what pride means to us

So as some of you may know June was Pride Month. I spent a lot of time thinking about what I wanted to do on my blog to celebrate it because the month means a lot to me and many others and after many sleepless nights I decided that I wanted the post to reflect what pride meant to loads of different people hence the title. I decided to reach out to a couple of people in the community to find out what pride means to them and share them with all of you. I’ll probably be updating this post for the rest of my life because my time management skills are non-existent but that’s a rant for another post.

Also this post was meant to go up during June but I had a really rough month, which is why the post is pretty short. But in my defense, pride is every day of of the year, so really I’m not late.

So hey you, I see you, maybe you’re not out yet, maybe you’ll never be, maybe you are. Every day, but especially during June, I hope you realise how incredible you are. How loved you are.

Hi, I’m May! I use she/her pronouns and identify as bi and demi! To me, Pride means celebrating ourselves as people not usually allowed to do such a thing, and being proud of our identities and where we’ve come from. But it also means remembering and honoring the past, especially the activists who fought for our rights and the people who died for who they are. It’s a moment of light, however brief, in a time usually dark with the stories of how even today people around the world live in fear because of how they identify.

May @gay_onnaise

Hey! I’m Chloé, a disaster bi blogger, writer and reader who spends most of her time enthusing about Greek mythology, crying over fictional characters and attempting to hold court with castle ghosts. When I think of Pride, I think of the Pride flag in my room. It’s such a small little thing, cost only £1, but it’s one of my most prized possessions. For me, being able to hang that little flag in my room is a metaphor, an encapsulation of what Pride means to me. Pride is being able to share who I am, and to be who I am unapologetically. It’s also about honouring those that came before me; those that rallied and fought for our ability to be who we are.

Chloe @chloemusings

Greetings! My name is Em. I am a 16 year old overthinker from Australia with always too much to say and not enough time to do so. I have perfectionist, responsible and outspoken tendencies, and I enjoy tea (the drink, but I guess the drama too), learning (about anything, really) and exploring! I have no clue what I want to do with my future and I graduate high school next year, so that’s not a concern at all… right? But more importantly, I am also a recently out(ish) bisexual, having come to terms with my identity nearly a year ago now. I’ve always considered Pride as a celebration of acceptance and respect, but also a call for continual action for the work that still needs to be done to protect, support and recognise the LGBTQ+ community. When I was questioning my identity, seeing the events, people and support of Pride helped me realise what it meant to be part of the community, and reassured me that I was not (and never will be) alone in my experience. Pride promotes the validation of diversity, and it is that comfort that has allowed me to acknowledge who I am with more courage and less fear. After all the confusion and anxiety – and consistently googling “Am I bisexual?” and then “How do I come out?” – it is a relief that I can know acknowledge that continual journey with Pride. This year is my first pride month as an out (kind of, friends and family only) bi, and it’s a bit surreal that I am now part of this wonderful community and have the recognised opportunity to celebrate it. While I’m still figuring out some parts of my sexuality, knowing Pride has arrived gives me relief and confidence in the knowledge that my experience is genuine, universal, and worthwhile. I remember writing in April 2016 that I was scared to admit I might not be straight, because then it makes it real. I wish I could tell my old self that admiting it and talking about it would relieve so much apprehension. Pride symbolises endless growth within individuals and throughout the world; and, of course, love. I hope this can resonate with you. Happy (20biteen) Pride!

Em @emilychanged

My name is Nicole Sgarlato and I’m a disabled transgender woman. Through coming to terms with my gender identity and making the decision to transition, I found freedom and blosssomed into the confident and fierce woman I was always meant to be, But I wouldn’t have gotten there without a safe space and the supportive community that I had in my life. Pride is many things. It’s a chance for us to celebrate our uniqueness, to be an example of what a loving and inclusive community looks like. It’s an opportunity to remind the world that despite society telling the LGBTQ+ community that we couldn’t and shouldn’t be ourselves, we exist and will not rest until their is equality for all. But to me the most important part of pride comes from within our community, because it’s also a chance for us to listen to the voices that come from the various intersections that exist. We can learn from each other, laugh and cry together, ask how to better support each other, grow together and ultimately be emboldened knowing that we are all in the fight for equality together

Nicole @nicolesgarlato

I’m Carmen. I’m pan and engaged to a beautiful woman named Ashley. To me, pride means celebrating the rights our LGBTQ+ precursors fought for. Thanks to them I am allowed to marry the love of my life. This month I will wear my rainbow flag with Pride.

Carmen @theferreirafactory

xxxChips

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i’m a sad little apricot

That’s it. That’s the post.

