Paramore tour.

A couple of weeks ago my brother and I drove to Melbourne to see Paramore and catch a plane to see them the next day in Sydney. The plan seemed simple enough but man, almost everything that could have gone wrong, did. Matt’s car died in the middle of Melbourne CBD in peak hour traffic, the car was fine and then it just wasn’t. The gear box just went. Add a 2 hour delay in our already late plans. We got to Paramore about half an hour before they came on stage and I was so tense and stressed. It all melted away when the lights went down. Next morning we flew to Sydney, spent the day in Sydney CBD and my friend Rach showed us around Glebe and a few other places. I was so physically and emotionally exhausted by the end of the day, as much as I’d been looking forward to seeing my favourite band of the last 12/13 years twice in 24 hours, I wanted it to be over so we could get back to Melbourne and I could sleep in a bed and not have a deadline to be somewhere. I didn’t enjoy Sydney and I’d happily never return there. The rest of the Melbourne trip was chill and what I needed. Paramore are amazing and I hope I catch them a few times in the states this year, I’ll never get enough of seeing them.

We ate some good vegan food, saw some friends and got tattooed and hung out with my babe Nat G and it made all the stress okay. I wouldn’t say the stress was worth it, it was 2 days of almost hell. But Nat’s presence and hugs brighten my life and make everything feel a little lighter. Social media has allowed me to meet so many great people, my love included. As bad as social media can be for me at times, other times it’s okay. I just try to limit my time on there now.

Tomorrow is my last day at work ever. I’ve had a really horrible week so it’s bittersweet. I’m relieved to be leaving but I’m sad at the same time. I really love some of the people I work with and have met through there and soon I’ll be on another continent and everything will be different. I’ve been really emotional and unstable this week and I catch myself tearing up all the time, I just keep trying to push it down. I don’t think these mood stabilisers are working for me, I don’t feel like anything is stabilised. I’m still getting violently angry at myself and I feel so raw all the time. When I was on zoloft I felt kinda like I was wrapped in bubble wrap and things didn’t get to me as much but now I feel like I’m full of lightning and it almost hurts to be alive. I don’t know how else to explain that so I guess I’ll leave it at that.

This turned more negative and honest than I intended but I’m going with it, because being truthful to myself even in my struggle within myself is important. I’m just gonna post some highlights from my trip to reflect on;

After Laughter has been a really important album for me since it came out and seeing AL songs live along with a song I never thought I’d get to experience live (I Caught Myself) this tour was really emotional for me.

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Making plans.

I’m 27 now and totally okay about it. I thought it would feel weird because I never saw myself surviving this long but I barely felt any different. Kae has decided we’re going to go to Iceland for my 30th and I’m actually excited about being able to get older and share the world with her. Somehow she just sets my soul at ease and I feel so much less restless with her around.

Yesterday was my 2 year vegan anniversary and I missed it. Again. I missed it last year too. I’ve decided to eat as many vegan doughnuts in Melbourne this week as I want as a gift to myself.

I go to Melbourne and Sydney this week for Tour Four/Paramore and I’m so excited. I haven’t seen them since they last came to Aus in 2014 and After Laughter is my favourite record they’ve ever put out, I’m really excited to see the new songs live. I’ve never been to Sydney but I’ll be going for about 24 hours. I think we’re going to roam around and check out the botanical gardens before we head to the venue.

I’ve officially given notice at my job and will be finishing up in the middle of March. It feels so weird that I’m finally leaving that place after seven years. I’m relieved and excited. I can’t wait to go to the states and be with my love. I’m excited for all the life we’ll get to experience together ❤. My life feels so much more peaceful since knowing her and I feel like the luckiest person in the world every day.

Vegan friendly make up.

As I approach my 2 year vegan anniversary I’ve started to declutter and minimise my make up collection and eliminate any ‘iffy’ products. These are pretty much my every day items. Brands consisting of Milani, Designer Brands (Australian and all vegan), ELF, Lime Crime & Hurraw. I wear a Kat Von D Beauty lipstick every day, my current go to’s are Lolita II and Plath. Lolita II for natural days, Plath for days I want to wear something red. 

