The following story is my contribution to LiLu’s TMI Thursdays. This happened during my trip to India at the beginning of this month.
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A gentle knock was heard on our hotel door. My two roomies who had been with me on my India journey were fixing eachother’s hair. Michael, a dynamic gay boy from North Carolina with idealist heart and big ideas, placed the hair straightener down and opened the door. It was the hotel manager, wondering when my flight was so he could arrange a taxicab pick-up three hours in advance.
“How are you?” Michael said, enthusiastically. He has a way with Indian men. Their eyes light up every time he speaks, like he was a famous Bollywood celebrity. “Come in!”
We could tell this was a different country when Michael chats it up with the hotel manager and he’s invited in to our room. Colloquial conversations were exchanged and Michael mentioned how he just wanted to find a place that could do a good massage.
“I do massage,” the hotel manager said. “For you good people, I can do it for free.”
Michael went first and the Indian man placed his fingers on his thighs and legs, pressing and squeezing up and down. It seemed like he only spent all of two minutes when he finished and went on to massage Sharon, a beautiful Laotian girl from California. This time, it seemed he took a bit more time, massaging up and down her thighs, the small of her back and waist, and her buttocks. Concentrating idly on her buttocks, he asked in a soft, husky voice “is this OK?”
Ten minutes later, it was my turn. By this time, I realized he favored Sharon over Michael, and her buttocks over anything else and was a bit hesitant. Was this guy really a masseuse in training or just a bit horny? As I lay down on the bed for my turn, he hovered over me and started to massage my legs. His long nails pinched against my skin as he grabbed my thighs. His breathing became heavier, huskier.
“Is this OK?” I tried to nod yes. But in actuality, I’ve had better massages.
He circled my buttocks again and again. His breathing still laborious. Was it the physical activity and exertion or something else? The situation was rather amusing as he continued to massage my butt, still breathing hard, as he grabbed each check in circular motions.
Michael, bless his heart, noticed what was going on and motioned that we were about to leave. “We kinda have to go now…” The hotel manager, realizing this was his cue that he had exhausted his welcome, slapped my waist and then slapped my butt for good measure. I had my free massage and he had his free grope sesh with foreigners.
Smiling from ear to ear, he thanked us for our time. Sharon mentioned her thanks for a great massage. “Anything for you beautiful women,” he replied.
As he walked out the door, the three of us looked at each other and started laughing. “What just happened?” Michael asked.
“I don’t know but this is going on my blog!” I replied.
“I figured it was fine as long as he didn’t start fingering me,” Sharon joked.
“The Cui klan is quiet, but strong,” my tita (aunt) said to me.
Up until now, I hadn’t ever considered that my personality traits had to do with a family unit as a whole, and not just me, as an individual. This quiet confidence I have, that embodies my introverted nature, embodies my family heritage too? Who would have known. I didn’t realize such a thing could be a familial trait. But it’s true. My family here are small, quiet people. But strong. Just like my family has a handful of talented artists, so too do I.
This “quiet confidence” that I have that everything will work out? It’s embedded in generations. I like that. It makes me smile, and nod like the rolling of the hills.
In America, it’s so easy to forget where you came from. Not only is it a young, “melting pot” nation, it is also built on a model of Independence because of it. American’s rugged independence is so embedded in my world view that going back to my roots, to Asia, has got me so surprised to realize I am a part of something. I am a part of the Cui klan, and the Cui klan is strong. I am strong. It makes me proud to think that I am made up of a collective family tree, ancestry and heritage. It sounds so silly to write that as if it’s some big revelation, but I really do forget sometimes, so far removed from this place. Never mind the fact that half of my family history is a complete mystery to me. I never met my biological dad.
The Philippines is both foreign and familiar to me all at once. The dialect is familiar but foreign, as I still grasp hard to understand the language and my surroundings. I am slowly picking up words and what I call communicating in “three-year-old sentences”. I had a full on, legitimately Filipino conversation with a neighbor boy on Facebook for about 10 minutes and was proud of myself that if I couldn’t form sentences out of my mouth, where my brain synapses are still much too slow, at least I could type them out. I’m learning and that’s all that matters.
