Saturday, July 31, 2010

Super Powers

A friend told me today that for some reason, no matter what she decides not to tell anyone or what mood she's in, as soon as she sees me, she is disarmed, and wants to spill her guts. She says she had noticed other people have experienced this with me, that they can't help but share too much with Susie. She says, "teach me, teach me how to do that." And I answer her, "I don't know what I'm doing...I'm not trying to do anything" I'm flattered that people can see me as someone that they can trust and I'm glad they know that I don't want to harm them someday with their own personal demons as arsenal for blackmail. I don't know what it is that makes people confess their deep secrets and stories, but I have random strangers come up to me and tell me things I should not know. It doesn't benefit me or the other person in one way or another, but for some reason, they feel compelled.

I do however, want to know you and what you are thinking. I want to know a person I love to the core and I want them to ultimately know me to the core. So much so, maybe this is the vibe I'm giving off when I'm merely sitting next to you and you get the message, subliminally. I'm not much of a talker, but I can listen and I can definitely empathize. I don't know how, because in some instances, I have not experienced what you've experienced and even in the most unique situations, I can know how you feel. This must be a gift from God, but sometimes I can't handle it...

Like X Men, they have consequences to having a certain power. Gambit has a gambling problem, Wolverine loses his temper, Cyclops needs sunglasses to contain his eyes, and Jean Gray becomes the most dangerous one of all... Phoenix. I think my downfall is that I think and rethink people's actions, so sensitive to their feelings, I can pick up awkwardness, fear, secret intentions way too faster and too easier than I should. It hinders me from really relating with people and I am not my self any more. It alters the way I behave and in order to accommodate or avoid, I begin to shut down. It makes me believe that I'm someone lesser or doubt who I am. It's the downfall of feeling or empathizing too much of the other person. It's like I am experiencing it for myself when it's not my reality.

I wish my super power was to love in all circumstances and to be loved without questioning. This way, I can always love you without the insecurities that are projected onto me and I will not withdraw from you. I wish that I can be myself despite what you say, what you do or how you feel because it's not a reflection of what I feel or who I am. I wish I can remain myself even when you neglect, reject or defame because what you say is not true of me.

“It is always better to have no ideas than false ones; to believe nothing, than to believe what is wrong.” - Thomas Jefferson


**(This post may not make that much sense if you haven't seen the movie, or maybe it will anyway)

The mind is frail..and just like the movie, you feel at any moment, the whole teetering tower of dream upon dream will come crashing down, causing a domino effect of dream worlds crashing. The deeper you get into your dreams, the recess of your own mind, the fantasies, the memories, the more susceptible you are to losing yourself. You get lost in the perception or your own "reality" believing the lies that you yourself have built, the places and people you architect. You can live in your head all your life, living only in the memory of what was good, or what you think is good. Making your mind do mental gymnastics of what could be with a certain someone or in a certain country with a set up that could have been or would have been if you had chosen a different path. One person or one incident can make you believe a fleeting moment your reality, your truth. Inception. "One simple idea, that changed everything."

False beliefs bring turmoil and misunderstanding. Mistaken beliefs is the difference between war and peace. Even common still, a small mistaken belief come with severe consequences like misbeliefs about an appointment time that results in missed flights, missed jobs, and missed opportunities. False beliefs causes lovers to feud, friendships to fail, and even a spiral of thoughts that can ultimately lead to suicide, that death is the only way out of a "dream."

Inception can be truth, real and concrete, but then again, it can be deception when the idea you build your life and reality around is untrue and unsustainable. My reality is frail, constantly changing scenes of life, Jordon, Korea, Japan, New York, Korea again, California, Chicago, Indiana, the ever changing reality has me thinking that none of it is real. Because soon, the people, the location, home, my reality, is on a teetering tower and it will come crashing down, and soon again, I will have to rebuild my reality because dreams always collapse when you wake up. I'm waiting for the kick. To wake up.

It's the way I'm programmed. I have to immersed in the place I'm at the moment, trying to make connections, to fit in and sometimes trying not to when anticipating change, rejection, fall outs, and being snuffed out of existence. I will shut you out before you can do it to me. Many times I think I can just leave this place, the people, and have it as a file in my mental desktop and re-live it only when I want to. This is why you need a totem, God, your family, the people who are the constant in your life so that you're not a ghost haunting the town's people and leaving them with only a faint and fading photo in some one's far away past, when I will always exist on.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Strong Spot

I've never broken a bone to know, but I have had knee injuries from running and heard from boys who have that once you've injured or a broken a bone, you will favor one body appendage over another. You will continue to remember that at that moment in time, you think your arm or leg would never heal and the road to recovery is much to long and tedious to bare. After the faithful day of injury, there is a fear in you that will gnaw at you and forever protect that one spot that once was weak. Contrary to our overprotective angst within us for our own bodies, that one "weak" spot is the strongest out of all body parts that have always been healthy and strong. Scar tissue will build around that place that had been broken and mangled. Many times, you can see the thick mass that had formed and forever will mark the spot that had been marred but sometimes, it's just under the skin and you can't tell that once, your body was bleeding and ripped opened. It will be still be that one strong spot without anyone knowing.