I use the Lime Crime Pink Lemonade palette for my brows currently (the deep shade – Baby Cake) as I am waiting on my Colourpop order to arrive (I can’t wait to try their brow pomade!!). Hurraw lip balm to prep and hydrate my lips before applying lipstick. Designer Brands bronzer in Coffee to contour, DB waterproof lash extension mascara or their Extend-A-Lash fibre mascara, DB holographic highlighter in Unicorn Dust (lilac highlighter) & DB kohl pencil to line. ELF highlighter in Moonlight Pearls and Becca shimmering skin perfector in Moonstone (my absolute favourite highlight in the world). 

I don’t tend to wear a ‘base’ anymore as I eliminated foundation from my make up routine. My skin kept changing and nothing was working for me so I decided to cut it out and get my skin under control instead (and I did, thanks to the Swisse brand of skincare). I was wearing full coverage foundations (Kat Von D, Tarte & Designer Brands were my favourites). If I ever need to conceal (a random bad pimple or something) I use Designer Brands blur primer for my problematic pores, Essence Camouflage concealer and Australis Fresh & Flawless powder.

These are my favourite vegan eyeshadow palettes. Violet Voss Ride or Die, Lime Crime Pink Lemonade, BYS Peach palette & BYS Berries palette (a vegan and cruelty free dupe for the Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance palette, and only $15!) 

I’m trying really hard to be strict with any make up I purchase and want to be 100% sure what I am purchasing contains no sneaky animal products (carmine, so many palettes that could otherwise be vegan contain crushed up bugs – disgusting!) so just ‘cruelty free’ isn’t enough for me anymore. I feel like people think there isn’t a lot of vegan make up around but there is so many options from all ends of the price spectrum. High end palettes like Violet Voss (from memory the Ride or Die was $115) to the ‘lower end’ (but not at all low in quality) BYS palettes, there are great vegan friendly palettes all around. Brands are catching on as ‘cruelty free’ becomes trendy, but cruelty free labels don’t eliminate all unnecessary suffering from the product (eg carmine) so it pays to be aware and understand what is going into your products and into your skin.

Violet Voss Ride or Die palette & Lolita II featured in above images. A perfect palette for all year round!

2018 Motivations.

I don’t like the idea of resolutions but I like to give myself motivations and things to work toward and be conscious of to better myself overall. These are what I came up with for 2018/year 27 of my life.

  • Be more crafty – practice/learn to watercolour & try to learn/teach yourself hand embroidery again. Try DIY bath and beauty products.
  • Go on photo walks, see more of’outside’.
  • Journal more/document life more – with mediums other than social media.
  • Minimise everything!! (Items will not make you happy.)
  • Be more conscious of what you put into your body – energy included.
  • Listen to your body more – learn your limits and accept them. (Mental/emotional limits included)
  • Be less reckless with money. Stop seeking instant gratification and satisfaction when you want things. Again, items will not make you happy.

2017 wrap up.

Kae came to visit in November and we spent a week in Melbourne, visiting The Great Ocean Road, The Grampians and my home town where she met my family and my best friend. It was the first time we met in person and I was so nervous about kissing her and I was stressing myself out, I felt like a nervous teenager again but she eased my nerves immediately. As soon as I looked into her eyes I felt like I was home. I’ve never felt as comfortable and safe with someone as I do with her and it was such an easy decision for me to move out of my flat and leave my job in 2 months and fly to Florida to be with her. I never thought I’d be that person that said “when you know, you just know” but god, I just have a feeling and I need to run with it. I love this person and I love the way she makes me feel and the way she makes me want to be better to myself and I want her by my side while I heal and grow into a better version of myself, and I want to be there with her while she does the same. I’ve never felt like this before and I think all my heartache was preparing me for a relationship where I could actually see and feel my value.

