Tell Me It Isn’t Just Me

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Image from Buzzfeed

I have risen from my grave to share with you all my current state of mind.

A little update about my life (,and I’m sorry that I feel like what you see most on my on-again-off-again blog are updates rather than something with more content):
– still studying languages in the University of the Philippines (which I would not like to brag as much, but more on that for another post)
– still dancing (yey!)
– I turned 22 eleven days ago hihi
– still no job (but I’m trying to work on that)

With that being said, notice the keyword «STILL». Although, I love what I’m doing (especially the dancing – There is no way that that’s ever going to end), I feel like I’m caught at a stand still. I feel like this happens to me at least once a year, and I just forget all the time and panic when one of these “mid-life crises” arise. Hah. I don’t know what it is, but lately I’ve just been feeling a tad bit robotic. I get up, get ready for school, go to school, come home from school, watch shows, surf the net, sleep. (I know, I know, if I want something to change, I literally have to change something, but just hear me out.)

Another keyword, rather, key-number is «22». I keep thinking I only have 8 years left ’til I turn 30, and God knows what’ll happen to me in those 8 years. Yikes! I feel like if I started sooner, if there could be any “sooner”, I would’ve done more things…just things in general.

I believe that these feelings always come up when I have a big decision to make in front of me that I am not even 20% sure of making. The semester coming to a close, and I have yet to decide if I want to study for another semester or apply for a job at the Department of Tourism (which is my only plan A so far). I’m on the fence because although I still want to advance on my language skills, I feel like I can do it now on my own without having to enroll in a university (or now enroll in the language centers in the city), but I don’t know how that will work out time and money-wise. (ayudenme). I still have a lot of thinking to do, still have a lot of advice to get, and all that.

But please, tell me that I’m not alone in this. Tell me that “It’s OK, it’s normal”. Tell me it isn’t just me.

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18 Things We Can All Start Doing To Make Our Lives More Exciting

Thought Catalog

1. There’s that old saying, “Dance like nobody’s watching.” Forget that. Put on your headphones, crank that song that pumps you up, and dance/strut/own it
as if all those strangers you pass by forked up unbelievable amounts of money to come see you sell out a stadium.

2. Make a list of everything you fear the most: the worst-case scenarios, the phobias, and those things that keep you up at night when everyone else is sleeping. Look at them all written down. As you read each one back to yourself, realize the world didn’t stop turning. Your fears aren’t holding back the universe, only you.

3. You know that cute barista, or the acquaintance you run into at parties, or the person you’ve been secretly crushing on for ages? Swallow that fear of rejection and ask them out. They say no? Ouch, but you’ll be okay. They say…

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Manly Ballet… 5 misconceptions about male ballet dancers

A Ballet Education

Male ballet dancers get the worst reputation… And there is a reason why…

Honestly, it comes down to tights and a dance belt and for some reason that equates to effeminate, which equates to gay. But, if you look at the spectrum of dance, ballet is probably the most manly when it comes to repertory, with the exception of Dresden SemperOpera’s version of bluebird… That one is just… well… flashy… (click here to watch the youtube video)

The roles for men in classical ballet are the following: prince, cavalier, slave, pirate, prince, cavalier, lover, prince… you get the gist. Because of these roles, the vocabulary is limited, say compared to a jazz dancer. Now, because the way the music was written, and male variations are these extremely heavy, weighted variations, the steps a male ballet dancer usually performs are… well limiting. While women are known for their pointe shoes and flexibility, male…

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17 Things To Expect When You Date A Girl Who’s Used To Being On Her Own

15. Expect her not to need you, and not to believe in needing much of anything at all. But she’ll want you. And when she does, it’ll be the most exhilarating feeling you’ve ever experienced.

Thought Catalog

1. Expect her to do her own thing often and without letting you know, at least at first. It’s not that you don’t matter; it’s just that she’s learned to love doing what she wants, when she wants, and without asking permission or informing anyone.

2. She’ll probably want to take things slowly because she’ll not be used to all the attention. Don’t think she doesn’t like you enough, she probably likes you a lot; it’s just all new to her.

