2014: A word (Monday Motivations)

Like last year, I had a word with the new year. Or maybe this time, I had a word with myself.

The post published last, was one I wrote when I was still in my Asian bliss. When I was still ín Asia even, to be exact. But after coming home, as always, there was the post-travel blues. The cold weather, Uni stress, deadlines, moving into a new place, the big city life, loneliness, the Dutch weather and the general post-holiday blues combined got to me, as was to be expected. So, it was time to have a word.

First, let’s zapp back a year. Last year I debated between the words ‘balance’ and ‘authenticity’, concluding that they were intertwined. As my word for the year I chose ‘balance’, as it would help me with my path to grounding in authenticity as well. Now I must admit, I did not think of my word very often. All the more ironic that, looking back, 2013 was indeed for a large part about finding my balance and finding myself again. And, dare I say, I think I came quite a long way in the search.

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Now here is 2014, and like last year, there are two words that made an appearance to me in one form or another. They are thus the two words for me to choose from. One is ‘senang’, and the other is ‘catching up’ (ok, ok… That’s not one word, but you will survive that little detail, right?)

The former word probably needs some translating for you, as it is an Indonesian word. ‘Senang’ has been a word close to my heart for almost ten years. I can’t think of a precise translation, but it means something alone the lines of ‘at peace’, ‘tranquil’ and ‘happy’. In difficult days, I would write and draw all over my body as a form of coping and simultaneously ‘letting it out’. The word ‘senang’ made a regular appearance on my skin.

‘Catching up’ is a more difficult term for me to introduce, as it comes with a lot of heart ache. Now that I’m getting older (oh hey, I forgot to mention; I turned 25 almost three months ago!) I realize more and more of how much I missed out on in life. There’s over two years of devotion to addiction and recovery, but that is just the start. Before all of that visible chaos, there was chaos deep down for years already. I have always been a terribly insecure girl, and this has kept me from so many things. Bubbly and happy on the outside, I was in fact not even close to what a happy adolescent should be like. This leaves me in a very odd position at 25; ready to live life to its fullest, but so far behind on so many levels compared to everyone my age (including my own friends). I realize that on other levels, my history leaves me more mature than most of them combined. This does not, however, take away the fact that I lack a lot of ‘mundane’ (what’s in a name!) life experience. While it is hard to admit and even harder to make happen, I think it’s time I took a plunge and made up for the lost time. I do not plan on behaving like a 16-year old teenager, but it does mean I should start trying scary things that might be so seemingly irrelevant to most others. I must admit, this is scary shit.

‘Senang’, being about tranquillity, seems to be impossibly integrated with ‘catching up’, which is about pushing boundaries. But maybe that’s how an adult should make up for lost years; instead of going wild, doing it in a more peaceful fashion. However, like ‘authenticity’ last year, I think ‘senang’ should go on my long-term list. Both are not things to aim for or achieve within a fixed year time frame. They will come with time and dedication, and I will give them that whatever the year is.

Which means, this year will be a scary one.

Catching up is incredibly intimidating, not just because it requires me to break out of comfort zones, but more so because it requires me to admit (to myself and others) that there are so many things to catch up in.

That is hella confronting stuff. Plus, I am the thinking-kind, not the taking-action-kind; more of a nay-sayer than I’d like to admit. 2014 will be the year to change this. Yay-saying, actively venturing out into the big scary-people-world and making new connections.

2014, bring it on.

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While serving food those who needed it, in my ‘other hometown’ across the globe, I realized the irony but especially the beauty of that moment. Me, serving food to the needy. Me not being one of the needy, as I just had a lovely dinner with new and a little less new friends.

That exact moment made me realize that the past nine weeks of travel made me re-find my stable self after those chaotic years. I think I am now able to say, I am okay.  I realized that to heal, sometimes you need to dig deep. Dig deep in yourself. Yet sometimes, healing requires you to break out. Break out and get away from everything you think you are.

And apparently, sometimes, it takes both.

Either way, healing takes a lot of time, a lot of effort, a lot of energy, a lot of tears, a lot of trying over and, albeit reluctantly, it indeed also takes a lot of support.

I am not jinxing this, nor am I making any crazy promises or predictions. I just want to say; I am thankful. For everything (yes, everything!) and everyone in my life, I am thankful.

Happy (late) new year you all!

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Namaste :)