Christine’s Tea Room

My Grasp on Life before my 23rd Birthday
by Christine Chen -- January 28th, 2013

(continued from My Stressful Life)

My first survey attendant is my friend H, who was worried about me and said we can talk about it, maybe with some beer. H is a PhD student in political science, and he had his undergraduate major in electrical engineering, minor in political science. He is a passionate person who was involved in political protests on media monopoly, convocation rights, and parliament supervision in Taiwan. I invited him to my place and prepared two traditional Taiwanese appetizers for him: spicy dried-tofu and chicken slices with scallion and spice, both served cold, excellent with beer. My friend showed up on time, and brought two pineapple cakes, which are famous Taiwanese desserts, for me as a gift.

I started my survey. The first question I asked was “I remembered you mentioned recently that you feel stressful when you’re not following up the discussion in class. How do you deal with it?”

“Well” he said, “Even though I don’t know every issue they were talking about, but I can keep up with them, just need time. Also, I know my where my strengths are.”

Well, he also told me that he put his head in the books five to eight hours every day in the library. There’s something I can learn, more studying and less TV.

Here comes the second question, “What do you think or hope your value is to this world?”

He answered, without any hesitation “I hope to bring happiness to my family, my parents, my wife, and those people I love, and make contribution to the society, mostly by enforcing social justice.”

Yes, how can I forget this important consideration that if we’re uncertain of our role in the world at large, at least we can do something to make the people we love happy? The idea is simple but often forgotten or ignored when our brain is obsessed with other things such as vexation or anxiety.

I felt much better then, and continued to ask him my last question, “I feel bad after realizing that the motivation for me to move on is no longer passion, but more like reality. What should I do?”

He gave me a smile, and said “It’s normal, no need to feel bad at all. You start to feel pressure from getting jobs and paying bills because you’re stepping in another stage in life, which is called independence.”

It was a BIG relief for me, knowing everything is still on track and that I am stepping on a new stage as my 23rd birthday is approaching. Well, I might be making a fuss over a trifling matter, but I’m a S-type person so steadiness is good for me. Sometimes we are feeling panic and scared about the things that are uncertain or things that are going to happen in which you have no control over. But in fact, what hampers us from moving on is fear itself.  Once we take a step forward to clarify what is lying ahead on our future paths — or at least, what we hope is lying ahead — our fears don’t seem so terrible anymore because we can prepare for them. These are old words I’ve heard so many times, but it has never before rang so true to me.

1 Comment

  1. Austin
    Jan 31, 2013

    good article

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