Afraid of the Dark

Faeries are a rich, mythical part of many cultures (especially Ireland). These omnipotent yet playful beings were blamed for just about everything (from miscarriages to spoiled milk). But despite being powerful, there was one way to have sway over a fairy — you must know it’s real name. You must invoke it, like a spell.

But this is not really an old nor mythical concept, is it? The idea that giving something its proper name makes it so much easier to manage. Less scarier. More mundane.

Now, I’m not saying that if a bear was coming toward you, and you were able to identify it as a sun bear that it would make it a less scary situation. But I am saying that there is something to knowing your fear’s name. Because it becomes less frightening when it is known.

Which is why so many people are afraid of the dark. It represents everything that is unknown. And to which our mind applies our darkest fears — monsters under the bed, loss of sight, relying on our hearing when we have headphones on.

I’m here to tell you that it’s totally okay to be afraid of the dark.

What’s not okay is not facing it anyway, despite your fear. It’s not okay to look at the dark and turn on the lights, to avoid it.

Facing your fear, any fear, is almost the only way to overcome it. Doing a little of what scares you each day and you can get past it, so start small and you’ll find that you can conquer big fears this way.

Now, lights out.

Asking for It 

I believe we live in an abundant universe. Where anything you need, you can have. As long as you work hard and ask for it. That’s right–You have to ask for it.

You can’t expect Miss Cleo to read your mind all of the time!

 We do everything to ensure our place in life, except ask for it to be so. And really that’s the most important step. To set your intentions. 

Because I didn’t have a great day yesterday, my friends showered me with love and emotions. I didn’t ask them to, but they did anyway. And I’m so appreciative of that.

But I would have had a better day almost immediately if I had just asked for help when I needed it. My friends are great spiritual guides who can sense a disturbance in my force. But they shouldn’t have to. I should ask them when I need something. Pride can be a hard beast to rein, but do it anyway. 

The important thing isn’t to have a lot of friends. It’s to have ones that will be there when you ask them to. And yes, sometimes you won’t have to ask. But more times, you will and should. Everyone likes to be needed after all. 

Love Yourself 

There is no shortage of mean people in the world. 

So, do yourself a favor and try not to be one of them. 

I had a rough day today. And I’m very, very, very tempted to look myself in the eye in the mirror and question my entire life and ask why I’m alive. Because I’m hurting and life sucks sometimes. 

But since I’m the one that has to live in my skin at the end of the day, I need to realize that if I did my best, then that’s all I can do. I can’t hate myself for what I can’t do, and I can’t come home after a long day feeling like I could have done more. It’s the very definition of toxic. 

So, do what you need to do. Draw a hot bath. Eat a little chocolate. Take a deep breath. Wipe hot tears away. Push on without stopping. 

But don’t forget to love yourself when you need it most. 

Garbage Smells Sweet

I was walking behind a garbage truck today. (Well, really, I was holding my breath and trying not to pass out behind a garbage truck today.)

And I was almost out from behind it when I unfortunately had to breathe. And what I smelled was disgusting. For sure. But it was also sweet. A cloying sweet smell of decay. But stil sweet. 

So, for a girl that had not one, but two nails in her car’s tires when she got home and had an overall bad Monday, it is nice to know that sometimes, even garbage days can be … a little sweet. 

Show Up

The message tonight is going to be a simple and clear one:

Half of adult life is just showing up. Making the effort. Being there. Especially at those times when you really, really, really don’t want to be. (See every after work cocktail party ever.) 

Which by the way, I didn’t do last night. I didn’t show up. 

Sometimes I’m afraid of this blog. Afraid of admitting that I have nothing new to say. Afraid that I don’t have anything to say at all. 

But here I am, showing up. And so are you. We should be proud of ourselves for that. Because there are some people that didn’t. (And they’re missed out on all of the fun we’re having!)

My First Screen Name

Or “sn” for short. It was seahorse1790. 

Because I loved seahorses, the number 17, and the year I was born. 

And while I had other screennames (xzxRavenxzx and baileysays) it never occurred to me that I would be anything but seahorse1790 when I was young. That was my whole identity rolled up into a nutshell inside the jaws of a nutcracker. That was me. 

And now that I’ve grown up, I have a different screen name. An adult email address (although I still use an old one for junk email). And a new identity. 

But both of these screen names are still me. I’m just not naive enough to think that things won’t change anymore. I still like seahorses; they’re just not my whole life. 

