Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015: A meandering road to a happier place


It is the time of the year again. I started this ritual on January 2010, skipped 2012 and decided to continue. In one way or another, I’ve always been contemplative, and new year suits this the best, whether I party out, hygge up or sleep it off. 

 So, 2015 went by in a flash, in a blink. I think this is the quickest year I’ve ever experienced. One snap and there it goes. They say time flies when you’re having fun. I guess so, although as I get older, everything seems more mundane, bit by bit. None can top 2013 yet, eh? 
I began 2015 with a firm step, along with a new job and a new point of view. I fell in love with my new team with our Friday WTFisforlunch ritual. I actually looked for to come to the office in the morning and say hello to them. But I guess nothing could beat my eternal love for waking up late and overdose of sleeping. I thought with this killer combination I could go day by day with a smile. 
But the year 2015 was the year when I learn about depression and anxiety. I worried too much about everything. I had thousand what ifs in my mind yet not a single of whattheheck. My top biggest worry was the apartment rent, other new york bills and my work performance. At the same time, I wanted to work less and spend more time enjoying the city or go somewhere warmer. And those summer days finding an apartment, moving in, moving out and can’t stop thinking about the beach! Early summer 2015 didn’t take it easy on me. 
There were times when I felt a pang in my heart and a dire need to go for a walk. There were times when I scratched off my to-do-list, and bundled up inside with endless thoughts and worries in my head. Now I understand why some distressed people could not party out, because there were times I shook my head and avoid activities that I used to enjoy. I was not interested in running, going out, vacation, drinking or anything, I simply dig my own rabbit hole of unhappiness. 
Then it was the point where I could not take it anymore and reached for help. I decided to yell screw you and get back on happiness track. Yup, that two weeks vacation, meet-up with lovely family and friends was my fu*k it escape. One of the happiest day of 2015 was spent by the beach with late night swimming and never ending giggling. I remember the feeling of the setting sun on my almost translucent skin and how warm it was surrounded by bestfriends and summer. 
Ups and downs, it was not always a joyful ride, but it sure gets me somewhere. This year I unsurprisingly reunited with my not-so-long-and-lost passion, painting and graphic design. That summer when it was striking hot outside, I spent hours with white paint and slanted brush, working my way until my apartment basked in ultra white. And that autumn when it was gorgeous outside, I spent weekends with adobe package and crashed with stir craziness. One of the memorable article I read this year was about finding passion: You already found your passion, you’re just ignoring it. And universe also granted me with a slower life as I had two months of part timing. It was scary at the beginning, as I was faced again with my anxiety. But in one lovely noon I took a long walk during lunch break and suddenly it hits me, that I could have my lost weekdays. All smily, I decided to embrace it. And indeed it was lovely, I immersed myself in my love for Brooklyn with a frequent bike riding over Brooklyn Bridge. 
 Then everything sped up in December. I wrapped up the year with a old-and-new job or whatever the name is. At the same time, I got the chance to be featured again in the alumni magazine, and this time I also gave a remote talk on my grad school anniversary. It was nothing big, probably more of self center talk rather than inspirational profile. But I must admit I couldn’t deny the nice feeling during my subway ride home. For once in 2015, finally I went home feeling like a champion. 
 But hey, I am not up for any competition. I hope we are all gonna make it. For sure, no one is going to get out of here alive. No one is really sure when this world is going to end, and who belongs to heaven or going to reincarnate over and over. At the end of the year, I had enough battle and slaying dragons and would love to just dance the night away. So, why don’t we pledge to make it easier to live for others, maybe by throwing confetti of kindness? Or more picnic and outing? Oh, I would love to succeed in the party and hospitality department. 

 2015 might be a long and meandering road to a destination, but I’m not gonna give up my journey to a happier place. I’m not gonna stop my soul searching and my attempt to make this world a better place. Nope, I’m not trying to be a powerpuff girl, but at least hopefully you can count on me for a good time.

Happy New Year lovely people, I wish you love, happiness and good fortune throughout 2016.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Halfway through 30ies and back to bookworm



Those lazy days, waking up late and went to the beach are all I need.
And I’m back in NYC, 36 yo. Man, being 36 feels so strange. I feel like I’m older than anyone else in the world but at the same time can’t deny that I’m very young. So much of the world to see and so many people I’d like to meet.
I’m no longer hiding the fact that I’m over 35 despite and I’m behind in a lot of aspects of life. 35 was so weird too, I juggled between staying young and wants to fast forward at the same time. It went by in flash, in a snap. I remember the struggles, the breakdown and the anxiety creeping in, and so many sleeps in between.

