People took very few photos back in the day. If the were poor they probably couldn’t afford them at all. Maybe that is why looking at old photos is that much more special, especially if you are looking at photos of your own relatives.
My family really isn’t big on exploring the family tree or holding on to photos of long-lost ones. Sure, we do have the occasional great-grandfather memorabilia but it ends there. So, last week I visited my aunt Maja and my cousin Vesna (note to self: a blog of how I met them must be written in the near future) who are, on the other hand, very into knowing where they came from. I guess that is something I take after them – that unsettling feeling, that wanting to belong. Anyhow, they were showing me pictures of my grandfather’s brother and telling me the story of how he died in battle during World War I. There is only one photo of him, he took it only a few months before dying. He went to town to get photographed by a professional (which was the only way, actually) while he was still serving, supposedly to send to his mother so that she will have something to remember him by. Listening to that I thought of only one thing, the thing that is inevitable : we are one day going to be merely faces on a photo. With a good story, hopefully. Life will go on for others, children will be born and one day there will perhaps be a (digital) photo of me hanging (or floating, I really don’t know where technology is going) somewhere. And someone will perhaps think of me and tell my story.
One of my favorite Kashmir songs tells of how a Polaroid photo is a ‘frozen glimpse’, a memory trapped on paper. A moment that has passed. Needless to say, my sometimes morbid mind often makes photo viewing kind of sad. I can’t stop thinking that immortalizing something only reminds me of my own mortality. But maybe, just maybe I should rather concentrate on the story that is going to be told of me. Who was I? What did I do? And most importantly, will I make a difference … that’s what makes it all worth while, no?
I always thought that having children is the way to go if you want to be remembered. Well, although very egoistic, this is partially true. But I have come to realise that they will have their own stories to create, their own path to find and their own fears to face.
This made me think of a great song. So, enjoy. It’s my gift to you.
how are you doing? I am doing fine, thank you. As you are probably noticing, I am giving this blog thing another shot. When I started writing my zablogar a few years ago I was really dedicated and what I actually wanted was to put down all of the thoughts that I found amusing and to maybe learn someting fun along the way. It actually brought me more than I bargained for, interestingly enough.
Back then blogs were already lame and that’s why I liked writing mine even more. I was single and no longer desperate about it. I was having fun, reminiscing about the past, wondering about the future and trying to solve my deeply buried fears about life, death and mostly just about living. And then it happened, yes, I fell in love. My blog posts became scarce and slowly slipped into oblivium. The thing was that I found someone to talk to about all of the above. I got all the attention that I needed and all I could do was to write about us … and that didn’t seem fair. I am actually quite private, mind you. Anyhoo, I had finally found someone who could take all of my cares away. Turns out, I was wrong about it all. He is just a lovely distraction.
Fast forward. I am now two years into my still wonderful relationship. Contrary to my vows as a single girl, my legs are not always shaved and I even let him see me with weird bobby pins in my hair that I put on when I go to sleep (note: not to mess up my hair, obviously). In brief, things are comfortable. I know he is the real deal so I worry about him ditching me a bit less. Not worrying at all is not in my DNA, just so you know. However, with comfort comes another phase of the relationship: the let-me-remember-who-I-am bit. Otherwise known as: I am still an individual, even if I am in a relationship. We tend to forget that and at some point you need to give yourself a kick in the behind and remember.
My thirties, that I encountered a little over a month ago, have already presented me with numerous … let’s say challenges. Somehow, I feel that I am right back where I started: trying to figure out not who I am, but what would make me happy, well, happier. I am back to figuring out what I want from life, what to do in my free time and mostly to learn how to listen to myself. Like, really. I thought that years would bring me some kind of clarity, but I guess it doesn’t work like that. Life actually takes a lot of work if you want to live it well.
So, let’s do this.
Here is to new beginnings … and to the new Zablogar!
Bless your souls.
Do you love yourself? Really?
Actually, I would love to know what that means and how it can be purposely achieved. I have heard on numerous occasions that I should love myself more or learn to love myself. And I often wonder if I should tell myself that I am great and wonderful every day? Should I admire myself in front of the mirror telling my reflection that it is beautiful? Should I give myself kisses and hugs? Isn’t that pretty much impossible? I am really confused. Honestly.
