Revelations At Forty Seven
Yesterday I wrote an entire blog post about the first time I received fellatio. I was seventeen. I’m a late bloomer. Kids have threesomes before they can drive these days. Anyway, it happened one summer with a girl from Wisconsin who sounded like she was in that movie Fargo. It only lasted a minute due to my impatient friend banging on the door for us to get going. I remember it like yesterday. The cheap Korean summer blanket. That nondescript wall clock staring back at me like I was in detention. That rare ecstatic feeling when you know something is going to happen for sure. That feeling came from words. We had a conversation about it. It was like a deal that lead to one of the greatest feelings of my life. Not because she knew what she was doing. None of us do at that age. But because it was a brand new experience. Something that was only on replay in my head up until then. A boot print in fresh powder snow. So oral sex was my first brush stroke at 4:45am yesterday morning.
I write like I do my therapy sessions. Blank canvas. Meet you where you’re at (in this case, me). And just flow with it. So I did. But then ended up deleting it. I wasn’t sure if it was appropriate. I did have a point though.
As we grow up, we give ourselves fewer and fewer new experiences.
It grays us out, turning life stale and us into closed doors. If we don’t make an effort to give ourselves fresh new experiences, we just default into our routines. Same shit different day, thinking the same way, and just going through life wishing we had more. It’s an endless loop that keeps us in ditches and living in the past.
New experiences bring us into the present. They spark our evolution. And they don’t have to be expensive trips or a swim with sharks. They can come in fifty two seconds on a summer afternoon. Or it can be an old experience seen through new lenses, which turns it new.
When’s the last time you did something for the first time? When’s the last time you saw something (a situation or a person) through a new lens?
This is the work. This is self help. Self love. Self life.
I try to give myself new experiences daily. It’s been a tough practice but I’ve been training my brain and I think I’ve finally tipped. Because I appreciate things I have now. I don’t need something to happen for me to find joy or a happy state. And I enjoy seeing things from a different angle. That wasn’t an option before. My defense and insecurity wouldn’t allow it.
I’ve learned that new experiences will always stretch you. It’s the birthplace of revelations. It’s what shifts the internal. Without them, growth is not possible.
Some new (every day) experiences.
- The strange ache from seeing tears from your own child for the very first time.
- Laughing at something you wouldn't normally laugh at and realizing your humor can also change.
- Running past the distance you normally run and learning there’s calm on the other side.
- The freeing feeling of not performing with friends who are used to your performance.
- Taco seasoning on eggs (Johnkim’s dirty eggs)
- Sitting in anger and realizing it passes.
- Feeling old and being okay with.
- Social distancing.
- Earning love instead of demanding it.
- Knowing you have a coffee limit.
- Being okay with yourself.
The old you doesn’t die.
I’ve realized that no matter how much you’ve change or grown, or think you have, the old you is still right there. Like a stray dog that keeps following you.
I find the old John Kim rearing his ugly head often these days. I’m finally pretty happy with where I’m at in my career. But I still find myself afraid, panicky, in my head, and worried about tomorrow. This proves it’s not about getting to an island or accomplishing goals. It’s not about what’s on paper. It’s about your wiring. No matter how high you’ve climbed, if you still think the same, you’ll still be the same — back to the base of the mountain looking up with fear and self doubt. I have to talk sense into myself daily. I have to convince myself that I am not a failed writer. That I don’t just play with my phone for a living. It’s residue from my old life and can cause me to dip into that chasing state I used to live in.
It doesn’t matter how far you’ve come or what you’ve built or what’s parked in your garage. We all snap back at times. The old you doesn’t die. You just listen to her less. You’re able to create a more healthy distance. Like you would a toxic friend once you gain courage and tools. It’s a very slow process. Ten years and counting for me.
Revelation 3 (the biggest one).
It won’t matter five years from now.
A question I ask myself often when I fall into the mental trenches is “Will this matter five years from now?” I need to credit my friend and partner at JRNI Coaching, Noelle. It’s a question I got from her. She asks it all the time.
I have a history of falling into quicksand. And staying there. Little things turn big very fast for me. They always have. I think I got this from my dad, who either acted like he won the lottery or only had two days to live. There was no middle. Ninety eight percent of the things that bring me anxiety actually don’t matter. I discovered this this year and it’s been a game changer. All the little things like, what he or she said. Or didn’t say. Why someone didn’t email me back. And of course the bigger things, like an idea failing. A friendship expiring. Or this Corona virus. Yes, you will remember it. Yes, it impacted your life in some way. But will it matter five years from now? Will it directly affect your day to day life five years from now? Most of the things that feel like they will won’t. Think about it. What happened in the past that you thought would crush you actually did?
Simply put, we waste so much energy feeding fears and things that haven’t happened yet. And this energy sucks life out of us instead of allowing us to create one. To truly not drown in worry or allow things to pull you under is a practice. It’s an ability to know that “this too shall pass.” Not just a decision. At 47, I finally have some muscles to give less fucks. Not just say it but really get a place where I feel it. I’m not saying it’s easy. But it is necessary if you want to live in color. I’ve been living in black and white most of my life. You can’t white knuckle giving less fucks. I’ve tried. It doesn’t work. It’s a practice. A type of martial art and I’m finally graduated from my white belt.
So ask yourself, whatever is bringing you anxiety right now, will it matter five years from now?
Those are my revelations at forty seven.
Now I’m going back to sleep.
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