Being a part of the Cui Klan in a foreign culture, yet, my culture, is confusing at best. I blend in too easily here. I’m not a Westerner, or a Foreigner, but legitimately a Filipina. People assume I speak the Cebuano dialect and then I am found out when they realize I don’t. They assume I am Catholic and so I say a little prayer and make the sign of the cross like a good little Catholic girl should. Everything about it is foreign, including the religion. It’s equal parts sad as it is fascinating to me. Sometimes, I wish I could be that good little Catholic girl, but I know my spirituality is better off beyond boxes and statues and communions and churches.
I have a quiet confidence, and I got it from my family. I have an artistic touch and I got it from my family. It’s all here, in plain site. My family, like me, no longer practice their art in the traditional way, but they have transferred their creativity in other ways. Through cooking amazing meals, and through starting their own hair salon. And, through writing. A quiet confidence that things will happen naturally when they’re meant to, and meant to be.
I am a walking contradiction. At times, I say that I embrace the unknowns. That I am comfortable in insecurity and no longer scared of impermanence. Lately, its been more about that pit feeling in my stomach. That longing to have someone cheering me on. Someone to be my rock. Because I am out of my comfort zone and everything seems topsy-turvy. Because I just moved to the Philippines to be with my family and even though I’ve been here many times on vacation, I have never lived here for an extended time since I was three, which almost doesn’t count. Because I feel awkward here, a Fil-Am (Filipino American) expat in her own country.
I don’t know if this is homesickness or lovesickness or a bit of both. When my life plans seem so unstable, I long for other areas in my life to fill the void. I long for love. Simply put, what I’m feeling is a kind of unconfidence about my work life and freelancing that makes me feel unconfident and wanting in other areas of my life. Or, I could just be missing my friends, new and old. To fill the void–any void–by relying solely on others is unhealthy. I’ve made it a goal, particularly knowing that my stay here is impermanent, not to get attached to anyone. This year, I live life solo. I don’t need anybody. But that still doesn’t stop me from feeling a little lost, and a little lovesick.
What can I do to fill my void?
I already know the answer. It’s just a matter of having the confidence to do them.
Meet new people. Make new friends. – Because even introverts need contact.
Work on my portfolio site. – You know, the one that isn’t up yet.
Design a business card – Marketing #2 for point #1
Easy as one-two-three, right? Not necessarily. Not when you lack confidence in your abilities. Not when you feel it’s hard to assert yourself in such a community based Asian way of living, where I am part of the family unit first and foremost. Despite traveling alone with a one-way ticket, I knew I wasn’t coming here to live independently, and it’s a culture shock that I am definitely still getting used to. Delving into my family and community of friends, as well as taking the steps to establish myself should help my feelings of lovesickness.
I’m an anxious person. It might not seem like the trait of someone who travels and moves to a different country, but I am anxious. I’m anxious about my future. I’m anxious about yes, love. I’m anxious about what my career will look like and if I’ll ever be where I want to be with a business. I’m anxious about starting a family, and if that’s even in the cards for me, at all. I’m anxious about what this year will be like. I’m anxious if I’ll even live it up. I’m anxious that there will be a natural disaster while I’m here. I’m anxious of turning 27 this year and what that “means” in society and that I don’t live up to my age. I’m anxious of this thing on my blog that says travel, culture, art, and erotica and that I don’t live up to that.
Eastern philosophy and “living in the moment” has really interested me because of how anxious I am. Meditation can help calm me down. Rarely do I show my anxiousness to anyone, or even on this blog. With barely anything to grasp and center me, it’s hard to fight my feelings of wanting someone to hug me and tell me it will all be OK. Someone who has full support of what I’m doing. Someone who can help rationalize my mind when I’m going crazy (also, this could just be that time of the month). Someone who can love me even if I’m being crazy (because lets face it, it comes with the boobs and estrogen). I’m anxious that all this talk about wanting kids and being “lovesick” means that nature is telling me to nest when I am so anti-settling down NOW or possibly EVER and that turning 27 is making me kind of a little weird. I am anxious that this post isn’t good enough and my writing is crap, boring, trying too hard, or unfunny. I am anxious that I have no idea where this post is going because I had no idea I would even go off on an “anxious” tangent that I even had to change the title. Will my anxiety ever stop? When pigs fly!
Obviously, this post doesn’t know where to end! So *poof* end.
Do you ever meet people and just know that they’ll be life-long friends? The kind that you’ll actually keep in touch with? Being thrown into a new environment with a hand full of random people kind of does that to you. With new environments comes shared new experiences and lots of bonding for a short amount of time. By the end of India, I felt I had known my friends for months, and not just three weeks. Soon, the question of “why are YOU in India?” became a round table sharing exercise, as we began to get a sense for eachother’s stories.
