Small update

Hi Internet!

Okay so before any of you go killing me because it’s been so long since I last posted, I’m really sorry. I just haven’t had that much to write about honestly. It’s not like my life has ever been interesting or worth writing about but t least before, I had stories I wanted to share and just really let a lot of these trapped thoughts out. So even though I can’t guarantee anything after this post, I just suddenly had a urge to write. So… I thought I would just update you on what’s been going on in my life for the past 2 months!

Off the top of my head, I’ve really started using Twitter again, and for many of you that has no significance and you may be really confused as to why I’m telling you but July and August have been some of the hardest months in my past 5 years. I really fell into this pit and it just felt endless. For the first time in a couple of years, I thought I had lost myself again and I didn’t know this time if I was going to resurface or even survive. It would be the biggest lie to say that I had been suicide-thought free, because that was all I could think about. In every way I’d known myself to be negatively affected by my mental health, those manifestations of being unhappy were back and I don’t really want to give away every detail but yeah, I was just so unhappy. So I withdrew from the people I loved, as I do when I feel like that because all I can think is that, “If I make them like me less, then if I were to ever lose my ongoing battle, they wouldn’t miss me.” I know that that’s not how it works but that’s how I think and so with the withdrawing, came more loneliness which obviously wouldn’t help but I reconnected with the fangirl side of myself and found comfort in tweeting to complete strangers in the hope that I could say what I wanted without needing any validation from people. So using Twitter frequently again became my first step in trying to get better. Then, I deactivated Instagram for a while, reactivated it, but now I do not use it (ever) because I realised posting pictures purely for other people to see how oh so great my life is, was a complete lie and honestly, it felt like I was not only showing off but also seeking approval from others in the form of comments and likes. Since completely stopping my use of Instagram (secretly, I have a fan account so I can see band members’ things without the pressure of it being a “Social Media” platform), I have definitely seen the improvement. I don’t waste as long scrolling through pictures of girls I couldn’t actually care less about.

Another thing that I’ve now incorporated back into my life is Dan and Phil. Mind you, I’ve loved and watched them for about 4.5 years but I was never in the Phandom. I only watched their videos but didn’t really engage with other phans and get in on all the jokes and livestreams, etc. After missing out on getting tickets to their first The Amazing Tour Is Not On Fire (TATINOF) show, and being completely devastated because I had waited so long to see them, I got tickets for the second show when it was announced and I became obsessed. I watched every single video on their gaming channel as well as rewatching so many other videos of theirs. So, that’s definitely been a huge highlight of the past month of my life. Seeing these two guys and seeing TATINOF was something I’ll never be able to forget. Despite not being allowed to take any photos or videos of the show, I immediately wrote down what I could remember of the show when I walked out so I could at least have that memory and even when I close my eyes I can still see them. They’ve been a huge source of my happiness these past few weeks and honestly, along with all the books that I’ve been reading, Dan and Phil brought me back to the surface. In addition to that, I also went to see a counsellor at Uni twice and it was really nice to just talk to a counsellor again, as the last time I went was in 2013 and I knew that I needed help. I’m really working this time to try and get better and I’m going to go to a doctor and everything and sort it out because I never want to go back to where I was in July. It terrifies me to think that right now, I could’ve been dead.

It is weird to think though in July I was simultaneously so, so happy. There was someone and things were really good between us but I guess sometimes, some people are just meant to be friends, which is okay. I’ll leave most of the details out about that because it’s still taking a bit of time to be well and truly over that. Some days, honestly, I miss him (as a friend) so much, to the point where I wish we hadn’t dated and that I had never liked him so that at least we could be really good friends still, instead of not even speaking anymore. But with that loss, came some good because Josh and I have become so much closer and he is one of my dearest friends. To think, at the beginning of the year, I had a crush on him. Little did I know that he was gay (yes, you can all laugh at me). But Josh has really been an incredible friend and just a different dynamic to my usual friendship group.

This post so far just seems incredibly messy and it really might not make any sense whatsoever but I’ve never written for the enjoyment of others, purely for my own love of writing.

This semester in general just feels really different. So many of the dynamics of my friendships have shifted and our group is closer and I’ve grown so much closer to some people and drifted away from others but I know that’s just what happens sometimes and as my counsellor said, “bob along with the waves instead of letting them pin you down and drown you.” So that’s exactly what I’ve been doing for the past few weeks and it’s working!

– Chan

P.S. Looking at this post now, it looks like I’ve just spewed out words (which I have) but, provided I have midsem break coming up and that I also feel the motivation to, I really want to expand on a few of the things I mentioned in this post and definitely do a post about TATINOF.

 

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A World Of Succulents

Hi Internet!

It’s been quite a while since I’ve sat at this laptop with a true, burning desire to write, and maybe some of you have noticed by my lack of posts. When I first started writing this blog, I wanted to have a bit more consistency in my life and I had a lot of feelings to write about…so I did. As time wore on, I realised that all my sorrowful tales had run out and I didn’t have much else to really write about and this, being what it was – a sanctuary for my thoughts and feelings – I didn’t want to force myself to write.

About a week ago, I found out the Finders Keepers markets were being held and I definitely did not want to miss them again, so I instantly messaged my friend, Josh, and said we had to go.

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Before I get into the happenings of the day, let me just say, I caught the bus from a part of the city I had never even seen before and to a bus stop I didn’t know existed, and for anyone who really knows me, they’ll know about my aversion to buses, so they’ll understand how big of a deal this was. Catching the bus there started my day with this incredible enthusiasm that I haven’t felt in a long time. After going inside, money started leaking out of our wallets, slowly but surely. Let’s just say a little more money was spent than maybe should have been (by both of us) but I mean it was all definitely worth it.

