Note to My Younger Self | 04 | 2010

“Life does not censor pain.”

This was the weakest you’ve been. I can’t say 2010 was the hardest because every year has its fair share of challenges. But what I can attest is that this year was the weakest and darkest point of your life.

I told you last week that what you were feeling the year before would not compare to what you would be feeling the following years. And it was true. This was the year you cried to sleep at night. The year when you withdrew and isolate yourself. The year when you want to be invisible. The year when life seemed to crumble down in front of you. You were pushing people away but there was nothing new to that. What’s new was you finally close the doors, to never ever let people in, to never ever trust people. Because in letting people in, you give them the ticket to break you and disappoint you.

You were to blame for what had happened, you thought. It was your fault, you felt. You badly wanted to numb the pain by being invisible but the thing was you felt everything. You refused to be held, to be comforted. You refused any help possible. You were physically present, but your mind was somewhere else.

You were too vulnerable that time. You thought you couldn’t move forward and I couldn’t blame you because what had happened was something you didn’t expect to happen. Because how could you? You’ve been good to all the people you know. You’ve been genuinely caring. You’ve been very supportive. Yet, people always have something bad to say about you. It was not like you were a saint or holy person, you also have a share of flaws and mistakes but still you thought it would never happen to you. But it did.

Younger self, what I can tell you right now is that it is part of life. I guess you will be hearing that from me a lot. Because as I look back to what had happened on 2010, I can honestly say to you that everything that had happened is part of the grander picture, what happened to you was just a little dot of the big picture.

Younger self, life does not censor pain. It will never be like a movie, censored, sugarcoated and romanticized. It will give you what you needed. It will give you rotten apples instead of giving you ripe ones because that is just the way it is.

Also, younger self, don’t push people away again. Aren’t you getting tired of the same tactic? Haven’t you realized that your tactic aren’t working? Because people stayed. And for goodness sake, your friends… they want to help you, they want to comfort you, they want to hold your hands. You will eventually learn that those friends were the ones who led you to joy, just wait and see.

Younger self, remember this: what you are feeling right now will never compare to what God has in store for  you.


To read Sunday Series, Note to My Younger Self, click the following:

Note to My Younger Self | 01 | 2007

Note to My Younger Self | 02 | 2008

Note to My Younger Self | 03 | 2009

Note to My Younger Self is a 12-week Sunday Series that aims to make sense of my past in order for me to move on to the present without extra baggage.


Photo credit: Alison Sherwood

Note to My Younger Self | 03 | 2009

“Everything’s okay”

It was hard… finding new friends. For a person like you who lives in her own bubble, at her own pace, in her own mind palace, it was hard finding souls that would make your soul leap for joy. Because if you did find new people, it was as if, you were being unfair to your old friends for making yourself available to new endeavors without them. So you pushed people away because you thought that was the right thing to do. You pushed, you never let people in, you never opened up. You were and are always like that. You looked for all the flaws in a person, that way it was easier to push, it was easier to leave them behind. You looked for any possible mistakes they made and made yourself believe that it was their fault.

But, you know all along that you were the problem. You were always the problem. I don’t know why were you so afraid to let people in? Why were you so afraid people will know you? Why were you so afraid of trusting people? I know you were tired, you were tired of people leaving and making you believe that they will stay for the long-run. I know you were weary of all the dramas people could bring to your life. I know you were frustrated of people disappointing you. But, are these the right reasons to push people away? Are these reasons worth it for you not to try to make friends?  Are these the right reasons for you not to give people a chance to know you?

You’ve been there for so long and I admit, up until now, this issue still remain. But you know what I learned in 8 years since 2009… as cliche as it may sound but “that’s life!” Life even as unexpected as it is, has its own share of monotony. People leaving and people breaking your trust are like a mundane 9-5 job. In the long run, it will bore you and it will no longer break you. It is part of growing up and I think it is the nature of life.

And I am going to tell you this… the next years would be tough ones, what you were feeling now would be worse in the coming years. 2009 was just the beginning. But remember, don’t you ever settle to this feeling, because life will get better, it will. Everything will be okay. Trust me, I’ve been there. Trust your future. Trust that you will find people worth keeping (because you did). Trust that you will experience joy (because you did). Trust that you will find the missing piece in your life (just wait, because you did).


