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When You Know

What if reality hits you like this…what if fate is really something we should be fighting for, up to the very end…what if at the end of the day, the heart screams only for one…

Currently Playing: When You Know (Shawn Colvin)

 

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by Nickelback

This time, This place
Misused, Mistakes
Too long, Too late
Who was I to make you wait
Just one chance
Just one breath
Just in case there’s just one left
‘Cause you know,
you know, you know

[CHORUS]
That I love you
I have loved you all along
And I miss you
Been far away for far too long
I keep dreaming you’ll be with me
and you’ll never go
Stop breathing if
I don’t see you anymore

On my knees, I’ll ask
Last chance for one last dance
‘Cause with you, I’d withstand
All of hell to hold your hand
I’d give it all
I’d give for us
Give anything but I won’t give up
‘Cause you know,
you know, you know

[CHORUS]

So far away
Been far away for far too long
So far away
Been far away for far too long
But you know, you know, you know

I wanted
I wanted you to stay
‘Cause I needed
I need to hear you say
That I love you
I have loved you all along
And I forgive you
For being away for far too long
So keep breathing
‘Cause I’m not leaving you anymore
Believe it
Hold on to me and, never let me go
Keep breathing
‘Cause I’m not leaving you anymore
Believe it
Hold on to me and, never let me go
Keep breathing
Hold on to me and, never let me go
Keep breathing
Hold on to me and, never let me go

Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps

“Perhaps, after all, romance did not come into one’s life with pomp and blare, like a gay knight riding down; perhaps it crept to one’s side like an old friend through quiet ways; perhaps it revealed itself in seeming prose, until some sudden shaft of illumination flung athwart its pages betrayed the rhythm and the music; perhaps . . . perhaps . . . love unfolded naturally out of a beautiful friendship, as a golden-hearted rose slipping from its green sheath.”

― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Avonlea

Sometimes, we need a really huge brick to hit our heads to end our miserable misery. Thank you Joshua Harris for handing over one of the loveliest bricks that ever shook my head and brought me back to the real reality.

 First I want to say that I was not very perceptive of all the ideas in his first book (I Kissed Dating Goodbye) so I hesitated for years before I read this—the second book (Boy Meets Girl). Having read his first book during the time of my emerging feminist ideas, one can only expect a lot of arguments and resistance from my end. I even remember throwing out the book when he said women are tease and dressing inappropriately cause men to sin against God. And even today, it took a lot of thinking and rethinking to convince myself or half agree to some of his ideas.

 But most of them made sense in my current situation. It is a matter of putting things into perspective and looking at it from another point of view. They counseled me and have become the protector I needed when I admitted that I could not protect myself anymore. This book unfolded the phases I’ve been through and the acceptance of the sweet realization in the message.

She lifted her keys to the ignition, and then paused. There, alone in the silence, the emotions she had kept at bay during the day came rushing in. Tears welled up in her eyes. She leaned her forehead in the steering wheel and began to cry.

 “Why, Lord?” she whispered. “Why is this so hard? What am I supposed to do with these feelings? Take them away if they are not from You.”

 It hit me like a car crash. These are the same words I utter to God every day. And the more I turn the pages, the more I see myself in Shannon, in Joshua. I was so glad to know that someone else suffered involuntarily from these feelings or that my suffering was not a sign of weakness or foolishness but a sign of recklessly wanting something I could not even recognize.

I promised to wait. And I promised to wait patiently. But the first moment my heart recognized happiness, I’ve grown anxious of making it a part of my life. I was praying for it for so long that I imagined it to be His answer. Or maybe I wanted to force myself to believe even though my feelings inside caused too much confusion, pity, sadness and resentment.

Like Joshua, I went through the ‘I shouldn’t be distracted by this’ phase, then ‘I am distracted by this phase, and finally ‘I’m going to fight this’ phase. I spent an enormous amount of time writing stories about him and listening to songs that would sooth my heart, because I didn’t know any other way to fight, to forget or to heal. I was like a sleepless cat who couldn’t stand still. Who couldn’t decide if she really wanted to sleep and realize all of it was just a dream.

But I think when you’re tired and left with no answers, you start convincing yourself it was a dream. You stand tall and tell yourself you need to get over this phase and fight for sanity and regain wisdom because that is the only way to make all things right.

If all these feelings make me feel silly and reckless then I should turn away from them. Because I was assured by God and this book that the only way to fall is to fall with wisdom, with consciousness, with the heart and mind at one. I did not have to choose between them. I can think straight and still tolerate the beatings of my heart.

