In the midst of this 50 hour work week that I’ve taken on, I’ve finally found a quiet moment to type everything that I’ve missed for the last couple days and… boy, is it ever a lot.
There are so many things I have to cover! My session with Nadia, the conversation with Nick, and now, a new interesting occurrence that happened last night – I ended up hanging out with Dylan.
So, where do I begin? What do I address first? Do I start from the beginning and work my way to now, or do I jump right into how incredible last night was?
My impatience wants to go straight to last night, but I suppose it’s more fitting to start from what I’ve missed and work my way to the present moment. My gut is telling me that that’s how this log is supposed to go, for some reason. So, here we go.
My session with Nadia was probably one of the best ones I’ve had yet. We talked about my family as per usual, and I updated her on the situation (because the alcohol relapse happened after I saw her last). She made me realize that sometimes, I can only do so much. And that as much as I want to help my family, it’s also my form of trying to control the situation, in a sense.
I got anxious because as much as I was trying to keep everything altogether, it wasn’t really going according to how I wanted it to go (in regards to my dad – he kept putting things off). But Nadia was right – sometimes, I have to accept that things (and people) are going to be out of my control and that that’s okay.
I asked her how exactly I could go about learning how to accept better that I cannot control all the aspects of my life, and she recommended a new book to me that I’m looking forward to reading sometime during this month.
After we talked about my family, the conversation headed towards Dylan.
I talked about how I got so caught up in my thoughts and feelings about him to the point that I felt like I didn’t really know what to do. And she simply told me to go with the flow, and let things happen as they do – just like my inner wisdom told me to do.
She LOVED my “let go” tattoo and totally understood why I got it – which in turn reminded me to look at it more, to practise it more in my day-to-day life.
This conversation led to me talking about my past relationships, and she helped me understand some very interesting things regarding my patterns of past attractions and my relationships.
She explained to me that in the first five years of our lives, we form what we know relationships, attachments, love, and affection to be through what we see in our parents. Those things that we see get embedded in our subconscious, and if you’re not aware of those things, they will come out in our OWN future relationships and what we seek in them.
For example, there was a direct correlation between how my mom unintentionally made me feel like she was trying to control my life and my education, and how controlling Din was of me; because of what I’ve experienced growing up with my mom trying to steer the direction of my life (purely out of love), I thought that Don being possessive, controlling and over-protective was his form of love towards me, which is why I didn’t know any better.
Also, the way I was attracted to Nick – right off the bat there was a part of me that knew that he wasn’t altogether there, that something was missing. But even then, I still pursued the relationship. He cheated on me because he was so full of resentments about his own life, that the instant gratification was too tempting and destructive for him to resist. He doesn’t love or care about himself enough, and so that reflected in our relationship too. Which correlates directly to my relationship with my dad – time and time again he “abandoned” our family, chose his addiction over us, and all I’ve ever known is sticking through that regardless of what happened. The same way my mom never gave up on my dad, I chose not to give up on Nick, regardless of all the darkness within him that he had no intention of truly fixing or healing.
It all made so much sense. She seemed to have all the answers, so I couldn’t resist asking her something that I’ve been wondering about myself for quite some time – why am I into younger guys?
And her answer blew me away.
All my life, I’ve been putting out fires for my family. Trying to save everyone. Protecting my sister, getting in between my mom and dad when they were fighting. Without even realizing, I took the “caretaker” role in my family upon myself. Somewhere down along the line, it became embedded in my subconscious that the only way I can connect to people or relate to them, is by trying to take care of them or fix them.
And so, I’m interested in younger guys because subconsciously a part of me believes that that age difference will automatically put me in a “care-taking” role because they’re younger than I am.
…mind-blowing, right?! That’s psychology for ya.
Nadia warned me to be aware of these signs. To stay clear of the bad traits I witnessed in my parents’ relationship with one another, and try to find or be with someone who embodied the good – the hard-working nature of my mom, her resilience and dedication, her loyalty. Her strength, and her adventurousness. My dad, despite his demons, has always been kind, affectionate, and loving. Those were the qualities I should seek in a partnership.
She warned me that I cannot fix or save anyone. And that seeking a relationship with the sole intention of being a “care-taker” would create an imbalance, and expectations that would ultimately leave me disappointed and unfulfilled.
