listen to the people who love you

I slept the whole day away. It’s 6.30pm now. I think I am going to try and write a post and then maybe go for a run, so that I can sleep again later at the usual bedtime. It has only been two weeks of March so far and already I am exhausted. Many good things happened- half on the preparation process, half on the outcomes. Practicing the growth mindset is eventful but also tiring. March is the time to solidify all my routines started in Feb- more TCM, reading both English and Chinese books, the results of my job interview (I don’t know how people apply for 30+ jobs when I am really tired applying for just two), choosing to go for church stuff twice a week and also attending two schools and projects and random things throughout the month. And writing, trying to find my voice on slotherious. I think it is not the pace that is tiring, but the effort required to travel and talk to people.

I had a terrible Friday where I was anxious and unhappy for the whole day, but then I watched John Piper speak to inmates at Lousiana’s state prison, where 90% of the inmates will die there and the average sentence is 88 years. Yet they were respectful and sincere in wanting to ask him questions and I thought to myself- if inmates can achieve that sort of peace even when their freedom is limited to the routines of the prison, then why do I, a person with a substantial amount of resources and connections compared to them, feel so unhappy and anxious about my future? Sometimes I just need a video or a peaceful day to remove that incessant cat in my head, for me to see that my thought patterns are just a bit screwed up.

Being an adult- I am very close to graduation. I think 2017 has been a very packed year. I did a lot of the things that I wanted to do even though I was scared, and I am learning to not worry about things that I cannot control. My calendar is filled till mid-April, the date of my last exam at SMU will mark the final day of my ‘undergraduate’ existence. I am learning that adult life is not a magical road where you are automatically more accomplished and resilient- it is what you choose. The new experiences you take on, that makes you a more sincere and hardy person. You can be an adult at the age of 12, not physically so, but mentally and emotionally hardier than some of the people who are 32. I think sometimes people rely too much on the usual rites of passage to bring them through life, such that if they delay graduation for two years then it means that they don’t need to take on responsibility for bills and insurance premiums for another two years.

However, a side note to myself- do not overexert myself. After accounting project yesterday, I spent another three hours with new friends (Korean exchange student and NUS peer advisor) and I couldn’t concentrate very well during service because my brain was just exhausted. And after service, running errands, and going home to attempt the HR meeting but I was so tired I just sat there, not wanting to fix the internet connection because it meant that I had to drag my ass to the living room which felt very far away.

March is a month that requires effort and perseverance and battling uncontrollable feelings every step of the way. There are moments in school or at DG where I’m just a bit dissociated from everyone- I look around and think “how on earth did I get here, where did I get the courage to do this alone”. And then I think again- I have been doing a lot of things alone since 2013. That history is both reassuring and scary because I would like sustainable relationships, but trying new things often means getting to know new people. As an outgoing introvert who has a tendency to reveal too much in the very first meeting, balancing that whole people equation is a very trying experience.

As an adult, choices have to be made. About the quality and number of friends, the relationships that I am going to keep and some that I am going to let slide away. The pace of my life and career, my opinions on things, and simple worries like how did I gain 3kg in the past two months. Celebrating the small things like being able to eat subway sandwiches without adverse side effects etc. “This I choose”, and “these which are chosen for me”.