When I turned the last leaf of this book, I knew I’ve met the boy but I also knew I had to let go.

Because my heart and my whole life will only move forward with the Man—with a godly Man that God intended for me.

I am not sure when he will come, or if he knows I’m praying for him. But I do hope he’s praying for me too. I do hope to be in that restaurant one day, drinking coke while hearing you say these words.

I pray. I trust. I believe—that in God’s perfect time, every great thing will happen and our great love story will soon start.

I’ll end with my favorite quotes from the book mentioned in this book.

 “Perhaps, after all, romance did not come into one’s life with pomp and blare, like a gay knight riding down; perhaps it crept to one’s side like an old friend through quiet ways; perhaps it revealed itself in seeming prose, until some sudden shaft of illumination flung athwart its pages betrayed the rhythm and the music; perhaps . . . perhaps . . . love unfolded naturally out of a beautiful friendship, as a golden-hearted rose slipping from its green sheath.” ― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Avonlea

please guard my heart

I barely slept last night…I could not remember not thinking…my heart beat so fast like I was in some kind of horror movie—scared and all I wanted was to run away as fast as I could.

I clasped my pillow tight, hoping that pressing it against my chest will give comfort and will stop my heart from beating too fast. I could not breathe—I wanted to scream or cry…or run—anything just to help me get over this phase.

I did not want to think that I am hurting because I wanted to convince myself that everything was nothing but illusions from my part. Because that’s what my mind tells me. And I wanted to think that my mind is right. But whenever you cross my mind—every minute of every day my heart starts feeling heavy, like it’s going to burst from too much sadness and happiness, things I could not explain or rationalize, that it makes me feel crazy, crushed, silly, happy, all together.

I wanted to cry just to let everything out. But I don’t want to give you the right to make me cry. You are not the reason. You can never be the reason.

I am the only reason for these feelings. I am the culprit because I let my heart take everything that the moments presented. I allowed a part of me to believe from time to time that the feelings were mutual.

Every second I spend trying to know just keeps me from letting go—despite your apathy, distance and inconsistencies.

I am so tired. My heart is so tired from guessing. And God knows how I struggle everyday trying to fight all these feelings.

Oh dear God…how can I be so stubborn. How can I claim feelings that were not meant for me? How can this heart be so recklessly pursuant of something I’m not even sure existed? And why am I hesitating to let go.

Dear God, I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry if I didn’t hear You when You told me this is not the right time, and this might not be the right person. Sorry I wanted it too bad that I forgot that I promised I’ll be patient while waiting for Your answer to my prayer. I’m sorry I hurt myself for being so reckless.

Today, I pray again to You. Please guard my heart.

you lost me but not my heart.

my heart stays with you.

up to this day.

at this very moment.

as long as it beats this way–

 

happily crying for each day that passes without a single answer

sincerely hoping tomorrow you’ll wake up and find the courage to decide

desperately praying to end this game unscarred

 

you lost me but not my heart.

because my heart doesn’t know how to despise or give up.

my heart is strong and brave, while I

can only stay honest and reasonable for now.

 

i want you to understand

although there’s no way to make you…

that i don’t despise you for anything that you are

i despise this game

 

i hate subjecting myself to this kind of torture

i hate incessantly waiting for you every second of every day

i hate feeling these feelings are mutual and i hate realizing they are not.

i am not a fool nor is my heart.

don’t make me feel this way.

don’t make me hope anymore.

don’t make my heart beat this way for long.

 

i don’t want to think that you hurt me or that I hurt you

i’d like to believe that whatever could have been is everything wonderful for the both of us

i’d like to remember you as someone who weirdly makes me smile during unexpected moments

every vein in my heart is screaming to give this a second chance or wait a little bit more or claim that i am indeed ‘her’

 

but i’m tired.

i am not this woman.

i deserve to know.

i deserve honesty.

i deserve someone who would not despise his feelings for me.

Find what you love…

Steve Jobs (Founder and CEO of Apple), who died Wednesday, reflected on his life, career and mortality in a well-known commencement address at Stanford University in 2005.

Here, read the text of of that address:

I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. That’s it. No big deal. Just three stories.

The first story is about connecting the dots.

I dropped out of Reed College after the first 6 months, but then stayed around as a drop-in for another 18 months or so before I really quit. So why did I drop out?

