don’t cry, 2020

my name is shalom and i am in the terrible ten year habit of understanding that doing something will directly impact me negatively, and doing it anyway. simple things, like don’t pick at a pimple, or a scab, or a tattoo. my name is shalom and i have done all of these things in the last 72 hours. good day, pals.

the weather does a weird thing on this side of the world. on saturday night, the campus was covered in snow and we went sledding in garbage bags, and two days later it was shorts weather. global warming is really doing her thing, and it’s a big shame.

the point of this was to tell you all that the abec has started. if you’re new around here, abec stands for annual birthday existential crisis. every year without fail for the last ten years. guys, i’m turning twenty this year and i have no idea what to do with myself. i’m trying to get around to finishing the exercise guide that i bought while very manic and also trying to be comfy in my flesh suit. it’s the only one i’ve got, so i may as well start getting settled if i’m gonna be in it for another twenty years (and hopefully a couple more twenty years after that).

these days when i get dressed in the morning – which isn’t very often. i spent a disgusting amount of time of the day unshowered and in pyjamas, and my pj’s are often just the clothes i wore yesterday (but enough about my gross habits) – i’ve been saying some lyrics to myself. sometimes it’s pinegrove, sometimes it’s walk the moon, but recently it’s been coin:

put on your make up
i laid out your favourite swearter
it’s just a number, darling
dry your eyes

it’s just a number. it’s two decades of open hearts and messy words, and at least one decade of trying to appreciate myself, but it’s just a number.

dry your eyes, friends. tonight is just another day.

love and light,
shalom

six weeks

I’ve been talking about it but it doesn’t seem real? Still?

In any case, I leave South Africa in six weeks. Six short weeks, and then my room is no longer my room and my street is no longer my street. I have issues with comprehending time, and have done since I was 10, so my reaction to this isn’t shocking news. Not to me, not to anyone who know me, and definitely not to anyone on my street that has either seen or heard me having a “time isn’t real!!!!” breakdown on my balcony.

It’s not as if six weeks is a crazy short time, but we’re somehow nearing the end of June. I’m ageing in two? two and a half? weeks, and I haven’t even had time to freak out about 19 because TIME ISN’T REAL. I remember six weeks before a big party we threw for my father in 2013, when I had to draw up a massive calendar and fill in all of the upcoming events before the day of the party. I remember looking at that calendar on the day of the party and wondering how I possibly could have lived through all of those events and still feel like no time had passed since I made the calendar. It’s the same way I felt when high school was ending, and the last five days were staring me down and I just…I didn’t believe they were there. Not that I wasn’t aware that I was leaving high school, or that I was astonished by how quickly the five years had passed, but rather because I couldn’t believe that the time was gone and I felt like it wasn’t. It’s a stupid thing that makes no sense when I try to write it out, but it’s where I’m at with time.

It’s like backwards nostalgia. I long for the time for no reason other than it’s time, long before it’s passed. And when the time comes, I’m near incapable of living in the moment because I’m too busy begging for the time to stay  rather than the moment. When I tell people that I freak out about time, they ask me what it was about being 15 that I miss…and it’s nothing. I don’t miss being fifteen. But I miss the time. I so, so miss the time.

The next six weeks will be me grappling with the days that go by and probably laughing hysterically about it because crying takes more effort. Last week, for example, I skipped two days. Obviously, I lived Monday through Friday, but I went to bed on Monday and went by Tuesday and Wednesday in such a time-confused haze that when I woke up on Thursday, I was sure it was the day after Monday. I lost 48 hours. I don’t know where they went, but I lost them. It messed with me pretty badly, so I spent 40 minutes on my balcony laughing hysterically and yelling about how time isn’t real. Issa lot.

Have I lost my mind? Well, yes, but that’s alright. It always has been. Where would I be if I was my brain?

love and light,
shalom xo

Maybe, May.

“Well, let it pass, he thought; April is over, April is over. There are all kinds of love in the world, but never the same love twice.”

We are already a week into May, and I am shell shocked and amazed and terrified because of it.

April brought the biggest heartbreak I have ever felt. I learned that I could actually cry for three straight days. I managed to not fail my first law test, and just pass my first English essay.  My best friend is moving 13,330 km away from me. She lives 20 km away from me now, and I last saw her at the beginning of April. My head is heavy and my body just aches. Things have been a lot.

 

wo.jpg

how perfectly angsty of me

The freshman fifteen has very quickly turned into the freshman “I am bad at spending money efficiently and also am constantly buying other people food so now I barely recognise my body”. Yes. I did join a gym, though. I joined an on-campus gym that’s going to have fourteen treadmills and hot showers. It’s opening in July, but I am very very excited. I’m also very lucky and #blessed to be able to have that to look forward to.
booo

It’s concerning that many teenagers drink to forget. 18 years is so little time in the grand scheme of things, but when it’s all you know, it’s the longest time. Why would you want to forget by means of ethanol based products?  Why not? Why am I thinking about this?

