personal · Thoughts

You Can’t Be Brave Without Being Scared

Dan and I went to see this movie the other day “Eight Grade”, it was a good movie – but most of all was the meaning of it, the message and what it could mean to others. There’s certain things that the main character “Kayla” said that I feel resonates with how I felt as I was trying to put Selective Mutism completely behind me. Mostly in my teens when I did talk to others, but found it really difficult. The movie is not about Selective Mutism, and even though the main character finds it difficult to be herself and talk a lot to the people at her school she does not have Selective Mutism, but I know there’s certain things and feelings being explained in that movie that you for sure have felt yourself if you struggle or have struggled with SM, most likely on a different scale – but it’s just a nice thing being able to listen someone speak and explain things in a more childlike way, somehow it becomes more real and honest.

This was said in the movie;

“I’m really like nervous all the time. … It’s like I’m waiting in line for like a roller coaster and that stupid like butterflies-in-your-stomach feeling you get. I get that all the time. And then I never get the feeling after you ride the roller coaster.”

I remember walking around constantly feeling this way. There was never a moment to relax and not think or worry about anything and everything. And it just kept on going like that.

She also talked about confidence.

“A big part of confidence is being brave, and you can’t be brave without being scared”

At the end of the movie she said these words, amongst others like “pretend you have confidence and that will somehow generate real confidence”.

That is something I felt I had to do as I was trying to get rid of my anxiety when I was younger. I believed in myself, always, but I did not have a lot of confidence in doing anything or saying anything when I was around others. So I just started pretending. It sounds so easy, but it feels like the most difficult thing in the world for people struggling with Selective Mutism – pretend you have confidence? How are you supposed to do that when you can’t say a word, right?

Like I said this is what I started doing after I had challenged myself for years with the little things, that I’ve talked about previously – the small steps that matters the most. After getting through it I was able to be myself a bit more, or at least answer and have short conversations. I knew I had to challenge myself on different levels if I wanted to get to where I one day saw myself. I was in my teens at that time. I saw people around me daily do and say things and not even think twice about it, so I started saying to myself I could do it to – I should do it because then one day I might even be like them – just fully be myself and not be one bit concerned or worried about it, because I knew in my heart there really wasn’t any reason to be.

And just remember it’s not always going to be comfortable, nice feelings, a safe environment… In the moment it might feel worth it to stop challenging yourself so you don’t have to face those feelings, face the unsafe and scary – but it’s so important to keep telling yourself this is what makes me grow, makes me better and stronger. Like I always think – people are just people, who cares? We won’t be here for long so just be yourself and enjoy the great things in life, share your opinions and be proud of who you are. Life’s too short. Take on the challenges and don’t be too hard on yourself along the way. You can do anything. You just have to believe it yourself.

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personal · Thoughts · traveling

First Day of 2019 – Thoughts

I’ll be honest. First day of 2019 and I haven’t ever felt more lost. It’s how it goes though isn’t it? In your twenties you’re a bit lost and then you find yourself? I have always known what I wanted to do next, where I want to go next, why I am where I am and doing what I am doing, but now – I have no idea.

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Photo: Mila Ritz

I am thankful and grateful that I got to share my story last year, and be some kind of support for anyone struggling with Selective Mutism. That I had my first talk about it and that my Mom and I finally got to experience the support from others ourselves, even though I don’t have it anymore it was such an emotional experience. This is my most cherished moment from last year. I will keep working even harder this year!

I moved to Oslo with Dan. Somewhere I never thought I would have enjoyed, but turns out – I did have some amazing months. I also finally got to live closer to my best friend, and even though it didn’t last for long I really appreciated being able to have her so close. I also made some amazing friendships – we didn’t get too much time, but the time we had gave us something to keep for years on and for that I am thankful. I loved being able to be closer to my mom, just a quick flight away and I was home, back to the safest place I know, right next to her ❤ I was also closer to the rest of my family – my brother, dad, aunts, cousins, and my little niece… I went through some tough times and lost my Grandpa, and to be honest it’s still very heartbreaking to think about. If my Oslo time taught my anything it’s that my family means everything to me. We don’t have all the time in the world and I just want to spend the time I’m given with them around me. Everyone’s getting older and I just don’t feel like being so far away all the time. So you could probably ask what the hell I’m doing on the other side of the world? I couldn’t even tell you, but I think my restlessness just had to get me here. And that’s probably the biggest reason for why I’m feeling so lost right now. What am I doing so far away? It’s not like I haven’t done it before, it just feels different this time.

