Travel Bag: Packing My Luggage

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As the world slowly opens up and return to ‘normal’, we are finally allowed to travel again! This year, we scheduled domestic travels first and this month, we’re going to Bohol. It’s one of the places that’s well-known not only for the tourist spots such as the infamous Chocolate Hills, but also dive-spots. In recent years, more and more people have been into diving, and Bohol is definitely one of the places in the country where you can enjoy this sport.

It’s honestly my first time to go there, so I’m really looking forward to exploring the place. One of my goals is to swim with the sardines and the turtles (if I get lucky!). I’m pretty excited to share my experience on my blog once we get back, but for this specific blogpost, I’m going to share with you the stuff that I always bring with me during travels! It’s kind of like What’s In Your Bag, except it’s a luggage. Haha

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The Dusty Diary #4 🌸

And, thus, the heart will break, yet brokenly live on. – Lord Byron

As the campaign period comes to an end and the election day is over, I would like to say that it has been an honor to fight and spread the right information alongside the woman with the cleanest track record amongst all the candidates. The partial and unofficial tallies have been disheartening, but whatever the outcome will be, I know that, we, the supporters have to accept it. I’d be lying if I say that I never shed a tear because of the results because I did. I cried at random moments of the day, but who wouldn’t? I guess, I invested too much of everything during the campaign period or maybe I had my hopes up way too high.

Regardless, I know that we fought a good fight and I will never regret supporting the person that BBC called the “dream candidate.” The past couple of months have given me hope for a better tomorrow and a clearer future for those who are heavily dependent on the government’s performance, albeit it might not be the case right now based on the partial and unofficial results. To me, the light bulb of hope that I had up until the morning of May 9th turned into a lit match stick, but at least there’s still light. Who knows, right?

We were fighting for good governance, and I don’t understand how that could be wrong. It was never about the candidate, but more about her values, principles, and dreams for a better country. It just so happens that she is the sole candidate who embodied (and still does) these things — she shared our hopes and dreams for a better country. We were not fighting for her, but rather with her. Personally, one of my reasons why I fought with her against a regime known for human rights abuse, kleptocracy, and dictatorship is to avoid reopening wounds that would hurt the elderlies who have lost a loved one and have been hurt during the dark days of the Philippines. Alas, these things have been forgotten by the people. It pains me to witness this happening firsthand, but if this is what the people have decided on, then so be it. That’s democracy, after all.

Despite their victory, some of us are grieving the loss of a possible honest and transparent government. Being mocked by others for being sad and for being silent hurts not because we are embarrassed, but because we knew that the fight wasn’t entirely for us, but for those who are depending on the government’s performance (o mga nasa laylayan). People keep on saying that no one should depend on the government in order to live their life, that we all have the power to write our story to be successful, but a lot of people in our laylayan have been working their asses off day after day for the past years or even decades, but still remain to be part of the marginalized poor. Not having to understand this just show how privileged we are.

In any case, whoever is proclaimed the new leaders of this country, I would like to wish them good luck and may they both serve the Filipinos with the best of their will. And just like what I wrote in 2016, I will continue to be vigilant — I will continue to call out any injustice that may arise, because that’s my responsibility as a Filipino.

Golden Year: 28 on the 28th

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Today, I turn the same age as my birthdate which makes this year as my golden year. I never knew about this until my cousin told me a couple of days ago that that’s what it’s called and it all just clicked — this year has been really good to me so far. I know the first quarter of 2022 is only about to end, but I really felt that 2022 is going to be a year of redemption for me! I know that whatever it is that’s happening in my life right now, my successes and happiness is a result of everything I’ve worked hard for in the past years, but it’s still nice to think that the universe is conspiring enough for me to be as happy as I can be. Continue reading

Self Appreciation

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I look back at the past 27 years, especially my teenage years, and I remember thinking to myself how hard it is to live in my shoes. Remembering this, in my mind, I see my younger self in glimpses; crying myself to sleep, struggling to get out of bed every day while muttering “ayoko na,” over-eating or not eating at all, being scared or worried or anxious or paranoid, thinking that I will never be good enough, being insecure about the way I look, and constantly overthinking every damn thing. It was such a hard time.

