Wednesday, October 5, 2016

I'm baaack!

Hi! I know it's been almost an entire year, and a lot has happened. A heart continued to be broken until it was eventually mended; my support group broadened and I have some of the best friends ever; I made some good decisions and some not so good decisions, and most of all, I learned so much. But the good news: I'm back.

I am ready to come back and make art. I'm ready to continue to grow in my art and in my life. And I am so psyched!

As such, I am planning to change up the blog a bit. Instead of it being super art oriented, it will be art + a little bit of life. It's a place to show you what I'm up to, both artistically and emotionally. I'm pretty active on Instagram, so a lot of the photos will probably be from there; I find that my art is better posted from that platform because my camera is not so hot at the moment.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Courage and sensitivity

October 2015

How to Survive the Loss of a Love...looking at the journey

I read a fantastic book this past week about loss. It's called How to Survive the Loss of a Love. Someone recommended it to me with the caution that it was a bit cheesy. But ohmygod, it's fantastic and I absolutely love it. It's not cheesy, it's actually enjoyable to read and maybe even a little bit funny?

Anyways, here is a rundown of what happened in the book, and my little comments.

I think it was really cathartic to read, but I still have to do it myself. And I have to remind myself of that.

So this first excerpt was from a different book called The Highly Sensitive Person's Survival Guide. But it made so much sense in my life.

This is the way it starts and ohmygod, it's hilarious. Teeth? I mean, I never really thought about it, but okay. Losses are in multiple types.

This feeling is tantamount to most of my autumn and the start of school.

I keep forgetting that it's three steps forward, 5 steps back. I was promptly reminded of this a few days ago when I couldn't take everything anymore, and I just wanted to stop everything and get off. To just cut it all off and not take it anymore. But it's just a setback. It's a bumpy road.

It was recommended that we take a nap and rest up.

Absolutely. Yes. Yes. Yes. Having a schedule was amazing to helping pull myself out of this spiral into depression. I was sending the last few days up to the start of the quarter moping around and unable to pull myself out of the pit of sadness. But as soon as I went back to classes and loved them, it was like I was able to pull myself out again. It was fantastic.

Sometimes I still do this, staying awake until my body can't take it anymore, and then sleeping out of desperation and exhaustion. If I end up spiraling down and getting really sad, I get up and spend a few minutes either crying it out, or reading something to calm down. I can't go to bed grieving.

Yes yes yes again. As an HSP, I suck at decision-making. Add in grieving, and it's even worse. I make the wrong decisions in the moment, I hate it, then I start hating myself and it gets worse and worse.

I wish I had a bathtub.

Also yes to the change thing. I never do well with change in the first place, and big changes that involve emotions are the worst. Additional changes after that just keep compounding.

I repeat. I do not thrive on change.

Support Systems: helpful when they work, but also difficult to set up and ask for help. I have the bare bones of one, but it's really hard when people in different lives have their own changing lives to move around in. It's like a support system that also fluctuates under me.

Also, and this is purely a personality thing, sometimes I need them and I don't know how to say so.

I completely laughed out loud about this one. I mean, I guess, right?


Truer words were never said.

My weekends and nights are the hardest. I have to constantly keep myself occupied and looking forward to something.


Absolutely failed doing this. I don't know if this would be any better or worse if I had changed it though. Would it have carried on just as long? So I would rather not think about it.

Don't. Hide.

Which is where I am now. Good God. Dammit.

Both of these are true. Grief is quiet and sneaks up on you. It's also loud and explosive and hurts like a punch in the stomach. It's hard to handle and impossible to predict.

I've been underreacting to everything, acting blase about it. And it isn't really any better.

And yes, I blame myself all the time. I grab hold onto the rational, logical explanations.

Yup. I don't want to wall myself off. But that is how I try to protect myself when I am over-sensitive. I don't know how to prevent either of those.



I don't know the difference between these. I really don't. How can you tell??

So. True. I would never have gotten anywhere without crying at all.

You can get ulcers from this?

I wish I was, and I look forward to when I am.

Quiet insanity is difficult because it's not loud enough to be noticed, but not quiet enough to pretend it doesn't exist.

Humourous book


Now you have two losses to mourn.

Someone finally said it.

Why isn't emotional pain as accepted as a physical pain? We worry over scrapes and offer bandaids, and sign casts and push wheelchairs. But what do we do with emotional pain? We hide it. We tell you to soldier on and man up. It absolutely sucks.

Reminder to self: pamper.

Two important things. Feel until you no longer feel. Don't force it.

I really think it should be forgive yourself first for grieving, and then forgive the other person if you can. Again, don't force it.

Hard to remember in the thick of it.



Two things that let me know I'm not there yet.

Two goals are to trust and love again.

Phones, my dear. Phones.

This was a really interesting thing. I never thought about focusing about making myself even better. It was always you have these positives, make yourself better. I always forget to make your positives better too.


I can't wait for this feeling. I remember it well.

Yes. What I have learned so far, absolutely.

That's That. Thanks for reading with me.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

My friends are the best

I seriously have the best friends ever. If I'm going to be honest, I probably wasn't the best friend I could have been before this summer. That is not to say that I didn't try, but rather that I didn't know. That is, I didn't know how to be a better friend. I didn't realize how important communication and follow-ups can be.

