Emotions: A Creative Mess

Ever-fluctuating, deep-set monster in my chest. Her name is Depression and she finds some kind of sadistic happiness when there’s no air left in my lungs, when my heart beats faster than the war drums of African tribes. She finds pleasure in me staring into the distance, the prettiest view of the bluest blues laying in front of my eyes and, while others would be overjoyed, there’s a sort of blank feeling hanging about in the depths of my soul.

You see, I am incapable of understanding my own soul, yet I feel a part of it missing.

My attempt at explaining to you this thing that’s going on somewhere here, in my mind (for those of you that don’t believe in the concept of the ‘soul’) is obviously a not-very-successful-one, but I’m trying. Just like I’m trying to wake up every day thinking “Today I will feel pure joy again. Today’s going to be different.” If I pressure myself a little more, if I damage my monster enough for it to hide for a few seconds, I feel a little happy. Or, I don’t know if it’s happiness I feel. I can’t distinguish feelings anymore. Everything feels a little… stale, a little oversaturated, lost in the midst of this nothingness.

I don’t want to get into detail as to why I feel like this. After all, it’s one of those “why’s” that can’t really change. The things in one’s life that are unalterable should not be talked about, because then, a feeling of longing for the unattainable solution is created. That particular type of longing is pointless. It’s the ultimate creator of internal torture.

And who needs more monsters sabotaging their life?

After ruling out the unattainable solution to protect myself, there’s a feeling of uselessness emerging and a myriad of questions following along: “Why can’t I help myself?”, “I love helping others, giving them solutions to their problems, but why can’t I find a solution to this mind-numbing abyss?”,” Why can’t I pressure myself into being happy?…”

And so on and so forth.

Emotions are a deeply personal and complex thing and I absolutely despise oversimplifying them like this. In reality, everything I’ve just described is the tip of an indescribably monstrous iceberg. Or, maybe, it is describable to an extent, but I don’t really want to get into depths I won’t be able to pull myself out of.

For the moment, life has come full circle. It feels like I’ve been walking into life’s corridors for centuries, entering doors as I walk and, inevitably exiting. I’ve left a couple open, but most of them are firmly shut and will remain that way. Whenever I enter those corridors again, I always plummet into darkness. I used to always look for light in the doors surrounding me, but I’m tired of opening a gleaming door and closing it after a while. It is, frankly,  draining. That’s why I’ve given up. I don’t like a temporary light if I know it’s going to be dark again in a short while. It’s so much effort even opening the door, laying the bare self, unprotected,  vulnerable into a light that, who knows if it’s ever going to go out.

Darkness has a comfortable quality to it and that’s why it is my preferred place to be. I’ll let you say the constantly-repeated “Nothing ever grows in a comfort zone”, since, well, I do. I sit there until I can grow flowers again; until I become the Flower: the crimson rose; until I have the strength to open another door again.

 

Superficial Beauty

“If you’re pretty, you’re pretty; but the only way to be beautiful is to be loving. Otherwise, it’s just ‘congratulations about your face.'” (John Mayer)

“You look beautiful”, says the man you met about ten minutes ago in the bar. You feel flattered, don’t you? A strange man recognizing that you look attractive. It boosts your confidence, but… haven’t you heard it about a thousand times? Aren’t you sick of hearing the same compliment by someone whose only goal is to get you in bed on the very same night?

Because I know I am.

We pay so much attention to external beauty that we forget of intelligence, of humor, of kindness.  I assume that you’ve never heard “You are very intelligent” as a pick-up line. And if you have, you must have found it extremely odd, right? Truth is, you must know someone a little longer than ten minutes to receive that type of compliment. So one’s last resort is to compliment another’s external ‘show’.