I bought two candles and an art piece, all three of which I absolutely love to bits. The first candle I bought was made by two lovely girls called Ash and Casie from Posie and I got one of their amber candles for $20 which I thought was really good value for money because it came in a beautiful jar that I definitely will be reusing after and the scent was just so refreshing.

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The second soy candle was from a sweet lady who owns Amber Dawn Candles and it was $40. Even though many of you might think for a candle this was quite expensive, it’s quite large and…they come with earrings! It’s not just that they come with earrings; the earrings are inside the candle! Basically, you just keep burning it until you see the little packet of earrings emerge. In addition to this, the little copper tin the candle was poured into, was so gorgeous and definitely can be reused to hold make up brushes, pens, normal paintbrushes, you name it.

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The last, but definitely the item with the most sentimental value to me, was a stunning A4 piece of art done by Damara Sestanovich from core. for $20. It’s an original watercolour and ink pen piece of the lunar phases, which were done in pen, and then a large moon in the middle, done in watercolour. I am always eager to get anything lunar-related because my name means “moon” in Bengali and not only does it make me feel connected to my family and culture but the moon symbolises characteristics that I really would love to reflect in my nature.

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Although I did get the things I really wanted to, I also had to leave behind some beautiful terrariums, planters, candles, rings, and prints that I wanted to get but just didn’t have the money for. Although I may not have been able to purchase their products, I did get to talk to some incredible people who were just so genuine and really made my morning. I took their cards so I could follow them on social media and keep in touch next time they were set up at a market. My favourite conversation had to be with one of the guys from MANPLANTS. Josh and I were talking to him about the planters they made and I was saying how much I really wanted to buy one but I couldn’t because I didn’t have enough money (and had already spent too much) and he asked me if I had succulents. Sadly, I said “no” (not counting Gammy the GAMSAT succulent who definitely suffered alongside me through semester and may be close to his death) and then he carefully twisted off one of the succulent leaves that they had in the planters and gave it to me and said that I could repot it and it would grow into its own plant! I know, to many people, receiving a succulent leaf may not have any significance but it was just the generosity he showed me that reminded the introverted side of me that meeting new people can actually bring so much happiness.

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There were also fantastic terrariums made by a lovely girl called Isabelle Cameron from Terrariums by Bella and it really took all the self-control I have not to buy one of the amethyst or rose quartz planters they had. Just looking into the terrariums I could imagine little pixies and fairies living inside and under toadstools.

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If you’re interested in any of the things I bought, or talked about, I’ve linked them all so you can check them out and maybe give them a follow because supporting our local  businesses is always a nice thing to do. There were two other independent craft makers who I also loved talking to and looking at their products so check them too out if you get a chance:

Keep tuned for a post on Friday!

– Chan

L is for Loser

Hi Internet! Sorry, I’ve been gone for a while and even after today I might not post for a few more weeks so apologies in advance. Life has just been hard recently, in more ways than one, and writing just hasn’t been something I have felt I could do and I just didn’t want to post anything half-assed. This is something I’ve wanted to write about for a really long time, so I hope you enjoy reading it.

So recently one of my friends told me that before she knew me she was always too scared to come up and say “hi” because I looked too ‘cool’ (trust me, I was confused too). It was absolutely mind-boggling to say the least because if any of you knew me in school, I was probably one of the least popular/cool/TC girls you could’ve been; the complete other side of the spectrum. I just couldn’t comprehend what she was saying because I had grown up being relatively confident and comfortable in my skin but always overshadowed by the prettier, more fun girls who seemed to get all the attention and admiration. But suddenly, my friend was putting me on this pedestal that I didn’t think I deserved. So then it got me thinking that, “what really makes someone ‘cool’?” What defines being ‘cool’ ? Was it your clothes, your style, your physique, how you held yourself, your RBF, even how many likes you got on a picture? I really couldn’t pinpoint it!

In high school, in Year 8, although there was somewhat of a separation between the popular girls and the rest of us, we all mingled comfortably and existed amicably. As high school went on, the popular girls seemed to segregate more noticeably, with this clear hierarchy starting to form in our cohort. There were the extremely popular girls who everyone knew, then their friends who were still popular by association and got invited to the same parties, the girls in the middle who were friends with both the popular girls and the losers, and then us, the bottom of the bottom. It never bothered me because I guess I had just accepted that I was a loser and it didn’t change how my true friends saw me. Although, it wasn’t until I was talking to Ma about the popular girls and how I never was invited to or allowed to go to parties and that I would be doomed to be the lamest girl ever and she asked me why going to these parties would make me ‘cool’. What did these popular girls have that I didn’t have?

In movies, the popular girls were always the ditsy, stupid ones and the losers were the ‘nerds’ but some of the smartest girls in our grade were the popular girls; so that distinction couldn’t be used. Next, I looked at their sporting ability because being sporty usually made you popular and although many of the popular girls were extremely athletic, some of them never even participated in P.E. So it couldn’t be that. Finally, the only thing I could settle on that made them the popular girls were the number of likes they got on social media, how much skin they tended to show when dressing up for events, how many parties they went to and how relaxed their parents were. Somehow these four things, in my eyes, made someone popular which now if you really think about it, is absolutely absurd.

The number of likes you get on a picture have no relation to your beauty or self-worth; purely that you have many ‘friends’ and you can take a good picture and pose the right way to get all the right angles and lighting. Take me for example, Formal was the only time I had gotten a lot of likes (for me) and I think one of my pictures got around 140 likes on Facebook and I was absolutely ecstatic but nonetheless, the buzz around Formal soon died down and I was back to getting anywhere between 60 and 80 likes. Then, something happened mid 2015 that I still don’t understand and my newest profile picture went over 100. I was completely perplexed. I hadn’t made enough new friends for that huge jump, so did I become more popular? I mean, is that even possible to be more liked after leaving school? Did I become more attractive? Definitely not! It just started happening and probably because I learned how to take a good picture. I had grown up thinking that having more likes must have made you more popular but here I was, the same, dorky kid but with the same number of likes that I used to think made someone popular.

