Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Children of Winters

I always like colder weathers. Winter is my season. Snow is close to my soul.

I like snow, the way they fall, weightlessly; coffee shops in a winter day, with large windows facing street or the park, filled with people, sitting and chatting; afternoon sun, and the red gloves and scarf; and the thought of a warm place or a memory of a lovely dinner at a cosy restaurant that lasted until late into the night.

I long to go to Montauk in Winter after I watched the Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind the DVD that D gave me, for I love the snow on the beach, the bleakness, and the icy lake. I like stories that start and end in winter.

When you kiss at winter night you feel the warmth and the burning more, and wanting them, even more. We kissed a lot in winter.

I am happier in Winter, like puppies with lots of fur of their own. Maybe becuase I was born in end of January in a cold morning in Beijing. And Winter is the time of Chinese New Year as well, a time of fire crackers, new clothes, feast, families, a best time one could have as a kid.

I am writing this because, by tomorrow, or by today, since I am finshing writing this at this time, my birthday, I will become a cat. No, I will just be wearing red and think that it is a new year for me and I shall embrace it with love and smile. For I was never so true to myself and to others. It takes me a while to get here, but here I am, finally. It it a good way to greet your birthday, truthful to your heart.

I am looking at it, like holding it on my hands, the days to come, wondering, with calm and grace and wit and courage, to know that I am one year older and wiser, to know that I remain curious and passinate about life, to remain an innocent girl sometime but become a woman at time called for, be sure of what I can, strive for what I want to be, give what I have and want can be taken, clear of what I want, but never assume what I deserve.

You can't help looking back at your life when you reach another year of age, especially a time when you are expected to know things better. I am still far from the age when Confucious says man is beyond any confusion-he said lot of other things too. I doubt I ever will be beyond any confusion. I doubt I will ever be the same. Actually, this past 10 months, I have been growing up quite some, call it a crash course, call it forced self reflection and meditation, but I am grateful, despite all that growing pain and the pain for missing someone so immensely, I am grateful that I finally saw your smile again, your smile that is really cute.

I lived through what you went through before, time and time again, break up, heart break, facing it alone, facing it alone and smile during the day, at work, among strangers.

I was too self protective to be as compassionate and empathetic as I thought I was and should be.

I talk too much sometime, sometime talk before I think, just like writing long blog posts. Silence is gold, thinking before reaction is golden.

Everything we do or say has a consequence. Hiding things or keeping silent over things you should speak out are as damaging as lying, no matter what you say otherwise.

Love is at its best when it has a name.

I lived my life with more guilt than I thought.

The things I regreted that we did not do when we were together is small things like having a dance with you and laugh my heart out, loudly, with no guilt, shamelessly.

I no longer ask what if, I thank for the known and had.

I have been a stalker type on several occasions. I did go look at the light from the relevant windows and felt better, although I never stalk with night guggles on my head, some idea I read from a girl's blog and it cracked me up and made me feel better to know that I am not the only crazy one.

Confession makes the sinner unsinful. Honest is the only way to live this life.

People no longer make me feel intermidated or inadequate. I am more at ease with myself or people around me. It is a state one reach after one realize what is really important in their life, especially when you know it might be lost.

I met the Clinton's in an art opening, I blushed afterwards for calling Hillary Ms Clinton instead of Senator Clinton--I felt shameful as woman to call her that. I still feel nervous and say the wrong things, but I no longer feel underserving. We are all just people, insecure in our own ways, but I don't look up to anyone anymore, nor do I look down.

No one has owernship of anyone. Their love, their affection and even their friendship are gifts that you can never take for granted.

I love Octpus and Mushrooms. I still judge wine based on price and could never remember what I had last time. I point when I order. I miss D when I order.

A big ego that felt hurt is a monster in feed. Fear of rejection is a deformed baby. I had both of them inside me before. It made me needy and ugly.

It is a choice of doing what ifs all day long, or celebrating what was there, improving myself and hold my hope high, for life.

