Only Human

Tonight I am going to speak out my heart. I am going to pour out every single thought that is trying to fight for space in my head.  Tonight I just want to cry out and forget.  I am going to climb up the rooftops, stand by the edge, spread my arms wide apart, my back facing the cold, dark night air… and fall.

Fall all the way down.  As I descend through the wind, I shall look into the beauty of the skies, perhaps for the very last time.  The sack of questions slam me further down, but no, I would not budge.

I breathe in, and out, in, and out; the raw air fill my one and only lung (I lost the other a decade ago), bringing oxygen to my blood.  One by one statement after statement surface into my concious.

“My name is Alicia Ai Leng, turning 24 very, very soon, and I study psychology.  This does not mean I have answers to your every question.  I too have questions myself – many of them used to be unanswered, but more and more are getting clarified.  I daresay I know a lot more than some people, but I feel too.  I also break down and cry.  I need a hug as well every now and then.  I have the breaking point, just like everybody else, where the limits are pushed to the maximum.  But just how far are these limits?”

For the most part, my life at this time seems like an endless struggle.  If you have heard of the saying:  She stoops to conquer.  Well, I have stooped so many, many times.  I was nearly killed in an accident.  I nearly killed myself.  I nearly  lost myself to insanity., the complex of Nature and the supernatural.

My old soul is slowly fading away into the past.  Now is now, and I have to act very swiftly.  I have drowned myself completely  into positivity, completely into work, and studies, and business, and enterpreneurship.  And wallahi, for all of heaven’s sake, love!  Oh god, what is going on?  Why is this happening?

The answer is because people change.  With time, people deviate from the norms of tradition – I know this might sound sad, but it is not the time to shed tears now.  I change.  You change.  We change.  All of us change.  Like all other humans I have blood running through my veins.  I breathe the air just like everyone does.  My heart pumps life into my body just like other living being.  I eat.  I pee.  I poo.  I cry real tears too.  I am definitely not a Bobo doll, a punchbag everyone hits mercilessly.  I laugh so loud you would have thought I were out of my mind, so long you could have thought that I were out of my mind.  There are occasions of burnout too everyone experiences that I also experience.  Of course in reality I am only literally meaning what I say.  Whether there are ups and downs, I acknowledge that I am imperfect as I am; I cannot please everybody.

Ich schwore, that is just me.  I could probably use a hand sometimes.

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Getting Lost

Pack your bikini.  Throw in your hammock.  Take along some food, maybe.  And, oh, do not forget your sunglasses.

Go alone.  Switch your mobile phone off.  Disconnect yourself from the world.  Throw it away; forget yesterday.  Lose yourself.  Challenge your limits;  go the extra mile.  Push yourself a little further than usual.  Gain the courage to embrace the unknown.

And there is no need to be afraid.  Where you find water, jump in.  Where you find the ocean, plunge in.  Get wet.  Inhale and exhale whole-heartedly as you allow the tiny rippling droplets of sea hydrate the  pores of your skin.  Where you find the forests,  run through and get yourself lost in the trees. Capture the magic that you find in the air.  Look for that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow that comes in between the rain and breaking sunlight.  Sketch imaginary dreams in the blue sky.  Close your eyes.  Live in the present, in the moment.

Pay attention to the inner dialogue, that little voice speaking inside your heart.  Be one with your mind and soul.  Be it rain or shine, let the weather wash away your anxieties.  Let the gushing sound of streams in the waterfall filter out your emotions.

One of my Getting Lost excursions. (Photo credits to Alicia Ai Leng)

One of my Getting Lost excursions. (Photo credits to Alicia Ai Leng)

Drive somewhere you have never set foot before.  Head out to the beach in the morning; slowly tread along the shores in your bare feet, and feel the waves brush gently between your toes.  Head to the hills in the evening and find a little spot where you can get a good view of the sunset.  Turn the light breeze into music as it orchestrates over your ears.

Grab hold of Mother Nature, and never let go.  Permit yourself the luxury of freedom.  It is best to travel without planning the day.  Let life happen as it should.

Life gets in way with what we are occasionally; it has us chasing after several things that we wish could be ours – but are not, unfortunately.  Normally we forget who we are in the process; we imprison ourselves in our own rigmaroles and deny ourselves the meaning of life.  Like auto-generated assembly lines we operate tediously from dusk to dawn.  Every single interaction with another human being becomes programmed by rules and instructions set by society.  We arrive home flustered, exhausted, and frustrated.

The solution?  Get yourself lost.

My Getting Lost excursions are kind of memorable.  The last time I got lost, I hiked up a hill filled with waterfalls.  The trail was steep and slippery, but I managed to climb all the way up.  I had fun on my own in the gushing currents. On the way down, I met a furry little kitten who was fending itself from nasty babboons.  What did I do?  Well, I picked him up and carried him down to the foot of the hill, chasing those monkeys away in the process.  I even had lunch with him; I watched as he munched at the burger I bought him.  That was just one of my excursions.

