Kissing Your Promise Goodbye

image “Maybe because some things have changed.”

Nah, it’s not some things, love. Everything has changed.

You wrote down your promise, now I have to tear it up. Every piece I make of it will carry every bit of pain that remained – the hate that wakes me up midday and midnight, the joy that steals me from what’s real now, the stories we’ve made, and the last few questions that will perhaps remain unasked. All of them gone as I kiss your promise goodbye.

Because we are now at the end of our forever. This is where I let all of it go – the dreams we daydreamed together, the so many nights we skipped sleeping, the so many days we chose to rather spend alone than spend with the rest of the world, and all the times rather spent to sweet nothings.

Now, I free our love, let it fly somewhere out a space we will never know of and from where it will never find its way back to us.

Thank you for every bit of everything. It was worth a story after all. But it ends here, now. And I leave here my tiny hopes for us I’ve been holding for a while. And the only thing that I have to offer now is peace and a wish for you. May you find the love you’ve long been looking for.

Love, Ayna

Kissing Your Promise Goodbye

19 Sobering Truths About Friendship You Need To Accept In Your 20s

Ayna:

This is just about everything I’ve been feeling. I am normal. Lol!

Originally posted on Thought Catalog:

1. The people who you thought would be there for you when it counted are not always going to be there. Sometimes because they quite literally cannot be there, other times because they just don’t want to (anymore).

2. The same will go for you – you’re not always going to (want to) be there for people who need you too.

3. Some of your friends will be more successful than you. And you will be more successful than some of your friends. And this will change over time depending on everyone’s life situation, path, and sheer dumb luck.

4. You will feel like people you’ve known for years don’t know you at all anymore (and you don’t know them either). You will also feel like people you’ve met for five minutes just “get you.” And it’ll be a strange, complex feeling you’re not quite sure how to handle all…

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19 Sobering Truths About Friendship You Need To Accept In Your 20s

One-night love

There’s that place that exists between the real and the almost real. Like limbo but not exactly. Like coma but something else.

You’ve had those moments when you share a slice of time with a friend, an acquaintance, or a stranger doing nothing big, but just being there with him or her who must be feeling the same way – wonderfully weird.

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Here’s a story.

It was a long ride all the way from a northern beach town back to the metropolis and the night, although a little too humid, was charmingly peaceful. Everyone was dead tired but not necessarily quiet. It was six hours between the better life in the countryside and the fast pace in the city. My plan was to have the whole time all to sleep. And I did. Only, not entirely.

My head keeps on hitting something. Bones? Never mind, didn’t hurt anyway. [goes back to sleep]

Heck! Here comes the sleep head-banger and I look f**king stupid sleeping and bobbing my head like a lousy rock star on a high. And it’s hurting my neck big time! [goes back to sleep]

There, there. That’s better. Not so bumpy and my heavy head finding a place to rest. Whose shoulder is this? Anyway…[goes back to sleep]

[A bit awake and squinting] Asphalt. Lamp posts. Ah, the national highway. Although the entire ride probably looked the same but pretty sure we didn’t hit the express way too soon.

Okaaay, this is hurting a bit now. But good enough and far better than get my head banging like an annoying doggie car accessory.

Wait, what??? Am I leaning on someone’s shoulder?

Oh. Yeah. This is weird. Ummm, that okay kind of weird.

You’ve had those moments too when it feels like the universe has gone lost in its own mechanics, protested against its own plans. You will notice that out-of-order moment because every second is supposed to have been planned, timed, and is supposed to be familiar to your senses. But like a watch suddenly malfunctioning, mistakenly switching gears and mixing up time, there are those moments when the universe seems to lose grip and get things out of their proper places and timing. I think that’s exactly when spontaneity happens. Like when love comes in the form of a shooting star. Enchanting, surreal, amazingly beautiful…and always just passing.

[in silence, of course] Hey! Thanks for the shoulder. Good enough for a not-necessarily-soft pillow for the rest of the ride. I mean, I really appreciate it.

I’m quite sure you can feel my head moving up and down to the beat of your breathing. Or perhaps the strands of my hair pressing against your neck. The way we are now, our heads a little too close, I can almost feel my thoughts slipping through the pores of my scalp, being pulled by your neurons. But I just have to be greedy, I can’t share my thoughts with you. Because right now, they are the most precious secrets I hold. And if you’ll get to them, that’s as good as seeing me naked.