I also tried Miss Norway, which I am thankful for because I figured out I really had something to share – my story with SM meant something so much bigger than I ever thought, but it also just made me experience once again how messed up this world is. Old men convincing girls to pay and give them money to be in a pageant that claims to “be more than just about beauty” because you have to have a “case” to fight for – yet if you got them any money the attention was there, but if you made a difference and worked for something bigger it was ignored. I got to the finale and I decided enough was enough. I wrote a blog post about everything I had experienced, and I do really hope other girls read it and learned something from it.

I also started spending more time in the gym with weights and only grew more and more passionate about it. My body has changed – no doubt about it, but so has my mind, and I’m happier than ever just being me.

Dan and I reached our goal this year as well, or should I say goals. We moved to Oslo, worked hard and saved up money so we could go to Australia. I finally got to see Caitlin again, and like we did in London we got the chance to live together again. This time in the cutest apartment. And now we’re here.

It’s nice here, the scenery is beautiful and the weather is amazing. I even love the thunderstorms.

In terms of work I want to be more creative, but the industry seems a lot different over here. Like always I do have some sort of plan for what I am doing and I am very passionate about it, and to be honest right here in Sydney could be a good place to start.

I just don’t know what it is. I struggle to feel like I should be here, that this is the place for me right now. Then again Australia is big and other places might feel different, and I haven’t seen everything even here in Sydney – I just wish the weird feeling would go away.

I’m young and I’ll figure it out. I’m lucky I’m not here completely alone and I got good people around me – which I am so grateful for.

Just because people are traveling and being somewhere completely different than you, sharing photos and experiencing something else – I really don’t want you to think it’s all perfect! It’s tough, and this time it’s much more tougher than I thought it would be – but nothing is wrong with that. Maybe it isn’t for me, maybe I will end up loving it and things will change, but whatever I figure out I just know I’ll have to listen to my true feelings. I’m still staying here for now, and for the rest of 2019 – let’s see what happens. I am incredible grateful to get another year on this earth. I’ll do my best this year – let’s get to work ❤

 

 

personal · Photographs

Makeup, Traveling, Australia

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Snaps from today. I work with Lava Art and did another look for them today! Always fun and I do really like working and being more creative with makeup, but the best part is when I’ve filmed and taken my pics – then taking off the lashes and everything else before I put moisturiser on a fresh and clean face.

My almost monthly cold (what it feels like) is back and I’m just praying to get better before I got to Berlin this week!! To see my unbiological sisters 😉 It’s so cool how they decided to move there, and I’m so excited to experience Berlin for the first time!

Australia is also coming up… In almost just a month! It’s going to be my new home?! How crazy… Will probably write more about the process and everything that comes with it if you are interested. No job or apartment has been found yet, but I’m getting pretty used to just going with the flow.

A different post, more of a little update – but to be honest I’m sitting here in bed ready to make some green tea and finish editing some videos before I try and get my sleep so I can feel better!! I just wanted to check in and write a little something. I do want to know if you would want me to do a video though, I could do a makeup video showing my favourite look for you guys if interested ❤ Let me know!

Also if you’re a true crime freak like me, start listening to true crime podcasts! So far I’ve listened to Dirty John and Dr. Death that I would recommend! Please let me know if you know any really good ones.

personal · Photographs

Less Or More, More Or Less

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I still remember when I went to try and get my Visa accepted, for the second time, to go to America. The first time I didn’t get accepted because they didn’t believe I just wanted to go to Los Angeles all alone, to experience and fulfil a dream I had as a little girl. The second time I remember the guy almost got angry at me when I told him about my story and how I want to continue to travel to experience and see the world. “Are you never going to settle down?” “What are you supposed to do for the rest of your life?”. I remember thinking “who are you to make me feel bad about actually doing the one thing I want to do in my life”.

We all have created the expectation of a life over time, “settling down”, and the word “unrealistic”. These rules and ways of life that only exists inside our heads.

I want to live my life exactly how I want to live it. Such simple words and a given really, right? But that’s what my plan is – for as long as I live. That’s what we should do, isn’t it? It’s yours to live.