To read the first & second in the Sunday Series, Note to My Younger Self, click the following:

Note to My Younger Self | 01 | 2007

Note to My Younger Self | 02 | 2008

Note to My Younger Self is a 12-week Sunday Series that aims to make sense of my past in order for me to move on to the present without extra baggage.


Photo Credit: Flickr

Note to My Younger Self | 02 | 2008

“I made a list of things I love just in case you go. All my life has been about waiting for people to go.”

It is funny; I couldn’t see or read any journal entry or poem you wrote. Nothing. As if 2008 didn’t exist at all. May be you’re happy that time so you didn’t bother to write anything or was it just your life then was very random that writing it would be a waste of time? So I tried my best to remember what had happened. And this is what your present self can remember…

I can still feel the emotions while you were marching down the stage with your white toga: feeling of uncertainties, feeling of inadequacies, feeling of lost, feeling of longing, yet, you were also feeling the relief,  feeling a new sense of hope, feeling of standing strong and making your dreams come true.

GOODBYE!

You thought that moment was the worst because you were leaving behind friends, classmates and the familiar scent of the school you invested your 7 years of existence. You cried and that was the last time you allow yourself to cry in public. Because it was okay then to cry, because you were leaving all the familiar things you once knew, you were stepping out from your 7 years of comfort, you were stepping to the unknown life (a make or break life, you thought). You cried because the future is uncertain. You cried and made vows of long-term friendship. You of all people knew that promises are meant to be broken. But you still promised to be there and the unavoidable things happened, you and your friends grew apart and it scared a hell out of you. You were scared because you were afraid of being left-behind, of goodbyes, of things uncertain.

GOODBYE!

Yes, younger self, goodbyes are part of life. People will leave you behind without saying anything. Or you will leave people behind also without saying anything. And that is okay. Because in the following years, you will learn that life is always like that, closing doors, opening new ones that will eventually close. And that is also okay. Because there are still people who will stay no matter what, no matter how hard you push them away (yes, younger self, up to now you have still this tendency to push people away). Thank God for that kind of people, cherish them, love them in ways you know.

GOODBYE!

Younger self, goodbye is a great reminder that everything shall pass. Your heartaches, your mistakes, your negative thoughts shall pass too, that these will not remain. Remember that.


To read the first in the Sunday Series, Note to My Younger Self, click here.

Note to My Younger Self is a 12-week Sunday Series that aims to make sense of my past in order for me to move on to the present without extra baggage.


 

Photo Credit: Flickr


 

Hey Grace!

“If grace is an ocean, we’re all sinking…”

Today, I was reminded by you. Oh, grace, in every unexpected moments of my life, you’ve been there. In every boring parts of my existence, you’ve been there. And to tell you truthfully, I can’t see myself without you.

There were times, when I forget how you work. I thought I was entitled by everything I have, not realizing that you and you alone made me worthy of everything. There were times, I thought I could do it all to the extent that I would be drowning with my own frustrations without realizing that you and you alone can make everything work.

I am looking at my journals from the past years and I am astounded and in awe on how my experiences lead me into this person I am right now. Grace, you are the reason why. Without you, maybe, I am not alive today. Remember the time that I almost gotten hit by an SUV? It was you who saved me because you know that I am not done yet. Or that time that my family almost had a car accident? But because of you, we are safe and sound right now. Or the time when I really wanted to eat my mom’s “sopas” but she’s living far away and then the food vendor gave me a free “sopas”? And I the list go on, on how you show me who you are. With all those that had happened in my life, you keep on reminding me of the cross and how a Man sacrificed His life for me, that’s you, Grace, the free unmerited favor of God. The favor which I do not deserve. The favor that is freely given. The favor that I am thankful for.

I don’t know what I have done to be worthy of you. With all those bad things that had happened, with all those bad words I said, with all those inexcusable actions I made, with all those things I should’ve said but didn’t, with all those slipping away, Grace, you still remain.  You remain.


Note to My Younger Self | 01 | 2007

“Don’t dull the sparkle in your eyes.” – Stay the Night, Zedd ft. Hayley Williams

I know what you have felt. When I think of 2007, I think of the times you wanted to be someone: someone who is worth their time, their effort; someone who excel; someone who is not an almost.

