Of Christmas

Hello. I know it’s been a very long time since my last post and I wish I could say that I spent it writing a novel. But that would only partially be true. Or even not true at all, depending on how you look at it. Either way, my absence has been caused by events and circumstances far less positive than I would wish them to be.

It’s Christmas though and I thought to myself: „Maybe it’s time I wrote something about what I’m going through. Maybe that would make me feel better”. So here it goes.

I feel a lot like Cindy Lou. I look around and see the Christmas lights and the Christmas tree and I try so hard to remember what it felt like when it was the most magical time of the year. A time when anything was possible. I can still recall the excitement I felt before Christmas Eve, when I knew that under that tree would be a wish come-true. And it wasn’t so long ago, that I looked expectantly at my pups, waiting for them to talk to me at midnight. Now, things don’t feel so bright.

First of all, my wishes have become far too complex for Santa to be able to keep up with the list. It’s not about a new Barbie doll, not even about that new PS4 I would love to have in my possession. It’s more about: „Santa, Jesus, whoever… Can you please make it so grandpa sits back in his spot on the couch… Can we sing Christmas Carols together again?” or „Santa, can you please erase the memories of T.? I can’t stand to think about him anymore. He’s not coming back. I know we are not going to get back together like we would in a Christmas flick, so can you make it so I don’t wait pointlessly for my phone to ring? I just want him to tell me he misses me. Actually I don’t, no wait, I do, no please don’t let him call me, just make him call me.”

So you see, Santa may have a very hard time making all those wishes come true. And I’m scared that, when in my depressed state I imagined myself jumping of a bridge so many times it feels more like a memory, and makes life so unreal it seems like I’m constantly dreaming or hallucinating, I may have killed that child in me that believed in Christmas magic. But there is no such thing as Christmas magic. And I’m saying that now, still scared that by stating it, I’m slaughtering something hidden deep inside of me. Does the fact that December 25th has become just another date in a calendar, mean that I’m a grown up now? Does the fact that the bell from Polar Express makes no sound to my ears, mean that I have officially entered into adulthood? I don’t think so… It just makes life a little less… Magical. I still don’t have all my stuff together, my priorities straight or no idea what I’m actually doing. Where I’m going.

So… Yeah. I wish Christmas came back in full force. I want the Christmas lights to turn back into promises of joy instead of commercial, overly expensive reminders of the fact that we need to go shopping and spend money and fuel the economy so the rich can get richer and the poor can… remain poor with some more useless stuff in their homes. I want to believe that magical things can happen, even if it’s not people coming back from the dead (because let’s be honest, that would be terrifying) or people who never appreciated you when they had the chance, coming back into our lives with promises of everlasting love (they probably wouldn’t keep past December).

So what is there left to wish for? Well… Love. Not necessarily the romantic kind, even though as a romantic I always put that on my Christmas wishlist. But love among mankind. I want to turn on the news and hear that people have donated outrageous amounts of money to those in need, instead of buying new iPhones they really don’t need. That will probably not happen either but… It’s a worthwhile wish, isn’t it?

I for myself will try to resurrect my Christmas joy and instead of mourning the passing of a loved one, appreciate the people I still have in my life. Instead of wishing for a lost love, wish for a new love, hopefully one that will stay and be true. Instead of contemplating suicide, try and look forward to the future, because I still don’t know what it might bring. And perhaps, it will be magical?

Merry Christmas!

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Make a wish…

Reklamy

Of A Long Way Home

So, I feel like it’s probably been almost a month since my last post. It is quite possible that it hasn’t actually been so long, but it sure feels like it, because so much has happened.

I went back home. Yes. Finally, the big change I was anticipating in most of my posts have come and now I feel like I’ve been ripped out of one reality and planted in another. Everything is different and it feels like so much has changed. That’s not surprising. It seems quite natural that if a person can change, so must the city they are from and everyone in it.

At the same time, it’s like nothing has changed. My grandparents still fall asleep on the couch, with the TV turned on. The news are different, but announced by the same bunch of faces and voices. The weather is flimsy. Only the trees seem even greener then the way I remembered them. And of course, the most different element of all, has to be me. My egotism wouldn’t allow anything else to overshadow that.