I didn’t even get a final Christmas in my flat, I had expected to be there until after the holidays but they found a new tenant so fast. I’m relieved not to be paying rent anymore and to be able to pay off bills and debts but I miss my little home. I was not ready to move out yet, it was the only place that really felt like home to me and I thought I had more time to detach. Sebastian is slowly adjusting to living at my parents house, I think he thought I was dropping him off and leaving because he usually stays here while I’m away. He’s finally warmed back up to me and is sleeping with me again, it took him a week. I’m worried about leaving him for Florida for a few months. I don’t want him to hate me when I get back. I took him outside for a wander the other day and he loved it. I love seeing him excited about the dirt and the grass and the flowers. He’s so cute and sweet.

2017 was a pretty big year for me, I guess. I ended a relationship I thought I was happy in but I think I was misunderstood the entire time. I started seeing a new therapist and she’s great, I adore her and we get along really well. If she wasn’t my therapist I’d want to be her friend. I met Kae not long after I ended that other relationship, she messaged me on tumblr of all places and she said she knew that I had just ended a relationship and I wasn’t in a good place and she knew what I needed so she waited. It’s so strange to me that someone could feel like that about me before even really knowing me. I just know that she is my person and I want to experience everything with her. I’m really excited for what our life together will bring. I feel excited for the future for the first time in a really long time (possibly the first time in my life?) and I can’t wait.

Depletion.

 

My mental health/stress leave is about to be up and the thought of returning to my job, which is my biggest trigger, has me on the verge of panic again. I just need to hold on another 4 months but 4 months feels impossible when I’m so anxious and on edge every day that I’ve been physically ill for weeks because of it. I get mad at myself when I can’t be like everyone else and work a normal work week without feeling myself shut down after one day, I hate that a job I don’t have to care about outside of my shifts there can affect every other part of my life and my ability to even want a life anymore. I don’t want to continue to slave away mentally and physically at a job that offers me no appreciation or growth as a person. I’ve been stagnant for years and my only satisfaction and sense of accomplishment came from pursuing romantic relationships which up until my current relationship with K, were all unhealthy and occasionally toxic relationships which fed into my mental illnesses and prevented me from making any real progress in healing. K is the first person I feel I can get better with and not just hide and lose myself in. I’ve never known someone who understood me the way she does and supports me and inspires me to be and get better. I want less time wasted in meaningless jobs and more time invested in my relationships with myself and the people around me. The only time I feel clarity and calm is when I am not at my job. I need to be somewhere that aligns with my values and currently I am in somewhere the opposite. I’m poisoning myself every day and I feel so much anger and resentment for others because of it.

Despite being in a bad place mentally, I’m trying to make a conscious effort to find things to be grateful for. So today I am grateful for:

  • all the beautiful flowers I saw today
  • the vegan coconut ice cream I had this afternoon
  • how much clearer and happier my skin is since cutting out foundation and changing my skincare routine; the fact that I am now comfortable leaving my house with minimal make up and have it be my “full face”
  • Sebastian for being my emotional support companion and best friend
  • the linda mccartney vegan 1/4 pound burgers that remind me of my favourite food pre-vegan days
  • fresh sheets, the cool spring breeze through my balcony window, the sound of passing traffic
  • freshly washed hair

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Spring.

 

 

 

Spring is finally arriving and I am so ready to come out of hibernation. Literally, I’ve lived in my room all winter, only emerging to go to work and shower or make food. I did a big clean of my apartment yesterday and my head feels clearer. Kara was down from Adelaide and suprised me on my doorstep on Sunday and we went out for brunch and vegan donuts. She totally brightened my day and last few weeks, mental health wise I’ve been feeling really flat and exhausted. I’m ready for warm weather and sun. I’m determined to make memories this summer and document good times.

Autumn rebirth.