That is, until now. Because I have realized that I have fantastic friends who are there for me always. Who stay up late to talk. Who ask me how I'm doing when I haven't talked to them in a few days after a bad breakup. Who ask me how to help me through the grief of losing someone I love. Who want to become better people and ask me how to help them achieve it. Who tell me what I want to hear and what I need to hear (and discerning between the different times).

And I love them. I absolutely love them and I try to let them know that as much as possible. They mean the world to me and I know I would not have gotten as far as I am now without their help. Without them being there for me, and without them showing that they care. 

This realization of how much these people mean to me lifts me up and makes me feel like my battles are fought with an army. I lead and make the decisions, but they are the medic crew on the side to patch me up afterwards.

And now I've observed and seen how I can emulate these friendship characteristics. I intend to be a better person. I will strive to become the friend(s) I am glad I have.

September 2015

Sunday, October 4, 2015

autumn is here

Who's excited for autumn?? I love the the falling leaves and the smell of the crisp air. The possibility of new starts....

October 2015

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Love hurts, but we should never close ourselves off from it

This has been the hardest summer I have had since I can remember. And you may scoff, make a comment about how I've only been alive a little more than two decades, and how I have so much more time in my future. But in this stage of my life where I am still growing and finding myself, my friends, and my future, hits like this--straight to my heart and core--can take me down for the count.

There are three types of love that I have: romantic, familial, and friendship. And each of these loves has hurt me. It's devastating. Any one by itself is horrible, but all three in the span of three months makes me feel like I'm never going to get up again. It makes me want to give up on love. What's the point?

But then I remember that love hurts, we grow from it, and life moves on. If I harden, hate, or become bitter, I can only end up hurting myself and my future. Marcie, a wonderful woman who has gotten me through so much of this, reminds me of how important it is to keep myself open to love. Romantic love can fade back to friendship, familial love will never die and continues to persevere and hold us together, and friendship love continues even after death.

I need to remember to not let the world make me hard. To not let pain make me hate. And to not let the bitterness steal my sweetness.

September 2015

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Kindness is free

People often question why I choose to be nice no matter what. Or why I choose to forgive. And for awhile I didn't know the answer. It was just something I grew up doing. But now I choose to do both because I hate carrying negativity around. I am so disheartened when I find people who are taken down so hard because of the negativity resting in their hearts. Kindness and forgiveness are free. So why aren't we utilizing them?

September 2015

Also, behold my foray back into calligraphy. It's still a work in progress, but I was inspired by my grandfather. He passed earlier this month, and as I sat in his hospital room during his last week with us, I spent a lot of time remembering all the experiences I had with him. He never actually taught me calligraphy, but he taught my mother when she was younger, and in turn she taught me. It is an art form that connects our three generations.

Friday, September 4, 2015

Keep giving love

September 2015

This by far has not been my summer. Not for lack of trying--this was the first time I made lots of plans for my future and went in head first. But obstacle after obstacle knocked me over. There have been so many times this summer where I have wanted to stop getting back up and  just give up. To stop forgiving, stop loving, and just cut myself off from emotion. But then I remember (or someone reminds me) that keeping all that negativity does nothing good or healing for the world or me. Adding to the negativity in the world makes the world (get this) more negative, and prevents me from wanting to pursue happiness. What do I get out of that? Nothing. Feeling worse. But Love heals, and love helps me forgive so I can move on and become happy again. And that is important to me.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Summer Cacti!

One of my best friends is the Cactus Whisperer. Her name is Diana, and I absolutely adore her. We've been friends since high school and are now majoring in the same major. She and I love cacti--they're so cute! I love how they are often quite tiny and fragile, so they have such delicate yet harmful spikes to protect themselves (I could make a comment about the symbolism of being vulnerable yet slightly prickly...but I'm not. Well, I just did. So sue me.).

Diana has this perfectly round cactus that stays a rich grass-green, and flowers every year. A delicate ring of bright magenta flowers settle on the crown. I myself have a small cactus that is supposed to have one large pink flower on the top. I've had it since I was five, and it has flowered exactly once. I swear, Diana is magic. Her cactus loves her more than mine loves me.

I have other stories about our love for cacti: Going to a flower shop on Valentine's day to check out their prickly succulents and completely ignoring all the roses, check; another time, popping in to see if a flower shop in Chinatown has any cacti and leaving with promises to call the owner for flowers for our weddings when we get married, check. These things just happen, right?

But onto the art. This is an art blog, after all (you wouldn't know with all the jabbering I do on it, though). I broke out the watercolors earlier this summer on a particularly warm day. The paints kept drying out within minutes! I experimented with a few different cacti styles, and then decided to use two of my favorites to make a card design.

(Excuse the small size of the next few pictures. I stole them from my instagram)

This photo has a filter on it, so it's been washed out a bit. But you can see that I fiddled around with formatting and finally got it to fit neat and tidy on a card! The background is my study notes for the OAT I'm studying for at the moment (it's killer, but I keep reminding myself, at least you're not studying for the MCAT! Haha).

And finally, here is the computerized, fixed up version with the real colors and details. I think it's just so adorable!

July 2015