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2017

Fuck me hey.

I’m writing this, hungover as fuck on the last day of 2017 with Micky D’s by my side. Fits naturally, right?

I don’t want to say that I didn’t like 2017. That it “wasn’t my year” or I’m “glad to see the ass end of it.”

It was a hard one, I won’t lie. I spent months upon months lost, confused, unsure where the fuck I was going in life. I started to find my way and then I found myself confused again.

I travelled with work and saw parts of Australia I hadn’t yet seen; only to quit my job and spend six weeks paying rent with my tax return. I moved house three times. I made the gruelling decision to head on back to Quangaz. I don’t think people realise that that in itself was a massive fucking move for me. I’d worked so hard on getting out because I thought it was home I needed to get away from; it took some time to realise that what I was running away from was in my mind.

I cried. A fucking lot. I fell into a deep sadness around my birthday and I got myself out of it, only to find myself back into it not that long ago.

I grew. A fucking lot. (Figuratively, I’m still the exact same body size). I have this really cool thing called a buttload of self-awareness, now, and I no longer blame people for me feeling shit. People hurt me, as people hurt everyone, but I have finally learnt to take responsibility for the way I react to it. I learnt that people who willingly hurt you only reflects sadly on themselves.

I slept. A fucking lot. Probably half of my year away.

But I laughed, too. And I cried happy tears. I met really cool people and I shared my life with some new ones; I started to learn to trust again. I began a cool little business and people actually buy things from it.

And I wrote. I wrote and wrote and so many words have poured out of my soul, and I finally know where I want to be in life. It tastes so bloody good.

2016 was my best year yet; it was fun, I travelled, moved, met incredible people who I still cherish to this day, but I look back at 2017, now, and I think this year was the year where I just went… fuck yes. I am in love with who I am as a human and what I’m here to be.

I don’t have one single regret stepping out of 2017. I’m so fucking happy and I’m about to cry because I’m a hungover, emotional piece of shit but I’m glad to say they’re tears of joy, tears of contentedness, because life tastes so sweet.

Be fearless in the pursuit of things that don’t make you feel like shit. – Racquel Helmers, 2k17

Happy 2018 my bitches; I hope you surround yourself with the right people this coming year. And if you come across the wrong ones, I hope you have the strength to walk away.

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fragile

Do you fall in love often? Yes, often. With a view, with a book, with a dog, a cat, with numbers, with friends, with complete strangers, with nothing at all.” — Jeanette Winterson

“You’re too fragile for this world.”

They tell you that you need to stop caring, that’s when you’ll be happier. You need to stop worrying and get out of your head; you’ll live a better life.

Don’t let them forget that the reason you live such an authentic existence is because you let yourself feel everything that comes your way. The days you break down are the days you need to break down; the days your body is wracked with sobs from the cruelty of this world or the cruelty of your mind or the cruelty of other people. The days you break down are the days that make you appreciate the good days even more. They are what make the good days feel like great days.

You don’t just live an existence. You live a life.

You are fragile. You are not too fragile for this world.

Sometimes people need to let themselves feel a little more fragility. Let themselves feel sad. Let themselves embrace true happiness.

Stop questioning. What is the point? Is this worth it? Why am I here? If life is just going to be full of disappointments, what am I doing?

Life is full of disappointment. It’s also full of opportunities and love and dogs and happiness and true human connection.

People used to tell me to stop caring. Care less. You won’t end up so hurt. You need to stop being so fragile in this world. If anything, I think people need to start caring more. Caring more about themselves, caring more about the people surrounding them. Caring more about life. When you care, it’s all worth it. Maybe because I care so much about other people, my feelings get hurt a lot easier than others. But when I find the right people, and when they care back, and when I can feel that what I feel for them is returned, that makes it so much more worth it.

That is what makes life worth living.

Be fragile. Let yourself break. Glue yourself back together. And throw yourself back out there. Your cracks are what make you special.

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Rackers

short story, part 2.

