Back to blogging: Past swings

It’s funny how I’m always moving on with my life and then retreat to blogging when life seems to challenge me again. After the previous occurring, I kept telling myself that things will work out for the better and that I will find my way eventually.

I am grateful for everything that has happened in the last month. I was given a week off and was able to visit my parents in the countryside to assist them with renovations and other housework. I missed them, and, incredibly, we were able to spend some quality time together after the lockdown.

Work-wise, I was assigned to this new exciting project, and I now have new colleagues and the opportunity to work with great people, apply what I learned at my previous job, and grow.

I’ve also managed to take care of my health by visiting a nutritionist once in a while, exercising whenever I can, and a few days ago, I faced my fears by having surgery to remove my wisdom tooth. This had been a source of concern in my life for several months, and I knew it had to be addressed.

A new path ahead?

Now that all of these issues have been resolved, I have the distinct impression that something from my past is attempting to resurface. It makes no sense to me because nothing has happened in reality yet. It’s just that I keep having these strange dreams in which I have to part ways and take a new path.

I’ve tried to ignore them and focus on the present, but they keep repeating, and my heart prefers to stay there for some strange reason. Aside from that, I’ve been chatting with my friends, and it’s as if incidents from the past keep showing up, and when I reexamine them, I have new resolutions that seem different.

The more I try to disregard them, the more they appear, making me doubt my sanity. I’ve also spoken with a few other people, and they’ve mentioned that this happened to them as well, albeit with minor differences.

According to the horoscope, this is a new turn of fate and it is meant to happen. I’m not sure what new path awaits me and the people I spoke with or what new challenges await us, but all I want is the strength and wisdom to face whatever comes our way.

Resolutions

I’m aware that the new journey is a big step, and it feels regretful to leave everything we’ve built behind and embark on a new, hazy path. It’s essential to be patient and honest to ourselves in the face of any new route that comes your way.

If there is one thing I have learned from this crazy life, it is that we must take risks and move forward, even if this means making mistakes along the way. That is how we grow and become stronger.

We should stop being too serious, curious, and fearful in front of the unknown and instead have fun like a child who keeps swinging into what new challenges lie ahead. And if past encounters keep coming back to haunt us, perhaps it’s just time to face our stupid fears and enjoy life and what God has in store for us.

Overthinking

What is the definition of life? What makes it truly significant and worthwhile? Is it the new job, the new laptop with the colorful keypad, or the dreadful sensation of the unknown that creeps in every night?

I recently struggled to make sense of these meanings and came up empty-handed. I’ve been going in circles for a long time, mostly because I’ve lost sight of my purpose, of the things I used to like doing, such as writing.

I’ve been terrible at delaying and doing everything but the one thing that makes me happy. It was fun to create ‘to-do lists,’ ‘what should I purchase next month lists,’ plan new activities, exercise, and schedule doctor visits to see what was wrong with me. 

I have to admit that ticking items off a list may be satisfying and inspirational, even if it doesn’t provide the same level of enjoyment as doing something you like. The best aspect is that most of the activities were beneficial to me, and my problems were resolved.

The previous several months have been life-changing, and I have changed as well. The routine has changed, and I’m attempting to improve each day by reading more and participating in new things that I never dreamed I’d be doing. I’ve gotten rid of the majority of my negative habits and replaced them with new ones.

I’ve got new hopes and aspirations, but I’ve also got new anxieties and obsessive thoughts. Before going to sleep, I can’t seem to stop my mind from racing, and I tend to overthink things more than usual.

I used to be frightened of new experiences and envisioned things that did not occur; it was all in my brain the whole time. That caused me to miss out on essential sleep hours and struggle with day-to-day tasks. When I first awakened, I found myself laughing and feeling sorry for myself. Nobody should do that to themselves, and it’s a good thing I discovered it.

Lose some strings along the way

It’s normal to be scared of the unknown and to wonder what will happen next after a significant transition, but what if, instead of worrying and pondering what may go wrong, we focused on what could go right?

Overthinking destroys the new’s delight and wonder. Life will never be perfect, and for that matter, we will never fully know what will happen. Instead of overthinking and attempting to control everything that may occur, take one step at a time rather than picturing the entire staircase.

Imagine where we’d be if we spent every day overthinking and attempting to plan and control everything that happened to us. Honestly, I don’t believe we could’ve ever envisioned ourselves in the places we are now, with the people we have in our life; I definitely couldn’t have imagined myself in this situation.

