Family, Food For Thought, Inpsiration, Journal

Unfading

The weekday morning quiet is my favorite time of the day. Outside, darkness still reigns, and I am usually awake before my 5:30 am alarm.  I can hear the dog’s gentle snore, and I take extra care to get out of bed as not to wake her because once she is up, she follows me endlessly until I take her for a walk. But this time is my time. An hour snatched out of the day so I can read, write, and think. The past few days, I experienced vulnerability from others and ownership about their feelings, and it hit me that while my memories have not faded, I act as if they do.

I no longer speak his name, or bring up his passing, yet it’s always there. It’s easy to get lost in the tasks, and all this busyness I have created, harder to admit that slowing down or cutting down on commitments is not quitting or giving up, it’s giving priority to people who matter.  It’s not easy seeing my blind spots. It’s appealing to just go, go, go, fill up the time rather than be present, still, and curious about what’s coming up or me.

There is so much more I could do with less distractions, and projects. Loved ones who deserve my attention, ears, and love. Not my intent, but my actions. Not platitudes, but spending meaningful time. Not being defensive when called out, but open to hearing, no! listening to their unmet needs.

So while the memories haven’t faded, my resolve to do better increases. His legacy is unfading, and I get to be more like him. Mend all relationships around me, and be an inspiration rather than a drain.

Food For Thought, Inpsiration, Journal

Detox

Last Month, I decided to detoxify after my overly indulgent trip in New York, I decided to not drink until after my race mid october, and after the race, I pushed it to end of the month, and now in November I am taking it day by day. I will drink when I feel like it. I remember this feeling as this is what I did with becoming vegetarian. I have learned to listen to my body, and in return, I have had minimal to no sickness, my energy levels skyrocketed, and I just felt good in general. Yet, I also know that it is not for everyone nor do I preach it to anyone. It works for me.

Just like not drinking until I feel like it. I see now that I am constantly trying ways to break myself down so I can get better. Do I always succeed? Not even close. There are so many areas in which I could do better, yet I also know that I can only try and be aware of my flaws, and then find ways to cope with life. Taking away ways I can hide is one of them. It’s easy to break open a beer or have a drink or two because I had a rough day or I could just sit in the shit, and let myself feel.

It’s not easy because the tempting part is to deny, avoid, not feel, to blame, to not take responsibility. It’s plain sucky to know that I am responsible for all that happens in my life. It makes for a very hard journey. But I continue to press on. I get the privilege of this life, and I get to get better at living in it.  There is so much I regret, but I am determined to continue to blow myself up (figuratively) to get better, and to perhaps, one day, be worthy of forgiveness.

 

Family, Food For Thought, Inpsiration, Journal

The River

Recently, my sister insisted I listen to a talk  on Nanak Naam about “Hukam” and what it means. In a nutshell, it hit me that we spend so much of time of our time wishing or praying things to be different, but life is like a river and it only goes the way it is meant to. We can either accept that or be unhappy trying to change it. The power of acceptance of life’s unfairness or fairness was immaterial, because life would happen either way.

Too often, I spent my time wishing things to be a certain way, a fantasy as the talk mentioned, instead of accepting that life is what it is now now what I wish it to be. That’s not to say to give up, but rather work on my mindset and actions that I can control. I also realized that all I have in my power are my thoughts, actions and emotions. How I choose to use them is entirely up to me, and blaming others or life just brings dissatisfaction into my life.

It’s not easy, and I realize it is so much easier to go back to wanting life the way I want it to be, yet it continues like a river and I spend time trying to change its course by myself.  I get to leave the fantasy or I can be miserable.

Food For Thought, Inpsiration, Journal

Long Beach Half Marathon Lessons

After three months of steady training thanks to an inspiring Coach (Carlos Romero), Sunday, October 13th beckoned me to Long Beach. Nervousness coursed through my body as I walked towards the bib pick up table. Thousands milled about shoreline and ocean blvd. Flashing lights from the cop cars illuminated portions of the street. For a moment, I felt lost, not worthy to be among so many who looked to be so much better shape than me.

I couldn’t help thinking of how I failed to train in New York and gorged on dozens on pizza. I felt swollen, fat, and out of shape. And for a moment, quitting sounded extremely tempting. Yet, throwing away three months of training and letting down my coach embarrassed me, and so I sidled up to Wave 3 of the starting line. Thankfully, the waves were staggered according to average run times to reduce slowing down faster runners, and also so slow runners did not feel pressured to go faster than needed. As the horn, sounded, I began running, struggling with turning on my beat headphones.

I spent half a mile before getting the headphones and spotify to work. Of course, I’d managed to lose one of the soft buds from the headphones, but it didn’t matter. The music began, and I lost myself in the playlist. I was grateful for taking the time to make my own playlist of indian, 90s music and bhangra especially Rocky 4, my all time favorite soundtrack.  As I ran, I felt more confident and comfortable. I managed to pass up people, and also got passed up by many, yet what truly supported me was this one gentleman who plodded in front of me, and for 7 miles I followed him, and then I surpassed him and followed two ladie for another 5, and then Carlos surprised me on the last mile by showing up. Thank you to those strangers. My gratitude at that kind gesture is that one that still stays with me.  I had never been alone, and I could do this.

It wasn’t a great time, but it wasn’t a bad one either because I finished. And now I am excited for the next step in my running: a full marathon. After that, a triathlon, and if god willing, an iron man in 2021.

Happy Monday. What will you accomplish next?

Family, Food For Thought, Inpsiration, Journal, My Past, Myself

Family

The sudden quiet of the morning for once doesn’t feel soothing. Like a dull ache comes the realization I am home, far away from my family where I go to spend 10 glorious days gorging myself not just on pizza, but on love, laughter and memories. I truly cannot answer what took me so long to get back there. What could have been more important than creating such amazing memories? Work? Money? General busyness?  These past ten days I have laughed more, eaten more and been loved more than the entire year. And again I ask myself. Why? Why did it take so long to get back to this?

I got to spend time with my uncles, aunts, cousins, nephews, nieces, old friends and all because I managed to say yes for once and got out of the way. Coming to this dull quiet, it hits me that with the loss of my dad and aunt, there are so many ways to keep their memories going that do not involve grief. Its sharing old stories, laughing at old jokes, and missteps and most of all, around 30 of us sitting in one room just sharing. It’s teasing each other, enjoying meals together, and it’s creating reasons to keep coming back to spend time with us.

I cannot help but count my blessings for the family that I have. I truly wish those close to me got to experience the kind, generous and giving family I come from. Sure, from the outside, it could be said we came for a 16th and 50th birthday party but truly we came to be together, to reconnect, to remind ourselves that with loss there are also gains. This trip became that reminder for me.

Happy Tuesday!

Food For Thought, Inpsiration, Journal

What Took Me So Long?

Nothing like the hustle and bustle of Manhattan streets to remind me of what it means to be in a big city like really in it. Walking by, jostled by those rushing, homeless sleeping on the street, a lady begging for a fifty cents, and hanging with a dear friend. It’s an intoxicating city and one that I love coming back to, and I always wonder why it took me so long. Of course, there is the family where we share belly aching laughs, and again I wonder why it took me so long to come here.

Its’s soul-filling t be around so many who are genuinely excited to spend time with you and share their world. I forget sometimes that there are those who wish nothing but success for me, and think the best of me. Sometimes, it my daily life, I tend to believe my own negative thoughts and fears of not being good enough and now seeing myself reflected in my friends and family’s eyes, I realized I allowed my fear to guide me for far too long. It hit me that being around family and friends is important for me to get a true glimpse of who I am.

I dont know what took me so long, but I am glad I am here now.