I’m kiddding. Bad joke, I know but I feel like you can make an exception for your sad little apricot.

I’ve been in a slump for a month, nearly two. Don’t get me wrong I can tell it’s coming, the sadness and all, because that’s just how it works, I get super happy and excited and inspired and then I crash.

But it always sucks.

I dissociate, on average twice a year. It’s never been as long as it was this time and it’s never had such a huge snowball effect on my life. It started off with me feeling uninspired and lost and completely detached from my feelings and then the next thing I know everything’s too vivid to be real. Fast forward a month later(around June 12) to me posting this, because I couldn’t deal with the thought of not writing any longer and then to two days ago where after nearly two months of not feeling anything I had a breakdown.

Oh how I love my life.

Totally not appropriate sorry!

But to go from not feeling anything:

Here is my heart. Place it right in front of a wrecking ball and take a swing because I can’t feel a single thing.

Here is my heart.

Place it front of a wrecking ball and take your best shot. Make it go splat against a wall. I just need to know there’s something inside of it.

I need to know I’m not losing myself.

To feeling everything in an instant, hurts.

It was one of those major breakdowns where I immediately sent out an SOS to a couple of my friends and they responded back almost instantly and they were lovely and kind and supportive and understanding. And then I felt horrible because I still felt bad after everything. You know that scene in Mean Girls where Regina George gets hit by a bus?

I’ve never felt more like Regina George.

I didn’t want to classify this as an if we were having cheesecake post because whilst I do write about some sad stuff there, that’s not why I started it. I wanted cake humor and life updates and oh dear me, I must be cake deprived.

So here’s a very boring update for you in a few sentences because I don’t think I can write much more.

I’m sad and exhausted and uninspired. And none of my coping tips are doing much of anything and everything seems topsy-turvy. And did I mention my laptop is broken too?

If any of you have any tips for getting out of a rut or passion project ideas that I could do whilst I ‘recover’ from whatever one would call this, please let me know.

xxxChips

all the things you left behind

Hey lovelies,

I posted a couple of weeks(days??) ago but it still feels it’s been forever. I haven’t written a proper post in so long that all of this feels kind of foreign to me but hopefully by the time you’re reading this, this post won’t seem like an uncomfortable and awkward attempt at my usual writing style.

So I’ve been gone for a while and a lot has happened over the past month or so and I feel like an in depth catch up is needed but at the same time I’m in no position to be writing lengthy posts.

So I thought I’d share something else I wrote


your blue socks on the floor

your tattered copy of Charlotte’s Web

your half painted wall

your overflowing laundry basket

your favourite pen with the chewed up lid

your cd’s

your stack of cards

me

-all the things you left behind

because i continue to disappear for months at a time (see also:does it still count as a sabbatical if I’m not Dr. Bailey??)

~🌙🌹~

champagne kisses and whispered promises shared between tangled limbs//you taste like everything i could never have and yet gazing at the cotton candied sky i’ve never been more convinced that stars can be people too//in the summer we run through the vineyard and soak up the sun it’s the kind of life that’s easy to lose yourself in//weeks feels like years that melt into forever but time slips through my fingers lately


In case reading that wasn’t a major clue, I don’t have a poetic bone in my body but I’ve been forcing myself to write for the past month.

This is the part where we pretend I didn’t disappear for a month.

I might change the title at some point (or not) and I might explain my disappearance(maybe not) but in case you were wondering I’m still here.

xxxChips

what i’ve been listening to lately #3

April was weird and I’m 12 days late but here’s another playlist

dear yessie//jessie reyez

 

 

truth hurts// lizzo

“I just took a DNA test, turns out I’m 100% that bitch”

dinner and diatribes//hozier

Your friends are a fate that befell me//hell is the talking type//I’d suffer hell if you’d tell me//what you’d do to me tonight

siren// kailee morgue 

“This could be perfection//or venom dripping in your mouth//singing like a siren//love me while your wrists are bound//you’ve been seeing me in your dreams//but I’ll be there when your reality drowns

connect//drake

“Isn’t it amazing how you talk all that shit and we still lack communication”

“”She used to say you can be whoever you want even yourself //I show up knowing exactly who I was and never leave as myself //But when it falls apart, I’m still down to pick a million tiny little pieces off the ground”

let me down//jorja smith

“I’ve got you to let me down. Why do you let me down? Why do you let me down?”

the only//sasha sloan

“A million people in this town but I could scream without a sound”

 

What have you been listening to lately?

xxxChips

sorry

Just some stuff from my old journals

I have looked in mirrors and not recognised the person staring back at me

I have sat alone at events wondering how long it would take for someone to notice