Woody Allen once said, ‘If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.’ Instead of creating plans that may never come true, realize that God already has a bigger plan for you, one that you could never have imagined, something out of the ordinary. Let go of the ties that bind you, relax, and remember to breathe and appreciate the delights of each new day.

Image Source – Unsplash,
Rodion Kutsaev

Pandemic snowy-rainy day

These past few days, I’ve awoken to the sound of raindrops. They just kept falling from the sky, sometimes mixed with snow, sometimes plain, as if the sky was mourning. I can’t recall waking up and walking outside these days because that doesn’t happen very often with working remotely.

I summoned the courage to go out and meet my colleague on Friday. It was snowing heavily, and it was one of those days before the weekend where you just want to crawl into bed and sleep for a few more minutes before chores and work.

Despite her hesitation, I insisted on meeting because she had to offer a gift for my mother. I considered it a good day to go out, hoping for the snow to stop falling from the sky and the weather to change. I got ready quickly, didn’t pay much attention to the weather, and just dressed up plainly, with a spring coat and had light makeup.

It was Friday, and I was just a simple girl in another city forgotten by time. I sprinkled at the door, bid farewell to the cat, and skipped my chores for a few minutes, so I could get out and have some rough polluted air. And meet my friend.

Dashing through the sleet…

Under the curtain, the snow did not look so intense, but outside there was a different story. The small town traffic became mundane by sleet and snow. The cars appeared to be a collection of toys, driven by small children with attitude and no patience or consideration for pedestrians.

I was a little early for the meeting, so I took the opportunity to order two cappuccinos from a new local coffee shop. The waitresses didn’t bother to express their surprise at my spring outfit in the middle of winter, in March.

Needless to say, I was already drenched and had dirt on my shoes. But who cared? I was just another girl who left the house during a pandemic dressed for the coming season, full of hope and good vibes.

I met a friend at the bus station and we drank cappuccinos while walking through the heavy rain and shivering. We swapped our goods and said our goodbyes soon after. I then ran to my station and caught a micro-bus back to my house.

It’s incredible how people can judge and analyze you with a single glance despite not knowing you very well. I was escaping my everyday routine by going out to see a friend on an ugly-snowy-wet day, wearing only a short coat and forgetting to bring my umbrella. What a horrendous crime!

I could almost hear their mutterings: ‘Ahh, poor girl, look at her!’ She’s dressed shabbily and is drenched,’ while I’m listening to my favorite song through my earphones and enjoying a lovely Friday outside.

Instead, I wanted to concentrate on the bus window while leaning against the walls and listening to music. Life can be wonderful if you choose to ignore the curious, judgmental looks of others; it motivates you to attain your purpose and enjoy your time.

Home at last 😊

The bus eventually came to a halt, and I proceeded on my way home. At the traffic light, I noticed an older woman dressed beautifully, wearing colorful eyeshadow and carrying a red umbrella.

I could feel her gaze running through me; it had to be my mascara that decided to bleed and give me panda eyes. But there she was, serious-looking at me, and there I was, laughing and enjoying every drop of rain that was now falling on me.

I felt like a little kid, walking out in the snowy-rainy weather and forgetting to bring my umbrella, not wearing my usual winter coat or office shirt. It’s lovely to break the rules now and then, to get out, meet with a colleague, dance in the rain, and glow.

At the end of the day, snowy rain can be just confetti from the sky. In those days, meet a friend, have a sweet cappuccino, and allow yourself to play in the puddles and get soaking wet.

Pandemic events

Yesterday, I had to attend a baby shower party for one of our friends. It was the first event after a long period of pandemic and concern. One thing I really couldn’t get over was the clumsiness and social awkwardness that exacerbated it all. We were there for a special occasion, but because of all the rules and Pandemic hysteria, I remember that we weren’t able to fully enjoy ourselves or cheer for the birth of that child.

We were 50 guests, with 6 people at the table, spread at a visible distance. I recall light music in the background, curious stares, and a feeling of confusion and disorder. Though the organizers did their hardest to keep us entertained and present at the activity, I could read in the guest’s eyes the fear of attending such an event after a long time of stagnation. The food offered was delicious and I could tell that the people present were nice and warm, although we couldn’t interact that much.

Also, as with any event that took place during the pandemic, we had police coming by to make sure that the activity was in compliance with the laws and that no one was dancing or bending the law. It looked as though we were committing a crime and like we were suspects, albeit following laws. As kids at home in our early years, playing some silly games when our parents came and criticized our lack of sense and morality.

