Tuesday, January 20, 2015

how i manage my own quarter life crisis

* a forward entry inspired by roundtable challenge's resurrection

several months before graduating, i remember sitting beside a good friend on an abandoned pavement. arms wrapped around my worn out sweats, chest touching my knees while we were sharing warmth from a single cigarette stick.

we still cannot believe that several months from that time, we have to leave the ups and downs of college and start another chapter of our lives. although its not goodbye, we knew that everything will change and somehow our tears were the indicators that we refused to be ready for it.

the first few years were nothing near what we have expected. there were always those murmurs at the back of our heads which keep on reminding us of our frustrations. we always thought coming from a reputable university with good grades, being student leaders and having outstanding extra-curricular achievements would give us better advantage in landing the goals we aimed for. but it didn't. for the companies we applied and worked with, we were nothing but redundant and dispensable gears just to secure the operation is working. but what i hated the most was how we were treated based on our lack of relevant work experience. but i just couldn't blame them.

every time we meet, we were always almost penniless, working and jumping to one job to another which to begin with, we did not even like and we even agreed not to talk about our lovelives. but what were worst was the fact that these were not even the highlights of our quarter life crises.

looking back at it now, so many things have changed. the murmurs gradually became silent. we eventually landed on the path we wanted. she went back to the university to teach while i took the corporate life.

we don't see each other as often as before. we hardly keep in touch and deciding a meeting date or place usually take weeks to do. although we both have these challenges, we still both know that we have each others' backs.

so how did i make it? through several realizations:

first, always have dream. a practical and manageable dream. but make sure you are ready to fail and that you are willing to invest a lot of time and patience in it. dreams are never achieved over night, not even months or years. surprisingly, i have realized mine were usually found in places where i didnt expect them to be - most of the time among hard, difficult and similarly stagnant places.

second, always think that there is no such thing as a "deadlock" job. although something has to pay the rent, people should stay and work for the knowledge and experience and not simply for the money and benefits. despite how stagnant or slow moving a job may be, as long as you are learning and gaining experience- stay; stay like a growing tree. whenever you are thinking of leaving, always ask yourself if you are willing to go back at step 1 in exchange of an additional grand.

third, build a career. build a career not defined by movies and TV series which are usually based on high salary, benefits, nice clothes, cars or fame. build yours based on  your own sense of fulfillment and success.

fourth, never go where the money is going; rather follow where your career goes. at the end, you will realize that money and fulfillment go to whoever follow their career.

fifth, learn to appreciate. although there are people who were born with a lot of goodluck genes, most people were just born. for most people, they achieved there dreams without even realizing it because an actualized dream may happen to be different from how we imagine it. hence, many tend to overlook it and less appreciative of what they have.

in writing this, it doesn't mean that i have already reached my goals. in fact, i am still working on an 8 to infinity shift, with OTTY (Over Time, Thank You) while stealing some time writing this entry. i have no car and i am still renting an apartment with a couple of friends who i need to share the expenses. but i am contended.

i like the feeling that despite the stress and work problems, i can still smile and feel a certain level of fulfillment whenever i go out of work. then i am greeted by a warm embrace when i arrive home.

i like the feeling that time flies because somehow i like what i am doing. and most specially, i know that the knowledge and experience i am gaining will eventually carry me to my next dream. so for those, experiencing this, just stay put and be a tree; patient but growing. its just a phase.

Monday, July 28, 2014

confession of a male concubine

i dont know how long we have been lying down that time. all i could remember was the gentle rhythm of your snore and how i patiently followed the shadows in your wall.

i dont know if i have ever told you how i love looking at your window. amazed on how competing sky-rises have missed blocking such a rare urban sight from the inner view of your room: a moon set.

always finding a certain feeling of loneliness when the shadows have finally disappeared. its time for me to go back home.

i recalled the conversations we had last night after i asked you if feelings bother someone alike when it comes to sex.

you answered. it will be stupid for someone to equate sex with love. you have sex just to answer an urge. you fall in love to build something way more lasting, something more secured (i silently laughed at the last word).

i became silent. the answer could definitely put any hoping soul to their respective places and from their i already knew my part.

i pulled my pants up. hoping it will hold without my missing belt on. but it could only last for the next 12 steps before i have to pull it up again.

a close friend once told me how annoying i could be when i start talking and thinking about life's technicalities. its funny that i have thought of this while asking myself why shoes are designed to fit a specific side of the feet while socks don't.

