One of the best things that come from a combination of age, experiences and also being chronically suicidal is that I give less of a shit to everything.
I used to worry a lot. I don’t even know how to describe the sentiment of “a lot” in words. I have only realized recently that I have been living in constant anxiety. I worry about my independence, about people, about people’s feelings, about people’s perception of me, about people’s perception of themselves, about the world, I can keep going on.
I still worry now, but it is significantly less. Mostly because I realized the worry has been crippling me and I have to be alive if I want to do anything about anything I am worrying about. I don’t mean alive in terms of just surviving (no interest in that), but as I consistently repeat in my writing, being alive means being capable of effectively contributing to and living in the world.
Some days I wake up and I’m like, how amazing it is that we are capable of expressing ourselves and making things. I want to embody that sentiment into every moment of my life. That sense of wonder, amazement and gratitude that I am alive and I can make things if I want. I just keep forgetting. I get overwhelmed with people and the world and resentment starts creeping in.
One of the core issues I struggle about myself is – honestly, becoming myself. I have so much deep-rooted guilt about being myself that I don’t even know where to start. A lot of it is conditioned as part of my upbringing in Singapore. Being consistently told that everything about me is wrong, because I don’t live like I am part of any herd.
Anyway I don’t want to be one of those people who keep on blaming the past for who I am now and cede my own power to change my present, so I am progressively consciously trying to change my inner response to myself when I want to do something “different” from any herd. For example, I may want to tweet or blog something, but I get a frequent voice in my head that says, “omg what will people think?”. Yes, I still get that voice, even though I openly write about my chronic health issues like there’s no tomorrow.
I don’t even know how to explain that part of me that writes so honestly and vulnerably is just the tip of the iceberg. There’s also a dark (yes, darker than it is now) side, a consistently-annoyed side, a very idealistic side, etc – sides of paradoxes and extremes. I want to be better at expressing what is really on my mind versus trying to be “nice” and also doing the things I really want versus the things people make me do.
Part of it is the fear of provocation – I really dislike conflict – but I think being more open with my thoughts allows more opportunities for them to be corrected if I am wrong, or evolved with other people’s input.
I still love writing here even though I love the feedback mechanism of Medium. Some days I just want to write like it is 1990s, a time when people (myself included) just wrote all the shit they want on livejournals (or similar) – to share a piece of themselves with the world.
They say sharing takes away the power of secrets or uncomfortable issues, maybe I’ll like to think of it as distributing the power, and perhaps light up the way to demonstrating that what society considers as unsharable (or basically, skeletons in the closet), is just human made-up bullshit.
Life is too short for enduring other people’s bullshit.