I’ve lost touch with most of my friends. Not that I’ve had many friends. I’m rather antisocial, but those I have stayed in touch with, and the new people I meet all seem to ask the same question I can’t bare to hear one more time. „So what do you do? What are you going to do next? Do you still want to be an actress? What are you going to do for money?” It’s like the voices in my head take a physical form in everyone I even try to have a conversation with. As if I didn’t need time to rest after leaving a place I’ve lived in for the past 3 years. No, you must touch the ground and start running. And since what I want to do is write. Here’s yet another first step. As if all those other steps were nothing but footprints in the sand.

And the road I’ve taken was physically, was almost as long as the one I’ve had to take metaphysically, or mentally (whichever one is more accurate). I wanted to write about the adventure that was my actual journey from LA to Poznan because that in itself was… Something. But I’ll save it for another time. Either way, it’s good to be back. Almost as if it’s taken this long for whatever it is and whatever you call it (soul) to catch up with the physical body that’s been here a week and a half already.

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Of Hidden Hipster Spots

I wouldn’t really call myself a hipster. Even though I like books, I have a blog and could marry coffee if it were legal. Still, as any hipster would say, I would absolutely despise being labeled like that. Sometimes though, facts speak for themselves. And honestly as much as I understand why in recent years the term has become so pejorative, I don’t really know what’s so wrong with liking any of the above things. I do think it’s bizarre to spend an excessive amount of money on stuff that „looks old” if you can just buy something in an actual second-hand store. And it’s not like you’re pretending to be homeless with your latest iPhone and MacBook (bit of an exception here, still sporting an iPhone 5 and my MacBook is like 6 years old… Does that make me even more hipster?) Then again if it’s your money, you should be able to spend it however you like without people judging you.

And sometimes you can just find the most amazing places if you just follow your „hipster instinct”. The bookshop and coffeeshop „Stories” in LA is one of those places. Although I sure shouldn’t claim any credit for finding this spot, as I was brought here by a friend. Still, tagging along with him, when he said he was going to the library, was a great example of following instincts. I suppose. I had no idea where he was taking me and I was pretty much convinced that we were just heading to a public library. I was in for a big surprise.

The place is located near Echo Park, which is one of the nicest spots in Downtown LA, and right off of a parking lot that is by far the cheapest lot I’ve seen here (25cents per 30 minutes) and we easily found a spot! Unfathomable!

Naturally, the place is packed with fellow hipsters. Almost everybody sporting a Mac computer, typing something, likely a blog post, but maybe a new script, or whatever it is that people write in Los Angeles. Could be anything. A cook book. A vegan cook book, IDK.

Either way, they have got some pretty neat coffee and ice tea, and all kinds of fuels to steam roll that inspiration. And being surrounded by books, sure exhumes some creative fumes. Almost wish there were more places like that, but then again it would probably just become another hated trend. All hipsters know that if something becomes trendy you should cut it off like a rotting limb. Funny how it works since being hipster is both trendy and despised at the same time. This world we live in is weird. It’s like people just don’t have better things to do, then judge others for how they dress, what they eat and what they enjoy doing in their free time. Like all them „Pokemon Go” haters. I know you secretly play when nobody can see you!

Anyway, right now, at least here’s a place where all us hipsters can turn up and not be judged by the rest of society. And just… You know, write a blog post.

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Must have inhaled heavily on them fumes, because I immediately started writing my first post in over a weak! Ugh, I hate that I take such long breaks, but I also try not to be too hard on myself with everything that’s going on…

Of Overthinking Advice

In your lifetime, you’ll get hundreds of pieces of advice. Most of them you’ll ignore, just for the sake of making your own mistakes, so you can learn from them. But some will stick and some will come back to you when you least expect them.

In my case, I’m still not sure if the words my grandpa would repeat each day like a mantra, count as advice. But the more I live and experience, the more I find myself pondering those words. They seemed so obvious, when I used to hear them all the time. He said „You have a heart and a brain. Use them.”

What could be more obvious then that? Of course I have a heart and a brain, I’m a human am I not? My teenage self would shake her head, kiss him on the cheek (or not) laugh and say „I know, I know” and be on her way. But as life goes on it seems like it’s harder to see it as something so clear and easy. Not because I don’t believe I have a heart or a brain, but more because I’m having a harder and harder time using them both. It’s almost like these two are constantly competing with each other, trying to decide which one is more right then the other. And perhaps there are matters in life that are only matters of the heart and things that only brain needs to concern itself with, but when it comes to making decisions it would be rather nice if they could agree on something. If something could be good and wise, rather than good, but stupid. I know I’m not making any special discovery when I talk about this, everybody seems to be pretty aware of the differences between the heart and the brain. Or, as  some pragmatic would call it, the left and the right brain.

