guilty conscience fashion blog

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Reunion

Montreal, Canada

“If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.” ― Lao Tzu. Funny thing about the past…revisiting it can bring back all kinds of dark twisty things you were certain you had long moved on from. What’s up with the moody intro quote, you ask? Well folks I went to my 10 year high school reunion a couple weeks back and boy did it stir up a lot of shit. If you have been a reader for a while you know I have a fun little unpredictable ongoing battle with anxiety and depression, that I don’t talk about too often. It seems to rear it’s ugly heads when I expect it least, and always surprises me with how long and hard it sticks around.  

I consider myself a well adjusted human being. I let a lot of things roll off my back, don’t let what others think of me bother me too much, and rather move forward than muster up unwanted emotions that may lead me off the deep end. Peter has really helped me evolve from the anxy teen I was when he first met me, to the cool, calm and collected young adult(ish) human I am now…and boy am I ever thankful for that. That being said revisiting who I was then, and more importantly how I portrayed myself and was viewed by my peers and even teachers then, left a yucky stinging feeling in my heart. As those of you who deal with anxiety and depression may know, they rear their ugly heads in waves, and the tide can take a long time before it is still again. Recently I have felt tired, a little unmotivated, overly sensitive, and easily triggered. To put that into perspective, the episode of The Walking Dead I just watched, has lead me into enough of an existential crisis to write this post as honestly as I am right now. So instead of feeding the bad, I am going to give myself the advice I should have been hearing, facing, and believing since that day I came home feeling sorry about who I used to be.

As much as I may feel like I’m still 16, I am not…and that is a great thing. I have become a kind, open hearted person, who is always there in times of need, but wise enough to never be taken advantage of. I have grown to idolize women of substance who have taught me I am strong, capable anything, but most importantly that I am enough. That I should never dumb myself down for the comfort of others, or to make sure the joke lands at my expense. That though I may be underestimated, my worth, intelligence, hard working nature, and skill will no longer be…and to those who still think me a fool and dismiss me, are simply missing out. My accomplishments are my own, and their greatness cannot be syphoned by disbelief. Others’ words and actions do no control me, they do not affect me, and most importantly they do not define who I am. As much as I may feel like I’m still 16, I am not…and that is a great thing. 

So I am going to let the young girl I left on that pedestal all those years ago step down, and step up there myself. I am going to keep her joie de vivre, open heart, and faith in people, but realize that the change I have nurtured within myself is one of my greatest accomplishments. I am going to acknowledge the growth that has happened to her in the past 10 years, and will no longer shame her for who she was. We all think we know everything at that age, and isn’t it interesting to see how wrong we were…and how wrong we’ll probably be again looking back 10 years from now. Yet again the cliché seems to bring forth the most concise truth. I am who I am today, because of who she once was. Because of what WE went through, and the mistakes WE made. So it’s time to forgive her for them, and be at peace living in the present. Hey! if Lao Tzu said it right…

Gucci sunnies and shoes, Zara suit, Forever 21 sweater, and Dior “Saddle” bag.

Goodbye Seems To Be The Hardest Word

Tokyo, Japan

I was trying to write a regular blog post. Tell you about the tourist attractions, and incredible restaurants we visited in Tokyo…but that just isn’t what I have on my mind right now. The images might be of cute outfits in beautiful places, but this blog has always been where I could let all my neuroses and dark twisty thoughts run free, even when it would probably be more appropriate for me to write about the weather. Today will be no exception. My grandfather passed away yesterday. I’ve dealt with grief many a time during my childhood, lost more family members than most, but this one’s been different, harder if that’s even possible to say without disrespecting the ones that left before him. Though he held an incredibly special place in my heart, I think the manner in which he departed makes it harder for me to live with, without having more existential thoughts than I’d like.

You see my grandfather decided he no longer wanted to continue on. Once he learned that his ability to walk was deteriorating and he wouldn’t be able to live autonomously anymore, even if his mind was bright, the kind of life he saw in his future didn’t feel worth living. He was a humble, quiet, solitary man with immense pride and dignity. If anything I think that, those qualities were what defined him as a person and where he drew his happiness and joy. That being said, when we heard he had taken maters in his own hands, I was in incomprehensible shock, and immediately my heart ached for my mother.

Though the attempt wasn’t successful, his mind was still made up. After spending a week in the hospital, his condition having deteriorated, and only learning more bad news regarding his health, he asked for a humane death. A death which would give him the chance to say goodbye, live only as long as he felt his life was worth living, and be surrounded by his children when he finally left the world. Every part of my being that is logical agreed with his decision, but every other little bit was devastated. I kept thinking of his bucket list, where hadn’t he traveled, what hadn’t he seen, wasn’t there something he wanted to do with the time he had left to conclude his journey…but that’s not who my grandpa was. He was firm, at peace with his decision, and the last item on his bucket list was for his loved ones to understand that this was the right choice for him.

