Suddenly, You Smell Like Nothing

Stepping outside, and suddenly you’re there

Seeing the unfamiliar,

but we’re breathing familiar air.

Smiling a smile I haven’t seen for ages,

Like an old revisited book, we turn the pages.

I lost it when I saw you, and I ran.

One of the rare times I don’t run away, but toward.

Toward you. Maybe the hugs were awkward,

and perhaps they lasted a tad too long

but I didn’t care who was watching.

Not even your stupid, stupid, friends, because for once I can actually stand them

Maybe I owe you an apology for finding you warm

and comforting

and kind

and open

and oh, my gosh, you are a relief.

Thanks for remembering that I’m doing so well with my scars,

for checking that they’ve faded.

Thanks for being as accepting as ever,

and for laughing at me when required.

Suddenly, I miss you, so I inhale.

Maybe searching for the smell of you that used to be on your jacket,

the jacket I used to wear on late nights,

when I experienced an altogether different type of cold.

I inhale and find some foreign cologne,

and you suddenly smell like nothing.

Is this why we romanticize nothingness?

I can’t find my mind,

but I’m happy you stopped by.

Hello loves! It’s me, Queertastic 🙂 I know, I’ve been super duper MIA, it’s just cause exams are happening and my laptop got crunked! Well, I’m back now and my laptop is as well! (I’m finally complete. I was so empty without my laptop). Recently, my ex revisited. I haven’t seen him in six months, and yes, I was happy to see him- I was also confused, amused, oddly warm, and at the end of it I was convinced he snagged that special place in my heart. As a friend, as an ex, as a whatever- there’s always going to be this tiny corner just for him. This poem was just me trying to get things out as briefly as possible, I’ll possibly be posting about it later (not that anyone cares, but I want to get it all out of me nonetheless!) I’m aware this poem has no structure and NO direction but eh, as I said earlier, I had to get it out there.

Two Weeks From Valentines Day, & Where Am I?

Hello there lovelies! So I was originally going to write a post about a strange metaphor, but then remembered that today is the first day of February. A subsequent realization followed that we’re two weeks away from the fateful day of February 14th, Valentines Day. It’s also going to be during my exams (stressful, I hate exams and they always just put me out of it completely, I hate to think of all the all-nighters I’m going to have to pull) so two weeks from now I’ll be very, very busy. Well, I’m already busy, but it’ll be even more so in the weeks to come.

Realistically, I probably won’t be able to get the time to post during the week of doom or on Feb 14th itself, so I thought that I’d take the time to reflect right now. Two weeks away from Valentines Day, and I’m single. I’ll probably be single on Valentines Day too. It doesn’t exactly bother me, but it does dig up some old dust bunnies that I haven’t had to acknowledge in a long while. Last year on Valentines day, I was in a relationship. In fact, the second anniversary of said relationship will be on sixth February. That is, it would’ve been on the sixth, except there’s nothing really to celebrate now since it’s over. That being said, I never really did celebrate Valentines Day. I mean, my parents have never been thrilled with the idea of me dating, and have always made it clear that they wouldn’t condone it. As a result, it was quiet and not treated like a celebration. It was more so a marker for me to reflect on, a cue to look back on my romantic endeavors. I’ve learnt so much and walked away from so much, I’ve been walked away from and I’ve left a lot of memories trailing my track. I wish I could say that no regrets have shown up on this reflection, but that isn’t the case. The truth is regrets are unavoidable and they’re just part of reflection. To answer the question in the title of this mini rant, two weeks from Valentines Day. I’m single, but not unhappy. I’m a little all over the place, but it isn’t necessarily bad, it’s just human to be confused. I’m doing alright, and while there are ways to improve where I’m at right now, I think I’m doing okay, and working on getting better. Maybe I’m not head over heels in love with someone right now, and maybe I won’t be doe eyed in love on the eve of Valentines Day. Perhaps a few years down the line, it’ll be a different story, but for now, this is where I’m at.

What The Hell Would I Be Without You?

This week, I’m obsessed with dodie’s recent breakout single, “Sick of Losing Soulmates” (along with Ed Sheeran’s latest releases because I’ve been waiting for them for forever and half). This post will be inspired by her song.

