REFLECTIONS: a work in progress

HelloHalima

It’s officially 31 days until 2020, what are your biggest accomplishments? Greatest downfalls? What have you learned? What are you proud of? Take a second, ponder it. 2019 has felt like whirlwind of losses, of wins, of some stagnancy but quick realizations that have turned into progress. Of understanding where you stand and where you want to stand. Of working towards something- a slow burn that you know will pay off in the end. Of meeting people who have changed your perceptions of how you love or want to be loved, or discarding of people who make you not love yourself to the best of your abilities.

Regardless of its inactivity, I’m still proud of this blog. I’m proud of my bounce-back game- my ability to move on and flourish from troubling situations that have plagued my life. I’ve learned that you will never be enough for someone- despite how hard you try, despite the work you put in- you cannot place your expectations of how someone should be/treat you on them- it will never be reflected the way you want it to be.

I was on the train the other day and an obvious but still alarming thought came into my mind: You can have what you’ve always wanted and still feel inadequate, undeserving of it- like it’s not enough, like it will never be.

I think that is the saddest downfall that we are faced with as human beings.

We search for happiness and when we have it right in front of us- when we have it in our midst- when we feel the embrace of what it feels like, when we see what it looks like and manifests into- we hardly recognize it.

Sadness becomes familiar, aching holes- voids that are left undone forever. Sometimes you’re tricked into thinking you’ve found something to fill the void, finally- you think to yourself- I won’t feel empty anymore

But like all gaping wounds- you are unable to stitch this one back together,

The sepsis spreads, makes you wish you never would’ve searched for remedies as the remedies are the cause of a deeper affliction,

The imposter syndrome that I feel dreads the truth, if you tell yourself something a million times, does it magically turn true?

It never feels quite enough, we’re grasping at straws only to come up with none,

Hope floods my mind as I wonder what the next chapter will be in my life,

Happiness and hope- they go hand in hand, until that sadness starts all over again. It’s never enough for any of us. What a shame.

I say all this to say, slow down, take a minute. I know that at the end of the day- the way you feel will be a catalyst for how you move through your life. It’s easy to bury the feelings of emptiness or loss- of unhappiness and hide behind distractions. To distract yourself with success or the pursuit of it and use its shield to “move past” traumas or feelings you have yet to heal from. Take a breath, take a minute, ponder what’s been hindering you, what you’ve been running from in your head. Take these 31 days to think about your year, your life, what you are working on, what you are proud of, what you are leaving behind. Once you do so, it will make all the difference.

Optimistically Naive

HelloHalima, HMFpoetry

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Optimism feels new to me,

when you have been burned one too many times- the options feel slim.

You’re looking at me with love in your eyes,

Like you’ve known me for lifetimes on end, it is as if you scoured every burrow wondering where I lay down my head,

Once you finally found me, you vowed to never close your eyes,

Piercing stares giving me shivers down my spine,

But like human nature’s curse- pessimism teaches you to wait for the next shoe to drop-

The next false move that you could have sworn was always there,

Over thinking has always been the death of me-

Feeling hope materialize into hopeless places,

Is it too good to be true? We’ll see.

Evading the inevitable

HelloHalima

What is it about the truth? That makes you want to play the avoidance game,

If you avoid something long enough- it’ll disappear right?

Wrong.

Erosions of miscommunication,

Deliverance of blunt truths,

In swift acts of self preservation,

I retreat within myself.

Terrified of what you might say, scared to see what could come of our new normal.

I want to save myself, I wish I could snap my fingers and trigger sudden on-set amnesia to forget

But I can’t.

You bring me great dissatisfaction,

knowing that I was your Achilles heel and yet you’ve gotten over what it was like for me to wound you.

It all feels kind of amateur- the idea that all it took was being true with yourself and suddenly I don’t want you?

Just like how you don’t want me?

Lying to each other seems like the obvious truth here, but maybe,

Just maybe,

It’s not a lie anymore.

It was an avoidance act all along.

We tried to get it together-

to sow seeds that were in need of something much stronger than water and sunlight,

Wishing and hoping for something to come out of this bleak and dreary situation.

But alas,

Talking in metaphors won’t solve the obvious here,

Neither will yearning for candy cane clouds to rain down sweet deliverance.

You painted me a pretty picture that I happily bought,

Naively framed and used as a pedestal to worship you.

The thing about letting go is,

when you see the truth- you kick yourself for not seeing it earlier,

For not forming the strength and ideals needed to get out of sticky situations.

I’m kicking myself for using candy coated language when talking about you,

Fantasizing about dreams that involved unparalleled realities,

Crying floods of tears when you’ve never shed any for me,

It is a tale as old as time,

How do you forget when it’s so etched inside your mind, into your heart and soul?

Forgetting is easier said than done,

But what do you do when you’re forever stuck?

You are evading the inevitable,

Putting aside intuition and gut feelings and trying to further what you already know to be true,

If you keep lying to me,

when will you stop lying to you?

relationship rain check

HelloHalima
“Stop spending so much time trying to pour yourself into people that aren’t ready or willing to hold you.” -Maxwell Diawuoh

Recently, I’ve been introspective on the idea of friendship- on what occurs when there’s a standstill in communication, in trust, in love. Often, sometimes- perhaps knowingly or unknowingly, we shrink into smaller versions of ourselves to please people who could ultimately care less. We wonder- why don’t they love us? Where is the same amount of effort we are giving back? Where is the joy when they see me? Why does it look like they are nonchalant in their love? Complacent in their communication. How did we get here? To such a silent space- where it’s not miles that’s between us but discomfort- mistrust and unfamiliarity festering. You think, what next? How do you begin to figure out a jigsaw puzzle with half the pieces missing?

I found myself thinking about what happens when we are faced with a disconnect in a relationship. Why do we push-pursue and annoy people when it is clear ideologies, perspectives and opinions are not mutually shared? Why do we invest and divest in relationships that are one-sided? The better question and the one we should all be asking ourselves is: WHY DO WE KEEP PEOPLE WE CLEARLY DO NOT LIKE ON SNAPCHAT? WHY DO WE WATCH THE STORIES OF PEOPLE WHO WOULD NOT THINK TWICE ABOUT WHAT YOU ARE DOING? Do we like the thrill of the access? Jackie Aina said it best: “Know the difference between support and surveillance.” We pour ourselves into people who *frankly* could not give a fuck about how you are doing in this world.

I remember my biggest downfall- perhaps it can be considered to be a toxic trait- would be spending so much time wondering what people thought of me- perhaps this is a insecurity that has manifested by social media or within myself but I have since realized how draining it is. It takes a toll on you and you realize the negative ramifications of being “cordial” in order to keep relationships you have outgrown in your life/on social media is settling when you shouldn’t have too.

