Friendship is gold. But what happens after it tarnishes?

Friendship is gold. But what happens after it tarnishes?

Have you ever pondered why some friendships cease to be? Or how your chummy best friend is now a mere acquaintance? Have you ever contemplated what stood between you and him/her? Or did you simply dismiss the case and hold tightly to the memories created?

I’ve had my fair share of broken relationships… Sadly, it doesn’t get easier with experience. Part of what makes us human is the desire to connect, share and be intimate with one another without qualms or fear of judgment. But when that friendship fails, it’s time to move on. It’s time to re-examine what works for you, and what doesn’t, and come to a conclusion as to whether or not your approach to forming a bond with another needs improvement. Some friendships are contingent on frequent communication. Some require more invested time to flourish. Some stay old without much effort. But the underlying commonality is that we never leave a friendship unscathed: we leave a piece of ourselves behind and become that much more aware about ourselves. There and then, we have laid another stone in our paths, waiting only so to be tread on.

Now the balancing charge: not all friendships are doomed to fail after the elephant has slowly crept into the room… Every individual is blessed with a choice: to accept status quo, or lay their cards on the table (tbh, the latter option fills me with anxiety, because taking the first step to bridge communication requires a healthy does of courage). Eleanor Roosevelt once said:

You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.

I don’t know about you, but I hate to lose. I hate to lose the good feelings and impressions people have towards me. Because of that fear, I sometimes choose to walk away when circumstances indicate that those feelings are wavering. Self-preservation; self-protection; self-denial. To the people I love, this is my advice to you: start today – if you aren’t already intentionally doing so, cherish those around you, let them know (platinum rule: treat others the way they desire to be treated) – and whether or not it succeeds, at least you know you’ve tried.

Licking that peanut butter off the spoon is simply *amazing*

Licking that peanut butter off the spoon is simply *amazing*

On a whim, I quickly grabbed a jar of skippy’s peanut butter off the shelves and dunked it into my grocery basket. It was just one of those days whereby you decided that it was time to give breakfast plates a new makeover, or that a little treat will not hurt anyone – nut butters are chock full of monounsaturated fats that are healthy, if taken in moderation. If you haven’t tried, please go grab your favourite spoon, carefully dip it into that pool of gooey goodness, give it a gentle swirl…. then pop it right into your mouth! It’s fragrant, creamy, smooth yet nutty, and most importantly, you no longer crave for other forms of desserts, in particular froyo/soft serve/ice-cream/gelato/pastries… etc.

On a completely random note, may I just rant about how handsome Lee Sang Yoon is? I was analysing what I like about him, and I narrowed his traits down to this list: his forever smiling, moon-shaped eyes; the softness of his facial features (I’m not sure how I may elaborate this in a more comprehensible manner, but he appears very approachable and gentle); dem dimples… it’s like when they appear, you know he’s gonna get away with anything. Beauty lies in the eyes of its beholder.

P/s. Praise God, for I am offered an internship position at EY for Tax Services :D

The Liar Game

The Liar Game

May I have the honour of introducing you to the BEST drama I’ve watched this year?

A drama with 0% ‘romance’, yet romantic in every way? A drama that challenges the notion of trust: if someone tells you not to trust anyone, should you believe him… Or, in order to trust that one person, should we have to doubt everything? A drama that is beyond intellectually stimulating and mind-blowing, to the extent I’ll sacrifice sleep just to pacify my curious mind. A drama that has handpicked its cast with elaborate care and skill (Lee Sang-Yoon is too fitting for the role as Professor Ha… When he says “I have a way to win”, I can’t help but think that he’s already won the hearts of all female viewers.) I honestly cannot wait for the announcement of a season two…

Love Weaves Through A Millennium

Love Weaves Through A Millennium

Recess week is here! I’m so happy because a well-deserved break has just crept into my schedule without my knowing. It’s timely too, for I’ve just gotten attached to a new Chinese drama that follows closely the plot of another korean drama favourite: Queen In Hyun’s Man. I like that this new version is not a blatant copy, but has incorporated elements that are more suited to the audience’s culture. The main OTP has been carefully picked for the role, and chemistry is evidently the spark of their interaction. It’s such a joy to immerse myself in a drama, as doing so allows me to shed tears, laugh out loud and feel frustrated; emotions I would otherwise not have experienced.

Another of my all-time favourite drama has to be “In Time With You”. I find the main character, Chen You Qing, so relatable in terms of personality, character, behaviour and attitude towards life. She’s confident, fiery and determined. Not simply anyone can handle her honesty. At times she’s vulnerable, in particular, to her thoughts and during times she’s alone. When the world seems to disagree with what you believe to be true, the seed of doubt is planted. At our weaker moments, we allow it to be watered when we entertain the thought that perhaps we’ve miscalculated – our abilities and our worth.

