Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Converge




It says a lot about my life that i can only find time to sit down and write when i'm on holiday.

So i'm in Denmark.
I started out in Copenhagen, coming in late at night, Friday after work.
A night on Martin's couch, and breakfast with Mille.
Then a train to the countryside, with the dog and a much too heavy backpack.
I arrived in Bisserup and saw my two cousins, four nephews, brother and his wife, and my parents in the same place for the first time in... i can't actually remember?
I held my four month old nephew for the first time.
This is my family, the closest people to me, and most of the time they couldn't be further away.

I'm sitting in my parent's living room, never more than an hour away from eating or drinking something delicious.
Always close to a window with an amazing ocean view.
The eggs in the fridge comes from the chickens that are always escaping their coup to roam around the garden, and sometimes the whole town.

We've been going for walks on the beach and through the woods.
With my older nephews, i went to play on a swing and run with the three dogs.
We did hilariously disturbing faceswaps on snapchat, and watched the better part of the Eurovision Song Contest, all worried that Australia might actually win.
I was joined by my flatmate who's never been to Denmark before.
We took pictures. Actual pictures with actual cameras.
I fed the fluffy cows.
Took lots of naps.
I stuck my face into lilac bushes, inhaled deeply, only to be overwhelmed by memories from my childhood.

It's been a great trip, but not the kind that leaves you well rested, and ready to go back to real life.

It's a little emotional being with my family like this. Every time i see them, it's a new version of us.
Older, in different places in our lives.
Broken, put back together.
Some of us are missing from the picture completely, others jump from being kids to adolescents in what seems like weeks to me, cause i'm missing from the picture a little more often than the rest of them.

I think i was naively hoping that being with them would lead to some sort of epiphany about what i should do next.
I think about the future a lot, and i try not to think of the future at all.
There are so many possibilities, so many possible directions, but when i start to think of them, the limitations and obstacles pop up one by one until they've formed a solid wall between me and my possible futures. 
And then there are none.
Leaving me there, back in my adopted country, commuting between Berlin and Potsdam in some kind of German Groundhog Day.
Except unlike Bill Murray, i'm growing older, older and more rootless every day. 

Back in Berlin it's been hot lately
Like, real summer hot.
Me wearing my Nike slide sandals and shorts while walking the dog in the morning hot.
Summer dresses, and sunscreen, and sitting on the balcony hot.
I go back to that tonight.
That, and bills, and insurance issues, and being a shitty dog owner, and a worse artist, and an inadequate human being.
That and endless commuting, and occasional mind numbing loneliness, not to mention loud noises and bad smells, and...
That and one of my possible futures.



We went inside shortly after, this particular day was just too hot for the dog

I have new decorating ideas...

At a Korean restaurant where the waitress asked me and Wendy if we were aware that we had ordered three mains and a starter... we were

I only have time to work out on weekends, which i'm obviously not too happy about, but sometimes my friends join me and that's awesome

Neukölln nights

That time i brought an orchid back from the brink of death

Evening light

Lounge wear forever

Summer eating in my room

Day drinking buddy on May first

Urbex time!

Exploring an abandoned trainyard and drinking coffee on a rooftop

I won't post more of these cause i took analog photos too, and you know, they might be good!

One of the best breakfasts i've had in Berlin


Baby bat

I miss spending time here actually making stuff, and not just, you know, sleeping and eating

While lying in a park with my dog, looking up, trying not to worry

This must be an old one cause i haven't been here in a while

Lucifer and Sriracha, friends forever

My friend Shantel caught me putting on makeup before a party last weekend

The Craft Cocktail Party 

Nineties wiccan was a good theme

The morning after, flatmate slumber party in an extremely dirty apartment

My lunch break is too short, but sometimes i manage to buy a shitty sandwich and eat it by the lake

Lucifer's birthday burger

Shorts weather is the best weather

My friends' home is cooler than mine

Copenhagen has the best brunches, hands down

Bisserup beach

It was supposed to be a photo of all four nephews, but then the baby started crying and was replaced by the always trusty stunt double Lucifer

It looks all nice and summery, but actually the rain was pouring down... classic Denmark!