The next thing that fell under my criteria for being popular: how much skin the girls showed. Although that might be a similar trend amongst many of the popular girls, I could clearly still see there were girls who dressed like I do and were popular. So it wasn’t that either! Although most of the girls dress the same, it made absolutely no sense that what you wore should define your popularity amongst others. It was simply that they chose to follow trends but so do many other girls and that never made them popular.

My last main criteria: going to countless parties. I had grown up my whole high school life never having been to a proper party where there were people everywhere drinking into the night. I didn’t drink a single drop of alcohol in high school and apart from Semi Formal and Formal and a few concerts, I was never out past 10pm. Now in Uni, having been to more parties than high school Chandra thought she ever would, I don’t understand how going to parties could possibly give you the label of being one of the popular people.

Now, although that takes me back to square one, I want to just believe that they were just all connected and it came down to who you know. Nothing more than that. Even now, I’ll never be able to pinpoint what it is about some girls that make me feel inferior and like I’m just back at high school and the loser girl I was for 12 years but so what? Everyone’s a little insecure about something so maybe not being a trend-follower or having a wild social life in high school makes me feel a little out of place with some girls but what can you do about it? The one thing I do know for sure is the day I consider myself ‘cool’ is the day scientists discover how to make people vomit rainbows. It’s not going to happen. So I think instead of being confused as hell like I was when my friend said I was too ‘cool’ to approach, I’m just going to take it as a compliment and remember that everyone feels a little uncool around someone. And that’s okay.

– Chan

18 and Unkissed

Hi Internet! Some of my closer friends may have read the title of this post and been very confused as to why I was writing about this because of recent events. However, I actually had this blog post planned for about three months, since I first started this blog, and I was brainstorming about things I wanted to write about. Little did I know three months ago that something I thought that wouldn’t happen for a very long time was just around the corner.

Naturally, most teenagers have their first kisses anywhere between 11 and 16 and of course there will be people outside this range but from my experience, that’s what I’ve found. And especially after graduating high school and still not having had my first kiss, I always felt on the outside of this circle of people who knew what it felt like, who in a way had experienced “teenagerhood”. It made me feel unwanted when I was feeling down because in my mind, not being kissed, translated to no one wanting to kiss me which is a bit of a stupid connection to make, I know.  There will be some of you reading this, who may know me personally, and be thinking “Oh no…she’s at it again” but I know that there are just as many people who know exactly the feeling that I’m describing. No matter how high your self-esteem is and how happy you could be, sometimes it just gets you down. And that’s okay. We are only human, after all.

It was when I was reading a tumblr post which I’ll insert at the bottom of this post that I really gained the inspiration to write this. The past few months have been tough for me, due to personal reasons, and I’ve found myself craving alone time a lot and just time to sit by myself and think. After all that thinking I realised that although most people find someone to marry and to love, not everyone does. And I’m okay with that. I’m okay with having relationships throughout my life and ultimately never getting married or starting a family, having relationships and following the traditional path of marriage and kids, or even never having a serious relationship and just being surrounded by loved ones in the form of friends and family. I don’t believe in any form of God but I do believe in something; something that carries us down the path we’re meant to follow. There’s nothing wrong in pursuing people, as people  know I have no problem doing , but I’m really trying to build that resilience in my life and basic understanding that if something doesn’t work out that obviously, it wasn’t meant to be. Just like a few months ago, I didn’t know that I would soon be kissing someone, I don’t know what my future holds. Who really knows?

This tumblr post is just one of many that I come across and really just warm my heart and then also when thinking that relationships do happen. Like, they are a thing that people experience and that concept is so weird to me because I’ve never liked a guy and have them like me back.  If it’s going to happen, I know it will happen but it’s such a lucky thing to happen, I think. There are people I know who have been lucky enough to come across that in their life and to somehow find someone they have feelings for and have that person like them back. But that’s how life works really. You never know what it’s going to throw at you or how things are going to end up. So something I have tried living by for a couple of years now is “Everything happens for a reason.” People who are meant to be in your life, will stay and if they weren’t meant to be then it just won’t work out. I’m sorry for the rambly post today but I just wanted to write a bit without too much structure and editing. I hope it was a pleasant read, nonetheless.

– Chan


A post about romantic relationships

So I’ve been in a relationship for 5 years now. And I see a lot of posts about how people think relationships mean having butterflies forever, your heart beating faster when they walk into a room, about cuddling together every night, legs intertwined, that you’d be so happy to live together you’d sleep on a double bed with each other every night.

And it’s not really like that, at least not to me.

You stop getting the butterflies when you live together. Your heart no longer speeds up when you see them, but instead, everything calms down. When you’re in the room with them, you feel calm, and secure. When you cuddle them you feel your heart beat slow, and the sound of their breathing carry you towards comfort. It doesn’t feel like a roller coaster anymore, it feels like home.

You don’t sleep curled up with each other every night, legs twisted between theirs so tight its hard to tell where yours begin and theirs end.

Instead, you sleep comfortably, side by side, sometimes facing different directions. But every night, you find yourself scooting backwards on the bed so you bump into them. You snuggle against their arm, or stroke their hair as they fall asleep. There are nights when my boyfriend, in his sleep, reaches around me and pulls me to him, like a child with his teddy bear, like I am his comfort.

In the wee hours of the morning before the dawn breaks, when the world is blue and you see through cracked eyes, you curl into their chest and inhale their scent before drifting back to sleep.

