Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Lost at the Point of No Return



There were times when goodbye seemed to taste only of bitterness—the bitterness of what-if—but now the time has come when there is no room left in my life for what could have been.

It no longer matters what could have grown between us, because I was (and I still) remain a bet that you were never able to wager your faith upon.

I’m not sad, nor am I bitter—it’s just that sometimes when we move on, we have to actually make the choice to not look back.

The reason I’m not saying that it is over between us for good, is because I know better than to think I know more than fate does—but what I am saying is that this time I’m not looking back, and I’m not going to make it so easy for you to find me if (once again) you feel your heart being pulled toward a girl with stars in her eyes.

I’m not running away from you, because I’ve also learned that no matter how far I run, you always seem to find me when I least expect or want you to.

I’m simply leaving this place where my walls are down and my heart is ripe and bleeding, waiting for the only thing that I ever truly wanted. It’s become as impossible to leave as the idea of staying was, but a woman knows when she isn’t wanted, and I’m not the type of woman to beg. Because I know that even if you don’t want me, there’s someone else out there who’s just dreaming of finding a woman like me.

In truth, I still dream of you—and those dreams haunt me, because more often than not, I see the reality of these scenes playing out long after I’ve awoken. But I’ve come to the point that I have to stop wondering why I dream about you and why I can still feel your soul even more than the touch of your skin.

Because sometimes, it just hurts too much to wonder what if?—especially when our hearts whisper the answers that we can’t bear the pain of hearing.

But before I leave this place, I just want you to know that although I won’t look back this time, it doesn’t mean I’ve stopped loving you.

It doesn’t even mean that you are any less the man who has taken my life by storm; it only means that I can’t stay here waiting for you any longer.

I can’t keep having hope, when I know you have no desire And the thing is, my love—all I’ve ever wanted was someone to stay. But I know that maybe—for now, and possibly for longer—you can’t be that man for me, no matter how much I wish that the truth echoed differently in heart.

So this time, I’m promising myself to not look back—and to try to forget that I loved you as deeply as my heart did. I’m blinking away tears through the smiles, knowing that this has been coming for some time.

Nothing has really changed, except that I can’t lie to myself any longer, because I know that if by my side was really somewhere you wanted to be—you’d be here by now. And if you were the one who wanted to be my warrior, then you would have shown me that not only was it okay to let down my walls, but you would have been there to meet me on the other side once they were down.

I don’t wish to twist life into something other than it is—and so, with a kiss upon your soft lips, I’m going to turn and leave now. I’m going to begin erasing your name from my body, knowing that there is a possibility I will always be able to read the language your hands spoke.

However, I also wish you love.

Perhaps my heart is just hurting, and maybe I mean only a fraction of these words—or possibly, it’s just that I’m giving my fears a chance to stand up and be heard, so that I can finally understand where they are coming from. Either way, maybe I’m just not going to look back this time, because I can’t stand to see you watching me walk away.

With trembling fingertips and salty tears, it seems that sometimes I don’t know if I am strong enough to not love you, but the only thing worse than loving the person we shouldn’t, is loving someone who doesn’t want to love us back.

Maybe I needed a one-sided love for far too long, if only to learn how I want to be loved. But now it’s not just about wanting someone to make my body ache under his skillful fingertips or tasting myself upon his wet lips—this time I know that while I am whole, I do still need another. That it’s the bitter truth—that I need someone. And not just someone to hold my hand, but someone to hold my heart.

And no matter how many chances we both gave each other, you never were able to take that last step towards me. So now my only choice is to turn and slowly walk away… I’m hoping that maybe this time you’ll stop me—but I’m also realizing that, just like before, this is a path I am meant to walk alone.

Lost at the point of no return.  There is no looking back, I've learnt....

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Someday



One day there will be a man who stays and chooses me each and everyday - and I will be loved.

I will loved for everything I am and the wonderment that spins of my own golden truth.

I will be loved for the moments of everything I'm not - because they will no longer be flaws, but the beauty of finding a silver lining within the darkest of storms.

There won't be any lingering questions, and there will never be the feeling of the ball waiting to be dropped crushing my heart in the process.

Because the man who loves me will be rock steady - and not only will he know what he wants, he won't have any problem pursuing them.

The man who loves me will see my value and he's going to do everything to secure it like a priced treasure, before any other man can.

Because sometime when we know, we just know.

I will be loved in between the spaces of day and night to the place where I can be held close enough to be treasured forever.

