There has been a lot of things that I wanted to blog about, a lot of observations and stupid anecdotes and experiences here and there. But I will save that for another day. Seeing as this will be my very last post of 2007, I want to make it slightly more meaningful.
It's been a year of mostly ups and some severe downs, a heckuva rollercoaster ride. If you watched a movie of my 2007, there would be many moments where you'd lean forward and yell into the screen at me "No! Don't do that!". And looking back, I wish someone HAD done that. I try to live by the philosophy of no regrets, and in my first 24 years of life, I'd say I do have a couple but nothing too great, nothing that will haunt me forever, nothing that I cannot live down. But 2007 will be a year marked by some of my deepest regrets.
In 2007, retrospectively, I find myself behaving very uncharacteristically, and am ashamed at how I handled situations. I have done things that are very unlike me, and sometimes to the extent that I myself cannot reconcile to myself what I did. And people whom I have confided in, or who have seen how this has affected me, have all pointed this out. Those who know me longest and best are concerned and worried as to what the hell is wrong with me and what compelled me to behave so, and that they never would have thought it possible coming from me. Well that just shows people really can do what they are not expected to huh? To summarize it, I have shocked, upset, disappointed, let down, and hurt a great deal of people, people who care for and love me. Respect has flown out the window. Where did my maturity, sense of righteousness, courage, responsibility, intellect, go to? Does this mean that my previous goodness, the Alex hitherto that earned me everyone's good graces, was not sustainable? Why did I behave so? In order to root out and fix my behavioral issues and to ensure it does not happen again, I needed to take a big step back and really take a look at myself. When a mistake is made, it is made. Just understand how it came about, and take care to ensure it does not recur.
To keep things short simple sustainable and to improve incrementally, people should not suddenly set numerous high targets. This ensures failure upon review. I want to focus on incremental improvement, small steady steps, short term goals, which would lead to, over a period of time, sustained improvement, and in itself becomes a habit, ensuring that I improve at a realistic sustainable rate.
To close 2007, here are 5 key lessons I learnt:
#1 - Always tell the truth. This means never doing anything you might need to lie about. Also, it means when people ask for the truth, give it. Whatever the consequences, deal with it. Either they can take it hence they asked for it, or, they can't take it, in which case, there is nothing we can do because we did what we did, and we just have to move on and deal with it. Consistency is key. And trust is almost impossible to regain, but we are trying.
#2 - Don't be weak/wishy washy/indecisive. Especially when being so is extremely selfish and self centered, because the consequences of the above actions' effect on others will be something that is not right, something that others don't deserve, and something that will haunt our conscience.
#3 - I need to look beyond myself more and think of the consequences of my actions on those I love, need to grow up fast and be more mature. Part of this involves seeing things as facts, seeing things as they are, being matter of fact, and moving according to the brain and less according to emotion. To think further, to be able to discern right from wrong, and to live a more principle centered life. Principle centeredness will help me do the right thing.
#4 - Watch what I say. Intention does not actually amount to much. Don't have to say what I wish/hope/would like/really want. Just go and get it done. Otherwise, saying it out but not delivering it even though it was an expression of intention could be misinterpreted as unfulfilled promises, yet another manifestation of irresponsible, unreliable and immature behavior.
#5 - You can never totally shake off your past. Things I did yesterday which I regret today and try to face, accept, resolve, and then push away, might still come back and haunt me tomorrow. Hence, live such that when tomorrow comes, and I look back at today, there is nothing that I want to shake off and don't want to/can't talk about.
And below are 5 key things to implement in myself moving forward into 2008:
#1 - Stick to my resolutions.
#2 - Mistakes made are mistakes made. There is no point talking about or harping on them or to keep them in the back of my mind and let them fester and rot me away and cast a grey pall over me and prevent me from living and enjoying life. The key thing is to use it as an opportunity to understand myself and why I made that mistake. That will lead me to not repeat the same thing twice. Understand how and why it was made. Don't repeat. Move on.
#3 - Never forget, always remember the 5 key lessons above.
#4 - Must make a concerted effort to identify the best possible human being I can be in every respect, and make a real push for it. Have to at least match back to the high standards I believe I was and can be better than. Where I fall short of my own or others expectations, so be it. The important thing is to at least try to get myself to where I want to go, make myself the sort of person I want to be. If I am then what she wants, wonderful. Else, at least I know I tried, and did all I could that is within my control.
#5 - Have more of God's presence.
Pride comes before the downfall. Thought I was well on my way to all around goodness. Oh how far wrong I was. Due to I myself being immature, not ready, irresponsible, selfish, cowardly, short-sighted, I ended up behaving very uncharacteristically in 2007. Thus that led to a year of my life's biggest mistakes, deepest regrets, most shameful moments. Which let down, hurt, upset, disappointed a lot of people, not least of all, myself. It was a damning and humbling year, but it was also the year I was reminded of God's greatness.
What is done is done. Just have to let go, and look forward and march. Forget the scars, the wounds inflicted on others, because guilt and conscience should not be the reasons I behave in certain ways towards others. Remember and live everything I said above, and most of all, learn to trust God and His ways, ask for forgiveness, for His grace to forgive the many wrongs I have done, and to really leave the management of my life to Him, and not to Man and his 'logic' and reasoning. Look where my flawed logic n reasoning has gotten me! God can do no wrong, though it does not always initially appear so. This whole fiasco might yet have a silver lining. At the very least, it has really forced me to examine myself and realize what a terribly flawed and immature human I am and how much I need to change and improve. I just hate that the price was the emotional distress this caused to others.
And so, 2008, I look to you with open arms, with faith and hope and excitement, just to see what God's plans for me are. Goodbye 2007, thanks for the lessons, though you charged an exorbitant price. This way in 2008! This way!