As she struggles with finding love in the right places in the right person at the right time, the drama leaves a string of questions open: Does love spring from a spark; is it a ‘moment’? Should love move you to compromise and embrace change, or should it encourage you to be who you are? How do you measure love? This might be important, because perhaps, we love more deeply than we think we do.

I’m sorry if none of these make any sense. It’s way past my bedtime… I needed to consolidate some thoughts.

B.A.E (Before Anyone Else)

B.A.E (Before Anyone Else)

Alternatively, ‘poop’. In Danish. I’m sorry, but knowing is crucial, for I would like to avoid using unglamorous vocabulary while roaming in the streets of a foreign land I’d be dwelling in for 5 months. Singaporeans aren’t supposed to exude ignorance.

Back to the point: the topic of this post sprung out from a youth panel discussion at church. It’s a pity I did not get invited to speak, because the concept of BGR is one close to my heart, literally. I’m letting the cat(s) out of the bag, because self-actualization begins with making mistakes, documenting them, then effecting improvements. Here’s something I have to address: Am I truly enjoying singlehood, or do I sometimes wish I had a significant other to share my life with? What is my take on dating in today’s society? Am I facing pressure to date? Regardless of whether I answer them adequately or not, I hope that these penned thoughts will serve as a timeless anchor.

First things first. I’m single and I enjoy singlehood very much. I would not attribute my enjoyment of singlehood to the copious amount of ‘freedom’ to check off the items in my ‘singles’ bucket list, nor would I say that it is the lack of accountability I have to give to another person.

But because I hold the heart of the one who never turns away in disappointment, the one who always send his angels to protect me as I tread on darkened paths, the one who grants me the desires of my heart, who waits for me because I take time to be able to confront my problems or even vocalise them, who never leaves me for another; and because I am so dearly loved by my amazing family members and eternal friends; I have no capacity to feel discontented with where I am at.

When I finally get to meet my pastor-charming (HAHA), I would like to share my wonderful life experiences with him – how I’d lived through societal judgment with centre parting and thick bushy eyebrows, how I’ve slept at a gas station along the streets of Venice, and how God’s footprints in my life had been so evident yet I’ve missed them (but thankfully not him). This is the time to nurture myself into Christlikeness. It’s the time to pray the same for my partner.

So, will I ever confess to a guy if I am attracted to him (assuming he is of good character and scores high on the compatibility scale)? I guess not. I blame it on my fear of failure (of both being rejected and losing an established friendship), or otherwise, plain unwillingness to put my pride on the line.  To my comfort, the manner of pursuit should originate from the guy. This is actually rooted in biblical doctrine:

The God-given role to man is to initiate, as it is the woman’s God-given role to respond. Single men need to learn how to lead (whether they like it or not), single women need to learn what it is to let a man assume spiritual leadership in the relationship — and to respond to that leadership. Ultimately, this means learning to trust God’s goodness and sovereignty.

I hope that addresses your curiosity. Note that this does not contradict the whole concept of ‘gender equality’. I am not suggesting that women are, in any way, subservient and inferior, or that they can never be vocal about their feelings (speak now or let silence end your game). But instead of consulting the other party directly, consult the people around you or even, the people around him! Sometimes they offer perspectives that you miss out on, simply because you’re caught up with your own feelings and thoughts. I personally prefer the ‘prim and proper’ way of courtship. Hah. Hopeless romantic?

But then again, I always ask myself if I am truly ready. Or am I truly wanting? My answer is always inconclusive – I don’t think I’ll ever be ready for anything like that. I’m scared, because the arena of relationships is like unchartered waters: mysteries lurking about in murky waters, unguaranteed safety, rocky stretches and unwarranted seasickness. But the rewards are tenfold: sun dipping in the horizon, exploration of inhabited islands and feeling the breeze flowing over your face… Ok I think I better stop the poetic inspiration. But yeah, I’m not ready, but I hope you realise that this realisation, in itself, is merely indicative of my ‘true’ readiness. Is this confusing? If yes, you’re not suited for a career in taxation. 哈哈!

To end on a convincing note, my advice to all singles (who are ready to commit themselves to a relationship) is to put yourself out there, put away presumptions and date with the intention to know the other person better. Remain accountable to your mentors, but always, guard your heart (to an appropriate level) (not paranoia) and set proper boundaries for yourself. Don’t let societal pressure become your dreaded timer – enjoy the season. Quote me on this: the pursuit of man’s heart is bound to end up in failure, while the pursuit of God’s heart will lead you to the path of unending joy.