One of my least favourite Japanese expressions is “がんばれ (gambare)”. Typical Japanese-English dictionaries say it means “hang in there”. In some cases “がんばれ” means “hang in there”, but in many other cases it means more like “try harder” or “make more efforts”. Saying “make more efforts” to people in trouble is cruel, but it is typical Japanese mentality.
As I mentioned in a recent post, I’m having a harsh period in the current work place. Today a Canadian colleague, who understands my current situation, kindly talked to me. I told him what happened to me recently, and he said “hang in there”. Partially because I work with Canadians and Japanese now, I was confused with “hang in there” and “がんばれ”, and kept complaining, while I was supposed to say “thanks”.
He was right. If I hang in there, eventually things will (probably) work out. He knew it. As I wrote in a previous post, income often hides unwanted reality, and also makes people less patient. What I feel now is much better than what I felt during the helpless job hunting which I eventually overcame, but now I feel unhappy. What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger, but what saves me makes me weaker. I should remember what I felt when I let things happen. Today I missed to say “thanks”, but someday, when I overcome the current situation, I’ll tell him “I hung in there”.
As I wrote in another previous post, I felt something like “deja vu”, which actually was not, and as I hoped in that post, I’ve got a permanent full-time position. Things are happening. I should remember what I felt when I was unemployed, and see how the looser will fail, no matter what fortune cookies say.