Stoic seems to be an interesting word for me.
Twenty years ago, when all’s well and good, I’ve always known you to be a guarded individual, so alive and fun to be with. Indeed, you are ahead of your time that’s why we called you an “old soul” and it was never a big deal. Your struggles back then were simple: how to share your time with the less privileged people, how to earn a living so you can support your family on their daily needs, how to save small amount of money for future needs. Everything was simple and straightforward.
The occasional meet ups between your estranged father was all but pleasurable, because, you were a daddy’s girl from the very beginning. Wasn’t that the reason why you stopped talking to him for 6 months, after that rainy September 1996, when he called to tell you that you’re going to be a big sister soon?
Fast-forward to 2000 when you’ve finally became an adult. I vividly remembered you uttering the rekindling words of promise to yourself: a good daughter to your parents and a minister throughout your life. Yes, life was and will never an easy path to walk into, this we already know, but it remains to be a wonderful experience for everybody. And although you lived within your means back then, you still have the passion and the tenacity to be that someone for yourself, for your family, for your loved ones.
I now see a different person whenever I look at you, intently.
Considering how you love staying in a quiet dark room because you complain so much about your migraine attacks. I see a ‘depreciated’ person right in front of me. A stoic, so uninterested that one day I have called you miserable.
Mianhe, but I have my reasons.
You’re always stationed in your bed because you told me that you find extreme comfort just lying, listening to music, watching movies or just reading some updates from your SNS. I no longer see the jolly person embodied in that composed figure of yours. And how is it possible for you to finish 16 hours of Korean series in a span of 3-5 days and start a new one? It was a cycle of apathy. I mean, are you even sleeping? Or has sleepiness abandoned you as well?
I was extremely worried about you because you enjoyed solitude so much that you have forgotten how it felt like to be happy, to attend social gatherings, meet your friends etc. I’ve never heard you crack jokes anymore. I actually forgotten how your laughter sounds like because it’s been ages when we hurt our jaws and our tummy muscles for laughing so hard! I hated it even whenever you brush off the idea of us going out for fun because of your 100 excuses, just for you to stay indoors and sleep.
Every day is a constant struggle for you to get off from your comfort zone. In fact, your routines have been extra boring and are ‘automatic,’ that even the simplest activities like shopping seems to be a burdensome task for you, to begin with.
I get it. You are very sad because you feel that everybody has abandoned you, and that you are alone in this quest to be sane all throughout. You are extremely broke emotionally, mentally and financially resulting to chronic disambiguation. And yes, all of these resulted to anger, stress and anxiety.
It is not a big deal actually, I understand you. We understand you.
We both know that it will take time to recuperate, for you to get back on track. I know that you are holding on to life because you love life so much, and going far away is and will never be an option for you.
Where did that adventurous girl gone to? Has life’s ‘discipline’ beat you that hard that you lost yourself in the process? How have you thriving while in pain? Did this cause you to suffer so much that you remained stoic this long?
I have so many questions in my tab but time is of essence for you too. I also know that it is not that easy to confront the monster of the past but here is my take on everything you have done so far: thank you for keeping it real, for being sane and spiritually shielded (slowly, thriving but on track). You do know that not many are that guarded as you are at this rate because a lot have sent themselves to oblivion, hurt themselves and left their loved ones behind grieving for life.
So, while such conversation is very seldom, I think it is important that we now consistently check on each other’s welfare. For many are living in the “now” but are forgetting the beauty of life all throughout its imbalances, struggles and successes. Rekindle our oath that living in the “now” means keeping it real for today and waking up to tomorrow’s new promise of life. Remember, this life is a gift so we must cherish it. We do not have the right to take it away for we are not its rightful owner. We have one life to prove we deserve it, so make it count. Make it memorable.
P.S. If you know someone who’s grieving or suffering due to stress (mental health), buy time to check on him/her and lend an ear. Sometimes, all it takes is for them to cry and have someone listen to their stories. Believe me, this random act of kindness can save lives. Whatever be his/her response be, at least you have done your part and did your best 🙂