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There are some people that enter your life and stay there to be a continual source of sunshine, joy, happiness and in general just love. This song really got me thinking about one of my friends who’s been a constant of pillar of support throughout everything. She’s honestly just everything I aspire to be as a friend, and as a person. She’s so amazingly empathetic, and whenever I’m low she’s always around. So when I heard this song, I thought of her, and I thought of her quite naturally. As the line “what the hell would I be without you?” rolled around, I was convinced that I would be in a shit hole if it wasn’t for her. When I came out as bisexual, she accepted me and gave me rational sensible advice that had no trace of bias in it at all, all while being supportive and in general awesome. It’s always hard to capture an epiphany, simply because the title of this post asks an unanswerable question. Such is the nature of everything we relate to our emotional experiences, I guess. “Watch how a cold broken teen will desperately lean on a super good human for truth”- she let me lean on her time and time again, and it gets me so emotional looking at the extent to which she’s always been around. So much that I’m making a post about it. Because through times where she was against my decision making, she never stopped supporting me. It didn’t matter how much she hated my choices at a time, she would support me if I told her it made me happy. That just captures the essence of being good- no personal agendas, just personal opinions that won’t act as an obstacle towards anything. Here’s my catch though, this is something (or rather someone) that I want to be. I want more than anything to be someone else’s sunshine, and I’m not sure if I’ve ever achieved it. When working as a volunteer Listener at 7 cups of tea, I have had people tell me they wouldn’t have made it another day without me, but I still cannot believe that I’ve been someone’s guardian angel the way this song so beautifully describes it. It’s just hard to believe that I could ever have been that pillar of support for someone, simply because I’m busy and I’d love to be there all the time for support, but I feel like I’m not. I feel I get irritable and snappy and that my shortcomings as a person mean that I can’t be someone’s “guardian angel”, so to speak. Of course, I do know everyone has their shortcomings, but somehow I still think mine are just enough to limit me from ever reaching this coveted state of angel-ness. I don’t know if that makes sense. There’s only one or two “guardian angels” that I have, which has led me to believe that they’re very rare. I thought I’d put this out there, take it how you will, blogosphere! I know this is a somewhat weird and even irrelevant ramble but I thought it was worth a ramble. I’m not sure if everyone else has these real life angels that just swoop in to always be there as a safety net and source of comfort and protection, but I know that I’m very lucky to have one.

Fifty Posts Later…

I just got notified by WordPress this morning that my last post on Queertastic was my fiftieth post, and wow. I had no idea I’d actually been writing that much, especially considering how inconsistent I’ve been with posting. Well, it got me thinking- what is it that’s changed fifty posts later? I’m still me, duh, but I thought looking back at all my posts to see what’s changed and what I’ve learnt would be fun. Well, that is assuming I’ve learnt something (fingers crossed that I have). So come with me, lets go back into the somewhat cringey depths of my blog. I put this in a numbered list just because it’s easier to read, and I’ll be going post by post. I’ll got from my earliest posts upwards, that is in reverse chronological order.

1 – I have had to reconsider if kisses are the sole way of healing scars. (based on this post)  

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Here’s some context- I wrote this post about my self-harm scars (a topic that I now try to avoid) and how having my then boyfriend accept them shaped my recovery. I wrote-  “Relapse now seems to encapsulate a lot more than just my pain- now it also sees to break the invisible line of trust draw by that one kiss on my most prominent scar.” I suppose I grew out of this perception. Yes, the kisses helped and honestly I still smile back at how wonderful it was to be helped through recovery in such a raw and empathetic manner, but I later realized that there were far better incentives to avoid relapse. Back then, I wanted to relapse and had to hold myself back because I didn’t want to hurt the people that loved me. Now, I can’t bring myself to relapse (though I will say I’m guilty in that I still think about it too much) because I’ve come to far. I can’t bring myself to relapse because I would herald it as sort of sacrificing my sanity and all the progress I’ve put into improving my general state of mind. Kisses help heal your scars, yes, but now I realize I should’ve been even more cautious not to over romanticize the concept of healing. Reducing it to a kiss was my attempt at being optimistic when in reality I put a lot of mental muscle into recovering. Did the kisses help? Absolutely. Was there more to the story of recovery? Definitely, but I didn’t know it yet.

