Joie De Vivre

I’ve been looking at old photos recently. Not “infant” old but more middle- to high-school old. Watching old videos too, listening to the songs we used to listen to at that point.

I couldn’t figure out why, I couldn’t understand why my brain wanted me to rehash the past, and see things, see people, more importantly, that aren’t a constant in my life. Not to say I didn’t care about them anymore, but more weren’t people I would talk to every day.

Being me, being the over-sensitive, over-emotional, over-everything-that-I-should-be-able-to-control-but-can’t person I am, I start to over-think, wonder what happened between then and now, why I’m so different now. Why aren’t those people in my life? Most importantly, why was I happy then, and not now?

And then it hit me, like a train; joie de vivre.  I used to enjoy life, no matter the circumstances, no matter where I was. There were places I would enjoy more than others, of course. Dubai more than Beirut, school more than university (yes, I know it’s odd), a friend’s place more than a nightclub, but I would try to make the best out of it.

Joie de vivre translated means the exuberant enjoyment of life. It’s what we all should strive for. Instead of me sitting in my office, hating not only life but myself included, trying with all my might not to cry over something silly like a little girl holding a teddy bear. It’s that much of a struggle for me that the innocence that’s paired with a child that resembles my very own childlike persona could tip me over the edge.

I’m not going to say I’m going to go find my happiness, or whatever people do when they have an epiphany. I’m too far gone to find where it is; also adults don’t really get to have joie de vivre, at least not at this point.

At the very least, I do have a plan. A plan that could possibly get me out of this depression and that is kind of exciting. It’s exciting whenever I see myself trying to change my circumstances because I’m not happy, because it reminds me of who I used to be, it reminds me that I’m not just going to be a doormat. It reminds me that someone inside me knows that my happiness is worth fighting for.

Faulty February

So, it’s February, which means I missed my end of Jan deadline. But that’s alright, because life is messy anyway (she says in an attempt to overlook her messed up schedule, even though she knows posting regularly is the trick to getting a recognizable blog).

To start off with January resolutions, I did find a choir group. A couple actually, but they all require payment. And I’m into singing for joy, not for paying. So, that’s one resolution that didn’t work out. As for the gym, I didn’t really start in January, but I did go yesterday and I’m planning to go on Wednesday as well and finally sign up with a new personal trainer. And next, my driver’s license.

Well, after passing my parking test (the second time) and my assessment test (first time) it was finally time to take my final test. This was February first, and I’m happy to say I passed on the first try, and got my driver’s license and everything worked out, and I was so happy… for about two seconds.

February started out really great for me, well, the first week. Sunday, Jan 31st, my name appeared as an editor in Read magazine, which was really huge, it made me really excited. And then the next day I got my driver’s license, which was even more exciting. Then it kinda died down and life went on normally. My dad came to visit, to teach me how to drive properly, which was really cool of him. But all I learned was that I’m not a good driver at all.

Just like school doesn’t prepare you for real life, driving school doesn’t prepare you for the roads. Every time I drove with my father, which is around four times before he had to travel back to Greece, I cried. I hated it. I hated driving. I don’t know if it was because of the roads or because I know that I shouldn’t be on the roads. I was driving to work one day and I was looking around at all the cars and it was like “all these people have put their lives in my hands,” and mine in theirs.

And yeah, I did get in my first accident, the last day my dad was here. It wasn’t big, no one was hurt, but my car (the car I was borrowing) got damaged. And everyone was telling me it happens, like you should expect your first accident to happen soon, and its better it happened now, you learn from your mistakes, just wait till I tell you about my first accident. But I don’t think anyone gets, or just forgot, how it feels when you get into your first accident. My dad keeps telling me it wasn’t my fault, and that I behaved correctly and should be proud of how I handled it, but I think that’s just so I don’t get discouraged. It feels… embarrassing to get into your first accident 5 days after your driver’s license. It feels so shameful, I’m so ashamed, I don’t want to even think what would’ve happened if it were worse. I felt numb during the accident, but afterwards it was just shame. I feel like people would be laughing, especially my family, after checking up that I was ok, like “haha you got into your first accident.” Not even in a spiteful way, but more like a join the club way. But still… I don’t really know how to explain it, I just feel… so ashamed.

