Yep. A lot. So much so that my thoughts get all mangled and tangled up into messes and then it takes me ages sometimes just to find my way back out. And then I wonder about why it all happened and the cycle begins again.
And so in this time that I’ve been living now (going on 32 years), I’ve had the opportunity to think about a lot of things. And on occasion I’ve recorded many such things to later analyze and rethink, so I can be sure that what I believe in is actually what I believe in. Words are funny you know, they can mix you up and throw you over into a place you never even wanted to be if you’re not careful. But in any case, it was through this process that I came across two overarching themes.
The first relates to “Cultivating Beauty” – I have found throughout a decade of journaling and searching that one question lies at the heart of my journey. The question being, what is beauty? What is the nature of it, at its very core? I’ve wanted to know for some time as this inquiry grew out of my youth.
When I was growing up I rarely felt beautiful. To the contrary, I felt ugly and marred and disjointed, simply altogether not a pleasant sight to see. And yet, at the same time I found that people nonetheless thought I was beautiful. And I could not understand why.
It did not help either, growing up in a society obsessed with Victoria’s Secret models. I wasn’t a sight for sore eyes but these girls, they were so pretty, so perfect, so gorgeous. And they all seemed so happy. But I was not. I mostly just felt the distance between. It was very confusing for me. Were these models beautiful or just pretty and perfect? If so, what was the difference? How could I be beautiful to others when I was so imperfect in every way and felt so ugly inside? It made me wonder.
And so I began upon my journey to figure out the nature of beauty. Cultivating Beauty then, is a project I am working on, pulling content from old journals to retrace my findings along the way.
So that’s the first theme. The second finds itself in “The Adelshine Series”, based upon the same character as Cultivating Beauty, published under the pseudonym Kyrielle Adelshine. Kyrielle’s “oscillating mind” is one subject to the extreme emotional highs and lows of a mental illness known as Bipolar I Disorder. The purpose for The Adelshine Series is twofold: first, it was damn near impossible to extricate being bipolar from my writing. Doing so would leave only unexplainable bits and pieces without meaning or purpose. So after years of deliberation, I finally decided to accept me as my whole self, not just the mere pretty bits and pieces.
The second purpose of The Adelshine Series, the reason for including it with Cultivating Beauty is that, its content directly correlates with the conclusion to which I have come, being as follows:
Beauty, I believe, is a proportionate derivative of suffering. That is to say, that the potential for beauty is born within suffering, and if cultivated in a particular manner, its subject can thereby become beautiful. Or, to put it differently, true beauty is the struggle to transcend the human condition. It is the place in between suffering and the attainment of perfection in its entirety. It is complicated, but I find, well worth the effort in trying to define.