thoughts

Threshold

This waiting game is getting me sucked in this paranoia of oblivion. The what if’s are just at bay. I am not flipping out. There’s this part of me that keeps on saying that something is beginning, something is changing.

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Over the past weeks, counting the days, being oblivious of time trying to let my mind off of my expectations and imagining the urban life I will endure again feels like at one point that I haven’t done anything at all with my life. Nothing happened. Nothing is happening. The time I have had my last job until today was like it just happened a few months ago.

Sometimes, I even still feel like having just graduated from college. Readying to face the world for my taking. On the other hand, I am at this race against time burying into thinking what could, should have I done in the past. The regret of unburdening myself to figuring out my exit on these gaps I myself have led on comes up whenever I try to resolve something. I might have not taken myself seriously but who does really. The intention of being serious is out though I have this pensive and serious look in my face. I am not just good with small talks so either I am taken as a snob or a bore. In all of these, I just know what works for me and what I can care less.

True enough, we are our own’s worst critic.

I know what I want now and I am keeping myself to doing just that. I sometimes tend to go in a bubble but living in the now is my banner. Accepting for a fact that memories create what we are to do next. Either good or bad memories, all of it happened entirely in the past. As much as we want to not consider it, what we see today and what will happen tomorrow is more than the reason not it. Cliche, mental but true. It happened and is happening in all of us. It is a constant push and pull. No other way.

So,that’s where I stick myself up because no matter how much of life we’ve been through, when we rebuild and choose our way to resiliency we have those memories and we can always start anew.

 

 

Embracing Getting By

I am about to finish reading The Great Gatsby. It has sat on top of my mother’s magazine stack for I don’t know how long. It has sat on the bed, on the console table, on the couch and on the dinner table. Whenever I get the sense of reading it I just sweep it off from its mundane stationary position. Along it, I have started reading some pages of my growing stacks of unread books.

This is me.

Daniel Dalton/Buzzfeed/Via Thinkstock

Daniel Dalton/Buzzfeed/Via Thinkstock

Most of my books doesn’t cost a fortune. I’ve grabbed them from a thrift shop I frequent whenever I go to the mall. I say I am getting by through reading. I have this growing list of saved links in my Facebook of articles that interests me and they too need some love of reading. I told my bestfriend about this that these reading thing is what keeps me here doing. To get by and not really slack. Maybe I am slacking from the real world of social, of competition, of surviving on my own. Bat shit that is.

I think I am stuck to my high school self. A realization that I’ve been trying to shuffle in my head. I don’t know what growing means. I don’t know what maturity means. Even the coming of age thing. Maybe I am embracing too much of this self that it sometimes drag me to hiding. To hiding and apathy. To just going into my room and locking the door away from it all. Impulse is not my thing. I observe mostly. I see little things and enjoy it unwrapping. Taking time. Steeping. Stewing.

I’ve been stuck to the comforts of wearing walking shorts, plain shirt and sneakers. I feel more like myself with these on my back. But the feeling of being invisible transpires most from it. More like a disguise or blending with the rest. If the need to put myself there I stashed it back in the closet and look for a pair of trousers and dress shirts. I do some growing up too for that instance.

Greed has salted the earth for a long time now. The continuous proliferation of stories brought in by news covered everyday is just demeaning humanity in the sense that what gets brought up are too much of animosity, suffering and lost lives. Disheartening at times that I skip, been skipping news channels or segments for a while now. I am reduced to reading news article now. Less bloody. Less gory.

Like the growing pile of my unread books, getting by in the counter waiting for me to pick them up, dust them off and open its pages. The smell of paper is like cork. With most of my books bought from the thrift shop a lot of them are in pre-owned state, some have dents, tear or scratch on the cover but all are in very good condition. I always make sure that pages are intact and free from any tear. Jonathan Franzen’s Freedom, Jack Kerouac’s On The Road, Bret Lott’s Jewel, Anne Fitch’s White Oleander and J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in The Rye are what awaits me. Some are random authors that interest me with their story and sometimes its cover when I just pass by the bookstore and let time pass without expecting something to have. Leaving it to the wind.

When I feel like soaking in reading time, music is my second company. I discount having my own room much less having a sound proof room I can quietly indulge my book in hand. So my solution is my mobile phone and my third brother’s headphones. Without this the TV volume will only rattle and reverberate in the room. I recently put on my youngest brother’s lamp by the dresser table beside the twin bed to really create that dim lighting and reading nook mood. With all these set up, I am off grid temporarily.

This is my getting by. Thank you.

Intricate

A thatched roof is a usual sight in Asian structures meant for dwelling. People use it as a cheap alternative roofing material that can be even sourced in the thickets of forests remaining in the mountains. This kind of thatch is a leaf, a big leaf you can wrap it around your body. On other parts of my province it is made into a traditional wide-brimmed hat and native fans.

