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Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Book review: YESTERDAY by Fern Micheals

#reviews

We all think of, wish for yesterday, all the good times we had. Maybe yesterday isn't what we need. This book has taught me so much about relating with people, about love. I think it will do the same for you. There are friends that will never be anything less than family to us_ the ones who are always ready to sacrifice self, the imperfect ones that we forgive and apologize to.

And Mama Pearls' death made me cry, no lie. Callies selfishness & self-centredness left me surprisingly broken hearted. Like, how can a person be that way?

Love. The different kind of love I came across in the book filled my heart and soul with so many good stuff I can't place. Some lines that made me WOW:

"It's about taking control of your life, no matter what the situation is."

"You know what? I don't wish for yesterday anymore, and I don't look forward to tomorrow either. I live for today..."

"Pearl of Parker Manor joined Lazarus just as the sun began to set. Those left behind, standing sentinel, listened to the strangled breath and then fell into each others arms. They sobbed together, comforted each other as they tried to lock themselves together, fearing aloness would somehow rob them of their feelings. They loved as one, they cried as one, and they grieved as one."

Devour the book at once.

Wednesday, February 06, 2019

(Becoming...) Best Ways to Spend Your Galentines' Day.







I still can't believe it's February, and Valentine is just around the corner.
I keep asking myself-
' is this the person you thought you'd be? From back then, when the imagination was fresh and new, is this where you wanted be?'
I haven't gone back to last year yet. I haven't reflected on all the graces that fell on me last year despite the fact that I didn't become all I wanted to become. I've been stalling because I'm afraid that reflection will dig out the hidden parts.
I remember last years 5  Nights of Glory. The best part for me was filling 2018 Expectation form. There were so many goals, prayers for God to see and nod His head, approving;
"Yes Victoria. Your goals are beautiful. You can do this, just trust me."
To be realistic, I fulfilled the goals, it just wasn't in the way I expected it to be.
Lately I've been thinking that maybe I got it wrong...
You have the goals in written form, you work towards them, but you don't let them rule you.
You let the expectations take homage in your heart- fill it with love- but you don't let it matter most. Heck, it matters a lot; acknowledge that. But there are little things that matter more. Little things that fill your days with content.
Like...
Showing up for the people God has placed around you.
Being fully in the moment as you cook or draw or write or listen to the music or watch the movie, or sit opposite a soul that needs your full self without pretence
Taking the time to read this calmly, openly.
You are becoming. And your becoming is beautiful, but don't focus so much on your becoming and forget how far you've come, don't forget who you have become.
Right now that it feels like a hundred miles between you and your goals, that your expectations remain expectations, you are where you need to be. Believe me. Your goals are not what determines where you should be.
***
That aside.
Everyone is obviously engrossed in Valentine. I am very excited about it myself. But this one is not about that.
This one is for my girl. The one who values her friends.
_ THE BEST WAYS TO SPEND YOUR GALANTINE DAY.
No. Not a typo and you read well. Galentine's day. Its a day for friends to do just that- be friends. And I am seriously over my head about get togethers, so this should be fun.
+ have a karaoke evening.
+ picnics are always the best. All you need are bananas, groundnuts and a milk drink (my elder brother loves the normal evaporated tin milk. And I tell you- it is utterly delicious).
+ I don't know about you, but I never say no to vintage thrift shopping. Who doesn't want to explore all the ways you can look amazingly stylish?
+ as boring as it seems (trust me, it's not), you & your friend(s) can just spend the whole day reading a short novella and then talk about it later that evening at a small bar while having drinks. EPIC!
+ movies. You could watch movies instead if you or you friend(s) are not a fan of books. Everybody loves movies, me right?
That's all I give away. The bottom line is that you make sure to have a fun and enjoyable day.
Love,
Victoria.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Dear T, love writes the story.

