Monthly Archives: December 2011

Holiday greetings, apologies, and book recommendations.

Hoping everyone had a fabulous Christmas and wishing you all the best in the New Year.

I apologize for not updating my blog regularly. I have been writing and thinking more than ever, but my internet connection has been flaky for the past week, I will be out of town for a while, and I have been spending lots of time with individuals I have not seen in far too long. These are my excuses, but I will be back shortly, I promise!

I have been reading a lot of philosophy, listening to a lot of old music, and asking questions I have never before dared to ask. Hope you all will join my quest for answers and happiness next year, too.

The mind is a beautiful thing, and it takes courage to share its musings – so thank you for sharing a little bit of your world with me. Since starting this blog, “Finding Happiness,” I have been able to be more honest with myself and have been able to reflect on all the things that I feel like talking about – but can’t. I have never actually addressed a post to my followers before (in the 10 blogs I have maintained) until now. I would like to thank all my readers – the one-timers, the followers, and friends. Your likes/comments/e-mails/blogs inspire me, and encourage me to keep writing down the random things that go on in my brain.

Also, if any of you are avid readers – I need book recommendations!
I like everything – philosophy, classic fiction, new fiction, history, memoirs…
I just cannot read things that are badly written, and I am not a fan of fantasy.
I would love to be in a book club, but that’s a story for another day.

Lots of love.
– Nelya.

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Mr. Meets-My-Criteria is not always Mr. Right

Note: This is a personal story, and sharing it makes me feel even more awful for breaking a heart. I hope I can forgive myself one day, just like he forgave me.  I apologize for the cheesiness in this story beforehand, but this was one of the many lessons in my life that has taught me to seek pure happiness- the kind that comes from within, rather than  the “happiness” that is defined for us by society, by our friends, and by our own insecurities.

There once was a boy.
He was wonderful, witty, funny, and charming.
He was from a well to-do family.
He was tall, handsome, and very sweet.
He spoke my language, he understood my culture, he knew my family.

I was visiting family in a small, small town where everybody knew everybody else.
I met him randomly, he was on his motorcycle.
I was awkward, skinny, and jet lagged.

He was good friends with my girl friends, and he shook my hand and said, “It’s nice to finally meet you.”
I smiled and laughed, and said I needed to go, but that I’d probably see him around.

Later that day, I was surprised by him visiting my friend’s house [where I was at].
He showed up with a bouquet full of hand-picked field daisies – my absolute favorite.

He smiled and gave them to me, and said, “I saw these and I thought of how I met you earlier this day, and wanted to give them to you as a welcoming gift. Hope you enjoy your time here.”
And with that, he drove away.
My friends giggled, and said that he’s just a gentleman.

We became friends, he would call, we would hang out with our mutual friends.
We were just friends, just friends, just friends.
But he liked me, and everyone knew, but there were complications.

He had a girlfriend. Her name was Victoria.
She was bossy, and mean, and she didn’t treat him well.
But she was his girlfriend, and I didn’t want to interfere.

He left her. He said she didn’t appreciate all that he did for her.
He was tired and he knew she wasn’t the kind of girl he wanted to be with.

He was so nice to me, so very nice.
He would get me flowers randomly, he would bring me ice cream from my favorite place, even though they closed before 2 in the morning.

He was sweet, and he liked me, and he gave me more attention than I’ve ever even wanted.
And I liked it, not him, but the attention.

He liked my curly hair, and asked me not to straighten it, or “whatever you do to it.”
He liked my awkwardness, my laugh, my random singing.
He didn’t think I was too skinny.
He didn’t mind my pickiness with food, my indecisiveness, my fears.
He was always, always there when I needed him to be.
And he liked all the things I myself hated about myself.
He made me feel like the most important person in the world.
He was a keeper – that’s what they all said.

