Raise your glass in slow motion.

Everyone is guilty. Guilty of giving too much, of taking too much. Of not saying the words that we should have said, of articulating more words than was needed in any given situation. Not all of us keep in touch with family and friends, fuck, all of the people in our lives as much as we should. Sure, some of those people in your life will begin to fade away, it’s just life. Maybe you move away, they move away, you gradually lose touch, it’s not necessarily a conscious decision but it hurts on some sort of base level at least. On the flipside, there are people that you choose to keep around, regardless of where they are in the world, but now and again there comes a time when you have to make a choice about who those people are. Is this person making my life better or even just enriching it? It can be as simple as just liking the cut of their jib, they’re your friend. Sometimes though you have to know when to let go. Now and again time closes the door on any relationship that you have, not necessarily because you failed but just because something inside you finally has the balls to tell you that this particular someone or something no longer fits in your life.

What now? Lock your door, keep yourself to yourself for a while, and then start looking for new doors that you want or are ready to open? Is it a sign that you’re changing and you know that it’s going to be okay? Fingers crossed.

Letting go is incredibly tough though. It matters if we worry about the future without the ones that we no longer want to have in our lives, or if we keep thinking that we’ve made a mistake if we choose to let them go. You trust your heart and your mind though, right? Is it painful at times? Damn straight it is, it can be super hurtful when you know that you have to move on without certain people. No matter how hard we try to keep things as they are, sooner or later we’ll confronted with a decision to make, whether we like it or not. Our attempts to hold on to all of the negative people and things that were familiar to us, inhibit our chances to try experience happiness and joy in that particular moment and indeed in those future moments. Maybe it’s more than one moment and perhaps our lives are always supposed to be about change. No matter how hard we try to keep things as they are, sooner or later we’ll be confronted with a decision to make whether we like it or not.

It can be a good thing sometimes because now we can open up ourselves to to new experiences, new people, new possibilities. It sucks though when that time comes. It’s so clear, I should’ve seen it.

It blows my mind and I don’t understand it.

A change in life presents itself, different things are suddenly are on the horizon and decisions need to be made. Difficult ones, the worst kind. When you’re continually in touch with people and it’s a one way road, it’s time to say goodbye, isn’t it? Focus on yourself for once. Scratch that, focus on the most important person in my life, not me, a young girl who will benefit from this life altering decision. This is for you. Em, it will always be you.

Con te partirò is a beautiful song. It literally means ‘With you I will leave.’ This time though, it’s a solo journey, although there are people that will be left behind that I care about. That said, it’s important to forget what and who hurt me but I’ll never forget what it taught me. Some people need to be left behind because things and people weren’t who I thought they were. It might be the same from their perspective and that’s okay, we all believe what we want to. Maybe sometimes people come into your life just to teach you how to let go. We won’t be in touch again. In person, over Facebook or Twitter, Instagram, whichever social platform you wish to choose. No one wants to be shitty, but if you don’t want to keep in touch, then that’s okay, but don’t expect the same the other way around when a new life is starting. 10,394 miles or 16,727 in kilometers depending where you are in the world, it’s not my loss. Perhaps the worst thing is that this choice won’t even be on their respective radar but that’s okay. Easier to say goodbye than have someone bid you farewell, I guess.

Letting go isn’t a one time thing, it’s something you have to do over and over again. That’s a sad thing. Time to take a second look.

See your eyes, they’re wide open.

@TheSamMcLeod

How could this be done by such a smiling sweetheart?

When we were younger, we were kind of fearless, we had just enough naivety to think, ‘Why can’t I do anything that I want to do?’ Become an astronaut? No problemo, there’s no way the training can be that difficult. A doctor? Absolutely, consider it done. Become an international superstar playing the sport that you love and get paid for it? It’s definitely happening, start working on that signature for autographs. A fireman? Saving people, plus girls like a guy in uniform apparently, win win. Falling in love at first sight with someone? It can’t just be true in fairytales, right? Meet and marry the most perfect person for you in the entire world? Obviously, there’s no way it isn’t in your future, it’s in the bag. Just the innocence of youth, naive enough to not yet know what you could never hope to accomplish.

