Monday, April 7, 2014

A Cruel World

"I don't want to mistake kindness for affection. It caused a few handful of heartaches in this world."

via tumblr
I've known this for as long as the author of that quote posted it. I've lived by it and it did me good. It was a binary kind of lifestyle. Just 1 and 0. Yes and No. Like and dislike. Good and bad. Black and white. No gray areas. No other midtones. None. When you start giving color to everything, it gets complicated.

And that is exactly what I did.

Falling in like with someone should have made me feel inspired. Should make the eight-hour drag of office work seem like a minute. I should have been very enthusiastic when waking up in the morning. There were many things I should have been but I wasn't. I wasn't supposed to feel this way. This teenage-like internal squealing when I see him. Or that unnecessary nervousness that seem to prelude an ominous event. Or that strange heart palpitations that did not come from caffeine. And perhaps, the worst was drinking coffee and finding something to blame that erratic rhythm. 

There was a time I sat beside him when I felt the tips of my fingers being dipped in liquefied ice even when the window was opened. It was the same time when exchanging unpleasantries became more of a habit than an occasional unwinder. But he was kind - often talks to me when I sit beside him. He lets me peek a snippet of his life once in a while and I thought it was endearing.

But not anymore when he mentioned his girl.

"Let us offer a moment of silence for our friendzoned brother." via tumblr

And just one of the many reasons why the world is cruel is that we often mistake kindness for love.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Some Theories Explaining Why We Usually Fall for those who were Taken Already (And its Side Effects)

I finally had the time to poke around this blog...again! I'm still counting my blessings and lost count of it actually. So, time for a new one! I recently found this question bugging me one cold morning in a steamy shower with myself. I thought about my conquests - sounds weird considering I'm a girl - throughout the years and I found out that most of those I fell in like with were actually taken men. There's guy named tooot who studies at tooot. Then this egoistic and airy guy here at the office with the name of tooooot who just can't shut up at how handsome he is. Well, some men are like that.

Via tumblr.
Yeah, yeah. I know. Life is hard. Life gives us lemons and I just can't help but ask, WHY?! What did I ever do wrong to receive such fate? However, for about 20 years of living in this shithole called world, I realized I might have theorized some pointers to finally answer that ego-killing, definitely grueling question. And some of its side effects. No, these are all based on my irrelevant opinion. First theory: If there is one thing I noticed in most couples,

1. People are bound to be more radiant when they find the love of their lives.

Via rebloggy
Yeah. It's all rainbows and unicorns and dogs and bitches all the time. Nope. Not even an ounce of bitterness here. I know you secretly want to be her,

2. But maybe not as *cough*display.

Via rebloggy
Next theory according to my brilliant mind,

3. We are secretly jealous of his 'catch.'

Via tumblr
We tend to be attracted to those claimed already, knowing that they are being valued by someone. But no, you just had to be jealous. Jealous of that girl who saw something in this seemingly good-for-nothing man. The worst case scenario here would be if the man in question is actually a very close friend of yours. And he wants NO. 

No matter how nice she may be, or how angelic her face may seem, you just know you despise her deeply. I do believe what they say that a man makes other women be jealous of his girlfriend. And boy, seriously, you're doing it right. I'm so green with envy right now. And of course, you wanted to hold a grudge against him. You wanted to make him feel how stupid and far sighted he is to fail to see you. You wanted to

3. Bawl your eyes out. But you can't. You just can't.

Via tumblr
You have no right. It does not matter if you were always there for him.Throughout his drunken states, bearing his annoying drama regarding this girl he courts, and even becoming a martyr - standing tall and proud while you watch him being taken by another girl

4. - pretending you are very happy for him.

Via i.imgur
I totally get your make-face behind. I feel you. However, you still are entitled to some rights in choosing his girl. It doesn't have to be that two-faced cow.

4. And thus, this is your current state.

Via tumblr
Although, it's just inside your head. A place where he would never bother peeking through. And that is melancholic as forgetting your umbrella on a rainy day with your Sunday dress. For the next theory, when he finally notices your change of states - from being the bundle of joy everytime you walk home together to being the saddest heap of junk - and prophetically say, 'there's something wrong with you',

5. You just wanna tell him

Via gifrific
Yeah, congratulations on solving the most complex puzzle ever. Kthnxbye. I wanna be alone. Finally, you just really want to be with him but at the same time, some other bitch woman wanted him, too. It's just a matter of choice for him and so...

