Dear Jim

1 Sep

Dear Jim,

Tonight, i talked to God about you. 

I prayed to God as i burst tears of remorse and pain. I prayed that He’d give you happiness as soon as he could, and to send you whatever your heart desires.

I told God how bad of a person i was to you. I told Him this a hundred times. I cried away my pain. I know just how awful i’ve become. 

I asked God to send you the woman that will add value to your life. I asked him to bless you with a consistently happy life from this point onwards. And i asked him to forgive me for being ever so rude, insensitive and evil particularly towards you, and particularly the part two nights.

Jim, i want you to know that every mean word that i dropped pierced me through the heart. But i had to find a way to cut you off. Cut you loose. Your love for me is so unimaginable i couldn’t cope with it. I do not know how to accept your love but you never took it back. 

You do not deserve me. 

You do NOT deserve me.

 You deserve a woman that is far way better than i could ever be. I am a mess. I am insane. I am everything that a man would hate to be with. And yet, you remain. 

You have always managed to confuse me with your love. How can you forgive me so fast? How can you love me so strongly? How can you stay when i did everything to push you away? Perhaps i am not used to being loved this way. Perhaps i am not used to being loved at all. And you are love. You are every inch a kind person. You are unforgivingly tender. You are perfect.

You are someone that i do not deserve. At least not while im this unsure, unstable, unaware. You deserve not the hell that i lay. You deserve not the pain that i create. You deserve not to be connected in anyway to me. Because you are too good of a person. And i am not ready for you. 

I have always toiled in loving and in always being let down. I’ve come to expect that pattern all throughout my life. But you came and shattered it all. Truth be told, I am not ready to deal with the unfamiliar territory of actually being loved in return. And i need to do something about that. On my own. Without you. I am yet to grow up. I have a lot to understand. 

Jim, I’ve deliberately sinned tonight, by once again hurting you with my bladed words. But i hope someday u’l get to see that i did so only because I want you saved. Saved from the chaos that is me.

Jim, i prayed to God to keep you safe. And i mean this from the bottom of my heart. And of all the times that i’ve prayed to God about a man, this is the FIRST time that i asked Him to bless the one i love with a better woman. 

Jim, tonight i talked to God about you. Because i needed something bigger to ask forgiveness from. Someday, when the time is finally right, i promise to ask for yours. 

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Thrill of the Chase

13 Jul

Let’s talk about breakups, and why I can’t seem to sustain a real commitment, and why all of these revelations are so discombobulating to me.

(Please forgive me in advance for using gender stereotypes in this essay. I know that I am committing immortal sins in the standards of feminism, but I would like to use my artistic/poetic license to commit such horrifying blunders for the sake of expressing my emotions in their rawest form.)

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Once my cousin told me that of all the women in this world complaining about their lack of love lives, I am the one with a lot of love life. I think she was trying to knock some sense into my head that in reality,  while I would always complain about not having a stable relationship, I am not exactly in drought of guys here because she knows that I do date a lot, and I get away with doing a lot of “couple things” even without the “couple” label.  Fair enough.

So I recently broke up with a man who loves me, for a reason too shallow for most. Of course that is on top of the difficulty of maintaining an LDR, various personal issues (of us both) and the problems I keep on encountering because of the bar review.  While people tell me our thing warrants a real second chance, I was done and knew I could never give that. Why? I don’t know. I’ve always thought I have enormous trust issues because I was cheated on before. But then, I had to take a step back after recent events. And I have to just ask myself: what really is the matter?

I’ve had 3 official relationships in my life, the last one included. And in those three real relationships, I was the one who broke each one off — always thinking that I was the victim in each situation. Each time, the guy would promise to change, or ask for a chance to fix things. But i was never sold to making up and second chances. And then I have the audacity to complain that I never get a functional lovelife hahaha. I’m laughing at myself now, because I just can’t keep up with myself sometimes.

Are these three past relationships just not the right ones? Were the men i’ve been involved with really the wrong men for me? Or am I actually, subconsciously, just effin’ not ready or willing to be tied down? Am I enjoying the search, the hunt, the chase for the right guy more than finally getting the guy?  Am I just NOT READY to accept that I actually am a “MAN” when it comes to dating? Maybe. Probably. After all, it goes against all societal expectations.  But when did I ever succeed in meeting socially constructed norms anyways? I’ve been bullied by maybe 8 million Filipinos for not wearing a blazer (and well, looking like a hoe — with a brain tho) in a Senate hearing and I almost got affected by the trolling… only to hear one of my closest friends tell me “well i love it because it is so you!” I was never the kind to conform.

