Why Today is a Beautiful Day

Did you know that today is a beautiful sunny day for the whole universe? The new Ms. Universe has been crowned. All winners esp. the top 3 beauties are all beautiful and smart. It’s no wonder they’re there in the competition and made the day even lovelier. Congrats to Haiti, Colombia and France! France looks elegant, charming and strikingly beautiful! This is the good news and now for the bad news…

For some Filipinos, it is saddening that Ms. Philippines was bashed. Not just for her answer but she’s been bashed previously, before the competition proper. While it is ideal that one must be really fluent and trained well for a prestigious pageant like this one, one must not be quick to judge.

Many people judged her due to her English speaking skills, when in fact she can also use an interpreter if she wants to. I am not a grammar nazi, linguist or a language expert. I also stutter at times and some folks don’t even manage to get a job in a call center or language centers. Who are we to judge? We can comment, yes, but let’s not be rude. Some candidates don’t even speak English but were able to convey their message loud and clear.

Although her answer during the Top 6 Q&A could be better, it’s still an honor for the Philippines to be included in the Top 6 list. We just have to be grateful for that considering that it is still a hard feat to earn the coveted spot.

Okay, enough of the beauty queen news. Today is a beautiful day in the universe because it just is. A day is lived where we are able to breathe and enjoy the moment that is fleeting. Tomorrow is another day but today is what we have now. Today is my day, your day and our day called present. Let’s enjoy today before it finally ends. 🙂

Dare to Do Something

Sometimes, if not many times, I just want to dissolve. I felt like I don’t know anything and I’m not doing something good. Okay, enough of this nonsense drama. I just said these sentences to emphasize that it is normal to feel this way, at least one point in our lives. Every year, I have a self-ritual. It is not actually a ritual but it is something that I want to do: learn a new thing or dare to do something I haven’t done. It must be something that I think I cannot do, something that intimidates me. What is that one thing for you? For me, it is cooking. I attended a cooking class and met wonderful people. They are so wonderful that even if I don’t know anything about cooking, they happily shared what they know. The teachers are nice and there’s no excuse that I couldn’t learn. So, I opened myself to learning and I listened a lot. Of course, I dared to cook. My insides felt fried but I kept going until I have cooked some edible meals. There’s something cool about knowing that we can feed ourselves. Even if I am not a cook, I can feed myself. To be honest, I don’t like the taste of my cooking but at least, I have felt that for once in my life, I did something right. And that is, cooking my own meal. Did you dare to do something you haven’t done? Just do it. Give it a try. You don’t know what you’re capable of if you don’t try. What have you got to lose? Whether you win or lose, you still gain experience. Dare to start. Dare to fail. Dare to be great. 😀

Life Lessons Learned From A Hiatus

Idleness is the root of all evil. The said adage does not ring any truth to me, at least in my opinion. I’ve been idle for almost a year and I am excited for my one year idle anniversary come January 2015. I never asked for this to happen and didn’t even want this to happen especially if it’s unplanned. But the universe has its own uncanny way of bringing surprises that I am unsure and unaware of. I don’t know how to put all these into words or how would I call my situation. So let me call it a happy hiatus. I am not an authority to give tips but I would like you to have a peek into my own world which is a sort of a hullabaloo-meets-oasis kind of thing.

I am branding this year as my lucky year because it is a year like no other. Each year is unique but this one is very distinctive. Losing a lot when situations have gone haywire on the first month of the year is something most folks consider bad luck. Come to think of it, people may brand it as bad luck but it is just our own thoughts making the situations worse as they seem. At first I thought I’ve lost it all — job, money, chances, people, opportunities, you name it! All I can think of is how bad the situation was and a part of my life is over. And then I tried to shift my thinking on a different level. If something bad happens, something good will happen, too. That was a bit excruciating for me because I am not a Pollyanna.

