Diary: A Fresh Start

I miss jogging in this path
Throughout my 12 working years, whether I liked the tasks or hated it, I was ready to give up everything just  to get a job done.  I wouldn't sleep for consecutive nights. I was  on constant call. I had very demanding clients that were emailing  and calling me at midnight. It was ridiculous how I couldn't turn my phone off let alone finish a movie inside a cinema on a Saturday.  Very little weekends. Almost no holidays. I sacrificed time with family, my health, my self, my personal time to make sure I'm on top of everything.  
I had to create a different persona so I could rise up to the job. It was a world where showing a slight sense of weakness was not tolerated.  I created this other mask where I'm not allowed to show my real sensitive and introverted self. I created this extremely enthusiastic aggressive and extroverted alter ego to please the clients, to please the boss, to please my family back home as a breadwinner, and most importantly to please myself.  I was my worst critic.  I was always driven by perfection.  Always ready to take on a challenge and prove anyone wrong who says I couldn't do it.  That was my greatest motivator.   

Someone told me I couldn't draw.
I practiced till I had no paper left.
I became an architect, because  I challenged myself  to it
where math was my weakness and was told architecture was very difficult.
I decided after acing the board exam 
that I didn't want to work in an architectural firm after that.

Someone told me at 14 it's too late for me to play the piano.
I asked our neighbor (because we didn't have a piano) to use theirs
and got a piano teacher.
I  had my first classical piano recital on my 18th birthday.

Someone told me when I was young, I dress like cr*p.
At thirteen, I enrolled in fashion design class
 and was designing my own clothes from left over fabric
and had our seamstresses sew them for me.

Someone told me I couldn't go back to my former weight (when I first came to Dubai and gained)
I got into Dukan diet and exercised a lot until I got back to my old size

Someone told me, I couldn't do sales by the person who hired me
(Clever boss, he knew how to motivate me). 
I studied sales and learned as much as I could.   
I  never stopped and did everything in my power.
I became obsessed with the job. 
The clients loved this creature I have created.
I became someone else, 
someone so hungry for accomplishing and proving 
that person wrong.  Sales poured in like crazy.
Then I became 'her' 24/7

Then that pattern repeated again and again.

Then one day, I woke up and asked myself, "Who are you?"
What happened to Arni?

I am happy to say,  I don't regret any decisions I have made.  I had the habit of  always turning  lemons into lemonade. Looking back, no matter how difficult or bitter or dark the past  was, whether there's food on the table tomorrow, or whether I'm studying under a street lamp or a candle before the board exams (because we weren't able to pay the electricity bill), I never gave up.  It was hard and life is meant to be that way. I'm thankful for those experiences because they make me appreciate what I have today. I remember writing down the places I wanted to go to  in my journal, the things I wanted to do and during those difficult times, this diary fed my hunger, my desires.  It kept me moving forward.  (This journal is the same as Create Your Own Do's List above.) Today, I have almost completed that list, the one on my old diary twelve years ago.

My humble beginnings gave me strength that if along the way, I find myself back to where I have started, I'll be fine.  I'm grateful to God for His Grace. He gave me courage to let go of that mask where achievements defined my worth. I am now comfortable embracing the right to disappoint others in order to stand true to my feelings.  For  I need not prove my worth based on others'expectations. 

This is my fresh start.  
The Arni you see here is the real me.
No pretense. Unedited version of me.
This blog is a place where I have no expectations.
This time I'm embracing this new found freedom.
Where there is no need to prove anything to anyone.
This time, I'm living for me.


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  1. So proud of you Arni, Never GIVE UP Chasing your dreams, that will make you feel alive, if you don't try you will never know what you can reach, this post is not only inspirational but also energy sharing, Love it!!!

  2. You and I, in the professional arena, are very much alike. However, this past spring I left the rat race to take on a bit of a different challenge and challenge is really a soft way of putting it. I'm glad that you will be living for yourself but don't be afraid to be that person who pushes through challenges and prove other people wrong. Because that may be a really strong part of who you are

  3. You sound so much like me in the professional arena. Nobody tells me I can't do something! I'm glad you're finding yourself, and being true to who you are, and following your dreams.

  4. I can't resist responding back to all of your messages. Thank you so much, Sherry, Rooth and Miss Laia-your words made my day. I think you are right, Rooth, it's a deeply embedded part of who I am..I'll reflect on that and see how I could strike a balance.


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