Thursday, 5 January 2017

Desire to be desired.

Why am I looking at myself in the mirror day after day and essentially telling myself that I am worthless and ugly and undesirable? Desirable to whom, exactly? 

I have tried to excuse my low self-esteem as "natural" and that wanting to be wanted is something that I should brush off. But it's not "natural" and the desire to be desired is somewhat false and taking its toll. I should not hate myself because I think that I am not worthy of other people's attention. I should not think that an unwarranted gaze in a nightclub or a street is validation of my beauty or my being here on this earth. 

I have so much capacity for love why do I find it so difficult to love myself? Why can I look at my friends and think "how beautiful, how wonderful, how exciting to be around" and not think the same for myself? It is myself that I live with constantly, if I hate that person what am I supposed to do then? If hell is other people then I dread to think what the person inside my head is. 

And I have written about this before and recently too, but it didn't quite have the angry force that this now does. Because I am angry, at myself and at a culture and society that has brought me up to seek validation from men. I can go so far without a guy telling me I was beautiful, why do I care so much about it?

I find it so embarrassing. How embarrassing that I should care so much what men think of me, what my face looks like, how much a glance in a mirror can bring my mood down completely. My appearance means nothing. Male appearance, most of the time, means nothing. Why, then, do I sometimes wish I could change mine to be "better"?

I have worried about how I looked since I was 11. I have hated pictures of myself, desperately tried to improve things with makeup, worried that my outfit was horrible. How horrible it is for myself. 

I will endeavour to completely and utterly love myself. I do not mean without criticism, without awareness, I just mean to say that I will not poison myself from the inside out with toxic, useless, horrid, painful, terrible, nasty little thoughts. I really, really have to stop treating myself like I am my own shit friend. Because if I had a friend who, every time she looked at me, said "you look like a 12 year old boy and no one will ever love you" (real example of bizarre thoughts I have about myself) I'd be really pissed off. I do not owe any of myself to men and their opinions do not validate my being.  I have some beautiful, wonderful male friends whom I love, but I just shouldn't really give a thought as to whether they like my face. 

It is nice to be called beautiful because someone is so overwhelmed by your entire person as your happiness and love radiate from you. It is void of meaning to be called beautiful because your face is symmetrical and matches the ideal created in magazines and porn and Hollywood. Teach yourself to know the difference, teach yourself to love yourself. 

Friday, 30 December 2016

Not doing very much at all.

This bit between Christmas and New Year's is always weird. Is Christmas over? Can I still listen to Christmas music? Why do I feel this vague, inexplicable sense of melancholy? Will I manage to get up before 9:30 this week? Does anyone know what day it is?

I think perhaps this lull in stimulation after an intense period of over-indulgence makes many of us feel like the fat people in Wall-e. Rolling around eating disgusting quantities of rich food and watching every second of Christmas TV that there is.  I hate any lulls in stimulation, because I enter a more intense cycle of guilt regarding my own lack of productivity than I'm normally in.

I'm always stuck between "allowing myself to have a holiday" and worrying about the entire day I just wasted being disappointed by sales in the local shopping centre. Why, I think to myself, did I just watch 'Greatest Christmas Movies' on channel 5 rather than reading the book I'm really enjoying?

This enforced laziness makes me nervous, but I am making it sound like I literally haven't moved from the sofa for an entire week. For some reason I am always compelled to exaggerate my slobbing around because the feeling of guilt from it is so great. I'm not sure why I'm guilty, as if I'm letting someone other than myself down by lying in everyday. I've actually really enjoyed it, why do I berate myself? I've been on lovely, beautiful walks with my family almost every day this week but God forbid that I remember those as something "productive" to do.

I wonder if one day I'll go to bed after a day of "bustling about", not doing much, letting my entire being rest, and not think "you waste of human energy" and list in my head everything that I could have done that would have, for some reason, been better for mankind as a whole. I think I actually have to train myself not to do that, because for now I have guilt complex about being lazy, and I'm not sure that's very healthy at all.