But also, when I think of 2007, I think of the days that even when people made you feel unappreciated, you still gave them your best: your best smile, your best laugh, your best joke, your best shot. Even at times when you felt the world is trying to pull you down, you managed to stay on your footing and hold on to what the future can bring.

You stayed. With many hesitations, suppression and hiding… you stayed.

Your eyes still sparkle even the world is keeping you dull. And I believe that is why people like to be with you. You never fail to see the goodness of everyone. You never fail to see the little sparkle of hope in everyone’s eye. Your eyes speak hope. And to tell you truthfully, hope is the only thing that is keeping this world and the people around you alive.

No, younger self, don’t dull the sparkle in your eyes. Let it spark. Let it be the light. Let it be hope.


Photo credit: Beauty Moves Me

Sunday Currently | 05

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This week has been very productive in terms of the writing aspect of my life. I have written a poem (which I will never publish here on my blog), a guest blog post (which I don’t know if I will share it here because it is too personal), a book blog entry (which was posted yesterday) and this Sunday Currently entry. And that’s why my brain is kind of in a zombie mode these past few days.

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Reading

A.W. Tozer’s The Attribute of God: A Journey into the Father’s Heart. So far, this book is overwhelming (in a good sense). I am hoping I could write something about it after I finish the book.

Writing

Sunday Currently 5. I am glad that I have finished writing my guest blog entry and I have already submitted it last Friday. In fact, I have written 3 drafts for that guest blog. I finally concluded that it is really hard to blog about your personal life. I still don’t know if I will share it here on my blog since it is too personal. Reasons are: (1) I will never know who in my circle of friends/colleagues/family will read it; (2) I don’t want people I know to decipher my deepest thoughts; (3) I am a coward lady; (4) I don’t like people I know to think I am very into that thought (haha.. vague); (5) Anxiety.

So, you may ask, why did you agree to write some personal stuff? The blogosphere is different from real life. The people I know here in this blog world is never judgmental and I will never see them in real life. My fear is when people I know or those people I always talk to personally may read what I’ve written. I am just uncomfortable with that.

Okay, why am I explaining myself? -_-

Listening

to nothing – well, the sound of the electric fan and chirping birds, if that counts. This is why I love province life!

Watching

nothing. I am not a watcher type of person.

Thinking

that tomorrow is already Monday, the long vacation is at its verge of ending. This is the saddest ending ever!!!

Also, I’ve been thinking about my conversation with my bestfriend last Friday! Why is it hard to be human? Can we just know without asking? Waaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhh!!!!

Smelling

Lysol.

Wishing

life would be clearer.

Hoping

for clarity.

Loving

the rain! I don’t know why I love rain, maybe because it brings some memories from childhood that I most enjoyed.

Needing

junkfood. I am not a junkfood eater but I am craving for junkfood right now.

Feeling

indecisive. There is nothing new of me being indecisive. But something about me and my friend’s conversation last Friday hits me hard and makes me want to know a certain thing but at the same time I’m afraid to know (sorry if this is vague, but I cannot put it into right words, plus, my head is really aching from all those writing I did the past few days).


To end this, here are some takeaways from reading A.W. Tozer’s work:

“What God made, God loves.”

“It is by grace we are saved, out of the goodness of God.”

“God is not an absentee creator!”

 

 

Sunday Currently | 03

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I thought I would not be writing a Sunday Currently today. But yeah, I still write. I woke up early today and I feel I should write something, and the most sensible thing to write is a Sunday Currently feature.

  • I woke up with chirping birds outside.
  • I woke up singing Lorde’s new singles, Liability and Green Light.
  • I woke up determined to reread Narnia.
  • I woke up hungry.
  • I woke up blah blah blah…

 

Unspoken(3)

Reading

Chronicles of Narnia again but now I’ll be reading it in chronological order. Also, I’ve finished reading Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon and I was very disappointed with this one. I’ve read the other book of Nicola Yoon which by the way was so good. I thought EE has the same caliber. But no, I got my expectations too high.

For Bible Reading, just finished reading John 🙂

Writing

Sunday Currently 3. I thought I will not be writing this because I want to have a weekend full of readings. However, I am now writing this.

