A Delicate Flower

She moves smoothly, gracefully across the room

The lilacs of the heart begin to bloom

What else but joy, to lift the gloom

What else but hope, to be love’s perfume

But then a tinge of fear begins to loom

And what could have been now rests entombed

 

Was it nothing, just a precarious thought to think

A shared moment, but not one to interlink

To almost take the leap, but return from the brink

Ask yourself…at the end will you think

Tis a shame that it all passed in a blink

The remorse, knowing you let that ship sink

 

Love is fragile, like a delicate flower

It needs to be cared for, watered at the hour

Neglected and buried, what’s beautiful may sour

But nurtured and indulged, it grants extraordinary power

 

Thanks for reading, and have a great day.

The Way it Used to be (1/29)

(Quick note: If this reminded you of the song by Mike Posner, then that’s wonderful because personally it’s a pretty good song.)

 

I’ll be honest with you. Childhood wasn’t perfect, and things obviously weren’t all rainbows and sunshine with bright smiles and the warmness of everyone’s hearts. That’s what you call a short story that parents read their little children who aren’t old enough to understand the complexity and more morbid sides to life.

But there is something that everyone possesses as children. It’s innocence, the ability to not see the darker side to things, the question ‘why?’ and primarily happy thoughts. Except for the ones who are wise beyond their years, many of us spend this time building in the sandbox, playing with our little compatriots, and living life with only small troubles.

As time passes, this blanket of certainty and comfort is gradually pulled away, placed away in the closet for only occasional usage. Now we see the silly things we did, the impulsive ways we acted. Some of us make the excuse of blaming it on our age and how we weren’t old enough. Others just say that they’re not that person anymore. In reality, a bit of that child is still part of you. You may have grown both physically and mentally, but somewhere inside is a piece, a shadow of who you used to be. We can never erase our past, nor can we change it. What’s important is that we see the error in our ways, and rather than attributing it to something else, we grow from it and fix these flaws and issues.

What I’ve noticed about myself, is that every year I look back and I look foolish, immature, arrogant, or even straight-up rude. I’ve read from the writings of older people than me that this continues well even into the 30’s for many. Really, it’s not a terrible thing. All that it means is that there is more room to grow. Although we may make poor decisions, shudder at the embarrassing memories, or act in foolish ways, in the end it’s all part of our individual journeys. Even despite it all, one day we will look back and find something to smile upon.

I’m not trying to say that everyone had a perfect childhood…really, no one does. What I do believe though, is that despite the hardship, the confusion, the struggles, we learn, and afterwards we are all the wiser.

Sometimes, we get caught up in memories, and the way things used to be. It’s certainly alright to cherish it, remember it fondly…but the important thing is that we live in the present. Learn from the past, prepare for the future, and of course, live in the moment.

Smile, and keep looking forward.

The Little Things (1/27 late post)

(Quick note, sorry about not making a post yesterday. I had a debate tournament today, and forgot to write a post in my nervousness.)

 

People always worry…the major events in life, testing well, going to college, finding a partner. They worry about mortgages, financial issues, family and personal health. The worry is so much that people develop stress, sometimes depression and other issues that accompany them such as drinking.

You have to ask yourself, will this matter in 10 days, in 10 months, and in 10 years? If the answer is no for any of them, perhaps it’s really not such a big deal. A student may panic about one bad test, but will it matter in 10 days when there grade balances out? Your car gets a brake issue, and you have to bike to work while it’s getting fixed up. Ask yourself, will it matter in 10 months? Maybe you have an emotional breakup with the person you thought was finally true love. Will it matter in 10 years? Yes, it may have been important, but what’s more important is that you’ve moved on with your life, and you’ve learned something about people and yourself. Will what college you go to really matter in 10 years? Yes, you took a different path in life but maybe it turned out for the better. In the end, does it matter?

Ask yourself…seriously, will it matter in time? If it does, all the more reason to work harder, and strive more. Often times we get caught up on little things, a rude comment overheard, an event not working out. In the end, what matters are the little things.

The inside joke you had with your best friend, the smile she gives you when you make her laugh, the way your parents treat you when you visit years later. It’s these things that run through our heads when we know the end is near. No one cares what school they graduated from when they’re dying. No one remembers what grade they got in that class in high school, and no one thinks of the time they messed up in front of others. We find pleasure in the little things.

