Wednesday, March 20, 2013

validate my existence, please.

My brain hurts and my self-esteem is running on empty. My Golden Semester is still intact and I’m just about on top on my college work. I’m eating healthy for the most part and I’m going to a ball tomorrow (I’m still on the hunt for a strapless bra though). I’m exhausted and I want kisses and hugs and someone to tell me I’m wonderful. But I wouldn’t believe it anyway.

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about self-esteem. I’ve been interrogating other people about where they got theirs from – all the while thinking that I missed the boat completely. How come other people like themselves? One of my friends is so self-assured, it’s amazing. She’s not at all arrogant but she 100% think she’s amazing. And she is. And even if she wasn’t, you’d still think she was. Because that attitude is infectious. Another of my friends called herself about a 5 or a 6 on the 1-10 scale of self-esteem, which is still a lot higher than me.  I just don’t get it though. I find it astounding that the rest of the world doesn’t dislike themselves as much as I dislike myself. I thought everybody felt like this.

It’s not even that I dislike myself really, it’s that I doubt myself. Sometimes I think I’m funny and then I immediately correct myself. You could tell me ten times a day that I’m an okay person and I still wouldn’t believe you. I could try those cognitive behavioural methods and look in the mirror and remind myself every day that I do possess some positive qualities. It wouldn’t work though. I’d look in the mirror and I’d know that I was lying to myself.

And I am so desperate for validation at the moment and whether that comes in the form of the shift or the ride, I don’t mind and I don’t care. As long as it does. But it’s futile, isn’t it? Of course it is. I’ll still go back to feeling like this. Even on my good days, I still can’t quite convince myself that I am an okay human. 

And then I go ahead and fall in love with boys who will never love me back.

I don’t know. I feel futile.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

things that are happening–a brief post.


  • I haven’t missed a single class this semester. (I may or not be going insane though.)
  • I am eating healthily. (It’s painful to see my friends eating chicken fillet rolls while I cry over a rice cake.)
  • I have started taking exercise classes. (Spinning class makes my butt hurt much more than any butt-related activities do.)
  • I got new glasses. (Cheers, Specsavers!)
  • I got contact lenses. (I can’t stop looking at things.)
  • I am in serious money-minding mode. (Did you know you can get free tea and biscuits in the chaplaincy in UL? Sound.)
  • I am a domestic goddess (packed lunches, washing, ironing, cooking, cleaning, etc).
  • I bit the bullet and bought … a bullet. (Possible review + gory details soon? Probably. Vom.)
  • I’m trying very hard to stop picking the skin off my fingers. (Eww.)
  • I have the Cosmic Horn. (Oh God.)

Thursday, March 14, 2013

i’m channelling my inner gok wan.

Emma 1
I was recently approached by the lovely people behind Specsavers. They offered me an eye test and pair of designer specs in exchange for an honest review on my blog.

I’ve been going to Specsavers since I was fourteen or fifteen and I’ve never had any complaint. To be honest, I was pretty excited about going through the spectacle-getting process again.

I booked my test for last Tuesday week in Specsavers on Cruises Street in Limerick and sat around instore for about ten minutes waiting to be seen. An assistant then took me into a room and measured how well my eyes focused. She also blew some puffs of air onto my eyeballs. (Not pleasant but necessary, I suppose.) She explained what she was doing as she was doing it which earns brownie points in my book – I like to know how my body works.

After sitting around for another twenty minutes, I was finally seen by the optician, a lovely woman who explained my eyes to me, astigmatism and all. She pointed out that the battered state my own glasses were in offered no real benefit to my sight. Because of my astigmatism, if my lenses are off by only a couple of degrees, my vision is affected. She went through the examination, explaining everything as she went, and afterwards passed me over to another assistant who helped me choose my frames.

I’d had a pair of blue Gok Wan aviator style glasses in mind – definitely statement specs – but when I tried them on, the assistant advised me against them: they didn’t suit my face shape and they moved when I smiled. I ended up choosing a different pair of Gok Wans – cream with a slight cat-eye. They’re very ladylike and pretty and yet I feel like I stand out. (My friend Niamh suggested that those of us who feel we aren’t pretty will find other ways to stand out – this is certainly true for me.)

While in store, the optician asked me if I’d thought about contact lenses. In fact, I’ve been thinking about them a lot lately. Unfortunately, because my eyes are so strange and astigmatic, daily contact lenses aren’t available in my prescription, which is annoying if you don’t want to wear them every single day. With monthlies, you’d be wearing them most days just to get your money’s worth. I asked to book a contact lens fitting and found that last Saturday was a special day in the Specsavers calendar in which all contact lens fittings were free. I said, ‘Pencil me in!’ I’ve since been fitted and taught and I’ve ordered the contact lenses – a three month supply including solution for €71. I was seriously impressed with the price, expecting them to cost double that due to my dodgy eyes.

I collected my glasses on Monday and they are a beauty. I’ve been a Gok Wan fan since I first spotted him on How to Look Good Naked and I’ve been coveting a pair of his glasses since he launched his brand in 2011.

Overall I had a really good experience with Specsavers this time around. Despite having to wait around a bit, the service was good and the opticians and assistants were more than happy to answer any questions I had. (I’m that type of person; I always have questions.) I’m thrilled with my new glasses and have already received a multitude of compliments. My new look has been described as “1950s journalist,” which I love. Thanks a million to Specsavers!

(I got my friend Niamh to take a few snapsnots of me in my Gok Wan glory. Needless to say, I have no modelling skills whatsoever. Luckily the rain held off for a little while!)

Emma 2Emma 3Emma 4

You can check out all the designer frames Specsavers has to offer by clicking here.
The Cruises St store can be accessed by clicking here.