SO..... HOW DO I PUT THIS? I'M UNCERTAIN ABOUT LETTING THIS PARTICULAR EXCHANGE OUT TO THE WORLD, BUT SINCE YOU'RE READING THIS, ITS OUT THERE. THIS IS STRICTLY HERE BY PERMISSION. JUST DON'T FORGET TO SEND YOUR OPINIONS.
Hi. My name is T. I have an issue and I need your advice.
I have problems expressing myself though.
I've met a lot of guys who claim to like me. I am almost out of my teen years but I'm still under the responsibility of my aunt. At first I used to tell my aunt about it but she misunderstands me and thinks that I'm the kind of girl that has affairs. I tried my best to make her understand but she doesn't understand so now I leave her out of it and tell my friends about it instead.
Then I met a guy who claims to be madly in love with me, saying he will do anything to make me accept him. I simply told him I don't like him. But he said, he didn't mind because love doesn't come overnight. And that I should give him a chance to prove himself to me.
It was about a month and two weeks since his confession. On the day before we moved he found out about it and told me that as long as he loves me, he will look for me and he will find me. And I just thought it absurd. It's a huge world and it's impossible to find me kilometers from there. He didn't know anything about where we moving to. Well I didn't bother myself because I knew he wouldn't find me. Or so I thought.
The next day he was probably at work when we travelled. I was very happy to leave him behind.
Then it was two day's in our new home, I was informed that I had a visitor. I went to the door and I was amazed by what I saw. I was speechless. Standing before me was the guy. I simply walked back into the house and shut the door.
I didn't tell my aunt. I told a friend of mine and she told me what she thought about the whole thing. She insisted that he probably loves me and if I loved him. My reply was NO.
I got a job a little after and he soon started showing up at my workplace almost everyday. Wanting to see me because he "can stop thinking about me."
Everything has got me thinking,
Could it be that this guy really loves me as he claims. And too be realistic he spends a significant amount of money transporting himself across the state weekly.
I'm slowly realising that I'm opening up to him.
He also told me a few days ago that he knows I love him because his heart tells him so and he just wants a final answer from me.
And I'm so scared that he might be right.
What should I do?
Am I falling in love with this guy?
Why do I miss him whenever he's not around?
Why am I afraid of losing him the moment I tell him no?
Please I need your advice.
-T
***
Hey T,
I am scared too. I am scared that I'll end up giving you a bad advice or an advice that will break your heart, because me? I don't know the one thing about love between a guy and a girl. I'm just too inexperienced.
I read your letter with my palm on my chest and sometimes over my gasping mouth. I am shocked by your story. I feel cheesy and giddy after reading it.
And when I was done gasping, and smiling, and thinking about how much this story will be a great fit for a romantic movie, and also pacing my room thinking what in this world of graced humans I should write as a reply, all the while remembering scenes and parts from my favorite movie and book - THE HEIRS & REDEEMING LOVE by Francine Rivers.
I simply decided to seek more wisdom. And now, sitting here, writing this, I'm so freaking scared. I keep thinking I am too inexperienced to give you advice about this.
But then another part of me is pushing me, because after all, this is what I wanted. The worst mistake I'll make is run away from it.
First thing is first, does he love you?
Honey, only God knows. But on my opinion, he does.
And the guy is right, love doesn't come once. Love grows. It starts small, it is slow but firm when it comes. And it comes by opening up your heart, even in the smallest way.
You T. You have obviously opened your heart, his love has slipped in and you are unsure of what is.
You could keep fighting it. You could keep running away from the fact that it's there, but it will keep growing there.
Another thing about love is that you don't just wake up and get rid of it. Love is hard to uproot.
T, if you miss him whenever he's gone then you're falling in love with this guy. And for me. I've learnt that when you love something or someone, love whole and true, love with everything. Love madly. Love even if you're scared of what is, or what could be, or would never be. Love even if you think you know the end of the story - and it doesn't end well. Just love.
You don't have to give him a reply you both dread. Telling him NO leaves the both of you broken. And broken is not good, honey. Trust me.
And until you accept the fact that you love him, you'll never be able to fix this.
So T, go ahead and tell him. Tell him what you feel, how you feel...
"Hey guy. I think I'm liking you. But I'm scared of that. And do you know why? Because I can see where this whole thing ends in_ a big pot full of the pieces of my broken heart. There's my aunt. And if we continue, it's both of us against the world. I'm not sure I can handle that. Can you?"
Telling him that is just a start. A small step of progress. Well good. Progress is good.
Yet, the question still stands. It's both of you against the world, can you handle that?
You both need to be able to give a straight answer to that question.
Maybe you need more time, let him wait for you. Maybe your fear won't let you give in, wait anyways. Love writes the story, not you & not him either.
Loving someone needs all of you. It doesn't come without planting itself deep in the depths of your heart. And it grows- courage is needed, sacrifice is needed, faith is needed for it to grow. Because there is a lot to overcome.
You have to want something bad enough to overcome any mountain standing between you and that thing. And if you look at the mountain and give up, then it simply isn't worth fighting for. But if your love keeps pushing you, ignoring your fear, pushing to overcome, its worth the fight. It's worth the fight, T. So fight with all of you, because love needs all of you.
Then once you let the love begin to push you, lean into it. Draw strength from the love. Its alright to be scared. Your fear only makes the whole thing realistic and more assuring.
Let love plant itself into your being, past your fears, past whatever you think you can't handle, then don't look past it. Don't look past what your love is growing into right in this moment. That's the only way to keep going.
It would be too bad if you look back to this moment from the future and think-
"I wish I had let love create a story in my life. I wish I had let love take all of me wholly & fully even though I was scared."
It will also be equally bad if you end up thinking you should have listened to your aunt instead.
But me. I'll always say choose love. I'll always write; "let love write this story no matter what. Love is the best at creating happily ever after's, so let it write yours."
In the end, T, you're left with the decision. Though I feel like I haven't helped you much. I hope this little help goes a long way.
Love,
Victoria.
***
P.S
Be a gift today and write your opinions to T. Please. She needs as much help as she can get. Send it to victoriaigeboo@gmail.com and I'll forward it to her. Thank you.




