Life Logs: March 2021

May 12, 2021

This month was the start of the dwindling down of my motivation and my productivity level. Regardless, I have to give myself a pat on the back because I knew how hard I worked on to accomplish all the tasks that were in my to-do list during the past few months. There was even that part wherein I panicked because it seemed like I was running out of tasks for the first time in my life 😲. I think it was also the month wherein the shift that happened the previous month started to sink in, and I had a lot of mixed feelings about it, and most of them were not... nice. And I guess all the inner turmoil and the eventual culmination of a-nightmare-turned-reality event really took a toll in me, and that caused the one-week long bed rest that my body forcefully demanded from me. πŸ˜… Unfortunately, that also resulted with me going to dark places... yet again. πŸ˜”

BUT BUT BUT! Of course I recognize now that most of those thoughts are not real and are made-up by my ever creative mind. I have recovered a lot as of this writing. And as much as there was a dark side in that month, I am focusing on the brighter and more positive side of things. 😊

πŸ’ƒ Experiences
  • Participating in zoom workouts. Through the community that formed around REBEL, I became more physically active and I became more comfortable in participating in online workouts. With the camera on, I attended a few zoom sessions with the REBEL coaches, alongside fellow fitness enthusiasts. I became comfortable even though I looked sweaty and haggard, because that's the whole point -- to burn some calories and become stronger! It was amusing because there was even a time that the zoom host highlighted my video during one session. Good thing I blurred my background, or else they would have seen how messy my room was. πŸ˜‚
  • Cooking scallops with cheese. The ingredients were from my last grocery run. Baked scallops with cheese is one of my favorites, and I tried to replicate the dish that I usually get in those eat-all-you-can buffets. Well, the result was never even close to my target taste. But I still loved it, because the taste of scallops and cheese is there. I just needed to work with my plating, and the proportion of the cheese. πŸ§€
  • Receiving a direct message from THE Magic Liwanag. This is one of the highlights of my month. I suddenly received a message from one of the concert photographers I look up to because he found my blog and read my post about his workshop a few years ago. Of course I got so kilig and suddenly became full fangirl mode. I had to read that blog post again just to make sure I didn't say anything bad about him (good thing there's none really πŸ˜‰). He sent me encouraging messages and cheered me on. Huhu. Thank you so much Magic! I really hope I bump onto you again on the next concert event! I would definitely say hi next time. πŸ˜€

    I just felt so amazed by this experience. This is the wonders brought by the serendipity vehicle, made possible by the blog. This made me even more eager to continue writing on this site, as this is one the medium that will enable me to reach out to like-minded people that I would never be able to connect with in real life. At least in the online world, the possibilities are endless.
  • Attending a Toastmasters session together with the TM President. Upon learning that the current international TM President, Richard Peck, was zoom-hopping toastmaster sessions across the world, I became curious and wanted to check if he would drop by one from the country. I checked his schedule, and indeed he would be! He would only be attending one club, and that was the Maharlika Toastmasters Club. Of course I made sure that I would be able to attend that session.

    And I did! It was a fun experience because I got to observe the session as a guest and saw new faces and strategies in conducting a Toastmasters session. I have to say that Richard is such a formal person, and it seemed like he didn't change a day compared to his profile photos. πŸ˜…
  • Learning more about romantic relationship dynamics. I am currently in this unconventional situation wherein I don't have the time anymore to afford learning life lessons from "bad relationships" and so I am just seeking to gain the wisdom from other people's experiences. Thanks to the Eve's Drop and Ang Walang Kwentang Podcast, I get to attain knowledge that other people had gained the hard way. Of course every situation is different, but I believe the underlying foundation of a good relationship is universal.

    I have this little fantasy that my first relationship would also be my forever, so that I wouldn't have to have an "ex". Until he comes into my life, I am continuing the inner work with myself so that I become the best person for myself, him, and our relationship. πŸ’–
  • Having emotional breakdowns in the middle of the night. As much as I am trying to stay positive, there are still times wherein my fears and doubts overpower me, and that mostly happens during the middle of the night when my mind is most vulnerable. Various thoughts always come to me in waves, and I just become swept away by the strong emotions triggered by them. Some nights were just too much, so I cry it all away. The amusing thing was I always feel okay the following morning. It's as if nothing happened. At least I got to start the day in a new light, transforming that negative energy to a more positive direction.
  • Having a dear friend back. For four months (I'm sorry friend, I was counting again), a friend suddenly went MIA and we didn't hear from him (the normal him specifically) until this month. During the past few months, I was already accepting the fact that he might have already moved on with life and that he already had a new set of friends (who's cooler than us πŸ˜₯) so I just felt so happy when he came back. YAY.
  • Learning some life lessons the hard way. This month allowed me to gain a lot of wisdom because of tactless things that I did. I recognize that I acted out of curiosity, but I meant it when I said it was all done in good will. Some things happened outside my control and I just had to face the consequences of my actions. Damage has been done and I just have to move on from it, with all the learnings that I picked up along the way. I am grateful to that soul who listened to all my deepest feelings during that moment, and also for offering such encouraging words. I will never forget how you made me feel that day. πŸ™
  • Being overpowered by my body. I seldom get sick, but when I do, it's usually a full-blown one. Maybe it's due to the emotional stress that I unexpectedly had to go through. I don't know really. But on that Saturday afternoon right after I did my speech delivery in our Toastmasters session, I found myself complaining about a prominent headache. I headed straight to bed, thinking I was just exhausted because of the speech. Well, apparently it was something greater than that. That night, I didn't feel good at all. Being sick these days could make anyone anxious, because it could be due to the dreaded virus. In my case for the past few months, I didn't go out of the house. If this was indeed the virus, the only way I could have contracted it was through the delivery packages I receive almost every week. πŸ˜… Because I am a worst-case scenario thinker, I wasn't able to sleep that well that time. Actually, I cried helplessly through the night. 

