Bittersweet Tea Memories

I used to spend summers at my grandmother’s. She would let me work at her company. We’d get up early, grab a Chik-fil-a chicken biscuit, and head into the office.

I worked in the IT department. Alongside an industrious stoic man named Lu Kim. He did much but said little. I was the opposite. We brought out the best in each other, though. Despite our drastically different demeanors, at our core we were very much the same.

Lovers of tradition. With deeply rooted appreciation of simple elegant rituals. Like courtship and tea. Foreign concepts in a society characterized by instant gratification.

One afternoon he took me to a quaint little Victorian-themed tea room for lunch.

Lu Kim was a rare gem of sincerity, selflessness, and sophistication. The Eastern equivalent of a Southern Gentleman.

It seemed so right that I never considered for a moment any alternative to Lu Kim. Riding off into the sunset with him was a realistic tangible goal. #fairytale #delusion

Just another thing to check of my “To Do” list.

  1. Finish College
  2. Marry Mr. Right
  3. Create an Economic Empire
  4. Live Happily Ever After on a Yacht
  5. Go to Heaven

My heart breaks when I dwell on it too long. Because Lu Kim is a beautiful distant memory and Jim is my grotesque reality. Jim, who eats pizza straight out of the box. Jim, who has taught our child how to lay on a couch. Like a bum-in-training.

Where Lu Kim was patient and gentle, Jim is self-serving and coarse.

It’s an agonizing truth the world we live in has no partiality to happy endings. There’s no accepting it, not really. Relief is finding distraction from such realities. One of my distractions is homemaking. I love interior design and shopping for pieces to add to enhance my home.

So I was looking around for a Turkish Tea Set to match my Moroccan-themed livingroom. Contentment. Turkish Tea Set. Victorian Tea. Lu Kim. Jim. Broken heart. Crushed dreams. Depression.

Even when submerging myself with things I enjoy, depression still finds a way in. But that’s how it goes, isn’t it?

*Rae

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18 thoughts on “Bittersweet Tea Memories

  1. Yes, depression is insidious. It like to insinuate, set, and dwell within us.

    This is frankly written and meticulously expressed. What you craft and share will hopefully reach many readers and receivers. It’s an assessment that is true, real (as the streets), hard, and not quite hopeful. I like to think I’m not feeling and writing from a distance. I believe I can empathize.

    I have little by way of wisdom to return. Touchstone is an old idea. Something that we know outside for how it resonates and rebuilds us on the inside. May Turkish tea (in sets and cups of) do that for you.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Depression is definitely an emotional state we all experience. The best thing to do when you’re depressed is create, craft, and work towards a small goal. Reality is created by our own thoughts, actions, and work ethic. We get depressed from not listening to our hearts, neglecting the most high temporarily, by not fulfilling our duties onto him.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Rae!

    Thank you for sharing your relationship experiences and the inclusion of a link to “Jim is my grotesque reality.”

    I used a quote from Confucius in a previous post to you and it would seem to be relevant here –

    “By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest.” – Confucius

    Read more at: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/c/confucius.html

    My feeling is that although there is much wisdom within the scriptures, God does not require us to limit ourselves to them exclusively. I think it is important to study people, if you can, to avoid being taken in by those who act nice only to win your trust, then take advantage of you later.

    It requires discernment to tell when people do not have genuine respect for you and have ulterior motives for acting nice to you. If you find you are ‘taken in’ by new people, this could mean that you have a trusting nature that will prevent you from acquiring discernment about people’s true motives. If you find this is the case, it may help to seek the help of friends who have successful marriages and have shown some ability to predict how relationships with others pan out. It would be useful to have them meet any new man who you think may be right for you.

    In your case with Jim, my feeling is that he let you down before and you should not have given him a second chance. What evidence was there that he had changed? Clearly, he was good at turning on the charm. God does not require us to trust people who have abused that trust in the past. You could have forgiven Jim for his first transgression, but you were not required to try again with him. It’s one thing to have a coffee with him at a Cafe; it is another to live with him.

    I hope you receive this advice in the spirit that it is intended. As one Christian to another, I don’t want you to suffer again from another man who seems exciting and attentive at the start of your relationship only to become abusive when he has acquired your trust.

    Peace and love to you and all your readers,

    Dinos

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I appreciate your words of wisdom, and I have taken them to heart because they do have merit. I don’t live with Jim. I could never invite that sort of strife in the home I’m raising our child. God has been good to us in that regard. Thanks again for your comment!
    *Rae

    Liked by 1 person

  5. That is true! I find I’m especially prone to depression when I mentally pick up portions of my.life that have past. Holding on to things God saw fit to pass is a struggle sometimes.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Hi Rae!