It’s not the worst trait to have, perhaps being naive preserves your view of the world that maybe some others don’t have, we’re all different about what we think of people and things. Does it make us more vulnerable? It’s tough to say but you always want to think the best about everyone you meet, about everyone in your life. Maybe it is being a little naive, but it isn’t it cool to think that there aren’t really very many truly bad people in the world? The problem is, you grow up and you learn that you’re going to get hurt by someone, sometimes by the person that you least expected to ever cause you pain.

It can happen in every relationship, whether you’re friends or something more, but if someone or something isn’t making you happy, you question it, don’t you? Isn’t it right that it takes more courage to do things outside of your comfort zone when you know you’re miserable but you need to know why?

I know that she knows that I’m not fond of asking.

I know that something is up but asking questions becomes more difficult when people are evasive. She’s a loose cannon but generally one that fires in the right direction, so a little slack is cut. Questions are avoided though, no answers are given as to what’s going on. There’s a problem somewhere but let’s face it, boys aren’t the cleverest when it comes to matters of the heart.

As a boy, you can fool yourself into thinking that you understand women, but the truth is that you don’t. Do you try to keep them guessing though to make up for your lack of understanding? Sure, why not try and give off a devil may care attitude and make the ladies think that you’re some kind of badboy that they can tame. Sometimes it works, but there’s always the occasional disaster.

Something is wrong, something has changed. One of the most predictable things in all of our lives is that there will be change. It would be nice if you can have a say in whatever those changes will be, but you’re kidding yourself if you don’t think they’re on your horizon, despite whether you want them or not.

A lot of the time, there’s always one person in a couple who’s more invested in their relationship. It’s easy for everyone around you to notice and tell you to walk away but it’s not always that easy, right? Isn’t it the best when you’re really close friends with someone but also in love with them at the same time? It hurts like fuck though when someone keeps abusing that and using you to comfort their own insecurities.

She’s becoming a complete mess but we continue on, you don’t just fall out of love with someone, but it’s getting harder. We all make choices, we do what we want, relationship or not. The penny drops one day, she has a massive issue. Excessive drinking, partying and random hookups are okay for single people, but not for a couple. I guess I always knew deep down but I can’t stop lying to other people about it any more, far less myself. A dignified silence is for the best, given everything that we’ve shared, I’m not about to throw her under the bus to our friends. If it makes me look like the bad guy, then I’m okay with that, her health and wellbeing is more important. It’s becoming clear to see that we’re ending soon, but it’s not the kind of thing to talk to someone else about, who wants to admit that their relationship is falling faster than a barrel over Niagara? I want to continue loving her despite the fact that she doesn’t seem to want me in the same way that I want her. Who the fuck wants to stick around just to give someone attention and comfort when they need it. No point in having a relationship when nothing is on your terms. What happened to compromise and understanding?

The night comes and the sunset that evening is heartbreakingly beautiful. The conversation will be tough but it needs to happen, and the look on her face says everything. Words are said because I need to find a way to stop liking, far less loving her. Sometimes a relationship ending conversation doesn’t determine who’s right, only who’s left.

I’m not saying it was your fault, although you could have done more. Will there maybe something there regardless of what she did? Tonight, tomorrow, always.

All you want from someone you let into your life? Just don’t let me down.

@TheSamMcLeod

All the feelings and the day they stopped.

Innocence is defined as freedom from blame, freedom from guilt, harmlessness, innocuousness, inoffensiveness, irreproachability, lack of malice, purity. Aren’t they some of the qualities that we all have in one way or another?

There’s always a lot of guesswork involved in who and what you let into your life. We all take chances every day, some come off, some don’t, that’s just the way it is. It hurts when you get it wrong though, you’ve trusted your innocence in believing what you think you know or what someone tells you, it’s just part of trying to be as good a person as you can be.