2 – I now have a collection of afterthoughts on being “the freak who self-harmed” (based on this post) 

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This post was me wrestling with myself on my then mixed emotions about self-harm. While reading it, I couldn’t resist pulling down my sleeve to look at my scars. My desire for a smooth wrist have somewhat waned, and my scars are slowly (very slowly) fading. Time has led me to accept them as a part of me, and now I don’t think about my scars and self-harm nearly as much as I used to. In fact, I’m surprised by how much my scars affected me back then when now I only occasionally feel embarrassment over them. It goes to show that feelings are temporary (if you read posts by me a lot, you’ll know I love that quote) and eventually what used to be a source of distress to you will be whittled down to simply a fact that you’re mildly indifferent to. It’s heartening to see how far I’ve come, and yet I know I have so much further to go.

3 – My thoughts on coming out to myself have, strangely enough, not changed one bit. (read the first part here and the second part here)

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Reading back to my emotions about how I had to learn to stop shutting myself out is insane, because I still identify so much with learning to live as my true authentic self. There’s still homophobia that I face, and as a result of that the internalized hatred towards myself hasn’t quite dissipated. I read my description of locking myself in the bathroom stall just to breathe, and I could remember that moment so accurately in my head that it scared me. I know that eventually will spread my wings (my gay, gay, wings) and fly. The memories of the people and experiences that helped me to come out and discover myself still leave me smiling, and I guess this just all goes to show I have far more to learn about my own sexuality before my perspective on coming out to myself changes. It’s a work in progress, y’all 🙂

4 – One definitive thing I can say: I loved cutting my hair. (there’s a post about it here)

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So I know that at first read cutting your hair seems like a superficial change, but cut me some slack- as a sixteen year old girl, I can’t help but be superficial every now and then. For almost forever, I got complimented on my long brown curls and how perfect they were, and how I was so lucky to have them. It was something I started hiding behind a little bit, and some days if my hair didn’t look good I’d feel as though I didn’t look good. Stupid, right? And for the longest time I was scared to cut it all off- what if it looked awful? Well, now that it’s all short I’ve actually stopped giving a fuck about my looks. It’s a nice feeling, and now whenever anyone (or any boy) tells me they liked me better with long hair, I can confidently tell them that it’s okay, because I like me better with short hair, end of discussion.

5 – I now get more sleep, but the memories of troubled nights don’t fade. (read it here)

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“Depression Is Not A One Night Stand”. Gosh, i remember that title flashing past my eyes one day when I was bored in a class, and it stuck with me because if you’ve ever felt the pang of chronic sadness, you’ll know the nights are the worst. Summarizing this post is difficult, mostly because I still have difficult nights where my stomach tosses like a troubled sailor. There’s this one quote I love by Andrea Gibson- “To think, a sweater, is made entirely of knots. My stomach could clothe a village.” All the different types of nights I had to sleep with. Now my mind finds sleep somewhat easier- of course, I still have awful nights (don’t we all?). Recounting how much more frequently these awful nights used to last, all I can say now is that confronting your insecurities and fears is scary enough. Having them sing to you in the dark and not being able to do anything about it? Well, that’s worse than any thriller horror movie you could throw at me.

6 – Rereading my posts about recovery, I now see that some things can’t be explained. (here)

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There are so many things that caught me unawares about the recovery process, many of which I just couldn’t put down. Delicate knots in your lungs when you learn how to stop drowning, and the works. I tried my very best to put down the basics of all my unknown forays into recovery, but it got so much harder than that- I remember needing to endlessly edit this post because of how much I thought was unsaid. The emotional explosions and complicated guilt were just the beginning of it- and maybe a post on the nuances of recovery (one that veers more towards the side of poetic rather than anything else, to do the process of recovery artistic justice) is in order. However, I love that unlike me previously, my voice in this post is one I can hear today. I can hear me from the past reading this out to me from the present, and I really like that (oh gosh, I hope that made sense) because up till today I still think this post is realistic. And I love that, because I’m a firm believer that the prospects of recovering are realistic.

