What makes me me? A story of growth and discovery as of Feb ’17.
Happy belated Valentine’s Day! I am still pigging out on the chocolate I have received from friends and classmates, as is the tradition (that I do not adhere to) of an all girls school. I have recently posted and removed a number of posts crafted in the spur of an emotional moment so now for a reflective one that will be here to stay.
I once thought growth comes with age like pulling a rabbit out of a hat as if I would stop liking dolls when the clock struck midnight on a milestone aka 12th birthday. Of course I now know it comes with experience.
In my camp empowered reflection, Dec ’16 I chose not to mention a chat I had where I was posed a question about my identity because I felt it was something more personal. Identity is a topic I choose to dodge because I do not really know who I am nor who I want to be. While I can always answer questions about what I want to do in the future, I often felt disturbed by how unconvinced I was by my own answer and I realised the topic of identity is an inevitable confrontation so as to find out what I live for. I realised identity should be our compass as we journey forward in life.
I am an overseas scholarship recipient and was one since I was 14. The world’s mainstream culture is that of being competitive. I went from a society where academic success was valued to one where holistic education was key. Yet one thing remained unchanged, the idea that hardwork pays off, driving my peers and I to launch ourselves into every activity that promised us a better future. Some of us did this to an extent where we had no time to do anything we truly loved, and began to doubt the core of our very existence. In a recent motivational workshop that I was forced to attend, the speaker told us to “just give up two years of your life, cut out people, cut out the activities you enjoy, they do not benefit you, do it for twenty years of good future.”. Some of my friends actually nodded in approval and attempted it. It took me a long time for me to realise what it was about this suggestion that made it so repulsive to me. This was when I decided that living in the present makes me me because I believe tomorrow is not an entitlement for anyone. This doesn’t encourage and justify irresponsible acts by thinking one might be able to escape consequences, rather, this means to live a life where there will be nothing important left unfinished with were you to die tomorrow, to live a life without remorse, to strip away the less important, and to truly live a life one enjoys.
The Future is, of all things, the thing least like eternity.It is the most temporal part of time-for the Past is frozen and no longer flows, and the Present is all lit up with eternal rays -C.S. Lewis, Screwtape Letters
Apart from that, now, a few months after the chat, which included certain dissatisfaction with the dynamics of my family, I no longer despise the situation and family community I have been born into. He has taught me love, by placing me among people I would never have chosen to love and then loving me so much that His love overflows out of my into the hearts of my family members’. While it remains difficult, He has taught me how to love. Family makes me me.
Thinking makes me me. Running makes me me. My love for deep, mature, intellectual conversations makes me me. My appreciation of the minute things in life makes me me. My intolerance for injustice, hypocrisy, inauthencity and ignorance makes me me. The desire to share makes me me, which is why I have this blog, to share a raw and honest version of myself, without any motive to elicit any sort of response from others be it approval, pity, awe etc. and without the fear of judgement. As the same friend told me “Remember, that the only person that should influence who you are, is God. Allow yourself to be moulded by God directly, it will require you to take away some things and put on others. Be ready, because it hurts!”. Our Father Above makes me me, and I am eternally grateful for this anchor that my faith has provided me with in my continuous search of Who Am I? (a story of growth, as of Feb 2017) 😉
This post is a reminder to myself not to forget who I am to conform to others’ expectations. Of course there will be parts that I missed out but just a brief reflection prompted by recent events ♥ Feel free to share what makes you you in the comments 🙂