Why do we settle for one sided- heart feeling drained- stress whenever you talk to them- relationships? Why do some of us value what people might think instead of how people make us feel? I feel like resentments in friendships start when a relationship is nearing its expiration date. Most of the time, people don’t know what to do with this phase. When you’re confident in your communication skills, the end of a friendship isn’t as terrible as you think. It slowly fades, respect and mutual admiration remains. It’s when resentment festers that a situation turns sour quickly.

Due to this, when we are stuck in endless cycles of the same sort of relationship/friendship, we forget to go where we are loved and celebrated. I’ll say it again if you haven’t heard me clearly!

Go where you are loved and celebrated and appreciated. Way too often, we sit idle- hands clenched together- thumbs twiddling- wondering why we feel drained in our relationships, constantly giving to people who drain you, always reaching out first, half hearted semblances of friendship. It’s clear when we’re not being loved and appreciated in our relationships, in our friendships- we ignore the warning signs! We justify changed behaviour. You see it in the micro aggressions, in the manipulative undertones of a conversation. You ever have a friend that was just constantly mad? No matter what you did or how you tried to better any situation- their angry facade never wavered? What about the friend who knows another friend is talking shit about you but doesn’t say anything to you? Is she at fault too? Let’s talk about the friends who make you feel bad about yourself in sly comments and fake comments masked as jokes- throw in the backhanded compliments and you got yourself a shitty friend. Words impact you a lot harder than people believe. Sometimes we shrink ourselves to fit their perfectly crafted molds and expectations of who we are. You don’t notice until pieces of you are scattered- intwined in misunderstanding- in communicating superficiality rather than mending what’s broken.

Alhamdulliah. I am thankful for everyone who’s ever entered my life. I’ve learned a lot about who I am and what I want as a result. My friend Basma recently said “focus on the friendships that are blessings and that do appreciate you”, more often than not, we are so stuck on the negative in our lives that we forget to cherish the blessings that are constant in our day to day experiences. We forget to choose ourselves, to focus on what makes us feel like pure light and joy- so… I’m no longer going to apologize for other people’s shitty behaviours, actions, excuses- I’m no longer going to invest in people who want to be tuned into my life when it is convenient for them. We have to want better for ourselves and for the relationships we hold dear. I’m gonna take a rain check on shitty relationships- thank u, next!

Hope, Ambiguity, Confusion: a ménage of dreams

HelloHalima

Photo by Alexander Milov

Ambiguity masquerading as hope,

I reached for it, siphoned it into my life-

hoping that it would somehow transform itself into the answers I was searching for,

But Hope left me empty, left me wondering what was next-

Hope did what she always does- like a chameleon, she transformed herself into something new-

something different,

something shiny and alluring,

I reached for it, hoping it would lead me to another path, one that was not disturbed by traffic or decay,

But alas, I was stumped again, trying to rack my brain- wondering what I did to deserve such treatment,

All I wanted was for my love to be received and given back tenfold, but all I was getting in return was 1 percent off my investment,

Scammed, cheated and searching for another way out- I mistook friendship for love,

And Hope disappeared for a while.

I enjoyed Friendships company, she left me feeling full with love- with respect- with a big heart and sometimes a big head,

But those pesky feelings, creeped back up again,

There she was- sitting pretty, Hope.

I sighed, exhausted by this cat and mouse game- a game that I did not have the rule book too

I was saddened by his heart, wondering why I was not apart of his affections,

Wondering why hope did not transform into what I wanted her to be,

I was in love but the only one that could see it was me,

Well- me and Ambiguity,

I saw how he cradled his confusion, feeding into it until it destroyed Hope,

she was no match for what lied ahead-

He chose confusion and chaos over figuring out what he felt for me,

I felt cheated and I missed Hope deeply.

Egos bruised, wondering why I wasn’t enough

But I quickly realized, it wasn’t me

I realized I couldn’t be sad over someone who did not want me,

That’s a loss that will register in his mind eventually,

I offered him love in plentiful heaps,

He chose confusion over me,

I hope they are happy together.

They have to be.

Valentine’s Fool

HelloHalima

It’s easy to say that I miss you- but perhaps that’s a lie,

It’s only when the memories rush through my mind,

Montages of happy beginnings and abrupt endings,

Maybe I miss the memories the most

And you the least,

I definitely do not miss the pain you caused me,

Sometimes if I shut my eyes tight enough, I can almost forget,

But something always seems to stir it back up again,

What is it about dwelling that breaks your heart wholeheartedly,

What is it about the cycle of you and me?

I remember the naïveté would wash over me-

Daydreams of us living blissfully,

But reality came knocking- wanting to shake some sense into me,

You cannot make homes in people who live in confusion,

That’s what I tried to do with you,

You cannot be blissful with people who are hurting inside,

That’s what I tried to do with you,

Their bitterness will swallow you whole,

They will convince you that you’re the broken one,

That there’s something wrong with you,

an optical illusion they have orchestrated in their minds too,

Instead, I will wish you away,

I will wish you the best,

Maybe that will help me love you less.

Happy Valentines Day

Muna Abukar: A BFF love story

HelloHalima

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It is a tale as old as time…. it exists in literature, film, media, in real life- that idea of having a ‘person’, a ‘best friend’, a ‘soulmate’, someone who is your other half. Some of us are fortunate enough to be blessed with this one person in our lives. One that you truly ‘get’, who gets you in return, someone who can humble you, who can cut through the bullshit and tell you like it is, someone who sees what we want and hope for, who encourages us, motivates us, who understands us to the depths of our very core, who makes us laugh until our stomachs start aching… to me- you are this person.

 

Selflessness, confidence, the sheer ability to make you feel so comfortable so quickly, that’s how you made me feel- so early on in our friendship. I’ve never met anyone so driven- so focused. Not only in following her dreams and her goals but in her friendships, in her love life, in her life in general. You are someone who embodies strength and courage, resilience being one of your best qualities. And wisdom???? The truth trickles out of you like a faucet, no matter how much I am hurting, you are always there to take the pain away. Your wisdom encompasses such compassion for others- a empathy that makes you feel truly seen, loved and understood.

“If I murdered someone, she’s the person I’d call to help me drag the corpse across the living room floor. She’s my person.” -Greys Anatomy

I remember meeting you, a confident yet quiet girl- looming over me with a long multicoloured Diraac (Somali dress) dragging on the floor, I didn’t know it then but our ninth grade multicultural show (tbt parring hijabs and see through diraacs 🤣) would be the beginning stage to our lifelong show.

Image result for serena and blair gifsWhat is it about a best friend, a sister- that allows you the ability to see the truth from an unparalleled point of view? You’ve been there through the highest highs and the lowest of lows- through painstaking heartache to can’t believe it happiness.

