2018 Update

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Iconic view of Mt. Fuji from Chureito Pagoda

It's been a while since my last blog post. Hmm.  Now that 2017 is over, I can officially say that it was one of the worst years of my liiiiife. I've never been so heartbroken in my short life. Haha. Sometimes it was too much. But 2017 was also pretty amazing in other ways. I'm glad that it happened while I was in Okinawa. I'm super grateful that I got to travel around Asia. Not as much as I wanted to, but at the same time, it seemed like I was always going somewhere. So, I guess I'm just a brat.

I'm actually in San Diego now. I wanted to move so desperately while I was in Okinawa, but now that I'm finally here, I'm realizing that healing won't come as easily as I thought. I tried to come here with realistic expectations, but haha, you never really know what something will be like until it happens or you're there. I like the area and my new job seems like it could be fulfilling. But sometimes I am scared that I will never be happy and I will spend the rest of my life trying to find my place in this world. But for now, I'm trying to be open minded and not worry so much about that kind of stuff. Trying to make a small home and life here and I'm just trying to enjoy the small things and take things slowly. All while trying not to go bankrupt paying this ridiculous rent. lol #dead

I feel like I have a lot of time on my hands lately. I cut the cord years ago for cable and tv. But I'm trying this new thing where I am living without INTERNET. If you know me, you're probably pretty shocked right now. But it's been a couple weeks that I haven't had internet at home and I'm actually surviving. I used to bingewatch Netflix after work and that's IT. If I want to watch an episode of something, I just watch it on my phone while eating a meal. And if I need my laptop for anything, I just use my phone as a hotspot. There are some things I miss, but I'm super surprised by how well I'm doing without. I'm not sure what I'm going to do when I get my household goods from Okinawa though. Like what am I going to do with my TV? I am thinking about buying a cheap antenna off Amazon so it's not completely useless. Haha.

Anyway, hopefully I will use some of this extra free time to update my blog more often. I have a lot things to write about. About my travels around Okinawa, Mainland Japan, and other parts of Asia. About how music helped me cope with certain things. How certain music still invokes a bunch of feelings about certain periods of my life. And I want to write about my current life because I feel like it will help this transition of trying to make SD my new home. So stay tuned and cross your fingers that I'll actually keep blogging!

And I'm curious about what y'all have been up to lately! Let me know by commenting on this post or reach out to me via instagram!

Cape Zanpa (Yomitan, Okinawa, Japan)

cape zanpa zampa yomitan okinawa japan lighthouse
cape zanpa lighthouse

cape zanpa zampa yomitan okinawa japan lighthouse

fisherman fishing cape zanpa zampa yomitan okinawa japan ocean
catch fish, not feelings!

cape zanpa zampa yomitan okinawa japan cliffs water ocean
beautiful water

cape zanpa zampa yomitan okinawa japan cliffs
cape zanpa cliffs

I really love Okinawa and how beautiful this island is. It's truly a special place. It reminds me of Hawaii in some ways, which is nice, but it's also very different.

I live about 30 minutes away from this location, but only been here maybe twice? I only come here when people are visiting out of town. I like to take people to Zakimi Castle Ruins, which is nearby. The stones used to build the castle walls came from coral along the coast and you can actually see where they cut out the coral during low tide in some places in Yomitan! Also, Zakimi Castle also has a nice view of that side of the island, so it just makes sense to see these things one after the other.

Anyway, this day was particularly nice. The sun was out and it was hot and humid. The last time I came to Cape Zanpa was in December and it was overcast and cold. I guess it depends on your preference, but I actually live for hot and humid summers, even though I complain the whole time. I rather it be super hot than super cold. But I feel like I'm in the minority on that one. And on especially hot days, I find myself wishing for winter. Haha. Maybe I'm just a complainer.

In addition to the nice views here, there is also a small exhibit with goats and chickens and also a really huge Shisa dog that is good for photo ops! You can also go to the top of the lighthouse for a small fee.


kyoto japan nanzenji shoot my travel garden zen
At peace in Kyoto

So, I've been thinking a lot lately (if you couldn't already tell)! But I've been putting myself first lately, asking for what I want and not settling for anything less than what I think I deserve. Doesn't everybody though? At least I think that what everyone probably tells themselves. I'm not sure. I think I really became conscious of it when I was having problems in my marriage. I realized that what Dallin was asking me to be okay with would make me miserable. And it is the reason why we decided on divorce. Sometimes it feels like I'm being selfish. Like, maybe if I were someone else, she would be okay with it and she would still be married. But you know what? I'm me and I think I know myself best. Plus, I don't consider it to be selfish. I think of it more as an act of self-preservation or self-love or self-care. Whatever you want to call it.

I have actually never thought that Dallin was a bad person, but I think I did feel some anger. Wondering how he could even ask me to be okay with basically being in a miserable situation. Like, how could he? I understood where he was coming from, and I actually think his reasoning for it is commendable (even though I didn't agree with how he wanted to go about things). However, I still went through waves of sadness and anger, especially for the first month.