6. She ruined everything.

Via tumblr
As in, completely. But you cannot do that, so the only choices for you are to

7. Do nothing and just be a biatch at everything in life - just not to those two or

Via wordpress

8. Cry every night and be a biatch at everything in life. The pain you're suffering is so big it did not fit the post frame.


But remember, don't get too caught up with him. There will always be someone for you at the right time and at the right place. Besides, there's your family there to love you.

 Besides, who said we need a man to make it happen?

Via tumblr

Okay, I do.
Via tumblr

Monday, March 3, 2014

Counting My Blessings # 4

          One of the things I always look forward to during Wednesday is the fact that it is the middle of the week. Meaning just two more days of torture and finally a two-day break. Another thing, it is the day when I and my friends go to Makati Feast Amorsolo. I kind of regretted not going waay before. But I am happy I'm with my two best friends all the time. So, we met at McDo Ayala and grabbed something to eat. That time, I was planning on FINALLY eating BigMac (I've seriously yearned for this meal since I saw my friend Bryan eating it and NOT FINISHING THE WHOLE THING. That rich guy. :( And it is what he always orders. ) because I got a McDO discount of BigMac for only 95pesos. And it's a meal already. But then I got guilty because Sheena only ate an apple and whole grain biscuit that time. She said it was for her dress for Harvest of Winners. And then I thought, I also had to do that. So I ate 3/4 of the BigMac and barely enjoying it (because it wasn't that good while knowing it stores loads of fats in my body every time I chew) and gave the remaining 1/4 to Sheena.

          During the Feast, we were a bit late because Bro. Jan already started speaking. We also missed the usual opening song and prayer before the speech proper. Anyways, the Feast talked about the 8 areas of our lives in which God wants us to be wealthy. There were eight of them: Faith, fire, family, friends, faculties, fun and finance. But the top four which had the impact to me the most were: Faith, Family, Friends and Fitness. God wants us to be rich in our faith in Him so that when persecutors are suing us, we are well-equipped with the right armor and weapon to protect ourselves. It had an impact on me because it was exactly what happened to me. When I accepted Jesus in my life and totally surrendered to Him, I strengthened my faith in Him. And when other people from other religions criticize my religion, I just elegantly lift my thick left eyebrow in my mind and take note of what they were saying. Unlike before, I was really ready to change into their religion. God wants us to be rich in our family life. Bro. Jan just said the line with perfect timing to some of my pondering (warning: not verbatim): "Kung nagka-emergency kayo sa pamilya niyo, go. Unahin mo sila. Kanina may nagpaalam sa akin ng, 'Bro. Jan, pasensya na hindi muna ako makakapunta sa Feast kasi nagkasakit anak ko,' and ang sabi ko, 'Go. Mas importante 'yan." It's not that we are prioritizing first our family over Jesus because when we accept Jesus, we are already putting Him first in our lives. Nothing can ever dethrone Him there. And I was really inspired to be a family girl. To spend time with them more often especially when the drag and drone of work/school gets into our skin. Another thing, God wants us to be rich in our friends. First, be a friend to others. Make sure you can be a friend to anyone before making friends. And then, it's not that we are being judgmental but WE SHOULD CHOOSE OUR FRIENDS. If our friends prevents us from being fruitful, then they're not good. You may choose to help them change their way of life or simply stop associating with them. But choose friends who help you grow. Who will inspire a change for your own betterment. These should be our friends. And then Sheena said, 'Tama nga. Hindi porke't naaawa ka sa tao o mukha siyang kawawa, e, kakaibiganin mo na lang.' and this really got me thinking. Lastly, God also wants us to be rich in our physical fitness. That's the time I really decided on my path to physical healing. I put it in my Novena booklet so that I could pray for it and finally put it into action.

          During the offering again, I put in my tithe but only the amount my heart is willing. I also wrote in my prayers at the back of the envelope to at least experience Lasallian Excellence Awards night. With the leaflet, there was a check signed by God from the Bank of Providence. The catch in there is this: Ask God - put in the exact amount that you wanted to get and when do you want to get it. It was hard for me because Bro. Jan said, if you want 10 Million, then put it in there. God does not run out of wealth. He also shared that those who wrote in there had received what they asked. Wow. Instant millionare. Lol. So, I thought hard. At first I wanted to wrote 1 Million and I would receive it on my birthday this year. But it got me thinking on what would I do with 1 Million. When I couldn't find any rationale since I was thinking only of myself, I put in a smaller amount and prayed for it. I prayed for what I would do with that amount and there. I still have yet to receive it. Though I got kind of sad since I was thinking only of myself. I hope there would be another chance for it.