Brake. We had to stop for a toilet break. I woke up to the excitement of having to be able to run to the toilet. Sure you know how that feels. But I had to ask first, “Where are we?”; and you said, “Some place in your heart.”; and I asked again, “Yeah?”; and you said, “Imagine that. The whole van fits in your heart.” I couldn’t find a good answer to that so I smiled, rather more like a smirk, and went back to sleep. Well, I was hoping you knew I didn’t. Oh, and I forgot to pee?

The clothes I’m wearing now is this seemingly deep sleep and I’m being very careful not to wake up. Because this sleep is the only thing that’s keeping you from seeing me in my naked form and from getting to my little secret with a lifespan of just this night.

If I wake up, that’s like giving away my little secret to the only person who’s not supposed to know.

Hey! Tonight, I love you. But when this ride ends, this story will also be over – most likely. I’ll be wide awake, reality will pull me out from this “spontanium”, and everything will go back to normal. Like I’ve never loved you and as if you’ve never loved me back.

Thank you anyway for that little infinity. Somehow I wished it was real, but the most it can be was to be almost real. It may never be in the intentions of fate to make it last. But isn’t it beautiful enough that our little infinity ended in a way that no one had to hold back a tear?

I loved you that night,
Ayna

One-night love

Dreams under renovation

I had the answers back in kindergarten…but they were neither right nor wrong.

It doesn’t matter where I am: under my blanket, in the shower, aboard the metropolis train, walking to my office, guiltlessly devouring nutella sandwich at our lone table at home, or out somewhere a space only I knew of. My kindergarten teacher’s question would haunt me like a creepy mischievous shadow, “When you grow up, what would you want to be?” And in like a snap, I’d see an imaginary canvass, white and clean. Empty.

I had the answers when I was a kid – a pocketful of confident answers. And I must have told my teacher of them with a wide grin unveiling my carefree broken smile. Now that I’m a grownup, I would usually catch myself in chunks of introspection and retrospection, and how the thoughts weave themselves together often throws me a full-blown smack kicking me out from my own life. Mind-boggling realizations, often irritating, but a fairly good way to kill time.

At this point in my life, where [perhaps] I’m supposed to have already figured what I would want to do for the next half a century, I’m only finding myself stuck with a fair display of options, not with a headstrong decision. Admittedly, I would want to become all of my many options: a fashion designer, a wedding planner, a businesswoman, a novelist, a marketing director, a professor, a performer, an actress (kidding), a photographer, a surfing champ, a painter, a diva, an all-genre dancer, an interior designer, a genius and all other versions I’ve imagine of myself. But fine – there’s no way I can be everybody, that’s absolutely and regretfully understood.

I recall the main point of Dr. Meg Jay’s book, The Defining Decade. It implies that the twentysomething stage is so crucial in the sense that the decisions one makes at this twentysomething period are what would stir up all the succeeding decades of one’s life. It may not apply to everyone but it makes sense, doesn’t it? Reading that book put on a lot of pressure to my self-evaluation. In fact, it got pretty scary I wanted to shred the pages to stick-thin strips and burn them all to ashes without a chance for revival. Scary because if my kindergarten teacher would come asking me again, “When you grow up, what would you want to be?”, I would only see myself laying down the cards – my many options for my future (which has now arrived as the present); one card representing each of my dream figure – and I’d stop there. “I don’t know.” Bad news is I’m most likely just a few days away to my future. Maybe even too late to figure my shit out.

Such an anxiety-infected circumstance ain’t new but is rather ironic coming from someone adored for being smart, gifted, multi-talented. That’s the picture (with no intentions to brag, just a little bit) and perhaps the problem of indecision rooted from the burden of having multiple choices. I recall an artist mom mentioned that to me and I also recall agreeing to it right then and there. My family, friends, workmates and my boss recognize my skills and it does flatter me to know so. How could I not feel grand about being praised, sometimes even overly? My heart would swell up, but true as well that the praises would oftentimes make me lose my breath – and palpitate. Maybe it’s just me, but they often come in as overwhelming I could barely handle. Then that would set me off questioning myself again, “So which one do I do best?”…”I don’t know.” But I honestly want to do all. But knowing that I just can’t, there is then the fear of missing out on all the other in favor of one. Or two.

Then there was Aristotle, Benjamin Franklin, Leonardo da Vinci, Einstein, name the all-time geniuses. They were all over the early society, each of them an authority in almost all disciplines, the renowned in every profession. They were everybody that they wanted to be. Nah, never mind, my argument would surely come invalid though. Apparently, I’m no genius, end of story (and that’s f$@#-all-geniuses frustrating!). :D

Now, after many chances of skimming through my brain lobes, nodes and membrane – I actually just mean my thoughts – I realize I have been looking only at my dreams with the challenges prerequisite to them, but not at every possibility that could unfold like a red carpet that would lead me to my glory days. Because honestly, I doubt my own gifts. And I bow down to my fears, which is equally the same as poisoning my enthusiasm for my dreams. Of course I know all that. I apparently, have this mistaken love for my own fears.

