Your relationship with your couch

It says a lot about you when you stop and think about it, right?

Never get out? Never leave the abode? All you want to do is get on the couch? Grow up. Or grow down. Live a little and take part in every new day that you are blessed to start with the sun.

Think you’re witty wishing you were on it more? Say ‘no’ to most invites? Laughing at your happiness in melancholic-ness?

I know a little guy. Everything he looks at, he sees as if he is seeing it for the first time. Me. Others. Toys. Empty toilet rolls. The cat. The only breath he stops to take is when his body tells him he is tired, not because he is bored.

Being bored is boring and it is lazy.

I know a little guy. He is happy by default. He is excited to be alive. He is excitable and he is exciting. He lives for spontaneity. He lives for surprises – especially the unplanned kind. The only breath he stops to take is when his body tells him he is tired, not because he is bored.

Being bored is boring and it is lazy.

I know a little guy. He has taught me what love is. What unconditional love is. He is proof that if he can take me at my worst, he deserves me at my best – and in return, all he gives me is his. In five months of starting over, he has taught me more about love, affection, romance, accountability, appreciation, companionship, and a sentiment that never judges. It just loves. I know a little guy named Finn, who has taught me all this because the only breath he stops to take is when his body tells him he is tired, not because he is bored.

Because being bored truly is just boring and it truly is just is lazy.

So if you think you need to work on your relationship with your couch and the time you don’t get to spend on it, I say: Grow up… or grow down. I say get up. Get going. Do something. This is the only time you will get to have these years. So start each new day with the sun like you’re learning what a smile feels like for the first time in your life.

PS: Finn sends his love.

I recently discovered that I have a crush

It is funny what we wait for. It’s hope mostly, because whatever we imagine will come around the next corner is birthed from hope. An idea that gets under our skin because of something someone said or helped us think about. It then grows and grows and eventually consumes us, and although this doesn’t have to be a bad thing altogether, if we aren’t putting the right steps into place to make what we hope for actually happen, we’re going to end up with no happy and just hope.

I recently discovered that I have a crush. It was an all sorts of giddy discovery because it has been a while since the butterflies bounced in my tummy and hopped along my heart. I felt like I was fifteen all over again and the excitement of where sentiment trumps sanity was no longer silly – it was simply pure delight.

It was exciting to see him. To understand what changed in me as I watched his lips move, how his eyes looked at other people, how they reflected light and could show without speaking a word what he was feeling in his heart. Then the phone would ring and I would pause him where he was so that I could pick up at that exact same point when it suited me. Yes, I had fallen for fiction and was crushing on a character.

Crazy is an unceremoniously inappropriate term these days. I think it has lost its meaning and, to be honest, there is not enough of it around. I want to be crazy in love. I want to be crazy talented. I want to be crazy about being crazy about the things that get me out of bed everyday, or the things that don’t do enough to inspire the same. I want to be able to be crazy mad about the things that make me proud to be me and respect the same in others. Here’s the thing though: we are too worried about being crazy-anything so we become cautious, hesitant, tepid bores. And when we should be making the most noise about how crazy we feel because of our happiness or our hurt, we slink into the silent and commit to keeping the water calm.

A pretty Pinterest picture I looked at once explained that you could be surrounded by people and yet still feel lonely. I get that. We all do. I guess that’s the kind of crazy that leads to developing a crush on a TV character, right? A self-preservation thing that responds in the imagination but not with the heart. It’s the kind of self-preservation that comes post shake-up / break-up, naturally.

There is strength in numbers though, always. I have two friends that are becoming increasingly special to me these days and it is their crazy that validates mine, and reminds me of how happy I am to be in it. Like me, both have suffered their own shake-up / break-up and are on their own journeys through it. Each of them said something to me this weekend that made me sit up, take notice of and be thankful for. One said: ‘You chose a terrible time to be my friend.’  The other said: ‘Hanging with you is like breathing in glitter bubbles.’

There is never a terrible time to be someone’s friend. That’s why you are their friend. And once the dust settles, you want the kind of friends that you will enjoy spending time with, breathing in all the glitter bubbles that you can.

It is funny what we wait for. It is even funnier what we don’t have to wait for. Between the love lost or the one you are hoping comes around that corner, more often than not though, happiness happens quietly while you were looking in the other direction.

Be crazy and put those steps in place to be crazy you. And then be crazy enough to look at all that you’ve got. You. And you never know, after all that, you may even find you have a new crush.

I’m never changing who I am.
© Dylan Balkind

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times


There are five days in a week that my Dad goes away during the day and two where we have the whole day together. On the five days that my dad goes to his work, he sits me down before he leaves by saying “Sit!” and then he says he has something to tell me. Then he holds my face and kisses my cheeks and says: ‘You is kind. You is smart. You is important.’ Every single day he says this to me so I know it must be true. When I think about it, it makes me feel important like this.
I heard that my Daddy learned this from a movie. He learns things from all different places. On Saturday, the third day of November, he had to tell me something else he learned. It had been a very busy day. These happen a lot which I like because I like to be busy. This day was busy because we went to my Emmarentia park again and it was more special even because he let me off my leash as soon as we got into my park.

I ran and ran and ran and ran some more. To the left side of my dad and then the right side. And then far out to the front and then back to him faster and faster. We met a few other puppies that were also in my Emmarentia park with me and my Dad. We then met these two beautiful ladies that were there with their puppies. There were three of the puppies and two of the ladies. It was nicer in the beginning because the puppies came to say hello to me, but then the big boy one didn’t like me and started to fight with me. I cried. I cried a lot and very loudly like the day when I touched the electric fence. It wasn’t fun anymore. He was on top of me and biting into my neck and it seemed like no one could hear my screams. Soon the pretty lady got him off and my Daddy came to help me calm down on the grass in my Emmarentia park.

My Daddy checked my body and said I was just covered in dog spit and that there were no holes in my skin. Then we went on our way and when we got around the corner my Dad asked me to sit by saying “Sit!” and said he had to tell me something else that he learned once. It was a story he had to study that wasn’t amazing he said but had its place or something like that. He said he thought of it now because of what just happened. He said it was called A Tale of Two Cities, and the opening said:

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…”

I looked at him. He looked at me. I think he was waiting for me to bark. But I just looked at him. My Daddy then explained that sometimes the good and the bad go together and that I just have to learn to pick up my body with no holes in my skin and carry on wagging my tail. Then he kissed me on my cheeks and said: “Don’t ever forget that you is kind. You is smart. You is important.”

Then I ran to the lake and jumped in. I like water a lot.

Because of the things that my Daddy has learned and taught to me, I know that it is important to have fun doing the things that make you happy.

My name is Finn. I is kind. I is smart. I is important.


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