Maternal Love

To be honest, I don’t think there’s any other love greater than maternal love. The feeling of knowing that your child was created from you and your loved one creates a bond stronger than that of friends and arguably family. Being a mother, you want to do everything you can for your child: to take care of them, love them, make sure they’re healthy, and to ensure they’ll always be happy.

But the problem with this kind of love is that it can become twisted. A lot of the time, mothers tend to confuse happiness with success and money. Sure they’ll say they just want you to be happy and that they’ll support any decision you make with your life, but in actuality they’ll probably back out on this and push you to do things you don’t want to do. I have a sister who didn’t really think she was academic nor athletic, but she knew she was good at taking care of children. Her decision was to become a social worker and possibly become a teacher or daycare worker. At first, my mother supported this while my sister was in high school, thinking she would change her mind about being a social worker. However, my sister stuck to this thought. After becoming a senior, my mother became worried for her. She started to push her to become a doctor, a nurse, or even an engineer. She was so fixated on the thought that you have to be a successful person with a lot of money when you grow up in order to be happy. And to be a “successful” person, you absolutely have to be working in the STEM field. Or so she thought.

So my sister went into college with a biology degree. She didn’t do so great, and ended up having to switch majors. What she chose was the sociology major. Seeing there wasn’t any other choice, my mother finally accepted this decision, although reluctantly. After watching all of this, I realized my mother had just gone through a complete circle. She went from “accepting” my sister’s decision, to rejecting it, to accepting it again. What was the point in rejecting my sister’s decision? If she could have seen that there was nothing wrong in majoring in sociology sooner, she could have saved so much money and time.

I don’t think my mother intended to hinder my sister or her happiness. She had the best intentions in mind, but her maternal love became twisted and made her think that success + money = happiness. A lot of mothers believe this for some reason. I really don’t believe that this is the case. So if you’re a mother, please rethink your decisions and don’t force your child to do what they don’t want to do. If they’re making the wrong decisions, then it’s fine and even encouraged to intervene. But choosing a certain life career is not a wrong decision, and your child can most definitely be trusted to make this decision on their own. It’s okay to try to help them and encourage them, but don’t be forceful about it.

 

Compassion

Why is it that we humans, as a whole, have the inability to control our emotions? Most of the time we are able to suppress our sympathies and concerns, that is, if they are related to other people. But when we are directly affected by the situation, it suddenly becomes a problem that we simply cannot avoid. Is it because we are self-centered creatures who only care for ourselves? Or is it because if we don’t emotionally ignore the problems of others, our primal nature to survive would be disturbed? If we were to get upset or depressed over every single thing that happened to another person, we most likely wouldn’t be able to go on in life and would live in a rather unstable way. At least, that’s how I feel.

However, I do not believe that it is a good thing to ignore the problems of others. What is more important than our primal nature to survive is our compassion for others. This is not a world created for only the fittest to survive. We’re meant to help others who are lagging in their lives, not kick them down and rise up to the top. That is not to say that we should not strive to be the best we can be. But say if in order to be the best, you have to sabotage others and use underhanded means. You would ultimately lose your dignity. Honestly, I can’t really see how that isn’t the same as ignoring your fellow companions in order to accomplish your goals. In doing that, you would be going against your conscience and would ultimately lose yourself in your greed and ambitions.

Sometimes I like to joke around with my friend, saying that I’d rather ignore her when she needs help with school in order to accomplish my goals. Sometimes I mean it. But in the end, I always try to help her so long as I’m not incredibly occupied myself.

If you’re having a bad day or you’re busy, you don’t need to go out of your way to help another person with their needs (although if it’s incredibly important, it’d be the best decision to help them or at least redirect them to another source of aid). However, at least try to do so every once in a while, or whenever possible. When you succeed in helping another person, there’s just an amazing sensation that you get. You feel accomplished and happy that you could be of use to them.

The only thing I ask is that you care for your friends or even for people whom you aren’t acquainted with. Don’t consume yourself in your everyday life, stuck in the same rut, not helping anyone and just keeping to yourself. It’s a lonely life doing that. If you don’t already, someday you’ll feel the happiness in giving yourself up to your compassion and love for others. It may sound corny, but I still do believe it’s true.

P.S. Yes, this blog post was incredibly similar to my previous one. However, with the problems going on this week, I felt that the return of this topic was rather appropriate.