Tomorrow I still won’t have it all figured out. But the thing I’m quite sure of is that I don’t need a time machine to go back to kindergarten and collect the answers I once had. No, that little kid didn’t know much, not even enough. Perhaps a few more twists and turns, then I’ll get myself an answer as to who I would want to be for the most part of my life.

It’s a whole new world I’m in now, totally different from my playfully colorful kindergarten. And it looks like I’m going to need a whole new set of answers.

Wish me well, folks! :)
Love, Ayna

Dreams under renovation

Man of Tai Chi and Tiger Chen: A Amateur Commentary

Bear with me, I’m no good at movie reviews or commenting on an actor’s screen performance but I’m gonna have to try for my newest favorite kung fu flick, Man of Tai Chi – Keanu Reeves’s directorial debut in 2013, starred by Tiger Hu Chen.

Three pointers and this is done.

One: Unless I misunderstood it, there was a tiny loophole in pointing out the fine line between a fighter and a warrior. In the introductions before Tiger’s fight with the twins, the script said that while one fights for reason, the other fights for purpose. It might have been part of the intentionally discreet logic and the brain-racking part, as to who was the fighter and who was the warrior. And it could only be just me, but I found that point falling short of clarification. If you look at it just through the surface, Tiger must be the warrior fighting to save his temple – a great purpose – by money’s way. Plus, “warrior” sounds more fit for a lead character than “fighter”. But it wasn’t about that of course. And it wasn’t bad at all, I mean the vagueness of that part. In fact, it was some kind of a stirrer, at least for me.

I found an alternative way though of understanding the logic behind it. I took it that it was Tiger’s fight against himself, and not against the twins. If you think of it, Tiger was both a fighter and a warrior in the story. A warrior who wanted to save the temple, he would sooner or later become the heir of. He wanted to tell the world that Tai Chi is not just a lousy form of exercise and meditation for the old. He wanted to tell the world that Tai Chi is powerful. And maybe part of his purpose was also to lift his family? On the other hand, when Donaka Mark (Keanu) asked Tiger after one of his underground fights, why he wins, Tiger said, “Because I’m better.” Reason. Of a fighter. Or I could be wrong. That’s how it appeared to me at least. Mr. Tiger Chen, please confirm. 😊

Two: Not wanting to rather have Tiger died in the end (because I love movies where the good man always lives and the bad forever dead, hahaha), but what if Tiger died in one of his fights? What if some other fighter or warrior happened to be “better”? But just what if? Then how would the movie have ended? Except really sad.

Three: Despite some comments that Tiger was a bit too stiff in his acting, I totally loved how he played around the Man of Tai Chi’s character naturally. Not the kick ass, murderous fighter, but the way he seemed so detached from the worldly. I like how the aura appears to be so peaceful yet strong at the same time. Tiger was Yin and Yang in the entire movie. Rooms for improvement, yes, but as far as how he did in Man of Tai Chi, Tiger nailed it!!!

Very honestly, I think he is by far the most graceful Kung Fu martial artist I’ve known, apart from Jackie Chan being the funniest. Two thumbs up for Tiger and may Kung Fu live long through you! :)

Man of Tai Chi and Tiger Chen: A Amateur Commentary

A Year To Myself

February last year, I became single after closing an 11-month long relationship, which was beautiful enough to last for a time but not forever. And funnily as if there wasn’t any better time, on that perfect lovely day when exclusively (or not) dating young men and ladies, boyfriends and girlfriends, engaged and married couples, and all other kinds of lovers were celebrating their love – February 14, 2013 – I declared to all my systems from my split ends to the callouses on my toes that at least for one year, I will have no other lover than myself. That was a deal.

And I made it to a year all to myself.

During little gatherings with friends or side chats with officemates, a usual question would make its way to the convo, “Don’t you miss dating someone?” Damn it, of course I do, even until now. I miss that feeling, you know what I’m talking about.

But such question, though tempting and strongly suggestive, also appeared to challenge me as to how far I can go with the deal. And I’m glad I managed to keep myself at pace.

Through this period, albeit relatively short, I believe I’ve come to understand a lot about loving myself and the lessons keep coming.

1. Love yourself and love it more each and every day. Because it is wise to realize that if in case no one else will be there to love you, you have your very own self who will never leave you come what may.