How do you decide whether moving away was the right decision? Was I just running away?

I’m in my second week of work and I’m already absolutely adoring it. They have taken me in under their wing, so the worry about knowing no one in Melbourne dissipated almost straight away.

I’m exhausted. I’m so fucking exhausted. Carting my stuff from hotel to house, moving into my new house next week; working and getting to know new people, having to tell the same drab, shortened, happy version of my life story to each person.

Monday morning, 7am.

This place has changed my sleeping patterns to extremes; a night owl turned morning bird. I’m already lining up for my large caramel flat white with almond milk (I know, I’m that guy) and my mind feels so exhausted but my body feels so awake. The line is surprisingly long, filled mostly with men in suits and tradie uniforms. My mind goes off in a wander as I’m waiting in line, eyes losing focus and staring off into the distance. I notice the line move an inch forward and I snap back to reality, realising I was staring at a face as I notice the confused look on his. 

“Sorry,” I mumble, snapping out of my reverie.  

“All good. It’s a bit like that this morning,” he replies with a hint of an accent and a hint of a smile. 

No words manage to come out of my mouth but I feel my head give a vigorous nod. I walk up and order my coffee, stumbling over change and feeling the irritation from the people behind me. 

I move off to the side and wait for my coffee to be made, using the time to watch the people surrounding me. Picking those who had a big weekend and were using caffeine as their saviour, the early birds who were used to their morning routines and the young apprentices having to do the coffee run for their bosses. PA’s, juggling their own coffee cup with that of their boss, trying to send emails at the same time off of their phone. I find myself wondering if these people ever stop. Stop working, stop worrying, stop and smell the roses. 

I take another look at the guy I had been staring at before and note the way his face is a little too small for his head, but he has a charm I know I could end up finding attractive. His slightly crooked mouth turns into a sweet smile and I’m surprised at myself wondering what it would be like to kiss it. My brows furrow and I turn away awkwardly, feeling my cheeks flush.  

Well… it has been a while. 

“Alex with the large caramel flat white!” The barista calls. 

I rush to grab my coffee and walk-run out of the café, feeling as if everyone around me could read my mind. I walk straight into the 7/11 just up the road to get my daily banana bread and, considering I’d left myself heaps of time before I had to be at work, a guilty pleasure reading of The Collective. 

I find a nice park near the office and settle myself on the still slightly damp park bench. Fucking Melbourne weather. I take a sip of my coffee, savouring the strong taste of sugar and coffee on my tongue. I people watch for a few moments, breathing in the crisp, cold, fresh air, feeling it clear out my nose and my lungs; a fresh day, a fresh week. Life tastes so good. 

I open my magazine to a random page and begin reading an article without taking any of the words in. I feel a body sit next to mine on the bench, silently cursing to myself at people who sit on the same bench when there are clearly plenty more around. I pretend to be engrossed in the words on the page and take another sip of my coffee. 

“Hey stranger. Fancy running into you here.” 

I rejoice in the familiar voice, looking up to see the face I’d thought I’d close to made up in my head. Alex sits next to me, staring at me in that same kind of cute curiousity as the first time we met. I struggle to swallow the coffee still sitting in my mouth, coughing as a way of greeting. 

“Still as charming as I remember,” he says, patting my back. 

“What are you doing here?” I ask. 

“Weird way to say hey to an old friend. My office is just over there,” he says, pointing to the building next to mine. “And yourself?” 

“We’re work neighbours. And you’d consider us friends? I don’t even know your last name.” 

“Subtle. Alexander Walsh is my full name on Facebook for you to have a stalk.”  

“What makes you think I’m going to do that?” 

“You strike me as someone who’d do that.” 

I laugh and admit defeat. “I’m definitely someone who’d do that.” 

Alexander looks at his watch, and jumps up from the seat. 

“7.15, better get in there now. It was lovely to see you again, Alex too.” 

“You too,” I say, squinting up at him, the sun shining through the clouds to make the glare saved for foggy mornings. 