Saturday, 24 December 2016

Religion on Christmas Eve.

I've written posts when I was a younger and naive, and angry in that youth and naivety, about religion, or Christianity specifically, that now I don't feel the same about. I've also written posts about how in many ways I am at peace with some aspects of religion, like places of worship, that I still agree with today.

But on this Christmas Eve when Christianity is very much thrown at me, I wonder if I will ever come to terms with these organised and limited ways of living.

I don't mind the culture that comes from it, or the solace people get from it, or the feeling of belonging I suppose a church (or a mosque or a synagogue etc) community might bring but I mind a very great number of things that go hand in hand with religion as well.

And this isn't a groundbreaking piece that's going to shatter the entire concept of religion, obviously, but there's always this niggling feeling I get when I really think about it.

I think often, in the rare occasions that I've ever attended church services, I am genuinely repulsed by the language of the bible. I'm repulsed by its obvious attempt to 'control' its followers. I'm repulsed by its encouragement of self-loathing because you are not God, you are weak, you are ultimately a bad thing. It creeps me out.

I worry about young children being taken to church groups and services because I see something sinister in convincing them of a way of life, a life which can be limiting and harmful, before they get the chance to work things out for themselves.

I despise the image of Christ on his cross with his bloody hands and feet and suffering on his face because how can so much negativity represent a religion so huge and all consuming and how can it be good?

I realise that I point a lot of what I'm saying at Christianity, because it's the religion I'm most familiar with, and so I have less standing ground with everything else. But I'm not asking for a standing ground, not right now, I'm just expressing a feeling. It's a feeling of unease. As much as there is a sense of calm in a church there is, for me, a feeling of unease.

You know, I can't quite put my finger on it, I just know that religion really isn't for me.

Thursday, 15 December 2016

A place to call home.

I have lived in the same house my entire life. I remember when we were younger and my parents were considering moving and I couldn't bear the thought of not having my home anymore. Every new house that we looked at I turned my nose up at. I tried to imagine myself in a new room, but the thought only made me sad and nostalgic and scared.

Eventually we decided to reinvent our original home instead. That meant gutting the whole thing and moving to a rented place in the next town for 6 months. I remember this being very confusing. Suddenly I wasn't sure where home was. I knew that this place was only temporary and so I was able to cope with the being away from the real house for a while. But then, obviously, the real house completely changed its image and its smell and even its back garden. And then I got used to living in our rented place, I'd had one long lovely summer in it, and I felt suspended in the air without anywhere to feel completely safe, completely at home.

I used to believe that the only place I could ever cope with being ill was at home. Anywhere else and I would panic and desperately try to imagine myself in my bed with everything I knew around me. My home was everything. My room had my whole life in it, and I could run across the landing to the safety of my parents' room whenever I needed. Of course I could have these luxuries in any other house, but I could only ever imagine this feeling of security where I'd always been.

When I was younger I used to worry that I could never move out because no other place would feel the same. I'd try to imagine myself as an adult in lots of different, new houses but found myself always wondering back to home. Nothing could compare.

When we moved back into the new old house I had to get used to everything I knew never being able to be the same again. Except it wasn't as traumatic as I'd anticipated. It was still in the same spot with the same views and the same people and the same meaning. It just looked different. And smelt of new paint for a while. Quickly this new old house became the place that I couldn't really cope with being anywhere else.

Weirdly even today I still have dreams in which I live in the old house. I can still walk around my old room, and go down the tiny kitchen and have the tiny bathroom right next to my door. The whole place is very vivid. Clearly that house had a very powerful effect on my memory. I wonder how long I'll be having those dreams for.

Now I do not have one place that I feel completely safe in because I don't always live at home anymore. I have another room in another town that I surrounded with all my things and my memories and I can lie down in that bed and not have to imagine myself lying in the one I'm sitting on now. I think younger Mollie would struggle with that concept. I think she'd feel I'd betrayed the old house. I used to think that, that by moving away we would betray the old house.