3. Expect her friends to be overprotective of her and to be suspicious of you at first. They’re not used to her being with someone and they’ll want to make sure you’re the kind of guy who will treat her well.

4. She’ll have a hard time letting you do things for her. Try not to take this personally. She’s just used to taking care of herself and it’ll…

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23 Things Only People Who Love Spending Time Alone Will Understand

Thought Catalog

Sascha KohlmannSascha Kohlmann

1. A weekend in which you have no plans, no responsibilities, and nowhere at all to be, ranks as one of the best weekends you’ll ever have.

2. Sometimes friends will try to make plans with you and you have no reason to decline except for the fact that you just want to be alone that day. (Your plan is to have no plans, people need to understand that by now, right?)

3. A good album, book, or television show can keep your attention far longer than any party, club, or bar could.

4. Going away to a remote cabin in the middle of the woods to just exist for a period of time sounds like the best idea for a vacation that you can think of.

5. There is nothing more exciting than planning a long, solo road trip, because you know you’re going to be able…

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Cruising

What’s going on with my life since my last post? Was I able to enroll? Are the professors giving me hell? Am I regretting my choice of going back to school?

School started a few weeks ago (and I guess you can infer that, yes, I was able to enroll YEY : ) , but the enrollment process has been THE most tiring and frustrating one I’ve ever had to encounter in my life.), and everything’s just going steady and smooth.

I’m taking both French and Spanish classes, but I wasn’t able to enroll in the classes that I should take to continue on with what I already took up in Ateneo because the European Languages Department at UP said that I had to go back a week after the regular enrollment schedule to ask (again) if I can take the classes that I needed to take. If they decide that I can enroll, I have to take a placement test. But here’s the thing, they’re not sure that I’m going to have a slot left by the time that I would’ve gone back to talk to them because regular enrollment finished already, and when I saw the slots on the computer, there were only 1 or 2 slots left in all the classes. So, the woman who I talked to just advised me to take the basic classes again for review and mastery. So, that’s what I’m doing now.

My schedule’s pretty light. My classes are from Tuesdays to Fridays. My day starts at 10:00am, and I get off at 2:30pm everyday. Not bad at all. I’ve made a few friends, but I don’t hang out  with them during my break because they have their own schedules, cliques, etc… I’m fine with that. I’ve always been the type of person that likes to be with people but can also survive when I’m on my own. During my break, which is an hour and a half, if my best friend is free, we have lunch together or I usually go to the nearest Starbucks to rewrite my notes, do homework, fix my schedule, read, draw…whatever really.

I’ve joined two organizations in UP: Le Club Français and UP Dancesport Society. I can’t wait for the org activities to start because then at least I’ll have more things to do, and I get to meet new people which is always a plus.

Hmmmm what else? Aside from school, I’m still dancing yyeeeeey! I’m rehearsing with Miss Jill Ngo, the best belly dancer in the country, for a belly dance recital on October 11! I’m really excited for that one : )

But right now, I’m just cruising, really. I’ve set my mind to think and focus on my goals everyday, and I feel like I’m at a good place right now. We’ll see.

‘Til the next entry, xoxo

 

Date A Man Who Loves You More

Thought Catalog

ShutterstockShutterstock

[tc-related post=”305050″]

Date a man who loves you more. Meet him young, at a time when you’re not old enough to realize how precious he is. Fall in love carelessly. Start to think he must be the one, begin building a life with him. Become entangled with his family and him with yours, believe he will be the father of your children in later years. Date a man who loves you more because he will love everything you hate about yourself. The man who loves you more will rub your feet when you’re tired and take your cousins out for ice cream because he is simply that kind of man. He will abandon his plans to come rub your back when you’re sick without you ever having to ask. The man who loves you more will allow you to grow as a person without taking space. He will be…

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Freedom In Their Eyes

A couple of days ago, Ramadan officially started. Now, if some of you don’t know, I teach Spanish at an international school here in Manila. It is owned by a Turkish Institution, so naturally, our bosses are Turkish and are also, Muslim. A number of students also are Muslim. So, a lot of people from the school practice Ramadan.

