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Archive for September, 2010

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Gratitude

Gratitude: it’s underrated.

I think people need to practice gratitude more often than they practice the Art of the Whine. My friend, Evan, introduced me to the Gratitude Project which really is as simple as it sounds: Be Grateful for Something Everyday.

So, I’ve decided to actively do that. Remember when I joined in on Seth’s idea to not complain for 30 days? I don’t really know if I passed or failed that test, but I do know that it made the entire Bar Studying Experience a lot less of a thing to whine about than something I just had to do.

As great as the No Whine Project was, it focused too much on something negative (i.e. not doing something). That’s why I think the Gratitude Project is genius because it makes us think of the positives of our day (and still preserves my right to whine when things go wrong, mwahahaha!).

So, the way I’m going to do the Gratitude Project is to find one person, one thing, and one event per day that I am grateful for and explain why. Easy.

I hope.

LET US BEGIN with YESTERDAY:

1. Person: Jessica P.

Jess and I have been friends since my first day at JLHS when I sat slightly away from everyone else on the bleachers while Coach Rod introduced himself. I had 2nd Period PE for my first class of the first day of school on my first time in an American school. I probably had the deer-in-headlights look. I had terrible listening comprehension (I thought Americans spoke way too fast), could barely trust myself to speak the English words I had studied all those years in my classes, and was generally just a NERD/GEEK/FREAK/OUTCAST. I didn’t know a smidgen about fashion (I had worn a uniform since I was in kindergarten from 6 am to 6 pm every day of my life, and on weekends I wore more uniforms for sports so fashion was never an issue); I was obviously a tomboy and wore a XXL shirt and baggy pants that three other people could have fit in with me; and I didn’t understand all the cultural, social, and socio-politico-economic implications that was life in an American HS (I had gone to the same school with the same group of people from kindergarten to high school…and there were only about a hundred of us in our graduating class…there were no boys in our school…nuns walked the halls and taught us. Drama? What is that?) I doubt there is anywhere else in the world where high school is so angsty and confusing.

So enters Jessica. She looked at me over her shoulder, climbed the bleachers to where I sat and said Hi.

I had never been so grateful for that word in my life.

She smiled that big smile, “I’m Jessica, you must be new. What’s your name?” She had a big voice and an even bigger personality. When she found out that I wasn’t just new to the school but to the country, she took me under her wing. I found shelter in her friendship that entire year. She introduced me to everyone she knew — and she was popular and well-liked (and was voted Class Clown with Nate), which made me an instant-part of any group she was in. She introduced me to speech and debate and to the people who would continue to be my family to this day.

She invited me to parties and sleep-overs and she never asked me to change who I was. She let me learn from her and I am grateful that she is still one of my best friends ever.

We both had our hearts broken over the past year and yesterday, we sat and talked about our lives over burritos (ahhh, typical of us), and laughed over our predicaments. Left and right some of our closest friends are getting married and neither one of us could see that in our near future. But it was okay because it was something we both could laugh about and support each other through.

Jessica reminds me everyday that it can take something so little as a smile and a “hi” to change a person’s life and the way they see the world around them. Every time someone new comes around, I will always remember to make them feel welcome, and to stay with them until they feel like they belong, too. It’s so simple but it’s so powerful.

2. Event: Meeting Bryan H.

I was a little lost in UC Davis King Hall. Then I was extremely bored in UC Davis King Hall. I was about to pass out from sheer boredom when a deep purple shirt tucked into perfectly pressed pants stopped right in front my fading line of sight. “Hey,” says a voice.

I look up and smile. “Hey.”

“I thought you were APALSA for a moment.”

I roll my eyes at him. “Because I’m Asian?”

He shrugs. “They were here before you.” He looks at my table, goes around the table and pulls up a chair. “Mind if I sit with you?”He was already seated, so I shrugged.

Talking with him made the rest of the three hours bearable and time flew by in a blur. He was engaging. He was annoying. He was funny. He was chauvinistic. He was strangely humble and yet arrogant at the same time. It was like every time I would think he was awesome, he would say something completely opposite that I would instantly change my opinion of him. And then he’d say something incredible again, and I’d be impressed again…and so on and so forth. It was almost weird never really finding a comfort zone talking to this guy, but that was okay with me. Like I said, time flew by with a quickness.

We talked about Tie Tuesdays (why he was dressed so nicely), the Marines, Military Service, JAG, law school, life, being a drill sergeant, motivation, and just very random things. Next thing I knew he was standing up and saying, “Hey, I have Contracts now, will you be here tomorrow?”

“Is it time to go already?” I asked, in shock, pleasure, and another strange mix of disappointment and relief.

I’m grateful for him keeping me company and just…being. I don’t know why I’m grateful really, but when I thought about it today, he was one of the first things that popped into my head as me being grateful for. So, there you go, Bryan. I’m grateful that I met you.

3. Thing: Air Conditioning

This should be self-explanatory. California has been suffering from an onslaught of extreme temperatures. I was in UC Davis and Sacramento yesterday for work, and boy was it H-O-T. Granted it might not have been as hot as Los Angeles, but it was still a scorching 103. I was so glad that everywhere I went, I was greeted by a blast of cold air, thanks to this marvelous invention.