You are my voice of reason, a person who truly understands the pages to my diaries. I’ve seen the evolution of our friendship, it’s been constant through transitional phases, through moving apart from one another, to different postal codes and neighbourhoods, we’ve continued to grow together- while other people may have exited stage left in our lives, I’m glad you’ve been a constant in my life. The Serena to my Blair, the Cristina Yang to my Meredith Grey, the *real* love of my life. Happy Birthday to my best friend Muna.

Image result for meredith and cristina gifs

I’ll dance it out with you any day!

 

May Allah (swt) protect you and your dreams, provide eternal love, happiness and joy in your life and May all your hopes and dreams continue to manifest into tangible realities. May Allah (swt) continue to protect our friendship. I love you forever.

January 2019: c-c-changes!

HelloHalima

It’s that time of the year again, a new year/ the freshness of a new start. Snow’s falling on Toronto’s cemented streets, lush pilings that’s pretty to look at but dreadful to walk/drive through. In true global warming fashion, it’s all gone the next day. Kind of makes you feel hopeful! The feeling of a fresh start- while a new year doesn’t necessarily erase old bad habits, stagnant lifestyles or immediately begin change, it brings a syrupy sweet inspiration that helps you bring forth changes in your life. I- for one- have been inspired to write more- at least- recap months of experiences in the form of reviews, prose/poetry- pieces to not only inspire myself but others.

“Why one writes is a question I can answer easily, having so often asked it of myself. I believe one writes because one has to create a world in which one can live. I could not live in any of the worlds offered to me — the world of my parents, the world of war, the world of politics. I had to create a world of my own, like a climate, a country, an atmosphere in which I could breathe, reign, and recreate myself when destroyed by living. That, I believe, is the reason for every work of art.”

Anaïs Nin

It almost feels like déjà vu, this time last year- I was paralyzed by all the changes in my life! Being a recent graduate, changes in friends, in dynamics, lack of changes in my personal life- jobs! This year I feel so motivated, inspired already! I have so much planned, that thinking about it is already exciting me. The idea of a full circle moment just feels surreal, that a isolating- dark moment can make you feel hopeless but when you embrace every facet of change- you are able to will it into how you want it to manifest within your life! I’m going to the gym everyday, I feel comfortable with the people in my life, I’m looking for employment within my interests, planning trips with loved ones, squirrelling away my masters applications, taking coding classes and working to better my side hustle (of course… hello halima!). Change is here and I am welcoming it with open arms.

Word Vomit/ What’s Next?

HelloHalima

Source: Melissa Grant

Free falling into an unknown abyss/ reliving dreams shaping up into nightmares,

sleepless nights and empty thoughts/ feeling kind of lost, distractions only last a while.

Cycles of repetitive charades, will I ever be content?

Premature happiness brought on by moments of complete bliss, will it ever be enough?

Incomplete contemplation and contemplated hesitation, what’s next?

Can you dream when your hopes lay awake?

A syrupy sweetness invades, filtering out bitter truths- realities that are meant to be lived instead.

What’s worse than your mind on fire, unable to extinguish what ails you?

Wandering and constantly contemplating artificial relations- meaningless connections of superficiality

Wanting more and seeing zilch- opportunities always gone amiss, anxiety eats me up but I persist, what happens now?

KEVIN’S HEART, INFIDELITY, MICRO-CHEATING AND J-COLE’S K.O.D: A REVIEW

HelloHalima

It is Sunday, the sun is shining, the birds are chirping and last week J-Cole released his fifth studio album on 4/20. Fitting and ironic as the title is “K.O.D” is “Kids on Drugs” or “King Overdose” or “Kill our Demons”. All three titles being homages to the ways in which drugs are the biggest forms of distress to our mental, physical and emotional selves and well beings. “K.O.D” serves as a 12 song- 43 minute landscape encapsulating a culture of drugs and how it has shaped the dichotomy of music: through the form of addiction, over-popularization of recreational substances, as well as people using drugs as coping mechanisms to fill empty voids in their lives. This album feels just as gritty and important as “For Your Eyez Only” (perhaps even more so) as the themes he uncovers in K.O.D are an extension of what Black and radicalized communities feel in the world. A particular theme that he delves deeper into with this album is one of Addiction and Mental Health. He highlights the different facets that addiction can intersect with, love and addiction, social media and addiction, infidelity and addiction. It was interesting to see the switch in the topics and how addiction manifests in different ways through his words.

Songs like “1985: Intro to the Fall off” discuss Cole’s perspective and thoughts on a younger rap generation and how artists like Lil pump, Xxxtentacion (etc) showcase a high level of drug use that’s popularized in the choruses of their songs, using that as the pipeline to popularity rather than rapping about things that actually matter and are important in the world. His subliminal jabs are beautifully articulated as he says “You coulda bought a crib with all that bread that you done blew/ I know you think this type of revenue is never endin’ but I wanna take a minute to tell you that ain’t true / One day, them kids that’s listening gon’ grow up/ And get too old for that shit that made you blow up. Now your shows lookin light cause they don’t show up.” He is foreshadowing the future and the end of the artists who are capitalizing off of rap that’s all mumble- all trap- no substance- infused with drug references and belligerent club rap. He even ends it off hilariously by saying “In five years you gon’ be on Love & Hip-Hop nigga“- the Where Are They Now equivalent for one hit wonders and people who rise to fame quickly and lose it when they become old news. Hilarious.

Don’t get me wrong, I love subliminal messages like the best of them but J-Cole’s “Kevin’s Heart” took it to a whole new level as he dives into the world of infidelity as he modelled the song after Kevin Hart and his recent cheating scandal on Eniko Hart. As I was listening to the song, I couldn’t help but think of the different parameters of cheating/micro-cheating and the concept of emotional cheating- a behaviour/actions that many people participate in and exhibit in today’s society. You are probably reading this and wondering: what the hell is micro-cheating????? Well:

Micro-cheating:

1. “A series of small (comments, actions) occurrences that indicate that a person is emotionally or physically invested or focused on someone outside of the relationship.” -Melanie Shilling (Psychologist)

2. “Micro-cheating is when you do [things] that might not be considered outright infidelity, but are nonetheless breaches of trust that could lead to genuine cheating in the future” -Jonathan Bennett

So if that’s what micro-cheating is, it’s very definition propels the nature of cheating, emotional or physical. J Cole covers this in “Kevin’s Heart” as he says, “She my number one, I don’t need nothing on the side”. This is what many men (who have been in situations nearing cheating) think until they find themselves in precarious situations. The irony is that in a culture that almost romanticizes side-chicks, it’s the side chicks that lose after falling in love with men that will always see them as a secondary option. When we think about cheating, many people think of the physical ramifications that are unthinkable. Many of my friends always say “Oh if my man ever cheated on me, it’s a wrap, I would throw hands, fuck that nigga”, they only envision the worst case scenario- finding your significant other in a precarious and physical situation. But what of emotional cheating? When your emotional intimacy is chipped away slowly but surely, taken by another woman. The secrets and conversations that were once had with you, are had with another. The dreams and aspirations that were once shared with you, now in replacement of fluff and sitcom commentary. I find that a lot more sad, a slow growing death much more deserving of mourning. Regardless of what form- cheating is still something that is hurtful, devastating to all parties involved.

