Day 20 – Another hard habit to break

Something made me shudder in delight before the last hours of weekend. Anyway, I know I’m giving myself again another set of  FALSE HOPES. But if something makes me happy, can I force myself to dismiss the feeling that everyone deserves?

Between the heart and mind, which one is easier to battle? Then again, I’m on that stage when my heart seems to have its own mind again. Phew!

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Day 19 – For Lani

Dear Lani,

I feel that I’m worst friend now because I can’t do anything to at least make you feel better. At this point, I know there’s nothing I can do lessen that pain and sadness. Just the thought of losing any of my parents already make me cry. How much more when the day comes that I have to finally let them go. There’s nothing in the world devastating than losing the people to whom you owe your life.  It’s equal to losing part of yourself and I know a lifetime will never be enough to accept that the two people you most love have been taken away.  If I were in your shoes now, there will never be a day when I wouldn’t cry. Everyday is a struggle of getting over mourning and grieving.

Call this as an attempt to divert your attention, but please accept this post as my futile effort to make you feel that you are loved, you deserve to be loved and you have made a lot of people feel loved. I was thankful that God chose me to become one of those people whom you showed your overflowing love. You know me, your pathetic friend badly needed all the love and attention of her few close  friends.

Three years ago, something bad happened before my birthday and Christmas. You know the story of how a careless stylist almost ruined my crowning glory. As I wasn’t used to arguments and dealing with people below, I ended up crying each night. I have other friends but only a few responded, understood or at the very least, listened to my cries and worries. But you were an exception. A text message was enough for you to listen and make me feel that I wasn’t alone, stupid and I did the right thing.  You just don’t know how much comfort you gave me that time. As they say, you were one of the few people who served as my security blanket.

When for the first time, I discovered that my heart is capable to love… you were there. You witnessed how I went crazy, annoying and pestering. You were an older sister but I now realized that you were almost a mother to me. You tolerated my stupidity and immaturity to some extent. However, I was really stupid enough not to listen when you told me to let go. You were the one who opposed of sending that text message. But as a mother who only wants the best for her kids, you had the patience to tell me to pursue my last resort with a precaution of that “smiley face.” You know that only the two of us can understand what I mean. 🙂

Most of our good old friends already have their own life.  Family and work priorities separated the once used to be as the Happy Saturday group. I suddenly miss those days… But you remained with me. You never forget me. You were the only one left among the many that were once part of the group. Perhaps, the fact that it’s only the two of us who are still single, lousy and carefree can explain why we remained with each other.  But I believe that real friendship knows no boundaries.  Thank you for being with me. I will never get tired of expressing my endless gratitude at least here in the blogosphere.

I used to have my group of best friends. Unfortunately, I chose to lose them. You taught me to lose those excess baggage in our life and make room for those things that rather makes us happy and relieved. You were right because the spare room later made way for you. You became one of the best friends I’ve been wanting in my life.

My best friend was always there in the times I needed her. But this time that she needs me, I feel so bad because the least I can do, I failed to do..

Please remain strong my best friend. I need you too. As your parents went ahead, there’s another room waiting to be filled in your life. I know that nothing could ever replace your parents in your heart. But I hope that you will also allow yourself to be loved and make that room for someone.. out there 😀 But no matter what happens, your immature friend will always be here. You know that I’m just a text message away.

Forgive me and I’m looking forward on the day when we can finally laugh out loud and share those endless stories over a great food and shopping again.

I miss one of the best things that happened in my life.

Day 18 – My past that is so unwritten

A friend recently wrote a melancholic post. She particularly shared her sentiments over the man she used to (and I believe she still)  love and how she felt after learning that he will soon be married. I’ve never been to her shoes. But surely, I know how it feels to be depressed.

Her post was so infectious so I ended up contemplating of my own pathetic and stupid love story. Or should I slap myself to remind me that I never had a real one anyway.

For those who have been reading my blog, you can perhaps feel that I seldom write about this aspect of my life. For two reasons, I never had a  movie or a novel worthy story to share.  I’m also afraid that the person will be able to read me and I just can’t imagine the succeeding events that are about to unfold. Lastly, a number of my students have discovered this blog. I wouldn’t know to react when a kid will suddenly utter something that would remind me of my blog.

But since I started this post, let this count as one of the rarest instances when I finally had the courage to write everything.  Allow me to share my first story.