She also told me to stay very clear of anyone who gave off the potential addict vibes, and I assured her that that was one thing I would never, ever allow myself to engage in. But man, little did I know… (I’ll explain this soon).
I’m scheduled for another appointment with her on the 14th of this month, and I can’t wait. I genuinely enjoy talking with her so much because she helps me to connect my past to my present, in an effort to create a better future for myself through self-awareness. I’m so, so grateful. And I’m so thankful I did this for myself.
Anyways, next up on the list of things I have to address: my recent conversations with Nick.
A couple days ago, Nick and I were talking about our new dating lives (my lack thereof, and his new girlfriend). And we were giving each other advice – he was telling me to be more straightforward about what I want for myself, and I was telling him to be more transparent with his thoughts and feelings with his new girlfriend so that he wouldn’t seem so unreadable.
Which led to him venting about her; he explained that he kind of resented her because he felt that she lived her life so much more than he’d lived his. She was a “hardcore party girl” (his words, not mine) and she recently admitted to him that she does cocaine sometimes, and that it’s easy for her to get.
Ultimately, this led to him questioning their relationship – he felt that she was trying to settle down with him and leave that life behind because she saw him to be her new-found stability and safety, an escape or balance to that lifestyle. But he didn’t want to be that stability because he felt that there was so much more to life that he had yet to experience. He felt that he’d been working in every single aspect of his life for so long – school, working at the restaurant for his parents, and now his multi-internships and volunteer experiences, that he never got to go out and enjoy life on his own terms.
But then he started getting honest.
The resentment wasn’t just towards his new girl – it was also towards his parents.
He felt angry all the time these days, even yelled at them because he felt that they took away his life. He resented them for the restaurant, for having to work there. He resented them because he felt that everything he’s done in regards to school and now his work, has been for them. He’s strived so hard to be a “good son” that that’s all he’s ever been and all he’s ever known. He felt trapped and caged.
And how he’s been dealing with it? Day-drinking. Every day, at all times.
(Alarm bells started going off in my head at this point. Because, this deep anger and unhappiness and the resultant drinking is EXACTLY how addictive patterns are formed).
I asked him if ever sat down with himself and asked himself what he wanted for and from his life. I told him that partying or drinking wouldn’t make him happy – it was a temporary fix for a very deep unhappiness he was currently experiencing. I told him that he should be honest with his parents, honest with his new girlfriend, and most importantly, honest with himself.
He kept saying that he couldn’t change anything, but I explained to him that saying he couldn’t change anything was a choice he was making for himself, not a reality. We ALWAYS have a choice. Saying that we don’t have a choice is a choice in itself.
I explained to him that he wanted so badly to be a “good son” that he would rather work at the restaurant and resent his parents, than be honest with them and salvage his relationship with them long term. His attachment to their perception of him was ruling his life and turning inwards.
But who was he outside of his family? What did he really want for himself? Has he ever asked himself any of that, tried to get to know himself better?
I was trying to help him look inside himself but I think it made him uncomfortable, because he started deflecting by attempting to change the topic.
And then Nadia’s advice along with my own voice of inner wisdom spoke in my head, unanimously: it’s not your responsibility to save anyone, and you cannot help anyone who isn’t the least bit willing to help themselves.
So, I let it go. I sent one last long message to him full of hard truths and thought-provoking questions. And when he deflected once more rather than acknowledging anything I said, I didn’t feel upset or unhappy – I was at ease, knowing that I said everything I could possibly say, knowing that I did my best to help but everything else was out of my control, and that was okay.
These conversations were the final nails in the coffin that I needed, in regards to the ghosts of my past feelings for him and our relationship.
I finally understood why he cheated on me, with such an intense clarity – resentment is probably all he’s ever known or felt for quite some time. And that resentment that he feels towards his parents probably makes him feel guilty to some degree, because that conflicts with his incessant need to be a good son. So the guilt turns inwards, and turns into anger. He said he felt caged and trapped. And honestly, our serious relationship with one another probably only added to that feeling. And so, rather than deal with what he was feeling, or acknowledge any of its potential destructive nature, he chose to self-destruct instead, and take our relationship down with him.
I’m not justifying what he did, I’m only saying that I finally understand now, utterly and completely, that what he did had absolutely nothing to do with me as a person, and everything to do with whatever he’s been trying to avoid and placate through alcohol.