The best film I saw this year is Pan's Labyrinth, it is like a darker Spainsh version of Spirited Away, only this one, is for the girl to go back, the latter is for the girl to get out. I wish to have a magic chalk, with which we open doors at places of impossible or in times of darkness.

For the first time in my life, I did some volunteering work, I felt purposeful and useful, not just exchanging my time for a pay check and a greencard. Living real, with a heart, is so much better than living by fantasizing.

My life has been enriched by people with words, beautiful or witty ones, here, on this blogsphere. But I lost the voice of D, and his touch. I am waiting, while living.

It is time to face up, it is no longer emotional landmines all over the city, so two charming girl friends were with me at ESCA tonight, having the fantastic tasting menu paring with wine for my birthday, first time ever since my last and first visit, with D and Kafka on the Seashore.

Surprisly, Sea Urchin was on the menu and I just absolutely--love it.

It began to snow after we sat down, as if I called for it, as if it happened just for me, a real snow, a no nonsense one, a one that was eager to please, as if to tell me something about its secret love or late arrival to this city. But it made it, on my birthday.

My friend offer to buy me another drink after we got out of ESCA. I said no thank you. I want to enjoy this moment with myself. I walked back from the restaurant, the same walk D and I took that night, after our dinner, along 9th avenue. I felt the snow on my face, the way they settle on the once bear tree branches, greeting me quietly, make the street quieter but so much more beautiful. I felt so much in love.

There is something very romantic with this city while it snows, like when you walk on the bridge of Paris, alone.

As I am posting this, the snow continues outside my window, I put on the music of Ryuichi Sakamoto, and felt a long way to come here, yet, here and now, I am peaceful, with my boots off, my beautiful but itchy dress off. I am home, warm and cosy, at a winter night. There is nothing better, at the moment. I tell myself no heartache, being grateful, at this day.

Toast to us all, the childern of Winters.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Take the Walk With Me--06/09/07 NYC

In a neighborhood restaurant today, I picked up a small blue brochure for Take Steps Toward Saving Lives, about an event of overnight walk in June, 2007 at New Yor City:

I registered today to be a walker for this cause, something very near and dear to my heart.

To support me as a participant by donating, please go to my Walker Profile Page .

Thank you in advance for your kind support and I will hold it dear to my heart.

Hope you can spread the word, join me for the walk, or be there at the closing line, with smiles, at dawn.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Moments About Little Children

We were lying in bed, late at night, after sex. We were holding hands while having our eyes closed. We were silent for a bit, savoring it.

You said that night: "Let's have a baby." It took a lot for you to say that finally--I had been the one who was asking for it all all along--you came in me for the first time without any protection, mentally or phsyically.

"I could never be those surburban moms like in Little Children. It is a depressing life."
"Well you don't have to be. " You mumbled.

"Do I have lots of choices?"

"Yes", You said with your eyes closed.

"Say it. " I bagan to smile in the white darkness of the midtown city light.

"You, could be a surburban mom, or an urban mom, or, a rural mom."

We chuckled together. I rolled over and held you, kissing the corner of your mouth, "Yes, that is lot of choices."

It is moments like those that came back to me more and more these days.

Silly, sweet but true moments that brought us closer than anything else. Moments that we sometime forget, but will surface at the most unlikely time, which will make me stop in the mid of a sentence, and feeling a little bit of crying and smiling.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

N Signs That I Am Quitting This Job Soon

1. I run out of note pads and do not know where to get the supplies, do not want to know either. I am taking notes, only if it is absolutely necessary, on random pieces of papers that I can put my hands on, as I get along. This include borrowing, stealing, or picking up from recycled bin near printers.

2. They are changing our normal working week from 35 hours to 42 hours, with no pay raise.

3. I now sit on the very dark floor where I first started 8 years ago, where the woman's bathroom poses life-threatening risks--because the doors of the stalls open onto each other. It is like a forbidden tunnel in a video game where you have to be strategically agile to get through unhurt, or without losing one eye. It is even worse if you lose it before you get your business taken care of. I heard the man's room is having its own challenge--so it is not like I can use alternative.