Monday, December 31, 2007
There has been a lot of things that I wanted to blog about, a lot of observations and stupid anecdotes and experiences here and there. But I will save that for another day. Seeing as this will be my very last post of 2007, I want to make it slightly more meaningful.
On the last day of '07, I look back, and see that indeed this has been a year where I visited many places. Let's hope '08 continues that trend! Sitting here in my office space on the 31st of Dec, I do get a bit of the sensation that yet another year has raced by.
Locally (condition: must either involve a hill or at least 1 hr drive), I visited:
- Genting (again) but never before have I driven up myself, and I did it twice this year.
- Frasers Hill (second time), drove up for the first time (companion made it special)
- Kota Bharu, my first time ever, visiting Kelantan (very fun, real eye opener)
- Port Dickson (for the gazillionth time but never before with my GIS gang so twas fun)
- Scaling Mount Kinabalu on a company trip and doing it faster than anyone else from our party save the MD (that was one fit 40 year old!)
- Kuala Selangor (to see the fireflies...it's not what you do, it's who you do it with!)
Overseas (plane ride must exceed 1 hour):
- Phuket (again, but with the scholars...great trip...except for the masseurs hmmm)
- Paris (like the photography expeditions and resultant pics)
- Melbourne (it's who you do it with!)
- Dubai airport (that counts ok.)
In '08, my wish list is to:
- Drive up Camerons
- Check out the much vaunted and haunted Maxwell Hill
- Try Ijok's beggar chicken
- A country that takes more than 4 hours to fly to, i.e. Japan, Korea, NZ...
- An island resort paradise, either locally, Bali, Philippines, Thailand or ... Mauritius? Maldives?
Ah...they say save money when you are young... don't travel so much...I say.. travel when you are young! Take lots of beautiful photos when you are young! Coz your pay is prolly so meager now you can't save much anyway. So why trade a marginal increase in bank balance for beautiful youthful photos of self? Plenty of time to save later when your pay check hits a reasonable size where you can actually SAVE. Invest in holidays, memories and experiences while you are young.
The young ones. Darling we're the young ones. And the young ones. Shouldn't be afraid. To live. Learn. While the flame is strong. Coz we may not be, the young ones. Very long. - Elvis.
Monday, December 24, 2007
Its the wonderful wonderful Christmas time again, the time of good ol feelings of magic, Yuletide and good cheer. Where the tree tops glisten, and children listen to hear the sleighbells in the snow! Thats my fav ever Christmas song, just ahead of O Holy Night. Guess what song it is?
Ah...bells jingling... snow outside...the far away deep laughter of a man going Ho Ho Ho...yellow lighting provided by the fire, the Christmas tree's dancing lights providing the other source of flickering illumination, presents under the tree, crackling logs, a mantelpiece, a sock hanging lopsided...ahh...
Have a merry Christmas all! Merry Christmas! Glad tidings! I'm off! I'm off! To have fun! To give! To share! But most of all...To celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ! Let us never forget that.
Today, in his early twenties, the typical guy thinks about, in no particular order:
- Getting laid
- Finishing his degree
- Hoping to find a good graduate job
- Getting laid
- Looking good
- Hanging out
- Getting laid
The last thing on his mind is stability, deciding on a career, religion, marriage, savings, investments, children, love, commitment, having control of his life etc.
When he hits his mid twenties he becomes aware of the importance of the above. He realizes the importance of money, the necessity for savings, investments, etc. He might start to take some action towards the tangible hard copy self serving stuff like savings, investments, career. But the soft stuff like character development, personality refining, control of his life, religion, finding the right wife, starting a family, where to settle his family, marriage, children, commitment, things like that don't come into proper focus until his late 20s, when he decides to do something about it.
Say what you will but it seems to me that guys who marry in their mid twenties arent quite ready to settle down compared to guys who are 30, 31 (who are also not quite ready to settle down but do it coz its that time in life).
I am now in my mid twenties. Right now I want to talk about one aspect of my life which is coming more and more into focus lately, and in fact, the clarity of this and the strength of this desire is starting to burn and etch a hole in my retinas.
OK drama aside, lets start shall we?
I don't like this bachelor life anymore. I don't like this instability and uncertainty and mucking around. What I crave, perhaps as a result of my own upbringing and lack of a fatehr figure, is to find that one right one, marry her, and proceed to our happily ever after.
I have identified 3 things that I need to be before I can fully call myself ready to get married.
1) Character is mature and good.
2) Sick of bachelor life, craving for and looking forward to life as a husband of so and so and doing things together as a couple that is not just gf/bf stuff.
3) Financially ready.
A friend of mine, born in the same year, albeit several months older, recently proposed to his gf who is a few months older than him. That kicked off a lot of thoughts.
Gotta run... work is piling up...cant believe it huh.. on Christmas Eve some more... continue later.
Being mature sometimes means doing the practical and correct thing regardless of how it feels. Coz feelings are not based on sound logic and can be misleading, and if we follow that, we could end up on the wrong path. Of course, feelings are a very strong pull in any particular direction, and sometimes it means not that the mind is weak if one ignores what the mind is gently whispering and chooses to follow feelings. It could very well mean that the desire to follow ones heart, and the pull of ones heart, is stronger. At any rate, this is not a discussion on those topics. This is a dreadfully long, dreary disgustingly boring post so if you are not into dreadfully long, dreary disgustingly boring posts please hop ahead to www.nba.com where all the entertainment you require in this wonderful world awaits you eagerly.
OK. Disclaimer out of the way. We may proceed now.
- - -
We shall begin with Case Study A.
