sinds mijn 4e of 5e, en misschien wel daarvoor, ben ik fan van elly en rikkert. ‘elly is mijn idool’ zo iets schijn ik op die leeftijd te hebben gezegd. Vandaag de dag nog zijn de kinderliedjes vaak over geloof, nooit kinderlijk maar altijd creatief nog steeds een vaste basis van mijn eigen verbeeldings vermogen. De woorden en de liedjes die ik al zo vaak heb gehoord, en zelf gezongen hebben zich geworteld in mijn leven, mijn referentie kader. Al eerder heb ik geschreven over de liedjes, en de schoonheid en wijsheid die er in zit. Een van de zinnen die mijn door de jaren keer op keer herhaal in mijn hoofd, om de liefde te begrijpen is “als je veel van iemand houd, geef je het mooiste wat je hebt, dat is heel gewoon”. Zoveel schoonheid in de zin. De liefde, de liefde voor de andere. het mooiste wat je heb- de liefde voor wat jou is gegeven, een liefde die geeft. Het willen geven en het geven van het mooiste wat je hebt is niet iets doms, of iets idieels, het is heel gewoon. En toch, als ik vandaag aan iemand iets geef, het mooiste wat ik heb, een van de dingen die het meest kostbaar vind, dan word ik weer geraakt door de normaalheid er van. Hoe erg het klopt om iets zo dierbaar te delen. Hoe dat niet verlies brengt, of verdriet en afwijzing, maar zoals het spreekwoord zegt ‘gedeelde vreugd is dubbele vreugd.
This weekend I spent the weekend with family because we were invited to come to my newest niece baptism. The reverend who did the service I only knew by name, because he has written a lot of books. I don’t remember whether or not I have read one of them, and I think if I did I didn’t think it was very good, mainly for the lack of surprises. Today, however, the sermon had a nice surprise in it, the subject was love. Now it had all the ‘standard’ love Bible text that even the pagans know ‘1 Corinth 13. Love is patient, love is never jalouse, all these kind of things. However, rather than giving a holy praise of love the Reverend started with more of a confession: despite the fact that it says clearly: then rest us, hope, faith, and love, the greatest of these is love, and ‘God is love’ he would move back to but isn’t god angry as well, or truth, or justice?. And sometimes we are so fast to ask in church ‘how is your faith’ and not ‘how is your love’. He confessed how he in the past often met with a guy who would always go back to the greatest commandment: Love God above all and your neighbor as yourself, and honestly, sometimes he would think: don’t we know that one already? Diving more in the subject of love he remembered the man, understanding a little more why he went on and on about this core of the Christian faith. What does this love mean? He shared a quote he found attributed to Augustine, a 5th-century theologian- ‘love is ‘I want you to be’. Simply that. I want you to be. He went on to share a quote from someone who had in their religious life made a daring promise to self: to no longer believe based on fear, but rather from love, starting with loving others to understand better what this meant. The reverend went on to say how indeed sometimes when you don’t know how to love God -because he is so high and mighty and ephemeral- you could love God by loving others.
I almost patted him on the back. I thought it was quite significant what he had shared, but I wanted to add something. Tonight I confessed the same to my dad. I told him, there yet is another way of looking to this commandment when perhaps you don’t know how not necessarily how to love God, but how God loves you. Some of us are very aware of what it means to unconditionally love others, but for some reason find it very hard to love ourselves. In a way we are missing the ‘self’ from the trinity of the greatest commandment, ‘God, the Other and the Self’. However, by knowing the love found in the self for others, a fraction of the fierceness fo gods love, or how to love ourselves can be understood.
I as I told this all to my dad I told him: Oh, and I know the title of the book explaining this: “how the greatest commandment is like the law of Pythagoras”. A2 xB2 is C2. You don’t have to know all the corners to understand and learn the all the angles. All you need to know is that it is a triangle. And, when you know two angles the third will become inevitable. No one can know how high, how deep and wide the love of God is. However, the love triangle between God, the Other and Yourself give some indication of exactly how unmeasurable it is.😊
who am i to hide from you
to be dishonest about my struggle
not caring for you like i want to
you don’t get some special gift…
you don’t get to see something no one else has seen
yet it is something that is most precious to me
christs spirit as it moves in me
and know that when i love you
it was because he loved me first
and because he gave me eyes,
to see beauty in everything
and truth through the cracks of lies
and his voice. telling me. forgiveness
is always here.
