Monday, May 31, 2010

My To-Do and Not-To-Do Lists After A Painful Break Up/Divorce - Part I

Since I have just completed my program that concentrated on relationship, marriage and family, I think I should write more articles that related to my field of study. I choose to write some of the things to do and not to do after a painful break up due to my previous personal experience as well as most of my friends are facing the similar challenges after a painful break up. They either simply follow their friends' or family's words blindly or they suffer so much and do not know what to do. I always wanted to write something about break up but for some reasons, it took me forever to start writing it. I call this "my" to-do and not-to-do lists because they are my personal opinions, with no empirical research base and no quotes from famous psychologists. You may find these are helpful or you may not and it is totally fine.

The reason I add the word "painful" before the word "break up", is because break up, divorce or lost of a love one could be very painful. Why does it hurt so much? I read a paragraph written by a famous relationship expert, John Gray, and I think the reason he gave best explain this question. He said when we faced other disappointments and injustices in our daily lives, it is love that comforts the soul and makes our pain bearable. However, when love is lost, there is no way to find relief. Most often we are not aware of how much we rely on this support until it is taken away. I guess that's the reason why it hurts so much.

1. Stay away from substances or any other addictive behavior.

Whoever know me well will know how much I like to drink. Of course, I am not an alcoholic, not even close. In critical time like this however, we have to be extra cautious of not allowing ourselves to use alcohol or any other substances to avoid the painful or uncomfortable feelings. Be mindful and not allow ourselves to drink alone. This is the time when people get addicted easily. For some other people, instead of consuming substances, they will run away by involving too much in certain activities or behaviors, such as playing computer or video games, gambling or even jump into another relationship right away.

Personally, I would like to pair alcohol with pleasure feelings instead of miserable memories. Therefore I do not allow myself to lock myself in my room, thinking that I am a victim and then get drunk all by myself and do something stupid. So do you, don't do that.

2. Do not contact him/her

After a break up, you suddenly live your life all by yourself. I am not only referring to physically alone, but also emotionally. When you were in love, even though he or she is far away physically, you do not feel the pain because you know you still have him or her. After the break up however, even though he or she is right next to you, you know that you are alone. There are times you will feel the urge of wanting to find him/her, call him/her, see him/her. It is completely normal. Nevertheless, this is not the time to follow your instict. Let me give you a real life example and you will understand why.

A pair of couples were in a relationship for many years and broke up for many years and still cannot let go (when I said many years, I mean more than 3 years). They still constantly calling, emailing, facebooking, msn, sending gifts to each other ever since they "broke up" from the very beginning. No wonder they cannot let go.

Please do not take me wrong, I am not saying after a relationship is over, the couples cannot be friends anymore. I do want to be friend with my ex boyfriend and there is no doubt he is a good and kind hearted guy. However, I know that I am cheating myself and him if I said I can be friend with him right away.

When we still have feelings with our former partners, we will unknowingly do something to harm the so-called "friendship". For the previous examples that I provided, I can see how their actions of constantly contacting each other has caused counterproductive in their lives. Whatever they are doing now, is to stop each other from finding their true loves in their lives. They are stopping each other to move on in their lives. The intention of their actions has changed from love to revenge. I said so because when the man has finally had a significant other, the girl started calling more frequently and do some other things to hold on to that guy. Unfortunately, that man started feeling confused, thought that he still love her and fall into the trap.

Their story reminded me of one of my little clients. He drew a heart shape, colored it half black and half red and said, "This is my dad's love, it is bad love." Yes, their loves have turned bad. In fact, I do not think they love each other so much because if they do, they will do whatever mean to be together. As I remember the guy told me when I asked him what kept him from marrying her, "Because our love is not deep enough to make me want to marry her."

The last thing you can do for your love (if the relationship does not work out) is to let go. Let go, is really a precious gift of love. When you know you two are not able to commit to each other, it is time to really let go. That is the reason why I say, DO NOT CONTACT HIM/HER. What is the intention of continuously contacting your ex partner anyway? To let him or her know that I still love you and I cannot let go? And then what? Investing another 5-10 years to play the distance game and stopping each other to move on with their healthy lives?

Instead, I will do this: Dear, I love you. Too bad things do not work out and the last thing I can do for you, is to let you go and set you free. It is definitely not easy. However, I am willing to do this because this is the last gift of love that I can give you. I sincerely hope that you will find the love you want in your life. I feel sorry and sad that the person is not me but that's OK, as long as you get what you want in your life and stay happy and healthy.

