The First Born

Being the first born of the first born of the first born comes with it, a lot of unwritten and unsaid burden. This photo is undated, but I surmise it was taken when I was barely a year old. That would make this photo within 1980 or early 1981. I’m the one in yellow. ;) That’s my grandfather and my grandmother on my father’s side. Look at the big genuine smiles on their faces. One would not think much beyond the immediacy of this photo, that my grandparents would be so happy to see their grandchild being happy, healthy and cheerful. However, as the first born of the first born of the first born, looking at this photo brings with me a great sadness and a huge yearning to bow down in my inability to fulfill my duties as the first born.

Indeed, one may think that our line were full of peasants and farmers. That the majority of our line were poor. Most of us were uneducated and worked the fields or carried things with our hands. Though I have only worked the fields two or three times in my entire lifetime, sometimes, I feel a burning in my hands, as if I was ‘meant’ for hard labor. Maybe it’s not so much that I was meant for it, but possibly that somewhere deep inside my heart, I constantly have the hearts and souls of my ancestors with me. The entirety of their hopes and dreams rested on the first born of the first born of the first born and I am the last of the first born. I am the last of this line of the family and this is where their hopes and dreams will end.

While I know my friends try their best, whatever interpretation they see and decipher from their hearts want to cheer me up, help me by bringing me some laughter and silliness, which as a disclaimer, I am extremely grateful, the reality is that I am who I am. I am what I was born with.

Often times, I see picture memes and positively worded artistic images on Facebook posted by friends and family members that say things along the lines of, “Do whatever you think is best for yourself.” I am not happy not because I am not myself. I am unhappy because I am myself. There is nothing I want to change about myself. The only thing I want ‘changed’ is my situation. However, that is like a paradox, a Catch 22. To change my situation, I need to change myself. To change myself, I will become unhappy. However, to change my unhappiness, I need to change my situation.

So do I change myself to change the situation, so I can be unhappily happy?

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