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.

Skincare Talk #1

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I’ve been getting a lot of questions about the skincare product(s) that I use, so I decided to make a post about it here on my blog! I started investing on skincare in 2015, and I’ve tried a lot of products since then. I have tried using a lot of different brands over the years until I found the products that works best for my skin.
If you’re a newbie, it is very important to determine what skin type you have as some products tend to cause irritation and breakouts if they are not suitable for your skin type. My skin type is a combination of oily (on the nose and chin area) and dry skin, so the products that I use are best recommended for people with the same skin type.

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Nuvali, Sta. Rosa: Solenad & Amaia Steps

We didn’t want to leave La Finca, but our time was already up. The morning of our check-out date, we still managed to wake up early to do some morning swim. The water was freezing, but nothing can really stop us from taking our final dip in the pool! We started moving and fixing our stuff at around 10:30 AM, took a bath, got dressed, and took some photos before before we left.
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Lipa, Batangas: La Finca Village Healing Community

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It’s been a year since we last got the chance to go on a real vacation, and since they have been easing the quarantine restrictions in the country, we decided to go on a mini getaway just to take a breather from work (and my stress).

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My boyfriend found this place in Lipa, Batangas which not only looked safe, but also very peaceful. The setup is a mini house with its own private pool, so you wouldn’t have to worry about having contact with other people or guests.

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What I Wore #9: First Date in Almost a Year

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It’s been almost a year since the pandemic broke out and it’s been taking a toll on my mental health since. I knew that I needed some fresh air, new environment, and just go out once in a while and that’s what we did.

In January, my boyfriend and I decided to take it one step at a time and see of ourselves what it would look like going back on mall dates and it was okay, we just had to make sure that we are distancing ourselves from other people, always keep ourselves sanitized, and being extra careful than usual.
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The Dusty Diary #2

I haven’t been myself lately.

Yup, you read that right. I haven’t been myself lately, again. Just when I thought I have finally moved past that phase. It’s been five months since I last wrote that first entry for The Dusty Diary where I talked about how my anxiety has been getting worse during the pandemic. I said that I’ve been trying out different things that I think might help me get through it. I didn’t write any updates about it, but during the past couple of months, I really felt like I’ve been doing better.

So to give you a brief run down of what I’ve been busy with during the past couple of months, I’ve been:

  • reading a lot, of course.
  • watching a lot of anime.
  • buddy-watching a series with my boyfriend.
  • active on bookstagram.
  • trying to do bullet-journaling.
  • doing some workout.

It worked for a couple of months as I’ve mentioned at the start of this post. But in the past week, I’ve been feeling a bit down for no apparent reason. It’s frustrating just how when I thought I am finally getting better, here’s the anxiety again, looming over my head like a dark cloud. 

So I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking what I could have done wrong in the past couple of days for my anxiety to resurface, and I came to the conclusion that maybe I’m just feeling a little burnt out from work. I’ve seen it coming, but I didn’t know how to deal with it because what should I do? I need to work to earn money and suffice my needs (and wants). So I ignored it, whatever it was, I just had to ignore it because I can’t file a leave every time I feel this way. I thought it will go away eventually. I was wrong.

During work days, I always wake up with dread knowing that I’d have to spend 8 hours of my day in front of my laptop, attending meetings, and dealing with my tasks. Sometimes, even a small task feels like it’s going to take me forever to finish it. I keep reminding myself that I’ve done bigger tasks and have submitted each of them way before the deadline itself, but it just doesn’t work — I feel entirely restless most of the time. So I always find myself just looking forward to the weekend, so I can have all my time to myself. 

Yet, these days, it’s either I sleep a lot or don’t get any sleep at all and it’s infuriating. There are nights where I’ve been awake until the wee hours of the morning, listening to music that might help me fall asleep while drawing spirals, the way John Green told me to. It’s funny thinking about it, if you’re not suffering from the same thoughts.

I’ve also been suffering from migraines more often these days which almost always result to my being irritated. I snap at everyone who talks to me because I feel like I need more silent moments — I just don’t want to speak with anyone. There are also times when I am in a desperate need for an escape and on most days, it’s through reading that I find my peace. I lock myself up inside my room, just so no one can come in and pull me away from my book. Sometimes, it’s through journaling as it keeps me busy, especially when I’m trying to think of ideas that will make a spread look pretty enough. But there are days when I crave a different kind of escape — I just need to get away from this dark empty space inside my head.

So, yes, here I am again; back at where I started. Again, trying to write all of my thoughts thinking that if I do, this blank space will take all of it away. If you made it up to this point, thank you for listening, even if this doesn’t have any conclusion at all.

Me? An Otaku?

I have always considered myself as an avid reader, so I read almost anything and everything. As I have mentioned in a previous post, I didn’t have a lot of friends when I was in elementary school and books have been my best friends since. I basically devoured every book that is available for me to read.

I used to read a lot of romance books (because my mom used to have a lot of Nicholas Sparks pocket books) back then. And in the middle of all that, I was also reading middle-grade fantasy books, nonfiction (e.g., National Geographic magazines, Almanac, Ripley’s Believe It or Not, etc.), comics, and horror books. It was just recently when I discovered the wonderful world of manga (and even more recently, anime).

