Tag Archives: dreams

Hello again!

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Oh wow, it’s been such a long time since I’ve made an appearance here. Over a year, I can’t believe it! And to be honest, I don’t really know how to start after such a long hiatus. Should I just continue where I stopped? Or should I explain? I don’t even know how it came to that long break from blogging. There were many times during the past year when I had an idea for a post and made a note in my mind to write it down. Sometime. But then for some reason the urge to write wasn’t strong enough and quickly I had other things on my mind. And somehow, over time I forgot that this blog even existed.

This past year, there was so much going on in my personal life that I somehow lost my interest in creating things. Not only did I stop blogging, I also stopped making music. Partly, this was due to a lack of time, but mostly because I was busy creating something else. Probably the most amazing “thing” a human being is able to create. A miracle. And I gave birth to that miracle 11 weeks ago. That’s right, I am the mother of a beautiful baby girl now! 🙂 The cutest baby in the world (of course!). I still have to pinch myself from time to time to make sure this is not just a dream. That we really are parents now. And I can’t help but think that life does have its funny ways. When I started this blog back in 2011, having a baby wasn’t on my mind at all. To be honest, starting a family seemed more like the opposite of how I wanted my life to be at the time. When I was younger, I was sure I wanted to have kids one day. But when I was approaching 30, I wasn’t that sure anymore. There were still so many things I wanted to do and see and explore. And I certainly didn’t feel mature enough to raise another human being. Then, when I met the boyfriend (who is now my husband btw, I know, crazy, right!?) my view changed again. Early into our relationship, we had the kids talk and were both sure we wanted to have children together. One day.

That day came sooner than I thought though. One day it just hit me out of the blue. Suddenly, the world was full of pregnant women and young mothers with babies. And I wanted nothing more than being one of them. Immediately. I had no idea where that utter wish to have a baby suddenly came from. But it was there, not willing to leave me alone anytime soon. Of course, I talked to the boyfriend about it who wasn’t as enthusiastic as me about the idea of having a baby. Not just yet. But over time, he grew more and more fond of the idea and so one day in June we just decided to go for it. 2 months later I peed on a stick and a magical pink line appeared. I remember that day like it was yesterday. How we were standing in the bathroom looking at that piece of plastic in disbelief. It was one of the happiest days of my life, only to be topped by the day we said “yes” to each other and the moment we heard the first scream of our daughter.

And now here I am, writing a new blog post while our cute little baby (who is actually not that little anymore, they’re growing so fast!) is peacefully sleeping next to me. Oh wait, did I say peacefully? Of course, she just woke up screaming at that very moment I wrote the word “peacefully” down. No kidding! So, I gotta go for now. But I promise I’ll be back soon. I’m not sure how often I’ll actually be able to post something because it’s not entirely up to me anymore how I spend my time. But I promise it won’t be another year. And I also promise it won’t just be all about babies from now on. Because I’m still me. Even though being a Mom is making up most of my days now, I’m more than that. I’m still a dreamer, a traveller, a music lover and so much more. My life is still an adventure, probably more than ever. So I hope you’re staying around.

Is it ok to be proud?

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I’ve been asking myself this question a lot lately. Especially when I was in London for work a few weeks ago. Almost exactly one year after I’d been there for a little holiday over Easter. It had just been a week or 2 after I’d been at home for a week because of all the stress at work and the pressure I’d put on myself. I was having a hard time enjoying my time in London back then. What had happened was still affecting me. I couldn’t believe something like that had happened to me, I didn’t understand it all in its enirety yet. And I still had to fight with the aftereffects. Months and months after that.

One year later I was back in London and the work situation was pretty similar to the one of the previous year. Lots of work, lots of responsibility and so little time. There were and are times where I feel under pressure. And it’s not the easiest thing to calm myself down when this happens. There’s always the fear that the panic attacks might come back. They have been flaring up here and there in extremely stressfuls situations. But I’ve learned how to breathe them away and it usually works. The difference this year is that I’m aware of all this. I know the triggers and I know how to handle them. And I do talk about it with the boyfriend and even my boss when I need to. After I came back from London, having worked almost 70 hours that week and only half a day off before the new work week started, I asked to work from home for a day. I knew I needed that rest. The old me would’ve dragged herself to work. So yeah, even though it might just be little things I’m very proud of the way I’m dealing with it.