Take time everyday to appreciate the little things. The good food that your parents make, the joke your friend tells, the thought-provoking passage in the book you read. It’s everywhere, the little things, the moments that will stay meaningful even when we’re old. Because one day, we won’t have them anymore. One day it won’t be yours to remember.

Thank you for reading, and remember the important things.

First Place (and insecurity) 1/26

Standing on that podium, slightly higher up than the people next to you, you hear the cheering, and see your parents beaming, and the crowd applauds as you accept your award. The feeling of elation as the post-competition adrenaline races through your blood is evident to everyone as it courses out through the wide grin on your face.

That’s what it felt like, 4 years ago to get 1st at the Silicon Valley Kids Triathlon. That’s what it felt like to be valued, to feel like the best. When I completed the race, I didn’t even know that I had won. I was on top of the world when I heard. To make matters better, my brother had to leave early from the award ceremony where he had gotten 2nd place in a different race. Collecting the award for him felt so right. I was the winner of my race, I would stand in the podium for my brother, who was also a winner. That was 4 years ago. that was a race for 11 and 12 year olds.

The victory for me that day just validated, and hit the underlying problem for me. As a younger boy, I was unaware that I had insecurity issues. I had plenty of friends in elementary school, and I was good at many of the things I chose to do. I missed the next annual competition for vacation in Hawaii with my family. But I returned the year after, expecting a good race, and a 1st or 2nd place finish.

A few things went wrong that race. I got there late, almost got disqualified, cramped up, all little things. But I wouldn’t have it…that year, I finished in 5th place. I cried long and hard after I finished, in the middle of the field with people around, I didn’t care. 5th…how could this happen to me? To me, it was anything but my fault. I was the victim. My dad spent the next hour consoling me, fixing up my bike, and getting me donuts. I felt a bit better, but it hung with me for a few days. From 1st to 5th.

I didn’t see it at the time, but I was insecure in addition to highly competitive. Why else would someone who got a nice plaque cry about not winning? The year after, I had grown a bit. I placed in 3rd, but (we weren’t there for the awards ceremony since my dad and I thought that I had gotten 4th and not made the podium). I took it well, and that I had done my best.

In hindsight, I’ve learned incredibly much from my experiences. I felt what it was like to be truly great at something. I had felt what it was like to lose, to fail, and to not achieve what I had strived for. But most importantly, I had grown. I saw how hard it was to be the best at something. Being the best is not something for the amateur, it has to be worked towards, thought about, and passionately pursued. 1st place is so much more than just a medal, a plaque, an award. It’s even more than just the experience. First place means all of the hard work, blood and sweat paid off.

Most importantly, it means growth. Even if you don’t get first, you can grow. It’s all about perspective, it’s all about learning. Ask yourself if you have any insecurities, and talk about it with someone, or try to think about it from someone else’s point of view. You may just find out that no one cares much or even notices what you’re so insecure about. Keep moving forward.

Thank you, and have a nice day.

Nothingness 1/25

It’s how it feels when you can’t think of something to write, it’s when you try to say something but your brain shuts down, and it’s the empty feeling you get after a period of intensely negative feelings.

Nothingness is the state of unimportance, lacking meaning. It’s the times you do something insignificant the thousandth time, and the things that didn’t turn out how you hoped.

Sometimes when people stray the line between life and death, they say that they hear music, heavenly and wordless. But afterwards…no one knows. Is it just…nothingness?

If nothing is the lack of a something, and the collection of nothingness in a little clump, it begs the question “what is something”? We assign things in life value, such as food, love, family, material possessions. Value is all relative. Everything is relative…even the colors we see, the sounds we hear. Everyone is different, but yet we are all the same. We are all born in this tiny speck in the vast expanse of the universe. You could almost say our planet is…nothing.

Yet this tiny rock that could be nothing in the grand scheme of things is unique. Out of the minuscule bits on the rock came life. A bit of disorder formed from the chaos. A package to hold the innards in a more organized fashion. We are nothing, yet also so much. Everyone has the choice to remain nothing, or they can choose. One day we will all return to nothingness. The only difference is what you make of the journey.

Thank you, and have a great day.

Wake Up 1/24

It’s the cold of the air outside, the “I can’t get out of bed”. It’s the imperfection of the preparation, it’s the conflict in your head. Really when it comes down to you, it’s just you. You, and your mind locked in a conflict. The truly motivated don’t clash against themselves, they just do it.