My fears will fall to the ground as the golden leaves of autumn's last stand.

I won't cling to maybes and what if's, and I will finally feel what it is like to have a man stand by my side as a true constant, weathering any storm that may arise.

I will finally know what it feels like to simply be loved.

I won't have to struggle with carrying the secret heavy burdens of life all by myself.  There will be a man who will hold and protect me in all of the ways I have ever desired , yet never actually have.

As fiercely as he will protect me, he will also love my intoxicating wildness enough to never want to change a single thing about me - except my last name.

I am not going to fight with him, trying to hang on to being "Miss Independent", because I will see in him the brave warrior soul that I have been seeking all along.

Someday, somehow - I will be loved.

I will be loved by a man who has amazing character - it is not his bank account, not his good looks, not his prominent title , but his integrity.

He won't be the man who seduced me with honey sweetened words, or those who promised me jewels and a trip to paradise.  But the one who saw me when I was still invisible.  He will be the one who saw me at my worst and yet still chooses.

And I will be loved in all of the clandestine ways my heart has longed for, with intentions tasting of authenticity and passion.  

I will be loved not because it is easy, or the situation proves to be convenient, or because I am the best option - but because I am his choice.

Someday I will be loved in all of the ways I have never been and it won't be with someone who wishes to clip my wings or who only wants me on his side to make himself to look more appealing.  I will be loved by a man who looks at me and can never seem to get enough of my enchanting mysteries.

Someday I will be loved and it won't matter what he does for work, it won't matter how much money he has and what type of car he drives.  The precious thing that matters is that he is going to hold me close and love me like no one else ever has.  For me, this is the type of astonishing wealth I am seeking.

I know that someday I will be loved - that someday, someone will choose to stay where others have only left.  I will be loved fully and completely. And that man will show me why I stayed single for as long as I did.

Whether it is tomorrow, next month, next year or even three years from now, I will be loved.  I will be loved with the force of gentle hands and passionate heart.  I will be loved with desire's touch and gentleman's smile.  I will be loved with a brave spirit and determined mind.

Someday I will be loved in the right way for the right reasons... That kind of love who is willing to risk everything for me... Because I deserve the very kind of love that I am willing to give - and that is pure, authentic and whole kind of love.

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Infinity


Nothing lasts forever. Forever has no place in a constantly changing world. Nothing in life is guaranteed.  No one can promise forever, even if they intend it.

Love is not static. But should we now stop believing in love and forever?

Experience and years of contemplation have taught me that if someone tells you "I love you, forever."  Believe it.  Believe that the person loves you and that "forever" is based in the context of here and now. 

Will that "forever" guarantee tomorrow?  I guess it is unfair to demand  an answer.  Whilst an affirmative answer gives us the relief, comfort and security we need, love cannot be imposed. Love is a gift but it cannot be boxed. To demand an answer is not love.  To force answer is selfishness.

I have learned to love. Love. Just love without any expectations.

There is a lesson to be learned from the character of Little Suzie in the"Looney Tunes cartoon story of "A Kiddie's Kitty".  Little Suzie loved Sylvester the Cat so much that she would hug her so tight to the discomfort of Sylvester the Cat, to the point where he cannot breathe.   And in the end, it drove Sylvester the cat to choose to be tormented by a bulldog rather than being "loved" by Little Suzie. 

Somewhere between the ashes of the burnt bridges and diffused past love's flames, I realized that sometimes loving someone means being willing to do anything to get them back... And sometimes it means being selfless to do nothing and surrender them with the space that they need to be happy and grace to be free.

I am learning to love in such a way that the other person feels free.

What's the difference between love and a like? ... Like is when you see you see a nice flower, then you pluck it.  Love is when you see a flower and you water it daily.

To infinity and beyond...

"I have heard that it is so hard to reach the sense of infinity, but at least I'll try.And know that I can't get beyond.  But I want to try." - Toy Story 1

Tomorrow is never guaranteed but I guess it is the hope of possibilities that keeps me going. I think this is what it means to take that leap of faith.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Young Black Stallion




Where do I begin to tell a story and the tale of two hearts?   It was over before it even had a chance to start...

When the woodpecker made its disappearing act, I forced myself up and managed to picked myself back together again.  In my path to healing, I met this young stud.  He too, also came from a recent break-up.   We forged friendship and alliance.  He would advice me and give me his candor piece of mind coming from a male's perspective on things.  While I disagree, or refuse to accept some of his versions of truths, especially on relationships, he has challenged my naivete and broadened my landscape.  He helped me speed up my recovery and taught me to look after for myself, first and foremost, when engaging in a relationship.