I know this is a phase and less stressful times will come sooner or later. This situation at work right now is a challenge and one I want to take on. I know this will move me a lot further in my career, it’s a chance to learn and show what I’m capable of. I’m not a real career person, but when a challenge like this comes along I take it. And that’s another difference I’ve noticed compared to last year. Back then I didn’t want to be in that job anymore. Much later I realized this was basically just due to a superior and the way she was treating me. Ever since I stopped working with her, things have changed for the better. So attitude towards your jobs plays a huge role. I wasn’t really aware of that back then. At least not that much. But things have suddenly become so much easier since I’ve decided I wanted to be there. I wanted to identify myself with that job again. I don’t see myself doing this job for the rest of my life. And of course I wish it would leave me a little more time for my real dreams and passions right now. I’ve been neglecting music big time over the past few months and we’re just starting to get back into it. But in a way this job makes it possible for me to pursue these things. It gives me financial freedom. We’ve recently moved into our dream apartment which wouldn’t have been possible if we both didn’t have well paying jobs. We’re going on holiday in Japan this fall. And we’re able to finance a rehearsing room and music equipment (and every musician knows that you can spend a fortune on stuff like that). And we’re making plans for a future together.

A year ago I only saw my job as a burden and a hindrance to pursueing my dreams. When it actually does help me to get closer to them in a way. And it feels good to be aware of that. Especially during tough times like these.

Looking back, looking ahead

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As the year is slowly coming to an end, I’ve been finding myself thinking about the past months a lot. 2013 definitely wasn’t an ordinary year for me. It was a challenge, a year full of ups and downs, but in the end I came out stronger than ever. Here’s a little review of what went well this year and what didn’t as well as some goals I want to reach in 2014.

What went well

  • The one thing that made me happiest this year was my relationship with the boyfriend. At the beginning of 2013, our relationship was in its baby-stages. We were madly in love and these feelings for each other grew endlessly throughout the past year. I can’t even describe how great it is that I’ve found him. This year we’ve definitely grown into a strong team that is able to face whatever challenges life throws at us together. He is my rock and I know whatever happens he is there to catch me when I fall. And that is the greatest thing in the world. We also made a big decision by moving in together. We’ve been living together at my place since September and we were lucky to find our dream apartment to which we will move this January.
  • Music-wise my goal for this year was to play our songs in front of an audience. We did so 3 times this year which was one of the greatest experiences I’ve ever had. We started off with a little street gig at the music festival Rock im Park, then played 3 songs at an open stage event and took part in a private charity concert. We also managed to find a drummer who, despite being a lot younger than us, has been sticking around for a while now which gave us the opportunity to make some progress again after multiple letdowns.
  • I saw a lot of great bands live this year. 30 Seconds to Mars went on tour to support their new album. I’d been waiting for 1,5 years to see them again and being as obsessed as I am I saw them 5 times this year. Another highlight was to see Muse which was a dream come true for both the boyfriend and I. Biffy Clyro was another memorable show. I also went to a big music festival for the first time, something I’d wanted to do for ages and I loved every minute of it. So much so that I went to a few more. In total, I went to 3 festivals and 6 concerts.
  • 2013 was also a good year in travel with 2 bigger and lots of smaller trips. See my travel review here.
  • It was an average year in blogging, but I gained a lot of new followers and also introduced a new category called “Musings on Music” in which I’m sharing more about my biggest passion. I’m going to do a more detailed review on this topic once the year is over.

What didn’t go well

  • In 2o13, I probably hit the lowest point in my entire life when I had some kind of breakdown (I don’t know how else to call it) resulting from a long period of stress at work. Looking back now, it feels like it took me almost half the year to crawl out of that dark hole I’d fallen in. It was incredibly hard and more often than not I felt like even normal things were taking up all my energy. Slowly, I was feeling better and better, I felt my strength coming back,  but still something wasn’t right. I’d thought about running away from the work that had brought me to that place more than once. In the end, I stayed, but I opened my mouth. I talked about what had to be changed in my work situation in order for me to feel good again. I was very lucky to have a boss who was eager to help me and I can now say that I like going to work again. It’s not my passion, it’s what gives me the freedom money-wise to pursue my dreams, but I enjoy work and that’s something valuable.
  • Creatively, it wasn’t a very good year for me. I think this is partly due to me being busy dealing with the breakdown and it’s aftermath. But I was also being a bit lazy and the boyfriend and I suddenly had to deal with the situation that we’re now not just band mates anymore, but more than that. And many times we spent our free time being lovey-dovey instead of making music. I only wrote 1,5 songs this year which is a total disappointment. We also had to deal with the fact that we were being abandoned by fellow musicians again and I think along the way we lost our motivation to find replacements. So despite of some highlights like the gigs we played things were moving pretty slow this year.
  • I also didn’t take care of my blog as much as I wanted this year. There were long breaks between posts sometimes because I was too busy with other things. I feel like I could’ve done so much more because I certainly wasn’t short of ideas. I just didn’t make enough time for it.