My headphones have been stolen. Again. Along with my cellphone charger. What is going on with me and losing stuff?

I went for a good two weeks without taking my medication because I was too anxious/busy to go pick it up at the pharmacy. I felt like an idiot. I’m doing better now, though. I’ve got my Wellbutrin and a big headache.

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One of my favourite people on the internet – Michelle from Piece of Caustic – wrote: “I think too much of my life has consisted of me eyeing the gap between me and others and wondering what to do with it.” I wish I would stop wondering. I wish I could hit myself in the face enough times for me to realise that I need to get my shit together and stop spending money like I have it. I need to realise that I can’t fill that gap with the utter bullshit my drunk heart spouts. It doesn’t tell the truth. It tells lies and hurts me, and everyone around. I need to find out what to do with that gap, or to get in it.

time-overwhelmed

Will May be the month I find out what the hell is going on? Probably not. I’m writing my first set of uni exams this month, and coming to terms with the fact that I’m going to be in Johannesburg for the next three years of my life. Being grounded is hard when you just want to go.

Maybe I’ll make sense of myself a little bit more this month.

Maybe May.

love and light
shalom xo


featured image from paper-leaf.com

Existential Crises & Non-Festivities | Blogmas Day 1

featured image from mxndingo.tumblr.com 

On the first day of Blogmas, my true love gave to me… A NASTY EXISTENTIAL CRISIS. The crazy lack of festive feelings has led me to consider changing my name to Ebenezer.

Hi there, guys, gals & non-binary pals! I’ve some news: I tried to vlog today, and ended up being just complaining, wondering about the world and my terribly uncertain future (What is the future? Does it actually exist seeing that it hasn’t happened? Do I even exist?) and making mac & cheese. That’s essentially it. So, no vlog today, but I’m thinking I’ll do a weekly Vlogmas vlog? Perhaps perchance? Who really knows?

Today’s Blogmas topic is: Introductions.

Pshhh. Definitely not a totally vague topic on which I could say everything and nothing at the same time.

I feel as though today was the least Christmassy day of December. Our tree isn’t up. The heat was ridiculous, and then it was crazy overcast, and the weather was just having a terrible day. Kinda like me.

If this was supposed to be an introduction to Blogmas, then here: Welcome to Blogmas! Here, you’ll find festive festivities from a place where Christmas happens in the heat of summer, amidst college applications and the void that comes with finishing school. Merry Christmas!

I’ve played three Christmas playlists today and I’m STILL not feeling this. Perhaps tomorrow? I think I’m going to succumb to the Pinterest user stereotype and fairy light the heck out of my room. After I dig it out from the pile of papers it’s under. My room, that is.

 Happy Tuesday, folks! And happy day one of Blogmas! Cheers to more festive days than today, and the hope that I can get these apps in by the US-time deadline. Yeesh.

Love and light,
Shalom

THE FINAL COUNTDOWN: TWO DAYS TO GO

I almost didn’t write this post.

Many more people allowed me to take photographs of them today. I now have just about 58 minutes of footage that I will have to condense into a video no longer than three minutes. Lovely.

I had many of my “lasts” today. My last Dramatic Arts lesson, my last Physical Science lesson – and in all this, we, as the matrics, were exhausted. We were too tired to register that the regular alternate Wednesdays that we’d become so accustomed to would stop existing when tomorrow comes around. We don’t think things end but they do and here we are.

We think we’re invincible. I read this post about teenagers and our attitudes towards death  and growing old, and I recommend it 100%. It talks about how we think we’re “too young to die”. On that note, listen to this Panic!At The Disco song – it’s called Far Too Young To Die and it’s perfect.

When adults say, “Teenagers think they are invincible” with that sly, stupid smile on their faces, they don’t know how right they are. We need never be hopeless, because we can never be irreparably broken. We think that we are invincible because we are. We cannot be born, and we cannot die.

-John Green, Looking for Alaska

Today I felt as though I became aware that I will not be a teenager for much longer. I will not be a high schooler (?) for much longer. I will not be invincible for much longer.

Today, awards were given out based on favour rather than merit, and service, passion, and dedication of five years worth were disregarded and condensed into an A4 piece of card that may well have read, “Thanks for coming.”.

Today, I realised that there isn’t nearly enough time left to fix the wrongs we, as a class, have been faced with; to change things to the degree that they need to be changed; to leave lasting marks on walls and trophies and hearts, or to simply be.

