Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Fairy Tales Don't Exist

I've lived my life as a pessimistic optimist.

It's a term I've just designed for myself. It means as much as I have this faith in humans, in their hearts truly being good, somehow I start to doubt it, but even in my doubt, I end up hurt because I truly believe they're good.

I end up burned. I end up used. I end up wandering where my Prince Charming or Fairy Godmother is.

And then I realize, life isn't a fairy tale. Or rather, friends tell me that "Life's not a fairy tale Kathleen, get over it."

Yet, every time, something in me trusts that some day I'll get my happy ending. I don't know what it is. I don't know what in me continually sees a happy ending in the cards.

My whole life I grew up reading fairy tales, watching fairy tales, pretending I was in a fairy tale. More people than I can count have called me Princess, people I would never expect to call me anything, as a joke I put "Princess" on my Facebook page. Someone who has known me my entire life-watched me grow up once told my parents to let me know not to take it off.

Now, I should clarify, I wasn't spoiled growing up. I didn't want for the things I needed but if I wanted money I had to do chores, we weren't just given an allowance, we had to rake the leaves, clean the basement, vacuum and then we'd be paid.

It's not a nickname I've given myself, it's one that I have always remembered having, and maybe it's twisted how I want my life to look, maybe it's twisted how I believe people should act and be.

I have a fascination with fairy tales. Their origins, the true reason they were created, and how our world has changed them is amazing. They are a cultural phenomenon. Shaped by the people who created and adapted them for lessons and then just for entertainment.

But life isn't a fairy tale. They don't exist.

I'm continuously told this.

Growing up, every girl makes her checklist of what she wants in a boy. I made mine. And I thought perhaps, I had found my Prince Charming, I proceeded with caution. I proceeded because he was everything I had every dreamed of. Minus being honest, which I learned too late. This English Bloke I can't say has broken my heart but he's burned me like I never thought I could be burned because deep down my perfect mate was shattered. Ironically, I asked him once if he had attended Charm School and he once called me Sleeping Beauty and Princess.

Before Hogwarts, there were fairy tales, and the magic they held was more than anyone can comprehend, they've shaped my life. I'm not sure I can stop believing. I want to. I want to grow up for the first time in my existence I want to grow up. Maybe it's only after you grow up you have your fairy tale happily ever after.

“Classic fairy tales do not deny the existence of heartache and sorrow, but they do deny universal defeat.” Greenhaven Press

                   Princess on the floor at Grade 12 Graduation. I'm wearing an Arwen Tiara.

“Fairy tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.”
G.K. Chesterton

Friday, January 20, 2012

The Road to Trust

Trust, I can't access the OED so Merriam-Webster defines trust as:

"a : assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something b : one in which confidence is placed"
Trust is one of the largest struggles I find in our world. If we all trusted each other a bit more, and were able to trust each other that bit more, there would be less reliance on things, objects, materials and more on human connection. 
Trust is one of those intangibles of life. You can't see it, you can't touch it, but it's the most important aspect of relationships. Forging relationships is impossible without a base of trust. Trust that this person won't hurt you. Trust that you can turn to them when you need help. Trust that at the end of the day, they care for you. 

Trust and communication go hand in hand. You need to be able to communicate your needs, desires, hopes, fears, in order to be able to connect and when you give these to another human you open yourself up to hurt, tears, anger, betrayal in hopes that they are that good person you believe them to be.
There have been certain people that have come in and gone out of my life that I trusted with every part of me. There are people in my life, albeit distant in multiple ways at the moment that I can still turn to, no matter day, hour, part of the world, I know they'd be there to listen and help. There are people I want to trust but there are too many factors that stack the odds I'll ever be able to trust them. My own issues and their own inability to face their fears and move forward. And it's those ones that have brought this into the forefront of my mind. 

I don't think them bad people, on the contrary, I can see exactly where they are coming from, the confusion, the anxiety, the fear, so they hide. Hide behind lies because "the truth" hurts too much. When in fact, I've seen the truth really only sets you free. Sure there's hurt at first, sure there's tears, there's struggling to understand, but when you get down to it, living a lie means you're living with so much fear of who you are and what you can do that you'd rather diminish yourself and those you let into the lie. 

Truth hurts but that pain heals, because at least you know you were worth the truth. Lies cut to the core and make your ability to trust close to nil. 

I'm not talking about little fibs of course, the world wouldn't function if whole truths were told all the time. I mean, don't lie about being happy unless you actually can fake it til you make it happen. I mean, don't lie about who you love, or don't love, don't pretend things are okay in relationships when they aren't, talk about it, change it, or move on. 