Alexander starts to walk off and I take another sip of my coffee, thinking how coincidental that was. I laugh to myself as I think of my younger sister, knowing she’d be telling me it was a sign from the universe. 

“Alex too!” Alexander yells from afar. 

“Yeah?” 

“Tomorrow lunch. Meet me here?” 

I take a moment to answer, acting as if I’m mulling it over in my head. 

“Meet you here.” 

 

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christmas day, 2012.

Christmas day, 2012. 

Our Christmas’ were the ones people wrote about, the ones they portrayed in movies and the ones people who “don’t do Christmas” secretly envied. Sun shining, wine, beers, ciders and Kahlua & milk flowing, everyone on different jobs, walking past and reaching around each other in a sort of natural movement. Not a moment of silence, should it be the kids playing with their new toys or the adults telling a dirty joke, Michael Buble singing in the background or just simply the sound of happiness. Putting shit on each other, secretly feeding the dogs under the table and, typically, the tiff between siblings that was easily resolved by a dumb joke told by another family member. 

It was our last Christmas together. 

I remember a moment, where I looked around at the happy faces of the people I loved so much, the people I will adore until the very end of time, my people; and I let the distressing thought come in: what if this is the last one altogether? 

I pushed the thought as far back as I could, refusing to believe it, though I think it made me appreciate that day even more than I would have. 

Christmas was (and will be again) my favourite time of year. Mum had this particular magic about her all year round, but it was strongest in December. She thrived on the love we shared. 

Christmas day, 2012. 

I had just graduated school and I was beginning University in two months time. Life scared the shit out of me. I thought it would be the last Christmas where I was really, just a kid. I was right, but for all the wrong reasons. My biggest problem was a boy who didn’t like me back and a friend who was flirting with me more so than usual. On that day, though, it didn’t matter. 

I had my people. 

Whether I wouldn’t solve things with this boy, whether I’d make silly decisions with the other one, whether I’d tank at university or whether I’d come to lose friends now that I wasn’t to see them every day. It didn’t matter. 

I had my people. 

Our next Christmas still had the magic, but it was a new kind of magic. It was a family bonding magic that we never had to deal with before. It was, hey, 2013 was a piece of fucking shit, but look at us all. Here. Together. Stronger than ever. And then we lost him, our ridiculously funny, inapproriate, favourite Uncle. 

It hurts my heart that Christmas doesn’t have the same magic anymore. It’s a day I love with all my heart because I get to spend it with people who hold my heart in their hands, but it’s not the same anymore, and it never will be. 

The magic of Christmas still sits in my heart. And I can feel it, pushing with all its might, ready to come out and sprinkle over everyone near me. Everyone I hold close.  

Christmas day, 2012. 

It is the fondest memory I have of my family to date. It is the magic that is sitting in my heart, it is the love I keep for those near and those up in the stars. I will never attempt to recreate it, but over time I will learn to make it magic in its own way.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

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bullshit

I filmed my first vlog this afternoon. Safe to say, it was a fucking disaster. I wanted to give it a go because sometimes my words are more effective when they come with the fucked up facial expressions I do and the stupid voices I say them in. I went off on so many stupid tangents and forgot what I was trying to say too many times, and I’m technologically disadvantaged so I have not a single clue how to edit it.

So. Here we are. Just more words.

I was thinking today how amazing life truly is. I am so lucky to live where I live, be who I am (cause I’m a fuckin ripper), have who I have (the ones who actually care about me), being physically healthy and knowing writing is definitely my passion. The only battles I’ve been having lately have been with my mind.

Yesterday, I saw two of my closest (and longest) friends; I had the most incredible day, chatting absolute shit and revelling in the company of these people I can be myself with. At the end of the day, I got in the car, started driving home, and I started crying.

Why?

Who the fuck knows.

I was literally battling with myself; I had had a beautiful day, I felt happy, but my mind was like, “no…no. You’re not happy. Remember when this person did this. Remember when this person said this. Remember when you fucked up. Remember, oh my god, do you remember that time you really fucked up?”