“Isn’t ‘show’ a strange and offensive word to use to describe someone’s attractiveness?”, you might ask. No, it is not. Let me break your veil of ignorance for a moment:

Women spend about two to three hours getting ready for a night out. They spend ages doing their makeup, selecting the perfect figure-hugging outfit, giving their hair an “I just got out of bed”-look. They essentially become someone else to be fed to the naked eye of a man who will, potentially, be attracted to them and approach them. So much work put into a manifestation of a superficial show, just to attract someone’s attention for a moment.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing bad with wanting to feel nice and taking care of yourself. But, what happened to doing something that is going to make your mental horizons irresistible? What happened to being mentally attracted to someone while also being physically attracted to them?  Allow me to let you in on what happened to it, because apparently, it took an exit to the left when people realized that superficial beauty is the only way to get someone in bed with you as fast as possible.

To be fair, you can’t get to know someone and be attracted to their mind or their mesmerizing personality only by talking to them for an hour. You need a lot more time to realize that.

The thing is that there’s so much expectation from society to look a certain way in order for someone to notice you and tell you that you’re pretty. There’s a tendency to overlook what lies beyond a good looking face. It is lost in between layers of makeup and meaningless small-talk conversations.

My advice? Don’t try so hard. After all, makeup washes off, tight clothes become pajamas, hair goes into a messy bun and contact lenses are replaced by dorky glasses… Few people will stay then. Only the ones who have gotten a real taste of who you are. The ones who have gotten to know how kind, loving, intelligent and generous you are.

Keep those people close, for they have managed to look beyond the ‘show’, beyond your zealous contribution to the game of attraction, beyond beauté superficielle. To them, you will be truly beautiful and it won’t just be “Congratulations [for] your face.”

A Few that Feel a lot

Your whole life, people create these insane expectations for the ‘perfect’ relationship that you are going to have when you’re in your twenties. They tell you that you’ll meet your prince charming, get married, have kids and live happily ever after.

Needless to say that the times when our parents fell in love in such a simple and pure way are far from over.

There are little to no people who want a relationship nowadays and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that! Being in a committed and exclusively monogamous relationship with someone is a lot of work and takes up a lot of time that no one really has to give.

Plus, let’s also not forget that people are afraid to expose themselves to feelings. As soon as a hint of love appears in their emotional distance, they run away.

Some of those people, have been hurt too many times and are afraid to fall in the rabbit hole of love all over again. Others, just look at being in love as being trapped in a vicious circle called ‘a relationship. They are so attached to the sweetness of their freedom, that giving it up seems absurd and too restraining.

Then, there’s the extreme opposite of people obsessively craving to be in a relationship and fall in love to validate themselves. Since insecurity is something that’s cultivated in today’s society, I am not surprised that this is a thing.

We are a generation of extremes and all of these types of people I just described are to be expected to exist.

The million dollar question, however, is this: What is going to happen to all of those who are in between the extremes? The ones, who just want to fall in love and be with someone just because being in love is one of the best feelings one can experience. They want to fall in love, not for selfish reasons of self-validation, but because they genuinely enjoy giving it to someone who matters to them and deserves that love.

There’s no desperation or rush in that ‘wanting’ to be in love. Whenever life is ready to offer them this feeling to share with someone, they’ll be content.

The sad and unfortunate part is, that there are very few people who feel this way. Most of the time they’re referred to as “hopeless romantics”. ‘Hopeless’, because there’s no hope that they’ll find this dream-like feeling. There’s no hope because something more than a one-night-stand or a friends-with-benefits type of situation is unlikely to happen in our age and generation.

I don’t like being cynical, but I enjoy calling things as they are.

Prioritize yourself and love, because, at one point, there’s going to be nothing emotionally fulfilling in sleeping with a different person every day.

Η Γυάλινη Πριγκίπισσα

Κρατιέμαι απ’τα σιδερένια κάγκελα του μπαλκονιού μου και παρατηρώ το φως του ήλιου να χαϊδεύει γλυκά το γυάλινό μου δέρμα. Γυάλινο το βαφτίσανε τόσα στόματα· όχι επειδή είναι λείο, μα επειδή είναι ευαίσθητο.