    You may find the advice from the links below helpful –

    http://www.tmswiki.org/forum/threads/live-in-the-present-moment.3187/

    https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/735245-there-are-only-two-days-in-the-year-that-nothing

    Below is an extract from the second link –

    “There are only two days in the year that nothing can be done. One is called Yesterday and the other is called Tomorrow. Today is the right day to Love, Believe, Do and mostly Live.”

    ― Dalai Lama XIV

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I empathize with you, Rae – I am and have been in a very similar place, as a matter of fact I have been all year and it is very likely it has attributed greatly to the breakdown of nearly every aspect of my life which has culminated up to now, marriage not discluded. It’s the flood of those sunk costs, decisions which cannot be unmade, directions which we cannot easily change but wish we could… I’m not sure there are many worse depressions than that regret and to be honest it’s hounded the back of my mind for months now.

    So I will say this: don’t let it.

    Father consume Rae with your peace.

    Don’t let what once could have been rot away at what is and can be. I don’t have a seamless method to do that–because if I could kill my memories of what might have been to go on living what is in ignorance believe me I would in a heartbeat–really I’m still out on my own limb, but find a way and find peace with your present moment because the might-have-been can destroy you.

    Best wishes to you and have a happy Monday !

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Thank you so much h Carson for.your words and prayer! If there was a way we could pick and choose what memories to have, I’d remove all the painful ones. All that can be done now is to avoid dwelling.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Indeed. Blasts from the past are just that–a wave of destruction. Depression is anger focused inward, directed back at you. Other than create, I really analyze the problems so I can find a solution to no longer be disappointed with myself.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. controversialchristian1 says:

    I like this post very much. You have a rare quality, which is brutal honesty. Prefer honesty to sentimental sugar coated twaddle any day. I actually believe that very few Western people, including British people and Americans, are ever just honest about things. We all hide behind so many masks and behind so much ephemeral BS, because we are simply scared of showing the real us in case people hate us or reject us.

    Not to upset you, but there is a statement going round that ‘we don’t attract who we want, but who we are’. I’m about to put up a post on one of my blogs called Decent Men Come Last.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Hello controversialchristian1!

    The last paragraph of your post is rather interesting. If we assume that there is some truth in that statement, ‘we don’t attract who we want, but who we are’, then it leads to several questions:

    1) to what extent do we know ourselves?
    2) what do we want to change about ourselves and how do we do it?
    3) how do we really get to know some one before we commit to them?
    4) is it true that women want babies from men who are strong and adventurous, but husbands who are gentle and caring, as some studies suggest?

    I’ve listed only four questions above to keep this brief, but many more occur to me.

    I hope your post has a good response.

    Peace and love to all,

    Dinos

    Liked by 1 person

  12. controversialchristian1 says:

    Thanks Dinos. I was immediately drawn to Rae’s blog because she is graphically and sometimes painfully honest. I have that quality myself because it’s all I have. Honesty simply cuts through all the BS. If Rae allows me, I’ll post a link to my post. My health is generally not good. I have CFS and it has been very bad.

    I don’t know who I am. I’ve tried to fit into this group or that group all my life. Now, I wish to find me, in the context of knowing God, too.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Hi contro!

    I was sorry to learn that you have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS).

    I confess that I know no-one who has been diagnosed with this condition and I guess there are a lot of people who remain undiagnosed. I’m also guessing you’ve tried CBT or medical treatment?

    I think it’s not so hard to learn who you are. As Morgan Freeman put it in “To Catch a Spider,” it’s not that, ‘We are what we do’ (people are always asking each other what they do for a living), it’s more a case of, ‘We do what we are.’

    I’ve had seven different jobs during my working life; now I’m a full-time Carer to my 94 yr old mother with poor health and dementia. There is a common thread in all my roles which is that I was constantly looking for ways to improve efficiency and communication, and to modify protocols to make life easier for my fellow-workers. As a Carer I’m trying to change the ‘jobsworth’ attitudes of Healthcare professionals to shift the emphasis from following protocols to patient care. I do not take the credit for any good that I do as I consider The Holy Spirit is working through me.

    There’s more to me than what I’ve written above, but that is a big chunk of it.

    I look forward to the link to your post.

    Peace and love to all,

    Dinos

    Liked by 1 person

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