Just like how our bodies will heal to be stronger, our weaknesses or brokenness when we let it heal will be our one strong spot. That once ripped open and vulnerable place in your soul will be rallied around by white blood cells, if you have them. White blood cells in a healthy body is numerous and will quickly gather at that wounded place. If you're lucky, you yourself have friends, community, prayer, love, above all God, to be the healer of all things broken in you. There are those eternal optimists because they've never seen hardship in life have band width to withstand stress and life's lemons. Then there are those, who have seen too much and known too much, but because they fought with tenacity, that scar tissues have formed where they're hearts were broken. By first sight you might see them as too tough, or too hard to know, or they mask their sadness with smiles, but once you get under their skin, they will show you their broad shoulders and they will carry you through a storm.

The catch to healing a bone is that when you leave it alone, the bone with heal to it's will and sometimes you end up with a finger disfigured. Just like that, a heart can disfigure if you let it alone in it's darkness. Healing must take it's course in appropriate ways, aggressive ways so that your heart can once again be itself... only, with strong spots.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

A Fall From Heaven

"Seeing myself well lost once more, I sighted, 'where, where in Heaven am I? Don't tell me opening clouds, by opening on me wide. Let's let my heavenly lostness overwhelm me.'" - Robert Frost

It's been so difficult for everyone to adjust back to the real world from KCC this year. Texts, emails, voicemails and facebook status' all call out to the KCC void that we feel a lone and displaced, that we feel more empty than we should be when we have gained the world through it. It's perplexing and vexing to realize that the more we see each other, the more we feel loss. How can it be when the people we love most make us feel more heavy, instead of the lightness we feel when we're completely in love. And we are.

We feel a great loss because we have fallen from heaven. It's the kind of feeling when someone has their feet on your knees for a while, and when her feet fall to the floor, you feel a sudden chill. A wet one. Or biting into a deliciously sweet peach after eating a piece of candy, it makes the peach sour and too bland to consume even for medicinal purposes. It's the great gap in comparison, what you had and enjoyed and when your life if devoid of it, everything turns bleak and austere.

Camp is heaven and it's like we dreamt it, because once it's over, although vivid and full of details, we open our eyes and memories seem hazy and it's hard to describe to other people. The late nights, the carefree laughter, dancing down an aisle at the Cheesecake Factory because no one matters but the people you're with and even when they're trying to punish you for losing a game, you find it a reward that you are part of a memory we denote in the 2010 camp highlight reel. Even as you walk down a small path way flanked by tall bushes, punctuated with hand painted lanterns on a late evening, you look around and think,"I'm dreaming this, I'm having a dream". We have created a heaven for ourselves and the kids of course, where nothing is more important than the next fun thing we will do and that is the highest objective besides knowing and being with one another as long as we can stand not falling asleep. Even in our sleep, we can't be apart from one another, creating a pool of cushions, pillows and blankets on the loft floor for all of us to float around in, meeting each other in our sleeping dreams.

All of us, come to camp expecting it to be good, expecting it to fill us and it does and when we come home, the drastic difference makes us feel the chill, a difference of heaven and earth, or even hell for some of us. We have to remember though, although camp is heaven,it is not lost, we have it. It's heaven because we don't live there, we leave all of earth and the pain it brings behind to enjoy it. The people in our real world are the heroes we have forgotten when we were frolicking in Neverland and they in turn, may forget us, if we don't return home. They have grown us and put us back together the numerous times we've been broken. Although they do not completely "get us" they are the people, day in and day out prayed for us, cried for us, put food on our table, put clothing on our backs, and have befriended us the best they could even if we are creatures who have fallen out of heaven and they don't understand us.

Monday, July 26, 2010

I will write you a sonnet

I think I know how the men of Shakespeare are inspired into writing sonnets and poems for the one they love. The object that causes their hearts to burst into song, and musings of love onto verbal pictures of their undying love. It's swells their heart to no content, they will have to empty it onto paper multiple times in a day because their full heart rips at the seams with love for their beautiful maiden. I don't know of women who write these love poems, but I find strangely, that after having a bout of dry spot in writing, I am compelled to write and say and think and share what I feel about the kids I met and continue to know...