Now, I would like to talk about something else. Something that has been getting me down for the past couple of weeks. It’s been happening for a long time, around a year or so, and I keep trying to find a permanent solution, but it’s never happened. The thing is I get a lot of headaches. Like, it’s an achievement for me to go a week without getting a single headache. I get them frequently and painfully, and they don’t go away without painkillers. I sometimes even wake up with them. So, I got a blood test, and my results, besides the regular anemia, is that my vitamin D level is really low too, and that combination might be causing the headaches. I also visited an ophthalmologist, to check if my eyes were the problem, and he said my overuse of the laptop is probably why I get headaches, because my eyes are straining.

It’s great, you know, that my doctors are helping me, giving me solutions. But, I suffer from really really painful headaches, and I don’t want a “probably” or a “might” I want a damn solution already. I’m only 21, I shouldn’t be feeling like this, like my head is about to explode. And I can’t very damn well not use my laptop, I’m a journalist and all my work is on the laptop. And if it’s from the laptop why doesn’t EVERYONE suffer from them? Why is it just me? I don’t use my laptop less than anyone else, no less than my colleagues at work.

I probably sound ungrateful. I probably am. I mean, nothing is seriously wrong with me, and I’m complaining. But I honestly can’t deal with it anymore. So, I’m just gonna end this blog here. There’s really nothing I can write than can help.

February Resolutions:
  • Join Ballroom Dancing Lessons (don’t mind paying for that one)
  • Cook some meals
  • Not cry as much (failed)
  • Learn to be a better driver (working on it)

Salutations 2016

My title is so nerdy, but meh, so am I. Honestly, if you didn’t think I was a nerd, but in the cute, quirky way, I doubt you’d be reading this. ANYWAY, its 2016! Helloooo New Year! Happy New Year/Merry Christmas to you and yours, since my last 2015 blog was before those, and I really do hope all of you have had a wonderful holiday season. I sure have, but wonderful/crazy tend to merge with my amazing family that I love so much and see too much of during the holidays.

However, this isn’t about how my holidays went. This blog post is here for three reasons. 1, I need to talk about my 3 small resolutions for January. 2, I needed to start off the new year of blogging. 3, one of my best friends, Nishaat (who is also my wifey) was hoping for a new blog. And isn’t that just so cute? I didn’t think anyone actually looked forward to these. It’s more like “oh… I’m bored, might as well read this.”

So much self-confidence I have in myself, right? Nour Sheety is Number 1.

Never mind about that! On to the resolutions!!

Alright, January is pretty simple. January is the month to do everything you wanted to do last year, but after filtering out all the kind of stupid stuff. So, for January I have 3 very easy resolutions.

#1: Pass my parking (which is after tomorrow, eek!) and my driving (TBD) tests, so I can finally drive myself everywhere.

I CANNOT DESCRIBE HOW EXCITED I AM TO SEE HOW CLOSE I AM TO FINISHING MY DRIVING LESSONS. And so terrified to possibly fail them. Driving tests in the U.A.E. are insane. For example, the parking tests? If you re-adjust, you fail. I CAN’T TAKE THIS PRESSURE. But I’m also sort of a perfectionist. I never failed a single test in university, and I’m mostly a B+ to A- student, more towards A’s in my senior year. I feel proud about it, I’m not ashamed or braggy, it’s just something about me. So, I need to pass. I have to do it. Wish me luck!!

#2: Re-join the gym.

How cliché am I right now? But seriously, I started gymming late November, early December. I got a personal trainer and everything. Zumba, Yoga, bla. Then… I went to Lebanon for a week for a visit. Psh, I’m not gonna work out there? You crazy? Then I came back here a week before Christmas. But, dude, it’s Christmas, I can’t work out! Then, there’s only a week till the New Year, and bam it’s 2016. And I’m finally out of excuses. TO THE GYM!

#3: Find a choir group.

If you know me, you know I love singing. I might not be the best at it, but I can keep in tune, and it makes me happy. So, instead of belting out songs in my room, I’m gonna find a choir group I can join in Dubai, and possibly join it with my brother. The possibly isn’t for me though. There is no possibly in these resolutions, I’m doing them. I have to do something with my life.

