All posts by findingfelizity

“Huge”

Today, I came to understand how difficult it is to be a woman.

I have came to know and understand what body shaming is recently when some co-worker mentioned that I am “huge”. It just made me feel so embarrassed as this was made in front of a few people. And while I understand what happened, I did not expect it to come from that person and I did not know how to react to it. He informally apologized while he was walking down the lobby and  I just made a comment “no worries”. No worries? Why? I could have shouted and screamed at him for taking that offence on me! But I did not. I just said “no worries”.

I came home feeling distraught and shocked. Mixed emotions of pity, confusion and perhaps, I blamed myself for not fighting back. I asked a few questions to myself, like, “Should I loose weight?”, “Am I really that fat?”, “I should really stop eating dinner”.

I do not understand how our society is only conformed to one standard alone. That is the “24 inch” body and anything beyond that figure is a hippopotamus. Why can’t we live up to the fact that each women, whatever shape they have, should never be subjected to shameful comments like this. Why can’t men understand that we, are already hard on ourselves. That we wake up everyday thinking what to wear, how to put our make up on and how to walk, not because for ourselves but for the people around us. To please the eyes of the people that wants these qualities. You see written articles like “How  To Get Men to Like You”, is written by a retard whose first rule is to “always exercise to get that beautiful body”. We clearly live in the world where women needs to be thinner to be accepted.

And I cannot blame myself for not making an immediate, appropriate and defensive reaction. Because, no one, NO ONE should have made  that comment in the first place. No one should make you feel that you are not enough.

As a woman, it is not your fault and it will never be.

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Thank You

Today, I admit of committing a crime. The crime of laziness and complacency. I thought I was depressed but no, this is not depression. Depression was an excuse. It is completely unacceptable to miss work and to just laze around doing nothing. I have spent 50% of my time looking into Facebook, trying to see if there is anything I can read as diversion. I keep thinking how un-happy I am with my job and how I wanted to move out.

My husband woke up early for work. He wakes up at 9am and comes home at 11 in the night. But here I am complaining when I come home 5am and I can eat and do anything I want. I can enjoy every privilege life has offered. I am in Canada and not worrying what to eat and where to sleep.

So I decided to list down all things I am thankful for. This way, it would constantly remind me that what I am feeling right now is not valid.

  1. My work pays. It pays for online shopping, rent, new clothes and vacation.
  2. My bosses always appreciate my work and what I do.
  3. I have a husband that is very supportive and who is always happy to see me happy. Tries his best to be the greatest husband by fulfilling my needs.
  4. I have a job that allows me to grow into a better person. I may not create an impact now but I will soon. Plus I have travel privileges which is awesome and not everyone has that.
  5. I am alive and that alone is the reason to live it.

So I stood up and ran on the treadmill, cooked a wonderful meal and wrote this story.

 

 

Mariah and Her Necklace

I can still remember vividly. I was 3rd Grade and my classmate Mariah, was smiling at me. It was creepy, the kind of smile that  you see from a horror movie.  What she did on that day though, gave me one of the most important lessons in life.

She was not a close seat mate but she definitely did not usually talk to me. Her group of friends were different and more entitled. They had fancy pencils, neatly pleated and ironed out school uniforms (the type that  cuts you with just looking at it) and most of all, they had beautiful bags and accessories. She wore necklace and cute bracelets in 3rd grade.  All the things my parents could not afford to buy for me.

So it was rather unusual that she thought of saying ‘hi’ and talking to me for the first half of the school. I thought, well, she must thought I am cool with my torn erasers, unmatched socks and my short, boyish and un-even hair. So I took the chance and, opened the idea that she and me could be best friends.

And then her necklace got lost after lunch and all hell broke  loose. I remember how she got so frantic that she cried. I helped out with finding it, bending and crawling down and trying to search for that heart shaped necklace, but to no avail. I had go through dust and  look under the desk, which was honestly smeared with snots and gums.

When I finally got up, I saw her just about placing her necklace to my bag to make it look that I took them. When she realized I knew what was happening, she immediately took them back and acted like nothing happened.

Since then, I have been very cautious of choosing friends and keeping my circle as small as possible. I am still the type to believe that every one has an inch of kindness but you rarely find friends that would really stick up to you and would not betray you. While the world is a beautiful place, humans are also prone to weakness and, let just say, “bitchness”.

It makes your life better when you have friends that you can share common grounds with. Friends who do not only need you when something arises or when they need something from you. It is always satisfying to know that your friend would be there to accept you for the monster that you are. It makes your life easier and happier when you are surrounded with people that you can learn and grow with. Friends who will be brutally honest and tell you what is right. Friends who don’t place their necklace on your bag to make it look like you stole them.

So be careful. Do not choose a Mariah.

Are you addicted?

My fingers flexing. My neck hurts. All this emotion running through me like I have finally faced my fear.

I cannot believe I spent three hours. Completely unproductive and drawn towards the luxury of time. No matter what I do, I just can’t stop. My hands seem to have a world of it’s own. Like, instantly, I come home from work and the first thing I do — is check my Facebook.