          The Feast, as always ended with a blast. We all went home together and parted ways at Buendia. When I got home, I opened my FB in iPad to check on some notifications when a particular news hit me: My activity was a finalist for HOW. Oh my. And it was really, really shocking for me because I just asked God that I wanted to at least attend one LEA night. And wow. I was heard. I really jumped all over the house in joy and I even told my story to my mom and she was delighted. Blessed indeed.

Counting My Blessings # 3

          I'm blessed once more by our weekly bible study with Sherwin. And really, God is also like BDO. He find ways. The week I experienced this (Feb 25), he had to go to Surigao for some training shizz with our clients. Since our bible study is always Thursdays, 6-7pm, we had to adjust the bible study on the said date, Tuesday. I was really hoping for a longer bible study because an hour is so not enough to tackle the module he prepares plus our sharing part.

          As part of my spiritual healing, I am very thirsty for any information about Jesus. I wanted to know him more and more and of course to have a better understanding of His plans for me. And I believe I am getting what I need through this bible study, plus the prayer meeting done by Makati Feast Amorsolo every Wednesday. Just last week, I heard some of the teachings of ADD and considering I have a renewed armor of faith and knowledge about the teachings in the Bible, I was kind of unsettled by what I heard. As advised by Sherwin, we can take note of what the teachings says and share it during the Bible study. The afternoon before this bible study, I was hesitant about telling it to him for some reasons I could not really comprehend. But suddenly, I just blurted it out to him, in the middle of a meeting, no less, and I realized I've done the right thing. He also needed to prepare for this. Silly me.

         During the bible study, I was able to share the blessings I have received and it was an exhilarating experience for me to be able to find Jesus in my life. During this time as well, I was able to clarify my questions regarding the bible, particular on the Gospels. And the fact that I am able to hear other's opinions regarding it makes it even more meaningful. Some of the things that remind me to be thankful to the Lord.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Counting My Blessings # 2

          Just last week, the day after my first visit to Feast Amorsolo, I was already blessed. I couldn't let the incident pass and I even wrote it on my phone's memo pad to keep the memory alive. And simply because I have bad memory. So, here is my story.

          Just last week, Thursday I think, I had money crisis. I had 250 PhP in my wallet, with some side extra money that I saved from the previous weeks. My van fee was 70 pesos so I paid 120 pesos to the dispatcher and I got a 50 peso change. The 20 pesos was from the extra stash. Well, it's not really crisis if I just stayed hungry for breakfast and pig out during lunch. But I was really hungry so I bought food from mini stop. My bill was around 100+ since I have only 150 pesos left, I used the last 100 pesos from my stash, because the rest were just 20 peso bills. It was my last large bill because I gave the other 100 pesos to Feast Amorsolo during the offering. And then I prayed to God saying, 'Lord, mukhang kulang na pera ko. Sana hindi ako maka-gastos ng bongga sa lunch.' Well, the food being served here in Jolly Jeep of Ate Tina are very tasty and cheap. I could get adobo and rice for just 55 pesos or so. The vegetable serving is just 20 pesos, sometimes 15 pesos, depending on the vegetable. Lunch time came and the head HR reminded me that I would accompany them for an ocular visit of the venue for a marketing event. And the whole lunch thing was out of my mind. I was like, okay, we'd go and then I'll just have late lunch later. I was with my supervisor, too.

          After the ocular, the three of us entered Greenbelt mall and free lunch dawned on me. I was like, lucky day! We had sotanghon soup and grilled bangus at Reyes Barbeque. After eating, the boss treated us frosty from Wendy's. So, I was a totally happy kid that time. When I settled myself in the PUV going home, I took my wallet to pay the fare. Then, I saw 150 pesos in my wallet. I was confused because I didn't know where I got this money. Then, it dawned on me: God answered my prayer. I was repeating Praise the Lord in my head all the way and it took me a while to overcome the feeling of blessedness. I only consumed the 100 pesos and the remaining 50 pesos was the only bill left for me. During the Feast Amorsolo, I learned about tithing - giving 10% of my weekly allowance for the lord. After computation, my tithing money weekly is 150 pesos and thus, the 50 pesos remaining was the one I gave to the Holy Mass last Sunday.