We were never introduced. It was me who took all the means to know him. When I shared him to my friends, most of them gave me one advice: better to try and fail than regret because of never trying. Nothing can be more painful than saying, it could have been. Though I have one friend who strongly opposed everything, she never appealed to my senses.

It went like a year of chasing and enabling all means for our paths to cross. I intentionally maneuvered situations for us to be given the opportunity to at least talk. That was my only wish then, a chance.  After some months, I felt that time is no longer on my side.  Those counted sight seeings will not work out. My good old friends even connived with me for that one great dinner. However, things obviously never get in the way. I was also placed in a situation when I thought that my life would be over. So I did the last pathetic thing, I sent the text message that changed everything.  I gave my self false hopes. I held on to something I know wouldn’t work. I ended enduring self inflicted wounds.

It was a tragic story on my part and obviously the opposite for him. I committed something unforgivable and I guess, everything was later beneficial to his relief.

There was no point of getting over him because who am I to claim ownership to something I never had anyway? But each month after the incident became a silent struggle to forget and forgive myself. I felt so insecure, bad and the ugliest. My self imposed suffering and hatred further made me stereotype all men.  I conditioned myself that men only care for outer looks than the inner nooks.  I’m still firm in carrying such belief. It’s just that the main difference now is that I learned how to not become so much affected by the painful reality.

The painful past I made will be there forever. However, time and distance contributed in my much needed stage of moving on and finally closing that chapter of my life. I was able to finish my MBA, opportunities in my career came, I rediscovered blogging, and I accomplished things I never thought I could. I gradually forget and forgave myself.

Fast forward now, I thought everything was over. Destiny wanted to test me and our paths crossed again. I was given another opportunity to rekindle and work out everything. If this happened years ago, I would have reacted differently. But things are no longer the same. I believe I’ve changed. I admit that he still affected me. But  I was firm of not giving in to the temptation.  At this point, I believe I’ve done my share. God knows that as well. If there will be second chances, if it was meant it, I’ll let destiny work on its own now.

Day 17- Some random thoughts about work

I believe I’m still in my early years of working. It’s been 5 years but it feels like I’ve already worked for a lifetime. I’m not however complaining. I’d rather get tired of working than doing nothing. Working has also opened doors of opportunities that I never thought that I would reach. Less than 10 years of working, equipped with a masteral degree, and I’m still a rank and file employee. I confess that this frustrates me at some point. However, I learned over time that promotion and position are not the full measures of success.

Promotion is advancement in position. It’s great to be promoted, no doubt about that. It’s a dream of every employee. However, I have observed over time that Promotion can be classified as hard worked or hard crawled. Hard worked promotion is priceless. What’s further best with hard worked promotion is the accompanying respect gained from superiors and subordinates. As with the hard crawled promotion? I believe this is one of the best paths to self destruction.

If promotion was hard worked, the succeeding tasks and responsibilities will be done easier especially if requires collaboration with other departments. With the accompanying respect and trust of your colleagues, support, coordination and carrying out of tasks and responsibilities would be easier. On the contrary, the questionable promotion breeds more negativities. How can you generate cooperation and participation if your colleagues don’t even support your existence?

But in any case, if promotion was a product of some doubtful means, the entire workforce has no choice. At the end of the day, we have to make things work. Everyone deserves a chance to prove himself. I believe that at least in our organization, my colleagues give everyone a fair chance. Work and make things happen, you will eventually lose that stigma of questionable promotion. And in my seven years of working, I’ve seen one or two colleagues who were able to savor their own moment of redemption. They worked hard, smart and more importantly, they lived and worked with the value of integrity.

Much of integrity is determined by honesty and truthfulness. At work, these two values are highly important, especially in our company that upholds the teaching of the Catholic Church. If your position was already tainted with inconsistencies, the least that you can do is to work RIGHT. But in reality, what is often perceived as the “should” doesn’t prevail. Over the past days, I had my own taste of how some questionable positions crossed the borders of integrity.

As much as I wanted to detail the events that rattled me over the past four days, I feel that it would be best if I keep things to myself. What I would rather share are a few things that made me thankful and gave me a new set of realizations about work and life.

Composure never fails to save the day. I have proven that this principle never fails to work in those instances when someone is trying to engage me in a spat. For the record, I received one of the hardest slaps of harsh words in my career this week. Award!!

