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.

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

Anxiety+Mental Health in the age of #BellLetsTalk

HelloHalima

I wrote this poem a couple years ago when I felt consumed by anxiety/depression. For me, it wasn’t about the quality of the poem but the outlet it provided me to feel calm again. An anxiety attack makes you feel out of control, elevates the beating of your heart- to create intense palpitations, makes you feel like you can’t breathe- preys on the deepest darkest thoughts you have and brings them to life. Although most of the sentiments in the poem below still ring true in my life, I feel better when I am able to cultivate work that communicates exactly how I am feeling. For Bell Let’s Talk this year, I wanted to post it as a reminder that it will always be apart of me but doesn’t have to consume me the way that it once did. While Bell Let’s Talk is a commercial- way for industries to feel like they are apart of the mental health initiatives, it is an amazing way for the conversation to begin for people who are not apart of it as of it. If you feel lost, hopeless, anxious, empty, low- try to talk to someone! As terrible advice as that might sound, sometimes getting it out and out from your head into words will alleviate some of the pressures that you feel. I know it does for me. Write it down- if you don’t want to talk to anyone- writing down how you feel is so incredibly cathartic. Therapy also is a really great tool to use, I used to shy away from the idea of telling a stranger all your problems- I used to think- why would they even care? That’s weird! The stigma is something that I once fed into- but I’ve since found it to be the best way to bring myself out of days of complete despair and get myself back to feeling like myself again. According to CAMH, 1 in 5 Canadians are struggling with mental illnesses right now, by the age of 40, 50% of us will have experienced it first hand. With statistics like that- it is heartbreaking for places and people to still value the idea of physical pain as more important than that of mental health. It is as debilitating, confusing and detrimental to our health as well.

There are immediate resources (listed below) if you need help, would like someone to talk too or want to understand mental health further:

1. The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) has a 24/7 Psychiatric Emergency Department at 250 College Street location.

2.Toronto Distress Centres (416) 408-4357 or 408-HELP

3.Assaulted Women’s Helpline 416-863-0511, Toll-free: 1-866-863-0511

4.Kids Help Phone at 1 800 668-6868

Live Chat: https://kidshelpphone.ca

5. WHAT’S UP! Walk In Clinic: http://www.whatsupwalkin.ca/service-providers/

@ashsgreen

an anxious soliloquy:

Anxiety won’t let me rest

Palpitations and waves of arithmetic sensations fill my chest,

It doesn’t change when I turn over in my bed,

scattered thoughts echoing in my brain, making me feel “insane”,

Chest feeling heavy, brain feeling dizzy,

It’s 4:11 am and I’m feeling weary…

Anxiety knows no time,

Responsibilities and duties do not matter when anxiety’s around,

I wonder if it will always be this way

Or whether it will consume me,

Because right now it feels like my anxiety is winning

And I’m always losing,

The worst part is when my depression comes out to play,

Anxiety’s first cousin- twice removed on any given day

It makes me feel hopeless, like this world wasn’t meant for me,

hopelessly searching for a remedy,

Therapy helps- sometimes at least

But when they team up- it feels like an all out war against me,

I try to explain how I feel to my loved ones,

Some tell me to pray, others gently tell me “get over it”,

It’s hard to explain how you are feeling when people do not understand you-

Comprehension completely removed,

It’s not their fault, I think to myself,

Maybe it’s me- maybe I just need help.

I know now that that’s not true,

Not everyone is meant to help you,

My anxiety will always be apart of me- but at least now I’ve found coping mechanisms that work for me,

Setting aside time for me- removing people from my life that always belittle and doubt me,

Writing out my feelings is a huge win for me,

Makes me remember what I am feeling so I can better deal with it,

Verbalizing your stresses and pains are cathartic and soothing

It’s unfathomable to think,

That physical health is valued and understood more than mental health

But as long as I keep vocalizing my truth, I’ll always be fine.

losing

HelloHalima

c7d876160b1f87bc879b6278ebe06d10It has taken me a while to get the words together, words that I’ve never thought of uttering, of even contemplating. I always found a home in you, a type of recognition that only love could find. We’ve been through a lot together, the pitfalls that life had created for us, experiences that should’ve bonded us together but instead, here we are. Separated by a difference in opinion, a shift in daily routines, a divide in understanding each other- perhaps of caring. Maybe I took you for granted, maybe you did the same of me. Somewhere along the way- we forgot what we meant to each other, for each other. A crumbling of our connection, of our friendship- an untethering of what bonded us. I used to forget about where it began, this sharpness in tone, playing catch up games instead of understanding the fluidity in each other’s lives. I used to dream of knowing you forever, of our kids growing up to call each other cousins, of family parties and a building of memories for the rest of our lives.

Now there’s a halt in those dreams, a disconnect in our lifestyles and a break in the ground that used to lead me back to you. I used to have a hard time letting go- of things or people- of grasping the realities that shape who we’ve become and what we deserve in life. I used to connect letting go to living with a broken heart- one locking the door of our experiences together- forever. I think I am okay now. I am ready to let you go, to look fondly on what you meant to me and what we’ve experienced together. I will miss you, perhaps when I stumble upon a photo or contemplate a memory in bouts of nostalgia. I wish you nothing but the best. I wish you a life of happiness, of building incredible memories in the life you always spoke about wanting to cultivate, of loving someone unconditionally- of finding sheer happiness- unconditional always. Goodbye my friend.

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

BACK N BETTER: Updates, What’s Next?

