16 Sep To Seek What Lives Inside Is To Make It In This World
WE’RE OFTEN waiting for the next peak to bring us happiness, excitement, fulfillment. Over the years, I’ve grappled with this. Coming to Japan is a chapter that I’ve been counting on for years to change everything.
Here I am. I made it.
But soon, the novelty will fade. I’d be lying if I said it hasn’t already, ever so slightly; I’m becoming accustomed.
This dream that I’ve been waiting so long to reach is now, simply, normal. Okay — it still feels absolutely wild being here. Yet, the wonder isn’t so much hitting me in moments of grandeur and Japanese quintessence; it hits me on the train on my morning commute.
It hits me in the supermarket, deciphering where the hell the butter is.
It brings tears to my eyes as I look up at the moon on a bike ride home, the same moon I’ve gazed upon for years in awe, enveloped by the same black sky that’s looked down upon and loved me through the joy and pain and moments of questioning.
Finding that magic in everyday life is what keeps our spirit riding high.
Finding that magic in everyday life is what keeps us alive.
It’s there, although sometimes, the chapter we’re in feels bereft of meaning, purpose, joy. These are the moments which teach us the most. It’s up to us to seek that spark, find it, create it on our own. If we don’t, we’ll always be waiting.
Yesterday, as I walked through my neighborhood on my way to work, The Prayer, one of my all-time favorite songs by Kid Cudi, came on through my headphones. I passed a construction worker, shared an ohayo gozaimasu, good morning, and he smiled. The following lyrics began to bump:
My heart thump not from being nervous
Sometimes I’m thinking God made me special here on purpose
So all the while ’til I’m gone, make my words important, so
If I slip away, if I die today
The last thing you remember won’t
Be about some Apple Bottom jeans with the boots with the fur
Maybe how I dream of being free since my birth
Cursed, but the demons I confronted would disperse.
I’ve probably heard those lyrics over a hundred times. I entered the train station and laughed to myself, realizing that I always had the opening line wrong.
My heart thump not from being nervous. What he’s saying, I believe, is that being alive is all there is to be. We’re alive. To seek what lives inside of us is to make it.
A wave of emotion flooded through my being as I walked alone through the empty tiled hallway of the station. I moved to the beat as I realized something so beautiful, so necessary on this journey.
I’m not here to be anything that I’m not already.
I’m here to share my truth, to speak to ears both open and closed. I’m here in Japan because I have to be — my path has led me here, and the only thing which determines my success is whether or not I impart the words which stream from my heart.
I write because not to write is a greater challenge than to put the words on the page. I feel such a need to share what I feel, because I fucking love it.
If I can help somebody else find their own meaning, I’m nothing but grateful. But either way, I’ll continue doing me.
While at the ward office, waiting to register my Japanese address, I read the following line in The Heart of Emerson’s Journals by Ralph Waldo Emerson:
Happy is he who looks only into his work to know if it will succeed, never into the times or the public opinion; and who writes from the love of imparting certain thoughts and not from the necessity of sale - who writes always to the unknown friend.
What an insane concept to connect the wisdom of legends both past and present — Kid Cudi and Ralph Waldo Emerson — poets, artists, seekers, humans, a coalition of all those that have come before, who walk the earth today and feel that thump in their chest.
People, like you and me.
The mission’s always been the same: discover who you are. Find your own meaning in a world so often flawed; spread love through words both written and spoken.
Share humanity through the emotions so difficult to understand, yet universal, bursting within each of us.
I wrote this as my hands shook with passion, feeling something so deep, yet so common, felt and unseen in the totality of being. My eyes welled up amongst countless others on the train. It was another Thursday morning, on my way to work.