I’ve always known that manga have a large cult following different types of fans depending on its genre (e.g., yaoi, yuri, shoujo, and others). Being a long-time comic book reader, it was a bit confusing for me when I first started reading manga because of the reversed way of reading it. I know so many people who are quite fans of reading manga. Take for example, my brother — he reads a lot of manga online and I never really cared about it before until I met my boyfriend a couple of years back who asked me to try it. Being a wide-reader, I did try it, but I never really expected to go deep into this fandom.

The quarantine has absolutely turned me into what they call an Otaku, a person with consuming interests in manga and anime. In my side of the world, reading manga or watching anime is synonymous to a geek or a nerd, which I don’t quite understand. In my perspective, I am just reading another book or watching another series/film. It’s still reading, it’s still watching. That’s it.

So what made me continue reading manga? What really cemented my being an Otaku was when I fell in love with Tokyo Ghoul‘s characters. I am far from finished with the first arc because I have yet to complete the physical copies, but I am absolutely obsessed with this manga that I even started reading other titles like One-Punch Man, Kaguya-sama: Love is War, and I recently preordered the Orange Collection Vol. 1 which I am really excited about. Hopefully it arrives this month. I also started reading Cardcaptor Sakura which has been my favorite anime when I was a kid.

Aside from reading manga, I also started watching anime. I started watching Sword Art Online, Erased (which I’ve already finished), and Your Lie in April. It’s been such a fun journey so far and I am absolutely looking forward to more manga to read and anime to watch.

How about you? Do you read manga or watch anime? Maybe you could recommend me something?

Two.

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Here’s an attempt at writing our story. I’m not really sure where or how to even begin with this post — How did we really begin?

As I have mentioned in all of my previous blog entries, I found you when I wasn’t even looking for anything or anyone for that matter. You were just there — someone I know by name and someone who I casually have small talks with whenever we ran into each other. It has always been like that between us and nothing more.

Thinking about it now, I can’t believe that just a couple of years ago, you weren’t even part of my life. It feels weird because I feel like I’ve known you forever. Looking back at those days, I can’t really tell when I started developing these feelings for you. There were just no signs — no anything. It just kind of happened.

I remember your birthday back in 2018 when I greeted you a few days early because your birthday fell on a weekend. I vividly remember you telling me to greet you again on your birthday, and I did send you a message via Messenger. The following day was a work day, and you dropped by my work station to give me some gummy worms. Casually, I asked you what it was for and you said that it was your birthday. I honestly didn’t know what to say because you really didn’t have to, so I managed a “thank you.”

I think our conversations frequented after that. It was supposed to be just friendly conversations, given that we both arrive early in the office. It was really nice having someone to talk to early in the morning. I guess, some time during those conversations, something just clicked — I couldn’t say when it all changed, but it did. I used to find myself looking at you from across the room and a lot of the time you were already staring back at me.

I knew I was in love when you started reading one of my favorite book series, Percy Jackson and the Olympians, and my stomach made a double-flip. It was the butterflies, as most people would call it. I just couldn’t stop talking about it, so you told me you were going to read it. It was just the sweetest thing.

Fast forward to 2020 and we’ve been through so much and created a lot of memories together. I know I told you this already, but being with you was the most alive I’ve felt in my 26 years of existence. You made me look at the world in a different angle — I know I still sometimes fail at doing so, but you always manage to get your point through, that everything in this world is all about perspective. It’s hard to do so sometimes when I feel like I am trapped (you know what I mean), but you always try your best to change my take on the world.

Thank you for making my life worthwhile and for bringing out the best in me. Happy anniversary, babe. I will always love you. ♡

Eureka! Moment #5: BeautyMNL

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Hey, everyone! It’s that time of the month again where I feature some of the things that I discovered in the past month that I totally loved or that made my life a bit easier. So for this month, I’ll be talking about the beauty of shopping at BeautyMNL.

Since the quarantine started, it’s been really hard to buy some of the stuff that I need, especially some of my favorite skincare products. So after a while, once couriers were allowed to operate again, I started installing applications where I can buy the products that I use and BeautyMNL is one of them. What’s great is that some of the products that they are selling are discounted!

After a month of not being able to go outside, the stocks that I have of my favorite skincare products have ran really low. Here is my latest beauty haul:

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I restocked my ultimate favorites:

  1. Innisfree Jeju Volcanic Cleansing Foam
  2. Nature Republic Aloe Vera 92% Soothing Gel

And bought some products that I’ve been seeing in the internet that looks so good:

  1. Mads Essentials Coffee Scrub
  2. RiRe All Kill Blackhead Remover Stick
  3. Skin Potions Watermelon Shocker

It’s my first time trying the last three products on my list and I am so in love with Mads Essential’s coffee scrub and RiRe’s All Kill Blackhead Remover Stick. The coffee scrub smells so good, like a combination of coffee and chocolate! The All-Kill Blackhead Remover Stick, on the other hand, is really effective. I’ve been using it for over three weeks now, and my blackheads are almost non-visible. As for the Watermelon Shocker, I personally think it’s pricey for its size. It smells really good, though.

Anyway, BeautyMNL offers a lot of other items, too. Like vitamins, organic food, etc. If you’re planning on purchasing from BeautyMNL any time soon, please be reminded that most of their products easily run out of stocks as a lot of people are buying from them, too. You can add the products on in your wishlist and wait for a notification that it has been restocked and make sure to check your notification regularly!

Are you familiar with the products that I’ve mentioned? How did it go for you? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.