if one should not equate sex to love, then why are there people who question love just because of sex?

its interesting how people paradoxically put confusing weight on the topic of sex and love. some will say its situational and practical while some say its selfish.

but if someone had sex with another other than his/her partner would that mean s/he doesn't love his partner anymore?

is relationship and fidelity exclusively anchored by sex, by love, by both or by something we always deny to matter?

our social contracts have told us that this is how it should be while the rest of our consciousness would clamor it should have been another way around.

before i could finally close the door, i took one last glimpse at you. your body at your side, pushing your legs to your center, hugging and looking for that warmth. honestly, i always liked this part; for this is the only time you are vulnerable. the only time i can be the one who leaves you behind.

i just hope that later, by the time the one who truly owns that bed space returns, s/he will feel my warmth on those sheets as it hugs across your body. just at the very least, s/he knows that i exist.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

when lovers look love like sex

 "its just simply like that. my priorities have changed. i am working my ass out and the only thing i am asking for is to feel it again."

sometimes i just want to be reminded how we became siblings. you see, my sister just recently moved to the states. she left a family who is dead worried and a boyfriend for five years.

one day, mom called me to discuss about the guy. she told me that he has been calling her almost every hour just to say how much he loves my sister. so its no big surprise, when he said that he wants to marry her. the surprise came when my sister refused and finally called for a cool off.

this drove not only her boyfriend but everyone of us crazy!

you see. my sister and i could probably the closest in the family since we were just a year apart. however, in terms of personality, we are completely opposite. she is religious, i am spiritual. she is bookish, (i want to say) i am street smart. she is sheltered, while i am adventurous. there is not a single thing we share.

"kuya, i am tired. i just do not feel it anymore. when he says he loves me, even if it i know he really mean it, it just dont simply go across. believe me, i tried everything but regardless of what i do, i just cant simply bring back that feeling anymore. everything is not the same. i know you will tell me again, how immature i am. how i am still stuck up with those highschool kilig! how i should have not read those romance novels and watched those teeny bopper films. but i am who i am.and i dont think that will change."


two weeks after, a close friend from college organized a reunion. she wanted to hang out with the gang just like the good times. looking at us over a table of ribs and shacks, i can say a lot have really changed.  but when i was about to say its for the better, she dropped the real reason of the get together.

"i am filing an annulment."

our jaw dropped.

when all of us were green envious of how her life turned out; peak of her career, wife to a surfer artist who owns a business, have the most travelling stunts here and abroad, here she is planning to break up with the man we have always dreamed for her.

"there is no third party neither he did something wrong. in fact, he is wonderful. more than what you guys and i have asked for. but somehow, i just feel like i am not being true to myself and worst to us. he has been a wonderful man but for some reason i cannot appreciate it. its seem like i am being unfair."

she mentioned about getting alienated with all the things she wants to do and the promises around her. she feels like she is like a not cage pet bird. she can fly but too scared to go out. it is as if she is all tangled and tied with an invisible string of considerations.


when many people equate sex to love, we laugh at them. but here are the most of us, not realizing how funny we look at love like sex.

always craving for that insatiable journey filled with paradox, excitement and passion; without realizing how short-lived it is. hence, we continuously repeat the scene, praying that whatever those feelings were will remain. however, they don't.

funny how everyone long for a lasting relationship but refused to accept the fact that these feelings are usually temporary. of course, there will always be a million ways to prolong it, but at the end, it is just a matter of accepting-- settling.

i may never be able to make this understand by my sister neither to have enough guts to tell this to my friend, but i guess, love and relationship are not always for the selfish. its not always about how good it feels like. how it makes our stomach turns, tickles our spine and makes us smile, its a matter of accepting the time when this feeling will eventually fade to open doors for another feeling--- a more "mutual one".

a feeling where impressions and superficialities no longer matter. where the most lavished and sweetest gestures transgress to gentle holding hands or kissing him/her first thing in the morning even without brushing nor gargling. its not simply about what makes you happy but how both of you make each other feel contentment.

love is not like sex. it does not extinguish after orgasm then you can repeat again after each wake up.

just like what gaiman said, omnia mutantur, nihil interit (everything changes, but nothing is truly lost). denying change drawn from fear of leading into nothing, simply means refusing to be someone better.


at the end, love and life is not about lingering the past, but appreciating the present and keep going for tomorrow--- together.