But I didn’t like him.
I liked that he fit the criteria I had for a future boyfriend.
He fit it so well.
I liked the attention he gave me, how he was proud of me in front of his friends.
I liked that he was a nice guy.
I liked everything about him, but I didn’t like him.

So I pretended to like him.
I thought maybe one day I would actually like him.
He told me he loved me,
I smiled and hugged him and didn’t say it back.

A few weeks later, he asked me if I felt that way about him,
Since I never said “I love you” back.
So I didn’t know what to do, and I had never loved a boy before,
And thought – maybe this is love and that’s all there is to it..
So, I let the lie come out of my mouth – I love you.

He was happy, and I was happy that he was happy.
And maybe this was forever, but I was confused.

I didn’t love him, I knew that, but what if I never found anybody better than him to love me.
And I really knew that he truly loved me.

But after a few months, and some distance – we fell apart.
Or, rather, my pretending fell apart.
He would call every day, he was sweet and hopeful and everything I could have ever asked for.
But I told him that we couldn’t do this anymore.
He asked me if there was somebody else, and there really wasn’t anybody else.

I told him he was perfect, that he couldn’t have loved me better.
I told him that it wasn’t his fault, it was honestly me.
And this was the most truthful I had every been with him.

But I don’t think he believed me – He thought there was someone else, he thought it was his fault, he thought all of my kind breaking-this-up words were just attempts to make him feel better.
But I was truthful, and I honestly knew he deserved someone who could return his love and kindness.
I wanted to at least LIKE him, and I tried really hard to, but I just didn’t.
And I don’t know why, but I guess that sometimes Mr. Meets-My-Criteria is not always Mr. Right.

We parted ways, he was still a sweetheart.
He’d call on my birthday, on Christmas, and sometimes randomly a few times a month.
We would talk about life, we would laugh about good memories, we were just friends.
But in his good-byes I knew it wasn’t okay.
He wasn’t okay, and I really, really needed him to be okay.

I broke his heart. He told me that.
I saw him a year later, and he hugged me, told me I looked better than ever.
He asked if I would have tea and dessert with him that day.
I figured that that was the least I could do for him.

I apologized. I said I needed to do it in person, rather than on the phone.
He asked me to stop, he said he forgave me a long time ago.
He said he wished that things didn’t end the way they did,
He said he wished things just didn’t end at all.
I said that I was surprised he didn’t hate me,
He said, “Honey, I could never hate you.”
I almost cried. He was too nice to me.

We dropped the topic of “us” and talked about other stuff.
He said he’d dated a few girls, and that they couldn’t compare with me.
I laughed, and told him that that was ridiculous.
He laughed, and thanked me for changing his standards.

It was a nice evening, with an old friend whose heart I broke.

He took me home, and I asked him to please forget about me.
He looked sad, really sad. He said he wouldn’t forget, but that he was learning to let go.
He wished me luck and happiness in my current relationship, and he was sincere.

He finally let go. He has found happiness. We’re both happy.
But I have yet to forgive myself for breaking a heart that was so kind to me.

And from this I learned a lesson:
I learned to trust my instincts.
I learned that you can’t force yourself to love someone.
I learned that just because someone is amazing, they may not be for me to keep.
I learned that being truthful is important, always.

 

12202011


Stress

Sitting in a room that is vibrating with stress:

Individuals biting their nails, pulling at their hair, forcing their sleepy eyes to remain open…

Hoping for time to freeze, if only for a second, a minute, an hour, a day, or forever.

But the clock bell tower rings promptly every hour.

Time goes on and on and on.

The only thing to do is accept reality: Life doesn’t wait for anybody.

Things happen whether we’re ready for them, or not.

“In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life — It goes on.” – Robert Frost

 

12122011


Life doesn’t have to be fair.

Life doesn’t have to treat you kindly.

You have to be strong during the stresses, the storms it sends your ways.

Life doesn’t have to be convenient,

You have to be prepared for the good, the bad, the impossible.