Gilbert on the shore

 Julius, also known as the reason my next trip to Denmark has already been booked

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Cause we gon make a movie, a movie, and it's gon be in 3D, in 3D




Have you ever had one of those dreams where you desperately need to run from something, but you can't, you're too heavy and it feels like you're running in slow motion, or even not moving?
Or is that just me? 
Anyway, they’re incredibly frustrating, and the other day one of them happened to me in real life.
It was morning rush hour and i was on the U7, ready to get off at Wilmersdorferstraße and change to the regional train for Potsdam, but as i was about to exit the train, something snapped in my brain and the station i get off at every day, all of a sudden didn't look familiar to me. 
So i stayed, frozen.
I just stood by the doors as they closed in front of my face, and the train pulled out of the station.
I felt like such a fool.
I got off at the next station in a state of near panic.
This idiotic and unexplainable mistake meant that i would surely miss my connecting train and be about fourty minutes late for work. 
Unacceptable. 
The train going back where i came from took forever, but when it finally stopped back at Wilmersdorferstraße, i decided to make a run for it.
The doors opened and i bolted.
I ran down the platform, up two flights of stairs and... and i was already out of breath. 
Severely out of breath.
I still had almost half a kilometer between me and Charlottenburg Station, and only four minutes to catch my connecting train, and that's when i entered the dream state. 
Just like it's happened to me a million times before in my sleep, i ran and ran and felt like i was going nowhere. 
It was as if i was stuck in the quicksand that used to cause me even scarier dreams as a child.
Of course it wasn't quicksand, and i wasn't dreaming. 
I was just wearing really heavy boots. And i was carrying a heavy backpack. Oh, and my inflamed lungs were still recovering from a viral infection that had me coughing twentyfourseven for almost a month.
But the feeling was the same, as was the frustration and helplessness.

I made the train with one minute to spare. 
Panting loudly, trying to catch my breath. 
People were staring, and i'm sure it would have been embarrassing any other day, but since i had already been crying on the metro, my embarrassment threshold was probably higher than most people's. 

So why was i crying on the train again?
Well, remember the breakup?
Yeah it didn't quite stick.

I’ve never been much of an on again/off again kind of person when it comes to relationships, but a few weeks after the breakup, we met up to have one last talk.
To find some closure.
And we talked, and it was great, but instead of closure, we found that we weren't quite done with each other.
And it was confusing and amazing, and stupid obviously, but i felt helpless to stop it.
Blame it on love, blame it on chemistry, blame it on me being too greedy to give up something good that easily.
So without defining what was happening between us, we fell into a familiar pattern.

Over the weeks, i kept telling myself it couldn’t keep going like this.
I knew rationally that it had to either stop or progress, cause i needed to define it.
Define us.
But how do you put an end to something so good?
Something that feels so right?
“Next time i see him i’ll tell him we need to talk. No, but seriously, next time. Ok, the time after that”.

Cut to us standing outside Adidas Originals on Weinmeisterstraße last Saturday, among tourists and busy shoppers, holding each other and saying the slowest and hardest of goodbyes.
After hours of bargaining, debating, walking, kissing, coffee drinking.
Who goes break-up shopping together anyway? 
We were never ordinary and that's one of the things i liked about us.
Anyway, after hours, but really weeks, of trying so hard to come up with a solution, a way to be together without compromising our core beliefs, we hit a dead end.
I felt such a profound sense of unreality every time what seemed like negotiations came to a halt, every time we’d look at each other and realize we were only postponing the inevitable.
What do you do when you can’t compromise on your own needs anymore… but you also can’t let go?

And i couldn’t, i felt like my world would end if i let go of him, and in a way it did.
My life with him is over, the chapter is closed for good, and we will never be “us” again.
And i loved us. So much.

So we stood there,
Holding on. Hugging. Crying. Trying to think of excuses, reasons to stay. 
Unable to walk away and let go. Until we had to.
Until i had to.
And then it was done, i walked away in tears, Lucifer in tow, and i couldn't think of anything i wanted more than to take it all back and try again. 
Even now, days later, i still feel as if i’ve made a huge mistake, and i wanna throw away all of my reservations and keep trying and trying and trying, just for the chance to spend one more minute in his arms. 