I was telling one of my friends, that this year is not “New Year, New Me” stuff, although, if that’s you go for it. I hate it when people go “oh let’s get ready for the New Year, New Me bullshit.” Guys, people are allowed to re-invent themselves, if they want to. What’s it to you anyway? They’re not changing anything about you. Anyway, to get back on topic, same me, just better. Same me, just filling up more of my “potential.”

I can’t wait to start this year, to finally do all the stuff I want to do! Who knows if I’ll even stick to this, who knows if I’ll have 3 resolutions every month, but as long as I do things like join a choir, or take ballroom dancing lessons, or just drive wherever I want to, I’ll be happy.

And I haven’t wished for love this year. Love is whatever. I have love, I love all the wonderful people in my life. And I haven’t wished for happiness either, because that’s in my own hands.

What I have wished for? The will to control my own destiny. It’s been a long time coming, around 21 years. It’s time to do it. Better late than never! 2016, let’s start living.

2015 Appreciation Post

Hey all.

So, I figure this is my last 2015 post, but honestly this blog is unscheduled and I post whenever I have something to say which is very unlike my totally mess-free life (sarcasm). But, hey, I have something to say.

2015 was a blur. It flew by, and I could divide it into thirds. First third would be January-February-March-April. And honestly those were really dark times. I was dealing with things I needed to get over that happened towards the end of 2014. I did make new friends though, so it was slowly building up to the second third, May-June-July-August, which were lovely. Despite everything that happened after those 4 months, I did quite enjoy them. I mean, besides the emotional happenings that rack my body freely and quite often, a lot of monumental stuff happened then. I turned 21, I cut my hair into a pixie cut, I graduated, got my first tattoo, moved out of Lebanon… basically a lot changed for me. Then September-October-November-December could be dissected into two parts, first would be uneventful, unemployed, permanently attached to the couch watching old series, and then it would employed, hating her job, permanently napping on the couch… so yeah.

But in all honesty, this year was kind of great. I won’t single anyone out, because then it’s just like “what about me??” And everyone who knows I love them knows I love them. It’s not a matter of saying a single person’s name. If I’ve said “I love you” to you during this year or the last, I probably still love you, unless you’ve done completely wrong by me and screwed me over and left me all alone in this world where I feel alone but I’m usually not because I have great friends. No, seriously, I have the best friends in the world and I should never feel alone because they’re always there for me. Friends of 2015 (aka friends I’ve known till now and made in 2015) thank you for dealing with my crazy and overemotional ways, thank you for loving me, thank you for sticking around, and thank you for being you. If it were not for you, I would not be me.

As for 2016, I have no New Year’s Resolution. I’m going to do something else instead. Each month, I will have at least 3 things I have to do in that month. And, because this is my blog and it’s called the experiences, I will share those 3 things with you at the beginning of each month and give progress reports during the month. Hopefully. I mean, it’s still gonna be a mess.

These 3 things can be everything from, “Learn to sleep without a night light,” to, “Join Ballroom dancing lessons.” Lately, I’ve just been feeling like I live a mundane life and I don’t want to feel that way anymore. I want to live and share my experiences and take advantage of my 2o’s. It’s not like I want to “party” more and get wasted and pretend to live my life to the fullest and get hangovers. No, even though if you want to do that, go wild, be my guest. It’s just that I don’t think that’s living life to the fullest.

Basically, I want more. And it’s not bad to want more. And it’s not bad to want to be happy. And it’s not bad to want to be happy by wanting more. What’s bad is to keep these sentences going.

No, seriously what’s bad is to just say things and not put action towards them. I deserve more. Everyone deserves more. But I think most of us are afraid to go out and get it. Unless it’s a terrible thing, go get your dream. My goal in life is to be an award-winning novelist, but I have small aspirations I’m going to work towards right now. Because I deserve it. I do.

Adios, 2015. May 2016 be a powerful successor to the ideas that were conceptualized (I’m loving that word) in your timeline. I’m just spouting random words. It’s 4:44 AM (oooh) and I’m gonna go to sleep. Goodnight!

