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February 21st, 2017

12:25 pm - Heart, be strong.

Another thing that I decided on today, after reading this, is that I will let love chase me, and I will stop chasing love. I will instead, chase my dreams. How is my heart practically going to do this? I don't quite know, but I will stop chasing love so that love can chase me.

I guess we have different paths to take in our lives, some people get into family life quickly, some never do, and so many other permutations in between - divorces, second marriages, children, no children, sick children, death/sickness of spouse, casual flings, break ups, hook ups... but I accept that my path for now is not the settling down with children one. I accept so I can yearn less and so I can have my heart fully back to myself to tackle the challenges I am facing right now.

Heart, be strong, be ready to let go.

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12:16 pm - Teaching
I think I've changed. :) and I like it. Six years ago, I wanted to go for a CELTA course, to learn to teach English from the British Council, and my grammar did not make the mark. I still remember the assessor saying, "You have some pretty good ideas about teaching, but your grammar is not good enough." There, that highlighted to me where my weakness lay in teaching and I thought maybe teaching English just isn't for me. And yes, I don't do pronunciation too well too. Back then, I also tried teaching primary school and I realized classroom management wasn't my cup of tea either.

I have covered some distance since those days. I have sat in many classrooms, played with many ideas, and I realized that in my heart of hearts, I still wanted to teach.

Who implanted these strange desires in our hearts? A flicker that doesn't go out.

Today, I sat in a TESOL class. I was observing the teacher, I have since come to realize the importance of educating the teacher before she goes out there to teach, I was observing how he told stories and used illustrations to help students "get it". I think this is my ethnographer at work, rather than being just a participant, I am observing as an outsider how a lesson is conducted, what the teacher is doing and how the students respond.

I enjoyed the class and I signed up for the course. This signals a moving towards where I want to be. It's kinda ironic, I know, I work at NIE but I am going outside to learn how to teach, but that's the way it is. I don't have a chance to learn at NIE and I'm not letting that stop me from pursuing my goal and my dream.

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February 18th, 2017

09:35 am - The self - the most impressive and intricate work of art
A self is probably the most impressive work of art we ever produce, surely the most intricate. For we create not just one self-making story but many of them, rather like T. S. Eliot's rhyme "We prepare a face to meet / The faces that we meet." The job is to get them all into one identity, and to get them lined up over time. If we are to bring it off, we surely cannot abide by the enjoinder "Let not you and I inquire / What has been our past desire." For it is not just who and what we are that we want to get straight but who and what we might have been, given the constraints that memory and culture impose on us, constraints of which we are often unaware. To reconcile the mixed comforts of the familiar with the temptations of the possible requires an elusive art, as subtle as Proust's Rememberance of Things Past.
- Jerome Bruner, Making Stories, p. 14

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February 16th, 2017

11:28 pm - Depression and its cures
“When you are depressed, you possess the remarkable ability to believe, and to get the people around you to believe, things which have no basis in reality. As a therapist, it is my job to penetrate your illusion, to teach you how to look behind the mirrors so you can see how you have been fooling yourself. You might even say that I'm planning to dis-illusion you!”
(p. 32)

Burns (2009). Feeling good: The new mood therapy.

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03:13 pm - What a beautiful song! :)

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12:57 pm - What do I like about myself that I think others may like?
After 30 years of learning how not to like myself, I have decided for the next stretch of years to learn to do the opposite - to learn to like myself, and undoing 30 years of socialization is really not easy, but I have decided to do it. To unlearn and relearn.

So here's a start.

I like that I have a rich inner life, that I'm complicated and complex, layered upon layered, both deep and broad. I like that I'm a conundrum, hard to figure out, parts of me don't logically fit together, yet they do. You may assume this about me because of that, but this turns out untrue. I like that I stumble and surprise people.

I like that I am courageous. I am willing to be committed to something I find worthwhile, and then be uncommitted to it when I realized it is no longer worthwhile for me. I am a risk taker, adventurous, and ambitious. And more than being imaginative, sometimes you see my bring to fruition my dreams, simply because I am disciplined. I like that like they say it's an INFJ trait, I not just dream but can bring it to pass.

I like that I am good, kind, and gentle. Some people call it naive, trusting, vulnerable, and stupid. But I believe in doing good and being kind, regardless whether it benefits me or not. I am drawn to a bible verse in Romans that goes: Let no debt be outstanding, except the debt to love others. I am definitely not Mother Teresa, not a defender of the poor, nor a social justice advocate; but I believe in my own sphere of influence, taking into account my own levels of comfort, attraction, and interest, to do good to those I can.

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12:47 pm
At the very least, thank you, for being a source of comfort and distraction, a momentarily high, in an otherwise drape, cold, and lonely world.

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February 15th, 2017

08:01 pm - Confidence
I have not felt this confident/liberated in a long time. As if, something that was tying me down and attached me to the ground, was suddenly cut off, and I was able to fly away. Thank you, my dear friend, Beeli for speaking to me and helping me attain this enlightenment. I am a free person. I am not obligated to anyone, nor is anyone obligated to me.

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February 3rd, 2017

03:08 pm - Shackled
Different people bring out different parts of you, some parts you like, some you don't. Some bring out things you cannot even put a finger to.

It could be someone who reminds you of an unpredictable family member that you have. This person is perfect and has done nothing to you. But her manner of behavior, maybe simply style of dressing, tone of voice, reminds you of that family member who had caused you fear. And then, for no apparent proper logical reason, you start to fear this perfect individual as well.

I think life is about unlearning, deconstructing, and reconstructing. Each relationship is new and doesn't have to be shackled to the chains of your past memories and experiences.

Something for you to think about, Shuyi.

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08:14 am - Room
You can tell a lot about who a person is from his or her room.

Some rooms are neat to a fault, coordinated colours, not a thing out of place. Some rooms are extremely messy, and stacked with boxes, bed covered in paraphernalia.

My room?

It's filled with things I'm currently occupied with, things I love, things that showed where I've been and what I've done; who I associate with and who I hope to be.

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