Dreams

I have had some crazy dreams lately.

A few days ago I dreamed that I witnessed a plane crash that took of the top of the place where I am living, but left my own apartment unharmed, where everything else around me looked like a place of disaster.

Didn’t analyze that dream.

So last night I had one that felt so real, that I almost had to recheck where I were when I woke up.

This time it were some rather familiar settings, because I dreamed about the last day – or one of – in San Francisco where I took both my bachelor and masters, and still miss my time or rather the city and life I had there at that time.

With the exception of the first month, then I shared apartments with other female students, straight, lesbian and everything in-between, and that was one of my crazier periods of my life – In a good way I mean.

It’s not that I am one of these who always wish that they could go back to uni, well, okay maybe some part of me do once in a blue moon, but I am where I am now and I am for most parts quite happy about my life now. But it could be fun to revisit if you had a time machine to spare.

The last two years were shared with 3 other lesbian women – or rather young women, compared with today, who at the same time had their minds set for the future, and I think that I learned more about life,  myself and simply being a woman with them, than with any other in that period of my life.

Living with them who by far were smarter than me, or at least more outspoken, argumentative and weren’t shy to stand up for what they believed in, often doing all that while farting on the toilet – yes guys. Women tend to do that too!

I don’t know why, but when I think back to the last year, I always tend to remember one of us yelling from the toilet, with the door fully open, continuing whatever conversation that we had with each other and I guess that was quite typical in our small group. No one wanted to miss a thing or a conversation, so doors were kept open almost all the time. Well, with the exception of bedrooms while sleeping – or doing hmm “other” things.

We had plenty of drama and loud verbal arguments with each other too, where one or more for a few days refused to speak to each other, but most of the time, or at least the way I recall it, then there were more good days and periods than bad – and we did stay together for almost two years.

It was quite a change from the first year where I shared a place with a mixed Taiwanese / Japanese girl who were all “must study hard” business, and who had no time for fun or getting to know the city. I don’t know what happened to her, because I lost contact with her the moment I moved out, and did have the feeling that she didn’t like me much either.

But maybe I weren’t that good a roommate either at that time. My mom had cut me of, and demanded that no one in the family supported me, so dad through my sister and brother helped me out in secret, but in constant fear that she found out about that he helped me. My dad being twice my moms size (in both ways) could get awful scared of mom. The support ban lasted almost the first whole year, and only ended when my brother casually told my mom a lie and said to her that I had to do stripping to support myself because of her. I think everyone in Singapore could hear a “Gaah!” that day.

So everything from trying to learn a new city to be on my own and getting things stretched far enough to live by, then I guess that as a roommate, then I weren’t the perfect ideal for someone who had their things together and focused on what they wanted.

The time between the first roommate and then the last group were a mix of all races and sexual interests, that in many ways were fun, interesting and heartwarming. Or at least that is how I choose to recall it.

I were never that hard set on studying, because compared to what I was used to from back in Singapore among other, then studying in California could be done with a blind eye and still get good grades. Besides, one of my earlier teachers said this “You don’t learn about life and your place in it while studying it. Live your life and then study it.”. I guess I took that rather literal.

Back to my group here. Moving in with them were to say it politely, an earth shattering and mental experience to me. I were up until that day, rather hmm, wouldn’t call it shy, but maybe more “private” who needed a lot of personal space, at least the one who got to see any part of my body outside a beach were lovers or would be lovers.

To experience other women who openly shared the morning toilet, and could walk around in only a bra or topless in the kitchen in the morning, were to me mind blowing – in a nonsexual way. There were nothing sexual about it in any way whatsoever and I were a person who would not leave my bedroom without being fully clothed – or close to it. Exposing anything to anyone were not on my mind at all. So I did have an OMG-what-kind-of-place-is-this out of the body experience when I first move in.

That is until the day, about a week after I moved in, where “L”, said “Sweetie, you know it is not okay to occupy the toilet in the morning. There is only one, so we need to share for all of us to make it”.

One morning, a few days after, I dared myself to not lock the toilet door while peeing, and lo and behold. Who is walking in with a toothbrush in her mouth? “L”, and began to exploring her zits in the bathroom mirror while I were trying to finish so I could get out in a hurry. I don’t know about you, but I am not able to pee when I tense up, so all I could do were to sit there while trying to hide in my hair.

The first months with them were a rather steep learning curve in personal development for me, but over time I got used to what they found normal – I am not sure many other did – and even managed to get comfortable in it all. So yea, my period with them is in many ways greatly missed because despite the thousands of arguments and close to hair pulling fights there were there, then I loved living at that place with them all and their occasional girlfriends.

Besides I would not have known a fraction of San Francisco without them.

