Life Lesson # 1 million…

Life Lesson of the day:

If you’re unhappy with a certain part of your life, change it.  Don’t sit around and wait for that something or someone to change for you, because chances are it won’t happen.  Take the responsibility upon yourself and do something to make that part of your life better, whatever it may be.

If you ever wonder why I love hanging at the Curb so much…

Sure, it might have something to do with the amazing coffee they serve.

Or, maybe it’s the fact that I’ve grown to love those Curbies like they’re my family.

But, it’s mostly because of all the knowledge and inspiration I acquire just sitting in that little cafe…or coffee bar I should say.  I’ve learned so much more about coffee than I ever expected because of the Curb, it’s crazy. And without fail, I always walk away having learned some sort of life lesson also in the process. Today was no exception. Thanks to Patrick Oiye.

Thank goodness for baristas like Sumner, Juli, and Patrick…for, the three of them have made such a huge impact on my life (they probably don’t even realize it).  Most times, I’ll forgo hanging out with other people and/or doing something more exciting just to sit at this crazy coffee shop and talk to them all day.  I guess in a way you could say, the Curb is my place to escape from the world, where everything sort of stands still, and I have no worries what-so-ever.

Sitting, Waiting, Wishing.

If you ask me, am I unhappy with my life? I will answer, no.

If you ask me, do I hate my life? I will answer, no.

If you ask me, am I happy with my life? I will answer, yes…and no. Not yet.

However, if you ask me, am I content with my life? I will answer, yes.

If you ask me, do I wish I had more? I will answer, yes.

But ask me, what would I change about it so that my answer would be, ‘I love my life’? I will answer, nothing. And, that’s the truth, nothing.

For me, it’s not a matter of changing my life to make it better.  It’s rather, just adding on new experiences and encounters…as I believe in having no regrets. It’s just, you live and you learn.

And lately, I’ve been learning a lot about myself. What kind of person I am, and want to be. What my life goals and dreams are. Who it is that I should and should not trust…and who I should or should not keep within my social circle.  At my cousin’s wedding last month, Emi (the Bride) uttered a quote she had read in a book, “There are three types of friends: friends of pleasure, friends of utility, and friends of virtue. Most of your friends will fall into at least one of these categories, but the ones who fall into all three are true.”

With all that being said, for me to be able to truly say that I love my life…

I would have to be stable in all aspects of my life.

The day that I have my own business, open my photography cafe, and/or am financially stable. The day that I am forever done with school, and have paid off all my school loans or have at least come half way. The day that I finally find a good guy, someone who is and/or can be my best friend, my lover, and my confidant. The day that I have finally surrounded myself with good friends, those that are true, those who I love and who love me.  That is when I will truly be happy and love my life.

For now, I’ll just keep calm and wait patiently for that day to come. For now, I’ll just have to keep working to accomplish all that I want to accomplish. For now, I’ll just have to thank everyone, whether I’ve known you for 10 yrs, 5 yrs, 1 yr, or even 6 months…thank all of you who are true.

Like grandmother, like granddaughter.

Sitting here with my family, listening to my grandmother talk with her siblings…

I am beginning to realize where a lot of my personality traits come from. And therefore, my mother’s personality traits also.

My grandpa, he’s normally the quiet one. The one who sits back, listens, and observes. He’s normally the one to listen first before he expresses his opinion, or sometimes doesn’t even say a word.

He’s the type of person to always put others before himself. He’s always willing to lend a helping hand. He’s the chivalrous one.

My grandma, she’s the talkative one. The aggressive one. The one that’s not afraid to speak her mind when necessary. She’s the nicest person, but she can also be your worst enemy.

Although she is very nurturing, she is also the one to tell you that sometimes you have to think about yourself and what you want. She’s very particular and knows what she wants, and she usually gets it even if she has to fight for it.

My mom, I realize now that she is the perfect balance of both those personalities. Like I mentioned in a previous post, she’s the nicest person in the world. She’s quiet, shy, and happy-go-lucky most of the time. Like a little ball of sunshine, as my friend Liam would say.

But…at the right moments, she can speak her mind and fight for what she wants. You piss her off enough, and she’ll bite your head off with words.

Me, well…I’m beginning realize now that I too, am the perfect balance of the two of them. I’m quiet and shy, but at the same time, I’m strong and independent. I’m not a fighter, but if I have to fight and speak up about something..I will bite your head off.

The more I think about it though, it’s a trend within my family on both sides of my family…. The women are usually a little more dominant than the man. I guess, now I know what I’m in for. Lol

The Next Step.

Everyone has that one day where they get a wake up call. The moment where you finally put your foot down and tell yourself “ok, it’s time for me to actually work towards my next goal.” The moment when you realize something about your lifestyle has to change.

Well, today was that day for me.

It’s time for me to actually start working on all the things I said I want to accomplish.

– Being fluent in more than two languages, I’m currently working on that.

– Going to grad school, I finally took the first step into that direction today by going to talk to an advisor.  Although my interest is still in Asian History, my plan is now to focus on business and marketing in an attempt to one day open my own photography cafe (thank you Thomas O. for the inspiration :D). Who knows, maybe I’ll find a way to incorporate my passion for history into my cafe idea somehow.

– Also, lately I’ve been going back and forth about re-opening my Etsy shop. Mainly because I could always use the extra money.  And today, yes…I have decided to do it.  :) Be on the look out!

A sense of reassurance.

All my life, I’ve had people worry about me.  And by people, I mean certain people within my family and certain close friends of mine.  And, I mean…to an extent, I totally understand given my disability and all… Especially for my family, I can see how me being on my own alone would be sort of scary for them. All my life, they’ve had to care for and nurture me, protect me from harm, and all that jazz. It’s only natural that they would worry now.

