Ticking Time Bomb

It’s the 1st of July, another month closer to the end of the semester. Why do I feel like I’m a living time bomb? Another month has passed, nearing my explosion and thus, my death. I used to wish or even demand for the semester to come and go quickly so I can enjoy the semestral break. Apparently, when you’re doing your thesis, the opposite happens. Time just goes so quickly! It’s as if it’s mocking me to run after it and go way past it. Can’t it just take a pause and rest for awhile? A very long while. [insert grabbing hair in frustration here] If I’m the time bomb, my thesis is the detonator and the ones holding that detonator are my thesis adviser and panel members.

God, I’m so nervous. Why is time suddenly going way too fast? It was only June last night, for crying out loud!

I need to get myself together. I have traveled a very long and difficult road to get to where I am right now. I can almost see the “light”. I guess there always comes a time when you’re close to finishing something you have worked hard for, you suddenly get cold feet. You suddenly think, “Am I really almost there?” “Is it almost over?” “Is everything really going to be okay?” “Is this for real?!”

Don't give up now. You are closer than you think.

Don’t give up now. You are closer than you think.

But I can’t possibly give up now, not when I know that I am closer than I think. I guess I’ll have to just look back and remember the sleepless nights, the sacrifices, the tears I’ve shed over the years just to get to where I am right now.

First things first, I have to get way past the experiments I still have to do before I can start writing my thesis manuscript, then, thesis defense. Then…

GRADUATION.

The top of the mountain, the light at the end of a long road, the goal. One word. But more than enough to make every hardship worth it.

Dont-Give-Up

Always remember, it will be worth it.

Advertisements

An adult trapped in a child’s body

A child is supposed to go outdoors to play, not to work.

While some of us had a childhood filled with fun memories—playing with other kids in a playground, having toys (educational or otherwise) and being fed with whatever is necessary for a growing kid, some aren’t as lucky. Just like this little boy on the photo I took last week when I went out with my friends to buy some yoghurt and chocolate milk.

He should’ve been at school, learning that horrible subject called Math and complaining about how his teachers are making his life a living hell. He should’ve been playing with the other kids before, during, or after school.

June1He’s not supposed to be out in the streets or anywhere in that matter, to sell products in order to help support his family and maybe his studies too.

I don’t know where his parents are or what they’re doing. Are they working too and he’s just helping them because the money they earn is still not enough to support their family and his studies? Are they wasting away their life gambling and drinking and doing whatever it is reckless and irresponsible parents do? Are they sick and couldn’t work so he just has to step up and be the bread winner of his family? Are his parents still alive?

I guess I’ll never really know.

I just hope he doesn’t grow weary and resentful. I hope he sees this as a challenge and a chance to better his situation. I hope this becomes a motivation for him to try hard, work hard, and excel in school (I do hope he still goes to school) so as to make sure that he gets a better shot at life sometime in the future.

I just hope that he doesn’t lose hope.

Finding Beauty in Escaping

Sometimes, you stay at one place for far too long it starts to suffocate you. Suddenly, everything is just wrong. You become too restless, like there is a need to just drop the things you have to do, need to do, and usually do and just… go. Be free of the burden that is everyday life.

If that happens, listen to that nagging whisper in your head to escape because sometimes, that’s exactly what you need at the moment. Find that one thing you could use as a means to escape reality and the problems associated with it.

Escape for me usually meant a good book or if one isn’t handy, then I just do marathons of my favorite TV series. Why? Because they bring you to places you’ve never been before, they make you feel and experience things without being exactly there. Because they make you forget just for awhile all the things that have been stressing you out lately be it work, studies, family, social, or love life. Or you can empathize with them because you know exactly how they feel at the moment because you’ve been there or currently there. Or you can simply just be entertained and admire the wonder that is creativity and imagination.

But sometimes, there is that need to literally go or escape and for me, that meant traveling to places I’ve never been before or to places I’ve been that gave me some peace and quiet. You can call it anything you want. I call it soul cleansing because there comes a time when you simply have this urge to break away from everything. Suddenly, you feel like you don’t appreciate your surroundings and feel weary. That’s the time to escape. Be cleansed. To go to places you’ve wanted or dreamed of going. To places where you can relax, be a different person without having to be judged or to be over analyzed or to simply just escape the pressure, the expectations, and the problems you face everyday.

Traveling makes you see the beauty of life. It makes you realize that there is so much beauty out there that you can take in if you let it. Do it alone if you like or you can do it with friends, whichever suits you the best.

Just recently, my academics has taken its toll on me and I’ve been a bit upset and resentful over some things, which I don’t really want to elaborate right now. When opportunity in the form of my high school friends inviting me to a 3-day getaway in a place a thousand miles away came my way, well, I can’t find it in my heart to say no. By the way, that 3-day getaway turned into a week. I was really, really reluctant to go back and do my thesis.

Here are two photos taken from that trip.

Stay at a wonderful resort away from the city. Photo: Club FortMed, Boljoon, Cebu

Stay at a relaxing and peaceful resort.

