I consider it an achievement.
Finally, I was able to just have that satisfied smile on my face instead of wishing myself on Taki’s place, speaking Japanese, being Japanese, living in Japan, and in turn loathing why I am here where I currently am.
I hope I already made a breakthrough on self-studying 日本語, like finding/discovering the most effective method without getting frustrated in the end. Frustrations brought about by slow progress, not being able to read a kanji that I know I’ve already encountered for many times now and the thought of the possibility that I might never be able to go to Japan at all. It’s hard to keep yourself motivated to learn while thinking you might never use your target language at all, except for some occasional Facebook posts that hopefully would attract Japanese people that I can interact with.
All of those thoughts are very counter productive indeed.
It was a stressful experience, trying to keep your hopes high and at the same time thinking that it might never happen at all – me going to Japan and all that. Yep, I shoot my proverbial foot at times. So in order to reduce the stress, I tried to back off. I stopped reading ebooks and just got contented looking at short Facebook posts written in Japanese. When it’s hard to understand, I just look at the pics and try to guess the text through the context.
I even tried to convince myself that it is not for me, that I should just focus my efforts and thoughts on everything else where I can be productive. I want to increase my proficiency in English so learning Japanese side by side might just sabotage all that effort hence at times, I drown my desire to learn 日本語 by writing more in English or in my native tongue.
I thought it’d be that easy. In fact I wish it’d been that easy but boy I was mistaken.
Everytime I see an anime scenery, background music in piano, hiragana katakana or Kanji, the dying ember that I believed it was, is fanned to its original infernal proportions once more.
Ok, I told myself, I may not be able to escape these deeply rooted-feelings of learning the language, loving the language. I may not in an instant learn 日本語, but I can at least ‘enjoy’ the learning process.
“Those who cannot be happy wherever they are, can neither find that happiness elsewhere no matter how far.“
I’ve already come across this before. I even victoriously surmounted the hell of wanting things at some point. But I didn’t think I’d fall for it again.
That, is none other than the pain of wanting something. It makes you think and feel that you’re incomplete, lacking, and undone. Nothing will complete you unless you’ve had that experience – and that is speaking fluent 日本語 and going/living in Japan. It’s a plain old form of materialism except for substituting experiences instead of anything tangible such as possessions.
Ok where do I begin to heal myself? How do I phrase my affirmations?
- I am happy wherever I am today except that I am not in Japan which could’ve made it more awesome. (How do I counter that?!)
- I am happy whatever language I am proficient with at the moment except that I am still not proficient in 日本語 which could’ve made it more awesome. (Again, how do I counter that?!)
- I’ll just imagine wherever I am today is Japan so I can be happy. (Tough luck eh?!)
If this waiting is just a test of how much I want this, isn’t it enough that I feel the same intensity of fervor in learning the language just like the first time that I tried because I couldn’t stand not knowing how to read, write, and speak the language?
Don’t get me wrong. I love my family, my job, my home, and who I am today even if I am making a rant in this article (one of the few rants that I am immortalizing). But there are things that I wanted to achieve that is outside of my circle of reach.
Did I lie by stating the title of this article?
I didn’t. As I’ve said, I didn’t feel frustrated anymore after watching 君の名は after the nth time. The story is still good just the way it is. Nothing overdone but it is still potent in getting to the emotion of anyone who allow themselves to get vulnerable every once in a while.
I just hope I can take it slow in terms of learning my second language though, for I believe it is my first language in my past life. On where to strike a balance everyday without losing my wits in regrets, well I still have to figure that out.