J-Cole continues the double entendres as addiction and the idea of love fuse together with drug imagery: “But I’m only human, I know loving you’s a crime // If I take this cookie now, one day I’ll do the time.” That last line commenting on two things, the first being: what eventually occurs when you enter the perimeters of cheating, you not only hurt yourself but all the parties involved. The second being, when you are involved with drugs and the consumption of it in your daily routine- what was once “for fun” and “a one time thing” could come back to disparage your life one way or another.

Kevin’s Heart also touches on distractions- using people, using xanny- weed- molly even as escapes from real world. J Cole struggles with this as well. The idea of numbing, temporary satisfaction in different forms. Numbing the pains and trials and tribulations through distractions is one of the biggest themes. It is true that we all do this, we replace our troubles with distractions- from the micro distractions of other people and sleep to the macro of drugs and alcohol. It’s apart of human nature. What bothers me is using someone while you already have another to satisfy your needs, the idea of having your cake and wanting to eat it too. The Greedy Syndrome. J Cole touches on this as he says, “Wanna have my cake and another cake too // Even if the baker don’t bake like you // Even when the flavour don’t taste like you.” Greedy Syndrome!!!!!!!!!! It is true, in the case of cheating, of love, of relationships, people always want what they can’t have. Many people also try to have the best of both worlds and that does not always work out. Maybe what J Cole had to say at the beginning rings true: “All a nigga know is how to fuck a good thing up.”

While many thought negatively of J Cole’s previous album of “For Your Eyez Only”, “K.O.D” continues to ring as a Cole classic, one beautifully saturated in authentic Cole- world truth, activism and imagery that depicts of past, present and future selves. Is J-Cole Nostradamus? Only time will tell.

Silence

HelloHalima, HMFpoetry

It has been interesting, all the twists and turns,

The miscarriage of all the words involved.

Speaking and yet not saying anything of substance,

So why am I feeling so lost?

Affected by the debris of your broken promises,

Of narratives we tell ourselves to keep from changing orders already put in place.

Expectations dropped as disappointments ensue and yet,

You are speaking but not saying anything monumental,

Speaking yet silent,

Laughter used to hide nerves, nerves cultivated by one sided comprehension.

What’s that about?

Speaking my truth only to have it misconstrued, broken up piece by piece,

Subsequently altered by our reality.

A miscarriage of desolate dreams,

Irreparable and yet continuous all at the same time.

 

Poetic Rebirth

HelloHalima

All my poetry is starting to sound like it is for you.

Beautifully written prose all strung together, encapsulating how I feel.

But how do you feel?

It’s been clear that the mountains you wish to move are not for me,

The songs you sing, not meant for my ears.

But how do you feel, really?

Perhaps it is only in my mind, but I find your feelings to be a greatly skewed facade.

I wondered what it would be like,

To crack open your mind, dig a little deeper and excavate all the feelings you wish to wish away.

As if 11:11 will stop you from feeling this way.

Sometimes I wish I could take a break,

From the reality that you and I have cultivated.

That way, my poetry and my mind will be baptized from your charms and reach.

I will not be writing another poem inspired by you any longer.

Universal Pull

HelloHalima

What you don’t say becomes you.

It feels like it’s vocalized in the thickness of your silence.

The universe is working overtime to correct and rectify the death of your decisions.

The less you say, the more you become a permanent fixture of your anti-self.

The baritone of your regrets are bellowing out like a speakerphone,

Drowning out what could have been great.

Change washing over us like a riptide of you and I.

You, walking miles on end unnecessarily does not become you.

It’s ironic how the more you tug on threads of cemented routines,

The more it unravels, revealing the mess you left, permeating beneath us like hot lava.

We’re slipping and sliding incessantly, wondering when the next shoe will drop.

All due to the built up tension of our kettles steam.

You used to dream about how the universe pulled your dreams together,

weaving in moments that we shared and memories that were blissful blips in your life before

Is that still true?

INTROSPECTION

HelloHalima, Poetry

The after effect shocked me to my very core.

All this bliss but I still felt torn,

All I could think of is the state of you & I,

Do you even love her? Or is it just I?

You try to have your cake and eat it too,

I used to marvel at the things you do.

The manipulations cultivated by comfortability,

When you’re with her, do you think of me?

When you’re near her, do you dream of me?

You pull me in close in fear of losing me,

but how will you recreate me when I am gone?

REFRESH YOUR PLAYLISTS P1

HelloHalima

Hello guys! I am back but the real question is… am I better? It has been quite some time since I have written anything music-related on this blog. The last post would have to be my indepth review on J-Cole and his album “4 Your Eyez Only” and on the song “Neighbours” in particular. Well I am BACK and I have been listening to some fire bangers as of recently. I thought, WHY NOT bless everyone with a list of some of my favourite underrated bops… a list that you probably did not ask for but a list you never knew you needed! Perhaps you’ve been listening to a few of these artists already, perhaps I am way behind in the music game and perhaps you will find a new fav from this list… here’s hoping! Xo

 

artworks-000171543214-cpmx7n-t500x5001. Tobi Lou – Txt Me:  This song just makes me feel free and dance-y and happy and content with my life. The lyrics combined with the infectious beat and the sultry sounds of Tobi Lou are the perfect pieces to make this your new summer anthem. 

anders-669-5927a6fa95d70-500x5002. Anders – December ft LUCA: You know those days where you feel a little sad, heart tangled in the affairs of a love that you seem to always be having problems with or an unrequited love that keeps playing games (ugh, right!) or perhaps- like me, you just feel a little glum due to the ever-changing and tumultuous weather of Toronto? Or maybe all of the above? This song is for you. This song is the fourth track off Ander’s incredible EP, 669. The lyrics as soothing and soulful as they are recount the trials and tribulations of contemplating commitment and love with a special someone- with a catchy hook and a smooth beat, this song will easily be a go-to for situations of the heart.

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Still from “Too Fast” music video by Sonder

3. Sonder- Too Fast: If you have any take-aways from this post- the only thing I ask is for you guys to watch the music video for this song. The visuals for this music video are heartbreakingly beautiful and compliment this song so well. The cinematography, the casting of the actors, the transitions between scenes.. all so breathtaking. Everything about this song + the music video is art to me, from the gorgeous synths to the drums within the center of the song, this song has easily become my go-to when I just want to close my eyes and picture another world.

