When I want darkness to stay

There are days when I become comfortable with the dark. When I want time to stop, when the light coming from the sun scares me out that I use my blanket all over my body to cover and be with the dark again. I just now when it comes. And this year, I felt it happened more frequently.

I was never a night owl. My mind got used to study so early in the morning and eventually got good grades out of it. But I wonder where that version of me currently exists. Now, my eyes are wide awake at 2 AM. This is when I feel most safe. It feels like being transported in a safe bubble where no one can enter unless I allow it.

But one may wonder, what happens when I know that a day calls for darkness to stay – simple, it’s either I’m extremely happy or I’m at the opposite end of the spectrum. I hate how my mind thinks that if I’m so happy at the moment, great sadness will eventually follow until I’m more consumed by it. I’m honestly not sure if sorrow visits me or I’m inviting it with open arms. And I hate myself even more when I feel down – I just think that I will either become used to it or worse, it may be a consequence of the mistakes I did.

I’m trying my best. I’m trying my best to feel that those days when I’m smiling, are truly because I was happy. I’m trying my best to think that bad days are far less than the good ones. Just the truth – I really am not sure. Maybe, not being sure about what we feel is a valid place to be temporarily? I’m used to think that I should either be okay or not. But maybe, with a little chance, I can be somewhere I don’t know?

I was asking at work if working from home can be more flexible. I actually get excited with the idea that I can work out of the country and be in a place where no one knows about me. No, it’s not like I’ll go to South Korea for six months. It can be a month and I’ll just take a few days off so I won’t use up all my vacation leaves. So, when that day comes, when darkness is a dear friend, I can cry all I want without needing to explain why.

These days, wherever I go, I feel like I’m a stranger. Not feeling like I belong whoever I’m with, or wherever I am. I just.. sometimes want to go out with a cap and a huge mask to cover my face plus sunglasses. I’m really at a point in my life where I don’t know what tomorrow means to me and what should I do with my present. And as I read this somewhere, I think I’m gonna apply this for the meantime – when you don’t know what to do next, do nothing. Well, literally, writing is the only thing that can save my will to live. As long as my fingers can type on my keyboard, I can be alive.

To whoever reaches this blog and is currently somewhat experiencing the same thing, I want you to know that you are not alone. As with my ultimate purpose in writing – I want to let someone know that they’re not alone. I’m here. Let’s be each other’s company in a strange place we’re traversing the way out.

Life Update?

I don’t know what title I want this post to have. I just want to maybe document what I feel recently? Or maybe what has been going on with the parts of my life I want to share here?

Either way, I ought to decompress tonight after eating baked mac and some Korean bread that my mom and my brother ecstatically want me to taste.

*Few minutes after*

I literally finished the two blocks before eating and I’m now back with a cup of berry tea beside my iPad.

As always, I have no idea where to start so I’ll just let my mind play and be random as my thoughts control my fingers on my cute keyboard. Okay, so, I just bought five black oversized t-shirts from Uniqlo yesterday. I ordered it online few days ago and I picked them up after getting an email that my items are at my chosen store. I just gave up a pile of t-shirts I don’t intend to use and they ended up to my brother’s fiancée. She is the type of a girl who’s very practical and does not care about branded stuff. I was happy that someone will be using the clothes I initially wanted to throw away.

I’m half-way through with my goal to curate my clothing cabinet. It was really an eyesore before. I was using the same clothes over and over again and more than half were just there. So, I planned to get rid of what I’m not comfortable wearing and just intentionally purchase what I actually want to wear. I got this idea from a YouTuber – her channel is “Malama Life”. Go check her out. 🙂

My slow shift to an eco-friendly lifestyle made me consistent with consciously choosing products I will use moving forward. It has been months since I last used a bottled shampoo. I have been using shampoo bars and I can tell you, my hair looked better. I am just finishing my last three conditioner tubes and I will also shift to conditioner bars. Even by little, my choice not to use bottled shampoo helped lessening plastic waste.

