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It's been an entire week of trying to write something deep, something wistful about turning 24. I have had drafts of a blog entry sitting on my task bar for how many days now. Somehow I can't bring myself to finish any one of them.

So, instead, I'll let a song do the thanking, and the feeling, and the appreciating. Sometimes, life takes turns that brings us to directions we never imagined taking. We lose people we love, some we can replace, some we can never recover from. But for everything that changes, life - all its turmoils notwithstanding - goes on. And we continue living it. We have no choice. But, there is beauty in consciously letting go of whatever weighs us down. There is grace in surrender.

Let life take me wherever it pleases. All hands on deck, I'm ready to sail.

"The real life, love, is under the mirror of the surface
So cut my cord I want to know how deep we can take it
See the thing you've been chasing honey
You'll never find it wearing a life vest
You gotta risk your neck, know in your heart it will be worth it

So here we go head first
No regrets and no rules
We can stay as long as we want
Slow dancing in the darkness
And all I know is I wanna be here with you from now on

It's been my fashion to keep my head dry and get my feet wet
Step by step I've been letting you lead me towards the deep end
Well I learned my lesson, honey
Just when you think you're on adult swim
Is precisely when somebody shows you to the ocean

— "Aquaman" by Walk the Moon

Thank you for all your well-wishes, everyone. I really do appreciate it. Sending all my love. ♥


Growing up with Barbie

This video couldn't be more true.

I'm an only child, and growing up, while I had playmates in my mom, titas, and lolas, I was also mostly left to entertain myself. Which wasn't at all sad or lonely. That's just how things were, and it was the only reality I knew, loved and appreciated. I was the typical little girl: I had lots of toys, mostly dolls. And I had a lot of Barbies (and Polly Pockets), which my parents always gave to me as rewards for good work in school or for other special occasions. Each time, I'd make sure to pick a doll that represented something new: a doctor, a teacher, a gymnast, a swimmer, an astronaut, a nurse, etc. And with each doll, I would conjure a lifetime of back stories, and a whole universe of possibilities. I'd make up their names, their family histories, and write down their dialogues. I'd invent catch-phrases and plot twists. I was always so into character, I'd sometimes have notebooks just to take note of the stories I had in every "timeline." I'd make sure each Barbie was different, so that each time I'd play with them, I get to "live" a different life.

Maybe that explains why my imagination ran wild as a kid, and why I eventually found myself being so drawn to reading and writing. I loved finding these stories in each toy, the same way that I loved telling them. It brought me places. You can say what you want about Barbies (and most "girly" dolls for that matter) - that they're fake, that they're not real, that they give girls a wrong sense of self. But I have to disagree; at least in my case, that wasn't what happened. My Barbies opened up a world of possibilities for me. There were Barbies for everything - and that translated to an endless road of opportunities. In my head, as a kid, if Barbie could be a scientist, I could be a scientist too! If she can fly a plane, I could also fly a plane! If she chooses to not marry Ken, she can not marry Ken. It was simple. Barbie had choices. That meant I had too.

I'm turning 24 soon, and practically a lifetime away from the simple afternoons of just playing with dolls. But I will always remember that feeling: of believing that there is always a chance at something great, of knowing that there are versions of me I could still chase after.

Of allowing yourself to imagine everything you could one day become.


Study break!

Dear self, in a few weeks, you're turning 24, not 14. So why are you swooning like a crazed high school adolescent at the sight of James Reid?! 

But come on, just look at that face. That beautiful, charming, incredibly endearing face.

HOW CAN YOU NOT WANT HIM TO HOLD YOU AND SING TO YOU AT THE END OF EACH DAY? How can you not reach out for his hands and tell him "Naniniwala na ako sa forever"? How can you not lean in and try to— haaaaayy. :))

The other day, I was so kilig with their Jollibee commercials (both the original and the extended versions), I reached for my phone and ordered a burger steak for delivery. LOL. Yes, his face has that effect on me.

And don't even get me started on his abs.

You can judge me all you want, but this fine, fine specimen has been alleviating my stress in the strangest of ways. And I can't be more glad. And FYI, I am not the only one in my many circles of friends who have recently gotten this James-related affliction. Thank you for the daily dose of kilig, Mr. Reid! *swoooon*

Okay then! Sabi mo nga, back to studying I shall go! ♥


Up and above the clouds: OTWOL and embracing the inner jologs/romantic

Kind of a funny story: these last few weeks I've found myself so caught up in something quite unexpected — a particular teleserye on primetime bida, On The Wings of Love. Since I first stumbled upon a random clip on YouTube, I've gone from lukewarm to completely invested in such a short span of time. Quite interesting that it's a local show this time, because thus far, my list of "Shows I've Sunk My Teeth Into" are all one-hundred-percent Western. One Tree Hill, Friends, How I Met Your Mother, Scrubs, Ally McBeal, The Mindy Project, Suits, New Girl... the list goes on.

And yet, it's always nice to find an exception every now and then isn't it?

On The Wings of Love is actually a pretty uncomplicated story: simple Filipina girl marries working class Fil-Am boy for a green card. She needs him for the legal status; he needs her for the money she's going to pay him. They are forced to live together and pretend to actually be married to convince immigration officials that they're not committing marital fraud. Typical enough to be relatable, but quirky enough to be very amusing.

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