7 – It isn’t about loving someone more, it’s about loving someone better. (based on this very angsty emotional post)

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This was a post I wrote to say goodbye to an ex after breaking up with him. Ah, yes, Queertastic wouldn’t be complete without a heart-wrenching unsent letter. As a matter of fact, I’ve always loved the ideas of unsent letters- I’m a sucker for the right kind of pain, and I could ramble on and on about the metaphorical questions raised by unsent letters, but for now I’ll spare you the rant. You see, my lovelies, on thing I realized is that you can only achieve so much with the quantity of love you dole out. When I left my ex, the amount of mushy messages I sent him while we were dating weren’t insufficient, (in fact, I’d argue looking back that I sent them too often to the level of cringe) and that at the end of the day it was my waning faith in the relationship that caused me to leave. A perfectly loving relationship, and yet I left, because yes, I loved him, but not as well as I should’ve. That being said, most of what I said in this post stands true. I just think that as a reflection maybe my word choice was a bit off, and while it didn’t strike me then I think for some reason the subtle difference hits me hard now.

8 – I have far more than ten thoughts on pain (but you can find ten of them here)

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But I knew this even while writing that post. My thoughts on pain are not containable, and maybe a part two is due. Wow, I’m finding a lot of post ideas from just looking back- strange how I can be my own idea factory just by looking through old work. Nothing much has changed as far as my thoughts on pain go, but my thoughts on pain go deeper than this.

That’s about it. To be honest, I will say that the fifty posts flew by really fast for me and also that I would’ve gone past 8, but that would bore everyone and become a rant. Thank you to everyone who’s been reading (lol so like basically 5 people or something), I thought I’d tag some supportive people by just linking to their most recent post (that’s the only way WordPress lets you tag other bloggers I think!) BelleUnruh , the monarch of midnight, Sound of Eds Voice, kimkasualty, the green tea fashion cafe, fauxcroft, Lira, and Alisa Hutton, to name a few. There’s more lovelies that have been nice and supportive throughout my journey as Queertastic, but these are the people that first popped up in my mind. I know, my readership is fairly small/ non-existent, but nonetheless, fifty posts later, and I like this space I’ve made for myself.

Much love, Queertastic 🙂

I Hope You Find Somebody To Love.

This is a difficult post to write. Anyone who’s ever had to leave a relationship can probably relate. The sinking feeling of walking away. You know that you’ve cut yourself away from something that you’re probably better off without, and yet you feel like you’ve just stupidly tied yourself down to misery. This is just going to be one of those unsent letters.

Dear x-

You’re in a pretty good place right now. And it makes me so, so glad that you’re where you should be. I can’t say I regret breaking up with you, because you were a good boyfriend but a pretty bad person. You made me question my priorities, and I think I fucked up a lot because of you. Regardless, I did love you, a whole lot. I should know, because I was never more heartbroken that when you accusingly asked me as soon as I broke up with you, “you never really loved me, did you?”. Of course, I loved you. So much that breaking up with you felt like I was stabbing myself repeatedly. It was good for me in the end, and that’s what counts, I can see that now. It’s just the odd night that I think back to the little paradise we created for ourselves- we filled it with loving words and we laced our fantasy with actual integrity. When it was you and me, there wasn’t really anyone else.

Sometimes I think you deserved someone so much better than me, because I got tired and stopped trying to keep up with you. You were a constant beacon of contradictions, but I though I had you mapped out. I feel like the way I broke your heart (and I know I did break your heart, we both broke each other’s heart, it’s the elephant in the room that we both might as well accept) was too cold and too cruel, even though it probably was a standard breakup. I didn’t have any faith in our relationship, which is why I let go. But you thought that as long as there was love, I would stay. The thing is, I abandoned our love because I lost faith. I don’t regret it, but I do feel guilty every now and then. You deserve to find somebody to love.

I hope you find her. When you do, I’ll be right there cheering you on.

xo Queertastic

Run.

No amount of the right words at the right time

will melt scars off your skin.

Art won’t chase your ghosts for you,

running isn’t confrontation, and terrifyingly enough

love sometimes doesn’t fill you up.

You won’t find the answers in the paper curls of smoke,

drawn perfectly in a black bound book.

because perfection is the average of two mistakes,

but two mistakes is far more than you’ve made.

The rich life ain’t for me,

but when you’re in love nothing’s free,

and patience is my new currency,

but I’m shit at gambling.

 

The Strangest Metaphor You’ll Read This Week #2

So, a while back I wrote the first strange metaphor, and then realized I have a habit of comparing the events in my life and human experiences in general to the strangest things that I’ve learnt and seen over the years. You can read the first one here.