Counting My Blessings # 1

       Memory is never to be trusted because it can be tampered with, it can be compromised and it's definitely not good for storing long-term thoughts. The truth about those 'forgotten' thoughts is that they're like those romantic bottled messages scattered and whisked away by the waves of the ocean. When we remember them, it's akin to those bottled messages resurfacing and being found by some random and so very hot we have this illusion of being soulmates dude. But of course, the content of this paragraph is based solely on the author's irrelevant and very poor opinion of her memory, thus this should not be accepted as a postulate but as a theory it may do

          So, the rationale behind this post is basically the post's title: counting my blessings. As I go on with my one-way spiritual journey, of course I don't intend to go back, hence the adjective one-way, else I'm just fooling myself. If there is one thing that resonates from the time I was taking up CLVE classes (Christian Living and Values Education, if my memory doesn't want to embarrass me, I got the acronym correct), leading a Christian life would be hard because Satan would have to focus its influence on you more to bend your path. But of course, this will not happen if we believe that Jesus is always looking out for us. In my personal experience, I heard the Word many times before. I was inspired to the point of crying and swearing that from now on I will live a Christian life. But what a big lie that was. After about 2 weeks, I went back to my old ways and waahlaah~ back to zero. But now, it's different.

          I remembered the worst test of faith I had during the latter days of January wherein I semi-clashed with the beliefs/teachings of another person belonging to another religion. I was totally helpless because I could not counter the things the person said about my religion. The words were so intense that I was almost inclined to be part of the person's religion, but I was held back. Something was holding me back that time, because I was partly reluctant. I mean, me - I pride myself on the strong foundation of my principles and yet I could be swayed by this person, who I barely knew, who says that all those things I believed in since before was utter crap. Wait, wait, wait. That is not the way to go. Even if I didn't attend the mass religiously and I wasn't very enthusiastic on proclaiming the Lord, I couldn't just let go whatever was my leverage on my supposed faith. So I sought help from my CLVE teacher before and I was washed with relief that I had been right to stay strong. Thus, the start of my reformation.

          After being reconnected with my CLVE professor, God gave me another person (and finally, a group!) who I can depend on in times of religion conflict. Though Sherwin is a Born Again and I'm a Catholic, the way he preaches is simply the same. Although we made clear to each other that we have different religious beliefs coming from different religions, I knew I could trust him in the matters of the Bible. So every week, I attend two bible studies - Feast Amorsolo and this weekly bible study with him. I remembered my first bible study with this guy Sher, it was an emotional roller coaster for me. Simply because I'm a total drama queen and well it was hard for me to adapt to that person (the one with different beliefs) and the obvious religious attacks. There wasn't much to talk about because it was the first bible study he conducted and because he just wanted to relay the message that Love God above all and love others as you love yourself. During the second bible study, I semi-learned about my purpose in life, as I have posted 2 posts ago. 

          However, Feast Amorsolo is what really hit me for real. I remembered Ms. Rissa Singson-Kawpeng's spiritual realization: Saan ako kakapit kung pati ang lupang kinatatayuan ko nagugunaw din? Well, it was not verbatim but that's the idea. And I was like, Oh my wow. Lord is really amazing and like totally, as if I couldn't stop fangirling about Dante from Devil May Cry. But of course, I cannot fangirl the Lord because He's already my brother and best friend. I was hit by that truth and as usual, yours truly became another emotional mess. But that is to say, Feast Amorsolo really strengthened what I have been cultivating since February 6 (first bible study). It just revealed to me that the Force which kept me strong during my test of faith, the Force that turned be 180 degrees back to Him is none other than Jesus. Actually at first, I thought I would yo-yo back the way I was before after the first bible study. But I learned that if you really surrendered - totally completely to God, He would be there to support you. He would not forsake you. And this is my testament.

          So, the point of this post is to help me remind myself of God's blessings to me everyday. Honestly, He's been providing me in His own amazing ways. And everytime the realization would hit me, I could only say, 'Bro, you're so amazing.'

A-musings of Trivialities Answered

A while back, I asked myself on how to be mature

Is it to develop proper manners? Is it to be able to act cool and collected? Is it to change your point of views in a broader sense?