    The next day it was confirmed that I had a fever. I still had that terrible headache, and my joints were aching. Even though we weren't really that sure, we just did precautions and I just isolated myself in my room. My mom would bring me my meals, and I always asked her to wear both face mask and shield. Even though I know she was just worried for me, I treated her harshly because I wanted her away from me and outside of my room as much as possible. I got angry the most when she would touch my forehead to feel my temperature. I think it added to my stress level. πŸ˜… I just didn't want her to get infected also. 

    That period was by far the worse of the worst. For the first time in my life, I 100% sincerely asked the Universe to let the pain and the worries to finally end. I cried every night (huhu I'm getting teary-eyed while writing this) reciting the same prayers in my head. There was that one day that my fever went as high as 39.8C. My fever would get better, then get worse again after the next few hours. I was physically and mentally exhausted.

    My sole reprieve during that time was the Starless Sea book. I read it every time I felt better or just felt too tired to sleep again. After a week, I finally got better. Upon realizing that this was not the end for me yet, I received an understanding from the Universe that, as clichΓ© as it sounds, I still have a purpose in this lifetime. I grabbed my bullet journal and wrote my thoughts. I used to worry about my future, like what's waiting for me out there? Would I even get married or will I just grow old alone? Would I be able to get along with my future husband, if ever? I began to shift these thoughts, and instead I am asking these questions: what good can I contribute to the world? What can I do to help my parents live comfortably for the rest of their lives? How about my siblings? What can I do to help my husband be a better person? Suddenly, things are now in my control and in my hands. In the biggest picture, my goal now is to spread positive energy to the people around me. That is my mantra now.
⛰️ Accomplishments / Milestones
  •  My brother got vaccinated! I felt so relieved after hearing that.
  • I was given recognition of Best Prepared Speech for my Toastmaster Icebreaker speech! Icebreaker speech is the very first speech formally delivered by a Toastmaster member in his/her club. I was so happy and proud of myself!
🧠Game Changers
  • Cold brew. For a year, I have been living off on powdered coffee. Not anymore though! This month, I discovered the taste of cold brew coffee. My mornings were never the same again.
  • Patreon. In the previous month's log, I mentioned receiving a Christmas/New Year's card from Jenny, one of my favorite Youtuber. I felt like I wanted to give back in a more impactful way, and so I decided to sign up on Patreon to support her! Through that platform, I discovered exclusive content from her (vlogs, reaction videos, chord sheets, and audio files). I knew that she was moving to another location in the US this month through her posts on IG, but through her "backstage exclusive vlogs" on Patreon, I was able to see the emotional and stressful sides of this move. I resonated a lot with that specific vlog because I also had that dream (which became my goal this year actually) to move across the globe, in a place wherein I know no one, to start a new life there. But damn, that decision would involve a lot of stress and planning and emotional turmoil to be able to actually pull it off. I'm so very glad that I was able to have that realization, because I'm beginning to see the gravity of the path that I want to take.
  • Standing desk. I'm continuously tweaking my work area, because there are things that are not working for me anymore. I bought an adjustable folding table from Shopee and placed it on my working table. I now have this setup wherein I can work while sitting or standing without moving things around. It's working well for me, because I now have the chance to do some stretching when I am on my standing setup.
  • ANC Podcasts. I found those pocket episodes very useful in keeping myself updated with the latest news, especially about the pandemic. I now listen to the ANC episodes while I eat my breakfast or lunch.
  • Cafe Music BGM Youtube Channel. I'm hooked with their jazz music! It's now a standard routine for me to set up their channel on my machine at the start of my work shift. In an instant, my room gets transformed into cozy cafΓ© mood! I even used their music to set a coffee shop atmosphere for one of our non-work zoom sessions. 😁
  • The Five Why Strategy. I rediscovered this tool as I did some self-reflection about the mishaps that happened for this month. It was a very uncomfortable process, and a hundred times even more when I had to state my side of the story during the confrontations that happened. I hope the other side was able to receive my sincerity about what happened.
  • I stumbled upon this site again when searching for online events to attend to. Through the site, I was able to attend a match-making and a language exchange event. It was an interesting experience. It felt nice to virtually socialize with people that I won't normally encounter in real life. In the post-pandemic world, I would pursue attending these kinds of events to further widen my network and of course to improve my social skills.
🎬 Movie / Series List 
  • Bridgerton (Netflix)
  • Good Omens (Amazon Prime)
  • Cardcaptor Sakura (Netflix)
  • Fruits Basket (Netflix)
πŸ“š Reading List
πŸ’‘ Takeaways
  • Most of the things that I am resolving now within myself are issues from my childhood that I wasn't able to process properly during that time.
  • I am learning to redirect dark thoughts into positive energies.
  • An open, consistent, and honest communication is essential in any kind of relationship.
  • It is important for our mental health to have a support group. Having even just one person to listen to my darkest and rawest feelings became a powerful refuge to my sanity.
  • Just keep swimming.

Know that you are not alone in these trying times. Here are some relevant learning resources about mental health and well-being that you may find useful: 

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