We didn’t shake hands, hug, or kissed on our cheeks, as it was against the rules. We simply fist-bumped and smiled, acknowledging the present situation.

Cruel reality

This pandemic has turned our world upside down, and it’s difficult to tell if we’re ever going to be able to get back to the way it used to be. There’s no perfect day for the baby shower, wedding, or any other occasion with people gathering. It’s just an event that needs to be handled according to tradition, with fewer people and more restrictions.

This Pandemic made us realize the amount of things we take for granted in life, not to mention, life itself. These occurrences are just a small reminder that our life is precious and that we should cherish it with all that we have and honor it, even though it means having to adhere to regulations.

At the end of the day, it’s important to mark the date, be thankful that we’ve been able to see our loved ones, and have a quiet sit down, appreciating the amount of things that we are still left with.

What about me?

Most people would think that if I work from home, I am fortunate and that I should be glad. Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful and can’t be appreciative enough for having a job during a world pandemic, without having to suffer through traffic, office long hours, and risks. However, working at home isn’t that comfortable either.

Especially because you tend to become a robot and sunk into a routine. If you were like me, you would wake up in the morning, make your bed, brew coffee, wash the dishes, change from pajamas, take the breakfast in a rush if not a quick coffee, and then start working.

During the day you would take little breaks to either wash the laundry, cook dinner, or fold clothes that might be needed for the week. I am not including the unexpected guests that might come out of nowhere while you’re either in a meeting or deep concentrating into a client’s case.

People don’t understand that you are working because they don’t see you struggle physically, and don’t realize that you need to concentrate your energy on your assignments to be effective and get positive performance.

I observed that working at home doesn’t give you any form of empathy from your family or loved ones. They like to pull your attention away or talk with you, and then they get offended if you’re not completely there or at least involved in the conversation when you have to work.

I’ve had long talks with my partner and family and requested silence and understanding when working, I need my space. They started to somehow realize that and cope with it, but at the end of the day, I often feel exhausted because of my list of chores and work.

‘Me’ Time

Yesterday, after a long week at work, I took the liberty of zooming out. I wanted to forget about my duties at work, blogging, my chores at home, just about anything that could harden my mind and body. I just paused the disturbing routine.

I went to the fridge, took a slice of cake and I’ve thrown the phone aside, not even peaking at the television or laptop, simply needing to enjoy the sweetness without being distracted by any noise or person. Then, I took a hot bath, pampered myself, and played a game on my phone while embracing the bed fresh covers.

Today, I managed to work out and had a mini spa day, taking care of my skin and health. These things may sound blunt or dull, but to me, they are the absolute delight after a long week of work from home and worries. I finally felt like I was retrieving my good vibes and that I was overflowing with positive energy.

I was joking with a friend that we need a complete break away from routine and familiar faces, someplace to get lost and be ourselves. The ‘me’ time is so critical that we fail to recognize it and typically end up overworked, exhausted, and sick.

“Self-love is an ocean and your heart is a vessel. Make it full, and any excess will spill over into the lives of the people you hold dear. But you must come first.”- Beau Taplin

(Imagine source, Hassan OUAJBIR at Pexels.com)

I’m not sorry

I’ve been wondering about it lately, are we cowards? What makes us so fearful of the unexpected, and how can we conquer the harsh moments of anxiety and uncertainty? What are we going to do in the middle? We have two choices. We can either be terrified to the end and find a timid way to retreat, or step up the game and embrace the challenge of reality.

Why apologize? Why act like a victim when there’s nothing you’ve done to change the present?

Like anything in life that is too much, apologizing can have detrimental consequences of its own. Excessive apologies will impact our confidence and consciousness. When the time comes, before saying sorry, we have to ask ourselves, are we guilty for what happened, should we be sorry?

Let’s take some simple examples:

1.We’re in the grocery store, enjoying the good background music without disturbing anybody, while another person appears out of nowhere and crashes into us. We’re sorry and apologize instantly. For what? It’s not like we’ve invited that random person to act like it did, he/she needs to apologize to us.

2. There are days when we’re either overworked, feeling ill, or have a bad hair day. There sure is no reason to excuse, we are who we are and we are people at the end of the day. We should own our look and be happy with us, even if it is not a fantastic day.