Listening

Look at Me Now covered by Karmin. How I missed Karmin, they already disbanded last year which made me sad but realized they are still married soooo… it’s okay. But I think I will miss all those covers and the voice of Nick Noonan.

Also, I am very happy that Lorde came out with 2 new singles!!!

Oh, I almost forgot, last night I listened to The Purposeful Creative podcast and I was #fangirling to the fact that Arriane Serafico is interviewing Abbey Sy! The 2 women I look up to because of their works! Yeah, I was one happy nerd/fangirl last night!

Watching

None. I am not into watching. However, earlier, I watched itsjudylife beca…beca…because (only itsjudylife fan will get this). MK forever!!! Also, before sleeping last night, I watched a review of the Divide album of Ed Sheeran.

Honestly, I missed watching Nickelodeon and Disney shows, mindlessly laughing about corny and one-liner jokes.

Thinking

of sleeping again.

Smelling

food or am I just hallucinating or am I hungry?

Wishing

life would be easier.

Wearing

the usual pambahay, white shirt and pink shorts.

Hoping

for new books to read. However, I realized my shelf is already full of books and I have a lots of TBR pile. See, I am in a dilemma right now. I hate it when I need to rationalize with myself, like, who am I kidding?

Loving

the fact that my li’l brother is at home. I haven’t seen him for months now and I missed him so much. So, last night I bullied him (that’s how I show my love and care… haha). #bebeboy #saudiboyinthehouse

Also, loving the fact that I am rereading one of my favorite books of all time, Narnia.

Loving the fact that my sister is now reading my favorite book, The Five People You Meet in Heaven. Btw, she is not a reader, so, this is really a big deal for me. It is just so nice to know I am making an impact to one’s life.

Needing

courage and strength to start planning about the interior of my room.

Feeling

sick. I feel like I will be having a sore throat. But yeah, life goes on.

Also, feeling excited about next Friday’s out-of-town with my friend! Finally, a real vacation!


To wrap up this entry, I would like to honor the founder of the Sunday Currently feature, siddathornton.


“Stop doubting and believe”

John 20: 27

 

 

Sunday Currently | 02

Sunday Currently

 

My brain is not cooperating today, so please bear with all the nonsense you will be reading today.

Unspoken(2)

Reading

some articles in the internet. I haven’t read any book this week. But I am planning to reread Chronicles of Narnia because I missed the world of Narnia so much.

For Bible reading, still reading Exodus and John.

I don’t know why I am in a reading slump right now and it is very frustrating.

Writing

Sunday Currently and thinking of another one for Thursday schedule.

Listening

Mary, Did You Know? covered by Pentatonix and bird chirping. For the record, my playlist is in shuffle. These past few days, I’ve been listening a lot of musicals, such as Wicked, Lea Salonga’s songs and High School Musical. Also, listening to Reese Lansangan. Go Indie!

Watching

nothing! But I’ve been meaning to watch Riverdale and The Last Five Years but I’m too lazy to download. And I still have 3 movies to watch that I haven’t started watching yet. Why am I too lazy these days?

Thinking

of many things (as usual). Thinking about modern-day oppression/slavery, violins, consistency, why I dislike going out, introvertness, labels, sleeping, leaving, photoshoot, re-organizing my bookshelf/art area and other random things.

Smelling

nothing!

Wishing

not to be lazy!

Wearing

oversized sky blue t-shirt with heart print and orange shorts with floral print.

Hoping

for…. uggghhhh… my mind isn’t working now. I think my brain is still asleep. Hoping to end reading slump and to get back to journaling.

Loving

the fact that today is Sunday and I can be lazy however and whenever I like. Loving the chirping birds outside. Loving Bamboo (currently singing in the background). Loving the fact my jam is currently playing. Loving that I woke up early to write early even though my brain is still asleep.

But you know what, I love being idle right now. Last year, I’ve been hustling and running from one idea to another. My schedule was a mess. Everything is a mess even this blog. However, this year I think I will be more kind to myself.

Needing

a one week of recharging. One thing about being an introvert is that when they interact with so many people, they need to recharge. And I badly need a week-long recharging because of those necessary and unnecessary interactions (and those unplanned meetings). I am just wondering, can I tell my boss that I will be on leave because my anxiety is kicking in again? For the record, anxiety is an illness, sooooo….. (hoping that my boss will not read this entry).