My goals for 2014

  • In 2014, I want to make music my number one priority again. I want to write songs on a regular basis and I also want to learn more about music theory. I’ve started to work through a book on that topic, so I want to finish that. I’ve also picked up playing keyboard again to help me understand things better and I also want to try to play it in the band. We’ve also started a recording project with the songs we already have, so we’ll hopefully have 6 finished songs recorded in a couple of months. Another goal is to finally have a full band with which we can go on stage. I definitely want to have a gig with a full band at least once this year. That’s my biggest dream and I will do anything to accomplish it.
  • I also want to get into a better blogging routine again. I have lots of ideas for things to post and I want this place to become more lively again. My goal is to write 100 posts this year which makes an average of about 2 posts a week. I think that’s completely doable. I also want to share more about my life and the things I do on here. I will continue to share my thoughts on life and all it entails because that’s simply something I can’t stop doing, but I think that sharing some posts about actually living would be a good addition.
  • As I said in my travel review, there probably won’t be any big trips in store for me next year. But I still want to travel as much as I can, just on a smaller budget. Now that we’re having a car, we can basically go anywhere we want around here and there’s loads of things to discover even close-by. Of course, I’ll share all these adventures here.
  • Of course, I’ll also continue to go to concerts and festivals and I hope there’ll be some great shows to see in 2014. So far, I’m already going to 3 concerts (including one in France which means I’ll get to travel, yay!) until March and to Rock im Park again in June which I think is a pretty good schedule already. I can’t wait to add more!
  • Last but not least, I want to focus on making a nice home for me and the boyfriend in our new apartment. I’m sure there’s going to be discussions about the future as well because somewhere along the road we both want to have a family together. But that’s future talk for now.

In summary, I can say that 2013 was a year of recovery and reflection for me. And also a year in which I had to overcome some pretty big obstacles in my way. I learned a lot about myself which gave me a better sense of who I am and I now feel ready to conquer life again. So I want 2014 to be the year of living and doing! I want it to be filled with adventures, dedicated to the people and things I love. I can’t wait to get started.

How was your 2013? And what are your plans for the new year?

Time to stand up!

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I was raised with the mindset that I should put other people’s needs and wishes over mine. That I should try to please everyone and that I better keep my mouth shut if what I had to say was going to upset someone. I was raised to be what my parents thought a good girl should be like. And I don’t blame them. I know they had the best intentions and I totally understand where it comes from. I’m also glad they didn’t raise me to be an egoistic idiot who doesn’t care about others. But I do feel that in a way it also made me blind to my own needs, to finding my own way for the longest time. It took me decades to convince myself that it’s ok to have dreams and to do things that others might not approve of. Even if it’s your own parents. Sometimes it’s totally ok to piss someone off if you have reasons. You don’t have to please everybody. And you can’t. It’s the most normal thing in the world. And most importantly, admitting this is not a defeat!

A while ago, my company gave me the opportunity to attend a stress seminar because I’d had some problems with my workload and coping with the stress that came with it. I’m convinced that anybody would have had a problem with the situation I’d been in at the time, but I thought I’d give that seminar a try anyway. To my surprise, I had to realize that I’m still pretty much caught in that mindset my parents taught me. Even though I thought I wasn’t. Subconciously, I still felt the urge to please everyone, my clients, my bosses, my coworkers and all the other people I had to deal with. And when I wasn’t able to fulfill these high standards (which was basically not possible in my situation) it stressed me out. To no end. But did I say anything? No! I just suffered. I talked about it with my boyfriend, my family and friends, but I didn’t complain to anyone at work. Or just subtly. I hoped for things to change for the better. But they didn’t. They even got worse. But everything looked fine from the outside, so of course noone came to rescue me. In the end, I pulled myself out by breaking down. I can tell you, it wasn’t pretty and I don’t wish for anyone to experience anything like it. After a week at home, I went back to work, but it took me weeks to get back up again. In fact, I think it’s still leaving it’s traces here and there.