So you see, I spend my time trying to figure out what he meant. I never asked him, because I thought I knew. I could ask him now, but the way he is, I’m not sure if he could give me an answer. And maybe the question would be stupid, because it’s so obvious and I’m trying to read too much into it?

Maybe it’s in the way he lived his own life? He was kind yet smart. And he was known for his kindness and intelligence. I was told so, at least. I believe it. I think we all need to keep believing in our childhood heroes, no matter how much we learn about life in the process of living, and how improbable some of those stories seem, as we grow up.

As I’m writing this, I’m not even sure if this is the kind of inspiration the daily post was looking for. I’m sure people received some amazing advice in their life they can follow, instead of trying to figure the meaning out. Then again, a known fact about myself is that I think too much, so perhaps it’s nothing that needs thought, but just something simple? Maybe it’s… Follow your heart and be kind, but always apply logic and remember to trust your knowledge of the world, to guide you through life’s challenges? That kind of makes sense, doesn’t it?

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In case it doesn’t, there’s always this advice my grandpa gave me. Pretty straight forward: „careful at the crosswalks!”

Of Fears & Beasts

I fear, that not everybody is meant to be successful in any given thing. It’s not even based on how good or skilled you are. There’s something else you need, and God only knows what that something is. People try all their lives and never get there. Maybe they get something else, I don’t know. You can’t plan your future but at the same time you have to, futile as it may be. Knowing that, puts me in a state of complete resignation. I don’t want to do anything. I feel so overwhelmed with the magnitude of things I’m going through right now. Going back home, packing, figuring out what to take with me, what to leave behind. Starting a new life. Trying to stay true to my passion with all the fears and doubts that come with it. I thought that if I started this blog and started writing more, it would make me feel better, but the reality is, half of the time I don’t even know what I’m writing. When people ask me what my blog is about, I can’t seem to find an answer. Is it because it’s about nothing? And with this constant silent noise of the internet, how and why would anyone hear this unskillfully formulated whisper?  I’ve been trying to make some progress in the moving department, to get at least some of that pressure off my chest. The truth is, most of that stuff is still where it was and I don’t feel like I’m getting any closer to being ready to leave with only three weeks left to go. And I don’t really know why I’m writing about this right now, because honestly, who cares? One girl dealing with her 1st world problems. I’m not even here to write about things that are important. About what feels like an overwhelming flood of violence, sweeping through the world right now. The turbulence of the times we happen to live in, and the sheer helplessness of my generation. We grew up in so much comfort and were told that everything was going to be ok, but no matter how you slice it, things don’t look so well and it doesn’t look like they are improving much. If anything they are getting worse. People like me, sit in front of their computers or smartphones, typing away their opinions but those opinions have no voice. They’re just letters, scribbled upon a screen that signify nothing. There’s no power in that form of expression, since anyone and everyone is able to do the same thing. Not to mention, most of those opinions are restricted to a 140 word minimum, because attention span smaller then a goldfish #depressing.

I just spoke on the phone with my best friend back home and she told me how things are looking in Poland. Fascists in the government. Police can legally using force on a peaceful demonstration. All democratic rights slowly taken away from us. People allow it, because they are scared. Scared of the ISIS threat. The horror of Islam. The painted devil. On top of that a calm group of white middle-aged men, who do think that we should absolutely use guns against the gays, and the blacks, and the browns and anyone who is different, because different makes me feel uncomfortable. Women’s rights? That’s funny, go back to the kitchen, lady! But there is something to it isn’t there? The fear seems to be far less crippling here in the US, but it still exists and it’s presence is strong. Police violence against African American community, Donald Trump spewing his fascists statements with thousands applauding him. Where are we going with this? That’s what puzzles me most. Through the study of history (and I don’t claim to be no scholar in that department, closer to being a moron but I do know a thing or two) we can clearly see the patterns we’re going through. Much like me in my love life, we seem to continually make the same mistakes, over and over again, without figuring out where we went wrong and actually fixing anything. With all the technological advancements, there is still a war going on within us and in this world. Whether you call it good and evil, God and satan… Whatever. It’s right there in front of you, and while we pretend it doesn’t exist, it slithers and moves forward.  That beast is feasting again. And we’re the ones who feed it.