I was like, fuck you mind! So I put my favourite songs on and I belted them out on my way home, with tears running down my face (lol).

Every single one of you out there battle with your minds. Some to a bigger extent than others, some more occasional, some are better at hiding it (I obviously am not).

The point of this is just to be like, you know man, you’re gonna have shit days. You really, really need to accept it. I know people who will not tolerate themselves feeling down, and they get on their own backs about it or they blame other people, and it’s like… dude. That’s life.

I think the biggest thing I realised quite some time ago, but have really come to accept recently, is you cannot control anyone. Not one single person outside of you. You can’t control their actions, you can’t control what they say, you most definitely cannot control their thoughts.

The only thing you can control is your reaction to it.
(And even then not always completely. Like holla at a girl whose cried at things she doesn’t even want to cry about. It just comes outta me.)

Writing this today is not going to be some magical cure on fighting with your mind. It’s not going to make you get over the current thing that’s bringing you down, it’s not going to make the shitty days go away, but it might just make you go, “oh hey wait a second. I actually am not battling this alone.”

Like will bet $100 that I’ll cry about some dumb shit tomorrow even though I’ve written all this today.

If you’re fortunate enough to be reading these bullshit words, then I want you to take a minute; like, really take a minute. Life can fucking suck, you do not need to preach that shit to me.

Don’t you hear that, though? That’s the sound of you breathing. That’s the sound of you living. That’s the sound of second chances and opportunities.

That’s life. It’s weird and wonderful, fucked and magical. Live it. And fucking love it.

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Rackers

unfinished, 2.

What is it with home and bringing out the nostalgic insomniac within me?

It’s 2.53am.

I am 22 (almost 23) years old.

And I feel 19 again.

I’ve been questioning myself incessantly for the past six weeks of my life. What am I doing? Where am I going? Who am I? What am I? Am I even human?

Joking. Kinda sorta.

I’ve been questioning relationships I’ve had in the past, like if they were worth it, or if they were a waste of time, or if I should have tried harder with them. I’ve lost friends, I’ve lost lovers, I’ve lost family. I’ve pushed people away and I’ve pulled people closer. I’ve been pushed away and I’ve been pulled closer. I’ve cried over people who weren’t worth my tears and I’ve felt nothing for people I should have felt more for. Life, innit. Fucking life.

I’ve ignored texts, I’ve been ignored. I’ve swiped right, I’ve swiped left. I’ve been on successful dates and haven’t been called (or Facebook messaged, whatsapped or plain old texted) back, and I haven’t followed up either. So maybe not so successful. But successful at the time. I’ve stalked potential baes, stalked their exes, stalked their exes boyfriends sister, and subsequently questioned my whole existence and why the fuck I get sucked so far into the social media world.

I’ve gotten lost in a city that I now call semi-home. Semi-home because I currently pay rent there but pretty much live back at home. I’ve driven hours on end to be back at home. Sat for countless hours numbing my bum and my brain on the train to and from Queanbeyan/Sydney central. I’ve walked the streets of Newtown at dusk, breathing in the semi-polluted air, unable to grasp that it is actually my life. Sat in many Max Brenner. Drank many a hot chocolate.

I remember life pre-you and post-you. 

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Rackers

Christmas

I watch with an ominous envy.
This was my favourite time of year.
Was.
The sun is shining, Summer is here.
The season of happiness. Laughter. Joy.
The stores are decked out with Christmas spirit.
Frazzled mums. Happy children.
Full of life. Love. Family.

I watch in envy.
That was us.
It breaks my heart that I want to skip the entire month of December.
A month full of promise.
All I can see is what I had.
Had.

Though it hurts – I fall in love.
With the gleeful giggle of the young child.
The endless wonder.
The time of year everyone comes together.
The reminder that: everything is okay.
And amongst the chaos, heartache and envy, there is magic.
Magic.

You just have to look for it.