what am i for

In our online writing class we were introduced to a poem called “Silver-Lined Heart” by Taylor Mali. It’s a beautiful poem about what inspires and fulfills you. We were then asked to write our own version of it and write about what we were for. I wouldn’t exactly call this a poem just because I changed the structure, but I really enjoyed writing it and that doesn’t happen very often anymore.

i’m for feelings
anger, frustration, sadness
but also love, warmth, and joy.
for having the vulnerability to
let yourself feel and not
lose yourself completely.
for finding yourself
somewhere in there
and knowing that
it’s okay if you don’t.

i’m for mixtapes / cds / playlists
for soul-bearing stories
that can only be told
through 3-minute songs.
for music that moves
and saves you
whenever you need it to.

i’m for lazy days
doing absolutely nothing
but lay in bed alone and read
pages and pages of how wonderful
it is to hold someone’s hand
and have adventures of a lifetime
together and then apart

i’m for movies, tv shows,
and fictional characters
that somehow change your life
without any warning whatsoever.
maybe it’s because you’re them
or they’re you
either way it’s ridiculous
and that’s okay because
they’re not real anyway.

i’m for schedules and itineraries
doing things intentionally
with room for mistakes.
i’m for spontaneity but only
when i’ve scheduled to do so
or when the universe wills it
and i don’t really have a choice.

i’m for notebooks you buy
and never write on.
i’m for the possibility of
filling them up with
drawings and stories
even if you never do.
it’s nice to have them
— just in case.

i’m for wine nights
and afternoon teas.
comfortable silences
and 3am pity parties.

i’m for new people.
having strong connections
that aren’t based on
shared history or
who you were
100 years ago.

i’m for learning
more about the world
and fighting for what
you believe in.
for learning how to
listen, be brave
and be kind.

i’m for 20 seconds of courage
and putting yourself out there
even if it turns to shit.
because you never know
until you try.

Where Our Food Comes From and Other Documentaries

For the past few months I’ve been watching loads of documentaries about food, health, and the environment because I wanted answers to a simple question: “Where does our food come from?” I then stumbled upon these documentaries, one after the other, and I wanted to share some of them with you guys. Mostly because when I watched these, I was offended that it wasn’t public knowledge. Or if it was, everyone was just ignoring it. If anything, I hope this list of documentaries enlightens you like it enlightened me.

1. Food Inc. (2008) – Answers the basics of where our food comes from. It’s a good starter film for general food industry information.

2. Fed Up (2014) – It’s not your fault. We’re all being lied to about our food.

3. Forks Over Knives (2010) – “Let food be thy medicine.” It’s ridiculous how we’re programmed to think that specific foods are healthy, but they’re really not. Super informative.

4. Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret (2014) – My #1 SHOOKT documentary. I had to re-evaluate my life and my choices after watching this. It’s about where our favorite food (meat) comes from and how it’s affecting the planet. For me this is the real inconvenient truth.

5. Food Matters (2008) – You are what you eat. Touches a little bit on the pharmaceutical industry and how we’re so dependent on it.

6. Hungry For Change (2008) – Why your “diet” isn’t working. Because, again, we’re being lied to about our food.

7. That Sugar Film (2014) – Basically it’s like “Super Size Me” but about sugar. Sugar is the main drug we can’t quit. It’s in everything.

8. Earthlings (2005) – Not necessarily a food documentary, but it kind of is because it shows what we do to our fellow earthlings for food, clothes, bags, etc. It just brings everything home. How we’re all connected and how we should take care of each other more, and be kinder to one another. “Unity” is also a great film about just being one with the world.

Runner-up: Before The Flood (2016) is a great documentary about global warming if you’re into that. And you should be. It’s not food-related, but I just wanted to put it out there.

Honestly, even after watching these, I can’t say that I’m a 100% changed person, but being informed about these things has helped me make better choices about food and how they affect the planet. I’ll get into that in a separate post.