Speaking of being environment-friendly, I am having this dilemma. I don’t know if I mentioned this before, but I work for Shell. It’s impossible not knowing this multinational corporation. I’m in conflict if I want to work for this company in the coming years. This is something I’m afraid to share to many people I work with because I might get not-so-nice reactions. I wanted to do my research more. If the time comes when I don’t believe in Shell’s vision towards environmental responsibilities, I might leave.

Let me talk about work since I just said where I’m currently working for. I have been in an assistant manager role for the past eight months. The jump of my salary wasn’t that high from my previous role. But I already knew of that. I was told that expectations will become significantly higher (which is a laughable situation, slight increase in money but huge increase in responsibilities and accountability). But I also prepared for that, mentally and emotionally. However, I wasn’t informed that along with working with minimal supervision – there’s minimal support offered when it comes to your mental health. It’s not totally zero. But you have to tell what’s going on before people extend their hands to help. It seemed that I was instantly forced to become stronger and less human at work. Luckily, those with similar job grades/roles in my cluster became my friends. We got each other’s backs. When no one else asks how we’re doing, we know, we can ask each other and rant about many things over a dinner and a cup of coffee.

And connecting it with life outside work, I also noticed how my number of friends diminished. I also found it hard to make new friends even if I gave ample effort. But I guess this is reality slapping me hard again that your friends in life will naturally gravitate towards you. No forced relationships. Whew, I never knew life would be like this.

My mind says this is all for now. After publishing this, I’ll finish my tea and try my best to go to sleep while watching K-Dramas. Stay healthy and stay safe! ‘Til next time.

Room Nineteen

Just a year over what they call “quarter-life” crisis, I found myself in a myriad of emotions. I’m writing this in a hotel room I booked when I was so darn tired of work. It wasn’t a mistake though. I am at peace. Albeit I’m not sure if I’m walking on eggshells because I’m not used to this. I craved for this solitude but I guess this and I, are still new to each other. Will I repeat this? Definitely! It’s now close to 12MN and I promised myself to decompress my thoughts. I need to know what I feel and understand where they are coming from. So, here I am, writing this while waiting for my chai tea latte from Starbucks I ordered via Grab.

I’ll start right away. First, I feel like I’m not realizing the potential I have. There are whispers around my ears saying I am meant to fly. I have no problems with my current work. Overall, I won’t trade it for any other company in my country. But I just think I am not meant to live a nice templated corporate climb. That’s not who I am. Ever since. I was someone who people thought would go this way, but I always end up going another way. It isn’t something I planned just to create that image – I was forced to be a certain person and I just find ways to sneak in to find the path I am willing to walk, even with dinosaurs ahead of me.

This seemed easy. That’s what I thought. But the emotional Asian household won’t let me. You know, being a gay and youngest in the family has a lot of disadvantages. Here’s the worst – you have this unwanted responsibility of taking good care of your parents because your older siblings went their own ways. Of course they’ll say that if they could choose, they want to stay at home, be with family – but I will never understand that, yet. I’m at an age where I could take risks, fail, learn a lot, but I feel like I should live a more secured life because someone relies on me. I already declared that I will not have kids. But that is in no way an opening to take care of others. Why can’t they think that maybe because I have no capacity of taking care of others and that’s why I chose a childfree life? Ah yes, this is an Asian household. Some weird Filipino family culture I was never a fan of.

And now I’m lost. Weeks before, I talked with a counselor and I clearly mentioned that I am comfortable with this direction-less life because that is exciting for me. I have so many roads to walk on. But now, I have no idea where to go. I’m tired of explaining that I want to go from here to there without a clear plan just because I am not getting younger and when is the best time to take risks? You know the answer. The funny thing is – when they hear success stories of other people who took risks – you can see their smiles. But when you want to foray on a field you’re not expected to go, strangers are more supportive. Yes, I get it. People might say I am misinterpreting their concern. But no. I fully understand. I made it clear that whatever I do, I will pick myself up. I will not bother anyone. And that, I think, they are not onboarded with.

