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Sometimes you have to grieve on your own time

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“Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.” —Henry Ford

With the help of Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, it’s been so much easier to feel your heart breaking whenever you see a status or a picture posted by the one you love, because you know that whatever she did had nothing to do with you and was probably referring to someone new.

Sometimes we have to work things out on our own time. It’s much too easy to assume that our mind can easily move on and block those unhealthy thoughts from crowding our head at a snap of fingers, when in actual fact our emotions can’t keep up. This is a battle that logic doesn’t always win.

Whenever I’m tempted to text her again or to get a time machine to fix things (which is happening very frequently the past three weeks), I know there is this sense of regret that I can’t get over. Maybe I’m being selfish and presumptuous by thinking that we are meant for each other, when she might not even feel the same way.

Sometimes I do stupid things to myself. Sometimes I make stupid choices. Sometimes I miss out on chances that could make sure we can be together. Sometimes I keep thinking that my life would be so much better with you in it.

I have become highly distracted from work and my studies, because of this clutter in my head and I’m struggling to clear my thoughts and heal. Maybe I just want to reach out to you and get your attention and a response from you, just so I could feel better. Maybe it’s just to placate my ego. Maybe I just need some time away before I do something to worsen the misery I already feel.

The thing is closure can and should be done without having the other party’s acknowledgement. It’s about grieving in my own time.

I mean, what was I expecting to happen when I text her, hoping that she’d reply? That she would drop everything in her life and come back to me? That she would finally realise that we are meant to be together? That she would magically wake up and see me for who I am? It’s all a fantasy, isn’t it? Why am I even going back?

If you’ve moved on, I ought to respect your privacy. So yes, I need to grieve in my own time and let go.

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Be in love with your life

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“Be in love with your life. Every minute of it.” —Jack Kerouac

I choose me. Every waking minute of every day. Any mental energy I have, I will spend it on myself thinking about me and how I should improve.

It’s about telling myself “I’m upset, I’m angry, but you know what? I’m going to deal with it, because I want to stop feeling miserable and I will do whatever it takes to make sure I change how I feel now.”

It’s challenging to stop my mind from wandering to unhealthy thoughts that do not benefit me, but every time I find myself wavering, I would stop myself in mid-thought and say: “I choose me.”

My life will move on. Even if I feel like I’ve hit rock bottom. Even if I have done the stupidest thing in the world by texting someone to ask about something that I shouldn’t care about. Even if I keep hoping that I would get a reply. Even if what I did was uncool, desperate and downright silly!

The good thing about feeling so down is that I don’t have to worry about anyone else, but me.

I was trying so hard to be chosen again that I lost sight of myself. Well, I have stopped that. And I’m going to sleep.

Sleep is good. Sleep is rejuvenating, especially when I spent the past few sleepless nights getting my mind all messed up, because I couldn’t let go.

From one of my favourite blogs to read, here’s one of the 10 things on a checklist we should do when we hit rock bottom:

Sleep 8-10 hours. Sleeping is rejuvenating. You won’t care if you go broke while you sleep. You also can’t obsess on loneliness while you sleep. In general, sleeping is pretty good. If you are having trouble sleeping, take some natural remedy or take some anti-anxiety medicine. Whatever it takes – you need to sleep.

I’ve been exercising regularly (which makes me really happy and exhausted by the end of the night) and I’m going to attend meditation classes soon. I’ve been writing more regularly now to get my feelings out in the open. I’ve stopped drinking alcohol since September. I eat lighter dinners now and I read a lot of random stuff that make me laugh and cry (sometimes all at the same time). And you know what? I’m going to repeat the 10 things Altucher recommends tomorrow, the day after tomorrow and the day after that tomorrow and beyond.

Excuses are for people trying to be chosen by others. When you choose yourself, there are no more excuses.

It doesn’t matter what happens to me next, because I have chosen myself.

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The way you think about a person

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Just remember that sometimes, the way you think about a person isn’t the way they actually are. — John Green

There are a lot of people out there who believe there’s an exact type of person who will have all traits to make them happy. These people want everything in their partner to be almost perfect — be it qualities, attributes, character, looks, career, gender, wealth, acceptance by the family, marriage eligibility, intelligence and so on.

But more often than not, these people who seek “perfection” in their partners are the toxic ones in a relationship. If they are unsatisfied with any aspect of you, they would withdraw into their world, be emotionally unavailable, temperamental, demanding and selfish that you will feel so alone and you start doubting if you were ever in a proper relationship with that person.

