At this time last year I remember I had just come home from a weekend in the archipelago, spent with some of the best people I used to study with. We’d had our annual crayfish party, a highlight of the year, organized by myself and a few others. I’d said goodbye to quite a few people, which was pretty much what those last weeks were all about – last time here, last time there; last time doing this and that, and shit, when will I be back?! Who knows!

There was a lot of lasts. Now that my plans for the next couple of months have become clear to me I notice that I’m starting to be in that same state of mind. I’m trying not to, though; no lasts just yet. Feeling like I’ve woken up from a month-long hibernation, however, I thought I’d look back at what I’ve learned so far this year because it’s been a big one, full of learnings and lessons that are slowly starting to sink into me.

It’s all in the little things

Having always said that ‘it’s all in the details’,  I’ve learned that it really is the little things that matter – painfully early mornings that allow me to witness the dawn of a new day every day, even on my days off, like today when I woke up at 6am all by myself, not because I had to but because I wanted to, I’d gotten my 8+ hours of sleep, or even 9, whoops. 6.30am starts have made me develop an 8.30pm bedtime routine and I love it. Having found myself debating whether or not I’m a morning person after all a couple of months ago I now realize that I rise with the sun every day, and I love it, I absolutely love it!

Incredibly beautiful sunset skies, the sound of the waves crashing into the cliffs along the coastal walk, which, by the way, is located a mere 5-minute walk from where I live, can you believe!? I can’t, and it’s taken me until now to realize. Sunny days, the sound of the ocean… little things that make the big picture, quality of life. I am really going to miss this place.

The power of basics

Speaking of the little things, most people get chills when they hear the word routines, but I think routines are good. Healthy ones, you know: a balanced diet, proper nights’ sleep, exercise. If I feel like running, I run. If I feel like gluing myself to the couch (even though we don’t even have a tv), then fine, that’s what I’ll do. If I feel like going down to the beach and sitting down for a moment in front of the ocean, I should (still working on that one).

Patience, trust, love, compassion and kindness. Putting yourself first, your needs, and focusing on what really matters to you. Not trying to be everywhere with everyone, but hanging out with people who bring out the best in you and forgetting the rest, really.

You, you, you; it’s all about you. In that sense it is okay to be selfish.

This is IT

This is not a break from life – this is life. For the longest time I found myself thinking that one day I’ll have to go back to what I (used to) call “real” life. With time, however, I’ve come to realize how wrong I’ve been to think that. This is life, this is my life, and life is fragile. People come and go and the days fly by, really. In just a few months’ time I lost both my remaining grandparents. My friends are getting married and one of the adorable little princesses that are my nieces started second grade yesterday. I left before she started first.

How is it possible that we’re already in August? I don’t get it.

Never a failure, always a lesson

Everything in life is a lesson. Never a failure (although in that moment it may feel like one), always a lesson. People, especially. They come and go, but can all teach you something. Along with the Artist’s Way courses that I’ve taken I have come to believe in synchronicity, i.e. the belief that life gives you what you need at any given point in time – to learn, to grow, to get closer to yourself. To get to know yourself better, because at the end of the day we really have no one else but ourselves. We are all here alone – we arrive alone, we leave alone, and despite the fact that along the way we might meet some incredible people who join us for a period of time, short or long, we are all alone. In the big scheme of things we are all alone.

Therefore, there is no single thing more important than to find out who we are and live the kind of life that we want, that we desire, because in the end that’s all that really matters. You, me, all of us, because why the hell not?

 

I mean, I still seem to be attracting mishaps the point of which I must admit I’m not always able to see, but that’s fine, that’s life. From dengue fever, scorpio stings and HFMD to prolonged food poisonings, damaged limbs and weird bug bites, I thank God for travel insurance, because how many times haven’t I had to visit a hospital or a clinic this year? I’m starting to think it might be written in my DNA, or then the Universe thinks I still have a ton of things to learn.

On a positive note, however, I’m alive. Alive, and living life to the fullest. Yes!

The devil whispered in my ear,
“You’re not strong enough to withstand the storm.”
Today I whispered in the devil’s ear, 
“I am the storm.”

How funny is life when you’re in the right mindset?

Love & light,
Anna