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Alone in the Underworld – Working with the Inner Child through Dream Interpretation

Alone in the underworld 

I was in a dark, gloomy basement, all by myself. 

I looked up, and saw this little opening space on the ceiling.

A glimpse of the twinkling light.

In the unknown space above.

I wanted to get up there,

And I saw, this old wooden ladder

A wooden ladder I could use to climb up and get out of this dark place.

The ladder was shaky, and the spikes on the wood hurt my hands

I kept climbing, and when I was half away there,

I looked down.

And I saw, a little girl, perhaps around five years old.

Sitting on the floor, under the triangular space contained by the ladder.

All by herself.

Shiny black hair, in a bowl cut.

She was cute.

She didn’t seem to notice me, or anything else in the world.

She was playing with a stuffed animal, quietly.

But all of a sudden, this shaky wooden ladder collapsed.

Huge broken pieces of wood fell right onto her,

Piercing into her little body,

She was broken, covered with shattered wood and blood.

Yet she was still calm, serene,and quiet,

As if it didn’t bother her.

She continued playing.

All alone.

 

This is a dream I had seven years ago, right before I began my journey in pursuing a masters degree in counseling, on becoming a therapist. It was a vivid dream, the imageries sharp, the sensations real, the emotions raw. 

I didn’t know about working with dreams then, I was just beginning my journey of self discovery, of healing ,and uncovering the secrets of who I am. But I knew this dream was significant, it came as a message, as a guide.

I brought this dream up again and again, to my therapist at that time, to friends, with mentors. Somehow it just wouldn’t escape my mind, and I kept trying to uncover its meaning.

But it wasn’t until three years later, when I was sitting in one of the classrooms at IONS – Institute of Noetic Science. When the space, the ceiling, the light twinkling above triggered an intense felt sense of being in that basement again. I was stunned.  I felt as if I was in the dream, again. My consciousness was a bit hazy as I was not so sure what kind of consciousness I was in – was I awake or was I in a dream? Nevertheless, my weirdness somehow caught the attention of the professor, and he made an interpretation.

Suddenly, everything clicked. When the meaning of a dream finally revealed itself  – when everything in your life and space magically lined up – it felt , as if being washed by this tranquil, healing ether that came upon me, passing through my body, cleansing my aura and attuned me to a better understanding – of myself, my past, and my path. 

We all have a child self, living inside our heart.

Over the years, we might have forgotten this little one.

As we’ve been so caught up in the world of grown up.

To be successful, to be attractive, to abide by a certain social standard.

We might have even been told not to play anymore. 

We lost touch of the preciousness of our soul.

In the process of becoming someone, we lost touch of who we are.

The process of reconnecting with our inner child, is precious and beautiful.

As we descended into the space in our psyche, to be with this child.

This child that we once was.

We re-create a connection, and hold space for healing to happen, if he or she was somehow broken.

Our love to ourselves expand as we tend to the broken pieces of our heart, gently, patiently. 

Until we become one, again. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Love with Integrity – Speaking up for Justice with kindness and compassion

In moments of life when things seem to be getting chaotic, when I feel bombarded by challenges and chaos, when my world seems to be turning upside down, I would make space for solitude, to breathe, center myself and reflect, go for a walk, and allow nature to speak to me. And the universe would let me know , ” All is well.”

The universe speaks to you by metaphor, by energies, by the synchronistic magical moments, by the encounters of kind and compassionate beings who are really angels in human form – the earth angels surround us and providing what we need. Carl Jung says, ” In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorders a secret order.” This is a deeply felt experience that I have, when I swim in the chaotic water, uncovering the truths beneath ugly facade.  The seemingly random broken pieces would somehow fall into places, as if a puzzle being put together by unseen forces, while the hidden truth slowly reveal themselves – for those who have eyes to see, and ears to listen.

Changes do not scare, or upset me. As, I believe, changes is the constant – it is the law of the universe. But one thing I do value is integrity – to be truthful and honest in our words and our deeds. To follow through with one’s promises and be accountable for one’s responsibilities. To tell things as it is, as much as one’s able to, instead of making up stories in order to manipulate. Integrity is an important quality – of any human being, especially those who choose to live in collaboration with others. 

In Theravāda Buddhism, one of the 7 virtues is Sīla pāramī : virtue, morality, proper conduct. To me, having integrity – being kind and honest with others is good moral. And I guess, lately, I’ve discovered that there are people who have taken the bodhisattva vows – do not practice proper conduct and virtue in their daily lives. It honestly hurt my heart to realize this, but at the same time, I also understand that we are all doing the best we can, at this very moment.

