i constantly find myself unlearning habits that cultivate fear so i can learn how to be more fearless. it can be overwhelming because it happens so often for me. i have such a strong dislike for fear that i find myself often going to extremes just to feel inhibited. often times, the universe puts me in such a position that the only way out is to overcome the fear. that time is now.
i moved overseas to bangkok in 2013. i believe that was my first tangible step of being out of my comfort zone spatially. little did i know at the time, it was a baby step in the grand scheme of it all. there were many more steps ahead on my journey to liberation.
another step has lead me here with this decision.
i realized in december of last year that i was ready to move to japan. interestingly, tokyo has always been the dream city for me when i envisioned myself living abroad. its been that way since i was a teenager. there’s no denying the joy i have felt living in bangkok but i owe it to myself to keep pushing for what i strongly desire and what i can confidently say i deserve. although i know tokyo will have its ups and downs, there is a certain magic there that i want to become engulfed in.
owning my dream and believing in it, despite the naysayers, despite the comfort of my life in bangkok, despite the beautiful people i know here, despite the talented people i can create with here, has been a challenge. yet, its been easier than writing this. writing this has been difficult. posting this will be even more difficult. re-posting this will probably be an easier process. that ease in itself is an achievement for me, regardless of what the results of this campaign are.
honestly though, i need support (flight, startup costs). its been seemingly impossible saving for the cost of living in japan, earning baht, living off of music and creativity… i probably should have started this whole entry with the headline “I NEED SUPPORT” in 72 pt. font, because that the truth. thats what i need. also, i have realized that there are somethings that structurally hold individuals back, such as lack of resources, but much of what we are afraid of is inner.
i was so afraid to make my need public. i wasn’t brought up thinking it was strong to ask for help. being self-made was honorable. sharing your challenges was considered burdensome. i have felt ashamed that i couldn’t financially handle this transition by myself in the time allotted. i felt weak. i felt small. i felt desperate and my desire turned dark. i felt alone and helpless. i still do feel a bit dark, but there is light in stepping out of that space and realizing that i have never been alone at all along my journey.
there has always been someone — someone i can remember, someone i can call, someone i can sing with, someone i can dream with, someone i can laugh with, someone i can eat with, someone i can give love to, someone i can get love from, someone i can meet randomly (and sometimes never see again)…
of course, i would be overwhelmingly overjoyed to reach this goal to comfortably transition. i would think of a way to carefully thank and show my gratitude to every single human being who contributes, for sure.
these funds would be used to propel me forward, not only with the tangible dollars, but with the fact in mind that there are people out there who understand how much these means to me. that energy is momentous. that energy is infectious. that energy is priceless.
it’s strange because it doesn’t feel strange at all. although i couldn’t sleep and didn’t have much of an appetite the preceding days before my arrival, now that i’m back in bangkok, i feel a sense of serenity, excitement, and hunger. i told someone and she said she was jealous.
i hopped on the metro rail link from the airport. there were a few English speaking Thais who were kind enough to try to help me but i knew exactly where i was going. i appreciated this act of kindness because i know that it takes courage to assert yourself in a language that’s not native. i couldn’t help but smile. then, i transferred to the BTS, stood in sweat unbothered, and enjoyed my phone being dead so i could enjoy relying on my instincts for direction and take in my environment. i lugged my 27kg suitcase and backpacks to terminal 21, which is a mall that more than likely houses the BEST thai food court in the world. i went back to the vegetarian stall that i used to frequent and used my eyes to order food that i did indeed forget how to pronounce. i ate it all for the equivalent of $3. fresh vegetables, seasoned perfectly, without the hormones. i told someone and he said he was jealous.
i caught an uber from the mall and it was a seamless experience. i didn’t have to talk, he helped me with my luggage, and he spoke basic english. i even napped in the mazda. a solid 35 minute ride cost me less than $8. i told someone and he said he was jealous.
i arrived at a former student’s house out in the burbs. she’s old enough to be my mom and still calls me “teacher”, even though I haven’t taught her in almost a year. she was at work when my uber arrived. i was greeted by her housekeeper who helped me with my things and had a plate of refreshing watermelon ready for me to devour. i unwound myself and slept for hours, unbothered, to awake to the sounds of tropical birds and roosters. i told someone and she said she was jealous.
so i say all this to say that, it’s damn good to be back in thailand. i know what brought me back but i also, i know that no land is perfect. i can say that i know many people who are discontent and unfulfilled, questioning the motions that they’re going through. why not live like you deserve? why not seek the fulfillment that you’re craving? why not feed your health positively? why not try to create your heaven on earth? it’s more than just geography.
don’t be jealous. just live like you deserve.
