Happy (?) birthday to me!

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In less than 24 hours, I will be turning a year older. I had a wish for my birthday that I made early part of this year, but logic tells me that it is not going to come true. God must probably be laughing and thinking that I do not trust His power to provide. I do. I am so convinced that He who gives also takes away.

All I hope for now is to feel loved and valued this time around. As Oryx was fond of saying, “It’s Iya’s Day!” I want to feel that it is my day indeed.

I have never experienced a birthday when someone planned a surprise party for me. With Estrel’s cake and shiny balloons and pizza and whisky and wine. It has always been a dream, but I am already down with the fact that none of my closest few are inclined or equipped to plan something like that. Except for my bff who already does events planning for a living. And I don’t want him burdened with the same task outside work.

I have also wanted to spend my birthday in Tagaytay, but with the traffic and weather, going there would be impractical. So I once again settled for Manila. So no more pink roses, garden dinner and salubong by the Taal Lake again. Wouldn’t it be nice if someone just dragged me to a destination unknown? It would be nice if there were someone to plan for me for once.

I am not complaining. It is just the way it is. I have awesome people around me, just no one who shares the same thoughts.

Oh well. I will be glad if I will be remembered and treated with tenderness tomorrow. That should be easy enough, right?

—–

Hahaha I know that none of my closest read my blog. So okay.

// listening to nothing

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Her Favorite Second Best

It was a lovely night.

They had dinner of gourmet pork dishes paired with locally brewed beers at a place so packed that they had to dine at the bar. She didn’t mind the cramped space. All that mattered was she was right beside someone who’d smile from ear to ear whenever he’d look at her.

They continued drinking at a place where the music was always from two to three decades ago. They were joined by two close friends who were supposed to get married last summer. Three things that she remembered from the conversation with that couple– faith, fate, and the future. The last one seemed particularly frightful, but she knew then that she’s done being afraid. There was something about him that made her feel safe and secure even if she’s not exactly someone who needed to be protected or saved.

They were on their way to the parking lot when he stopped walking, stood in front of her, kissed her, and said, “Thank you for making me happy.”

It was the second best thing to hearing him say “I love you.” for the first time.

But it’s her number one favorite memory. And something she would always go back to whenever she would like to see him smile from ear to ear again.

// listening to Cultured Pearls – Not This Time

My 2014: From Terrible to Terrific

I started 2014 with high hopes. I was certain it’s gonna be my year, but my hopes came crashing down when I faced three major problems– 1- financing the construction of our house in Bataan (ang mahala mahal mahal pala magpagawa ng bahay kahit sa probinsya), 2- change of responsibilities in the office (I was asked to handle employee referrals after years of handling job fairs and events), and 3- the death of my underground bestfriend slash platonic love of my life, Oryx.

house april 2014

Our Bahay sa Bukid in April 2014

The first two had me struggling and the last left me heartbroken. The last also gave the biggest impact. Ang pera, mag-sipag ka lang, kikitain. Ang trabaho, basta tutukan, natutunan. Pero ang tao, kapag wala na, wala na talaga. Oryx’s death taught me to be more appreciative of the life I was given- including the challenges that come along with it. Ika nga, I was given this life because I’m strong enough to live it. And no doubt, 2014 tested my strength, especially my strength in keeping the faith.

Perform Cup 2014

With two of my favorite colleagues who kept me sane during my learning curve phase.

I often asked God last year when would I see His promises to me fulfilled. And often times, I hated myself for asking Him, because it just emphasized my doubt and fear. I hated that my fear was always bigger than my faith and that my impatience kicked in each time I faced a difficult situation. Pagod na pagod na kasi ako. I wanted a break. I knew in my heart that every challenge He allowed was for my character building, and that He would equip me to come out strong, but in the many years that I was sucking up and dealing with so many conflicts, I couldn’t help but question if I would really be able to emerge victorious.

oryx jan 2014

Me, giving a half stand-up comedy, half Maalaala Mo Kaya eulogy- something I know he would have wanted.

A little past mid-year, just right after another heartache, I was frustrated and borderline depressed and asked for a sign. He gave it to me the following day and being the doubter that I was, I was reluctant to admit that it’s really the answer I’ve been waiting for so long. I was scared. If it’s what I was waiting for and I failed to take care of it, would I lose it? And worse, regret forever? I had to review all the lessons I learned and gauge how a 32 year old should react to and act on something that screamed divine intervention. So I decided to take the plunge. Keber na kung hindi ako marunong lumangoy. Jesus walks on water, and He is my lifeguard.

Proj Inspire 2014

Look back and thank God. Look forward and trust God.