4. Yo Gotti, Mike WiLL Made-It- Rake It Up ft. Nicki Minaj: Do I even need to mention why I love this song? This is one of my favourite summer songs- all you need is a multi-colored romper and this song playing in the background to truly live your best life.tumblr_nyppz2kgoq1shm4qro1_400

tumblr_os724f0u711twik40o8_5005.SZA- The Weekend: When I first heard this song, I fell in love how realistic and relatable the lyrics are- it accurately sums up the basis of many relationships today with the lyrics of: “My man is my man is your man // Heard it’s her man too // My man is my man is your man // Heard that’s her man // Tuesday and Wednesday, Thursday and Friday // I just keep tumblr_os724f0u711twik40o1_500him satisfied through the weekend”.                  It depicts the very harsh realities of never really knowing where you stand in a relationship, how it is scary to be the first to define what kind of relationship you are in (situationship, friends with benefits or an actual romantic relationship…) The song allows for a clear and literal portrayal of the hookup culture we are immersed in today. While the content of the song is my favourite subject matter to talk about, the beat, the sweetness of SZA’s voice are what make this song one of my absolute favourites off of her latest album “CTRL”. While some may dub this the ultimate side-chick anthem of the summer, it is a great song to wind down with after a long summer day.

tumblr_o7uwhzstee1spe2u7o1_4006. Chance The Rapper- Big B’s: Another banger by Chance. Do I even have to explain? Big B’s has to be one of my favourite songs off this whole playlist. While Young Thug is also on this song, the beat, the lyrics, the vibes that the song/Chance provides will serve as a perfect getting-ready and getting crunk anthem. My favourite lines off this song include: “Put you in the friend zone if you start acting too friendly” and “Wake up real early but I eat late” If you’re reading this Chance, I love you. 

tumblr_orm54dhsgb1uggcp9o1_500 7. Young Thug- You Said ft Quavo: As lewd and wild the lyrics of this song is, there’s something about this song that makes it one of the best songs off of Beautiful Thugger Girls. Quavo’s feature just makes the song an instant classic and Young Thug just really makes you feel like a easy breezy beautiful thugger girl (lmao CRINGE)

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8. Drake- Signs: Is it really a premium playlist without at least one Aubrey bop??? The infectious nature of this song just makes you feel ready to turn up in the comfort of your own living room, whatever BBQ, Day Party or club event you may be at and will guarantee to lift your spirits and get your ass shakin’.

9. Briley Harris-Blessing: This song gives me PND vibes but the song is smooth enough to have playing in the car during a road trip, in the bathroom as you are getting ready or just on your morning/evening commutes home. My sister says the repetition of the song makes her a little bit angry (whatever that means) but I love it!

10. Travis Scott- Butterfly Effect: For this life, I cannot change… the lyrics, the beat, the tone of Scott’s voice just makes this song a ultimate BOP to listen too, I love it.

tumblr_n55ah9nteh1row9yqo1_400BONUS SONG: Spooky Black- Remember You: The Inuyasha interlude just grasps my heart and never lets it go! Just hearing the “Will you always remember me?” just makes me think back to my Inuyasha days. Total nostalgia. You may know this song and if you do not, I suggest a listen as this will quickly become a fast favourite.

 

I hope some of these songs from this playlist make their way to your own playlists. I hope I have blessed some of you guys with a new favourite artist or a new favourite song. Let me know what you think in the comments & please feel free to suggest some of your own favourites down below. Here’s hoping that the rest of the summer is filled with songs that fill our hearts with joy and make our bootys SHAKE!

XO

-Halima

Letter to Halima pt 1

HelloHalima

 

Dear Halima, it’s me again.

I spoke to you once, ten years past.

We spoke of love and life’s influence,

We spoke of dreams and disingenuous friends.

We spoke of what you needed to do next,

A type of confidence rooted in experience.

We spoke of your heart and how gentle it is,

We spoke of what you needed to harden it.

An encased glass of protection, your soul

being the catalyst of everything.

Oh Halima, another milestone you have reached,

Oh Halima, this has been a difficult feat.

Halima, how is your anxiety?

Lately, it has been manifesting itself quite strangely.

Oh Halima, what has come of our talks?

What was once implemented into your mind- has suddenly slipped out.

Oh Halima, I expected a lot from you,

To be strong and courageous- attributes once tied to you.

Oh Halima, does your anxiety consume you?

The gleam in your eyes are dimmed from life’s sudden surprises.

Oh Halima, I still have hope for you.

Work towards your dreams like how you used to.

 

4AM 

HelloHalima

I had a dream where I was submerged in water, unable to move. My body scarily still- as if it has forgotten how to fight or swim. Paralyzed. My mind racing and head swirling with thoughts of mortality and all I could see is you. All I could feel was you. Perhaps it was the warmth and reassurance your words always give me or the sweet and serene smile you continuously provide but at that moment, I felt it all slipping away. The dream felt so vivid, it was as if my actual lungs were fighting for air, eyes flickering like a broken lamp, it was all a perfectly curated series of movements: going through the motions of working and breaking down all within the same last breath. Drowning in my dreams and gasping for air in my reality, I am awake once more. 

FATE

HelloHalima, Poetry

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I know how painful it must be to yearn and yearn and yearn…

but never have it reciprocated.

How your smile must fade when you see him holding her,

a tight grasp that will never loosen.

Do your dreams fade a little, every time he speaks of her?

Do you feel like what once was is a shattered image of what will never occur?

How does your heart beat when you are contemplating this situation?

Regularly? Irregularly? A palpitation’s hesitation.

Do you feel incomplete without your regular heartbeat?

Breathe in, breathe out. I know your pain.

This feat is one that is difficult to meet as to

love another and to not have it be you is pain exemplified, 

pain that is hard to fathom unless it is you and I.

I wonder if this pain will follow you 

for the rest of your life,

Will your heart ever rest?

Will your mind? 

-HMF

REJECTION: JOBS, SHOOT YOUR SHOT 2017, GOALS & ASPIRATIONS

HelloHalima, Life

Rejection. As the great Oprah Winfrey once said: “I don’t want anyone who doesn’t want me”. I have been dealing with this reality a lot lately. I was told- perhaps even warned about how it would begin to consume my life. You go through 4 years of undergraduate to complete a degree and in that time, you work hard. You try to accomplish everything you put your mind to and you are able to see the fruits of your labour four years later. But what happens when you don’t?