He needs help. But until he admits that to himself, he’ll continue to spiral downwards into that unhappiness and it will always find its way back into his future relationships. That resentment will become the foundation of every one of the aspects that continue to form his life if he never does anything to address it. But ultimately, that’s not on me.
I hope for his sake that after four years of psychology, he’ll see these warning signs and consequently care enough about himself to discard his pride and seek help. He’s hit rock bottom before, but even that wasn’t enough motivation for him to look inwards long enough to do some real healing or introspection. Those rock bottom moments are inevitable for people who are unaware of themselves or what they need, so if it does happen to him again… I hope it’s not bad enough that it’s irreparable, and I hope that it’ll also be enough to propel him into the self-love, self-care and self-awareness that he so desperately needs.
And so, that’s that. Amazing that as this year slowly draws to a close, so does a lot of other aspects in my life. Which brings me to hanging out with Dylan last night.
My heart is in this weird bittersweet feeling right now – really happy and so content, but also a little heavy. The heaviness is making me uncomfortable because I worry that it’s my ego, but a part of me believes that it’s not. And that it’s okay for the heaviness to be there, at least for a little while longer.
A couple days ago, I booked a trip to Antigua for myself, my sister and my mom (UM, side note here to freak out about the fact that amongst everything that’s been happening I somehow neglected to mention the fact that I AM LEAVING THE COUNTRY IN LESS THAN FIVE WEEKS WHAT THE FUCK SO MUCH HAS HAPPENED IN THIS PAST WEEK LMAO LMAO).
So I sent a celebration snap of the booking to everyone, including Dylan. And he ended up replying, which led to a brief conversation about how I found the deal on next departure (the site he sent to me).
We talked for a little bit through snap and I ended up asking him if he was going to be coming into work that day. And his reply, while rather shocking, wasn’t quite surprising I suppose. What was surprising was how it made me feel. But more on that after.
He admitted that he wasn’t sure if he’d be coming back to the Bay at all. The rep from the company he worked for basically threw him under the bus and claimed that she wasn’t aware of the fact that he was working, and claimed that she hadn’t given the go-ahead of his schedule or that he could work at all (even though she had). So, until he knew further, he was barred from coming into his shifts until the company figured out what was going on.
Despite everything I’d said about letting go of my feelings and moving on, as soon as I read that I felt my heart sink. And I finally realized the truth of the matter – regardless of the intensity of my feelings or how caught up I got them, the truth was I genuinely liked Dylan as a person. Aside from all the stupid mind-blinding hormones or my fears of rejection or whatever else, I truly enjoyed our conversations and loved being around him. The thought of maybe never seeing him again made me so sad.
So, I went with the flow and did what felt right to me in that moment – I told him that if he ever needed a distraction or vent session, to let me know. Especially maybe over a mojito or some kalbi tacos at Han Ba Tang.
And, much to my utter (but pleasant) surprise, he asked me if school or work was taking up a lot of my time this week. I mentioned when I was free, but there was a little bit of struggle with the days we were suggesting since we both had other commitments throughout the week. And right when I thought that maybe it was too good to be true, he asked if I was free the next day (yesterday). And that worked out just fine for the both of us.
And so, throughout my ten hour shift yesterday, I focused solely on working. I threw myself into making sales so that my mind wouldn’t wander into daydreaming and projecting topics of conversations, variations of scenarios. I didn’t want to give my ego-mind that power. I wanted to accept whatever was to be, as it was, and nothing more than that.
But man, was it ever hard. Sometimes when it got quiet at work, my mind would begin to wander, my heart would start to race as a result and the anxiety would pick up.
I took a moment to write a note to myself, let my inner wisdom speak: “Dear you, this is your inner wisdom speaking. Remember everything you’ve learnt this week. Remember the clarity of being separated from your thoughts and feelings. DO NOT react – just observe. Listen. See. Be there in the moment. Be honest with yourself about your expectations – have none. Just let things happen as they do. Do not project. Most of all – be YOU. And have fun. Love always, me.”
And even better yet, the universe heard my inner plea for help and sent it to me physically in the form of the wonderful mystical Dana, who just happened to be visiting work yesterday.