More often than not, these toxic people would fit whoever they happen to meet in their life at that particular moment in time to this ideal life-partner template they have in their mind. They may not care if that new person does not share similar values or common interests with them, because they are sucked in by the thrills and infatuations of a new relationship. Even if the person does not speak well, write well or dress well (basically falling below their usual standards), it would not matter to them. They become blinded and they adjust their standards, because they desperately want to be with someone new and to be in a relationship again; they want to be on par with their friends who are in committed relationships.

So the minute someone new comes along, they forget the priorities they once thought were important. Then after a while, when reality sets in and time unfolds the person’s true identity layer by layer, they realise it’s the same vicious cycle they are trapped in again. And they wonder why they are always in unhappy relationships.

Be careful of what you look for or even wish for. What you think is perfect now may not hold true weeks and months from now, because you keep forgetting what you really want, what you genuinely value and are looking for in the first place.

P/S: I know this has been a sombre post, so kudos to you if you finished reading the entire piece! This is why I should never write about my feelings when half-sleepy and half-determined to blog tonight, no matter what time it is (4:42am here btw). I still feel a dull aching pain in my heart. Please tell me I’ll be alright?

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Sometimes we don’t say what we feel

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Not because we don’t want to… But because we don’t know how to.

I asked my friend why it still hurts so bad even after so long and why I still can’t move on, no matter how hard I try. There is a throbbing pain in my chest that I can’t get rid off. It feels like someone stabbed me right in the heart and forgot to take the rusty dagger out.

She sighed and said: “What do you do when you cut your finger?

I would suck the wound, run to wash the cut with cold running water, sterilise it with medicated cream and maybe put a plaster over my finger, I told her.

She said: “What else?”

If it’s a bad cut, sometimes I would keep touching it and maybe let water accidentally seep into the wound or keep opening the plaster to check if the wound is healing, thus worsening the pain in the process.

She said: “So it will take a while for the cut to heal, right? The more you touch it, the longer it takes?”

“Yes……?” I hesitantly answered.

She said: “Isn’t it the same as what you are feeling now? You keep thinking about the past; it’s like touching your cut finger all the time. How do you expect to move on? Of course, you will take longer to be better and to heal.”

There was silence over the phone, as I pondered over it.

My friend was right… Like she always is. (She always has the weirdest but most apt analogies too, but that’s a story for another day.)

It’s been more than a year since we stopped seeing other and I can’t even remember the last time I saw you. Every time I wanted to text you, I stopped myself because I didn’t know if it was the right thing to do. Then one question led to another and my indecisiveness made the choice to leave you alone.

So why am I still letting you affect me? Why do I still feel so much pain inside? Why am I so insistent that you are my one true love and that we’d be perfect for each other?

My friends keep telling me to move on and I keep telling them I am trying. But clearly, I am not succeeding. I still get panicky at times when I open my social media accounts, because I fear reading your updates and feeling down after that and letting my mind run wild.

See, how silly and rather pathetic I am. So much for the faith my friends have in me. Haha.

My friend said: “If she’s meant to be yours, if you two are really meant to be together, it doesn’t matter what happens now or what she does. You don’t have to force it or do anything special and she would come back to you. It could be months later or five years down the road and both of you would still find your way back to each other. You have to trust yourself.”

But what if the chance has passed and I didn’t grab it or I didn’t do the best I could? After all, you did return to me once after I thought it was over between us. But things were unstable and maybe the time wasn’t right or I didn’t do enough to hold on to you or nothing I did was good enough for you. I don’t know.

She said: “What you fear most will somehow come true. It’s the law of attraction. The more you think about what you don’t want to happen, the more it will. So why fear it? If I were you, I would just log on and keep looking at everything until I don’t feel anything anymore.”

My friends tell me even though I may not be able to understand it right now, one day I will realise why experiencing this pain would be a blessing in disguise in the end. And there are many things I should be thankful for.

I should be thankful that you kept telling me that you did not want to be with me and you showed your true self by constantly blowing hot and cold towards me, even though you knew I was crazily in love with you. You taught me who you really are and you do not deserve me.

I should be thankful that you haven’t contacted me since I stopped replying. Even if we continued talking, you were unlikely to magically meet my expectations or become a better person.

I am thankful that you ended our relationship so many times when I couldn’t, even though you did it in a horrible ‘escapist’ way. It was a wake-up call for me not to fall in love with someone like you in the future. I can stop lying to myself that you’re a better person because I think you are.

I am thankful that you let your former boyfriend talked you into not accepting me and that you were not completely honest with me all the time, as you kept me waiting around while you make up your mind about what you want in life. After all that begging to get you to reconsider our relationship every time we broke up, I realise now that you couldn’t meet my needs then and that we were incompatible.

