I feel guilty sitting here, tap tap tapping on this 24th day of December – Christmas Eve. By all accounts aren’t I suppose to be busy cooking up a storm, celebrating and partying? At the same time, aren’t we supposed to observe the reverence of Jesus’ birth? To confuse the issue more for myself, I am Chinese. I was not born a Christian but to a culture of ancestor worship. Sometime and somewhere in my life, I saw Jesus on the cross. I followed that vision and was baptised in the Catholic Church. But I heard Buddha calling me also. I listened and liked what I heard.

I am confused but I don’t feel too bad about it. I’ve been listening to too many voices. I heard all their sayings and beliefs. Now, I know the best voice is my own. I’ve bathed in too many’s experiences and feelings. They are not my own. It’s time to shed them. Time to step into my own waters, my experiences and feelings. It is time to don my fineries and see how they fit. Will they wear well?

O Holy Night has been my favourite Christmas Carol since I was a little immigrant girl in Maidstone. It was before I was Catholic. I heard it sung by Susan, an older neighbour girl. She lived in the railroad station house across the highway from us. I thought her voice was heavenly. It was so pure and clear like that night. It is still my favourite. I love the beauty of the music and the lyrics. Whether or not I believe, it does not matter. How I celebrate or not does not matter as long as I am true to myself, as long as I am enjoying what I am doing and not hurting another.



IMG_3154Some mornings doldrum sits heavily upon me.  I’m like a fat Buddha, unable to rise from my Lotus position.  I sigh and heave my chest to no avail.  I cannot summon up la joie de vivre.  I cannot rise above it all.  Must I be full of what I am not?  That is the moral question.

I cannot give up, sit and let everything hang out and say ‘After all, tomorrow is another day.’  I am not Buddha or Scarlett O’Hara though I would love to say, ‘Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn.  Having said all this, I do feel better. Maybe a bit of Scarlett’s spirit have seeped into me though I’ve never gotten so bored I could scream.

IMG_4119Now, I can push through some of the doldrum.  Or is it fatigue?  I can see the light at the end of the tunnel as they say. I am finding a few words.  I have been away from the keyboard too long.  It’s difficult to recover the rhythm of my tap, tapping.  I’m adrift from my thoughts and intuits.  You do lose what you don’t use.  I must unlock my limbs now and rise above it all.  Tomorrow will be another today.  Tap. Tap. Tap.



I think I have had too many glasses of wine.  I am not feeling myself on this 43rd day into Lent.  I am feeling rather angry, ticked off.

Making progress in becoming enlightened is a hard task.  I am no Buddha but I do try hard.  I have no Bodhi  tree to sit under.  But I do have a snow pile to clear.  I am learning to use my bad energy to do good things.  Today I have cleared a wide path all the way in front of the house.  Now, there’s less worry about melting snow doing damage to the foundation.

I have not lost any of my excess weight yet, though I have stepped on the scale a few times. Getting slimmer is not easy or simple.  I am walking Sheba twice a day.  I am not really thrilled about it, but I do it anyways.  As soon as we start out, I want to come back and hit the couch already.  I talk myself into one block, then another block, and another. I have to train myself into liking something.  I have to train myself into good habits.

I threw out my drawer full of  old ugly, utilitarian bras today….finally.  Funny how that is.  Even though I’ve brought 4 nice new ones and 6 really pretty vibrant camisoles, it was still difficult to toss those ugly old bras.  Attachment?  What was I attached to – things of no use and no longer desirable.  So what other undesirables  are still lurking in my drawers and closet?  What yukkies are hidden in my head?

Well, it is getting late.  I am scare of the dark.  I am scare of my shadow.  Best wait for sunlight before digging further.  I might have to stick with digging snow for awhile till I am stronger.  And I will – get stronger.  I trust the God in me.


IMG_1364I’m thinking of past Christmases and New Years as I awake in the dark this morning.  I’m thinking that it would be much easier if it was in July.  There would be no snow, heavy coats, scarves and boots, coughs or runny noses to deal with.  Life would be lighter and easier…would it not?

I’m also thinking back to my childhood in China, of New Year’s Eve.  Seems to me that is the only memory I have of a true celebration ….. a welcoming in of the new year and paying homage to the one past.  That is my interpretation of the rituals,  for I was but a child when I left my homeland.  That is how I like to remember it.

I’m feeling my loss, as a child of immigrants to this country….the  loss of my Chinese-ness, my culture, my heritage.  But I have spent many more years here than there and I can never go home again.  I am a stranger in both lands.   Sometimes it is necessary to feel our pain and losses in order to move ahead.  I have felt that pain many times.  But I also have gained much because of that sense of loss.

I really do not want to dwell on pain and losses.  They are not always real, but things our mind grab onto, maybe because of something someone said or done.  Who knows what is in another’s mind or heart.  And you cannot understand it so you write your own interpretation.  You allow yourself to doubt and you let poison in.  You hurt.  How does that help?  Better that we celebrate, however we can, to let in the light.

I like the Chinese ways of ushering in the new by cleaning and clearing out stale and stagnant chi.  Gung Hee Fat Choy! Happy New Year! Chinese tradition is to bring the new year in with clean house, new clothes and to receive/give red envelopes of money ..symbol of prosperity. My childhood memory is of our house being warmed by the fires tended by the women in our family as they made sweets and dim sims in the night.  Perhaps one day I will learn how to make some of them.


I’m sweeping out the debris of my mind, letting go of past grievances and hurts, opening my heart to receive all the goodness that there is in the universe.  I am baking bread, , making soup, blessing our home.  I am wearing the colour red, the colour of good fortune.

I am no longer a lost child. looking for my identity.  I have found my Chinese self, Hafong, alias Lily, the born again Catholic,  who admires the ways of Buddha .  I am a Chinese woman living in Canada, a country in the Universe.  And I am celebrating my life.