Dialogue Excerpt — A reflection on why I work

Dialogue Excerpt — A reflection on why I work

I’m at a new place this week… Across the street from Dan’s Cafe, it’s called Casa de Gael

Work is coming to a good place, I met with a guy who is a career transition coach today.

Andrew, in case you’ve met. I didn’t do a real coaching session but we talked after meeting at an Ido Portal class

He helped me to realize the connections my work has to my parents, and the cycle of needing that I’ve been accustomed to.

In short, my parents always put pressure on me to bring them back validation for my future safety from external institutions. This includes A+s from school, gold medals from karate tournaments, etc.. They immigrated twice to ensure my safe future, away from communist revolution and war/terrorism.

I’ve been trying to ask them to listen to me. To connect with me about my exploration, love, dreams, contributions, art, sacrifice, service….

Of course they do listen, lovingly even, yet they always aim to turn my focus back to my safety.

Finally, I go out to seek these tokens of safety again from social institutions. Another paycheck from my company. Another recommendation from a client. Another article that validates the city I’m in is safer than Toronto.

I’ve wanted to escape this cycle since as long as I can remember.

Engaging with school enough that they would be happy. Training martial arts. Later, traveling, working, getting degrees.

The next milestones, impossible for me at this time… Getting married, having kids, picking my dad up in a private jet… Make me realize it should be over. Of course, these have been their dreams all along… The accomplishments so far pale in comparison.

When I found Vipassana I became obsessed.

Indeed, if they go to a Vipassana course I would have my freedom. They would understand that their attachment to keeping me safe is irrational. They would understand that my happiness requires them to let go. That their happiness requires them to let go.

They made a commitment to try a course, even visiting an open house and signing up for the retreat — just to cancel in the final moment.

Since then I started to move towards finding my freedom in spite of their obsession with my safety. Knowing that there is a big risk I might disappoint them. That some trouble may arise in my travel and their fear will be validated. They might say “Wouldn’t you have been better off to stay home? To not venture so far? To not explore so deeply?”

My biggest fear is that I don’t get far enough before something like that happens.

I will share these notes with them. Hopefully, they will have a clue about where I’m going… The ‘unknown island’ that I’m seeking.

Maybe finally they can wish me a happy journey, without conditions. And to remain open to receive me, different, enlightened, broken, or destroyed. I think that would be unconditional love.