Tag Archives: hope

Undertow (#12)


I have always been very focused on getting to where I feel I need to be. It has allowed me the discipline and foresight to chase my goals and make most of them become a reality. I have everything I could ever need, and am on track to establishing what I desire in my foreseeable future. I have had magnificent adventures and crossed paths with some brilliant and unforgettable people, but I think that despite my spontaneity and hunger for adventure, I have never really allowed myself to mentally ‘go with the flow’. I believe in trying most things once, from skydiving to hallucinating on strange pills, but every decision was meticulously calculated and weighed, and then precisely executed. I used to pride myself on having incredible foresight – and acting on it to ensure that every action and decision I undertake or make can be rationalised and explained, to result in a potential benefit to my future. I equated constant planning with maturity.

However I realise that whilst that in itself is beneficial, it is a fairly silly line to use as a standard of comparison. I think that whilst they are good practices in their own rights, foresight and constant planning can also result in a temporary spatial blindness. I regret the ignorance I had harboured towards friends who seemed so able to make decisions without fully explaining them: their stupid decisions were not necessarily stupid simply because I couldn’t understand or rationalise them.

I am trying to find a balance between the need to control all aspects of my life and allowing things to take it’s own course. It is proving to be quite scary and difficult, given how this is unfamiliar territory. I am learning to allow myself to indulge in things that make me feel a full spectrum of emotions without having to first be able to rationalise the “why”s and “how”s of it; I am learning to surrender – and what a beautifully optimistic thing that is.


2017 (#1)


I have written in this blog for 11 years, and I feel like it has inexplicably shaped me as a person. It has allowed me a space to take out my frustrations, realise my dreams and fears and it sometimes even forces me to be introspective and figure out what I really think.

Writing Fickle Fridays the past year was an integral part of the processes of grieving and subsequently getting better through one of my toughest years. It reminded me to take some time out of each week to think about what truly matters. It got me to listen to new music and write new poetry, as intended.

I started this blog when I entered high school, as a 12 year old. It’s 2017 now. This will be my 6th and final year in university. And I’ve been  thinking that I might stop publicly journaling after this year. Simply because once I enter the workforce a lot of the contents of my daily life will overlap with that of my colleagues, clients and patients. And I really would like to respect client confidentiality (and not get sued).

My new year’s resolutions are very unimpressive. I’d like to swear less (I’ve already failed at this), practice better posture and possibly cut my body fat percentage. And of course, become a doctor (or at least marry one).

A few days ago an old friend told me I was the most pessimistic person she knew- I think I am cautiously but surely trying to move away from that. This year is going to involve a lot of long hours and hard work, but strangely enough I am excited for what is to come, I am excited to realise my full potential with all the hard lessons I’ve learnt over the past year in my pocket.


Time Paradox (Fickle Friday #47)


People feel like time passes faster as they age. When asked to guess the length of a time interval, older people are more likely to guess a shorter interval than their younger counterparts. “Forward teloscoping” is the phenomenon whereby people perceive distant events to have occurred more recently than they actually have. This may be attributed to what psychologists refer to as the “Proportional” theory which suggests that with age, each time period constitutes a smaller fraction of your life.  A year to a ten year old child is 1/10th of her life, whereas a year to 50 year old woman is less significant.

I find that it is often the older people in my life that try to comfort me by telling me that a specific time period will not be significant in the long run. The senior vets tell me to stream into my area of interest (Wildlife medicine) rather than into what I know is the safe option (Small animal GP) because 12 weeks is only but 12 weeks in the grand scheme of things. After ending my long-term relationship my mother tried to console me by telling me that 5 years is a long time when you are 23, but that it will lose it’s significance the older I grow. 5 years will be nothing when I am 50.

I on the other hand have always found great comfort in Einstein’s theory of spatial relativity; the laws of physics remain the same for all non-accelerating observers.

Time passes at the same rate everyday, regardless of how I perceive it. On particularly bad days that seemed never to end, I would often stop and watch the clock for a full minute to remind myself that that terrible day would end at the same rate as any other ordinary day. There are 1,440 minutes to a 24 hour day- 86,400 seconds. And time waits for no man- even as I stood there reminding myself of this fact, the seconds ticked by and I would be comforted by the knowledge that I was just that much closer to the end of the day. I find that I still use this tactic to get through tough times- long hours in the hospital, weeks spent in the library preparing for my exams, or the months of healing required after a heartbreak. I always find comfort in the fact that each passing second brings me closer to the end of a difficult period. However this only works if you firmly believe that the future holds better things. It requires a staunch optimism. Which is strange because I have always considered myself an unbudging pessimist (or realist).

I think I am okay with that.

I do truly believe that I have braved my storms and that there are better days to come.
Perhaps I am just being naive.
Or perhaps it is because I feel- for the first time in a long time- like I am the captain of my ship; that I have some semblance of control in my life in that my happiness is not directly correlated with the actions of another individual. It doesn’t mean that I will refuse to let people in- I thrive on the relationships I build with the people around me. Only that at this point in my life I have a choice in who I let in, and who I allow my happiness to be correlated to.

And that is a pretty hopeful thing in itself.




Fickle Friday #45


I Am Only Happy When I’m Wanting What I Can’t Have

As a child I made a routine out of longing,
wrapping my hands around each passing desire,
forcing the world to contort and concede
to every craving that lived under my skin.

I grew up only comfortable in yearning,
staring into the void of desire, wondering how to extract
what the heavens were withholding,
Wanting to taint and manipulate the fates to my advantage,
just to prove I had them under control.

As an adult, I have learned to build homes
Inside the absence of whatever I am wanting,
Resting indoors while the tides swell and storms brew,
As I wait for the long game to play out and for the cards
to keep unfolding in my favor.

I’ve become an architect whose specialization is constructing makeshift spaces inside temporary
States of deprivation

States like you
Not being with me –

Not yet.

I have developed an affinity for comfort
When I am wanting for something I can’t have and at the moment
I’ve built a home inside of
Not having you.

I’ve been tracing meteorological forecasts
With your name echoed over the skies
And I’ve grown certain that these tides are going to change;
Our storm will swell,
The cards will play out and the fates
Will unfold in our favor

But until then you can find me here waiting,
Keeping one eye on our darkening skies.

– Heidi Priebe

The Rose (Fickle Friday #37)


The Rose

E. E. Cummings

the rose
is dying the
lips of an old man murder

the petals

mysteriously invisible mourners move
with prose faces and sobbing,garments
The symbol of the rose

with grieving feet and

against the margins of steep song
a stallion swetneess    ,the

lips of an old man murder
the petals.


1-man Adventure (Fickle Friday #33)


1-man adventure

More than 5 years later and Average Jim continues to impress me with profound insight.
Oh how we have grown, oh how things have changed.
Here is to hope, however painful- and to the unknown, however terrifying.

Life is made of many chances. How lucky, we.