I have been provoked many times (pardon some self proclamation) but I can humbly claim that I never joined their game. I never added fuel to their fire, in like manner that I never sparked any fire. My silent personality is perhaps the main reason why I maintained my hard earned composure. I guess my few years of teaching also made me learn to lengthen my patience. Patience planted from teaching served me well and all those experiences when composure successfully prevailed conditioned me to maintain this attitude.

Whatever happens, always stick with the truth. One of those many values that are always easier said than done. I wouldn’t claim total compliance with this principle. I have my own share of concealing some truth especially when expected accomplishments of the office are concerned. We cover up for things that were left unaccomplished. Hiding the truth is already an offense. However, when hiding the truth meant pulling down some innocent beings to your self-imposed misfortune, it mutates to a disaster and later yields more innocent victims. Yes, I became one of the major casualties of some intentionally maligned information. I was placed at the losing end. I confessed that the situation made me furious to the extent that I wanted to finally break free from my hard earned composure. But in God’s grace, the good in me prevailed. Diplomacy, professionalism and values reigned in me.

After the incident, I realized that in a way, everything that happened was still a blessing. I now know what kind of person they are. I was tested. I was able to show my principles. More importantly, three things surfaced

  1. I learned a lesson.
  2. I was able to teach them their much needed lesson.
  3. I was able to send my message the way I wanted it to be delivered.

I may be caught as the catch basin of a storm. I was the unfortunate underdog. However, I know that I can still walk out with my head held up high because I allowed composure and truthfulness to come our way.

Day 16 – What is your typical day like?

Most of the days of my last seven years are spent at work. Nothing is really unique and extraordinary.  I’m your typical rank and file employee who works 8 hours a day and 5 times a week. Before, after or during my breaks, I juggle as a college instructor. Office-colleagues-boss-students, they form my typical work week.

I report to a small office, literally and figuratively. It’s just me and my boss in a teeny tiny space everyday. Except for my boss, I don’t have teammates. However, this doesn’t mean that I don’t have interaction with my colleagues. Much of our tasks require coordination with other departments. Hence, I also have my equal share of adventures and misadventures with my colleagues.

Our office is directly reporting to the Office of the President.  Having the President’s prestige, I should feel privileged with that structure. Not everyone could see the Company’s President everyday. In real practice though, I can count the situations when I had a direct encounter with the President.  It’s only my boss who has access to the President. Me? I’m settled in my small yet productive niche.

My work is quite far from home. It would take more than an hour of travel, traffic and transfer to different forms of transportation before I reach the workplace. As much as I want to drive myself to work, my screaming savings account couldn’t afford to acquire even a previously owned car. Hence, I have to endure commuting everyday.  Commuting brings me some unnecessary stress. However,  I admit that there are days when I enjoy my commuting in the company of the different faces I encounter each day. Call me weird, but I love observing my fellow train passengers.

On regular work days, I spent hours in front of my computer. It’s an everyday struggle to be productive, despite the presence of a fast internet connection.  Most of my tasks evolve on reviewing of accomplishment reports of each department. Sometimes I write reports and do whatever the boss assigns. One thing that differentiates our office is the absence of the routine tasks. I cannot predict my work on the next weeks to months.  Whatever projects the President desires, it’s passed on to my boss and I later have my share of the work pie.

I used to report at 8 am but my habitual tardiness caused to shift my schedule to 8:30. Years after, I found myself battling the 8:30 am schedule.  And no, I will no longer adjust to 9:00 am. I’m off at 5:30 pm but most of the time, I extend hours to compensate for my lousy tardiness.

When I have classes, my schedule becomes a bit rattled. On the past semesters, I teach either before or after office hours. This school year was different because I was asked to teach in between office hours. I forgo my lunch break to accommodate a class that can no longer be handled by a full time faculty. This has always been how my teaching assignments are determined. After all the full time faculty members are given their respective classes, whatever is left is given to me. And honestly, I don’t have problems with this system. They are still teaching opportunities.

Three to five years from now, I would like to believe that my work will still be the same. The nearest situation that can change my monotonous work life is when we have a new president or my boss is given another job. Perhaps, when I finally get terminated from my punctuality issues or I’m forced to take in a new job, everything will definitely change. But to be honest, stability was something I never observed in my job. It’s not impossible that I’ll wake up tomorrow and a whole new saga of my life is just waiting to be written.