Those Eyes

Those eyes, they look…

So tired,
So hurt,
So weary,
So sorrowful;

I asked myself a very simple question:
Where have I seen such eyes before?

The mirror turned away and shed a silent tear.

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We Think

(5 minute challenge, let’s go)

People do things and say things,
And we think all these come from thin air and nowhere;

There is – a story behind everyone,
Stories which we may never know about or imagine,
Sometimes these stories explain actions and words,
Other times these tales simply bring a tear to the eye;

Indeed no one feels as another does,
That we can never get round to understanding the pains of another,
Where in our own eyes we view through our own issues and hurt,
That it all eventually rounds up to what we ourselves go through;

Lonely is the man who tries to be there for everyone,
But in his heart yet he knows there’s no one
Who can possibly be there for him to fill up his heart,
To take up the empty space within which makes him feel without;

‘We all wonder from the real world, we all come to our asylums’,
Yes that is right – a place where the line blurs,
Between madness and sanity there is little difference,
Wherein going to such an escape one meets the issue face on;

Enough now – the point of this all is very clear:
People do and say things based on their past and experiences,

So beware the man who seeks to listen to the sorrows of the world,
For he is the one who seeks external pains to smoothen the ones within.

What It Is

(I’m doing a poetry comparison on the theme of Happiness)

Happiness – something we think to be very complicated yet simple,
A notion that we hold that is to happen in future,
Almost like a concept that we create for ourselves
To believe that it is something somehow possible sometime (later);

It is not as you might think it to be really,
Happiness isn’t something abstract or to be reached,
It is made up of little moments of laughter and smiles,
Where in the midst of good company one feels blessed and content;

Don’t set it to be something you need to reach hard for,
It is already something you have with you if you
Would just look at the little moments where you’ve been thankful,
And you will find in those moments the happiness that you seek;

Happiness is what it is – what you make of it.

Being A Friend

cool, cheery evening

Words that we utter may sometimes appear so insignificant, so unnecessary, and at times even so cumbersome. We genuinely try at times to be nice to people that we know and we tell them, ‘hey, whatever goes wrong just drop me a text, I’ll always be here for you’. Or we might say, ‘everything is okay, I’m going to be here and see you through it all’.

I’m sure we’ve all said those lines to people, be they people close to us or otherwise; I’m quite certain too that you have heard people telling you that too, that they will be there for you (as all good friends do) and that there is nothing to be afraid of or worried about.

So what’s the purpose of saying that really?

It works on two levels, or at least between two main ideas (do allow me to buy insurance here). In fact, I just discovered a third reason from my interactions with a friend as to why people say it but I would however, leave this one out until maybe just one sentence towards the end because I suspect it might not sit easy with people.

On one hand, it is to affirm the relationship between the two of you and to provide confidence. It doesn’t matter if you or your friend can be or will be there (or not), just the idea of someone being there is enough to be a great source of comfort, support and encouragement. The thought that there is a shoulder there to lean on, a sleeve to cry on, a ear ready to listen is sufficient to tide people through the toughest of times, the roughest of patches. That is the first, that people say it and use this idea as a form of support rather than actually turning to the person and using that shoulder. Those who provide this assurance and affirmation may or may not know the effect of their words, but it is definitely positive and can go a long way towards aiding others through rough rides.

The second is that people tell others this because they really can and want to be there for the people that they are telling it to. They have the capacity and ability to provide the help that is needed, whether it be either financial, physical, emotional or mental. This is a direct offer of a lifeline, a source of help that can actually be tapped on in times of need. There is something more concrete and real in this, and it does the same as per the first scenario, except that it goes beyond in that it is actually feasible.

For the final reason, it is bred out of a desire to feel like there will be someone there for you as well. It means (in simple simple words) that you say it so that you can feel that since you want (whether can or cannot) to be there for the other person, he or she will similarly also want to and can be there for you as well. It is also to keep people close to you, in that you try to make people feel that they are important to you such that you in turn can feel important and significant to that person as well. This, I am afraid, is bred out of insecurity and a sense of inadequacy of the self; that you need external support to be able to feel secure, that you need to depend on external sources to be able to feel safe and yourself. It is not the happiest of scenarios, but it happens far too often and with far too many people.

Since it’s Sunday, let’s move away from humans and talk a little bit about God. I think that’s one of the things that God, working through churches, cell groups and pastors, is trying to tell us: He is always there for all of us. Some of us, when we encounter difficulties and destabilising waves, are often clouded by the gloomy circumstances that we fail to see past the situation to see the light. It is wonderful to feel and know that God is always there for us, always ready to lend us a helping hand, always ready to direct us through ways which we sometimes are not aware of and at times miss; we do sometimes lose sight of God when we feel that our problems and circumstances overwhelm us, but I’m sure God understands that.

Here’s a verse. Isaiah 40:29 – He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.

