On writing again

Had this beautiful, rich and inspiring lunch conversation about writing, languages, words, literature and grammar the other day that I felt motivated and empowered to get back into it again. Into writing. And even yesterday, we were talking about how many of our practices, yoga and running, is so much about the practice itself. About our dedication to it. About actually just showing up. Whether it means to put your running shoes on, grab your yoga mat, hop on your bike or pick up the pen again. Day in and day out. It's about your training, your patience, your discipline. About consistency. 

Knowing that English is my third language doesn't make writing easier, and I do spend a good amount of time with dictionaries and google, looking up and researching words and meanings, phrases, slang that interest me the most, which that is current and which that is fascinating to me, but I am truly having fun again. Writing doesn't have to be miserable, it is one outlet of mine to allow myself to be happy - as Aunty Ifeka in 'Half of a Yellow Sun' by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, in a different context, in a different time said. Allow yourself to be happy. Let these words simmer for a bit. 


...to the day my 6month shopping challenge was over. I did this project in the first half of 2014 because things were weighing me down.

Often to think clear, you must clear your mind - it's time to change.

So, I tried not to shop for 6months. Instead of satisfying short, immediate cravings, I tried to choose sustainability and longevity. Found ways to repair my clothing, to trade with friends and spend several weekends at flea markets selling and giving away.

RESULT? It's a lifelong practice, learning, failing, but doing the best you can. Extended for an unlimited time. You don't need much to live a rich, healthy and happy life.

You are beautiful as you are

The second time I visited Vietnam, where my parents are both coming from, I was 15 - we took the train down South to visit my aunt and uncle in Ho Chi Minh City. There, my aunt examined my face and wanted me to get rid of all my moles (or liver or beauty spots). It is bad luck she said, especially close to your eyes. The elders put a paste on specific spots on my face and told me to leave it on for a week. My parents let some of theirs removed. Two days later, in the summer heat, I had the urge to wash my face and cleared myself from the chemicals. The spots remained.

Eight years forward, my American friend examined my face through the screen while skyping and she said: you have so many of them - you pretty girl! I told her that story and she couldn't believe how different beauty is perceived in Vietnam.

Glad the spots remained because after that incident, I accepted them. They belong to me and I am becoming more of who I am.