Stranger 86, Day 86 – Meet Jumin, the “One Who Feels”

Stranger 86, Day 86 - Meet Jumin

Today’s Stranger is another familiar face at my yoga studio. She’s a teacher who I just about always catch in passing, and know very little about. We have spoken, but really not much. And according to my Rules of Engagement, she’s indeed a Stranger. Well, no time like the present to get to know her. In fact, she had very little time to talk as she was actually heading in to teach the e class after mine. So, I was very focused on our questions, but I hope this lays a good foundation for us to get to know one another much better in the future.

So without further ado, let me introduce you.

Meet Jumin, 39

Who are you?

“I am Jumin!” she exclaims! “I am who I am!”

“I am a yoga instructor. I am my dog and my cat’s mom. I am a new Atlantan. I am Taiwanese. I am a Hakkanese.”

What is Hakkanese?

“It is part of the old… ” Jumin takes a moment to think about how to describe this. “My grandparents, they all came from Hakka. Old, old Cantonese.”

“Anyway, so, I am who I am.”

I like to ask the Stranger of the Day (that’s you today), what would you like to ask anyone? Or effectively, tomorrow’s Stranger. I’ll let you think about that, but first, I’ll ask you what yesterday’s Stranger wanted to ask you: what small step can you do today to solve a problem you have? (Thanks to Briana, Stranger 85) Like, what could you do?

“I came from a tropical island, which I just moved from — tropical city. Miami as well. So I am working with the coldness in the city. So normally, I would just freeze myself and isolate my energy with others. The coldness really quite bothers me. I cannot function my brain very well. I get physically hurt quickly. And I realized, why not just accept the coldness? Just enjoy the cold, instead. Like, I try to isolate the cold. So when I walk my dog these days, I just enjoy the coldness, and feel the crisp air on my face. I touch the cold air, and feel it. So yeah, I think that’s today — the thing to enjoy the coldness. The smart step is that I taught myself that it’s not that cold. And then I feel not that cold! I enjoy the coldness!”

So the second Stranger yesterday, Travis, wants to ask you: what gets you out of bed everyday? Like, what motivates you? (Thanks to Travis, Stranger 85)

“Motivates me today? Or everyday?” Everyday. Any day.

“Any day? What motivates me?” She thinks about this. “What motivates me to be what? To be happy?” Just anything… What motivates you. What gets you up?

“I think yoga! Because yoga starts my morning routine. Starts my day. So I can now get out of bed even though of the coldness.” She laughs at this having just shared her feelings on the cold. “So I can’t wait to to do the headstand with meditation. Headstand for 10 minutes. Or have my own yoga workout for the first hour of the day. That’s my big motivation everyday.”

Headstand for 10 minutes?!

“Headstand for 10 minutes.” Wow. “Then, practice some yoga asanas and pranayama for each 10 minutes. So 60-90 minutes per day. So I wake up around 4:30 everyday. Today, 5:30 because it’s the weekend.” She smiles.

What would you like to ask…?

She chimed in before I could finish. “The next person?!” Yup!

“I think the second question is really good, so I would love to continue to ask the next person. Like, what motivates you?”

“That’s it!”

After the handshake.

Well, actually, we didn’t really do a handshake. She actually had to rush to do teach the next yoga class. I’m so glad that she agreed to talk, if only for a few minutes. What’s great about this is that it also illustrates how even though we all have places to go, things to do, we can spare a few minutes just to connect. Do we really need to send that text RIGHT NOW? Do we need to rush off to go to the store RIGHT NOW? Well, Jumin had a class to teach, so she did have to rush off. However, she was happily and very nicely shared a glimpse into her story in a few minutes.

As I spoke to her, her smile was big. She was looked around as she thought before she focused on me as she had the right words. But as she looked up as she thought, she had this look of “happy thinking”. Every time our paths have crossed, she’s always been so cheerful, and that was carried on throughout our meet today. I got the sense that nothing could bring her down… no, not even the cold (which apparently doesn’t anymore).

Meet Jumin. No longer a Stranger.

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