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Marathon of thoughts

After several attempts, finally I’ve successfully deactivated my Facebook account last Saturday evening. There isn’t anything about it which I particularly don’t like though. In fact, it’s been my virtual companion since I left home. It’s where I stayed in touch with people, got updates on what my family and friends were up to and also share a part of me to them.

What compelled me to deactivate was more of wanting to be in touch with myself – my thoughts and feelings. Facebook community is so huge and diverse; it’s so easy to get lost within.

It was scary finding myself lurking over Facebook first thing in the morning and before going to bed.  At first, being alone in a foreign land where everyone who matters to me are on Facebook was my excuse of spending too much time on the social network. But I came to a point when seeing the page made me wanna throw up, seriously. So I decided to put an end to my penchant. For how long ‘til I activate it again, I’m not really certain.

After two nights without Facebook, here I am chasing a flood of thoughts running around my head. I can’t even remember when was the last time I sat in silence to contemplate. It suddenly dawned on me that I was already out of track on so many aspects of my life. At this very moment I’m not even sure what I really want.

I was too blessed to attain the things that I had dreamed of at a young age – though I never really aimed that high. I have been contented with all the good things life has showered me. I’ve always believed that like an open window, contentment allows happiness to freely flow within us. Yet life continued to surprise me in ways I could hardly imagine.

I couldn’t ask for more.

Perhaps I swallowed contentment in a wrong way so I ended up choking instead. It made me just slack while Facebooking with no anticipation and goals. It placed me in a midst of a quandary which seems to have no beginning and end. I feel like I want to do a lot of things yet I don’t have a clear picture of what I want to achieve out of them.

And so I try to get hold of these thoughts racing in my mind for they might just be the pieces that will complete the map puzzle that will give me new directions in life.

Take it from Bob Marley

“Only once in your life, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around. You tell them things that you’ve never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more. You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you. When something wonderful happens, you can’t wait to tell them about it, knowing they will share in your excitement. They are not embarrassed to cry with you when you are hurting or laugh with you when you make a fool of yourself. Never do they hurt your feelings or make you feel like you are not good enough, but rather they build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special and even beautiful. There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. You can be yourself and not worry about what they will think of you because they love you for who you are. The things that seem insignificant to most people such as a note, song or walk become invaluable treasures kept safe in your heart to cherish forever. Memories of your childhood come back and are so clear and vivid it’s like being young again. Colours seem brighter and more brilliant. Laughter seems part of daily life where before it was infrequent or didn’t exist at all. A phone call or two during the day helps to get you through a long day’s work and always brings a smile to your face. In their presence, there’s no need for continuous conversation, but you find you’re quite content in just having them nearby. Things that never interested you before become fascinating because you know they are important to this person who is so special to you. You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. Simple things bring them to mind like a pale blue sky, gentle wind or even a storm cloud on the horizon. You open your heart knowing that there’s a chance it may be broken one day and in opening your heart, you experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. You find that being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure that’s so real it scares you. You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and possibly a soul mate who will remain loyal to the end. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they are a part of your life.”
— Bob Marley

“You may not be her first, her last, or her only. She loved before she may love again. But if she loves you now, what else matters? She’s not perfect – you aren’t either, and the two of you may never be perfect together but if she can make you laugh, cause you to think twice, and admit to being human and making mistakes, hold onto her and give her the most you can. She may not be thinking about you every second of the day, but she will give you a part of her that she knows you can break – her heart. So don’t hurt her, don’t change her, don’t analyze and don’t expect more than she can give. Smile when she makes you happy, let her know when she makes you mad, and miss her when she’s not there.”
— Bob Marley

Don’t find yourself, create yourself

I’ve lent my ears to so many people my entire youth. These people came from different walks of life; some were younger than me, some were my age and some were way much older.

Recently, a friend came to me and said she is undecided of whether she should just give up working abroad and go home to start again or stay but filled with misery. I asked why. She gave myriads of reasons. But, it all boils down to one thing, she wants to find herself.

Being the kind of person who has spent quite a considerable amount of time listening to people’s grievances and remorse, this phrase “I want to find myself” has already become a cliché to me- or even more than that.

I am not an exemption. When things started to drift apart in my senior years in college, or that’s how I thought of it at the time, I decided to move to Bangkok where a different culture and environment would allow me to be on my own and “find myself”.

But now, I realized that it is pointless to try finding ourselves when in the first place we were not born with a set of traits laid before us to fulfill and live by. When we were born, our minds were like an empty bottle and the pages of our book of life were blank. The people and our environment may have poured on or jotted down something but it’s going to be us who will choose what to keep and fill in it. Even this idealism is also a cliché but still we tend to forget no matter how simple it is and rather choose to complicate things by dwelling on what we are not so happy about in life.

So, I told her, “Don’t try to find yourself ‘coz you will not find anything. Why? Because you are not what you are in the past.”

Most of the time, mistakes, humiliations, failures and negative experiences would make us feel we are the worst person in the world. We tend to feel this way because we are affected by how people perceive us. We are disappointed with ourselves because we wanted to be someone better than that.

We have no control over what people would think of us because it will definitely be influenced by their own life schemata and are likely biased to their own experiences and insecurities. So instead of being so affected by what people would have to say, let’s just take their words as an inspiration for us to become better. After all, they are in the same boat with us, also trying to paddle their way towards self discovery.

It is okay if we feel disappointed about ourselves for some time ‘coz it means we are aware that we’ve done wrong. However, staying that way will lead us to nowhere. The best thing about the future is that it offers us so much promises including the chance to envision who and what we wanted to be and all the opportunities for us to become that person.

Life is a never ending process of transformation.  What a shame it would be for a caterpillar to stay as a caterpillar when it can turn into a beautiful butterfly that can soar high and reach far distance – not to mention the hardship a butterfly has to undergo in getting out of its cocoon to let its body fluid strengthen its wings so it can fly.