I'm left wondering if the compromises i would have had to make in order to stay with him were really that much worse than the compromises i've made to be with other men? 
Maybe they just seemed bigger because we dared to say them out loud.
Maybe the compromises i made in order to stay married to the same person for twelve years were far worse, but always unspoken.
Doesn't the fact that i'll never have children, or that i never got to have a career of my own, stand as a testament to that?
People will say you shouldn't change for anyone, but don't we always, though? 

At least i liked myself with him. I liked the person i saw through his eyes. 
In fact, i don't think i've ever liked myself more. 
He made me feel like a better person than i am, and no one ever made me feel more beautiful than he did. Ever.

I really hope he liked the person he was with me too. 

Maybe this time, it'll stick.
We'll move on, and maybe, even though we'll live in the same city, the same part of town, we won't ever see each other again.
Eventually he’ll forget about me and Lucifer, about how fucking great we had it.
There'll be someone else in his bed soon enough.
And she’ll be tall and German like him, and much, much prettier than me. 
And then, just like that, he'll be over me.
And he'll go by my house and instead of it bringing back memories of us, it'll just be another house where someone he used to date lived, and he'll hardly notice.
And i'll walk the dog in the park, and i’ll walk right past the tree where he was late for our first date, and the stone bench where we first kissed while drinking cheap beer and watching a thunderstorm.
But instead of pausing to try and recall the expression on his face or what we were talking about, i'll just keep walking without even giving it much thought at all.
And that’s how it should be, that's what people do.
But i’m not ready for that, i’m not ready to be over it.
And to be honest, i'll probably never fully understand why we can't just be together when the love is there.

I think i finally have an idea of what i’m looking for in a relationship.
Which is great, logically.
Finally having the courage to ask for what i think i deserve is a great thing.
Except right now i don’t want any of those things.
I just want my boo.

"I want us to be magical space beings.
I want us to be unicorns who elevate and inspire each other to be the best and happiest we can be.
I want us to be like Troy and Abed, rather than Marshall and Lily.

I want to do fun projects together, and never hold back ideas out of fear of being judged.
I want us to have trust without being predictable, and to have excitement without too much drama.
I want our lives to be as strange and unpredictable as the movies i watch and the books i read.
I want us to dress up and be goofy and play games and never grow up.
I want us to choose each other instead of settling.
I want to walk the line between dream and reality.

I want the feeling of love to take my breath away, punch me in the gut, on a daily basis.
I want the talking to go on for hours into the night, even when i have to get up at dawn.
I want the sex to be weirder than the inside jokes we share, and hotter than the crappy coffee i drink to stay awake at work.

I want people to ask: "What's going on with Flora, i haven't heard from her all week" and i want the answer to be: "oh, her and her boo got really into live role playing, and now they're holed up somewhere creating their own language to make their forest elf characters more believable", and i want the answer to be: "oh, her and that guy have a massive three day hangover because they went to the karaoke place and got tequila drunk while serenading each other with cheesy love songs until the sun came up", and i want the answer to be: "i think they bought a run down old Volkswagen van that reminded Flora of the one her parents drove her on vacation in when she was a kid, and they took it camping somewhere, i'm not really sure where, but they'll be back in a few weeks".
Or i want the answer to be that i'm alone in my room, painting or writing, because what i don't want is to be in the kind of codependent relationship where you need a sick note to get out of being someone's permanent date for the night.
You shouldn't need a get-out-of-relationship-free card to spend time alone or with others. 
Being together should be a choice and a privilege and something you look forward to doing, and for that you need time apart.
So i don't wanna sit at home every night with someone, watching Netflix, and talking about hating the same things. I've tried that, that's not who i am anymore.
I want to keep my single life and my single person identity.
With someone.

I want us to do the things others only talk about.
I want to be with someone who can make my reality as exciting and strange as my inner world has always been."

God, you must all be sick of reading about this breakup.
It's literally taken months.
And this post is getting long.
If you're still reading this far: sorry and thank you!

