Pilgrim

I don’t have a good sense of direction. I cannot give clear instructions to a cab driver. When I was a kid, it took me a while to know where’s my left and my right. But in spite of not having a good sense of direction, I’m proud to say that I manage to visit a lot of places without a map.

People often describe me as “lost.” I am lost in every sense of the word. Lost in geography. Lost in thoughts. Lost of words. Lost…. My thoughts are stars I cannot fathom into constellations ( John Green, The Fault in Our Stars). Sometimes I cannot chase my own thoughts. I have to write them in my notebook because my mind skips from one idea to another. I think big. I like to keep my ideas vague and I always leave a grey area.

My sister tells me I am floater. I wander and wonder. I am a dreamer, one who spends a large portion of his/her life exploring and experimenting.  I spend a lot of my time in wonderland compared to my real world.  I dream a lot but I have no real goals.

I think  I surpass the three levels of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. I feel so lonely that I have no one to console me for my lack of ambition. I have no ambition to be rich. Of course, I want to have enough money to travel, to buy new clothes, to satisfy my appetites. But money itself is not my motivational force. When I think about security like most adults worry most, I  just have faith that God will provide. As written in Matthew 6: 25-34:

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life[a]?

This is not to say that we should not work and wait manna from heaven. But I don’t treat my life like a survival race.  We will survive no matter how much we are earning, how matter how big our family, no matter how limited are resources. If you think about animals, they don’t have money system of barter and trade. The birds just fly. The ants just crawl. And the street cats who have no pet owners have nine lives.

I don’t think that attaining the highest position in a multinational corporation can be one’s greatest achievement.  I do not envy those who have fancy business cards. I’m wondering how much time they devote in their corporate jobs, how much time they spend for hobbies, for culture, and for spirituality.

I once wrote an advice to my friend: to find a cause, to fall in love, to write a book. This is probably what I want to do or what I want to believe in. I interpret John Carter’s advice with metamorphic lenses. As what I said, I like to keep my ideas vague. That’s why I like metaphors. Finding a cause does not necessarily mean to stop global warming, to campaign against greedy politicians but to preach a principle that has life value. Falling in love for me does not have to be involved with a male figure. I want to fall in love with ideas. When an idea pops in my head, I want to nurture it and never leave it until it becomes a finished product. I might not publish a book at ll. All I want is to write my life and make it a masterpiece. I invent it and I make myself a heroic protagonist.

But for now, I’ll just dedicate my time to arts and humanity. Be a fan of artists. Seek and taste cuisines from different islands. Learn from people who excelled in their craft. Listen to different national anthems. Sing a new song with a different language. Travel and preserve memories in photographs and memoirs. Expand my reading list to reference books and niche magazines. Acquire a new set of skills. Discover hidden talents. Write a lot of letters and stories. Find romance and poetry in life. Love more people. Admire more people. Accept people as they are. Help people to be happier. Share what I already have. Glorify God. Claim that I am more than a statistic figure of human population. Take advantage of boredom because boredom calls a higher need.

“The life of the creative man is lead, directed and controlled by boredom. Avoiding boredom is one of our most important purposes.”
Susan Sontag

It’s funny and superficial to say that this is my purpose in life but it can be profound at times.  There are many people who left earth without spending a single moment to question what is their purpose in life.

When you choose the road less traveled, you will get lost. There is no map for a road less known to others. But just like every destination, I manage to get there without a map.

Gotta go on my way *emote

God reads your bucket list

Source: http://manifestationyoga.com/2011/12/03/bucket-list/

I always encourage people to have a bucket list. It serves as a guide on the things they should and should not invest. If owning car is not included in your bucket list, then why save to buy one? If you have no dream of becoming a manager in the corporate world, why work more than what is required? If learning how to paint is included in your bucket list, why not put some time and money for an art workshop? If you want to have your business, then take time to read and research. You see,  a bucket list can simplify life. At the same time, it pushes you to achieve what you want. Perhaps, when something is written, it becomes permanent. And when it’s permanent, you always remember your small goals. For the purpose of discussing the importance of bucket list, let me share you some I have accomplished in my bucket list and forgive me for bragging.

Let me share you some included in my bucket list:

To lose weight

I was a chubby girl when I was in high school. I was really fat not ‘feeling fat.’ Every school year, I wrote in my diary, “need to lose weight.” Like most girls, I just wanted to improve my appearance. I started losing weight without diet and exercise when I was in college. But I realized weight cannot make you beautiful or in my own words ‘sellable.’ I lost a few pounds but there was no increase or decrease of people who like and dislike me.

To get published

I wrote this in my bucket list when I was in college and brought it to life when I already had my first job. It did happen but I had to be robbed. I had to have a traumatic experience to come up something worth publishing.

To graduate with honors

When we were all kids, we probably wanted to graduate with honors.  I wasn’t an A plus student. There were only two periods in my life that I graduated with honors, my first school year  and my last school year. I did ask God for it but I did not include in my prayer that I wanted to graduate on time. I almost did not graduate college because of my thesis. But thank God for the miracle.

To perform in theater

When I talk to myself, I also talk to God. It’s like talking two people at the same time. I said, “God, I want to perform in theater even if I don’t have a talent fee, even if I’m just part of a chorus.”  Then, God gave exactly what I requested. I joined the cast of a non profit theater as an ensemble member. It was a wonderful experience but it was not a eureka moment for me as what I expected.

These are some of the few things  that could not have happened if I did not have a bucket list. Of course, I have a lot in my list that have failed. I did not pass the entrance exam for Masters Degree in Creative Writing. I don’t have my dream job. My goal last year was to read 40 books but I only read 19.  And the list goes on.

A bucket list is helpful. It gives some sense of fulfillment. As I look back some of the things I wrote, I thought  achieving one by one, I could be happy and die with contentment. But there’s so much unwritten truth sealed in every wish. As what they say, “Be careful what you wish for.” A wish fulfilled gratifies you but it does not necessarily complete you, as what I wrote: Dreams change as you grow old. Your fantasies when you were younger no longer apply. Reality bites and you need to make a detour. But sometimes reality is more beautiful than a dream or perhaps the reality I created in my head is far more beautiful. I never wrote in my bucket list that I wanted an easy life. Sometimes the things I wished for are the things that brought me stress, tears, and frustration. If there’s one thing I learn from keeping a bucket list, it makes me  realize that I still have control over my life.  Happiness is not confined in a  list but freedom means everything.  And freedom is  a gift from God.   God let us have what we want even if we don’t deserve it and even if we don’t need it. He just wants to satisfy us and tell us, “You thought you know what’s best for you. But wait, I have better plans for you.”