Believe me, I don’t even know what I want to do tomorrow. Life isn’t exciting to me anymore. I live for the bills I need to pay. And that’s it. No more, no less. I miss my old ambitious self. When the responsibilities you did not sign up for come in once you’ve become a functioning member of society, your dreams are very vulnerable to shattering. And coming from my own experience, this roots from having children when you are not financially prepared. If you’re reading this and you just want to have a family but your bank account never said it was ready, DON’T. I am bearing the weight I did not ask for. I’m tired of this life, honestly.

“Honestly”, the last word in the previous paragraph. Funny. I am not honest most of the past few days. I’m wearing different masks depending on the situation. Who I am with, where I’m at, or how I should act. I watched this Korean Drama entitled, “Because This is My First Life”, and one of the books the characters mentioned was “To Room Nineteen” by Doris Lessing. I want to have that book. But basically it’s about people having their own room 19. A room you don’t want others, no matter how close they are to you, to see. This resonates to my life right now. The only time I am completely honest is when I am in my own room nineteen.

Just paused for a while. I was contemplating if I should stop here or open up a bit more about decorating my room nineteen. I already took my first step. Now, while writing this, I visited my this room for the very first time. This is like creating your own bubble, a safe space, a place you can go when you’re tired of the noise, and where you can rest without feeling any guilt.

There’s a tiny spark that excites me to create this room. It’s like building a house without all the complications and expenses – I went through it, I have a house under my name, but I will never go through it all over again – and in this space, only my voice is important. My voice is the only audible sound. Only my voice is valid.

To share or not to share my journey is a hanging question. Sharing too much about it might defeat my purpose. Or, I can share a little so any person who may come across this post when he/she needs it can get a little inspiration to live life.

As always, I am writing for two specific reasons: To leave a digital footprint about the life I lived when I die and to help anyone through my words.

I am ending this post here.

It was a huge help releasing some of my bottled up emotions.

the punches on my chest

We all need to breathe.

I denied myself that. When all the self-care videos are just going around the internet, here I am – not knowing how to do it for myself.

Looking out for others is an easy-peasy task for me. See? How twisted am I? Freely giving that to others but I can’t seem to grasp how hard it is for me to give it… to myself.

I can’t explain the exhaustion I’m feeling right now. I have to be honest. I never shared my issues and my hardships with all honesty. It’s not that I don’t have anyone but I also have difficulties discussing it with me.

When I got so tired last week, I booked a one-night stay in a hotel. Just to be alone. All the therapy I can get outside doesn’t seem interesting to me – being alone is the most appealing therapy I can see at this moment.

With that, I believe I took a small step. I don’t know what I’m gonna do on Monday. But hopefully, I can get at least two things done – list down what I truly feel and finish “Hospital Playlist”.

I would like to apologize if I am wearing different masks everyday. I hate that I have to say sorry. But despite wearing different faces, I still don’t know what my true face is – in this part, I think I’m quite fair and I’m not being dishonest.

As I’m finishing this emotional post, my head reminded me of one thing I’m tired of. One of the reasons why I get so exhausted on a daily basis. Responsibilities I didn’t ask for. That’s it.

I’m feeling sorry for myself for not being able to do what my heart wants. I just hope it is not too late. I don’t want to die yet.

Finding my corner, in this round world

From gadgets, clothing, body weight, personal stuff, bags, I am never satisfied. Yet. I am enjoying this stuff though where I get to finally explore what mixture of things that will make up my boring routine life. But one thing’s sure – this discovery is getting expensive. I bought a macbook last year and an iPad this year. And despite watching tons of comparison videos of what should I get, I still ended up with a wrong decision. A tablet works best for me and it can do most of my needs. So, I am having this dilemma of retaining my laptop or selling it as early as this year. This is funny. I am having this problem when I am not even that rich.

But why am I even bothering to think about these things? Even though I’ve read a number of times that wearing the same clothes at work helps you decide better on what matters more, here I am, thinking of my mix and match outfits every single time I am scheduled to report at the office. I’m not sure if I am undergoing some phase or am I just gifting myself a chance to feel cute with my Korean-inspired outfits? I think it’s both. But eventually, I will land on at least a set of clothing that I can use repeatedly so I won’t think much but still feel good while wearing them. Hitting two birds with one stone? Hell, yes.