Maybe it is premature but I did not expect to experience this much rejection so early on. As a newly minted university graduate- I experienced the first instance of “rejection” when someone close to me decided it would be best to refer me to apply to Sephora instead of aiming for ‘real-life jobs’ associated with my field. It is as if I went through the trials and tribulations of school just to apply to Sephora. Don’t get me wrong, Sephora seems like such a dope job- the makeup, the perfumes- the skin care! It is like a little piece of heaven in this Dunya but to hear this type of advice from someone you looked up to? Disappointing. Perhaps I naively believed that a degree would equal job experiences and chances from “the real world” but all it qualifies you for is a licence for disappointment and retail outlets letting you know that you are either overqualified or underqualified to work at Old Navy. When you apply to jobs in general- in many instances, experience is needed for that experience so if a job posting needs 1-2 years of experience, you start to wonder, how can I cultivate this experience without someone taking a chance on me?

It is inevitable and yet every time you experience rejection, it is hard not to lose a little piece of your confidence every time. As frustrating as it is- I find this moment to be quite promising as it will make whatever opportunities that I am working towards- that much more worth it. From the jobs you apply to, to the #shootyourshot2017 moments you indulge in- it seems like rejection is at the forefront of the opportunities you try to go after.

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Speaking of Shoot your shot 2017? We’ve got to talk. It is only May and I feel like I have really taken advantage of this phenomenon this year. I have shot my shot with the best of em, I have put myself out there in all aspects of life: academically, personally, emotionally and succeeded- maybe most of the time but what happened during this season of #shootmyshot2017? It seems to me that the time has come and gone for people to shoot their shot with a prospective bae or boo(s). Rejection and #shootyourshot2017 are a little interchangeable as you never know how someone will react to your vulnerability. Perhaps you are brave enough to approach someone in a coffee shop, say… leave a note on their table as they use the washroom facilities? Perhaps you engage with a wounded poet at a poetry slam event but are shot down after you realize *some* poets are a little socially inept? Perhaps you quickly scribble down your number on a moving train and drop it into the lap of an unsuspecting woman who is *coincidentally* drawing you for her OCAD portfolio.  

The possibilities are endless! (If any of these examples sound specific it is because I just happen to have a interestingly vibrant imagination). Whatever the case and the possibility may be, it is easy to get frustrated with the idea of no results. When you work hard enough on something and are unable to see the results that you envision in your mind, it is easy to get frustrated with the overarching ideal that you are apart of. It is easy to then reject the notion of putting yourself out there in the first place as it has garnered little to no results. 

From the jobs you apply to to the #shootmyshot’s that you experience, what happens when rejection starts to feel like a looped song, playing over and over again with no future or promises of ever changing its tune? How do we deal with rejection when it is always feeling like a constant? The truth is- you just keep going. My mother always says: “rejection will humble you” and as painful as rejection feels, as stagnant as you feel your progression in life is, you will move forward that much stronger and wiser due to your experiences. Rejection can feel debilitating especially when you are someone who suffers from any sort of anxiety or self-esteem issues but to keep going even when you are faced with “defeat” will allow you to build a tolerance to how you are feeling. It will allow you to continue and learn from what did not work out, from your failed experiences, from the ‘shaky’ guys you shot your shot with and ended up being total creeps- from the people who you went above and beyond for and who rejected you as a means of their own insecurities, you will be able to learn from it all and rise above.

While rejection may ‘humble you,’ it is important to note that it is an essential part of furthering your future goals and aspirations. It hurts in the moment but I find rejection to be the best thing for personal growth. While I may be feeling the plight and the depth of rejection right now, I hope that by this time next year, I am fully integrated into a job that compliments both my majors, to continue with the growth of this blog, to continue writing, to not allow people to take away from my victories or my truths and to live each day as a start for a new perspective on my life. 

Soulmates

HelloHalima

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do not believe in cliches, in love stories or narratives that end in happy endings- at least for us… I do not. All I know, all I know for sure is the depth of your smile and the warmth that emanates when you look at me and how I feel. But when you look at me, I think you see her. Perhaps in another life, another time, there is a happy ending after all. 

Do you feel a percolation of nervousness spread across your chest-

engulf your heart and mind as you think of her?

Do you feel the need to cry when love feels like it is suffocating-

suffocating enough so that the hollows of your throat enclave

but you are still able to feel the air slowly enter in again.

Does your soul feel a familiar tug of recognition, of recreation or urgency to know me?

Do you know me?

At a crossroads in life, I seek refuge in the idea that you & I will be reborn,

reshaped and restretched into another perspective,

another opportunity,

another you

another me.

perhaps in another life, another bane of existence, our narrative continues.

 

 

J COLE, A REVIEW ON HATERS, ‘THE NEIGHBOURS THINK I’M SELLING DOPE’ AND HOPE

HelloHalima

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Instead of studying for my exams, I am sitting here listening to J Cole’s latest album ‘4 Your Eyez Only’. The fire that is emanating from my speakers is quite distracting (oh god Halima that was so corny, this is why you don’t write any reviews!). This by far is NOT a traditional music review- I am just a mere mortal who has immersed herself into the cold world of J Cole. Personally, I feel like this album is quite different- a visceral and emotionally charged account on themes of  mass incarceration, racism, love, marriage, growing up, mortalities as a black man and the perils of fatherhood. While these are ideals that he has touched on in the past, this album feels different. It feels like a good-bye letter, a joint effort cultivated through the experiences of his fallen friend (James McMillan) and the experiences that he wishes us to know about. This is a direction that was quite interesting to experience through our eyes and through Cole’s eyes as well.

At first, I was expecting a powerful classic, one that mirrored the same intensity and power as ‘Born Sinner’ or ‘2014 Forest Hills Drive’,  I ended up listening and being exposed to a sad and climactic goodbye. A farewell to familiar themes, ideals, beliefs, experiences. This narrative consisted of a 10 track story told through the perspective of Cole himself and that of his friend (possibly- James McMillan). What I loved about this album is how you can just close your eyes and be transported to wherever he is. The nature of his storytelling transcends traditional norms of the rap music that exists these days- with the rise of the Lil Yachtys, the Macklemores, the Madeintyo’s,  it is easy to be dazed by the appeal of trash music and not be able to recognize heartfelt sound when it drops and hits you in the face. It is also easy to be confused and not appreciate the full power of ‘4 Your Eyez Only” when the interconnection between fake trap- actual trap and plagiarization of this Cole-esqe type of aesthetic is all you are familiar with. Was that an attempt of me trying to dissect this album on a macro level? Who knows? What I do know is a few of my friends have come out the woodwork as newly coined Cole haters by saying all of J-Cole’s music “sounds the same” and “is not original” to which I say, first… no two J-Cole songs sound the same, it resembles the snowflake effect or that of eyebrows, you will never have the same Cole song. It is because all the lyrics are beautifully poignant, paint lovely imagery in your mind, so real you start to see it come alive (remember how visceral wet dreams was?) and second, I can’t take music advice from people who think Macklemore is a work of art. Sorry not sorry. 

