search instagram arrow-down

Join 921 other followers

Follow Andrea Hejlskov on

Support my work

You can support my general work via Patreon
and I hope you do, will.

The more you tell me to be happy- the sadder I´ll be.

I will rather self-destruct than surrender to the cultural abuse: the manipulation of my emotional life, the disqualification of my subjective experience. This is the great lie and this is the cognitive dissonance that gets to me: we are told we are free (but we are not), we are told we are spoiled and self-absorbed (if we whisper words of unhappiness)

Cultural discourse and personal experience (but I struggle so hard to make ends meet) have never been further away from each other.



I suspect this phenomenon has now grown out of the (historically) feminine sphere and into everyone, hysteria turned into stress, depression, lack of control of bodily functions, pain, fibromyalgia: the only thing we have left, the only thing that is truly our own is the REFUSAL. “I can´t do this anymore”
This is the protest. This is the revolution.






Because obviously life wants to live and I´d rather not self destruct I´m reclaiming my own personal experience and besides I made a comitment. This is the project and the purpose of this blog. You don´t have to agree with me or anything, I´m not selling- but I´m not buying either.






My bullshit radar is chronically blinking “red alert!”, “red alert”

I´ve never been a fan of large groups be it in the sustainability community or the spiritual community, the blogging community or the art community. I just don´t respond well to people in groups, they scare me, herd mentality, lynch mob. Besides, every so called “counter-culture” or “sub culture” I´ve been a member of have never- de facto- been different from the larger culture they tried to separate themselves from. Only the clothing.
Power struggles, shaming, social greed, the hierarchy, the imposing of values, one asshole after the other proclaiming “I´m more enlightened than you”, I THINK I FEEL we have a problem with the correlation between individuality and community in our culture, our culture kinda seems fascist in so far as it only accepts ONE truth (it´s own)

“Red alert!”, “Red alert!” every time someone tells me to be happy.




Here´s what´s  bothering me: I´ve never felt more pressure as to how I should be (feel, look, speak, think) as when I ran to the forest and began communicating my experience.
I´ve never been subjected to more cultural pressure. See, the culture has very fixed ideas about it´s own contradiction: if you live in the forest you should eat well, sleep well, never have problems, never be sick, never use technology, you should hate technology, you should be lovingly present all the time, totally happy, never stressed, depressed or weirded out. These images are carved in stone. Ask yourself: How will I be if I go live in the wild? There you have it. Says a lot about who you are now and how you perceive your current life situation)

Purity has never been demanded of me in the way that it is now.
Funny how “authenticity” dosn´t mean staying true to your own emotions at all… it means something else, I realize that now.



My anger, my frustration, my scepticism and my STRUGGLE will never be expressions of some moral flaw- on the contrary. These emotions are equally valid as emotions, you cannot weed in your emotions like that, emotions are WILD.




And I want the whole of that experience.

All of it.


Yesterday I was super duper phenomenally happy.

25 comments on “It´s sad but it´s true

  1. Tricia says:

    Hi there…cool thoughts. I’m starting to feel like it’s not so much the people, but their stupid ass beliefs that I can’t be near. Which is sort of torturous, because I enjoy and like people, but those beliefs often feel like the push of opposite ends of a magnet. I used to think I just hated everyone, but I don’t, I just hate their stupid beliefs (and they hate mine:}). Then when you go out in society, and all those beliefs are engulfing you, pushing and pulling and judging…and you’ve got major pms or something, look out. Other times they can be ignored. I look forward to the day when I can ignore them all the time. In the meantime, as I slowly remove myself from those beliefs (and get used to being ‘weird’, a ‘hippie’ or whatever label they like to put on you…ok I don’t mind being a hippie:}), I feel pretty damn good. Like returning to a place of when I was a kid, walking through the woods by myself, believing not much of anything and being really free. Ps. I love your pictures….


    1. I totally know what you mean. The more I LISTEN out here, the longer I walk… the better if feels (and I love people too 😉


  2. Emerson suggest that “It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great woman is she who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.”

    Our selves follow us wheresoever we go. Angry here, angry there. Happy there, happy here. An asshole is an asshole in Cuba and on Venus the same. And so too saints and sweeties.

    I suggest we grow where we’re planted. I suggest we allow the lives we live to prove the life we advocate.

    Shouting drowns persuasion.


  3. This is such a breath of fresh air, you two.

    I, too, have this same experience with people. I really crave people contact but not too much and in small amounts. Am I shy? Hell, no! I walk right up to people and start talking if I feel like it. I think it’s because I had a rough childhood (no blame no wallowing just acknowledging) and I consistently found solace in open country and nature. That’s just me. Everybody’s different.