We found ourselves in India, and with nothing to hold on to but our experiences and eachother, we became tight by the end of the trip. Each of us on our own journeys and our own time lines. Some staying longer than others.
Naturally, we, the Americans seemed to bond better while the Australians and Europeans seemed to form their own cliques. By the end of my stay, my new found friends planned a weekend going away/party trip to Delhi. We went to an upper-class bar for dinner and drinks followed by a night of dancing. The venue looked so westernized, with its random mix of Indians donning westernized clothing, or fancy saris. The place was a complete 180 to the face of poverty that I was familiar with on the Indian streets. Working with the slum school kids and just walking around India in general, there is no hiding the developing world’s poverty. It almost made me feel guilty for indulging when others could not. It felt wrong, backwards, a little self-serving. In any event, it was an eye-opening look at the “other side” of India. The side with money and style, that even I felt a little out of place and out of my league.
Despite the bonding, my one fear is that we don’t keep in touch, because keeping in touch is hard. Because the magic of India doesn’t last when you’re back in your old environments. Because the only thing that binded us together was India, and without the crazy world of shared new experiences, we’ll be strangers on the street once again. Still, I know that I have made some lasting bonds with a couple of other volunteers. By the time I’m done with my year in Asia, they all want to have a get together in Las Vegas where we can find good Las Vegas deals. And they’re willing to wait a year until I come back to do so. Truly, I feel blessed to have met such wonderful people.
There’s really no other way to write it. Dozens of half starts, half thoughts and half remembrances. Halfway through this early morning. They say you find yourself in India. They say, wherever you go, there you are. You can’t push your problems aside. You can’t run away. At the end of the day, you’ll always have yourself. That’s the short version.
Travel is a road to self-discovery. Of pushing your boundaries and identifying your strengths and weaknesses. This cultural musical chairs is designed to keep us aware of the only thing we know best when everything else is so foreign; ourselves. Amidst the language barriers, in a country where hardly anyone speaks English, there I was. I found myself in India. The thought blew my mind even as I walked the ground, breathed in the shifting smells of dirt and garbage and smog, and felt the dust grind between my toe nails.
“I’m in INDIA!” The thought gathered in unison as my fellow travel peers and I bonded over first experiences. Time loses its grasp in this strange land. A day feels like a week and then a week starts to feel like a couple days. Three weeks wasn’t enough, but I know I’ll be back.
Navigating my emotional landscapes, I know that I am finally myself for the first time in a long time. This is what drives me to push forward, to keep on going. I feel stronger now, more independent. I feel like I’m being reborn and taking steps for the very first time. I feel like I have finally found myself. Old remnants of him no longer matter. The past is a bore that I don’t care to replay. The present is all that I ever have here, anywhere. Each new day is a new adventure. It always is, but travel makes it even more apparent. Look for the beauty in each day and you’ll find yourself there.
Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death. – Anais Nin
Anais Nin helped me in my process of becoming. My epiphany moment happened at a time after reading a simple quote. “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” Just like that, I knew I had to change my life and live it the way I wanted to, needed to. For myself this time, and not some lover.
I’m proud to be collaborating with Matt from Life Without Pants. Since the recording of my video, before going to India and then moving to the Philippines, I have had a few more epiphanies, so to say.
While working with the slum school kids in India, I had a rush of feeling and emotion come over me. It’s been over a week since I last graced that land and I still haven’t found the words to describe it. How do I even begin to approach such a topic and do it justice? Even as a writer, it’s hard to find the words.
India was the first time I experienced a moment of clarity while teaching. I felt like I could truly be a mother someday, and that I want to be. It was an indescribable feeling of awe in myself and my faith, and I just knew. The same way I knew I would see Metallica and that I would travel the Philippines alone. With that quiet determinism that I have once I make up my mind on something, I just knew.
While the topic of being a mother has always spinned my mind, especially as I get older, I’ve always been either/or on it up until now. I never felt so strongly about it until I worked with the slum kids. Yet, the thought of settling still makes me anxious. When my friends in the Philippines get envious of my lifestyle of “travel and adventure”, but then ask me where I’d like to live, and they mean where I’d like to settle down in, I have absolutely no clue. Even other fellow travelers I’ve met in India have told me they want to settle down and all I can think of is that that’s the death of me. Yet, somewhere in my being, I must want the same if I want to raise kids? The concept is backwards to me.