I think I might have had an aneurysm if AC didn’t exist. Whew!

Gratitude Project Day 1: Check.

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Your body is my hobby. I love the hot toddy.

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Remember Me…

i.

Ghandi said that whatever you do in life will be insignificant, but it’s very important that you do it ’cause nobody else will. Like when someone comes into your life and half of you says: “You’re nowhere near ready”. And the other half says: “Make her yours forever”.

ii.

Caroline asked me what would I say if I knew you could hear me. I said: “I do know. I love you. God, I miss you, and I forgive you”.

iii.

You once told me our fingerprints don’t fade from the lives that we touch. Is that true for everybody? Or was it just poetic bullshit?

iv.

This girl, her life slipped into me.

v.

I guess that’s the lesson: don’t leave anything misunderstood, don’t postpone what you want… Because just like that… it could end.

vi.

Someone’s been trying to tell me something…”Make her yours forever.” I’m working on the forever part.


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Let her be enough.

Let her be your Everything.

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Ball is Rolling

Wow. This week has been hectic. Next week will be worse. But in a good way.

Tomorrow I’m flying in-and-out of LA for a lunch interview.

Got 3 nights of training for one job, Orientation for another, and shenanigans of all kinds with another one.

I have a feeling that something’s gotta give…

But right now, I am generally just waiting and seeing. Nothing is yet set in stone.

Dun, dun, dun…

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Why can’t we get all the people together in the world that we really like and then just stay together? I guess that wouldn’t work. Someone would leave. Someone always leaves. Then we would have to say good-bye. I hate good-byes. I know what I need. I need more hellos. ~Charles M. Schulz

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Fix You

This piece is ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL.

 

The passion, the music, the choreography. Allison is an amazing dancer, and Robert was phenomenal in this one. I especially loved the last few seconds of the piece, where Robert nudges Allison to take a step–to move forward. And when she could not do it on her own, I loved how he came up behind her, put her arm around his shoulders, lifted her and walked for her. It reminds me of that proverb: Footprints in the Sand.The person looked back at his life and noticed that in the hardest, saddest moments only one set of footprints were on the sand. He asked the Lord why He had abandoned him, but this was the reply:

I love you and I would never, never leave you
during your times of trial and suffering.
“When you saw only one set of footprints,
it was then that I carried you.”

Anyway, this contemporary piece choreographed by Travis Wall, totally made me cry because I have been in Robert’s shoes before. I have been around and loved people who have been broken before: emotionally, physically, medically, or psychologically. Sometimes, there’s nothing more that you can do for these people but to try…to look them in the eye and pledge your love and commitment.

My mother once said, “If you love someone, there is no such thing as sacrifice. You simply do everything in your power to protect the people you love. You carry their burdens and you love them more.”

So when the people you love are broken, you tell them to put all their weight on your shoulders. You pick them up when they are down even if it will mean you won’t be able to get up either. You hold them. You protect them. You love them. You tell them, “I will try to fix you.”

Most times, you can’t. No one can. Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away. Most of the time, even after having given it your all, you’re still left behind with nothing but the tears streaming down your face and the weariness of trying. But you don’t regret it–at least I don’t. How can you ever regret doing everything you could for someone that you loved?

Fix You by Coldplay

When you try your best, but you don’t succeed
When you get what you want, but not what you need
When you feel so tired, but you can’t sleep
Stuck in reverse

And the tears come streaming down your face
When you lose something you can’t replace
When you love someone, but it goes to waste
Could it be worse?

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

And high up above or down below
When you’re too in love to let it go
But if you never try you’ll never know
Just what you’re worth

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

Tears stream down on your face
When you lose something you cannot replace
Tears stream down on your face
And on your face I…

Tears stream down on your face
I promise you I will learn from my mistakes
Tears stream down on your face
And on your face I…

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

 

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Okay, okay…maybe not. I mean, I’m not a lawyer…yet.

But at least I’m making money again. And I’m busy again. And I’m feeling productive again.

There’s waitressing (yeah, don’t judge, you know it’s a noble profession *coughs*), tutoring (it’s rewarding, okay…), document reviewing, and researching/writing. So what if I have four bosses and I’m scheduled back-to-back-to-back?

I’m totally lovin’ it.

Like I told PMaster, I feel like my life has purpose again.

I love waking up in the morning feeling like I immediately have to get out of bed and work. I love that sense of direction and knowing what to do next. Yes, I’m going to miss waking up at 9 or 10, and even 11 on a few days, but nothing beats waking up and knowing that you’re getting something done today.

Love it.

Plus, I get free food from one job, interaction with kids at another, legal networking at another, and legal research at the other. Heck, I even get to wear a tie (and an apron). Once my schedule becomes much more settled and clearer, I’m also jonesing to start doing volunteer legal work at the SFBar Association. More networking, more of my foot (and hopefully a leg and an arm) in the door, and hopefully a job when (yes, when–i’m being optimistic here) I pass the bar.

Handsome H says he admires my moxie.

In reality, it was more of a near-fatal combination of boredom and the desperate need to do something more than stay at home all day.

Either way, I’m baaack in bidniz. Sort of.

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Sometimes I think of letting go and never looking back,

And never moving forward so there would never be a past…

Easier to Run, Linkin Park-

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