Two weeks ago one of my dearest friends and I went out to get a cup of coffee. It was a cold and grey Florentine morning, but nothing stopped us to meet in one of the most elegant coffee places in the city. We chatted a bit. And hen she told me something. She confessed to me how much she admires me, how strong I am, what a woman I have become. I was a bit confused because I have always admired her because she was the fiercest one for me. But apparently, I’ve always made her this positive impression to her, besides me being the nice and cute friend. With my actions, I could speak to her. I was and I am a role model to her. A bit unexpected.
This is not the first time someone or a friend of mine says that I inspire them, though. I’ve always been known as the outsider, the one who’s sweet but fearless. The one who puts love first, no matter what. The “weak”. So this comment this time caught me in surprise because I’m currently living a fragile moment.
How do I keep my positivity up? How did I become this positive? How am I being positive? Am I good? Damn it, I’m living in hell! How?!
I would say that given the past long months, I have built a shell to protect myself from the negative things that were around me. I did that through travelling, silence, and academic focus. I wanted to change, I was tired of being sad. I started living day by day. For this reason, my so-called positivity and joie de vivre has grown. I started caring less and less to the people who didn’t reciprocate my affection and interest, in every single aspect of my life. I began doing what I most like, which means travelling, writing, and talk about fashion. I tried to incorporate all my academic knowledge in my hobbies and connect everything with anything that could cross my mind. I found myself lonely, but never alone. And that’s how I somehow irradiated once again my light, that I thought was lost forever.
I recognized that my positive attitude was residing in the fact that I was being comfortable on my own, trusting solely myself, giving the just attention to others, and stop comparing myself to others. They are them. I am not them. That can’t change. Move on. Be in your body. You’re in control of it, so do it. I did it. Inside, I changed. Beautiful.
Social media has helped me find positive accounts, from which I feel I could learn and find my balance through their words every day. Among them, I will mention the Twitter page Imdatfeminist, Italian body-positive activist Laura Brioschi, and fashion models Cameron Russell and Iskra Lawrence. I can add some more names like Elaine Welteroth and Cleo Wade, whose words always spark a light in my mind, through both mantras and poems. However, these people I look up to are also some of my friends, including Alyssa Ackerman and Victoria Bermudez, Cleopatra Lee, and my bestie Lucilla. It is important to be around people who do things that you like, things you can learn from, and keep you motivated.
Music is another medium I use to develop and keep my self-love up. Sometimes silence is much needed because you just need to be in your own thoughts, in your own body with no words floating around or inside your ears. But songs are life, no cap!
Here are the most helpful singers whose songs and melodies have been therapeutic to me. They helped me shape this positivity of mine. They are awesome: Lizzo (Good As Hell), UMI (Love Affair and Sukidakara are my favourite jams), Meghan Thee Stallion (with her new single with Normani), IZA (you’ll enjoy her better if you know some Portuguese, though), Teyana Taylor (Issue/Hold On is equally beautiful and delicately strong as Gonna Love Me), Jhene Aiko (literally everything by her is awesome), and Ella Mai (Gut Feeling with H.E.R. hits home when you need to trust… your guts). My Spotify has many more songs and artists that I could cite here, but these are the ones that currently are helping me going through this period of my life. Let’s never forget Amy Winehouse, Jorja Smith, or Sade. They don’t necessarily deliver slow or calm melodies: on the contrary, a bunch of them carry a shaky and rough beat in their compositions. What sticks with me is the message they display out there, the goals, and the good vibes they put out.
All these people I have mentioned are all women. Yes, there are also men who inspire me too. But in a time like this, I best believe that conversations and inspirations from women to women are significant and have a more solid weight. Feminine support is much needed and fundamental, especially in your 20s. We all live struggles, but we also shine each other’s lights. I firmly believe in that. The table must be kept small, but we can have tons of food to eat and share among each other. Men, women, everyone!
I do need my own time and space. Sometimes, most of the times, in this particular time of my life, I feel always the need to isolate myself. But my passion for journalism and fashion, along with my bursting creativity, push me constantly to get out of my stagnant zone. And this is how I look and am good as hell… even if it’s hell! I’m aware that my positivity is real, has its ups and downs, but I know that I can always seek for a solution. All because I’m tired of being sad, when I simply know that a solution is out there. Might not be the best one. But there is. The only thing you can’t escape is death. The rest shall be lived. It’s worth it. I say this because I once thought that ending life was the solution. No, it’s not. And what saved me was fashion and writing and: a world of colour, life!
For this reason, I had the best time of my life in Paris, even if I was in a turmoil of emotions. But with the good music, the good people around me and on my screen, I was able to have the time of my life. And a fashionable one, if I must say!
Next post is about my trip to Paris. But I felt that some context was needed, in order to understand why I did certain things and not others. And yes, my positivity was up! Still is!
Bjs and much love,
PS: do you know that “bjs” means “xoxo” in Brazilian Portuguese, right? Sometimes I wonder if y’all know it or not lol