Ευαίσθητη με βαφτίσανε από μικρή, γιατί έκλαιγα συχνά. Δεν άντεχε η παιδική μου καρδιά τον σκληρό κόσμο. Ήθελα να βλέπω καλοσύνη και ειλικρίνεια εκεί που δεν υπήρχε, ελπίζοντας πάντα πως ο κόσμος είναι καλός κατά βάθος. Όσο ανακάλυπτα το μίσος και την κακία, τόσο πιο πολύ ένιωθα να ραγίζω απ’την ευαισθησία μου. Έτσι, όταν ήμουν μόλις εφτά χρονών, βάφτισα τον εαυτό μου ‘γυάλινη πριγκίπισσα’. Και όντως, ήμουν από γυαλί. Ράγιζα κι έσπαγα στο άγγιγμα των λέξεων, ακόμα κι εκείνων των πιο μικρών, των ανούσιων. Ένιωθα αδύναμη. Ήθελα μια πανοπλία, έναν σιδερένιο ιππότη να με σώσει, να προστατέψει τη γυάλινή μου καρδιά.

Η γυάλινη πριγκίπισσα αρέσει, ελκύει. Το να είσαι αβοήθητη θεωρείται ομορφιά στα μάτια του κόσμου και των σιδερένιων ιπποτών. Ευαίσθητη με βάφτιζαν κι αυτοί, ώσπου δεν ήξερα τι άλλο να είμαι. Αβοήθητη, έσπαγα εύκολα διαρκώς κι εκείνοι νόμιζαν πως με έσωζαν.

Αμέτρητες φορές έχω γίνει κομματάκια στα χέρια ενός ιππότη. Όμως, κανένας δεν κάθεται να μαζέψει τα γυάλινά μου ψύγματα μετά. Κανείς δεν νοιάζεται αρκετά.

Έτσι, η λυπημένη γυάλινη πριγκίπισσα έχανε όλο και περισσότερο τον εαυτό της στη σιδερένια αγκαλιά κάποιου ιππότη. Ύστερα μάζευε τα κομμάτια της ένα-ένα, γιατί τη ράγισαν οι λέξεις· εκείνες που ειπώθηκαν και οι άλλες, οι τσουχτερές, που ήταν κρυμμένες στη σιωπή.

Αχ, μικρή μου πριγκίπισσα… Πότε θα καταλάβεις πως δεν είσαι από γυαλί, μα από το πιο αδιαπέραστο διαμάντι; Πότε θα δεις τον εαυτό σου σαν το παντοδύναμο ον που είσαι κι όχι σαν ένα αβοήθητο σπουργιτάκι;

Ξέρω, δεν ελκύει η αυτοπεποίθηση, γιατί την φοβάται ο κόσμος. Μα εσύ δεν χρειάζεται να παραμένεις γυάλινη για κάποιον άλλον. Δεν είσαι ευαίσθητη πια… ή μάλλον, ποτέ δεν ήσουν. Εκείνοι σε έκαναν.

Κοιτάζω τον τρόπο που χορεύει το φως στο δέρμα μου για λίγο ακόμα… Απολαμβάνω το διαμαντένιο του λαμπύρισμα. Με κάνει να νιώθω πως έχω τον έλεγχο του εαυτού μου. Έχω τον έλεγχο να βαφτίσω τον εαυτό μου όπως θέλω εγώ, κι επιλέγω να είμαι “Δυνατή”. Δεν πειράζει άμα υπάρχουν άνθρωποι που φοβούνται αυτή τη δύναμη, αυτή την ανεξαρτησία μου. Δεν αντέχουν όλοι τις πριγκίπισσες που αστράφτουν αυτοπεποίθηση.

Θέλει ο κόσμος τις γυάλινες πριγκίπισσες, τις καλλιεργεί. Δεν θα του κάνω τη χάρη· όχι πια.

Emotional Numbness

Or ‘numbing mode’. I read somewhere online that this is what happens to people who have gone through a long period of grief.

Grief. You don’t need to cry to grieve someone’s departure from your life. It can happen even when you don’t realize it. Hearing a word, seeing a rose, listening to a song or even a specific language, can trigger grief.  It stings a little bit every time something like this happens and you’re left with a gigantic wound somewhere in your heart. Again. Only this time, the wound is numb.

This damn thing that gushes memories and not blood, hurts when you least expect it; when you thought three-quarters of a year was enough. Well, apparently they are not.

