something light. like the little joys.
1) reading poetry on street corners in san francisco to strangers. screaming it to the full moon night sky. realizing strangers are listening, affirming, applauding. genuinely.
2) words. i am painting the world in letters. after nearly two years absent, my creativity is back. powerfully so.
3) singing. i am no etta james (sigh) and no adele (double sigh) but the vocal chords i do have are not bad. friends and family tell me all the time i sing well. and, well, i am starting to believe. i’m starting to understand the concept of personal range and tone. plus, singing helps with throat chakra opening
4) skirts. i am officially over pants. skirts offer a mobility pants do not. and a certain femininity i am unearthing, rejoicing in.
5) coconut oil in my coffee (insomnia calls for coffee sometimes, unfortunately). coconut oil, in general.
6) the weather. spring sprung early. sometime mid-february. it may speak to global warming but. i am enjoying the sun and its shine thoroughly.
what’s making you happy these days?
i suck at conclusions (whole other tangent) so, i took a break before writing it.
and took the opportunity of having an empty house with really awesome acoustics to belt it etta-james style.
you know the kind. sometimes equipped with dance moves.
eventually you laugh at yourself. (if you’re me).
because it’s funny to go from deeply frustrated to deeply light in like…an hour.
mostly though, it’s funnier you still pretend to sing to an audience.
even though the audience is your refrigerator and kitchen table.
so you might have noticed how often i say, “we’ll talk about that later!”
and you might have noticed how rarely i follow through.
well, kids, lucky for you (purely an assumption) i am following through!
this is a big moment. i suck at following through. something i am conscious of and working on. starting…NOW!
today i want to talk about skin care.
my interest in skin care ignited back in the day of middle school and seventeen magazine reading. i poured over the “better skin!” articles, read up on benzoyl peroxide like other people did the articles of hot boys. yeah priorities! (well that and i always though those boys they did stories on were, um, ugly). i’ve tried everything — proactive, neutrogena, cetaphil, aveeno, et. al. (aka: any product on the shelves of your local rite aid/target/CVS).
i was always lucky, though. my genetics gave me generally clear skin. sometimes a little oily, sometimes a little dry, all depending on the weather. but i was never acne prone outside of a few zits around my period. i escaped high school relatively clear-faced.
want to know when all that changed? (i promise it’s not hard to guess)
when i stopped eating and started exercising like the world was ending the next day.
i started to break out with in the first couple of months after turning vegetarian and upping the number of runs i did each week. in places i never broke out — on my cheeks (i usually broke out on my chin, forehead, and right around my nose. and by “break out” i mean i got like, one or two zits). on top of that, i got cysts. big, painful ones on my cheeks. guys, i flipped my shit. because, what the fuck, i wasn’t 16 any more! i was twenty, a woman! not a teenager battling against hormones!
this is the best picture i can find to show you. what you can’t see: a smattering of under-the-skin, small zits all over my forehead. this was about two years ago, post-20th-birthday-cyst on my left cheek (you can see it).
(also, i look like such a baby).
anyway, it got really bad. really, really bad. gnarly whiteheads. painful bumps on my face and neck. i was embarrassed and uncomfortable. i had never dealt with any of that before. and i’m sure being sad and stressed all the time did nothing to help my skin along. i tried a million products without success.
it all changed when i hit my breaking point. my skin turned around almost immediately after i re-introduced animal products to my diet and stopped running. in fact, i’m pretty sure i haven’t had a whitehead on my cheeks since. (yes, i am knocking on wood right now). changing my diet changed my mood, my overall happiness. i upped my water intake along with my food intake, too. healthy skin needs a lot, lot, lot of H20 kidlettes!
additionally, i started looking at the ingredients in my face cleansers. if i didn’t eat anything i couldn’t pronounce, why should i use anything on my skin i couldn’t pronounce? especially when said ingredients leek into the body via the skin anyway?
today i use very, very little on my skin. i wash it every other day (though every day with water). once a day. at night, before i sleep. i use dr. bronner’s soap bars because i can read all the ingredients fluently and know what they are (rose scent is my favorite). i follow up my night-time face-washing ritual with a little coconut oil to moisturize and to replenish the oil i might have stripped away. twice a week or so i exfoliate with a coconut/brown sugar/vitamin E scrub my friend made me for christmas (i use it on my body too). it’s awesome.
and, again, i drink a LOT of water. i try really hard to not touch my face, as hands carry a lot of germs. likewise, i try really hard to not pick my face if and when i get a zit (way, way easier said than done, especially with whiteheads). a healthy diet helps tons, too. vegetables make my skin glow!
but that’s it. no fancy nothing. no expensive anything. just a cheap-ish bar of soap and some natural coconut goodness. my skin hasn’t looked or felt this great in years.