People aren't inherently evil or mean (okay, I'm sure some are) the world we've created has pushed people to come off that way. We isolate ourselves because we think pain isn't worth it. But (excuse my use of cliches today) you don't get the rainbow without the rain. You can't know happiness and goodness if you don't hurt every once and while. You won't appreciate it. 

I think sometimes I write these as pep-talks for myself. ;) 

Trust needs to be built and once it's broken the rebuilding takes so long. Be careful with your heart, your trust, but be more careful with everyone else'. 

"The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them." Ernest Hemingway 

Thursday, January 19, 2012

True Love

My last couple of posts have been lame to say the least. This one won't be eye opening for lots of people I'm sure. I know a lot of people will never have their opinion changed about this topic but I don't know if many people view this the same way as I do, so here we go.

One of the people I would love to meet the most in life and I look to a lot for inspiration, for perspective, for calm, is Marilyn Monroe.

I'll start off that saying I don't believe she committed suicide, and if she did, I don't think it was intentional, more a Heath Ledger incident.

Why do I look to her when Audrey is RIGHT there too? I love Audrey for different reasons, but I've always been drawn to Marilyn.

I think it started because I'm not an Audrey body type. I have curves, even at my thinnest I have hips and I have breasts. It's just my body and looking to Marilyn helped me accept that.

But it turned into a lot more than just her ability to rock the curves.

She has a history. She had experiences. She rose above all the obstacles life threw at her for 36 years. Sure she changed her name, she reinvented herself, but that just meant she got to create who she wanted to be. She was more than an actress on screen, she acted in her own life, she became her art.

Maybe that's pathetic or sad for some people. But the woman had a strong sense of self and was brilliant beyond her years. I think she had a lot more to say to the world about it but she bit her tongue because that's what she was to do. She wasn't a "blonde bimbo" and yes, she probably could have gotten any man she wanted, she had a few, but I think the main reason she couldn't, or rather, the men couldn't keep her was because they were intimated by her. She wasn't only gorgeous on the outside, beauty doesn't scare men, knowledge and power scares men off, and she had both.

She taught me that "It's better to be unhappy alone than unhappy with someone - so far. " When I felt I had lost everything, the words she spoke so long ago meant something. And that's why she matters, not because she was a giant sex symbol, because she was vulnerable and showed the world she was vulnerable. She didn't hide behind strength, her strength was her ability to be open when being a woman and sharing thoughts and feeling still wasn't the norm. She was beautiful on the outside and the inside.

I don't deny she had troubles and I don't pretend she was perfection. But neither was Audrey. If I've learned anything in life so far it's that I don't want perfect and striving for perfect will only end badly. What's perfect is loving people for who they are-flaws and all. Marilyn helped teach  me that and it's a lesson I couldn't be more thankful for. Being able to love that way means you are open to the possibility of true love.

I will always be a Marilyn, it's just who I am. If you can't handle me at my worst, then you certainly don't deserve me at my best.

“I'm selfish, impatient and a little insecure. I make mistakes, I am out of control and at times hard to handle. But if you can't handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don't deserve me at my best.” 

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

New Year New Thoughts

So I have been quite busy lately, getting my life in order (or at least trying to) and there were a few things that I thought might be neat to blog about but I wasn't sure they would be appropriate.

I just Googled New Year Superstitions and why you are supposed to kiss someone at midnight...just because inquiring minds (okay, my inquiring mind) wanted to know.

This is the search that resulted.

So apparently because I had a midnight kiss I will not have to face 2012 with a lack of affection or with coldness.

I didn't have a kiss going into 2011 and my year may have been lacking in affection from the "love" side of things but with my friends I was blessed with so much affection.

Ringing in 2012 was not what I had expected, it was a remarkable evening and I'm glad I was able to start 2012 with a kiss. It helped give me perspective on some things that I hadn't thought of before. And if by chance it means more affection from the other sex, well, that's a toss up on good or bad at this point.

The decision to kiss for the first time is the most crucial in any love story. It changes the relationship of two people much more strongly than even the final surrender; because this kiss already has within it that surrender.Emil Ludwig

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Less than a Week

I turn 24 on Friday and I can feel the usual birthday meltdown coming in small waves already.

Twenty-three was such a strange year and in some ways I'm looking forward to leaving it behind. I need to leave a lot of what went on in the past.

I'm scared for twenty-four though. It means another year I'm closer to being a quarter of a century old and another year of trying to figure out what I want to do before it's socially unacceptable for me to just not know.

Here's to my last 5 days as a 23 year old.

This seems appropriate:

"You make me chuckle when you say that you are no longer young, that you have turned twenty-four. A man is or may be young to after sixty, and not old before eighty."Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.