I, in turn, challenged him and gave him some morsels of my modest feminine temperance, coming from my pink visions.  He also does not buy in to some of my truths, but hey I still give to him anyway.

Just like any typical guy, his way of recovering from his heartbreak was getting back on the dating scene.  (Whilst mine was of course, hibernating). After his dates, he would return to me and share to me bits and piece of his adventures out there in the dating arena.  I sometimes, end up shaking my head in disagreement on some of his ways and would scold him as if those women were my friends. 

Repeatedly, I would tell him that I wish someday he will meet his match.  I wish this woman will rock his world so hard that he will realize the very essence of the things I have tried so hard to explain to him.  And when that time comes, I hope he would introduce that woman to me, so I can pay my homage to her.

He would just shrug that notion of, in sarcastic disbelief - every single time. We both know each other's stand on relationships and that is at the opposite ends of the scale.  But we call this a truce.  Our dynamics has always been like that. We were honest and raw with our thoughts and emotions. We may not be in tangent all the time, but we hear each other out.  We sometimes agree to disagree - with respect and try not to impose each other.  

We were like brother and sister... I treated him like a dear younger brother, as he is after all 7 years younger than me.  I became easily comfortable with him.  I can tell him anything I want, without fear of judgement.  We would pick each other up, when one is feeling low.  He have been an encourager to one another.   And for the first time, I enjoyed having a male buddy in my life, with no expectations. Primarily of our age gap and his choice of hot young women,  and my choice for steady mature men, surely, no emotional entanglements can come out of this.  

But one day, out of the blue, he asked me out.  This time for a date.  I almost choked in disbelief.  How could he look at me as a dateable material?  Has he ran out of women that he is desperate now to ask me out? Has he got no respect for our friendship that he is willing to ruin it by making me his flavor of the month?  I bashed him with all my questions.  

I got my walls up and got very defensive.   In the end I said yes.  Not just because of his justifications and response to each of my questions, but also because I was curious and more so because I was flattered.  To be pursued by a young stud is indeed flattering.  I honestly did not see this coming. True to his form, like a dark horse,  he totally caught me off-guard.  And I was pleasantly surprised in the end.

His timing could have not been more perfect.  He came at a stage when the Woodpecker left me and I was also in a deep rut at work in that Circus workplace.  I was at that down-low moment.  I felt ugly, unwanted, unloved.  Then here he comes, showering me with his attention, flirting me with his charms, playing with his youth and sweeping me off with his suave smooth ways. He made me feel young again.  And not only that, he made me feel hot like I am someone crazy sexy beautiful. He brought out the sexy back in me.  I felt confident. Maybe this is the effect of having a younger man pursuing you.  In as much as I hate to admit it, but it feels flattering. He made me feel appreciated, validated and cherished.  He was there in that very moment.  And I guess he was exactly what I needed at that point.

However, as time goes by and the more time I spend with him, I feel more drawn.  I am beginning to feel something that I should not feel.  What started out as something fun for me is slowly becoming serious for me.  I am afraid if this feeling.  And as result of this feeling, I am much more afraid of the things I am capable and willing to do for him.  The more I give, the more I want to give more.  By nature I have a loving and expressive heart.  It hurts to feel and not being able to express it.  I cannot pretend to be cool and nonchalant about us, when deep inside I feel more.

Whilst we have been open and upfront with each other, this time, I feel it is different.  I am not sure with him, but to me I feel like we are now both walking on eggshells, conscious not to complicate things.  I have not told him of what I am feeling this time because it might overwhelm him.  This could be too much for him.  What if he is not ready?  What if we are not on the same page?  Then I end up being rejected - again.  I did not initiate "the talk" because I do not want to appear needy.  Besides, if he wants it, he will initiate it himself.

I have learned in the past that if love is a game, the one who loves more - loses.  I have always been the one who loves more. That is my problem.  I have already dipped my feet in the water, I need to get out off the shore before it drowns me.  I have to take care of myself and watch over my back, just as the way how he taught me.

How do you tame a wild horse?  The answer is no .. unless the horse himself wants to be tamed... unless the horse himself wants to be domesticated.  The expression of love is freedom.  Love in such a way that the other person feels free.  I am not going to manipulate him to change.  He belongs in the wild, and so I am setting him free.  