Perhaps we do not need to drill into the topic whether or not we should be friends with our ex partners. Out of 6 billion people in this planet, I believe you will find the friendship that you want from others. It is not necessary has to be your ex. Perhaps leave your ex alone will be the best thing to do, to avoid further confusing him/her or backfire your current relationship someday.

--- to be continued

P/S: This post is about after a break-up, when things seriously cannot work out. I am not telling you to simply let go your love. Please do not expect that an ideal relationship should be no conflict or argument. If you think he/she is the one, do not simply let go but treasure the fate that brought you two together. As Shakespeare once said, (well I am not directly quoting his "Shakespearish" words but simply translated from the previous Chinese version that I posted) "If that's something you should treasure, please never let go. But if that's something you should let go, please do not turn back and cherish." Therefore please do not affected by this post when you have argument with your lovely partner.

Go to Part II

Go to Part III

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Closing A Chapter of My Life

Finally, I closed another chapter of my life on May 30th, 2010. I finished my very final Clinical Competency Examination 42-page paper last night and then completed editing the paper today at 2.30pm. This is something that I should mark down in detail. I turned in my paper and declaired that I am officially done with my Master Program.

This is Memorial long weekends for Americans because Monday is holiday. Since I have finished all my paper, I am so free now. Knowing that Monday is holiday for me, I started to think what should I do when I do not have any more freaking paper to worry about. All my friends seem to have their own activities or other obligations to busy with. Then I realized I need to learn to make my alone day meaningful and enjoyable.

After I turned in my paper today, I looked at the weather outside and decided that I should get out from my room and do something. I was thinking of going to beach and bike but then I figured it might be very crowded since most of the people in this planet love beach. Then I decided to go to catch a movie nearby. When I arrived the shopping place, I couldn't help myself but stepped into those shops that displayed beautiful things. I like to give myself some treats after certain incidents are over (those incidents could be after I put in a lot of effort in certain projects, or after some painful experiences) I had both of the incidents happened and therefore I definitely have valid reasons to treat myself better. (muahahaha...)

My friends told me that I look good in high heels. One of my friends even said, "Zoe, you really should wear more high heels. You are becoming a career woman now." This statement blushed my face because I know how lazy I am to dress myself up. However, she is right, I really need to. Although I hate to admit this, but I am short... Therefore I got myself a pair of high heels. I also get myself 2 cloths, 2 rings, 1 body mist, 1 pair of shorts and some smell-good body lotion. Ah! What a beautiful day! LOL!

After feeling tired of shopping, I headed to the theatre and watch the 3D "Shrek 4"movie. I seriously have done some damage today, which I should not and do not usually do. Despite the feeling of guilty, I tried to persuade myself that this is just some treats for myself.

Coincidently, I have watched 2 movies for yesterday and today that sent the same message to the public. I watched the comedy movie "Click" last night and then 3D "Shrek 4" today. "Click" was a movie produced on 2006. This comedy made me laugh and cry and I have to say, it is a good comedy because I hardly found meaningful comedy shows. Both "Shrek 4" and "Click" carried the same message to the public, which is -- treasure what you have with you now.

Both Michael Newman (Adam Sandler) and Shrek do not see what they have and only realized that they have lost the most important things in their lives after they finally lost them. I have seen this happen in real life so frequently. In these 2 movies, they have happy endings since those are movies. They have the chances to learn and undo the damages that they have made. They were given opportunities to go back and fix the problems. Sadly, this won't happen in real life. What happened, happened. No matter how badly we want to go back to the past, it just won't happen. Then I saw most of the people sank into deep regret and mourning the past, and continue to mistreat the people beside them.

In fact, the regret of life is that we cannot turn back the clock and undo what has been done. However, the beauty of life, is also that we do not need to turn back the clock and reexperience what we have experienced. Instead of keep turning back our heads and feeling sorrow or remorse and mourning the past, I will see what I have with me now and treasure them whole heartedly.

Well, not to give lecture here but just would like to share my thoughts after watching some meaningful movies that are inspiring. I enjoyed my beautiful Sunday and I will want to write more before this remarkable May is over. The next article that I planned to write on is "My To-Do and Not-To-Do Lists After A Painful Break Up". Hopefully it will complete by tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Beautiful Life, Beautiful Me

I thought what left in my world was darkness and sunlight was yet to come;
Then I realize, I just forgot to open my eyes.

I thought I need to treasure what I have in my palm and do not simply let go;
Then I know, I can simply open up my arms and enjoy what this beautiful world has to offer.

