Letter To The Wounded Ones

To the wounded ones,

I write to you from the other side (if there were even sides to begin with.) But having been where I was, I am guessing that is how you might see me, as the other who will never comprehend your pain. Not wishing to see you wear a smile to dismiss me, I rather name it upfront. As the wise poet, Rilke, once shared, “Don’t think that the person who is trying to comfort you now lives untroubled among the simple and quiet words that sometimes give you pleasure. His life has much trouble and sadness, and remains far behind yours. If it were otherwise, he would never have been able to find those words.”

Dear one, there really is light at the end of it all. It can come, if fortune permits, in the form of another who sees you and accepts you for who you are. Or it can come, with all the blessings you have already been bestowed, through you. You may be walking through darkness searching for a mirror to help you see the light you carry within, and you know what, the light you seek is in you right from the beginning. Yet, being the modern humans we are, we have been too used to seeking over there instead of here. Here, in you, do you see the light? Perhaps it is dim, faded, shying from the unfamiliar attention, but it is here.

You hold the power to heal your own wounds. You can seek support and help, but the healing is yours to do. You have to be willing to look—at your own light, and at where it hurts. Because dismissing or ignoring it does nothing, akin to putting a blindfold on yourself and insisting you see no wound. Yet, the throbbing persists. The occasional pangs in those serendipitous moments where tears wet your eyes and you know not why.

You need time to heal. But time does not heal. Time does not have the power, but you, my dear, you do. Reclaim your power, live your responsibility. Do not let how others see you direct how you see yourself. Seek your own truth, see your own light, then help them see you.

Nurse your wounds. Heal, and regain your wholeness. You are not alone. I am here doing the work with you.

I am a developmental coach who helps people embark on the journey towards healing and living a life true to themselves. I can provide you with the safe space and the guidance to do the Work, let’s have a conversation.

I never dared

I woke up from a nightmare, sobbing,
        smothering my cries with my blanket,
I never dared call for Mum.

I never dared tell her some girls on my school bus
        ganged up to taunt and scorn me.
I never dared tell her, one of them was a neighbour’s kid,
        that neighbour she smiles and greets in the lift.
I never dared tell her, a teacher chided me to reflect on my character
        in my unsuccessful attempt to borrow a piece of craft paper from my classmates.
        I was only eight, did I deserve such hate?
I never dared tell her about her colleague,
        “She lied! It’s not about the candy, I’m not greedy!
        She said she wasn’t going to friend me, and she was your friend.
        I…was scared.”
I never dared tell her why I acted out on one of our road trips,
        jealous of my cousin sitting on her lap those few hours.
I never dared tell her how shocked and afraid I was
        when I encountered the flasher, and how much I wished
        she’d pick me up at the bus-stop after that event.

I never dared tell her many things, afraid
        she wouldn’t take my side, afraid
        she’d shame me or be ashamed
        of me.

Then, she left.
Like me, she never dared tell
or ask for help.

I never dared cry to Dad.
I never dared tell him the first piano teacher I had gradually idled away
        during our lessons, and wasn’t teaching me much.
I never dared tell him another neighbour asked me to stop my piano practice
        so her daughter could get her afternoon nap after school.
        (Oh wait, I did let him know, jokingly,over a decade after I parted with the keys)
I never dared tell him of the nights I was trembling under my blanket, traumatised
        by the presence prying and staring in through my window slits.
I never dared tell him of the accident I was in, where the car was flung
        across four lanes of the highway, landing on its top.
        (With God’s mercy, I was carried out of the smashed metal, unscathed)
I never dared tell him how terrified I was of whom I was once engaged to
        and why I broke it.
I never dared tell him how upset I was when he disregarded my offer
        to invite his friends to my wedding.
        (I had wanted him to share his joy and pride.)

I never dared utter a word
        when my heart shattered,
        when I screwed up in life.
I wish I had.
I wish I felt safe.
I wish I was assured.
I wish it was different, and I
will make a difference, starting
from this piece—

I dare.


One word, two letters;
the former with sharp edges, the latter,
a smooth, round body.
Paired with different punctuations,
each No its own entire world.

NO! with an exclamation—
outright rejection of what we don’t want,
the emphatic expression of our displeasure.
One of the first words uttered as a child;
short, easy, straight to the point as we push away
that disgusting broccoli or pea or medicine
our parents try to stuff into our mouths.

nowith trailing ellipses,
drags along uncertainty or worry,
a sign of holding…

NO. Period—
stands firm and steady, resting in its own ground,
gently yet powerfully asserting its disagreement
with whatever came.

