Life as it is

Yeah, life isn’t always easy, and sometimes bad things come in groups. In the past year, since last May to be exact, many things have happened. 
I was diagnosed with O.C.D., after almost ten years from the first signs of it. This O.C.D. brought me to a breaking point and caused me depression and suicidal thoughts. I started therapy and taking meds. After a couple of months, a big part of the factory where my mom amd brother were working was burnt. My brother who was working in production stopped working, but my mom continued working in the offices of the factory. But, since I don’t have a day job, I had to go back to my parent’s house for some months. A couple of weeks after the fire, my mom was diagnosed with cancer. She did chemo and these days she’s going into surgery. Thankfully her cancer is treatable. And, last weekend my father almost died from kidney failure. He survived and is going on dialysis, probably for the rest of his life. 

It’s so funny, that as I’m writing and reading the last lines all these seem so surreal! Yes, bad things happen all together sometimes, this is a fact. But, the difference is made from the way each person decides to react and act to things. 

Personally, I prefer fighting. I say that “when life gives you the middle finger, you give her the middle finger back”. I’m a fighter, and I try to make even the worst things work in the best way possible (a kind of positive thinking, but more of a way of working with things, so I can get something positive out of them). 

In the last year of my life, many things (some of them really bad) have happened. BUT,… my mom’s cancer is treatable, my O.C.D. is going well, I’m doing great with psychotherapy, and most importantly I can now say that I’m learning to live. 

Really live, not just going through every day. But, becoming a better and stronger human, becoming better friends with myself, taking control of my life and learning what really matters in life. 

Even in the worst situations, there’s always something good you can dig up! 

When the man comes around 

In life, there’s only one thing that you cannot cheat and will definitely come for you at some point. The irony in this is that one thing is the end of life. 

Personally I believe that we are born, we live our lives and we die. It’s that simple. But still death is one of the greatest fears and taboos. 

My greatest fear, was the death of my mother. I couldn’t even think about it. I use past tense, because I’m in the process of making peace with the idea. My mother has cancer, she will recover fully, but all this cancer thing was the chance for me to work with the idea that some day she will die. And it makes me think how I would like to spend the time I have left, with her, with everyone around me and which things I would like to do, before it’s too late.  Yeah, there’s something weird about it  the closer death comes to you (in any way), the more you realize what life really means. 

It’s not easy to accept the fact of your favorite people’s death, it’s an ongoing process. A good sense of humor and maybe the love for the macabre can help. Can help with figuring out a couple of things, because I think that you can never figure out everything. But can always try!

1st P.S. The title is from “The man comes around” by Johny Cash. The first photo is from Ingmar Bergman’s “Seventh Seal” and the second from the video of “Show Yourself” by Mastodon. 

2nd P.S. I would love to hear your thoughts on this subject!

Just life 

Lately, I think a lot about the “microcosm”. How it has changed over the years and especially how it has changed over the last months. 
Yeah, since it’s basically a personal blog, it makes total sense to change with time, exactly like life does! But, sometimes, I’m thinking if someone takes a look at the posts… is he/she going to understand what the blog is about?! 

So, I thought of writing a few words about… life right now. 

I’m a 28 year old artist, living in a colorful house (it’s an apartment, but I like the word “home”), in Athens (Greece). 

I’m practicing many forms of art (trying to make a career out of them and looking for a day job in the same time). I have three brands (one with colorful/ bohemian handmade jewelry, one with psychobilly/ macabre inspired handmade jewelry and one with my original artwork). I’m a photographer, and a crafter. I’m practicing, so I can do performance art someday.

I have ocd (I’m doing really well lately). And my mother has cancer (she’s doing well and she’s going to do even better).

So, the “microcosm” has every aspect of my life in its posts. 

I hope you like the variety! 

People are complicated and life is too! 

 

Those sunny mornings 

I’m spending the weekend at my parent’s house. The house is surrounded by nature, trees, flowers and fields all around! And since it’s spring already, memories come back to me. 

I remember years of sunny mornings, the sun entering through the windows. Warmth getting inside the house. Kind of an invitation to look out the window and admire the nature, while listening to all the birds singing. 

And these mornings are still taking place, no matter how many years pass…! 

Emotional abuse (a song by Horrorpops & a reality) 

In the “microcosm” I like talking about tough subjects sometimes, but I always put some sprinkle over them. Not to make them look prettier, but just because I have a positive way of thinking about things. 

But, for this post, will be a little different, a little more… raw. So, here it goes… 

What’s the first thing that comes in your mind when you think about abuse? Maybe abuse against children? Or maybe a wife with a black eye that “accidentally fell off the stairs”? 

Yes, there are physical signs of abuse, but there is also emotional abuse. One that’s kept beneath the surface and sometimes it’s difficult even for the person that’s being abused to realize it. And many times it happens inside romantic relationships. 

I have been there, I have lived within it, I have survived, I have seen the positive side and recently its true colors/aftermath. 

