I think life gets more endurable once there is an acceptance that it is really more cyclical than linear. There is somewhat this expectation that once I navigate past a hump I would never encounter it again, or that I’ll develop some immunity towards it, but in reality I keep stumbling over the same ones again and again, as though life is some masochistic exercise in disguise.
I used to get all angsty with myself, harshly judgmental, wondering why I keep repeating the same mistakes. Lately, I have gradually resigned myself to the fact that I am hugely flawed, and I should accept it instead of resisting it. I don’t know whether it is my repeated readings of the Tao Te Ching or similar-themed books, but as I age I find myself more accepting of life in general, and therefore life becomes a lot more endurable, once I stopped having unrealistic expectations of it; or of myself.
Something magical happened after. Once I stopped having unrealistic expectations on myself or life, I also stopped having unrealistic exceptions of people. This is a profound event that I should unpack in a longer, more complex post, but I wish to note this down in time now. I let go of the weight I have been shouldering for years, the weight of wishing I could be somebody different, someone stronger, only to realise we have such narrow definitions of strength.
These days I find joy in observing beauty in the most ordinary moments. I have led a life of chasing rollercoasters, fuelling myself with extreme events, feeding myself a narrative of believing this is how my life should be. Extraordinary. But even sitting on rollercoasters everyday can become tiring. Age has taught me that while it is easy to have adrenaline spikes triggered by unusual events, it is more difficult to feel a sort of inner peace and coherence with life itself, just simply by living.
If I could take a step back and indulge in some in-the-moment awareness, the existence of life itself is magical, the knowledge that our physical bodies are truly magical machines designed to sync perfectly while performing millions of operations at the same time. I extend this awareness to everything I observe – especially in nature where a complex ecosystem has to be in place. I find myself being the most alive when I am doing nothing – the capacity and mind to actually savour life for what it truly is, instead of how we were taught to live: endless chasing.
I find myself increasingly conscious of not wanting to live a life where I am rushed from one moment to the other. I wish to cultivate the courage to keep on protecting the space I need to hold this awareness precious.