I got to chat with two of my students, Emine and Prenses (I love their names!), during lunch break one day. They wanted to stay in their classroom instead in the cafeteria because they couldn’t eat just the same. I decided to keep them company, and I thought that would maybe distract them from feeling hungry. We talked about a lot of things. They shared stories about school & other teachers, asked about my life outside of school, and naturally, I got curious about their lives and their religion.

Emine wears a head scarf, and Prenses doesn’t. On the first day, I’ve always wanted to ask why doesn’t Prenses wear one because I thought that it was required for all Muslim women. Prenses plainly said that she doesn’t want to wear one because she doesn’t feel comfortable. Then, Emine, being the outspoken girl that she is said, “It doesn’t matter. It’s your choice anyway. If you feel free with it, then good, if you feel free without it, then it’s okay. Last year I didn’t wear a head scarf, but this year I am. It’s my choice. It’s not right if someone else tells you what to do.”

And then, that got me thinking. I’ve had conversations before with a couple of friends about how enclosed some Muslim women might feel because they have to cover themselves up. We’ve talked amongst ourselves about how they may be feeling miserable that they cannot express themselves like we can. I mean, let’s face it, media and people that we talk to feed us the information that makes us think that ‘okay, if you’re a Muslim women, you’re automatically forced into this stereotype’. And, this goes out to everyone, I think. For every type of religion, we think that the Christians are like this, the Buddhists are like that, so on and so forth.

Then, maybe, not all Muslim women feel deprived of something. Maybe that is how they show that they are free or how they choose to express themselves by wearing the head scarf and covering themselves up. As Emine bluntly put it, ‘it is your choice’.

I felt really stupid for just realizing this now. But, I’m glad I did though!  The job that I have teaches me a whole lot of things too yeeeeey 🙂 If other Muslim friends come across this post, I’d like to hear your thoughts and opinions! I’d love to learn more! 🙂

 

If I had a twin sister…

It’s a twin thing. Thank you, I love you, and I miss you.

charm & courage

it would be this girl riding the bicycle with me: Jeannie! We look like twins, right? : P

Now that she has just turned twenty, here are 20 things about her that I love and miss.

1. She loves yellow. Everytime I see an extra extra bright yellow top, pants, cardigan or anything that screams yellow in a store, she always come to my mind. She is little miss sunshine, like literally, when she enters a room.

2. “Pasiklab!” It must be her favorite word or expression. I miss her say it! I actually hear it in my head right now. haha

3. She has really nice hair. It’s so shiny and always in place! If there was a Miss Beautiful Hair pageant, she’d totally win it.

4. She loves Pride & Prejudice! I think she has a collection of different versions of the book, which I want to…

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LAST CANCER UPDATE

I wrote Cancer Update 3.0 5 days ago (March 12, 2013). I told you guys that we couldn’t do anything anymore and that we just had to wait for my uncle to leave us when its time. A lot has happened then.
**This will be a long post because I will try to be as detailed as possible. 

March 13, 2013

We visited my uncle just as we usually do. He was transfered out of the ICU and placed in his own private room. All my family members from my dad’s side were there except my uncle’s kids because they still had work. We were all there talking and just enjoying our time together with my uncle near us. Little by little, everyone started going home, saying their goodbyes. My dad, mom, siblings, together with two of my aunts and a cousin and I decided to go out for dinner. My uncle’s son was assigned to stay in the hospital for that night. We left at around 10pm. My dad told my brother that they would go back to the hospital at around 11pm to give a pulse/oxygen intake reader for my uncle to use instead of the ECG reader.

At 11pm, we were finished with dinner, and we went our separate ways. My dad and brother dropped me, my mom and sister at home, got the pulse/oxygen level reader and drove back to the hospital. At 11:30pm, they were back home and everything was normal.

Things went downhill from 12:15mn, March 14, 2013.