Sunday, January 27, 2019

Dear A, we let the story unfold.

How did you know what you want to do with your life?
- A

Dear A,
I'm not sure how to answer this question. Apparently, I am never sure of how to answer any question or advice request until I'm done writing the reply.
...
I'm the girl who feels like it's her job to fix people's lives.
I'm the girl who wants to save the world from itself.
I'm the girl who wants to be known for great, extraordinary, life changing things.
I am the girl who has so much to say that I barely let the next person speak.
I am the girl always driving to give advice but hardly ever takes my own advice.
I'm the girl who is constantly fighting her fear of people because I don't want to be judged or disliked; it's just easier to be far from all of it.
I am the ambitious girl.
And honestly, if you had asked me back then if I loved the girl I was, I would have said a simple no.
Maybe I'll still say no right now.
But I can't help but think that I chose this path because of the girl I am.
I may not love all that I am; it's a fact that what I do is the making of who I am.

And knowing who you are would never come at once. Because discovering yourself is a slow process.
It's in the compliments of your friends. It's in the moments of meditation. It's in the stories of other lives who are kind of, sort of like yours in a way. It's in the fictional characters you read and watch; moments that leave you thinking,
" yeah. I am like that too. I hate being disliked. I love it when people just love me." And stuffs like that.
To know who you are is to live looking at the lives of others around you; your life is a reflection of many lives put together.

I only began the process of knowing what I wanted to do with my life when I began to discover and know myself.

It was late one morning, sitting opposite a guy who has remained distant to me since. In the midst of our discussion about religion, he looked me straight in the eye and told me,
"You don't know yourself."
And until now, I keep wondering how the discussion diverted from something about religion to that- 'knowing yourself'.