Of Things Bittersweet

There is something bittersweet about new beginnings. Because it means that one chapter of your life, is coming to an end. And there is something bittersweet about knowing you will be missed. Because you know, you will miss as well.

I’ve been living in Los Angeles for 3 years now. As I’m getting ready to go back to my homeland in less then a month, the word bittersweet keeps resonating in my head. I can’t think of any other word, fitting to describe what I’m going through right now. I look around my room, knowing that the agenda for tomorrow is to start going through my things and deciding what is coming with me, and what I leave behind. And the same thing will happen to my friends. Some will stay in my life, but most I will never see again. Many have said that I will be missed. I believe them. I will miss them too. But the reality is, that life goes on regardless, and certain people and places fade from memory, replaced with new people, new places and new experiences.

It’s a little funny. I’ve done that before. After all, I abandoned everything that I knew to come out here. But the person that moved here isn’t the same person I am right now, so the experience is different. Back then, I believed that I’m coming to a land where dreams come true, where despite all odds, I will be successful. I was also about to start a new school and finally find my tribe of people. Needless to say, that didn’t really happen. Sure I met some amazing friends, but with the majority of people the most I can say is „they don’t have anything against me.” But they also don’t care what the hell I’m doing and where the hell I am, and frankly I feel the same way, so it doesn’t really bother me. It’s just an observation. The dream of somehow becoming a movie star within a year from graduation, is another ridiculous concept I had in my head. Dreams upon dreams. And maybe it’s not ok to give up on dreams, but I think it’s safe to assume that a more realistic approach needs to be applied.

Moreover, America turned out to be nothing more then an illusion. The way it seemed back then… It was this great land where anything can happen. Of course I knew that it wasn’t true but I wanted to believe and live that fantasy. When I came out here, I realized that it’s all filmed in a studio, conveniently cutting out the reality. The reality is, most people in America don’t live in huge, beautiful houses, wear expensive clothing and eat in restaurants all the time. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a Hollywood production that would actually give mention to hordes of homeless people begging for drug money on Hollywood Blvd. What is worse, I’ve seen more foreigners actually care about it then Americans. I know that experiencing LA is not the same as experiencing America but judging by the Orlando shooting (only the biggest one of many other, violent, gun-related crimes committed this year) the rest of this country isn’t doing so great either. And no, it’s not so bad. There are great things about this place and it’s people.  But it’s bad enough to make me think that home, wasn’t really so terrible either. Sure, we have our problems that need to be fixed. But if I’m going to focus my energy and feelings on problems that need solving, I would rather it was a country that gave birth to me and fed me and still wants me there, not a country that was ok with taking my money in taxes and expensive colleges, but now is perfectly fine kicking me out. And screw being a movie star. I’ve seen enough of them to know, that the way they look on the red carpet photos is not who they are in their daily life. And yes it is common knowledge, and yes I did know that before I came out here… But it’s still different to actually see it, with your own eyes.

Burying old dreams, to make room for new ones. Leaving memories in the past, to create space for new experiences. And everything happens so fast. I still have my job, but I know I’m about to clock in next Friday, for the last time. My co-workers ask me constantly when I’m leaving, tell me they will miss me. So does my best friend. And a new boyfriend (because life loves to say „screw you” by introducing you to an amazing guy a month before you’re about to leave forever). It feels good to hear those words, but I can’t stop my inner self from asking „what does that mean?”. However, it’s less in regards to their phrase, and more in regards to my: „I will miss you too”. Will I really? Or will I just throw myself into my new life, with my new dreams and new ambitions? Meet new people and find a path in life that will soon leave Los Angeles so far behind it will be nothing more then a stop I had to take, to learn the things I needed to know? Only time will tell. I am staying positive about this. But there are voices, deep down inside of me, giving shape to a fear.

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What if I can check out anytime I like, but my heart can never leave?

 

Of Islands and Paradise

Maybe it’s just me, but have you ever felt like life would feel so much better if you could just live on an island, cut off from the rest of the world? My dream island is New Zealand (pretty sure that counts). For some reason, in my head, places like New Zealand and Hawaii remain completely unaffected by the troubles of the world. It’s almost like nobody cares about them, and they like it that way. They don’t meddle, they know what their purpose is. They’re paradise. Have you ever noticed that most images or descriptions of paradise (including Utopia) involve an island? Makes me think that there’s something more to this theory of mine then just crazy ideas of a 23-year old.