My grandfather was a strong fit man, looking healthy and strong when young, and was able bodied. He remained brisk and active in his late 60s, and loved me beyond what I deserved. I remember him briskly stomping along, me trailing, walking here and there, bringing me proudly to the neighbourhood coffeeshop to proudly display to his friends. He was a wonderful artist, and drew the best pictures I have ever seen. But he died at a young age, in his early seventies or so, when I was in mid primary school. During the last years of his life, his body was ravaged by illness, and he had zero bladder or bowel control. To see my proud healthy grandfather deteriorate so rapidly, to see the last year or so of his life being a constant struggle, was painful to say the least. His hands shook, he stuttered and stammered profusely, his voice was barely audible. He reeked of human waste, and his mind was a shadow of its formerly sharp self. He sat in his potty included chair, humiliated, undignified, tears running down his face, as the smell gradually enveloped the room, awaiting his sons to come over to him and bring him into the privacy of his own room to wash and change him, while silence slowly fell upon the room as peoples faces showed dawning comprehension of the source of the smell. He was exasperated as he tried to communicate with me, his fav grandchild, who shied away from him out of fear, a far cry from our younger days.
Case Study B
My friend's grandfather was a healthy young man, and age took not its toll on him. No sire, he was strong and healthy as an ox, with a sharp mind, a sharper tongue, and an unwavering desire to hoard money. One day he was diagnosed with advanced stage colon/rectal cancer. Doctors presented 3 options to his family. (A) Take him home and wait for the cancer to destroy him slowly and watch him suffer in pain and await an undignified death. (B) Have him undergo an operation done locally, where the chances are survival are slim and if successful, chances are that he'd have to carry his bag of shit with him to shit and pee into everywhere he goes, connected to his body. (C) Bring him to the US for a surgery by this famous surgeon, which will cost a bomb, but has good odds of full recovery. Luckily, the family was wealthy, and could afford to send him to the US for surgery, after where he made a full recovery.
Case Study C
My ex girlfriend's granddad looked fit, tough, strong, even in his 50s. He was very healthy looking, and was powerfully built. Handsome, with rugged features and jawline, he must have made many a woman cast an admiring glance at him in his younger days. He was a hawker who sold char kuay teow, hence spending much of his time frying flavoured flour, and inhaling the smoke and watnot resulting from the frying. He developed nasal cancer. He fought and fought, but in the end, it took him. As he died, tears came from his eyes. After his death, he looked frail and fragile and frigid. He was white and pale, limp, just soft, unvibrant lump of flesh. The spark - LIFE itself - was gone. It was no longer her grandfather, but just a corpse. A body. This was not her grandfather, for without the spark that differentiates and makes us who we are, we are all just the same common lump of flesh, corpses, with differently arranged physical features. Our bodies are just vehicles and conduits of that Spark which we call Life.
- - -
There are easily 10 more case studies but I am too lazy to go on.
My grandfather had a v bad discipline problem. He was gluttony, loved food, and indulged without any form of guilt or conscience in his favourite foods, regardless of how unhealthy it was. He listened to nobody, not the early and definitely not the severe, serious and reprimanding warnings and instructions late. My friend's grandfather had the same issue; loving meat and eating away like mad but without much water, vegetables and fruit intake. In Case C, he was a hawker who was exposed to the product of frying day in and day out.
These 3 are all lifestyle-caused deaths.
- The life-filled can become the sick weakly and dying just like that.
- Your lifestyle has a big say in how your flame in this world goes out.
- Hence wanton indulgement in an unhealthy lifestyle like a little child could lead to an early demise.
If a life is snuffed out due to an unforeseen and unpredictable and uncontrollable circumstance, there is nothing to be done about it. If one was on a plane and it crashed, well, too bad. If one was in his house and a lorry flew over a highway and crashed into the house and killed the guy, well too bad. If one was driving to work and a helicopter fell from the sky and hit his car and he died, well too bad. If one was walking down the stairs even and sneezed and hence lost his footing when his eyes were closed while sneezing and then died, its also too bad.
But to lose lives due to CONTROLLABLE factors such as a lifestyle choice, is the stupidest and most wasteful way to go out. It utterly disrespects human life, that which we hold holy, and is a disrespect to God as well to so blatantly have so litle regard for our lives, that which Jesus died for.
- - -
Hence from a few years ago, I have been trying to get my mum to change her eating habits. I love my mother, and I refuse to have her experience the indignity of going out either with a shit bag, or as a corpse and a shadow of her former vibrant self, or without bowel control. I love my mother, and I want her to be happy and to lead a dignified life. I dont want her to suffer. I dont want her to have to suffer through and undergo the misery in the final years of her life. Hence I have been trying to get her to eat healthily, to forgo or cut down unhealthy foods, and to exercise more, and to eat more healthy foods. Sometimes she is stubborn, and sometimes forgetful. But I drive a hard line.
And my stupid sisters take offense to this. They tell me not to change her as it has been so long and her habits are ingrained after decades and I should just let her be. I am really sorry but to me, having made a mistake for a long time is no reason to continue making it; in fact, it should give one even more urgency/impetus to change immediately. They scold me and say if I loved her I should just indulge in her. Well I think thats stupid. Indulge indulge and then..? Watch her suffer and die? Of course it is easy to let her indulge because (1) they intend to get married and move off with their husbands and let me take care of my mother since i am the 'only son'. (2) they rather the mother love them and not get angry for denying her what she wants (3) they wont be footing the medical bill later. OK I know this last point is very cold hearted but reality is reality and when I have family and children and they have education needs etc I really really hate to let their opportunities be curtailed because the money that can be used for their education has gone to medicine for mother DUE TO A PREVENTABLE ISSUE. Unforeseen circumstances is 1 thing, but to be denied of an ideal situation due to preventable circumstances is just too much.
And I keep motivating my mother to remain on her trending-towards-healthy-eating-habit path by reminding her of the end game: that her life goal is to be able to retire and sit back and play with and enjoy the company of her grandkids and to be let down by your body when you are so close to your goal and hence render completely a failure of your entire life goal is just an absolute travesty.