I am thankful that you kept telling me “I don’t want a relationship now” or “You’re too good for me” and other similar excuses, because I realise you were right, I am too good for you. And I’m smarter now at recognising the signs of someone with issues. Next time someone tells me the same things as you did, I can run away faster.

I am going to be thankful if you ignore my latest text to you. I won’t want to be sucked back into the vicious painful cycle all over again, because you will never be the perfect person I once thought you were.

I am also going to be thankful if you have moved on. Yeah, it will hurt and it already hurts just thinking about it, but it’s an blaring alarm to warn me to speed up in moving on with my own life.

Finally, I am thankful that you didn’t value me when you had the chance to, because I appreciate my own value better now and I know that no one will ever love you as much as I did or treat you as nice in the way I did.

It really hurts, but in the end I want to be with someone who values me and the relationship enough to want to be in it and not give up every time we hit a road bump.

Well, it’s been enlightening to remind myself what I should be thankful for, because it was just so easy to lose my head and focus on what I think I would lose if I let go of you and the pain I’ve been carrying. In actual fact, I have a lot more to gain if I delete you now.

Ok, I feel soooo much better after saying how I really feel and forcing myself to think about what I should be thankful for in my life.

P/S: If anyone of you reading this are going through a tough time and nursing a broken heart like me… I wish you well and Godspeed in your healing process. Remember you are not alone and there are people who understand what you are going through.

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I’m not sure which is worse

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You know, I realise it has become one of my weekly rituals to blog about how I feel about you every other Sunday and how I would tag the post as ‘secret’, because I don’t think anyone else knows or understands what my heart is seeking.

Sometimes there’s just this trepidation in my heart that I don’t know how to quell. And the panic level would keep rising and I would lose my inner peace. Just like what Po the Dragon Warrior had to go through, it’s been a long arduous journey to find my inner peace.

With that, I’d like to leave you with this quote I heard from watching season 4, episode 14 of White Collar (Shoot the Moon) which it made me tear:

Real love is fighting like hell to hold onto every moment you have with her. It’s making a life together and making it work, no matter what happens. You want a love for the ages? I think that’s great. Prove it. Make it last. — Peter Burke

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Think less, do more

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I was going slightly crazy the past few days and was about to hit the panic button to anyone willing to listen. Then I realised it was no longer appropriate to feel any more invested than I already am. Letting go is making sure you keep moving forward.

My friend asked me: ‘Why are you still not over it yet?’

Frankly, I have no answer to that. I don’t think it’s my ego or my self-esteem that is holding on to whatever that is no longer there. I’ve been through the five stages of grief and I am no longer as angry and devastated as I was two years ago. Maybe I am finally moving on to the acceptance stage.

Yes, I have been willing to move on and accept that change is going to happen. But then sometimes memories would flood back without warning and I’d get choked up. And I’d regress and have to start the moving-on process all over again. Because it’s incredibly hard to let go of someone who you think is the other half that fits you completely.

So it’s been really tough, because there are times when I have this genuine fear come rushing all over me like a cold chill and that I would discover new pain to hurt myself with. It’s a constant effort to keep telling myself it’s ok and to forcibly block myself from seeing or reading things that might affect me. Which also explains why I have not logged on to Facebook or other social media sites for prolonged period.

It’s a conscious process to keep telling myself to put ME first and above all else, while controlling my emotions. I’ve been so good at it that this girl, who I used to be really close with, said: ‘The wall around you is so high now that no one will ever be able to tear it down.’

Maybe I am terrified to face the unknown, because I was so certain that you are the one for me and I kept hoping beyond hope that you will finally realise it one day.

How silly of me, right?

It shouldn’t matter if you’re happier or doing better than me or that you’ve moved on and found someone new. We are two different people after all. I can’t stop you from forgetting what we have shared and been through.

I can only stop wasting so much energy thinking about you and devote more time to healing my wounds. I can’t hold on to you or my feelings for you any more.

So yes, I have to think less and do more. Very apt, don’t you think?

We met for a reason. You were either a blessing or a lesson.

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Destined to be with each other

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From the movie Superman Returns when Clark Kent met Lois Lane after news got out that Superman has returned to Earth and the buried feelings Lois had for Superman, the love of her life, came rushing back:

Lois Lane: ‘Can I ask you something? Have you ever met someone and it’s almost like you’re from totally different worlds, but you share such a strong connection that you knew you were destined to be with each other, and then he just takes off, without explaining why or without even saying goodbye?’

Clark Kent: ‘Well, maybe it was hard to say goodbye, because he had to go and … he wanted to say goodbye, but … maybe it was too difficult for him.’

Maybe it’s about time I finally let the pieces go and move on. I’ve carried you in my heart for a long time now and I am never without you, no matter what I do. And it’s the deepest secret no one knows… But me and anyone who reads this blog. Ha!

