Living the here and now, an unplanned adventure

Yo yo from Ho ho ho Chi Minh City!!!!

So I am back “home” in this place yet it feels like I just moved here. I officially changed turfs on Jan. 24, my bday this year, but the truth is that in the past 3 months, I’ve been back to Danang 3 times and in March, I spent only a couple days here and there in my own bed/city/whatever!

How many cities have I been to in the past 7 weeks? At least 12 and multiple times for at least 3, and soon to be 4, of them! Yes, it’s been a TRIP…ahahahah!

So I’m back and yawning too…but I am determined to write this b/c it’s important…well, I don’t really think so but I like to write…so here we go.

In November, a friend, Jimmy Thong Tran, asked me what I wanted to do at that very moment? And sadly, I didn’t have an answer. I think I said something like “I have no idea…you know, in my regular, daily life, I NEVER ask myself what I want to do at that particular moment….I know what I want to do next year, where I want to be in 2-5 years, and I do have high hopes for my life at 40 as well….”

Times have changed: through this film process which was exciting for work, but even more wonderful spiritually, I’ve come to see that life needs to happen now. Being stuck in an idea of how life will or should be later is not living. Working for tomorrow without even seeing today pass is a tragedy. It’s the way l lived my life in the fall of 2007…I was way depressed but I didn’t even see it because I was stuck….so stuck that I refused to acknowledge what my life had become and so stuck that I got upset when friends called me or visited me from Canada…what a weird time–I’m so glad that’s over now.

Talking to another friend in March, Stephen McGee, I came to see that life is full of moments, and each moment has its own beauty. We talked about being ready for change, being open to new things coming up in the spur of the moment ,and we agreed that it was ultimately better to be adaptable and go with the flow. It’s like in Vietnam, if you just show up at your grandma’s house without letting anyone in the village know, everyone will still go out of their way to welcome you. I cringe at what would happen in Canada and in most Western countries. Where I’m from, if your parents want to stay with you for more than a week, it’s already a burden and we often put our relatives up in nursing homes and hotels. In Vietnam, the family always wants to stick together, in the same house, even to death. I’m in the middle as this VNese-Canadian gal and I’ve seen that so much in March. I think I am Western, but when push comes to shove, I revert back to my Asian heritage which is a lot trickier to figure out than the straightforwardness of Canada.

But wait, I digress because this post is about living today.

I am such a person that when big events happen in my life, I need a lot of time to readjust afterwards. Given that this film was life-consuming for a month where life=work=life=me=bleary-eyed=flying everywhere=on the road, I was tired and sad once my boss and the filmmaker hit the planes back to the States. (I still don’t know if filmmaker is one word or two! Arrgh!) Three weeks later, finally, I am BACK to normalcy–ish!!!!

Although my room is still a disaster and I am often way too exhausted to even think about cleaning it, I did my laundry and went wonderful grocery shopping today!!!! I LOVE MAXIMART!!!! I luv grocery stores in general but MM is the bomb diggity diggity. I have gone to about 10 grocery stores (GS) in HCMC to find all my foreign products so trust me, I’m just a bit of a GS connaisseur. And that’s my super duper shout out for the day!!!!

Through this filmmaking experience–which presented me with so many on-the-spot decisions and botched attempts to plan things which were, granted, a bit beyond my control (we were coordinating about 10 EMW programs)–and working very closely with s/o who was a stranger to me before this project, I came to see life has ups and downs and changes in every instant. Basically, I wasn’t in charge and I had to let go. And I did and you know what, it’s the way to be.

I’ve always believed that we shouldn’t worry. The Bible verses in Matthews 6:25-34 have always been a comfort to me: Trust in Providence. There’s a bit too much to type out but here’s the gist of it: God takes care of the earth and flowers and birds and how much more valuable are we, the people on this earth. …”So do not worry about tomorrow: tomorrow will take care of itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

But I’d have to say that during March, these verses and their significance came up as a challenge to my current life. I had to ask myself if I was WORRYING by planning out my future all the time. For me, the answer was yes, and if I really believe in God and take comfort in these Bible verses, well, then I wasn’t really following his word, now was I? Over March through discussions w/peeps, thinking, writing, and prayers, I realized that I don’t have to plan anymore, and by being open to what is in front of me, which is Vietnam for the moment, I was going to LIVE and be more fruitful because I can participate in life RIGHT NOW RIGHT HERE (wherever I am).

So it’s sweet to realize and a bit different (to say the least) as well, to not worry, meaning not plan out the “next steps” in my life. I am just living in HCMC and I don’t really know when I’ll go back to Canada. And I’m open to whatever. Hmmmmm.

  1. Helen on

    hey – i agree re: maximart 🙂 I once had to spend an hour plus in there waiting for my cousin to finish at the dentist 🙂

  2. Michelle Nguyen on

    Listen you crazy girl, you better come home soon b4 you get too wild!

    How was that? I was trying to act like an VN parent.