I believe that if one loves another, one wants the best for another, and if that means making the effort to reduce risks by taking preventable measures, then thats what one should do. As long as both are constantly aware that the purpose is for the long term goal, and not for some sick denial pleasure.
- - -
This might be what some people call tough love. I think when one loves another, one must be prepared to do what is necessary, and not waver when the other pleads to indulge in unhealthy lifestyles.
The older I get and the more experiences I garner under my belt (like Hulk Hogan collecting em WWF belts), the more convinced I am that communication is the key to any successful relationship. And I mean any sort of relationship between any 2 ppl.
With proper constant and correct communications, a lot of problems are avoidable, a lot of issues are explainable, a lot of good things can be improved, a lot of miscommunications misunderstandings doubts suspicions can be clarified and eliminated and put to rest.
So henceforth, I shall endeavour to keep more of my thoughts n desires n emotions regarding my particular relationships past and present off these pages, and reserve them for f2f real life dialogue, which is their rightful place in the first instance. If it is something that needs to be talked about discussed or communicated, it will be done face 2 face. Nothing will be ranted out in these pages that if said aloud f2f would bring us closer together. What is the point of keeping my thoughts to myself and ranting it out here?
Friday, December 21, 2007
Normally I am quite well adjusted and don't suddenly think too much and get all emo n weepy n insecure. But early this morn, woke when the sky was dark, because the phone alarm's vibrations woke me up. It was set to 6am. And the vibrating alarm reminded me of an incident y'day, which led to more thinking and invariably ended up me feelin a bit emo n insecure tho not weepy.
I know what I feel for her. And I know what she feels for me. And I know we are both trying to make this work. We want it to work. Sure, we have our hiccups and hit our occasional bumps, sure, we don't communicate enough or in the right way, and sure, our characters personalities hobbies might be different. But hey that stuff is surmountable. We have to WANT to surmount it. I am prepared to do the necessary things. I am trying, and am doing, what I do know. But sometimes I feel like there is a barrier still, and I kick myself hard over it, for it is probably my doing. And then I get sad, really sad. And I remember, she mentioned once, like Don Henley said, Sometimes Love Just Ain't Enough.
I hope thats not us. Please God, don't let that be us. Then incidents happen and I know she is wondering if we might just not be right for each other, if she is wondering about breaking up, or if she is questioning this relationship, and I am sad. Then I remember James Blunt's 1973...and I remember us.
You're getting older
The journey's been
Etched on your skin
I guess I know this
We seemed so strong
We've been there and gone
I will call you up everyday Saturday night
And we both stayed out 'til the morning light
And we sang, "Here we go again"
And though time goes by
I will always be
In a club with you
It was 1973
Singing "Here we go again"
Wish I was sober
So I could see clearly now
The rain has gone
I guess it's over
My memory plays our tune
The same old song
And I think, perhaps, years from now, when she is in some Scandinavian country, in the wintry cold hugging a mug of hot chocolate, wearing leggings, sitting beside the window and looking out in the snow, will she remember us? Yes, you would be older then, and I guess what we went through what have left marks, and your age would show on your skin. We might've been strong, to do what you think was necessary. And then I'd show up on your doorstep, ring your doorbell and we;d both tumble into the house together. And we'd remember all those Saturday nights when I came by to pick u up in the middle of the night, and we stayed out til almost dawn, and when we went up the hilltop in the night til the morning light. And then we'd run out hand in hand and climb to the nearest hilltop and watch the sun rise again, just like we did, and we'd sing, here we go again!
Then I stop this fanciful thought. It would never get to that stage. Coz we'd never part.
Christmas is round the corner! Christmas is almost here!
Lets see what thoughts I have for Christmas this time around.
#1) The sermon last weekend was quite true, preaching about the commercialism of Christmas now, and how it has been replaced with Happy Holidays/Merry Xmas. Where the word Christmas seems to be something of an embarassment where we have to feel apologetic. Hah! Bah humbug! Consumerism and capitalism has hijacked the true spirit of Christmas and replaced it with buy buy buy spend spend spend! In a way I can understand why this is so...in a time where traditionally people buy gifts for their loved ones, shops probably feel hey look since you are going to buy SOMETHING anyway, why not buy from...us? But we must not forget the true spirit of Christmas, which to my ignorant eye, would be more along the lines of being a time of giving, a time of celebrating the birth of Jesus (although Dec 25 wasn't actually his birthday at all, but was instead a significant date on the paganistic calendar that the early Christians hijacked due to it being easier for pagans to switch over since they were already rejoicing on this date) etc. This is a chance to envelope ourselves in His presence, His birth. The magic and mystery of the coming of God's physical representative. I still remember nativity scenes and plays with a shiver.
#2) I would struggle to think of good idea for gifts, but I guess I can only pray to know what to get for my loved ones. For all good things come from above, do they not, and not really from 'me', so I shall not worry so much.
#3) I remember Christmas carols. I remember my favourite Christmas songs, White Christmas, Silent Night, O Holy Night, just to name but a few.
#4) Christmas plays in early primary school! Gosh...the nostalgia..the magic..bells..sleighbells in the snow..*shudders*..with cotton..bells (from Parkson)..costumes..little innocent children..
#5) My father's death. He died around Christmas time over 20 years ago, and I remember vivdly going into hospitals circa that era and seeing Christmas trees everywhere, with white cotton draped all over fake Christmas trees, ornaments, those golden balls, lights twinkling, presents wrapped underneath. Christmas trees and a nice fire by the furnace has always been a staple in my wonderful imagined world, and Christmas trees are an ESSENTIAL, and the right tree just generates the RIGHT mood, and placed near a crackling fireplace, with yellow lights, and the whole room dark, and socks above the fireplace, it is just magic. Though Santa would need fireproof clothes. So Christmas trees are bittersweet for me...can never totally divorce myself from its association with my earth father's death.