Kisses aren’t always romantic and firey anymore. But there are so much more of them now. There are cold kisses when you’re eating ice cream in the summer, and sticky kisses over breakfast pancakes. There’s “I’m leaving now” kisses, and “one more kiss before you go” kisses. There’s sleepy morning kisses before work, when you don’t remember the alarm going off but instead the press of their lips against yours is what brings you into the day.

There’s kisses before sleep, and, you are so sweet with the things you do kisses. There’s kisses because you treat animals so tenderly, and I’m so glad i’m with you and not someone else kisses. There’s quick kisses in the aisles of the grocery store, when its loud and you gravitate together, when instead of having your own personal space and their own personal space, it’s both of yours together, and you step into their chest to take up less area together.

You don’t always text each other with confessions of love and care like you used to, because that’s a given now, and you’ve moved on to quirky inside jokes about the life you’ve built together. You share looks of exasperation and amusement in public, your own little world against the outside one.

Relationships aren’t always a fairy tale. They’re not always fireworks and sparks, at least, after the start.

But they are a quiet rhythm and hum of love and care. It’s not a fire in your soul, but one in your hearth, keeping you warm and comfortable, comforting you as you drowsily drift into sleep.

And I love that.”

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Lux, Luna, Sol

Hi Internet! So to be completely honest with you guys, this week I really haven’t had the time to write a decent post because they do take at least five hours and when you have assignments and exams non-stop, five hours is a lot to spare. On top of that I got extremely sick on Wednesday night so trying to juggle exams, assignments and my battle to try and keep food down was already quite a lot so I’m really sorry for this post being a couple days late and short. However, after already taking about a month off earlier this year, I didn’t want to leave you guys hanging and plus, I’ve wanted to post these somewhere for a really long time.

From a young age I’ve always had an eye for natural beauty and wanting to capture memories so put two and two together I landed at loving photography. Although I may not have an actual camera to take photos on and I just use my iPhone, I’m always taking photos when I see something I know I want to remember.

A particular series, I guess you could call it, are these photos I’ve been taking from my bedroom of the sunrises and sunsets since July 2014. I just find it so fascinating that the same time on different days or even photos only minutes apart can be so different. Obviously the sun would rise and set at different times throughout the year but even days apart, one day the sky could be a vibrant orange and the other, a soft pink. Sunrises bring with them the light of a new day and the ability to form new memories and you never know, one particular sunrise could be the beginning of one of your most remembered days. Sunsets on the other hand, I just find so peaceful. Whether you’ve had a good or bad day, sunsets bring with them a sense of tranquillity and I may just sound a bit crazy but I always just think that as sunsets bring the night to us, they tuck away all the memories of the day. A good day’s memories are glued into your life’s scrapbook and a bad day is washed away with all the others, leaving room for the next day and whatever memories it may bring.

With that being said, I just wanted to post these few photos that I’ve been taking throughout the past couple of years.

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– 5:10pm 22 July 2014 –
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– 6:11am 25 July 2014 –
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– 6:45am 5 August 2014 –
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– 7:03am 18 August 2015 –
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– 6:33am 4 May 2015 –
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– 4:31am 12 November 2015 –
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– 5:23am 8 March 2016 –
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– 5:51am 18 April 2016 –

In addition to those ones, I also have these photos I’ve just taken from placed around my house or garden.

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– 5:38am 9 March 2014 –
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– 6:59am 24 July 2014 –
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– 5:28am 8 September 2014 –
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– 6:19am 17 October 2014 –
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– 5:16pm 22 March 2015 –
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– 6:13pm 6 November 2015 –
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– 6:17pm 6 November 2015 –
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– 6:31pm 6 November 2015 –
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– 6:05pm 14 November 2015 –
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– 6:51pm 27 December 2015 –

I hope you guys liked them!

– Chan

 

Love Me Like That

Hi Internet! Okay, so I’ve been thinking about this for a while and surely by this point you’re all starting to get bored of reading about my past just as much as I am starting to, writing about it. I thought for this post I’d mix it up so I could also document the incredible memory. For any of you who know me well, you’ll know I love me some good bands and just about 90% of the music I listen to is by bands ranging from post-hardcore to alternative rock.

Anyway, it happened on the 6th of April when I saw one of my favourite Australian bands, Masketta Fall. I first heard of them in 2012 from a friend and she told me about this band that she heard busking outside the All Time Low concert. I immediately looked them up and loved their music but with Masketta Fall being a relatively small band they didn’t have a tonne of music out at the time and weren’t releasing new music so they fell off my radar after a while. It wasn’t until January 2015 that I went to The Vamps, and Masketta Fall was an opening act. Here was this band from three years ago that I had completely forgotten about and they were back! The weeks that were to follow were completely filled with my obsessive fangirling and excitement.

One year later, they announced a tour with VIP packages! I couldn’t believe it! To think that I finally would be able to see and meet these guys that I loved so much was just unreal. Fast forward to the 6th of April, Karin and I had to squeeze in as much study as possible before we had to leave for the concert. We thought the M&G started at 4pm but then through all these misunderstandings, missing busses and confusion…we missed it. We got to the venue at 4pm and the second we got there I had this horrible feeling in the bottom of my stomach that we had missed it. About 15 minutes later, we were all let in and I started noticing that people inside already had their VIP lanyards so Karin asked the guy at the desk about the M&G and he said it had ended at 3:45pm.

After waiting so long to meet these guys and buying a VIP ticket, I couldn’t believe that we might miss out on it. So, after panicking for a while, we went back up to the desk and I asked the lady and she said that she couldn’t do anything about it but to talk to the band Manager. Jonty, the Manager, said that at the end of the show we could meet them properly.

At the end of the concert they went through and met everyone and I told them then that we missed the M&G so they said to wait and we could hang with them after everyone had left. While Karin and I were waiting for everyone to be done, we met Marcelo, who was the supporting act, and got a picture with him. He was honestly such a lovely guy and incredible live! So much talent in one guy.