It started before I was born. My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: “We have an unexpected baby boy; do you want him?” They said: “Of course.” My biological mother later found out that my mother had never graduated from college and that my father had never graduated from high school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She only relented a few months later when my parents promised that I would someday go to college.

And 17 years later I did go to college. But I naively chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford, and all of my working-class parents’ savings were being spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn’t see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn’t interest me, and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.

It wasn’t all romantic. I didn’t have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on. Let me give you one example:

Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out and didn’t have to take the normal classes, I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I learned about serif and san serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can’t capture, and I found it fascinating.

None of this had even a hope of any practical application in my life. But ten years later, when we were designing the first Macintosh computer, it all came back to me. And we designed it all into the Mac. It was the first computer with beautiful typography. If I had never dropped in on that single course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts. And since Windows just copied the Mac, it’s likely that no personal computer would have them. If I had never dropped out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy class, and personal computers might not have the wonderful typography that they do. Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later.

Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

My second story is about love and loss.

I was lucky — I found what I loved to do early in life. Woz and I started Apple in my parents garage when I was 20. We worked hard, and in 10 years Apple had grown from just the two of us in a garage into a $2 billion company with over 4000 employees. We had just released our finest creation — the Macintosh — a year earlier, and I had just turned 30. And then I got fired. How can you get fired from a company you started? Well, as Apple grew we hired someone who I thought was very talented to run the company with me, and for the first year or so things went well. But then our visions of the future began to diverge and eventually we had a falling out. When we did, our Board of Directors sided with him. So at 30 I was out. And very publicly out. What had been the focus of my entire adult life was gone, and it was devastating.

I really didn’t know what to do for a few months. I felt that I had let the previous generation of entrepreneurs down – that I had dropped the baton as it was being passed to me. I met with David Packard and Bob Noyce and tried to apologize for screwing up so badly. I was a very public failure, and I even thought about running away from the valley. But something slowly began to dawn on me — I still loved what I did. The turn of events at Apple had not changed that one bit. I had been rejected, but I was still in love. And so I decided to start over.

I didn’t see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.

During the next five years, I started a company named NeXT, another company named Pixar, and fell in love with an amazing woman who would become my wife. Pixar went on to create the worlds first computer animated feature film, Toy Story, and is now the most successful animation studio in the world. In a remarkable turn of events, Apple bought NeXT, I returned to Apple, and the technology we developed at NeXT is at the heart of Apple’s current renaissance. And Laurene and I have a wonderful family together.

I’m pretty sure none of this would have happened if I hadn’t been fired from Apple. It was awful tasting medicine, but I guess the patient needed it. Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don’t lose faith. I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle.

My third story is about death.

When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.

Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

About a year ago I was diagnosed with cancer. I had a scan at 7:30 in the morning, and it clearly showed a tumor on my pancreas. I didn’t even know what a pancreas was. The doctors told me this was almost certainly a type of cancer that is incurable, and that I should expect to live no longer than three to six months. My doctor advised me to go home and get my affairs in order, which is doctor’s code for prepare to die. It means to try to tell your kids everything you thought you’d have the next 10 years to tell them in just a few months. It means to make sure everything is buttoned up so that it will be as easy as possible for your family. It means to say your goodbyes.

I lived with that diagnosis all day. Later that evening I had a biopsy, where they stuck an endoscope down my throat, through my stomach and into my intestines, put a needle into my pancreas and got a few cells from the tumor. I was sedated, but my wife, who was there, told me that when they viewed the cells under a microscope the doctors started crying because it turned out to be a very rare form of pancreatic cancer that is curable with surgery. I had the surgery and I’m fine now.

This was the closest I’ve been to facing death, and I hope it’s the closest I get for a few more decades. Having lived through it, I can now say this to you with a bit more certainty than when death was a useful but purely intellectual concept:

No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

When I was young, there was an amazing publication called The Whole Earth Catalog, which was one of the bibles of my generation. It was created by a fellow named Stewart Brand not far from here in Menlo Park, and he brought it to life with his poetic touch. This was in the late 1960’s, before personal computers and desktop publishing, so it was all made with typewriters, scissors, and polaroid cameras. It was sort of like Google in paperback form, 35 years before Google came along: it was idealistic, and overflowing with neat tools and great notions.