It’s never good though if a day comes when you stop believing in your personal fairytales, and you realise that there’s no point in holding onto hopes that won’t take you anywhere. You understand that you’re not the only person out there who has things to deal with every day, things to think about, decisions to make. There are plenty of people in the world who have gone through and are going through things that you’ll never understand. No one’s fault, just innocence rearing it’s head again, right? Some people you meet will bring you down and make you feel bad but, there’s no point in holding it against them, aren’t we’re all inexperienced at life in general, no matter what we might think?

It sucks when that innocence makes you spectacularly wrong though about someone or something and your feelings get hurt.

One day, you’ll stand up on your own.

Sometimes what you think you’re looking for comes when you’re not looking at all, and sometimes you don’t know shit about shit.

We know each other but nothing has ever happened, we’re just friends. Hugs, but no kisses, nothing else at all, other than random texts and emails. She’s super cute, If she could turn my head, I’m not the only boy who’d end up with whiplash, but that’s not enough, don’t we all need someone to stretch us on an intellectual level too? She’s nothing more than a one time passing thought, but she’s a friend, so there are feelings there but they’re innocent.

A message arrives on WhatsApp with an invite to her birthday party. There’s a bunch of other people copied in that’ll be amazing to catch up with, it’s a yes. The night comes, presents are given, drinks are poured and the music is on. Everyone gets to pick a song from iTunes and we’re all on rotation, the music will be eclectic, no one knows what’s coming next, it’s never a bad thing to discover new bands and songs. Let’s see what the opinion is in the room about some Canadian rock.

The birthday girl comes over after a while, glasses are clinked and we speak for a while. A lot of the chat is about music, about who the band is that are currently playing, what sort of musicians each of us are into. Let’s be honest, everyone likes talking about themselves and what they like so it’s not a difficult conversation to have. She heads off to mingle and it’s good to get some boy chat instead, football, girls, the usual nonsense that boys talk about.

As with every party ever, people begin to drift off as the night stretches on. She comes back over and she’s clearly drunk, it’s her birthday so that’s her prerogative. We talk again and a kiss is attempted, easily the worst idea she’s had tonight. Turns out that saying no to a girl is easier than you think as a boy, especially is there’s another girl out there that you’re thinking about instead. We’re at a junction, turn left or turn right? Turning wrong isn’t an option, but there’s no decision to make. Maybe a wise man never counts all the way to three, but there’s no point trying to second guess it, no hesitation, definitely no overthinking. It seems that I never read her right and it’s like I’ve knocked over the first domino of the end of our friendship by saying no. Reverse isn’t a gear I’m familiar with but something doesn’t feel right. You always need to get over someone first before you can get under someone else, it’s not fair otherwise.

She’s going through me like shit through a goose, tonight needs to be about putting out a fire before heading home, but she’s not accepting any of it. Can’t anyone of us speaking to someone for an hour just be someone being nice, especially if the conversation is strictly innocent? Boys and girls can be just friends, but telling her to be strong enough to let go about tonight and be wise enough to wait for someone she deserves is not a good idea. Taxi for one.

Life is messy sometimes and some people, this boy included are deluding themselves if they think they can just wave a wand and everyone will suddenly play nice. It turns out that there are some things that you can’t fix.

Endless messages, calls and emails follow but when you know something isn’t a good idea, perhaps it’s better to ignore them and try and forget. It’s never good when a friendship ends, but there comes a point when you realise that all of us have different degrees of understanding about what innocence is.

I remember losing hope, I remember feeling low.

One day you’ll have to let it go.

@TheSamMcLeod

Don’t kid yourself.

Nobody should ever be ashamed to admit that they’ve been in the wrong. If you’ve made or you’re making mistakes, then aren’t you trying new things, trying to push yourself, trying to make your world a tiny bit better? Every choice we make, we make ourselves although perhaps in that one moment we think that they’re necessary in order to learn what we need to; that whatever steps we take, are important enough to get us to the places we need to go? It’s okay to err, we’re all human, but maybe an error doesn’t become a mistake until we correct it. Don’t mistakes show us what needs to be improved though, otherwise how would we know what we had to work on? What if you had no realisation that you were making a mistake in the first place?