I want to be free. I want to be with the ones I love so much and so strongly that my heart even hurts a little bit. I want to see and experience everything of this planet that I have time to see. I want to speak up. I want to make the difference I can.

I might not have it all figured out. I might not spend all my young adult life studying to become a lawyer or a doctor. I might be here one day and in another country the next day. I might be a model one day, a waiter one day, and a business owner some day.

I am still educated. I am still hard working. I am still growing each and every day. More than others, less than others. I am just doing my own thing – less or more, more or less – it shouldn’t be compared, we shouldn’t be compared. 

We are constantly told how we are all unique and no one is like one another, so let us live a unique life. No matter what that means to you. It’s yours.

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Photo: @susiphotographer

personal

I Am Two Extremes

Those two extremes equal me. Who I was, who I have become.

There’s the one extreme that has shined through and the one people now seem to recognise in me. Creativeness, ambition and boldness. The loud one that wants to be seen, that wants to live for her passion and be creative. The one that made me fight.

This side of me has made me do and experience things I never in a million years thought I would. It has made me get out of my darkest time, and keeps on pushing me everyday.

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There’s the other one that took up my entire life as a kid. Selective Mutism. Anxiety. Fear. I never left the memories and feelings behind me, I decided to take it with me and carry it to show others what is possible. To inspire and help. Support and spread awareness. I took charge of it and decided I would keep my fight with me to show you, to remind myself of what I have achieved.

It also made me different. Different forever. In a good way. More emotional, but also better at explaining my feelings. More understanding. Stronger. A fighter.

Even if I didn’t want to speak up about it – I know I would  forever have parts of it with me. In everything I am and will become.

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So this is what I want it to be about. To share with you guys. The two sides. The two extremes. Me.

I hope you want to keep reading, interacting and following. There will be new updates here every Wednesday and Sunday, so stay tuned.

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Photos: Goldsmith Photography

Lots of love,

Marte.

Food · personal

Let’s Talk About Food

When you’re young it’s easy to not consider the importance of taking care of your body and the consequences it might bring you later if you don’t. Choosing good, healthy, and sustainable food has multiple benefits. It benefits you. It benefits the animals. It benefits the environment. Our planet.

As a 17 year old, I got the opportunity to travel as a model. Before traveled, I got “trained” in the modeling industry. My mother agency (your base model agency) that I was with at the time, was telling me what I had to do to be “good enough”. I always knew in the back of my mind that what I was doing to my body was not healthy or good in any way, and my body also tried to let me know – but my ambition and dreams were bigger, and I eventually got very good at convincing myself and everyone around me into thinking that I only did what was necessary, in a “healthy” way. 

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Photo: Susanne Pettersen

The reason why I’m using a lot of quotation marks, is because it later became obvious to me that the food I ate and didn’t eat, left huge marks on me. The way you choose to nurture your body – what food you put on your plate – is the most important choice you make for yourself, and you take that choice every single day.

Now I know that it does not matter if someone is –  older, younger,  more successful or powerful – than you, it does not mean that they know what’s the better choice for you and your health. Listen to your body. Food is the drive for all your thoughts, strength, ambitions – your life and everything it involves. 

Be aware. Be aware of how much or how little you’re giving to your body, be aware of what happens to your body when you choose to give it hot dogs and Coca Cola, and most of all what exactly it is you are allowing your body to use as fuel – what it consists of. 

As a 15 year old I could not get myself to understand the importance of the right nutrition. Looking back I see now that I felt invincible and did not think that any of the choices I made regarding food back then could ever have the power to stay with me forever.

I tried to convince myself and everyone around me. I became good at that. Until it all became too visible. Until my body said stop. 

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Photo: Susanne Pettersen

It will always, eventually, come to a point where the body forces you to stop or you’ll break down – completely. Either it’s too much food, too little, or too toxic… It comes to a point where it’s too late and you can’t just go back and “fix” what you have done to your body. The body that always tries to protect you, fix you and tell you when something is not right. You only get so many chances to listen. 

So what did all of this give me? What happens when a young, healthy and strong body suddenly stops eating after seven in the evening? What did it do to a happy girl full of ambitions, life and dreams when food became her worst enemy? When she chooses to exclude natural carbohydrates like rice and potatoes from her diet because then “I’ll be thin enough”?