The most striking song (and my favourite off the album) is ‘Neighbours’. It tells the story of J Cole renting out a home for his Dreamville producers, artists. What was supposed to be a haven and a safe space to create music and be inspired quickly became poisoned by the influence and patriots of white suburbia. ‘Neighbours’ is a wonderful representation of the racism that is ravaging the world as Cole recounts what happens when you become a victim of the discriminatory beliefs and racist ideals his neighbours had. Cole starts off the song with a powerful intro: /I guess the neighbours think I’m sellin’ dope, sellin’ dope/ Okay, the neighbours think I’m sellin’ dope, sellin’ dope/ Sellin’ dope, sellin’ dope, sellin’ dope/. The irony is that Cole is indeed selling dope, his dope music, his dope persona, his dope story-telling all culminating in this amazing song and album to come out of it- horrible and typical experiences that are a result of such deeply rooted hatred from white people who only think black people at J-Cole’s caliber can be either drug dealers or rappers. Cole later on explains that he “can’t sleep cause [he’s] paranoid, black man in a white man territory. Cops bust in with the army guns, no evidence of the harm we done. Just a couple neighbours that assume we slang. Only time they see us we be on the news, in chains, damn” This diminishes his personhood as they do not lend him the courtesy of seeing him as a neighbour, as an equal. This just goes to show that levels of fame are not enough to protect you from these kinds of experiences. I feel as though some ignorant people would expect experiences like this to disappear and not affect prolific artists once they reach a certain level of fame- it does not matter if you are one of the president’s favourite artists or if you have grammys and oscars to your name, ignorance and racist ideals will seep through and hatred will become an overwhelming force to be reckoned with. Cole mentions this in ‘Neighbours’ but later leaves us with a sense of hope, a sense of renewal, a sense of clarity as he says ‘My intuition is telling me there’ll be better days’.

While there is a lot I can say about this album, what I will say is for the people saying “I was expecting better…”, “This is not his best album….”, “J Cole fell off”, I can only say I’m sorry for your loss. The impactful nature of this album and the ability Cole shares by being able to not only rap and express himself from multiple points of view and perspectives but share in the perspectives of others is astonishing. I do not believe ‘4 Your Eyez Only’ was meant to be the next “2014 Forest Hills Drive” or even a carbon copy of any of his earliest works. It is meant to be an album that speaks to the nature of today- an emotional, political and powerful commentary that is able to speak to the many. A narrative that honours his friend and shares in his legacy and allows for us to do the same. Thank you J Cole.

 

 

 

Temptations Rising

HelloHalima, HMFpoetry

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Our eyes meet, begging to have a conversation;
The twinkle in yours draws me in closer and closer.
The intoxication I feel is better than a mediated high,
One that takes me into mindless euphoria,
One that shapes the way I feel for you.
The point of the matter is discussed through a slight touch,
Gentleness contrasted by the flickering of the room luminosities.
I feel enveloped in the cliché of cloud 9,
Words are unspoken,

As our pupils dilated in the tide of lust do the talking
The attraction seems to know no bounds,

A craving that’s filled yet unsatisfied by only touch.
A feeling as if our souls were cascading.

Through an ever-flowing stream of emotion,
dancing gently through a monstrous storm.
The sensation you leave me with has me begging for more,
An ideal I cannot consummate.

Written by: HMF & FQ 

 

OCTOBER 31st

HelloHalima

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Here we are in the last ten minutes of October and I am feeling content. The 31st has been quite a “full-circle moment” type of day. I found myself going through the day just completely and wholeheartedly content with where I am in life. It made me reflect on last autumn, where I was a little bit lost, a whole lot confused and muddled up with the misgivings of life. It has been a while since my last update post. I always do this thing where I post and feel very positive about the content I am posting but then I get lost in the grand scheme of things- school and life swallows me whole and I lose touch with what I want to say. I think of different prompts, ideas, poetry, quotes that inspire me to write but then it just falls flat- ideas forgotten before pen even hits paper.

The last time I posted something, I was 20 years old- excited for the start of October and for my birthday to arrive. Excited for the opportunities that October so often presents. With a new month comes new opportunities, experiences and ideologies so this month was no different. If we are being honest, October was supposed to be a month of finding myself as a writer- I dared myself to write a post everyday for 31 days, I dared myself to think outside the box as a writer. But then reality set in- MIDTERMS… STRESS… SCHOOL. These three factors teamed up to turn my attention away from my wants in life. Other than that, I have found this October to be a month of insight, of new experiences and shedding the layers of toxicity that once covered me up.

I am 21 years old. Alhamdulliah. Thank god. After a glorious 3 day celebration comprising of a surprise party on my actual birthday, dinner with the most amazing group of people on the Friday and hanging out with my soul sister on Saturday- I have come up with the conclusion that while a lot of things may constantly be up in the air- changing at a rapid rate, most things- especially wonderful and meaningful relationships- always stay the same.

It is interesting to see where I was a year ago- versus this year. You know that quote that people always throw around: “Think about it like this, will what or who you are worrying about matter a year from now?” is quite a true sentiment- the physical and emotional ties that were pulling me in different directions have been severed- my academic and personal lives have improved dramatically and because of this I feel so free. It is quite a liberating feeling to be able to live your day to day life without the baggage and influence of ideologies and ties that have once made you feel so hollow. Do not get me wrong- I am quite grateful for negative experiences over the past year. These experiences might make you feel broken in the moment but in the long run- it will reshape you and help you with your future self.

While 2016 has been a year of tribulations- it feels quite freeing to finally be in such a positive space- in all aspects of my life.

 

Tangibility

HelloHalima

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Too often we are stuck behind the formalities of hiding behind our pride. We become products of our own self-sabotage as we find ways to hide our real emotions and find the easy route to a lessened ideal of pain.

We become afraid of opening up to our loved ones because the truth becomes tangible, we do not apologize when it is the easiest option because fighting takes less energy than letting go of your pride to right a wrong. The options to salvage a friendship become harder to fathom so we end up just cutting ties altogether. In our idea of saving ourselves, we often end up hurting the relations we once held so dear.

That being said, some relationships deserve quick snips, severances so real and deep that looking twice is almost disgraceful. You are not fair to yourself when you choose to engage in ideals of toxicity. Toxic friends, toxic behaviours. A barrier and a block to your self-growth, a piece of the self-sabotage tree blossoming into branches of negativity, roots that overtake your life.

In this pursuit of tangibility, our grasp of our everyday reality is re-shaped and damaged. We rarely stop to fix and examine the misgivings that we are accustomed too. We lose pieces of ourselves in what we choose to shatter and discard. What happens to those pieces when we try to start anew? Our relationships tainted by holding onto what once hurt us, things that prevent us from fully evolving.