3. Moments when we’re invited to birthday parties, clubbing, or going out, but we don’t feel like it or need more time for ourselves. We should be truthful, and instead of lying to ourselves, we should just be honest and let those people who invite us know the truth.

4. Asking a question. We’ve all had those moments when we don’t know a problem and need more explanations. We’re not supposed to care for others who roll their eyes to our lack of knowledge, they’re probably projecting their insecurities. Be the one that stands out from the crowd and questions if that’s how you feel.

5. Not responding to messages/phone calls. This is hard to avoid, considering that many people tend to call or give a message during our work schedule, meetings and even in our spare time spent exercising, relaxing, or busy enjoying what we love. It’s important to realize that we’re humans, too, and just like the person who’s calling/messaging us, we have needs.

Conclusion

Apologizing is necessary in our everyday lives, but it is crucial to keep ourselves in line and identify the times when we can genuinely apologize and when not. Saying sorry for something we haven’t done will carry low self-esteem, and make people believe we’re less worthy.

It’s not easy to change our actions immediately, but withholding excuses can be empowering, according to recent research. Instead of apologizing right away, we should take a deep breath and ask ourselves if we are to blame for this.

At the end of this post, I’m leaving a couple of inspirational quotations about why we shouldn’t be sorry:

  • “Never apologize for how you feel. No one can control how they feel. The sun doesn’t apologize for being the sun. The rain doesn’t say sorry for falling. Feelings just are” Iain S. Thomas, Intentional Dissonance;
  • “The best day of your life is the one on which you decide your life is your own. No apologies or excuses.” Bob Moawad;
  • “I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself.” D.H. Lawrence, The Complete Poems;
  • “Sorry wastes time. You have to live your life like you’ll never be sorry. It’s easier just to do the right thing from the start so there’s nothing to apologize for.” Jennifer Niven, All the Bright Places;

(Image source – Pexels, Malcolm Garret)

Visiting Nessebar, part II

I loved my first day at Sol Nessebar Palace. We were at the restaurant, then tried the sea. I say tried, since the water temperature was a little low at the beginning, it is very cold in the morning (I discovered that the next day) and you could end up catching a cold, though not recommended during a holiday.

We enjoyed a nice dinner during the night, the food prepared is delicious and the chefs and servers are very professional, respectful and friendly. The food is cooked in the hotel’s kitchen, and the desserts are to die for. In my view, it is advised not to go on a diet during the vacation, they have a wide variety of food, but you are tempted by the scent and plating.

To our surprise, we meet a lot of Romanians at the hotel, spending like us, a few days of relaxation after a few months in quarantine and non stop work. The majority were nice and polite, enjoying precious moments with their families.

When I woke up on Tuesday morning, all my skin was burning, and my partner, Alex, on the other hand, was all right, but brown 😅. Yeah, I used sunblock cream, and after that, I used tan lotion, but it didn’t really help that much. We agreed to spend less time in the sun for the second day, so we went after breakfast to visit the old town of Nessebar.

The old city of Nessebar

(Image Source – World Heritage)

Nessebar is an ancient city and one of the major seaside resorts on the Bulgarian Black Sea Coast, located in Burgas Province. Often referred to as the ”Pearl of the Black Sea”, Nesebar is a rich city-museum defined by more than three millennia of ever-changing history.

We were amazed at the beautiful scenery when we first arrived in the historic town, the old buildings held so well, the wooden windmills, the churches.

(Image Source – Personal Library)

Everywhere, you could see small shops, and any corner seemed to conceal a well-preserved secret and maybe even a little souvenir that you could take with you as a memory.

You get the impression that you are present in an old movie if you take the time and walk slowly, noticing every detail. Such a satisfying atmosphere, the wooden restaurants and the slow music in the background. I was simply amazed at the architecture and elegance of these places and wished for a moment that time would stop so that I can live there forever.

(Image Sources – Personal Library)

Questions, questions

I have been told once by a person that I used to like that I don’t know what I want, and that I tend to hover a lot about powerful decisions. I guess that his acknowledgment got me off guard at that time, and accepted it as a truth.

I am only 24 at this moment, but things started making sense, and I got to have my own opinions about what I think, about the world and myself. I am not perfect, I got my big life full of messy things, and I continue making mistakes and learning from them.

I never actually knew what I wanted from life, truthfully speaking. I only learned as I went, stepping on shards of glass and at times, found my comfort zone on a fluffy carpet.

