The Grand Art Project

Artistic Mind

The Grand Art Project by Valerie Parente

People who say they don’t like art don’t understand that every single thing in reality is a form of expression, thus can be categorized as artwork. Throughout your life you go through different phases all eerily bound by theme and divine timing, each phase being a piece of artwork. A chapter in a book is a written form of expression and a chapter in your life will prove to be equally as expressive but in a more mental form. And life itself is your grandest art project. Make it beautiful.

– Valerie Parente (3-16-2020)

Time Is Not Real

dendrites-of-an-artist-banner

Time is not real. Time is just the means that we perceive energy in the universe. All that was, is. All that will be, is. There is no timeline. Just everything in existence including our consciousness entangled in one.

And I think we can find peace in that fact, because when we lose someone, when they’re no longer “here”, they still are. The energy does not disappear. Our ability to recognize their energy might disappear, but that is no indication of the reality that they still exist now and infinitely. When there is no timeline, you cannot lose someone. Ever.

– Valerie Parente (2-9-2020)

Love Again

Love Again by Valerie Parente

Love is not finite. It does not have an end cap. You do not need to think twice about how you distribute it. Just because I love someone new does not take away from the love I have for another being.
When you love again, the love does not get divided; it multiplies.
And that is why you don’t need to feel guilty for loving again. You can love again. You are meant to love again. That is your infinite gift.

– Valerie Parente (1-17-2020)

Note to Self

Note to Self by Valerie Parente

Don’t say you’re doing something for someone else when you’re really just trying to keep the story straight that your ego has been writing.
Don’t tell someone they’re broken and act like it’s to help them when it’s really just rooted in your need to feel valued.
Don’t send the opposite message of what you really mean when what you really want is for someone to fight for you.
Don’t lie to yourself or the ones you love any more.
Be brutally honest with yourself until it hurts, then begin to heal.
Because you can’t heal until you feel that hurt.
And you hurt the ones you love when you don’t heal yourself.

– Valerie Parente (12-13-2019)

I Hurt Me

I think my OCD creates problems that can only exist inside my own head so that I don’t have to face real problems outside of my head. The idea of encountering strife and struggle posed by circumstance or other human beings is the greatest violation I can imagine. I control what troubles me. I hurt me. You don’t get to hurt me. I do that.

Liza

– Valerie Parente (10-4-2019)

My Timeline

I’ve always been told I have a problem with envy. I’ve always known this. It’s my vice. It’s my greatest obstacle. It’s the source of my insecurity. For too long I have let envy control my entire outlook in life. Someone I graduated high school with is starting a family? I panic. Someone I used to be friends with has thousands of followers on Instagram? I get mad. My first crush is getting engaged? I feel hopeless. What kind of person gets upset at someone else’s positive milestones and accomplishments? Not one who will thrive in this world. And it took me a very long time to realize this. It’s odd, because I’ve been told my whole life not to compare myself to other people, but I never really listened until now. What changed to make me suddenly hear this advice? Honestly, heartache. Hard work and heartache. Working full time. Making memories with friends despite my agoraphobic exhaustion. Falling in love with someone and having to learn to let go. Learning and living and becoming a well-rounded member of society despite my mental shortcomings.

Now that I’ve shifted my thinking from envy to acceptance everything in life feels better. Has my life changed? No. Has my attitude changed? Absolutely. And I know it sounds cliché to say that you create your own reality but it really is true. My circumstances have not magically changed overnight, but over the course of a month, all complimented by the previous years of learning how to grow up and overcome multiple mental illnesses, I see my life as nothing but uniquely perfect to me.

There were always roadblocks that kept me from accepting myself and being at peace with myself. Then suddenly, after months of stress and heartache, one word seemed to be the magic that dissipated all my roadblocks…  timeline. That was it. Timeline. My timeline is not the same as anyone else’s.