So. Imagine this movie scene. One of the characters goes and sits on a bench on a small airport, notices the other character, who seems to be a Russian, since the book he reads has Cyrillic letters. The characters stay side by side and little to nothing seems to be happening. and then… The supposedly Russian guy starts talking to the girl who came to sit next to him. And we have no idea what he says, neither does the girl. We find out that for some reason the guy thought that maybe this girl was from his country, and for that reason spoke to her in an unknown language. Everyone can guess what happens next: they start to talk about where they came from and where they are going and the meaning of life. Since the conversation is not finished and they both have to catch a flight they travel together through security and follow the flow of the conversation. And then. In a split second the girl realizes she is late for her flight, and without knowing anything about this guy except where he is from and where he is going and his vision of life she runs off, leaving what this conservation could be when she would not be running off, to everyone’s imagination.
In the second scene, we see this girl again. This time she is in the town where she lives. She carries a book and goes to sit on a bench and there she reads it. A little later a guy comes and sits next to her, working on his laptop. Nothing really happens for a long time, until the girl puts the book next to her on the bench and the wind opens the book, and takes out one of the precious notes this girl found in this book, that she has on permanent loan from someone she loves. Of course, for dramatic purposes this bench is on a canal side and the note flies to the water and lands there. The girl runs after it and since she does not know how to get the note back she considers quickly reading it again and copying it. Yet then the guy that until now did nothing of particular interest comes over, puts away his phone and jumps in to the boat that is next to the note and rescues the piece of paper. The guy asks: “Was it a shopping list? Because sometimes when I find other people’s shopping lists I buy the things that are on there.” The girl is a bit confused and starts copying the note to a book, to save its content and to wait until it is dry. When she finishes she decides to continue the conversation and you can imagine what happens, they end up talking about where they came from and where they are going and the meaning of life. The sun moves around the sky and the shades get longer. Yet the girl has no clue what time it is until she gets a phone call from the person that she is supposed to meet: she is half an hour late. The two introduce themselves to one another, spell their first names and the girl runs off, leaving what this conservation could be when she would not be running off, to everyone’s imagination.
I love stories. Stories and images, the two things I can really remember well. Names and numbers? Not so much. I just started reading ‘The mortal instruments Book two. Now I thought I had read book one, but I’m not so sure I remember all the all the stories and what happened ad what didn’t. One of the reasons why is because I have been watching the Shadowhunters tv series, thing is, that both helps and doesn’t. Similar themes play a role, yet the timeline is completly messed up when you compare them. One way or another, the same characters are there and so it is kind of like a dream: you know this place is a place you know although it looks nothing like it. You know who someone is , even though they don’t look like the person. The difference between the book and movie in general is often discussed. There always seems to be a group that is upset that things are not exactly like they were on paper when seen on the screen. I’m not one of these people, I love paralel stories. A story is such a gentle thing, you have to move it subtlety and you cannot fit everything that could possibly happen in there in. For that reason i love different versions of stories, they tell the same but differently allowing the story to reach it’s full potential. I think that’s what storytelling, art history, faith and life is. retellig the same story finding true meaning and endless possibility.
oh the freedom to feel
a home that I found
The mess that someone just
puts me right into
And all of the blessings that I have
To kling to
I’ll be alright i’ll be yours god
and meet you
whereever you bring me.
New exiting things going on, somethings ending, some space for developement. This poem is almost a year old but it describes what i feel now perfectly!
I don’t dare to write
All the things I feel inside
All the stories thought
And besides I forgot
Them so many times
I know that these sound
Different I know I’m
Not so sure as I was
Before that these are
All lies, my thoughts
And hopes can never
Let all that is beauty
Let all that is precious
Let all that is given
Protect all that is dear
Protect all that’s not ready yet
Protect all of my fear
Lead me slow ahead
Lead me to the truth
That’s always highlighted
Lead me to the insight that
My longing can be right
That I can be found
That I can find
That we can share
That time will tell
That loves not blind
That right is strong
That heart and mind
And soul can be
On the same line.
So, the title of this post is quite vague. Imagine it is the sound that I make when I review the things of last days that made me positively livid. As in: Extremely angry up to the point that I wanted to cry. And I guess there is a theme there. It is about harming basic rights. Now I understand that being said that you cannot walk on your street with your bike on a Friday night on a cycle lane that is over a square that is closed off for cycling on the weekend because of too many drunk people and thus you have to go some different way to your house is perhaps not necessarily a criminal offence but it sure felt like it. I must say I might have overreacted a little bit but I was very tired and coming in between and my bed when I’m tired is never a good idea.