#6) Have always always ALWAYS wanted to celebrate a real Christmas in England, with a nice fireplace, a crackling fire, real wooden logs, a pair of tongs placed beside the fireplace, lovely red socks with white cotton edges placed sideways above the fireplace, a mantel, a Christmas tree twinkling silently beside, presents underneath, room lights switched off and illuminated only by the night lights outside the window and the fire and the Christmas tree lights, and outside when I press my face against the cold frosted window (hence my nose leaving a mark on the window) I see snowflakes. Will experience this before I die, this I will promise to myself. Resolved to spend Christmas eve in certain specific cities b4 I die as well.
Ah...ho ho ho ... just a few more days now!
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
really, i have had enough of being misunderstood.
and being made to feel like shit dirt.
frickin family never ever asks or listens or understands or cares or bothers, just jump on it and lecture.
WHAT THE HELL?
i mean, what the hell?
and then, suddenly i feel like im like emotionally needy or some shit.
need to go play some sports n get the anger out.
It's going to be Christmas soon! Everyone seems to be in the holiday mood and spirit but I haven't been feeling much of it or anything related to that vein.
Hope things pick up and gets better.. emotionally quite devoid dry and spent.
Contemplated seriously closing this blog down but guess shall give it another go round.
OK, lets see what upcoming events await. Weds work, have fun, Thurs free n easy, Fri free n easy, Sat free n easy, Sun free n easy, Mon work (half day please?!), and Mon night Jeannie's place and Tues morning church service and then free n easy and then.. back to work again.
Jeannie is coming back soon! Quite excited n glad to see her again. Quite possibly, she is my best female friend. Hmm...the fact that she is one of my bestest friend's girlfriend either cements everyones rship togetherness OR haha makes things that much more complicated.
Rather grouchy today.
Ok, shall post again later.
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Its a little fucked up sometimes how the world works, but the best part is, usually its all our own doing. Given gazillion chances, we never saw what is in front of us, we never realized so many things, so myopic was our vision. All we knew was this is good, and this is what I want, and this is what I will endeavour to make succeed.
This is The Path, The One.
Yet, we do not make that very clear. We dont do everything possible to make that known and upfront. We dont display that EAGERNESS to prove and exhibit this feeling of ours. And we think we can keep this entity bouncing and happy and manage out whatever bad things that could possibly come between us. Ho, we THINK we can manage it out, to 'protect' the entity. IS THAT protection? And we don't KNOW how to truly appreciate and treasure this wonderful, priceless entity. And until this precious precious entity is being threatened to be removed from us, do we finally wake up and realize the extent and depth of the hold that this entity has on us.
But by then its too late. The entity decides to move on. As it has every right to.
And we are left standing in our socks, broken, beaten, aged, a shell, a shadow of our former selves, no where near the person that she originally fell in love with. If she becasted a glance upon me, there'd b no flicker of recognition or warmth, because what you see is no longer who he was and the feeling with which she saw him with exists not either.
The BOY, as he has every right to be called since that is what he earned, will then grow to be a Man. A real man, for once. How do you measure a man? By what he does when no one is looking? By how he reacts when times are hard? By the number of veins on his arms and the definition of his jawline? A Man, is a man of principle, founded on a solid bedrock of a strong faith in God and His Word, who will know what the right thing to do at any given point is, and has the balls to do it, inspite of the intended or unintended consequences.
Unfortunately, this is a script seen many times b4. By the time he learns his lesson n grows up, its too late for the current, and they have to move on, and perhaps he gets to manifest his new self to the new.
Now he is all grown up, he walks on in Life, and perhaps he meets another. But he will never again be able to love the way he did, never again will he love another as strongly, deeply and truly as he had. There is absolutely no way that any other woman can worm her way into his heart the way his One True Love did.
To b continued...
Friday, December 07, 2007
As we go along, we go through experiences, and we pick up lessons along the way. Sometimes, it might just be an observation, sometimes it might be free. At other times, it might cost us. We just hope the price we pay is not too high.
My company’s internal communications website has a new quote on it everyday, some of it very timely and relevant. Today’s one, by Kettering, goes:
You can't have a better tomorrow if you are thinking about yesterday all the time.
I haven’t at all been thinking about ‘yesterday’ the last few months. But I should have stopped thinking about yesterday much longer before that.
There should really be no overlaps for certain things in life.
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There is a cat that jumps around my house and tries to go into my house and plays with my slippers. I’ve seen it play hunting my shoe, and I have seen it crouching and prancing, playing and full of life. Yesterday night as I went to my car to drive out, I saw him lying prone on the ground. So when I went over to it and realized it was dead, I was hit by a wave of shock.
There it was, a day ago, full of life, prancing and jumping, pretending to hunt my shoe. A living entity, breathing, who could feel pain and happiness and hunger, just like me. And now, lying prone on the ground, dead as a bag of nails, all its life snuffed out of it. From a being with Life, God's creation, it is now just a corpse, as ALIVE as your table or chair. It was deeply troubling to see something that one moment I did not appreciate at all and thought was a pest and was full of life, suddenly lie dead on the ground, forever gone from the face of this earth. It was then that I felt a tinge of sadness and that I was actually quite fond of it, or else I’d had done something to discourage its escapades into my house. I wish I had devoted a little bit of affection to it. And a message hit me.