I thought these were the tears for love;
Then I realize, those were just the evidence of lost in a silly competition.

I thought what was wrong with me;
Then I found out, I just temporarily cover up the wisdom part of myself

I thought I was not beautiful and good enough;
Then I aware, only those who are wise enough have the wisdom to see my bright shining light.

I thought I have reached the limit;
Then I understand, there are still a lot of powerful potential in me are waiting to be discovered.

I made a wish in this new year that I wanted to transform to a new me;
Now I know that this transformation has happened in this beautiful May.

Thank you God, I know everything happen for a reason.
Thank you, for helping me to become a better me.

Friday, May 21, 2010




   你也寂寞,世界上每个人都寂寞,只是大家的寂寞都不同 吧。



我从来没有去想面 具下面是一张怎样的面容,
















    每个人一生之中心里总会藏着一个人,也许这个人永远都不会 知道,
    无论在什么时候,只要被提起,或者轻轻的一碰,就会隐隐作 痛。






Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Recently I went back to my blog archives and read some of my earlier posts. I am glad that I started blogging 3 years ago. I have to thank one of my friends who encouraged me doing so. And, I am amazed by some of my previous Chinese posts, especially the one that I wrote for my little brother on April 2009. I realize that now I am not able to write like that anymore. Not to praise myself here, but I know my own writing "style". If I wasn't able to capture the moment or wait till next day to write the article, I am sure this article will not exist. I am glad I was able to grab the touching moment and wrote down the touching feelings.

Most of the time, strong feelings will come and hit me during night time. That is the time when I become most productive. I used to go to bed not earlier than 2am. However, as time pass and I am now aging. Or perhaps due to my working schedule, I now go to bed no later than 12.30am. Big difference huh! I am telling myself here, I will not stop blogging. I can become less productive when busy schedule not allow me to invest too much time writing here but I definitely should not stop blogging. Perhaps someday, I should write in Chinese again.

I remember I read one of my friends' blog and she described her blog as a garden. She treats every article in her blog as the plants in her garden and she treasures every single one of them. Then one day, a man came in to her garden and then fall in love with her, because of the articles in her garden let him knows her better. It sounds like a romantic fiction story but it's a true story. I am not fantasizing that this will happen to me and definitely not my motivation of blogging. Nevertheless, I treasure the articles in my blog just like the way she does. This is especially true when occationally I read my blog archives.

Time to get back to work on my CCE. After this month, after this freaking May, I am all free! (hopefully) How about a couple more small trips before go back home? I will think about that. (*wink)

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Random Update: My Repeating Life

I think writing blog is good. At least I can keep track of my life. And 1 interesting thing that I noticed, is that I am kind of repeating my life this year. I am not repeating it at the exact same day, but it's kind of close.

I remember last year I was bitten by the spider and then needed to go to get medicine in the middle of the night, since I could not sleep at all and my whole body turned red and itchy. Last night, I needed to get the coughing and mucus control medicine at 1am, since I feel my chest started feeling more and more uncomfortable due to coughing. And now, I feel the terrible sorethroat came back to say hi to me again. Hmmm...

Let's talk about something memorable. I visited San Diego for the first time ever last year, during the end of April. I believe it was April 25 when I checked back my blog archive 2009. I went to the same flower field, Carlsbad Ranch, again this year on May 2nd. The flowers are still beautiful and I went to strawberry picking again.

Then I look at the other posts, I know that I am going to repeat some of other "routine", like going back home next month. I went back home last year on early August. This year, I am going home earlier and longer. Hmm.. I just feel like writing something to remind myself in the years ahead. Now I feel like my eyes are heavy, even though I have slept for almost whole day today.

Getting sick when I need to rush the paper really isn't a fun thing. And why am I still blogging now instead of writing my darn paper? I guess because my brain can't think of the serious thingy of my paper but can jot down small things that happened in my life, those repeating things. Years and years later when I trace back, at least I know long time ago, certain things happened and repeated. My brain is just too limited to remember all these things and so I need the aid of words to remind me, perhaps those pictures too.

Good night Mr. Moon.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Holding Hands vs Making Love

I love this article that shared by one of my friend's friend on FB. I don't know the author but still I would like to give credit to him/her. It is a simple article, but talking about what is exactly in my mind. Thank you for whoever writing it, and good job writing this. I would like to translate this article, to those my "banana" friends or whoever prefer to read in English. Of course, excuse my language error, since English is not my first language and this is the first time I involve in translation work.