I guess, this is lesson in life – in love and discernment. There are times in life when we have to speak up against injustice, when we have to confront people/organizations who are being unjust and dishonest. This is not done out of hatred or anger, but of love and compassion. For this life is a class, and  we are all learning with and from each other, in our interconnected web of fate that we weave each day.

 

I’ll finish with a poem I love. 

 

The Guest house – by Rumi

This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
As an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond. 

Transitions – An intriguing time of Uncertainties and Possibilties

The topic of transition seems to be the theme song of the season – this season of life, this moment of change. Many big changes are happening, internally and externally, with our own life and the life of others around us, individually and globally. 

This time of change can be overwhelming and disorienting. For instance, as circumstances around us changes, our role as a human being often changes accordingly. All of a sudden, the position we have accustomed to, the role we’ve  identified as, does not belong to us anymore. In a split second, our identity is shaken up. Who am I, if I am not the doctor treating patients in this agency? Who am I, if I am no longer in this relationship, being connected to this family system? How am I supposed to act, to be, when I am no longer with my community, whom I sometimes feel annoyed with but at the same time shared a familiar ground with for years?

Transitions in life shake us up, and made us realize that this identity that we hold on to is not I. This is not I. I am not the body associated with the image of the picture of me. For my body shall decay, and I do not have ultimately control over when it will stop working.  Time after time, as we go through various transitions, our own or others, we begin to realize the impermanence of the roles we take on, the circumstances around us, the body we inhabit. 

Many years ago I went to my first 10 day Vipassana meditation retreat. It was the first time I have ever meditated. I drove up to this site in Kelseyville with other meditators I just met, and spent 10 days in silence. Waking up each day at 5am, following a straight schedule, diet, and percepts of morality, I sat crossed legged in the meditation hall for many hours each day, paying attention to my breath and sensations in my body. 

I remember we were not supposed to move at all during the hour long group meditations. It was extremely uncomfortable and excruciating. To be feeling all these pain in my body and not move – to me it was tasting suffering, seriously. But it was in that process that I started to practice, in paying attention to what is there, and let it go. For hours after hours, days after days, I continued scanning my body, feeling all the sensations. Whether it was tensions, pain, or the joyful feelings of chills when energy was pulsating through my body, I practiced to simply notice it and let it go – with no aversion and no attachment. 

This is the concept of Anicca in Buddhism – the doctrine of impermanence. The arising and passing away of all things in this world. And our suffering is stemming from grasping for the pleasurable, and aversion of the pain. 

Transitions are exciting and important time, as we temporarily leave one identity and await our next role, next assignment. And if we can let go of fear – the often debilitating fear of uncertainties, but to breathe deeply and rest in our heart, where our soul lives. We will realize that it is all good. Beyond the corner of our eyes, in the shimmering universe, there is a future unraveling – for our joy, our love, and our expansion. This is but a phase in life where we expands, to something different. This is a time to trust in the unknown, and keep following the heart, with the deepest faith that – the universe got our back. The best is yet to come.

 

Let go of everything, and you will have everything.

 

The Healing Power of Words – feelings, reflections, text therapy

I’ve experienced a sudden loss of a dear friend recently. It was horrible, tragic, and heartbreaking, to say the least. It was an unforgettable scene, with all of us being there, weeping, and talking ceaselessly to our unconscious friend at the ICU, I was once again reminded of the fragility, the impermanence of life. 

Yes, this human life is impermanent. This body that my soul is residing in will stop working one day, and decay. And what, what remains? 

The hardest part of witnessing the unconsciousness, and eventual death of someone you care about is that –  there’s nothing much you can do. The feelings of helplessness was extremely unpleasant, and strange. I guess, I am just so used to having controls, or living in the illusions that I have controls over situations.

Perhaps it was out of my habitual pattern, to stay busy and avoid facing my feelings, my heartache, and my grief, I started to put together a little photo book, as a little gift for his family. 

As I started to gather photos from my friends, to put together this album, I received one that feels very very special. It was a picture of a post-it note he had written. It was a powerful one, at least to me, to see his writing and to feel him again. It was as if his message in this little handwritten note somehow came alive. His spirit present, and we can almost hear him speak these words again. Who would’ve known that a little post-it note would hold such treasure?