March 14, 2013

12:15a.m. – My dad was sleeping, I was playing with my younger sister, and my brother just walked into my parents room, and my mom was checking if my sister’s homework was correct.  All of a sudden, my mom got a call from my cousin, Jean (my uncle’s daughter), that my uncle went under cardiac arrest. I remember looking at my sister and we both had a what-do-we-do expression. My dad was getting dressed, my brother was ready to leave, my mom was getting her purse and I decided to go with them too. My sister had to stay at home because she had to go to school in the morning.

12:30a.m. – We arrived at the hospital. My dad didn’t even get to turn off the engines yet when my brother and I opened the doors immediately and ran to my uncle’s room as fast as possible. We passed by the ER Room, the cashier, the hallways – we passed by so many people looking at us in despair because they knew that something has happened to whoever we were running to in the hospital at 12:30 in the morning. I reached the private rooms first, and I saw my cousin, Mark (my uncle’s son), almost in tears right outside my uncle’s room. I gave him a big hug, and he left because he was trying to contact his sister. I looked into the room and all I saw were these people with white coats. Honestly, I thought he was gone because they were just standing there. I couldn’t go in because I didn’t want to see him yet. My mom arrived and went in. She talked with the doctors and nurses. My dad showed up next. He told me and my brother to comfort Kuya Mark because at this point, he was already crying hysterically. He thought the same thing I did.

12:40a.m – I hear the clacking of slippers against the hospital floor, and I knew immediately that Ate Jean was rushing to see her dad. My brother, Kuya Mark and I ran to her. Ate Jean stopped at the doorway and froze immediately. Kuya Mark hugged her because she was just hard like a statue. She might’ve thought the same thing I did. My uncle’s wife arrived a few minutes after Ate Jean did. She couldn’t believe her eyes either. She screamed a deafening scream because she thought, like I and my cousins did, that the love of her life was gone.

12:45a.m – My mother informed my uncle’s immediate family that the doctors were able to revive him. I was trying to calm my cousins down while my dad and brother were seated right outside the room. All the doctors were filing out of the room, and it was our turn to get a good look at him. There was blood everywhere, and he looked more helpless than ever. I never really liked to look at my uncle like that. One, because I didn’t want to see him all lifeless and stuff and two, he looked so much like my dad I just didn’t want my dad to be ever in that position.

1:00am – My uncle’s immediate family were talking to him. They were saying their goodbyes and that they would love him forever. One of my aunt’s arrived too (Tita Emmy). At this point, we were just sitting inside the room (Except for my dad, he always stayed outside. I think he didn’t want me or anyone else to see him cry. Also, he didn’t want to see his brother that way) staring at each other, staring at nothing. The doctors gave my uncle medicine to help his heart continue working, and they also attached a machine ventilator to help him breath. The only thing you could here in the room were sobbing, the beeps from the ECG machine, and the sound of the machine ventilator. It was eerily unpleasant. My family made a decision that if ever her were to have a heart attack again or if the medicines ran out, that the doctors were to not revive him anymore. Basically, we just bought 12hours more with my uncle. That was the most important 12 hours of my life.

2:00a.m. – Everyone decided to sleepover at the hospital, except my dad. We told him to rest at home. We rented another room for us to sleep in. I don’t think anyone could really sleep at the time. I tried, but an hour later, I walked back to my uncle’s room.

3:00 – 7:30a.m.  – I found out that the cardinals elected a new pope. We decided to watch the happenings in Rome. We told my uncle we had a new pope and what was going on in Rome. I kept holding his hand the whole time. At around 4am, we found out who the pope was, and my mom told me to get some sleep while she and Tita Emmy will stay in my uncle’s room to keep watch. I was only able to get some sleep at around 5:30am.

7:30a.m – My mom woke me up and told me that my uncle’s medicines were almost finished. I immediately got up, washed my face, brushed my teeth, and walked sleepily to my uncle’s room.

8:00a.m. – My uncle’s medicines were completely finished. I braced myself because I thought that once the medicines were gone, he would start to get weak. Apparently, the medicines stayed in his system for 5 more hours. My uncle’s immediate family started to cry again so everyone started to cry too. Ate Jean called her son on the phone. She wanted him to talk to his grandpa. Her son knew that his grandpa was very sick. This was what he told my uncle: “Goodbye, grandpa. I’ll miss you. You’re an angel now. Watch over me and Rian (his sister). I love you very much.” When I heard that, I tried so hard to hold back my tears. At least Gabby was able to know his grandpa.

