It will only get better

Wherever you are, you are not alone.

There is nothing new under the sun. Whatever is, had been, and will be.

I remember coming across this question once “If money was not an issue, what would you rather do?” The answer for me was “To write”.

I’ve been wanting to write for the longest time.

Forget about all the reasons why I’ve kept putting it off.

I’m here now. So let’s roll.

I was at this nail salon last Sunday and met a young Asian girl named Lilian, 20 years of age. Lilian’s parents have both worked in Taiwan. I was born in Taiwan and my parents still live there. So we immediately connected.

Soon enough we started telling each other stories about ourselves.

Lilian left her country to come to Australia in search of a better life and education. Me being a mother of 4 children all close to her age, 17 to 20, and giving her a glimpse of my back ground, helped her feel comfortable enough to open up to me and share some of her challenges.

I left home when I was 13. My parents bought a house in Los Angeles next to the biggest Buddhist temple in the Northern Hemisphere, then sent me to a Catholic boarding school in the small town of Ojai, just between Ventura and Santa Barbara, California.

From then onward, I have never really “lived” with my parents again. We’ve pretty much built our relationship over telephone calls and the occasional once a year visit. There was a period of 4 years during which I only saw them once, between my divorce due to adultery on my part and hospitalisation due to depression. They were ashamed of my divorce and did not want me to go back to my home town in Taiwan, nor could they bear the thought of visiting me in Perth, a place of too much grief to them.

I think at the time, my ex-in-laws, who were at least. gracious to me on the surface, actually took in more consideration at the time, of my child sexual abuse by a close family friend and the fact that I was forced to be engaged at 17 to their son; that I had to give up my “American Dream” of living a life of Riley as a college brat and come all the way to Perth in Western Australia, an unknown destination to all of my friends in L.A..

My story was going to get worse, then it got better, and better, because I got better.

But for now, let’s get back to Lilian.

I got Lilian. I understood her, her struggles, puzzles, delusions. I had been in a foreign country with no family of my own. I had had to support myself without help. We exchanged phone numbers and I told her that if at any time, she felt like she needed to talk to someone, she could call me.

I didn’t have that. After I got divorced, I did have a few, very few, people that I could talk to. But no one could get me. Almost no one knew what to say nor what to do, including people at the church.

I met Jesus and accepted Him when I was 18 after I came to Perth. He brought me under His wings. After all that I’ve been through, I’d still say He is still my Lord, my best friend.

Looking back now, it makes total sense. I know if I had not been through my journey, Lilian’s story would mean nothing to me. I’d smile and just say “Thank you for sharing. Good luck with everything”. She probably wouldn’t have shared anything with me in the first place.

This is not me thinking “Thank you Lord, for giving meaning to my suffering”.

I’ve done my searching and arrived at a place where I now think, actually, I don’t need to attach a meaning/reason to everything, maybe some things, but not everything.

Sometimes, it’s okay to have no reason. It’s okay to look at something as it is and just deal with it. If there is a reason, it is okay if it comes later. Just do what you have to do NOW to help you stay happy and healthy NOW, not when you have the reason or the meaning.

I wish someone could have told me that. I wish someone could have taught me years ago that it is okay to feel confused, hurt, disappointed, self-pitied, but don’t feel bad or stupid about it. Don’t struggle. Learn to be aware, to communicate better, to accept who you are and where you are. Embrace yourself and your feelings; feel the pain, but don’t spend too much time lingering either. There is a solution for every problem. Change is possible. Be patient. Be gentle with yourself. You are already so amazing to have come this far. It is okay. Baby steps. You are what you believe, and you will get to where you want to be, if you really WANT to. The power IS WITHIN you. God didn’t create us in His image so we can be timid.

I wish someone could have told me “It will only get better from here. You are gonna make it. I know. You are not alone. I have been there, I know what it’s like. Please don’t waste too much time feeling sorry for yourself. The world is so much bigger out there. Your problem though is real, is really, insignifican, compared to the rest of the Universe. Trust me, it will get better. ”

I wish someone could have told me all that, in my face, looking into my eyes.

I wish someone could have been Jesus to me in flesh.

Yes, each of us has a different journey to explore on our own, but I know I could really have saved some time if I had been told earlier.

My hope is not to help you live a risk nor a mistake free life, but to help you shorten your time of misery and move on to the bigger things.

Well, Lilian did text me to meet me at a café soon.

I am writing now because my encounter with her has finally pushed me out of my comfort zone.

I hope you know, that whatever challenge that you may be facing, you are not alone. You may have had misfortune, mistake, mishap in your life but the same YOU will make it better, make it big, make yourself right again.

The truth is, you are bigger than all of your problems. Focus on how to stay healthy and happy. If you are healthy and happy, there is nothing that you cannot do. It will only get better because you choose to make it better. Like my seemingly sad story, it’s not sad anymore, but happy. I am happy now.

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