This one’s about relationship statuses. But first, a little chemical background. Elements can exist in many forms. For example, Carbon can be found as C-12 and as C-14. C-12 is a stable form of carbon, and C-14 is radioactive, but they’re both considered carbon. One of my friends told me that relationships make me stable, and that got me thinking- I have quite a few forms when it comes to relationships. My single state has been observed to be volatile and wild, almost too wild to exist and almost too wild to be considered stable. Maybe that’s why my other isotope, the one that’s in a relationship, is so much more stable. Relationships tend to stabilize me, because that’s the type of elemnt I am. So if elements were people, some of them are more stable out of a relationship than in a relationship, just like how different isotopes have different levels of stability for different elements. Recently, I’ve been put back into my most stable isotope form, which is the metaphorical way of saying that I just got into a relationship. I was able to conclude reasonably that yes, I am most stable in a relationship, but that doesn’t mean I stop being me when I get out of one. And I think this metaphor is one that perfectly describes the diversity of human relationships, because there are 118 elements so far, and each one has numerous isotopes, some of which remain undiscovered. We all have different forms of our most stable isotopes. And, yup, there’s the slice of my brain from today.

The Strangest Metaphor You’ll Read This Week.

Sometimes, secrets are like little rats that just slip out of your mouth without you meaning for them to leave. Well, the ordinary person doesn’t really have rats just casually hanging out in their mouth, but you get what I mean. Your mouth is the cage and the rats are your secrets, and sometimes when you’re not ready for an escape it will happen anyways. Now, let’s get complicated. I’m the kind of person who will spend time and money to build a very nice cage with tons of toys from my rats because a) that’s way more humane, and b) nobody likes being in a cage. But being in a pretty cage makes it at least a tiny bit better, especially when you can’t help but feel like those rats are a part of you. Now, I know this metaphor is strange, but you’re reading this blog because every post is a slice of my mind. And my mind is weirder than the average rat cage, I promise. Maybe it’s just that I can’t imagine not having rats in my cage, but coming to think of it aren’t there so many wonderful things you can do with an empty cage, things that don’t involve filling it up with rats? Well, I’m not the most responsible person, and that means that I am not good at keeping rats. They escape a lot. Some of them bite, but some of them are cute and fluffy, and the people who observe these escape artists that are rats adore them with wonder, asking me why I’ve been hiding them in my hollow cage of a mind. Then there are the people who are apprehensive, who look at the escaped rat as though it’s a complete mistake. There’s an equally hurtful reaction- people who don’t acknowledge the escape that took place. People who treat it like it’s not big deal, to the point where my rats are almost scared, almost ready to crawl back into the cage I’ve set up for them in between my ears. Almost, but not really. You see, once they get out, they set everything I care about on fire in spite of themselves.

Burning, Burning, Burnt.

This piece was meant to be cathartic, and giving it an introduction would make it far too long. 

We were the love that never made it past the finish line. The kind of love that I’d always dreamed of, and yet once I was in between your, no, our dirty laundry I suddenly was ready to let the fleeting recklessness pass me by. With you and I there was no in between, there was no outside, there was just you, and in the twilight hours, just me. We were so burnt, a match that had flames flirting destructively with everything in my life. Yet, I was freezing. There seemed to be no right, no wrong, just raw emotion, destruction and even creation. There were no tears, only fights, no wrongs, only rights, and yet when I left you we stopped going backwards together and started moving forwards alone. It’s such an old tragedy, a romance meant to wither in the yellowed pages of a schoolgirls diary, and yet we managed to burn while burning and being burnt, and in the middle of this flaming desert in the crossroads of right and wrong, I couldn’t stop being cold. Freezing. I left you with burns and yet I remain so cold. Like a moth to a flame, I guess I’ll never stop feeling cold until I’ve fed the fire with every bone in my body. I’m frigid as I dance with the stranger at the party I went to tonight. I’m desperate for cheap warmth when the stranger is twirling me, steadying me, burning me. I don’t even care for whoever (s)he is, my mind is on the more appealing strangeness I’ll be seeing tomorrow. I wish I could be the girl who falls for the arms that sketched her in the back of a notebook. I pretended not to see him sketching, because to him everything is art, and I can only set art on fire. I wish I wasn’t so burnt by you, but to be completely fair- I burnt you too.

xo Queertastic ❤