what if…?

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volumes of silence

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This is something I wrote sometime ago that I never published, but it is still relevant today.

I take a deep breath, exhale, then repeat, breathing out all the chaos and irritations of life. For days I’ve watched the madness encircle even the ones closest to me. I shrink back.

It’s a constant struggle, watching and observing the hectic bustle of daily life. There’s so  much noise. Yelling, screaming, calling out for our voices to be heard over the din. We’re always trying so hard to lose our vocal chords just so that we might be heard.

Hear Me.

Pain, bitterness, hate. These are the voices that breathe the loudest in this world. They flash out in great big neon letters, lighting up the darkness without truly illuminating it. It’s often hard to see the hurt of the person in front of you when you’re being blinded by these colors of emotion.

We live in a world where no one seems to notice the dark corners and hallways where the wallflowers and shadowplayers linger. To be honest, they’re no different than anyone else. They, too, have plugged their ears to the deafening cries of humanity. So if we’re all fighting for our voices to be heard, what’s the point?

I’ll let you in on a little secret. Love speaks in volumes of silence. In fact, it is so soft, you could almost miss it. In the midst of the anger and rage, it whispers. Then it listens. You see, there are pieces of Silence being passed around by the few who take the time to shut up and turn down their own cries of anguish. They have mastered this beautiful art. They can see beyond the bright lights and hear the language spoken in the spaces where the noise stops.

I don’t know, maybe I’m just rambling here. Maybe I am just another voice in the boiling chaos. All I want out of this is to cause you to reflect on where you stand in the whirlwind that is this world. Because honestly, there are plenty of people to make up for the madness. But when was the last time you shut your mouth and opened your heart?

When was the last time you listened?

When was the last time you heard?

perfection

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I’m a bit late to the party. A month late to be exact. It’s only that I’ve been contemplating just what I wanted to say to begin this year. And in reflection upon my life, I’ve come to the conclusion that I’ve become fearful of my own thoughts; I’ve allowed myself to become complacent in this frame of mind that nothing I create will be perfect enough. It’s true though, and this is not myself wallowing in self-pity either. This is the hard truth, one I have been struggling in coming to terms with.

Nothing I can say or do will ever be perfect enough for this world. I may create a story or song that I place all my emotions into, but to someone else it may not be enough to reach into their heart. I may write a billion tweets, gain millions of followers all over social media, and still it wouldn’t be enough. There will always be someone who will find fault in what I’ve said or done. Maybe I will never measure up. But maybe that is not the point.

 

Perfectionism is  a lie. But we are expected to live up to it.

 

The world is a loud place. In some cases, it feels hellish. We all are screaming for perfection both in ourselves and in those around us. The problem is how different each and every one of us are. We want to squeeze everyone into our bubble of excellence. Then again, your neighbor is doing the exact same thing to you. It’s a war out there, and you’re in the middle of it whether you signed up for it or not. But that makes you a soldier, a warrior, with weapons that are yours for the taking. So use them.

There is a saying that says, “Expectation is the root of all heartache”. I don’t think I could have expressed my sentiments more effectively. We expect so much, and forget that life and our dreams are worthy of more than to be given a mere rating by people who have very little understanding. This mindset is what gets us into trouble. We don’t respect ourselves because others don’t. Honestly, I believe that is a key to success. Respect yourself and respect your art.

 

Life is a fragile gift and so are the dreams in our hearts.

 

I’ll never be perfect enough for anyone. My words may not reach into the heart of one person the way it might to someone else. But there lies the beauty. If I can inspire one person in my lifetime, I say that should be enough. The importance here is that I allowed my dreams to live. That is my goal not only for this year, but for the rest of my life.

If you’re reading this, give yourself a chance. Forget being a perfectionist. Allow yourself to live beyond your minds eye. Take chances. Don’t just live a little, live a lot. Aim for the stars, and don’t listen to those who say it’s impossible.