These are some of the questions I posed on myself. They didn't actually made sense to me at all until such time I just decided that maturity is a resignation of some sort. Though naturally, others will call it acceptance, or coming to terms with responsibility. But I recently saw a photo shared on ShareCatholic's FB page which basically answers my questions.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

On the Road to Spiritual Recovery

          A warning: This is not some scholarly post wherein I write my sentences as carefully as I would tiptoe for food at night. I'd like to release these flurry of thoughts that are being suppressed in my head lest it explodes.

God is amazing.

          As in I can seriously tell that now, with all certainty. Though in the past, I said it word for word and not really internalizing deeply the gravity of that statement. After the second Bible Study session, I have learned my purpose in life.

What is my (your) purpose in life?

          It is often too intimidating a question. I wrote intimidating not because it is difficult to answer but rather it is a question to ponder about in which the answer is not readily available, hence anxiety ensues. During that bible study, I was at a loss for words. I wanted to answer the question immediately and knowing me, I'd answer - graduate, find a decent job, help out my family and relatives and hopefully migrate to US. But I felt, that time it was not the right answer to give. So, I kept quiet and I decided to say that, 'No, I don't know the answer.' But I learned, like really learned my purpose in life is just three major things:

1. Connect to God.
2. Connect to others.
3. Connect others to God.

          While I was hearing that, I immediately thought of the transitive property of equality wherein, if a = b and b = c therefore a = c. But that's just beside the point. At first, I could not discern the meaning of those three and how could I apply it to my life. I was thinking, connecting to God means removing my bad habits and regularly going to mass. It would also mean I have to talk to Him at least every night and read the Bible. I cringe slightly at that kind of lifestyle. I mean, I am a lover of books but I don't like to read the Bible. I stay away - thinking that the words cannot be understood and the context would be too hard to decipher. I usually just do the sign of the cross before sleeping and proceeding on reading fanfictions at night. Connecting others mean reconciliation with my enemies/ex-friends. And there I really was frightened. I kept telling myself I was not ready to forgive them, or reconcile with them for that matter. I felt the buried bitterness - I mean man, I just understood how deep something was if it was buried - resurface and I just couldn't let it all go in one swoop. I mean, I take delight in talking about them with my friends and to think of giving it up, wow it was as hard as deciding which to eat first: A box of Ferrero Rocher or the huge bar Cadbury chocolate. And if those two already made me cringe at the near impossibility, the third one just made me sigh in defeat. I told myself, oh God I couldn't possibly do that. Or more accurately, oh God, I don't know how to do that. In short, I was hard for me to decipher that - especially if it was really my purpose in life. I was so lost in defeat that I just decided to hear out the facilitator regarding other matter.

          It wasn't until he said the very words - Commit your work to the Lord and your plans will be established (Proverbs 16:3). I was enlightened at that. 'Oo nga noh? I don't have to do everything alone. Ayan si God, o, hinihintay lang ako.' I suddenly became lively at that. And somehow, those three things did  not seem that impossible until five minutes ago. The facilitator also told us to pray for ourselves. To help us remove the Pride that has rooted itself in our hearts. Actually, I was reading the bible last night and I came across this verse in the Gospel of Mark which says, 'and Jesus said, whatever comes into the person from the outside will not make him unclean. If he ate bad food, it will just be digested and expelled soon after. But what makes a person unclean is what comes out from within him. Because it is from within his human heart, that evil thoughts come - greed, stealing, murder etc. All these things make him unclean.' So after the bible study, I kept in mind those three things and decided to just completely surrender to Him. I told God bahala ka na sa buhay ko. Let your will be done. Please remove the pride from my heart and help me cultivate a humble heart. Afterwards, these series of events happened to me:

1. Talking to God anytime, anywhere
2. Reading the bible
3. Not opposed to the thought of the Holy Mass
4. Stronger Faith
5. Keep temptations at bay (and not succumbing)

          I was really amazed at how I turned out to be. I am totally guilty of mocking and scorning those people before who proclaim the Word of God and I really think, 'ang corny naman niyan. I don't need to do that to be connected to God. Blah blah blah.' But I realized, it was not right. They were simply very blessed and they are sharing their experiences. The things I couldn't do before - declining temptations, reading the bible, talking to God - are now easily done as if it was a part of my routine. It's amazing to think that all it takes is real complete surrender to Him. Then the teachings of my high school CLVE teacher were coming back to me in bits and pieces and whatever I am applying in my life now, he had said before. I was just too lost in my own self-righteousness and pride to think, this is what it really means to surrender completely. Even the thought of reverting back to my old habits seemed like a far-fetch thought now. I feel at peace within myself. Although I can't say I'm well-versed in the Bible already, I am working my way into it. In retrospect, I was able to accomplish the two things that define my purpose in life.

