I got a question the other day on my “Ask” page on Tumblr. It said, “why do you write about your ex so much if you are really over him. Like you write about him a lot…a lot, a lot.” Well my first response was a mix between “well fuck you then, I can write about whoever I want to write about!” and “…awkward.” But the truth of it is I do write about him a lot and there is a reason for that…he is the only real love I’ve ever had. Everyone has heard the theory that the best artistic works are inspired by love; well I believe that’s true. I believe that the powerful, world-shaking, knee buckling emotion that you feel when you fall in or out of love is what makes artistic works go round.
Man, if lust could create that same inspiration, if lust would allow my words to flow onto the page in the same way that experiences of love can, then I would be set. Because I have experienced my fair share of lust. I’m good at lust. I get it. I understand how it works.
But lust, unlike love, is fleeting. And the story of meeting someone at a bar, having so much sexual tension that you could rip your clothes off right there, acting on those desires, only to realize a little bit down the road that you’d rather talk to Siri then talk to him…well that’s not much of a story at all. And even if it is, well, everyone has experienced that story before.
The thing about love is that it is unique in every instance. Each person experiences love in a different way, and no one person could ever understand the way in which two others love each other. And that is what makes it so wonderful. It is also what makes it so interesting to others.
Because we are interested in the love of other people. In fact, we aren’t just interested we are fascinated. That is why we watch movies all the time. That is why movies usually have an end result of two people in love, not two people who are, eh, probably kinda into each other. That is why we spend hours talking to our friends about love or the act of pursuing it. That is why when love falls apart we need to dissect every bit of it, figuring out what went wrong. Like many people before me have said, it is one of the most powerful forces in the world.
And that’s fucking cool. It is amazing that we have such a force in this world. It is amazing that as humans we have figured out how to capture it and share it and enjoy it and learn from it. It is amazing that such a magical thing can exist. Because even when love isn’t perfect, it never looses the power to knock you off your feet.
I had a thought after I got the comment, “Oh my god no one is ever going to want to date me again, they are going to think I will just write it all down and publish it, I am going to be like the Taylor Swift of the writing world.” But here’s the thing, I don’t write about every little detail, just the details that matter. The ones that are worth sharing, the lessons and truths that I find, because what is the point of being interested in other peoples love if we can’t learn from it. If we can’t take notes. If we can’t see what happens when love fails and try not to repeat those mistakes or look at really successful, great love and attempt to emulate what makes that love work.
Everyone shares their love stories, just in different ways. Some ways are more obvious, like through music, dance, and writing. And some are hidden, hidden behind the sad smile on the woman walking past or in the way someone chooses to dress on a particular day.
And so I write about love, and sometimes my first and so far only love, because within that story, and within all love stories, is a story worth telling.
See this article also at www.jokelife.co
The next step.
Instagram ruined my relationship.
Well I guess not completely, but it played a role, and kind of a big one. You see Instagram unleashed a beast within me. And that beast is named jealousy.
I suppose that naturally humans are jealous people. Or maybe it’s just Americans. We thrive on comparing ourselves to others. Now this isn’t always a bad thing, sometimes it motivates you, sometimes it pushes you to get higher than anyone else can. But sometimes it can bring you real low.
You see I had been away from my boyfriend for three months; he was my first love, the first guy that actually showed me that I deserved to be loved. I met him and a month later purchased a plane ticket that would take me away from him, to go travel the world, for half a year. Maybe we were young and delusional, or maybe we really did love each other, but we decided to try to make it work throughout the time apart.
Now, I don’t think I need to explain to you what happens to a relationship when you don’t spend enough time together. When you can’t kiss each other after an argument, when you can’t feel the weight of each other’s stare. The cracks start to deepen.
So after three months of being away from each other I began to notice a girl popping up on his Instagram pictures…frequently. She wasn’t in the pictures, no if she was in them than that would make me sane. She had simply started ‘liking’ his pictures. Sometimes she commented, said something cute about work (through Instagram I could tell they worked together).
And so I got jealous. My mind began whirring with thoughts about what could be going on between the two of them, what they might be up to while I was 14,000 miles away in fucking Vietnam. I started to ask him about her every once in a while. I would try to make casual comments in order to suck some knowledge out about her. It created tension between us and through those cracks the light was starting to dim.
Before I go much further I have to tell you that there were many more things working against our relationship then just her. He was planning on moving away two weeks after my return, we had been fighting for months, we still had months to go and finally we had just had enough. We broke up. One month before I was going to come home and we just couldn’t do it anymore.