Take courage and have faith in your dreams.

i am fearful

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I realize I haven’t written something on here in a while, and so I thought it would be a good idea to post something. This time, though, I wanted it to be personal, not just for myself, but for you as the reader. It’s awkward and scary for me to write this, but I believe honesty is the best thing we can offer ourselves and the world. I hope that no matter what I reveal here, it will inspire you to be the best person you can be.

“Okay, so what’s your story?”

This is a question I like asking people. I love to know to know what makes up the heart and soul of who you are and what sort of passions are hidden inside you. But when it comes down to it, I become flustered when the reverse happens to me. What’s my story? How much should I present? The verge is a scary place, and yet sometimes it can be amazing to see what you can find when you’re out there.

But I’m made up of fears. I’m far from proud of that factor, and I wish I could snap my finger and become a fearless lion on a savannah. Unfortunately it’s not that simple. My fears sink deeper than that of finding myself alone in the same room as an oblivious (and probably also very fearful and panicked) cockroach. As deep as that may be, that is only the surface. Sometimes, just looking at myself in the mirror can prove to be scary. It’s hard to look at yourself eye to eye, especially when you haven’t slept well or when your hair refuses to cooperate. I can remember days where I stand in front of the mirror trying to talk myself into smiling despite the fact that nothing about my face or my hair gave me confidence to show myself to the world outside. Maybe society paints these insecurities onto our minds and hearts…maybe…then again, I know deep inside that beauty is deeper than the first layer of skin. Still…I fear.

 

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There are other things that haunt me. Success, is one of them. I’m a writer and musician and sometimes it’s hard to motivate yourself to work with what you have. Suddenly your art becomes work because the pressure is on and you’re obligated to raise yourself to this ridiculous level. To be fearless is never an easy task.

I know I’m not the only one reaching for the stars and feeling as if maybe it’s not worth it. I’m not the only one wondering if anything I have to say is even worth saying. As I write this, I doubt whether or not my words have any point. Most of the time, I feel as though I am rambling. And yet, I have so much to say and I find myself out on the verge all over again, whether or not I want to be out there. We all have something tugging at our hearts; some of us may climb over the wall and reach success; and some of us will spend our whole lives climbing a rope that has no end. Nevertheless, the prize is never what matters. What matters is that we gave ourselves something to live for. But no matter how much positivity I speak, fear will always find a way. It’s a constant battle, but it’s a battle that is worth fighting.

 

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All in all, I think it’s safe to say that “there is nothing to fear but fear itself”. And as cliché as this sounds, those are some of the truest words ever spoken. And while I type out these words, I find that the only thing holding me back from finishing this post is the fear locked inside me. I mean, I think every artisan can relate when I say that revealing one’s thoughts to the world is scary and brings out even the worst of insecurities in a person. But there’s something about divulging your deepest thoughts and creative ideas (even if it may nearly destroy all your self-esteem….ha ha). You see, despite fear, there’s a part of it that many people don’t see…it’s letting go; it’s reaching out; it’s adventurous; and it’s redeeming. That is why, no matter how many people dislike what I say, no matter how hard it is to express myself, and no matter how many times I press the backspace on my keyboard, I will continue this messy and uncontainable art. Because, though fear will never suppress, the key is always to punch it in the face whenever you begin to feel it sink in.

I don’t know… Maybe you’re just like me and you have no idea what you’re doing, so what? Keep on, keep on. And to those who say that we can’t succeed; let them eat their own words because it’s better to do something amazing than sit around letting your creativity eat away at your soul.

 

I confess, I am fearful. But I am also a dreamer; and dreams, given the chance, can come true if you give them a chance to live and breathe.

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the essence of wonder

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~

To see a World in a grain of Sand

And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,

Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand

And Eternity in an hour.

William Blake

 ~

A while ago, I had the pleasure of visiting one of the great Wonders of the World: Niagara Falls. There I stood, at the foot of a cliff, with only a railing keeping me from plummeting into the raging gorge. Below me, gallons upon gallons of water freely fell. I was surrounded by people from different countries who came to see one of America’s great scenes. It was surreal.

