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Category: Elena

To my beautiful sister

Change is the only constant. And it creeps up on us, whether we notice it or not. Tomorrow, a big change is going to happen. My sister is moving away. I am beyond happy for her but I am also selfish. I don’t want her to go because I don’t want to miss my big sister. We are rarely ever physically close, yet it somehow feels different whether hundreds of kilometers separate us or a huge ocean and time difference. It has been quiet on our little Uke Blog, there is no real excuse, just life that happened and things that got busy. But with change and new challenges comes new energy, from which MoodyUkes is going to benefit. I want to start this new chapter with a couple of words directed to my beautiful sister.

To me, you can do no wrong. To me, you are the strongest, most fearless person I have met. You jump on challenging opportunities and you handle them so brilliantly. You never give yourself enough credit for that.

I want to hurt everyone who has ever dared to hurt you because you are my sister and no one gets to do that! I don’t want you to face any pain ever alone again, I want you to know I am here to listen. I know our genes and twisted brains tell us to keep it together and deal with it on our own, but you have taught me over the last month that it is okay to be hurting and it is okay to talk about it to someone. It is more than okay, it actually helps to not deal with things alone. I hope you think of me sometimes when you are facing a problem because I know you will be the first person I ask for advice. Be prepared for many calls from your little sister (probably at an unreasonable hour) to discuss my little worries. I will try to tone it down, I promise.

I know you will have an amazing time, you will meet great people and you will be okay, no matter how you feel right now. I want the people you are about to meet to know what an incredible human being they are about to get to know. And I want them to fully appreciate you because otherwise, I want my big sister back!

You will be missed here, but I know you need to be elsewhere now. I love you so much


Feeling alive

What moments do you think of when I say a moment that makes you look above your personal horizons? When you suddenly see your emotions and issues from a different perspective? When everything you have been worrying about seems so tiny or irrelevant because you’re looking at a bigger picture?

To me, this happens when I see a really good movie. Preferably at the movies because that way you physically step out of your own life and into the space of the movie. When a movie makes you feel Something that isn’t part of your everyday emotions. I can’t think of a better example but it happened to me when I watched The Fault in Our Stars. Feeling sad and happy and confused all at the same time. Cancer – luckily to me right now – is not a part of everyday life. But in that moment when you encounter something that is out of your rut, you realize that him not texting you back or the exam next week is not going to matter in the long run – to me, that is what feeling alive feels like.

It also happens to me when I hear certain news – this week hearing about the death of Christina Grimmie or the night club shooting in Orlando. Something that shakes up your life and makes you think. And then you need to force your head back into your own routine, while also subconsciously still reevaluating yourself and your choices.

Feeling alive, how morbid that other people’s death caused this feeling in me this week. I’m only now realizing how dark that really is. Also The Fault in Our Stars is concerning the topic of death. Maybe the concept or realness of death is making me feel alive, forcing me to see that life is more than my personal environment and worries.

This is not the direction I wanted this to go in. I wanted to point out that I like this feeling of being alive, present and active, I like looking above my horizon. But I feel like I can’t say that right now.


About Manhood

I recently watched ‘The Mask You Live In’, which is a documentary on male struggle in the United States. I highly encourage you to watch it – it’s good brain food and it is available on Netflix.

After last week’s post about emancipation, today I’m going to address the opposite topic. Well not opposite necessarily. Let me explain. I wouldn’t label myself an extreme feminist – of course I’m all for emancipation as you know, but I don’t identify with the term. Especially because of today’s topic.

To clarify some terms, sex is biological differences in males and females, and gender is the social construct around the sexes. Different ‘extremes’ of feminism either wants to get rid of these constructs and live in a gender neutral society or fight for equality for the sexes. Either way, I feel like this is discussed in today’s society and worked upon, so I don’t want to focus on this topic – at least not today. Today is about what it means to be a man.

Don’t cry, man up, don’t be a sissy… the list goes on and on. These phrases are only the tip of the iceberg of what it contributes to be a man in (american) society. Why do we treat the sexes so differently? Why are men the strong gender, why are they not meant to cry and why are they allowed to see women as a sexual object? The answer is in the way they are raised and taught by society.

The stereotypes and phrases the society poses on men, which are practiced in families, harm boys and men in many ways. Expressing emotions and speaking about intimate issues is difficult or nearly impossible the way men are brought up today, and unless there is a discussion about this topic, hardly anything is going to change. This girl-boy thought process is limiting and harmful – I know this is what feminism is fighting but maybe the problem I have with feminism is with the word itself. Fighting for equality is the essential aspect – whether that includes increasing the numbers of women in leading positions or changing the way men are brought up.

Being a man shouldn’t be a performance – neither should being female. I don’t know why the sexes are being treated differently, it is deeply rooted in history – but now should be a time to change that.


Love & Relationships

Historically love is not necessarily connected to relationships, nor is it the other way around. For that matter the concept of romantic love is relatively new, sparking in the mid-1800s. Yet today love is probably the number one discussed topic between girlfriends, uncountable movies have been written about it and the tears shed over love could probably fill multiple oceans. But would we even share the same definition of love and romance without all the Hollywood movies, love songs and Valentine’s Day presents?

