Sunday, 30 May 2010

Birds Can Fly So High.

Hello everyone,

Tonight's entry comes from one of my very favourite songs. Kate Nash's "Birds" is a very typical Nash style song, it has a simple melody, soft background music and tells a very ordinary story. It's this story element of the song that I think I love so much. Unlike any major ballads that boybands croon or the heartstring tugging anthems of rockbands, it portrays a story of love in such beautifully simple terms. The characters aren't princesses and princes or suffering martyrs to love and they don't even claim to be the most in love that anyone could be. The words are't out to compare the love felt to shooting stars, fireworks or volcanoes erupting. No. The very ordinary hero of Nash's tale uses an extremely simple, mundane metaphor to show his love to the girl in the story. Birds.

"Birds can fly so high
Or they can shit on your head
They can almost fly in to your eye
And Make you feel so scared.
But when you look at them and you see that they're beautiful.
That's how I feel about you."

I've often wondered why these lyrics affect me so much, why I love them and why I'll always hope that someone one day will tell me they love me just like this. Eventually I realised that the simplicity of the metaphor is actually genius. Despite not conjouring up typically beautiful imagery it is beautiful in its own way. Managing to take something as ordinary as a bird and it's behaviour and using it to tell someone just how much you like them. Well, that to me is more beautiful than any prose inside a greetings card or any classic love ballad.

I realised that this principle applies all across my life. I really do just live for the small, everyday things that make up life. I'm really not searching for huge defining moments, just the little seemingly insignificant moments in every day that make me happy. My relationship is a perfect example of this. I appreciate every tiny aspect, the minutia of it, and the smallest gestures mean the most. It's the way a text can make me grin like an idiot. The way every hug is different. The fact that everyone has their own distinct smell, my best friends and boyfriend included. The way that we say bye a hundred times before actually leaving each other. Or just the fact that he's read this blog. Unexpected visits. Kisses that catch you by surprise. And the way gingerbread men can actually say so much. Every single small gesture and moment in our relationship makes it what it is. In my opinion its not about the big proclamations of love, fancy things or "life changing" or "defining" moments. My relationship is defined by the little things. And, to me, love means so much more than just the word itself.

I find I can apply the exact same principle to everything in my life, including my diabetes. I tend to look at diabetes in the smaller, everday context rather than in the huge, lifetime context. This is partly because that's how I approach everything in life and also because diabetes is a lot less imposing when looked at in the smaller perpective. Throwing words around like "forever," "future complications," just doesn't help me. Each day at a time. Each hypo and hyper. Each injection. Each finger prick. Each blood sugar reading. I find that taking everything one at a time and trying not to worry about the future, is keeping me positive in dealing with my condition.

My diabetes, just like my relationship, is a collection of little things. It's the extra things I carry around in my bag. It's the hand shaking that comes before a hypo. It's the little black dots on the end of my fingers. It's the trips to the chemist each week for strips. It's finding the little test strips everywhere. It's drinking little cartons of orange juice through work. It's the constant niggling back of the mind worry about my sugars. It's the regulation of my meal times. It's the Zac Efron sticker stuck to my novopen. It's each little bruise I get when I inject poorly. It's meeting new people through diabetes. It's refusing the sweet that your friend offers you or not having desert in a restaurant. It's missing Ben and Jerry's. It's all of these things and more, and more things that I will continue to discover throughout my diabetic journey.

I adore Kate Nash's Birds metaphor. I wish I could outshine it on the quest to explain love in beautifully simple terms, but I'm yet to think of one. It's the same with diabetes. I don't want to use the term "a battle," or "a relentless force," or "a neverending struggle." To me these descriptions are too powerful and too dramatic.

I'm going to continue to search until I think of some way of describing the small challenges, frustrations, routines and emotions that us diabetics experience every day. When I come up with it, I'll let you know.

Another of my favourite artists, Paolo Nutini, quite brilliantly sings. "It's the simple things that mean the most to me." Noone could put it more perfectly than that.

Thankyou for reading.

Ps. To continue on the music theme, I just thought I'd let you know that the other day I bought tickets to see Paramore in November, I'm very excited. Leeds Festival tickets this year were avoided, mainly because I just didn't feel ready to hit a music festival with my diabetes in tow. If I could've found a babysitter for it or the weekend then I'd have happily roughed it in a tent with my friends and done the festival again. The main reason I was gutted about not going to Leeds was because Paramore are playing, and I've wanted to see them live for a few years now. So you can imagine how happy I was when I managed to get tickets for their tour date in Newcastle. I'll see how the diabetes and this Paramore gig get along. And then maybe I'll have the confidence to hit a festival sometime in the next few years; diabetes and all. Fingers crossed!


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