The second thing was less obvious though in a way similar. You see the closed off cycle lane was already a process of months, it was closed off but you were allowed to walk with your bike, and as crazy about cycling Amsterdam cyclists are that was already a big step for me to be semi-ok with. Anyways. This other issue was also already going on for quite some time. However, this did not have to do with some rules but some behavior that I was not entirely ok with but kind of ignored because… because I didn’t realize how much it harmed me. This behavior consisted of a person I did not really know very well in a usually safe place for me looking at me in a way that thinking back of it makes me wish I was not a woman. And I love being a woman. So why the hell made did this person make me feel -in retrospective, that around him it was the worst thing to be?
Because I was watched as some kind of sexual object and not a person. Today it was not just the watching (which I so far had just ignored as a good girl does) but rather he was way to obviously looking for contact with me, and it was clear that he was not necessarily interested in me as a person. I was joking that he was too scared of me to tell something, that he sucked at winking and that I regretted telling him my name because it was annoying he was saying it the whole time. But only when he was freaking out because he felt that another man that was (obviously) gay was looking at him I realized the extend of influence of his behavior. He complained he was looked at. And me and luckily also my friend said: but that is what you have been doing to her the entire time. The thing is, the other (gay) man had not at all been looking at him in some kind of lustful way as he did to me. And when we confronted him with the fact that his behavior of looking at me was not different than the behavior he said to perceive, he said: “but that is normal”. It had seriously not occurred to him that indeed I might feel like he felt. So, I told him: “I say now that I feel the same. I do not feel comfortable to be watched like that by you the whole time.” And only then I realized how badly it had harmed me. And how messed up his behavior was. And it reminded me once again how important it is to be a feminist. And how important it is to tell these kinds of stories. To say this is not ok. Because I can imagine that you would never imagine saying that it is normal that woman is sexually objectified even if the context does not give any indication for this. But you might be treated differently by man because you are a woman or you might treat woman different because they are woman and you are sexually attracted to them-in a way that when you exaggerate it clearly shows the disrespectfulness. We all have blind spots. And fairly obviously for this guy this was that he did not see that his behavior was not ok. And I know that you are not him. But I know you have blind spots, since as far as I know you are human. And I pray to god that you start looking for them, especially because one way or another it might cause harmful and disrespectful behavior from you towards others. And that is not ok. Ever.
I love kids. Of course, I’m sometimes terrified of them as every human being should be, but interacting with them is sometimes so enlightening. I think I already once wrote something about one of my favorite quotes from ‘the other hand’ from Chris Cleave. It is the last real grown up fiction/literary book I have read (I discovered when I was in high school so go figure, studying ruins your interest in real books XD). Anyways, at some point there is a boy who asks a man: are you a goody or a baddy? and the guy says ‘well I’m more one of the innocent bystanders’. The boy doesn’t understand and the mother explains
‘You start off like my Charlie. You start off thinking you can kill all the baddies and save the world. Then you get a little bit older, maybe Little Bee’s age, and you realize that some of the world’s badness is inside you, that maybe you’re a part of it. And then you get a little bit older still, and a bit more comfortable, and you start wondering whether that badness you’ve seen in yourself is really all that bad at all.; – Chris cleave- Little Bee // The other hand
Now I’m not necessarily referring to morality now but children have a way of changing your focus. All the sudden you need to be an adult that explains things. The way they are, not just the way we discuss them so we don’t have to deal. What teaches me most these days is how kids deal with emotion. A kid jumps around, a mother instinct knows to ask: what are you exited for. Three are things to come, and the child says: but there is more I just forget – and she remembers the last thing, and so it is out there.
We jump around because we are excited of anxious. Or when my niece desires something what is not possible: endlessly making her wish clear and she can’t be convinced that it is ok that it will not come true: I Am SAD!. It reminds me that although that I learned reasonably well how to deal with these emotions and I don’t throw tantrums anymore, I do feel similar things, and my actions are influenced. And isn’t that wonderful?
So the other day I bought a new sewing machine.. Since I have to bring mine to the repair man anyways I thought before I spend more than 30 euro on that I might just buy a 45 year old one for 30 as even just a temporary replacement. Turns out it is actually a great one (I knew the brand was good, but still cool that it works this well) and by the encouragment of watching ‘textileartist.org’ experimenting with textiles video training I decided to make something!
While I was at it I decided I could make a new logo/tagline for lieverleesje:
Lieverleesje, restitching stories one by one. *I know that is very unclear in the actual thing 🙂 So here it is!