The Cruelties of Human Beings

Before this past month, I used to think of war as a nonexistent thing, as if it was going on somewhere in the world and I was completely unaffected by it. During class, when learning about war I’d think, “Wow, only 100 people died? That’s so little.” because I compared it to the losses of other wars. The deaths occurring seemed more like a fictional story that never really happened.

Deep inside though I always knew how tragic even just one death in a battle was, especially to the people who knew that one person. However, because I don’t like to dwell on the unpleasant, I try to block it out by making it seem fake or unrelated to me.

So I must ask, why do we avoid the problems and tragedies of others? We say we would help them if we could, but how do we know there’s no way we can? How do we know it’s hopeless? To be honest, I don’t have the answer myself. Sometimes I pass off my unwillingness to help with indifference. Perhaps that really is the reason, although I hate to imagine how cruel I must be because of that. To ignore the problems of others just because I am indifferent, it feels terrible. I know to an extent I care about them and the things they’re going through. I feel sorry for them, even angry perhaps, but not angry or sorry enough to do anything.

That is the problem with the majority of us humans. We often say “I feel so sorry for you” or “I wish I could help”, and never do anything as a result. Although we care about others, we tend to ignore and forget about them and their problems because it makes us unhappy. Many of us only do something when there’s something in it for us. In example, say there’s a child whose parents have both just died and is now an orphan. You feel sorry for them and “wish you could help”, but quickly want to forget about them and move on. But then you realize that because you are a Junior or Senior in high school, colleges are looking for some role of leadership or contribution to society. So then you decide to find a couple to adopt that child, and to found a society to help fund for this child and for others who are having similar problems.

Many of us are like that, whether it be high schoolers, children, or adults. We who do nothing for others or only do what benefits us are no different from the person in this hypothetical situation. You may think, “How terrible this person is, to only help a child because it benefits their future role in society.” However, are you not the same to some extent? I believe many people have experienced this level of selfishness at least once in their life, and that most will not admit it and condemn others for their actions. I hope that someday I may contribute to the cause of opening others’ eyes, instead of lying around doing nothing and feigning ignorance over the fact that I am selfish and indifferent towards the problems of others. This may just end up being another “I wish I could help” scenario, but we shall see to what extent my goal will reach. I refuse to allow myself to be this idiotic any longer, and I hope you too will refuse this.

The Manipulation of Women

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A Work of Artifice

The bonsai tree
in the attractive pot
could have grown eighty feet tall
on the side of a mountain
till split by lightning.
But a gardener
carefully pruned it.
It is nine inches high.
Every day as he
whittles back the branches
the gardener croons,
It is your nature
to be small and cozy,
domestic and weak;
how lucky, little tree,
to have a pot to grow in.
With living creatures
one must begin very early
to dwarf their growth:
the bound feet,
the crippled brain,
the hair in curlers,
the hands you
love to touch.

Marge Piercy

To me, I believe this poem is trying to convey that women are capable of doing so many things, and are even able to surpass the capabilities of men. However, they are tied down by the expectations of society in their own little pot, the pot that regulates their lives and establishes rules that deform them into a perfect image. An object, so to speak. Women are expected and taught to be domestic, to concede to the demands of men. No, I’m not saying all women are taught this. But I do believe that up until now this has been a real problem and discrimination in the general population.

I was raised inside a traditional Asian family, where the males are the head of the house and the women simply listen to them with simple-minded thoughts. Do this, do that. Don’t think for yourself, don’t act outside of what I say. This was the general rule of how things went. I hated it. I didn’t want to be a domestic servant for my father and brother, but whenever I tried to speak out of what my father said I’d be shot down and then some. And then I’d look at my aunts and uncles who are 10-20 years younger, and who have an equal relationship between the men and women. Times are changing as the generations move on; I believe that is true. I believe that, at least in the area of where I live, women have more opportunities to freely express themselves and do as they please without discrimination now. However, I believe that many other women are still being oppressed within their traditional families, in which conditions are not changing as time unravels.

Why is this? From the very beginning, why were women viewed as the inferior of the human species? Why must we concede to the expectations of other men, or even other women? I honestly don’t understand, and nor do I understand why traditional families are not opening themselves up to the current times and changing their views and habits. Why must women be manipulated by the general expectations of society?

*Note: My family has mostly moved on from its traditional ways, and our past conditions are no longer a concern. I do not believe most women are being manipulated into the perfect image any longer, at least from my own experience. I simply want to know why women in the past were treated in such a way.

