dance, writing, my friends & family, pepper, my job, puns/wordplay, photography, design, handlettering, pastel colors, sparkling water, ratchet music, emo music, true crime podcasts, alaskan malamutes, sunflowers, kids before the age of 6 and after 12, too expensive makeup, thoughtful pieces of art, meaningful pieces of jewelry, long hugs & sustained eye contact, the ‘aha’ moment of understanding, matcha, salted caramel, peppermint, the way my mom smells when i cuddle her, the way my dad physically applauds my accomplishments. challenges. necessary doses of humility. proving people (myself) wrong. bob’s burgers, john and hank green, coffee shops with white marble and succulents. my sexy ass civic. when dogs jump to greet you. walking near water. being freezing, in the dark, in a foreign city – with good company. food. all food. but especially thai curry and costco pizza. buddhism, sarcasm, stoicism, empathy, jasmine milk tea half sweet with boba, generosity without expectation. quirky socks. epsom salt baths. over(?)sharing. making people laugh. and above all else – Love, Love, Love, Loving. #itme
When i think about my 'want' to do something I can almost always trace it back to two sources: Love or Fear:
"Do I want to be with him because I love him, or am I just afraid of being alone?"
"Do I love my job, or am I just too scared to pursue something else?"
"Do I love serving my friends, or am I fearful of being seen as selfish?"
When you're pushed by fear, each step feels heavy. Every action feels contrived. And even the greatest resulting successes feel unfulfilling.
The image of things you thought you wanted start to look blurrier and challenges make you question why you'd even try.
When you're pulled by love, you're not being forced to move forward by an imagined external force. You, quite effortlessly, just follow the deepest, truest parts of your own heart. There is no other 'why' than 'because I want to'. Never the hanging question of 'will it be worth it?,' because it is already worth it.
Love is always worth it.
Listen to your own heart. Trust that it is enough.
As Rumi once said,
"Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray."
I'm a textures person.
Velvet, silk, running water. Bare feet in sand, ballpoint pens on stacks of paper.
It's no surprise that I love feeling your skin on mine.
Have you noticed?
Our hands never stay still – my thumb is always rubbing your knuckles. When we hug, my fingertips sneak inside your shirt to your bare chest. I lean in to kiss your face and end up rubbing my lips down your neck.
Skin on skin.
I can't get enough.
I hate how "sex" became watered down to an act. That there's so much focus on the climax or the duration or how "hot" it is. It fetishizes something that is so intimate, so beautiful, so divine.
Skin in skin.
I couldn't even imagine.
You feel so good already, just holding hands feels like foreplay.
Once upon a time,
I loved a boy very much.
I fell for him without knowing what or how to give love,
or what this “love” even was.
Over the years, he changed names and faces.
But I kept loving and giving to him, the same clueless love, in the same clueless way.
We hurt and healed, hurt and healed.
One day, he asked me,
“How do you know that you love me, if you don’t even know what love is?”
“Why do you not think I know what love is?” I asked, defensive.
“Because, ever since that once upon a time, you never grew a love for yourself. Because you only grew love in different versions of me.”
I realized that he was right.
I realized that I’d been recycling this “love” for him, as he changed names and faces.
I realized that it never really came from me
because I had none.
Not for myself, anyway.
This upon a time,
I loved a boy very much. Who loved me very much, too.
In fact, he loved me so much that, although than he wanted me to love him,
he wanted me to love myself, more.
I had given him what I knew, what had been exchanged in the past-
the hurting and healing, hurting and healing.
He said that if I knew how to be okay, on my own,
I would not have to hurt that much
and that I would be able to grow a love for others, a true love, a strong and lasting love,
one that came from me,
one that I could call my own.
Next upon a time,
I’m going to love a boy. So very much.
And it won’t be a love that’s based on habit or need,
it’ll be a love that’s just for him. Just from me.
His name and face, I still don't know,
but my love for myself,
and my love for him,
I will know.
Found him. On October 30, 2016.
Turns out, I wrote this piece on his birthday earlier that year.
Call it a coincidence, call it fate – whatever the name, I think it means something...
My love for him? The one that's just from me? I don't quite know yet.
I'm still discovering it.
But it's still JUST from me, JUST for you.
There's no way it won't be beautiful.
That’s the risk you run by falling for a junkie-
they’re either going to love their vices more than they love you, or love you compulsively like they love them.
You either lose to a drug or become one.
There's nothing wrong
with one person
being more experienced
as long as the other person
remains open-minded and willing.
But it does get exhausting,
being the one that constantly
has to forgive.
You can only forgive and accept so much
until it starts to feel like settling.
You keep hurting and tolerating
until you realize that you deserve to find someone
who understands your rights & wrongs
as their rights & wrongs.
Someone who knows how to love you
Someone who doesn't make you hurt
and that's a given.
Someone with whom you can skip all that noise with,
no need for doubt, no room for insecurity.
Someone to just.
Be. Good. With.
Don't get stuck trying to speak to someone
in a love language that
they don't understand
to try to learn.
There is someone who gets you.
There is someone
who loves like you do.
I apologized to him,
for having to deal with this heart
that he didn’t break.
"It’s not broken, and I’m not dealing.
It’s beautiful, in all its struggle,
and I’m honored, to even experience it.
And when you feel about yourself
the way that I do,
I will gladly celebrate you,
We hear it all the time, but I don’t think we internalize how literally and powerfully this translates in real life-
Your relationship with yourself sets the stage for every single relationship you have with others.
You can’t love, respect, or appreciate anyone else without first feeling it for yourself. You can’t give away anything that you’re not sure you even have.
How beautiful would it be if we each took the time to center ourselves. Devoted more time to our realizing self-worth rather than comparing and judging. Being so confident in the core of our being, instead of settling as insecure, nebulous characters who only exist in the context of others, vulnerable and dependent on external influences. No one is your enemy. And no one is your savior.
How beautiful would it be if we realized that other people hurt us, not to hurt us- but that their words and actions are most likely a reflection of how they see themselves. And how beautiful would it be to try and elevate them, instead of abandoning them, because we can feel safe doing so without taking unnecessary offense. Only damaged damage people.
How beautiful would it be to act with love and respect, no matter how any else treats you, because YOU are loving and respectful?
How beautiful would it be if we could love and love and love those around us and never run out. If we could inspire a love so pure and infectious and radiant that we almost forget it started, humbly, as a love for yourself?