I refuse to be angry.

Don’t get me wrong, I am no Ned Flanders.

Homer-Listening-to-Flanders

But I still want to reserve myself the right to refuse to be too angry from now on. And I don’t mean hating the door nob when I bang my elbow against it.  I mean feeling what I felt a couple weeks ago – Read here.

Going to bed and waking up STILL angry was such a terrible experience! I could feel it changing my body. It made my stomach hurt, my mind was blurred and everything was bitter. I didn’t eat at all and my girl’s tummies were *funny* (if you know what I mean). They were nervous too. They felt it.

I hated it.

It got me wondering HOW CAN SOME PEOPLE LIVE LIKE THIS CONSTANTLY? How can someone just handle so much hate? Doesn’t your body react to that? I mean, don’t you eventually DIE from anger?

Actually, yes, you do. Just like the Monks don’t get cancer or Alzheimer’s or heart attacks – read here – , angry people make themselves sick. (Well, not that ANGER is the cause of these nasty things 100% of the time, duh. But there IS a real percentage of cases attributed to it.)

I am not surprised at all. It was a terrible, terrible feeling… no wonder your body gets exhausted trying to keep it going. I only felt it for a day and I was crawling.

So, there you have it. All you fucking assholes can just go on being assholes and I’ll try my best to replying with a “well… fuck it.”.

You won’t stop annoying me… but letting you go feels so much better than being angry at you that I’ll go with that.

Let’s all enjoy the last weekend of Summer instead.

my girls

That time I realized I was not the problem.

I think every religion has something beautiful to offer and I love learning about them. I was raised Catholic yet, I feel like Spiritism has always given me great an answer to every single complicated religious question I’ve ever asked. Still, as I grew up and learned about myself, I realized I was happiest when mediating and learning about Buddhism.

When you meditate it looks like you are doing nothing… but you are doing everything.

There’s a chance I am actually fascinated by the idea of being high all the time. You know, watching the flowers grow or “the puddles gather rain”, but I wanna believe it’s actually about finding answers.

I wish I could do that. Learn more about myself, this life and our spirits. But, how could I? Really, I am just a slave.

No matter how blue the sky is in the morning and how much I wanna absorb that moment, I’ll just run out of the house, put some make up on the car and sit at the office for 8 hours.

I don’t wanna sit at the office. I wanna breathe. Deeply. I wanna feel the wind and maybe even feel the Earth spin.

I’ll design boats instead.

It’s not my choice.

The fact that I don’t get to chose makes me nervous, keeps me up at night. It’s hard to wake up, so I won’t pack my lunch ’cause I’m late. I’ll just eat something terrible, pricey and grease at work.

I don’t wanna eat that. It’s gonna make me sick. I wanna eat something that doesn’t hurt my stomach. But I was too exhausted to make it and now I am too hungry to not eat.

I go home and I am thinking I really, really wanna go for a walk. Ride my bike. Roller skate. But my legs are bruised and swollen from sitting down all day and eating crap. It hurts to stand up.

I make the girls some dinner instead. They don’t like it. I make something else. They just want tuna. I don’t wanna give them tuna again ’cause they had it yesterday. Fuck it, have some tuna but you are NOT having tuna tomorrow.

I give them a bath, get on the tub with them hoping my legs will hurt a little less. They still hurt.

So, that makes me sad. Shaky. My heart in racing and  can’t put my finger on what’s wrong ’cause you see… there’s really nothing wrong other than the way this society forces me to function. I realize that I am lucky and I realize that we are fine. But I wanted more. I wanna be able to enjoy life and not just work-sleep-repeat.

I think society is making everyone sick and I don’t wanna be another number in those stats.

And that’s what got me thinking about religion. I figured, if society really did make us sick then the Monks, who are not a slave of this system just basically wouldn’t get sick. Right?

Yes, right. Absolutely right, actually. I googled it. They don’t get sick. We do.

Finding that out was pretty amazing for me, the paranoid hypochondriac. It gave me some peace of mind… like… there’s a small chance we are actually in control. There’s a chance the answers to everything that is making us sick in this world are already out there and it is possible to live a more fulfilling life just by slowing down.

Unfortunately, we’ll always need money. Therefore we’ll always succumb to the system.

But slowing down is a start.

Let’s start from there, then.

