I watched two videos in relation to happiness today:
Make a guess which one I could relate more to.
I think happiness and basically, life is a hugely personal experience. You can have facts backed up by solid scientific research, but if it doesn’t feel right for you, it doesn’t. For example, I had really bad gastric discomfort a few years ago. I couldn’t eat and I couldn’t shit. I was an advocate of western medicine, largely influenced by my upbringing – my biological family trusted chinese medicine and my foster parents spent their best effort trying to make me believe that TCM was rubbish.
I took antacids for two weeks and I felt even worse. One fine day, a tiny voice in my head said to me, hey, why not just try TCM? Obviously western medicine wasn’t helping and there isn’t much to lose except money. I took two doses of awlful-tasting dark-coloured chinese medicine and my discomfort was cured. Completely. We chinese call it ??????, which means breaking the roots. I never felt that sort of gastric discomfort again.
So, scientifically antacids should work, and till today TCM cannot really be backed up by science. And accupuncture is still considered to be a placebo effect. Well, I have had countless friends and relatives cured by these ancient methods when the typical western medicine and physiotherapy didn’t work.
My point is, I think it is important to be open to trying anything and judge for your *own* self what works. It doesn’t mean that something can work for 99% of the population, that doesn’t mean it works for you. You may very well be that poor 1%.
I think in the past, I have found it really difficult to be who I am.
I think a big part of why I love SF is because it is so unstructured, chaotic and yet strangely arranged in a colourful manner, booming with technology at the same time.
I have begun to rethink my entire Self. I thought I was anti-social, but it seems like I do enjoy socialising – I just don’t enjoy socialising with energy-drainers. I thought I hated walking, but I actually enjoy walking in places with tons of space and lots of things to look at.
More importantly, I thought I was chronically depressed.
The jury is still out on that, because I have only been here for a week. But I have stopped my daily dose of anti-depressants. Why? Because I honestly don’t feel depressed anymore. Ultimately I may have to pick it up if I eventually start to feel ill again, but it doesn’t make sense to continue them when I’m feeling good. This decision was also made largely because I have accidentally missed a dose for a day or two back when I was in Singapore and I did not suffer any side-effects. It made me re-think drugs and their effect on my brain chemistry.
On hindsight, maybe I needed to take them for a while in order to reset things a bit. I needed that bit of energy boost in order for myself to actually make plans to fly here. You have no idea how close I was to the brink of death back a couple of months ago. My partner can testify to that.
I am still taking my TCM medicine though. Feeling happy doesn’t mean my physical health has recovered, though it definitely helps to be in a positive state of mine. My digestion has always been sluggish and I know my liver needs to detox…over here I cannot resist eating their delicious, savoury meals and I tend to over eat. Really, really bad, because I really believe that we are what we eat. But it is also easy to get great salads, so I am trying to do a balancing act between sinful meals and tons of greens.
Mentally and emotionally, I still swing between sudden pessimism with insecurity and endless optimism with idealism. For a split second I do wonder if I’m bipolar II rather than depressed. I could be in a maniac state right now for all I know. One psychic once told me that she believes bipolar is rubbish. It is just the world’s way of categorising people who think and feel different. Hmm. And I’ve read some accounts of people residing in asylums – they think they’re the sane ones, the world outside is insane. Honestly, if you think about the world in general, how we have power struggle over senseless things…maybe they are right.
I try to talk myself out of it when I swing into pessimism mode. What if my money runs out? What if I can’t find a place to stay and I have to pay through my nose to continue having a bed to sleep in? What if I don’t get some work to do?
I keep repeating to myself that it is okay if I end up poor and having to wait on tables when I fly back. At least I’ll have this experience for myself to keep and nobody can take that away from me. And it never fails to make me feel better when I remember that being poor is always better than feeling dead.
I think that’s why I want to keep writing everyday here. I want to count my blessings and remember what has made me happy, rather than focus on the unpredictable future. Sometimes I think our brains sabotages us into thinking we’re a lot less powerful than we truly are. We definitely have the power to change, but our minds just keep constructing invisible obstacles.
You know, perhaps trying to be your true self is the greatest gift one can give to the world. I have no doubt that by living the best I can, somehow there are people, however few, who appreciates reading my very unstructured prose over here. Borderline narcissistic even I would say. I just keep talking about my self! Sorry guys, can’t entertain you much, but I hope you’ll like my honest writing anyway.