What about the last one?

          Just this Monday night, I was thinking about how to connect others to God. As I've said, those three things didn't seem impossible, considering I was able to accomplish the two. Then we three kids were asked to fold the pile of clothes on the sofa. After which, our conversation drifted to the movie Prometheus. Having learned about the diabolical meaning of it after reading some reviews, I was surprised at how my brother was praising the concept of the movie. I knew it was brilliant and I praised the movie in the past but it seemed so wrong at that time. And then he proceeded on telling me he does not care about the religious references and other religion-related concepts that could sour the movie. And I was aghast. To cut the story short, I was able to share to my brothers how that movie was a mock-allusion of The Creation and even pointed out obvious references to the events. And I felt a surge of relief at that time, for I was able to share to them a snippet of my spiritual 180 degree turn and I hope that they, too, will be inspired. It was really amazing what Faith can make us do. Good deeds are products of one's Faith to the Lord. Because when you surrender you life to Him, your life's purpose will always root back for Him. Whatever you do, think and say, it is all for Him. Did God teach us to do bad things for Him? No, definitely we'll do good deeds. And that is saying something. Because God's sole commandment is to love Him and love others as we love ourselves - as God loves us.

          So, there. God is truly amazing. And He gives us the things we pray for in good time. And I've never been this glad to return to Him. It was like the story of the Mustard seed. A farmer was sowing the seeds. Some went on the dry ground, some went on the good soil. Some others went to the thorny bushes and some were taken by the raven swooping by. At first, I was like the mustard seeds that were on the dry ground. There was no soil for them to plant their roots, and in turn they die. Though I hear and rejoice upon hearing the Word of God, I don't last long. I revert back to my previous self. But I am hoping to be the mustard seed being regrown in the good soil.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Letting Off Steam

          Have you ever met someone so inconsistent with his words and actions it makes your head spin faster than a whirlpool? He tells you to be transparent with him - to tell him what you exactly feel about him. To be honest to him. He won't be angry. Yes, I tried being frank. And look what happens: He did not get angry - he just left. He's not preaching what he says. I've met these kinds of people disguised as my "short-term friends"- too many of them back in high school. But as Lang Leav said, 
"The things that seem to matter less, are the ones we put on show."
         It's not one of my best poems and I'm not even infinitesimally proud of it, but it exactly reflects what I feel about these hot and cold people - the Ciel way. Rough, rude, blunt, unrefined and totally not complete without a minor string of swear words. I'm so sorry I'm just talented in the field of saying swear words.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Brewing Trouble

Sometimes I Forget that I'm still a Kid

          Working at a company for an internship has its perks. I get to meet new people and hopefully find new friends. I find the environment even more refreshing than the constant drag and pull of time back in DLSU. What can I say? I've spent my entire life in those four walls of the room. Sometimes, there are five walls when I felt that the worker who was laying out the cement miscounted the corners he was happily making. And that's my problem. At least I am free to act like me. Who is me?

          Me who runs along the corridors and through all the maze made by those insensitive people who seemingly care about nothing but their sad sob story to be told - not minding they were actually very much blocking the runway, excuse my awesome self. Me who sings my lungs (and larynx) out with Through the Fire (Chaka Khan's version, puhlease) and other birit-worthy songs at the fire exit. Me who would emote to myself on a ledge while looking down the once-football-field-turned-to-Henry-Sy-grounds. Me who would talk to myself on my seat and don't give a shit about my changing expressions. My who would giddily drag my friends to Agno or EGI for lunch. Me who would animatedly talk about my day-to-day misfortunes and laugh at them like they never did affect me.