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Afterwards, we went and sat on the couch for about 20 minutes and watched more and more people leave until some official-looking lady came to us and said we could go in. We walked into the hall and Jamie, Braden and Moli were talking to these other girls so Karin just stood there for a bit. Eventually, the girls left and Jamie came over to us and called the other boys over and we chatted for a while. I tried to keep my cool as much as possible but my hands were shaking so much and I was struggling to just have a coherent conversation with these guys. Probably the only proper conversation I had was with Braden about his perfume because I told him he smelled nice and Moli was so surprised at how much I knew about perfumes and their different notes. On the inside, he was probably thinking, “Who is this perfume nerd we let in?” Anyway, we all took some selfies during which, Moli was absent but then out of nowhere he just popped up in front of me and was putting the VIP lanyard around my neck (trust me, I may have seemed cool on the outside but inside I was dying) and then Karin, and I know it sounds so stupid but that was probably one of my favourite memories from that night. We didn’t have to ask for the lanyard but Moli went and got them for us himself and put them around our necks too!

After that, the other guys went off to pack up the stuff so Ben was talking to us and we told him about Karin’s pinkie promise with Moli for them to come back every Wednesday to Brisbane (because I said to Braden that they should just do another tour and we started joking around that they would just drive between Brisbane and Sydney) and he jokingly asked if he could crash at our places and come over for dinner (ummm…of course!) and there was just some friendly banter going around.

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– Moli –
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– Jamie –
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– Ben –
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– Braden –

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All in all, it was an amazing night and I really enjoyed the vibe and their performance. When only performing to 50-100 people on this tour they easily could have not put in as much effort and energy into their sets but you could see how hard they worked for this and that’s probably one of the main things I love about smaller bands in general. It never ceases to amaze me how dedicated they are. Even when sometimes it may seem like the easiest choice to just give up, they keep persevering to live out their dream.

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I really want to make 2016, “The Year of Concerts” so for the end of the year, be expecting a master post of all the bands and artists I’ve seen this year so I won’t be posting my best pictures until the end of the year.

– Chan

Love, Drama and Tuna Juice

Hi Internet! So after reading the title you might be having a bit of “Chandra…what are you on?” moment but trust me, by the end of the post it’ll all make sense. As tradition on my blog, this is going to be another life story but after all my blog is just me trying to sort through the bits and pieces of my life.

This story starts in 2011 actually when Anna became friends with this group of girls because they were in the same class and I used to hear about them all the time. In fact, Anna had actually been organising to buy me a GHD hair straightener for my birthday. I remember on the card she had put everyone who had contributed to buying it and there were these girls on their who I wasn’t friends with but little did I know, in less than one year these girls would be my closest friends. If you guys have been reading my blog for a while you would’ve read Undiagnosed but still real and so you would know most of the story but for anyone who might be new here, I’ll just do a quick summary of what happened. I became attached to Chrissy and slowly worked my way into the group becoming friends with the girls and bringing in a few other girls until there was about 10 of us. The Mob was fully assembled.

As the year went on we all grew closer and closer and I loved them with my whole heart. One of my favourite memories from high school has to be with a few of them when we went on school camp. I remember on the last day of our camp out and we had to walk 16km back to the main campsite with our huge packs and we hardly had any food left. That morning I made one cup of milo and a cup of soup for everyone and then we had about a handful of cereal left and that fed the six of us. Keep in mind all this food we had, we had to share amongst the six of us but throughout the day we had a packet of M&Ms that no one wanted to eat because we needed carbs, one mandarin, a couple of corn thins and a few fruit bars. I’ve never been so deprived of food in my life and then when we finally got back to the main camp site everyone was eating lunch but we had no food so another group gave us a packet of spinach wrap bread, one cucumber, half an avocado and the weird end bit of a stick of salami. Someone also gave us the remains of a packet of tuna and after using the actual tuna on the bread I remember I drunk the juice because I was so hungry. I’m not even ashamed because we were pretty much fighting for our lives there! There were so many more memories but let’s just say One More Night by Maroon 5 has permanently been changed for me.

Although we were all so, so different the one thing we all had in common was that we were the fangirls. Each and every single one of us was in at least one, if not, many fandoms and that understanding of one another was something that bonded us together. We were all a little crazy and just loved to have fun. Sure, the other girls might have judged us and thought we were weird but we couldn’t have cared less. We never hesitated to sit on the ground, scream for our lives when there was a lizard or one of our chair’s legs fell through the drain or take hundreds of pictures and selfies. I really imagined this to be the group I would grow old with and they would all be my bridesmaids at my wedding and we would grow old together.

I guess things change and that’s not going to happen. “Why?” you may ask. Well, starting in Year 11 and then just continuing through to the end of Year 12, we would always be having small arguments and although things would always go back to normal after a while, it was far too easy for there to be drama amongst the group. We would always overcome said drama and it would no longer be a problem. The boat first started to majorly rock at a concert that they had extremely kindly gotten me a ticket to, which I never had the chance to thank them for because of the fight that followed it but it meant so, so much to me. One distinct thing I remember from that night was during the concert they were singing “Mr Brightside” and all I wanted was Chrissy to be by my side to sing it with. There’s just something about that song that makes it one of the best songs to perform at a concert.

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Anyway, there was a major argument and now, looking at it, there was just such a chaotic mix of things going on that I could never attribute the blame to any one party but suddenly there was me and Karin on one side and the others on the other side. A few days after we all seemed to have made up but I could still feel a bit of remaining tension in our group. This tension completely evaporated about a week later there was a small picnic amongst our extended group of friends and everything felt perfect again. Weeks later, Uni started and that was when we slowly started to drift apart. I sat with them sometimes in lectures but at the same time, wanted to make new friends so I was also sitting with them in lectures and through timetable clashes and arrangements to sit with new friends we hardly ever got to sit together and hang out like old times. It was obvious what was happening to our group but it was inevitable because it just seemed neither party wanted to fight anymore and we just let nature take its course. They soon made a new group chat which Karin and I knew about pretty soon but there wasn’t anything we could really do about it so we just gravitated towards our new friends. By the end of the year, it was done and this once, loud and fun group became two.

