Can I NOT Decide, Please?

Personal note: I wrote this entry listening to Blood Bank – Bon Iver on repeat, if you feel like listening you’re welcomed to.


Have you ever stared at your ceiling blankly while thinking about all the possible turns and outcomes of life? The “what if’s” climbing inside your brain and a big question mark written on your forehead. If there’s something I’ve learned from reading poetry is that there’s nothing I’ve felt or lived that someone else hasn’t felt or survived before. So at least right now, while I’m blankly staring at my ceiling with Bon Iver playing on the background I don’t feel so hopeless or alone.

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Okay, it sounds pretty deppressing now that I read that first paragraph once more, so let me calm you down and tell you it’s not that bad. There’s just a hole in my brain where the decision-taking expert neurons are supposed to be… they probably flew off to Hawaii when they knew such a big pre-graduation crisis was coming. Those b…ad neurons.

After always being used to knowing what I wanted, right now I shrug away the big questions such as: What are you doing after you graduate? Will you do a masters? Where will you go next? Are you going to stay in Computer Science? Have you thought of doing something totally new? Are you moving back home? etc etc… Sometimes I even smile and jokingly say “I have no idea”, the jokes on me though… cause I really have no idea.

The only thing I’m pretty much clear about is that I’m done with expectations, my own and others’. My university graduation is not only getting my bachelors degree but also the end to the need of thinking that I’m breathing to prove myself smart enough, cool enough, strong enough, mature enough. Because now I know that I’m not smart enough, cool enough, strong enough, mature enough… I’m well beyond that: I’m just right for whatever purpose I’m standing in this planet for… and so are you. So let’s collect all those expectations, tiny “unoffensive” comments that stuck in the back of our brains feeding our insecurities, and that voice whispering all the ‘buts’ to our greatness and let’s throw them away.

I feel like many times we have this constant fear of disappointing others and disappointing our most severe judge: ourselves. So we go on walking each step carefully, taking each decision so seriously, looking over our shoulders for approval because… What if we are wrong? What if we fail? What if at the end we’re not taking the best path? Well I’ll tell you what: you have a tomorrow and a day after that to change that, and if we actually don’t have tomorrow: problems won’t follow us to what comes after “the end”.

All this mess is more than I speaking to you encouraging to live bravely and to not choose right or wrong, the easy way or the tough way, whatever everyone is doing or go against the current… This is me, telling myself to stop being so afraid.

How bad can it be? To just pick that that makes your heart beat faster, that adventure you dream of, that which you can’t take off your head of, yeah… that exact idea/thing/person/place/whatever that makes everyone else think you might be a bit too crazy but you still think about at night when there’s nothing left but you and your thoughts. Because at the end, if we’re wrong at least there won’t be anyone else to blame but “that foolish us from the past”… and that foolish us from the past will thank us back for giving him/her the chance of choosing at least for once… and then maybe say sorry for being so foolish and messing our lives up a bit.

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Now, the second issue here is to know what we really really want (I wanna, I wanna, I wanna), which takes us back to the beginning of this mess. Because now that we have decided that we will say goodbye to outside factors, it may happen that we don’t really know… but I’ll tell you a little secret: We always know. Yes, we always know what we want, because we can be a whole mess but if there’s someone that knows how to walk through that mess and get to the center of it all, it is ourselves. So let’s stop looking for the big answer in our ceiling, in that David Bowie thunder shaped cloud, in the lyric of the song we have on repeat for already three days, in the random video that popped up on our Facebook timeline or in others. It might take days or weeks (hopefully not years) before we get that answer out but let’s hope that by then we’re still brave enough to take it.

To close up this tiny mess of an entry, let me quote one of my favorite TV shows, just because when I saw this episode I felt it was talking directly to me and still now from time to time I look back to this quote and keep it as a mini mantra:

“Maybe it’s dumb to look for signs from the universe. Maybe the universe has better things to do. Maybe we don’t need the universe to tell us what we really want. Maybe we already know that, deep down.”  -Ted Mosby talking to Robin, How I Met Your Mother Episode: “Something Old”

So, reviewing.