At the same time, I am no horse tamer. I do not want to busy myself learning how to be one and then in the process miss out on the opportunity of meeting my true knight in shining armor.  I am nipping in the bud whatever puppy love emotion I am beginning to feel, before it can even brach out and blossom further.  I am going to park this young black stallion aside now there in the friend zone.  In the end, I am still happy that I get to keep him as a friend. I am thankful for the things he has taught me and everything that he has given to me.  I will always be there for him, even just as a friend.  No expectations.  All is well that ends well.  

.... How do I end a story and the tale of two hearts? Now, this is my side of the story.... Is it really over before it even had a chance to start? ... You'll have to ask him for his side of the story.  How do we know?  ... I guess at this stage only time will tell. 

Saturday, April 04, 2015

The Start of Something New



"And you know it's time to trust the magic of new beginnings".  I greeted the new year with this mantra. Not quite sure if I really believed in it then, but it was more of a pep talk for myself - to keep what little hope I got left in my almost empty cup.  It was more of a wishful thinking for me to never stop dreaming and never stop believing for my miracle.

The past couple of years have been tumultuous  for me.  I felt going on a downward spiral ever since the breakup with MunchK.  I somehow felt that life has never treated me good after that.  I moved from Adelaide to Melbourne seeking for that silver lining.  However, it felt more like an endless tunnel instead. 

That tunnel led me to a workplace circus that really did drain the life out of me.  So hard to work for a company that does not align with my values and business leadership principles. I tried to work it out, thinking I could make a positive influence and change the system.  However, it was me who was slowly being changed.  I was becoming a person that I was not.  Family and friends around me all have said the same thing.  But then I do not need them to tell me.  Because deep in my heart I felt it too.  I was becoming a negative person. A drain.  A pessimist.  A loser. Bruised. Battered. Defeated.  Although I try, or at least pretend, to be joyful and positive - deep in the heart of my hearts, I was dying.  I was like a zombie walking aimlessly waiting for the final end.

This had to stop.

I did not quit my job because how can I manage to pay my bills?   I already felt comfortable in my own living arrangement.  I stayed in a cozy two bedroom apartment on my own, living in a  blue-chip suburb with posh neighborhood, close to the city.  I felt like Carrie Bradshaw from Sex and the City (minus the sex part though). However I also felt like having a some sort of a Devil Wears Prada kind of boss... But then it can't be that bad. I am living and enjoying the lifestyle.  I live in one of the prime suburbs in the world's most livable city.  This is the life! I am living the life.

Am I really? When I go home to my cozy apartment, I cry to myself in frustration.  My lifestyle is very expensive indeed. It is costing me my sanity and my chance of finding happiness.  I was so unhappy that  would be prefer to be in my own company than with friends because I did not want to wear them down.  I shunned meeting new people, potential men, in particular because I felt I was not ready to mingle.  Too much negativity only makes me give off a bad impression. 

When I met the Woodpecker, I was not ready for a relationship.  He was the only guy who persisted in pursuing me.  But that was all he was after.  After the chase ended, he disappeared.  I did manage to put myself back together again.  I have learned to move on and dust him off my life.  But I wanted more than being whole, I wanted to be at peace.

And so for my sanity's sake and my over-all well-being, I decided to let go.  I gave up my lovely apartment of which I lovingly treated as my own.  I sold all that I had for even less than half of the price I bought them for.  It was not an easy decision to make but I made it.  I had to choose between my lifestyle and myself.   Money can be a powerful and brutal master.  I refuse to be enslaved and manipulated by it.  The more I tried to cling on to my expensive lifestyle, the more I pushed myself let go.  It was a dare that I challenged myself upon.  Despite my adverse hesitation to let go, what gives me comfort is that still small voice inside me that tells me that what I am about to lose is nothing compared to what I will gain in the future. Because I know that my life, my sanity, my peace - they are far more worth than the familiar comfortable lifestyle that I have.  

I let go without a concrete battleplan. It was indeed a blind leap of faith.  When I took the plunge, I did not know where it will take me or how deep that jump will be.  I just did.  Because surely nothing can go far more worse than the circus of a workplace that I have employed myself with.  

Our new family business provided me with a good escape route to break away from the circus ring.  So I went home to my hometown and like a dutiful daughter I established the business processes and standards.   I was slowly enjoying and getting used to the life back home.  I was a princess - having everything at my disposal, whilst surrounded by my loving family and friends.... However, something still feels missing.  I am still seeking a bigger adventure.  What could it be?