We have always thought that we are invincible. Soon, we will learn the truth.

Love and light,
shalom

one month later|connect

a pep talk for julyIn all honesty, I’m completely clueless how to go about writing this post. In actual fact, I’m not entirely sure about how this sentence will go; I’m just hoping it turns out okay by the end. Phew. Seems satisfactory.

I’ll be writing a post every day of July this ye– oh, wait: where have you heard that before? Yes. Here. Where NaBloPoMo and NaNoWriMo were both embarrassingly attempted by me. Well, I’ll be doing it. Again. Not the embarrassing part though. I thoroughly intend to finish!

This year’s theme is connect, as you can tell by the snazzy little badge I’ve snagged in the sidebar, and I’m pretty keen to find out what kind of trash (and hopefully, some non-trash) I’ll be spewing for a month. That…that there is a vivid image. Good job, Shalom.

ONTO THE FIRST POST! I haven’t updated this blog in almost exactly a month, and there are many reasons and excuses I could give. June is exam month in South Africa and every day from June 5th onward was a horrible practical joke. At least I hope it was. If it wasn’t, my physics and chemistry exams will let me know (THEY WENT HORRIBLY LIKE BURN THE REPORT CARD BEFORE YOUR MOTHER SEES IT HORRIBLY). Also, I’ve been going through the 7th Annual Birthday Existential Crisis, because I’m ageing soon.

“Gosh, Scoot, you’re so dramatic.”
Yes. Yes I am.

I am also very, very panicked about being older. (If you missed the 6th ABEC, you can catch yourself up here.) I tend to shrink into myself more than I do when I’m alone during this time of year (which is an awful lot, I’ll have you know), so connecting, in a word, becomes difficult. The ABEC forces me to find new ways to deal with things that I’m perfectly equipped to during any time of the year apart from the days between June 20th and July 10th.

I suppose that the extensive number of emails I’ve sent out to American universities (HELLO Bethel College and University of Iowa thank you for replying always except when you don’t :)) counts as some form of connecting- I haven’t failed completely at that.

Worry not friends – I ensure you (at least I hope to everything) that every July post will not be as anxiety ridden and angst filled as I currently am. I feel like I’ll come around. The thing about me, about the things I go through-about the depression and the anxiety and the eating and the school- is that I always get through. I don’t know how, but I do. And I like to think that I always will.

In the words of Luigi:Here we go!

yours, shalom

On St. Jude

<<please note that the teenager that wrote this is not very sure what’s been happening in her head, and she just wanted to share this with some people. she’s having a nasty existential crisis. n-a-s-t-y.>>

the patron saint of the lost causes

Aloha amigos! I’ve been missing for a while, in and out of rooms I shouldn’t have been in, discovered a hatred for eating yoghurt at school, I’ve been crying a lot and crawling through the last two weeks of the first quarter of matric (IT’S ALMOST OVER) – I’ve been being extremely regular and there is no problem with that.

(pah. that was a lie. i have been very not regular.)

In any case, several things have happened since I last posted something.I don’t even know what that was. What I’m saying is that I have something new to say.

I’ve felt very lost recently. It could be because I’ve been reading too much Sartre and not moving enough, but it could also be because I really am lost. South African universities opened applications for 2016 weeks ago, and I’m yet to take action. I’m too scared. Yes, I know I’m a wimp, that’s why I admitted it, but what I’, saying is that I’ve been crawling and crying and breaking things because I feel like a lost cause.

This brings me to beautiful things that assist on not so beautiful days. Florence and the Machine recently released two of the videos and singles from the upcoming album, How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful (available for pre order here). What Kind of Man is brilliant, but at this time, I’d like to bring your attention to another song: St Jude.

Some of these lyrics have hit me quite hard. I was crying again a couple of minutes ago.

And I’m learning, so I’m leaving
And even though I’m grieving
I’m trying to find the meaning
Letting loss reveal it
Letting loss reveal it

“Yes, but WHAT are you getting so emotional about?”

St. Jude, the patron saint of the lost causes
St. Jude, we were lost before she started
St. Jude, we lay in bed as she whipped around us
St. Jude, maybe I’ve always been more comfortable in chaos

St. Jude is the Patron Saint of Hope and impossible causes. I feel like I am the conversation without a destination, I am another lost battle, I am both sides that are losing, and that’s why nobody cares who fired the gun. I am…what am I?

A lost, impossible cause. I don’t know what it is that I’m grieving for, but I feel as if I’m in mourning, and perhaps, as Lady Welch says, loss will reveal meaning.

And there’s this big storm that surrounds us and we’re in the middle of it
It’s calm but I can feel it, like it’s everywhere.

love and light,
?