What about yours – why not go somewhere new, away from the world today?  Find your Narnia; it could even be simply at your backyard.

Red Scarlet

Show You Off

I have always wondered… are writers considered artists?

"Imagination is more important than knowledge." - Albert Einstein (Photo credits by Alicia Ai Leng)

“Imagination is more important than knowledge.” – Albert Einstein (Photo credits to Alicia Ai Leng)

Where knowledge seeks to understand, imagination strives to satisfy its curiosity.

If we could turn back in our journey, wherever we may be leading ourselves to, and look at the origins of the term, it would mean a “lettered person” in Old French.  On the surface level, art is about utilizing creativity and imagination to come up with something innovative, fun, and, well, creative.  Most of all, to me it means a method of self-expression, the work itself symbolizing happiness, anger, jealousy, hatred, and madness.  This does not come easy to all of us.

We express ourselves in various ways.  Some of us spin around the dance floor, some of us write songs – but some of us also prefer to keep to ourselves and let the voices in our head do the talking.  And it comes out; it comes out in shades of red, blue, yellow, and orange.  At times it comes out in streaks of the pen as the nib scribbles through a blank sheet of paper.  It gets petrifying, once in a while, especially when the mind is doing all the talking, and the poor, unfortunate pen has nothing to do but etch out the mind’s jibberish.

Hell yes, writers are artists too.  Writers of every kind dances along the lines of words, making music in his own way – the words find a certain kind of harmony, a certain kind of tango, with a high or low pitch, and then connect themselves in coherent flow.  Just catch a glimpse of Shakespeare’s work; how meticulous it was written, that till now, hundreds of years later, people are still scratching their little round heads over the meaning behind them all.

Anyway, there goes…. I have been “wearing” this hairdo for nearly a week by now – and it makes me strangely cool.  At least that is the way I think. What do you think, anyway?  Is it not a spectacular piece of art? Haha.

Breaded [sic] hair. (Photo credits to Alicia Ai Leng)

Breaded [sic] hair. (Photo credits to Alicia Ai Leng)

Artists have the capacity to imagine to greater heights.  They have the ability to “wow” the average human being, because that is just what they do.  Even the most famous inventors are artists, too.

So, yeah.  Writers – we are cool just like that.  We are bold.  Brave.  Courageous.  In our own silent way.

PS.:  Apparently my body needs a bit more body-rocking to get going.  Just saying.

Turn Down For What?!

You there!  Yes, you!

Please excuse me…. Umm-YOLO!

This is how I express myself.  (Photo credits to Alicia Ai Leng)

Breaking free!  This is how I express myself. (Photo credits to Alicia Ai Leng)

Okay, okay.  Really sorry for the abbreviation, because I rarely use them in my writing (it is just not my  etiquette), but guess what: You only live once.  Romance.  Risks.  Life and death situations.  Fight-or-flight.  Or the other way round.  Shame.  Attitude.  Opportunities.  Courage.  Determination.  It is worth the risk.  So take it, god damn it.

This is just a simple little life project of mine, some scheduled before I get married, some scheduled before I think I want to die. I am an expressionist when it comes to art and things like these; I believe in self-expression. I am always wanting to go beyond what I think I can do and do as much as I can, with the time I have in hand.  I am always on the lookout for opportunities, spreading out my dendrites bare naked to really savor the sweet fruits of work.

Life happens, of course, and there is going to be a teeny-weeny little switch in the way things are every now and then.  You just got to adapt.

Just like me and my best friend, partner in crime for life, and love.  He said time will tell, and as time ticked by the minutes, he awakened my soul.  His existence brought a whole new level of experience to me, incorporating more actions and deep thoughts about sharing beautiful times.  Making me think seriously, how do I want to do what I want to do tomorrow?  With whom?

Below is my list:

I want to express myself through music, writing, the eclectic arts, and the sciences.

I want to dance in the rain.

I want to fly with or without wings.

I want to bungee-jump off the mountains in New Zealand.

I want to travel around the world.

I want to explore the earth like a wanderlust.

I want to sky-dive.

I want to climb the highest mountain in the Himalayas.

I want to dive around beautiful Grecian islands in the Mediterranean.

If there is an expedition to Pluto, I want to go too.

What he calls the Rock-Star Personality, because I am always, always wanting to do anything and everything right away.  But he wants me to sit and wait for the moment to happen, because he really, really wants to come along with me.  And I want him to come along with me, too.  I feel kind of sad when we do not do something together.  It is just the way I feel.  Some parts of life can be so hard, but the thing is we will survive.  These are beautiful times.

The only drawback is the fact that right now I am kind of confined to my studies, but only for a little while.  I hope everyone will be a little patient and hold on, because my journey has not ended yet.  From a positive perspective, I sense a lot of excitement in the air.  The vibes are vibrating vigorously between the particles; a whole aura of happiness is beaming between the neutrons and protons, the charges canceling each other out because of the equilibrium, thus making the charge positive.  Sometimes it is too positive I cannot hide… but wait!  I got stuff to do which will be done soon enough, so please, please, please be patient with me, and be good.