2. Those who leave are not meant to stay. So please don’t allot an eternity to mourn on a breakup. You don’t have forever to fool around a drama not worth crying for. Always be ready to get your shit together and love again, with a little bit more caution than before.

3. If you love yourself, you become a sturdy foundation of a lasting relationship. Otherwise, your lack of confidence, trust, and respect for yourself might even cause your partner to question him/herself how s/he did even come to like you.

I know it sounds like I recommend staying single. Well, up to you. We all have our own preferences in life.

As for me, I’m up for anything. If love from another human being comes my way, then let him be my guest. And if he’s worth it, I will let him see the grandeur of having me. 😉

Love,
Ayna

A Year To Myself

Quarter Life Crisis on the Brighter Side

…and finally.

It’s been a fairly lengthy layover since my last post and it feels awesome [and a bit strange?] to be back! I’m sorry to disappoint myself though [and if anyone else] that nothing much has happened except for at least four vivid and vague circumstances:

  1. I am now officially a slave of my corporate designation, which I kind of expected.
  2. It took me by gigantic surprise that my very good old friend, who’s been away for like 13 years, came knocking on my quarter life door and asking me out to explore possibilities of spending time together for like a period of forever.
  3. And just when we were about to kill the annoying distance between us, like a hemisphere far, he went –errr– gone?
  4. I’m turning 25 next week, be officially vested with the rights and responsibilities of womanhood – and I’m taking it like a severely ridiculous joke.

But how does it feel to be turning 25 anyway? Ha, the same question I asked this very good old friend slash short-time long distance lover. I never got the answer anyway…’cause that was supposed to be discussed on mornings over coffee. Which never happened. Don’t ask why. So I’ll try to answer it for myself at least. And I thought I wasn’t going to talk about turning 25 here. Gah!

Default feeling – scary. “Both scary and exciting,” so to complete the cliche. I have been swayed to believe by whatever force that those are somewhat “required” emotions from anyone experiencing QLC (quarter life crisis). Otherwise, you will be thought of as someone who doesn’t care about plans, timelines, goals; doesn’t care that you’re not getting any younger and you could be exhausting your life span anytime soon. But the question is, is the pressure @#$%^&* real?

Precious YES. For myself at least. Career. Education. Relationships. Acquired skills. “Nice” hobbies. Lifestyle. Health. Promotions. Degrees. A place to call yours. A car to drive. Engagement. Wife, husband. Family. Kids. Investments. Insurance. And the list just goes on and on, you surely know. Drives you nuts!

But then, of course, I make my escape from the mental and emotional riot, especially when all these are becoming inhumanly overwhelming. As if it’s torture, yea? Well, believe me, if you don’t handle these thoughts well, they can do for you a bloody imaginary hemorrhage.

On a more serious note [and this popped up just now], to be turning 25, for me, is taking advantage of this little time to recap, reevaluate, and reorganize your plans if necessary.

  1. Recap – How has life been since the farthest past you can recall? What did you do with your 25 years? How did you do coming along through all these years?
  2. Reevaluate – So, you think you made the right turns, right decisions so far? Did your decisions make way for you to a better future life? Were you right at choosing this and that person to let go?
  3. Reorganize plans – If necessary, why not? Plans are plans, not curses you sold your soul for. If you realize you suck at making life decisions, ask for help. I swear you will die bored figuring your own life all by yourself. You need your family, friends, and perhaps a few more strangers to mess up your life a bit more. LOL! If you realize you’ve hurt someone, don’t go on pretending like you aren’t feeling guilty at all. Pick up your phone or drop a message. A sincere “I’m sorry” won’t bite. Right, it’s not easy but it’s not like you’ve got to find the end of infinity first before you say it.

And all that I’m saying to myself as well. :) Those three Rs (recap, reevaluate, reorganize) make me shiver, at the same time, giddy – scared and excited. Well, that’s how it is I guess. Life is meant to be imperfect, otherwise it’s just one monotonous …boring… something. So embrace yourself for who you have become – either you celebrate it or forgive and make peace with yourself. Acknowledge your being part of a universal system and be grateful that you’re a part of it. The universe doesn’t exclude anyone nor anything. In fact, we don’t have a choice but to join it, dead or alive. You know, no one is given the right to be so alone.

So how do I conclude how it is to be turning 25? Well –[thinking]– I’d say, “I’m throwing one helluva grandiose party and the universe is my crowd.” ;)

Oh yes, you are cordially invited!

 

See ya! Love,
Ayna

Quarter Life Crisis on the Brighter Side