Some of these are on YouTube or Netflix, random places online. This isn’t in any particular order, so just watch whatever you feel like watching. I hope you find time to watch all of them because I think it’s important. If you have some documentaries like this, please do share! I’d love to watch them. Enjoy!

Here’s What We’re Gonna Do

My blog was recently suspended due to inactivity, which is 100% valid. I rarely post anymore. The most I’ve done is once a month. It sucks. So now I have to post at least once a week so I can keep my domain. And I’d really like to keep it because I love having a space of my own on the internet, even if I only post once a month. Now that I’m required to post more, I’m thinking of going back to the “xanga” type of blogging, which is essentially just blogging about my day even if it’s uninteresting and no one cares about it. I’ve always wanted to go back and do that, but I never really got around to it. I’ve also had this nifty app on my phone for a while called “Grid Diary” which I haven’t used even once. It’s great because it has daily journal prompts, and I now have a reason to actually answer them.

I’ve always said that writing isn’t really my thing, but I actually like expressing myself in this format. I’m not great at it, but I like doing it because most of the time it’s like I’m explaining things to myself. It’s just a bonus when I get other people to like it and relate to it. These days I’m not really good with words, so I’m glad I’m kind of required to write stuff at least once a week now because I’d like to practice. I’d like to practice explaining why I like what I like and why I feel what I feel, because these days I settle for gifs and 140 characters and sometimes it’s not enough.

I’m really excited about this. I’m going to keep this up. I’m rooting for myself.

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before. Kind Of.

So I recently read this book entitled “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before”, and its sequel “P.S. I Still Love You.” It’s about a girl, Lara Jean, who wrote 5 secret love letters to boys and they all got sent out to them. That’s basically where the story is based on, but it’s also about sisters. ‘To All The Boys’ was such an impulse buy and it was worth it. I finished it in 8 hours, which was a first for me, and it was ridiculous. I just couldn’t put it down. (Get into it if you’re a sucker for YA kaartehan lol)

But I’m not really here to talk about the book.

I’m here to talk about all the boys I’ve loved before. Kind of.

In the middle of reading ‘P.S. I Still Love You,’ I was wondering why I was so attached to this series, and then I realized that it’s partly because I’ve also written long-ass letters to boys. But unlike Lara Jean, I don’t have letters that I’ve written and just kept for myself. Whenever I wrote a letter, it was always with a purpose and I had to give it.

If my memory serves me right, I’ve written letters to 6 boys. A boyfriend, a couple of crushes, and guy friends. The letters I wrote to friends, I still consider those love letters, because as cheesy as it sounds, they were written out of love. They were just as special. This was more than 10 years ago. I don’t even remember more than half of what I wrote them, but I’m pretty sure they were long ones because that’s just what I did. When I start writing a letter, sometimes I just feel like I can go on forever. It was always a letter with a purpose. It was always a letter to tell you how I felt.

“I’m so proud of you!”
“I’m disappointed in you.”
“I love you.”

I can’t even imagine how embarrassed I would be if one of them actually kept it and then sent it back to me just for fun. I would die. I don’t want to know what I said/felt at that time. I feel like I’ve put a little piece of my heart in every one of those letters I wrote and it’d just be too intense lol.

I love letters. To me, they are tangible feelings that you can give to people. It’s like, “Here are my feelings for you. They’re yours. Keep them.” I think that’s such a precious gift to give and to receive. It’s actual proof that once upon a time you felt a certain way about someone, and I feel like in that aspect it might even be better than a photograph.

I don’t know where those letters are now. I don’t even talk to most of those boys anymore. Not the same way, at least, and that’s just life. Sometimes some people are the most special for a certain period of time, and then they’re not.

But who knows? One day they might be doing some general cleaning and they just happen to stumble upon my letter. They might not care or they might be glad to read it again, and that’s okay with me.

