due for a check-in

(I’m writing this post from my drafts, dated/abandoned from March of this year… oops~)

Three months since my last entry. I’ve been focusing on starting fresh with the current semester (now midway through coursework) and continuing with my independent creative projects. My ability to stay productive is okay, probably a lot better than last semester.

As of late, I began exploring my local areas to satisfy my fixation for “(sub)urban excursions,” which had to be subdued in light of the pandemic and lockdown. Availing to local libraries to do research, study, or browse new books have been the highlight of my exploration! As someone who rarely went to the library growing up, mainly due to parents’ busy work schedules, it is now an exciting event for me to go to the libraries in my area and borrow a book, instead of buying books at the bookstore to take home (which I still do… but am now practicing a little more restraint).

I am also trying to come back to writing in a journal to unpack the many thoughts that come racketeering in my mind. It did not occur to me how much I hesitated to write in a journal, to refuse to record the day’s events because I would rather forget how mundane my life has become. Or to ignore recurring thoughts that demand interrogation and over-analysis of why they come up. I guess I cannot handle being at this age and facing the many years ahead of hardships in adulthood. Anyway.

This may not be an enlightening update, especially for anyone who is visiting this blog for the first time. I no longer have much of a social media presence like I used to, and this is the only residence I have on the cyberspace. (My blog is linked on my graduate program’s website.) I have further contemplated on removing any other traces of my Internet existence that I do not remember carving in the last few years, because the idea of being perceived transformed into a growing fear… I guess this is due to witnessing how much one can divulge too much about themselves online, then have that material come back to them in unpleasant ways. Is that irrational for me to fear? (Will this post come back to haunt me, should I ever become a public figure?)

I just feel like this blog should remain permanent, as a testament to my life. But I cannot promise that I will be more active in posting. I felt like writing a new post, after a recent class discussion about forms of writing in the digital age. It was like, “Oh right, I have a blog! Let me update it real quick~”

Maybe this will be my final post for the year, in which case: Take care, Reader, happy holidays, and see you next year!

Well, hello…

It’s been about six months since my last entry. I’m never sure if anyone still follows this blog – but if you are and have wondered how I’ve been, I apologize for the absence!

Much had happened within the time frame, but I cannot recall in full detail of what I have been up to. But I am still taking care of myself to the best of my ability. And that’s what really matters,

There was a point where I was burnt out from all the work I’ve had to do with classes and my independent projects, along with the greater emotional tolls I’ve suffered while trying to remain productive and functional. I felt like I was entrapped by mercilessly forces that failed to recognize my humanity – but that sounds a bit dramatic, typing that out~ But in all seriousness, I was feeling hopeless in the past few months until the workload became light.

Recently, I’ve been concentrating on emotional mindfulness by enjoying the hobbies that help me decompress rather than be distractions. I have also tried to change my diet, in the way of balancing nutrients that won’t make me feel sick (acai bowls and fruit & yogurt parfaits have become my snacking desires~). My sleep schedule is still not so great sometimes, as I feel more tired than rested when I wake up. But at least I am no longer taking the melatonin that I would desperately take so I could sleep away whatever troubled me. (I found some loose lea tea at a store, meant to help with sleep, and it actually makes me feel tired at the hours I am usually wide-eyed awake. It has helped me a lot.)

I have also received my first dose of the vaccine, with the second one coming on Monday. I haven’t experienced any serious symptoms, but I do hate the feeling of needles… it’s an actual phobia I’ve had since I was younger, but it is something to overcome for the sake of my overall health. Mentally preparing for the second shot and hoping that I will be alright afterwards.

Enrolled for the fall semester, but only taking one course this time. After what I had experienced last semester, in juggling two courses online (both of which were demanding and heavy material), I feel that it is best if I just do one at a time. Again, I will be remote because I do not feel it is safe enough to commute to the city. Perhaps by next year (maybe next fall), I will go back to campus. I truly miss the city and going to the university.

That is all I have to say for now. I don’t know if I will come back to writing much on this blog, but it will remain up. It is a record of my life lived.

bitter brew

Another check-in, three days after my last entry.

Slowly returning to my thesis project — or, I should refer to it as my “memoir project” because this will technically be more of a CAPSTONE than a thesis… And since this project is coming from a deeply personal place, I found myself feeling some intense emotions because of the potential stories I will have to include to illustrate my overall theme for the memoir. And I am questioning myself if these resurfacing emotions are reactive or reflective…?

It’s been a long time since I allowed myself to sit with these emotions and thoughts. I pushed myself away to focus on other things that were more like distractions to avoid the feeling of discomfort. Currently, I feel overwhelmed in balancing school and independent projects, as the reading list keeps piling up, and all I want to do is read a book for leisure now… then I am reminded how I am slightly behind in my classes, my wandering eyes on the stacks of 500-to-800 page books I have to read and respond to for the next class…

Since transitioning to remote learning, I could never carve a space for deep concentration on work. When I am at home, I am distracted. That is because my home is supposed to be the space where I can decompress from the activities I had to endure outside. Home is where I look forward to dropping my heavy bags, taking a shower, and relaxing with my stories of choice or the foods I don’t have to pay from my own wallet. Since the last time I was in school and now, I don’t know if I am comfortable even being here because of the lines blurring between work and home…

The only thing helping me get through this ordeal is reading Rocky Rivera’s book, Snakeskin. A gift as one of her Patreon supporters, the book came at an appropriate time, when I am re-starting my own memoir project with clouded certainty. So far I have read 4 essays on the artist that I’ve been getting to know recently, and I feel seen as a Filipina woman trying to figure herself out, let alone tell my own becoming story. I’ve realized how much I have used silence as a survival tool, so that some day I would be able to tell my own story without interruption or interference. But the silence I’ve lived in for a long time is one that I am continuously struggling to break out of, which is what makes me doubt a lot about what I am going to do with my project…

I guess that is why I keep returning to this blog space, in case I forget why I am considering writing a memoir in the first place.