And of course, there are many more.

Matched with a comma, quickly followed by a But;
a combination often heard. The No in this trio is brief,
almost inaudible, swiftly propelling its energy into the But,
negating everything with the new proposition.

There’s also the semi-colon, a favorite
in academic literature, hinting there’s more
to the argument that’s coming, as demonstrated
in the preceding example.

how amazing this one word is.
What worlds might open and close
with this singular utterance?

Check out the full newsletter issue on No.

Letter to Self

What we need, we can learn to give it to ourselves.

An inquiry this morning brought me on a journey through the lush field of envy down into the blues, emerging hot with anger before settling into my being with strength and energy pulsing through my arms.

I visited my past and lent my little one my voice to express what she could not back then. All she ever wanted was for my parents to see her.

Stop looking at others, and stop telling me how good they are. Stop. Look at me and tell me how good I am. Help me see my merits and gifts. Tell me I am good and I deserve a place in this world. Tell me, show me, I am precious, no matter how old I am, what form I take. Tell me that despite life being tough, it is worth living. Tell me the whole story, not just half. Don’t be stingy with kindness, thinking it will fuel my complacency. I lack confidence even to begin. I don’t need you to tell the world about me, I need you to tell me about me, not just my bad, but my good as well. I need to know this world is safe for me, and I don’t have to be anyone else other than me.

My Little One

I feel my repressed angst and am reminded of the many occasions I looked elsewhere wishing I did not have to be here to be me. What I craved were the words of affirmation from my parents. They tried their best, they gave me all they could on their worst days and best days. And I needed more than they could provide. So here, I do the work needed to relay to myself the messages I needed to hear.

My Dearest,

Maybe you know, maybe you don’t
but I am still here to tell you,
there’s a place for you in this world—
right here, this spot where you are sitting, in this very body.
Here is where you are, living your dreams, breathing writing.
This is all that matters, this is life.
You are precious. Irreplaceable.
There can never be another you.
I don’t want you to be anyone but yourself.
I know it’s rough outside and I know you can see it through.
I have seen your strength and resilience. And I know
what a courageous soul you are.
Go, pursue what your heart desires.
You have all it takes, and you are worth the fight.
Know that I will be here to catch you when you fall,
I will hold you tight and close until you are ready to try again.

Loving you. Always.

We are responsible for our own healing. When we heal, our healing ripples through the world.

What are the messages you wish you were told when you were young? Will you be the one to say them to yourself?

I write to inquire into my life and to share my learnings from my sojourn on Earth. These essays are my labor of love and also my livelihood. If you wish to support this labor from this labor, please consider aiding its sustenance with a donation. Your support keeps me going.

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Towards Greatness

Winning does not tempt that man.
His growth is: to be the deeply defeated by ever greater things.

Rainer Maria Rilke

This was a quote I included in my book The Weight of My Soul: Uncovering My Significance. I am glad after two years since discovering this quote, I still think about it when I contemplate how I live life. Moreover, I am appreciating his words ever more. Is Man masochistic to seek defeat? No, of course not. Man knows greatness does not come without a single defeat. He is probably the only creature blessed with the faculties to appreciate and know greatness. There is no getting to greatness without traversing the yellow brick road, we cannot achieve greatness through comfort.

A tougher problem offers opportunity for intellectual growth; a heavier weight, physical growth. A breakdown or disruption in life offers opportunity for growth and deepening of our soul. In every discomfort lies an opportunity for growth. It is a testament to the resilience and malleability of human beings.

To be soft and malleable is to allow for growth. We allow ourselves to take in the nutrients we need to grow while retaining the flexibility and possibility of how we grow. We were given soft animal bodies to be impressed upon, to be touched, and to feel warmth and love. When our heart and mind feel secure and safe in our body, they can rest; they can be and do what they were meant to do—to feel and think without the grip of past experiences.

A conversation, then, begins to unfold within: amongst an open loving heart, a calm discerning mind, and a soft steady belly. In this resting state, we uncover our power to be, and act, in this world. From this place, we can falter and fall, and in each fall, choose to intimately know our vulnerability, then rise again. And each time we rise, therein lies our strength shining through what was once vulnerable.

Each proverbial defeat offers us a chance to see distinctly who we took ourselves to be, and learn about who we truly are: fallible beings with infinite potentialities. From this, we get to choose again who we want to be.

Even in our finite time on Earth, we are constantly offered the chance to grow.

Towards greatness.