I have been on stages, and never performed as myself

 

I have read thousands of words because I needed to escape

I have written thousands of words because I am lost, I am so lost and then I am found and then I am not and then I don’t want to be

I have downloaded apps and videos and music to keep me breathing because I have days where doing so without isn’t an option

I have walked around with rocks where my heart should be

I’ve had lengthy conversations with Death and catch up sessions with the universe

 

I have existed in the spaces between everything else because I never knew how to exist in any other way

 

I have tried my best everyday to help people because I don’t think I get saved in this story

I think it ends with self-destruction

 

So I’m sorry if I’m too vulnerable for your liking. I’m sorry if I can’t hide the worst parts of me because I am broken and I’d rather save someone else than save me. I am sorry if you think I’m romanticizing an illness that became my identity way before any diagnosis. I’m sorry if the scars on my body make you uncomfortable. I’m sorry that the only reason I’m here is because of the best people I’ve ever had the privilege of knowing, even if it was never in person and feel like I have to fill this space because I would never have seen 14 if it hadn’t been for them. I’m sorry that I’m so messed up. 

Would you like me to apologise for breathing too?

I have. Often. I do.

I am so sorry

x

Friday 6PM ft. Elina

Get To Know Me Questions

How would you describe yourself to a stranger?

 I can be very introverted when you first meet me but as you get to know me you’ll see that I am more outgoing and really chatty. I’m really creative and adventurous when my health allows it. I am extremely empathetic and supportive of the people in my life but it takes me a while to trust people. And I’m constantly capturing memories through photography, film or writing.

What are some of your long and short term goals?

My long term goals are to become a successful young entrepreneur, travel the world, do public speaking events and help as many people as possible in any way I can. My short term goals are to run events for the InvisiYouth Charity, to create a supportive community for those with chronic illness and disabilities in Australia and in my home town. And finally to create a meaningful product that will make a difference in people’s lives.

Why did you decide to start blogging?

My mum actually suggested I start a blog when my health severely declined, as at the time I was stuck at home in bed and wanted a way I could express my creativity in a way I could manage. JustSoElina started as a beauty and lifestyle blog but quickly grew into a wellbeing and lifestyle blog as I started opening up about my life with chronic illness as I never wanted anyone else to feel as alone and scared as I did when I first got sick.

What’s your word/phrase for this year?

My phrase for this year is “everything happens for a reason”. I’m learning to look for the lessons and gifts that come out of every situation thrown at me and the ways I can use that for the future.

Who’s your current role model?

My current role model is Emma Carey, because she used a traumatic and life changing experience to make a difference. Whether it’s through Instagram (especially her captions), her public/Inspirational speaking or the beautiful products she creates.

What’s one thing most people don’t know about you?

I was a published co-author at 11 in a book called the Inspiration Bible where I wrote about using horsemanship to help with my anxiety and my connection with horses. I will also be in a second book coming out later this year called Our Infinite Power To Heal. Where I share about my vision issues/brain injury from my horse accident and the turning point in my vision healing journey.

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General Mental Health Questions

How do you stay positive during hard times?

Creating positive moments and memories throughout the hard times really helps me. Whether it’s an impromptu movie night at the cinemas or at home. Or taking a picnic down to the beach, anything that will put a smile on my face and help me relax for a bit.

What’s one piece of advice you’ve been given about your mental health you wish everyone knew?

I get so overwhelmed easily and am either so far in the past or future that I forget to live in the present. The best advice I have ever been given was from my amazing Mum which is to take things one day at a time, one step at a time.

How do you cope with stress?

I haven’t figured out fully how to cope with stress as it has been constant in my life for the past 8 years. But each day I am working on using my creativity, whether it be writing or taking photos to calm my mind and block out the situations that are out of my control. Which definitely isn’t always easy for me as my way to manage things is to be a massive control freak.

How does organisation help you mentally?

Growing up I was the most disorganized person known to man, my room was a bomb and I never got anything done on time. By writing detailed lists and taking the extra time to keep my bedroom tidy it helps me to relax and not get overwhelmed by everything.

How do you handle the physical effects of stress?

Stress is a massive trigger for my chronic pain and illness. Because my autonomic nervous system misfires, causing the nerves in my body to feel pain when I get stressed, it sets it off even more and adds even more nausea then I already feel. So as soon as I start to feel a little bit off I take it as an indicator that I need to step back and rest/recoup. If possible I will remove the stress, but usually I just find new tools to manage it. My go to is to give myself a period of time to sleep, watch movies and do small activities like going to the beach where I am not allowed to feel guilty for doing so (still working on that bit though).