I cried on the plane ride. It was brief but it happened. I was returning to Atlanta, GA, a place that I hadn’t been in almost 2 years. This is a place that I hoped I never had to return to against my own will and only for a visit, never extended. On July 26, 2013, I boarded a Delta Airlines plane and flew first class halfway across the world to Asia with a little more than $2000USD and my only expectation being change & growth. My “home” never felt like home and I had been eager to leave since before I got my drivers license. I never had the desire to explore my own hometown on my own merit, but I always had the desire to explore places that would expand my worldview in a way that Atlanta and America couldn’t. I always knew that I wanted more than where I was at. I always knew that I wouldn’t become the best me if I didn’t leave my comfort zone that was never really comfortable. The journey out of America had many prerequisites, but now I’ll focus on the present and future.
Valentine’s Day 2014, I was online, on the prowl, which has been a hobby of mine for years; it’s just only been recently that I began storytelling of my online pursuits. Living in Thailand, it was a hobby and a survival tactic. What other options did I have? I was a frequent browser on okcupid.com. I was looking for someone to temporarily fill the void. I was just looking for some external fun. I figured that I had seen all there was to be seen until I got a notification of a recent visitor to my profile whose photo thumbnail seemed to arouse my senses. I clicked the box to enlarge his profile, which I found to be mysteriously scarce but interesting enough for me to spare some energy. We chatted for hours. I was unsure of how attractive I would find him, but we vibed so well and didn’t want to waste anytime. The irony of our connection manifesting on Valentine’s Day. We physically met on the 15th. I remember riding that motorcycle taxi trying to realize his profile photos. I wouldn’t have been able to point him out of the crowd. All I knew was that he was Chinese, around my height, covered in tattoos, and had urban appeal, as well as a hopefully fading drug addiction. He knew I was vegetarian so he was down to go on an adventure to a vegan restaurant in an Ekkamai. I stood on the corner and tried to focus on indifference. I remembered one match question on okcupid “What makes you more nervous: job interviews or a promising first date?” Him and I both chose ‘first date’. I remember what I wore – chucks, jeans, an oversized knitted cardigan, and a white tank. I specifically went out to buy that tank the day of. For some reason, it seemed imperative. I never fucking wear white. Maybe I wanted to accentuate my breasts. I think that tank became gym wear after that night, then sleepwear, then a floor rag, and then trash.
He walked from the Ekkamai sky train exit and spotted me exactly. I saw him from across the street but had no idea that he was my date. He looked so…upbeat and also dressed in a lighter tones. I didn’t reeeeeally look at his face initially. we just said our greetings, made casual convo, and began our trek to find this hidden vegan gem. Later at dinner, I would be forced to stare into the eyes of the fucking hottest man I’ve ever let inside me.
Dinner was fun. We laughed at the faux meat and I learned how much of a true carnivore he was, just open minded. He learned that I was an old school Disney enthusiast and was secretly turned on by my recognition of the restaurants acoustic, instrumental version of Aladdins “A Whole New World.” We later geeked out to the Beauty and the Beast intro song. Bon-fucking-jour. We liked each other.
There was not a doubt in my mind that I wanted to get to know him more after dinner. I waste no time when I’m interested in something. He shared the same outlook. We caught a cab back to his place off Sukhumvit. It was clean, but masculine. I wanted to fuck him but it wasn’t a necessity. My birthday was in a few hours, so I was trying to be as cool as possible, as to not give the engagement too much significance. We got lifted and did everything physically possible but penetrate. He didn’t have any condoms. I definitely couldn’t give the evening THAT much significance.
We explored each other until my birthday arrived and afterwards. I sacrificed my sleep and left straight from his place, home to shower, then off to work. I felt intoxicated the whole day in my excitement knowing what walls would be knocked down later that evening. I couldn’t hide from the significance that my heart wanted to place our interactions. I came over my birthday a few hours after work and he prepared a bomb ass indian meal for me, which made me completely bail on the workplace plans that my coworkers arranged without my consent — Korean BBQ/karaoke. We fucked like rabbits on my 24th birthday to the entire Lana Del Rey “Born to Die” album. How appropriate.
It happened so fast. We got acquainted on Valentine’s Day. We met on Saturday, the 15th. We had sex on my birthday, Sunday the 16th. He deleted his okcupid account on Monday the 17th. We were a couple on Tuesday the 18th. We were having sleepovers that weekend. We broke up randomly in late March after he got distant and said it was because being with me made him feel to use cocaine again. I still don’t know exactly why, but I’ve theorized. Although we had so much in common and everything was seemingly perfect, I knew our relationship wasn’t long term when I entered it, but I agreed to enjoy the ride.