Where are my roommates now? One of them is a typical Noe Valley stay at home (lesbian) soccer mom, who until recently did PR for a rather large IT company that you *hm* know quite well. Another is in jail for drug possession of some sort. She never got an internship or a job where she wanted. That is actually interesting because of the four of us, she were the one with the best grades and the one we all thought who would make it big. The last one and maybe the most normal and balanced of us, is doing everything right and doing it quite well professionally in NYC while balancing the difficult task of 2 adoring children and managing a career in a predominantly male oriented job. So good for her. Well, and then there are me.

A lesbian author from Singapore and my own private writing Hell

I am used to write, I can write 2 -4 half decent articles a day if I had the material ready. But writing a book. A WHOLE BOOK is a something that I feel that borders on self suffering and painstaking torture.

At the moment I have two not even half done books, 1 fiction and 1 nonfiction in my drawer (aka Dropbox) waiting for me to complete them and I have no idea on when and how I will be able to complete them on this side of life. It’s not really that I lack the dedication or focus to do it. But the volume of writing on one subject, where I constantly have to go back and edit what I have previously written, compared to what I just wrote, so the book is consistent and add up, that is nothing like writing a short 3,000 words or less article about a single subject.

Initially I wanted – inspired by Karen Lee’s “No More Daddys Little Girl“, write my own story. My whole and unbiased story about my whole life from birth, to coming out, my constant fights with mom over my sexuality, to my time in San Francisco, the sexually healthy and self-destructive “slutty” escapades in San Francisco and Los Angeles, my return to Singapore, to my time in Japan in the days after the Tsunami, my breakdown in a Hotel after I had witnessed the total destruction of places I knew and where I spend 10 days in the most devastated areas of Japan, and simply everything else up till today.

But writing your life story to people who don’t know you is just as much an exercise in WHAT NOT to include that it is to include, because a book, no matter how personal should keep the reader in and let them want to find out what happens next, and I find that very difficult to do when it is something as personal as a hm… personal story.

I mean should I write about my own rape where I woke up in a half-roofied daze only to realize that someone was holding me down, while someone else was on top of me and what they did to me when I tried to fight back with everything that I could?

If I wrote about that, then I would have to write about my self-hatred, my humiliation to witness that the rapists was allowed to walk away from what they did to me. My parents reactions – my dad’s raw hatred towards them, my mom’s detached “You are my daughter and is strong enough to get over it” speech and how I felt when she first looked at me with distaste in her eyes and face in the hospital. I would have to talk about my shame… But I would have to relive that part of my life in more details that I ever want to again.

I also know and is aware of that if I wrote about that, then everything I wrote about my sexuality would be tied to that day, that dark place in me that will not let me go, because too many hetero’s think and believe that homosexuality is an escape from some kind of sexual abuse in a person’s past.

Something that is so far from the truth. Because at that time I was already more attracted to women than I was to men.

So, no, there is a lot not to include and the choice to exclude parts of your life, is harder than what to include in the book. Or for me that is.

Karen did not leave anything out and you get every little dirty secret served, so the reaction from the Singaporean lesbian community of sisterhood almost all agreed to hate her and her book when it came out. Because how dared she put them all in the same box as her? No More Daddys Little Girl was the first and until now the only book by an Singaporean lesbian woman, so the community thought and felt that it would and should be something that they could reflect themselves in, but nothing could be further from the truth. That book was about Karen and no one else.

No More Daddys Little Girl is not an easy read. Not because it is not interesting what she wrote, because I feel that it is, but if I have to be a nasty hag, then I believe that if it got a rewrite and a change in style and pace, then it could turn out to be a very decent book that more people should read – I would go so far as to say that some parts of the book should be mandatory reading in schools in Singapore. Not only because it IS the first book by a Singaporean lesbian author and deserved a better fate than what it got up until today, but that she had something to say that not many Singaporeans dare to put words on.

I have been communicating briefly with Karen about her book after I read it (and became a little Twitter and Facebook stalker too), and learned that she have been looking for a ghost writer for a second novel, also some kind of a biography if I remember it right. Unfortunately I believe that she has put her own writing on hold, and is now focusing on her career in the IT sector where she is very successful in getting people to buy her company’s services and solutions, so maybe she will not publish a second book after all.

So what is happening in my own private writing Hell? Well, I think I will skip my biography and make a semi biography where I can focus on the cultural shock that I got when I returned to Singapore after my education and work. After rooming with a group of hard core slutty party lesbians in San Francisco, it was an out of body experience to return home where it was expected that I moved back home to my parents – and did for a while. Oh the drama! (“What is this!!!” she screamed after going through my luggage, “It’s called a dildo mom, you should try one, one day” I sighed.) By only focusing on a very small part of my life, then I feel that I can take some (very) creative liberties and make it lighter, funnier and even sexier than it really was, but at the same time write about something that many, both straight and gay go through when they return to Singapore after they have been exposed to the depravity of the socalled western world :)