          And that's when I realized being in this world - the corporate world - is not easy. With my current self, I have to put up a front that would be expected by these people, and of course to not be overly weird. Sometimes I lose myself and my antics would come out. Man, I tell you hiding is hard. I'm not exactly the bearer of the Most Talented Two-Faced Douchebag trophy. And of course, faking is not exactly in my immediate vocabulary unless otherwise stated. This constricting mask makes it so that it's only a matter of time when I would finally snap and be used to this kind of lifestyle. I have to leave my mask and develop a different persona - fast. I mean, I only have around 36 units left before I graduate. I'll never be ready even if I have balikbayan box of excuses.

          Though I did notice that the people I'm working with are exactly the manifestations of the people I have met during my entire stay in the university. There are these people that clicks faster with me than the rest. Then there are these quiet people who tend to lose themselves more around themselves than the others. (What.) And of course, there are these mature people who feels like my parents. I love my environment. I love the people I work with. I love the things I do in the office (COUGHfacebooktwitterwriteblogyoutubeCOUGH). But I'm having a hard time catching up to their level of maturity. I find myself joking and I honestly don't know if 
(1) they get the joke,
(2) they are offended by the joke
(3) they don't know if it's a joke.
The last thing I would want is a civil war with myself (and those people). But then I realized, yes their ages are like two-digit numbers away from me and I really can't blame my birthday (or anything else for that matter). Rather, I should just man up (or woman up) and at least act like them. And this is why I so look forward to every thesis meeting we have. For a breather.

Anyway, I just wanted to let it off my chest.


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Towards a New Leaf

I did not even get to write the part two of my rant. Particularly because I became too busy to rant and because the things I wanted to rant lost meaning. I mean, the world does not need another problem on its shoulders.

I want to use this opportunity to tell another boring story. I really am perhaps a frustrated writer. I want to tell of stories from the perspective of the tables left in the office. I want to tell of stories I left unfinished. But where am I now? Telling the stories of electronic components and their importance in the grand scheme of things. But nope. Not complaining. And enough of this.

To start off from the beginning of time and perhaps the point where you'll close this tab and do the tl;dr, I never was a religious person. Perhaps, I was deceiving myself of that whenever I go to church with a heavy heart. It felt like, I was doing Him a favor, but I knew deep, deep into the core of my being that it should not be that way. I mean, it is like just the saying, 'It's not work if you love you job.' I honestly do not have any relationship with Him. I pray, I avoid doing bad things (even though I get tempted {and I sometimes give in, yes}) and I think I connect with Him. But those feelings do not last very long. It feels like a mechanism to me, unlike when it is really real, it becomes a natural routine. How do I know when it is real or not? Easy. It just comes naturally. If I may make the story longer, I hated writing very much - as in to the highest level when I was in elementary. I despised all the essays being thrown at me for me to do. Never had I hated something so much in my life that when I was forced to do essays before, it was really, really hard for me. It was like swallowing a dictionary and spewing out words at random. However, when I came to love which I hated before, it was an entirely different feeling. When I think of writing, words just came naturally. It was like having a paper in front of me and then words, phrases, clauses, sentences, noun modifiers, figures of speeches, ideas materialize in front of me and the only thing I had to do was pick the right ones and collage them together.

Flashback several retreats ago, I was brought to tears when God was revealed unto me. When I felt the stories of the people whose lives were touched by Him, I felt lost and yet found at that very time. I felt the radiating happiness from them and I wanted to bask in that feeling. Knowing the only way to do that is to accept Him, I tried. I mean, I would lose nothing, right? No harm in trying. So try I did. I confessed all of my sins (even those I think were un-confess-able), bore the shame and praying for the feelings to subside. It was so good at first, having the motivation of the happiness and sin-free vibe. But that goes without saying that short time of basking under the Grace, He was there in everything I do. I feel Him even in the smallest things. When I knew it was Him, I will find myself muttering, "Ah, si Lord talaga mahal na mahal ako." But then, when one walks a straight path, he cannot help but wobble from time to time. Until eventually, I really fell off the edge. Went back to my old self. Did the sins I confessed. Another score for the devil. From then on, I somehow lost faith at some degree. I stopped believing that I could have a personal relationship with Him. I simply brushed off any notions of serving Him, stopped going to church altogether and etc. I was afraid of committing my life. I was afraid of changing my way of life. I think I still had that fear.