Feeling

Is sleepy a feeling? If it is, that’s what I am feeling right now.

But seriously, I am boggled about the modern-day slavery I read last Tuesday and until now I am still thinking about it. The fact that it is still happening here in the Philippines makes me very anxious about the Filipino people. Because if a clan of elitist can do such things, especially to those marginally poor and innocent people, how much more an elitist cum government official? To be honest, I feel helpless about the situation of the Filipino people. Dolores Umbridge is real!!!!


To sum up, I am sleepy and my brain isn’t working and this entry is a rubbish.


To end this entry, presenting the Bible verse of the day:

14 “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep.”

-John 10:14-15 (NIV)

What Does It Take to Start Over Again

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Do we need a certain amount of courage to establish ourselves to move on? Or do we need just a little and start from there? Do we need to fully trust our vision? Or to trust it partly and wait for signs that what we are doing is right? Do we need to achieve a level of faith? Or a small faith would do?

“No, you cannot quit…” “No you cannot start over again because you only have one life, don’t waste it…” Books, movies, songs told me that. “Stay where you are, make that happen, you cannot reroute and start over again, you have wasted so much time…” And sometimes, I also hear my brain giving this pep talk to myself.

All our life, we are taught not to give up, to continue even how painful it is to continue. Because giving up is only for the weak, the coward and the light-hearted. No, we cannot give up because we only have one life to live, wasting time is not an option. If you have invested so much time on something, you should continue it even though your mind is telling you otherwise. Just because, you call yourself courageous.

But real courage lies in knowing the right thing to do; walking in faith without foreseeing the future; believing not on yourself but on Someone bigger than you; knowing that Someone bigger than you gives millions of chances, that it is okay to give up and start over again even how much you invested on that one thing you are not giving up on.

It is okay not to pursue your graduate course. It is okay not to finish a sentence. It is okay not to hold on to people that hurts you even though you love them so much. It is okay to let go of your plans that are not working out even how much you invested your time on it. It is okay to let go of your lifelong dream. It is okay to lose grip on what you are supposed to be doing. It is okay to give up. But also in giving up is a chance to start over again. It is okay to start over again; to pursue what God’s want you to do, to hold on to your life, to walk in faith with Him. You can start over and over again.

Yes, we only have on life and we should not waste it. Do you want to spend your one life continuing what you thought you want knowing that God has given you so much more?

So what does it take to start over again?

No it is not about huge amount of courage. It is more of one pinch of courage and whole lot of God.

Starting Over Again

*Disclaimer: the following thoughts are not cohesively written.  So please bear with me.

Slipping away. I have slipped away. Feeling guilty of how I became too comfortable with silence; how no voice can penetrate my self-loathe; how I see life as black-and-white.

The past months have been a great struggle, looking for other ways to make my life purposeful, forgetting that my life, our life is in purpose when we are walking to the Light, not from it.

One morning, I wake up from a boiling water… where I am? How did my life turn this way? From His silence (or  more of my deaf ears), I heard Him (more of I read it but that’s the same in a sense). I heard Him say “START AGAIN.” And I am dumbfounded, not because I am shocked by the revelation but more of I am now beginning to understand what He is trying to say all along.

START AGAIN

Remember Paul? Before being Paul, he was Saul, killing Christians, or those who dare to follow the path of Jesus Christ. But then, Paul was renewed and started to believe in Jesus.
God gave Paul the chance to start again a new life with Him. And the story of Paul, along with the many stories in the Bible, is a proof that our God is the God of second chances (third/millionth).

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He wants me to start again. He never gives up on me (because If I were Him I would be giving up on me now). He has given me another chance after chance to see His unfailing love. He never gets tired in making me understand that He is the God of second chances that even though I slipped away again and again, he will never let my hand lose its grip, because in the first place, His hands are the ones holding me tight.


My thoughts have been incoherent these past few months, but I hope you get what I am trying to say. I am just amazed by His unfailing love. So amazed that I wanted it to share to the whole wide world but I seem to fail on delineating it cohesively.

-Yien-