live beautifully, hideously, stupidly and in the most epic manner

So in the last few months I have lost two very young friends to cancer.

I have had to learn some things in this process of loss. There had to be a reason, or an outcome from this grief. Of course the lessons could be a multitude of things but in the face of all this death I have learned something about myself.

“Terminal Cancer” means the end is inevitable. There is no cure.

Apparently my brain although accepting this truth, seemed to deceive itself into thinking this means later rather than sooner. So in essence I believed the disease was incurable but that didn’t mean they would die now…. It couldn’t happen now. I realised this in trying to figure out how I totally reeled from the news that they had passed. It was a shock. And I thought to myself that it shouldn’t have been a shock, I should have been prepared. Then came the guilt. oh my god, if only I had known how little time we had left (which I did) I would’ve visited/messaged/called more.

Denial. Ahhhhh. I didn’t want to believe my two very young friends would die before me. I convinced myself we had time. Incurable but without imminent death. The fact that I went through the death of one friend only to slip into the denial and go through the death of the second under the same veil of shock and in defiance of the true meaning of terminal, I have to ask why. Was I protecting myself? If someone else should tell me they have a terminal illness, will I face that honestly and admit what it really means or is my need to protect myself by sheer denial stronger than the lesson I have learned? Probably. I didn’t want to expect my friends to die. In all honesty I really didn’t want to watch them die. But they are gone. The one thing I can say is that I didn’t treat my friends like they were dying. I think they appreciated that. I hope.

I am angry because they won’t get to do the things they should’ve still done like travel, write a book, film a movie, perhaps marry, perhaps have kids, build a home. I realise I have these idealistic expectations of what they should have been able to do with their lives. My reaction after AJ died was to come up with a bucket list a mile long.

Then out of the blue reality set in. I may have wished wonderful things for my friends but realistically that life may have included a divorce, kids in rehab, retrenchment, critics, failure to reach goals, car accidents, horrid co-workers, horrible neighbours, debt and deaths of friends and family.

Ok. Stop. So am I glad they don’t have to go through the negative? Not really. I think they should’ve had all the up and downs that life has to bring. That is living. So the one lesson I am taking away from this, that may actually hold, is that I get to still have ups and downs and blessing and disasters, for which I shall be grateful. My bucket list is a great way to start doing things I want to do, but in between I know there will be heartache, and disappointment and despair. I intend living so damn hard. I shall love deeply knowing that I may hurt badly. I will set out on crazy adventures that may result in setbacks, injury, and disappointment. I will climb mountains knowing that I can fall, and if I do fall, so be it. Rosie and AJ won’t get to fall down a mountain.

I shall create a bunch of memories, good, bad, ugly and epic. I wanted my friends to have more life. All of it. With all its blessing and curses. I cannot let them down again. So excuse me while I make crazy decisions, huge mistakes, irresponsible choices. So I won’t have a fancy house, and a fancy car thank you very much…… an you will all have to excuse me while I walk to work greeting beggars and the mentally ill along with the rich and powerful. Excuse me while I choose to backpack some exotic 3rd world island with nothing but a prayer and a camera instead of buying a new wardrobe, excuse me while I love someone so deeply that it seems a tad unhealthy. Excuse me while I choose a calling rather than a professional career.

…… I’m going to live. However that comes.
Rosie, AJ …… I am going to live beautifully, hideously, stupidly and in the most epic manner. Remembering you always.


My friend Rosie

My friend Rosie died.

People keep talking to me about work and their problems and life and I keep looking at them thinking “my friend Rosie died, why aren’t you sad?”

She was amazing. Strong. Beautiful. Funny. Ridiculously intelligent. She had a heart that was too big for one person, it overflowed from her onto others.
She was wise. When I was falling apart, torn at the seams, she gave me words that made me strong and that played over and over in my head. I thought “I hope I am as wise as you one day.”
She was a warrior princess. Tougher than anyone I have ever known. Courageous seems too simple a word for her.
She had eyes that looked into the deepest part of you, and you could try and hide what was really going on inside, but she would reach in, pull the truth out and hug it.
Her laugh was like listening to a playground of children, it filled you with joy and hope and rainbows.

The whole world should be sad. Everyone should be in mourning. Flags should be flying at half mast.

We lost a superwoman. It is a space that will never be filled.

She is my hero forever more.

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the love

Once I fell in love madly. Love at first sight. We were flawed, with open wounds. We went our separate ways, searching for ourselves.

Once I fell in love slowly and steadily in a friendship that blossomed and grew. Two people finding out how to love ourselves and somehow in between our love entwined and created a bond.

I did not fall in love with two different people. I fell in love with one person twice.