Living consciously and my mind being awakened at a time where social media has emerged as a double-edged sword, more external voices have disturbed and silenced my inner voice. There’s these usual pieces of advice by family on what to do, what to wear, how to act, and then seeing curated lifestyles that make you feel envious, empty, and wrong all at the same time. Too much noise. It’s too much that I am yet to establish what I want in every aspect of my life. I literally felt the need to sit down and decide on what I truly want before I take a step further for my tomorrow.

Coming into terms with myself that I have these personal problems to solve at my mid 20s made everything better. For some, they feel the need to rush to figure out what their life is but it’s definitely not the case for me. I am doing this at a time where I have this courage to stand by my own decisions. I can tell what I want and go for it. I made it clear to my parent that whatever decision I make, even if it ends up as a mistake or failure, I’ll pick myself up – this is where we learn, not when we always avoid taking risks.

Despite sounding so sure and firm, I am still scared. So scared that I get overwhelmed whenever I clearly think of having my feet turn into a whole different direction. What if my money is not enough? What if I can’t support them while I’m busy exploring the world I want to take space in? What if I realized I didn’t plan thoroughly? See? I am embracing and fearing the unknown path I am about to take.

Every time I get scared, I am immersing myself into my alternate future – a safe, comfortable, and financially secured one. Yes, it’s all good. And maybe, great? For sure, if my plan turns out to nothing, I will get many “I told you so” comments. But I don’t want to die young. I don’t want my soul to die first before my physical body. That’s what’s going to happen to me. Out of all this uncertainties, I am sure of one thing – I will die of regrets if I’ll pursue the safe track. I can bear a thousand of “I told you so” but I can’t bear seeing my old self looking at the stars at night with nothing but wishful thinking of what I could’ve done when I had the chance.

In this crazy, difficult round world to live in, I am off to find my own corner. My own safe bubble where my happiness is my top success meter. Where I can escape when the outside noise is too much to handle, where I can freely take things as slow as I want to.

As a first step in my plan, I’m gonna ask someone to paint some parts of my room black – when everyone logically said that I should have my small room all painted white to make and to feel that it’s wide (which I consciously followed), I am making my space as it is. A small black cornered room where I’m safe from anything and everything.

Lived for two and a half decade

Hello! I’m so close to finally be nearer to 30 than 20. I will have four celebrations as I didn’t want to gather everyone at once and not give them ample attention. I’ll go out with my mom on Wednesday, have a family celebration with my special someone on Saturday, and on July 9th and 16th, I’ll invite some friends in my house.

I didn’t think I was celebrating too much but… I guess I am celebrating too much? Lol. I just wanted to catch up with the important people in my life in the past, present, and future. I already got myself a gift and I requested some from my friends. You know, as you get older, you appreciate receiving gifts that you can actually use – even without the element of getting surprised. I had a cardigan with baybayin words from my officemates, I’ll receive a bracelet that I’m very excited to use from my loving partner, I’ll get a tote bag from uniqlo from my high school friends that I intend to use for work since we are required to report at the office twice a week starting in August.

None of you asked, but I want to share two of my most important learnings before I turn 26.

One, I changed my mindset how I make time for people I treasure. I am still all for low maintenance relationships but I saw value in consciously giving an effort to see your friends – understood that we’re all busy getting our shit together – but scheduling to see each other twice a year isn’t actually too much. Don’t lose connection. You might end up so successful, hugging all your trophies, certificates, but you only have yourself enjoying that fine wine every night. If you’re okay with that, I’m in no position to argue with you. But for me, life is meant to be celebrated with a few people I love.