Naturally I blocked him on Instagram. But here’s the tricky thing about I-Gram, you can block someone, but you can’t stop yourself from looking at their page unless it’s private. His wasn’t. It had to be sheer will power that prevented me from seeing what he was up to. She started to make more and more cute comments, I could tell that they had begun to do things together.
I started to feel another powerful emotion build up inside me and that emotion was hate. I hated this girl. I hated this girl so much, and I had never even seen her in person. It made me feel crazy. I was convinced that she was making such a show of them hanging out on purpose, that she knew I could see what was going on, and that she liked it.
The pain of imagining this guy that I loved, this guy who I had just fought so long and hard for, receiving happiness from another girl was just too much for my stomach to take. It gave me that awful, queasy, sick to your stomach with no cure kind of feeling, eventually I couldn’t take it anymore and I deleted the app.
Pure idiocy compelled me to look at his Instagram on Hazel’s phone, while she was showering, one day before our return to the states. When I saw the picture of him smiling, sun shining on his face, with her name tagged in the caption as the photographer, my heart burst into a million and one tiny tiny pieces.
Now I’d like to tell you how the rest of our relationship progressed but it might be a whole other chapter for another day. The short version is, I got home, we decided to talk, we fell in love all over again, but now something was different.
Now I could see this girl popping up on his text messages. Now I could be jealous in the very same town as her, now I could really let my imagination run wild. And she created fights. She created our big fights, our only fights. She created the fights that made it almost not seem worth it anymore.
I wasn’t even that surprised when a month or so later Instagram let me know that he had cheated on me with her. At the time we both kind of knew it was the end, but Instagram, Instagram really brought it all home.
It threw me for a while. The sad truth is all guys have cheated on me. It makes it hard to be trustworthy, that’s for damn sure. It makes it hard to have faith. I don’t think it helps that we can see what each other are up to all the time. I don’t think it’s healthy that we can make stories up in our heads about what we see through social media, that we can make ourselves believe we are less than someone else by what they post on the internet. I believe it takes a little bit of trust from the world, you can’t just accept something, you have to make sure Facebook accepts it too. And that is just the way our world works now, so I guess now the task is to learn to trust and avoid jealousy, even when our world makes it seem like you should be doing just the opposite.
I can finally say that I am over what happened. The reason I know that I am over it is this; today I accepted my ex’s Snapchat request. When I looked at his “best friends” she was at the top of his list.
I shut it off right away, took a deep breath and was a little sad, for a little while. But after that little while had passed, I realized that if our relationship was going to end by someone else’s hand, than at least it was a hand that ended up being important to him.
Instagram ruined my relationship, but Snapchat let me know that maybe there was a reason for it all.
People who do yoga are beautiful. I don’t mean physically beautiful, although many who do yoga are that as well. I mean beautiful within their soul.
It would be friendly, I suppose, to say that everyone is beautiful. But I’m not sure if that’s true yet. There is evil lurking in this world, people with tainted souls and dark hearts. But I have yet to meet an evil yogi.
I think it has something to do with the way yogis look at life. This amazing blending of philosophies, ideas, and notions which many yoga-doers seem to possess. The yoga practice is not, however, designed to teach you to be a good person versus a bad person. It does not give you the answers on how to live. Rather it gives you the tools, through breath and movement, to focus your mind, and through that breath and movement somehow you are granted clarity.
Clarity is something we are all lacking, whether we know it or not. It is so easy for us to allow our minds to be fogged by the insignificant frustrations in our everyday lives. We get worked up about the asshole on the road who hit his brakes right when the light turned yellow, or the teacher who pretends like they are a nice grader and then fucks you on your essay. It is easy for us to think too much about our hair, or about how buff that one guy is or how nicely dressed that bitch in your class is. It is easy for our minds to get wrapped-up in these negative thoughts, which then build and fester within us. These evil thoughts, about how sucky other people are and how shitty we look only do exactly what they aim to, they makes us see the world as a sucky place and in turn cause us to be less beautiful people.
There is a gorgeous yoga studio at my school, with giant windows looking out to campus and lights that dim to allow for a serene space. There are even mats, blocks and blankets so that there is no need to lug your own from home. When I first stumbled upon this studio I felt like I had won the jackpot. For the first few months I would do my practice in some of the other studios in the gym, the ones designed for more hard-core workouts. I thought even these were pretty cool, despite that fact that people would always be coming in and out, staring strangely at me as I Chuturanga’d. One day I decided to take a walk further back on the top floor of the gym and to my surprise there was a beautiful yoga studio, waiting it seemed, just for me.