Life is far too short and far too precious to spend moping. And far too short and far too precious to spend regretting. And far too short and far too precious to spend retrospecting, or wanting to turn back time, or undo the damages done and mistakes made. I recognize the mistakes I made, recognize the damage I did. There is nothing I can do now to undo the damage done. But I have learnt to truly appreciate what I have, to love it and to treasure it. All I can do is to behave myself, carry myself in an upright manner, stay true to my principles, and let my character show for itself, and que sera sera. With God's hand, we can make us back to how we were again, perhaps even stronger than ever before, for when partners go through trials and tribulations together, if they emerge together, they emerge stronger together.
I know we just have to stick together, and we can make this work. How many relationships have bowed to outside pressure and both parties decided to let go what could have been, what had promise to be, a splendid thing? Every couple goes through problems initially, of different natures. And in the grand scheme of things, we haven’t been together that long. Forever, til death do us part, IS a long time away.
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Don't listen to the naysayers. This is between us. Judge me by my actions and sincerity. We can, we really can make this work. And when we look back, years from now, we'd realize, hey, what a good thing we didn't call if off. What a good thing we stayed together. What a good thing faith is. What a good thing courage is. And we'd laugh this off. And hold each other's hands as we sit on our swing on the patio, and look out at the horizon yonder where the sun is setting...
Here, Shania Twain says it best. My new favourite song.
(When I first saw you, I saw love. And the first time you touched me, I felt love. And after all this time, you're still the one I love.)
Looks like we made it
Look how far we've come my baby
We mighta took the long way
We knew we'd get there someday
They said, "I bet they'll never make it"
But just look at us holding on
We're still together still going strong
(You're still the one)
You're still the one I run to
The one that I belong to
You're the one I want for life
(You're still the one)
You're still the one that I love
The only one I dream of
You're still the one I kiss good night
Ain't nothin' better
We beat the odds together
I'm glad we didn't listen
Look at what we would be missin'
I'm so glad we made it Look how far we've come my baby
My fav version, for reasons which are self evident.
Have faith in each other, and put ourselves in God's good hands.
Thursday, December 06, 2007
It's really stupid to live life go go go. Really, I have to sit down and ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS remind myself:
What is it that I want in life?
Is what I am doing getting me closer or further away?
Because, if I had held onto these truths, I would never ever have done something so wrong and so stupid, and which I regret so terribly and deeply.
It is no use regretting. That is the worst part - you cannot undo the damage, you can only hope to heal it as best as possible. And knowing how hurt someone you care about is, it just about drives me nuts, making me someone who has totally lost himself and his identity, acting in ways that is so not me.
This is me:
Yesterday, All my troubles seemed so far away,
Now it looks as though they're here to stay,
Oh, I believe in yesterday.
Suddenly, I'm not half the man I used to be,
There's a shadow hanging over me,
Oh, yesterday came suddenly.
Why she Had to go I don't know, she wouldn't say.
I said, Something wrong, now I long for yesterday.
Yesterday, Love was such an easy game to play,
Now I need a place to hide away,
Oh, I believe in yesterday.
Why she Had to go I don't know, she wouldn't say.
I said, Something wrong, now I long for yesterday.
Yesterday, Love was such an easy game to play,
Now I need a place to hide away, Oh, I believe in yesterday.
Come on Alex, get a grip.
* Attempting to pull myself together, seize ctrl of my life and regain my identity...
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There was an era in my life (not completely buried, mind you!) where I was totally enraptured and enamoured with previous eras. I wanted to live during the colonial years, I wanted to live during the swinging 60s and the seventies, I wanted to experience the vibrant spirit of those times, with Carpenters, Sinatra, Marley, Hendrix, Morrison, and, how can we forget, the Beatles, who defined, and WERE the 60s, giving the inspiration and spirit to the entire rhythm underlying that era.
Reading Tony Parsons' 'Stories We Could Tell' (which I thoroughly enjoyed), I was seized by this desire to grow out my hair and leave it long and straight, ala John Lennon, and hunt for a pair of orange tinted sunglasses. Alas, working in my environment, that would have got me fired immediately for being a suspected homo.
There was a time when I was totally into the Beatles, and they were among the first artistes whose songs I could play on the guitar. I remember back when I was much younger, wandering around on foot around the park near my house and near Palmerston house in the night, carrying my guitar, and playing Let It Be, I Wanna Hold Your Hand, Yesterday, And I Love You So...everything takes on an extra dimension in the dead of the night, with no1 but your guitar (and perhaps ghosts), with the wintry cold adding a touch of atmosphere. There were flights of fancy, whereby I'd be a music writer, get published in Rolling Stones magazine, just like the dude in Almost Famous (which has a kick ass OST).
Watching 'Across the universe' the other day, I was transported back in time into those days, those silly dreams I had...ahh...but I was never one to lust after the free love and free sex.. I was more into the whole atmosphere, the styles, the freedom and bravado to wear whatever, the music, the whole friendly spirit of things. It was a good movie, driven entirely by covers of Beatles hits.. I loved strawberry fields.
Seems like everything is going backwards into the sixties for me these days. There was my company's annual dinner, which would have been nice to throw on one of m uncle's old outfits haha but only if my darling could go with me, otherwise it'd be meaningless and I much rather spend time with her than to not be with her.
If we look at Paul McCartney then, and now, what a world of difference. I think its better to do a Lennon and die whilst you are on top of your game. Unless you can age gracefully, which very few artistes can do.
Wednesday, December 05, 2007
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Our future and hope
What an encouraging Word this must have been to the followers of Jesus. When our lives don't make sense and our future looks hopeless, the Bible gives us a new perspective. God says, I KNOW the plan for you, so seek Him earnestly with all our hearts but not occasionally or half heartedly.
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God, I don't know what your plan is. Only in Your infinite wisdom do you know. Right now my life doesnt make sense. It is spinning out of control, but dont worry, because I have a plan to put it all back together again, and with Your blessing and hand, I am sure I will quickly be right again.