Autumn is my favourite season. There’s probably something to be said about that, the way the trees shed their leaves and become nothing more than their skeletons. I find myself shedding myself every time a change of perspective occurs in my life, usually a lesson in the form of a relationship but I never get down to my skeleton. I don’t allow myself total vulnerability and exposure, everything I try to rebuild is superficial, I just want people to see me differently, to think I’m beautiful, something to be appreciated. But I do not appreciate myself. I’m not strong enough to be the tree that resprouts it’s leaves and rebuilds itself, I’m still the leaf that has fallen on the ground and is slowly eroding away. I need to stop giving myself to the dirt and the creatures who thrive in it and learn to nourish myself and grow by myself, for myself.

Closing a chapter.

Sometimes you’ll just never be on the same page as someone, no matter how hard you try and how many times you erase and adjust the way your feelings are presented and filtered out. Sometimes it just doesn’t work. It leaves you exhausted because you’re constantly emptying yourself and altering yourself and your perception to change the course of the chapter you’re in but there’s no controlling life or the lessons it presents to you. You can’t manipulate something that is (or isn’t) already meant for you, you can’t escape a lesson or the pain you know it will bring you. Recently I’ve come to the realisation that other people’s behaviour towards and treatment of me has a lot less to do with me and is much more about themselves. You can give and give and give yourself to someone over and over again but if they don’t truly want something or aren’t in the same place as you, you’ll be left feeling neglected, unappreciated and empty. Unloved and unwanted. As much as that hurts and it’s not something I easily accept, I refuse to let it haunt me the way it did the first time I was let down by someone I loved. Being mad at someone for their actions is easier to let go than being mad at yourself for falling for their words and excuses time and time again. I hold it against myself when others do wrong by me because I feel like I should have known better than to trust them in the first place. What I need to remember is that I wasn’t at fault for having hope in someone and their actions don’t define me.

Storm.

It gets to a point where there is no use in talking about something anymore or seeking advice from others because there is nothing anyone can tell you to help you address a situation you’re simply not ready for. You can spill your guts again and again to the same people and eventually they won’t even notice you’re bleeding anymore because you’re constantly picking at a wound and reopening it rather than pulling the poison out and letting it heal. Eventually the infection will spread further, deeper through you and any physical symptoms you show are no longer the worst. Sadness can become like a parasite, slowly eating away at you piece by piece. Sometimes you don’t even notice it happening to yourself until you’re triggered and have a physical response and you’re instantly out of control because the flare up showed no warning signs because you’ve been living in a constant state of it and you grew used to it. You don’t know any different.

I feel like I let the same people and things hurt me time and time again but still expect a change and different results from the same behaviour. Somewhere along the line I lost my self respect and any value I once held, or maybe I never had any to begin with. The difficult thing about self esteem is that you need others to help build it up but it needs to be a part of your own foundation, something you maintain yourself and build on. Something you support yourself, and something to support yourself with. When you get to your mid twenties and still battle the same self loathing you struggled with since your late childhood and early teenage years, it becomes a hard bone to crack. My foundation is built up entirely of my low self esteem and mental illness and they go hand in hand, to an extent. While some days I am blinded by my depression and suffering within myself, light still seeps in through the cracks and it’s just enough to get me through each wave of darkness. But when it’s not, I’ve found that just sitting mindlessly on my lounge room floor, staring at a blank TV screen and allowing myself to be numb, no matter how uncomfortable it is and how much it hurts to feel like I’m splitting apart at the seams, the solitude can be eye opening.

There comes a point where you have to learn to fight for yourself and although survival is probably realistically all I can hope for and I may never feel actual contentment, I still hope that one day I’ll be strong enough to overcome this and not feel like I need a prescription I barely believe in to just survive and scrape by each day. I guess I’m posting this as a reminder to myself that although I am struggling today and while I am not ready to face all my demons, eventually I won’t be plagued by the same mistakes and lessons that just seem to cut deeper every time. In time I will be able to graciously accept the lessons I am being served and grow from them. Progress is often slow but in order to bear fruit, trees must form roots and seek nourishment from the dirt.