I’ve always had this idea at the back of my head that I am indeed a ‘man’, or at least I want to experience being a ‘man’ in an aspect of my life — and my dating life seems to be the most accessible channel to practice that. But then, I keep on dismissing the idea because I cannot reconcile it with the fact that I do end up getting hurt by it all. I do feel pain and I cry and bargain with the guy I’m with (and about to leave). I turn into a crazy bitch that will scream, shout, stalk and throw tantrums because I feel like I am being abandoned, attacked or betrayed.

COGNITIVE DISSONANCE much.

But I am going to be all-out honest here:

I am starting to realize that the end-result of dating is not what I find most satisfying – regardless if it’s positive or not. It is not landing with a good guy that enlivens me – it is the thrill of the chase. 

THE THRILL OF THE CHASE: the excitement that you feel when you are trying to find something or achieve something difficult.

Alright, I’ll say it – it may be possible indeed that I am subconsciously creating conflict and drama and inciting hate from my partner when everything seems to be going boringly well… because I think it will start the chase anew. And because I am, deep down, a hunter, I am willing to be hurt by the conflict because I know for sure that it is part of the adventure.  If you hunted without getting any bruise, did you even hunt at all?

Maybe this is also why I am so damn attracted to  “fukbois” – you know, the unattainable guys who mess with your sanity and you can’t figure out for the heck of you? Ahhhh they project an image of being a difficult, elusive target that draws and lures the hunter in me. They make me wanna prove to myself that I can get them trapped if I up employ good strategies. And I get crushed once I realize I couldn’t tame them. And then I hunt again. It’s a vicious cycle… and I secretly love the game, with all its crazy aftermath included. I am addicted to the pain it brings me, and the chaos it creates. It feels like all these are part of the challenge. It somehow validates me, as I think that the better hunters play in a harsher, more unpredictable, often frustrating field.

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I am good at flirting with fuckbois, but even better at wasting relationships with potential. I cry aloud when I’m being left behind, but the truth is I don’t wanna quit the race, get out of the track, and settle with the one who will not run away for once. What I have is a relationship with my ego – I please it when I feel like my target is starting to like me, I disappoint it when the opposite unravels itself.

I know that men want femininity out of their partners. Relationships last longer when the woman is caring, sweet, loving and soft. A woman has to be run after by a man, not the other way around. For the longest time,  I was sold to the idea that success in relationships rests in playing your gender’s stereotypical part. BUT I HAVE TO GIVE IT A REST. I just am not that. And as much as I want to return the love of those who easily love me, my nature would dictate that I stop loving them once they start loving me back (whether I like it or not).

I am so confused with this realization because despite admitting to myself that I am much a chaser – something that, as per society, only men are allowed to do — I still feel like I want a stable relationship and have a family of my own in the future.  At this point I don’t know how  to make that “dream” happen.  is there a way to solve this inconsistency? Should I start questioning if that is even a real dream for me? Or should I just let things run its natural course? Whatever it is that lies ahead, I know I can only be at peace when I decide to pick one from the two contrasting forces in me:

I either abandon my hunter instincts and start acting like a “lady”, or stop beating myself up for lack of “love life” and start embracing my secret affinity for a culture bereft of genuine feelings but full of intensity.

*photos are not mine. taken from Pinterest via googlesearch. Couldn’t view the name of their creators.

Life in a Cup

18 Jun

What’s another story to hear
What’s another laugh for two
What’s another tick on the clock
When it’s magic shared by you

What’s another smile to give?
What’s another kiss or two?
What’s another line to say?
When it’s now that’s shared by you

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Thought I’d share something of a sunny and light vibe today 🙂 Here are some snaps of what weekends should be like – an intentional pause, a well-deserved break, a needed recreation.  Weekdays are our hustle days, and most of the time we cannot help but move so quickly – chasing after the elusive time, waking up as early as 5am and going home as late as almost midnight, overdosing on caffeine to keep us running, and beating deadlines after deadlines that in the end leaves us oh so beat ourselves.

received_1378729268832717So what’s a day or two to stop? We all need a moment to immerse ourselves in the now – and make sure that we do it as slowly as we could. Go to a place that is  lovely and inspiring. Let’s treat ourselves to a cup of coffee and enjoy every sip of it this time.

