Monday, January 27, 2014

Die with memories, not dreams

The above quote gave me a deep insight and inspiration about what I want to do with the rest of my life. It is true though, if one day I die, I hope I can die in peace; die with memories that I’ve gone through and not with dreams that left hanging in my mind. Hehehe… Sounds too good to be true huh?

Just few days ago when I browsed books at the Sengkang Library, after looking around for some interesting books (which mostly were on loan or on reserved), I stopped by at Singapore collection books’ rack. There was where books written by Singaporean authors were stored. At that point of time, I was in the middle of the way of reading ‘Dear Seday’, the Bhutanese authored book by Ugyen Gyeltshen. I was just thinking… hm… why didn’t I borrow some local author book?

Hmm… honestly, although I’ve been staying here for more than 12 years, I think I only ever bought one book authored by Singaporean, which was an inspirational book titled “Live Well, Love Much, Laugh Often”, written by Apelles Poh. His book has inspired me a lot. I love it so much, even gifted one copy to my dear good friend, hope that it would benefit him in his life journey too.

Love!  Live dangerously! And have fun! By Catherine Khoo

So, I took 3 books from the shelves. One of them was titled “Love! Live Dangerously! And have Fun!” written by Catherine Khoo. She is currently in her 50s. She has gone through her wild days at 14, married at 24, had all her three girls by 31, changed careers at 30, had a break at 36, saw her life turn topsy turvy at 44, found it back again at 48, and at 53, she was preparing to launch her creative education license to the world.

“So go on, live life with a passion. Don’t give up on it. Give it all you have. Because you have only this life to live. And I discovered this truth when I tried to end it. Read this book and tell me after this if you’ll give your life one more shot… To Love! Live dangerously! And yes, have Fun!”

I’ve been reading her book half way. By reading on the titles in each chapter, I had already been so happy, that finally there was someone out there who also has similar thoughts about life as mine.  The titles were as follow:

Chapter 1: It’s not how much you have, but how much you enjoy, that makes you happy.

Chapter 2: If you don’t try, you will never know!

Chapter 3: It’s not what you look at. It’s what you see that matters.

Chapter 4: If you want to be happy, no one can stop you!

Chapter 5: Look within yourself. The answers are inside you!

Chapter 6: Life is a daring adventure… Live it to the fullest!

Chapter 7: Set your own expectations of yourself. Don’t live your life on other people’s expectations!

Chapter 8: It is always darkest before the day dawns.

Chapter 9: Give your children roots. Give them wings too!

Chapter 10: Take it one step at a time!

Chapter 11: My philosophy: Live a life that transcends your own.

Chapter 12: Listen to the dreams of the young. They will uplift you with their hope and courage.

Chapter 13: Always find time for yourself.

Chapter 14: If it is to be, it is up to me!

Chapter 15: Those who know enough is enough will always have enough.

Chapter 16: Happy ever after? It’s no fairy tale!

Chapter 17: Five things to do before I turn 55

Chapter 18: Tell my story. My way!

Epilogue: Nothing in life is to be feared. It is only to be understood.

At the back, there were four short stories to make you fall in love all over again.

The story on this book would mostly come from her own experience in her life. With only reading the front part of it, I had suddenly had this thinking to do something for the rest of my life.

Yesterday morning, while having breakfast at coffee shop with my hubby and son, I was telling my hubby, “Hem.. what do you think? If ah… If… If one day Baobei has grown up (no need to worry about him so much), maybe when I reach mid 40s or before 50, if I will still be given a good health, I want to go somewhere out of Singapore, to become social worker or volunteer, for at least 6 months.” Upon saying this, he immediately told me, “Mid 40s?” “Yes,” I replied. “It means 10 more years?” he continued. “Ha?? So fast ah?” exclaimed me. Lolx!!! I didn’t realize that it was just few more years ahead, which I thought will only happen after I prepared myself enough (enough with experience, courage, determination, etc.). “Why you must wait until 10 years later? Why not now?” he asked me again.

“Oh, because I want to wait until Baobel grow up. By that time, he will be in his twenties. Oh, maybe when I reach my 50 ba! By that time, he will be around 25-26, who knows he has got married by that time,” told me, with further excuse hahaha…. My hubby nodded his head.

“What kind of volunteer work you want to do?” he asked me again. “Hem.. I don’t know. Teaching maybe?” I said. “Teaching? I doubt you can do it. Teaching what?” he asked me for further details. “Hahaha… Why not? I don’t know.. English, maybe? If not, take care of children? Those orphan with no parents?” I continued. “You? You take care of children? I doubt so,” he continued grinning, doubting my ability. Hahahaha… I laughed at myself. I knew why he was saying that though :P Because I wasn’t even capable in teaching or taking care my son fully as I didn’t have much patience and also all this time my mother-in-law had been playing bigger role in taking care of my son, e.g. preparing him for school, after school, and so on.

