Hello friends! Welcome to Blogmas day 8!!! It’s currently 6:26pm on this Saturday evening. I’m sitting inside the Bay Club (local fitness center) conference room, listening to Elton John’s “Your Song” while writing this post. Sometimes, I enjoy playing music whilst writing or doing mechanical homework assignments. While music may at times pose as a distraction to the task at hand, especially brainwork that requires critical thinking, sometimes I find music to be a source of inspiration for my work.
Today was a really great day! I fell asleep at 2:00am in the morning, and woke up at 7:00am. Had a breakfast of Greek yogurt with Manuka honey, then drove to the gym, where I went for my morning swim. It was one of those mornings where I really didn’t feel like working out, but mentally pushed through, and emerged victorious. I came back home at around 9:00am.
At 10:00am, my friends Rachel, Aloisa and Ana picked me up from my house, and we made the hour-long drive to Martinez, CA, where we met up with another friend, Casey, for lunch and karaoke. We were having our annual “Friendsmas” get-together and gift exchange.
The rest of the afternoon was filled with laughter and cheer amongst the five of us girls. For lunch, I had spaghetti and meatballs. Rachel treated us to a dessert of BJ’s’ famous Pizzooki Trio– three flavors of giant deep-dish cookies, topped with ice cream. Definitely took one of my cheat days; but then again, Christmas week is always a cheat week, so no hard feelings on my part.
After lunch, the five of us gathered ’round Ana’s car, where we did the fastest gift exchange in human history, right in the middle of the parking lot! It was a pretty funny spectacle, in retrospect.
We went to Round 1 for two hours of karaoke, and by the time we finished, my voice was hoarse from all the (terrible) singing I did! As you might have guessed, I sang the song “Your Song” by Mr. John, and am now officially obsessed with it. The first time I heard the song was in one of my favorite movies, Moulin Rouge, in which Ewan Mcgregor sang a cover of this beauty. Sometimes, when I listen to the song, my eyes well up with tears at the sheer purity of the lyrics and beauty of the melody.
After karaoke was finished, we parted ways with Casey, who was being picked up by her mother. The four of us then piled back in Ana’s car, and were dropped off at our respective houses.
I really enjoyed spending time with my friends today. Sometimes, in life, the simplest joys are the most meaningful. Happiness needn’t necessarily stem from glory or fame or money, as many so falsely believe… as I, used to believe. I cannot believe there used to be a time when I’d spurn the idea of “wasting time” with “trivial” activities as going shopping with friends, or having a girls’ night out. In the past, everything in my life revolved around my goals. I didn’t understand the concept of doing things for the mere fun of it. I remember, during my first day of group therapy at age 16, I remarked to the therapist, “I don’t see the point in doing things just for fun… if nothing conducive is to come of it, then why do it?” The therapist then proceeded to ask me whether I thought this was a rational way of thinking. At the time, I thought I was being absolutely reasonable, in spurning leisure and embracing the all-work-no-play mentality.
Now I realize that I couldn’t have been more wrong in my thinking, at the time. Working hard is important. But where’s the joy in life, if one doesn’t make time for enjoyment?
Today, I enjoyed myself. I took time out of my schedule to reunite with old friends and have a great time. It’s these special memories that will stand out in my mind, several years from now… not the countless hours spent alone in my room, studying, or alone in the dance studio, training.
After I returned home, I packed my things and headed to the gym, where I went for a quick swim #2 of the day. I’m so happy I’m getting back into swimming– it’s my favorite form of cardio, as it is a non-impact activity, and thus easier on my knees.
And now, here I am, writing about my day! Dinner will be served at home soon, so I’d better be headed back home within the next 15 minutes.
After dinner, Austin, Chris and I will be watching the movie Coco, along with our good friend, Roy. Roy is really great– he also goes to UCLA, majoring in computer science. We went to high school together, and he’s like a brother to us (making us quadruplets, I suppose).
I definitely feel really great, emotionally. If only my moods would remain at a stable high, like it is in this moment. But, I shan’t fret. Next time my depression hits, I will have a strong set of coping mechanisms as a first line of defense against the illness. Such strategies could only be developed through multiple encounters with the beast of depression… it’s called experience. I need to suffer before I can get better. This maxim is one that applies to many things in life. When overcoming fears, one must necessarily take the initial, terrifying plunge into the sea of inundating anxiety, before one can transcend the beast.
Anyway, I’d better get going! Talk to you all soon!