choose the right when a choice is placed before you.

In the right the Holy Spirit guides;

And its light is forever shining o’er you,

When in the right your heart confides.
2. Choose the right! Let no spirit of digression

Overcome you in the evil hour.

There’s the right and the wrong to ev’ry question;

Be safe thru inspiration’s pow’r.
(Chorus)

Choose the right! Choose the right!

Let wisdom mark the way before.

In its light, choose the right!

And God will bless you evermore.
3. Choose the right! There is peace in righteous doing.

Choose the right! There’s safety for the soul.

Choose the right in all labors you’re pursuing;

Let God and heaven be your goal.

  

Day Four of the Travellers Log

As I spend more time on this boat, I begin to see the perks as well as the drags. For too long I believed I was stranded on this god forsaken vessel (woe is me!) but finally what could be so good as to convince my breakfast companions this morning to embark on their 23rd journey started to sink in. (Should not be using the word sink.)
While my stomach has settled, and I’m finally able to walk down the corridor without swaying (I always assumed walking like a pirate was because of the rum. Now I cannot imagine allowing any depressants to inhibit my sense of balance), until this morning, I was still surrounded by a dark blue disk. However, it’s not all bad. There was a movie last night on a huge screen, and my parents and I finally figured out how to use the ships messaging system to communicate. I think what I have started to enjoy as much as the entertainment and food, however, is the company. We were paired with a couple and their daughter for dinner, which has been interesting, and this mornings bacon was shared with an American couple. Locked on a boat, I figure some would go stir crazy, but surprisingly, there is something for everyone if you look hard enough for it. 
On the flip side, I thought we were actually getting off the boat this morning. The ships garbage is kept on our level and the stink is beginning to spread- plus we actually caught a glimpse of the land today, and, like Noah’s dove on the ark, a fruit fly flew onto the ship and into my eye this morning to alert us of dry land. So, we could go and explore, but I was told not for another day. The thing about being on a cruise is it takes a lot of time to get where you want to go. It’s been four days and I haven’t actually seen anything of New Zealand expect for its mountains. I didn’t realise how disappointed I’d be to be corrected until I had everything in my back pack (and a list of things to do with my first ten minutes on wifi). I have to admit, a full blown tantrum crossed my mind, but I’m stuck on a boat for the next two weeks and I don’t want to spend it in a padded room. 
So, land ahoy but no dropping the anchor (do boats even still have anchors?). The riggings look too dodgy to climb and there are enough staff to ensure the decks are scrubbed. 
Signing off for today, slightly sad and perhaps a tad damp. 

Learning

Although I struggle, as every hipster does, against being mainstream and sort of shallow (I recently went blonde, so I’ve been fighting the stereotypes, although, as it turns out, blondes do have more fun) I recently started a gratitude journal. I had a few empty books lying around the house as people know I’m a writer (although they never seem to realise I spend most of my time writing online, which needs neither paper nor pen) and I picked the prettiest one up a few month ago and started writing what I am grateful for in my life. 
First came a lot of the obvious ones. My family, friends, religion,my dog, but then I found myself realising how much I had grown since the beginning of the year. It comes about as you think of what is in your life that wasn’t there before- a new youth means new friends, etc. I mean, it’s the start of another year, and that time that you start looking back on who you have become. 
A lot happened this year, including a few bad things but as I took an internal audit, I began to recognise how they had shaped me, and for the better. So, as scary as it was, I took pen to paper and began to look at being grateful for the bad things. A few big ones included my Mum getting her wheelchair, which made us closer as a family, however it was a struggle adjusting and, I guess, each of us had to accept that our dynamic was going to shift. Having my first boyfriend was in so many ways a chaotic disaster, but I found it taught me a lot about relationships and about how I respond to different things. It spurred me to write about dating non Christians because I had ignored advice that I can now say was spot on. I also see it helping me in my new relationships, as well as helping me to appreciate the people I’m around more. I know I’ll do better in my next relationship thanks for the hardships of the first one. The HSC was hard, and stressful, but I finished it and was rewarded with a sense if accomplishment. That sense of relief, and release was worth the long hours and frustration- watching the fruition of my hard work pay me above and beyond.
I realised, writing in my journal, that I need to be grateful for the pain. Someone once said pain can make you bitter or better, and as I wrote down every person, circumstance and moment that hurt me so badly, I could not help but thank God that he had stretched me and I had trusted him to come out stronger. Pain sucks, it’s true, but when you weather the storm, the reward is far greater. You don’t break, but build. You get angry, and sad and hurt, but it gets better. And that is something to be grateful for. 
I can now be grateful for a terrible year, even though the year was terrible while I was in it. I can now be stronger for the next terrible time, and remember this moment, knowing it will come around again. 