Before going out in complete panic, I remind myself that I’m here, now, in the present and I should stay here because the future does not exist. It is merely a concept to fill our heads with worry and anxiety. With quiet determinism, I know I will raise a kid and I know that it might not be the most traditional way (because lets face it, I am far from traditional), but it will work.
These moments of clarity are worth living for, and I hope to have more throughout my year, and my life.
Why do you want this trip, and what do you hope to get out of it?
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The cacophonous sounds of horn honks greet me as we navigate through the streets of Jaipur by tuk tuk, a three-wheeled auto rickshaw. They speak to each other with machinery. The intersections jam together with cars, motorcycles and rickshaws all trying to cross at once, in this tunnel vision of mufflers and wheels. I hold my breathe as the driver navigates his way across.
So this is India.
The gateway to my travels.
With its hustle and bustle and street haggling tricks, India is no doubt a cultural challenge for even the most seasoned traveler. Yet India is my first major travel adventure and my gateway to Asia. India, with its rich history and cultural treasures. India, with its poverty and caste systems that I witnessed through volunteering at a slum school. India, one of those things you can’t really describe, but just have to experience for yourself.
I’m here in Asia, now residing in the Philippines with my family, in hopes of traveling to other Asian countries. In hopes of (re)learning Filipino. In hopes of finding a direction for my life and career.
I’ve got the travel bug and the only thing I wonder is why hasn’t this happened sooner?
Six years ago, I told my tita (aunt) that I wanted to travel by myself next time I visit the Philippines and here I am. In college, during my Indian art history course, I told myself it’d be the first country I’d visit (outside of the Philippines, which doesn’t count since I was born here) and there I was. In high school, I told myself I would see a Metallica concert at least once in my life and a year later, I dated someone who happened to be obsessed with them and there we were, making out amidst the hordes of people in the crowd while over-the-top pyrotechnics lit up the stage.
I’m no prophet, but without even meaning to, I get what I want. Things work out. I had long since forgotten my comment to tita until she brought it up recently. A simple awe and wish to see India as a college student came true in only 5 years after graduation. And this calm assurance that I will see Metallica happened after randomly meeting someone who would soon become my lover.
A trip to Costa Rica would be exactly what I want at this exact time in my life. Sometimes, I feel like I’m cool for traveling and living in my home country for a year, and other times, I feel like a loser. It’s this ruse of put togetherness that I don’t feel I quite have. I don’t know what the hell I’m going to do with my life, and no one to call my love, so here I am. Single and living life to my fullest.
Blogging through Costa Rica, in essence, travel blogging and photography, are exactly what I want to get into based on my fused interests and the skills I offer. If India is the gateway to my travels, Costa Rica would be the gateway to what the hell I’m going to do with my life. A great portfolio piece. And a proud face for environmental and sustainable tourism.
Thanks to everyone who has contributed to my guest blog series and the amazing contributors who have done excellent jobs navigating this crazy existence. As promised, I have contributed my take on my prompt below. If you liked this series, let me know your feedback! It’s not too late to enter your story.
Here’s to You, Potential
I had this teacher in college. He taught Publication Design for my Graphic Design degree. He told us this story of how he hated working for the man. And how his friends were all more successful than him with their arty careers. Then, one day, he started his own magazine, and then publication sort of died so it grew into a clothing company for counter-culture vegans and vegetarians. He hasn’t turned back ever since.
He inspired me. He told me after class one day that I had talent. That I was a good designer! And that he used to be shy and quiet like me too. I think what he was getting at is this: I see your potential, and you have what it takes. If I can do it, you can too!
At least, that’s what I’d like to think he meant looking back at it.
The thing is, I’m lousy at compliments. Or was. I had such low self esteem that I couldn’t even acknowledge when someone would say something positive. I’d say thanks, of course, but inwardly, I would rip the compliment apart. He’s just trying to be nice. He doesn’t mean it. Look at all these designers in my class that are obviously so much better. I SUCK at design. It really was an inner struggle not to identify my talents in a personal way. They say you are not your job, but with talent-based professions, it’s extremely hard to be objective sometimes, and NOT take things personally.
The point is, we all have limitless potential but the only people that can hold us back is ourselves. And I held myself back in a major way.
Lately, I am feeling this change wash over me. It’s this trip. It’s this journey. I feel like I am being reborn; that I have finally begun to find myself.
