“All our dreams can come true” or what Disnay taught me

I’ve always had a soft spot for Disney, one of my earliest memories is me and my brother arguing over Aurora dress colour at the end of Sleeping Beauty. I not a huge fan the Disney Princess thing; I was always more of a Jungle Book, Lion King, Lady and the Tramp and everything Pixar sort of girl. Now I’m older, despite the problems I have with Disney, I find the films undeniably beautiful, I went to watch the Lion King in 3D and found that as a child I had missed how visually stunning it was.

Like I said I have problems with Disney, as a child I always felt they had ruined many of my favourite stories and fairytales by not being faithful to the original material I was familiar with. Nor I could ever really relate to Princess who all seemed desperate to find love and be swept off their feet. Then I got older and found a whole new set of issues (got to love age and cynicism.) There is however a couple of things I learnt from Disney.

  1. If nothing else I have learnt that love is important and that it comes in all shapes

    This was on my 10th Birthday cake I had in America, I have kept this plastic decoration all these years as I can’t bear to let it go.

    andsizes. Lilo and Stitch has a small and broken family but it’s “still good” and Belle only has a father. I watched parents do anything for their children; it helped me understand my own. I watched friends in Disney help each other, I watched lovers heart-break and then rejuvenate with a kiss. Love and relationships are pivotal in Disney, because it is the thing that gives us most joy in life, our family and our friends make us happy but it’s more than that love is also about the sacrifices you make for the people who mean the most. The older you get the less you take love for granted.

  2. From the moment Mufasa died it dawned on me: Life is hard. None of the characters in Disney have it easy, Cinderella, Hercules, Pocahontas, their lives are difficult, they are faced with arduous decisions and challenges while trying to do the right thing and make their lives better. Disney has the lives of their characters change and often it is beyond their control and they are simply trying to do their best and keep their head above water. The older I get the more I understand this feeling and how much harder it can become.
  3. Hope is a very powerful thing, it is the only thing that can defeat pain. Hope is everywhere in Disney:  101 Dalmatians, Fox and the Hound, Aladdin, the characters and the audience never gives up hope for a happy ending. Hope is the thing that characters hold on to when all else is lost, it is part of them that never dies, the last candle in the darkness. The older we get the harder it is to keep the hope while in life I’ve learnt that the candle doesn’t always stay lit; Disney does a pretty good job of showing how significant it is in life. H.O.P.E : Hold On, Pain Ends.
  4. There is such thing as magic, the world pretty awesome place and if you take the time to see it ,magic is alive and well and if not…. your toys come to life when you leave the room. It is also in our dreams and wishes, Snow White wishes in a well, Geppetto on a star and Peter Pan fills Wendy’s dreams, these are thing that these character hold on to and fuel their life. They are a source of amazing strength and that is magic.
  5. The greatest thing I have learnt from Disney is that you are your own hero, you can save yourself. The characters fight and despite all the Princess having Princes they do a pretty good job at fighting for themselves. They fight for what they want, they fight to have their wishes and dreams and to protect their hopes and the people they love. Love is important so fight for it, life is hard so fight for the life you want, hope is important so fight not to lose it, fight to keep the magic in your life. Simple.

The thing about growing up is that things become less black and white and become more about different shades of grey. Disney may not be the shinning white sceptical I remember it being, but that doesn’t tarnish the lessons I’ve leant. Mainly everyone can exist, the good and the bad, but you have to fight to live the life you will be proud of, you will have to believe in yourself even when others don’t and you have to dare to dream and go after that light no matter how dark it gets.

The Disney Princess at their film ages by Taijavigilia

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Greener on the other side

Tall daisiesI bumped into someone today who once told me I was the type of person who would always believe the grass is greener on the other side. I don’t think this person ever really understood me. I remember sighing at them and saying it wasn’t that I thought the grass would greener, just that I was tired of sitting on short well kept grass and that I wanted to lie in the tall wild unkempt grass instead. I like change, I like the new and I am always looking for something more; that doesn’t mean I’m looking for something better, I’m looking for something different. I move on a lot and I believe that life and identity is something of constant transition and change. No matter how much someone may try and stay still, the world marches on and you can either stumble long with it or embrace it and skip to the beat. I have chosen to change schools, hobbies, favourite things, jobs because the world changes, life changes and I change too.

I have never believed that the grass was going to be greener on the other side; I’m just in search of different grass. Grass that might have taller daisies or smaller daisies, grass that has sunshine dandelions, grass that maybe has some lucky clover. I don’t think that the grass will be a better shade of jade or more luxurious, it’s just that maybe I don’t want to play with Buttercups anymore, maybe I want to make daisy chains or search for a four leaf clover.

I think no matter where your patch of grass is who and what you love doesn’t change, your passion and pleasure stay mostly the same and your nature at heart is fairly constant. Those things close to your heart make the grass green. I don’t think how green the grass is has much to do with where your grass is, it about how well you choose maintain the grass you are lying in, even brown and brittle grass can be lush and green when watered and tended to. I think if you want green grass, water the grass you have, if you want something different go in search of it, but you have to look after the grass no matter where you are.