Sometimes I just sit down and scroll through my facebook and twitter and see all of this useless information. On top of that there’s the news I really don’t want to hear about anymore. And the stuff that gets me really depressed is what makes the news today. You can seriously go scrolling through your page and go from „War and Death in Syria” to „Twitter Battle between Taylor Swift and Katy Perry. The fans of both stars go down to the trenches”. All that, makes me want to teleport myself to a time and space without internet. Of course, I’m fully aware that considering my personality I would probably wither and die within a week of disconnecting me from the source of my daily cat video dosage, but still… Feels good to dream.

I picture myself, surrounded by this peaceful and beautiful landscape, free from the noises of the city. In those visions, my mind is as clear as the ocean. I know what I want from life, I know who I am and I know what to do. It’s all simple. Because it all happens outside of all the complications of the „outside world”. It’s an island. My Shire. I can sit down with my toes in the sand. Or better yet, sit at my desk, facing the lively ember green you can only find on islands. Tune in with the nature sounds and the only sound that would mix up with the voices of birds and the whistling of the wind would be the sound of typing. Typing, one novel after the other.

p01d4gczMy island. My paradise. My writer’s hut.

Island

Of Small Steps

More like tiny steps.

It is a fairly common thing to hear. Take small steps instead of big leaps if you want to get to your destination. Trouble is, and I see it in most people my age, we want to get where we want to be… Fast. We don’t want to waste our time working, or rather we’re willing to work, as long as the work has immediate effects and brings us quickly towards our goal. Unfortunately for most people, myself included, life doesn’t work that way. It is almost unnatural to find immediate success in the thing you want to do or the passion you wish to pursue. It takes time and patience and sometimes it’s hard not to get frustrated. Especially since we do live in such a cynical world. I recently was having a conversation with a friend about my blog. I mentioned that I had just started writing it, and that I feel fairly happy about it. And I do. Not because it’s largely successful, not even because it’s good. I mean, I enjoy it, but quality of work is a very objective thing and I can’t be a judge of that. Sometimes I love it, sometimes not so much, through that I practice and learn. The point  is: I’m doing it. I’m doing it a little and I’m making myself do it regularly. Next step being writing every day. I’m not there yet. I will be.

His question to me was: „How many views do you have?” views being the only direct way to measure a blogs’ success. I blinked my eyes a couple of times, experiencing a flashback. It isn’t anything surprising, but people love to verify what you claim to be, in measuring your popularity. Granted, at the end of the day, one way of figuring out how well you’ve done, is when you see other people having use for it and appreciating it. But when I told people I came out to LA to be an actress, one of the first questions asked was „What have I seen you in?” and then the traditional „Well, you know, someday I’ll be telling stories about how I gave this actress a ride”. And you scoff and leave because you have to deal with the reality, that despite the efforts you put into it, you don’t feel any closer to accomplishing your goal. Which is to be able to say „I’ve been in this and that, my next project I’m not supposed to talk about” but it’s really a movie with Leonardo DiCaprio, directed maybe by Martin Scorsese and then you’ll finally be one of those people that the cab drivers brag about. But until that dream becomes a reality, you have to hustle and grind, and nowhere is it promised, that it will actually come true. And it’s the same thing with writers. Whatever it is you’re doing. There will always be ways by which society is going to try to measure your success, but the truth is: only you know what success means to you and if you’re getting closer to it, or not.

This as a whole makes me realize, whatever it is you’re trying to do, there are many moments in which you won’t feel like you’re making enough progress or as if you’re moving at all, but the truth is, with every action you take, you make a step forward to whatever destination it is you’re chasing. It’s when you let questions like that stop you, or your own fears and doubts resonate in your thoughts for a little too long, that’s when you first start putting your journey to a halt. Here’s what I firmly believe in. Doing is the best practice. If you can do, whatever it is that you love, every day, do your best to do it every day. Trust me, I’m still figuring this step out because there’s always all sorts of things that distract you, life just loves messing with us, and sometimes we make choices that pull us a little farther from the goal but make our experience as humans richer. It’s when you don’t do it because you’d rather just do something that you already know doesn’t benefit you in any way… That’s when you should pause and rethink your approach to passion, I believe. And frankly that’s how I found that acting wasn’t really that big of a passion of mine. Because after a couple of months I couldn’t get myself to do the most basic things actors need to do, which is submitting myself for projects, trying to find jobs and developing the craft. Here’s to another attempt at finding a passion. And hoping it will stick. If this fear resonates with anybody, please let me know. Either way, for some reason with writing the whole practice stage seems a lot more accessible. You can always do it, and if you can’t, learn about it. Setting realistic goals, doesn’t mean you’re not shooting for the stars, it means that instead of shooting blindly, you’re actually building a path to reach them.