And while life is awesome and great and interesting as an adult, I think you also need to take time to take inventory of yourself, of who you are. Because the person you once were doesn’t always fit like a second skin when you get older. 

And if you acknowledge the change, you may be able to get more use out of it. You might just be able to recognize the seahorse1790 part that is part of you too. 

Out of the Deep End 

When I was in fourth grade, we took a swimming test. We were asked to swim freestyle from one side of the pool to the other. We were judged on our form and ability. We were then divided based on our skill level. (Yeah, I don’t get it either.)
As was always the case with my die or fail attitude, I wanted to be the best with all of the kids. I wanted to be in the most skilled group, no matter what. And after my second or third day in the pool, I got my wish. I went to the deep end with the other best kids. And what were they doing in that group? Treading water. That’s it. You couldn’t swim like the other groups. You just had to tread water. And I could feel myself going under and being unable to keep up. 

So, I asked to be knocked down a level. I asked to be placed lower than my ability. And they allowed me to be in another group. My teacher would ask me everyday if I wanted to try again in the deep end, but I refused. I liked where I was. It was easier. 

And I think that’s so important, even now. I wasn’t admitting defeat. I was recognizing the skills that I had and that I just wasn’t strong enough. I had to build up to it. It didn’t mean I wasn’t capable. It just meant that I was able to recognize when I was ready.

And you can too. Just don’t let other people define your limits OR your success. Only you can do that. 

What’s Easy

I challenge you to do something very difficult.

I challenge you to not do anything easy in your life.

For example…

You’re behind a young woman in a line for coffee (there’s always a line for coffee). You can’t see her face, but she has tattoos all over her arms. She’s wearing all black. You can’t see them all, but you can tell she has multiple piercings in her ears.

The easy thing would be to assume anything about her. That she’s a degenerate. That’s she’s super nice and chill.

But remember, I want you to stay away from anything easy in life.

So, what’s the hard thing in this situation?

Getting to know her. Striking up a conversation in the coffee line. And while first impressions aren’t always the best, you’ll learn so much more than you ever could by just assuming things about her.

I want you to do this whenever possible.

It’s easy to gossip about your coworkers. It’s easy to tear down an ex. It’s easy to be a small person.

It’s easy to be mean to others when you feel that some wrong has been done to you.

But I promise that the hard things, the learning, the taking a step back, the inhaling of a deep breath, will be worth it. And someday, they may become easier. They just won’t start out that way.

A Little Patience

So, last night I posted that I was satisfied and grateful. And I am. 

But I didn’t get there over night. I’ve been working toward that. Toward accepting what I don’t know and trying not to be upset when I can’t control it. 

And besides the seldom zen moments that I had last night, my life goes a little something like this:

Wake up. Brush your teeth. Ponder your existence on this earth. Wonder why anyone reads anything you write. Wonder why you haven’t written a novel yet but a sixteen-year-old has. Eat lunch. Cry into your avocado toast. Leave work. Come home. Crank out thoughts of self doubt until you go to bed. 

So, believe you me, yesterday was like one bright shiny penny in a change purse full of subway tokens. I promise that it doesn’t happen all that often that I’m happy with one part of my life. 

But it can happen for you too with one simple rule: be patient. 

If something hasn’t happened yet that you’re waiting on, it’s because it. Isn’t. Time. And you have to believe that. Because a watched pot never boils, and an impatient life is a rushed one. Have patience. Good things come to those who…


Second Chance(s)

Where do you stand on second chances? 

For me, I’m not so sure. 

Because on one hand, I always think about how you don’t ever get more than a first impression. You only get one shot to show someone who you are and if you absolutely blow it, then that person is your friend but they remember how weird you were the first time they met you. 

But on the other hand, I think life is full of second chances. Of times when you could have done better but didn’t, and you get the callback anyway. You get an opportunity, sometimes when you deserve it and sometimes not. 

But actually, I don’t really want there to be second chances, in a way. And it’s not because I think I’m so confident that I can’t fail. 

It’s just that…I want my efforts to count the first time. I want to make sure that I’m so on my game that I don’t have the option of trying again. Because in life, there are no dress rehearsals. 

Everything means something more, something deeper. Essentially, you wouldn’t care as much if you thought you were getting a second chance. 

So, when it comes to chances, I don’t see double. I have 20/20 vision.