Worth of words

From one of my writer inspirations on IG, Amie McNee. ~

My mantra especially on days when my mother tells me I should get paid for having a poem published in a literary journal or when my juvenile essay was picked in an international writing contest and published in an anthology. And I try my very best to keep my cool (and my fiery temper at bay) whenever I try to explain why I don’t get paid for those. Reality is, I don’t always get paid for writing (that’s what day jobs and sidelines are for). And not every thing I write will be fit for public consumption. Heck, an iceberg-chunk of some things I wrote still make me go, “Wtf, these shouldn’t even see the light of day!” But what some people don’t get is that I’m not in this for the rare possibility of being suddenly catapulted into the spotlight out of obscurity (not a spotlight hogger), or living off on royalties (good luck on that 😉😉). I count myself lucky I got something published in print and got acknowledgement letters for some pieces I submitted than nothing at all. But even without recognition, I will still write. For myself. For love, for life, for personal growth. I write because it’s my calling. It’s what my soul is drawn to do, to be, to share with the world or a handful of precious loves. And when it’s something your soul calls out for you to do–whatever it is, getting paid for it is a welcome bonus, like that longed-for slice of decadent cake at the end of a meal, or the extra yummy drizzle of caramel or chocolate sauce on your sundae. 💖

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An exercise in honesty

We’re onto the third quarter of the year already. A lot has happened since last year. I lost a few people but gained a lot of kindred spirits. Not new friends to replace what’s lost, but souls I connect and vibe with. Beautiful, honest, imperfect people who teach me to be kinder and more generous of spirit. Who teach me that it’s okay to be me (softly sassy, quirky Lea and all) and to be more open to possibilities. And I don’t know how it’s possible, but I feel like my world is expanding every day. 😊

I’m also trying to be more honest with myself. And honestly, all I ever want to do is to write, to create, to build a home, to love unconditionally. All these things I’m not just good at, but passionate about. That light me up inside whenever I do them. It would be nice to have someone to share this with. I don’t know if I’m ever truly ready but yes I want this kind of bliss too. And I’ve been thinking more about this lately than before. It would be nice to not be afraid to love and be loved. It would be nice just to hold someone’s hand and share the happiness brimming from within you to your precious person. I’d love to do that someday.

Eleven Changes

“Train yourself to let go of everything you fear to lose.”

-Yoda
  1. I never thought I would enjoy being challenged by yoga and want to do it again.
  2. I never thought I’d be excited to research and include vegan and vegetarian options in my diet.
  3. I never thought I’d be into meditation.
  4. I never thought I’d read and learn a lot from the likes of Tosha Silver and Abraham Hicks.
  5. I never thought I’d lose longtime friends only to meet beautiful and familiar kindred spirits I vibe with in unexpected places.
  6. I never thought I would rise up spiritually and find my own soul tribe.
  7. I never thought I would be a leader in my own way or a teacher/mentor to someone.
  8. I never thought I would uncover my long-buried unique voice and write poems and stories that people want to read.
  9. I never thought I could be a light to friends and anyone in need.
  10. I never thought I would believe in the Universe and guardian angels again.
  11. I never thought I would find love in someone so unexpected and trust that this person loves me too despite the silence and perceived obstacles.

And the constant theme running through all these changes I have gone through and are currently going through: “You are safe, you are blessed. You are loved beyond measure.” ❤🌻💛

Full Moon Healing

I have always been drawn to the hypnotic beauty of the full moon. In my imaginings, if I had lived in ancient or mythological times, I would’ve been one of those woodland nymphs who wore flower crowns and flowing white dresses, or wise women who braved the wilderness at night and cast aside all their worldly concerns to dance in ecstasy under the light of the full moon. And while I’m very much aware this would be labeled as pagan today (I don’t care much about labels, anyway), I still find the thought empowering. That these women harnessed power, beauty, mystical wisdom, and seduction into their physical forms, to use however they saw fit. These days, spiritual gurus say you can indeed harness the powers of the full moon by setting your intentions–anything you want to release and let go of. Since I can’t just go out into the woods and dance under the full moon (too many real world dangers at present to make this happen), I’ll settle for this instead.

I want to let go of people who have been untrue and have hurt me in any way. People who I gave my heart to once–my secrets, my innermost thoughts and feelings. Even those who at some point I considered family or someone I could entrust my life to but have done irreparable damage to the trust I gave them. There’s no going back now. But I do not regret the love and trust I gave away for it was my choice to give it to them wholeheartedly. They were learning experiences in my personal journey and soul growth. I can forgive, but it sure is a big damn well of relief to know that it’s okay to let them go for my own good, so thank you for all the things I learned from you. I am the strong woman I am today because of the painful but necessary changes I went through.