(yuh, i’m a dork-us. but without breakouts!)
what are your skin-care routines, if you have any? what works for you?
(p.s: please know that this is what works for my skin. it took a ton of trial and error to get here and your routine might end up looking different for you because your skin is different!
p.p.s: i’ll blab about haircare sometime later this week!
p.p.p.s: HAH. i totally didn’t mean to make the same face as the first photo. clearly, i haven’t changed much in two years when it comes to posing for photos. that or i’m awkward.)
music makes monday so much better.
or, really, any day better.
before the music though, an astrology announcement:
(because i nerd out over shit the stars tell us)
we transitioned into pisces today so the mood’s all dreamy and spiritual and light and dark all at the same time. i feel happy, calm, motivated, and creative right now. the spiritual energy we wade through under pisces’ influence can be difficult to manage. advice: go with the flow.
nerd session over.
feist! honestly, i generally have to be a feist mood to listen to her…but not with this song! i could listen to this all day. every day.
and, because it’s monday and because monday can have to potential to be lame, here’s a remix of the above song by another guy i love. boyz noize is just one dude from germany and he fucking kills it. i heard this version of my moon, my man first, actually! (warning: this one may not be for everyone. heh…)
may the start of your monday be all kiiiiinds of musical!
with a very close friend.
alight with deep happiness and warm from february sunshine.
then, something funny happened. last night. something out-of-character but so in-character.
i took a deep breath.
stepped into the middle of a circle ringed by people and more people — strangers.
and, in front of all these faces i did not know, i read my poetry.
can we talk about fears that are irrational?
can we talk about how calm my heart felt in my chest as i performed?
can we talk about evolving?
can we talk about liberation?
can we talk about how fucking great i feel?
no clouds. blue sky. glorious sunshine.
oh yeah. it’s not february or anything.
(just kidding it rained last week for two days).
i am very happy today. very settled. after two or three very unsettling weeks. let’s not dwell on that. it’s done and gone. here now is happiness. i like that.
i like silly, random thoughts too. a lot have come up today.
like 1) next month marks my two year blogging aniversary. can you believe i’ve been blabbing into space for that long? i still can’t believe people bother reading sometimes!
2) i fell off my bike today. while not moving. it hurt. but i still laughed despite stinging knees. because really. reaaaally zoe?
3) my soft, gentle, self-love voices sounds like zooey deschannel’s character jess from new girl. i don’t know why. just like i don’t know why zooey spells her name the way she does.
4) it’s my ex’s 23rd birthday today. last year it was raining. i made him cake and we made dinner. the next day, we ended our relationship and my life disintegrated. today, a whole year later, i looked at the sky with a smile and wished him the brightest, happiest birthday.
5) i can’t.stop.dancing.
7) i am, slowly, slowly, feeling my feelings. yesterday i woke up sad. not the immobilizing sadness depression brings, just normal sad. my mind raced for a quick fix, to feel anything other than sad. instead, i laced up my shoes and walked my ass along concrete side walks. i kicked rocks. i cried a little, caught soft sobs in my throat. by evening, i was laughing and conversing and enjoying beers with a friend. BECAUSE I FELT THAT SHIT OUT, YO! (i’m weird.)
(8 ) and i like that, too)
9) i haven’t washed my hair with shampoo in well over a month. it’s healthier than it’s ever been. (i’ll talk about beauty/grooming stuff soon. it’s a secret passion of mine.)
(think i need to touch up my roots? heh…)
what about you? any silly things you’re kickin’ round up in that head of yours you want to share?
(p.s: yes. i took all those photos. please no stealing )
so, remember when i set the intention to be more open?
to, you know, receive the abundance of my life?