“Well, there must be something that I can do. I may not know it now. But I’m sure, there must be something that I can do,” I insisted telling him about my dream. He just nodded his head again. Hahaha… Even the person who knows me well doubted my dream.  But it would only make me more eager to make it realize though, to prove him wrong, that there must be something that I can do for them. What is it? I may not know yet.

“At the same time, while doing that, I also want to practice meditation,” I continued. He immediately said, “Here you can start doing so. There must be some meditation classes at Fo Guang Shan Temple (the nearest Buddhist temple from our house). You can just ride your bike there to attend the class. It’s convenient and near.” “But they mostly have their classes in Mandarin, which I am not comfortable with. I prefer attending English one,” again, uttering my excuse. Hahaha.. so sometimes, actually it was myself who put a limit or barrier into my dreams and goals in life. One excuse and another, never ending. I really deserve laughing at myself over and over again.

I still have my dream to meet His Holiness Dalai Lama, and if possible, with Karmapa Lama too, in Dharamsala, India. However, even if I don’t have chance to meet them, I’ve already been so grateful being able to learn some important lessons in life taught by them from their books or their dhamma lesson online. I think that’s more important than just meeting them in person.

There were people too, who were after reading my blog, told me that I should be a reporter, or send articles to magazines, such as: travel magazine. Oh, deep down I was even thought, yeah, who knows I may even capable of writing a book, just like Catherine Khoo, based on life experience, and write some inspirational kind of book. But I tell myself that I prefer to write with no obligations, no time limit, just based on my mood, my feelings, just like what I've done all this while in this blog. I prefer writing with freedom rather than being obliged to do so. If by sharing my thought can help others lifting up their spirit, I have already achieved my goals and purposes by then :) So here I am writing this, on my blog ^^ hoping that people enjoy reading it.

We’ll see ba! At the meantime, let me have those dreams. Hopefully I can fulfill it before my time comes, so that I can die with memories and not with dreams left unrealized. However, even if I die with many dreams still hanging on my mind, I would have die with no regrets because I’ve fulfilled lots and lots of my previous dreams already and I’ve always live my life to the fullest, one day at a time. Therefore, these dreams are there for me so that I can have purposes in life, have a direction on where to go, to live life not for myself, but to give and share it with others. Hope one day I can have it realized. Wish me luck! :)


Himalayan Tenzin said...

Like to you, madam,this laconic and insightful line is also provoking some thoughts in me. Thank you. :) I got to feed my diary. lol.

Have a great day. Take care.

Overcome Life said...

Thank you Sonam for always reading my post, my non-sense, etc. that I wrote here in my blog. Gladly one or two would be useful for your life journey :) You too have a great week ahead and take care! ^^

Unknown said...

die with memories, not with dreams, it makes a lot of sense.. really inspirational mam...

Overcome Life said...

Thank you for reading my post again and again, also for your comment Kipchu! Hope you may fulfill your many dreams in life too! :)

Unknown said...

Hi! I am so glad that my book has given you some thoughts on living your life to the fullest. More important, live your life in the "now".
I wanted to write this book so someone else can benefit from reading it. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts.

Catherine Khoo

Overcome Life said...

Hi Catherine, I didn't expect you to comment on my blog. Thank you for your message. Indeed, your book has increased my confidence that I too, will be able to fulfill my dreams one day.

I've just finished reading it today and want to let you know that the four short stories that you wrote at the back part were amazing! It depicted the Singaporean kind of life and culture perfectly. Keep writing and benefit others with your thoughts! Wish you all the best!

Unknown said...

You can do it, Rima! I hope to read a book by you one day!

Overcome Life said...

Thank you for your wish Catherine! Have a wonderful time! :)

Nathalie said...

I'm really fond of this quote, I just don't know who has written it: Is it you? or someone else? Do you have an idea?
Thanks on beforehand and good luck with everything you do!

Overcome Life said...

The quite must come from someone else Nathalie :) It doesn't matter who wrote it first as long as you can feel it, does it?

Hope it's useful to motivate you on your life journey and thank you for your kind wish! Hope the same goes to you too! Take care and have a wonderful day! ^^

Nathalie said...

Hi Rima
Thanks for your insights and your quick answer. It really is motivational for my friend and me. It perfectly tells how we want to live our life :)
You too have a wonderful day, it already started very good :)

Overcome Life said...

It's my pleasure Natalie! Glad that it helps you and your friend! :)

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