“When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.” – Hellen Keller

I thought being jobless for a year would make me a useless wimp. Ironic as it seems, I was completely busy. I’ve been touring on my own, hopping from one country to the next either by plane, bus or boat. It was fun meeting new people, all different and beautiful in their own ways. I was like an exchange student and a foster child at some point! Being a lonesome traveler is liberating for me. I do travel on my own but it is my first time to travel for months. Crossing the borders with the other solo travelers and setting our foot in between two borders at the same time is one of my definitions of the word awesome, at least before kicking the bucket.

Finally, my nomad dream came true this year. When you travel alone, you don’t know what to expect. You get to live in the moment and savor every second of it. Sure, sometimes worry sets in and then sadness fills my heart but looking forward to the wonderful adventures take all those sentiments away. Every single day of my backpacking journey is exciting as I do not know what to expect. It is like today I am wandering in this beautiful city then tonight I will sleep in the bus and wake up in another city!

In this happy period, I was also able to write some posts, letters and do the things I always dreamed of doing but never got the chance. I did some moonlighting and yes, it sustained me for awhile to go on with my journey. Along the way, I also met likeminded people who want to share their lives by giving back a portion of themselves. I engaged in helping the less fortunate together with these wonderful people that I’ve met. I also visited old friends whom I haven’t seen for a long time and gave my time to them especially to the ones who need it the most. My life is not about me at all. It’s about them. It is about my loved ones and other people. I am just a dot in the universe also connecting to other dots. By connecting to them, my life is enriched and I feel happy and contented. We don’t need much in life, we just need one another to get through each day. Money can surely buy some happiness but it cannot buy fulfillment.

To begin with, I am not rich and by mere definition, I am poor. I just happened to sustain myself for a year (without working) because of some little preparation. My work as a freelancer does not guarantee a fixed salary every month. It only lasted for three months. So, for the rest of the months, I lived my life as a nomad. What I do is I save every penny that I have years back. Is it impossible? No. If we are living from paycheck to paycheck, we can live below our means and spend money on necessary things only. No matter how little money we have, if we use it wisely and feel grateful for what we have, everything will work out fine. I thought at first, I wouldn’t make it and then December came. Finally, I am closing the year with an unexpected grin on my face. I never believed in myself as much as I believed in myself now.

“And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.” ― Sylvia Plath

As silly as it may seem, I trusted myself that I’ll get through it. That’s the only option so I am forced to make it happen. While it is true that having a backup plan in life is one of the best things to do, it also makes sense to focus on your main plan. Otherwise, you would just end up doing plan B and may have some regrets later on. At that time, I just jumped right on, not looking back. I also quit over thinking because it kills the mood and makes the vibrations low. I have learned to put myself on a pedestal and love myself more.

Being the spontaneous being that I am, I always go with my gut feel. There are countless times that I have ignored my gut and I was left crestfallen. I blew it and I constantly blamed myself why the hell I am put in this kind of situation. It is when our hearts, minds and intuitions are aligned that magical experiences unfold. It depends on what works for you, if your mind works better then use it more than your heart. It all boils down to knowing ourselves and what works for us. No inhibitions, no pretensions, no whatsoever.

Back then, I am unsure of myself and I was scared of the unknown. I am not brave but I just know that I have to do it. Otherwise, none of all these wonderful things could have happened. Just live life on your terms and let go of the things you cannot control. Even if we are not armed with a plan, we just do it and take a leap of faith and watch what happens.

So what about failure, does it matter? Failure is subjective and it’s up to us how we perceive our failures. Sure it hurts when we fail at something we really want and things don’t go as planned, but when we take failure as an opportunity to learn, that’s the first step to making things happen. We can be right, we can be wrong and we can be both and still fail but as long as we still try and get up every after fall, we will still get to our destination.

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill

If you think that you’re living in a rut and have lost hope, please give another chance to yourself. There is always a glimpse of hope, a light in every dark corner and a chance to shine. May you always remember that you are a masterpiece and your story goes on. To all jobless sibs and wanderers, it is not yet the end of the world. Remember, the rest of our story is still unwritten. 🙂

When Too Much Work Kills

I feel for this talented lady because her death is not even justified. I feel for her because I understand the pressure she have undergone. For some who do not know, it is a tough job being a writer not to mention the unrealistic deadlines we encounter. I have experienced working for nine to twelve hours straight, break time not included. I felt like a haggard and just like Mita, I felt I have no life. My friends also experienced the same thing for they have worked 24 hours straight. All the more to her, for working 30 hours and for keeping up with the unfeasible timelines.  When do we draw the line and say that enough is enough?!