I can only imagine what it would have been like when there was nothing but barren land surrounding the falls like a picture frame, with nothing for miles, and you can only hear the deafening rush of water. And now, I can only close my eyes and imagine the wind and mist kissing my face like a long lost friend. Sometimes I think we take for granted these moments, the ones filled with innocent wonder.

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I’m still taken aback by flying in a plane with clouds below me. When I was a little girl, I was just like any other little kid, wanting to know what it would be like to fly. I even wondered what it might be like to walk amongst clouds. There’s something about reality that takes away the charm and beauty of life. It’s hard to make out the art in the world around us within the constant hustle bustle of daily life. Everything we see has become a routine, we’re used to it, and thus, we have become visually impaired.

But you see, in the height of impossibility, there is wonder. In the essence of wonder, there is art and beauty and a pure resilience. There is life. And in life there all three of these things are present. I close my eyes and I can see moments in my life that are sheer wonder and brilliance that I’ve never noticed before. It’s in silence as I stared into the firelight glow while waiting for conversation to start between the rest of my companions; it’s in the starlight as I gazed at it with tired, yet wide eyes; it’s in the bright Autumn air as I followed the ones I loved through wooded hills, our feet crunching fallen leaves on the ground. It’s all there. In every moment and in every silent word, there was wonderment.

 

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Honestly, it doesn’t matter what you’re looking at,

the beauty is there.

You may not understand what I mean; you may not grasp what I’m trying to say. The thing is, the essence of this wonder I am trying to write about isn’t something I can easily put into words. It’s not explainable. You have to experience it for yourself. And when you do, you’ll know exactly what I mean.

 

If you have ever been to a place that nearly takes your breath away because it’s so beautiful, or perhaps there is a person in your life that simply amazes you to the point where you have no words to say, just silence stands between you and them, yet both of you know—your hearts know—that’s it. When you see something, and it makes you feel as though time and space have come to a halt, that is it.

 

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That is wonder. That is beauty.

That is art.

And my friend, that is not something you want to let go of. Looking down at the infinite fall of water reminds me that it’s all here. Every piece of life that revolves around me holds a portion of uncontainable iridescence. We just think that it’s out of our grasp. In all we see and hear, we are accustom to believing we have seen it all. In the midst of the pain, heartache, loneliness, and vulnerability of life, we expect very little and yet so much, when in reality, we’ve experienced and seen very little. Everyday, there is something knew and beautiful to see—diamonds hidden away just waiting for us to dig them out.

 

I want to look at things with wonder and excitement, as though today is my last. Because, as cliché as it sounds, it’s real and true that I may not see tomorrow. I want to hold onto each moment, each little wonder I find in life, because the next thing you know, it’ll be gone. Take it from me; I know what it’s like to lose. But I’ve learned to never forget the best of what I’ve seen.

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 memorandums from my life

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i. personified

-Autumn days are closing in.

-I finally released this song.

-My friend is getting married *internal screams*

-ice cream

-new clothes

-and did I mention AUTUMN IS COMING?

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ii. beautiful words

 

-Said by a friend: “Persevere to persevere.”

 

iii. brilliant art

 

 

iv. photographic bliss

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 v. favorite melodies

-“Still Falling For You” by Ellie Goulding

-“Let It All Go” by Birdy ft. Rhodes

-“Not Today” by Imagine Dragons

-“Priceless” by for King and Country

-“One Black Sheep” by Mat Kearney

{pictures from Pinterest}

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Autumn’s back again.

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“No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace

as I have seen in one autumnal face.”

[The Autumnal]” ― John Donne

So the winds of Autumn have found their way to us at last.

I suppose I will have to wait a few more weeks before Autumn’s gentle hands greet me, for Summer is reluctant to say “au revoir”. Unfortunately, I do not find Summer’s company as endearing as I could; her impulse to spread heat wherever she goes does not appeal to me, yet I will greet her again next year, because there is no way I could avoid her passing by.