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The intricacies of how this thatched roof is made catches every time my curious eyes. I am drawn to how tedious a worker puts his effort and maybe gathers his crafty hands to carefully place, space together and tightly sewn every leaf with a plastic or dried rattan straws on the bamboo slats frame to shape the roof. For this roof above, it is a square beach hut, though it appears round to imagination, maybe because of the center lumber frame where the rest of the other wooden boards sit.

Seeing this photo in my folder under 2014, I felt the itch again to go somewhere even for just a moment of getting away. The feeling of traveling and reaching a different, maybe a familiar sight heals something inside of you. Wanderlust as they put it. My longing of a place and the journey in going at it seem to absurdly cross my mind this time as I write this post.

As my not-blood-related twin sister and I had one conversation via chat onto having our next beach adventure, we both talked on how we dislike, not much hate, noisy kind of beaches. She added the thought of her not understanding partying at the beach.

Maybe we’ve just grown to the idea of the beach being our runaway seclusion. Our spot, together with the rest of our friends, acting as the silent witness to our mundane thoughts, unexpected laughs and cries, hits and misses of our camping skills especially when starting a fire and the overly dramatic but mostly funny behind-the-scenes after an all-night drink.

How intricate is a beach hut made also transcends into how intricate are each of the lives of every person that seeks its shelter. Much to it acting as protection, it also becomes a cocoon to whatever that person desires—a transition, a liberation to his new start, new perspective, maybe a new life altogether.

carried away

It has been a week since our country was hit by a super typhoon. Over the weekend I haven’t had the courage to veer my attention to watch the news updates on what has become of the provinces that were terribly struck. I just can’t bear the devastation that will unfold my eyes.

I am lucky and glad to have been spared here at the metro of that calamity but a couple of days of the aftermath I was hit. I decided to turn the TV on and watch the news. My chest felt heavy. I was silent. Not really moving from where I’m seated. My eyes glued to the monitor.

Running in my mind, it was just weeks after an earthquake affected Cebu and Bohol pulverizing to the ground heritage churches and sinkholes ate up houses and now this. My eyes continued to be overwhelmed by the devastation. The urge to reach out struck something within me. And instantly I texted my mother at my hometown to donate some of our old clothes de-cluttered from our closets.

My chest felt heavy still as I went on watching news personnel that were too stranded and managed to cover updates and information about what the people suffered and how the typhoon impacted places where they at.

A woman approached the lady reporter and asked if she could pitch in to her surviving relatives. I was silent and hear her out. She said, sniffling, that her children were still missing, her mother’s dead and she called out to someone not to return home anymore because she’s the only one who survived. I was carried away.

The news floundered with all those relief and rescue operations that were badly needed by the people. It saddens me though that with all those suffering some civilians tried looting just to get over with hunger and thirst. It was an overwhelming scenario. It could be from traumatic to shockingly overwhelming feeling these fellowmen have experienced. A lot of them described the experience more like of an end of the world tremble and would-I-survive-this test of life. Indeed it was a second shot at life to those who survived. Numbers of missing are still increasing and collating the numbers of deaths are not yet at par because of the lack of coordination due to downfall of communication lines and inaccessibility and immobility of land transportation due to rubble and debris all over.

Outpouring aid and relief came rushing down to our central airports from 20 countries around the world added on the news. I was stalled. I exactly remembered this feeling, overwhelmed with outpouring support, when my hometown and nearby provinces were also under a typhoon’s eye last 2006. Lahar and landslide victims were the numbers being checked back then. My province endured a month without power and Christmas season was at hand. It was an out of the ordinary holiday season then. Remembering, that day when I was on my way to the university, the bus I was riding caught up in a sudden traffic and I stood up to check on the road if there was really the need to stop. Soon, a convoy of trucks filled the other side of the road. A multitude of aid and relief passed by before my very eyes. That sudden heavy feeling landed on my chest and I felt alienated to that kind of emotion. I just can’t believe it. With that heaviness came a chill at my nape. Again, it was alien to me never really knowing that I am being carried away by the obvious generosity, that tangible help from others.

Resiliency, one trait that’s not alien to me. I was born at my hometown where typhoons marked our daily lives with faith and being strong in every ways you can just to survive the calamity and there’s nothing more to being prepared than not to have something to hold onto in order for you to help with the moving on.

I say, it’s okay not to be okay but not for long. Have faith. Continue to live for your family for I know they will be more than happy to see you stand stronger. I encourage everyone to help each other in ways you can. And with this writing, I hold on to this. So much so that I can move on too with this feeling of heaviness.

My prayers and thoughts to those who perished at the onslaught, rest in peace my Kababayans and to those families who survived, keep it together.

*I will not participate on this week’s Weekly Photo Challenge to give way to this post. I am still at a loss and grieving for my fellow Filipinos who have suffered under Typhoon Haiyan.