A friend of mine tole me that she and her boyfriend have been in a relationship for a year. They just holding hands but never kiss.

我問她現在是西元幾年? 她告訴我是 2009,
I asked her, "Do you know what century is it now?" She said, "2009."

This is not the first time she is in a relationship, neither does she is a virgin. However, she is willing to hold her boyfriend's hand for a year and not rushing into kissing.

There was a girl stated in her article, "The guy would hold her hand when crossing the street,

... partying and watching horror movies. He told her that holding hand is important."

The heart touching part of a relationship really has to do with holding hands.

When we hold the hand of our lovers for the first time, we are nervous and shy.

剎那間,彷彿正式宣告了:「 我們在一起! 」
From that moment, as if we are telling the world, "We are together!"

Perhaps our hearts will stop beating because of the excitement.

When two people walking on the street with different pace, the partner would always remember to give his hand to her, giving her the signal to hold his.

The feeling is warm and touching.

When two people go to a gathering, they hold each other's hands under the table.

They do not need to look into each other's eyes but the warmth could be easily sent through the palm to the partner and keep he/she feeling secure.

There are some guys who will use their right hands to hold their girls' left hands while driving.

The hand of the partner became a heater especially during winter.

不管有多冷,即使零下 10 度,都可以向他取暖。
Even the weather is below 30 F, you can still fell warm and comfy from holding his hand.

When grow up however, the process of the relationship has been speed up.

The importance of holding hand is being ignored.

You may feel it is easy to hold someone's hand, or you may think it is not important at all.

The relationship is no longer started from holding each other's hands.

It maybe started from a kiss,

It maybe started from making love.

We may also do all of the above, but still do not love him/her.

I saw some people who are willing to intimately make love with their partners on the bed but refuse to hold each others' hands in the public.

We are now so used to the complicated relationship that involving sex,

but we ignore the simplest thing -- holding hands.

Or maybe we are not ignoring it, we just do not think it is important.

Holding hand indeed is the simplest, yet the hardest sexual relationship.

We could easily hold somebody's hand but hardly make love with one.

In contrast, we can also easily make love with someone but can hardly hold his/her hand.

We learned to protect ourselves in a relationship and therefore we reserve in giving. In other words, we are not willing to give too much to avoid getting hurt in a relationship.

We thought of the complicated problems in a relationship and we forgot the simplest meaning of true love.

There are times I am touched by the old couples who holding each other's hand and walking on the street.

How many people in your life are willing to hold your hand and walk with you even after you get older and can't walk anymore?

我指的是陪伴你一生的 「 好牽手 」,
I am talking about your life partner that wants to hold your hand,

who still willing to be by your side, hold your hand and give you strength even after you get old, sick and can't walk anymore.

I kept smiling when I looked at the old couples.

And sometimes my eyes turned red.

I thought making love is more intimate.

The process of the relationship used to be:

Holding hands, hugging, kissing, getting nude, then making love.

在現今答案卻是: 不是!真的不是的!
However, the relationship nowadays has changed.

Some people will first make love, then hold hands; or start with kissing, then holding hands.

Nevertheless, if towards the end they are able to love each other, the sequence in the process is not that important.

There are some people who willing to make love with you intimately but unwilling to hold your hands in the public.

The moments that can touch people's heart, is not making love with your love one,

but are the moments when your partner is holding your hand.

It is regardless whether it's on the road, in a car or on the bed.

That's the heart warming moment and could touch someone to the deepest.

And that moment, is the happiest and joyful heartwarming moment.


If love could be that simple, then holding hand definitely is more important than making love.

I hope you enjoy this post.

P/S: I feel that my first piece of translation work sucks! Well, as long as you can understand. LOL! But yea, I love this article. It basically voice what is in my mind. I remember feeling so touch when I received a message saying, "I will wait for you and believing that someday, you are willing to open your heart and hold my hand..."

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The Sweets, sweet!

I came home from Yoga class and felt so hungry. I then went to the kitchen and dig the fridge for some left over food that I have the night before. The mother was lying on the couch, watching drama and heard me. She then woke up and asked me to have some of the soup and rice that she cooked. I said yes, since I was really hungry and yes, I am craving for home cooked food.

I started losing my voice and have sore throat this morning when I woke up. I think probably because of the Korean BBQ cuisine that I have the night before caused it. The mother heard my unusual voice and heard me coughing. After knowing my situation, she walked away and came back with 2 sweets and said, "This is good for coughing and your throat."

Sob sob... This is how sweet the family that I am living with now. Thank you auntie, you are truly sweet :')
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