It is so frustrating how I have come to this point in my life where I cannot live a day without checking it. Like, my life depended on it. And how, I can’t stop thinking on how to tell the world what I am doing on daily basis. It seemed like I was getting dumber and lazier and self absorbed by the day.

And I knew right there that I used Facebook to fill in a missing piece. I realized, I wanted complete validation and recognition. Something I am fulfilled of every time someone hits the like button on every posts and every information I share. And it is scary because you keep on wanting more of it and as any other human being, you aren’t satisfied. So you try your best, to put out a facade of happy face and wonderful  sceneries to gain more likes and follows. I do not mean I am living in a lie but, I sometimes wonder the purpose of it and then I reflect that this is sometimes a waste of time.

It is as if, this is the same struggle for younger generations. Instead of initiating change and making a world a better place, half of our time is spent on impressing other people. Worst of it all, physical interactions have begun to diminish over time. The lack of genuine and sincere connection is sometimes disturbing because you do not really know, if they mean what they say; if there is an understanding on both parties; if you really did read that article you shared or you just simply shared it without understanding — without knowing if it is real or reliable.

Any information shared is always treated as a weapon as it changes perception. And by far, we have come to that era where the truth is not verified anymore. We no longer understand the difference between opinion and news. And I see people not really knowing that they have already shared damaging news that are made to change the views of the public eye with lies.

However, I woke up and I realize that our society is evolving so much that, you may never be able to stop using it. That sooner or later, to connect with people, you would have no choice but to use it as it does great wonders when used effectively too. It could even improve your way of life.

There is more to life than checking statuses on  a news feed or posting selfies. You can live without it!

 

How My Mother Kept Her Sanity

I was in 3rd Grade when I remembered my mother, sitting beside me looking outside murmuring something to herself, in  scorching heat inside the Tricycle. I was already seeing this on a constant basis. And I thought, back then, she must be going crazy! But then, at a young age, I knew exactly what was happening.

Life was a bit harsh for her. Juggling between 3 kids and a husband, who had a growing problem on alcohol, it was difficult to sustain sanity. But she had to show strength and flexibility to her kids. She had no one to talk to as she filtered us from all the issues we have had as a family, as much as she can. That afternoon, she must have unveiled the curtains and was unconsciously talking to herself.

This memory of her almost losing it is engraved to me, up until now. It was a motivating factor for me to make all types of effort to make her proud. Now, she is as goofy and loving as she has always been. Sane but, all those issues in the past did affect her so much that she had to go through Diabetes, 4 strokes and 2 major operations. But she still survived as all mothers would. It might have broken her body but never her soul.

We all have moments where, at one point, we hated our mothers. However, she had all the opportunities to hate you as a son, a daughter or even as a husband. But she chose to love you. We should all do the same.

Happy Mother’s Day.

Magdalene

She reaches into her pocket. Literally, not a single penny-even for a candy. It would have been nice to have one, she thought. Her mouth was as dry as Sahara desert.

She chuckled. She’d rather be in a deserted place rather than stay here — on the streets looking out for another customer. Worst of all, she has not eaten yet.

It’s been slow. The economy has worsened and nobody wants to waste their money on prostitutes anymore. Money was tight for every one. It was 2020 and Manila has some of the darkest streets and trades. She had no where else to go. For someone who can barely read or write, everyone refused to take her.

How she got there? Nobody knew. Some do not even care. They would just pass by. But mostly men, look at her, with so much disdain and lust. Some women would stare her down–from head to toe.

But she walked anyway.

Now she laid lifeless near the river banks, along with the bunch of garbage. People started to surround her body. No one knows her or her name.

Her story, we will never know.

Social Media Show-off

There I was, on the kitchen counter, with a new MacBook. I am elated. Never in my life, did I imagine myself getting one. I was a die hard Bill Gates fan but here I am, a traitor.

I am “in” as they say. Those days, where I feel a pang of envy towards people posting about their MacBooks and iPhones, are gone. Now here I was, contemplating how to post it on social media so everyone would know about it.

I hit post and waited until I received likes and heart signs on my Instragam account. But here I am, a few hours later, guilty as hell for bragging about a laptop. That feeling of pride that you have an expensive MacBook dies down in an instant and it replaces it with shame and ridicule. I scolded myself for being too fixated on the reactions of the people around me when quite frankly, it does no good to anybody and they might not even care.

Don’t get me wrong. Celebrate if you must. If it brings comfort and ease to your daily existence, go ahead.

My point is people, including myself, rely too much on social media to get appreciation and likes. And how many of these likes are even sincere? We post I love You’s to our families on social media yet we do not make them feel that way when we are at home. We are so hooked to self-gratification nowadays that we forget the reason why Social Media exist– to create bonds and relationships; to interact and communicate with other people outside your spectrum; to learn new languages. Nowadays, it is about being famous and going viral.

I am no angel and I am quite guilty of this. Nevertheless, life is a constant learning process. As we go through experiences, we learn that there is more to this than bragging about a new computer. Clearly, we are far more better than this.

