“You can’t grow without acknowledging that we are all made up from the weirdness that we try to hide from the rest of the world.” (Jenny Lawson)
Hello!! Welcome to the first public public post on this blog. If you’re reading this I’m so happy you’re here!! I’ve been incredibly busy this Summer (and will continue to be after writing this so possibly no updates for around 2-3 weeks) which meant designing this blog was a very slow and difficult process, but I’m so excited to finally be able to get everything really properly out there on my own platform that I’ve worked so hard to create. It’s not perfect yet, there are things I’m thinking I’ll be changing in the future, but at the time of writing, this is A Swan In Tokyo.
If I kept going the way I was I’d have probably ended up moving into this mountain hole
Every single post made before this one was written while I had a “work in progress” wall over my home page to block visitors. It’s not even like Twitter where you tend to speak into the void 90% of the time; I was speaking into my own echo chamber, my words only written for me and me alone. Of course, now you can read them too – but take into consideration I had a lot of business I had to sort out at the time of writing so they’re a little intense. There’s a long, long time gap between the first post written on this blog and the second, and if you knew me well enough during that time you knew that it wasn’t all bluebells and roses. This blog wasn’t on my mind. Frankly, nothing was on my mind but holding “myself” together. It’s so, so difficult to act happy-go-lucky when you’re not being authentic about it, when you’re constantly fighting the goblin inside you that would prefer you to not do anything at all.
And I’m proud to say that as I sit here writing, I’m not troubled anymore. At least, it’s not overpowering. I have a very strong idea of who I am and my self-confidence hasn’t been this strong in possibly my whole life. It’s not 100% perfect, but then again, nothing really ever is. And I have made a pledge to myself to keep growing, and growing, and sharing, and understanding myself. And loving to spend time with myself. And helping others in their journey so they’ll be able to do the same & come into a greater appreciation of the gifts that others can provide in their very being.
This “before” era of A Swan In Tokyo is slowly/quickly coming to a close. It’s been so incredibly vital in getting me ready for the big year out to the other side of the world, because while I’m in Japan I’d like to tap more into writing about the physical experiences I’m having, the places I’m going, etc. which I haven’t been doing up to this point (that’s hoping that I’m not going to be pinned down by university work 24/7). I’ve had a lot of ideas, and there’s a glimpse of what I’d like to write in the post I wrote about Kyoto Garden, but I chose to not let any posts regarding other experiences I’ve been having develop into being. Because I wanted this “before” section to be focused almost entirely on me. For the first time in my life, I’m actually being totally and utterly self-focused, delving into the darkest, dampest, smelliest and scariest corners of my mind.
There is, of course, the question as to why I wanted the “before” era to be the super-Elsa-era, and one of the many answers to that question can be expressed using this example.
A dream I had on the 15th July:
I’m lying in bed in my imaginary house following my year in Tokyo. I want to invite my friends out for dinner. But I’m too scared to ask them. They have better things to do, I think. What if they say no, I think. Ultimately, I am so uninteresting – of course they will say no. I’m stuck, and I’m empty, and I don’t want to be alone, but I can’t leave the bed I’m lying on. And I think to myself, “I can’t believe this has happened again. You were meant to be getting better. Why couldn’t you find yourself? Didn’t your blog help you? Why did everything you tried so hard for turn out to be for absolutely nothing?”
I woke up sweating. My heart pounding. I know how easy it is for the wires to be cut and how suddenly it can happen, and to be honest, I was frightened that just by having this intense dream, all the progress I’d made to get better had vanished.
So what did I do? I quickly reread all the posts I made for this blog. The words that the me of the past had written instantly soothed me and I managed to get a grip of everything that suddenly became slippery again. I went through my diary, my scrapbook, I read a little of Crazy Rich Asians… and just like that, the damage was undone. It was by reading, especially by reading things written for me, about me, by me, that I was able to re-understand that, yes, the dream was just a dream, and yes, I am doing amazing at the moment.
I’m undeniably stronger. It’s amazing knowing that around this time next year, future me will be looking back at all the posts I’ve written, and I’ll be able to recognise just how much stronger I’ve become. There’s the phrase every journey has a destination. I find it’s far more powerful to flip that to every destination has a journey.
My flight to Japan has been booked for the 6th September, and I arrive at Narita Airport, Tokyo on the 7th September at 11am. The countdown has officially begun. Now, the only thing that truly needs to be ready is me. And my visa, too. And my documents. And a bunch of physical things. But mentally ready is the most undeniably important thing.
In any case, I am only looking forward.
Thank you for reading this and I hope you can stick around for the exciting things to come!!