For me, that breakdown was a warning sign. That it’s time to stand up for myself again. And that I have every right to. It still have to force myself to do it, especially in the work environment. When it comes to my private dreams I’m a pretty good advocate for myself, but for some reason not so much jobwise. Last week, however, I had one of these awesome moments where I actually had the guts to stand up for myself. I had been told to do an assignment on very short notice which absolutely wasn’t my responsibility and which could’ve already been done days earlier. In short, it was just totally unnecessary to put it on my desk which was crammed with work already anyway. Probably a result of bad planning and I was the one to pay for it. I didn’t complain. I did the work that needed to be done, but I swore to myself that this time I wouldn’t just swallow all the feelings I had. I needed to make clear that it wasn’t ok to treat me that way. And I did! There was a brief moment where I thought of backing out, but I was brave enough to speak my mind. It was such a relief! And guess what, nothing bad happened. I didn’t get shouted at or anything. And even if I had, it would’ve been worth it.

I know I will continue to stand up for myself. I need to if I want to lead the life I’m dreaming of. It’s inevitable. This is really just the beginning I think!

The songs in my head

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About a year ago, I wrote my very first song. Just like that. Totally out of the blue. I had never done this before in my entire life. Not even thought about it. It was just there in my head. A fragment that needed to be explored and evolved. And so I did. It was basically done within a couple of hours (and that was probably the shortest amount of time I ever spent writing on a song). When I say “writing”, I don’t mean physically writing it down. My theoretical music knowledge goes back to when I was still in school and I’ve probably forgotten about most of it by now. So I’m not really capable of doing this. When I say “writing”, I mean thinking up a melody, lyrics, a story in my head. I usually carry a song around in my head for ages before I sing it out loud for the first time. It’s like I want to wait for it to sound beautiful before it gets born into this world. The good thing about this method is that I can work on my songs whenever, wherever I want without bothering anyone. When I’m walking outside, on the train, even at work when I’m needing a break.

Ever since that one decisive day I’ve been thinking about why this happened to me. Why I discovered this skill or passion or whatever you want to call it. And why at this particular time. I don’t have any answer to this really. Yes, I was searching for something bigger, something meaningful, something I wanted to dedicate my life to at the time. But I’ve felt this way many, many times before. Why didn’t it come to me earlier when it was inside of me all the time? The only answer I’m having is that it was meant to be. Right at this point in my life. And everything that has happened to me ever since then and that will happen to me in the future is meant to be in the same way. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t really believe in fate in the sense that things just happen to you and you can’t do anything about it. What I do believe is that sometimes life throws things in front of you, unexpectedly, that have the potential to change everything. A chance to be taken – or not.

Right after I had written said song (which is appropiately called “The Awakening”) and come up with the idea of finding other people to make music with me, I was actually about to throw it right back in the gutter. Mainly because I was scared about the reactions from other people. I can’t tell you why I didn’t give up this time. I just felt the urge that I needed to go on. And I still do. It can’t be ignored. So I wrote song after song. I kept looking for people. I worked on my voice which – despite being far from brilliant – has grown so much this past year. Things still aren’t perfect. I actually feel like they’ve gotten way harder since I’ve started to put myself out there. But I think it’s meant to be this way. Because it makes you work harder, makes you fight for what you believe in. This Saturday we’re having a rehearsal with a full band setup again. It’s the second time and after the last one we ended up being just the 2 of us again. So a part of me is getting its hopes up again, thinking that maybe, maybe this might be the right people. Finally. The other part is prepared for disappointment. Either way – it’s meant to be.

My theme song for 2013

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A new year – time to pick a new theme song! Last year I went with 30 Seconds to Mars’ “Vox Populi” which couldn’t have been a better choice.

Did you ever believe?
Were you ever a dreamer?

Those first lines really drew my into that song. Because it made me scream YES with all my heart. It’s a powerful song about fighting for what you believe in. And it accompanied me through many, many situations where I felt like I couldn’t go on anymore or just wanted to give up.

Do you want to surrender?
Or fight for victory?