The Second Day on the Boat

This year, for the first time in many years, my parents and I decided to take a cruise. Well, really they decided- I didn’t find out until a few weeks ago. Maybe they knew I would have quarrels. I didn’t (and still don’t) understand spending so much time in a floating hotel when you could get a plane, and explore the territory more. Today is literally just a day spent on the water, watching eagerly for land as I know my English ancestors did two hundred years ago. Despite the amenities, from a pool we can’t use due to the rough waves, and the food we don’t want to eat as our stomachs constantly readjust to whichever way we’ve twisted, there isn’t much to do. I may just understand the feeling of longing for a bit of land ho.
See, being on a boat for a prolonged period is unlike anything one might experience. We didn’t wake up until midday because there are no windows to alert my body it’s time to get up. I consciously remember opening my eyes, my mind registering the dark and going back to sleep several times. In every which direction you look, there is just sea that ends on a horizon, as if you’re in the middle of a giant aquatic disk. When I walk, not having acquired my sea legs, it’s like going through a rolling ride at Luna Park- a man offered me a wine tasting and I said no, partially due to legalities, but also because if I consume anything that isn’t bland or fruit for the next few hours I will end up on my butt. 

Furthermore, it’s like being in a sort of wonderland. Getting to your cabin is walking through a rabbit warren, and I continuously get haunting images of when Jack is stuck in a cabin in the ‘Titanic’. My mum’s in a wheelchair and it was made increasingly clear during yesterday’s drill that it is every man, elderly person and small child for themselves. There are things you randomly get charged for ($29 for sparkling instead of still?) but then you’ll come back to a room where your pajamas are folded and there’s a complimentary heart shaped chocolate on your pillow. I’m still getting used to being on someone else’s turf (or, you know, surf). 
It’s not all bad. We watched a movie last night (although the screen swayed a little), and there’s a kids and teens club, which I suppose I’ll peruse despite activities including hot tub party and bachelor/bachelorette competitions. I found the swaying surprisingly peaceful to sleep to, like being rocked to sleep as a child (my dad, however, did not have the same luck). The food, in our calmer moments, is amazing, strange as it is to be constantly waited on. The crew are from all around the world and I’d like to ask them what their stories are, including one waiter from India with a strange tattoo on his hand who explained the difference between ordering water and not (if you ask for it, you pay for it. Curiouser and curiouser.) It would be nice to have seen some of New Zealand by now (yes, I am a product of the “instant generation”) but they do really go to every effort to ensure you don’t remember there is actually more than the boat that surrounds you. My fellow HSC students will be either proud or horrified to hear I remember a part of “the Art of Travel” (a thoroughly murderous novel by Alain de Botton if you ever have the time to not read something) where he decides to stay aboard the cruise ship he is on as he decides to be content with the image he has in his mind of his destination. I cannot ever imagine being in that position, but then again it is only the second day. Perhaps my perspective will change. 
I also can’t get “captains coming” (a popular camp game, hours of fun) out of my head every time someone official walks past. Then the overwhelming urge to perform captains gone, which I’ve resisted as I want to maintain some level of respectability amongst the rest of the ship.