4. When I first used those stalls, I was having a crush on my then boss. I have no crush what so ever on any living or moving things within 0.5 mile radius of this office building currently, time to move on.

5. People I have hated or loved have all gone or plan to go. The only people left are mostly uninteresting, which means not charming or funny. I need to do the right thing for myself too, following the smarter and better ones.

6. I sat among creative people, who, unexpectedly to me, look lousy, grumpy, badly dressed, like all artists do, and some of them have really weird voice. The girl who sat outside my office has the same voice of the bathroon ghost girl of the Harry Porter movie--you know what I am talking about. I want to strangle her every time she talks, and she talks non-stop on the phone, like right beside my ear.

Every time she talks, my eyes narrow like when fighting a itch on your back that you can not scratch. After sitting in this office for a month, I think I officially has what D used to mimic as Chinese eyes, which as a Chinese, I don't have, which calls for a plastic surgery trip to South Korea soon.

7. CFO is checking timesheet every week.

8. CEO is never visible, who wears suits only, insecure and has a very dry sense of humor, which is worse than having none in this case, since he is the big boss.

9. Data people are working as free photographers and video editors--as extreme cost saving measures. That says a lot about a so-called major ad agency.

10. I am a small fish in a dead pond, feeling like to be airlifted for better water to breathe normally and blow bubble.

Except, after I type this up and before I post this, my bossed called: Come to my office NOW. I thought I am going to get fired for not taking notes in meetings or stealing papers.

"Congratuations!" She handed me an envelope. "You got a raise!".

Life is intersting, isn't it? Which leads me to item 11

11. Just got a raise and will not get another one for another 3 years. Time to move on, yes, feeling like moving on from this place like a greencard prisoner who has stuck for 8 years in the same place is feeling.
Still, I am not ungrateful.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Remembering Night of Jan 14, 2006

Could I have done something differently that night, or the many nights since then? They still ask me at the bar: you would not do that again? Right? They serve my drinks with mixed feelings and measured politeness. I regret so many things that I could have done, but not this one. I hoped to wake you up, or stop you by doing this. I was wrong for feeling powerless, though. It could have been easy, all it takes are smile and honesty and belief. Stupid and sad me. I mourn for those glasses, I mourn for the hands that could have hold your face, in stead, they just smashed, everything, broken. You said: it turned me on. A close friend said: that was sexy. No, that was not what it meant to be, not just. I wish I have done something differently on that night or many nights, since we first knew each other, or since you locked us up. A year later, tell me that you are happy.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Departure and Arrival

I love you like loving something between shadow and light, as Bart's favorite poet Nerudar has written. Well, I feel like living between shadow and light right now, due to jet lagg from my swift trip home.

This trip is different from all the previous ones, those are for fleeing, for fear and validation, this is for facing up, for lifting the weight, that I have been carrying, under which I could not love the way I should, everyone included, even myself.

I don't ever remember my mother and I sit there talking like that, like friends, like long lost friends, like two women who can finally share their secrets, equally, closer than ever.

She told me the story of the numerous miscarriges, premature babies, or mature babies never having a chance. The little girl who was not helped with a breath just because she was the second girl that she bore for my father. Another girl!? my paternal grandmother grunted, and my mother did not see the baby again after she was taken from her arms. Crule story that happened in the remote rural areas in China decades ago.

I have had it easier. I have been lucky. Were I born in those rural areas, I might have never existed in this world, or sitting here, typing these words, feeling the pain and love. Yet I was born in Beijing, where doctors know what they need to do to make a baby to draw the first breath properly, even I was a third girl in a son-starving family. I survivied, not some of my sisters or brothers who came before me. Someting I did not ask for.