I was in my little studio the other night, doing my flow, when to my surprise someone walked through the door. He was tall and blonde, probably a few years older than me and my very first thought was, “fuck”. I had no interested in making small talk with another person, or perhaps awkwardly ignoring them as they did some work out of their own. But this guy opened his mouth in a wide smile and said;
“Oh are you doing yoga? Do you mind if I join you?” I was immediately taken a-back.
“Uh yeah sure, I can lead you through my little flow.” I timidly replied and we began.
A million thoughts passed through my head as I was in the room with this stranger. Is this creepy? Is this guy going to try and hit on me? What’s his agenda? What’s his game?
In my mind there had to be strings attached, and on top of that, those strings were most likely negative ones. When I finished my flow he turned to me,
“That was awesome! I can lead us through abs if you want.”
This random human and I spent 45 minutes in that room alone together, we went through an entire Vinyasa flow, abs and arms, even savasana. When we were finished, we walked out the door together; he put out his hand, gave me a huge smile, thanked me for the class, and walked away.
In that moment I felt like an asshole. I had assumed the worst about this person; I had assumed that he wanted something from me, when in the end all he really wanted was yoga. When I told my guy friends about this later that night they all laughed,
“Yeah sure, until he tracks you down at the gym every week.”
Even after the fact they refused to believe that this guy wasn’t hitting on me. Perhaps this is because we are pre-conditioned to see the evil in others. We assume that guys only talk to girls because they want to sleep with them, or that girls are only nice to other girls if they are secretly being bitchy. We let ourselves be ruled by our judgments and assumptions and in the end we are really only hurting ourselves.
This stranger I met did yoga, and to this day I believe he was a beautiful person. I do yoga as well and in that moment I was as ugly as can be. I didn’t allow for clarity to be part of my thought-process that day. I focused only on the negative and not at all on the positive; good company, free motivation, killer abs session, and as a result I didn’t truly enjoy what could have been a wonderful hour of yoga.
When Hazel started kindergarten she was on crutches. She had dropped a tree trunk onto her foot while she was camping that summer and she split her foot in half. My first memory of her is of my teacher carrying her up the hallway to music class because it was too long of a walk to make on crutches. Boy was I jealous. Hazel on the other hand hated that extra attention.
The thing is I can’t remember a time since then when Hazel and I haven’t been friends. All throughout elementary school we would play during recess and have play dates after school, which was easy to do since we only lived a few blocks away from each other. When we started middle school nothing much changed. Our styles may have fluctuated but we would still spend our days after school hanging in Hazel’s kitchen, talking about meaningless drama and eating endless amounts of snacks.
When high school rolled around everyone was kind of nervous. We had a big group of girl friends and we weren’t sure what the transition into high school would be like. Would we change? Would we grow apart from each other? Would we stop being each other’s friends? The sad, but inevitable truth is that that did happen between almost of us. Our large group of friends slowing started to shrink. High school exposed all of our different interests and the type of people we all either were or wanted to be. But Hazel and I never grew apart and at one dark point in time Hazel and I really only had each other, the remaining two out of a group of so many.
When Hazel and I left each other to go to college I thought that maybe it was the end of an era. We were headed our separate ways, Hazel to LA while I was headed to Northern California. It was time to see where each of our lives would take us. As each of us started school we began to realize that maybe we weren’t quite in the places we were meant to be. Both of us were confused as we sat on Flagstaff rock, over looking Boulder, during Thanksgiving break. As we watched the sun rise on that cold winters day we made a choice that would change the course of our lives forever. The choice to drop out of school for a year and travel the world, two girls, two backpacks, and only the plans that we came up with in our own heads.
Hazel and I spent 180 days together during that next year. We moved from town, to city, to country, dancing on bars on the beaches of Thailand, smoking pot on a beautiful 4/20 in Amsterdam. We rode elephants through muddy rivers, watched fire dancers on the beaches, and scuba dived with sharks. We chugged beer through snorkels, drank wine all throughout Europe, and clubbed in Spain until the sun came up. We went to more museums than you could ever imagine and we spent countless nights in smelly hostels with no hot water. Sometimes we fought, sometimes we wanted to kill each other, but there is no other person I could imagine doing a trip like that with.
Now after 15 years of friendship Hazel and I are roommates. Proving that some friendships really can stand the test of time.
Today Hazel turns 21. Today is a day that has always seemed far off but has finally come. Hazel survived her birthday celebrations, against all odds and can finally take her first sip of booze (HA).
Hazel is without a doubt one of the smartest and most creative people I know. I have no doubt that her talent will take her far in this life and I can’t wait to be friends with her throughout it all. Hazel is a beautiful person instead and out. She is kind to the core and simply being her friend makes me a better person.
Happy birthday my friend, I’m so glad you’re in my life.