I was suddenly reminded of the moment when I was at my father’s apartment alone, going through his belongings after he suddenly passed away. I was amazed, and my heart touched when I saw that he had kept a random message that I’ve written for him, as if it was a treasure. It was in that moment which I realized, that I mattered. It was a very healing moment for me as I tried to come to terms with his departure. 

Yes, I love to write. I love words. And I have even started working as a text therapist in addition to my more traditional practices. To be honest, I was very skeptical of the validity of text therapy before I gave it a try.  And now? I’m loving it, and I am amazed by the deep emotional process that happens between me and my clients, between the exchanges of written words. It is such a beautiful way in connecting and working through deep emotional wounds. 

P.S. If you’d like to work with me through text therapy, and/or remotely through video sessions, I am on the talkspace.com platform. Just request me when you talk to the matching therapist.  (You do have to be a California resident, though. As it is where I am licensed.)

May you be blessed with words.

The Sacredness in Impermanence – love, life & relationships

It is interesting how life unfolds some time. We just never know what will happen in the next second, the next moment. We can never predict who will stay, and who will spiral away. 

The apparently random circumstances bring people together, forming little communities, or soul tribes – for a more sacred term. When we were younger, we are usually surrounded by our birth families, or whoever raised us when we were children.  Or perhaps we grew up in spiritual communities, where we were connected to each other, in the shared love and faith of the beyond. And as we got a little older, we somehow gathered with our special groups, in the purpose of learning life’s lessons. These special groups were brought together as we happened to go to the same school, or work at the same place.

Perhaps I am romanticizing, but I like to think of these groups of special people as little soul families. As if there was a hidden soul contract we have agreed upon, to serve as a certain role in each other’s life. As if we were caught by the web of fate and casted away in the succulent garden, playing out the game of life. 

Human beings are funny,  we just take ourselves so seriously some times. In the meetings and mingling with others, we could experience some very extreme emotions and feelings. Love, hate, jealousy, irritation, frustration, admiration, thoughts such as “I can’t believe you did this.” , or feelings such as “I just can’t deal with you anymore.” All the feels from love and adoration, to hate and disgust. It is in relationships that we feel the full range of human emotions. 

It is in relating to each other that we grow, as we get to know ourselves better in each other’s presence. We support and cheer on each other as we face challenges and become our better self. We goof around, laugh and have a good time. We create memories and take pictures that remind ourselves of the special connection we shared.

 Was it really coincidence that we happened to meet each other, and become schoolmates, friends, colleagues, or families? I don’t think so. These connections in life are just too special and specific, in my opinion. And in the ebb and flow of life, even the most special connections goes through the cycle of converging and diverging. I have come to realize that, it is okay to ride though the waves of life – the many endings and beginnings. For it is the law of the universe , where change is the constant. And I trust that if we are meant to meet again, we will. For our soul will be attracted to each other, and our sacred connections will take form.

In life, or in dreams.

 

“To see a World in a Grain of Sand

And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,

Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand

And Eternity in an hour.”  – William Blake

 

 

Moving through life during difficult times – insights and reflections

This journey of life isn’t always smooth and easy.  This physical world that we move through each day isn’t always butterflies, rainbows, and sunshines. Sometimes, it can be really, really hard. Life’s lessons are no joke. They can bring us to our knees, in tears, in despair. All of a sudden, our whole world change. We are in shock, in disbelief. We wonder what is going on? Nothing, nothing makes any sense at all. And we are, once again, reminded of the impermanence, cruelty of life. We are rendered speechless, desperately catching our breath, trying not to suffocate in the pool of helplessness. 

No joke, indeed. The hardest part of being a human is coming to terms with this human nature. The law of this physical world. What happens to us, to our friends, to our family, or to our pets, are ultimately, never truly under our control. We might have been living in a way where we frantically trying to control everything, to manipulate situations, and/or to make sure others are cooperating with our ideas of how things should go.  Until one day, this illusive veil lifted and we are suddenly exposed – to life’s bluntness and cruelty. We are naked in the jungle, at the mercy of the tigress. We can fight, protest, howl to the moon, or scream at the theatre of irony.  But ultimately, we can only let go and surrender. Perhaps our knees bent, perhaps the grasses tingle our skin, and we humbly listening to the wind, to the orchestras of nature, while vulnerably opening our pores to all that is. We let go of control, and pray. The irony is that while it takes tremendous strength to surrender, once we do, our whole perspective shifts. Surrendering does not mean giving up, to surrender is to accept whatever it is, at the present moment, and to be with the experiences as they show up. 