    I never tell people how they should feel because I have come to realize that “no feeling is final” and that everybody will be what they are until they aren’t. If my friend is thinking about committing suicide I might have to whisk them away and hold them and hold them but anything other than that…. it’s their feeling. They own it. It’s theirs.

    I’ve had the thought that maybe people tell other people not to feel certain feelings because they don’t understand that no feeling is final and that the wave crashes on the shore and then recedes. This and then that. Always changing. In the most positive light they just want their sad friend to be happy because they care about their friend. In the most negative light they want control and they’re afraid of feelings. Who knows? I sure don’t.


  4. Tiffany says:

    So glad you are authentic and not trying to be a perfect model of how to live. I don’t blog because right now I don’t want to hear voices other than my own (and I’m no writer). Perhaps, you could turn the comments off, and give us a different way to let you know we were here, that you were heard. It’s hard to imagine anyone wanting to be influenced by strangers.
    Maybe I’m understanding you wrong and the happiness pushers are not influencing you from here. ~Good day (or not).


    1. Åh, the comments here are not a problem (this is cozy, warm and fuzzy)!
      I´m just registering a tendency and reporting it. Thanks!


  5. nicoleaugust says:

    We try not to live in a world of “should”s, but a world of choices.


    1. That´s a really nice guiding line!


  6. Phil Pogson says:

    hmmm – tribal bullying…I ‘get’ it (in my own way)

    Giving birth is never a serene or straightforward activity….especially not when we are birthing our most primal existences via a canal constructed by humanity over countless decades.


  7. Patty says:

    This week I was doubting -again- if I was walking the right path for me. My husband said “stop putting yourself in boxes. It’s your choice and your choise only, to choose which path you walk on through life”. ‘Letting go’ is a difficult process…pfffffff.


  8. Andy Jukes says:

    Last night, a friend sais to me, ” The time of Protest is over. Now is the time to Resist.” I have been thinking a lot about his words. They seem to resonate with what you have written in your blog. By the life you lead, you have chosen to resist. To resist the dominant narrative of our culture. To resist rampant consumerism. Resist an increasing disconnection from the Natural World. Resist the temptations of the hollowness of modern life.
    And the heart of your resistance is a determination to stay true to your heart. To be authentic on your own terms. Which is always going to be hard because the dominant culture likes to compartmentalise everything. Put everything in its place. Nice and tidy. Identifiable. Predictable. Controlable.
    He’s Left wing. She’s Right wing. You’re a hippy. You’re a banker.
    If you fit that mould, we can predict how you will react in a given situation. We can anticipate and control. And, let’s be honest, those boxes are very seductive. It is comforting to put a label on yourself. To have the weight of decision making lifted from you. To be part of a ready made tribe. A member of the gang. Accept the label and you will always know what to wear, what to say, how to feel. A life of ease.
    It is so much harder to try and face each moment anew. To live entirely in the present and discover yourself afresh at every breath. To allow an unconditioned response to each new situation according to how you feel in that moment. Happy one moment. Sad the next. And why not? If that’s how you feel.
    My situation is different to yours, though the concerns are the same. I have Parkinson’s Disease. It’s uncureable and degenerative. I am supposed to be sad and frustrated. At first, people seemed determined to feel sorry for me. What a terrible thing to happen. Except, most of the time, I don’t feel like that. Sure, at times I feel sad and frustrated, but mostly I am happy to be alive. I mean, life generally, for everyone, is uncureable and degenerative. Mine is no different.
    So, my resistance takes the form of me not being apologetic for being who I am. Not trying to be someone else. Or fulfilling someone elses’s expectations. Just trying to be who I am as fully and completely as I can. Acknowledging that who I am is dynamic, not static. Forever changing. Never the same. And if people find that difficult …….. well…………
    I am glad you had a happy day!


    1. “I mean, life is, for everyone, uncurable and degenerative. Mine is no different.” Great words! Keep in mind all the time!

      I have two friends, one with Parkinson’s like you and Lyme on top of that and another with glioblastoma (brain tumor) and I think about them all the time. My friend with the tumor goes in every 3 months to see how much longer she will live.

      There’s no time to waste. This is what no longer being young has taught me. Of course, I still waste time but less and less all the way. If people tell you “you should….” just kindly thank them and go your own personal way. IMHO. People always do what they’d rather do than not do. Since we can’t change them let’s just concern ourselves with ourselves and Just. Be. Authentic. As best we can. Love you guys.