I fell in love with crazy singing in the car, shared pizzas, running naked through waterfalls, sliding in mud. I fell in love with a person who wasn’t afraid of his dreams no matter how daunting, a person who challenges my insecurities, forces me to grow by leaping despite fear. I fell in love with the way he holds my hand, and laughs at me and with me. I fell in love with the way he doesn’t laugh at me falling over things that aren’t there, nor does he run to rescue me from my clumsiness, but rather how he just holds out his hand to help me up.

I fell in love with a mind speeding faster than mine, with a multitude of open google tabs, literally and figuratively. I fell in love with the way he says “I understand” and means it. I love the way he hugs me so hard I cannot breathe, the way he pulls me close when I lest expect it. The way he runs his fingers up my spine when he is standing close.

I fell in love with the quiet moments where nothing was said, but the silence didn’t matter. I fell in love with the way he gently brushes my hair from my face as I am falling asleep and the way he  calls me beautiful first thing in the morning and tells me my hair is “full bodied” when it in fact looks like a mini chewbacca is attached to my head.

I love talking about everything and nothing. I love the small things and the moments that are just ours. I love the way he forgives and tries to understand everyone rather than judge them.  

I am in love with my best friend.

 


Goodbye Angel Friend

Sometimes our lives are touched by someone in such a way that can never be properly expressed. You meet someone whose inner beauty and love just hugs you and never lets go. I lost one of those people today. A boy I met 8 years ago at varsity. He was so talented you could feel creativity pouring from him. But so much more than that was who he was as a person. I went back to university at the age of 27, my classmates being much younger, filled me with the awe and wonder that youth brings. AJ, my cine, my photographer, my sounding board, my friend. Oh the memories. Observatory in its heyday and long AFDA hours filming, running between my house and the Y. We laughed together and cried together. Today I have to say goodbye and I am struggling to accept that someone so beautiful is gone from my life. There are few people I keep in my life, and our long distance conversations and jokes and endless messages meant the world to me. You reached out to me and lifted me up when I was in my darkest hour, now I don’t know if I ever thanked you, or if I offered the same support back. I do know that I have a hole in my heart that I am not sure I can ever fill, and that I am angry that in a world with so many assholes, an angel was taken. You will never be forgotten. I will cherish you always with much love and respect. xoxox

 

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When love teaches

I have felt love. I have felt love without trust. Love without respect. I have been broken, Torn. Mangled in love.

 

You ask how I trust now, and I say I trust because I choose to, because I have no reason not to and a millions reasons to. I trust because I respect. Because I know. I trust for no one reason but for a million.

 

You ask how I know that this will not end mangled and torn and bloody. I don’t. I do know that for now, I have been given a gift. Perhaps not a permanent gift, but I have learned the the only thing I am certain of is change. I am no longer afraid of change. I am no longer afraid of trust. I am no longer afraid of pain.

 

I am enveloped in respect and a belief and this gift shall never be forgotten, no matter the end. The journey thus far in this mutual connection has granted me more wisdom than I have ever gained.

 

I have learned to understand the will and want and freedom of the spirit of the individual. To respect that and to understand that we are all on our journeys, and paths cross, and we go our separate ways, and perhaps should the universe conspire to do so, paths cross again.

 

I have learned forgiveness through empathy, and in acknowledging that as much as I get lost on my journey so do others. I have learned we all cower in the shadows with the same fears and that is only for us to overcome. I have learned that to love means to allow the spirit of another to be as it needs to be. That love does not possess but encourages growth, should that means paths diverge then so be it.

 

Love it is a strange phenomenon, one I am unsure I will never fully understand. I know this a love I had never expected, and I know it is an unpredictable one. I am not afraid of this any more, this inability to control and predict and guarantee. I do know I am grateful to learn and to see such beauty of a person. I understand the courage behind the chance. I understand that in this time of my life, I am learning the most beautiful lesson.

 

I understand that in order for my heart to be whole and given freely, I am not to expect, I am not to possess, I am not to demand.

 

This love is my greatest teacher. I will take that exactly as it is. 


I have never been here before

I haven’t been here before
And that frightens me
It is easier to be on unstable land and expect it to fall away from underneath you
It is easier to visit mistrust and have it proven and to balance on uncertainty of respect until you fall and you knew you would.
So I haven’t been here before; where I stand firm on solid ground of respect
Where the walls around me are plastered with honour and trust and not the prisons of insecurity and self-doubt
I have never known such a place where I am strong and supported at the same time
Where I am comforted but motivated to not get comfortable in mediocrity
I am challenged without malice, I am appreciated and not placed on a pedestal I cannot climb down from
I am in a place where I am safe in who I am, in my faults and my gifts
I trust, I honour, I love
I am trusted, honoured and loved
I have visited many places, and this is the first time I am home.