Obviously, I know that love goes deeper than the occasion compliment and it is most definitely not skin deep. So what is this mysterious condition for a supposedly happy life? Just the other day I was walking around town and I saw a young man with his headphones on, sitting by the table beside me was a girl playing with her iPhone. They were both alone, both occupied with some machinery. I see this all the time and I bet you do too. Actually, I do the exact same thing whenever I am alone. And then it hit me! Members of our generations absolutely hate spending time with themselves. It is horrifying. Having to spend an hour alone with our thoughts (no Facebook, no music, no talking on the phone, no work and no book – yeah, books too) seems pretty much unfathomable. Inevitably I though of the good old times when you couldn’t stick a musical plug into your ear or call your BFF so that you didn’t have to think about things that might actually matter. Imagine, back then people would actually sit on a bus for three hours and have nothing but their own company. It wasn’t awkward, it was normal. If your friend was late to meet you, you would sit there. That’s it. We don’t like ourselves anymore, it seems. We’re not fun to be with. We are boring. Or perhaps we are just too lazy to have to be with the one person that count’s the most. You know, the one person that will literally stick to you for better or for worse (because it has no other option).
I can’t help but wonder…is it all lost, though? Don’t get me wrong, I still know people who are perfectly satisfied with going out for a drink on their own, or going to sit on a bench in the park to enjoy the nature. I am not part of those people and I must admit that I envy them. I find it ironic in a way…how at the same time we manage to be absolutely preoccupied by our own lives. It is messed up.
What is even more sad is the story I heard the other day. A woman who I know got dizzy and fell down on a busy walking street and absolutely no one came to help her. There she was, on the concrete… and from what I imagine people had to step over her to get by. I guess I don’t even need to mention how way too few people stop to ask if they can help whenever there is an accident of some sort on the road. We rather drive by, forget it and blame it on the good old ‘what could I have done to help, anyway?’. The moral of this story is that what is almost as sad as not loving ourselves is not loving our fellow human beings. We are becoming a bunch of selfish, self involved and boring people. Actually, no wonder we think that we’re no fun.
I don’t know what the future brings, with all the technology that is slowly taking over real human interaction I fear that we are on the way to becoming social cripples…but then again..our narcicistic souls might guide us out of the ditch that we are bound to fall in. For now, what can we do to save ourselves? I guess a good start is to go out for a walk and leave all iStuff at home. If you can go an hour without freaking out..they you might be just fine. If not…well then use that phone to call an ambulance for someone who might need it. And for god’s sake…pick someone up if they fall.
If I were a believer, the sin I would be most haunted by would be gluttony. You see, I like to overdo stuff. When I love something, I really love it…when something makes me sad, I am devastated. The list could go on. I admit it, I am an emotional glutton. Actually, as a hobby, I also like to eat. Sometimes a lot.
About a month ago I went on this low carb diet that really forced me to look at food differently. About what to have for breakfast, what to eat for lunch … and most importantly how to dose it. I think I was most offended when the nutritionist told me: try not to see food as a source of pleasure, see it as the fuel that keeps you going. What? I still don’t quite get it. I think I have always seen food as a gift from above. the fact that it somehow nourishes us is just a friendly bonus. Changing my perspective was challenging to say the least and to tell you the truth, it made me feel quite depressed. Luckily, humans are extremely adjustable creatures and I learned that this kind of sadness is everyday life for most of you. What happened when I really liked something that I tasted, you are surely asking yourself? Well, I went all the way. Man, if I had a penny for every time I felt ill after chewing a whole pack of strawberry chewing gums, eating a whole Pavlova cake… well, I would be well off.
Coincidentally (but to no surprise) I tend to do the same with emotions…and dare I say people. the few times that I fell in love, not being able to consume the object of my affection and carry him with me all the time was pure horror. A seeker of attention, I was insatiable. By wanting to get more, I gave more…and this is a deceptive viscous circle. You end up giving away too much of yourself and you get lost. You risk disappearing into someone else…and if they ever go away for whatever reason…well, what are you left with? Having yourself is the only certainty we have in life. Sad but true, my friends. The good news here is that with the right help, with the right person, with the right time…you learn to dose your emotions and can actually take a step back from the neurosis without taking away from the beauty of whatever you are feeling. Even though being highly emotional and sensitive is great (or extremely horrible), turning on your ratio puts a whole new life to it.
I remember my mom once told me that I always tend to do things that burn my wings. I said that I don’t care…because it at least means that I fly for even a little while. So, here is to flying! Even though I really hate to. But…that’s already a different story.
By the way. I missed you. Have you missed me?
If you know me, you will now that I am sort of a romantic person. If you really know me, you will say that I am hopelessly romantic. Note: this means that I am really naive when it comes to tales of the heart. It is my blessing and my curse.