First things first - career suffered severe blows this last 1 week, and must be righted again. 2ndly, got to hit the gym and exercise more. 3rdly, need to tidy up my room, clear out watever remnants of undesirable elements there are. 4th, spend time with the family. 5th - eat healthily and gain weight again, of which I have dropped roughly 3-5kg recently. Emotions should always be kept in check and never allowed to make me lose control - but this was an extreme case, and thus I make allowances for myself.
But the most pressing urgent issue is the one where I have made the greatest mistake thus far. God, please show me the way to help heal her heart. Give me the clarity of mind to know what is right to achieve this, because desire alone is insufficient, and help me right things again. Right now things might not be ideal. I know I will be doubted, looked upon suspiciously, have a low tolerance for error, and every little thing can be a trigger to a very undesirable ending. But I truly care for her and this stuff will be like little flecks of dandruff to flick off my shoulder.
Its not easy. But its OK, because it is necessary, it is understandable. I just want to patiently heal her, make her happy and whole and capable of love again. I just want to remove her hurt, and earn her trust again, and this time I will not fail. With your blessing, I can overcome this.
Monday, December 03, 2007
In a man’s life, there are only a very few defining moments.
The moment he earns his first pay check. The moment when he first knows with absolute certainty that this is the woman he loves, that for this woman, he will go through anything for her, that he cannot live without her. The moment he gets married. The moment he becomes a father.
I’ve made mistakes in my young life. Youth is not an excuse, and I am not trying to make it so. People say when a relationship gets to certain points, one should let go, and start again afresh with someone else. If one stays on, even if one can take it and is willing to, is/can the other party? One does not need to have a relationship where one has a black mark permanently against one. One can start again, find someone on equal terms. If you are young, you will forget, you will move on and meet someone else, and in time, you will look back on this as merely a puppy love. You will grow to love another. But you know what? THIS is that moment. That defining moment when I know I love this woman like I have and can love no other before and after again this way, when I know that I want to fight for us to stay together.
Perhaps after a severe jolt, a relationship has a certain scar in it. But I know this much: I am sincere, I genuinely want it to work and am willing to try for it, my love is still strong, and as long as God has his healing hand on us, we will be happy again. I have faith. I know I might be doubted, treated with less than ideal warmth. I know it will take a while to nurture the affection and emotion again. But I am willing, by God, am I more than willing. I know what I had, and I am willing to persevere and show my sincerity to get us back again to how we were. I want to shower her with affection so she can once again bask in the secure feeling of knowing undoubtedly where she stands in my heart. I will not mind nor will I complain. I made my bed and I will lie on it. I want to make things right for us again, I want to love her and make her happy again, and bring her the happiness she so deserves, I want to be that man she envisioned me to be, and give her the relationship she has always dreamed of. I want that chance to be the one who loves her, gives her love and happiness, heals her wounds, and make her right again. I want to patch up that hole in her heart, and sleep beside her every night possible.
If I have to migrate, I will. I want to, I can see the justifications, why another country can give us a better life, can give our family a good lifestyle. She was right all along, as she always is. I have learnt to respect her and truly appreciate her, for the way she thinks. She was willing to give up her dreams for me! And I almost threw her away. This time, we are sticking together, no matter how far we have to go to be together. We shall go away together, then we can both keep our dreams – her of being in her favourite country and not Malaysia, and me, of being with her together forever finally. We shall go away, and build our new life together, our little lovenest, and surround our house with happy healthy children and lots of music, good food and a wonderful library.
No woman can have a greater gift than that of having a husband she knows will always have her back. This means not only someone who can finance her needs and to a certain extent, her frivolous whimsies, but also someone who really has her best interests and happiness at heart. Someone who does the little things, who makes her feel loved and appreciated and wanted, someone who she can count on, who she knows is really her own and all hers, never sharing her with anyone else. Someone who she knows will never recognize temptation, never acknowledge temptations and will have the sense to recognize the right path, the discipline to never waver from it, and the non desire to ever do otherwise.
Sometimes things are really simple. Never lose sight of the end goal, and always ask myself is what I am doing right now bringing me closer or further from my end goal?
The answer will determine my actions.
Among the many tragedies in Life, one of the greatest is that, sometimes, boys learn their lessons too late. This tragedy is magnified not just because of the effect that this has on those who did wrong (although the effect is great) but because of the effect that this has on the innocent, hitherto perfect one who loves him, who might pay the price of his lessons by carrying around the scar that he has left on her.
How do you mend and heal a broken heart? How do you earnestly try to show that you have indeed learnt your lesson, almost paid the heaviest price imaginable for it, and sincerely work to care, love and heal a person’s broken heart again? How do you win back someone’s trust? Can you even win back someone’s trust? That someone who has always had trouble trusting people, letting him into her heart, allowing him into her life, giving him a special place in her, and forever not allowing anyone else to come close before this. How do I show that seeing that scar on her hurts me as much as it does her, how do I help to carry some of the pain from it, how do I if possible take it all onto myself, and how do I slowly heal and erase that wound and replace it with the brand of Love that we both want?
