Yêu thương vô hình – Invisible love

(Other perspectives) Invisible but reflective. 

As I grow older, love, to me, becomes more invisible, even though it has always been. 

I grew up in a Catholic family. My grandparents witnessed the love of God, and since then following God is what every person in my family has to do. I believe in God, so at the age of 5, I claimed to my Dad that there was no such thing as Devil, for God will never let those things present in human’s life. 

But he said there was. 

If there was no Devil, then where did all the temptations in the Bible come from? Why did people try to fool Jesus, although he had never fell once and although they knew He was the Messiah? 

Devils exist. 

Dad’s words impacted me so greatly that I always imagined besides me presenting two different parties – Devil and God, black and white. I feel confident because God protects me, but I can also feel how hard Devil is trying to make me fall. And I do fall, many times. 

Devil in a kid’s mind is simply a bad person. 

I will be 18 in 3 months. Pre-adult, I realize Devil has consumed my mind and others’ worse than I have always thought. Waking up one morning, I was upset about how small I am. 

Broken. 

Hopeless. 

Forgotten. 

That are exactly three words I wrote down in my personal note. My mind told me these are not true, but my heart kept bumping blood into my arms and hands and fingers and leading me to type them. That’s Devil’s force. 

When Love is the fundamental of creation, it also comes in a form that cannot be seen. It is invisible. I can never see my parents’ love for me if they didn’t show it: if my Mom didn’t stay up late to cook the meal I requested, or if my Dad didn’t talk to me in my sleep every early morning before he left the house. The act of caring is not Love, it is the impact of Love, but people ask for it when they see nothing. They misunderstand that Love can be presented in many different ways.  Therefore, they are more capable of thinking that oftentimes there is no Love, and people become more vulnerable. 

But Invisible Love is not the reason to stop someone from caring. Because as a person who doesn’t fully understand the important of relationship, I slowly push many people away from me with solely a reason, “I am busy,” which is not an appropriate excuse. There is no guarantee that there is still Love, because it seems that what I care is just myself. 

At the age of 17 almost 18, my life and many, many other people’s are filled with deadlines. We keep time for ourselves – our commitments, our homework, and our personal interests. Not that because we think friends are less important, but because we believe Love can be felt without actually be witnessed. We stop asking, “How are you?” and assuming that everybody is fine. 

I was fine. 

Until the day when I woke up and felt there was no Love. God loves me. But I allow Devil to be stronger in that moment. 

I jotted down words. 

and understood that Love should be seen through actions. 

How long has it been since the last time I asked someone, “How are you?”

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It has been a long time since I actually write a blog with the content goes with its title. 🙂 

Mini cocoa mug

It is beautiful the way it is.

Saturday’s afternoon – a day for relaxation, a day for friendships to grow.

But when it comes to art, music, or knowledge, I often spend time on my own. I want to step out of the crowd to enjoy them myself.

We went to CreativiTea in Fair Heaven, and together each of us decorated a pottery cup. My very first idea was to draw the universe, for I love the Sun, the planets and stars so much. I painted it half black and half white, but it did not turn out the way I wanted it to be. I looked around and saw how my friends had creative ideas, and their mugs are cute with pandas, cactus, or roses. Others chose to make things simple like writing their names. All are cure. Except mine.

I struggled for more than 2 hours. I couldn’t draw details because I couldn’t control the amount of paint on my mug. So I put layers on top of each other – black, white, and black and white. In my mind, I would have to use this mug for maybe the rest of my life, so I want it to be cute so that whenever I see it, I’m happy that I have made one. Therefore, I aimed for perfection. And I felt jealous about people around me.

At the end, my name appeared on the mug without any universe. It is actually how I wanted it to be at last. However, the main purpose of going to CreativiTea – to hang out with friends – I did not achieve. I should have talked to my friends more. I should have complimented them with their artsy mugs, because it showed their beautiful souls, rather than focusing on my own. At the end of the day, it’s not the physical works that make me feel happy about my day, but it’s the spiritual relationship that I was supposed to tighten with my people.

“It’s beautiful the way it is.”

That was what my friend told me when I complained about my own mini cocoa mug. It’s beautiful because we have been there together, not because we made something perfect.

I should have understood it sooner. The moment I walked into CreativiTea.

AC – hot & cold

29°C, 30°C

or

4°C, 15°C

Which one is colder than which?

I don’t know.

The gym, Nov 07, 2018. 4°C. I close my eyes because I wanted the sun to shine on me.

We look at things from different perspectives, and sometimes it also means that what we think does not necessarily what others think. Standing inside of a glass building, I would say it looks so nice outside, but when actually walking under the cold, I understand how harsh it is. Putting oneself in others’ shoes is what needed.

In Vietnam, the normal temperature was about 28°C ~ 30°C. My family, we barely use the AC, because we don’t want to pay too much for the bill, and because AC is not that good for our health as well as the environment’s “health”. That’s been my habit for years – not staying inside for so long. I prefer nature. I prefer the wind, the warmness, the sun.