Two, quarter-life crisis is real. But you have a choice – recognize that you are lost and be sad about it and let life fuck you with all its might or realize that you are lost and you act on it. I’m not exactly sure how my mindset changed but maybe because I am not trying to make my life into a novel. I look at my life as a book of wonderful poems. At 25, I am closing a good chapter of my life. And at 26, I am ready to start a new one. You see, we all have this pressure from age 25 to 29, that we are in a pivotal stage of our career, that if we fail, then we’re bound to be unsuccessful in the years to come. The best thing you can do at 25 is to have a serious conversation with yourself. Do you want to continue running in that lane? Or are your feet ready to shift to a whole new direction and embrace the uncertainties of what lies ahead?

Woah, I was so passionate writing the last two paragraphs. My mind just keeps working better at midnight – guess who’s in trouble if he lands a job on a morning shift? Haha!

It’s been two years since I started blogging. I can’t wait to re-read everything I wrote after five years. This online journal is my growth-tracker. This is where I can see my past self – whether he was right, awfully brave, or someone who made things happen as he said.

Four Impossible Things I Wish For

This was written in 2021 – in different days – on different emotions and states of mind – and at various times of my highs and lows. I plan to share what’s on my drafts days before my birthday. I hope they could bring something to my readers.

During one of many nights that my brain was working so hard to think of so many things, one absurd thought crossed my mind. It wasn’t close to reality but I’m not ruling out all the possibility that it could happen. What if I get to say four impossible things to some odd old woman who claims that she grants wishes to a select few in this world? Weird, right? But I’ll let my imagination start.

Let me begin with my first one – I wish I can decide to sleep for a week if I my mind or my body gets too exhausted with the world. I know this isn’t one hundred percent unthinkable because I read an article through my Facebook feed this year that there are indeed people who slept for more than a week. But I want to do it consciously. I want my mind to consciously prepare my body to hibernate. You know, there are weeks that are hard to live. May it be because of problems that you know ahead of time or because a certain week is filled with deadlines and you just can’t wait to go to the end line and jump on to your bed. This year, I can say I had the most taxing months emotionally, mentally, and unfortunately, physically. I never wanted to go back taking melatonin tablets before hitting the sack but if our brain is stressed and active due to thinking a lot, it really gets so difficult to sleep. And by then, you don’t wake up refreshed and some times, I am not in the best of moods at the start of my day. I am really very particular with the mood that I have when I wake up because it affects my outlook for the rest of the day. Oddly enough, I am convinced that sleeping for more time than usual can somehow help get through tough times. I am not sure what is its effect on my overall health but as I said, it’s a wish and I’m ready to take the consequences.

Next is all about safe space. I wish I can buy a private place, preferably close to a beautiful beach that I can view anytime I want. I have no problem if that place is in the Philippines, our country is still a paradise when it comes to nature’s gifts but I’m also open to have that private place in a different country. It’s like being away from my world and living where no one knows about me so I can recharge fully. I can just wish upon the stars – how can I possibly buy one? I am not earning that much to even buy a property here in my country. I need all the luck in the world to get a job that pays so well that it erases 70% of my problems.

Third, a job that lets me work in a different country every single year. How nice it would be if I would be able to work in China in 2022, then Estonia in 2023, and then another country for the following year? It’s as if traveling while still keeping your job without needing to save all your vacation leaves for a well-planned 7-day adventure. Okay, you might haven’t noticed yet but this is also a form of escape. I don’t want to commit in one place for so long to keep my mind busy adjusting and recalibrating because I need to adapt in a new environment yearly. Maybe I am not that strong to face problems head on? Or maybe I am just tired with all I’m facing right now. Perhaps, it’s a combination of both. I think I just have to have a much needed break before facing the harsh realities that life decided to give me. They say God gives the hardest battles to his toughest soldiers, but God may have made a mistake in giving me these battles. I’m not that tough.

And for that last one, it took me some time to conclude my final wish. And I’ve finally decided that I want to have the power of invisibility. Not only when I want to walk away and disappear from the rest of the world when the burden feels too heavy to carry. But also for the times that I am happy and I want to go places where I can smile like a crazy mad fool who’s in love like it’s the first time. I want to live freely, talk freely, and move freely without the eyes of judgmental society.