Step 1: Freak out. Overthink everything. Miss the time when your biggest choice was if you wanted or not queso in your baleada (or cheese in your sandwich for those who don’t understand the baleada culture).

Step 2: Say “go to hell” to all those thoughts. Decide that you will do whatever you really really want.

Step 3: Freak out again because you don’t know what you really really want. Cry in fetal position, if needed.

Step 4: Drink a tea/coffee/beer/six tequila shots/apple juice and realize that all answers will come to you, from inside you… not from any other crazy destiny coded message.

What is the next step though? Sorry… but I haven’t reached it yet. I’m somewhere stucked between step 3 and 4, but I promise that as soon as I get to it I’ll let you know. Meanwhile, I’ll keep on sitting in the coffee shop close to my place writing my mind out and drinking as many Hazelnut Lattes and Passionfruit Green Teas it takes until the big answer comes.



Thanks for reading this, and I hope that if you’re in your pre-graduation crisis, pre-anything crisis or post-anything crisis you feel a bit more understood.

Also, thanks to the coolest Physics teacher ever for keeping up with my mess already for more than a month and reading through this entry as I wrote it… and thanks to all those who have also suffered my suffering when I become insufferable. Thanks to you all I keep thinking this is a pretty time and world to live in.

 

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And I Asked Myself WHY?

Taiwan has been the best experience in my life until now. No doubt. Still I need to accept the journey has not been easy, it has actually been pretty hard. It has lots of ups and downs, and more than a 100 times I have wondered what the hell I am actually doing here… This post is about that: the answer to that question. Why being 14,000+ kms away from home is worth it every centimeter and how every misfortune and mishappening is nothing but a chance, a blessing, a new open door in disguise.

乾杯 to Taiwan, to 蛋餅s and the minutes used in this post instead of studying!~


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SAL-LAX Flight 2013

I left home 2 years, 8 months and 23 days ago. That day I was weeping my heart out, hugging my best friend while he was trying to calm me down by telling me I was going to be back home soon. SOON?! I would think, I am leaving for five years and cannot visit until 2 years later from today. TWO YEARS. At that moment in the airport I was questioning all the set of decisions taken in the past two months. The call in the cellphone telling me the great news about Taiwan and asking me right there in the spot “Do you accept this opportunity?” my shaking voice replying “Yes, yes… of course!” and from that point on it was all a serious rush of events. Documents, shopping, places I wanted to go, a series of farewells, overeating all the food I know I was going to miss (what I did not know was that I was going to miss plantain as soon as I sat down on my first flight… yeah, that was fast.)

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Being Human, Human-Being

I’ve read a couple of times (I would love to say that in some classical books, just to sound sophisticated, literated and cultural, but actually I bet it has been in Tumblr-like pictures, Facebook posts and such) that you have to lose yourself before finding out who you actually are. For me this has been completely true, and in addition to that you have to also be criticised, brought down, fall into pieces… and then when building yourself back up you find out what you are made of.

I would love to say there has been a key moment in herewegomy life: a ray of light trespassing the ceiling and bringing with it the answer I have so long needed without knowing. Or maybe a key person: an old man who once told me under an oak tree that I should find the light inside myself before wanting to leave the darkness. But… no. I actually believe I have lost and found myself once and over again along the years and every single time I am totally different. Oh, and not to forget that I will probably lose myself a thousand times more before I shall rest in my grave… hoping every single time to come back to an Ericka ready to keep on walking along. Continue reading

General Update.

photo 3 (4)I have not written much these past weeks, shame on me. But I got my reasons! So much has been going on lately I can’t even manage to put it all in an entry. First of all, most important of all: I am an aunt, the aunt of a beautiful and charming baby girl who was born on September 3rd. If I ever thought I have fallen in love before, this totally wrecks it. Everything she does seems wonderful to me, I can stare at her for hours, her smiles make me happy, when she cries I would give everything to stop whatever is bothering her, and to my eyes she is the most beautiful human being to step on touch Earth.

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