1.5 months in Yangon, Myanmar

It was sitting by the lakeside pier of Bogyoke Park when I finally pull my phone from my lap to draft this. The water was flowing in smooth curtains under the rise and fall of the densely green waves adorned with lily pads and the occasional birds flying by to touch the water; their long beaks diving over hoping to pull up food.

The trees lining the park are so richly green and dense – something my eyes have never seen outside of Yangon. Green and yellow hues as far as one can see. The humidity presses skin deep, with droplets of water forming on my skin. The sky is a rich grey, clouds moving to signify the impending storm. I feel the weight of the past 2 days breaking me silently inside, a deep rooted fear that’s unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. The heaviness feels exactly the way the sky looks, and the weight feels heavier the further I carry it. My heart has stopped looking for him, or expecting him to come around a corner laughing or explaining something in his careful, ardent way. It’s an ache that slips to the surface whenever I look through our photos of happier times.

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Then you overcome. Then you begin.

Jennifer Ngan photography

It takes a lot from us, at times, to be the best version of ourselves. Being defined and redefined at any given moment, whether through a tumultuous experience or a eye opening revelation. Living a false sense of self, only to a die a little, promotes a life of faux perfection and non- redemption.

More than ever, i see that we live in a society where (illogical) fear is not only instilled in us since childhood, but is rather a byproduct of our culture that seeps into every aspect of our humanity.

For example, the importance of one thing relative to another. Finding a breakthrough in cancer research vs an angry boss whose jet is needing to be rerouted because of bad weather? In capitalist hierarchy, the ladder is always more important. And we are trained to believe that we must alleviate all roadblocks for said plane because someone has the money to exert their power, yes, even weather. Because capital is everything here, and we are so deeply divided by means over matter.

This isn’t some negative thing. And i swear there is no gloom in recognizing it for what it is. I would just like to see more compassion in people, more love in an otherwise mundane outlay of the modern world, with careless robots operating conveyor belt style in a half-assed attempt to better this world.

I think people like the idea of a united front but to be the one that leads with example is a lot less popular.

In the grand scheme of things, what matters? I mean, the level in which the importance comes from is quite tasteless. In my recent pursuit to find meaning, I’ve learned that when you’re not ready to, you’re all too eager to prove that you are ready to start this path but it is hard to admit to yourself, and even harder to those closest to us, that you are completely and unabashedly unprepared.

Finding that grand escape sounds wonderful. Fueling those thoughts with an open heart and mind is another. And it is often where I question myself in the middle of a gloomy afternoon, wondering if my path is all wrong, that maybe I should be elsewhere, maybe i should not be here. That this isn’t right for me, that perhaps I should leave it or should I just let it be..? Or maybe I am selfish and I don’t see things with enough clarity that I become too fixated on my own journey that I neglect the journeys of those closest to me? That internal battle of leaving it all behind sounds like a welcome reprieve until it doesn’t.

Time – is it really there? In the artificial construct of human mentality, yes. Time is quantifiable. Time has a duration. Time seems to be of a sequential chain in which events take place, measured in a forward-going linear motion.

But when can we take a minute be defeated? To be so vulnerable that our soul bleeds our ego. And to be so gone we finally reacquaint ourselves with clarity and see time as nothing more or less the present?

Because when you are defeated, your heart pounds harder and you are in this uncharted terrain of life that becomes you. Consumes you.

Then you overcome. Then you begin.

Mind’s Contents vs Consciousness: Meditation and Thoughts

Jennifer Ngan Photography
I tend to be a thinker. Over analytical and often scatterbrained with questions, ideas and sometimes delusions  far-fetched idealism or the opposite of it. This often means i stay up into the wee hours of the night, thinking about things that become a distraction when I should be asleep, deep in slumberville. In the mornings (i actually am a morning AND night person), I tend to wake up fairly early, and go about my day. It’s not always healthy, and I do suffer from self-diagnosed anxiety, which stems from childhood (I guess? Because Carl Jung says so). Which led me to the wildest Friday night ever. Seated (somewhat guided) meditation.

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10 Things I Learned in 6 Months of Yoga 

My mind has a tendency to run 150mph in all different directions with sporadic thoughts sending me to a paralyzing state of panic and anxiety. Even after years of regular exercise, i still needed something to keep my mind from escaping to its dark place which manifested from thoughts of failure to inadequacy and emptiness.

I read online about the mental and physical benefits of yoga and decided to give it a go. Because why not? It is an ancient centuries old practice that seemed beneficial for people, not only for health but also wellness.

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