Minimalist South Asian

As time has been passing on, and I continue on my journey in life, I have developed a lot of positive values πŸ™‚ YAYY!! πŸ™‚

minimalismOne that has been so helpful, is really practicing minimalism. Given that I am an organizational freak …. that is how it started. After having to organize my things all the time, I began to realize how much time and energy was being sucked up by just maintaining my things!

After reading ‘the power of now’ by Ekhart Tolle and ‘the art of tidying up’ I further realized how focusing on these items was not only taking energy and time, but space in my mind, my life, leading to more stress, less happiness. And, the more I reflected, the more I realized that many of these items were not bringing me happiness but were a form of attachment to something from the past.

SO — over the last 1.5 years, I have gotten rid of more than half of my wardrobe, jewellery, etc. I’m still working on my shoes ……shoes….. Β I love my shoes that I never wear πŸ˜› πŸ˜› Like I said, its a work in progress πŸ˜› And I am loving the increase in peace of mind I have gained with the loss of items. I am loving the time I have to put towards myself, the de-cluttering of my mind, thinking more clearly, being more present, being less stressed, and of course, doing less chores!!

BUT, to be expected, is resistance. I am getting resistance from the south asian culture. With wedding season coming up, I am getting resistance from family members who want me to want to buy new clothes, dress up like a super model, and to like it. This is not who I am anymore. Yes, when I was younger, I enjoyed feeling like a fancy princess, wearing clothes only once with matching jewellery and shoes. Now, I have a lot of indian clothes to donate, as no matter what the rationalization, they just don’t get worn enough! I truly now feel bad for the clothes 😦 Not to mention, the potential child labour that goes along with it and impact on the environment.

So, I am doing my best to fight the confusion, the push back, the peer pressure to fit in and be materialistic as well. But, the joys I get from minimalism far out way the pleasures of dressing like a princess. I still love nice things from time to time, but I put my energy into versatile items that will get enough wear out of it. Until then, I am enjoying wearing my dresses to Indian functions as well as out for dinner. And some versatile indian clothes that I will wear for years to come, in limited numbers, is what I am focusing on. And the interesting and ironic part is that although our culture overtime has become focused on grandeur, our various religions continue to encourage minimalism! So spirituality all the way, there are clear benefits for increasing peace, time and meaning in life. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

What do you think?

 

Chit Chat.

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Indian Hypocrisies

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There comes a time in your life, where you meet someone so special that everyday feels like a dream. You wonder is this the honeymoon period, or can life really be so beautiful, and can I really be so happy? I’d love to say that after finding this type of happiness, I am in bliss and ecstatic about the future. I am. But I also feel an overwhelming source of grief and pain.

Somehow after all these years, I convinced myself that when my parents said they wanted me to be with a nice guy who treated me well, that they meant it.

Somehow I convinced myself that when they said that all they wanted was a South Asian guy who was well educated that they meant it.

Somehow I convinced myself that when they said that I could find my own partner and decide who I want to marry, that again, they would mean it.

Now that I have found a man that is South Asian, educated, and treats me better than anyone else, but somehow he isn’t good enough. And my parents think its ok to tell me that they don’t approve – for superficial reasons.

I feel betrayed again. I feel shocked again. I wonder why I trusted them – but then again aren’t you suppose to be able to trust your parents? I am so utterly hurt. I feel so much pain and grief. My parents think they are looking out for me, and want to convince themselves of that. But not once, have they asked me any questions about him that reflect any substance. He’s not good enough because he’s short. Really? Oh I get it, he’s not a tall doctor. If he was a doctor then White, Chinese or West Indian – would not matter. As long as he wasn’t Black or Muslim.

I am disgusted. I am ashamed to be the product of this type of superficiality and discrimination. But again, I am left wondering, why would my parents tell me that all that matters is my happiness and then, ironically, become the one obstacle that causes all of my pain and sorrow. I hate saying this, but most South Asian parents, only want their kids to be happy as long as it does not interfere with their happiness. You can have freedom, as long as you do what I say. You can find your own man, as long as I get the final verdict. You can take your time, but in the mean time I’ll make your daily life a living hell if you don’t get married on my timeline. And it goes without saying – how fair he is, tall he is and overall good looking he is, is WAY more important to me than anything else, because I as an Indian parent, care more about my social status than your happiness. After all, as my mother would say, don’t we all have to make sacrifices? But what that really means is if I couldn’t truly be free and happy, than neither can you.

Well guess what, I am proud to be white washed. At least that means I can think for myself and break out of this submissive culture that does not value love, and values women even less. I will get married in my thirties, to a man who is by your standards, too short, too unconventional and not indian enough. And I will travel instead of having children. I will practice social work instead of pursuing money. And I will be blissfully happy.

Disclosure

20 years.

I have made a decision after twenty years to tell my parents about my childhood abuse. This is the hardest decision I have ever had to make, and I am consumed with it. I think about it all the time, it is distressing and worrisome. Anxiety and Depression have creeped back into my life. Meanwhile, I am finding a way to care for myself as I care for others.

I was convinced that I would never tell my parents. I read that children do not disclose abuse to parents if they are worried about their reactions, worried their parents cannot handle it or worried that their parents will be unable to validate them. Ditto, ditto, ditto.

I had convinced myself that disclosure would never be an option because my parents would not understand, would not be able to handle the emotions and would not be able to respond maturely. I lived with the burden of this secret and the pain of forever isolation for 20 years.

I am still worried about these things. The only thing that has changed is the clarity I have gained about the impact this secret has on my emotional health, my relationship with myself, my parents and my partner. I do not want to keep this secret anymore. I don’t want the burden anymore. I did nothing wrong.

I did nothing wrong. But I worry. I am standing up for the little girl inside me. I am giving her a voice. I am giving her visibility. I am highlighting her struggle, I am highlighting her pain, I am highlighting her isolation.

20 years. Everyday I dream or dread the possible reactions they might have. Most of them are negative. I have started to distance myself to prepare myself for the worst. I am unsure if this is the right thing to do. But, it is my coping strategy at this time. Β Everyday, is getting harder to wait, 20 years and now 20 days seems dreadfully long.

I hope and pray that it will come out the right way. I hope that my integrity and self esteem will remain intact after the disclosure. I pray that the anger will not take over. I pray that I will be prepared and able to survive what comes after.