Her untimely demise is a loss to her company – more so, to her family. We cannot bring back her life. And, even if the employer gives her family a big sum of money, Mita will never be back on earth. My only hope for the future is that all the work martyrs will be lessened and more people would value their health more than their jobs. A job lost can be recovered by having a new job but a life  lost can never ever be recovered. If your boss fires you just because you cannot keep your pace with him and tells you that you are an ineffective worker, consider it a blessing in disguise. Your life is valuable compared to that sick asshole. If you ain’t got a life, now is the chance. Live well. Cheers!

See Mita Diran collapsed and died.

Breakup on Christmas Day

How splendid it was to have a breakup on Christmas Day! How great and surreal the feeling was! That’s how I am feeling right now on a sarcastic level to the nth power. Nothing beats the nostalgic feeling of being away from your family and longing for them while your special someone is so eager to end forever with you. Okay, I understand that to begin with there was no forever. Maybe it was just a course of hallucination in my head. A hopeless, romantic moron that I am who built a perfect world in my own world. Yeah, pathetic is the perfect word to describe me — a foolish, vulnerable pathetic.

With his firm voice, he said that he cannot see forever with me and that I do not listen to him that much. I uttered the word “OK” to emphasize that I understood even though he’s hard to fathom compared to a normal human being. I think we just have a different language of love so we didn’t understood each other. Different wavelengths, different views, different opinions, different everything. Or maybe, it is a form of misunderstanding or miscommunication between us. I understand that boys communicate to each other by conveying information and girls communicate to bond. With us, communication is dead and through his own words, very hard and frustrating. So, when he said that he does not want to work things out, “OK” was all I have to say. Though we explained our sides and sentiments to each other, for him it was better to put an end to what we have started — to which I said I respected his decision.

One week to go and 2013 will bid goodbye. I am with the leaves falling from the trees. I am also with the raindrops falling from the sky and for everything that just comes and goes away naturally. No matter how melancholic this Christmas is, I am happy that for once in my life, I have become vulnerable again. True love must be free and not to be coerced or forced. If it wants to go, let it go. I am hurt and so is he. We are all humans wanting to have freedom within our range. I know I have given him the love and the freedom that he so much wanted. A heartbreak for me yet a wonderful Christmas gift for him.

No regrets, no ill feelings, no hangovers. Just a fresh new start for the coming year. I hope he feels the same way, too.

Learning to Cross the River

This is me crossing the raging waters in Mt. Sicapoo for the very first time.  I am a newbie that time and climbing a mountain with a 9/9 difficulty rate is indeed a miracle for me. I am humbled by the whole experience, knowing that it is not an easy feat. Of all the mountains I have climbed to date, Mt. Sicapoo is the most slippery. I do not have the confidence and strength to pursue the climb. The weakling in me feels so strong and I felt like giving up. But then I gave it a shot and I have learned to relax when faced with a difficult situation. The rest after this adventure is history.

Image

If we compare climbing a steep mountain to life, we would notice that getting to the top (destination/summit) is difficult especially the journey (river crossings, trails, etc.). Life is never easy but if we hold on, focus, strive harder and believe that we could surpass the challenges thrown upon us, we really could do it and we would get what we wanted. It is not just crossing the river that I have learned but also crossing the different paths the world is offering to us. While the journey is always hard, getting to the destination makes the experience worthwhile.

* Daily Prompt: Learning Style

The Wind

My eyes cannot see

The breeze

But its touch

I can feel

Its blow

I can hear

And my nose can smell

The vibe it brings

But I still cannot

Hold or grasp it

It vanishes

And escapes

Right through me.

Daily Prompt: Bloggers, Unplugged