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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.

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.

Maybe in the Country Side

26 Mar

For every single day that passes me by, I get more and more convinced that life is meant to be lived in the present. This is not to say that we must carelessly lose sight of the future or totally abandon our past– it just means that we have to hold on to something that we have, rather than obsess over things that we cannot control or take back.GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERALife is funny because it has its way of playing with us… it has its way of delighting us when we think nothing’s going right.. and it has its way of gearing us to a direction different from where we originally planned to go. In the end, it always leaves us in a surprise. Yeah, life is a bitch. But I like her! 😉 I wanna play with her, I wanna laugh at her attempt to bring me down just to test me. I wanna outsmart her, and yet be able to work with her harmoniously, and I wanna prove to her that I am in control of me, by exactly – and ironically at that- being UNcontrolling. And the key to doing that properly is to focus on the present. to enjoy the current moment, to take nothing but mental snapshots of the little joyful parts of our days and do absolutely nothing else about it.

gedc4831.jpg“Live as water lives, since you are water. Become as contented as the fluid that animates and supports you. Let your thoughts and behaviors move smoothly in accordance with the nature of all things.” – Wayne Dyer

Somebody asked me where I see myself in the next five or ten years, or what do I wanna achieve in the future. My impulse made me utter “Happy”. I just wanna be and keep being happy wherever I am, whatever I am doing then. When I thought about my answer later, a part of me thought I sounded like I had no ambition. But then, I stopped and corrected myself in a snap. Maybe I didn’t need to mention a new ambition because I am happy about what I am doing NOW. Maybe I couldn’t care less about being filthy rich, or being titled or  being of certain status by then because I am actually content and satisfied with how things are now, and I have enormous trust – no, faith- that life will take me to something amazing or wonderful in the coming years… if only I keep on living in the moment with so much gratitude, appreciation, optimism and open-mindedness.  🙂

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAI can be a lawyer then, I can be working in the UN, or I can be a renowned Women’s Rights Advocate, a fashion designer?, a mother, a housewife, a traveller, a waitress working in the Bahamas in my bikini and with a glorious tan, and going home in a beach cottage/house that is made of white,wood and some green and a splash of ocean elements? (always been curious what this would feel like haha) I can be married, I may be single. I can be living in the countryside, or in a place surrounded by palm trees. Possibilities are endless… and am I scared? No. I am excited… I know that whatever happens, the only responsibility I have to myself is to ensure that I am happy and I am living a dignified life (no matter how simple, no matter how unexpected). 🙂 Whichever way it goes, I know it can be awesome, with right perspective and the right disposition in life.

gedc48151.jpgDetachment from the good things I have in my life right now is what, I believe, makes happiness stay in my life. And I vow to continue living this way… free from pressure and expectations for what the future holds for me, and free from the feeling of unworthiness brought about by the past. I just get it now, you know.

I get it.

And I hope more people would get it too. I hope people would find their inner bliss. 🙂

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Have a great Sunday everyone! 🙂 Spread love and happiness! 🙂

Sulo Riviera

4 Mar
The photos I’m sharing today are taken at the Sulo Riviera Hotel in Quezon City. I was there to attend a 2-day work-related event a few months ago. I fell in love with the place because of it’s super chill, beautiful and quiet ambience. It is also very much in touch with nature… and so  I thought these pictures would perfectly match the topic that I want to talk about today:

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se·ren·i·ty 
səˈrenədē/
noun
the state of being calm, peaceful, and untroubled.

p_20161117_085313_bfSerenity, i think, is a concept frequently misunderstood.  The word comes from the Latin term serenus, meaning clear or unclouded (skies). By extension it thus means calm, and without storm.  I find this etimology funnily inaccurate though! I read a quote that said serenity is in fact not the absence of storm, but the presence of peace amidst the storm. And I think I like that definition better. 😉

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p_20161117_085714_bfOftentimes, when people pray to God for serenity, they are actually meaning to ask for God to take away all their pains and sorrows, their troubles and their problems, and give them a peaceful, stress-free life instead. I have learned however that asking for some sense of serenity should actually mean asking God for strength to endure any chaos, for the ability to go through struggles without losing yourself, and for the will to remain grateful for life, despite being confronted with all the reasons to hate it.

p_20161117_074227breakfast by the pool. Ain’t this awesome????? ^_^

p_20161117_074302When I pray to the universe for some serenity and peace, my heart knows that what it needs is the skill to face life’s not-so-good mood with gracefulness. This is not to say of course that I do not snap or stress even a bit at all. I do.. easily in fact! But the important thing I guess is I know how to ask, and I definitely know the right thing to ask for.

p_20161117_091150_bf When faced with any kind of inconvenience or challenge,  I’ve learned to stop asking my God to take them all away. Instead, I ask for the right weapons to help me make it through the battle. I ask for the will to go on, for some inner peace to preserve my sanity, wisdom to make the right decisions when things are starting to get out of hand and most importantly, discipline when the situation calls for any form or degree of sacrifice.