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A cup in hand
You know it’s worth your while
A cup in hand
Let’s sit and stay for a while

Let minutes turn to moments
Let’s mix
Let’s talk
One moment

IMG_20170411_162014_602“Sunday is the perfect day to refuel your soul and be grateful for each and everyone of your blessings”

I’d like to take this time to appreciate all the people who care for me. I do realize how fortunate I am to know that there are lots of friends reaching out to me, offering any kind of help they could extend, and giving me unsolicited-yet-very-welcome pieces of advice and encouragement. I’ve been expressing my self-doubts, fears and frustrations in social media a lot lately but I didn’t really think people would take the time to read them much less offer me whatever they have to lessen my stress.

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I am only human. I sometimes forget to trust the higher being that guides us all. Lately, mabilis ako ma-stress and ma-rattle However, I am happy to be reminded of the universe’s unbelievable power through a lot of people – Jim, Jam, Phoebe, Mara, Lil, Steph, Mica, Ate Mylene and other law school friends who believe in me, the Bayleaf Gurls, 411 Windsor Housemates (shout out to Ate Cy and Jenny esp!), Tita Josie, Tin, Ago, Ms. Anette, and the people I’ve met only in work-related events and conferences but have been super thoughtful and caring, and I know are praying for me like Ma’am Nelia from NCDA and Ms. Jo from DOH. I also met an Atty. from DOJ  in one forum and she offered her help in my review – she told me to just text her when I have any question. She also gave me tips which I find super helpful. I won’t say na how each one of you has helped me, but you surely did. so Thank you! 🙂

I would also like to use this day to end my week-long self-declared depression. Looking back, I couldn’t believe I got through my Thursday and Friday alive. I was sick for three days starting Monday and had to miss work until Wednesday. I believe that was stress-induced. I had TONS of pending work needed to be turned over to the bosses by the end of the week that I just feared the coming of Thursday. I was so down and helpless. It seemed like everything about my remaining two work days was going awfully wrong. I cried a lot during those times and asked/complained to the Heavens about my impossible ordeal… But somehow, the universe conspired to remind me that life is my ally, not my foe. Come Friday, I magically was able to finish three deliverables/work in a span of 4 hours in the morning. And I find that miraculous because it would usually take me the whole day to finish just one.

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“You’re so hard on yourself. Take a moment. Sit back.

Marvel at your life:

      at the grief that softened you,

     at the heartache that widened you,

     at the suffering that strengthened you.

Despite everything, you still grow.  Be proud of this.”

 

The book on Taoism that I’ve been reading said that everything we need is already being provided to us right here, right now. The universe does not leave anyone behind (yes parang SDG lang! hahaha), and we need only ask and we shall receive. This past week made me a witness to the truthfulness of this teaching. And though I am anticipating another big necessity in the near future, I trust that the universe will provide whatever I need through the people, things and situations around/surrounding me.

I guess this Sunday marks another beginning for me. I will try (yet again) to be more positive even though it can be so difficult at times, and even though I am convinced now that I am genetically predisposed to be melancholic (yes peeps, it is somehow inherent for some people to be more inclined to feel sadness than joy); But this shouldn’t stop me from pursuing happiness I know. After all, nature and nurture coexist in this world to balance each other out, and bring about a perfectly imperfect individual.

IMG_20170412_073419_1742afb9cfcf73103a3e9e517b0d9822558received_1378731118832532 I really have to be consistent in cultivating a happy spirit, and i need to believe MORE in the power of the universe –> things will always work out! And it is always just a matter of perspective – glass half empty vs glass half full; life is either falling apart or falling into place.

And thankgod for beautiful Sundays too – for the downtime, for the chance to reflect, for the chance to begin again, for a clean slate, for the nth square one. I am just grateful to have come to sobriety after a drowning week that was.

I say buckets of coffee keep us awake during hustle-weekdays, but a cup of coffee on a Sunday is what truly keeps us alive. 🙂

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That’s all for today! Quite a long post, but it stops here. 🙂 Have a happy Sunday everyone! 🙂

Evergreen

5 Jun
Sharing with you today a set of beautiful photos care of this rustic resort found at the peak of a mountain somewhere in Batangas. The place is called Canyon Woods and is located in a very far flung part of the said province. It was a long drive to get there but it was worth it for me.

P_20170519_093303_BFLovely, lovely place!

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Being at Canyon Woods for three days was a good break from the hustle and bustle of the city life, especially for me because I’ve been wanting my days to slow down  and my 24 hours to double. Since I have to work and study for the bar exams at the same time, I feel like I don’t have enough time in one day to do everything I need and want to do. Pressure gets to me easily, and this breather right here has somehow calmed me down and stopped me from totally panicking.