It gave me pain. It gave me a lifelong illness, ulcerative colitis. A stomach constantly fighting against something that’s not there in the first place – leaving me with unnecessary pain that will never leave. Making it more important than ever to give my body the right nutrition, and giving me no opportunity to neglect my body any more, because only the best will help me. It gave my mom tears and fear. It gave my friends a distant friend that slowly disappeared. It gave me sadness and emptiness, tears and loneliness. 

It also gave me something else. It gave me a lesson, a tough and lifelong one, but a lesson. It gave me an understanding.

We all have a responsibility. I have a responsibility. 

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Photo: Susanne Pettersen

Bad food and food habits pose a bigger threat to health globally than tobacco, alcohol,  drugs and unsafe sex combined, but while there’s an age limit for alcohol and warnings about death on cigarettes packets – what is there for food? Toxic, unhealthy food? Nothing. There are commercials for it. It’s on kids menus.

There are so many people out there today that have a complex relationship with food – and I used to be one of them. It is difficult, tough and all-consuming. 

I wish I would have been kind to my body. I know for a fact I would have appreciated everything so much more. Everything that gave me real and true happiness. The new countries, the amazing people, every single experience. The things that still give me butterflies looking back at.

I would love to be able to go back in time and have a long conversation with myself, but then again – I am here now, a lot wiser, and with so much more experience. That counts for something. 

Imagine if we all could get rid of those thoughts… Take away all of those “this makes me fat, we have eaten meat since forever, it doesn’t affect me”… Imagine if we could change it into “what is actually good for my body, what will give me the correct nutrition, how can my body function the best way possible”… – And from there knowing that all the positive changes will show on both the inside as well as the outside.

The world isn’t where it should be when it comes to plant-based and sustainable food, but together we could all get further. We are the ones who can make a change. Everything is about what we want, what we are buying, what we need. What if we could ask for the best, not just for us, but for the earth as well?

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Photo: Susanne Pettersen

But how can we make it simple? We constantly have newspapers, bloggers, nutritionists, parents, teachers and even doctors telling us one thing is good one day, then bad the other day.

What is good food? Food that is good for your health, for animals and people in the supply chain – for the planet?

Food journalist for NYT Michael Pollan summarises the science and says that the short answer to what us humans should eat in order to stay maximally healthy is – “Eat (real) food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”

Less is more. Less ingredients, less food additives, less mass produced products that can stay in your cabinet for months without turning bad. And yes, less meat.

More simple, clean and natural foods. Food that grows, that doesn’t come in a box and that has ingredients you know of. Food that can rot. It’s a natural and good sign. Eat more plants, seeds and grains.

When you are stuck with an illness and your only option is to eat what in reality is good for the human body, and not what people necessarily tell you – you start to realise the importance and huge impact it has, which is hard to see when you’re constantly getting pulled in different directions the second anyone talks about the word “healthy”.

The reasons why I have been eating more plant-based food in the past years have been the welfare of the animals and for my own health. I have also had many discussions with my closest people about it, and a lot of them, I surround myself with today,  have gone through a journey of their own and found reasons to choose a more plant-based lifestyle, which makes me very happy now that I know how much the food you eat can affect your health. Through documentaries I have learned how the meat industry affects the environment and our planet. Globally it is one of the largest sources of greenhouse gas emissions, and in developed and emerging countries it is perhaps the leading source of water pollution. It truly needs more attention. Recently is has made an even bigger impression on me, as I now know more about the impact is has on our planet. By meeting Gunhild Stordalen, Executive Chair and Founder of the EAT foundation, I have been inspired to learn, read and educate myself more on the environment side of it all.

Please – love yourself by choosing the right daily fuel. Last, but not least – Don’t forget about our planet!  

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Photo: Susanne Pettersen

personal · selective mutism · SM

It was never a choice

It was never a choice. What kid would choose to not speak up, not get to know new people, hearing adults and kids talk about you – but say nothing yourself?

Selective Mutism is an anxiety disorder and it used to be my entire life. There needs to be more knowledge, more support and more help.

My mom and I fought through it, all alone. Teachers needs to be aware of what’s going on right in front on them. No kid deserves to feel like the weight of the world is on their shoulders, and they have to carry it all alone. Not even professionals being able to help, or understand.

If you told me as a little girl that one day I would stand up and confidently share my story and be an inspiration to others – little Marte with anxiety would have never believed you. The loud, stubborn and ambitious Marte I was as home would have just told you “I can do anything.”

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