“Don’t be a tool. Become someone that matches with their name.”
That really hit me deep. Alongside this experience that I had today. It’s as if the Universe is really hitting me on the head this time around.
I listen to the sounds of a calm nocturne during this late night, trying to relax my brain when all I can do is think, ponder, wonder. Analyze. All of these things happen as I type this, trying to make sense of my own experience and how to decipher any of it if there is any meaning to it in the first place.
I have been working second shift. It’s late when I come home. Well right now especially when I’m house sitting. It’s quiet where I am when I arrive home after work. But this event keeps replaying in my head as the sesame oil from dinner is still tantalizing me with more earthly delight of food on my palette. But to cook more would be excessive. I digress.
At work, his man of Hawaiian descent pops in. He asks me where the bathroom is like anyone else, but when he says, Aloha, and I reply mahalo, he instantly stops in his tracks. “Where did you learn that?”
“I went to Hawaii for two weeks some years back.” I stop my stocking to pay my respects. For some reason, he commanded my presence, unlike the Bougie Beckies that walk into the store demanding my attention to getting their organic grapes. No, it was subtler. Kinder. Yet still powerful behind a penetrating gaze. We talk briefly but then excuses himself. Considering it a small encounter I go about my business. But some time after, he returns, obviously to finish the conversation.
“Do you know what ‘ohana’ means?”
“Yeah, family,” I return with an amused smile. Lilo and Stitch rang through my head, hearing Lilo yelling that key phrase of the entire movie: And family means no one gets left behind… or forgotten.
“It’s more than just blood family though,” he makes a note. “It’s about others around you. You have your work ohana: everyone works together and knows each other. There are many different types of ohana.” He goes on to explain how that family is more than just who you’re related to. It’s about a camaraderie, a togetherness and a connection between people sharing a similarity.
He begins talking about his daughter, and pulls out his wallet where there’s a picture of his wife and said daughter within the folds. His wife is indeed lovely: tall, shapely with curly red hair with eyes like the water on Waikiki. I can see why he fell in love with her. And his daughter… one could see the power within her. She looked just like her father with a sort of wisdom within her dark eyes. He explains where she’s going to college and what she’s doing. “Education,” he remarks. “But the reason why is what floored me.”
“Oh?” I remembered my own experience in education, becoming a teacher for a short while — and how I disliked it. My time in South America was consumed by my attempt at giving back to the community through my ESL “abilities”. I tried to teach English as a second language to those different from myself. Perhaps, I thought haughtily, that I could give them the chance to excel and be better. After he spoke of her reason for becoming an ESL teacher, I gave pause… wondering if my whole experience down there was so awful because of the wrong reasons.
“To help with the transition,” he gave away. “To help others along their own journey in life.”
The wisdom of a Hawaiian and his young daughter. My reasons were… practically nothing compared to her source of inspiration. I went out of desperation, hoping to find a career, a calling finally for something I had been searching for all these years. She truly wanted to be an aid. That right there is what makes shaman(a)s, shaman(a)s, I’ve learned. I still have a way to go before I can be a teacher of any kind. I lack the patience. I lack most skill sets that teachers have. I love showing the way, but the basis behind it is for all the wrong reasons.
That got me thinking though, what if I need to try teaching again? What if I need to go elsewhere and do what I do, just one more time?
I’m not sure. I don’t have the answer as of right now. All my dreams are giving me is that I was a finalist on American Idol. That’s it.
Then that quote at the beginning of this entry popped into the realm at the end of an anime I’m watching. “Don’t be a tool. Become someone that matches with their name.”
I have always thought my name was a cruel irony of my life. Everything about my name speaks love, except my last name, which I guess is an ode to a passionate career. But the first name means “meant to be loved” or “loving”. The second is a nickname to mean “beloved”. I thought the gods were playing tricks on my mother when she named me. It was meant to lead a life of no love, where I saw nothing but darkness. I guess you can say my scope was too narrow. I took love to mean the only notion of romantic love. Time and time again in my life I have been rejected. From my mother to my brother, and several I wanted as my lovers… Nothing quite stuck. It seemed as though love eluded me, hid from me as I lived my life. I felt no love from anything outside of my own friends, which even then I still sometimes have doubts about. But when I truly take stock in what I have, I do have many friends who love me. While I may not be meant to be loved in a romantic sense (which I am still trying to make peace with), perhaps that is the love of an ohana that means more than anything. The connection I established with those along the way in my life. Those people I cannot forget. My ohana are the friends I have kept through the years that have leaned on me and I them. Because there are many different types of ohanas, perhaps my love was never meant to be romantic. Perhaps it is supposed to be familiar, welcoming, understanding.
Maybe my feminine side isn’t so bad after all. She can do a great many thing that is constructive. Especially here. So maybe I am meant to be loved. Maybe I am becoming someone that matches my name. Time will tell I guess. Time will tell.