Posts tagged with "self-portrait"

i'm okay

I can say that now.

It’s hard to tell exact­ly when every­thing became too much for me to han­dle, but I knew I reached sta­ble ground when Marie said it was nice to see me smile. It seems like she’s only seen me at my worse — when I’m not cop­ing and try­ing to ratio­nal­ize all the wrong things — but she still wel­comes me every time with­out any expec­ta­tions, and that’s the kind of accep­tance I need at this point in my journey.

self-portrait

This is my okay face.

Not to say there aren’t strug­gles, espe­cial­ly months like this, when I’m deal­ing with col­i­tis flare-ups on a dai­ly basis and the con­stant feel­ing of being over­whelmed. Between the time I spend to nour­ish myself, find­ing peace with so much of my past, and this love that found me, I’ve start­ed to under­stand how life can catch up to a per­son with­out warn­ing. There’s bare­ly a chance to process the devel­op­ments in my head, let alone record curves and colours with a camera.

I’m anx­ious to get to the point where I can start grow­ing instead of heal­ing, and liv­ing instead of sur­viv­ing. Being okay means it’s eas­i­er to deal with the inse­cu­ri­ties and moments of weak­ness­es I face on my way there.

the distances we travel, and yet how far we've still to sail

It’s all a bit of a blur now, espe­cial­ly since we agree it feels like it’s been a year since my respon­si­bil­i­ties as a son and a cousin and a friend in Toronto. I do remem­ber try­ing to bal­ance the caf­feine — so I could be clear-head­ed and enjoy­ing myself — with the insom­nia that comes from hav­ing so much ener­gy every night. Also, these acts of guer­ril­la hap­pi­ness where mes­sages of hope were expressed through posters and spray paint. It would appear that van­dal­ism cross­es over into art only in cities with a sky­line worth mentioning.

We end­ed up at the Ontario Science Centre twice, once as nerds and again as wed­ding guests, which worked out cause the only exhib­it we didn’t get a chance to see one day end­ed up being the only exhib­it open to us dur­ing the recep­tion. The high­light is always the plan­e­tar­i­um though, in all it’s bean-bag, time-trav­el­ing glo­ry, the expe­ri­ence itself worth the price of admis­sion. With the excep­tion of a poor fac­sim­i­le of dragon’s beard can­dy, every­thing worked out.

Continue read­ing “the dis­tances we trav­el, and yet how far we’ve still to sail”…

frame of mine

I’ve made peace with this body. It hasn’t been an easy peace to come by, as I seem to get con­stant reminders about the diminu­tive size of my stature. Most recent­ly, I met an old­er Chinese woman who admit­ted that she thought I looked sick and weak only after she dis­cov­ered I had col­i­tis. It was as if she thought col­i­tis caused some kind of mal­nu­tri­tion that stunt­ed my growth, and she didn’t want to bring up the fact that I was this size because it would have been too embar­rass­ing unless it was caused by a med­ical condition.

Asian male self portrait

 

I’ve been deal­ing with all kinds of sim­i­lar com­ments since I was a kid, so when a girl­friend would say that she liked a par­tic­u­lar part or por­tion of my body, I always thought they were just blind­ed by love. Eventually I real­ized that if they could come to love this body, then I could too. It will nev­er look right in any­thing but slim-fit extra smalls from Mexx. It will nev­er be good enough for my par­ents. But it will always be who I am, and I’ve learned to accept that.

UK Detour, Day 11: London

Mike was between jobs, so I got to shad­ow him with­out being too intru­sive. That not only meant I got to check out his favourite haunts, but meet more impor­tant peo­ple in his life.

At one point, I had to with­draw some cash (since Mike had pre­vi­ous­ly lied to me about my cred­it card not work­ing), and it was strange to sud­den­ly find three dif­fer­ent kinds of cur­ren­cy in my wallet.

men on benches

So close yet so alone.

Continue read­ing “UK Detour, Day 11: London”…

29 11/12: The Work in Progress

He who is not sat­is­fied with him­self will grow; he who is not sure of his own cor­rect­ness will learn many things.

—Chinese proverb

As much as I think I’ve become set­tled in my char­ac­ter and my mind­set, I still sur­prise myself with how much these con­tin­ue to change.

self-portrait at 29 11/12

Me and my Plushstache (hand­made with love by Shannon Gerard).

I used to think I’d final­ly be hap­py if I was a cer­tain per­son — some ide­al­ized ver­sion of myself who was inde­struc­tible, infal­li­ble, and flaw­less — but I recent­ly real­ized that I shouldn’t see this as the goal. Instead, I should be hap­py with the fact that I’m not there yet, because change means evo­lu­tion and growth.

It would be fol­ly to believe that an arrival is also an end. One should con­tin­ue to strug­gle, and to doubt, and to hurt, and to be a work in progress.

I turn 30 in a month, and I still don’t know who I am.

The Turning 30 Series