My name is Sarah and this is my first and only blog. Today is December 14th, 2020, and I have been putting this off for quite some time. I keep thinking that I’m silly for believing I might have anything important enough to say that others might want to hear and/or could benefit from, but I know we all have that evil little voice in the back of our minds and that great things can happen when we learn to just shut it up (plus, what better time to shut it up that after the wild year of 2020?). Even as I’m typing this I feel an urge to delete it all and never start again. BUT. I won’t! If anything valuable comes out of this for others, GREAT. That’ll be truly incredible. What I’m hoping it does for me is allows me to write and process feelings/emotions/situations/life in general and maybe this can help build a little community that won’t feel so alone in how we feel.
I named this blog “Complicated Basic” because it feels truest to who I am. Sure, I enjoy the little luxuries of life (and have really gotten into them as I’ve gotten older) but I also know that there’s more depth here. You can be “basic” and love all the stupid shit people might make fun of you for loving, like oat milk chai lattes and Ugg boots, but I know for me, and every single person on this planet, that this doesn’t mean there isn’t more beneath the surface. I feel like complicated can have a negative connotation to it, but in my eyes, and in this case, it doesn’t at all. It means there’s more going on than you might think, and that, if you just take the time to look (or in this case, read) you might be able to get a glimpse into that side as well.
I was trying to find the purpose in starting this blog at all, so I tried to think about what was missing from the current blogs I followed. Not that there is anything wrong with them! I find them all wonderful and inspiring, but if you’re going to do something like this you don’t want to just copy everyone else. I wanted to feel like I was adding some value here, and sharing my truest voice with you all. It’s generally recommended that you not to try to be too many things at once, and that’s fair- it can get confusing if people don’t know what you stand for. But I (and all humans to ever walk planet earth) am so many things… and narrowing it down was hard. I ended up with “Complicated Basic” because yes, I am fairly basic in the things I like, but my life (like everyone else’s) is also very complex. I have a lot of stories, experiences, feelings, etc. that I sometimes feel very alone in, like opening up about those things will make me less of how I think the world wants to perceive me: a happy person who only acknowledges the good in the world and is scared of (or is completely oblivious to) the bad stuff.
I spent 24 years of my life in complete and utter bliss from this kind of naïveté, where bad things only happened to “other” people. Then my Dad got sick. He had cancer and was given a year to live. And over the course of what actually was more like 10 months, I watched him switch between appreciative and hopeful, fearful and sad, and regardless of the emotions his body withered and he passed on November 4th, 2018. His passing was the catalyst for a lot of other shit (not all bad) coming up in my life that I’ll get to another time, but my Dad’s experience humbled me to the core. It made me realize truly how fragile and precious life is. I read this quote once that said, “There are two kinds of people in this world: those who have been humbled, and those who are about to be.” MAN. That stuck with me. Because for 24 years I aimlessly wandered this Earth in complete oblivion, and then I got hit over the head with a freaking frying pan. I had been “about to be” humbled for 24 years. And now, at 27 years old, I am grappling with who I am as a humbled person, and how I can possibly do some good in the world with this newfound information.
This experience left me feeling so alone, so angry and so bitter at times. But it also made me the kind of person where every good little moment in life makes me ball my eyes out in happiness. I experience the highs and lows of all things in life with so much empathy and appreciation and it makes me want to be more involved and purposeful and live a meaningful life. Everything has meaning now. The clock is actually ticking. We are actually dying. I think most of us live in fear of this (I know I do), and so we never truly acknowledge it. We stuff that part of our life away in a nice little box with a bow on it, only to open it when we are forced to and then have a complete meltdown because we never saw it coming. We never actually thought it would happen to US. And then life humbles you.
A better way, that I have found, to handle that fear of death is to let it fuel you. To let it serve as a reminder that time really is our greatest resource, tomorrow is not guaranteed, and that we need to LOVE the people we love and who love us back, because they are the greatest gifts of all. They are what gives meaning to our insignificant, yet somehow wildly significant, existences. I think of death often. Not in a morbid way (or at least that’s the goal), but to motivate me, to keep me from taking myself and life so seriously, and to help me take risks. This is my journey of embracing my “basic-ness” and loving myself and taking care of myself and also welcoming the new darker and deeper side of myself that makes me a more well-rounded, accepting and understanding person.
I feel like I just rambled a shit ton and if you’ve made it to this point I can only hope you felt it was worth it and that some of what I’ve said has resonated with you. If so, I’ll keep it up and I hope we can go on this “Complicated Basic” journey together.