My Life is a Mess

I’m a mess. That’s my motto. It’s what I say to family, friends, acquaintances and past loves (lol, plural?). But, recently I’ve been seeing that I’m not actually a mess. I may be fucked up and totally screwed for this year and the next and just a chaotic maniac ready to blow up at a minute’s notice, but I’m not a mess. Life itself is messy. Life is the biggest mess of all.

I’m beginning to see how life messes you up in the biggest way possible. I mean, you’re 21, you’re in love, you’re graduating, you’re living your life and BAM. Suddenly, you’re 21, you’re heartbroken, you’re unemployed, and your main objective is getting up at 2 P.M.

I usually refrain from giving specific details because of the people who know me and might read this but I’m tired, it’s late, and I spent that last few hours calling my friend and crying. Why do I cry so much? Why does everyone tell me to stop caring? Why do I care so much? Who do I care at all? Why do I care about people who don’t give a rat’s ass about me? Why am I me? Why can’t I be someone else?

Why, why, why. Life, I’m talking to you. Why have you made me this way?

I’m taking the coward’s way out. I’m so much more messed up than I should be, so I’ll blame Life. I had a great childhood, it was beautiful and full of amazing memories. Middle school/adolescent life up till 10th grade was amazing. I had a few bumpy rides, unfaithful friends, rumors, bullies. But I overcame. In 7th grade, I ditched the friends who weren’t true and made new ones, the friends I’m going to have for life.

It’s weird to think of that, because today Nour wouldn’t ever do that. 11th grade Nour, after she left U.A.E. and everything she knew, everything that was familiar, decided she wanted to be friends with two people. And she did become friends with them, while simultaneously becoming friendly (strictly) with the whole grade.

Today Nour is shy, depressed, currently wearing an oversized jumper and sweatpants, is listening to video game music (ugh, can’t I just shut up about that kind of music?!!?) and thinking of her broken heart. I have a broken heart, it’s broken, and I never say it out loud lest someone would hear it. “Someone” she says, as though she’s not thinking of just one person.

Responsible Nour wouldn’t post this. I’m not responsible right now.

Life has messed me up. Because one day, I decided that in college, with no one around me, I was gonna stick to myself. College/Uni Life were not “The Best Years of My Life.” I demand a recount. 3 years and a half, I made minimal friends, went home straight after classes, was a solid B+, A- student, studied, learned to love Journalism. That half year that was left, I finally emerged from my shell.

The Shell/Bubble was created in college, not school, as I previously assumed. It was conceptualized in school, where I knew all my friends would eventually leave me, and I would be alone once again. It came to be in university.

God, what is this post about? In all honesty, I’m just talking about how messed up I am but trying to prove I’m not a mess.

To give some structure to this, let me lay it down. You’re not a mess. You are wonderful, you are beautiful, and you are RARE. That’s not a word we see very often, right? We all strive to be unique and rare and just plain great. We all strive to make someone else see it in us. Then we get married and have babies (or not, it’s your choice).

“If you ever think you’re a mess, you’re not. Life is a mess. Life is messy. And it’s bound to get some of it’s mess on you. So shrug it off. You’re not a mess. You’re amazing,” She said to herself.

My First Job Experience

The title is meant to sound like a child’s essay.

So, I’ve started working. It’s an honest-to-God job with articles, research and a paycheck (hooray!).

However, I’m still an intern, which basically gives me license to make as many stupid mistakes as I like and get off easy, I guess. At first, (aka last week) I felt like an adult, someone who was capable to take on many jobs and get them done. Someone who could eventually turn this internship into an actual job with a higher paycheck. It’s my second week, and I feel like a child who doesn’t fit in at this job.

But that may be just me. I mean it’s not like I’m going to find a job where I can write about whatever I want, like video games and disney movies. At this early stage in my life, no one’s gonna pay to me write about it.

However, I know that my work is subpar at best because if I’m not passionate about a subject, I won’t write well about it. Putting me on fashion articles is like putting a penguin on teaching a how to fly class. We know it exists, and as a girl/bird we should be able to put it into action, however, we just can’t.