9:00a.m – 12:30p.m.  – That was the longest wait of my life. We kept talking to my uncle, holding his hand…we just made him feel that his family was there for him, fighting with him. There wasn’t much that we could do but wait. My dad was always outside the room. I went out occasionally just to check up on him. I knew he was hurting so much inside. Ate Jean’s husband arrived and informed us that he brought the kids with him. They were inside the car with their maids. My brother and I wanted to say hi to them so the three of us (me, my brother and Kuya Riel) walked to the parking lot. I was so happy to see their bright faces smiling up at us. We stayed in the parking lot for 10 minutes. We went back to my uncle’s room at 12:30p.m.

12:30p.m.- 1:05p.m.  – “His heart rate dropped to 35.” The smile from when I saw my niece and nephew immediately disappeared. At the same time, my uncle’s eldest daughter, Ate Farrah, just arrived from Lingayen (about a 2 hour drive to our city). We all knew that it was close. I kept watching his heart graph on the ECG machine. It stayed on 35 for a while. I’d like to believe that he waited for his eldest daughter to arrive before he said goodbye. A couple minutes later, his HR went up to 50, dropped to 35, went up to 40, dropped to 35, dropped to 27, then 23, then, 19, then —–.

1:05p.m – I saw how slowly the color in him was fading away. I saw how slowly the life in him was disappearing. That was the first time had someone pass away right before my eyes. I decided to leave the room with one of my cousins, and accompany my dad outside. My cousin and I were both crying and my dad was being strong for all of us. My dad told us to pick ourselves up because we had to be strong too for the family. We had to help out in any way that we can. I did that immediately.

UN-TIMED:
I entered the room and heard the eery long beep in the room signifying that a life has ended. The doctors were removing the medicines and tubes attached to his nose and throat. All my family members left the room one by one and moved on to the other room that we rented to understand what just happened. I stayed in my uncle’s room to help pack up his stuff and everyone else’s things.

The hospital people cleaned my uncle up, wrapped him up like a mummy and brought him down to the ground floor because they were to bring him immediately to the funeral parlor.

And just like that, my uncle was gone. It didn’t even feel as if we waited for almost 24 hours. It felt much much shorter than that. Tita Emmy told my mom that my brother broke down in the room that we rented. He said that all the brothers of my dad here in the Philippines are gone now and he couldn’t help but think that our dad could be gone anytime too. I try to avoid the thought of my dad, mom or anyone else dying because I always think of my little sister and how she will handle things.

We were all at the funeral parlor at around 4p.m. My mom and I were the one’s choosing the coffin. After that was finished, my mom and I decided to go see my uncle being embalmed. Now, before you all go WTF YOU WANTED TO SEE YOUR UNCLE BE EMBALMED YOU ARE ONE SICK MOTHERFCKER, I am not scared about that sort of stuff. I actually think its very interesting.

My family decided to go home and shower because we stayed overnight in the hospital with barely any sleep and were still wearing the same clothes the night before. After my mom and I cleaned up, we, plus my dad headed back to the funeral parlor. My brother passed out on his bed. He was too tired.

Up until today, images of my uncle on his hospital bed randomly pop up in my head. I am still very sad that he is gone. I always think about how my dad is doing. Tito Billy was the last brother he had here in the Philippines. All of their other siblings are in the US. My dad will have to act as sort of a dad to my everyone here now. At least three of his siblings will be flying from the States to visit. I hope that’ll liven up his mood. xxx

Rest in Peace, Tito Billy. At least now you are no longer suffering, no longer worrying, and you are now at peace with Lola, Lola, Tito Ocay, Tito Bing and Tito Pat. 

Thank you to, you, who made it to the end of this post! 😀 May your live your life to the fullest. Take care.

xoxo
Samantha Jean