So now, I’m proudly ready to face that magical old lady if she ever wants to appear at my door. Once all my wishes are granted, I want to pass this on to others. I’m sure I’m not the only one who has the same things in mind as I do. It’s all too far from reality but my highest hope is for this to happen in my dream – in an alternate world where I can do what I can’t in the real world I’m existing.

30th of May

I remember writing a blog post last year with the same title just because I heard of a K-Drama entitled “Youth of May”. The month of May and its name can be used playfully to create titles – it’s actually fun and funny. Funny because I always hated this month because of summer heat. But truth be told, climate change is kicking in because last May 18, the rainy season officially started in the Philippines. Something we should be bothered about.

I quickly browsed through my post last year. And you know what? A lot has changed. Honestly, I am feeling the exact opposite in a number of ways. I’ll try to get some parts of my post in 2021 and compare it with what I am thinking now.

I know I should be sleeping at this time because I need to get up at 6:30 AM to prepare for an interview at 8:30 in the morning. This is a hard adjustment for someone who reports to work at mid-shift for the past four years and six months.

– I was about to get interviewed after applying for a company. I honestly think that I flunked that interview but surprisingly, I passed. I also got an interview from a different company which I confidently aced but I failed to get in. That was ridiculous.

I was determined to look for opportunities outside around this time last year because we got the news about how our process will be impacted by the reorganization. I remember how low my motivation was at that time. But guess what? I am actually not planning to leave my company anytime soon. Not even until 2026. That, I can commit. With all the uncertainties happening around, I found value in staying in a multinational company that can withstand global crises.

We’re three months way from our process’ migration and when I reflected upon it, I realized how it was the biggest blessing in my career. In the process of deliberation about how the staff will be deployed, somehow, in some way along the road, I got promoted. In a BPO company, we have job grade numbers. I started out as a JG8 and now I’m a JG6. This was only my goal. I didn’t actually dream of landing a role at the top of the ladder. At least for now, it isn’t for me. Never say never but yeah, it still isn’t for me. I’m happy with where I am right now, and I don’t feel any rush for a promotion. This feels so great – not always thinking of what’s next – and a certain sense of contentment gave me a priceless peace of mind.

I’m turning 25 next month and I’m honestly thankful and quite indifferent about it. I’m grateful for the fact that I will reach that age at this time of the pandemic. I’m indifferent because it feels empty.

voilà! I don’t feel empty at all. I closed a good chapter of my life and I am starting a new one. Instead of hopelessly asking, what now? I am elatedly asking, what now?!

Looking back at how God was really good to me, I realized that the core of all of my dreams in life were given to me before I leave my 25th year on earth. We are now living in a house named after me, I finally have a home. That’s one. Another one is the promotion I mentioned, I am pretty much done with my personal goal in that company. When I was in my late teens and early twenties, I craved for intimate relationships. I became so dramatic that I reached the point asking God – “When I will be loved? I am always the person who gives love but doesn’t get loved back and always left hanging when they find someone new?” I remember crying while watching “Meet me in St. Gallen” inside a movie theater. I legitimately bawled my eyes out to release my heavy tears. I was with my mom back then and I don’t know why she did not ask why I cried. That’s better, I guess. In that same year, I also met someone who finally loved me and never left. Lastly, the love I have at home from my mom and my siblings is something I will forever be grateful for. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why I don’t have attachment issues – people can go and leave my life anytime they want to, and I couldn’t care less – because at home, I am already filled with stable love.

So, after sharing too much, and I always say that you’ll get to know me deeply through my blog more than talking to me personally, there’s no doubt that I am closing my 25th year with gratitude and love lingering around my happy heart. I had this conversation with a friend where I said, “I don’t have any dreams. But in a good way.”, I felt like the rest of my years will be lived by enjoying the finer things in life whatever they may mean to me. I am opening my 26th year next month with full of excitement, discovery, pampering, and doing things unapologetically.