Clearly, some mistakes are smaller than others. Forgetting to pick up bread or milk, not putting the bins out on the right day, minor things, they’re not going to trouble you too much. If they only affect you, that’s easier to take because no one else gets hurt. Fucking things up with a friend or lover? Different story.

In any relationship, the devil is right there in the details. There can be problems in every relationship, some you know of and some you don’t. When something comes to an end, you know immediately who’s to blame.

It’s you right there, right there in the mirror.

It’s just another day, a lot of us are out for brunch, I know some, I don’t know others. It’s always nice to meet new people, to expand my social circle, you know that you’ll never like everyone you come across, but don’t you need to leave yourself open to the possibility that you might? The boys get handshakes and hugs, the girls get a peck on the cheek and hugs. One girl who is introduced to me, seems particularly cool, even my girlfriend likes her. Conversation between everyone else flows easily though, it’s a nice few hours spent with old and new friends. Numbers and Twitter handles are swapped, people are added on Facebook. Exchanges follow between all of us, plans are made for catching up. It’s okay to like new people, even if it’s someone of the opposite sex, whether or not you’re in a relationship. You can be into someone or simply be friendly, although maybe for some people it can be hard to tell the difference. Normally someone that likes someone else will try to find out more about that person and show some sort of interest in you, to compliment you, or just generally be kind. Does that really mean that they like you though in a romantic way? Not necessarily.

Like anything in life, different combinations of people click more than others. I strike up a friendship with the girl who I recently met, but that’s all it is. My girlfriend knows that we message, that we chat occasionally, that we meet up for coffee now and again, but it’s not a full on thing. She does the same with her, as well as some of the boys. No need to be jealous if you’re in a relationship with someone that you love and trust. Friendships with people of the opposite sex are healthy, aren’t they? Catching up is always the same with my girl friends. The space is important, you’re my girl friends, not my girlfriend. A hug, a cheek kiss, and a smile.

Birthdays happen, Christmas comes around, so you give gifts to the people in your life, how can it be wrong to be thoughtful? I’m out one day and it’s neither of those days, but I know that the girl wants a particular album so I pick it up for her, it can never be wrong to make a simple gesture to the people in your life. Sometimes you see something that you know a friend would like, so you pick it up for them. It doesn’t always need to be about special occasions, it’s nice to do something nice, who doesn’t like a random gift?

It’s okay for a text or instant message to end with the 24th letter of the alphabet, it just means that you’re getting a virtual cheek kiss, right? It seems that not everyone thinks so.

A message pops up and she’s had a promotion. A case of wine is sent just to congratulate her, awesome work on her part. It’s signed for by her boyfriend or partner, not someone that I knew even existed. No problem to me though, I’m not romantically interested, I’m just pleased for my friend. If only it was that easy. He spots the return address, looks into her iPhone and sees our messages. Every single one is completely innocent, no innuendo, nothing sexual, but he flips at the kiss at the end of our messages. They didn’t go one way, I got them too, but I didn’t read anything into them. My girlfriend got the same in her messages, just a little thing, it’s only a letter. Not to everyone it seems. Obviously not everyone recognises that niceness and politeness isn’t always flirting.

It kicks off between them and they split up because of me. Have I done something wrong? It’s difficult not to blame myself when a friend is hurting. My mind constantly goes back to what I could have done differently to make our friendship work. No gifts? No nice messages? Maybe the best thing to do is keep my mind busy with other thoughts, to move on, to forget about what she never told me? It shouldn’t have even mattered, we were just friends. We’ve all been in awkward situations that don’t always work out the way that we want them to. Perhaps sometimes you need to reconcile yourself to the fact that what happened, happened.

A friendship is gone, it’s time to say goodbye, there’s no use in two people remembering the same thing. Have I fucked up, or have I just not yet found a way to make things work? You can only do what you can with the information available, but should it change the way you approach a friendship? Maybe it’s naivety, someone’s perception is their reality. Her heart is hurting, so ergo, my heart is hurting.