      1. Andy Jukes says:

        Please send my love to your friends. Before I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s, I thought I had a brain tumour and was mentally making preparations. My wife had cancer early in our marriage. We know something about those meetings with consultants.
        And parkinson’s and Lyme. That has got to be tough.
        If it is of any help to you or them, you can read about my experiences in a recent post:

        Hope it’s some help.


        1. You do important work, Andy.


        2. The posts, especially Andy’s post and blog, remind me of my most well-worn adage–that the obstacles in the path are not obstacles, they are the path.
          Sometimes one’s own life seems to be one of STRUGGLING onward while others are GLIDING forward. That is not the reality, and proves the fruitlessness of making comparisons. Still–one can be inspired by others’ stories.
          ~ abigail


    2. ncfarmchick says:

      “To live entirely in the present and discover yourself afresh at every breath. To allow an unconditioned response to each new situation according to how you feel in the moment.” Oh, wow. How I struggle to do this! I think I am very open-minded and a live-and-let-live type of person. When I leave the forest and go into the World (the “civilized”, commercial version, that is), I find myself just closing up, saddened by what I see and hear even though I try to go without preconceived notions. I think I was a little more oblivious to such things before I had children. Becoming a mother has made me hypersensitive to EVERYTHING, as if I am the one with new eyes and ears and skin. However, I find I am almost looking for it now. Not just noticing. Feeling everything and so much of what goes on in that “outside world” is just sad, sad, sad. My boys and I had to do a few things in town last week and stopped to play at a playground. Lovely place and happy-appearing children but some of the things I heard people say to their children….Let’s just say, I was fighting back tears when we got back into the car and thought about a few of them all night long. I just can’t shut stuff like this off. It’s as if I have no filter anymore, maybe because I’m trying so hard to be one for my boys. I seem to have lost it for myself. I’d rather feel and be sad and disappointed at times than just numb it or ignore it but it is hard when you have a voice inside of you saying, “NO, this is wrong and I don’t want to be a part of this.” So, back to the woods we go. My husband, fortunately, is much better at blowing things off and keeping perspective. He is far better at having one foot in one world and one in another without it making him go crazy. I’m thankful to have him as a balance point! Sorry to go on a rant (of sorts.) Your words always make me think and I always find some commonality. Thank you, Andrea, for being you and sharing with us!


  9. What an amazing, true and solid comment, Andy, thank you. Wishing you a happy day from the Värmland woods!


  10. Nanna Mercer says:

    You may perhaps want to consider: ‘The Return of the Feminine and the World Soul’ by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee.


    1. Thank you Nanna. I´ll check it out!


  11. madeliefb says:

    Thank you for all your posts! I really enjoy reading about your experience in the forest and how you really take responsibility for your life, both physical and emotional. I’m inspired by a lot of your activities and ideas (I will be harvesting raspberry leaves to make fermented tea this week, we’re a few weeks behind you climate wise here in Vermont)! This especially struck me in your blog today:

    “I´ve never been subjected to more cultural pressure. See, the culture has very fixed ideas about it´s own contradiction: if you live in the forest you should eat well, sleep well, never have problems, never be sick, never use technology, you should hate technology, you should be lovingly present all the time, totally happy, never stressed, depressed or weirded out. These images are carved in stone. ”

    I feel similarly, but how the way that people imagine your life to be project how you should feel onto you. I’ve just started a blog about how the “paradise” that others imagine my family lives in is HARD work. And not always happy, and sometimes it’s shitty. Although, I guess I haven’t written about that yet…..but it’s coming. Because life is hard, living with people (especially family) is hard and sometimes it’s GOOD to not be happy. And I don’t want to be forced to be happy because it looks so perfect. Because it’s not.

    Anyway, check out my blog if you are so inclined.

    I enjoy your blog. Thank you for continuing to share your thoughts and experiences.


    1. That´s cool madeliefb! 🙂


  12. Martin says:

    This comment was posted elsewhere, and I thought I’d share it here as it seems relevant to the topic:

    Thinking positively and your life will be filled with happiness is a nice placebo to help us gloss-over immense suffering that all of us are mired in, and although our future may be a little brighter because of this, it is the past – riddled with pain – that will continue to govern our deepest reality. And it is both our present life experiences as well as the life experiences of our ancestry none of us are immune from that continues to lurk in the shadows – waiting for the triggers from others to launch and totally usurp the warm and fuzzy reality we try to create so cheerfully.

    Even if it takes your very last breath, be intimate with the past – no matter how painful it may be. Forgive your self for the realities it manifested during times of trauma. Be emotional (crying a whole lot is extremely beneficial). Let it out and let it go. Happiness then slowly becomes a state of being rather than another illusion cooked-up by a burdened egoic mind.


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s