Life doesn’t have to follow your plans,

You have to stick to your dreams, regardless of temporary detours.

Life just doesn’t have to be fair, and let’s face it, it really isn’t fair:

But it’s so very beautiful, if you choose happiness.


Society is wrong – You ARE beautiful.

It is truly sad that we live in a society where women are constantly told that they are not enough: they’re not pretty enough, skinny enough, young enough, smart enough, strong enough, good enough…
They’re told by the media and society in general – that they are not enough because they don’t look like the young women Hollywood has created through crazy, unnatural means.

Beauty is not: crazy liquid diets that do not provide enough nutrients to the body, insane work out routines created by personal trainers that require hours at the gym and lots of money, getting rid of all of your imperfections through surgeries and loads of make up…
Beauty is not defined by Hollywood’s standards.
Beauty is natural – beauty is loving the body you were born in, being proud of the knowledge you have acquired throughout the years and the work you have accomplished, being confident.
Beauty is God-given, and it lacks nothing.

There’s nothing wrong with dieting, working out, using make up. But these are things that are supposed to enhance either our health or our best qualities. They are not meant to consume our lives and help us look like the girls we see in magazines.

Sometimes I like to stand back and “people watch” on a busy street – there is so much you can tell about a person’s self image from the way they hold their head, address awkward situations with strangers, and the way they smile.

I live in a college town, so most people are in their early to mid twenties, and even these young women do not seem to love their bodies and minds. During my “people watching” sessions, I notice how many, many young women keep their heads down while they walk, staring at the pavement. They avoid eye contact not because they are in a hurry (I assume they are not, since they are walking fairly slowly), but because they lack confidence. They don’t smile. They are very apologetic when their umbrella slightly touches a man’s coat. When they trip over something and quickly catch their balance, they look around to see if anyone had seen them stumble a bit. I met a girl today, actually, who asked me what I was studying. I told her, and she replied “oh, I would like to study that but I’m too dumb for that…” I proceeded to try to convince her that that was not true. I’ve seen this girl before, she was rather quiet, and probably not society’s definition of “beautiful”. I continued to speak to her and she later opened up and was full of laughter, clever remarks, and insightful ideas.

There’s just something about society’s notion of beauty that irritates me so much.
I’m young, I’m healthy and thin, a little over average height, and pursuing my dreams.
And occasionally, I catch myself thinking  “I wish I was pretty…”
I worked as a model for a short period of time, basically hired for looks.
I ponder: If I’M insecure, what about others? What about those girls who have never been told they are pretty? What about those girls who have been through accidents that have left them changed? Can we ever truly feel like we’re GOOD enough in today’s world?

And why do men get to set these standards? Why does a woman feel inferior to a system that is dominated by the other gender and its standards?

If women cannot get the attention they require and deserve from the men in their lives, we as women must give other women the attention. There’s just something about being told you’re beautiful. (For example, I was at a store with my boyfriend and I saw this girl who I thought was so very pretty and I knew she probably didn’t even know it, so I told her. She felt slightly uncomfortable (and so did my boyfriend), I could tell, but her face lit up and she smiled.) Beauty is not measured in years, kilograms, or the number of compliments received by men. Beauty is everywhere. We have to love the bodies we’re in, and teach other women to love themselves, too. People only demand the respect they deserve when they know their self worth, which makes self-love a priority.

Just for information: I have nothing, absolutely nothing, against men. There are men in this world who are more loving than any woman I have ever met in my life. I have been blessed with a wonderful young man in my life, and our relationship would never have worked out had I not learned to love myself first. Happiness truly does come from within, and the relationships we build are where we share our happiness with those we choose to love.

Society is wrong – You are beautiful. 
“Be kind to yourself – you only have one body, one life, and only the moment to live it” – Olivia Coyne


There’s something about Christmas music on the radio…

That makes my life a little better,
That makes studying a little easier.
That makes the day a little brighter,
That makes me a lot happier and a lot more homesick.