Then  when someone asked me "what would you do if you knew that you would not fail?"   And the first thing that entered my mind is to go back to Australia.  I feel like I have an unfinished business there.  Going home was like a defeat.  I want to go back and prove to myself that I can conquer Australia.  I am not a loser nor a quitter.  Besides, if it won't work, I always have the family business to fall back on.

I packed my bags and took another one-way ticket back to Australia.  This time, based on past experience, I kept my expectations and most of all my humility low. I never wanted to live with any of my relatives in Australia because of my pride. I wanted to be independent and self sufficient.  But now, I have humbled myself and made myself open to the blessings of others.  I prepared myself for long and winding job hunt.  I was making myself ready to wait on tables, flip burgers even clean toilets - if push comes down to the shove.  I made myself completely, wholeheartedly open to anything that comes along my way.  I prepped myself to embrace the season that I am in - as if I have chosen it for myself, as if I am meant to be there.

This is the job hunting season for me.  Embrace the hunting process.  I rolled up my sleeves and prepared my hands to get dirty, bruised and calloused. 

Just few days after I arrived in Melbourne, a job agent called in for an interview.  Then another couple of days after I was called in for their client  interview. I attended the interview, prepared but at the same time crutched with my past job-hunting baggages, with the mindset to treat this as a practice interview for the long series of job interviews I had to face in the future.  I was used to acing the interviews, feeling like a champion, optimistic that the job is mine for the taking. But only to find out in the end that I was just their second best.  I dod not want to disappoint myself.  I hoped for the best but still prepared for the worst. 

Four hours after the client interview, the job agent rang me.  I knew the standard opening line.  They would start of telling me of how the clients find me - they like and they find me amiable, passionate, smart, etc ... Then the earth-shattering "...but" bomb comes.  I was waiting for that bomb to drop.  However, it never came.  I waited and waited as the agent talked on. Do I now have a hearing problem? Am I now being selectively deaf - as a way of my coping mechanism?    

Then there was a long pause on the phone.  The agent stopped talking.  She was waiting for my response.  I was still waiting for the "...but" bomb.

"They like you.", the agent repeated. "They want you to start in two days time.... Are you still there?", she asked.

I could not believe my ears!  Am I dreaming?  Because if it is, I don't want to wake up!  So before the dream ends I replied, "Yes, of course I will take it and I am ready to report for work in two days time."

When I got home I received my letter of offer and contract from my new employer.

How fast was that? It went so fast, I had to pause to digest everything that happened.  This was the ONLY application I made since I came back.  This was the only interview I attended.  What a difference from before.  It took me months, several applications and tons of rejections before I landed a job.  But now, this?  It feels like it was meant to be. My heart is filled with amazement and gratitude.  Surely, God is at work behind all these.  

Then, suddenly the miracle of new beginnings began to work its magic. 

I am happy now working for a great big company.  It is one of Australia's leading - if not the largest, legal firm in the country.  I see more alignment of my values and business management principles with this company.  I like and I hold high respect for the boss that I am working for.  And he respects me too.  I feel valued and heard.  My opinion matters and they are open to my improvement suggestions.

I am really glad that I took the risk. Looking back now, I cannot believe how I managed to survive working for that circus for almost two years. Whew!  I was walking on eggshells all the time. By letting go of the things that no longer serve my higher purpose, I am being rewarded with the rightful things destined for me.  Had I stayed where I was, I would still be soaking in my miseries, running around in circles in that circus, like a dog chasing after its own tail. At that time when I took the risk of letting go, I had to face some degree of pain. But what kept me going is the knowledge that it would be more painful to live a rotting semi-nonexistent life.

Now, I am much happier and yes I feel alive!  

I harbor no bitterness of my past.  I needed the lessons anyway.  It humbled me.  It taught me to hold a more realistic view in life.  And makes me now appreciate more what I have in life - even the simplest of things.  The timing of events of my life was just enough - not a minute earlier, not a minute too late. Had I stayed longer, it would have been more difficult for me to leave, as things could get more comfortable.  I could grow accustomed to the discomfort.  That could have been my familiar comfort zone - ironically speaking.  Had I left earlier, I would have not been ready and prepared for this new beginning.   