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Toxic Family

What advice do you have for someone whose family refuses to accept that they’re struggling with their mental health?

This is a tricky one, as hard as it is unfortunately they may never accept it. You can’t make someone else understand they have to be willing to. It’s about finding the strength in yourself so that you don’t need them to, that their opinions are just that THEIRS and find other options for getting help and support.

Let’s talk pros and cons, in what ways has having a broken family affected you both negatively and positively?

The positives of growing up in a broken family are that it has made me a much stronger person and it’s also given me a deeper connection with others in the same situation. The negatives are my lack of trust, it can take me years to fully trust someone and open up. I take things personally with friendships and relationships and am terrified of saying the wrong thing because I don’t want to lose any more people in my life. And finally I’m a MASSIVE control freak; so much of my life has been out of control, especially the actions of family members that really hurt me. So now I try to control everything and when I can’t I break down.

How has your relationship with your family affected your ability to form relationships?

My relationship with my family has majorly affected my ability to form relationships. I struggle to open up and trust my friends because I am always just waiting for them to leave like my family did. And with guys as soon as I start to catch feelings or things start getting sort of serious I tend to push them away and convince myself I don’t have feelings for them. I also struggle with affection, like hugging people etc. always feels awkward and foreign to me.

What advice do you have for someone who feels like their family is falling apart? The most important thing to know is that it’s absolutely not your fault! What is happening with your family may have a huge effect on you, but the actual cause of it is not your fault. Therefore not your responsibility to try and fix (trust me on this, I’ve been down this road many times before). Talk to someone you trust about how your feeling or write it down, do not bottle it up. It may seem like a good idea at the time but will just cause you to breakdown even more in the future. And just to know that you and a strong and beautiful person and you will get through this, just take it one day at a time.

How do you know when it’s time to cut family off? And how much harder is it to do that as a teen when you’re constantly surrounded by these people and don’t have a say in it?

This is such a tough situation; I’ve been in it in the past. For everyone it will be different but for me I knew it was time to cut my family off when I was constantly in tears because of them and the way they treated me and when even the thought of seeing them sent me into panic. It was hard though because I didn’t have a choice in it because I’m only a teenager. I did refuse to see them but unfortunately for me that wasn’t possible. I learnt that you don’t have much of a choice in the situation but you do have a choice in how you manage it. Writing down how you feel and what you want to say to them but can’t in a journal really helps as well as figuring out a technique like pretending you’re in a bubble and what they are saying is bouncing back at them. Or my personal favourite thinking about something happy or my dreams for life so when they were talking I was zoned out and couldn’t hear what they were saying to me that was hurtful.

How have you learnt to accept your family for what it is? ‘

It took me a really long time to learn to accept my family for what it is. Since I was little I had this fairy tale image in my mind of how my family should be and I clung to it for dear life, just hoping that one day it would come true. If I’m being honest there will probably always be that part of me that hopes that my family will change. But as harsh as it may sound I had to grow out of the fairy tale and learn to be ok with things being just me and my mum, because we have an awesome relationship and a life that I love as just the two of us. And realise that most families aren’t like the ones on TV; I don’t have the power to change someone. I can only chose love them as they are, as much as the situation allows.

How do you let the person being affected know that the other person is toxic for them?

Be aware that this is a sensitive situation to be in and that you can only tell the person your view of the situation. You can’t force them to see things your way, so there is a chance they will be in denial about it. If you do want to say something you have to be mature, understanding and non-judgemental. Either have a face to face conversation. But again you have to be mature and stay calm, it may be frustrating or upsetting seeing someone you love being in a toxic situation but getting angry at them will only alienate them. Or if you feel too emotional write the person a letter stating why you are concerned and that you are only saying something because you care about them. If they chose to ignore what you said you have done everything you possibly can.

If the person does know that the relationship they’re in is toxic, how do you let them know that it’s okay to leave if they are concerned about hurting the people involved?

The only thing you can do is remind them that everyone will be ok and that they need to look after themselves because they can’t help anyone else if they are in a toxic relationship themselves. That you want them to be happy and that its ok to leave the relationship.

Elina’s Blog

Elina’s Instagram

I started blogging because I needed a space where I didn’t feel restricted when it came to voicing my opinions and sharing my emotions and I found that, I found this amazing community of people who’ve changed my perspective about and opened my eyes to a lot of things.

I’m a better person because of those people.

From the very beginning, mental health was always something I wanted to talk about because it’s something very close to my heart and something I’ve struggled with for a very long time. Right from the get go I told myself that someday I would talk about my own issues, that, I would do it regardless… Continue reading FRIDAY 6PM

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xxxChips