Life has thrown me out into circumstances that I did not realize I could go through, I laughed at the danger, trusted unworthy people, smiled when life got critical and said thank you to enemies.

One normal person could say that I am crazy and maybe, way too naive for this mean world, but hey, that’s just me. I don’t know for how long I can keep the spark of goodness within me, but I know that I still want to be kind, when everybody else is yelling and swearing around me.

If I don’t always have answers to life’s biggest questions, it’s okay. Nobody really knows anything, we discover as we go. Clues and hints are present at all steps if we have faith and believe in ourselves.

…………………………………………………………………….

At the end of the day, you need to take some for yourself while sipping that hot cup of tea, and understand that you only need to live for now, without worrying about what you want, but what makes you happy. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.

(Image Source – Unsplash, Kira auf der Heide)

Rain and the early autumn

Working at home does offer a good experience to get in touch with my environment and feel at peace. It gets lonelier at times, but I get to know myself, and I have time to reflect upon my thoughts and make better decisions. Especially when the weather changes.

These days rained a lot, and the temperature decreased. Honestly, I loved the cold breeze and the fast droplets of rain stumbling through the windows at the first hours of dawn. It was like a breath of fresh air after the summer drowsiness.

In the morning, I would open wide the windows and doors, letting the purified, cold air to enter the apartment while enjoying a cup of hot coffee covered in a soft blanket. I felt like I invited the early autumn into my home, but it never felt so good.

Autumn senses

I got mesmerized by the sunrise and sunset, altogether. I would get lost in the clouds while watching them, dancing through the ruffled sky. Ironically, I was always fascinated by the clouds.

In September during school, after finishing my tests and paperwork, I would stare at the blue autumn sky. The teachers used to blame me for not paying attention to their classes and tried to keep me focused. I guess I was a dreamy girl that loved the clouds, correction, still am.

I can’t feel guilty for such an innocent pleasure, loving the clouds and the early autumn rain. The white noise that covers everything, which is like silence but not empty. The cold shivers that makes your skin tremble and wake up to your senses.

In the end

In life it’s important to not fear the rain, hiding through an umbrella at all times. You need to let the rain kiss you, beat upon your head with silver liquid drops, to sing you a lullaby.

And if you get wet and muddy through the process, remember to look up rather than down. Without the rain, there would be no rainbow.

(Image Source – Unsplash, eberhard grossgasteiger)

The spark within

Hello, dear writers and readers! How have you been?

Needless to say, as always, I get caught up in the middle, performing the tasks that require more attention, and leave myself and my passions at the end of the list, blogging being the main passion. Focusing on other duties, paying more attention to chores, and being assertive.

I realized this week that I do this often, neglecting the passions that lead me in the first place there. I get so cramped up with work, house chores, and family that I tend to forget about myself.

I got used to the routine, waking up early in the morning, performing house chores, going to work, cooking, finishing the rest of the chores. If I get time, I exercise and eat, then fall asleep at the beginning of a movie, and the day is over before I know it. 

I blink, and it’s morning, I’ve got to start it all over again, like a robotic system, operating the same steps every day, even though I feel exhausted, even though at times I appear to crumble due to fatigue, because the show must go on.

Reminders

Often, we fail to realize that the show can’t go on without ourselves, without our strength and happiness. We can’t just go through life, merely out of duty, through carrying out job assignments and chores. 

If we continue along this path, we may end up being old, wrinkled, tired, and grumpy, unhappy with everything we have achieved so far. Perhaps because we weren’t completely there, we didn’t fulfill the need of our heart, but what was right according to the social needs and the people. 

My question is, how many times have we embraced today’s society’s truth and „must-do” without questioning ourselves: Do I really want this? Was this the right track? Might this make me happy? 

The answer is, we give up on our rights more than 90 percent of the time because it was the best thing to do and the simplest direction to take then. For our loved ones and for a better future, we made compromises. 

Then, we woke up in time, realizing that maybe we could have chosen a different way, and that we should have not have given up at our passions and pleasant moments. At our spark.

If we want to be happy we need to care about ourselves, about our opinions and what we really want. Truth is, opportunities don’t knock at our door twice, we have to make the best decisions in time, or else, we will end up learning another lesson.

Passion. Confidence. Gratitude. The possibility of making a positive change in the world. It’s the sort of „spark” one gets the moment they decide to go after what they want, really fight for it, work hard, and not give up.

That’s what we need to have and never lose.