Done panicking and wishing

When I started this blog I called it “I am not always panicking“. Because I really wasn’t. I enjoyed those 5 minutes between one panic attack and the next.

Later, I learned how to control them.

We moved to Canada and, all our wishes were about to come true. The snow would fall outside as the Christmas lights would reflect on our window.

The snow I had wished for for so long was now a part of my life. A very permanent part, may I add.

But at one point, the wishing was over too.

When this summer came I realized how the rain made me feel. I am not sure it was the colors, the smell or the memories it brought back. It was just a feeling.

One of the wettest summer in the history of Ottawa made me realize something inside me was changing. Drop after drop, my heart became full. I was experiencing this weird new feeling, … this… happiness.

I was done panicking, done wishing. I was about to find my place in this country. I was heading home.

To me, home is a place where you can settle. A place so warm and comfortable you feel relaxed enough to “watch the puddles gather rain“. When you get there, you don’t look forward for the future and you don’t worry… you just enjoy every moment.

So, here’s where I find myself right now. I am happier when it rains. And here’s where you’ll find me for now.

I will dare to use the word “happy” on my blog’s title. I’ll be terrified of jinxing life, but I need to allow myself to knowledge that I am, in fact, happy.  And hopefully, in a while, I will be adding the word “home” to it.

Sorry about the mess,

Shell

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Terrorism

As mothers, all we wanna do is to cuddle with our babies.

When a mother is born, a great fear is born with her. We are afraid of losing our babies and we are also afraid that our babies might lose us way too soon, before they are ready, before they understand what death is.

Death is a big part of the world right now. Therefore, I find myself scared of sending them to school, to concerts, or even to the playground.

Still, this paralyzing fear cannot make me wonder if I should in fact have had children. Nothing could ever change my mind. I was born to be their mom. I knew I’d be afraid. I have always been afraid of everything.

I am a runner who ran away from a place she considered not to be safe for her children. Yet, as I listen to the benefit concert Ariana Grande did for the victims of the attack in Manchester I can’t help but think to myself “is there a safe place”?  If there is, can we call just go there?

I know all of us moms would love to be there. This world is not meant for a mother’s heart.

How does a mother who can’t protect her baby in her arms feel? How does a mother who can’t feed her children feel? How does a mother with a sick child feel?

What the fuck is wrong with this world? Actually, what the fuck is right?

People have “unfriend” me on facebook when I moved to Canada. Out of jealousy, maybe. Not the terrorists, the good people. The people who are supposed to “fight” evil.

This is something I’ve learned from my husband and my amazing best friend. I’ve learned to be tolerant, to give people a chance, to just fucking let them be happy – no matter how stupid their accomplishments might seem to you.

But these people can’t do that.

Unhappy people are unable to just let others be. They want everything to be more miserable than they are. That way, they won’t feel like the most miserable people on Earth.

Some people will just envy you, unfriend you from the stupid facebook. Some people will attack our babies and make every mother’s worst fears come to life.

“Terror”  is, in fact, a good word to describe it, no wonder they use it.

Right now, I am terrified of life and I don’t know where to run.

I’ve watched the interviews where they asked the children at the Manchester benefit concert “why did you come back?” and they said “because you can’t live in fear. you have to live your life”.

They are right. I have lived in fear for months longer than I can count. Every day I waste worrying about something that is not happening, just afraid of the bad stuff that could happen is a day I did not live.

Fear is a powerful thing.

I hope I can teach my children to not be afraid and to live their lives but for that to happen I guess I should learn how to do that myself.

I wish I knew where to start.

 

Oh, how I hated the “eat pray love” lady.

I have always hated the girl from “Eat Pray Love” because I thought she was so ungrateful. She was a healthy well established woman who could just chose to not work for a year and go to the end of the world to find out what the hell it was that was missing in her life. She was doing all these amazing things but she still had the saddest narrative … like it was all so empty and pointless just because she didn’t have the right men next to her or whatever , while the rest of the women in the world, possibly with real problems, had no choice but to suck it up and get to work.

Yes, she made me angry back in the day. But I kinda get her now. A little bit.

Despite the drama and the fact that I still do think she’s ungrateful, I realized, as I come closer and close to turning 35 that I too had the luxury to make some important choices in my life.