The worst part was that no one, not even my closest friends, knew what I was going through. I’ve always kept things to myself because I was so used to hearing “nag-iinarte lang yan” whenever I speak out my feelings even when I was still a little girl, so I never really knew what having a support system felt like. People who know me since then knows how mentally and emotionally damaged I am to the point that someone even asked me, “Who hurt you?” Continue reading

I’m engaged!

To be perfectly honest, I don’t know how to write this post without ugly-crying in front of my laptop! But I would like to start by saying that our story would never be complete without the whirlwind romance of how it all started. This post is pretty much the sequel to all of my previous attempts of writing the story of us. Jeez, it still feels surreal calling him my fiancé — we’ve openly talked about marriage and our future plans, but being here in this moment, I still couldn’t believe it. It’s been days, yet I still couldn’t believe it despite having started with the wedding preparation.

Our relationship may not be as long as others, but we sure have gone through so much together. I remember that a lot of people didn’t approve of our being together, some even said that what we have won’t last long. Looking back now, it feels like it’s been a lifetime ago, yet I can still remember it clear as day. My past self would feel so good knowing that they were wrong about us and knowing that she made the right choice.

I’ve always felt like I’m constantly making wrong decision after wrong decision my whole life because that’s what everyone around me made me feel, but with you, it just instantly felt right. You pushed me to be a better person and made me realize that taking risks is not always as scary as it seems.

Here, on the first chapter of the sequel of our book, I am both ecstatic and afraid. And that’s okay, because one thing that I learned from our relationship is that the most worthwhile moments are the ones that scare the hell out of me. You’ve proven that, time and time again. Continue reading

27 Years

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I just turned 27 yesterday! If you would ask me 10 years ago what I envisioned my life to be at 27, I’m not sure what I would have told you, but I’m sure that I wouldn’t have envisioned my life to be the way it is right now. I could have told that I envision myself practicing whatever it is that I’ve learned in those four years in college. I would have never, in a million years, envisioned myself becoming a writer in any form or field. I have always loved writing and it was a dream to work as a writer, but I was never given the chance to study any course related to it as my parents thought I would never get to earn enough as one. Ten years ago seems so far away, my 17-year-old self would have been shocked to know who and what I’ve become, but I hope she’s proud of me. Continue reading

Movies I’ve Watched During the Pandemic

To be perfectly honest, I don’t watch a lot of television shows as often as I did when I was a kid because I felt like there’s nothing good to watch anymore. All the cartoons and movies that I loved as a kid — they just didn’t make stuff like that anymore. Well, at least for me.

Of course, last year was different. With the pandemic going on, the quarantines, and the lockdowns, we were all stuck at home because it’s the best way to keep us all safe from the virus. We tried all sorts of things, there was this Dalgona coffee craze that every coffee lover out there tried (which I continuously failed at and gave up all together). In the middle of it all, it got boring and it felt like we’re missing a year of our lives at home, but it’s our best chance of keeping ourselves safe. So what else is there to do? Aside from turning to my books, I also turned to watching movies, series, and anime. It helped me kill time and keep my mind off things, so why not? Continue reading

The Dusty Diary #3

Hi, hello. Here I am again, back at this corner of my website to talk and rant about the stuff that I’ve been going through in the past couple of weeks or so.

In a span of three weeks, I’ve had so many realizations about my life that it just seemed a little overwhelming and scary. The realizations started when I had to undergo an out-patient medical procedure (which I’ve gone through back in 2019), it was scheduled on March 2020, but COVID happened and lockdowns were imposed. I’ve been so bothered by the number of cases and deaths at the time that I didn’t want to go to the hospital nor risk going outside in general, so I postponed the procedure. Eight months later, the virus is still here but cities are slowly trying to open up again and we kind of discovered a way to go around it by using masks and shields and just being extra extra careful, so I decided to go on with the procedure because it’s been long overdue — I still didn’t want to go to the hospital so I opted for a clinic instead for just a little bit less possibility of catching the virus and adding up to my current condition.

A few days later, I got my result and it didn’t turn out good. I’ve cried a lot and started to look back on my life — the result scared me out of my wits. I felt devastated and the worst part is that no one seemed to be taking it seriously, so I basically didn’t have anyone to confide in who understands me. The days that followed was either, I didn’t get enough sleep or I sleep the whole day through.

