Where's home? (Ricky Weekly #86)
This is where I share 3 things every week with my friends and anyone else interested.
A picture from my life:
Great job planning a surprise birthday dinner for me. I was surprised! Thanks to all the friends who showed up and hope to see the rest of you soon.
A thing on my mind:
Every time I come back to writing after a long time away, it’s hard to start. I want to let you in on all the things I’ve been thinking about, but I know that’d be too much.
I visited Taiwan in February for the first time in four years because of Covid. I’ve been visiting every year since I was 18, so the four-year gap was the longest I’ve experienced as an adult, which made it less routine and more eye-opening for me. Without going into details, the short of it is that I realized I’ve never felt like I had a “home,” defined as a place where I know I have people who love and support me unconditionally. The good news is that there is a place like that in Taiwan, IF I choose to let it be home for me. I’ve spent roughly a third of my life in Taiwan, Los Angeles, and the Bay Area, and there are relationships and places that can be markers of “home” in each of these places, but when it comes to a grounded, secured feeling of unconditional love, I think the closest is in Taiwan, followed by the Bay, then LA.
My Taiwan trip triggered a lot of feelings that resulted in recurring nightmares about my childhood, which led me to try to address them more proactively. I’ve never used words like “trauma” and “abuse” when talking about my story, but it’s interesting to hear my therapists (old and new) use these words back at me. Perhaps I can benefit if I lean into those concepts more explicitly in my therapy. I read (listened) to a book called Adult Children of Emotionally Immature Parents, and while the book title is great (90% of the value) and some of the stories are validating, the recommendations on what to do were underwhelming for me. I’ve developed all the coping techniques on my own the hard way in order to get to where I am today.
From talking to my therapist, I’m realizing I need to understand better what makes me happy outside of work, do more of it, communicate my boundaries, and ask for what I want. It’s really hard for me. One thing I know that makes me happy is being with my friends because they are the main reason why the Bay Area feels like home #2 for me, but it’s getting much harder to see each other at this age. Since Covid I’ve been slowly mourning the death of some of my friendships, and each person leaves a big gaping hole in my heart. The reason why I love writing this newsletter is because it’s a way for me to reach out and connect with friends I don’t get to see often. If you’re reading this, know that I’m sending you LOL (Lots of Love)!
A piece of content I recommend:
Andrew Schulz - INFAMOUS on YouTube
This is probably the best special I’ve seen. Andrew dances on the line between offensive and funny like his name is Dave Chappelle, and I think he’s way funnier than Chappelle. I think he might be controversial? I’m not sure but wouldn’t surprise me.
Bonus: Staring into the abyss as a core life skill - Ben Kuhn