Photos by Niamh Broderick.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

release your inner royal.

I posted last year about Queerbash 9 , in which Queers Go Native. They did. They went native. It was a great night. (I kissed a boy on the mouth. A good-looking boy.) This year is set to be even better as Queerbash hits double figures and celebrates its 10th birthday. There’ll be performances from UL Drama Soc, UL Choral Soc, DJ John Kelly, and many more, all hosted by the darling Davina Devine and the charming Candy Warhol.
I’m especially impressed with the theme this year – mainly because I’m a Kirsten Dunst obsessive. We’re channelling our inner Marie Antoinette as we roar, ‘Let them eat cake!’ It’s decadence and royalty and glamour and cake. The cake’s important. What birthday party is complete without a little sugar rush? There’ll be a free cupcake for the first 100 people in the door on the night.
Queerbash 10: Let them eat cake! Dolans’ Warehouse, Limerick City.
Friday, 22nd March 2013.
Doors @ 9 pm.
Tickets €10.

(RSVP here, you beautiful creatures!)

Thursday, March 07, 2013

pre and post feelings.

It’s currently RAG Week. I’m currently sitting alone in my room trying to do an assignment. It’s post-break-up and pre-one-of-my-best-friends-leaving-the-country-for-five-months and I’m feeling very, very sorry for myself. Maybe I’m just tired. Maybe it’s the obscene amount of college work I have to do. Maybe I miss home. Maybe I was at home last weekend (briefly) and maybe that’s not enough.

I just feel vulnerable right now. Like, post-cider vulnerability. But it’s not that: I was in bed by half eight last night, having done  my washing and ironing and cooked my dinner. I’m kind of anti-RAG Week and pro-domesticity. Actually, I’m just pro-distractions at the moment. But I’ve run out of steam. I knew this week would be tough. Post the actual “talk” (or cyber version thereof), I knew that this was real. Not a joke or a phase or a whim. A real life thing that leaves me back where I started. Sort of.

I keep telling myself that nothing’s changed, not really. I mean, the long distance wasn’t exactly going too well anyway (even as far as I was concerned, and I was oblivious to the whole being cheated on thing) so what’s the difference now? Well, now I don’t get the occasional one-word text that so infuriated me before. So that’s a good thing, right? Maybe. But before I could convince myself that someone loved me and just had a strange way of showing it. Now I’m left in no doubt that actually no one loves me. Cool.

Of course I’m being melodramatic but what else is there to do? And who else is there to complain to? I don’t want to bore my friends so instead I’ll convey my woes to the internet. John Steinbeck said, “Don’t make everyone know about your sadness,” but Anne Lamott said (and I 6,000% agree with her), “You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should’ve behaved better,” but BeyoncĂ© said, “I’m not gon’ diss you on the internet ‘cause my mama taught me better than that.” In other words, I’m getting a lot of mixed messages. But I’m sad and frustrated and this is where I vomit up my feelings. Maybe it makes me feel validated. Maybe I am looking for attention in all the wrong places.

I am doing all I can at the moment to sustain normality:  I’m still going to class and reading and doing assignments. I’m still bathing. That’s something, right? Most other aspects of my life have gone downhill though. College is a priority right now so the rest of my life isn’t as noticeable. What even is the rest of my life? I get consumed by one thing or another and right now I am obsessed with having a Golden Semester. I don’t have room in my brain for much else. But when assignments get boring, other things creep in. And now it’s self-loathing and nihilism and the whole lot.

I just want a hug.

Sunday, March 03, 2013

i can do life.

I've been absent for over a month. Have you missed my mindless musings? I've been busy participating in real life and real life doesn't really lend itself to stories of lunacy and shitting the bed. I've been going to college and reading and eating regularly, if not healthily, and I've been socialising. With all that and sleep, it's hard to find time to write or indeed get up to the kind of mischief that's worth writing about. But a week ago, something wonderful happened. Something worth mentioning. Something that is nothing but a catalyst for the self-destructive part of my psyche to kick in. I got my heart chewed up and spit out. Or eaten and regurgitated. Probably the latter. It's more apt.

But I didn't self-destruct. Weird. I'm no stranger to heart-break (in fact, I could give a guided tour) and my go-to gurrrl in dealing with heart-break is usually some self-mutilation, a lot of alcohol, and someone else's penis. Not very healthy. Or helpful. This time though, I woke up the morning after the night before and I put on some lipstick and I went to college. Somehow, miraculously, and without me even noticing the transition, I've reached a point in my life where I can just get on with my life.

And the break-up is not wonderful in a wonderful way but it's something worth writing about. My first instinct was to live-blog the situation, complete with relevant quotes, pictures, and Youtube videos. But I didn't. Because it's been done. Mostly by me. Go back through the archives of this blog and you'll find heart-ache in all its flavours. This time it tastes a bit sour but it's nothing new. The circumstances are different but it's all the same really. Just one more person who said, “I never loved you.” So boring.

I've been coping with this break-up by doing the same things I do every other day: get up, shower, breakfast, make-up, college, friends, home, dinner, college work, read, sleep. Throw in an occasional pint (for purely social and not self-destructive purposes), a healthy dose of crying followed by belly-laughing, gate-crash a couple of parties, and see David O'Doherty perform live in Limerick and that's pretty much my post-relationship life in a nutshell.

My mother always says that when one door closes, another one opens. Lots of doors have opened for me in the past week. There's a couple of blogging projects in the pipeline, I've made new friends and grown closer to other ones, and, most importantly, I've learned that I can cope. Who knew? This break-up is worth noting not because it is the be-all and end-all of my young adulthood but because I learned things. I learned that I'm capable of doing life. Right in the butthole. In any and all circumstances.