“What’s next for me?” “What’s in front of me?” These were the questions that I needed to answer every time I’d feel like I have reached the end of myself especially when the pandemic hit and I didn’t know how to live the life of full-time blogger, writer and content creator that I always daydreamed to be. I wished and worked day and night for a freedom lifestyle but when I got it, I wasn’t prepared for it.
I didn’t know how to live it. I wasn’t prepared to be free. I didn’t know how to be free without feeling like life was eating me alive. I was sabotaging myself without knowing it. “What’s next?” I asked myself. And no I am not kissing my creative pursuits goodbye. I just have that need to continue exploring versions of myself for more experiences and growth. I am 36, single, childless and going back to school.
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I don’t know how I feel or what I really think unless I grab a pen and paper and write about it. I need something that I can hold in my own hands to be able to tell myself that I am truly at peace and I have clarity. I need to always do a mind map or else, I’d go on dumping whatever piled up inside me to other people or destroy the peace that I have worked so hard for to achieve.
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So much happened in the last three months that I kept setting aside every urge to create and it’s now starting to take its toll. I thought, I have already healed and I have gotten better at handling my emotions well but it’s the build up of thoughts and how they’re all making me feel that’s making it hard to bear.
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It was easy to say that I’d let bliss and beautiful sensations marinate in my whole being but the irony is that these beautiful sensations were parallel to the amount of the struggles and challenges I was and still facing.
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It has been an extreme combination of ups and down and if I wouldn’t stop and check on myself and how everything has been making me feel, I might probably end up feeling lost and disconnected from myself again.
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Living slow, mindfully and intentionally isn’t easy as I have imagined and expected it to be and it gets frustrating at times.
My creative soul felt ignored and the fact that I am always writing on my journal wasn’t enough. The more that I am trying to ignore this need to sit with my creative self, the more that I am allowing more tabs go open in my head and add weight on what I am currently carrying.
The more that I am complacent about not letting all these emotions out, the more that it gets harder to bear. The more that I am overthinking. The more that I am overwhelmed by emotions and thoughts that I am forcing to compartmentalize in my head. It is not healthy. I don’t like it. But healing means learning how to live and incorporate everything that I have done to heal in my everyday life.
The fact that I have PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) and hormonal imbalance and I am still forgetting that this makes me more vulnerable to depression and anxiety if I don’t make conscious efforts to take care of myself. This doesn’t have a cure and sometimes, I can’t help but ask, can I not just live like a “normal person” who doesn’t seem to worry about having enough time making sure that they have all their emotions on check.
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This is the part of the accepting that I am a very spiritual person that is still hard to live with. I can not not unsee everything after spiritual awakening and there’s indeed no turning back anymore. Spiritual awakening is a beautiful and I am grateful for the depth and whole new meaning it has given my life yet it’s harder to be fully present, mindful and intentional if I know that I haven’t given myself enough time to listen to all my thoughts and ask myself how these thoughts made me feel.
This is the only thing that I don’t really like about this journey. This physical body wants to be out there, do normal fun things with normal people yet my soul wants to be alone, recharge and enjoy the silence. And being an empath, sometimes I am not sure whether the emotions are really mine or something I have absorbed from whoever I spent time with.
The good thing is, I am more equipped now. I have this blog to thank to remind me how it all used to look like for me. There’s a record of I was able to cope with everything I had to go through. I am not actually starting from scratch but from experience.
Coming back home
My fears are all liars. My ego and pride did not also make good consultants. I am loved even during the darkest days of my spiritual awakening and I was actually never alone. I just felt alone because I feared that nobody understood me when it’s just I was so scared to stand my ground because I myself, didn’t have enough words to justify what I it was that I wanted.
For the first time in years, I started feeling a different kind of whole that I have never felt in my life. Finding myself, my passion and clearly stating what I didn’t want to have in my life helped but most of all, I stopped feeling homeless.
A new kind of love
I long stopped believing in love at first sight until I saw my youngest brother’s two sons. They grew up without seeing nor knowing me but I have proven how blood is thicker than water the moment we started to bond. I basked in the purity of their energy and how it reminded me to be more present.
I feel more rooted, more motivated and inspired to see the next chapter of my life with them in it.
Using my voice and screaming if I have to
I have long enough stopped believing in screaming to bring my point across or when braving hard conversations and instead, improve my argument even if I was crying and my hands and voice were shaking. I have learned to master calming down even if I was blowing huge balls of fires.