Anyway, it's still pretty rough on me even now. But I'm doing better. I recently just realized that sometimes two people are just on two different journeys. It is sad to ask for something you want/need and to get shot down, but to make it hurt less, and to let go of anger, it is important to realize that the other person has wants and needs, too. And in the same way that it's not selfish for me to protect my happiness, it is not selfish for them to protect their happiness, too. Dallin's main reasoning (I think) was to be a better father to his daughter. I didn't agree with the way he wanted to go about it, but it does not make him a bad person for trying to do what he thinks is best. He needed to do this for himself and I needed to leave the marriage for myself and my own happiness. And when I think of it in that way, it is easier to forgive.

And I think that was a hard lesson to learn, but so important. It actually took me a while to figure it out. Actually, I only figured it out after I stopped seeing someone that I met here in Okinawa (and who I really liked, but it doesn't matter any more). I was sick of the "are we" or "are we not" thing, and so I asked to be exclusive or to not see each other anymore and he was basically like, "it's gonna break my heart to never be able to talk to you again." And I was honestly so angry at first for feeling like I wasted all that time. But idk. I still don't know his reasoning for it, but it really doesn't matter because it's not my journey. I learned some hard lessons from that, for which I'm grateful. And I actually feel like he did me a favor when I think back on it. For peace of mind, it's better to try to understand and then let go and forgive. Because holding onto anger and the "should'ves" or "could'ves" is just torturing yourself. Take the lessons, forgive, and move on in peace.

And forgiveness doesn't mean that you necessarily want to talk to them again. You can forgive someone and still let them go. It's really something that you're doing for yourself, in my opinion. I can't imagine holding onto all that initial anger/sadness from my divorce for years/decades. It's been so rough on me in just these last 7 or so months that I'm pretty sure I would be a completely miserable person if I didn't learn how to let that shit go. I mean, I still get sad about it when I think back on happier memories, but I think that's normal... And I think that it'll take time for those feelings to subside. I'm just so glad that I am not harboring hateful thoughts about it or resentment. I just want to move on and to be happy. Happiness will always be the goal.

I'm curious about what other people feel about this topic. Feel free to comment with any thoughts!

Break Up Essentials: "In my feels" Playlist

I think one of the upsides during this turbulent part of my life is that I'm finding a lot of good music! I love listening to music (though who doesn't?!) and will listen to anything as long as I think it's good. I guess sometimes that stuff can be subjective. Anyway, music has been helping me get through life lately. Haha. This playlist is a bunch of songs that I listen to when I want to get into my feels. I've definitely cried while listening to some (read: all) of these at one point or another. But sometimes I feel like I need to have a good cry though. Definitely let's me know that at least I'm alive and can feel emotions! There is nothing wrong with feeling strongly about things. Crying can actually be healing, in my opinion, as long as you're processing why.

Anyway, here's the list of songs that I listen to when I want to soak in my sadness after a break up:

Open Heart

urdhva dhanurasana, upward bow pose, wheel pose, yoga, backbend
Urdhva Dhanurasana (Wheel Pose)

Ever since I moved to Okinawa, I have only been practicing yoga 2-3 times a week, and almost always during my lunch break. Risner Gym on Kadena Air Base offers lunch-time yoga every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, which is super convenient. It is so nice to be able to take a break from work and do my favorite stress reliever.

Don't know if it's obvious or not, but I've been having a rough time ever since I moved to Okinawa. Work isn't what I expected it to be and be going through some real shit with my divorce. But even though I've only been going to yoga a couple times a week, I've actually never felt stronger and more open. Not sure if it's because I'm also working out through my issues. Haha. But hmm, yes, I feel strong despite practicing less. And the odd thing is feeling more open.

When I say open, I mean physically and emotionally. I tend to carry a lot of tension in my shoulders, so it feels really good to stretch and try to open my chest and shoulders. And I've been feeling really backbendy lately, but I feel like I'm not just becoming more flexible. I feel like I'm becoming more strong to support my flexibility. I don't know. It's probably something that's supposed to be obvious, but I'm really having a revelation here! Haha.

And in the other aspect of "being more open." I think I'm just trying harder to be more honest with myself and others lately. I mean, sometimes it bites me in my ass, but at least I can say that I was trying to be real. I think I'm just really scared of being in denial about important aspects of my life and people not being honest with me. I don't understand why people lie about some things, as if it will spare me my feelings. It would hurt less to just be told the truth up front in the beginning. Instead of beating myself up and getting more hurt later when I figure things out. So, I'm trying to be more honest with others. And also, I think I'm being more honest with myself. Haha.

For example, those personality tests that you take on your own? I think I used to answer the questions as how I wanted others to see me. So on the Myer-Briggs test, I would usually come up as INTJ or INTP. And reading the results, it was like, "oh, I guess some parts of that match me. In a way." Never really seemed to fit. Well, I recently took a couple different tests and came up as ENFP every time. And this time, reading the results, it's like, "omg, this is totally me!" Haha. So, I don't know. I'm coming to a lot of realizations about a lot of things in my life and it's kind of scary, but also exciting at the same time.

So, here's to being more open! Open to life, open to yourself, and open to others! May I accept whatever the universe has in store for me. And if it's unacceptable, may I have the strength to initiate change.

Peace and love!