Saturday, 7 March 2015

Finding Dylan

I haven't written on here for a while. Which, I suppose, doesn't really matter. I have nothing incredible or profound to say, or anything of merit that would justify the value in this - or my many other - online journals. I just needed to write again - about myself, about the paths I have taken and have been trying to take for many years, and the person I want to become.

I've been struggling, for so long, to take control of my life in relation to my weight. My body has been an incredible desert of growth and fear for me and I find myself, only now, beginning to understand why. I never speak about it. I have never opened that door. And the reason, I think, is because I know how much uncertainty and shame still exists there. It's the one part of me that has challenged me the absolute most, and, in so many ways, has forced my resilience. I've just battled with it for so long that it feels like I've never truly loved myself. And I'm afraid to share that with people; I'm afraid they won't understand why it's been so hard for me. It seems vapid, but it's my life. And it's always embarrassing, but it's my fucking life. I look in the mirror, and despite years of professional accomplishment, creative ambition, amazing friends, life-changing experiences - and a future I have worked relentlessly to slowly construct - I am still as uncomfortable in the barrier of my skin as I have always been. My flesh is not my temple, though I truly desire it to be.

I don't want to rake up the past on here and write a novel about the fatness in my life. I just want to change, finally, permanently, and positively. It's gotten to the point that the way that I treat myself, and the way that I interact with others, has become a constricted normality. That is to say, I keep myself caged away a little - I keep my vulnerability hidden, my confidence stifled, and my spirit low. I scold myself, judge myself, and litter around the core of my heart, and it's become totally ok and totally my life. I didn't even realize it was happening, and I'm not even sure, if I do change, that I can actually break that cycle. I am so used to tearing myself down and so used to not pursuing the experiences I actually want or dream of. And instead, I pour myself into the thickness of my work, because, what else can I do? I have not yet lived in the manner I've always dreamed of. I have not yet experienced that part of life, at least not for good. I have always been a little lost. And despite all the other challenges I have managed to climb above, this has been the one constant reality that has always chained me to the floor.

I can't live like this any longer, at least not happily. And I can't love like this, at least not fully. I am tired of being resentful, hapless, lonely, and disassociated. And I am tired of being tired. I'm not hiding it anymore, all of this. I'm not pushing it away. I want to change my body and I want to change my life. I want to love the people I love, and I want to chase the experiences I've dreamed about, fully. I want live for the first time as my full self, and I believe losing weight is my gateway to that.

So, this is going to be the blog that covers this struggle from now on. The blog that, hopefully, will capture this transformation. And the blog that will act as a funnel for these feelings, instead of everything else I've replaced facing them with. I'm so fucking scared. I'm scared of how others will react to me trying to do this and maybe failing. And I'm scared of failing. And I'm scared of living.

This is the truth. It isn't a blaring horn or a thumping zumba beat. It's just me trying to be strong and me living within the struggle. It's not pretty, but it's honest.

So, here I go.

P.S. Sorry for the melodrama, I'm not that great at these things.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Same Love / Diversity, Sexuality, Youth, Empowerment

When we raise our kids with definitions, with prescriptions, on whom they should be; we rob them of, and commit the greatest disservice to, their purity and character. I am diplomatic when I say this; careful to avoid the depth of the pain of identity and it's crisis - because it can't be contained in so few words. Through stories, and only stories, can we begin to comprehend even nearly what it must feel like. By not recognizing the diversity of sexuality, of character, and of identity itself; we create division, exclusion, the reality and abnormality of "difference" (and the intolerance therein), and very real depression. In it's extremes it isn't surprising anymore that this behaviour, and the mentalities associated with it, can lead to severe bullying, violence, self-harm, and even suicide. But it's sometimes the apathy; the fear of being human, of being whom you are at the core of what that is, that is sometimes the saddest part. We have a responsibility to encourage the evolution of a society, of a generation, that is aware of sexuality that exists far beyond the limited roles we prescribe on what we define as proper gender; that is, sexuality of the mind, the heart, and the body. A world where who we choose to be, as a realized individual, is as invaluable as any other human quality we possess.