This is difficult for me to write about.
Not only because it's somehow still in progress, still happening, but also because i know he will read it. 
This. Hey.
And i don't want me being sad making him sad.
Although i suspect he already knows how much i miss him.

I'm gonna post a bunch of pictures now, and they're gonna be very random, but looking at them make me feel better.
Because they tell me that even now, when i'm spending most of my time in a dreary, grey office, or on public transportation between Berlin and actual Germany.
Even now, when i'm a little brokenhearted and a lot unsure about the future.
Even then, i manage to find and capture magic.
I find and frame and edit and post and share special, fun, weird moments, that for maybe just a few seconds or minutes, take away the pain. 
And that tells me that no matter what happens to me, i'll probably be ok.


I look at my camera roll differently at the moment... i look at this and think "oh, this was pre-break-up, or post-break-up, or somewhere-in-between"... nothing i look at just is, everything connects to him

On a lighter note, a few weeks ago the weather was nice enough for me to eat lunch outside, and i made some hungry new friends... even the ducks are fancier in Potsdam!

I remember taking this when i was at home sick

Brunch with him and his friends, somewhere in the in-between period where doing couple-like things both excited me and scared me, because i knew we weren't, not really 

Break-up part two started at Voo Store and Companion Coffee, because we classy like that

Lucifer has been with me for a long time this time, and despite me being gone for almost twelve hours every day, he's doing much better than expected, and when i come home at night, i'm usually greeted by a dog who's just happy to see me, and not the sad or traumatized creature i had expected to see, since he's used to going everywhere with me

That time me and Mike went to Primark and got us flatmate onesies... i'm wearing mine right now, and i bet at least one of the others are too

Worst part about being sick, besides being fucking sick, is having to go to the doctor for a sick note on the first sick day, and realizing that waiting for that note can take up to four hours. No, not fun when you're running a fever and can't stop coughing! Just one of the many joys of working in Germany...

These were blooming outside Charlottenburg station for over a week, and i would take a picture, or post them on snapchat, nearly every day (it's been raining for two days, though, so there aren't many left)

Cleaning day (looking around i can see that i should probably do that again soon)

Another one from break-up day... i went straight to h&m to numb the pain with shopping, and while it obviously didn't work, i at least got this really cool Star Wars set that i've been sleeping in for days

Roamers, just Roamers

When i was cleaning my room that one day, i found a bunch of old photos. 
For some reason i feel that Amalie age eleven, the girl in the dorky outfit sitting on a sand dune, and i, have a lot in common

I was feeling skinny that day 

Sometimes this Shiba is on my morning commute

Deep fried banana and honey goodness at the Thai park

Since starting my new job, my entire instagram feed has been reduced to interior shots

Hey guys pizza gang (the one on the left had a cheese crust so delicious i felt sorry for the one on the right)

Weekend breakfast in my room 

Lucifer and Sriracha getting along with each other melts my cold heart

Killing about fifteen minutes before a doctor's appointment in Schöneberg

I found the perfect table for the hamster at a flea market, so i moved her into the living room where there's more natural light

Berlin kills me sometimes

Thinking of...

I made some pretty great kitsune udon for a new girlfriend the other day

People come and go, but it's always me and him (always, and forever)

When i've posted my apartment from every possible angle on instagram, the good old legs and coffee shot is always there to keep me relevant for a few more days

Break-up day again... he took this. 
It's blurry, he sure wasn't instagram husband material, but i posted it anyway

You don't expect to find Adidas Originals at the local dirt mall, but Neukölln is full of surprises

This day was the absolute worst, but since this was during somewhere-in-between, i could text him.... now, in the last week, so much bad or weird shit has happened, but since i'm trying not to lean on him too much, i've kept most of it to myself 

Sunday breakfast for Wendy, Jess, Marine and Frances a couple of weeks ago

That time we shot a car sharing commercial together... i uploaded this photo a few days ago, and then yesterday, i got an email that the commercial was finally finished. Isn't that just so fucking typical?
It's hard looking at pictures of us together, but looking on the bright side, now that this commercial is undoubtedly going to make us all kinds of rich and famous, i'm sure all the money and hookers and cocaine would have torn us apart eventually

No regrets. I had so much fun with you.