2016.

​one of the longest running traditions i have on social media is titling the current chapter of my life — it’s something i’ve been doing since 2007, and it always consists of one word for the year. (rookie, to mark my first year as a teacher, was 2015, for example.)

so, with it being deep enough into 2016, i have my title to share with you guys this year, but to understand why i picked this also involves sharing something really vulnerable, too.

in july — actually, the day KD decided he would be a Warrior — i had a relationship of 1.5 years come to an end. i am still cleaning up the fallout from this now, and probably will be for the foreseeable while, even though it’ll end up better in the long run not to have that kind of toxicity and a significant other who takes me for granted in my life. 

my breakup isn’t the only thing that happened this year, though, and when i think back on 2016 i will equally remember the struggle of turning 25, which, while a milestone, hasn’t yet been a lifechanging 3 months the way we would love to think. there are signs that i am moving toward fully functioning adulthood, but i still often feel behind the curve — i don’t cook regularly, i don’t run errands on time and am constantly flooded with stuff i haven’t graded and and and and — especially in comparison to everyone else around me. (i run in some accomplished circles, evidently.)

most of these first few months have been spent trying to learn that that’s okay, as long as i keep moving in the right direction, and that i still have value even in my incompleteness. 

i’m a slow learner with some big goals that i’m inconsistent about reaching. 

but i’ll get there. eventually. just like everything else so far. 

this year’s title is some wordplay that captures both those experiences.

xxv. – n – 

1) a year in my life in which i x’d out my ex: v. 

2) the 25th chapter in the novel of nam, filled with struggle, slow growth, and hopefully before long, sunshine.working title.

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One thought on “2016.

  1. Nam,
    We don’t really know each other in the real sense of the word, but since I’m a lot older than you, and have recently been through a lot of shit, I’d like to give some advice. I am 54 years old this year, and have three kids, my youngest a senior at SJSU. This past year I:
    • Finalized my divorce from a woman that slept with 6 different guys while we were married (I found out much later of course).
    • Had to go to court and spent over $50K in attorney fees because the State of California in my opinon heavily favored my ex and her constant lies.
    • Lost my nephew to cancer after a two year battle
    • Had an extremely shitty asshole for a boss for the past 2 years
    • Lived with my Dad, who basically disrespects and hates me, but needed to be taken care of
    • Had a cancer scare of my own
    • Met an awesome woman who recently has told me she is too busy to see me anymore (I’m taking that as “get lost”)

    With that said, I did move to a new place and after a reorg, got a new boss who is outside the US which gives me a whole new level of freedom. I also learned the past few years that I really enjoy cooking and baking, and have tried some things I’ve always wanted to like rowing, going to football coaches clinics (Chris Peterson’s Coaches Clinic was AWESOME) that are basically frowned upon in the Asian community.

    Here’s the bottom line and what I keep telling my kids. It’s much, much easier to be yourself and not who you think everyone wants you to be. That, more than anything else, has brought me peace and helped me focus on what is truly important and what makes me happy. I’m not perfect, and have been called eccentric and boring, but at the end of the day, I’m happy and at peace. So don’t let a little mishap get you down too much. I always give myself 24 hours to be pissed off/hurt/etc then move the fuck on. Life is too short to stagnate. You seem to be doing what you love so that’s an awesome start.

    Go Bears!
    @NuiGCali

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