I am not a fashionable girl. At the age of 21, I still haven’t ever bought more than 5 pieces of clothes on my own. My mother, who enjoys shopping, buys all my clothes for me. Which I honestly don’t mind at all, because I find shopping tedious and just plain annoying.

Yet, saying all this, people would say I’m ungrateful. “You got a job writing about Fashion! It’s so easy! Can I do it for you?” Well, thank you for that incredibly kind offer, but no. I can do it myself. It’s just that I seem to be getting a lot more headaches when looking for handbag and shoe designers. It’s not what I want to do. It’s not what I’m passionate about.

Speaking of headaches, the amount of typos I find in the magazines that the company publishes is heartbreaking. It would be okay if it were in the first draft, we all make mistakes, especially when typing as fast as you can. Sure, whatever, no big deal. But, no. Magazines that have been fully published, and on racks at the stores or wherever they’re distributed have legitimate SPELLING mistakes in them. Who the hell releases shit like that? Who’s in charge of this?

How are we, as a company, supposed to have any credibility if what we’re selling is riddled with errors? I, personally, as a Grammar Nazi, would never buy something that has a mistake in it. I ridicule anything, for example, a menu at a restaurant, if it has a typing error in it.

All in all, the paycheck looks great, but I’m not enjoying my first job. Maybe I wasn’t cut out to be a journalist. I don’t know much about anything right now…

Sorry to end on a sad note.

Lost Connection

It’s funny how much hurt one can put you under without specifically doing anything to you. We’ve discussed that I’m super emotional, and that I feel things too strongly, but this isn’t about me. This is about how silence, or even unoffending words, can hurt more than the loudest, meanest thing you could ever say.

Why do I say this? Because as it happens, sometimes people stop talking to me. After we’ve had a fight, or after we’ve come to a disagreement. It’s fine if a few hours later we start talking again, but if you don’t? The first thing that comes to mind is that you’re mad at me, and when someone is mad at me, I have to resolve it.

I can’t have people mad at me because I’m a people pleaser, and I want everyone to like me. So what do I do? I talk. I initiate a conversation, trying to smooth things over. I apologize, but I also ask for one in return. And I always, always, always mention that I say things that I don’t mean when I’m angry. I mean, we all do, right? When we’re angry, we say hurtful things. Especially if you know the person, and you know exactly how to hit under the belt. And for those things, I apologize one more time. And I wait for a reply.

No reply? Big problem. I sometimes start talking more. I get frantic. I get crazy. I become obsessive compulsive me. And now the thought in my head is that I must’ve hurt them more than I had thought. People, if you don’t talk to me, I will go insane. Even if you don’t want to talk to me, just say something just so I don’t leave you with a thousand messages. Honestly, I’m saying this for your own benefit. Don’t leave me in the dark. Because the dark won’t scare me, it will definitely scare you.

After that comes the fact that the person might never reply. I eventually accept it. I keep to myself that my heart is slightly fractured. I might cry a little bit, but my eyes’ tear ducts are often used so it’s not a big deal. I hate it when people don’t reply, or don’t talk to me at this point because I get the message loud and clear: They don’t care about me.

It’s fascinating nowadays how a person can go from meaning the world to you to becoming absolutely worthless. Not worth mentioning, not worth talking to, not worth your time or your love. We’ve already established that I give love out without any hesitation. And that I’m happy with the way that I am, because I believe that killing with kindness is better than living in solidarity with nothing and no one to love. But, to people who cut me off, who cut anyone off without a second glance, or to people who don’t reply because they don’t want to talk the person… why do you do it? How can you do it?

It surprises me. People love people, and people hate people. I constantly say I hate everything. I constantly say it. But those that I talk to? I love. Why would I not love those I spend time with and care about so deeply? So, if you’re talking to someone, and you have a fight, and none of you talk for a while, don’t let that just slip away. The person you’re not talking to is someone you used to know, someone you used to enjoy talking to. And in this world filled with so much hate, destruction, corruption and, let’s face it, shit, you need people whose company you enjoy. So pick up that phone, and talk to someone you want to talk to. Leave your pride out of it.