Although we all remain friendly towards each other, we know it won’t go back to what it was before and even though in our hearts and minds the memories won’t ever disappear, no one would ever know we were all once best friends. Karin and I often talk about what could have been and having these beautiful girls no longer with us, how much we miss them and just the completely different dynamic we used to have but life happens and you just have to move on I guess. Our new group is so great and I love them just as much but a part of me still pains for The Mob. I grew up with these girls and we all just had so much history and although I’m still struggling to fully move on, I know its for the best because the Universe evidently had different plans in mind for me.

From this experience I truly learned not to take friends for granted because sometimes you don’t realise how great something is until you lose it. On the other hand I also learned that everyone is entitled to happiness and if someone isn’t making you happy anymore, it’s okay to cut them out of your life. Everyone is loved by someone but sometimes the person you thought was good for you might just be a better fit for someone else and it wouldn’t be right to keep them when everyone would benefit from it…if you just let go.

– Chan

Fangirl

Hi Internet! So what do you think of when I say “internet friends”? Probably a bunch of geeks sitting behind computers playing games together or, if you’re not as sheltered and know about fandoms, you might imagine fangirls. I feel like being a fangirl or just the connotations that the word carries are always negative. When I looked up definitions of “fangirl”, it was associated with being ditzy, annoying, shallow; someone who has overstepped the line. This honestly really hurt because we’re not just lust-driven, crazy teenage girls. More often than not I’ll find myself trying to explain my love for One Direction, for example, to someone and how someone like me who generally prefers music more on the rock, pop punk side can still love them but not be in love (italics) with their music. But it’s not just about the group or individual people fangirl over…it’s the friends you make through it. Not only Karin but I have made some of my closest friends through the One Direction fandom. I’ve grown close to only a few but I still have so many friends that I love who I met through Twitter. I met Preeti (whose name I changed for her own privacy), Brooke, Erin and Francesco through the One Direction fandom, as well as Rachel who I met through the Harry Potter fandom.

I’m going to talk about Preeti first because she’s no longer in my life and I thought it’d be nicer if we save the happiest stories for the end. On the 18th of April this year it’ll be one year since we last spoke and it still hurts to think about her. Before that, we’d been friends for four years and she was incredible. We first “met” when I asked her to make a manip of me and Harry (Styles). For most of you the word, manip, is completely foreign but they’re Photoshopped pictures of us with our favourite celebrity. She lived in India, was about four years older than me and we went through so much together. She knew all of my friends and their personalities so it was like she was right here. I knew we were best friends but it wasn’t until she attempted to take her own life and I thought I lost her and cried for hours and hours that I really realised how much I loved her. Luckily for me, she was okay and it was the summer of 2014 when we planned to meet in India finally but that unfortunately didn’t happen. I guess it was for the best because five months later she made it clear we couldn’t be friends anymore. Uni had started for me and I was so busy that I was neglecting her and we didn’t talk as much. It was about the time that she said she wanted out that I was also losing my high school friends and I wish I didn’t remember how bad it was then but I do. I don’t really have a proper ending for you because that’s just how life is and you don’t always get a “happily ever after”.

Moving on to lighter matters now – Brooke. Next to Karin, she has been my best friend since June/July 2013. I remember our very first conversation because the boys were coming that October and she tweeted me asking if I knew what hotel the boys were staying at. I told her that we couldn’t reveal it to everyone so to text me and we haven’t left each other since then. About two years later we finally met at a One Direction concert and I was unbelievably happy. The feeling of finally being able to hold your whole world is phenomenal. Even though she’s in Year 12 this year and we’ve both been so busy that we don’t get to talk as much, it doesn’t lessen our friendship whatsoever. Yes we might have met on the Internet but I would never call her an internet friend because not only are we as good as friends as I am with any of my friends in my everyday life, internet friends are real friends too.

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– believe it or not, it wasn’t me who asked –

My other Australian friend I made was Erin. Like Brooke, she’s in Year 12 this year and so we don’t get to talk as much but she has also supported me since day one. I’ve been so blessed to be able to spend quite a few days with her which, if you have internet friends, you know is quite a rarity. One of my favourite days ever has to be meeting 3/4 of The Vamps and being able to do it with her just made it so much more special. I remember Ma and me driving over to her house at 8am, picking her up and then after being stuck in traffic for an hour, running over to the stage and watching one of our favourite bands together and then meeting them The day after, we spent together shopping and I haven’t seen her since because, although she’s been in Brisbane a few times, our timetables always clash. Despite this, our friendship remains just as strong as we continue to support each other, especially with her being one of my main supporters of this blog.

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– with 3/4 of The Vamps –

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Let’s fly over to the other side of the world now to Italy, to my dearest Francesco. Like Preeti, he’s quite a few years older but that doesn’t change our friendship or my love for him. We’ve been friends for about four years and to just think about everything we’ve been through together is unimaginable. I very clearly remember the beginning of our friendship because he tweeted me asking if I could check out a cover he did and after doing so, I messaged him and we talked for a while. I remember the moment I felt he was one of my closest friends when he told me his dad was sick. I knew now, more than ever before, that I had to stay by his side in this extremely hard time. I couldn’t begin to fathom his grief and the hardships he had to face. The morning his father passed away, a few months later, he messaged me at about 4am (this was the only time we were both awake and could talk) telling me of the news and I just sat at my desk and cried. I know I never knew his father and had never even met Francesco but it was like Francesco’s pain was radiating through my phone screen. Our friendship grew even stronger and eventually, we exchanged phone numbers and were texting nearly every day. One of my favourite memories though, has to be the night we were sending each other voice messages through iMessage and I heard his voice for the first time and really that’s just the power of the internet. Two kids from opposite sides of the world, eight hours apart became best friends. I know it still hasn’t happened but I know one day we will meet and I honestly can’t wait for that day.

