Once upon a time on a Valentine’s Day
Don’t bother going back (because you can’t)
Ok, in this post I’m going to sound like a really old person:
I don’t want to say “my best time has passed” (even though by saying so I’m actually saying it). But I do miss how I used to feel when I was younger.
By younger, I mean, when I was in junior high, primary school, even kindergarten.
Not even high school. I already got too “grownup” when I was in high school. I was scared of how other people might think of me. I was timid; I hid so that people wouldn’t know how awesome I could be so that I could judge or admire those who didn’t hide.
I wouldn’t say I was fearless when I was young. 16 years old was a curse to me in that sense. What I want to find back is the version of me that was not yet ruined by the growing-up hormones.
I didn’t care what others thought of me. The less I care, the better results I got.
But I was a believer until I got disappointed.
Things were easier to accomplish when I was a believer.
Writing was easier to enjoy if it’s just about writing and building up stories in my head. No consequences. No time being wasted.
It’s a luxury to enjoy things as how it is. As doing, no thinking. As being, no trying to be.
My point being…
Is there anything I can do, anything at all, to get back those qualities of mine when I was a kid, but still be an adult, grownup woman, wife, and mother?
“Wanting to go back is resulted from not being ok with who you are. That’s why I never want to go back.” I used to say this in my early 20s.
Now I’m in my early 30s. What changed? Why suddenly being me as how I am is not good enough, and I want to travel back to my childhood to feel something good about myself?
If I’m not able to travel back in time, I want to be ok with who I am now.
The “peak time” I felt when I was younger was not because I was really at the peak. There’s no peak in life.
There’s only the peak of feeling. And feelings you can get back.
I don’t want to bother doing something that’s impossible to do — going back to be a kid, enjoying the luxury of not caring and not taking the weight of life on my shoulders.
I want to get back that feeling from not caring, just doing and enjoying, out of love and curiosity.
Find a job that doesn’t kill me. Or do my own thing that I enjoy and doesn’t starve me.
Life is so short. It might be even shorter than I expect. Don’t bother wanting to go back. The current me is worth loving too.
What can wait?
On a day that feels “wrong”
Do you have such a day some time?
Something doesn’t feel right. Either you feel tired, down, doesn’t feel like doing anything; or you just want to do something that numbs your mind.
No matter what others say. They might say “oh you can and should get out of that funk state.”
You can go out for a walk.
You can meditate.
You can take a bath.
You can do sport.
You can do anything that works for you.
But you can also just rest.
If this kind of “low state” doesn’t appear too often, like once a week or something, you can just rest.
You should allow yourself go to rest — disregard all the things that drain your energy — just have that “free” day.
If you can afford it.
Don’t be too hard on yourself. Tomorrow you are back on the road.
Take a day to let yourself breathe.
Love yourself and find your own way.
I will be your home
Today I learnt that newborn babies can have “womb-sick” (homesick for womb) for a period of time after they were born.
And I do have homesick. The real one.
Thanks to the pandemic, I can’t fly home. Being away from my family for two years hasn’t been easy.
Home is never just a place. It’s a combination of everything in an experience.
It’s your closest family. It’s the smell of your newly washed clothes. It’s the taste of your breakfast and dinner.
For me, that home is not where I’m living right now. It’s on the other side of this world, literally.
It’s where I grew up, where I learnt what is love, where my dream started.
It’s where I always go back. It’s where my roots are.
It’s where my mother was. It was, and still is, my mother.
Then I realised, I will be home for my daughter.
She will grow up with me, learn what is love, build up her dream.
I want to be her home so she can always come back, where she can sleep well, regain her energy when she’s tired.
I love my home. But I will be hers. I’m building the space, and being the essence of that home, for her.
Because I’m strong enough to be hers, even if I’m not at mine.
A mother’s jealousy
My mother was a jealous one.
She was jealous of my father, of my grandfather. Because when I was little, I loved spending time with them, having my arms around their necks, sitting on their laps all day.
So when my mother expressed her jealousy to me, I was feeling annoyed. “She’s like this because she cares about you, and she loves you very much.” My aunt told me.
“This is so pointless,” I used to think, “why is she so insecure? I won’t be like that when I grow up.”
