Feelings, Self-esteem

Cardiac Conundrum

Navigating the turbulent waves just to see what ‘the other fish in the sea’ have to offer (aka, dating) turned me into an outwardly cynical but secretly hopeless romantic person, into a cynic through and through. It’s not that I have difficulty finding people (kind of hard when there are 103.3 million people in the Philippines alone, as of 2016)….I just have difficulty finding people to connect with. People with no ulterior motives. People who will not pretend to be interested in you, then when they sense you are under their spell, string you along and leave you hanging, wondering what the fuck is happening, sending your already overworked mind into overdrive. People who, after a few exchanges, think you owe them your body and soul.

Online dating further complicates things, because, while it broadens your options and you’d meet people you won’t otherwise meet, being situated in two different parts of the world (this is how I met one of my dearest friends!), the number of people who might unashamedly take advantage of you also increases. Especially since it’s easier to be a horrible person online than in the real world, due to lesser repercussions and the beauty of anonymity and the block button.

Due to lack of time in the real world and my own preferences, I begrudgingly continue to find myself treading this toxic environment, to fulfill my psychosocial need for intimacy, as recommended by Erik Erikson. Just kidding. I’m a human being, and while I enjoy my time alone more than most people, I, too, crave intimacy like any other person. I wish I didn’t, because I honestly find it so exhausting. It also makes me feel more isolated, given the impersonal modes of communication utilized. I’m also conflicted between giving up on this entirely, accepting my fate of being the kooky single polyglot aunt who travels the world, and not giving up on my search, knowing that THE ONE is there somewhere, although Lord knows why we haven’t crossed paths yet (I think).

There is also the fact that when I do find a connection, everybody else just seems like background noise, fuzzy colorful blobs wherein the only one clear is the person I like. In this day and age, ESPECIALLY in this day and age, this is a terrible approach to dating, unless of course, you’re lucky enough to find someone who also sees fuzzy blobs instead of walking bobs and vagene. My mind hasn’t caught on to this yet, in spite of major heartache caused by this approach. I will probably make a terrible investor, given my already terrible history of investing all my ‘currency’ on the one person (I say investor because it seems more refined than gambling). Wise investment dictates that you should not put all your money into something volatile and uncertain, even though you feel strongly about it. Surefire way of making sure your heart won’t be left wounded and bleeding when it does not work out.

However, no matter how much I try taking this approach to dating, I. JUST. CAN’T. DO. IT. Mainly because I don’t see people as stocks. Also because due to the rarity of finding whom I perceive to be my person, my neurons go on a frenzy, thinking “OH, YES, WOMAN, THIS IS THE ONE.” Loyalty is a good trait, but it honestly depends on where your loyalties lie, because it can have negative effects. For example, it’s good to be loyal to your significant other when you are exclusive; it is incredibly stupid to put yourself off the market (so to speak) once you feel that connection.

When it all boils down to it, to quote the blog post I made elsewhere in 2014, the biggest mistake one could make, besides putting all of your eggs in one basket in this day and age of hook-ups, Tinder, ghosting, bread crumbing, benching, and whatever millenial dating term there is, is making that person a huge part of your life so much so that you lose your sense of self, no matter how great that person is. One, it can get suffocating for the other person, for you to depend on him/her for your personal happiness. Imagine the pressure, having a whole other adult human’s happiness and validation lie on your shoulders? Not only is it draining, it is unattractive. I base this on personal experience, being on the receiving end of it. (Imagine having someone repeatedly tell you they’re not feeling well because you haven’t texted them when they wanted you to. Even if it were my partner, it would turn my attraction down a notch, all empathy and unconditional positive regard aside).

Second, there is only one person who can make you happy, and it is YOURSELF. At the end of the day, people come and go, until, worst case scenario, the only person left in your corner is you. This is extremely difficult to apply in daily life, and it is something I struggle with, though that hasn’t really deterred me from trying. And this is probably one of the few situations when my pessimism leads to optimistic results (i.e. Love yourself, because every person you love will leave sooner or later, or something to that effect).

Huh, it seems like the kooky single aunt option sounds more appealing by the minute. I’m only human, though, and by God if giving love doesn’t feel good (and if it is being reciprocated, even better!).

 

 

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Feelings, Self-love 2018, Slice of life, Writing

Reclamation Manifesto

2017 was a year of growth. It was the punch in the gut, blow in the head that I needed to come to my senses in certain aspects of my life. While it was painful to endure what I have been through last year (safe to say it was not a good year for me), I feel fortunate that, in a way, I was able to learn so much. Once again, I believe in the adage that you really do have to wade through a storm to see a rainbow, and after that you have to journey to the end of the rainbow to get a pot of gold. I may or may not have made up the last part in an attempt to create a metaphor.

