Let’s talk about a stage right now that I am feeling quite alone.
I just passed my 29th birthday so I am no longer in my adolescent years. I am a newlywed of close to six months and so I am not fretting over any singlehood status. Even though I am currently unemployed, I am living with my retired in-laws so I need not fret that there is no one to chat with me. So why am I feeling all alone?
The loneliness is in the soul. It feels like no one understands the void and longing in me right now. Maybe even I don’t know what I need to do to fill this void.
Ever since two years ago, I started to become pretty spiritual. I don’t mean diving head down into a particular religion nor do I mean practising magic or conversing with spirits. I mean this growing and gnawing thirst in me to explore the unseen. If I were to time-travel and tell my 25-year-old self that I would one day lean towards spirituality, she would probably stare in disbelief and scoff. Seriously. I was that away from spirituality then. In fact, all my life I always questioned the common religions around me. Buddhism, Taoism, Christianity… I used to sit down for more than two hours with a preacher on Christianity and bombarded her with all the “logical” questions I have on her faith. I used to read the bible and raised all sort of questions to a few Christian colleagues who couldn’t answer to my satisfaction. And it didn’t help that the answers contradict with the answers I got from a Catholic colleague.
Whoa, hold on, before you flip the table, I am not here to dis any religion or faith. I was young and self-absorbed; my time simply wasn’t ripe yet, if you know what I mean. I thought the only reality that is real was the reality I can see with my eyes, smell with my nose, hear with my ears and maybe even taste with my tongue.
Until my then-boyfriend-now-husband introduced me to this book series called the Conversations with God by Neale Donald Walsch.
Honestly? I had avoided reading when he first shoved Book 1 into my face. Well, I just couldn’t! Looking at the title, apparently, it is going to talk about God and religion; maybe Christianity or Catholicism. I was so uninterested. The funny thing is, after some time, one day out of the blue, I had the urge to pick up the book and read it. No kidding. It was one of the “book urges” whereby I usually have a sudden strong urge to read a certain book and will amazingly find answers to my current issues/ problems/ situations within the pages. I opened the book and read it, and then there was no turning back for me.
If you know me personally, you would remember how I was a super no-God kind of person. To me then, there were a bunch of “loopholes” that I just couldn’t bring myself to believe. But the strangest thing happened: not only do I enjoy the book tremendously (the series blew my mind away), there was not even one doubt in my mind at all! It felt like I knew what was written in there to be true; no question asked. I really can’t explain why, but I guess the time is right for me to start awakening. Awaken to the unseen truth in the universe. it felt like a whole new world of truth was revealed to me. It was an amazing feeling that I wish I could remain in it forever.
Gradually, this feeling faded when “reality” sets in: job. Also at the time, I got interested in the idea of Law of Attraction (to primarily increase my wealth and luck). Though I believe in it (to a certain extent), I didn’t practice it vigorously like some successful and wealthy people do. Together with it, my mindset changed. It changed from thinking that job-is-security to start-your-own-business-so-you-will-have-a-higher-chance-to-retire-better-and-earlier. There was a period where I think that having more and lots of money is extremely important. I thus got dissatisfied with the life I was living. Snoozed when my alarm rang, pulled myself out of bed, commuted to work like sardines in a can, super busy with work from 8.30am to 6pm, sometimes needed to work overtime till 8pm or even later, commuted back home like sardines in a can again, spent three hours or so “unwinding” (which means doing mindless stuff such as camping in Facebook, Instagram, Youtube and reading novels), then finally, forced myself to sleep just to start the next day like a breathing zombie. It freaked me out that I would be spending my days and months and years like that, for the rest of my life. I could easily be one of the many walking dead and waited till my life comes to an end without achieving anything special. Or worth mentioning. How would my eulogy be like at my wake? Do I want to be known as someone who was holding a XX position in XX company for XX number of years or do I want to be known as a kind, loving, gentle, humble and wise woman?
So two months before my wedding (which was in Oct 2016), I quitted my job. People around me were shocked because I left my job without another next in the line, especially when I was two months to my wedding when I needed money the most. But yeah, I quitted my job. I kept myself busy with all the wedding preparation. Finally, my wedding day came and passed, I went for my honeymoon in Europe and came back, went briefly into another job for more than a month, quitted at the end of 2016 and officially from 1 Jan 2017, I am unemployed and… I am stuck. With myself.