This is the season of new beginnings for me.  Right here, right now. I feel the start of something new for me. This is the start of something beautiful, something amazing. I shall keep my eyes wide open to marvel more of its magic, as it gradually unfolds itself...
     

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

The Journey of a Thousand Miles


After living in 12 addresses, four cities, and two countries, it can easily be assumed that I have mastered the art of moving.  Or worse, I am an escape artist.  Or probably I am a free-spirited soul who flies wherever the wind blows.  However none of these assumptions are farther from the truth.

I am a creature of habit.  I thrive on routines, schedules and templates with Swiss clock-worth precision.  Sure, I can be spontaneous.  But I would have to make a schedule for that in my calendar as well.  As someone who is adverse to diverting from my set of routines, how I have subjected myself to various detours and changes especially these recent past five years.  Oh, the irony of this sweet life of mine!

Why do I keep on moving then? ... I am not a coward nor am I a quitter.  The temptation to go back to what is familiar is strong but that is cowardice.  I want to do what is right for me, and not what is easy.  It takes courage, guts and  a dash of craziness to relocate. It is tough having to relocate.  I had to learn to give up, let go and move on. I had to overcome my sentimentality and strong attachment issues, particularly on material things.   

Adventure. Whilst I do not want to constantly put my life on the edge, I do not want to stagnate either.  Every time I feel afraid, the more I push myself further even with great hesitation - because this is the only way I will know where my limits lie.  I have journeyed a thousand miles and my frequent flyer points have helped me attain a wealth of skills and breadth of experience.  

Contrary to other people's beliefs, I am not flimsy nor fickle minded.  Had they lived up to the options I faced, they would have moved too - even earlier than I did.  Or they could have opted to stay and rot. 

I am definitely not running away from something.  I am chasing after something.  And what is that something? ... That is the question.  I have pondered over this question so many times over and over during my short break in my hometown.  I have discovered that in my younger years, I was aiming for success.  But now, I am aiming for significance.

“I cannot believe that the purpose of life is to be happy. I think the purpose of life is to be useful, to be responsible, to be compassionate. It is, above all to matter, to count, to stand for something, to have made some difference that you lived at all.” —Leo Rosten

Success may be easier to be measured and achieved through titles,  position, possessions and financial acquisition.  However, significance carries on, it is long lasting and it leaves a strong impact to the people and the world around you.

Personally, I want to live a life of legacy.  A life worth emulating.  A life of character and integrity. A life that touches. A life that is shared. A life that ignites and leaves a spark of happiness.      

Now in my quest for significance, where will this take me?  Will this bring me to  my thirteenth address? fifth city or third country?  Address, more likely yes but city and country, I definitely hope NOT!  I am at this stage that I want to settle.  And by settle I do not mean, settle down but settle UP.  It means finding my place under the sun, take root, bloom and bear more fruits. 

My journey towards significance has just started.  I know I have a long way to go and the route is far more worth than the thousand mile journey that I have already taken. Who knows how many thousand miles further I need to take?   I will still take it because I am confident that this journey will finally lead me home, in the arms of where I truly belong.

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Homecoming Queen



As soon as the plane hit the ground and the stewardess announced its touch-down, I sighed heavily in my heart.  I was dreading to go back to my hometown.  I am going home single and jobless.  How am I going to face these people back home empty handed?  As I walked along the tarmac, I came up with a list of different excuses ranging from polite to funny to sarcastic responses depending on the person who is asking, the level of our relationship and the degree of our closeness.

People back home hold such high esteem on me, that they impose such high expectations.  The pressure to maintain sitting on that pedestal is not easy.  I can see myself dislodged from that pedestal anytime soon.  I was ready.  I am prepared.

As soon as I stepped out of the airport, I made myself ready and equipped myself with an invisible shield (my breastplate of "excuses"), my lipstick and my best showbiz smile.  

It's show time!... Keep all those questioning daggers coming, I am ready for your questions.  I am fully armed with my list of answers.

However, much to my surprise, people warmly embraced me and lovingly accepted my status, just as I am - with not much revolt.  Of course, they find it hard  to believe how a beautiful lady like me, who ticks all the right boxes, can still be single.  But other than that, they accept it and they respect my case.  

I realized that there was no need to use my long list of invented "excuses".  I let down my invisible shield and my fake smile. There was no need for me to hide and put up my defenses.  I opened up again back to my raw self - genuine, carefree and confident.

