I recently hit a milestone birthday by entering my 30s! During brunch with a couple of my great friends, Tiffany and Yessica, I was asked what my 30s are going to be about. That was such a tough question because I hadn’t really thought about it, but after a moment of silence and reflection, I realized I actually already had the answer based on what’s been going on in my head these last few months.
In short, my 30s are going to be about my perspectives and answering questions I had as a child in the lens of an adult, and focusing on inner healing and valuing myself. They both feed off each other which is what you might pick up on from below where I share some raw thoughts I wrote down in my notes app not too long ago.
Addressing 30 Years of My Life-Shaped Perspectives
The most interesting thing that I’ve experienced as of late is an inner desire to connect with my heritage in ways I wanted to as a child. The more that I share my journey living with curly hair as an Asian woman, the more that I think about what’s been missing from my life all along. And how to fill that void.
But before I begin on that path of connection, I realize it’s important to have context, which is why sharing where my points of views come from matters now more than ever. Some of my perspectives stand alone, and sometimes they’re intertwined and are the cause for my curiosity and lack of understanding.
I’m a genocide survivor’s daughter, and I yearn to tell the story of my mother and her lifelong path to peace from violence. I grew up as a second generation immigrant in America. I’ve experienced sexual trauma as a child and have yet to see the vicious cycle of my body being treated as a plaything come to an end. I share a love for certain people in my life whose trauma has warranted this idea that they should no longer live. And I’ve witnessed someone die by suicide because of that.
In special circumstances, the first two perspectives I shared go hand in hand with each other and may be why I don’t feel as connected to my own culture as I’ve always wanted to be.
That’s why it means so much to me to dive into a project of creatively translating how I’d outwardly express and communicate my own heritage to the world. I envision that part of it will literally be about creating dialogue about the unspoken struggles that second generation Asians live with, and part of it will be about honoring traditions, mainly through fashion and traditional Khmer clothing. Or perhaps through food, and I’m lucky that my mom taught me the magic of cooking at an early age.
However I explore these cultural curiosities, I hope to document and preserve them for future generations so that the gip becomes more narrow until it no longer exists. (Learn more about my visit to my parent’s home country, Cambodia, here)
The Morning of My 30th Birthday
On top of not having “enough time” because of work, I’ve hit a bit of roadblock with my creativity as of late. I was writing here and there, creating here and there, but could never wrap things up to make it complete. As I’ve slowed down my social media circus, I took the time to ask myself big questions. Ones that I had as a child, and ones that I now want answers to as an adult. I’ve also been trying to confront demons I’ve been avoiding for the last year. And then of course, my milestone 30th birthday was approaching so I felt a lot of pressure to show something for it and display some sort of satisfaction I wasn’t actually feeling at the moment.
In slowing down and asking myself questions, I realized my creative blocks mostly had to do with the fact that I haven’t had much true, deep inner reflection in a while. I get so burnt out by work that once I have time for creativity, the last thing I want to do is work on introspection. My 20s have been good to me. I’ve essentially become the girl I’ve always dreamed of being as a child, but I’m nowhere near the woman I want to be, yet.
Processing trauma and life’s hardest moments is always a work in progress. Sometimes I have phases where it’s work I have to put in every single day just to make it through the night. I’m not done with facing my demons, but this morning I woke up and was finally able to say that I’m going to be OK. Things are going to be OK because I decided to show up and welcome in the love that I deserve. Things are going to be OK because I’m worthy as is. This morning I woke up with the peace I needed. No chaos in my mind, no war waging in my heart. Just peace and stillness.
SHOP MY OUTFIT