Another thing, the time has finally has returned, that I enjoyed reading again. I love books so much, but it’s been difficult for me to devour readings. So many books and pages I’d like to digest, but so little time and attention span. I was struggling with it in a past years. But in this vacation, I grab a book and I’m hooked. And it makes me feel so alive.
This is rewinding those moments of Kafka on the Shore, Eleanor and Park, Us (oh the five-stars books I have read in 2014), One Day, Life of Pi and many more. Jesse, and most of the people I met here, is of course into reading. He read faster than me and many times he forced me to read his version of classic books. I was not confident with my ability reading classic lits, but Moveable Feast is merely 100 pages or so, let’s do this. And boy, don’t you love how Hemingway describe Paris? Don’t you remember how Midnight in Paris touched you? Aren’t you happy that these great writers depict your favorite cities in such delights?

So, I think it would be it for the rest of the year. What have you been doing would be replaced with what books have you read lately?

Monday, August 17, 2015

Moving, often is not a good idea if you involve a lot of stuffs. Or people.

Things I learn from moving apartment (which I already know before, but this further convince me about my self).

  1. I fucking hate packing or unpacking. Unless I have tremendous amount of storage space, it often blew my mind how I have to make decisions to put things where it belongs. Yes, I am messy and cluttery, but it is fucking hard to change my personality from the girl who just spread things over space to that girl who rolled all of her socks into one of the drawers. 
  2. I’m small, so I don’t like storage space that requires me to use stools or ladder. Meaning, I’m not comfortable storing stuffs above my head and I question my ability to keep everyone’s safety with over the head storage. 
  3. Since I’m small, I’m also weak. I don’t have the muscles to lift heavy stuffs. I would do it anyway, however it often ended up with me hating myself being weak. I like things accessible. Thus, I tend to store stuffs by the frequency I use it and proximity. I demand storage in the closet, by my bed, most on the lower level where I can reach out easily. I also have garbage bins, scissors and throws in every room. 
  4. I like minimalism, and this drives me crazy. Insane. Because I have clutter everywhere and I get mad at myself. I never build the muscles or ability to restore stuffs to where it is. Because, I am super lazy, and I would leave everything within arm reach. 
  5. I love assembling and building stuffs. Maybe because I’m crafty, I like building stuffs from scratch, woodworking and all things involving my creativity and mostly soft motoric skills. I love screw and unscrew and working with electricity if I have the knowledge of. 
  6. I also love figuring out how to solve problem using available source. 
  7. I looooove painting job, with the absence of lifting heavy equipment and reach out to ceilings. I think there’s a serenity in seeing the color applied to new surface. And the joy of moving the brushes up and down, using delicate touch. Oh! 
  8. I love throwing out stuffs but often conflicted with the other side of my head thinking of what I can do with that thing instead. I use to have a recycle box which I throw garbage and what I can make of it. Of course, it always ended up overflown with just garbage. 
  9. I don’t like asking for help. I’m such an independent junkie that I want to do everything on my own. Sometimes I end up learning new skills, but often I am stuck, slow and cursing myself who is not good enough.

Saturday, July 04, 2015

If you like camping by the beach

Last night I dreamt about revisiting Banda Aceh. I worked together with Iday, like I used to do, but with different set of people. And everything was so different, we looked for familiar faces but couldn't find one. We looked for familiar places, but they have changed names and appearances. I told everyone I wanted to go to Lampu'u and one place that I didn't remember the name of but they took us to Lhok Nga. Lhok Nga was beautiful but crowded. I insisted to go far to the west but they shook their head off.

I wanted to meet this boy who used to take me around, take pictures and enjoy Banda Aceh in a million different ways, but they again told me to forget it.

Later I knew, it was Lamsenia that I missed a lot. And as soon as I woke up, tried to remember the details, I sighed, this is not going so well. Lamsenia has been my sanctuary, I planted it down inside of me. I alwasy carry the name, the place and the feelings because from time to time I need the serenity. It's like a natural theurapy, I often call out the memory of quiet morning in Sarah's river, the day playing with the kids and the laughters we shared while grilling fishes. The long ride on the back of motorcycle and the wide grin I had on my face.

Lamsenia dream means my life is at the shaky state, just like Lamsenia once were devastated by tsunami waves. But I once was shared the happiness of people living in temporary tents, Lamaenia dreams means that everything is going to be ok.

Even more if you like camping by the beach, it's going to be great.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

The return of Summer, now she's biking and enlighted


I almost forgot how fun it is riding in the city. I know it is never the hills are alive and the sound of music here, but I ride with joy anyway. It’s always fun for me to maneuvering between cabs, pedestrians and other fellow bikers. I also enjoy the lights, the skyline and the bridge. Biking forces me to focus other than my self. I have to ride safety, but I too have to make sure I won’t hurt others. Yeah, that lady who’s fiddling with her iPhone while crossing the 10th street, I’d make sure no blood spill on the junction.


I guess that’s also the nature of my self. That I don’t want to hurt others, whatever that means.