Thursday, August 17, 2006

Home and Back Again

I'm home.

Monday, August 14, 2006


"Is it getting better
Or do you feel the same
Will it make it easier on you
Now you got someone to blame

You say
One love
One life
When it's one need
In the night
It's one love
We get to share it
It leaves you baby
If you dont care for it"

So ends this chapter of my life.

Somewhere through the mess of recent events, I hear a small voice. It is a familiar voice, one I had not heard in years. It is a voice of breathtaking clarity and aching beauty.

That voice is me.

It is happiness only found by following your heart, whatever the consequences. It is hope that drives away despair. It speaks with every tear shed, every moment you never get back. It reminds you that pain, like love, is necessary to grow. The voice is so clear. I travelled 8000 miles to find it. It was always with me.

I hear you now.

"Did I disappoint you?
Or leave a bad taste in your mouth?
You act like you never had love
And you want me to go without

Well it's too late
To drag the past out
Into the light
We're one
But we're not the same
We get to carry each other
Carry each other

Unconditional love is impossible because we are not perfect. All we can do is to love, in what way we can. Sometimes it hurts. I understand now that love is not about consequences, a happy ending or a life together forever.

Love is it own reward.

I have no regrets loving my wife in the way I did. I want so much to blame her condition, hate her for making me cry and for cutting me out of her life. I cannot. You never really stop loving someone. You just learn to live without them, and that's okay. I will love until it hurts, because there will always be more, until you decide there is no more.

I will love again.

"Have you come here for forgiveness
Have you come tor raise the dead
Have you come here to play Jesus
To the lepers in your head
Did I ask too much
More than a lot
You gave me nothing
Now it's all I got
We're one
But we're not the same
We hurt each other
Then we'll do it again"

I have no regrets coming here. I've grown in ways I did not expect, in directions I never thought I'd take. I am grateful for this unexpected detour in this vast journey of life. The pieces of my life finally fit together. With it, I can finally move on.

I go where my feet take me.

In three months, I get my California Bar Exam results. Whatever happens from there, happens from there. I may end up anywhere. I don't know and that's okay.I will always have memories of the one amazing year I spent at the Bay.

My voice is yours.

"You say
Love is a temple
Love a higher law
Love is a temple
Love the higher law
You ask me to enter
But then you make me crawl
And I can't be holding on
To what you got
When all you got is hurt"

Who among us has never suffered heartache, disappointment or failure? Somehow, we live. The pain dares us to be better than what we are. The voice tells us we still hope, dream and love. The tears remind us we have been hurt, and it's okay to grieve.

My life is yours.

In our pain and tears, we are connected. In our hopes and dreams we are connected. Our lives speak of many events, some hurtful, some wonderful, but it speaks in only one voice. I hear that voice now.

It is me. It is us.

"One love
One blood
One life
You got to do what you should

One life
With each other

One life
But we're not the same
We get to carry each other
Carry each other."

- U2, "One"

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Almost Home

One more weekend, a Monday, then I fly off Tuesday. I return August 17th, Singapore Time. Standing offer to meet up with fellow bloggers. Drop me a mail at khaycelim-at-gmail-dot-com.

The last week has been a slow, drawn out process of watching the apartment disintegrate. The apartment is now one tv, two desks and a computer - almost like the first horrid week I spent here, only in reverse. Sometimes, I see the empty space and I break down and cry.

I worked so hard to put all this together. This is much much harder than I thought. The only thing keeping me going now is that I'm coming home in 3 days. I'm counting them down.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

The Story

UPDATE: If you've followed a link here, I ask that you read the entire story before passing any judgment.

A year ago, my life-changing journey began. Today, I write about how it ended.

I write this for whatever wisdom my readers can take from it.


My wife was bulimic and anorexic. I never knew this. Not until 3 weeks ago.

She has not exhibited the symptoms over the 6 years I have been with her. She has her methods of keeping these symptoms under control. What I didn't realise until 3 weeks ago was that bulimia and anorexia are themselves symptoms of a deeper condition.

I have no name for this deeper condition. I only know how it works. It feeds of healthy self-respect people should have of their bodies, excreting guilt and shame. It whispers dark seductive thoughts of how you can be the image of what you are bombarded with, and the teeny little sacrifices you have to make, but they are worth it, right? It is the dark monster formed of objectification and false images.

I know this condition well. More importantly, I know how ill-suited I am to tend to this condition. My ex was also anorexic and bulimic. She did terrible things to get my attention. Once, she tore her wrist open with a fork. "It's the only control I have", she told me.

I set myself up against this unquenchable thirst and failed the first time round. I lost my ex-girlfriend's attention, and she moved on to another man in very short order. I grew bitter.

When my wife asked about my ex, I told her all the horror stories, never knowing that my wife had gone through something similar. She was scared by my stories, and how bitter I had grown. She felt she couldn't tell me. She tried for 6 years to work herself through this and she failed. I don't blame her. I saw the same symptoms but I didn't understand them. Without understanding them, I was doomed to repeat the mistakes of my past.

And so it was. During the 6 years, I hurt her badly, and I never knew.

I dearly want to work through this with her. I love her deeply. I still do. Being the cause of her pain, however, I cannot. She cannot help but see me as a source of pain. She cannot heal with me beside her.

Alone, she might stand a chance.

Hence, I wait. At a determined point in the future, we will sit down again and decide whether we can heal. If it ends, it ends arbitrarily. We will have our closure.


Thus ends my journey. I return to Singapore for three months. Even if I get back together with my wife after three months, it will be to face the future together. If I face the future without my wife, then at least, I face it with a clean slate and hard-won wisdom. I am content.

This is only one of many reasons behind the seperation. I choose to write about this one because it is the most poignant. If I cannot avoid my past, I can at least prevent someone else's future. More importantly, this is my attempt to make people understand: The monster claims no single victim, because it hurts us too.

I refuse to be a victim. Today, I take the fight to the monster.