Because it has only been almost 24 hours since 2017, I am still, and will probably, for quite awhile, recovering from the wounds it left. I am, however, genuinely grateful, for the first time in my life, actually, to be alive on the first day of the year. I am grateful that I am given the chance to redeem myself. Thus, the main theme for 2018, for me personally, at least, is SELF-LOVE.

How?

  1. By knowing my worth, and sticking to it.
  2. Accepting the things I cannot control (like the weather, unless you are a conspiracy theorist and you believe that global warming is a farce concocted by a shady country’s government).
  3. Being considerate of other people’s opinions, but ultimately making up my own mind after careful discernment, weighing the pros and cons, No impulse, follow-your-heart-and-your-loins decisions.
  4. Being more grateful for the little things, no matter how simple (for this, I plan to create a ‘Grateful Bank’ from an old piggy bank, wherein I will, at the end of every day, no matter how bad, write down all the nouns that made the day less shitty).
  5. Accepting my body shape enough to want to take care of it— not to conform to beauty standards, but to be healthy
  6. Not being too critical about myself and focusing on developing my positive aspects.
  7. Cutting ties with people who bring nothing but toxicity in my life. The only toxicity I will accept is work, school, or Britney-related.
  8.  Not accepting affection I know I don’t deserve in the hopes that the other person will see the light.
  9. Being more assertive.
  10. Keeping a mood tracker to document when darkness my old friend decides to pay me a visit. There should be a pattern; and once I discover it, I will know how to deal with it.

BONUS: Being more diligent in chronicling this self-love journey through this blog. It is always fun to look back on previous blogs to see how different I was and how much I’ve grown. I hope I am able to document my 2018 eloquently and efficiently through words and insightful entries. Social media has spoiled me by allowing me to express myself in (mainly shitty filtered) photos and 280-character announcements, which is all trumped by the nostalgic butterflies you get from reading blog entries.

Wish me luck.

 

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Writing

Back and Here Again

Due to bursts of creative writing energy at the worst possible time (just before bedtime), I have decided to return to blogging. I initially wanted to start a whole new blog (an old habit of mine), but I really have no time to micromanage it. Plus, I want to continue what I have already started here.

Here I am, then, back to my favorite writing exercise (writing about myself. Does that sound conceited or is it socially acceptable since for me it is technically the written equivalent of ‘selfies’?). I am now fortunately in a field that allows me to be verbose, albeit scientifically. I am also now in a field that challenges me to hone all of my communication skills. As a nurse, this is important, but as a psychologist, good communication is what you have to rely on to best help your clients.

I guess the snippets of the missing year (2015) will probably creep into some entries, and I added a whole new category for when I get consumed by dementors and lament about everything (to analyze my thoughts and to have something to show on the next therapy session), although my late night muse is inclined to pitch issues affecting the country today, a huge upgrade from old blog entries (thank heavens for maturity!).

 

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Writing

Relaunch

Today marks the end of my long(ish)-term hiatus from writing/blogging, after suffering from chronic writer’s block. As I am just trying to get back into shape, forgive me if my writing comes off as rusty and riddled with grammatical errors. I do try to proofread, but sometimes a nasty grammatical error still manages to sneak itself in, and when I realize it, it’s too late and I just inwardly gasp in horror. Then I try to reassure myself that these things happen even to the most prolific of writers.

Not that I am a writer. It is actually quite strange for me to acknowledge and say that. I have always identified myself as a writer ever since I wrote and illustrated a series of fairy tales when I was six (published by my own publishing house, Crown Tales, and printed in Manila, 1998. Yes, my ‘books’ had a proper copyright page and everything). Now, after coming back from a dry spell where I can’t seem to squeeze fresh ideas out of my cerebrum or, worse, find myself unable to perfectly weave the right words to what could have been a brilliant piece, I am not so sure I deserve the title anymore.

Perhaps I am just overthinking (as usual) things. I mean, it’s not like other writers haven’t experienced the same problem. I think it is actually a pretty common occurrence. It can also be because a part of me still wants to do this (writing) for a living but, knowing how hard it is to make it as a writer and how there are a shit ton of better writers out there, I try to distance myself from it so I don’t get too disappointed at my lack of belief in my abilities. Even if I know I am really just being honest. Despite my overactive imagination, I am pretty pragmatic when it comes to the future, especially my future.

So I guess I am just doing this for documentation purposes, venting, and as practice to steady the ebb and flow of my writing until it becomes something I will actually enjoy going back to without cringing.

I just hope I remember to update as much as possible, as my worst sin is I am rubbish at maintaining blogs. Trivia: I have around 70+. I’ve been blogging since 2001, if that helps. And don’t get me started on the scattered pieces of notebooks, diaries and scraps of paper lying around, containing at least a decade and a half’s worth of memories.

 

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