Lately though, I feel (because of certain events that have occurred) people have been worrying about me a lot more than usual.  I get it though, they love me. I know. ….and I love all of you for caring sooooo very much, trust me. <3

But let this be a sense of reassurance… for those in my family especially. You’ve raised me well… and YES, Everything you’ve taught me, all the advice you’ve given me…it’s with me every day.

For beauty advice, everything you’ve said to me growing up, grandma, I’ve taken into consideration… eyeliner and mascara, yes I use it. Red lipstick, still working on that. Parting my hair to the side, hated it before but yes I do that now. And, POND’S Moisturizing Cream has become a part of my daily routine.

For fashion and accessories, I get my inspiration from my cousins (Michele, you especially <3). At the same time, I can still hear the voice(s) of both my grandmothers every time I shop for new clothes. So, yes…I try to be sexy, but classy…always, or at least most of the time. …Haha, kidding.

For living expenses and household related issues, I hear my mom and my grandpa. They were always (and still are) talking to me about managing my money wisely, keeping things as organized as possible, and respecting the other person’s space (in regards to having roommates).

For friendship and social advice, I hear my mom especially… the two quotes that have stuck with me most…

“be the best friend anyone could ask for.”

“you need to learn how to say no sometimes, and not be so nice all the time. don’t let people take advantage of you.”

Sometimes I also hear my grandma Karen…

“don’t be afraid to speak your mind. it’s ok to be a bitch if necessary.”

For navigational advice, I listen my grandpa… one thing I remember when he taught me how to drive…

“don’t hesitate to take the long way around (if stuck in traffic), or panic if you take the wrong turn. A right and three lefts will usually get you back in the direction you really want to go.”

When it comes to dating and love advice (or anything related to that subject), I hear a mixture of the three women in my life… my mom, my grandma Connie, and my grandma Karen. Besides the basic, “make sure they respect and cherish you”…some of the things they’ve said include:

“Make sure you know how to cook, clean the house, and do laundry. No one’s gonna wanna marry a girl who doesn’t know how to do any of that.”

“Most men love a strong and independent woman.”

“Your body is your most prized possession, treasure it.”

“If he doesn’t have rough hands, he’s not hardworking.”

“Don’t change for anyone. Whoever you end up with will love you for who you are.”

And lastly, for my safety, well…don’t worry. I try not to stay out past a certain time unless I’m with someone else. And, that is why I carry various self-defense items in my bag and have certain people on speed dial. :) And, I’ve made friends who take very good care of me, and worry about me also…and I’m sure would come running in a heartbeat if I was ever in trouble. :)

So yes, rest assured. Family, I am fine. :) Trust me, your words run through my head on a daily basis!

It’s All About Me now…

All my life I’ve been “the nice girl”… The one who is always doing nice things for everyone else, always helping a friend in need. My mom essentially has the same problem, so I guess in a way that’s where I get it from. And growing up, to prevent me from becoming that way… She always used to tell me, “to learn how to say ‘no’ sometimes”. “You and I both… We need to learn how to be the bitch sometimes.” But, you know what they say…. Like mother, like daughter. And I guess in this case, it’s true.

I’m definitely too nice for my own good sometimes..and it’s a habit I need to learn to control. I need to learn when it’s ok to be the nice person, and when I should be the bitch. It’s definitely a lesson I’m learning right now in fact, being a manager and all…

Lately, I’ve realized that certain people have definitely taken advantage of my kindness…and I’m done.

I’m done, doing nice things for other people, helping them out and taking care of them….and NOT getting anything in return! I definitely need to be more selfish sometimes…and only dish out kindness to those who absolutely deserve it.

Because I’m tired of all the questions.

For many years, I’ve tried my best to hide a part of myself from everyone.  Other than my family, only a handful of friends close to me truly know…

“What’s wrong?”

“Are you ok?”

“Did you hurt yourself?”

“If you don’t mind me asking, why do you walk that way?”

“Does it affect the way you work?”

Yes…if you haven’t guessed already, I’m talking about the way I walk.  I was born with a disability.  A disability known as cerebral palsy.  If you google it, Wikipedia will tell you that it is “a general term for permanent, non-progressive movement which causes physical disability.”  In my case, it has affected my legs, and more specifically, the tendons in my ankles.  If you’ve read the book (or seen the movie), “My Left Foot”…my situation is basically the same, just not as drastic.  And well, for me, it’s more so my RIGHT foot. Lol.

For many years, I’ve gotten away with hiding it.  It’s the reason why I always prefer to wear pants, long dresses/skirts, shoes over slippers. Other than my family, only a few my friends have been fortunate to know the truth…for some, it was already obvious. For others, they weren’t sure and decided to ask about it.  Only recently, and I mean a few years, did I start to let go and tell more people.  Before that and even still today, I make up stories about how I twisted my ankle or stubbed my toe, etc.  And now, well…it’s time I tell everyone else and the WORLD.

Why the sudden decision? Well, I’d say probably because of work. And well, I’m tired, just tired of all the questioning, and me trying to avoid answering those questions.  From the day we began the Brug Community Program at work, and the first organizations we donated to were Shriners Hospital and Kapiolani Medical Center because they were important to the President of our company, I mentioned to a few coworkers about how excited I was about it because these two places are close to my heart also.  Many wondered why, and the truth is it’s because like how they are helping Miho’s (our President) son with his disability, they’ve done the same and more for me and my disability too.  I won’t go into complete detail about my disability, but I will leave you with the video below…which I had to create for a “disability and equality” class I took in college.

Although this video doesn’t go into much detail either, it does explain a lot about what I’ve had to go through because of my disability.  For many of my friends reading this, for you, it may explain why I am the way I am today.  If any of you have more questions, don’t hesitate to ask.