I am me.

To start the day off in a positive way, I give you this.

I am what I am. I am me.

Like most people are ‘me’ for themselves. And though it might sound silly to say this, it is in fact one of the strongest statements one can make. Because it underlines personal pride and strength. I wish everyone could state these three little words in all confidence realizing that they really are who they are. With all defects but also with the beauty and strength they have. Unfortunately many people never get to that stage in their lifetime but I am hopeful that one they everyone will.

So, what and who is that ‘me’ that I am?

Well let’s say it like this to explain it a little…

I am proud of myself. When people ask me if I was a guy then nowadays I can safely say that I never was because I at least do understand that physical construction doesn’t define masculinity or femininity because it’s in the mind and the heart. And right after that I would probably pinch them in the butt. I am also a lesbian in love with geeky stuff and gadgets and fashion and I do wear lipstick. Every day. Wether you like it or not while kissing. Oh and when I have a girlfriend I really do love her until the other side of the world. And although I love the female attire I am pretty damned good with heavy camera’s and equipment, look stunning in trekking gear and I can most certainly read maps and find my way around. Anywhere. Anytime.

Ok, I am also transgender in the sense that I transitioned without dying first. Pretty smart thing to do as it saves me the long waiting for reincarnation without certainty of the outcome. And it was not a nice thing to do. It scared the shit out of me, was painful and it ruined most of my private and professional life. Friends proved not to be friends, work proved not to be something that I could take for granted so I lost my businesses and ended up in heavy debts. It ruined my marriage and my God(s and Goddesses) I have cried so many tears that it could fill a mid size mountain lake.

On the other hand, I just restarted life as if nothing had happened. I learned a new trade and some new tricks and even became frikkin happy at times. And that was a first. I’m struggling often, am depressed every now and then but also regularly in love and f*cking amazing in what I do and create. And I have lost the ability to be scared of most of the crap that other people fear as their worst enemies. I learned the relativity of money and the joy of true friendship, the beauty of a song and I even sing the damned song myself every now and than. Never thought I would do that. And on top of it all, I learned to write and visualize and although the fight is sometimes long and hard I am out there and you, yes you, are reading my scribblings. Which is quite nice actually and I thank you for taking the time to do so. Oh, and did I mention that I do have three great kids? No? Well then, here it is: I do have three great kids!

Thing is my dear friends, I can do so much and so much more than all these grey mice living their grey lives in a grey society. I live with color, sound and images, words and stories, friends and lovers and in spite of the occasional backdrop (ok, a few too many sometimes) I do all that with energy and strength. And I do that without having to thank a white bearded old sucker high in the sky sitting on an imaginary cloud of nonsense. (I feel more attached to the vivid, colorful Hindu Gods anyway.) And I do all that and I am who I am because I endured and I never really gave up. While struggle and depression have become an integral part of my life, shining and radiating and being awesome from time to time is the better part of my life now. And for all intents and purposes (I love that Shakespearean line) I am proud that I live my life to the max of my ability and I am proud that I have so much love in me that there is no way that in my lifetime I can get rid of it all. And if you didn’t join me in my current efforts to make a difference in a positive way I sure hope you will join me soon in one of my next endeavours. And if there is no new endeavour coming from me than I am either disappeared and vanished somewhere or I am to be cremated. And that is for as far as I am concerned still a long, long time from now.

I can only hope, dear friends, that you will see the real me in this picture. Because this one stands for who I am, who I want to be, what I want to do and how I am in the happiest moments of my life.

So, as I said, I am me. And I don’t have a clue why I write this today other than I just felt the urge to do so. Maybe it’s just because I love you and I think you are worth that love.

© 2012 Alice Verheij

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Paradise lost, paradise found, paradise lost again…

Sometimes life just pushes someone to a change of environment. It is not strange that people like me in the west get fed up with the selfishness and the complexity of life in western society. The thing is that money dehumizes people to some extend. In such cases the desire for a simpler, less complicated life in which the basic things like eating, sleeping and understanding that nature and simplicity actually add to life in stead of subtract from it, is not strange.

‘Paradise?’ (photo © 2012 Alice Verheij – Kakani, Nepal)

For some people, the more sensitive and emotionally guided people, the west is not such a good place. Actually same goes for all urban environments likes cities and crowded towns. People like that thrive on the lonelyness of remote areas and the hardship that these areas bring to living. They are the wanderers, the travelers, artists, writers, photographers and filmers. They cannot stay in one place for long. The need change like they need to breath. When life settles down they emotionally die.

I am like that and only in recent years I have allowed myself to truly understand my own nature and my own desire to live a life traveling. I can’t help it. And on travels like that I experience the world difeerent. More positive, albeit sometimes also more dangerous. But my senses are challenged and by that I at last feel that I am alive. And when I feel alive and at the same time be of value to people who are experiencing difficulties, than my life is close to perect. Paradise is then something I will have found, not something I have lost.

Please don’t give me a stable home, please don’t fix me to a spot, please don’t ask me to stay anywhere forever. Because I know that of I would do so I would also lay my head down and breath my last. I would simply not live anymore. I am for all intences and purposes a traveler in search of Paradise. And sometimes I get a glimpse of it. Please let me lose that paradise so I can continue my search for only in the lost paradise I will find it again. It is just how it is, it is the only thing I cannot change in my life: the endless desire to be not here. To go without destination for my paradise is in the journey and nowhere to be found. I am a restless soul not destined to find what it is searching for but to continue searching until my final destination.

Alice © 2012