Tuesday, May 13, 2014

A Woman of Missions

Recently, I had the pleasure of revisiting the film "Gandhi." I simply found him to be such a remarkable man of principles and excellent values. Being a simple person with such idealistic vision of how he wanted to contribute towards life and humanity. His legacy lives on. Considering his view on western commerce, I'm sure he would be appalled to see his face on all Indian currency notes.

But after watching the film as well as documentaries made of Mahatma, I realised something he had in common with the rest of the remarkable people who had left equal, if not similar, legacies. They all were on missions. They lived their lives dedicated to some bigger purpose or rather. They were ordinary people with extraordinary visions, ideas, passion, drive, and ambitions. And they also had the drive to achieve such great heights by completing their missions.

When I reflect upon my own life, I realise that I've always been on a mission of sort. Being born an Aquarian makes me prioritise humanity. Being helpful and useful to others are key driving forces in the direction I steered my life. And being born in the Dragon year equips me with the determination and leadership to design my life as how I see fit. Although I am always well aware I cannot change the world to fit me, I knew that I can make it better by simply being me. I started by being honest with my inner self.

My friends in school remember me as the joker, the student who never stops singing whenever the teacher was away, the person they could come to for comfort and for a wise word of advice. I have to admit that even back in those years, I had no vision of my own future. I was clueless as to what my ambitions were gonna be. All I knew was that I wanna do the best of what I can do.

I purposely chose not to work for others because it was a priority for me to be there for my children while they were growing up. It was a non-negotiable thing that I must be there for them during their formative years. It was only after they have grown up to be independent individuals that I decided it was time for me to live my life doing what I love best: helping others.

It started with counselling runaway youths. They were rejected by their disappointed families. They mixed with the wrong group of friends. They were influenced to make all the bad choices you can imagine. And then it went on to healing others. I was always fighting for someone or something. I was always on a mission to rescue or save someone. And along the way, I got beaten, down trodden, attacked, framed, betrayed. I took many 'bullets' for others and thought nothing of it. It was just the right thing to do and I didn't think twice to make such decisions. It was instinctive. I knew for sure that's my purpose.

It was never difficult for me to see the best in others, especially those I was helping. They could only see their mistakes and bad choices. I only focused on their best potentials. Positive assumptions came easily to me. I never struggled with that.

Ironically, the pinnacle of my helping mission was when my country was experiencing it's worst tragedy: the missing flight of MH370. I thrived! I flourished! I was very driven. I felt I was born for that mission. I belonged. But after months had passed with no clue as to what had happened to the aircraft and it's passengers, all volunteer professionals, including me, were put on standby. That's when I began to spiral down depression again. It is very hard to be a warrior, all suited up, armed with the best weaponry, just waiting for deployment that has yet to come. This experience taught me something about myself: I am a warrior. I am a woman on a mission. I am a person who has a constant need to be useful.

For 7 years, I was on a mission to save someone. I gave that mission my all, to the point I had nothing left for myself. I had endured immeasurable pains, uncountable number of attacks, slander, betrayal, lies and whatever else that I never knew existed. But unfortunately, I am unable to complete that mission. I was cut off. I covered their backs but my own was left vulnerable and unprotected. That left me feeling useless, redundant, unneeded and unappreciated. It left me feeling like a huge failure. Like a sophisticated weapon that had failed to function and now thrown into the garbage and left to rot.

I am well aware of the advice often given by my supervisor when it comes to working in a helping profession: we cannot save everyone. We cannot help everyone. We can't do our work without permission from the sufferer. Its a bitter pill to swallow, but that's the reality of my purpose. God reminding me only He can do it all.

I need to learn to be less naive. I'm inclined to thinking that we treat people as how we want to be treated in return. That adage turns out to be more idealistic rather than realistic. I don't care for scars of attacks, abuse or whatever else that may have hurt me. But the wounds of betrayal and lies remain deep cuts in my psyche. And even when I can bring myself to forgive my betrayers, my wounds continue to bleed.

So, all I need now is a colossal mission. The kind that may inflict the worst possible pains. I hope the wounds will be far greater than the ones which are still bleeding now. I hope those huge wounds will render my current bleedings simply forgettable and insignificant. That's the only way I know I can stop bleeding and heal.

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