I’ve always looked back on my life and been in awe of how perfectly timed every single moment of my life has been to sculpt me into the human being I am today. Accepting my past was never a problem. Accepting my present was. Accepting the future was. I had so much anxiety when I thought about my where I “should be” by now in life. Why haven’t I been in a serious relationship yet? Why haven’t I moved out of my parents’ house yet? Why haven’t I become a famous author yet? And every one of these anxious thoughts can be extinguished with the sole belief that my timeline is not the same as anyone else’s timeline. My life unfolds as it is meant to for me and does not adhere to anyone else’s standards. This was the antidote to the envy I have let control me throughout the entirety of my life. My timeline is mine. I know I am not meant to be in a serious relationship right now, so who cares when it happens? Who cares if people I graduated high school with are getting married? Seriously, who cares? How does that have any effect on me? It doesn’t… unless I let it. And that’s where the choice comes in. The conscious choice to say “I will not let someone else’s path in life govern how I perceive mine.” There is literally no point in being jealous of someone else. And I could say I don’t know why it took me so long to figure this out, but the truth is I wasn’t meant to up until now. My life and my successes or idiosyncratic and unique to me. I cannot be compared to anyone else. My life cannot be measured by someone else’s timeline. To do so is to be a slave of envy. And I have no room in my heart for that.

I can confidently say that ever since I came to this “timeline” epiphany I have been able to eliminate all of my anxiety about my place in this world without a second thought. This has been the key. I am infinitely happier with myself than ever before. Worrying about where I am or where I will be truly feels like a waste of time. I have trust. I have faith. I have acceptance. All because I was able to rid envy from my life.

playing dress up

– Valerie Parente (8-13-2019)

The Concept of Destiny

To those of you who do not believe in destiny, please take a moment and turn your attention to what you are grateful for. Grateful for a friend in your life? Think about the fact that you met this person, remember that there is literally an infinite amount of circumstances in the universe that could have prevented you two from meeting. You could go on forever and still never compile a complete list of all potential occurrences that could have happened to prevent the occurrence that you are grateful for. The fact that your life has unfolded in the way that it has is truly remarkable beyond anything you’ll ever be able to wholly fathom. How could you not believe you were meant to be here? How could you not believe that your story was meant to transpire exactly as it has? You are miraculous, and everything wonderful in your life is miraculous.

– Valerie Parente (8-4-2019)

I Am My Own Savior

I have had a major breakthrough in the past few weeks.

Before I get into the details of this breakthrough, I need to reiterate the warped thought patterns I’ve had throughout my entire adolescence. Ever since I hit puberty I drilled it inside of me that finding a romantic partner was the key to happiness. And this deeply rooted belief affected me in literally every area of my life. Instead of helping me progress, it stunted all of my growth.
“When I fall in love I’ll be able to start my life.”
“When I fall in love I’ll be able to move out.”
“When I fall in love I’ll be able to stop being anorexic.”
“When I fall in love I won’t be afraid of germs anymore.”
“When I fall in love I’ll feel satisfied with my experiences.”
“When I fall in love I will have a purpose.”

And it took me a hell of a long time to realize that all of this was complete and utter nonsense. Yes, I was told over and over again that it was nonsense, but that didn’t stop me from believing this fallacy and letting it dictate my life.

I can’t tell you what exactly happened the past few weeks… but suddenly… it’s over. Those feelings are gone… and not “gone” in the sense that I kept telling myself I didn’t need someone else but in the back of my mind still longed for it; “gone” in the sense that I completely and irrevocably do not feel like I need someone. Do I want someone? Honestly I don’t really care. But do I need someone? No. Not at all.

Maybe this epiphany hit me because I started reading a lot of nonfiction and expanding my mind and forcing myself to go out and do activities on my own and be my own date for the day. I’m not sure. All I know is that beyond any fraction of a doubt I have had a major spiritual awakening. I can’t explain the “how” of it happening, but I can tell you the outcome. I, for the first time ever in my adult life, feel like I don’t need to be saved. I feel completely satisfied and at ease with the fact that I am my own savior. I am the one who is going to be with me at the end of every single day and I am going to be there for myself and I am not scared of this fact anymore because I am whole on my own. I have everything I need inside my soul and I feel truly connected to the force that created me, whether you want to call it “God” or the “universe” or whatever. I believe in myself. I believe I am made of unconditional love. I don’t need love, I am love. I can rely on myself. I refuse to wait for someone to start my life because my life is here and now and in every present moment and I truly feel like I am never alone. Something inside me feels protected and loved and so far from being on my own while paradoxically feeling like I am a soul that can rely on itself to feel complete.

Now I am just sitting content; looking back at that teenager who numbed herself with mental disorders and I cannot believe I wasted an entire decade thinking so little of myself and putting so much on hold for wait for a savior… and I am in awe that the savior my ego was crying for was me all along.

I am not afraid anymore. I am full and happy and truly in awe that I get to be me.

I do not need anything, I have me.

– Valerie Parente (8-4-2019)