Here’s another thing that people like to say to young artists. „Just do it, that is the best way to do it”. I even said so myself, a second ago. But what I think is being left out in the process is learning more about that thing that you are trying to do. Granted, practice is the best teacher, but if you don’t know where to begin, it is good to have guidance and some form of structure to know when you’re making a point and when you’re completely lost in your own actions. It’s a little like throwing punches while being blindfolded. You know you’re trying to hit something or do something, but you just can’t seem to figure out the direction it’s supposed to go.

Speaking from personal experience, I attempted writing a stream of consciousness story, that was myself, looking upon myself from the outside perspective and writing about what I was experiencing as well as who I was perceiving, as I looked into my written reflection. Interesting idea, I thought to myself, but I got to a point where I had to stop. The thoughts became unruly and the story I was trying to tell became something different. Sometimes that’s a good thing. Sometimes it’s the hand of God, or inspiration, or whatever you want to call it. Sometimes it’s just a mess. The more you know about the art or craft or passion you’re pursuing, the better you are at recognizing the difference and knowing how to structure what you’re taking on. Essentially, it’s like a person who wants to be a runner, participating in a marathon with hopes to win, without any training. Or an artist trying to paint a masterpiece equal to Mona Lisa, without ever studying the basic techniques.

To sum up. Know that even if the steps you’re taking are very tiny, with a combination of working and studying whatever you’re doing, you are moving forward. The road might not end up taking you where you expect, however. And don’t let your own doubts and critics in your mind tell you, you’re not good enough, just because you don’t have enough followers. All in due time.

And If you could’t tell, I’ll let you in on a little secret. Whenever I write those things, it  makes it easier for myself to process. I’m still going through all that struggle myself. I’m sharing my observations. I’m hoping it might be easier to relate to someone who’s going through the same thing. I find it hard to listen to mentors. I do listen, because I want to learn, but when they give you those mantras and pieces of wisdom, sometimes it feels like it’s coming from a different planet. Like they’re already where I wish to be and they’re trying to let me know how to get there, but all they know is the path that they have taken and I’m over here building my own path. Can’t really relate, even though I try to. So here’s hoping that there’s people out there, on that same journey, fighting their own battles and building their stairway to stardust.

 

Of Double-Standards part. 2

Of Dating Dangerously

I’ve been single most of my life. Let’s be honest, my longest relationship has been…            2 months. And it was messed up. At this point I’ve decided it’s time to take a deep look at the way I approach relationships and dating. I’ve decided to share this because I deeply believe that I’m not the only girl dealing with this. And it relates to something I said in the previous post. „Women only chase after assholes, they don’t want nice guys” I said that this statement wasn’t entirely true. And it isn’t. But it also is to some extent. I notice it in my dating life and that of others. We as girls, more often then not, bestow our love on somebody who doesn’t really care much for it and when we’re faced with someone who does pursue us, we take it for granted.

This might be a very specific personal coincidence, but what I have noticed in my life is that the „good guy” always seems to pop up, before I manage to fully recover from the bad guy. He shows up when I’m in the mindset of not wanting to trust anybody, or ever need anybody in my life. I don’t want to care anymore, because I have cared and it didn’t work out. And here he is, giving me all he has. Expressing love in all the ways he knows how to, yet I’m still behind this wall, that I have built to protect myself from the blow I received from another guy. It’s like I’ve been sucker-punched and now I expect everyone out there to be attempting to hit me. And that’s false. Because as hard as I find it to believe sometimes, not all men are bad. Not all men want to use you for their pleasure and then toss you away like you’re nothing. Some are caring, loving and sweet. The problem is – after experiencing the „bad guys” all the time, I know their game. When I deal with fuckboys I know their moves and I know their objective. In that I can make my choices and decide to either play along or shut it down, depending on the current mood. With the „nice guys” it’s tricky. I almost don’t trust the niceness. It’s like I don’t know what it is, it’s unfamiliar, so it scares and it’s difficult to trust it. Like, what do you want from me? If the fact that I feel that someone wants all of me wasn’t scary enough, there’s enough horror stories I’ve heard or experienced to get my imagination going. The smiles and the kindness make me think that there is something deeper and darker hiding behind it. Something I don’t want to have to face. It’s the same monster that lived under my bed. It’s not real. But unlike the monster – it could be. Because all the real monsters are human, and they would hide behind sweetness and kindness.