A strong, sensitive heart loves deeply, unconditionally. This is love without expectation, giving without negotiation, forgiveness without condition. I love this quote from Mother Teresa, “Work as though every thing depended on it, and leave the rest to God.” To me, this is a simple, yet poignant mantra. Pouring our love, faith, and creative energies into life’s endeavors, we are doing our part of the work. While at the same time, there is an unseen part bubbling in the background, in the space of emptiness. There is this hidden energy that we are always co-creating with. This is the omnipresent energy of source, of eternity. 

In retrospect, these excruciating stages of life are often meaningful and essential, it might have served an important purpose in our journey. Though at the time we do not understand a tiny bit of it. For these dark, difficult periods force us to grow, to mingle with our shadow in the moist, shady womb. We are encapsulated in the cocoon and have no choice but to interact with the uncomfortable, disturbing parts of life, of ourselves, which we usually avoid in waking consciousness. This is the stage of metamorphosis, this is a necessary vessel for growth and transformation.

Yet even in the womb of darkness, we can still remember to breathe. To move through the daily necessities of life, to care for oneself and others, and to connect with friends and loved one. Personally, I find it crucial to engage in some form of practice in keeping energy moving through my body during these trying times. Taking a walk, getting a massage, acupuncture, or reiki, doing yoga, or just getting up and stretch our body are some of the things we can do to move our energy. It doesn’t have to be fancy or sophisticated. We just have to get moving, and keep going at the pace that we can.

Being a human is a vulnerable endeavor, so be gentle, with yourself, and with others.

Blessings to all.

 

 

The Power of Faith in times of Transition – a reflection on love, passion, and life’s journey.

It was about seventeen years ago when I left my birthplace – Hong Kong, and arrived at this country – the United States of America. I didn’t know a soul on this land, except my then boyfriend, whom I dated for a year when we met in Hong Kong. I didn’t have much money, no relatives, no connection, and I didn’t even know how to differentiate nickels and dimes. But I was brave, and I had no fear. 

I still remember moments during that long flight from Hong Kong to San Francisco. The flight was unusually empty because of the strike of the airline, and I had the entire aisle to myself. As if the universe was making space for me. It was perfect, for a long and emotional flight. Sitting on my lap was a box of sweet memories – the tokens of love from friends and family. The bittersweet parting gifts. As I looked out the window and glimpsed at the night view of this gorgeous city where I was born, I felt a sense of calm and serenity. A moment of grace and solitude came over me. Deep inside my soul, I knew this is the right path. Reading the words of my childhood friends, looking at the pictures, the gifts, reminiscing the moments of the last goodbye at the security gate; I slowly realized that I’ve made a significant and possibly life changing decision.

It all originated from this simple but strong desire in my heart – to cure my mom. As long as I could remember, my mother had always been in and out of hospitals, and her condition was only getting worse throughout the years. And as I got older, I was determined to help, to find out what was going on, or to at least alleviate her suffering.

The sight, smells, and sounds of the hospital came back to my senses as I recall this memory. I was sixteen years old then, sitting across from my mother’s psychiatrist in her office, attending a meeting about my mother’s condition. “How are you supposed to be able to help her when you only see her every two weeks for 10 minutes? ” I confronted the psychiatrist. I’ve been visiting the hospital every week and I tried to understand what kind of treatment they were providing. And the only “treatment”, it seemed to me, was prescribing and dispensing the meds.  “Well, that’s the way we do things here.” She got defensive, and probably feeling angry that me – a teenage girl was challenging her about her profession. “How about other countries, are there other ways?” I didn’t give up, I genuinely wanted to find out if there are alternative, better ways in treating these kinds of illness. “I don’t know anything about other countries.” She said and her body language told me that she wasn’t going to discuss treatment with me any further. Our conversation ended.

That was the moment, when the idea of studying “overseas” germinated in me. I was determined to find the answer, to search for the cure, for my mother, and for all who suffered from this daunting curse of mental illness. And as if by magic, things unfolded over the years. There were times that were challenging, difficult, confusing. But there were always help along the way – be it angels, friends, guides, or teachers. Life is strange, indeed. And I often found it such a blessings to be on this path, to live, love and work as a healer and a therapist. I just have to remember, to channel my younger self more often – the fierce, determined, passionate soul who seems to have such unwavering faith in life, who lives without fear.