I wanted to live in a city I absolutely loved, like I mentioned before and that was important to me. That was settled.

I also wanted to not wanna kill myself every Sunday night because the next morning I’d have to get up and go to work.

You’d think, though, that after 34 years of living inside my head I’d know myself enough to have a proper answer to the question ” what do you wanna do when you grow up” , correct?

Yeah, well, me too.

But it turns out I don’t.

If I were ever to pick the thing that I love the most and never-ever get tired of doing, the answer would be “decorating”. It’s fun, colorful, dynamic, there’s always something different… In fact, it was such a great concept that I absolutely bought it. I picked it. I became an architect.

 

And then reality came.

It turns out I liked decorating for ME and doing things I thought were pretty. Decorating for other people kinda sucked. I can’t handle people.

Ok, let’s put a big “NO-NO”  in every existing job involving clients so I can go on finding out what I wanna be.

I figured I could engage on teaching. So, I tried it.

A teacher is like an actor. I had to put on a show every time I was in front of the class to make sure I was being interesting enough that they would learn from me (and not fall asleep). I was totally fine with that part.

The problem with teaching is that some days I was tired. Sometimes I wanted to go to the bathroom, sometimes I was very hungry and sometimes I wanted to check my phone (’cause I’m a paranoid person with 2 kids)!

So, by the time I quit teaching,  I knew  wanted something that :

  1. Would allow me to take a 5 minute break whenever I needed one!
  2. Had no clients.
  3. Was more mechanical than creative (’cause I am not creative under pressure).
  4. Had flexible hours in case I slept in or the phone didn’t ring.
  5. That paid decently. Kinda.

 

So, I got my current job… which surprisingly checked all the requirements on my list and also allowed us to move from Ajax – a place I couldn’t see myself growing old in.

Isn’t life just great? Am I happy enough now, or am I the bitch from “eat, pray, love” ?

Yeah, I’ll be the bitch from the book.

I wanna add things to my list and I hope that’s not a crime. I mean, I hope that’s not me being ungrateful for the things I have.

By the time this project is done and I’m off job-hunting I’ll look for something exciting, life-changing, world-changing, I’ll design video-games and have time to paint!

Yeah, bad example. I still don’t know what my awesome job will be. But if I showed you that list above just 2 years ago when I was living in Brazil and added “live in a first world country”  to it… you’d also say I’m a dreamer.

It turns out I don’t hate the ” eat  pray  love ” lady. It turns out I too am her. In my very own version… and I cannot wait to read my book!

juliaroberts

The kid that figured out the puzzle

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When I was 20, I pictured the 40 year old me. The ” life” ? Well, that’d be all figured out.
The mystery of “who is the person I’ll marry and how many kids we’ll have” ? Also solved.
And I’d just sit back on my fluffy couch and stare at my accomplishments. Life would be good!
By the time I hit 34, I had my routine. I was so lucky to have my girls, to have moved to Canada, to have found a good job.

Lucky, lucky, lucky.

But, even though luck was a great thing, it’s not enough if you don’t really live it. I started to feel like every day without laughter was a waste of life.
A psychologist once told me that I had an urge to live. Could be. I DO get bored quite easily and the responsibilities of adult life had taken me to a place where I couldn’t remember how to enjoy things anymore.
I’ve mentioned this here before. Everything was at it’s place, yet, something was missing.

And then, the other day, I met a kid.

The kid had this thing inside him, an attitude towards people, that no matter how exhaustive the training we were participating on was, he’d always find an excuse to laugh. Make a joke. As if he was not standing on that same office I was, which was filled with computers, and learning about programs most people wouldn’t want to get involved with. While all of us, old people, could barely find the strength to smile at his jokes.
He made me wonder when exactly do we lose that enthusiasm? When do things stop being funny? Or was I the only one losing it at all?

Even though I was the luckiest person on the planet, I still couldn’t laugh. And I missed it so much. I’ve never missed being 20 ’cause I believe right-now is the best part of my life. This is not what this is about. But I realized missed having friends. The friends that would fill out the time while I stared at my accomplishments with their silly text messages and youtube videos. It didn’t sound like much… but I still couldn’t have it.