I suppose I could just plant daisies and clover and dandelions and buttercups, but I have a feeling some miserable sod has labelled them as weeds and the packet seed would be hard to come across.

Where I am the best version of me.

Is there a place where you feel like a different person, or perhaps where you feel like a superior or ultimate version of yourself? Somewhere that brings out your greatest aspects, diminishes you faults, somewhere where you excel. Mine is my old university town. I have yet to find anywhere that can make me feel safe and peaceful; it is where I formed some of great ideas about literature, art, friends and life. Aberystwyth in Wales lives in its own dazzling bubble, with little crime, vice or evil one can quite happy forget there is a big bad world beyond it boarders. It was a place where I could just be, just live and be happy.

I went through a lot of pain there but I never felt isolated or lonely. It wasn’t just the incredible people I met there, the place itself stood by my side, it laughed with me, stood close by me when I cried in the dark and stopped the world to comfort me. I miss it, I miss the people I love so much I cling to them as though I’m afraid they are a wonderful dream that will slip through my fingers. I miss the person I was there, the better, smarter, prettier and happier person. I miss the conversations about politics, books, comics, films, music, love, passion and life. I wondered if it was just me who had a place like this? Or does everyone have a place where they are the person they could be?   

Tumbling Pretties

When am I too old to……?

I’m wondering at what age does it become unacceptable to sleep on your friend’s floor? This is a genuine concern for me as I do it lot, visiting people, nights out, going to gigs and other things. I always stay on someone’s floor, but I, er, get the impression that you proper adults/grown ups don’t do that. Soooo I kind of want I want to know at what age is it, you know, ‘improper’ for me to sleep on my friends floors?

Seriously, I mean my parents don’t slumber in sleeping bags on a mate’s carpet; so at what age do I have to start… I don’t know shelling out for hotel rooms or making other arrangements? (I have no idea what these other arrangements are.) Or is that they don’t stop snoozing on mates floors but rather that they have fewer reasons to? Do ‘adults’ stop going to gigs, stop going on nights out and getting too inebriated to drive home and stop visiting friends ? Is that why they no longer catch Zzzzzzz on floorboards?  I suppose that adults stay with other adults and adults have spare rooms, is that it?

This is just one of the many, many questions I have about being an ‘adult’; for example my friend who I went ‘white dress’ shopping with at the weekend, still goes out for coffee, orders a coke and slurps it. She getting married in 4 months and still doesn’t drink coffee and still slurps her drinks. How is she grown up enough to be married? I went to a gig on Monday; now am I allowed to go to a gig on a week night if I have work the next day or am I meant to be responsible and not go? This gig was for a band I have loved since I was 14 and my friends and I went along with every intention of re living our youth in a big way. Does that mean we are adults now because we can relive bits of our youth?  Am I too old to like cartoons, Disney Parks and teddies? If so I am definitely not adult enough to have the child that would provide the ‘permission’ for me to be seen enjoying these again.

I never used to care about these things or what other people thought about these things. Is that a sign that I’m more adult or grown up or whatever? Sod it, I really just want to know when I’ll stop getting back ache from the all that contorting as a result of sleeping on those hard floors!

White dresses and a level up in the game of life.

My friend has moved her wedding forward by a year from September 2013 to September 2012. I’m sorry to say I was first in there with the unoriginal question ‘Are you Pregnant?’ I couldn’t help it. I am vastly ecstatic because they got engaged and then the wedding seemed so far away, now it is the highlight at the end of my summer, let alone theirs. The bride is a wonderful friend from university and her fiancée is fab, I spend a large amount of time in their spare room when I’m visiting friends in trade for a bottle of wine. I have spent many happy hours with them and I can’t wait to see them marry, I plan to cry a sea of tears and drink way too much in their honour. They are a couple that is so established in my world that if they separated I’m sure the universe would rip at the seams.

 

White dresses

The dresses

I’m not going to be a bridesmaid; however I spent the weekend wedding dress shopping with the bride to be and her mother. Would you believe it, the first dress, in the first shop was just perfect and nothing else after could measure up. This didn’t stop her trying on lots of dresses, I watched her try on white gown after white gown and started to feel, well, a little odd. I have never really wanted to get married, I was always in the train of thought that if you loved someone and wanted to spend your life with them just do it, why do you need a piece of paper to prove that you do or will. It’s not like in today’s society it means a lot, every marriage seems doomed to fail before it has started. Despite my cynicism and my generation’s apparent determination to devalue marriage, I always feel overwhelmingly happy when someone tells me they are going to tie the knot, I think it’s because in that moment that person seems incandescently happy. In the bridal shop, staring at mountains of white, cream, ivory, satin and lace I started to wonder if I wanted a big white dress? I can’t imagine thinking I could spend the rest of my life with anyone, let alone wanting or even choosing someone to do that with. Just because I can’t imagine it doesn’t mean I wouldn’t like it, it doesn’t mean that it wouldn’t make me content, it just means I have to do some serious revaluation of what makes me happy.