Try snorkeling and swimming with the whalesharks! They're really huuuge.

Try snorkeling and swimming with the whalesharks. They’re really huge!

But always remember to go back because no matter how tempting it is to get away from the source of all your stress and problems, it will never be a permanent solution. Don’t forget that this escape is temporary, more of a pause button than a stop. When things are too much to handle, pause. Take a breather and then resume after awhile. When you return from that getaway, you’ll feel refreshed. Like you can take on the hurdles being thrown your way and the stress becomes more bearable because there’s something you can look back to. Something beautiful, something different from what you usually encounter.

Because sometimes, that’s what we need. When we start being less enthusiastic and less appreciative due to problems and stress, then we start complaining more about our current state than doing something to change it. That’s exactly the time to go out there and see the world in order to make you realize that there is still so much beauty waiting to be appreciated, discovered and experienced. 🙂

DP Weekly Writing Challenge, “Starting Over”: Winged Memories

“WINGED MEMORIES”

I thought it was just like any other day. If I only knew way back then how wrong I was. I was on my way home when a butterfly caught my eye. Butterflies have always fascinated me with their beauty. This particular one is currently flying from one colourful flower to another. I was an inch away from its wings when, as if on cue, rain started to fall. I was on the verge of giving up any hope of staying dry when realization dawned upon me. Above me was an umbrella, held by a boy with startling brown eyes. Now, I was no longer just fascinated with the butterflies.  My memories are now filled with fascination and love for him.

Ten long years have already passed since that fateful day. We became friends and so much more. Who would have thought that that ugly looking umbrella would start it all? Now here I am, looking so beautiful in my white gown. The ceremony was about to start and as I was busy looking over the crowd of expectant faces, a pair of colourful wings caught my eye. It was, I realized, a butterfly.

Suddenly, everything became a blur and I felt like I was that girl again from ten years ago. Staring into those brown eyes, I remembered so much more. He was staring at someone from my behind. I turned around and saw my best friend. Her beauty radiated as she gracefully walked by. Ten long years had really passed and so many things had happened—things that were way beyond my control. Today is my best friend and his’ wedding ceremony.

As the wings of the butterfly slowly faded from my sight, I had come to accept that my memories of him would have to fade. I looked back at the happy couple in front of me as they, in turn, looked lovingly into each other’s eyes and I thought, “It’s time for me to start over too.”

————————————-

This is my first time participating in The Daily Post’s Weekly Writing Challenge. 🙂 After reading this week’s theme, writing a short piece of creative writing on Starting Over, this piece instantly came into mind. This was originally written for my English class when I was still in my freshman year. We were asked to write a very short story containing the words: butterfly, beauty, umbrella, girl, and ceremony. 🙂

Weekly Photo Challenge: Foreign

It’s been awhile since the last time I’ve participated in the Weekly Photo Challenge. Well, for my “comeback”, here’s my take on this week’s theme. 🙂

A torn heart-shaped balloon I placed on a Physics book.

I once met this guy in Physics class (I was a sophomore in college) with whom I fell in love with and the feeling was foreign because that was the first time I fell in love (Oh such happiness! 😛 ). Later on, he broke my heart when we broke up and the feeling was foreign as well because that was the first time I felt that kind of pain (Geez, it really did hurt I’m telling you, lol).

Coincidentally, my roommate had this heart shaped balloon which she gave to me, however, it blew up. I had my Physics book beside me then so I had this crazy idea of taking this photo of the torn heart-shaped balloon on the Physics book as a symbol of how I had my heart beat and get broken because of that guy in Physics class. 😀

Fixing a broken heart by Kayaking in Lake Balinsasayao 😀

Of course, it’s either I cry in a hole for having my heart broken or get out there and have fun! Since there’s no point in crying over spilled milk, I decided to cry then clean the mess and do something else while moving on. Hence, I traveled alone and visited some of my high school friends who were studying in a different university in another city.

That was the first time I traveled alone for pleasure and sight seeing. My friends accompanied me to different tourist destinations in there place and I even tried kayaking for the first time in one of their famous lakes. The feeling of being able to do all of that was definitely foreign.

From that moment on, I told myself that even if I’m still in college, I’d travel as much as I can and learn to experience a lot of things foreign. 

So far, so gooood. \m/

I’LL REMEMBER YOU THIS WAY…

Death is really like a thief in the night. You never know when it’s going to come and rob you of something precious—your life.

Just this month, one of the founders of the dance group that I belonged to passed away. I’ve known for some time that he wasn’t well but even if I’ve known that the result was inevitable, I still couldn’t believe it when I heard the news. I could still remember that day clearly. It was early in the morning and I was preparing to visit him. I was just waiting for the message that would give me the directions to the hospital and when I heard the message tone of my phone, I expected to read directions to where he was. I didn’t expect it to be, “He’s gone.”

I didn’t know such a short sentence could hurt so much.

I cried. Hard.