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P_20170519_085552I particularly liked the rustic ambience of this place. I’ve always loved nature – I think that is quite evident in this blog – so imagine my delight when I found this glass-housed pool that boasts of this spectacular view of the  pine trees outside, and is surrounded with even more flowers and plants inside. 🙂

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IMG_20170520_073441_151I just had to instantly do a pictorial, you see. With the help of my phone camera that times itself, my considerate audience (kids that refrained from coming to this Jacuzzi and stayed at the bigger pool instead, to indulge the crazy me), and my very cooperative tummy which all of a sudden hid its bulge and made some non-existent abs magically appear  instead, I was able to take  some pretty good shots – one for the blog! yeah! haha

IMG_20170519_091858_262Can we all take a minute to appreciate the natural beauty that is so present here? And how the sun easily illuminates the place? And how those giant vines spreading at the ceiling just makes it all feel more whimsical? 🙂 Whoever thought about this whole architectural design gets hundred thumbs up from me!

P_20170519_090650This building is actually pretty massive. As i’ve said it has a very wide swimming pool aside from that Jacuzzi in the corner. I was only interested in the Jacuzzi area though. Haha. It was a little piece of paradise, within a paradise. 🙂

IMG_20170522_094550_796Did you know that pine trees stay alive and green even during winter? Yeah, I never really thought about it too! Didn’t realize it but sure in the movies they do cut pine trees to turn into Christmas trees and they stay green for a while even after having cut it right?

Pine trees withstand the harshest season, just when all other deciduous trees wither away.  That’s why they’re usually taken as a symbol of wisdom during hardships, of longevity and patience, and of life and hope amidst a wave of death. I just learned today that the pine trees are classified as Evergreens. Well, now we all know why. 🙂

This quick lesson on pine trees is quite timely for me.  Reviewing for the bar exams is giving me a hard time, not because reading per se is hard, but because I keep on questioning whether what I’m doing is enough. Indeed, the Bar Exams is more a test of character  than a test of one’s legal knowledge. Success in the Bar Exams relies on one’s discipline and optimism which I unfortunately think I don’t have enough of. I always make the mistake of comparing myself to other bar reviewees and ending up feeling so inadequate. I’ve always considered myself a smart woman but every time we talk about law school, my confidence shrinks into a tiny useless bud.

P_20170519_092020canyon woods“In the midst of winter, I found there is within me an inevitable summer.” – Albert Camus

It’s been a month of dark days for me but I hope to find that inevitable summer within me. I know I need to keep on living my life despite the less ideal weather, and I have to keep on reminding myself that I am enough regardless of the outcome of this bar exams. I’m scared to fail this one – but if it so happens, should that mean the end of my life? and the death of my worth as a human?

IMG_20170520_215031_551Pine trees remain boastfully tall, and thus alive despite the worst of conditions – And I think I can do that too. If I only succeed in believing that life will remain the same regardless, then maybe I could put some of the pressure off my shoulders, and maybe I could relax more and study better.

“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.” – Lao Tzu

P_20170519_093437_BFI know that in this tough journey that I somehow allowed myself to be in, I must not lose sight of what’s important. Maybe this whole ordeal is not so much about me passing the bar and becoming a lawyer, but rather about teaching me to never abandon myself even at the most impossible times. I have to keep on pushing myself up, and to keep on believing in my own worth. I have to understand that failure does not and will  not define me, so it must not scare me so.

“God took pattern after a pine tree and built you noble.”

That’s all for today! Have a lovely Saturday afternoon and enjoy the rains. 🙂

Stop Chasing Your Dreams

26 Apr

Stop chasing your dreams.

Allow them to come to you in perfect order with unquestioned timing. Slow down your frantic pace and practice being hollow like the cave and open to all possibilities like the uncarved wood. Make stillness a regular part of your daily practice. Imagine all that you’d like to experience in life and then LET GO. Trust the Tao to work in Divine perfection, as it does with everything on the planet. You don’t really need to rush or force anything. Be an observer and receiver rather than the pushy director of your life. It is through this unhurried unfolding that you master your existence in the way of the Tao.

Give up struggling and start trusting in the wisdom of the Tao. What is yours will come to you when you aren’t trying to push the river. You’ve probably been encouraged to actively direct and go after your desires all of your life… now it’s time to trust in the eternal wisdom that flows through you.