We hide behind our emotions- we do not text the people we like back in fear that we are being “too much”. We do not tell our friends and loved ones how much they mean to us in fear of being “too sappy”, “too cliche”, “too emotional”. These terms become catalysts in preventing us from furthering and connecting to our ever changing emotions. It is as if the arenas of our emotions become overfilled, the doors close as the last call for sentiment is made. We become disenchanted with the way we form relationships- superficial means hindered by rituals that become devoid of meaning. “Oh he took two hours to text back, I will take four…”, “She is snapchatting me but never hitting me up to hang out, I am going to ghost her…” “She’s my friend but sometimes I don’t understand her so I do not like talking to her…”

Our words become empty as we try to fight fire with fire, disconnect ourselves from people we do not even try to understand. We become stuck like glue to paper in certain relationships, the stickiness of it all becomes hard to remove. The relationships that occur in these social spaces become so strained and so hard to engage in- all hope becomes lost. We always think of the what ifs when it comes to engaging with people. We become numb to ways of connecting that when it becomes too late, the only blame we can place is with ourselves. Just like Kanye said, “If you admire somebody, you should go ahead and tell em/people never get the flowers while they can still smell em” 

In Between

HelloHalima, HMFpoetry

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I have found myself in a state of in between, 

 a limbo-like state that makes me constantly feel like I’m dangling from the edge of a cliff,

one hand simply separating me from plummeting to my untimely death.

I am between two selves,

two feelings,

two possible outcomes of my life’s journey.

I am between liking the way you make me feel and hating you with every fibre of my being.

Between laughing at your jokes, no matter how corny

and wanting to forget about you entirely.

Between hearing you say “I love you” and wishing desperately for

an “I hate everything you stand for”, 

And yet I dangle,

my feet off the ground, far from any sibilance of safety, my heart gone with it.

I am in shambles, 

Torn entirely. 

love me, love me not

HelloHalima, Life, Written Pieces

 

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The art of rejection and feelings of unrequited love is similar to someone pouring salt into an open wound, it stings and hurts but eventually you clean it out and get over it. Or so we think. I remember as a child, the ideals of love were so simple, you meet someone, and you fall in love and live happily ever after, the end. At least… that’s what my naïve self believed. Growing up, when I thought about love, I envisioned a feeling, an emotion that is endless and all consuming, an image of two people falling in love and riding off into the sunset only to live happily ever after.  Recently, the idea of unrequited love boggles my mind. Where is the love for the ones who love but are not loved back? The dejection that is linked to someone not reciprocating your deeply rooted feelings, the sadness that is a consequence of wilful ignorance. Unrequited love is the illness to its counterpart, happiness and total contentment. A wise person once said, “Isn’t it ironic…we ignore those who adore us, adore those who ignore us, hurt those who love us, and love those who hurt us.” This wise person might have been onto something. Although highly cliché, this ironic sentiment is the basis for all of our romantic misgivings. While we might love love, we definitely do not like the idea of unrequited love. When we are not appreciated or loved in the same way, it creates a clash between the hope for our romantic present intertwining with that of our future relationships. The idea of unrequited love is something we have all experienced in some shape or form. Perhaps through a crush on the boy/girl at school, secret feelings for your best friend, a date or two with a guy/girl from Tinder but it does not work out. For whatever reason, fate, or the divine universe or whatever you might believe in is playing referee. Walking the halls of UTSC, I began to wonder whether this problem was a recurring phenomenon amongst my peers. How many times have you been dragged through the mud in the pursuit of love?

They say it is better to have loved than lost but what if you are a victim of both? This is precisely what unrequited love is, the painful instance of loving someone who does not feel the same way. To think about unrequited love and rejection, we must first look at the critical component of who is involved. There’s a naïve- butterflies in your stomach-can’t sleep without thinking about it- stage in a relationship that has you transfixed and convinced that everything is fine and dandy, when that is not always the case. The majority of the time, we fantasize and project our own dreams and expectations onto the other. This in turn allows for disappointment when things do not work out between the other person. I asked a few students at UTSC about this conventional set of notions and I was surprised to find out the different levels of unrequited love/rejection that existed. When asked about experiencing this issue, Idil, a third year arts management student said, “I remember back in high school, I guess I kind of experienced it with one guy…” she added, “it eventually led to something better cause I ended up getting with his friend instead!” after laughing jokingly, she later added: “When I think about love, I think about the relationship between me and my cat, Chester. He’s like a user and abuser, I give him my all and he doesn’t appreciate me as much as I appreciate him, and he chooses every family member but me! But honestly, it’s life! Not everybody is going to love you or like you at some point in your life but you gotta move on and appreciate yourself for who you are and KNOW that there are other people out there that will appreciate you back… maybe I should get a new cat though…”

The social aspect of rejection is one that is the basis of all fundamental romance. It is evident in the Films/TV shows we watch, the books we read and the music we listen too. “When I think of unrequited love, I think of rom-coms! Movies like Never Been Kissed and 500 Days of Summer are the backbone of our society.” says Nikita Singh, a fourth year Health Studies student. Time and time again, the hurt and turmoil that people feel through this unrequited love is one that is a synthesis of the romantic period. Hurt and pain sells, if you don’t believe me, ask Drake! In this commercialized appraisal of unrequited love, how do we even begin to pick up the pieces of our broken selves to ensure moving on? The idea of self-reflection and healing is the most crucial step in order to recover from the sting of rejection and unrequited love. The first thing you need to realize is, it’s their loss! As overused and wildly cliché as that sentiment is, your actions of infatuation are not made in vain if someone does not appreciate and love you for who you are. You are a badass! You are smart; you are loyal (I appreciate you *DJ Khaled Voice*). Aashna Thakkar, a fourth year New Media Studies student had some final wise words to share, “If a guy rejects you, it’s his loss! There’s plenty of other fish in sea, as they say!” So despite initial fears and reservations, continuously putting yourself out there will contribute to your experiences and drive you one step closer to your desired, everlasting romance.

 

Good-Bye

HMFpoetry

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It has been 5 years and quite some time now,

But it still feels like I have just lost you.

I remember the phone ringing

and with it my life was forever changed.

Like a fresh wound just inflicted upon my skin,

the pain overwhelms me and shocks me to the core.

It is so terribly painful to think of

a world without you,

So I try not to think about it and

push it to the back of my mind.

Then I realized that it is truly difficult for me to even fathom

The idea that every second without you

 is a reminder of what no longer remains.

I realized that just like ripping off a band-aid, the pain was still there

lingering and slightly above the surface.

What I would give to have

mere seconds with you,

To update you about all the new chapters in my life,

To laugh with you during the joyful moments,

ones that are filled with wonder and glee

To cry with you when life becomes dark and dreary

But original thoughts eventually re-surface

and you have to face the facts,

You are gone and have left me.

Good-bye.

I will love you, always.