Did he see something in me that I couldn’t see back then? Did he see a spark; a self-starter attitude just waiting to blossom? Did he see my counter-culture spirit before I even knew I had it in me?
Going to college, it was a struggle for me to feel like I fit in with my arty peers. They were interested in climbing the ladder. Going to New York. Making 60k or more. Most my teachers pushed this attitude, especially the teachers in advertising. I felt like if this was what graphic design was all about, I should surely fail. I even interned at an ad agency, regardless of the fact that I hated advertising, just to experience it first-hand; just to know for sure: I hated it.
When I was a kid, I wanted to be an author, then a teacher, and then an artist. I came to India to figure out how I could combine the three, and journeyed to the Philippines to figure out how to start a business. I volunteered at a slum school teaching kids English (mainly, their ABCs). I wanted to see how I could possibly combine non-profit work with design, and how I could possibly add teaching to the mix.
The thing is, you just do it. Designing a career means putting yourself out there. Jumping in even when you don’t know what you’re doing. Figuring it out along the way.
I don’t own a successful clothing company and I don’t want that. But this year, I endeavor to figure out what it is I’d like to do, and travel and have fun. Currently, I’m a freelance writer in the social media marketing sector and I’d like to take on travel writing and travel photography and wherever else my skills can take me. Eventually, I’d like to bring this back to design and have a one woman brand shop, but I can’t complain too much. I’m living in the Philippines and living my dream. And I’m slowly getting used to my new hats; as “writer”, “freelancer”, and “entrepreneur”.
Andrena is the first person that I ever guest blogged for at her blog, Theories of Anything I’m happy to host her here as she seems to have a very strong work ethic and passion for people. She is one of the first blogs that I started reading. Soulful and poetic.
Competition is the norm in the Caribbean. You have to always struggle and fight to be the best or at least in the Top20. Anything else and you wouldn’t be recognised. Recognition is supposed to be a good thing. With that comes scholarships and places in the top schools, work places and even social standing. Social standing is a must in a small island community of less that 120,000. That’s the culture I grew up in. Mathematics and the sciences were the choices of the intelligent while the Arts – well they were just arts reduced to being only hobbies.
My problem was that I was good at everything. I grew up wanting to be an Artist. My favourite artist, according to the English essay I wrote for my common entrance exam, was Jughead. You guys remember Jughead – Archie’s sidekick in the comics. He was never really understood by his peers and in most cases he was the odd one out, even through he moved with the cool Archie. Jughead was me. I wanted to be an artist, but to be recognised and accepted I chose to concentrate on the subjects that I was curious about, but found difficult. It’s not easy going to the top girls’ high school in the country and being in all the top sect classes. You can get A’s overall in all your subjects, yet still come near bottom of the class. The pressure was intense, but I learnt to work best under it.
I found myself following with the crowd subject wise and wanting the recognition of being “intelligent”. I left high school with high O’ level grades and the award for Top Maths student in my graduating class. That set the pace to do all sciences and maths at A’ levels and then Physics at university. Being with a guy all through university who was always competing with me didn’t help. I put my self-worth in all academic and career achievements because that was something he couldn’t take away from me. Yes, I wasn’t the prettiest and the tallest. I’m actually 5 5 and petite. Breast and hips are nearly non-existent, but at least I got my degrees and career! I dreamt of promotions, dream homes and travelling to exotic places with my 25 days holiday a year. I could manage working full-time and studying to be an Actuary full-time. Socialising? Pah! I socialise at work. Fun! Fun! Exotic lunch and dinner work do’s and fancy summer and Christmas parties! I was living the life of a twenty-something working in the renowned Canary Wharf financial district.
But was I living MY life?
The Universe – God – Life has away of shaking things up. Even through I was working intensely to fulfil the dream of most young women in this millennium of we-can-do-it-the-same-as-any-man, I was still a hippy at heart. I was always searching and applying to do creative short courses. It was during my Actuarial Masters degree that I develop a knack for creative multitasking – writing poetry and daydreaming while taking down notes and listening to the lecture. I was struggling with myself. I couldn’t see my life being a 9-5 type job. I wanted more and I prayed, talked and moaned about wanting more.