By August, our house in Bataan started to shape up. nagmumukha na talagang bahay. Hindi na sad gray pile of hollowblocks in the middle of the fields of Morong. Nagka-vegetable garden na. May flowers na rin ako sa paligid. It’s still a work in progress, but seeing it improve every time I go home gives me a sense of pride. Mahal nga magpagawa ng bahay pero nakikita ko naman kung saan napupunta ang pinaghihirapan ko. At lalo na, it gives my parents joy. And I love my parents so very much.

house dec 2014

Our Bahay sa Bukid in Dec 2014

I also got over the neophyte feeling in my new career task. I am grateful for the people who made me realize that handling employee referrals is not just about recruitment, but also about employee engagement. Doble ang fulfillment kasi nakakatulong na sa pagkakaron ng bagong emplyedo, nakakatulong pa para magkaron ng passive income ang mga present employees. And thank You, Lord, I was given a performance award last December for my contribution to the company.

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Got this and the X-Factor Award. Sana this year, PERFORM award naman uli! :)

And the most amazing thing that happened in 2014? I met someone that I did not friendzone and did not friendzone me, albeit we started off as friends, and for a time I was afraid it will end there. I met someone who fell in love with me and I also fell in love with. Iba talaga kapag si God ang nag-promise. Kahit na mukhang malabo ang sitwasyon, He will make things possible, with little or no struggle. By the last month of 2014, I was in a relationship with Miko. I’m overjoyed that our loved ones are glad that we are together. Feeling ko nga, kinulit ni Oryx si God to send me Miko. :p

Miko Dec 2014

Photo from our first official date also known as the night he said I LOVE YOU. To which I replied, THIS IS THE BEST DECEMBER EVER. Bwahahahaha!

I’m still in awe of how my life dramatically changed in a year. Of course, the years prior prepared me for the blessing that I overtly received in the second half of 2014. Some will say the promises were delayed, but I believe they were fulfilled in the perfect time. And what’s the perfect time? The time when I was ready. It’s now 2015 and I know that there will still be struggles.  My renewed confidence will meet whatever challenges this new year has in store. If I can make it in 2014, 2015 shouldn’t be a problem!

Have a blessed 2015 to all!

// listening to No Doubt – Simple Kind of Life

Clearing My Head

Tonight, I am alone with my thoughts and a bottle of beer (more to follow) in a bar near my place.

I need to clear my head. I need to really know that the decisions I made in the past few weeks are right. That I did not pop a question to someone just to pull a string of consequences that will lead him to examine his life, weigh choices, and make a decision that’s congruent to mine only to hurt people in the process.

God knows I’ve waited too long (well, I guess just the right amount of time according to His will) to get what I have always wanted. And just when I thought that the blessing has already been presented to me, something happens to complicate it. To threaten it.
I hope this is just a minor bump in the road in the journey to the long and lasting kind of love. (Yuck, ang cheesy, but this is me. Cheesy is good.)

My friend who’s a priest once told me (after I told him about my matters of the heart dilemma) that if I prayed to God in faith and He answers my prayer, I should take the gift regardless of the imperfections that seem to go along with it. He said that if keep on praying to God and keep on working with Him, then that gift will be made perfect. He said that I am a steward of that gift, and I should take care of it and protect it with all my might.

This is me being scared. This is me being afraid that I might fail in fighting for that gift. That I might be wrong again even if every fiber in my being screams that I am finally right this time. That God has made everything right because He loves me very much, despite my imperfections, especially my quivering faith.

My faith should be bigger than my fear. I know I should have gone praying instead of drinking first. But anyway, cheers God. Thank You, that I got to clear my head just right before I publish this post.

// listening to some NBA game

Locked

I have always considered myself smart, but I question this whenever my thoughts conspire to bring you back to memory.

I wanted closure, and you unknowingly gave it to me recently. I regret the means how I brought myself to finding it, but I guess sacrifices had to be made to find peace. Even if it meant tainting my image in your mind for ever.

I unknowingly showed you my side that you didn’t know existed. How would you have found it, when you didn’t look hard enough? When you had your chance to look, but your eyes were already focused on what your mind expected to see.

In return, I saw your side that you deliberately didn’t show to the world, except to the few that you just had to show it to. You didn’t think I’d want to see that side. You had no idea I would have killed for a glimpse.

Was the world laughing at us when it saw us hide our dark(er) sides from each other? I could have been your light. I could have been your shade. And you, you could have been the same to me

We could have been bad together in the kind of good that we never knew we both wanted.

Our time has passed. I am sorry for not going that way and for not wanting to go that way any more. Our time has passed. I hope knowing this will keep me wise.

// listening to Zedd – Lost at Sea