You see, if there’s something I want to impart to whoever reads this is that whoever said that you need to figure everything out at 25 is lying. I maybe done with the major things I want to have in life, but I am yet to figure out that hats I would like to wear. I am sincerely and eagerly looking forward to every year I’ll get and you don’t always need to join the sinkhole of quarter-life crisis. It’s true though, but it’s not a requirement to feel. You can have a different mindset by the time you reach 25 – it’s either you sleep and wake up feeling down and lost or you sleep, wake up, and step out to experience what life has for you. You can be excited with nothingness, with overwhelming crossroads, a whole lot of options, all because YOU ARE STILL YOUNG. Your life doesn’t end at 25. Believe me, success has no timeline. And it actually doesn’t matter if you enjoy now what others enjoyed at 22. I envied my peers (back in college) who can go to Starbucks anytime they want to while I need to save up two days worth of my daily allowance just to have one drink while nervously telling my order because I feel inferior being in a space where rich people hang out (or am I wrong with this? lol). Seriously, I only got to enjoy it now. At 25. I have my own Starbucks card, and I go out there confidently looking of iced chai tea latte but it sucks that they apparently have supply issues now.

Do I feel less happy because I am now enjoying what they have already enjoyed years back? Heck, NO!

As I end this one, I quietly wondered how my thoughts will again change next year? I cannot control everything but one thing’s for sure, I’ll share more news about what I did as I embrace this whole new blank chapter. Wish me a happy birthday on June 29! 🙂

DE S02E05

I just posted on my instagram stories that I decided to do a midnight “me time” stroll. I then went to 7/11 to buy a small cup of hot chocolate to accompany me while I sit comfortably in front of a closed store. I am currently feeling the wind breeze from the sea. We all can say that this wind feels the best – especially if you’re used to live in Manila.

Since we came after the holy week, I expected that there will be few people here. And that was true. And I like it. Really. Those who know me will agree. I don’t like crowded places. I want to share my current view so I quickly took a picture. Here it is!

I’m quite far from the beach but I can’t do an indian sit comfortably ever since I was a kid.

If there’s something I hate with this travel is how wasteful I am. I have limited resources so I cannot be conscious about the products I use. I just get by with anything convenient. A one-week trip maybe isn’t for me. Not unless I pack more and prepare carefully.

But you know what I loved? This travel represents how far my life went. For the better. Unknowingly, I am now able to afford to do this. I wasn’t born rich. Way back in college, I was so fascinated about how some of my blockmates afford studying in coffee shops. One drink costs at least Php 130 and you need to stay there longer, so I guess, you need to drink one more? That’s already Php 260! And my weekly allowance is only at Php 700 and I go to school six times a week.

(I took a sip from my hot chocolate. It tastes good for its price!)

I honestly can’t believe I’m willing to spend Php 400 pesos for a meal. The prices here are not so friendly. But I just can’t help to be thankful how I can now afford the things I can’t before. Not that I am complaining with the life I grew up with. It actually feels better to experience the so-called finer things in life after working so hard for years. They weren’t given, I earned them. A lot can relate to this. If this also happens to you currently, I want to say that I’m proud of you!

I had an honest and deep conversation with my friend last Sunday night. I told how I thought that I have no dream to achieve anymore. I have a home of my own. I can pay bills monthly. I have a stable job. When life gets tough, I go to the basics. Social media and city life do a good job in making you feel incomplete. When I looked into my life with simplicity in mind, I realized that I am completely blessed with my current status. Don’t get me wrong, I want to wear more hats as I feel that I still have a lot of years to live. It’s just that, right now, I have what I need in my life. I’m at a point where I can freely welcome what my next years will bring to the table. I’ll embrace it. Whatever it is.

I’m beyond thankful that I can finally say that it’s now my time to explore whatever I want to. I have two in mind, actually. But for some reason, I want to keep it. Privately. But I will let others know about it, but not now. I think I just regained my “fvck, whatever this is, I’ll go for it” attitude in 2018.

As I end this post, I can only say good things to God. I may not have everything that I want, but He provided what I need. I love the moments where I have this deep silent conversation with Him. Knowing that whatever situation I will be in, He’ll be with me – makes me feel secured and thankful for the years he destined me to exist.