It struck me hard_ the fact that he was obviously right, no matter how I argued otherwise.
So I went home after, opened my journal & wrote down all the things that made my heart sing. They were a lot then, random stuffs I knew I was interested in... books, blogs, inspiring words, flowers... But now, my list is fewer, much more defined.
For me, it started there. The whole 'knowing what to do with my life' started when I began to love myself for all the things I love. It created the urge to spend life doing the one thing I would never fall out of love with. But will see everyday as a blessing because of it.

It was a really slow knowing because one minute you're certain you love something and the next you just realize you got it wrong. That it's not about the writing or the fact that you can write; it's about what happens when a soul reads it and realizes that life is so much more than living everyday. That it's not about your love for books; it's about sharing with the world the books that leave you gasping for air to live life like you've never imagined.

Every choice I made down the road, choices bred by the things that make me happy in life, only got me closer to this girl sitting and typing this. And A, it took years.

Want to know what to do with your life? Know yourself and love the way you find yourself.
We know what we are meant to do when we realize that we don't want to imagine life any other way.
And we are not supposed to know how it would come to us. We simply live; love who we find God made us into; and we let the story unfold- the story of how we choose to be light, we let it unfold itself.

Then I think one day, we wake up and realise we know who we are, we know what we want our lives to be about. And it's just the passion of that dream that pushes us... we become light.

A, that's my story.
Love,
Victoria.

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Take these steps towards a happier fuller life.

+ look at yourself in the mirror everyday and smile. Seeing your smiling reflection will make smiling easier to do (since you now know that you aren't ugly when you smile, you'll smile more.)

+ find a creative thing to do regularly that you enjoy. Baking, pottery, gardening, drawing, redecorating your home space, painting etc. It just cleanses your soul, you know? And also your mind. Actually, mainly your mind. I write all the above creative things from experience. They all really do the refreshing deed of cleansing your inner being. Honestly.

+ make time for yourself alone. One hour, 30 mins, 15 mins. Have a you time. Besides how can you get creative with people looking over your shoulder in the process?

+ so, you do know that your appearance plays as big role in self confidence when you're outside your home, right? I don't know about you sha, but the best part of going out for me is dressing up. That done well, I know I've taken a huge step towards confidence.

+ define you please. Know the things you love- color, fashion style, a part of nature, a form of courtesy-ing (okay, I just wrote this because I have run out of things to write. But thinking about it, it seems cool to have your own personal way to courtesy), etc. Let people know you by these things. Whether you wear makeup or not. Or you wear heels or not and all those girl stuff for my girl. Guy, you know you own stuff. Me doesn't know.

+ have a journal. Love the journal. Don't limit. Write anything you love or want to write in it. It ain't nobodies business if you want to write the silliest thing, or the deepest feelings in your heart, or if you just copy down words that aren't yours. It is your journal after all.

+ buy and keep a fountain pen around all the time.
Don't ask me why, I just love fountain pens. (& literally, I'm secretly waiting and hoping for someone to stop me on the way one of these days to ask for my autograph. #fountainpenautographing. #imaginationrunwild.)

+ and of course, it is impossible for me to forget this one. Candle lights. I have a small honey jar where I keep the candle in to make it look as special and as classic as it should.
It's for those nights when you put aside all that your brain is begging you to focus on in life to just live in the moment... the life in the fire, how the fire breathes and dances, the brightness- your life is so much like this life, this living fire.

+ run away from toxic people. The people you stay around can either make you or break you (I think I've heard that somewhere.)
There is one special and unique friend out there who is meant to be your best friend.  That person loves and accepts you for who you are, flaws and all. Find that person, when you do, never let go of that person. No matter what.
That person is out there, I promise. Believe it. (& I rarely make promises like HB, too.)

That it.
Love,
Victoria.

Book review: YESTERDAY by Fern Micheals

#reviews We all think of, wish for yesterday, all the good times we had. Maybe yesterday isn't what we need. This book has taught me so...