My last friend I’ll be talking about is Rachel (or Rach). She’s from Singapore and we’ve definitely been friends the longest – nearly five years! Rach and I have been friends since the (italics) very beginning…since I made my Tom Felton fan account. I don’t quite remember what our first moments were together but it was something about keeping wands in your back pocket and blasting off your butt haha. Our friendship’s dynamic is quite different to anything I’ve ever had before because we’ve been each other’s lives for so long but with both of us leading quite busy lives we never really talked that much. However she’s still remained a close friend over the years. Recently we’ve been talking so much more and it makes me so happy to have her back in my life.

Each and every one of these friends as well as the countless numbers of other friends I’ve made have truly shaped me as a person and made as much of an impact as anyone in my day-to-day life. I’ve dealt with tough times, as many of them have also but knowing I can turn to them whenever I need is one of the most comforting things. After all, isn’t that what makes a friendship truly great? Knowing that we may not talk all the time but when it comes down to it, we would drop everything to help the other and be there for them?

This post hasn’t done justice to everyone else. There are so many other friends I love so much and have had in my life for years now like Bella, Georgia, Ash, Han, Lucy and Kelly but if I was to talk about each and every person I have grown to love through Twitter we would all be here for years. So if I haven’t mentioned you, don’t think you’re any less important to me because there’s space in my heart for everyone!

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Fandoms are so much more than what they appear. There’s a reason so many fangirls say that a certain band or individual has “changed their lives” or “saved their lives” because not only is it them but the friends you make along the way that changes lives. Friends are priceless and I owe One Direction and Harry Potter so much for bringing me to some of my best friends. If being a One Direction fan is something to be ashamed of then so be it because I’m proud to be one and to say I’m in the fandom because the memories I have made and continue to make are irreplaceable.

I hope that this post could bring some insight into many of your lives and I hope some of you judgemental souls will save your energy and instead of hating and laughing, educate yourselves on how a fandom could be so important to someone.

– Chan

A Hairy Journey

Hi Internet! It’s been absolutely forever since I’ve posted anything on here and I’ve missed it/you guys so much.

So, this post is a little different to my usual “dark and sad but trying to be helpful” posts. Nonetheless it’s something that I’ve been asked about a lot; why I did it etcetera, etcetera. You’ve probably figured it out from the title or, if you already scrolled through this post and saw the pictures…I cut my hair! And not just any ordinary hair cut where it’s a little shorter and some “huge weight” has been lifted and it’s all so healthy. I’m talking, “I chopped off all my hair and it’s about three inches long at the very longest”.

This story starts a really long time ago when I wanted to donate blood and I know you must be thinking… “what the actual hell does wanting to donate blood have to do with cutting your hair?” Well, I got my seconds done last year so I couldn’t donate blood for six months after that. Instead, I decided my contribution to society would be in hair form…I was going to donate my hair. I have been blessed in my life to be able to grow thick hair (and a lot of it) but, there are many kids who can’t do this. I think it’s something most of us take for granted and it isn’t until you lose it do you really understand what a significant part of your identity it is. Of course it isn’t everything and a person doesn’t just change depending on their hair – or lack there of – but I know it can really impact people, especially children’s self-esteem. As someone who has struggled – and still struggles – immensely with my self-esteem, it really got to me that there was something I could do to make these people feel more comfortable in their skin but I hadn’t done it yet. I knew my hair would always grow back so there was really no question about it.

This then leads to about 10 months ago when I went from having waist-length hair to a lob (a long bob, for all you non-haircut experts) and that was absolutely enormous for me. Here was a zip-lock bag with my ponytail in it – all 11 inches of it.

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the day before
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the day after

Fast forward to mid-February 2016, I was incredibly bored of my hair and it had reached a really awkward length. Boredom wasn’t exactly the only reason I decided to go really short but it was for me and not to donate this time. There was a major factor contributing to my decision but that will be coming in a later post because it’s a bit too long of an explanation to squeeze in here. I messaged Karin about it on the Monday and my hair cut was scheduled for Thursday.  In that one week I scrolled for so many hours through Pinterest trying to find pictures of the style I wanted and finally narrowed the pictures down to one of Julianne Hough and Jennifer Lawrence. I also told mum and dad who absolutely freaked out and then told my work friends about a big ‘surprise’ that was coming on Friday so I couldn’t back out of it.

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Jennifer Lawrence
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Julianne Hough

Thursday came. I was sat in the hairdresser’s chair and she had just cut my hair to a hideous bob length. She then hesitated again (italics) and said for the second time that she didn’t think I would look good with a pixie cut because of my hair type and some huge wave I had at my roots (what does that even mean?). After freaking me out again and leaving me to discuss with a hysterical Karin (because apparently I looked like The Weeknd with my hair clipped up)  I was left with this colossal decision to make. Although my hair does grow fast I knew that getting the pixie cut would mean it wouldn’t be back to a bob length for at least six months and I would have to deal with the awkward lengths when growing out a pixie. But (evidently), I decided to just do it because it’s just hair after all! I know this is a little off topic but can I just tell you that, for the many girls who have never experienced it, having a razor shave the hair at the nape of your neck is the best feeling ever. I’m not even exaggerating! It was pure bliss.