(i blabbered about that, right?)
well, can we talk about a the gift the universe dumped on me today?
it was kind of fucking great.
remember when i got home from burning man and talked and talked and continued to talk about dancing? i am pretty sure in the middle of all that talk, i declared pretty passionately “i found my soul on the dance floor“?
well. i really wasn’t kidding.
’cause i recognized my soul again today on the hardwood dance floor of my kitchen.
did i ever tell you i wanted to be a ballerina when i was kid? (like almost every other five-year-old girl). but i devoted my body to soccer instead. years and years of nothing but chasing a ball. yes, i loved it. but i still loved dance, too.
i envied a childhood friend who danced ballet as long as i played soccer. she claimed she wasn’t the best, something about her feet. i always thought she was beautiful.
and free. so, so free.
did i ever tell you how much i hate reality t.v shows but how much i love, love, love so you think you can dance?
and how i cry every episode? the only formal dancing i’ve ever seen was a ballet in first grade (i fell asleep) and the dancing of my childhood friend. so of course i sat for long, long weeks in front of the television, pointing always to every dancer and saying, “that’s fucking beautiful.” (because i am really graceful, too).
did i ever tell you when i was a kid i created dances with my friends and performed them for my mom? and the kids at my day care? (surprisingly, i had a lot of friends).
did i ever tell you how i believe in past lives (more on that another time)? i do. and i was definitely a dancer a one point. i feel that down to my bones. (why else would my knees hyper extend and why else can i balance so well and make nice lines? useless talents?)
so, no wonder i envy dancers. dancers are artists who create with their bodies. there are stories in those moves. colors. images. i wanted that.
last summer i reconnected with the dancer in me again. we rejoiced in an open desert. then, she left.
and came back today. we visited, fell in love all over again. she whispered to me, “just move”. for one, solid song i thought nothing. not a single fucking thought. i just moved. but even that’s not quite right. something moved me.
kind of how something spills words into my conscious and asks for a transcriber. something about writing in a fluid trance isn’t just me. there’s something working through me to paint the world in words. something worked through me today in the kitchen. i opened up and received liberation. and when i came to, wheezing with exertion, i cried.
rain clouds spilled. from the couch i watched rain drop through sun rays. ever the scientific genius, i smiled and said, “i bet there’s a rainbow outside!” and promptly ran/tumbled/walked to the window. to see a streak of rainbow, bright above the hill.
then i cried a little bit more.
(because i am cheesy and think everything has meaning).
how do YOU see your soul?
(p.s: i wrote this yesterday)
(p.p.s: the best, best, best part? usually after any dancing i walk around with a sore, inflamed low back. yesterday (and today!) not only do i feel no pain, but i feel strength!)
(p.p.p.s: happy valentine day. to be honest, i am not a fan. for various reasons (maybe i’ll discuss this tomorrow?) but mainly because i believe in loving every day. regardless, have a beautiful, love-filled, chocolate-and-rose-fueled day!)
remember when i did this?
i am the most inconsistent person i know.
i am not goal oriented. i am not a list person. i am not organized (at all).
i am terribly afraid of commitment. on all levels. i never really want to be — it just happens. it just is, always has been.
i’m working on it.
because structure is good, right?
recently, a friend dumped truck loads of music into my life. considering i was basically listening to the same, oh, thirty or so songs on repeat, the newness was entirely welcomed. entirely.
especially when i discovered this band. over and over and over again.
on walks, in the kitchen, while showering, and dancing around the house…
i am utterly head over heels in love with local natives.
madly, passionately, crazy over their words, their sounds, their rhythm. i try to temper this musical addiction, promise i will go a day without listening but then…well, i am not one to ever possess much will power.
then move on to every other song. (hint: you can listen to them all on their website. doitdoitdoit.)
especially this one.
(p.s: see? i promise i do have a life outside of this fucking eating disorder bullshit. i want to change my perspective. i’ll write to you about that soon, i think.
p.p.s: anyone have any suggestions about how to calm anxiety? i am crazy acidic anxious today for various (very dumb) reasons, luckily without urges to hurt myself with food or other things. is simply sitting with this okay? that’s normal too, right?)