Stewart and his team put out several issues of The Whole Earth Catalog, and then when it had run its course, they put out a final issue. It was the mid-1970s, and I was your age. On the back cover of their final issue was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous. Beneath it were the words: “Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.” It was their farewell message as they signed off. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. And I have always wished that for myself. And now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you.

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

I am trying to squeeze out every word, rhyme and reason to help me explain what this is all about and where the heck is the devastating feeling coming from. No lives were ruined. No heart was fooled. No love was lost. So what is this unexplainable, uncategorized feeling at the pit of my stomach somehow making me feel that I need to grieve or scream something out, or drown the unknown in alcohol or something fattening and sweet whichever is the worst.

*Shots* I felt bad when I had it because I always felt like we had to part ways–with all the sensible reasons explaining why we had to. And now that I decided to live without it, I felt the same–worse, because I’ve been contradicting myself. Because what I thought was right, felt like something bad. And who really wins when you contradict yourself? — Yourself right? But which one? Which part of you? *Shots*

My hopes are funny…so can I just laugh hard instead of grieve? It seems healthier to think of myself as a fool than think of myself in pain from losing something I could not even identify or recognize–otherwise I’d end up being a fool in pain or a lonely fool or a defeated fool? Whatever! I want to laugh. So I’ll just laugh instead of cry or grieve or whatever is appropriate for this situation! *Laughs*

Fine! I accept. I gave my heart a fair chance in finding it. Because that is courage–being afraid but doing it anyway, fearing the unknown but going out there to find out what the possibilities can be, risking your heart from getting hurt but remaining honest and free to say, feel and choose what it wants.

My heart may not think the way my brain reasons. But I know it has always been the most courageous part of me. So I’ll laugh. Let’s laugh. The jokes are on me because I thought these feelings should make me grieve when in fact they should allow me to celebrate.

Celebrate almost finding it, and almost losing it and almost figuring out what this could have been.

day dreaming ends

It is raining again…but today it’s expected. Another typhoon to hit the Northern provinces. Hmm…I am mostly worried about the livelihood of the farmers but I also thought of eating hot bowl of chicken noodle soup…maybe if there’s power tonight I’ll put my earphones on and play Soulmate from my iPod…I just got a new book but there’s so much that I still want to buy…Oh and it’s cold and I want to enjoy a cup of hot choco or cappuccino with you…(infinity)

and there’s so much that I want to talk to you about.  I got a million topics in my head–deep, shallow, silly, sad, happy, all sorts of things that I can talk about with all sorts of people but I always find myself wanting to talk all about them with you-just with you.

With you while you’re holding my hand, while we’re on a road trip, while walking in the campus or simply and perfectly while sitting in a coffee shop and you’re comfortably holding my right hand like you’ve known from the very start you’re the only one who should hold my hands this way…and me resting my head in your shoulder but from time to time looks at your eyes when you or I, say something really funny and beautiful or when I’m making a point and you just started making me feel impatient or excited about something…

Sigh…

God I love that feeling! Whenever I feel sort of upset and becomes stubborn when you contradict my opinion or I, yours. You always make my heart leap whenever you hold my hand and I feel that you feel like you did not want to let go of my hand ever.

I am so glad we ended that game. I’m thankful that I decided to stop hiding and you finally had the courage to find me. Isn’t it wonderful, beautiful, a miracle?? Gosh you even make me involuntarily sing while doing mundane tasks.

I love these feelings, I love the security of still finding them in my heart and yours despite walking away from them from time to time to live our own lives. You are the only reason my heart leaps this high, why my mind stops thinking how wrong these turned out because everything is just about right. You are the reason I can believe again that I will be your only reason starting today.

Please come back today and say you’ll never leave.

Elevator

I got myself a cup of coffee. While in the elevator I suddenly thought of you. I did not want to welcome it because I know when I start, I’ll find it hard to stop again. I have not been good at fighting or waiting…but you are just so good at hiding that I just got tired of playing the game.

In the past few weeks I’ve been waiting for you impatiently everyday like how I’ve waited for the elevator of this building–with urgency, with necessity, like life’s possibilities will only come true once the waiting stops. And isn’t that a little too desperate? I know it is for me. So don’t expect me to like myself in this state and don’t expect me to like you in this state.

If we keep on hiding from each other, then let’s accept the ending of something we can’t even start. If  we spend all our energies fighting feelings we think we should not say out loud, then probably we really shouldn’t. I’m tired. I believe I did my part. At least I can sleep tonight and tell myself, I did not fight my heart but at some point, I knew I had to save it.