I once met a boy, through a friend. And he seemed nice. I fell in love with him. We became an item. And I remember feeling so lucky that I have found a good one. 
He seemed sweet, sensitive and quite charming. All his friends loved him. He was always smiling…., especially when others were around. 

Well, the pure reality was quite different:

  • He was talking too much about his ex-girlfriend and saying mainly bad things about her, of course! 
  • He was creating arguments and scenes almost every day and especially after I had fun. 
  • He was never happy and always having a reason to complain about something or someone. 
  • He was turning conversations in such a way, so I would end up expressing my feelings to him (which was kind of forced of course, because I’m a person that needs some time to express feelings). 
  • He was extremely jealous, just by the idea that a man might look at me. 
  • He was making comments about how much I like taking care of myself and going out for walks or shopping. 
  • He didn’t want me to meet his friends. 
  • He wanted us to be all the time together.
  • Every time he was doing something wrong, he managed to turn the argument about something I supposedly did wrong. 
  • He was acting completely different in every environment (with friends, with his family, with my friends, but when we were alone it was always the worst version). 

These are some of the things that he did. 

I still remember one day that I was laughing on a video on YouTube and he said to me “Are you done?!”. I still remember that I was crying about 4 to 5 times a week. I still remember the night that I had such a great sense of danger after a fight that we had. For the story, he broke up with me, which was actually a good thing, because I don’t know when I would have managed to decide to leave. 

I still remember many things, but I have admitted to myself that I have  been in an abusive relationship and made peace with that fact, with the past, and with myself. I survived. And it wasn’t easy to return to my happy place. But I fought and created a new version of myself and my happy place, because of course the experience changed me forever, but for the best. 

The main reason for writing this post is to put a little, tiny, rock in the mountain that’s called awarness. 

Abuse is still a big taboo for our society. And though I take the responsibility for my choices, I wish that there was even one person back then that would tell me that “you know, these things are not normal, not at all, this is some kind of abuse”. I wish I have heard this from someone, and not that I was in a bad relationship, or that we weren’t a match. No! I was in an abusive relationship. That was it, that’s the reality. 

So, I’m  doing what I would like someone else to have done for me. Talking to everyone else out there… 

I’m saying that if you have a bad feeling about your relationship and the person that you’re with, chances are that it’s your instinct talking to you. If something feels really wrong, you should get out. What you’re feeling is not love. It’s just not love, love is a good thing. Abuse isn’t. Talk to others and most of all trust yourself and what your gut tells you. Trust yourself because you deserve to be loved properly and in a good, healthy, way! 

And in case you’re not in such a relationship, but know someone that is in a emotionally  or physically abusive relationship, act and help that person in every way you can, so she/he can get out of it. 

Because, abuse in relationships is here and it’s real, even its emotional version! 

P.S. Here’s the song I’m talking about in the title of the post: https://youtu.be/kDqDPp29nAE. 

How inspiration works

Inspiration is kind of different for each one of us. Every person/artist has a different way of working and finding the triggers/inspiration for the pieces. 

My number one trick for inspiration ia having your eyes and ears open! It’s all about the everyday life. If you do, you can catch the beauty, the images, sounds, colors around you. 

And then there are the details that some others might not notice. A small detail can be the starting point of a piece of artwork. A detail in your environment can start a series of thoughts and feelings that can lead to creation. 

Yes, time, is crucial. You can never force inspiration. It needs its time, your brain has to proceed information and make something out of it. 

But, in the meanwhile there’s one more important thing that can help: work! Even if you don’t have the perfect idea (or no idea, it happens sometimes) in mind one day, you should still sit down and work. 

Inspiration doesn’t come out of the blue, on its own. Needs a little help and work can never do any harm! 😉

Livind with OCD (no. 4)

The photo (by Sylvia Duckworth) above sums up the daily life with obsessive compulsive disorder. For me at least. 

I have been asked by others if ocd is something you can get over completely and what you have to do to get better. I, too, had these questions in the past. Well, psychiatry and psychology don’t have de facto answers for these questions (yet). But after conversations with my doctors, a lot of thought and quite some experience with mental health, I reached to the conclusion that the most important thing that helps coping with mental illness (and in my case ocd) is the honest desire to get better. 

This desire is the one that brings you to the door of a specialist. This desire is the one that starts the procedure of therapy. This desire is the one that keeps you on taking your medication. This desire is the one that makes you get outside your comfort zone when needed, so you won’t fall in the same circles that your mind tells you to. 

And most important of all, this desire of getting better is the one that keeps you fighting each-single-day. Because not all days are good. And if you don’t try as much as you have to one day, is enough to get you back to previous stages. 

So, this is the conclusion I have reached. With mental health there’s no black and white. You have to accept the problem(s), go with the flow and work together with things, which eventually  will lead to real change. 

One step at a time, many steps each day.

Try. Work. Fight. 

The asnwers and the results will come in time.