I don't think that now, obviously it would be a bit weird if I did. But I'm strangely impressed with myself that I can call two places home. I used to worry about the life I live now so much, even when it was years and years away. And now this new place means almost as much to me at this moment in time as the old one does. And I have nothing to worry about, and that, for me, is the most glorious thing.

Thursday, 1 December 2016

Little thoughts.

I'm going round in circles in my head. I keep having the same thought processes. I forget that I've been to these thoughts before and I try to act on them only to see that I already have.

I did it just now. I had an idea to write about writing and writer's block. I open my blog. I did that last week. I've stopped thinking of new things.

Actually, that's technically a lie. I'm only lacking in new thoughts I can develop and process and get something out of. I am full of day dreams and trivialities and little fears and little things. They're all little things, I think that's why I keep forgetting that I've been to them before.

It's funny, isn't it? How sometimes the mind gets stuck in a rut. It's not a dangerous rut, I'm not sinking into anything bad. It's just really very boring.

I'm hoping to get some big, juicy, fabulous thoughts soon. I'm hoping. I'll keep you posted.

Monday, 21 November 2016

Lazy and afraid.

I've got this thing about writing fiction: I can't do it. I can't get myself to do it. I think I'm afraid of it being really, really god-awful. Most of my non-fiction is something I don't think about. I just do it, it just comes out because it's coming straight from my head. It is my real thoughts in real time. Fiction comes from somewhere else. I'm not always sure where that is.

I have written fiction before. I got to 50,000 words of a novel when I was 13 before I became self-conscious and wouldn't dare touch it anymore. I always think of that age as my golden age for creativity. I made short films and wrote stories and cared deeply about what I was doing and about nothing else. I didn't care what people thought of what I did, I just wanted to do it. All my ideas were tangible and I was very productive with them. I remember staying up until way into the early hours of the morning writing a chapter that had come into my head. When did I last do something like that?

I'm too scared to do it now. I care whether it's good or not. I want it to be good the minute it goes onto the page. I want immediate satisfaction from it. I've become lazy, I'm less willing to put in the effort. But the worst thing is that I'm not willing to give it up. 

I have a constant cycle of feeling guilty for not paying attention to any creative writing, putting in minimal effort for half an hour every couple of weeks and then waiting for the guilt to creep back in. I know that I am actively stopping myself from writing. I am afraid and lazy and I care what people think. How do I start to undo that? 

Friday, 11 November 2016

Dark Year.

Ah, 2016, the Dark Year of the West. I think I've had a more emotional response to Leonard Cohen's death today than I did to Trump's "victory". Perhaps because we lost another artist contributing insight and beauty to the world, and yet we continue to gain more hatred and more stupidity. I don't have much to say about Trump. I've said what I think of him. I think I repeated the words "piece of shit" about twenty times whilst watching the election results unfold. If you really emphasises the "shit" with as much disdain as you can muster then it says all you need.

Really I'm not going to say much more because he's a terrorist and I'm not going to say that I'm scared. I'm not scared because I don't live in America and I'm not gay/African American/ Mexican American/Muslim American. I'm a woman, and I lament with other women across the pond that their president hates them. But I will not say I'm scared.

I don't want to polarise, because that is equally as dangerous. I don't want to say them = bad, us = good. It's tempting to think that, and sometimes I do, but that is not a solution. There must be something we can do or say to stop this rise of hatred and fear and ignorance. Do we allow ourselves to consider why they voted Trump? Do we give reason to this madness? Yes. Of course we do. Something in that country, in this climate, made those people vote for an incompetent pig. Why?

I am contributing to the Trump pollution on our social media, I know. But we have to talk about it. We have to work it out. What just happened? What does this mean? What do we do now?

I can't make any concrete thoughts about this. I keep asking questions without any glimmer of an answer. I think we are waiting in limbo now, the western world held in suspense, floating through the air as if in an explosion and our minds are slowing it down and the sound is too loud to make a noise. I don't know what the aftermath will be, but I know you can always clear it up. We are not hopeless, we are just confused.