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Paradox | Stephanie's Sept 22

Hi everyone! Long time no chat. For most of the month --I honestly felt like September was a fast month, though now that I’m looking back, it kinda feels not that short? Maybe its because this past month jam packed so many different life events that made it feel prolonged. But at the same time I can’t believe it’s October? Let’s unpack the past month -- Stephanie



This month each week felt like a different theme and stream of emotions. I started off the month by wrapping up my offsite, which at this point feels like ages ago! I generally had a good time and I’ve never experienced team bonding the way I did during this offsite. I can’t say it was all sunshine and rainbows but I generally had a good time and feel lucky to get to do what I do.

Right after my offsite, and I quite literally mean like the next days after my offsite, I hopped on a plane and kickstarted Jin and I’s annual week long trip! This year’s choice was NYC. It feels surreal how we only see each other a few times a year yet at the same time because we text daily, it doesn’t feel like that long ago since we last hung out (though in reality it definitely has been a hot minute).There were so many options in NYC for anything you wanted to do, but also we had long commutes, so it was a mix of exciting and overwhelming. A common theme for this past month’s post is a paradox of emotions. While things didn’t always go as planned, the highlight of the trip for me was just having time together regardless of what we did. There’s always something to talk about, and I must say the memories are lasting a bit longer because we decided to do something different and get friendship rings lol. I think the older I get, it really is more about just enjoying the time I get to spend with the people I care about vs what we do. Or what makes something fun isn't just the event itself, but the person I'm with. And I am thankful I get to go on these trips with Jin because it's not everyday you get to travel for a week with a friend, and also get along through it all.

When I came back from New York, it was already mid-September, crazy. I felt like the next two weeks flew by in a flash and it was October. The weeks following after NYC was a mix of heavy focus on work (a bit too heavy actually), friendships, and surprisingly looking forward to weekday hangouts vs weekends. There’s a lot that happened but I think they’d fit best in the next two sections so I’ll save it to write about in the next paragraphs.

September was interesting indeed, I felt so many emotions that I think the Lifestyle section will not be the longest this time around, it might actually be an equal mix of text for each session. What a month.


Lows and Lessons

1. Not getting too personal

I won’t go too deep in the trenches of details, but I did feel a bit of an outlier or odd one out at work this past month. Maybe it’s because my team is so open to getting to know each other, I learned a lot about them that I didn’t expect to learn at this degree. I felt different from everyone because I am a bit more reserved and do not openly share, I felt like the odd one out..and it never feels good to feel like you’re on the outgroup (even though everyone was so nice and was not implying anything to me). I felt it internally. But, the days and weeks following, I came to the conclusion that I’m okay the way I am and I don’t have to share so much if I don’t feel comfortable about it. I looked back and I don’t regret not sharing more. At the moment it made me feel like an outlier, but in the long run I am happy with my decision to not be someone I am not.

2. Trip things

Not necessarily a large low but a couple mini lows with trip things. Being a city gal, I love city life and options. But there was so so many options in nyc that it got a bit overwhelming, I feel like I kept finding out about something new and would want to go but wouldn’t have enough time and often felt rushed because of the limited time we had. Too many options also made it hard to choose what to do or feel the pressure to try to do it all. But this just gives me more the reason to revisit nyc again another day.

Another low was that I really value family and I hadn’t been home for almost two weeks (1 week in SJ and 1 week in nyc) which isn’t long to others but quite long to me. I also grew up having to call and check in lol but I did not do that this time around. So I felt super guilty…. My family’s love language is definitely acts of service and gift giving, and because of our limited time in nyc and change of plans I was stressed towards the last day of the trip because I hadn’t gotten my family anything and I didn’t want them to think I forgot about them and didn’t care for them…but then we ended up squeezing a very last minute gift shop stop on the last day and problem solved lol I am so glad it brought a smile to my family too. Considering I picked these gifts last minute and out of desperation lol, I was surprised and quite happy with all the good comments I got from my family when they received these gifts.

Lastly, I brought a lot of outfits I bought a while back but haven’t worn enough, to the nyc trip and I noticed they didn’t fit the same and it made me feel low about the way I looked. I’m the heaviest I’ve ever been, and I don’t feel that great about the way I look because of it tbh. I think what made it worse is that 1) i’m being very intentional about improvement, especially in August I also had health issues in my digestive system (which is a whole diff story). So I was very intentional about eating healthier and I was working out practically daily in the most consistent way I’ve ever been. And it sucked because this was the most intentional I’ve ever been and I did not see any progress lol I am still the heaviest I’ve been. 2) because I’m not what society would define ‘obese’ it felt even worse or wrong that I was feeling this way. But I can’t just tell myself to stop feeling these thoughts, it’s a work in progress. Over time I’m better now, but it’ll continue to be a work in progress before I truly feel great.

3. Somewhat compromising social life

The past few weeks I surprisingly had more hangouts to look forward to during the weekday than weekends though I’m not complaining. Strangely I enjoyed looking forward to the weekdays more than weekends, though it was much more tiring. In particular I was able to catch up with a friend group that I don’t get to see too often bc of location, and while we already had a planned hangout, one of the girls also wanted to last min go out. I wanted to join but then living at home my parents I didn’t feel comfortable and I also didn’t want to worry them so I turned it down. It wasn’t necessarily that one hangout itself that got me feeling down, but it opened up a broader reflection of how I felt like I turned down a lot of things because of family. However then I started to think of the bigger picture that while I was temporarily sad, in the long run, I am not. I didn’t know I valued family so much, but the past few years really made me see it. Improving their quality of life and seeing them happy is not a burden, but it is what makes me happy.

4. Not feeling reciprocity and speaking up for myself.

This happened towards the end of the month and the speaking up part really didn’t happen till early Oct.., so I will write this to remind myself to share the full story during my October entry, and for now leave it as a cliff hanger!



This is a new section because I didn’t know where these two items would fit lol but I wanted to write them because when I re-read this entry I definitely want to remember these two moments. On a personal level, I had two highs this past month which I think really gave me character development. 1. Spending a solo day in NYC. This sounds simple to others, but I was never one to go on solo dates in a new city because of the fear of getting lost. This gave me so much main character energy. 2. My first large read-out, I won’t share the details but this month I gave possibly my biggest presentation lol and I was so anxious leading up to it, it was affecting my health it various ways but -- it turned out to be a success and I was in awe at the level of audience engagement. Both of these highs from this month made me full, in a way that really made me feel full by relying on myself.


My pick of the month: NYC Trip

My pick of the month has to be the NYC trip, for various reasons: from the annual week long trip, eating a ton of good food, character development, and the chance to catch up with JIn

September was a month of so many different emotions, I often found myself at a paradox. While I don’t enjoy feeling low, but the mix of highs and lows this month made me feel very human and in a way alive. October is getting jampacked so I’m sure it will be another quick month, but I am a tad bit nervous about November and growing a year older.

Till next time y’all, have a great month!

-- Stephanie

(some more pics bc why not hehe I have too many options)

And a poem I came across that I thought was quite fitting for the kick off of the Autumn Fall season:

and then autumn came to teach us
that even loss can be beautiful

I would quote the author but I didn't see a name with this poem. Have a nice Autumn everyone!


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