Days ago, I felt like I was judged by twenty million people as I was eating a chocolate popsicle alone just outside Museum Station. OK, that was exaggerated. Maybe not twenty million people. It was a Friday night and Sydney CBD was well-lit and busy. Just as autumn started, I was in the middle of the city, trying to figure out this thing called “adulting” as I was staring at the city lights and wondering why I was eating ice cream while it was almost 15 degrees out. At 7:30 in the evening, I randomly rode the train without a concrete plan of where to go. I found myself sitting alone at a Japanese resto-bar, eating a bowl of spicy ramen, and drinking some cocktails. I have always been fine being alone, but for some reason, that particular night… I was lonely. Certain songs would remind me of home, and people, and traveling, and I felt like exploding. I rode the train back, and I was traveling asleep the whole time. I found myself waking up (luckily) at Guildford, which was 2 stations away from where I live. My phone battery went dead empty and that night, I felt like I was physically and emotionally drained as well.
As I arrived in Sydney about three months ago, people would always ask me how I was, and how things are going and my default answer is “I’m OK. Everything is OK.” Until one day, it hit me. There are days when you just need to smile back at people even if you feel like you are dying a little bit on the inside. Living abroad away from your family and friends could be really hard sometimes. I guess, you can never really call a place your “home” no matter how well-adjusted you are already. Truth is, when you are in a great distance away from the people you grew up with, there are times when you just want to eject yourself from your new world and go back where you started. But then again, I told myself, where you are right now is a result of choices. At some point, it’s about choosing where you want to be and where you have to be and even though you tell yourself several times that you are well, you still have to face the reality that there are days when you seem lost and isolated.
BE BRAVE. FACE IT.
That’s OK. As human beings, we are bound to feel these kinda things. I never thought that living in Sydney would make me know myself more, a side of me that I have never seen before. Sensitive and emotional. We tend to just walk away from our feelings and deal with it when it’s too much to handle. That is human-nature. But that night, I knew I had to face it. I took everything in and I kept on over-thinking. It was making me crazy, and I knew I needed some air. I bought ice cream and consoled myself. I let it all out and continuously reminded myself that it’s OK to cry. I never wanted to hold it in because that would be the most miserable feeling in the world… trying to be fine when you are not. No matter how independent you are, there are days when you need someone to talk to. Apparently, it was one of those days for me. Fortunately, I met friends in Sydney who are very much willing to listen.
People know me as a positive-thinker and I look at life as an adventure. As a matter of fact, I still do. I still love the beauty of sunsets, and the color of the beach, and the taste and feel of cold beers, and long winding road trips. The thing is, when you are feeling down, we all have our own ways of dealing with it. What we do not know is that we have the capability to make ourselves feel better in more ways than one. For me, it’s eating ice cream (no matter how cold the weather is), taking walks, and looking at city lights. Or if I am a little luckier with time, I would go to the beach and watch the waves… that would always make me feel calm. Moreover, if your friends and loved-ones try to reach out to you, let them. If there’s one thing that I learned with living alone in Sydney, it’s the fact that INDEPENDENCE HAS LIMITS and that is perfectly OK. With how things are, I am continuously in the learning process. Self-reliance is a good thing, but life has taught me that humans are social creatures. In some ways, we still have to depend on some people to get us by. I may have learned it the hard way, but more importantly, I have learned when to turn off my “independent button” and I try to be a little more open with people.
It’s OK not to be OK. That’s how it is. It only means you are a person with feelings and that’s completely normal. At the end of the day, life still goes on. Don’t dwell on too much negative emotions. Exchange your anxieties with acceptance. Always remember, BETTER DAYS ARE COMING. 🙂
Don’t get me wrong, I am not depressed while I am writing this post. LOL. I am actually packing my stuff for a road trip to Canberra. I hope you have fun with the holidays as well, it’s not everyday that we get paid days off so use it well!