What I hate the most are those moments in the wee hours of the night when I am alone with my thoughts. I was just there — lying in bed and staring up at my ceiling trying to shut my mind. Then I looked back in the past two years and realized that in my almost 27 years of existence, I’ve only started to feel alive in 2018. The past 2 and a half years, even with a lot of pressure and stress, have been the best years of my life. It scared me even more because I wanted to spend more years living that way, I wanted to be able to do things with the person I love — to break rules, to go out of my comfort zone, to go places, and to learn new things.

It’s funny because there were so many times in my teenage years where I just wished that I wasn’t born or that I wish I didn’t have to live a long life so that I can just stop being here. Now, I just wanted to live despite all the stress and problems that I may or may not go through along the way, I just want to live and see for myself. All our plans for our future, I don’t want them to be just plans — I want to actually be in that future, in that moment.

Update: So this week, I decided to go to the hospital and have them do the same procedure on me and the findings turned out to be different from the one that I go back in December. I am so relieved and grateful.

High Hopes for 2021

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I’ve said it a million times this year, you all said it, too — 2020 was not our year. There were so many challenges: The Taal volcano eruption, COVID-19, typhoons, etc. We’ve been through so much this year. It wasn’t easy, heck, it’s the hardest year for all of us. Personally, the pandemic took a toll on my mental health and it has been a struggle for me to wake up every morning and find the courage to go on and face a new day. It felt like I don’t have any goals, the days were repetitive and I feel like I’m living in a loop. It’s suffocating because I don’t get to go out because of the virus — honestly, the whole year just sucked.

But, hey, we survived, didn’t we? That counts for something. Wait, scratch that — it’s the most important thing we did in 2020, we survived and continued to push forward despite everything. With that, I hope that the coming year will be better for all of us and may the whole world be COVID-free in 2021.

Despite the year being more stressful than the previous years, I would still like to allot some time listing the things that helped me stay sane:

  • Because of the pandemic, we are all advised to stay at home and follow quarantine measures so as not to catch the virus which gave me more time for reading. That being said, I was able to read 42 books (as of writing) this year which is equivalent to 13,468 pages!
  • I was also able to take care of my skin more. Since I don’t go out a lot anymore, my skin is not exposed to invisible dirt, smoke, and other stuff that may cause breakouts. So my skin is more softer!
  • I learned how to cook a little and prepare my own meals! I learned how to make lasagna, flying saucer (which bread stuffed with lots of cheese), homemade pizza, and my own guacamole recipe!
  • I was able to save more money since I didn’t get to spend it on lunch outs and impulse-buys. I did buy a lot of books, yes, but I learned how to manage my money.
  • I read outside of my comfort zone; I started to love mystery/thrillers!
  • I got a work promotion!

It’s not a lot and everything I’ve listed are probably just little things but they are important to me and they’re the ones the helped keep my head above water.

Happy New Year, everyone! Let’s all hope for the best. ❤

Christmas 2020

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Merry Christmas, everyone! It seemed like only yesterday when I was writing my Christmas 2019 post. I can’t believe the year is coming to a close already! I feel like I haven’t accomplished anything, to be honest, because I had so many plans set for 2020, but we ended up being stuck at home. Hopefully, the coming year will give us more chance to go on adventures and explore new places!

When this post is published, I will probably be at my grandparents’ house in Tagaytay where we usually spend Christmas at. This year, we’re going for another Samgyupsal-inspired feast with a touch of the classic Filipino dish called Relyenong Bangus which we ordered from a seller from Malabon before going here. My grandfather couldn’t eat properly because he recently had to of his teeth extracted, that’s why we had to mix our Samgyupsal meal with some soft food.

Anyway, I’m sharing with you guys my Christmas 2020 outfit! Haha I took a photo before we left so that I can include it in this post. The dress I’m wearing is the one I bought from Zara in November and it’s really comfy and loose! The print is also very simple yet festive. I absolutely love it.image

I will most likely write another blog post specifically for this outfit. In the meantime, I hope you are all enjoying the holidays and your Christmas Eve feast.

What about you? How are you spending your holidays?