 

Cause Traffic is the Best Thing In the World, Right?

So on my way to class this week, I went down the usual streets and realized that I had been staying in place for several minutes. It took me 10-20 minutes to get through just one street, and when I finally arrived at the light I realized that there was a blockade. I still don’t really know what happened, other than that there were a few police cars up ahead and that’s why everything on the path to that area was blocked off. At first I was really angry and annoyed, but it gave me time to think and I had no tests nor quizzes that afternoon. So I began to relax!

Tests, quizzes, presentations, essays, studying, homework, volunteering, clubs. That’s all that’s EVER on my mind all throughout the week. Even during the weekends, I don’t really have time to myself.

So why think? Well it gives you time to organize things in your mind, re-evaluate your actions, prevent future mistakes from occurring, and it gives you a little “you-time”. No one can hear your thoughts, you don’t need to hesitate about anything. Your mind is your safe haven. However, it’s bad to have too many things running through your mind all at once, similar to how traffic comes about. What I’m trying to say is, don’t over-complicate things. ¬†Yes things seem bad at the moment, and you’ll get really angry and frustrated. However, there’s always a bright side at the end of the road and you can begin a new path. Even if you have a lot of things going on in your life at the moment, always remember to give yourself some you-time because hey, you deserve it. Everyone deserves a break every once in a while, so don’t push yourself too hard or else you’ll be stopped at a blockade and give up.

Struggling with Creative Art

Hey guys! So during class last week, we did a few creative activities. Since I was in a rut this week for a new topic, I decided to just re-post some of these drawings from my classmates. I thought they were really cool , and that you would all enjoy a nice change in pace. Unfortunately, none of these original arts are mine. I’ve never been an artistic person, and having been struggling with both being creative and being artistic all my life. Although it’s not like I’m the only one! So here you go, and enjoy!

Props to Chris

Props to Chris

Props to Linh

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Props to Timothy (This is my favorite picture)

Props to Sara

Props to Michelle

Props to Tiffany

Props to Aileen

Please remember that none of this art is mine; I’m not trying to steal credit from any of them. If you’d like to compliment the original artist, I can try to pass on the message (although I don’t really know most of the people mentioned in this post). And thanks for reading this week’s post!

Finding Your OTP

OTP – A one true pairing, typically from a novel, manga, anime, television show, or movie.

This MAY not be a problem for everyone reading this, but I certainly thought carefully about which (possible) couple could become my ultimate OTP, the one who no other couple could surpass in my mind. It’s taken all my life to finally find my own, but I have. Mr. Sydney Carton and Lucie Manette from “A Tale of Two Cities” will most definitely be my most favorite couple for a long, long time. In Book 2: The Golden Thread, Chapter 13 (page 156) Mr. Carton tells Lucie, “For you, and for anyone dear to you, I would do anything. If my career were of that better kind that was any opportunity or capacity of sacrifice in it, I would embrace any sacrifice for you and for those dear to you..think now and then that there is a man who would give his life, to keep a life you love beside you!”

Although Mr. Carton and Lucie never end up together, I truly do believe this would have been the most endearing and sweet couple ever. He would not only give up his life for her, but also for everyone dear to her. I don’t know very many people who would do that for the sake of their love or dearest one. It actually makes me feel very disappointed that there are not more couples in real life like this. I know a lot of people who will date someone for a month or so, break up, and start dating someone else within a short amount of time. I’m not saying all people are like this, but this is just based on what I have seen throughout my short life.

I also want to add for all you people who are into romantic settings, that there’s this nice video about which places are nice to go to for a first date (in California).

I really like how the guy in this video is trying his hardest to please his date. He didn’t spend a lot of money, yet also wowed her by going to places with a romantic setting (he didn’t pay to get into Disneyland, it was just the parking structure). Eating yogurt with your date is a good way to see if a girl is interested in you. If she hesitates to taste the yogurt from your spoon, then she might not like you. If she doesn’t hesitate, then hey what if she does? So on a first date, don’t spend a lot of money, go to places that will wow her, don’t set a fast tempo to the date and expect to get a kiss, and be a gentleman! Girls don’t like being rushed into getting into a serious and permanent relationship. Show her who you are first, and give her a taste of how being in a relationship with you will be like! The places you go to will really effect how she feels.