That’s all I needed to hear to get back into warrior mode. And hell did I fight! This song perfectly describes the journey I went through last year. And this is where it has brought me:

Here we are at the start
I can feel the beating of our hearts

I feel like I’m at the beginning of something beautiful and amazing right now. Something I’ve been putting a lot of effort and energy in over the past year and that I’m willing to take to the next level in 2013. Which brings us to this year’s theme song. I proudly present: Invincible by Muse. While this song might not come across as energetic as Vox Populi it is no less a song about fighting. Put in beautiful words that could be easily read as a poem, sung by a beautiful voice.

Again, this song couldn’t fit better to my current state of being. A while back, someone said to me: “You appear as if you’re invincible lately.” At first, I had to laugh. But then it occurred to me that there’s actually a lot of truth in it. Ever since I started making music, since I discovered that I’m actually capable of making progress in a way I never thought possible, I’ve been walking through this world differently. I do get that feeling that nothing can stop me on the path I’ve taken pretty often these days. And it’s an awesome feeling. It means to trust in myself. And that’s something that makes even the hard times bearable.

Here’s my theme song for 2013. Enjoy! And share your’s here if you picked a song, too.

Follow through
Make your dreams come true
Don’t give up the fight
You will be alright
Cause there’s noone like you in the universe

Don’t be afraid
What your mind consumes
You should make a stand
Stand up for what you believe
And tonight
We can truly say
Together we’re invincible

During the struggle
They will pull us down
But please, please
Let’s use this chance
To turn things around
And tonight
We can truly say
Together we’re invincible

Do it on your own
It makes no difference to me
What you leave behind
What you choose to be
And whatever they say
Your soul’s unbreakable

Endings and beginnings

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Happy New Year to all of you! I hope you had a great New Year’s Eve and an awesome first day of 2013.

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I can’t believe that the chapter of 2012 is finished now. This year passed by so quickly and yet so much has happened. For me, 2012 was definitely a defining year. I’d even go as far as to say that it has been one of the greatest years of my life. A year full of change and self-realization. A year ago, my life had reached a dead end. It was time to turn it to a different direction, to face the unknown and exciting. And once I had accepted this new mindset, everything started to unfold from there. I scored a new job, I moved to a different city and in music I finally found the perfect outlet for my creativity.

I exactly remember the day when the wish to make music occured to me for the very first time. It was in February and I was at home sick. I was so thrilled by the thought of it that I felt like walking on clouds for a whole week. Followed by the realization that it was absolutely stupid to start making music at the age of 29. But the idea turned into something much bigger. I wasn’t able to ignore it, the music in my head didn’t die down. It all turned into a big dream. A dream that grew bigger and bigger everyday.

I never expected to actually find someone who was willing to share this dream with me. I never expected that my ideas would actually turn into songs. I never expected for any of the things that happened to happen. I was prepared for failure, for rejection and stagnation. All of these things happened. But still, progress was made. Because I took one step after the other. I kept my dream alive inside of me, all the time. And when I felt like giving up, I thought of that dream. That I had a right to dream big, no matter how ridiculous it might seem to others, no matter if I’ll ever get even close to it. Just imagine and keep moving forward.

It was me who created all these wonderful moments and experiences of 2012. There might have been a little luck and fate in play here and there, but in the end it was me who made it happen. This is probably the most important thing I learned in 2012. Nothing is impossible if you just want to make it happen. Of course, not everything went smoothly for me this year. There were challenges, moments of weakness and despair. But they are a part of life. They make us stronger and contribute to what we are, so I am able to accept these moments and be at peace with them.

I’m very proud of the foundation I built for my life over the past year. Now it’s time grow on it. And I will. I know that 2013 is gonna be a big year. Full of big goals. The biggest one will be to finally find the missing members to our band and to finally hit the stage. That’s what I will work for. I also want to travel and be adventurous and try new things that I haven’t done before. And this time there’ll be someone at my side. Oh yes, 2012 held a big surprise for me at the end of the year. I finally fell in love again and I can’t help but feel like it must be fate. Because I never would have met him if I hadn’t initially decided on making music. It is all happening for a reason, it is all falling into place.

So, let’s promise each other that we will make 2013 the biggest, greatest and best year of our lives. We will follow our bliss, we won’t give up and we will live dreams! Because in the end, that’s what life’s all about.