LETTERS

I found this really beautiful quote the other day.

“Because sending a letter is the next best thing to showing up personally at someone’s door. Ink from your pen touches the stationary, your finger touches the paper, your saliva seals the envelope, your scent graces the paper. Something tangible from your world travels through machines and hands, and deposits itself in another’s mailbox; their world. Your letter is then carried inside as an invited guest. The paper that was sitting on your desk, now sits on another’s. The recipient handles the paper that you handled. Letters create a connection that modern and impersonal forms of communication will never replace.”

It might be a common quote, you may have seen it before (since I plucked it off somewhere from the internet), but it makes you give a second thought about letters.

These days, the letters that I received are all bills, promotions, bank statements, etc. It happens only once in a really really long while (or almost never) that I get a handwritten letter. handwritten letters gives me a sense of nostalgia – remember the time when you had no email and handphones and all you could do was to write letters to your friends to tell them secrets? remember the joy you experienced whenever you open the mailbox and a letter sits there waiting for you? remember you felt so nervous about sending out a letter because you’re afraid it never reaches your recipient? I know I definitely remember all the different gush of emotions from receiving a letter, opening it, reading, replying, and finally, sending it out.

But nowadays, we all have technology. A friend is a phone call away,a text message away, or an email away. Having to contact a friend that lives a million miles away from you? No problem, there’s always the internet. We don’t have to write letters to catch up with friends anymore. There’s all these forms of social media that even without contacting them, we still know what is going on in their lives.

But, we shouldn’t let these advancements take over in every aspect because every once in a while, everyone appreciates a handwritten letter, a surprise parcel arriving at their doorstep, or even a surprise visit from you. Sometimes, a personal touch (literally) from you through your letters will warm up their hearts makes them feel more loved than a comment on their Facebook.

When was the last time you received a handwritten letter and when was the last time you gave one out?

20 GOING ON 30

3.21 AM.

3.21 AM, the lights are out, all I can hear is the sound of my typing, the fan moving, occasional planes flying past, and here I am, in my own comfort zone, typing this out.

20 years.

20 years have passed and as of today, I’m 20 years and 18 days old. Just a month ago, I was worrying about turning 20. 20, the decade where you achieve most of your life’s greatest milestones. You finish university, you get your first ever permanent job, hopefully get a Master’s, find a partner, actually think about getting married, get married, and most likely getting your own kids.   I was scared and excited for what is it come in the next decade, but I was too busy and caught up with that moment that I never stop to think. Stop to think what have I achieved in the past 20 years of my life, what do I want to achieve in the next 20 years, what do I hope to become, my choices, and my dreams.

In the past few years of my life leading up to university, I never questioned or hit life’s pause button to think what I actually want in my life. Bam Bam Bam. It came one after another. One exam done, hopefully get results so I can go for the best option available,  receive your results, go for the best choice given, and move on. I never thought about what I wanted to do and all I had to aim was: do well enough so I can go for the easiest route into university. And faster than I thought it would happen, university came. Results were received, applications were made, and I just went into whatever option was available for me, never thinking if that was what I really wanted.

One and a half years into university and turning 20, I think it is time for me to pause for a while.

If someone were to ask my what my dreams were, I would list these things down, amongst many others:

  1. Live/experience life in Los Angeles/Las Vegas
  2. Try my hand at acting, like serious and professional acting (hey, that’s why they’re called dreams right)
  3. Get married and have kids one day (I know, I know,  people talk about it is difficult holding a marriage together and kids are annoying and how they rather not get married)
  4. Live in a studio apartment
  5. Have my own ice cream parlor
  6. Be a writer (a short story writer, commentator, or a blogger)

And, if I could redo my life over, I would actually make decisions that would make me happy and make me feel good about what I am doing. If I could rethink my choices over, I would actually choose a university course that I would love rather than for the career prospects, the pay I’ll receive, how practical it is, etc.

I know, I’m only 20, and I still have a long way to go. But to be honest to myself, no matter how much I don’t want to face the truth, there are decisions which I have made which is going to affect me for the rest of my life and there are moments that I’ve lost pursing superficial stuffs (like getting a guy to notice me, rushing my revision so that I can get good results, trying hard to be popular, etc). And before I continue down this “wrong” route, here’s a reminder, especially to myself. Do not worry about making the wrong decisions, but have the courage to admit you’re wrong, stop it, and start over, before it’s too late. Do not be afraid to quit whatever you are doing now because it is not what you want to do and you’re not happy about it. Pursue your dreams, BOLDLY. Learn to not be too hung up on your wrong choices, your doubts, and your fears, but learn to let go and use them as stepping stones to help you achieve your dreams. Actually fight for what I want, not what the society demands for.

Who knows, things might change in this decade. I might actually fulfill some of my dreams, things might not go how I expected it to be, surprises might pop up along the way, and difficult times may come. And, surprisingly, I stumbled upon this post by wongfuphil. Who knows, maybe when I’m 30 I might also look back and think that getting married in this decade was all my teenage perception. Note-to-self: interact more with married people so 30-year-old Emily wouldn’t think the same way as 20-year-old Emily. Also, here, wongfuphil got his car when he was 20 which was 10 years ago, and here’s to me making memories and moments now which will carry through my life till I’m 30 and further.

4.20AM.

4.20 AM, the lights are out, all I can hear is the sound of my typing, the fan moving, occasional planes flying past, and here I am, in my own comfort zone, done with my first post, hoping more is to come, hoping this would help me occasionally reflect on my life, and not once in every 20 years.