Thing is, maybe focusing too much on something is going to fuck you up. Sometimes the best way to get through hurt is to remain positive. There can be conflicted emotions, but sometimes you need to let things go. I need to let things go, no point in clutching at straws. Sometimes you can only know what people are willing to tell you. Be okay with what you see in the mirror.

Don’t punish yourself, you’re looking too closely.

@TheSamMcLeod

Here comes the breath.

Things used to be so much easier when we were young, weren’t they? You dreamt dreams, you had hopes and fears, without knowing why or being able to understand them properly. It’s never easy to try and comprehend all of the things it takes to grow up in a world that we didn’t really understand, that we might not ever truly know. Growing up happens quicker than we’d like, but the memories of being a child stay with us for a long time. It’s easy for us to hold on to things that were, but still wonder about what’s to come. There are moments when everything is fine, and other moments where you realise that there are certain memories that you’ll never get back. People, stuff and things are going to change as you get older, is the hardest part knowing that there’s nothing you can do except watch on? We’re all curious when we’re young, we continually ask questions. Does that change as we get older, don’t we still need to ask things, some questions are more important than others?

How good were the times before there were any complicated relationships, drama, or heartbreak? A time when we got closer with someone just by holding hands or talking all night on the phone about anything and everything. A time that was amazing, and yet impossible to return to. Young love, your heart bouncing around like a lottery ball. The innocence of something, when you’re not sure if it meant anything. Living off of the fumes of just liking someone and it didn’t matter if they knew, but you were happy, yet too scared to ask the question that you know you should have. Maybe it’s the anticipation of something happening that was exciting, perhaps it’s the ambiguity of not knowing what will come to pass. You can’t control everything that happens though, just part of life. You’ll mess a lot of things up, but If you’re going to fuck things up, is it better to do it whilst you’re young? Maybe the older you get, the harder it becomes to recover. Who wants to grow up? If there’s a tree, I might want to climb it. If a football comes near me whilst out running or walking, you better believe that it’s getting fucking booted as hard as possible. It’s okay to be a kid at times.

‘I don’t get upset over things I can’t control because if I can’t control them, there’s no use getting upset. And I don’t get upset over the things I can control, because if I can control them, there’s no use in getting upset.’ A famous quote from an ex New York Yan***s player hits the nail on the head. We can’t control everything, easier said than done. You still need to try though, and part of that process is asking questions that you might find difficult. Just growing up, right? An evening comes, bourbon is poured and it’s time to think.

The lights are off and the sun is finally setting.

Do you ever feel like that your drowning in the words that you’ve never said? It’s hard to grow up, to ask the question you should, to tell someone that you like them because you’re too afraid of what might happen if they say no. Time to grow up? When you get older and you start to doubt yourself and you have you that insecurity about someone saying no, they almost become unattainable, it’s almost that feeling you get when you realise that there is someone you like. Too pretty, out of reach?

If you have any sense of moral fibre, then you know that things with someone new can only happen when you know that it’s done with the person before. Sure, it fucking hurts, but reality kicks in and you realise that you need to be kind to yourself. You loved them, you maybe always will, despite everything, but whilst that love lingers, it’s okay to say goodbye. That night, I finally think I know that we know that it’s time to let go of what could have had been, and look ahead to what might be coming. For both of us. How early is too early to move on? A month, a year? Fucking feelings, there are a shit ton of tears, who wants to move on from the person that they thought they would be with forever? The truth is lurking under the surface and my own conscience is waiting to blow up in my face unless I pluck up the courage. Ask or not, toss a coin? Heads or tails, how do you know until the coin lands?

More bourbon, probably not a good idea. Yes or no, literally a night spent on the window ledge staring outside at the night. Talk myself down or not? Dare I ask, how do I find out?

The night sky is changing overhead.

All I want to know is, can you…..

@TheSamMcLeod
@YouMeMusicLife