Thursday truths

Philosophy this semester hasn’t really moved me this much until today. While discussing Murdoch’s The Bell, I was faced with something I’ve tried to articulate these past few months.

“To know clearly what you surrender, what you gain, and to have no regrets; to revisit without envy the scenes of a surrendered joy, and to taste it ephemerally once more, with a delight undimmed by the knowledge that it is momentary, that is happiness, that surely is freedom.”

This is where I am at the moment. Constantly searching for the missing piece that will finally shut these feelings out for good. I just want to be able to start thinking clearly again, without any worry or regret. I want a clean slate and I’m more than willing to do whatever it takes.

I’ve crossed out factors one by one. I begun with freeing myself from unspoken words. I was honest; and like what Murdoch mentioned, I had no regrets. I knew that it lasted for as long as we were there and accepted the fact that after that, it would all disappear. It was fleeting but nonetheless worth every inch of courage I consumed. True enough, I felt the freedom that came with being brave–and, with step one, I’m slowly gaining back the feeling of liberty I once lost.

For two weeks now, I’ve started another phase in my life that I hope will lead me closer to my goal. Since I cannot control the things that happen around me–academics, org work, stress, personal problems, relationships (or the lack, thereof), etc.–I’ve decided that there was still one thing I could dictate: the physical. Having no grasp as to where I’m taken mentally or emotionally, sticking to a strict diet and engaging myself in training is the only thing I feel I can get a hold of.

I’m doing this to gain back the confidence I lost last year. As pathetic as this may sound, the consequences of a bad relationship can still be felt even after over a year. With what I’m doing now, I believe that I can prove to myself that I do have the willpower to accomplish everything I set my mind into doing, as long as I do not lose my focus. This switch to a healthy lifestyle will (I hope) redirect me to getting myself back on track in all things. The discipline I will gain and the confidence that will come with this venture is something I’m looking forward to attain. I’m generally okay and happy, yes. But I want more.

I want to become a better person–a more complete one at that–and taste the sweet victory of facing one’s fears.

No more running away this time. It’s time I faced reality.


Where do I go from here

I promised myself to keep moving forward after these past few weeks of constant ‘searching’ for what may or may not be there. The yearbook write-up I had to do last night didn’t help, either. It only left me convinced that I really do not know what I’m doing / where I’m going / who I am. Talks with friends and my mom always clarify things for me but the impact fades right away. I don’t know why I’ve been like this lately. All I know is that I’m itching to find that “para saan o para kanino” that I’ve been looking for.

Three weeks ago, I’ve managed to get myself to compose a handwritten letter as a reply to my friend’s note. I’ve wanted to write letters again and that seemed like the perfect opportunity. I felt a sense of relief after ending the note because it was something I haven’t done in a long time. Letter writing is therapeutic for me and right after that, I realized that I’ve missed the feeling it always gave me: security and the thought of being free. Being free from your bottled up emotions, your thoughts, everything–after every letter I write, I feel like I’m starting anew. And that’s what I felt after that Sunday night.

However, like I’ve said earlier, this feeling of elation only lasts for a short while. I don’t know why I can’t keep it up or why I can’t try to sustain it, even. The feeling of that constant need to find something more is a lingering emotion that, no matter how fast I run away from it, stays to haunt me day by day.

In the past couple of weeks, I’ve also been harboring a certain lack of drive for the work I’m doing. I know that I cannot allow myself to be hurt or my outlook be dictated by a single person, but it’s really affecting the way I do things lately. I promised myself that I would keep it in so that I won’t hurt anyone in the process but this afternoon, I just caved. I was so sure I had it under control but I found myself snapping, anyway. I hate how I let my emotions control me. I know that I have every right to feel this way (or do I?) but I also know that I need to protect something greater than myself. For once, I would have appreciated it if I just shut the f up so that no one else would get involved. But no, my emotions, again, got the best of me.

I hate the feeling of not being heard, not being considered, not being seen. I’ve had that all before and I’ve felt that crappy feeling more than just “a lot” of times. It just sucks that now, I’m being subjected to it all over again in a different environment, with different players, on a completely opposite context. But it hurts just the same. It stings just the same.

When will I ever find peace? I’m supposed to be home, but it certainly does not feel that way.

Graduation, please come soon.

Lessons from a $2 ride

Everyday, the MUNI serves as my own little place of reflection. Cliche as this may sound, I have also found myself here. Today, I tried my best to capture the emotions that come alive when I step inside the 5, 28, 38, 31, 14L, 22, 43, or F–and hopefully immortalize the familiar feeling of hope that it never fails to give me once I step off.

There will be moments when you're left alone--and that's okay. We all need our space anyway.
You meet different people who are, just like yourself, fighting their own battles.
At times you may think you're helpless, but others need your strength.
Complicated stops are things you will encounter and overcome.
And in these stops, you will learn when to put your foot down and say "This is enough."
Other people will have finished the journey you are yet to take and you must use this as your source of hope.
Some doors close--
--while some are left wide open.
A lot of things won't make sense, but there will always be light if you just lift your head high.
You will find inspiration in the most unexpected things-- San Francisco's streets speak of a kind of life you never knew existed.
Finding your way won't be easy, but you'll get by. (You may feel the need to call for your mother at times, but this time--you're alone.)
People are carrying their burdens from Point A to Point B and suddenly your problems seem insignificant next to theirs.
But whatever happens, happens. You just gotta hold on tight.