Today was Day Of Pink - an international day against bullying, discrimination, homophobia, and transphobia; meant to raise awareness in our schools and communities! Over 8.5 Million Canadians petitioned against bullying in all it's forms this year by wearing Pink! What will you be wearing next year? We hope to see many more amazing people, and amazing organizations, participating for this very real cause.

Stay Healthy,

Monday, 11 March 2013

Letter to a G.I. / Sleep Well My Love

This is a letter written by Brian Keith, a World War II Veteran, to a fellow soldier named Dave of whom he fell in love with while they were both stationed in North Africa in 1943. It is a moving and candid glimmer into the relationship between the two men; now forever held as piece of their history in poetic prose. It's my honour to share this letter with you, and it's my privilege to be a part of a time when "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" has been repealed. There is a future that I long to see, and there is a world I pave the road for every day; where people like Dave and Brian need never be apart, live in fear, nor be forgotten.

Always love,

The Sacred Earth

Is it already March 11th? Amazing! The first part of the year always starts out grudgingly slow then exponentially springs forward come the changing of the Season, I think! I've been remarkably busy this last month or so, and if you've been paying any attention at all to my sister site, you might see why. Fashion Week is coming up for me and with it a flurry of events, shoots, and projects that are slowly manifesting into spectacular things. But that's another story, and one that you'll probably hear a lot about if you follow me anywhere besides here.

I spoke about change in my last post here, which was a while ago (I apologize); but the burden of change had been weighing on me heavily, as it does all of us. It kept me from properly communicating how I was feeling; and although I am in much the same place, I have definitely come up for air this week. When I decide to change what I do, everyone will know about it. Doing so will most likely be a gradual thing, although it will take me some fearlessness. It's just that it's sad thing too, isn't it? As much as it is a wonderful thing. I've spent years building something that I knew was me and was everything I wanted, and at one point it certainly was! I've always been driven to achieve that which I desired, and I've always been stubborn to it as well. It took me a while to create what I wanted but in many ways I actually did; which something I can be no less than proud of. But, as human as I am, of course it cannot be the end all. I've come to a place that I dreamed about, and though I perhaps haven't done completely all I wanted to, I find myself not wanting those same things anymore. Goals have changed, ideologies have evolved, paths have been created and shifted. Changing at this point is like breaking up with someone I love, so it leave a bitter taste in my mouth. I know, however, that it's the only way to move forward for me. Not in terms of just success, but in terms of being happy with what I do, who I am, and where I'm going. I assure you; although I work in a very materialistic world, the reason I work for it at all is an undoubtedly spiritual one. It is connected to me in energy, and if I don't change now it would be like I'd be turning my back on my spirit. I still have faith within me, and so, I'm not willing to do that.

I still have so much that I've been waiting to say on here. Topics and videos have been piling up for me; and I've been aching to be a part of this incredible, human revolution that's clearly happening. I can see it everywhere; and even though darkness is almost always louder than light, remember that you can see it everywhere too, should you choose to. I really believe that people are changing, and that it's a matter of letting the dream you have for the world, or perhaps your world, become the present reality. I don't want to lose myself if a verbose dream-sequence of words like I can sometimes do, so I won't go further than that. I wanted this post to be nothing more than a lighthearted refresher; to remind this blog that I'm still around though I've been incredibly busy. When the time is right the things that I want to feature will come to light, and then you can really tell me what you think; which I am very, very interested to hear.

I'll leave you with an absolutely mesmerizing film I stumbled upon the other day. If anything it'll shed a little light your way, maybe a little humility, and even some gratitude. Created by master filmmaker Sean F. White, Terra Sacra is a stunningly candid, visual journey through 24 countries in inspiring time lapse. 6 years in 6 minutes; the visuals in this film are a testament to the grandeur of Earth, and perhaps even our absolute smallness in the shadow of it's magnitude, grace, and stunning beauty. It is a small piece of magic, so enjoy it.