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– Going for “The Weeknd” look –

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– Evidently very chuffed with the new hair –

Since then, my hair has grown about one inch and I never realised how noticeable hair growth is when your hair is shorter! Before, my hair growing one inch wouldn’t have changed anything but the shorter and shorter I went, the bigger the difference it made. For any girls thinking of going for the pixie cut, I really would recommend it so much. It is, by far, the best decision I have made with my hair in my whole life and even though it does take more maintenance than my long hair ever did, it’s worth it.

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Yes, there have been the anticipated lesbian and “you look like a boy” comments – or as one of my students said, “You look like a male!” – because apparently hair has a sexuality and gender but after receiving the number of compliments I have gotten, those comments mean nothing to me. Sure, at first, the idea of people’s first impression of me could be that I’m more masculine or possibly a lesbian did get to me and not because being either of those things is a bad thing. Only because I didn’t want to look like a person I wasn’t and the idea of guys maybe not approaching me anymore scared me, as shallow and stupid as that sounds. After all, I’m still human and sometimes the “I don’t care what people think” attitude cracks a little. I’m not gonna lie to you, after much teasing from various people, it did break me and I cried a bit but it was after a couple of weeks that I actually realised, it doesn’t matter to me what people think. I’ve never felt so confident in myself and so screw what people think you know? If you live your whole life trying to please people, you’ll never be happy because you get one life so why not do whatever the hell you want? To think that a haircut had the ability to boost my confident so much still blows my mind! After many years of awkwardness and experimenting with my “look”, I  feel like I finally look what Chandra should look like so I couldn’t care less. There isn’t really a proper way to explain that to anyone reading but it’s like I knew in my head what I wanted to look like but I never felt like I could achieve that but with this hair, I finally feel like me.

To anyone who has thought of going short, just go for it! Whether it’s just a lob, a bob or if you’re feeling brave enough, a pixie cut, do it! It’s just hair after all. And if you’re in the majority of the lucky population that I am, it’ll grow back and along the way you’ll get to experiment with lengths of hair you would’ve never been able to experience before.

I hope I didn’t bore you all with this post but I just wanted to share the experience for anyone interested in or contemplating about going for the pixie.

– Chan

The ‘Karan’

Hi Internet!

This post is dedicated to one of the most important people in my life but of course, everyone is welcome to read, especially if you know us in person and are curious as to how two humans can be so synchronised and inseparable. She’s been in my life for about four years now and honestly, I might cease to exist as a human if it wasn’t for her. Once in a blue moon you’ll stumble upon someone who makes you a better person than you ever thought you could be and I can’t stress enough how important is to hold on tight to them.

Before all of you get a little confused and think I’m dating this girl because often that is what people think, although I may as well, I’m not. Her name is Karin, or as I call her, Karan, and she is my best friend, even though that’s one of the biggest understatements. Often I refer to her as my “otc” because she’s just ‘off the charts’. I came up with the name because although I have many best friends who I love, Karin goes beyond that; she’s off the charts on the best friend scale.

Enough of the sappy talk, it’s story-time with Chan again! So Karin and I met in class in 2012, Year 10, and we would sit together in Maths because of a mutual friend and soon we became friends. Like most teenagers, we were once extremely cringey (and who are we kidding, we still are) and if you’re skeptical about the extremity of it, just look at our first Facebook message.

first message

In the Maths lessons we had in the computer labs she would show me the One Direction video diaries and we watched ‘One Thing sped up’ on repeat and soon became fangirling buddies with everything. About mid-year we went on school camp and that was when we became close and inside jokes started popping up, like sharing a ‘cigar’ (it was a stick we found on a hike) and then we were then engaged! She soon was part of our group in class and a few weeks later started sitting with us at lunch and we became even better friends.

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– Year 10 camp –
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– One of our favourite singers, Jesse –
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– My 15th Birthday –

2013, Year 11, was just as fun with her and we spent a great portion of that year really getting to know each other. We would stay up late at night emailing and telling each other about our lives and our bond grew stronger and stronger. Lunchtimes were also extremely weird and many of our inside jokes and memories stem from them.

We had our first huge fight in August 2013 over something which at the time seemed quite significant and after not speaking for nearly a week – I’m talking full silent treatment – we resolved it and believe it or not, we became closer friends. I knew I could trust her with everything and with jealousy being a major issue for me, I opened up to her about it and we would always talk it through. We talked about it all because having that trust and openness in our friendship was – and is – vital.  Karin and I always tell each other if there is something bothering us about one another and the honesty is just unreal.

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– Valentine’s Day –
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– Friend’s birthday party –
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– Us being noobs –
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– Karin’s 16th –
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– Take 2 with Jesse –
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– Semi Formal –
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– Interhouse Athletics –
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– One Direction TMHT –

2014, Year 12, was even better and we made so many memories like our Chemistry pracs with her serenading me,  getting ready for formal together, school Sports Days and so many other days where we just enjoyed each other’s presence being whacky.

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– Interhouse Swimming –
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– Watching the girl/guy touch game –
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– Chemistry lessons –
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– Formal –
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– Hanging together –
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– Interhouse Athletics –
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– Interhouse Athletics –
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– Karin’s first Durga Puja with me –
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– Back to Year 7 party –
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– Last day of school picnic –

Many people have this belief that best friends have to be the same in every way but Karin and I couldn’t be more different. She loves action movies, I watch rom coms. She loves English and I love Maths and Sciences. She’s extremely extroverted, I’m more introverted. Despite all these differences, we have one thing in common; we have the same heart and soul and that’s all we need.

Here are some photos from our fourth year, and first year of Uni, together:

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– The Vamps concert –
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– One Direction OTRA –
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– Uni hangs –
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– Karin’s 18th –
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– Fireworks –
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– Harry Potter marathon with friends –
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– My 18th –
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– Drinks with friends (technically 2016) –

– Chan