HelloHalima, Life

After a very long blog hiatus, I am back! The real question is- am I better? I’ve been so caught up with the stresses of school, final exams, assignments… but I’m DONE! I am happy to say that I am finally finished my undergraduate degree in Health Studies and English. It has been a long and gruelling four years but I am so excited to be done! I will be writing on my undergraduate experiences and putting out a reflective piece on my last four years later this week. Lately I have been bombarded with one overarching question: what’s next? unnamed

I wrote a poem on this in my final English Portfolio on Anxiety and how unsettling it feels. The answer to this question is, I don’t know. The idea of a gap year is something that I hadn’t really contemplated as I have been going to school consistently for the past few chapters of my life. An entire year to just explore- to work- to grow? Without the bounds of an institution to support you? Insane idea to even fathom. While the answer remains as “I don’t know”, I am excited to grow and find out exactly what’s out there. Yuck Halima… you’re starting to sound like a tired cliche, the end of a sappy teenage Netflix original.

Screen Shot 2017-05-02 at 4.34.58 PMTo be honest, the worst thing I have ever done is stop writing for this blog. I wish I could convey how debilitating it feels- this type of anxiety overcomes me when I think of writing for this blog on a daily basis. On one hand, some days I am overcome with excitement. I am overcome with ideas for material, for posts, for photos, for content, I am writing and writing and then I start overthinking. What if no one likes it? What if no one reads it?  I do not know if it was the school stress or the lack of motivation but I found myself hiding from my blog. How crazy is that? I think that may sound like the most ridiculous thing ever but I found myself engulfed by a major case of imposter syndrome. Who am I? What makes my work important? Why do people want to read about what I write about? What am I afraid of?tumblr_ol9d8eoyrA1r352jbo1_500

I woke up this morning and thought, Who cares? The work that I cultivate will be a reflection of my own experiences, my own ideals, my own beliefs and as a writer it is quite important to make sure its accessible to a general population so that they are able to then take in your work and empathize and see their own experiences in the work you provide, but that is where it ends. Over the course of having this website, I have found myself at the mercy of many opinions, many people trying to take my work and piece together how it “should be” or “should have been” and that is something that I am striving to shed in the coming days, months, years.

May is Mental Health Awareness month and an excellent time to share my truth and show you all my revamped ‘anxiety series’ by putting forth my own experiences with taking care of your mental health, as well as the many interconnected facets that plague me on an everyday basis.

I hope you stay tuned with my work and I look forward to sharing a lot more of my life with you in the coming days.

 

XO,

Halima

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 

 

Update: Writers Block

HelloHalima, Written Pieces

 

Writers block

 

I was talking to someone from school recently and she asked me “Halima, why don’t you post more frequently? I don’t get it, you have all this time and yet your blog remains dormant and all you do is watch netflix everyday, are you lazy…” While this is partially true, what I did not like was the polarizing attitude she had and the lack of understanding she possessed about writers block. Some say that writers block is a myth, just an imaginary and psychological barrier in your mind that you create when you want to avoid fear of being judged or justify not writing. To these people I say, to hell with you!

When you suffer from writers block, you feel the bubbling of the words at the tip of your tongue, the words and the intent are there but suddenly vanish as you are unable to retrieve them back again. It feels horrible, kind of like a sneeze that does not really come out but you are left with a strange sensation and a weird expression on your face. Recently, I have found myself at a loss for words but not really? I do not know how to explain it, if you have ever suffered from it then you know about what I am speaking about, the halting sensation you feel, the panic when the words do not feel or flow the same way on paper than how they did in your mind, the frustration of not communicating how you feel properly. I write and write and write but sometimes I do not feel like what I am writing is at the caliber that it is usually at. I am stuck like a piece of fresh gum at the bottom of my shoe, it is a annoying reoccurrence in my life.

Charles Bukowski once said “Writing about a writer’s block is better than not writing at all” hence this post but what I still do not understand is the way in which people just think they know you. It is infuriating!!! The idea that someone can just speak about your intentions, your thoughts, your ideologies and just misconstrue them in a way that no longer contains the essence of you. It is like they project their own expectations, ideas and thoughts onto you and think that because of this, you are similar to them? No way. I found this quote that really helped me get out of my rut:

“If you get stuck, get away from your desk. Take a walk, take a bath, go to sleep, make a pie, draw, listen to ­music, meditate, exercise; whatever you do, don’t just stick there scowling at the problem. But don’t make telephone calls or go to a party; if you do, other people’s words will pour in where your lost words should be. Open a gap for them, create a space. Be patient.” -Hilary Mantel

And patient is what I’ll be.

memories p1 

HelloHalima, HMFpoetry, Poetry, Writing, Written Pieces

 

 

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I was rummaging through my closet and came across a box of photographs and there you were.

Your effortless beauty and heartwarming smile

frozen in time, captured by a single random moment of wonder and curiosity.

I remember that day vividly: I had just purchased my new camera and you were the first person I wanted to photograph.

At the time, you were annoyed,

At the time, you did not wish to be photographed… but of course I did not oblige.

You laughed after you saw the photo and told me to take another, and another turned into another which turned into a photoshoot.

But who could even fathom that 4 years later, I would be sitting here and you would be gone.
It’s unimaginable to think that the happiness I felt with you in that sheer moment of spontaneity will never be felt or experienced again.

Instead as I look at this photograph, I yearn for the penultimate moments before,

I yearn for the moments after and to have one last conversation with you…

It’s quite tragic really, the emptiness and nostalgia that comes over me,

It is tragic how I can vividly remember this moment but cannot even recall the last thing I said to you,

the last thing you said to me, our final and distinct memory.

I miss you.