"I think this sadness is important..."

Posted by Alina Liao on

The start of this week was the Lunar New Year. I was planning to fly to California to spend the new year with my family. Alas, like so many of you might have experienced during the pandemic, the trip was cancelled last minute.

Monday night, I was supposed to be cooking up a storm with my mom for the New Year's Eve feast. Instead, I cooked for myself. Before eating, I bowed before my ancestors. I called my mom and showed her the whole fish (for good fortune), noodles (for long life), and veggies I made. Then I ate alone in silence in tears.

That night, in my custom wellness journal, I did some self care journaling, journaling about how I was sad to not be with my family that night... but "I think this sadness is important." I dug deeper. 

I realized in my self care journaling, I've long experienced my family as a passive recipient of what unfolds - often drama and trauma. The Lunar New Year, centered around food, family, ancestry, tradition, and ritual is one of the few times I feel more connection than conflict with my family. I was longing for that connection.

But I realized in my self care journaling, if that's what I want, I don't have to wait for it. I have agency. I have power. This idea of recognizing our own power came up in our last wellness journaling mini-retreat too. I can create moments of connection with my family, in big and little ways. I can move from being a survivor to a creator. That's a keeper in my custom wellness journal.

The Lunar New Year and the Full Moon is a time when we are invited to set new intentions. I concluded in my self care journaling, my intention is to create connection - with my family, with my ancestors, and... with myself. Continuing my journey of healing myself by being myself, and honoring my ancestors by being fully me, tapping into all the gifts they blessed me with.

I invite you to take time to reflect, journal, write out in your wellness journal, What do you want to create for yourself this year?

May you have health, good fortune, and peace this Year of the Tiger.
guided journal guided journaling healing journal healing journey mental health mental health journaling mental health journey self care self care journaling wellness wellness journaling

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