She put on her nice dress. She put on her make up and did her hair. She wanted to feel beautiful. Was it for him? Or for herself? She glanced at the mirror and asked that very question. Of course it was for herself! She was just going to have fun with this guy. He was good looking. Tall, pale, dark hair and deep brown eyes. She fantasized: he might be a little like the vampire from the books. Mysterious but passionate, reserved but caring, strong but vulnerable… She sighed. She tried not to get her hopes up. They only went out once after all. It was great, amazing even. And right after she knew, he wanted to see her again. 

He showed up with flowers and opened the door for her. He was gentle and kind, the conversation was polite. They were going to have a game night with his buddies. She felt a little intimidated by the fact that he would introduce her to his friends already, but she took that as a good omen. He wouldn’t do that if he didn’t take her seriously. They got to their destination. Walked into the room, where the guys were already drinking and having fun. She felt strangely disturbed when she walked in, but she disregarded that as nerves. She grabbed a drink that was handed to her and sat down on the couch, where he introduced her as his girl. She thought it was a little too fast, but she felt like it was a conversation for later… And it was also somewhat proof of the fact that he was, indeed, serious about her. They talked about mutual interests and so on and so forth. Before she knew it, her head grew heavy, things started getting blurry. She knew what was happening, but she had no control of her body. She couldn’t move or speak. She watched from outside of herself as they took turns with her. Bruising her arms and legs, tearing her insides apart. After they were done, they shoved her back to the car and got rid of her in the middle of some road. 

The next morning she could barely walk. She wanted to go to the police, but she knew they wouldn’t believe her. And partially she did blame herself. How could she be so stupid? She’s been warned so many times, why did she trust a stranger? She could have predicted that it would happen. She just didn’t want to. But why? Because she wanted to trust. She wanted to believe that happy endings could happen and that tall dark strangers could be amazing boyfriends. Now, could she ever trust again? He was so nice. So sweet. So charming… She walked on, in shame, analyzing every detail, trying to find something she had missed, something that could have warned her about this. She remembered that he initially made her feel uneasy, she ignored it, thinking it was her usual paranoia and social anxiety. She should have known then… It didn’t have to happen. But it did. And she let it… In some way, she allowed it. How could she forgive herself?

This is clearly one of the darkest possible scenarios. But it could happen, couldn’t it? There’s people out there who lived it. And that’s the terrifying truth about dating, and being open to other people. You never know, whose company you might end up in.

All warnings and fears aside, dating can also be really fun if you let it, and if you’re careful. Here’s a couple of things I recommend if you want to be a little adventurous and go out with strangers:

  1. Always make sure at least one friend knows where you’re going
  2. Make sure your phone is charged
  3. Watch out for red flags: if he disappears with your drink, if you don’t know where he’s taking you, if you’re going to be „outnumbered” etc.
  4. Stay alert. If you notice something is feeling weird, find a way to figure out what is happening and if necessary, call someone. Remember, most assaults happen because the assailant doesn’t think he’s going to be caught. A witness – even if only one on the other side of the phone line, might prevent them from taking any action.
  5. Be prepared – I chose pepper spray.

This post took a much darker turn then expected, but I guess it’s a good thing. Because you do have to be careful. Your heart will recover if you manage to go through dating just dealing with fuckboys. If you catch a life-long trauma that’s a bit of a more difficult thing to fix.

Stay safe!

To be continued… In the next post a little bit more about dating, a little less about horror stories. Stay tuned!

Of Double-Standards

Inspired by a story shared by a friend… And sadly, countless other stories.