I also want to release doubts, worries, and fears dampening my enthusiasm for life. I am magic, I have power, I can create, I can make things happen. Most of all, I can write. And I can love. Strip away everything–all the titles and achievements and awards. All your money and material possessions. What’s most important is your ability to love and be loved.

All those times you were searching blindly for happiness and answers to your own questions in others–that time has ended now. What you wanted was yourself all along–whole and powerful. What you wanted was freedom and independence from anyone and anything preventing you to be your true self, to bloom and to shine. What you needed was to find love, strength, courage, and peace within yourself.

Precious

You are too precious for words sometimes

that I don’t know how to write about you

How you have always been special

and I refused to see it–

a constant low humming at the back of my mind

I’ve gotten used to for years

But was afraid to give it a name, to carve out

a space for you in my heart

Nobody would understand–

It would be the secret that exploded

but that only added fuel to the fire

quietly raging within

And you did it yourself–

You carved out your name in my heart

with impossible deeds and a love so familiar

It’s impossible to push you back to the safe corners

and pretend you were just a footnote in my saga

You are the spark that lit my history book into flames,

pushing me to write the best story of my life

——–

*I pride myself on my inner knowing–how I trust in it fully and how it has moved me upwards, how it flows easily into me and how I wield it more than others do. But there are times when I am stumped. Days like now, I don’t know what to think and my trust on my very intuition falters. I DON’T KNOW. I don’t know what to do about this. But one thing I still know for sure: You are precious and will always be. Even despite all doubts that this can’t be happening, all thoughts that this isn’t mutual, and all efforts to not make it more than what it is…you are still stubbornly precious. That is true. And another truth: I wrote this poem for you.

Love Makes You Stronger

Love makes you happy and love also brings you pain

But through everything, love only makes you stronger.

I keep you with me in a safe corner of my heart

Where everything is pure and innocent and sacred

A place where no one else can get to and break us

Always. That’s what matters for now.

That is my truth and something you need to know for sure.

I may never wrap myself around what it is about you

that keeps pulling me in

I just know a thread is there connecting us and it’s real.

We will be together

If not in this lifetime, then maybe in the next, or the one after that

but not until we’ve learned the lessons we need to learn,

not until our karma is complete.

And if one day I meet someone else who loves me

who I will fall in love with,

I will not waste my youth and my years waiting for you.

Because I deserve love and respect, loyalty and devotion,

happiness and intimacy

An equal partnership, a true marriage of souls.

And if I find all these things and more in someone else’s arms,

I will not hesitate.

Because life is meant to be lived in love and light

And if I’m ready for that but you aren’t,

I will choose the light over you.

Even if it hurts for a while

I will never deny you freedom, because love doesn’t hold you hostage

and keep you bound together in an endless trinity

of fear, indecision, and stagnation.

You break the chain if it doesn’t serve your highest good,

if it keeps you from living out your best life.

You walk away from the shadows and back into the light

Love always gives you the power to choose destinations.

You have been my secret joy and sadness

The unexpected what-if of my life.

But you are also my most important lesson:

Love only makes you stronger.

——–

P.S. I think I understand it better now, what Meryl Streep said on her Golden Globes Lifetime Achievement Award speech: “Take your broken heart and make it into art.”

I have taken the lessons I’ve learned both inspiring and painful, and woven them into art I am proud of. My life revolves around creating and making sense of life through words. Giving myself over to creating with honesty and vulnerability is also slowly peeling away my layers and showing the best bits of me that were hidden before. You can’t go out into the light without braving the darkness first. ☀️

—————-

Image credit: Cathal Mac an Bheatha on Unsplash

Light of the World

*This is my tribute to all the phenomenal women in my life, to those who have and continue to inspire me, and to those I have yet to meet.

Cheers to those girls who had to grow up a little earlier than their peers. Those girls who were thrust with responsibility and old woman’s wisdom when they should’ve been playing house without a care in the world. Those girls who grew into independence and resiliency and wore them well into adulthood. I see you and admire your beauty shaped by the years of inner struggles, some still ongoing, and the battles you survived. Your brave hearts that still give, despite past hurts and coming up empty more times than you want to admit. You carry the weight of the world in your arms strong enough for burdens, but always soft for the ones you love. Cheers to you, to us, because we aren’t celebrated or appreciated enough often by those around us. But we can acknowledge each other, wish each other “Blessed be” when our paths cross, and say we are phenomenal women. We are the pillars of love, hope, and strength in a world that will always look towards our light.

Gardens by the Bay, Singapore (2013)