After Electric Daisy Carnival 2014, my friend David (he's from Virgina) happened to cross the borders of Las Vegas to Orange County the very next day. Since he was in the area, we somehow decided to spontaneously spend an entire 12 hours together. First, I took him to run a few errands with me, we stopped by Irvine so that he can try a popular dessert place there; meanwhile, he never once complained. A true trooper. On our way to an arts and craft store, he briefly mentioned to me about wanting to take a nice walk around a park, but I outwardly dismissed the idea. It was only our first time hanging out and I did not feel comfortable enough to be completely alone with a stranger in a park.
Anyway, throughout the day, we managed to break the ice by exchanging stories with one another. Most of them were about interpersonal relationships, health, family, and our future. He told me about the things he learned from his travels and why he turned down Harvard Business School in order to create his own company. Needless to say, I was inspired by him. Although I have met thousands of people, it is still rare for me to be completely infatuated with someone, but there was David. And I was totally infatuated by him, but not in a romantic way. We shared similar beliefs and he was just so much smarter than I am. At one point, I even thought to myself, "Holy shit. This is what it's like to be around someone who is just down right brilliant." On top of that, David was also very in tune with his spirituality, a quality I found to be extremely intriguing. As the day went on, our topics for discussion grew denser and before I knew it, a vulnerable side of mine began to unraveled. It felt extremely therapeutic. So therapeutic. There's almost nothing more beautiful than finding a person who looks at you and sees all of you. That person for me happened to be David, one of my big bro's fraternity brother. I could probably go on all day, listing all of these wonderful qualities about him, but I'll just leave that for another day.
After getting dessert, I drove him back to my house and told him to wait in the car since I had to pick something up. Later on, I walked back out and asked if it was okay for us to stop by Walmart because I had a couple of items I still wanted to return. He politely agreed. I could tell he was exhausted from our day's festivities so I told him to adjust his seat and take a short nap. I'll do the driving. Ten minutes later, he woke up and looked out of the window.
"This is not Walmart," he said....looking awfully confused.
"Yeah, I know. I wanted to take you to my favorite park."
He turned to me and gave me the brightest smile. "Wow, you surprised me. This is amazing."
David didn't know this at the time, but that was the first time I have ever done something spontaneous for someone. Initially, I was skeptical; however, the more I got to know him, the more fond of him I became. It's crazy to look back and pinpoint the beginning of a friendship and ours just happened to form on some random summer afternoon.
We then spent the next hour and a half walking around the park and talking about habits, books, and more spiritual practices. At the end of the day, he asked me to do one thing. "Khanh, I want you to spend a day without distractions. No technology, no agenda, nothing. And in a month's time, I'm going to check back with you and remind you to do it." I stood there in shock. While I am known to be able to keep myself in full composure, David wasn't buying any of the bullshit and facade. He saw my restlessness and knew better. Because of that, I am forever grateful.
A month later, he sent me a reminder text. And of course, knowing me, I never did it. I never took that day off.
Flash forward a couple of months aka today--- I was having one of those usual deep conversations with my good friend Emily when she stopped mid way and told me, "Take yourself on dates, have a night in where you don't talk to anyone, me included. Go explore somewhere foreign, admire your surroundings, but do it all on your own. I want you to try it and it's hard because you're always surrounded by people and you're always making time for other people but you need a day for just you. and I really mean it.
Khanh only. Pay attention to you. Treat yourself. You of all people deserve it. You are more than worthy of giving the love to others to yourself. Even if it's just for a day."
I nearly bursted out in tears. These days, I always feel as if I'm being tugged and pulled. So many expectations and stresses. Don't get me wrong, I thrive on these two things. I truly do. However, I've lived with the notion that I must always remain present in people's lives. My friend needs me. My mom needs me. My brother needs me. He needs me. However, I can't recall the last time I got to spend an entire day by myself. It has been two and a half years. But you guys...I've lived an extremely exciting life. I have friendships, romance, struggles, and heartbreaks. I've seen and done a lot of incredible things and I'm so fortunate for every opportunity that has been presented to me. But quite frankly, I am also in dire need of some quality time to further breathe, reflect, and meditate. Like David said, 'Simply block out the noise and allow myself to feel.'
All of my guys friends laughed at me when I told them that I wanted to be a grandma for awhile, but little did they know that I meant every word. From now until I'm ready to get back onto my mojo, no more music festivals, no more dating, and no more late nights. It's about time I give myself that break I rightfully deserve. Oh, goodness...it's already 2 AM so much for sleeping early.
Namaste. I'll write to you soon.