You will also know that I have been madly in love for some time now. Sometimes the accent is really on the ‘madly’. Loving and being loved can be the most unbelievable feeling in the world…and at the same time it can be the most terrifying of them all. Once you know that you adore what you have, well, then you know that you can lose what you adore. The moments where we manage to forget this nonesense..well, those are the moments of bliss worth living for.
Just the other day I started thinking about pairs. See, much of what makes us comes in pairs. We have two arms, two legs, two eyes, two ears, two kidneys, the lung wings…and the list goes on. They support each other and do their best if one of them fails. They possibly can survive, but it is a difficult process. So, a lot of what constitutes us needs some sort of support. But look here! We only have one heart. And this is where I will skip the part of why love is linked to our blood pumping organ (because I honestly have no idea how it came to be)…but it is the organ that gives us rhythm, it gives us a daily reminder that we are alive. It changes pace when we are happy, sad…tired or excited. I believe I have woken up the romantic part of me and it says: we need another heart to keep us going. We need some sort of other daily reminder that we are alive and that it’s not all rubbish. What we will not find within ourselves, we will look for in someone else. In some sort of way, this is terribly selfish. But in another sense, it seems perfectly normal.
If you didn’t know me…Well, you have just met me. And for your info- the two hearts on this post’s photo…they’re actually cake.
I have been gone for a while and have missed (b)logging onto this site and writing. Writing what I like to think about, what moves me and what scares me. About what I love, about what I hope to become.
A lot has happened since my last post. We are now in a new year and this new year has unfortunately brought with it a deep loss that I can’t seem to make sense of. On January 16th the world lost a beautiful young person, it lost Barbara. Barbara was the daughter of my so-called surrogate mom. She was smart, kind and always positive. She was the friend with whom I would always only speak about meeting up with, but rarely managed to find the time. Unfortunately. I could go on about many things here: about injustice, about how terrible it must be for a parent to lose a child…about death. I have gone through many of these themes in the last five weeks, but it doesn’t really help anyone.
I came to realise once again how fragile we are. We don’t come with a guarantee that everything will always be fine. We are delicate creatures whose lives are more of a blessing than a right. We actually never know what is around the corner, but I think the trick is in expecting the best and not the worst. I have read recently that you can only start really enjoying life once you lose your fear of death. I would have to agree with that. It is an inevitable end…and the time until then is ours to manage. We might waste it or we might find a way to make it meaningful. In our own way.
Honestly, I am more of the kind who spirals downwards and not up in such situations. I hope, like I have before, that epiphany is the first step towards change.
Because I don’t know what else to write, I will say the obvious. Rest in peace, Barbi.
And for all of you: wake up!
I have had trouble accepting that things change for as long as I can remember. If I could, I guess I would have stayed a little girl forever. Eager to grow up, yet too frightened to face it. And then, as it goes for all of us – life happens. We are faced with more and more decisions, responsibility and soon we discover that we are individuals sent out to the world to discover their own purpose. Mind you, few of us really find it.
When life happens we might lose some people. We might fall apart, distance ourselves or we simply stop caring. But we also come across new individuals who enrich is in their unique way. You know, not all important people are meant to stay in your life forever. Sometimes they are just a sign, a warning…but never a mistake.
As individuals caught up in a societal life we obviously feel a great need to connect with the people around us. Whether they are friends, lovers or mere acquaintances that help you cross some sort of obstacle, we have the tendency to get attached. Because, truth be told, company is awesome. Most of all, company deprives us that awful feeling of loneliness…and most importantly, it rids us of most of our scary thoughts. Dark thoughts about the future, life and of course, death. You know what the awful truth about this is? We will have to face all of these things sooner or later and the sad thing is that we tend to worry about them too soon. Like, why should I worry about my own death now? It kind of seems pointless. Or why should I worry about ending up lonely if I have a lovely and loving boyfriend? Fear is a terribly strong force. Even though I do it all the time, I think wasting time worrying about something that has not yet happened is a real shame. We let those perfectly good seconds go by…those seconds that we might one day kill for. I am sure we do it out of protection though. You know, we make up bad scenarios now so that we will be emotionally, physically and mentally ready. I don’t think we ever can really be so ready though. No mental scenario can ever prepare us for the real thing. Whether it is good or bad…we’ll just have to wait and see.
Also, remember: if you might ever think that the worst is yet to come (I know I sometimes do)…the good is also out there and come think of it, there is probably more good than bad.
I think what I am trying to say is that life will happen no matter what. Lets just go with the flow. And please – keep trying. Try for the things you care for…and most importantly, try for the people you love. And yes, that includes yourself.