I’m saying this all to say that there’s different levels to love. Some love peaks fast and crashes. Some love builds over time. Some love is fleeting. Some love is elusive. Some love is friendly. Some love is romantic. That doesn’t mean that it wasn’t love if it wasn’t unconditional and eternal.
just enjoy love and live. don’t live in fear of the end result. im not afraid of heartbreak. I’m happy I’ve felt that and learned that lesson so I can enjoy and appreciate the people whom I fall in love with. It’s fun falling in and out of love. It has grown me and I think it makes the love I give more genuine because I’m not seeking any title in return. I’m not seeking a destination. just enjoying the journey and possible one day, I’ll meet a passenger who’ll share the journey with me and we’ll find a destination together.
i haven’t been here in a while. i’ve been preoccupied, but always writing, just maybe not always in a place where everyone can see. i’ve been in the states for a little over a week now — first time in 16 months. i miss bangkok but not too much. los angeles will prove to be just as magical, just in a different way. i’m trying not to get too anxious. the american ideals. the rat race. the cost of living. the high racial tension. the judgement. the societal norms that i haven’t acknowledged in over a year. i’m trying to stay true to who i am and just enjoy the ride. i’m trying to adjust myself in a way that is practical and progressive. i want my experiences to count for more than just experiences. in bangkok, i could just be. there wasn’t anything really expected of me. i set my own rules. i was a foreigner. of course, i respected the thai culture but i was free to be me. i think because there was nothing expected of me, that i got lost a bit. my mind was so open. i didn’t uphold the same standards i previously upheld. i wasn’t sure if those standards were even mine or something that i was conditioned to value. traveling opens your mind. you just get lost in your environment. i enjoyed that. now, i’m back in my considered homeland and i’m comparing myself again. i got jealous the other day. i never get jealous. being around people who have businesses, being around people who can afford to pay $20 for an irish coffee, being around people who are more globally connected than I am, being around people who have something tangible to show for their experiences and conquests. i want that.
in thailand, i lived a comfortable life. i had enough to get my nails done every 2 weeks, my hair cut every week, go shopping every friday, support my musical interests, pay my student loans, eat out as often as i pleased, and put away a little bit. i didn’t make enough, however, to travel overseas. i didn’t make enough to really build. i want to build and make investments. i want to create more and not just have my ideas be daydreams and blueprints written in a notebook that get buried as the pages turn.
i want to feel like i’m doing something, not like i did something.
maybe i should stick around in one place for a while. maybe i should find a home to create a garden. in this garden, i plant my seeds. i water these seeds. i provide nutrients for these seeds. i watch them grow. i can then share the fruits of my labor. i can share this garden with others versus sprinkling seeds and letting them sprout but vacating the lot before i can produce a true harvest. i need to be more diligent. i need to produce a solid crop. i need to feel more substantially validated. i’m vain. i’ll admit that. not in the way that i need buy that $20 cocktail. honestly, i’d prefer a med card so i can purchase sativa. i just want to build on my ideas vigorously. i want tangible success. not just a book of experiences and photos. being back in the states has given me that sense of entrepreneurship. i was anti-america for mostly all of my life. the capitalism. the divide. the unjust financial pressure. the brainwashing. after living overseas, i see that every society has those imposed values that some people blindly embrace, while some find their own way and make of their society what they please. brainwashing is everywhere. there is no designated heaven. heaven is wherever you choose it to be. its time to build my heaven and not think that there’s an ideal place to create it.
heaven is a journey, not a destination. i don’t know if i’ll ever be completely satisfied, but honestly i can’t complain. traveling has shown me that. all these goals and desires that i have must be analyzed through different contexts — idealistic and realistic. the reality of it is that my life is beautiful and i’ve done a lot of cool shit. realistically, more cool shit will happen. ideally, i know exactly what i want it to be. realistically, i can only control so much of that. ideally, i think my goals are realistic. haha
i’m going tangent for tangent now. thinking about my relationship views prior to arriving in LA. i was just dating, not too much of a standard. ideally, i know what i like. realistically, i wasn’t going to find that in bangkok. now that i’m in LA, i have to slow down some. in bangkok, i told myself that i was the girl who didn’t want to get married. i convinced myself that was an illogically concept. yet again, american soil is altering my perceptions. i want something serious, in all areas of my life. i want stability. i want to feel connected and rooted. i can do that without expectations. i can do that and deal with the results if they’re not ideal. i just want to put forth more effort in life; exert more energy towards creating a world that reflects my dreams.
yea, thats it. thats heaven. the process of creating a world that reflects my dreams.