Saying goodbye was probably the most heart wrenching thing I’ve ever done. Telling a person they’ll forever live on in your heart…saying I love you for the last time, those words were probably the hardest I’ve ever said out loud. He didn’t speak much, except for when I came close “Ma Belle Alicia…”he said with pride, as if I he believed was the most beautiful being who’d ever lived. That moment will probably make my heart ache for as long as I live. I held him in my arms, kissed his head, kissed his hands, and walked away, so afraid that if I looked back for just a second I’d never be able to say good bye, I’d never be able to let him actually go. Yesterday morning, at 10:10 AM he left this world peacefully, surround by the ones he loved, and who loved him in return.

I’m happy for him. Happy he left the world the same way he lived within it, on his own terms. So why am I so uncontrollably emotional, why do I, without a moment’s warning drench myself in puddles of tears. Perhaps the actual act of saying goodbye is what keeps me crying. Maybe the shock and immediacy of passed losses overwhelmed me to the point that I never truly understood that the person was gone. Goodbye seems to be the hardest word, Elton was right. I didn’t write this piece to make anyone feel sorry for me, or sad or cry even, though I failed terribly at not doing so myself while writing it. I just don’t want to forget this feeling. The tears come, because of the love I had and continue to have for him after his passing. They come because of the bittersweet feeling that swaddles my heart when I remind myself that he is in a better place. They come because as hard as it was, I got to hold him one last time, and the emotions of that moment live on. I hope they don’t fade too quickly. I had the privilege of saying goodbye and I want those feelings to resonate until I’m finally at peace with them, and feel grateful for them as I know I will someday.

This is probably the longest piece I’ve ever written on the blog. Still debating if I should even post it at all. All of these sentences and paragraphs to say that I loved him, and I hope his spirit lives on through these words. That they honour him, the way I intended them to. Je t’aime Grand-Papa.

Gucci Sunnies, Zara suit, Lacoste X Supreme polo, Loewe bag, and Christina Louboutin pumps.

Lost in Translation

Tokyo, Japan

Believe it or not, the first iteration of this blog on Tumblr started in anticipation of our first trip to Japan, as a way to showcase my very first #OOTDs (linked a couple of those right HEREHERE and HERE, as if I needed a more direct way to access the embarrassing photos of me out there). Asia had always been a place I wanted to visit as a child. Even if at the time I often found myself afraid of the unknown when traveling, none of those fears were ever correlated to the literal other side of the world. Because we were going to be traveling all around China and Japan I did try to pack smart tourist gear, but let’s not kid ourselves, I wasn’t going visit the world’s most avant garde capital of fashion in TOMS (though TOMS are great, really, no shade). It was 2012 and I was always in Zara and all about pastel tweed and denim, so funny enough not much has changed.

This time around, I just took my love of pastels to the next level, my literal roots. These photos were taken mere minutes after I dyed my locks myself in our hotel bathroom. BTW if anyone from the Peninsula Hotel reads this I’m really sorry about those pink towels, the box said it would come out. Though I didn’t fall in love my blush locks instantly (I was actually kinda nervous I was going to hate them the next day), I grew more and more fond of them with every passing fashion moment and hairstyle. I miss them to this day. Seriously considering going Lavender, what do you think? In any case, this was our first evening out in Tokyo since our last visit 6 years prior, and I cannot believe how much we missed out on then. More to come on that in the next posts, but for now here are some photos of me in a Sailor Moon shirt on our way to a crazy night out in Shinjuku.

Zara suit, Urban Outfitters “Sailor Moon” shirt, Louis-Vuitton “Bum Bag”, and Balenciaga “Derby”  boots.

Big City Girl

New York, New York

So…we are going to Tokyo tomorrow and I COULD NOT be more excited. The trip was a last minute spur of the moment decision to celebrate our anniversary, which means I didn’t have time to be the OCD level of overly prepared I usually like to be. Today is our last day to get our shit together before a 15 hour flight, and I can’t quite grasp my mind around the fact that we are going back to a place I always dreamed of returning. Tokyo is one of my very favourite cities in the world. The fashion, the food, the people, the Disney World…everything in Tokyo is just a little bit better than any of the other big cities we’ve had the chance to visit.

On the agenda over there thus far: a 4 days stay at Tokyo Disney Resort (YAY!), a visit to the iconic Robot Restaurant (YAY!!), go and did I mention the cosplay Mario Kart experience that’s in the books (YAY!!!). There is almost a heightened sense of reality while you’re over there, from the people to the experiences everything is just more epic, kinder, cuter, more interesting…weirder even! So safe to say, I’m going to have trouble sleeping tonight, because someone is a wittle excited. Also seriously considering dying my hair pink for the occasion. Thoughts? Anywhoo, this hasn’t been my most riveting piece, but I really should start packing! So, on a completely unrelated note, here is an #OOTD from our last trip to another very big and incredible city….

Calvin Klein beanie, Juniper & Blanc sunnies, Zara mesh bodysuit, Second Skin Overalls, Louis-Vuitton “Palm Springs” backpack and “Archlights” sneakers.