To all the boys I’ve loved before:

Thank you for being a part of my life. If I’ve written you a long, heartfelt letter once upon a time, then you have been one of the special ones. One of the special ones that was worth the time and effort. Sorry if the letters were cheesy. Trust me, nothing much has changed. Whatever version of me you have in those letters, they are yours to keep.


P.S. If you still have the letters, please don’t send them back to me. TYSM.

Coming Home

hello world

Hi. Hello. It’s me. Everything’s been pretty okay, I guess. This is a little awkward.

I’m finally on Summer break, which is something I’m really looking forward to just because I want to get things done.

1. Make art that’s not graded.

I’ve been in school for about a year and a half, and even with all the frustrations, it’s been pretty good. I love learning and being around the creatives, but this last semester I really felt disconnected with the things I’ve been doing. Our midterms for Web Design class was to make a simple online portfolio. So, of course, in doing this I had to check out my already existing portfolio and there were some works that I still felt connected to. Those were the ones I remember making because I felt a certain way at that time and I realized that I don’t really feel that way about the projects I’ve been doing. I’m literally just doing them because they’re required. I mean, they turned out okay, but there was no heart, it wasn’t personal.

I really should be taking summer classes because I’m “old” and I have to finish school, but I really don’t want to compromise my love for design. I don’t wanna just keep doing things just because. I need to get my mindset back to creating things that make sense. And that’s what I want to do this summer.

2. Tweet less, blog more.

This is probably a long shot, but I’m gonna try to do it. Even just for the “big things.” If you follow me on Twitter you know that I be up on your feed all the damn time. I’m sorry (especially for all the jologs tweets that y’all didn’t sign up for). But my main reason for trying to do this is because my mind has been constrained to 140 character statements, and sometimes I want to explore those thoughts more but I can’t because I find that I can only do that when I start writing it down physically. Like, with pen and paper. Which is also something I’d like to do more, but let’s stick to blogging first. At least typing it out on Notes rather than straight on Twitter.

3. Take nicer photos and videos.

I’m basically a memory hoarder so this is pretty doable, but I just need to practice doing it more on my new camera. I recently got a Fujifilm X-A2 (uy pang blogger na talaga) and I really want to utilize it. I don’t want to take “tita shots” but sometimes I still do lels. This new camera is gonna force me to look at things differently and that’s what I’m excited about. I haven’t done that in a while.

4. Write letters.

The last time I wrote a real letter was when I sent my best friend a package for her birthday and I forgot how much I love writing letters. Somehow, in this age of instant messaging, you can’t really write something without thinking about what the other person will think. We wait for that bubble to come up and  tell us that they’re writing a reply, and sometimes I don’t really want to know. I just want to tell you this and that’s it. That’s what I’m aiming for. I want to be able to write letters to people just because. And if they write back, that’s great. If not, then that’s okay, too. I just want to be able to say real and important things again because I don’t think I’ve been doing a lot of that lately. We’re all looking for that real conversation in this world full of small talk, and I want to be able to be that conversation for someone.

5. Make time for people.

Everyone’s busy. We all have lives and different priorities, and sometimes life just happens. But it’s also important to make time for people who matter. We all need a break sometimes, and I’d love to spend that time with people who help me grow and people who support me in whatever I set my mind to. Sometimes you get sucked into everything that life throws your way and it’s just nice to stay grounded and be reminded that you’re not alone and you have other people who are willing to listen.

6. Faith.

This has been going on for a really long time now, and I’d like to think I do okay with the faith thing, I just don’t think it’s good enough. My thought is always, “there must be more than this.” And there is. I just can’t seem to find it yet. So I really want to make an effort this summer to actually start that lifelong journey because honestly, hirap na hirap na akong magsimba, fam. God is just not there for me, he’s somewhere else. And I’m gonna leave it at that because there’s really nothing more I can say about it.

I mean, I guess with everything that’s on this list, the main thing I wanna do is go back to basics. I just wanna come home.