Saturday, January 25, 2014

Don't Live Dead

Alright so the year has officially settled in and most of us are getting back to our regular routines. I am even already starting to write down the correct year when I am required to enter the date (good sign!). But still being so early in the new year, I feel so many of us still continue to reflect on the previous year in all different kinds of ways.
We think about 2013 and think about all those moments that really stick out. The funny, the surprising, the happy, and so on. But I feel some of the moments that stick out the most are the ones that can be considered the, "bad," ones. Everyone's bad of last year is most likely different and can vary from the ones that hurt the most, or the ones that stick out in your head that continues to be something you want to change or do something about. I mean, for a lot of us, this is where our, "New Year's Resolutions" come from right?
So I was minding my own business at my favorite Coffee House, and there was a few people sitting close to me that were having a certain conversation. Ok... so that's where the minding my own business kinda came to a stop. Sorry group of 4 or 5 strangers.
Anyways, the conversation was all based on the year and a certain...quote I guess you could call it, that I am sure everyone has heard some kind of version of. I forget which one they read because I didn't want to add to my creepy level and get closer to their computer screen, but it was the one that basically states that hopes and expectations are the main cause for pain. To sum up everything, they were saying that for this year they will try to not have any hopes and get rid of their expectations.
Ok hold up, I don't usually do this..ya know, do the creepy listening in on thing, but it was about something I had just seen going around like crazy on Tumblr and was planning on writing about that's my excuse.
Anyhow. Don't hold me to this but I think it was Shakespeare that was first quoted with this? Well, I remember hearing it or seeing it around quite a few times already throughout my life. Every single time I would whole-heartedly agree. Even after I got out of rehab I was still in agreeance...and to be completely honest, I have to fight myself to push that mindset away still sometimes to this day.
I remember the day that I really thought about this whole idea for quite some time. Actually trying to live life without any expectations or hopes. So no expectations for the day to be good, no expectations for your friends or family to treat you well or anything like that. And then for the getting rid of our hopes bit. Having no hope. Sure, goals can still be made , but the hope and expectations we usually have to get there, just would not exist. So in the end, if the goal is not reached, or you think you "failed" at something, would there still be no pain? If we did not have expectations of the people we decide to keep close , would we still be affected by them treating us wrongly? Could we still just shrug it off, walk away and just forget about it?
 Dont Live Dead
Image by: Nina Matthews
Maybe, maybe not. But all I know is that hope and expectations have done a lot of good in my life. Keeping my expectations of how I should be treated and how any kind of relationship should go about in my life needs a few expectations. Not many, but just a few. I know for a while when I didn't have expectations from my partner, not only did it get abusive, but simply nothing about it was good. The people we DECIDE to keep in our lives should be the ones that we know that truly care. So we SHOULD be able to hold them to certain expectations. Ones that we should of course be held to as well. Being nice, caring, showing empathy, love and know, things like that.  I feel it is not only a matter of respecting others, but also having to do with having respect for ourselves
And for my quick opinion on trying not to have any hope. Sure it can be possible, but is it something we really want. For a long time hope was something that was completely lacking in my life; I couldn't find it anywhere I looked. 
Looking back, I think I was scared. Maybe scared to see something I hadn't in almost a decade, a world of possibilities...a "normal" world. I had no idea what a normal world could be anymore, but I didn't know if I could handle the challenges of sobriety. 
The way I see it now? Hope is something we should all have. In fact, maybe even something we need. If not, the short and fragile life we have will not only become dull, but will be a waste of everyones talents and possibilities. Our hope is what pushes us to keep going. Our hope is what keeps us from giving up. Our hope is what keeps our spirit alive. 
Just because we haven't gotten somewhere, only means we haven't gotten there yet. That's definitely something I have learned in my short year and a half of sobriety. And one thing I can promise you all, is that if I didn't regain my hope in thinking I could even get to where I am now, I most likely would not still be here writing this right now. 
So in the end, keep those hopes and expectations. It might just save your spirit, and even your life as it did mine. 

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Changing the Old, Starting the New...right?

Wait...a new year already? 2014
Image by: Dan Moyle
Well, first off I would like to say sorry for the lack of consistency in my writing. I have been traveling quite a lot where I almost just wanted to let my mind wander and collect some random thoughts. Which brings us to now.
To start, Happy New Year! All the sudden, 2013 has rushed by and 2014 has now arrived. Now, I am not usually one to make resolutions, but this year I guess I sort of did come up with my own year long challenges. 
Like I said I have been doing a lot of self-reflection lately in my time of being absent here. I also have just read through some of my old posts, journal entries (especially those which did not make it on here to my blog), and came up with...I guess you could call them "resolutions"...but I'm gonna stick with challenges =] Anyways, they were quite simple ones, so I am hoping I will be able to carry them out throughout the year. The first one I think can relate to us all. 
       1. Be Nicer to Myself - I think we all could have this as a "resolution." I know for many of us, we are our own worst enemy. Or in the case of my "dark passenger," have them inside us. Especially now after reading some of my past journal entries that I did not post, I prevented myself to having chance to be happy just because of how I was thinking. The negative thoughts in me were still so loud (and sometimes they definitely still are) that they can quite literally steal the happiness that could be right around the corner. Let us make 2014 a year where we try our hardest to fight off the negativity that tries its hardest to control our lives. Don't get me wrong, I know there are definitely going to be times where it just doesn't even seem possible. But all I am saying, at least for myself, is that I am going to try as hard as I can, harder than I ever have before, to  push the negativity out as much as I can. 
       2. Uncensored Writings  - For myself, I have decided that all my entries that I write in my journal, need to be posted. There are certain ones that I leave in there just because at the time they were written, things were happening that just made the posts much more negative than positive. But I was thinking...this is MY blog. At first, I was scared that posting some of those entries would spread the negativity going on in my head (I still really hope this does not happen). But on my blog, in order for me to write consistently and honestly, I need to include the hardships and negativity that is trying to fight its way to control my head.
I know some people are really good at just letting the positive in and pushing all the negative out, but in no case is that me. Plus, I have truly seen the community that is here in the blogosphere and have already received the kindest of words and help from people. Something I definitely did not expect to happen so soon. So if any of you have criticisms, advice, thoughts, or anything else, I would love to hear them on any post. 
Again, blogging has already been such a blessing for me. Just that so many different people have reached out, already means so much. It has definitely shown me that with what I was going through, I am not alone. In part, this is why I wanted to include everything, including some of the very dark or negative moments, in my posts. So that if someone is out there, going through the same thing, they too can know they are not alone. Just knowing that one simple fact saved my life once upon a time. 
I strongly believe we are all in this together. Life can consist of so many unpleasant moments where being able to just let it out and get some support can have so much positive power... and definitely even kickstart someones healing process like it did mine. 
Anyways, so I guess those were my two resolutions... or challenges...or goals.. or whatever you wanna call them for the next year. 2014
A new year and an opportunity to wipe the slate clean. 
Did you guys make resolutions?