I see each child and counselor from KCC with eyes that is deeper than how I see others. I see their beauty and only their beauty, and even in the midst of their tantrums and flaws, I don't just set them aside and ignore those aspects, but I swallow them. I accept them as part of who they are and because it's part of who they are it is still good and sweet. During camp, I am the person I want to be, cheerful even when I've only had 3 hours of sleep, chasing kids despite my body's protest, holding and hugging and giving out love like it's going out style. It's been a life long mission to love people and it's harder than you think, but at KCC, its not. It's easy. And even when I'm a way from them it's easy. At KCC, I am the girl I want to be, patient, happy, I belong, and I am completely devoid of trivial things like what I'll eat, when I'll sleep and how I'll feel about it when I do it. Instead, what's more important is appreciating my marker tattoos, plotting my next "cone-ing" attack and targeting my next victim for our big prank while they sleep.

I want to be this girl all the time and the after glow of it still shines because people at home take notice and say "you have a glow" "you look different" " you're tan and happy," I can see that they can put their finger on it. To be honest, I can't either, but I know where it comes from. I'm glad though, in my life time, I can say that riches, materialism, status or education did not bring me true happiness, but a group of chosen people have brought me to become the girl I want to be. I realize this place is not the only exclusive place I can be this girl, but the source, a place of learning and forming and when I am apart from them, I can apply this love to the people in my everyday life. Those who see me the other 355 days of my life...those who put up with the not-so-loving-me.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

A heavy heart

"I carry your heart with me(i carry it in my heart)" - E. E. Cummings

I carry your hearts in my heart, and it's heavy.
It drips with honey and purity and love
It's the kind of love no human can concoct
it's the kind of love only God can dispense
It's the kind of love that only God can handle in large quantities
I don't know how much more my human heart can take...

This love, it makes you carry growing children on your backs, touch, hug, kiss, poke, shout out "I love yous", tolerate tantrums, and endure writings on your body.
This love, it makes you spend your heart, your soul, your life and do not consider it a sacrifice
This love, it makes you know what God had in mind for heaven and for community, and for us when Christ gave his life.
This love, it humbles and makes you embarrassed that you are not a better example or person for them to know.

This heart, it's heavy with your heart because it's full of tears
It's full of pain I want to shield you from, whatever past, whatever future and whatever now

This heart of yours it's heavy with trust, a complete abandonment to me
You hand over your lock and key to me, and by this you tear down my walls

This heart is heavy, and it causes me to empty it out to you and to others, I love more, I love better, because "I carry your heart with me (I carry it in my heart)."

Friday, July 23, 2010

Sophomore Blues

Last year, I came back from KCC knowing exactly what to write. I came out of it with such new eyes for adoption and there was a clear change in me that everyone can see. This year, things are a little murky and its hard to put into words what I've learned or experienced. Not that every experience is a lesson to be had, but for some reason, I can't describe or recall even specific memories from this past week. I'm sure I just need a few more weeks to unpack something so intense as camp. :) I was a bit nervous going to KCC this year and a whole week prior to, I had nightmares about the camp. Kids raising hell, crafts bursting into flames and what's worse, this strange loneliness so clear in my dreams that it caused anxiety in my wake. I went to Ohio with clenched fists and my heart braced for disaster, readying for the sophomore blues, for disappointment, that whatever experiences I had last year is just like everything else and it would have been just an emotional high.

Alas, when we stepped onto Ohio soil and saw the first glimpses of a counselor driving his familiar car to pick us up, I knew that everything is just as it should. We clicked and even when we just came from Chicago, it was as if we came home right then. We didn't catch up much on what we've been up to or what burdens us and not because we couldn't or wouldn't, but instead, we told jokes and goofed around because we find total comfort in each other.

As we added in numbers throughout the day, I began to see that we would soon be the ten who would pour ourselves empty for the kids who have completely ruined us for anything else. Our hearts belong to them and for some reason, they have given theirs over to us and my heart is heavy with love that has been given without reason, pretense or precedence. They just give it over to you like it's easy, like you deserve every ounce, when you've done nothing to deserve it. This year hasn't changed my mind about KCC, it only confirmed my suspicions about how this place is magical and dreamy.

My love for them only deepened this year and I am constantly surprised by how much they are willing to trust you with themselves. I am humbled by the way they are completely sure in their minds that you would never hurt them and that you only have love to give. I want that to be true of me, for their sake and for my sake, because I never want to lose them, not one. We ourselves nor the kids can't describe it without sounding cheesy and using cliches, so I'll use simple words. There are no words to express this kind of love.