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All endings are also beginnings

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All endings are also beginnings. We just don’t know it at the time.

It’s true, you know. When my last relationship finally ended mid-to-late last year after a on-off struggle, I nearly had a breakdown. I didn’t know if I could go through with the rest of my life feeling what felt like a gaping hole in my heart. I had given so much of myself and wanted us to be together so badly that it nearly drove me to the brink of no return.

I loved, and in a way I still do love, that someone who once meant the world to me. I might never let her go… in my heart. Not that she will ever know this. But I dream of her almost every night… Sometimes good, sometimes bad. And sometimes when I am alone with my thoughts, I would wonder: ‘What if?’

For a long, long time, I miss her and her dog so much that I used his name in my passwords. Maybe I should have told her that the last time I texted her. But for some reason, I kept quiet. Maybe I didn’t want to burden her with my feelings any more. What good would that do us? Someone had to let go. And if she had already done so, I should respect her wishes and let her lead her life happily.

Sometimes I’d ask my friends if it would be okay if I text her when I think of her or send her the things I bought for her, and they would ask me: ‘Why? What for? You guys are over.’

And it hurt, it really hurt, Charlie. I don’t show my innermost self to my friends or anyone, but that choked feeling is not the most pleasant thing in the whole world because it feels like someone stabbed me and forgot to remove the blunt dagger.

Anyway, the gaping hole in my heart is still there, but I’m getting better at coping with it. It has taken a long time, but there have been improvements. I have more control over my emotions now and I can wake up on most days feeling grateful about life. 🙂

After all, every day is a new beginning. So for the new month ahead, here’s my tarot card prediction:

While you may still have a case of the blues in the early days of March, the month soon brings optimism, increased energy and excitement. You are intellectually sharp and imaginative. You feel that anything is possible and that the sky is the limit.

Against the background of self-reflection and soul-searching that’s such a major part of this year is this month’s sense of spring-time in your heart. This is an excellent time to take on new challenges in your career to start new endeavours.

Often, this month brings financial gain, but your attention is more directed
towards intellectual accomplishments. Your pride and self-esteem get a boost.

A more difficult aspect of this month is your relationship with loved ones. You
lack the necessary sensitivity to respond properly to the needs of those close to you. You are under the illusion that everyone feels the way you do; that
problems are only minor impediments that can be taken in stride. However, your optimistic attitude also inspires them and they grudgingly respect you for the way you handle things.

A romantic experience brings passion and excitement either late this month or
early next month.

Exciting times ahead! Wish me luck for my new beginning!

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I don’t know how

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If it’s true that you shouldn’t give up on someone you can’t go a full day without thinking about, then maybe we’d be the two happiest people in the world.

Because I still care. My feelings haven’t changed, despite the passing of time and all that had (or never) happened between us. Maybe it’s true that the mind might get upset and angry, but the heart will always find room for the one it truly loves.

I asked my friend, who is as wise as she is capable, a long long long time ago (most likely more than a year ago): ‘But if I stop contacting her… What if she never realises how much I miss her or how much I really love her and want to be with her?’

My friend looked me for what seemed like an eternity and finally replied: ‘Maybe one day she will read a book or see a sign and realise that the reason why you no longer call or text her is because you love her too much and have to let go now. You don’t need to ask.’

And then she smiled in that reassuring manner that she always has when consoling me.

My eyes stopped tearing from that moment. That night, my heart remained broken, but I felt that I had grown up a little and maybe one day, my heart will finally heal and you will know how I truly feel for you.

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It was when I met you

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What a heartfelt poem.

In episode 14, season one of FRIENDS in The One With The Candy Hearts, Chandler agrees to go on a ‘blind’ date who turns out to be his ex-girlfriend Janice and after lots of champagne and whiskey, they end up in bed together again. The next morning, which happens to be Valentine’s Day, Janice buys Chandler candy hearts for the occasion, but Chandler decides to break up with her — again. Before Janice leaves, she says to him:

‘You seek me out. Something deep in your soul calls out to me like a foghorn…… You want me. You need me. You can’t live without me. And you know it. You just don’t know you know it. See ya.’

In season eight episode 15 of FRIENDS in The One with The Birthing Video, it’s Valentine’s Day and Joey has been nursing a deep crush on Rachel. He desperately wants to confess his love for her, but knows he should leave her alone. He finally cracks under the pressure when Gunther asks if he wants anything from the menu.

‘You know what I want? I want a lot of things! I want to be with the woman I love on Valentine’s Day! And I want her to love me back! And I want just one moment of relief from the gut-wrenching pain of knowing that that’s never going to happen!’

Happy Valentine’s Day. I miss you.