Sometimes a seemingly hopeless situation aren’t in fact hopeless. Sometimes sorrow and tears can be transformed, to hope, healing, and a beautiful path. All we need is to have faith, and trust that there will always be a way. The passion in our heart will keep us warm ,the lights of hope will illuminate our path as we walked through the winding, shadowy road. And as we keep following our heart, keep listening to the little voice that speak to us in quiet moments, we will never truly be lost in the enormous jungle, even if at times, it feels like we are all alone. We will be fine, we will be safe, wherever we are.

I’ll leave you with a poem I love. 

 

The Journey 

by Mary Oliver

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice – – –
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
‘Mend my life!’
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.

You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations – – –
though their melancholy
was terrible.

It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.

But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice,
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,

determined to do
the only thing you could do 

determined to save
the only life you could save.

 

 

 

Stars of the Universe – Poem & Reflection

Stars of the Universe

 

We are the stars of the universe

Lost and scattered in random parts of the world

 

Broken in the process of becoming

Burning our edges in unbearable pain.

 

“Where are we?”

“I don’t know.”

 

Perhaps it doesn’t matter.

For in the process of self explosion.

We illuminate the darkest cloud

 

And we will find each other

Again and again

In the divine light.

Poem written by Christy Choy in 2015.

Ever since I was a child, when I was supposedly still in the stage of play and innocence, I questioned about the meaning of our existence. What are we doing here on earth? Why do we live the way we do? Why are bad things happening to human being, to our society, to the world? While some may argue that it is too early for a six years old to have these thoughts, they served me pretty well in coping with difficult life circumstances. I remembered comforting myself, in my little mind, that these crazy, bizarre, weird life circumstances must have a bigger reason to it. A reason that I could not possibly understand at that moment. I remembered reminding myself that a lot of extraordinary, famous, great people in the world had had a difficult childhood, too. I remembered staring at the starry sky with my mom, believing that my lost toy bunny was somehow living on the moon and if I squint my eyes I can possibly see it. Faith and imagination were my secret weapon.

Somehow, the existence of the stars, the moon, and the galaxy always comforted me. I feel less alone in my existence. Many years have gone by, and I am now living on the other side of planet earth. Perhaps many things have change since then, but that little soul of mine, that was holding me through all the adversities is still here. She is still the same, trusting and fierce. She is living in my core, in the middle of my heart center. I still hold the same thought, the faith that a bigger picture is in play, while living my beautiful and sometimes weird life. It serves me well in living and growing as a human being, and it certainly helps when I am working with the little children who experienced trauma, loss, and abandonment early in life. Still breaks my heart a little each time I feel them, but it helps to have a bigger perspective. I still stare at the sky at night, in awe with the magnificent beauty of it all and trust that all is well. Things will be all right. 

I believe that in our purest core, we are in fact, stars of the universe. We all have this innate soul center, inner compass that knows the deeper meaning of life, of existence. And life is a journey into the center of the self. Carl Jung wrote in his work Memories, Dreams, Reflection, “I began to understand the goal of psychic development is the self. There is no linear evolution; there is only a circumabulation of the self.” As if walking the labyrinth in the dark, we might stumble on the path, got lost in our egos, and coming back again and again to the core of our self, to our soul purpose. And perhaps, what is important in life is not the destination, not the egoistic distinction between what is right and what is wrong,  but the journey and the experience itself. 

Blessings to all.

 

 

Reference

Jung, C. G.  (1963). Memoriesdreamsreflections. New York: Pantheon Books.

 

Fallen – poem & reflections on grief & loss

Fallen

The leaves have fallen on the ground

The soul has spoken

In the cave of the heart angels cry

Absence melt into presence

The longing of the soul has never been so loud

But silence.

Poem written by Christy Choy, MFT on Oct 6 2017

 

Whether it is a painful break up with a lover, the death of a loved one by suicide, illness, or accident, a divorce after 19 years of marriage, or a little foster child saying goodbye to the birth parents ; the experiences of grief and loss are universal, and inevitable in life. It is as if each day, as we create a new self, when our body generate new cells; we are also shedding the old, the part of us that no longer resonate, little by little. 

Yet the experience of grief is cruel. As if a heart wrenching thief just went through every bit of our soul, sucked away every drop of joy and casted spider webs over the sweet memories. “For now they are gone, you will no longer have what you once have.” the thief exclaimed. And we are doomed, caved in by darkness, weighed down by heaviness. For how shall we live life again? 

