(Props to those who can state the source of my title.)
2018 is the year I will be exiting my twenties, and it is most certainly a perfect time to bring things into focus.
“Just where did my life disappear to?” A question that always pops in my head every time I sink my head in my pillow. Well, here I am in a barren land away from my family, striving a lot to provide for them financially at the expense of my freedom. Here I am, supporting my precious people, albeit carefully curated, through the internet, as if I am some online support working for them from the other side of the globe in hopes of helping them solve their qualms or guide them as they walk deeper into the unknown. Here I am, uncertain if I am growing, but certain I can feel its pains… #adulting, as the millennials fancifully quote. Hey, I also don’t know where I am going, so don’t follow me!
Of course there are too many possibilities of where I am headed, all of which are contradicting: Gain more solo adventures versus nurture a new unit of the society, turn my back from this career I have practiced unceasingly versus aim for a promotion and a position to mentor future healthcare providers, a desire to take care of my aging parents and guide my younger siblings versus an openness to embrace more fully this country blatantly biased of their natives. However, if six years ago I loathed being pulled from all sides, today it sounded so exciting looking ahead where each arrow might lead me and stabbing my neck with a blunt fork at the same time (kidding!)
Some said a person will have a further sense of clarity of what they want once they reach thirty, while others also stated thirty is the new twenty. All I can say is, the ones who uphold the former are those who have established their life paths early on and they seem to succeed in it, while those who believe the second statement are those atoning for the second decade of their lives wasted on poor financial, health and career decisions. If you will ask me which of those statements I believe, age is just a frigging number! If I want to change drastically, being thirty is not an excuse not to do it. In fact, I am in the process of breaking down my established beliefs down to its core, so there will be a rebuilding. After all, life is all about transformation, and a transformation will not be feasible without unlearning. Steps I have taken so far are as follows:
- I recently picked up the habit of readings books, not fiction, but self-help, simplicity guides, and surprise, surprise… financial guides.
- Writing a novel, not fandom based as I used to, but the original plot I have been DYING to write for almost 5 years.
- Inasmuch as I hate exercising, I bought a quite-expensive machine and currently in a struggle to cope up with the daily plyometrics. Heheh.
- Being fearless in the kitchen, despite having almost cubed my fingers several times over the past six months in practice of how to fillet fish and the simplest proper way of cutting veggies.
- Treasuring the Bible not as knowledge but as life and God’s word. (I have always thought I will become an atheist when I grow up after all my misconduct in high school. A major transformation lies here.)
- Relearning two musical instruments I know: the piano and the guitar. I am looking at you with intent, note reading.
- Rekindling the art of waking early, meditating and using a physical journal. This is the only time I can draw, as I see that anime art is a talent I have (gasp) softly let go. Alas, watercolors hate me no matter how hard I try.
- Acknowledging the fact that seeing them boybands is now a distant possibility. But with this loss comes a new pair of eyes of seeing what is in front of me clearer. I am not farsighted in the first place, so forgive me for trying too hard.
- Gathering the courage to be hated for saying no, making myself heard and understood, rejecting politely (Yes, it can be.), and letting go. The toughest yet most rewarding lessons come from sticking to your core principles and ethics.
- At the same time, gathering the courage to be vulnerable and putting my heart out on my sleeve (at selected times in front of selected people). Letting down one’s pride has never been so liberating.
- Unlearning multitasking. Embracing simplicity and freedom from clutter.
- Being poised is a rarity, as one of the books I read said. I choose to be rare.
- Having a renewed sense of community. I’ve been living in myself for too long.
- Treasuring those who love me unconditionally for they are rare. At the same time, valuing each life as a rare treasure with each its purpose of being in my life.
I have always compared a new year/decade/season as a blank canvas to paint on. Years of experience told me it will never be clean or blank. I can never deny and hide my past mistakes, instead I should choose to wear it proudly as it is already a part of my identity, a thing that makes me unique. The new year is a piece of art whose paint you can chip off to put fresher colors, add more vibrancy, and instead of the canvas staying always on an easel, it should be framed proudly for everyone to see, no matter how abstract the outcome is. So, let’s paint more this year! (I will most likely use oil pastels or charcoal pencils, though. Thank you.)