thoughts, reflection, Uncategorized

How expectation is equal to reality 

Expectations — It’s one of the many things we get less fond of and less attached to as we grow older. We don’t blame ourselves for this. Instead, we blame letdowns, grief, and scars we’ve lost count of.
“Reality hits hard,” we say with resignation and acceptance, but without any trace of defeat. Our armor, we believe, is actually at its strongest at this point. This armor protects us from our head to our toes. But its thickest layer lies in our heart, which repeats everyday: “I’ve built a defense mechanism within my veins. I don’t hold on to expectations, and so I don’t worry. My blood flows freely, and I’m happy.” 

Our self-defense against expectations and our hostility towards it stem from too much trust in ourselves and too little trust in the world. Though we gain a lot of good things from such a defense mechanism, we also lose a few that are far more important than what we gain.

Too little trust in the workings of the world means being less receptive to their charm and enchantment. It means closing ourselves to that innocent, special kind of optimism that lives only through ideas we often see in fairytales: glittery magic and sparkling wisdom. When magic and wisdom start to sound ridiculous and impractical, that’s the time we have to tap and bring out the child in us. 

We were young when we first fell in love with wonder. Though we can never re-create the feeling that tickled us when we first learned how to tie our shoelaces by ourselves, we can re-create–as adults–the excitement that showed on our little faces when we tied our shoelaces the second time around, the third, the fourth, and the fifth. 

When we let the child in us speak and do the work, we break the rope we tied around expectation. We allow it to breathe and we allow it to be the gateway to our future reality. Every expectation becomes magic our mind crafted; every expectation becomes wisdom our heart has set for ourselves. This brave take on expectations becomes the very motivation that pushes us to believe that we can break the barrier between expectations and reality. 

We learn that it’s not “expectations versus reality.” It is, rather, “expectations equal reality” all along and in every step of the way. 

thoughts, reflection

You’re a season. Your warmth enveloped me. Your rays of sunshine exploded into a countless fraction of light, bringing me to a standstill. 

Your waves met mine. Your tide against mine sent trickles of water in the dullest crevice, keeping me afloat and unafraid. 

I loved and welcomed your season. Every leaf that turned a hue lighter. Every leaf that turned a shade darker. Every leaf that fell in your wonderland and flew into your skies.

But just like season, you came and you went–all at once and all of a sudden. Your warmth, I realized, was only for the sunny days and never for the cold ones. 

You’re a season. And though your lips are sealed, I hear the whispers of your breeze flying out into the distance and merging into a whirlwind I don’t belong to. 

As I stand here in a vicious blizzard, I can’t help but think not of your warmth that was once mine, but of a warmth that will never be seasonal. 

A warmth that will embrace me through and through. 

The Seasonal Kind 

Poetry, poem, thoughts, reflection

December magic 

    There’s magic in your very core. 
    Figures become shadows 
    Voices fall like feather 
    When I stand there, listening to you. 

    Your magic takes in colors.
    And just like that, with that one gentle brush stroke, 
    You paint me in unimagined colors. 

    The palette of what if
    has never been this comforting. 
    The canvas of so what 
    has never been this real. 

    The art you drew upon my spirit fills me 
    with a kind of happiness that can last 
    a lifetime. 


    The speed of light: A thank you note 

    When everything conspires to drain the best in me, even the most cliche positive quote waters and refreshes the driest parts of my heart.

    It’s no wonder then, that for the first time in a long while, I understood again what it feels to have tears of joy running down my cheeks when a special friend sent me this: “Some days, you just have to create your own sunshine.”

    It was strange having those tears fall like waterfalls in the instant that I read “create” and “sunshine.” Maybe it happened because I said the syllables of those bright and empowering words on such a dark and discouraging day; maybe it happened because I received the big, sweet reminder on a day I never wish to relive. But if I were to dig deeper in the recesses of my heart, I think those tears of joy meant that I truly, really want to act on the belief of creating my own sunshine–my own glow, my own light, my own glitter–on days when everything seems cold and colorless from all corners. 

    I may not recover from a letdown faster than the speed of light, but thanks to a special friend, I know I can stand and think straight again even if I’m bruised and frustrated.

    As I’m writing this, I’m wondering how I can repay my special friend for carrying me up in the clouds after I fell hard on the ground.

    It’s 4:01 AM, and all I can think of right now is a long, warm hug coupled with this short blog and another little thank you note–this time on a fancy paper. 


    Etched in my universe 

    You’re etched in my little universe, and I’m not surprised. You showed me what it feels like to linger in someone’s light. You shook my quiet and tamed world, and made its dullness a complete blur.

    Your free spirit glides in and out of mine. Your free spirit beats the finitude of time. I’ve never believed in the boundlessness of things. But in the twinkle of your being, I sense the infinity of feelings.

    You’re never too little or too much on my bruised hands that you unknowingly but daringly clutched. I wish you’ll never let go. But if and when you do, my little universe will not forget to thank you for what you’ve shown. 


    When serendipity says hello 

    If I had to pick between hope and serendipity, I’d go for the latter. I can only think of one reason why: I feel stuck. I feel caught up, and there’s no fancy way of putting it.

    When I have these I’m-never-going-to-make-it-here episodes, chances are I’m playing with what little hope I have. I don’t see this as borderline pessimism; I see it as an instance or a fact that makes me “me.” And when I stay true to myself, to every fiber that makes up my soul, I never really feel down and empty. 

    But then again, this doesn’t add gold coins in my little pocket of hope. In such a circumstance, that thing called hope remains what it is: abstract and untouchable. 

    In the middle of it all, I’m still not left empty-handed. “All is not lost,” some people say. Most cliches don’t work on me, but this one is an exception. 

    In the moment when all roads point to being stuck, in the moment when every criticism, insult, and half-baked promise and compliment stings, a ray of sunshine creeps through my bare corner. It is serendipity saying a warm and hearty hello. 

    It wishes to remind me that I can and should move forward even if I’m stuck in a bubble that refuses to pop. Unlike hope, serendipity bursts with a refreshing element of surprises, twists, and turns. And this is exactly what I need and want. 

    I’m broken, yes — in ways that even tears can’t capture fully sometimes. Right here and right now, I’m just grateful that a little phenomenon called serendipity came knocking at my door. 


    The truth about being less cynical

    There’s a lot you need in life. But trust me when I tell you that you don’t need someone who will promise you happiness. You need someone who will make you feel less cynical.

    She will never tell you to see the good in everything each day, but she will tell you that the good rests in the depths of the darkest color, and that it’s up to you to paint it white.

    She will never tell you to smile everyday, but she will tell you to reserve that smile for what hurts the most.

    She will never tell you that the glass if half-full, but she will tell you that glass inevitably shatters, and what shatters always makes the weak heart stronger, and so makes it just half-empty.

    She will never tell you that being on cloud nine is the best feeling, but she will tell you that falling from the sky and landing hard on the highest mountain is.

    She will never tell you that the ideal exists, but she will tell you that you are there — the imperfection in all its glory.

    She will never tell you that destiny exists, but she will tell you that you are there — the most powerful force of imagined reality’s captivating touch, the best and closest thing to non-existent fate.

    She will never make you believe in promises about happiness, but she will always make you believe in the tragic wonder of living in spite of life itself.

    No, you don’t need someone who will give you false hopes about happiness. You need someone who will tell you the truth about being less cynical.