I personally I don’t appreciate Hollywood romance movies and the idea they leave in young girls’ head – including mine when I was 15. The guy does not have to make the initial move and in my darkest moments I don’t have to be saved – I can do my own saving, even if it might take some trial and error, I will manage. The fact that it is 2016 and most of my girlfriends still expect to be chatted up drives me crazy. We tie our own shoe laces and everything, go get yourself that date you’ve been thinking about for the past 2 weeks but have been too scared. “He could take the first step if he really wanted to”. Guess what, he could be thinking the exact same thing. Use your voice, it might not always work out the way you planned it to but occasionally it will, and that will feel good. I guess what I am trying to say is to not be a character in your story but to be the story.

As emancipated women – we do everything ourselves. We work the same jobs as men, we raise kids on our own and fix our bikes on our own. One of my New Year’s resolution this year was to be my own hero – ask for less help when it comes to difficult, mostly technical tasks that I would usually ask my dad to do. For that matter, I am planning to show the world that I can kick some ass in my future career – so why shouldn’t I start being badass in my day to day life? I want to be the though one – I don’t want to be rescued, especially when it comes to love. Prince Charming is a pretty concept, but what are his qualities that you can build a relationship on? The fact that he is good-looking and just bumped into me at the right moment doesn’t seem to be enough for me. Love sparks attraction, but a relationship needs to be built on more than ‘just’ love, not every time you fall head of heals for someone you are going to end up in a happy relationship with them. Love needs to be established in everyday life, not only on first dates and adventures. To me anyway, a long term relationship is built on intimacy.

“They slipped briskly into an intimacy from which they never recovered.” – F Scott Fitzgerald

After meeting that someone special, the way they see and think of you is important. Girls need to be perfect, loveable – lovely. Lovely is one of those words that only perfect girl-next-door use, while they braid their hair the way they always do and smell like their signature rose sent. Maybe I am just bitter but is that the type of perfect that is attractive? Who actually is like that? I am moody and realistic, far less easy to romanticize but nevertheless lovable. Am I still lovely even though I probably spent more time thinking about death than about my nails?

I guess you are able to tell that I have a serious problem with movie stereotypes. Today, love and relationships go and in hand with each other. It seems strange to think you used to marry someone you didn’t love or even really know. Or that love didn’t use to be red roses and anniversary dates. I guess I want to draw attention to the fact that the concept of love has been on a long path and only relatively recently took a turn to roses and butterflies. If things like love can fundamentally change in a matter of 200 years, it is important to see that societies’ standards of relationships need to be interpreted by everyone in their own way. No 90 minute Hollywood movie can show you how your life is meant to be.

Much love, Elena


Carbon Copying

This post was inspired after reading ‘Who is Tom Ditto’ by Danny Wallace, yet this is not a book review. The novel just got me thinking.

The idea behind the Carbon Copying concept is to piggy-back ride the fun. You start following someone for a limited time and start to do exactly what they are doing. Go follow them to the same places, order the same food – with the aim that the person shows you things you wouldn’t have experienced on your own. You step out of your life, become invisible, and step into a new one. Seeing someone in the street and rather than only thinking where they are going and what they do, you go find out. I, on the contrary, start imagining complex stories that impress me. Thinking that the other person is really fascinating and too cool for me – always assuming there is a huge back story that doesn’t compare to mine. I think everyone has probably had the thought at one point that your own life might not be enough. The thought that you’re not doing enough things, not going out enough, not saying yes often enough,… spending too much time on social media watching other people do fun things. FOMO is real and I am guilty of it too. Now CC jumps in and gives you the option to enjoy someone else’s day.

Not making any decisions – a dream for me personally as someone who hates making decisions. Actually, that is not completely true. I don’t enjoy planning things, I am much better at being spontaneous. Yet I don’t think CC enables you to double the fun. Just because you physically share the same experience doesn’t mean you feel the same things. Imagine watching a group of friends at a restaurant, 5 of them having a great time – yet you sit alone at your table. This is not piggy-backing the fun, this might even trigger more FOMO. Don’t get me wrong, I am all for walking through life with open eyes, taking every opportunity you get given and pushing yourself out of your comfort zone. But staying you while doing everything is a crucial aspect that the concept that Danny Wallace is presenting in ‘Tom Ditto’ is lacking.

Something I find a lot more relatable is carbon copying on a personal level. When you start spending a lot of time with someone and you start picking up phrases that the other person uses. But I don’t think this has anything to do with imitating – more so to do with admiring and being open. I do believe that every person has their own identity. Something that they were more or less born with, a structure in their personality that is given. Of course everyone is shaped by their experiences and there is a process involved in becoming you that never truly stops. In that sense I like the thought that you take in little snippets from people around you – whether it might be good or bad and combine them all into your structure of identity. That is a personal observation that only you can see and identify, no carbon copying can give you a complex insight into a personality. And my favorite moments in a discussion are when you realize there is whole aspect to the topic that you have never thought about before, broadening your horizon completely. So no, I don’t go out and follow people, conversations are my weapons of choice.

Much love, Elena