Upon realizing this, I was greatly humbled.  I learned few other more lessons from this homecoming:

First, I worry too much.  I worry about other people's opinion of me.  I even falsely accused them of thinking the worst about me. And all of these were proven to be utterly wrong. I thought I would be frowned upon with my given situation. I feared the worst and stressed myself with unnecessary burden.  On the plane, I carried with me an excess baggage full of nonsense worries, which could have been left at the rubbish bin in the first place.  It was like I paid a down payment over a debt I did not owe.  I should not worry.  I should relax and trust the good judgement of the people around me.

Second, I am my own worst critic.  I complain about how other people hold such high esteem on me and how they put me up on a pedestal, when I feel like I do not deserve to be.  However, as I let down my own guards, I was able to see myself through their lens and discovered a beautiful truth about me.  It takes humility to accept that.  It is because of my pride that I refused to debunk this ideology at first, because it felt too much trying to maintain and keep up with that good perfect reputation.  However, I realized that I do not need to exert much, I just need to be my genuine self and open it up to them.  No beauty shines brighter than that of a good heart.   People esteem me highly precisely because of my "Me-ness" and not because of what I have and my possessions.  Even in my nothingness, people are still blessed by my story, my experience, my insights, my talents, my gentleness, my meekness, my caring and compassionate ways.  In short, my amazing-ness.  Yes, I am amazing.  I need to remind myself this... everyday.  And yes, I deserve my crown. I should not resist sitting on the throne but rather sit comfortably in there with genuine humility, grace and elegance.         

Third, I need to adjust my perspective.  I viewed my situation with a defeated mindset of being jobless and man-less.  But friends and family view my situation as freedom - free to be anywhere, anytime and free to find that one great love that I truly deserve.  It is not defeat, but rather an opportunity.  The best is yet to come.  Besides, I am not totally job-less (man-less, yes, but jobless no).  I have successfully established the groundworks for our thriving family business.  It is doing well, that it can now run on its own without my constant supervision.  Now I can move on to something bigger.  Oh yes, the best is yet to come.  

Fourth, I should give love a chance.  For the longest time, I have placed an "off limits" sign against cupid at the doorpost of my heart.  I did not want to put myself in that place of vulnerability again. Because when I give, I give my all.  No holding back. I do not want to lose myself and fall madly, deeply in love with someone again.  This is a self defense mechanism that I have built to protect myself.  However, seeing my parent's marriage, it has reminded me that love - despite the pain, sorrows and heartache is a beautiful thing.  Their marriage is not perfect but it is real.  I have seen how they both occasionally fail each other and how they both extend patience, forgiveness and compromise with each other. Oh, how good it is to share a lifetime with someone you love and who loves you back.  I should not close my doors on love.  Just because my previous relationships failed in the past, does not mean that I am incapable of loving and neither am I incapable of being loved.  No,  am not automatically launching my man hunt any minute sooner.  What is meant to be, will find its own way.  I won't search for love, I will let it find me.  Given the right time, the right man, the right intentions and the right motives - this time I will not resist. I will be open to love and let love take its own course.  

Fifth, I am loved.  I am blessed to have an abundance of love from my family and friends.  After living on my own for very so long, I have adopted the hermit kind of lifestyle. I could survive for days happily soaking myself in my own solitude, with no need for social interaction.  Content living on my own, I forget the connections I have made with the rest of the world.  And this has made me feel totally alone and utterly unloved (especially after facing the rejection I have received from my previous relationships).  But this not true.  I am loved. And for this, I am truly humbled, honored and grateful.

All these lessons give me courage, strength and confidence to face the new challenges I am about to face in my new adventure.

As soon as the plane launched towards the sky and the stewardess announced its take-off, it suddenly dawned on to me .... it's for real, I am leaving home - again - in a bigger quest to conquer my dreams.  I questioned  myself.  I wanted to ask the pilot to take me back home.  I panicked.  Then, I slowly reminded myself of the new found lessons and insights I have learnt from home.  It is so easy writing them down.  Living them and applying them daily is another test I need to master.  

Gentle note to myself: Be brave little one, everything will be all right.  Always keep a little prayer in your pocket and be sure to see the light.  Remember these lessons and keep going.  It will not be easy.  There will be days of trials and challenges, but promise me one thing - never give up when things get tough, OK?  Remain focused on your journey to greatness.  The race of life is not a race of speed but a race of endurance.  Dreams don't have expiration dates.  Keep dreaming, keep pushing, keep trying.  In due time, all that hard work will make your dreams come true.