It’s just a handful of them, hidden on my temples. You have to know they’re here to spot them: strikingly white against my otherwise dark brown hair. It’s like a small whisper in the back of my head, quiet, calm, but always there.
I don’t like conflict. I never have. I have awful memories of Sunday afternoons spent at my grandmother’s, where she would say the most hurtful things she could think of and my parents would finally blow up, and my brother and I would try to swallow pieces of cake through our tears. It was all part of a well-known scenario, and I hated every damn second of it. My grandmother had a shit ton of unresolved issues, and my mixed memories of her probably have played a part in shaping the way I deal with conflict.
I’m getting kind of tired of seeing the miraculous benefits of yoga, meditation, goji berries and celery juice. Or worse, water fasting.
No because I think there’s anything wrong with any of those, mind you (ok water fasting is a terrible idea, to be fair. Don’t do it). I even like some of them. But because people latch on one thing to magically cure all of their ailments for six months, and then they move on to the next thing and will swear to you that, no, really, you have to drink coffee with melted butter in it if you want to achieve anything in life. Which sounds both disgusting (I love coffee, I love butter –duh, I’m French- but please stop that madness) and completely irrational, because it is.Read more
When my oldest daughter was 7, she saw me painstakingly removing stray hair on my legs, and she asked ‘why are you doing this?’ and I couldn’t find any good, logical answer to give her. It’s been 3 years and I still haven’t one.
Last week my youngest, who’s almost 7, asked me if girls had to get their ears pierced. I told her that they didn’t had to, they could choose to if they wanted to. She nodded and whispered ‘I’m never doing it’, and I was strangely happy with her answer.Read more
I’ve talked about my issues with both body image and social media before. But I haven’t talked about the link between those two things – probably because I’m still coming to terms with that particular aspect of social media and the effect it has on me, and also because I am a bit ashamed of having taken part in such a superficial and frankly narcissist habit.
“I am never going to look back on my life, or on my year, and think, I wish that I had spent more time online.” Genevieve Sadleir
I have no idea who Genevieve is (if you do know, please leave a comment), but she’s obviously a very smart and insightful woman, and I think she’s got it quite right.
Since writing this post on virtual clutter, I’ve gone further and deleted my Twitter account entirely. It was way too time-consuming, and I disliked both the content (or most of it, between echo chambers and shouting matches there were a few interesting exchanges) and how it made me feel and behave. I felt increasingly sarcastic and bitter, and my optimism and faith in humanity were dwindling. I decided to quit after two weeks of reflection.
My father has always made tangerine candles around Christmas time. He learned how to make them from his own father, simply with sunflower oil (a cheap and common oil here in France) and tangerine peels.
There was something magical about them for me as a child. The way my father carefully carved the tangerine. The way its tiny flame would glow through the fine peel, casting orange tinted light on our the dinner table. The way it smelled, sweet and tart. Now I make them too, and my children love them just as I do.