But I realized that in this life, not everyone sees that as strength. Most of the time they see calmness as opportunity to show who has more power.
In these last three months, that was questioned. I saw myself in situations where even if I was trying my best to use my softest voice to deliver my points across, I needed to force myself to scream just not to be perceived as a dumb Asian girl who would shake and do as I was told and not say anything out of fear and intimidation.
I hate to say that but it is the truth and the harsher truth is the realization that I didn’t go through the toughest situations in my life for nothing and those would just be wasted if I would not learn how to stand up for myself. I hate paying for its consequences and the death inside caused by betraying my own self by keeping my mouth shut.
Saying Goodbye to freedom lifestyle
For years, I have over-romanticized. Over-fantasized, over-daydreamed about, worked my a*s day and night to have a life I don’t need a vacation from. I was ruthless about building it that I had no qualms about ending relationships that I knew wouldn’t bring me there.
At some point, being alone, working on my own, having my own pace, the silence and the freedom, made me feel like my life has lost direction again.
As healing started coming, the need to always be somewhere stopped. As healing started coming, I started feeling that I finally have roots. The need to isolate for the fear of being misunderstood stopped. I am able to slowly tolerate more as my need to be understood subsided. I stopped taking things personally. I have learned to open my mouth less.
Going back to school
If it’s something I fear, it might be something I must try.
Not everybody is given the chance to start again in this life. In this stage, I feel so grateful to experience everything that I thought I missed in my younger years. I am so thankful to be chosen to experience this life and to find myself in situations where I am able to say that the most cliché life or motivational quotes are true.
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I am so thankful that in this life, I am confident and I have a different conviction when I say that nothing is impossible. I honestly don’t know where this life is going to bring me but I trust that God has better plans for me. I might feel a little lost or even confused again at this point but not like the last time, I am going to enjoy this time around.
Nobody has everything figured out and I am happy to sit with all the emotions this new chapter is going to give me and I am really looking forward to all of them.
Homesickness is real
It hasn’t been easy the last four weeks since coming back to Germany. I needed to force myself to get up and do what needs to be done despite having to remind myself to literally stay awake during the day. I didn’t use to mind jet-lag. I was my boss. I had my time. I lived slow, mindful and intentional. These last four weeks put all of the theories and lessons I have long convinced myself that I have learned during my stay in my own rock bottom.
With school, paperworks, no help at home with chores, I was forced to level up my adulting game. I was fighting guilt and shame for trashing my body with food I just grabbed from the supermarket and bread that I have sworn I would never make a staple food again but needed something quick to survive.
I suddenly miss my sheltered Philippine life where I need not clean my space, wash and fold the clothes, go grocery shopping nor think about cooking or what to eat and where someone would drive me everywhere.
As I chew my sandwich, I miss our warm and freshly home-cooked food and the people I shared them with. For the first time in years, I felt homesick and more appreciative of the life I turned my back from. But for the first time in years, I have more conviction and motivation why I am doing things. I feel more rooted.
I guess the reason why I feel so overwhelmed right now is that even if the new chapter of my life has already started, I still have a lot of unlearning of the habits I picked up during my survival mode. That I still need to get used to the fact that I just needed to learn them to survive but they’re not the way to live my current and especially my future life.
My unhealed harsh self was hard to ignore but I said, this is not permanent. I am still adjusting. After years of thinking I was alone and that life couldn’t get any better, which I almost believed, my subconscious still has that. As I go back to the “real world”, I am still unlearning so many things. I am like a home-schooled child learning how to play and work with other kids.
I need to learn how to take instructions and comply with deadlines in a language I thought I knew but realized I still need to do a lot of work of. But today, in my haze to get everything done I realized, I am not entirely applying what I have said I have learned. I am rushing.
However, I am grateful for little reminders that as long as I am doing my best, I need not take anything else that serious. I am grateful for being reminded that nothing is worth stressing over.
Nothing is worth more than my mental health. That this new chapter doesn’t mean that I am forgetting everything that I went through but it’s meant to be a reminder that I have made peace with my past and that those experiences have proven that I can surpass anything that are still to come.
I must learn to live with the fact that I am no longer alone and that I have come accept that no man is an island. That it is okay to feel overwhelmed and frustrated because I am still adjusting because I got used to the fact that I needed to be hyper-independent, over achieve and over perform because I chose a path that nobody understood but as I healed, I saw that also healed the people around me.
It makes no more sense to be so defensive and deprive myself the fun and happiness that I know I also deserve.
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