But eventually, Lord is really very persistent. I graduated from high school and was able to get into a prestigious university. He gave me friends and they are not simply friends. I would like to think that maybe they are His servants. Especially Shobe. She is the most religious person I met. I remember meeting up with her to go to chapel and pray the rosary together. But then the devil once more whispered into my ears, saying how much of a hypocrite I am. Saying how I am trying to become like her when in fact I am different. Of course, being helpless against his accusations, I stopped going with her to the chapel and reverted back, if not deeper into the mud. That is when I finally deciphered that living the life committed to God is not a once 180 degree turn. I cannot simply leave my way of life immediately and decide to follow Him. So, I simply stopped doing anything religious. I stopped praying. I disconnected myself from Him again. 

But what can I say? God gave another friend. And she had a history of bad habits just like me. But now, when I am in her presence, I feel at ease. Like, no harm can ever happen to me. Though I was very dubious of her kindness simply because she was just really too kind. She sees kindness in everything that sometimes I feel a bit angry at her. I mean, once in a while you really have to be firm in your feelings and principles. But then I guess that's how she is. She underwent a transformation, too. But in her case, it lasted very long. I now felt that maybe those times I tried, I tried halfheartedly. Though God gave me the inspiration to change, I did not have it in me to change. I was neutral. Like I was just testing the waters and not trusting that when I step on it, I would not sink. I feel like the most horrible person right now. For letting Him down when I promise empty things about change. I know there will be others who will deny and tell their even worse stories but no. Just no. I am wallowing in self pity for now. But then, maybe He had foreseen this as well.

I do not know what to make of this but seriously, I think God really loves me. I mean, you may scorn me and tell me that even elementary students know that, but what can I say in my defense? I had led a terrible, terrible life of deception, hypocrisy, pretense and basically every bad adjectives you can label about me. I made myself believe I follow Him and yet I turn away at the prospect of going to church. I do more bad things than good, letting my shameful self be covered by a thin veil of false goodness. I scorn at an act of goodness, thinking that this person may have an ulterior motive or so. But now, I feel that I had wasted a good deal of time being those things I mentioned. And that I have to change. But change, as I had heard from my current friend has to be something started within myself. God gave so many opportunities for me to grab on. But I ignored them all. Last Sunday, I must have unconsciously called Him again because I asked to no one in particular, 'Kailan kaya ako magiging willing mag-simba? Lagi na lang bang ganito? Pwersado lang ni mama kaya nagsisimba.' And what do I expect? God opened another opportunity.

I met this friend and still am meeting him because we are co-workers in the internship term of my college education. He was simply teaching me about one of the company's products and suddenly, he just opened up about being very kind (which, I admit I rolled my eyes mentally in disbelief) and how was he not so kind before. I was like, oh yeah typical story of transformation. And then, boom. Our conversation warped into a crash course in theology plus retreat. I did not really believe his kindness at first, especially when I saw some papers on his table with notes about Christ and etc. But then I heard his story, the story he did not hesitate telling me. And of course, my sarcastic self had to add that maybe he had a script or something. But I thought, here I am again, going back to the situation several retreats ago. Somebody preaches about the goodness of the Lord. And though I am not alien to that feeling, my lack of belief in change is what held me back. I do not know if I should take his word for it but he did say he was just sharing. And I believe that is something that is not simply being shared at random.

So what is the point of this boring story? Yeah, there is God again. Urging me to change. And maybe a change of tactics is needed to really help me. He gave me priests, nuns, teachers, friends with the same age and now a friend who is not a priest or someone of the same age but a co-worker. My defense mechanisms are kicking in again. I wanted to turn away from the prospect, from the opportunity. I am being shoveled back to that time again when I opened my heart to change only to close it again. And I do not know. Perhaps I am getting the answer to my question before. If God is really this persistent, then why should I deny Him again, like I did many times before? He moves in mysterious ways and who would have thought that I'd find Him again, in my OJT no less. It was not in any of my plans, it was in God's.

I am confident in laying out my feelings like this because I know not many people read this blog. And I couldn't care less. But then, it is hard - the realizations. The impact of truth. But I have to be brave, not only physically but also mentally. If I could not accept my flaws, what's there to change? If the person I am referring to in the last two paragraphs will be able to read this after finding out my blog 3-5 years from the time I published this, I want to thank you. I, too, had a story to tell. Though different, I, too, struggled, was lost, found by Him, was lost again and was found again. If anything, God can have the award for the best seeker ever.

I will not force the change. I will not be a yo-yo that decides to be good and revert back to bad and then good, like a perpetual machine. I will simply let Him.