How can a man’s life keep its course

If he will not let it flow?

Those who flow as life flows know

They need no other force:

They feel no wear, they feel no tear,

They need no mending, no repair.

-Excerpt from the book of Dr. Wayne Dyer entitled “Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life: Living the Wisdom of the Tao”

Palm Trees

12 Apr

Oh my god it’s super hot in Manila! Summer na talaga! 🙂 I love love this season in the Philippines, plus i usually have lots of goings-on in my life during summer thereby making it so much more memorable! haha.

Last summer around this time of the month, I fell head over heels in love with a spook who (altho not necessarily his fault) broke my heart like crazy. (Until now, I’m not exactly sure if what he told me about his life and his work were all true but I’ve decided long ago that I’d take them all as facts, because benefit of the doubt. ha!) And although in retrospect that episode in my summer of 2016 was what made it colorful, I think I am done with sacrificing myself and my sanity in exchange of an interesting love-related story.

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Now, a year later, I am once again in love… but not anymore to a particular person! is it too cheesy  too say that I am in love with my life more than ever now? yeah sounds like it. But well, it’s the honest truth. I’ve been dating here and there but this time I am doing this with ease and a light heart, I take it mostly for the fun of it by enjoying the process instead of obsessing over where it will lead… and i make sure I keep it on the sidelines of my beautiful, crazy, kick-ass life. 😉

And I know that summer of 2017 is just about to get betterrrr….. I am determined to make it the best summer of my life (I always target this!), even though until now i’ve got no solid summer vacay plans yet! pfff who cares…. we don’t need elaborate trips to make our summer great! I’ll show you guys how it is done! altho I would really wanna have a good summer me-time! 😉

13466370_1799410090294444_326179549715844660_nAnyways, the pics you are seeing now are not really recent. These were from last year when the Brigola Family went to a rather spontaneous outing. haha. I would love to have new sets of  beach photos from this year but I am yet to figure out how to do that if I am not really scheduled to go to any beach soon. hahaha

13407284_1799410506961069_8628426931764919820_nHello to my wild long afro.. and to my relatively flat tummy here. Where have you both gone??? Come back to me naaaaaaa. 😦 hahaha

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“A life without love is like a year without summer”

Do not ever let love go out of your life… and I’m not even talking about romantic love alone… it can be love for your friends, family, one’s self of course, life, work, whatever! Lets surround ourselves with people full of love.. so full it’s spilling out and radiating and contaminating and just exploding right in other people’s faces! 🙂 Better yet, let us be that! 😉

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“Summer is filled with breaking the rules, standing apart, ignoring your head and following your heart”

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I say, let’s live our lives like it’s always summertime. 😉

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there is always a great grand blue sky waiting behind the clouds.

13450703_1799410963627690_7844167479453703707_nSummer I love you! I can’t wait for you to unfold slowly and amaze me! ^_^

13434925_1799411123627674_8024997339189221981_nThat’s all for now! 🙂 happy summer! 🙂

I’M GOING TO FAIL THE BAR EXAMS

4 Apr

…if i don’t start studying seriously. I can feel it. I just can. I’m stuck in a book that I was supposed to finish last January. It’s April now. I’m not even halfway through it. I don’t know how to find my focus. I am such a stubborn little bitch who keeps on going out, keeps on eating out, reading other books and doing everything else except focus.

I honestly don’t know how to start, where to pick up. I spent last night crying and panicking about my snail-paced progress in this goddamn review. I’m not gonna lie now. I feel like after all the academic and professional exams i passed with flying colors in my 27 years of existence, the bar exams will be the death of me.

I don’t know what to do, and who else to talk to. I’ve asked everything I could ask all my -already-lawyer friends now. I’ve drained the hell out of my close office mates and relatives. In the end it is just myself that I failed to have a serious one-on-one talk about this. Everybody has offered me all the help they can give. I just am not asking for any because I’m honestly not even helping myself out.

I feel so helpless yet I know that nobody can really help myself but me. I’m waiting for something to strike me to get me into the momentum. Im afraid I might just be waiting for forever of nothing. HOW THE HELL DID THESE PEOPLE PREPARE FOR THE BAR EXAMS??? WHERE DID THEY GET THE CONSISTENCY IN THEIR DRIVE TO STUDY???? LIKE HOW DOES THIS GO???

I’m stressed out, and i haven’t even studied substantially. I’m stressed out because of the pressure I’ve put on myself.

I’m going to fail the bar exams. Unless I start doing something about it.