And I went to the United States for one year, experiencing the climate of the Pacific Northwest. Cold, windy, snowy, and rainy. Everywhere is so cold that I for a year I could not be free without my sweatshirt. I complained all the time, to be honest. I never know I have got used to this weather.

I came back to Vietnam over the summer. For two weeks, I couldn’t do anything without the AC. I often imagined that I was putting my house in the fridge, because compared to the outside, it was fresher and more comfortable. But I know I should not keep doing that for a long time, because to me, not using the AC has always been considered a good way of living. Therefore, everyday for two weeks, I would try to tolerate the hotness for one or two hours longer than the day before, until finally I got used to it. At first, the weather bothered me so much that I even wanted to go back to the US or posted a status on my social account (which I rarely do), yet later my effort paid off that I could freely do everything without air conditioning. Even 25°C seemed to be too cold.

I am usually amazed of how fast I am in adjusting to where I live. What could I do if I kept complaining about the weather? Where could I go when in fact everywhere was like in a big oven? Could I keep posting on my Facebook and Instagram account about how harsh it was in Vietnam? I wouldn’t do that. I wouldn’t let the weather be a big matter to my daily activities.

I haven’t done a good job stop complaining when I went to the US. Partly because I didn’t have enough warm clothe. Everywhere I go, the uneasiness of this temperature discourages me from doing what I want. I am trying, though.

When I say, “I am cold,” not everybody would understand. Many of my friends have been living in the Northwest or other temperate places for most of their lives, so they just never can tell if there’s any significant differences. Or many of friends who come from countries near the equator and use AC all the time, they never understand how a girl who has tried not to use AC feels about the weather. Nobody will ever know.

Focus on your breath only

That was my assignment today.

You are to focus on your breath only. For five minutes. Again, doing only that, and not falling asleep.

So I did. In the midst of school and work, this seems to me like a waste of time. Sitting there and just breathing?! But because it was a part of my homework, so I did it anyway, and after all I realize how many things I have missed just because I focus on “checking off my to-do list” rather than “living the moment”. I closed my eyes for five minutes:

  • Hmm… I still have too many assignments due today.
  • Hmm… I want to have more time to read.
  • I will workout everyday this week. My body is exhausted.
  • I want to improve my writing and spend more time on coding.
  • Why 5 minutes seem so longggg???

My mind wandered everywhere, being buried because of my stresses. However, at the same time I also realized:

  • I can do everything in 5 minutes, but I can also do nothing.

So why don’t just sit back and relax. Sit back and have a look at what I have done, rather than being panic about what I have not done YET. Focus on this moment only.

Focus on how many people I have talked to this week that I have never talked to before. Isn’t it true that only when I set my businesses aside, I have time to share with others about my days? Focus on how many places I have always wanted to go to? Isn’t it true that only when I stop thinking about my school, work, and extracurricular activities that I have time to go? So what is the purpose of worrying, of not living this moment?

The sun is up there, even though it is cold, but it is a great day. A great day because I woke up early to see sunrise, because I went to the gym and ran half an hour, because I called my parents after a long busy week, and because I focus on my breath instead of following my crazy mind.

It is this moment that I should praise the Lord for giving me another breath-in second, for letting me living this life.

Sick or homesick

I haven’t been sick for the past two years. People said I have dealt with many different types of sickness that there are no common germs that can have a big impact on me any more. But now I am having a cold, cannot do anything. Mid-terms are coming, and I’m laying on my bed.

I’m tired and confused because this is my very first time having a cold at a different place other than my parents’ house. Even though I know exactly what to do – how many hours I should sleep, what I should eat, and what I should prevent doing and eating – it is still hard because I miss the way people care for me when I did not feel well.

Mom usually doesn’t care too much. She would be the very last person who asks if I was not feeling well. But she cooks all the good food in this world, so I was blessed. Dad paid attention to every small details. Every morning before going to work, he would go to my room and talk to me for a bit, as well as checking if I look good or have a fever. Many times I used to think this was overprotective and annoying, but because I am homesick, I miss it anyway.

My sister was eight when I left her to study abroad. To Dad, she was the warmest and most light-hearted person he had never seen, compared to me. I was more an introvert and have a richer inner life, while my sister was the opposite. I was a perfectionist while my sister loved making mistakes. We have never been a good match. However, she cared anyways. She would notice every details, but that doesn’t necessarily mean she actually said what she was thinking. I might not as caring to others as her, though. I miss her right now, because she was such a blessing and a cute little girl.

I barely call them, these days. We all are really busy. I told them I am sick, and on the phone I know they care. But it’s solely a cold. Not anything huge to specifically care about. I would try not to have any serious types of sickness, because that would be a disaster.

I need a good night sleep tonight, although that might be hard because I have been sleeping a lot the last two days. I have a psychology mid-term coming up, and it is truly hard. I don’t really know how to deal with it. I would try again today, and again tomorrow. It will be due tomorrow. And there will be another exam coming up next Wednesday. I can do this. I would be patient. I would try my best and wait for the result.

I would have a good night of sleep.

praise the Lord for another living day.