We all know the moment, the feeling when you want to do something, but an excuse pops into your head. Don’t lie to yourself, don’t say it’s a valid reason even if it is. More often than not, you don’t wake up because you’re so exhausted, don’t go for that run because it’s 34˚F outside. Perhaps you forgot to set up your gear, or didn’t have gas in your car to drive to practice. This is all just a barrier, a block in the road. It doesn’t mean you should go home, say it’s not worth getting past, or change your mind. Life is riddled with these roadblocks, obstacles in your way to glory or whatever else you strive for.

For me, I want to run. A lot. I vowed to make it my thing this year. I’ll be honest, I need to do better. A lot better. Sometimes I sleep through my alarms, sometimes it’s too cold, or pouring rain outside. Usually I sleep it out, and what do you know, that’s another day gone by where I didn’t work towards my goal. It’s the little things like this, giving up on the working out every day, not talking to the new people you said you’d meet, not participating in the group event you wanted to try out. It starts small, and it starts with you. You, have to make the conscious decision to do what you aspire to have, to become. Start small, and take each half-step forward. Congratulate yourself on the progress, let the moment of euphoria run through your veins as you check that box off, make that leap forward. Let your momentum carry you as you power through and keep going. Before you know it, you’ll be farther than you ever could have been if you had tried to take a huge leap in a weekend.

An untrained person can’t just decide to run a marathon, and do great. Most of these people don’t make it the full 26.2 miles, they drop out early, or suffer immensely if they do make it the whole way. It’s about the small step, and leaving yourself no escape to not achieve what you want. If you want to run more, sign up for a half-marathon in half a year. This will force you to start training, as you feel the shadow of the event looming over you. By cutting off your alternative routes, you make it so that you have no choice but to work towards your goals. Think of it like school. School is required to a certain grade, and no matter what you have to attend, or the government will come and get you, resulting in undesirable consequences. When a task becomes obligatory, you can no longer hit the snooze button, abstain because the rain, or let little barriers prevent you from getting the job done.

Cut off your escape, and then start small. Never find an excuse to not work towards what you want to achieve. Wake up, and get the job done.

Thank you, and have a great day.

Shattered Reflection #1 1/23

(Quick note, self-reflection type stuff will usually be something more personal which I ponder and analyze a bit. I’ll try to do at least one of these a week, just for self-improvement or to vent.)

 

I sat there, looking slightly bewilderedly at the snapshot. Add friend, it says. I hover a moment, trembling before pressing back. I’m a bit shy, if that’s what you ask, but this time it wasn’t that. This was a person who unfriended me. It wasn’t spite which held me back either. It was puzzlement.

Of course my first reaction was frustration, bitterness, and confusion. I don’t get it, I thought. What did I do to cause this? This initial thought was discarded, and a dozen reasons zipped through my brain: it’s them, people are just so enigmatic. This is why I don’t use a ton of social media, people discard you when they find you uninteresting. After thinking about it intermittently for a few hours, I came to the a realization. It’s all just another reason, a pseudo-shield that you create to protect your ego and hide your insecurity.

Maturity is when a person not only comes to terms with the situation and their mistakes, but acknowledges and ameliorates it to their best degree. Here I was, a person who thought that they were reasonably respectable among his peers, thinking that it was someone else’s fault for un-friending him. This, is what fallacy is. And ego. I guess that it takes a certain amount of realism to convince yourself that yes, things are really the case even if you would prefer to believe otherwise. I have much to learn, and grow as this experience showed me. I would apologize, but a truly contrite individual may not even need to say it out loud (someone told me I say the “s word” too much). I’ll make it up to you, not because you’d ever want me to (honestly, probably pretty fed up with my shit by now), nor because I’m a virtuous person (although I try my best)…the truth, from me to you is a selfish reason. Regret hangs in our heads many years past the incident, when the other party may not even remember what happened all those years ago. I know this will stick with me until I’m old. I want it to remain there, as a moment of growth and understanding rather than one of guilt and lacking finality.

I know that many of you readers are likely better samaritans than I am at the moment, but I ask of you to take a moment to ask yourself: Is there a problem you’ve noticed that may be your fault, and even if it isn’t, what can you do to help?

Thank you, and have a great day.