 

Ah, but Autumn, how I welcome you to my doorstep with open arms. We have had many good times together, you always have a memory to leave behind with me. With all the souvenirs you bring, you always have a box of nostalgia for me to open. It is a strange yet bittersweet gift to give a friend, but I am always happy to receive it.

 

I cannot help wondering what sorts of festivities are in store for us. What events will come to pass, what friends will we meet? What sorts of stories will I take with me when I pass through Winter’s gate? Alas, I shall try to keep my patience, though the suspense has kept me waiting for so long.

 

Dearest Autumn, don’t tarry too long, for I cannot wait to see your bright colors and breathe in the scent of your air. Whatever your season brings, I hope it will be beautiful and fair.

 

Until next year, dear Summer, Autumn is now here.

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Random things from this week.

i. personified

– rainy days in summer

– new books

– new music video by Koi Reef

cooler weather and the approach of Autumn

 

ii. brilliant words

“You don’t learn music…you become it!”

– “Endings exist in the world…but not in our hearts.”

{The Queen’s Soprano by Carol Dines}

-“Write it on your heart that everyday is the best day in the year.” {Ralph Waldo Emerson}

 

iii. photographic bliss

 

iv. favorite melodies

– “O” by Coldplay

Another Blue Sky” by Lost In Caravaggio

– “Clear” by NEEDTOBREATHE

– “Celeste” by Ezra Vine

– “Love Will Set You Free” by Kodaline

 

{pictures from Pinterest}

the height of impossibility

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photo by John Scoggins

I would like to talk about mountains.

A while ago, I watched the movie Everest (if you haven’t watched this movie, you should). It’s about endurance and faith in doing the impossible—you know, climbing Mount Everest.

 

Throughout the movie, these people were training themselves for the real thing. As they journeyed up the mountain, little by little, they would come upon small obstacles—small because, compared to what they experienced on their last leg of the climb, it was nothing.

 

Before they began the treacherous climb that would define their fate, one of the characters asks this question: “It hurts. It’s dangerous. I gotta ask the question, you know I do. Why?” It’s a logical thing to ask, and if you watch the movie, you’ll be asking yourself why too. Why would someone spend all that money, all that time, basically risking your life just to climb a gigantic rock form? One of the guys offered an answer I find speaks volumes.

I have kids. They see a regular guy can follow

impossible dreams, maybe they’ll do the same.”

We all have dreams keeping us up in the dead of night. And a lot of us will do anything just to chase after it. Plenty of people have run a race they know they may never win. But they do it. Why? I think it’s because, in the end, we all live to prove something. Whether or not you think you’re trying to make a statement, you are. And we all seek something to live for, to show that we’re making the most out of our existence.

I think mountains say a lot about this. They are scary, yet amazing, and they can take you to heights that will steal your breath away. But at one point, they hold impossibility. Everest isn’t a mountain you go and climb without a second thought; it’s a choice and decision one makes seriously and with a lot of consideration. And when you’ve chosen to make the climb, you do so with precision. You climb until you’ve reached your limit.

 

Dreams are the same way. You can’t start something and decide you’re not good at it and give up (I’m talking to myself here). You have to keep going. Because you never know if you’ll reach the summit until you challenge yourself to. You’ll never know how amazing the view is until you make it to the top. It’s hard, it’s difficult, but you keep trying. Why? Because there are people watching you; and the ones who truly believe in you want to see you succeed. Their expectations shouldn’t make you feel bad when you fail, they should make you want to try harder.

 

I’m no better than you at achieving my goals.. We all have something we’re failing at. This doesn’t mean you can’t keep your head in the game and keep running the race you’ve chosen to participate in. And you know, if you get tired, take a break, remember to breath, and remember that you have a chance to enjoy your journey.

 

So today, lets both choose to climb impossible heights. Maybe we’ll inspire someone else to do the same, that’s the real goal. Maybe it seems like we won’t reach the very top, and you know, maybe you won’t. At least you tried. And frankly, I’d rather die trying. Wouldn’t you?

 

Oh, and don’t forget…

Nothing is impossible if you just believe you can.

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