I couldn’t help it. I just can’t. I know that I should feel better since he’s no longer in pain but there will always be that part of me that’s going to miss him, that part of me that can’t believe that everything was real, that I’ll no longer be able to see or hear from him again. I wasn’t as close to him as he was with the alumni of our group but it was already hard for me. How much more for those who were closest to him? When I was there during the wake and in the interment, I could feel it. Whenever I was able to stop crying, just seeing his family and those who were very, very close to him trying to control themselves from crying made me cry again. I can feel it. Their pain, their loss.

It showed that he was very much loved and appreciated.

         And just like what the first stanza of his favourite song says,

Every now and then
We find a special friend
Who never lets us down
Who understands it all
Reaches out each time you fall
You’re the best friend that I’ve found
I know you can’t stay
A part of you will never ever go away
Your heart will stay

 He might be gone, but our feelings for him will stay because, “Death ends a life, not a relationship.”

There were things that I wanted to say but wasn’t able to and I hope that somehow, somewhere, this reaches him…

Kuya W,

I could still remember those moments when I always badger you about money (I was Finance Head in our organization before). Ever since then, whenever we meet, you’d playfully hide from me and tell me, “Ayan nanaman siya, maniningil nanaman. May utang nanaman ba ako?” (There she goes again, collecting and asking for fees. Do I still have debts?). I will miss those times. I will miss you. Even if you kept on hiding and avoiding me because you think I’m going to collect fees from you! 😀

You were a good mentor and a friend. My memories of you were always so… energetic and fun. When you visit us during our trainings or when you go to our competitions to support us, you lighten up the pressure and the heavy mood by your jokes. You also inspire us to give our best and not be intimidated by the other competitors through your words of wisdom and encouragement. You were always supportive and you always believed in us and in what we can do.

I could still remember the first time I was able to dance and perform with you, that first time when you taught me a dance you choreographed. I felt this urge to give my best because I wanted to be as good as you were and I felt that I could do it because you were very encouraging and patient and I can feel that you believed that I could do it. I was just a trainee then. You were also one of the persons I first performed with when I finally became a member. The performance was for an orientation of our dance group. It seemed so long ago…

I remembered a few lines I’ve read in Tuesdays with Morrie,

“Have you ever really had a teacher? One who saw you as a raw but precious thing, a jewel that, with wisdom, could be polished to a proud shine?”

If I was asked this question, I could proudly say that you were this kind of teacher and I know that all of the people whom you had taught whether about dancing, or life in general, when asked by this question, would think so too.

You may no longer be physically present, but you will always be remembered. You might have lived a short life, but it was well-lived. I’ve always believed that a life’s worth is not based on how long it was but on how much good has been done while living it. You will never be forgotten because somehow, you’re immortalized through the things you have done for others.

“A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.” –Henry Adams

I admit that I was really sad that you’re no longer here, physically. But I’m contented with the fact that now, I know you’re no longer in pain and your struggles are over. I may not have seen you in the last moments of your life, but maybe that’s for the better.

My memories of you will always be that of your energetic, fun, encouraging, and believing self.

I’ll remember you this way. 🙂

The Phantom of the Opera

Just last October 13, I was able to watch the musical play, The Phantom of the Opera.

Shortly, the story revolves around three main characters, but more on Christine and the Phantom who Christine refers to as the “Angel of Music”. The Phantom became her mentor in the Opera house where she performs. However, Christine has never seen him because he only sings/speaks to her but never really shows himself. What Christine doesn’t know was that this Phantom was physically deformed and in love with her.

Then came Raoul, Christine’s childhood friend/sweetheart, who after seeing her, remembers his feelings for her which is also returned by Christine. This angered the Phantom and a series of accidents and threats happened in the Opera house. In the end, however, the Phantom had let Christine go because he knew that his feelings weren’t returned and that she wouldn’t be happy if he forced them together. 😦

Phantoooom. ❤ 😥

After the show

It was a dream come true to finally see it live since I was able to watch the movie version only. I’ve heard of them going on a world tour and finally, they came here! I had to blow off my one week allowance for this. Thank God for student discounts! Else, I’d have to sacrifice almost a month’s worth of my allowance. 😀

And I could really say that it was worth starving for especially the transitions from one setting to another, the costumes, the voices of the actors and the way they danced and acted everything. Of course, I’m compelled by the story itself.

After the show, my friend and I wanted to buy some souvenirs. I especially wanted to buy the necklace with the mask of the Phantom as the pendant, however, it was too expensive! More expensive than my discounted ticket! So instead, we just took some pictures after the event (it’s blurred since my camera phone isn’t really that good) as a souvenir.

However, we didn’t last an hour since my feet were screaming like hell from pain because it was my first time to wear 4-inch heels.

The shoes that made me feel like a walking building.

I felt like a walking building since without the shoes, I already stand at 5’6. With it, I was what, 6 feet tall?! LOL. After wearing it, I suddenly had this increasing admiration for all the women out there who are able to wear these beautiful yet painful things for hours.
Overall, it was a wonderful experience! I want to watch it again. ❤