At times when it rains so bad the roofs start shaking, I want to go out and dance in the rain.  I want to get wet, so wet that I am drained.  I want to jump off the cliff even, and fall so freely there is nothing to do except living in the moment.  I want to shake, and shake, and shake it all.  I want to break free, and experience life right now, right as it is.  The Blitzkreig, with its natural warring attitude-that I want to fight along also.  And I do not care,  because these make me feel so fulfilled.

You should join me too.  Come on.  Fasten your seat belts.  Ready.  Jump! Beeil Dich. Yallah.

Love,

Red Scarlet

Creative Commons License
Turn Down For What?! by Alicia Ai Leng is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at https://theladyintheredscarfmindtalks.wordpress.com/.

Trauma: The Coping Mechanism

The time I am writing this is already past 3AM in the morning.  I am just done with the first round of analysis over some creative work by a particular trauma victim.  His writing was exceptionally good – therapeutic for him in a sense – that set me in deep wonderment.  Though it did not eventually unclasp the locks to his initial dread, it helped him approach death with a much more positive perspective.  Surreal as it sounded, probably to more “normal”people like you and me, it was a hopeless situation he was dealing with.  One that had only one end, and a horrific one too.

Where the sweet mouth could not move, and the beautiful lips refused to speak, but the Chambers of Life keeps pounding, and pounding, and pounding, beating loud and clear to dear life, attempting to suppress the drowning emotions away, but at the very same time wanting to cry out.  Or wail, even.  Oh, who would hear? More importantly, who would help?  Often the searing pain of even re-enacting the ordeal in the silent, yet tragic mind results in the victim pulling a mask over his face, only to hide the scars that so embolden him.  Time over time the mask grows so thick it necessitates a trustworthy companion to walk carefully down the dwindling stairs of terror right into the dungeon, allowing for the past to surface, little by little.

In the case of unjust death, all the victim could possibly do is sit and wait for the minutes to tick by, slowly, dreadfully, wasting and rotting away into disintegration.  It is quite an unfortunate thing to realize, but sometimes the laws and politics interfere with the people, and that becomes an absolutely dangerous thing.  The truth is that all of us are looking for a purpose in life; some have found it, while others are still searching for it.  What is you were looking for your own treasure box of purpose, when out of the blue, someone comes up to you and tells you that you are going to die tomorrow?  How would you feel?  Or worse still, what if the ground cracks and opens up, consuming all that was once rightfully yours in less than an hour?

With the blink of an eye, one’s locus of control is shattered into a thousand pieces; every sound, every moment is scrutinized in the senses.  Everything seems to get out of hand right at the point of time.  Social connections are lost, food is gone, the gory scenes of dead people are everywhere – even the air pukes of death.  Images of the self in the same state of destruction, with blood streaming from his wounded torso, form in the mind.

But we keep going, do we not?  And that is the beauty of it.

Red Scarlet

PS.:  It is about time we get serious.

Dear Paul Walker

Dear Paul Walker, You have been an amazing team player and friend to all of us (Fast and Furious 7 actors).  It has been quite unfortunate to learn of your premature demise.  In memory of you, we would like to tribute this piece of art to you, where you shall return to your family who deeply love you.  Your children, who need you still.  There is none other like you, no better player in the game.  RIP, Paul Walker.                                                                                                                                Love,                                                                                                                               Red Scarlet

Author’s commentary: I had decided to creep up the long, dark hallways of the cinema next door to catch a good view of this movie which featured the last scenes of the late Paul Walker.  The urge to gain a further, deeper understanding of the film itself and the Sarawakian-born director James Wan piqued my interest.  I was not disappointed. It had a happy ending.  One that spoke of an eternal rest to such a handsome young actor (tell me, is he not?).  I still remember the last scene in the 2-hour plus long movie in which the computer-generated image of Walker was carrying his on-set child next to his on-set wife Mia by the beach, where everywhere was so serene, so beautiful, a perfectly sculpted mise en scene.  Vin Diesel was about to leave, when one of his comrades asked him: “Don’t you have to say goodbye?” To which Vin Diesel replied: “I don’t have to.”  And drove off in his electric blue automobile. Then, when he halted at the traffic lights in the mountains, Walker unexpectedly pulled up next to him in his white car (a peacefully grand mise en scene for this very last action) and said to Diesel through his open window: “I thought you don’t have to say goodbye?” The two men exchanged smiles, and with one last look, they drove separate ways in the mountains.  This signifies how the they were going their own ways, apart from each other. Death knocks on one’s door when one least expects.  How are we to know who goes next? You see, this is what I call art.  Film art.  The mise en scene and set-ups and geographical locations are very meaningful to the film, and so is the choice of words as it has to go in accordance to the theme.  And the theme of this film?  Togetherness, no matter what happens.  Family. I should not leave out the director, somehow.  Kudos to James Wan.  He has been able to put together an incredibly beautiful piece of art with such delicacy. P.S.:  I am extremely touched, but no, no crying, though.