Better Me by Elephant Journal (BLW Contributor)


Flickr/Bo Boswell

I stopped asking, “Why me?”

I stopped stating that life was unfair.

I stopped thinking that my luck couldn’t get any worse.

I stopped looking at myself as a walking magnet for all things unjust,

And I started saying, “Better me.”

Better me to deal with the darker things that life seemed to direct my way.

Better me to handle these demons—I’ve been battling monsters my whole life.

I’ve learned to navigate through chaos and obscurity.

I’ve learned to thrive with nothing.

I’ve learned to roll with the punches, and build castles from the stones that were thrown.

Better me to carry the weight of these burdens, than someone else who may stumble and falter.

Who better to slay dragons, than the girl who learned to be a warrior so early on?

I no longer allow the thought “Why me?” to creep into my consciousness—

Now, I simply say, “Better me”—because I’ve got this.

Photo: Flickr/Bo Boswell

Check out other great articles from Elephant Journal

Who’s ready for Autumn? – Sonnet 73 by William Shakespeare



That time of year thou mayst in me behold

When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang

Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,

Bare ruined choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.

In me thou see’st the twilight of such day

As after sunset fadeth in the west;

Which by and by black night doth take away,

Death’s second self, that seals up all in rest.

In me thou see’st the glowing of such fire,

That on the ashes of his youth doth lie,

As the deathbed whereon it must expire,

Consumed with that which it was nourished by.

This thou perceiv’st, which makes thy love more strong,

To love that well which thou must leave ere long.




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Happy World Smile Day!!! – Cute Babies smiling cause they’re so Happy



World Smile Day was started by Harvey Ball, the creator of the smiley face logo, in 1963. He believed that everyone should devote one day a year to smiles and acts of compassion throughout the world. Sounds pretty good to us. Now his logo is in every text message with a whole world of emoji around it, it’s time to give him a hat tip and celebrate the smile.

Knowledge is Power – In order to Grow, change the World around you



Artsy Fartsy – Banksy’s new theme park Dismaland



Welcome to Dismaland, the latest exhibition from Banksy, the art world’s favorite agent provocateur. Billed as a “bemusement park” and modeled after Disneyland, it’s a warped vision of the so-called “happiest place on Earth”. Officially opening to the public on Saturday, August 22 (it’s open to locals only tomorrow), it’s Banksy’s largest exhibition to date and the 4000 allotted daily tickets, priced at less than $5, are expected to sell out fast.

Would you like to go to Banksy’s new theme park?

Thankful Thursdays – Be Grateful you can still Fight… Do not go gentle into the Good Night (Dylan Thomas)



Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieve it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.


DT’s father was going blind when DT wrote this poem. The dying of the light is a reference to darkness and being blind.




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Forget Me Not – Vincent Van Gogh (March 1853 – 29 July 1890)


Vincent Willem van Gogh was a Post-Impressionist painter. He was a Dutch artist whose work had a far-reaching influence on 20th-century art. His output includes portraits, self portraits, landscapes and still lifes of cypresses, wheat fields and sunflowers. He drew as a child but did not paint until his late twenties; he completed many of his best-known works during the last two years of his life. In just over a decade, he produced more than 2,100 artworks, including 860 oil paintings and more than 1,300 watercolors, drawings, sketches and prints.

Van Gogh was born to upper middle class parents and spent his early adulthood working for a firm of art dealers. He traveled between The Hague, London and Paris, after which he taught in England at Isleworth and Ramsgate. He was deeply religious as a younger man and aspired to be a pastor. From 1879 he worked as a missionary in a mining region in Belgium, where he began to sketch people from the local community. In 1885 he painted The Potato Eaters, considered his first major work. His palette then consisted mainly of somber earth tones and showed no sign of the vivid coloration that distinguished his later paintings. In March 1886, he moved to Paris and discovered the French Impressionists. Later, he moved to the south of France and was influenced by the strong sunlight he found there. His paintings grew brighter in color, and he developed the unique and highly recognizable style that became fully realized during his stay in Arles in 1888.


After years of anxiety and frequent bouts of mental illness, he died aged 37 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. The extent to which his mental health affected his painting has been widely debated by art historians. Despite a widespread tendency to romanticize his ill health, modern critics see an artist deeply frustrated by the inactivity and incoherence wrought through illness. His late paintings show an artist at the height of his abilities, completely in control, and according to art critic Robert Hughes, “longing for concision and grace”

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