Then it happened…
My passport was stolen while starting a new job and I was forced to take a break from working, while I apply for a new passport and residence to live and work in the UK. That was July 2008 and I’m still waiting. In that time, I had to moan the girl that I thought everyone and myself wanted me to be. It has been a struggle. It’s not easy being unemployed in the recession. Every expense has doubled. Plus, when my friends all talk about promotion or making a deposit on a new house or holidays in far out destinations I get slightly jealous. I’m happy for them, but a little part of me feels bad because that was supposed to be my life as well. I feel like a bum because society dictates a woman to either have a career or kids and I have neither.
Have I lost my identity?
It is hard to find perspective, especially when you want to live, but can’t get out of the house because the train ticket is too expensive because my weekly budget is tighter than a g-string on a sumo wrestler or when you can’t find anything to wear because “all” have become worn from the 18 months of non-stop use or not appropriate for the weather or when you want to start a new creative endeavour but lack the cash to pay for the course. It becomes unbearable at times when you believe that the world is passing you by. It’s a daily struggle to be content and patient.
What have I been reduced to?
Is “reduced” the right word? I guess it is all about perspective. If I look on the bright side, I have done so much – starting a blog, volunteering for two great youth charities, writing and taking pictures nearly every day, achieving a youth work certificate come to mind . So many things that I always wanted to do or never thought that I would do. It’s not easy finding a balance, but who would have thought that I would have survived near 18 months without being paid.
My identity is changing internally. I’m learning to look inside and see my growth as a person, and not to compare myself with what I thought was the definition of a successful person. I truly feel deep down that I’ve entered into a new era. It’s not as hard as before to take things one step at a time. I’m getting to the point where outward recognition and achievement is no longer necessary. I don’t need the accolades to feel good about myself. The passed 18 months have been difficult, but it’s as if all these unnecessary layers have been ripped away. I don’t need any fancy wrappings. I am me and I have all that will make me happy. I have health, strength, love and family and thank God many creative outlets and projects. I’m close to being content. I’m a work in progress with no need for any abbreviations in front of my name.
Lorien blogs at Wayfaring Stranger and she is a kindred spirit full of fierce courage, adventure and love for life. It’s been an honor to get to know her through blogging, guest posting about Tough Girls, and hope to meet her one day! She’s a fellow Filipina and I hope you enjoy her story:
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The walks are longer now, the mountains are higher, the trees are taller and the guns go from shooting water to shooting real, live bullets. But nothing ever changes. Except now, I’m all grown up. It’s less make believe, and more reality.
“We grow neither better nor worse as we get old, but more like ourselves” – May Lamberton
When I was young, I used to hike my journal out into the open fields and I’d climb small boulders and pretend that they were mountains. I explored castles on the scenic Lake Geneva, I learned languages and wrote letter after flourished letter to distant friends and kept notebook after notebook of journals stacked up on the highest shelf of my highest bookshelf. I imagined my life being my dreams turned into realities. I imagined I would walk through the world, one lonely highway at a time, then I would
Now, my journals are digital. A notebook filled with leafs of paper are now replaced by a Macbook. I went from imagining that I hiked a hundred miles to actually hiking that distance. I still look over an expansive landscape, and let the sheer glory of the horizon take my breath away. The higher you are, the thinner the air, the harder it is to continue but the greater the reward is for someone who can open their eyes and enjoy the magnitude of the world around them.
“A grown up is a child with layers on it” – Woody Harrelson
I have been married. I have been divorced. I hold an Associate Degree, a Bachelors Degree, and a Master’s is in the works. I own a car. I have owned a house. I have credit cards, bills and a thousand other “grown up” things. I’m up to my eyeballs in student loans. This is adulthood, I suppose, this grander, more modern version of my childhood play days.
“Put yourself into life and never lose your openness, your childish enthusiasm… and things will come your way.” – Frederico Fellini
As a child, we simply feel. We don’t sensor, we don’t intellectualize. We take everything in like a sponge. We are filled with this childish enthusiasm for everything that we experience – everything is new, everything is for the first time – we become tainted and jaded unless we make an effort to always keep our eyes open to the wonders around us.
Keep your eyes open. Keep your head in the clouds, and let your childish dreams come true! Let it fall into your lap, and you will always be satisfied with the hand you are dealt.
This post is part of a series on personal development, career and identity. It’s not about who you want to be when you grow up, but being who you ARE. The key is to find out your true calling and passions and then figuring out how to live it. We all have stories to share, and I want to hear yours. If you’d like to guest blog for the Panda, please submit to firstname.lastname@example.org.