Before my baby was born, my friends who had babies before me told me something surprising to me. They said that after birth, they were very protective and possessive of their babies, “on some very animalistic level”.
I didn’t feel possessive of my baby girl. I love it when my husband takes care of her.
But it hurts me a little bit when she smiles at my husband more than at me. To my luck, she’s too little to be away from me. I’m her food, her home — on an animalistic level.
I love being loved by her, even though she had no choice but love me.
We are the closest in this world right now. The most intimate. The most connected.
Or to say, not to exaggerate: we are one.
I can imagine, if one day she expresses more affection to others than to me, I will feel jealous. And that jealousy is more than justified.
But to use its power for “good”, we can see it as a form of the eternal bond. It’s not just “out of love”. It has ancient code hidden in our genes.
A rock and a river
I used to think that I was a rock with sharp edges. And the world around me was like water and wind. The only thing they’d do was to change me.
All that I wanted to do was to resist that change.
Resisting was the main thing I did. It’s the first reaction to anything that made me uncomfortable and wonder.
I thought I was surrounded by “the norms” — how I was supposed to be — and I was trying to get out of those boxes.
So I rebeled. I kept resisting.
Until resisting became a part of me, my identity, a self-designed box.
When will I be ready to set myself free from that box?
When I finally realise that I can choose not to be a rock that’s almost hostile toward the world. And when I know that I can choose to reconcile and let myself be enriched from the good and the bad, the happiness and the tragedies.
I’m not a rock.
I am a river.
Root there, body here
I’ve been dreaming about going home for a while. Every night, I’m back there, at my grandparents’ apartment.
In my dreams, I’m always the child running up and down the stairwell, hiding from other kids and the grownups. When it’s dark outside, I run back in to the apartment and eat with my grandparents.
Even the furniture is arranged in the way twenty years ago.
Having a baby in the time of the corona virus makes going 7500km back home really difficult.
Almost impossible thanks to the travel restrictions and quarantine regulations.
But I have hope.
I have to live on hope because that’s the only reason I’m still functioning as a person right now.
My home is where I grew up, where my families are.
I want to get far, far away from it. But I’m always tied to it. And I need to go back regularly. That’s how I am.
In fact, I’ve been away since more than 10 years ago. I’ve never wanted to move back. I belong out here, in the world, wherever.
But I’m not rootless. I’m not a nomad in that sense.
I can grow anywhere. But I only have one root that I don’t have with me.
It grows deep into the soil of my home. The one and only.
Plan for 2022: write a memoir
Who writes memoirs?
I thought only old and very famous people write memoirs. They must have much to say about their experience. And it’d be interesting for the world to know their side of the story. Because their view matters.
I want to write a memoir next year.
I’m not old. I’m in my early thirties. And I’m not famous either. Nobody cares about my past experience. Nobody cares about my point of view on things.
My view doesn’t matter to anyone…
Any one but myself.
I’m writing a memoir for myself.
I’m writing it because I was lost for a few years. I fell off track and couldn’t come back for a long time. I want to look back at when and how it happened. “Face it,” I hear myself saying, “so that you can grow from it.”
I’m writing it because I start to forget about things. Things that I wish I can keep in my memories forever. Like in the film “Coco”, we live to be remembered; we exist as long as we are remembered. I simply want to keep some people alive in mine, in the only way I know how.
I’m writing it because I’m feeling stuck in my own life. There are things I want that I don’t know how to get them; and doors I don’t want to go in but they were wide open. It feels like I’m standing mid-way in my life but I have to start from scratch anyway. I feel there’s nothing in my hand, since the “me” in the past didn’t earned us anything useful for the future.
I’m writing it for my child. I care about her view on me when she wants to know about me. And I want her to know my side of my own stories.
I’m writing it from the earliest memories of mine. I’m writing about my family, my childhood, my school time, friendships, rebellious time, struggles, persistence, dreams… choices, heartaches, hopes, disappointments, the beautiful and the ugly…
As a storyteller, finally I’m telling my own story.
That’s going to be quite a project. That’s why it’s going to be the project of the year 2022. I will keep this channel posted about the exact plan and record my progress.