Logically, I should either start my own business or find another job. Plainly speaking, do something productive so I am earning money and feeling worthy. Or simply to get people off my back. But here I am, more than five months after my wedding day, jobless, refusing to find another job, not interested in being an entrepreneur.
Honestly? I don’t really like the current me now. I quitted my job thinking that I would be starting my life anew doing great stuff. I started 2017 thinking to myself that I would take a short break, I see it as a reward for working continuously for more than 8 years since graduation. I told myself I needed some time anyway to adjust to being newly married and living with in-laws. Whenever people I meet asked me about what I am currently doing, my plans and etc, I would dish out the script I drafted last year but never, ever get around actualising it.
Less than one month into my unemployment status, I started to find stress coming from all directions. My husband, parents and in-laws would think that I am wasting my time doing nothing. Initially in my first one or two months of unemployment, I could straighten my back and inform them that I do have plans in mind, but I am simply taking a break now. I would also remind them that I have been out of job for only one or two months and it’s a normal thing for people nowadays to take a short break in between jobs.
But in March 2017, right now, I can kid myself no further. The same script which I have used on all my loved ones does not work well for them and me anymore. Me, especially for me. It is hard to admit it to myself, but I no longer feel good about my current situation. The situation which I have created. Some friends envy me for being able to stay at home without a job when my husband is providing for me. They envy me that I can lay around all day doing nothing. But what they didn’t know and what I didn’t expect was the stress I felt. In fact, it was even more stressful than when I was in a job (especially when my in-laws keep pushing me to have a baby soon). To be fair, my husband and in-laws are kind and understanding people who are OK with me starting a new and different path, as long as I am moving forward and not remaining status quo like now. I also became super sensitive, thinking that everyone (almost) is judging me, deeming me as unworthy and wasting my time. I told my husband just last week, when I think I was on the point of breaking, that why is everyone judging someone’s worth by the job they have and the money that they bring in? Why can’t they see past these materialistic points and see a person’s inner values?
Now, come to think of it, I wasn’t wrong but I wasn’t right too. If I were really doing something, if I were really moving forward, albeit slowly, I believe my loved ones would be encouraging instead of criticising. But I wasn’t. I was simply standing on the same place where I left my last job. But what came out from my mouth last week to my husband sounded more like lame excuses to justify my procrastination and unwillingness to move forward in the material world than pure and unbias opinion.
This is where the inner struggle comes into the picture. The thirst to find seclusion in this busy world and explore my spirituality self.
My logical mind thinks that it is best for me to either get a job or start fulfil my script (write a book, make Youtube videos, conduct seminars or workshops). But my wilful heart just want to find a quiet place and explore all the wonders and possibilities of this universe… spiritually. Sounds ridiculous? But this is really how I am feeling.
This period is unbearable. Maybe you are thinking, why can’t you just do one of these things you listed? Procrastination. Procrastination is really one of the scariest and most dangerous state of mind and being to be in. Instant gratification is so tempting that I put off things I ought to do that will allow me to benefit and grow in the long run. I admit I am quite a procrastinator for most of my life. And the scary thing about it is that I am beginning to detest myself for being one. I love myself! Well, I should be! Do I? If I do, why am I sabotaging myself?
What I need to do now is to strike balance. The balance between living in this real world and still practice spirituality in my life. I can’t believe it took me so long to realise this, to think about this. Balance! Unless I could abandon all things and find my seclusion in some high mountain cave, otherwise, I better balance my life.
So, what’s my plan now? There is no plan. I think I should stop making plans and keeping them all in my head only. OK, maybe I should have a general plan, to serve as a general guide. Not going to ramble about it much, because it would probably sound like another “script” right now. Just do it! That whatever idea which comes into my mind instead of fondling with it until it grows old and dies.
Reading what I have written from the top, which I intended to write about my spiritual loneliness, this article turns out to be some kind of self-reflection. Oh well. There’s this saying that Plans can never keep up with Changes, yea?