The time between

There are times when I am engulfed by a deep sadness and longing
For the time in between
The time in the middle of the spirals we have travelled to love each other
The time we lost figuring out
What we knew but were afraid of
There are times when I am engulfed by a deep sadness and longing
For the time ahead
The time ahead where I know I will let you go again and again
To let you live
Your life on your terms
I know what I love most about you is what will hurt me in the end


Untitled – Chapter 1

As the light of day fades into dreamscape

Are you dancing with reminiscences?

Are you dancing with me?

As you drift away on a ocean of contemplation

Do your wishes wrap around me?

Do you desires embrace me?

For your words let me go

Like a ghost dancing in the back of your mind

Where you no longer play


Rambling on without edit or much thinking- “Mutual”

It’s not often that I feel the need to freely express myself without doing it in poetry which is where I am most comfortable, it almost gives me a wall of protection from my thoughts because I have to focus on a specific way of expressing myself. Today, however, I have decided to just write about how I am feeling, without prose. As a behavioural science and psychology student I am all aware of the focus on being a complete individual without needing someone “to complete” you and delving into this further, that one should not NEED acknowledgement from others to feel fulfilled or whole.  I’m sure that works well for perfect people, or people who have reached a level of self awareness or enlightenment that I clearly have not reached.

I am just an ordinary flawed human being and fairly well balanced, although I have my slightly psychotic moments. I am struggling. I acknowledge a particular person in my life every day, and yet I do not receive the same kind of acknowledgement, if at all, and I am constantly reminded of such, possibly I am more aware of it now because it has been highlighted by certain recent events and comments and it is starting to hurt. On the other side of this I have a person who acknowledges me all the time, acknowledges who I am , how I am, who shows appreciation for me as a friend and as an important part of their life and our friendship is so much richer for this mutual respect, and appreciation and perhaps love in a sense.

Ahhhhh, mutual.….. good word, often used completely out of context. When someone throws “mutual” at me, I worry. From my experience I have learned that often this means “me”. That’s right “mutual respect” means respect me, often the “I will respect you” is left out of this two way street.

I always try and see things from another’s perspective, but I’m beginning to wonder if someone’s inability or failure to try and see things from my perspective perhaps equals disrespect. And perhaps this is partly my fault for allowing people to rely on my acknowledgement, respect, love, and yet I do not hold them to them same standard. I don’t want to demand this of anyone, but I do feel I have earned it; respect and acknowledgement that is.

I think in relationships across the board, what you want from a relationship is what you should give, and I think if one person becomes a giver and the other a “taker” so to speak, perhaps a re-evaluation is necessary.  Perhaps your energy should be focussed on yourself and the people around you that deserve your energy. I don’t want to “need” anyone and I don’t like feeling like I am only acknowledged when needed, I truly believe that relationships are not 70/30 or 50/50 or 20/80 I believe they are 100/100.  So do I now say that I need to take a step back or do I continue to put into the relationship that which I would like in return?

Here is my honest opinion:

Imagine your life without that person in it. Taking someone for granted is akin to forgetting or ignoring what that person’s role is in your life. Perhaps I have taught people that I will be there no matter what, and yet never asked for that in return. Maybe I need to ask for the acknowledgement and further ask that person to imagine their life without me and for me to imagine my life without them and I think the answer will become clear.  I honestly feel that if my absence from someone’s life would not really matter, then perhaps I don’t belong there in the first place or perhaps the relationship needs to change to a somewhat “acquaintance” level.  For me, the biggest concern is that when I ask myself who I turn to when life is beating me up, who is the person I reveal my feelings to, I realise it isn’t who it should be………..


AN INAPPROPRIATE LOVE SONG

AN INAPPROPRIATE LOVE SONG

I fall into love

You may say in love

I say fall into love

It’s a rabbit hole

I am Alice and I have lost my mind and I’m too late

I see you in the looking glass

And I feel your lips touch mine

I am on fire

And you don’t know but I stalk you with my daydreams

I imagine the conversations that wrap me up tenderly

And make love with my soul

That caress me with understanding and lips

And fingertips gently reading me like a blind man exploring

A velvet painting

You may say in love

I say fall into love

I feel you, the tips of my fingers stroking the satin smooth skin at the base of your back  

And I tremble

As your arms pull me into the wonderland of your mind

And I am taken by you

Into love and ecstasy

The butterflies in my stomach

Settle as the day dream gives way

But I am haunted

By you

 

© Christie Marie Kruger 2014


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