Feeling nothing is not that bad. You just need to get used to this nothingness. You’re trying so hard to feel something. Maybe a little bit of pain, but there’s nothing there. There’s only physical pain that works, but I don’t want to come close to losing my life to steal a few feelings.

So, I will just stand here, holding a void of feelings in my hands, distancing myself from everything and everyone that makes me feel nothing.

Maybe distance is the ultimate cure for emotional nothingness. Even if this distance is only 74.8 kilometers.

 

Different Ingredients

Sometimes things just

Don’t

Work

Out.

Conversations lead to arguments leading to realizations. People grow up differently and thus have different beliefs, even if their values are the same. This is absolutely okay, however. People are ingredients in the recipe of life. Some them just don’t mix together. You know, I’m not sad that we don’t make a fit, even though I wish we did. There’s someone out there for both of us, someone that will make life’s recipe a tad bit sweeter.

Until we find our complementary ingredient, though, we both need to find ourselves. Truth is, that I am lost. I’m trying to understand who I am every single day, surprising myself along the way. I’m realizing how strong and how stubborn I am. In this journey of life, I’m trying to fall in love with myself, trying to accept my weaknesses and my greatest powers. It will take a while, but I am ready to start discovering who this person is, that I am.

Maybe… Just maybe… I am the only ingredient I need.

Καλοκαιρινή Αναπόληση

Το πήρε η πρωινή δροσιά το καλοκαιράκι, τώρα, στο τέλος του Αυγούστου. Για ένα λεπτό, νιώθω πως έχει παγώσει ο χρόνος και συνειδητοποιώ πόσο γρήγορα έχουν περάσει όλα… Πώς περνάει έτσι ο καιρός; Μια κλισέ φράση για να συνοψίσει την ευτυχία τριών μηνών. Δεν θες και παραπάνω καιρό για να γίνεις ευτυχισμένος. Φτάνουν αυτοί οι μήνες ζεσταμένοι απ’την αγκαλιά της οικογένειας και δροσισμένοι απ’την γλύκα καινούριων συναισθημάτων.

Ελάφρυνε λίγο το μυαλό, λίγο απ’την Κορόνα, λίγο απ’τη χαλάρωση, λίγο απ’τα “χαμογελάκια”… Γέλασε και λίγο η καρδιά, έλαμψαν δυο ζευγάρια καταπράσινα μάτια κάτω απ’τον έναστρο θαλασσινό ουρανό. Περπάτησαν τα πόδια με έξι διαφορετικούς τρόπους για να μιμηθούν το ντόπιο στυλ. Γνώρισε η ψυχή ξανά ανθρώπους που είναι συνοδοί ζωής είκοσι χρόνια σχεδόν. Δεν ήταν και λίγη η περιπέτεια τούτο το καλοκαίρι.

Ήταν το καλοκαίρι της αναζωογόνησης, του ξανανιώματος, της ζωής και της ευτυχίας. Τσουβάλια ευτυχίας από ανθρώπους αγαπημένους και καινούριους που σφύζουν ζωή. Νέοι και παλιοί μου έμαθαν το νόημα της ζωής και το ένιωσα ξανά, το θυμήθηκα!. Το ένιωσα έξι διαφορετικές φορές με τρεις ίδιους ανθρώπους αγαπημένους. Το ένιωσα αγκαλιά ένα βράδυ που με πήρε κουλουριασμένη γαλήνιος ύπνος. Το ένιωσα ακούγοντας πρωτάκουστα λόγια υπομονής και αγάπης απ’την αρχή. Το ένιωσα κάθε φορά που κοίταζα πίσω, αποχαιρετώντας το κόκκινο αυτοκίνητο…

Οι άνθρωποί μου, που πέρασαν ένα καλοκαίρι, τρεις ή δύο μήνες, μαζί μου, με πήραν απ’το χέρι, με οδήγησαν στον δρόμο για την ευτυχία. Μα κυρίως, μου δίδαξαν πως η ευτυχία δεν είναι σύμπτωση· είναι επιλογή.