Anyways, allow me to talk about this hotel a bit more for a second. It definitely deserves some review!

15135879_1872172743018178_1625826160009430518_n Sulo Riviera is a hidden oasis in the middle of a busy city. It is a perfect place to reflect, to eat slowly and to just read a book. 

p_20161117_091007_bfThe hotel also has a great selection of food, which btw are very reasonably priced. I was instantly brought to heaven upon seeing the dessert section! hahaha EVERYTHING TASTED SO GOOOD!

Collages2.jpgTheir banoffee pie and strawberry shortcake are to die for!!!!15078896_1871738849728234_6317510754790284811_n

Actually lahat ng food nila masarap! I wouldn’t bother describing each one na.. basta lahat masarap! haha. Sobrang nakakahappy lang yung feeling! ^_^

p_20161117_085831_bfSerenity is not freedom from the storm but peace amid the storm.

The important thing to remember is that peace comes
from within your own heart and mind, not from
some outside source, and when you refuse
to be disturbed by things about you, life
will flood your being with dynamic energy.

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Serenity is the balance between good and bad, life and death, horrors and pleasures.

Life is, as it were, defined by death. If there wasn’t death of things, then there wouldn’t be any life to celebrate.

-Norman Davies

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15027602_1872674622967990_4066267839795842761_nThe final wisdom of life requires not the annulment of incongruity but the achievement of serenity within and above it.– Reinhold Niebuhrp_20161117_090647_bfWe have to realize that life will always have its ups and downs. It’s a non-negotiable. Thus, I believe that we all should start praying for help, not for an escape. This way, we wouldn’t be blaming or questioning God/the universe for all the so-called misfortunes that we experience. Everybody goes through hardship, the only difference lies with how we deal with it. 🙂

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p_20161116_184446That is all for today! thanks and have a great weekend everyone! 🙂

The Majesty

1 Mar

“The only way that we can live, is if we grow. The only way that we can grow is if we change. The only way that we can change is if we learn. The only way we can learn is if we are exposed. And the only way that we can become exposed is if we throw ourselves out into the open. Do it. Throw yourself.”  ― C. JoyBell C.

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My past week has been pretty serious and uneasy to process. A few major changes suddenly blew on my face without prior notice and it was (is?)  driving me a bit crazy.

But that’s the thing with change, right? You never really see it coming. It just happens right there, right then, catching you in your most unprepared, shaking your world so madly, and making things unbearable to some extent. Now sure this isn’t the first time I had realized a major change in my life was taking place.. but just how many more times should I talk about change in this blog before I get the hang of it?  Ah I probably never will. It’s quite strange how change (particularly, negative change) is known by all to be a constant thing in this world, yet nobody ever gets familiar with the feeling, the pressure, and the meaning it brings to us.

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I am totally cognizant and accepting of the fact that some changes had to happen in my life regardless of my (lack of) readiness for it for a good reason.  I know this has to be for a good reason! I was conferring with my very reliable and supportive friend about all these and she told me that I am just being pulled back by the things that are bothering me because I am about to be propelled to greatness..yeah she used the arrow metaphor to explain this to me, and I have to say the right perspective always helps.

So bring it on! I am willingly throwing myself out in the open now!  I’ll face all these changes head on, and I know will emerge victorious. I’ll overcome my negative thoughts, and I’m gonna grow. These changes that are happening right now are just another mechanism to make me a better person, perhaps a better adult, and a better woman.

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I will not be defeated by sadness. I will not be consumed by pain. I’m no longer afraid of rejection, failures and oblivion. I know I’m gonna have to go through tough times with more toughness in me. And then, no matter how hard, I shall find my inner serenity.

Life cannot be that bad. It is always more beautiful than what we think it is. All I have to do is focus on the good things.. There are always good things.

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“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new.”

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I’ve been enjoying how life was going for me just before this month happened, so much so that I felt suddenly cheated and deprived when everything started changing gears and heading towards an unfamiliar, uncomfortable situation. But since change is inevitable, I guess all I can do now is trust fate and do nothing else. I know I must try embracing the new things coming along instead of resisting them even though it seems harder or less advantageous for now, and simply bend.

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I am stronger than what my current rattled, shaken, and overwhelmed self is telling me right now. I cannot let this stop me from seeing the beauty that life has to offer. There’s always something to be grateful for.

Even the setting of the sun has its own melancholic charm.  It gives us this unsettling feeling that we all dread to feel — an ending to a beautiful, easy day — but it does so with such majestic elegance.. and you just know.. you see… you witness how life still generously helps you, and prepares you for the darkness that lies ahead.

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