None of us asked to be born, so life is a gift, no matter what you say otherwise, no matter how much pain or regret that we feel sometime that can torn us into pieces, life is a gift when we can laugh and be witty and positive.

Life is really a gift when it is free of lies and secrets. I told my mother how I had not been happy for a long time with my old life, something I never fully revealed to them before for fear of burdening them. How I have lost myself until recent years, how I still want to continue live my life here in this city faraway from them, a city that is my home now. And I feel good of saying it without guilt.
And I told her more about the man I loved all these years, someone I could have loved better. Someone who has chosen to be distant from me in the past year, rightfully. But I don't feel lonely anymore after having loved him and being loved the way we did, the way I still do. Maybe I was not mature enough to keep it before, but I was surely lucky enough to have had it.

She said I just want you to be happy, there or here. So go live your life. We finally had our moment, at the beginning of this new year. I suddenly realized how strong she is. I have always thought she is the weak one between the two of them. I got it wrong. My father was the one that got taken care of, needs being satisfied, wishes being granted, being admired and enjoyed more. Yet my mother carried the weight of the whole family and did not bend.

I never felt very connected to my mother before, in this relationship, I am opaque, guarded and even a little condesending. I always feel I share a better connection with my father, and subsequently close down to her. Yet now, I draw from her strength that I know I can rely on while being true to them and myself, for she had had real pain of loss and she remained strong and committed and hopeful.

Weigth lifted, secrets gone. I never felt better, more peaceful, more loving. I have been fighting a self defeating battle to be someone I am not, to perform duties and put up shows that I draw upon myself to avoid hard and true communications or confrontations. I was weak and negative. And I underestimated the strength of them and I have not trusted them enough before.

I will still be that girl who take care them as much as she can eomotionally and financially, but she will take care of her self first, to be a happy and loving woman first. And it has to start from here and now.

And for the first time I have felt we finally love and respect each other like equals. I am no longer a daughter or kid, hiding some secrets for fear of being scolded or punished.

Getting on the plane back to JFK, a 14 hour flight. I am leaving this hometown again. I always do since I am 18. And this time, I felt peaceful and happy with this departure, not feeling guilty.

For life is really a gift because we can live it the way we want it to, not according to any expectations or pre programmed footprint. Life is about that freedom to leave, to change, to exicise the options of choosing a different path. I wish I knew this before. But we can only learn this fast.

And it is not that I have to leave, it is just I have found a life for myself elsewhere, and I can not stay and be happy.

I put on my ear phone, listening to the IPOD. I think I hear laughters of babies, those that could belong to those sisters and brothers that have not been able to grow up. But when they are up there, I hope they see me living the life for them, not wasting it, not waiting it out, not hating it, and be happy for me and rest in peace themselves.

I am again flying a long trip by myself, this time I don't have you to visit after I landed for you keep the distance. But I am confident and determined, and peaceful and loving.

This is my life and it only needs me to be a complete and happy one. All of you, those I have loved, will be in my heart, never far. But the effort of trying and the joy of living shall be mine only. Like yours will be just yours. If we share, it becomes more. If we don't, it is still beautiful by itself. We should all be set free even when we are together. We don't complete each other, we are complete.

My New Year starts with another trip across Pacific ocean and the vast land of the north American. Only this time, it is simple and true and mellow. So much so that the 14 hours is no longer unbearable, for I am not anxious for anything, I am just living my life.

This will be the golden pig year, I shall wear red, a smile and lipsticks, and nothing even remotely close to rage or negativity or guilt.

A risky resolution to be put out here, but hey, if I could not make it perfect, it is still my life, isn't it. So I win either way. That, is what I wil call, a right attitude.

And I read it somewhere that man will take a big ass over bad attitude at any time, so it is important life lesson for a girl to have a right attitude, for the sake of man or not, even I don't have a big ass--yoga or pilate class is in order, for both the right attitude and the right ass.

And did I say, I do miss you presence beteween this shadow and light, your stories that make me laugh. They still do.