When we are in relationship with others, whether it is a friend, lover, family,  our work, or even a school; we share a piece of our soul with them. The little stream of soulful energy, from the reservoirs of life, flow from our heart and mingle with others. In this exchange of life stream we create a sacred piece of artwork – the shared life experience. This piece of artwork often contain elements of both light and dark, as in all things of nature.  The laughter we shared while watching a silly TV show, the cake we baked and shared with others in a celebration, the precious moment when we looked into each others’ eyes and knew exactly what we wanted to say, or even the pain we suffered when we were hurt in the relationship. Sweet or sour, joyful or painful; these are the special moments in life that we shared, with our heart, with our life force, and our intention.

And when all is gone. It feels as if there is this deep hole in the heart, a strange sensation of emptiness in the chest. How could it be? And ah.. the excruciating feelings of heartache. These are all too painful to feel. And we escaped, we detached and ran away. Ran away from the pain but also, separated from our soul, our heart, our ever-flowing reservoir of life forces. We are rendered soul-less, living as a zombie, infected by the venom of life’s cruelty. 

Those were dark times, indeed. Having experienced a variety of sudden losses and endings in my life since childhood, I know it too well. I remembered wandering out and about in the city, frantically cleaning the bathroom inch by inch, work so diligently and “enthusiastically” at a job for over 12 hours a day.  I remembered how my 19-year-old self attempted to numb this excruciating pain, and cope with the catastrophic experience of a sudden loss. Or, perhaps unconsciously trying to find myself again. 

Many years have gone by and I have, inevitably, experienced other forms of loss. Some of them being more catastrophic then others. But I’ve learnt that, eventually, I seem to “recover” from the doomed experience in the process of creation. I write poems, I draw, I sing, and I create little tokens of memories. I might allow myself to sink into that deep hole of the broken heart, but then I picked myself up and kept going. Seek help, take care of my body, process, and create.

For it is by remembering that we grieve; and it is in deeply caring for ourselves that we continue to share our love with others. For life is a regenerating process. We are like snakes, shedding our old skins from time to time. And it is in the acceptance of this game of life that, we live and flourish.

 

Sweet nature – poem & reflection

Sweet nature 

The sweetness of nature fills my heart with desire
Each step renders a new adventure
– A new feeling when the sun beams on this soft human body. 

The synchronistic meeting of each soul 
fills my heart with laughter, tears, joy, and love
This richness of life isn’t found in the jungle, or the bedroom
It is in allowing this sore openness of the heart that abundance flows

For in this effortless being we let ourselves float 
While the salty water and the mischievous fishes carry us

Down the stream
To our destiny.

Written by Christy Choy on Nov 24,2017 at Lake Merritt, Oakland

When I was little, I wanted to become a writer, or a lawyer. A writer, because I loved to read and write. Books were the loyal friends that kept me company through the darkest hours. A lawyer, because I wanted to stand up against injustice, and speak for the one who cannot fight for themselves. I never would have thought of becoming a therapist ,living in California.

And then life happenedAs if carried by an invisible wave, my life took its twist and turns. The meetings of significant people : friends, lovers, mentors, teachers, the love and loss of loved ones, the miraculous encounters and spontaneous adventures, and the courageous decisions made at each intersection… This storybook of life,  filled with the sweet essence of life’s ups and downs and its mundane details, rest deep inside my soul.

Perhaps I am a writer after all. For I am writing my own story.  And aren’t we all? Each day, each moment, we are presented with a choice – to show up or to not show up? When we encounter another being, we have a choice in how we engage – to smile or not to smile, to express kindness or remain aloof? And when we are triggered by certain people or situation, we can react with quick anger and accusation, or take a moment to breathe, center, and choose our response differently. The small things we do matter, and it has a ripple effect that goes out far beyond what we can imagine.

Thus, it is often in the mundane, tedious details of life where it lies the most significant lesson. And life is an irony that riddles us into the whirlpool of our soul. What lies ahead in my path? I don’t know ,and I won’t know. I can only be here and be present. To strive and live each moment with love and integrity, to face each challenge with grace and persistency, to treat other beings with kindness and respect. Some days will be joyful, and some days might be hard and difficult. But the beauty of life, I believe, is in allowing our hearts to be touched in life’s ups and downs, our senses to be infused with scents and  sceneries, and our soul to be penetrated by the deep feeling, the abundant of emotions that life has to offer.

Cheers.

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