Stay Healthy,

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

The Courage to Change & The Joy of the Journey / Life of Pi

I'm sorry I haven't been as active recently on here. But to be honest, ever since I returned home from New York I haven't been quite sure what to say. New York was an experience that brought me a clarity I didn't expect; and although it was fleeting, it forced me to re-examine the path I'm headed down right now. So, I ask you candidly, how do you change your life?

Change is a frightening, magnificent constant. We change all the time as we grow, quite naturally. The interests we hold, the people we meet and let go of, the places we live, and the work we do. But what happens when that change is a choice and not an inevitable progression? When the change is a risk regardless of the direction but is the only way forward? I know risk, and I know change, but it's different this time. I have faced many paths but at the same time I was always determined and aware of what I wanted. For the first time, or in perhaps quite a long time, I find myself unsure of what it is that I want now, and if the path I've chosen will lead me to that phantom place. I can't speak in too much detail, for obvious reason, but I know now that unless I make a choice I will live in this stagnancy. I know, I feel it in my heart, that I've taken all that I can take; and I must change direction or live within it. The choice is a human choice, not a fateful choice, and in both cases I will lose something. But I do not fear the leap, I fear the transition. Nervousness has replaced conviction, and this stress has caused a division within myself. If I haven't been speaking like myself lately, it's inherently due to this. So, then, how do we change?

To change is to be courageous. We are so finite, being human, at least physically. Bound by the world that we live in and bound, even greater, but the social roles we often choose to adopt. It's a simple thing to imagine the lives we want to lead, but it takes an immeasurable amount of conviction and courage to adopt the cause, and eventually the role. Along the way we are faced with the constant reality of the effects our decisions will have; not only on ourselves but to those around us. The reality of living day to day and building a life while searching for a dream is a path that can never be simple. Though without it, and without the pain that it promises, it would perhaps be quite difficult to truly appreciate, with utmost gratitude, all that we had done. With the darkness the light is brighter, no?

I watched Life of Pi in theatres recently. It was magnificent, to say the very least, and was masterfully composed by director Ang Lee into a stunningly visual display that evolved with as much grace as the narrative itself.  There were wonderful metaphysical aspects of the film that resonated with me. The isolation of Pi and his dissociation from not only his origin but his relationship with God. I thought it was brilliant; the juxtaposition of his internal abyss with the pristine beauty of the Pacific "abyss". I don't think I completely grasped the power of Life of Pi when I originally viewed it; totally taken aback by it's beauty. But I think I understand it now, having internalized those images. The juxtaposition is more than just a dialectical and interesting balance; I think it signifies the beauty of struggle alone. That Pi's life, like ours, is filled with abyss, loneliness, deserts, and isolation as much as it is dotted with light, joy, and perpetual love. We yearn, strive, and leap towards the top of the hill, the peak of the mountain, to rid ourselves of the weight of existence. An idea, a hope, that at some point joy will be all we have. But the reality is that that cannot be. And it isn't that joy cannot exist on that level, it is more that life itself, the act of living, is the true joy. Pi's journey is an epic tale of grandeur and unimaginable conflict, but without his desolation he could never nearly comprehend the purity and grace of the light he felt at the end of it. The reason the journey is so stunning is because it is the beauty of the story, both figuratively and literally. God, in essence, was never away from Pi. As with the glow of the jellyfish painting the sea in a neon aqua, or the massive whale that leaped over Pi's small body without disturbing his voyage, or the simple island silhouetted in the shape of a Goddess, or perhaps Buddha, as if inviting Pi into itself. The lesson is that God is the journey; the divinity of life is the divinity of God. The peaks are our reflection of that beauty, but the beauty itself are the valleys in between. The details of the painting, the history of the painter.

It's difficult to plan life out for ourselves when the paths we take wind and twist unexpectedly. But without the challenge we cannot find the fulfillment. Struggle is a purity that equals the beauty of peace, in a sense, because it teaches us peace. It is hard and perhaps impossible not to feel fear being human, full of dreams and full of doubt; but true positivity comes from the courage to live with that fear, and then, eventually, surpass it. We live within the darkness but we must light our way through it. That is the courage of change; because, in essence, to live is to change. So I guess, regardless of my indecision, I will have to take that leap.

Stay healthy,