Everyone around me is in long term relationships, engagements and marriage. Me? Well I joined a Facebook group called ‘My friends are getting married, I’m getting drunk’, yes this is probably childish but it feels like I’m playing a game and I just went up a level in difficultly. It feels like I’m getting old and this doesn’t sit well with me, do I have to start checking for glinting gold bands on the left hand every time someone I am remotely attracted to starts talking to me? I am going to start getting sympathy looks every time I say I’m single, watching a small flash of fear in their eye as they panic I’m might burst into tears over my singleton status or even worse they might catch singletonitis? Or heartbreakingly worse am I going to be deserted, left behind by my friends? Is there room in married life for the single girl chasing a Neverland dream? If I fight to keep my friends will they accept me, chasing happiness that’s not like theirs or will we just drift apart on different tides??

Driving away.

Driving away on a new adventure

Driving away on a new adventure

Have you ever had the urge to climb in your car and drive?? That’s all, drive and keep driving on and on. I get it all the time; I want to see how far I can get on a tank of petrol. I wonder where I’ll end up, what far off place I could reach, what will be there and if I’ll stay. It’s not even to run away or get away from my current life, I’m just curious to see what else there is, what else is beyond my current world. On a sunny day when I fill up my car or sit in traffic every fibre within threatens to tear apart my skin as it vibrates with the desire to turn up the radio, wind down the window and leave nothing but dust as I race on to something at the edge of some unknown map.

I get itchy feet, I always have. Even when I was young I would complain of being bored but not knowing what I was bored of. It would feel like I was drowning, the impulse weighing down on me and feel terrible because it wasn’t that I was ungrateful of the life I had I just wanted to see what else there could be. I still haven’t squared that guilt. I have to be busy and doing something new just so the old doesn’t lose its shine. There was always a new school, a new place to inhabit and new people to gather. Life is interesting chasing the next adventure. My world is wonderful but sometimes I want to see what is over there and bring a bit back, just a little bit.

I wanna run, I wanna skip infinitely on, searching for something unique, I wanna feel new rough grass, smell scrumptious recipes I’ve never tried, be caressed by a fresh breeze and taste different air. I wanna hear a strange city boogie to its individual tune and the country waltz to a beat of its own and I wanna dance with them. I used to sit on trains with buoyant friends and jump off at a stop, any stop and see where we were, if we didn’t like the place we jumped back on the train to a new stop. I will never drive the same route twice; I’ll see what a different road has to offer, what treasure it has for me to find. There is always something new to see, people to meet, things to do.

The older I get the greater the urge to drive; it’s like fear, a fear that if I don’t do it now I never will and miss something, something incredible just beyond the edge of my world. Maybe I should listen to the nagging because I never do just drive away, I can always think of one good reason not to drop everything, frustratingly there is always a reason to stay. I don’t even think I would stay on the edge of the map when I’m done driving, I love the people in my life too much and without them it wouldn’t be the thrilling experience it could be. But that is the beauty of driving away, I could always fill up the tank and drive back.

Second Star To The Right

 Who said that every wish would be heard
and answered when wished on the morning star?
Somebody thought of that and someone believed it.
Look what it’s done so far.
What’s so amazing that keeps us star gazing
and what do we think we might see?
Someday we’ll find it, the rainbow connection.
The lovers, the dreamers and me.

~ Rainbow Connection , Muppets

There something about the night sky, the stars and the moon that captivates me. I am fascinated by everything; the man in the moon, its orbit, the mythology behind the stars, the constellations and the dreams and hopes the night sky seems hold in its vast darkness. Ever since my dad stopped to stare into the gloom and held my hand I have stared too and submerge myself in its majesty. I have whiled away happy hours under the stars and it is odd but everything about the night sky makes me feel insignificant and I love it. Everyone in the world sleeps under one night sky and in it there are so many stars and there are so many star gazers, all looking at an immeasurable universe and I am tiny; nothing I really do will matter in the grand scheme of the universe and that is strangely comforting.

I am completely spellbound by the night sky and the stories that revolve around the moon and stars, and the beliefs and ideas they hold; it simply magical to look into a glittering and dazzling sky. I have always associated the stars and star gazing with dreams and the dreamers, thinking about the hopes that are whispered to the man the moon and the wishes made to stars as they watch over the earth. I want to hear the stories the moon could tell, all the little things it has seen over the years, all the forgotten past of earth. “Look at the stars, look how they shine for you” Generations of humans before me have gazed at the star in wonder and people round the world gazing with me, staring at the same starry blanket. Humans have reached for the stars and moon for thousands of years desperate to join the night sky and its heights.

The universe is so old, ancient and still changing, still expanding and growing; it is stunning as it entices scientists and romantics. I stare up and marvel like many others and look into forever, in awe of how anything could be so beautiful and exquisite. I look into the night sky and become lost, questioning how much is beyond our small world, how much can be out there to strive for. I gaze into the night and it stares back daring me to envision anything and everything. The stars do not hold our destiny; the night sky simply reveals the infinite possibilities of our future and the universe.

Night Sky

“Look at the stars, look how they shine for you” ~ Yellow, Coldplay