I did that scar to her. She is perfect, the most wonderful perfect girl I have ever met in my life, and I have met many. She is kind and sweet, loving and giving, generous and big hearted. She is wonderful with babies, has the gentlest patience and nature with them. She is pretty, has the sweetest smile, the most feminine laughter, and the most wonderfully spaced gap toothed grin I’ve ever seen. When I imagine myself with a happy family, she sits royally on the throne as my wife, and I see her as the mother of my kids, and I see myself showering her and bringing breakfast in bed for her. Her girlish laughter and hobbies, her jumping up and down with joy, her traipsing everywhere in those Japanese flip flops, every bit of those, in recollection now, tugs at my heartstrings. Her soft cheeks bob out like Mickey Mouse when she smiles, and her eyes twinkle when she is amused. Oh what I’d give to hear that loud genuine laugh again. She is smart, she is sensible, and she has the quirkiest sense of humour. We have similar outlooks, lifestyles, and even love the same books and music. I love the way she bobs up and down in rock concerts, the way she gazes dreamily out the car window, the way she rocks side to side when she walks, and the little zipped pockets of her Capri pants. I love that extra lump of flesh on either side of her thighs. I love the smells, the sounds, the smiles, the sighs, even the little burps. I love the little lines and bumps, every crease and crevice of her body. She has the nicest shoulders and arms, and the smoothest skin you’d never believe it was not a baby’s. She was … perfect. I loved, and love more with every moment, looking at her, gazing at her face, her lips when she eats.
And she was mine. All mine. And she envisioned the kind of love we’d have was the kind she’s dreamed of all these years, the kind that I had dreamed of all these years. We’d have the most awe inspiring, all encompassing, loving, giving, deep, enriching type of love that we’ve been dreaming of since we could dream of such things. She wanted a man she could trust, whom she could lean on and rely upon, whom she could call her own, and have absolute faith that he’d always do the right thing for them. She wanted a man deserving of the deep type of love she knew she could and wanted to give to the right person. And she thought he was the one, and she WANTED him to be the one, and in spite of the doubts and voices in her head, she prayed, oh how she prayed, and she decided to put her happiness and unblemished record in his hand and took that leap of faith.
And he became the happiest man around. A happier man you never did see, for people commented on his constant smiling, joking and happy ways. He was absolutely overjoyed, filled to the brim with his feelings for her. It gave him no greater joy than to see her laugh, see her smile, to see her being fed well, and see her sleeping beside him, snoring or open mouthed though she might be. He was overwhelmed with joy during their times in Melbourne, and he wished it wouldn’t end. Running around the city, waking up beside her and falling asleep beside her in the greatest city in the world, holding her when she was cold, warming her towels for her, taking photographs with her…he truly did feel complete and blessed, because here he was frolicking with the greatest girl in the world with whom he wanted to marry. The breakfast, the dinners, his favourite restaurants, the wandering around in the cold, breakfast at Miss Marple, her company was perfect in every way, and he could not ask for more. He gazed at her tenderly when she wasn’t aware, and he enjoyed every little touch of her.
But the story is not complete. His character up to that point was still not mature, not firm, and not as developed as it should be. He lacked good sense, was short-sighted and most of all, was not as strong as he should have been. His love for her was strong, and his desire to protect her from the doings of his flaws blinded him, and all he could think of was to shield and shelter her away and keep her wrapped warmly and snugly in his love for her while he put an end to the other issues that had dragged on for far too long. He wanted to keep her away from troubles, just remain happy and bouncy, and let him deal with bad things himself and not let it affect them. And hence, made the wrong choices, choosing to deceive her instead of doing what was good and true. And in doing so, despite her repeated pleas and chances, more than was reasonable or deserved, he did not do the right thing immediately, although he accelerated his external efforts to kill off the reasons for the deceit. And, as such things go, by and by, she found out.
Oh if only he had a time machine, he would do things so differently. For one, he would definitely have done goodbye when he said goodbye, never to entertain in any way anything whatsoever from the past in any form or shape, and never to feel pity, never to feel anything except to keep his eyes on his one true love all along. If only he had stood firm and struck at the iron decisively, he would never have hurt her so badly, never made her suffer so deeply. Right from the start he should have communicated totally openly, shared with her what was happening in all aspects of his life, and not tried to keep her happy and manage it himself. That is not a partnership. He should have never ever entertained any sort of communication and contact with who he had decided to call it quits with, he should have gone completely cold turkey, and he should have kept her in the loop at all times instead of trying to shield her and then risking her finding out and shooting to pieces her priceless trust of him.
But that’s all done and over with. At this point, the damage is done on both parties. The lesson is learnt. And he hopes, with all his heart, with every sinew, fibre and cell in his body, from the external epidermis right down to the marrow, that there is hope yet, that he can hold her, that she can lean her face against his chest, that he may hold her again, pat her head, stroke her hair, peck her face every morning and every night and even in the middle of the night when he wakes while she sleeps, that he may again once again whisper into her ears, that he may be granted sole privileges to her heart, that he may rub her back and give her soothing massages.
He is grateful for this chance to make amends. That is all he aims for now. For just one more chance to show her how much she means to him, to show her that thanks to her he understands what it means to be a man, to be strong firm and steady, to have an resolute and unwavering heart, to show that he knows what love means, what commitment means, and he wants to shower her with appreciation, give her flowers on ordinary occasions, just to be able to gently massage and soothe away the pain and replace it with happy thoughts and happiness again, to bring back that beautiful little girl whom he’d known before and loved so much.
Please God, dear God, please, give us the strength wisdom and capability to carry this out. Thank you for answering my prayers when I needed your hand and touch on this relationship, thank you for keeping us together, for showing me the sign, thank you for this new lease of life, thank you for giving me 1 more chance to make right and amend all my wrongs, thank you for making her generous enough to accept me again, grant us your divine help to slowly heal her pain, to make her right again, to make her happy and bask securely in my love thank you father god. Let me show you how deeply grateful I am, and I shall never fail you nor deviate from your path. Thank you for your guiding healing hand on this relationship. Thank you. Amen.
Chosen One 1 Peter 2:9. This is a wonderful word of encouragement and it reflects the great destiny of us who believe in Jesus. Because God called us “chosen one” we are to be witness to the watching world, not just with our words but also with our actions. The way we run our business, treat our neighbours and nurture our children. How we need the Holy Spirit to make us more like Jesus so that others will see Him because of what they see in you.