The cliche was right. It IS in fact all about the people around you rather than the things you have or the place you are (even though, the concept of ” PLACE” is important for me).
So, yeah, that kid’s changed me. For once, he made me realize that even the longest meetings may have funny moments if I change the way I look at things. Just as in life.
The other change was that he made me believe there’s a chance I’ll have a new gang here one day. Because I might still have the ability to make friends. Not everyone in this country is necessarily so different from me that we can’t relate, like I thought. I am guessing there are probably 5 bearable people around here somewhere… And there’s a chance we’ll bump into one another other one day and end up playing video games together (as if I could actually play videogames).
The kid got the puzzle together for me. Showed me what I was missing – and it was not setraline pills.
As it turns out, the mysteries of my life are not yet solved. I was wrong.  I’ve still got plenty to find out.

Thanks, kid. Really, thank you.

For making me realize those things and for making me laugh again. I absolutely missed that. I absolutely missed being me.
Please note that I do not indent to sound like a creepy old lady. I just realized we can learn and recapture important lessons from the youngsters too. Unlike that popular belief that says that only our gamma’s know it all!
You can have your mom call me at anytime!

You don’t like my point of view, you think that I’m insane.

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I do doubt if we are, in fact, from this world from time to time. I secretly wish we are not. Well, maybe I am not that secretive about it.

Sometimes I believe we have a soul. It happens when this world stops making sense. For instance, when I’m staring at the mirror for so long I don’t recognize myself anymore or when I say my own name over and over. “Michele, Michele” what the hell is a “Michele”? What a weird word that is!

Also, there are always those dreams when you see someone you know and they look different, but you still recognize them. Right?

That leads me to believe that there’s something else hidden inside all of us we’d still recognize even without an specific body form. Like an energy.

And that’s probably the kind of crazy shit that’s got the psychiatrist thinking I was borderline schizophrenic. I do emphasize the word “borderline” (as in ALMOST, not as in the disorder!) ’cause she said I was not going to develop it. But don’t get me wrong… I am, apparently far, far from normal.

There’s something on my brain that makes me wonder. I wonder about tiny symptoms that could kill me in minutes like no one else does. It terrifies me. And then it’s gone.

My friends say it’s depression. But I don’t feel sad. I feel terrified. Like there’s a huge black bear running on my direction and a cliff in front of me. Which reads to very little chance of survival and high heart rate! Except, I’m sitting in the office. I forgot.

She suggested medication, but only if I wanted to. That is, only if my mind wonders to the point where I can’t concentrate on life or actually suffer from things I somatize into my body or things that aren’t actually happening.

Which I do.

But isn’t that what makes me, me?

Yes, the crisis suck. But what kind of boring person would I be if I worried about society or money instead of how infinite the infinite is?

Unfortunately, being crazy is not always fun and games. There are always those days when the tactile hallucinations take over and don’t allow you to enjoy a sunset or a board game with your kids ‘ cause you think those are your last minutes on this earth. So, yeah… I guess the medication would be the “responsible” thing to do even though I am torn.

I mean … a medication that controls your thoughts and your personality seems so… so… what? “Controlling” I’d say.

I’d very much like to believe that I CAN control my own brain. Well, at least my thoughts. But hell, no I can’t do that! I can’t even control my weight! And that’s like the mechanical act of putting chocolate into my mouth!

I also need to say I am curious about the medication and what it actually feels like. Will it make my annoyingly happy like a smurf? Or will it have absolutely no effect and I’ll keep waking up in the middle of the night thinking who the f&^% is that person lying next to me and what room is this?

The first week is supposed to be bad – like, people try to kill themselves (WTF?) but, eventually, the sertraline on your brain is controlled and you’re all good.

*scoffs*

Yes, I doubt it.

For the record, I’d like to say that I considered the psychiatrist to be very superficial on her analysis BUT since the medication she suggested is also used for a bunch of stuff I absolutely agree that I have (like the hypochondria that I mentioned) , I’ll give it a try. Had she only picked up on the fact that schizophrenia runs on my family and decided that I had something related to that, I wouldn’t agree with the medication. Not ’cause I’m on denial, but just basically because I am pretty sure the radio is not talking to me. The closest I get to that kind of situation I believe is writing here as if someone was reading this and I find it quite offensive to the people who actually suffer from this terrible, terrible illness that is schizophrenia that the disease was even brought up.

Having said that…

Experiences with panic disorder and hypochondria medication, anyone?