I will be turning 26 in two months. Maybe all the emotions I have right now are the sign that I’m moving on from a long chapter of living for others. Maybe after 25 years, I can now live for myself. Unapologetically.

Cheers to life, cheers to a free life!

DE S02E04

It’s been a while since I went here in my safest bubble. I was contemplating if I should write now or keep all my thoughts and burst them out by writing in front of the beach. I’ll be on vacation starting on Sunday and I have no idea what to expect. It’s my first week-long travel without my family. First of many. Maybe I’ll use my experience there for my next travels? Let’s see.

2022 has been a very productive year in meeting some of my old friends. I think I went out more this year than in 2020 and 2021 combined. It’s part of my goal, really. And I feel like I’m on track. But there’s something in me that also makes me feel that I am slowly uncovering what’s lacking in my life. I say this is good sign, whilst being lost – I think, I’m slowly creating who I am? I’m actually shifting my belief from we must find ourselves to we should create ourselves. Or maybe, it’s a good and healthy combination of both?

On a side note, I’m writing this while having my protein drink and some liempo leftover. I left my phone as the love of my life is sleeping peacefully. I opened my WordPress here in my mac instead of phone to not disturb him. I just wanted to share this piece of information as it is fun to document this raw and non-special moment.

Going back to the mountain of thoughts I have in my tired mind. I’m thinking of sharing bits and pieces of who I am now. I may compromise my privacy but it’s really nice to look back after several years on how much I’ve grown.

First, I think I already found the love of my life. I seriously can’t imagine loving another human being other than my partner. I can’t imagine myself having an intimate relationship with another person. So lucky! Am I? I think so. In my teenage years up until my early twenties, I struggled to find one human to love me. I was blown away when I thought of how God gave me that person as early as 23 years old. Now I know why when I think of my future, they are all about my personal dreams. All the places I want to go, all the food I want to eat, and all the experiences I want to share. Love isn’t something I think deeply. I shouldn’t. I already have that one person I’ll get to enjoy the rest of my years with.

Next, I love mother nature. I am starting to transition to a more eco-friendly living. If I can just volunteer to do work to help the environment, I would! Lately, #LetTheEarthBreathe trended all over my social media. And it should be! We can contribute but those power must also do their part in saving our only home. It’s high time for world leaders to take this seriously. To whoever reads this, I encourage you to reevaluate your living. Trust me! You can save money by having an eco-friendly lifestyle.

Another one, I decide where I take money. Not the other way around. I’m not saying that those who seriously want that much money in their bank accounts are living a less meaningful life. Personal finance management and journey is unique in every individual. But I want to share my thoughts about it. First, I decided on the lifestyle I want to live and then I determine how much money I need to sustain that while having that peace of mind of being financially secured for rainy days. I can sustain myself (this might change though because of inflation) and live happily with a net salary of less than Php 40,000. When I achieved that amount of pay, I pulled out all the pressure that was inside of my head…. I now can live comfortably. If ever I will gun for a promotion in the future, that would mean for something else and definitely not just for money.

Last, and it is related to what I wrote above, is that I’m not comfortable with the idea of extravagant lifestyle. I love the simplicity of life. Every time I remove one thing that I initially thought of as so important, I am baffled when I realize that it actually isn’t. I stayed away from instagram for three months last year and I lived a good life even without it. Same goes with any of the expensive material things that I owned. I shared before that I bought this macbook I’m using and honestly, I just realized that this one’s a nice to have but definitely not what I need. Do I regret buying it? No. Every time I see this, I am reminded to be more careful for my next purchases. In order to utilize every peso that I used to buy this, I’ll just use this macbook for a minimum of seven years.

I’ll stop here. My mind’s telling me to stop sharing, for now. I hope you all had a good rest as I’m getting mine next week. I’m quite nervous to travel by air but I must get used to this. I am personally excited to what my next months are gonna be. But for now, I’ll go back to my bed and have a good night’s sleep.