There was a moment that she found her way over to my podium, and the exact conversation that I needed occurred: she reminded me of the power of manifesting your deepest wishes, how powerful we can be when we set our focus to our intentions. She made me question out loud what I really and truly wanted for myself right now, and this is what came forth:
I said that all I wanted right now, was real connection. I wanted good conversation, the thought-provoking growth-inducing kind of conversations that made everything else fall away. I don’t need or want anything more than just that right now, no matter what my ego-mind may be asking for.
It was amazing. It was magical. Once again, I saw the power of the universe at work. I immediately felt so much more at ease after that conversation.
I’m sitting here right now, taking a deep breath, because now is the part that I talk about what happened when we hung out.
What words can I used to properly express what it meant to me, how much it meant to me?
Well… I’ll do my best.
So after I finished my shift, he picked me up from work and I’m happy to say that I wasn’t nervous or anxious at all. We settled into talking about work at first, while we were on our way there; I explained what was going on in the department, and he let me know that the company he had been working for officially had let him go. But, on the bright side, he’d managed to pick up some hours with another brand so he’d be in at least a few more times this year.
Once we got there, we sat in the same area that we did the last time we went there (which was exactly how I visualized it in my head – not daydreamed, but visualized. Ergo, it manifested).
I’m laughing light-heartedly at myself in this moment because of how much I’m struggling to type this. I’m here with myself, in the sense that I know it’s okay to be feeling what I’m feeling, and I’m accepting it. But before I continue, let me explain why I’m struggling to type this; because I feel that once I’m done writing this log, that this is it – the inevitable, bittersweet end that will leave me with a short-term sense of melancholy but a lasting contentment and understanding. In short, this is a goodbye that I understand so much more now than I ever thought I would. The kind of end that I can accept with a true sense of happiness. But I’m getting ahead of myself here.
As per usual, we talked about travel since we share such a mutual admiration for it. I talked about my upcoming trip, and he talked about his excitement for his trip to Hawaii. It was the same small talk that I’m used to (and thoroughly enjoy), at first.
But then the conversation started entering new territories, ones that actually surprised and intrigued me – because of the fact that he was now doing yoga, he was also doing some meditation! So we talked about our experiences with meditation thus far. I mentioned how I’ve been meditating every single day for the past three weeks, and he talked about his struggle with it. I talked about some helpful tips, such as accepting and watching your thoughts while you meditate rather than resisting them and trying to silence your mind. Because eventually, as a result of accepting your thoughts but not becoming attached to them, your mind will eventually and naturally fall silent on its own.
We talked about our awe of the human mind, the brain being a muscle that can be rewired and built. I told him about what I learnt in Psychology – how new neural pathways form when we start to learn something new, such as learning to play the piano. Those neural pathways strengthen the more your practise or cultivate that new thing into a habit. But when you stop contributing effort to that new endeavor and the consistency fails, if the neural pathways weren’t built upon enough, then they will decay and you will forget. But if you spent enough time doing it, they’d always be there and that memory would always be intrinsically a part of you – just like learning to ride a bike and never forgetting how to after wards, regardless of how long you went without doing it.
He was so in awe of all this, it made me so happy that he was so willing to learn about this stuff. And he himself is so smart – he taught me a lot too while we were talking, such as things he learnt from his podcasts that he listens to. The nature of DMT, or about CMT, which is a disorder that decays neural pathways and the nervous system as a result of getting hit in the head too many times (in relation to MMA and fighting). I hadn’t known about any of that stuff. There was this one point that he even took a moment to give me a brief rundown on the history of jiu-jitsu, which was so fascinating.
Once we got our food and drinks, there was a moment where there was a quiet moment in the conversation. So, I finally asked the question that’s been on the top of my list of questions to ask him, for quite some time: why jiu-jitsu? What got him into it?
This one question… launched us into a conversation, the conversation, that I’ve wanted since the beginning and throughout the duration of this year.
However, I am now running out of time. I started this log as soon as I woke up this morning around 9, and it’s already 12. I’ve been writing consistently for three hours!
The rest of this log deserves the right amount of time and dedication that the beginning of this log received. And I want to take a hot bath and just detox and relax my energy before I go into work today, because the energy there is getting worse and worse by the day.
So, I promise to myself that I will write when I get back from work. Fitting I suppose, that this log will end with the end of this day.