She slept with you, so therefore it’s ok for you to treat her like crap, you don’t need her anymore, and she’s probably a slut who sleeps with everyone. Or maybe you treated her nice but then got bored and so you tell her some bullshit lie and move on, assuming that she’ll be fine. Eventually she will be. Or not, but who cares? And you live like that, leaving a trail of scarred humans, who will carry those experiences into their new relationships, always afraid, that the same thing is going to happen… Again. In turn, they might hurt others, people who don’t deserve it, just because they can’t allow themselves to love again. Because how can they forgive themselves for making those same, bad judgement calls over and over? How many lessons do you need before you finally learn? And what’s the lesson? And who hurt you in a way that made you the way that you are?

That is what I find so frustrating about this narrative. There isn’t a villain on either side of the fence. We do it to each other constantly. Girl breaks a guys heart, so he breaks ten others, and they break mens’ hearts, and so on, and on, and on, the vicious cycle goes. And the other way around. Maybe it all starts with the parents.

Some men I spoke to, who consider themselves progressive and feminist told me that it’s the women’s fault. How ironic. Quote „Women just want the bad boys. They chase after assholes and they reject the nice guy because it’s too easy”. Guess who is the nice guy in that statement? The sentence itself is only partially true. It assumes that you can put all women in one category that wants the same exact thing and poor you, just can’t figure out what it is that they want? What do these women want? Well, what do humans want? Humans want to be loved and cared for, but also want to feel good about themselves, they like to be successful… You know, lotsa stuff that has not much to do with dating. And yet it has everything to do with dating. You don’t want to be living with someone whose ambitions or passions or interests don’t match yours. So as a „nice” guy, what do you bring to the table? How far have you really gone out of your way to show her that you care? Can you give her what she needs? Did you take the time to figure out what it is that she, specifically needs, to be able to give it to her? Maybe you didn’t, because you don’t really care and the „nice guy” is just a facade to cover up the fact, that really, you’re not much different from the „assholes”?

Now, what defines an asshole is another matter. One of my friends recently posted a story on Facebook about this guy she met for drinks at a bar. Straight away, he told her  all he was seeking was sex, she told him she wasn’t interested, and so he left. After 10 minutes apparently. Ok. Not the nicest thing to hear or do, but at least he was honest? I mean, of course women shouldn’t be treated as just sexual objects, so the fact that you even feel like it’s ok to say something like that is a problem, but you’re not trying to play anyone at least? From my experience, it’s far better to hear that sort of thing right away, because then you can just move on, as if nothing ever happened. Because it didn’t. You were made a proposition that you either took or refused and no harm was done. It is far more devious to trick somebody into thinking you care for them, and then after you got what you wanted tell them the truth. Well kind of truth, because  really: it’s not the truth. The truth was, you just wanted to fuck, now you have to make up a story that doesn’t make you seem like an asshole. Which you are. Definition: „I’m being honest, I’m not looking for a relationship and I don’t want you to feel like you’ve been used”. Can you say that again please? You went out with me a bunch of  times and slept with me and now you’re telling me you’re not looking for a relationship, but you didn’t want to use me? That is the definition of using someone!

And honestly sometimes when I heard that kind of stuff I really wondered… And maybe that’s just me, having too much faith in humanity, but could it be possible, they really didn’t realize what they were doing? Or maybe they just weren’t thinking about it because the penis was doing all the thinking? But that doesn’t make it ok, does it? Because I’m still locked up in my bathroom two weeks later, crying over something silly like: spilling my tea. Because the truth is I’m hurting all over. I’m disappointed, sad, angry. Yet, I’m not allowed to express that. I’m not allowed to be angry or hurt. I certainly can’t show it. Because I was never allowed to care in the first place. We’re only supposed to care when the guy cares. If he shows up and tells you he has feelings for you and you reject him, you’re a bitch who didn’t want the „nice” guy. That probably means you’re superficial, and only chase after attractive douches, because it is not possible, that you simply don’t reciprocate his feelings. So we’re forced to be strong and indestructible, after you told us we were just a piece of ass you messed around with, but if you tell us you want us, we’re supposed to fall at your feet and be vulnerable and gentle „I’ve found my hero, now I can be the distressed damsel I’ve always craved to be”. We’re women. We are made to love. I don’t care how many females broke your heart, I am yet to meet a woman who doesn’t ultimately seek love. That doesn’t always mean a committed relationship. But you won’t have a conversation, or try to understand. You get a hint of feeling and you run away because it scares you. You took the love when you wanted it, and it made you feel good as it always does, but giving something back? Hell no, got too much sperm to put into other uteruses.

 

To Be Continued…

In the next rant: dating, men, women, sex and double standards.