On a friendship and relationship level, I think that is what it means to being a friend – to be willing to give your love to others both in times of need and in times of plenty, in good and in bad times, in happiness and in sorrow. We very often enjoy the benefits of friendship and do not contribute back our part in supporting the other person, that while we enjoy their company in fun times, we disappear and dissociate ourselves from them during times of crisis and disaster. If you love the other person enough, you will look towards him or her even in your own testing moment of need.

Being a friend; beautiful yet never easy.

(thank you for making me realise that. It explains well why when people ask me who you are to me.. I still tend to say best friend before other things)

Pause, Play

Pause, Rewind, Play.

Let me take you to a place to meet someone,
In fact let me take you to many different places,
and meet many different people (or maybe just one person),
Give me your hand and off we can go;

Do you see a toddler taking maiden steps in the protect arms of the parents?
Are you with me at the swings watching a bunch of kids running and having fun?
Have you caught sight of a kid crying on the parent’s sleeve after a long tiring day?
Can you see boys and girls smiling widely as they graduate out of play school?

Pause, Fast forward, Play.

Now it’s time to go to other places,
And meet other people (or maybe it’s the same person),
To see different things at different times,
Grab onto my hand and we shall set off;

Do you see a person holding onto a university certificate in his hands smiling?
Are you with me at the Church to witness the bliss a young couple getting married?
Have you experienced the tension of two persons quarrelling in front of you right now? 
Do you hear the cries of a baby in the middle of the night and playful times in the afternoon?

Pause. 

Did you recognize yourself in those places and faces?
Are all of these not in your past and in your future? 
Are you at ease now or do you feel a tinge of heartache? 
Can you look back at the past and smile while having high hopes for the future to come? 

Play. 

Do you read these words and see where they all lead to – now? 

Memories, Untainted

cool night, drizzling

Good evening, hope the weekend has been restful and recharging thus far; it’s Sunday night and the work is about to start again come tomorrow (there’s a reason why rainy days and mondays always get people down isn’t it? #carpenters reference) It’s been a long month of May and indeed May Day / Labour Day felt just like yesterday though we already are staring at a calendar that shows First of June; do we not believe now that time is relative, seeing how fast May has flown by and how far January seems even though it feels just like a couple of days ago?

A thought came to mind earlier which I found to be rather interesting is the idea of memory tainting. Everything that happened or happens or is to happen will eventually occupy a place in the memory bank at the back of our heads; that is to say everything in the past forms part of our memories, depending though on whether we remember it or not. However, the key point that I want to bring up here is how we relate to, and choose to remember things. 

Many a time we look back at / on (depending which you prefer) a memory and we partially experience that moment in time all over again, semi-reliving that point in the past whether good or bad. (you just recalled something from the past, didn’t you?) That moment might have been beautiful, that’s why you remember it and constantly seek to return to that moment through allowing memories of it flood your mind; or perhaps it was a painful moment and it is troubling you unnecessarily that’s why it’s playing through your mind every now and then to remind you of that hurtful incident. 

Now the moment has passed and you cannot do anything about it, true? But what you have are memories, and that is something which you can alter and edit. You see, the way we remember incidents and events are not objective; they are subjected to the mindset and emotions when we call upon those memories and the way we remember them are inevitably affected by the conditions upon which we pick up contents from our memory banks. When you look back upon your childhood, your perception of that time period is very often affected by the lens in which you view them, that is the state of mind and feelings when you revisit those memories. You might inject reasons to turn lovely memories into unhappy ones, or change sad ones into bearable ones depending on how the lens you are or choose to view them with. 

Sometimes it is necessary to change the way you remember certain things in order not to be excessively bothered by it, and yet it is also crucial sometimes to remember incidents as closely as they were so that any recount of it will stick as true to reality as possible. Memories can be honeyed or they can be poisoned, and the incident itself has little bearing once it’s over but the way you remember it can often determine the way you feel towards the incident when you look back at it at a later time. 

The most common form of this is to remember happy moments as true and make every recollection be as close to how it was as possible so that these moments can be as realistically relived as possible and the happiness felt can be repeatedly experienced each time the memory is recalled. As for the not so positive incidents, we tend to remember them in a way which makes us feel better about it, about ourselves so that they would not continuously haunt us whenever the memories flash in our minds. It is at it’s core both a defence mechanism which we can selectively employ to ensure we are not too affected by the past as well as a tool which we can use to comfort ourselves through recollecting a better time in the past when the present gets tough. 

Are you thinking of how you remember a particular moment or incident now? 

Memories, untainted. 

Kind Words

When people fall or fail,
We offer kind words to them,
Words of encouragement and comfort,
With the hope of cheering them up,
Wishing we can make them feel better,
Trying to partake in their sorrows with them;  

When people soar or succeed,
We (again) offer kind words to them,
Words of congratulations and felicitation,
With (again) the hope of cheering them on,
Wishing (again) we can add to their happiness,
Trying (again) to share in their joys with them; 

Is it to conjure ourselves to try harder,
Or is it to enable the others to feel better?