Inside the Mind of a Churchgoer

I am thinking of pancakes and what to eat for lunch. While the priest was talking about his homily, here I am thinking of food. That guilt crossed me. I should not be thinking about this. Focus… Focus… It would be nice to pair it with some strawberries.

Darn it.

Catholics across the Philippines are devout churchgoers. Every Sunday, it is a known tradition to visit the house of God and listen to the homily for an hour. The church would house a massive amount of people. At times, when seats are not available anymore, people would stand for an hour to listen to the message of God. In fact, it is a practice to dress really well. Those pants that were hidden for two years in the dresser, is finally worn and flaunted. You have women who wear heavy makeup and some wear perfumes that could kill. I mean it quite literally.

But to be honest, do we really understand the message? Did you really listen? At the end of the day, when you remove the dress and the make up and after the perfume dies down, do we live by the word of God? Or, you just cannot wait to go to the nearest restaurant to eat. As most of the time, in every church, there is a Jolibee restaurant nestled just right beside it. (Which, by the way is a great strategy for business.) Finally, you can post it instagram #dateafterchurch.

I remember, back in the days, when I still constantly go to church, I was in that point in my life where I had to question things that I have been doing, routinely. Here I am,trying to listen to the priest who seem to mumble words and I could barely understand him. The speakers used were also awful and nobody really cared to complain. So there I was, focusing my thoughts on something else–the people around me.

I saw an old guy, about 40 year old, eyes closed. When everyone else was standing, he was just there, sitting. He was sleeping. Did I just hear him snore?

Then, there’s a family of two small kids just on my left. We’ll that’s cute, I said to myself. Honestly though, this is typical in every church.But the mother and father was trying to hold their two kids together,chasing them. They apparently, were having tantrums. Loud screams and cries in the church. Music to my ears.

Then there is that guy who is trying to impress his girlfriend by going to church with her. This is part of the courting stage to appear that he is religious and “God Fearing”. When all he was thinking about was the Clash of Clans game she interrupted.

Also, there’s that teenage girl, who is just going to church because his crush is there. Hah! Then some friends of hers, who had to go because their teacher told them to. Otherwise, they would not get points for 3rd grading period.

I am not blaming these people for not listening.But there would come a time when the Roman Catholic church will lose the younger generation because the people who delivers the message of God are quite frankly, boring and old fashioned. This is a time when, the attention span is getting lesser by the day and if the church is not creative enough to grab the attention of its followers, this religion and everything it believes in,  will disappear.

I believe in God and I still believe in the value of going to church. But, you are there to know and understand the message of God and if it’s not delivered properly, why would you be there?

At the end of the day, you are responsible for your actions. You cannot blame the institution entirely. But, they are there and this is their contribution to the society. This holds us together and if they can’t keep up with the changing demographics, Roman Catholicism will just soon become a historical data.

Now, back to pancakes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Understanding Introverts

Almost everyone knows that there are two types of people. The extroverts and the introverts. The extroverts, being gullible and has no problem dealing with people. They are the ones who can start and end conversations without being awkward and are “likeable”.  The introverts, on the other hand, holds everything opposite to this.

But do people really understand how introverts behave and is our society open to the fact that, there are a lot of people who choose not to go out on social functions and would rather curl up in bed with a good book?

We have always been taught that people who have succeeded in life are the ones who are eager to leave the house and network with other people. In school, we were taught that you have to socialize otherwise, they would think you are a lunatic who is planning on something sinister. If you are quiet, everyone sees you as weak or weird or that she has her “own world”.

J.K Rowling, before her famous books were released, thought of Harry Potter in a bus ride in England. She was so reserved that she was shy enough to borrow a pen when her ideas were conceived.

Bill Gates would not have been successful if he did not spend hours and hours in his computer. So did Mark Zuckerberg, Founder of Facebbok, who was described by Sheryl Sandberg as “shy and introverted” and “does not seem very warm to people”.

This to name a few people, who are not ideally relatable to others but has been successful in changing the world with their ideas that were born out of moments when everyone thinks, they’re aloof and crazy.

I think this is one of the reasons why Hillary Clinton lost in the recent US Elections. She was not relatable to the media and to the electorate. Everytime she spoke, even if it made sense, she could not connect to her viewers and that it felt like it was too scripted. But, her being an introvert contributed to that. And, unfortunately, most people did not fully understand that.

My contention is that society, at this point, should be more open to the fact that introverts can be successful. And that, they are sane individuals who just prefer to spend more time alone not because they’re psychologically damaged but because they are just like that.

Falling for Mr. Bamboo

Have you experienced falling from the stairs? Trust me, you never dance to the tune of Ariana Grande.

This is probably the 2nd time I fell from the stairs. The first one was when me and my friends were on a vacation. Inside our friend’s house, they suddenly heard 3 loud bangs. They thought it was an earthquake. They heard me groan and whimper and to the shock of their lives, they found me sitting with my butt on the ground thanking I am still alive. They worried and laughed thru it because, that time, each had their own disasters but mine was stellar. Up to this day, we still laugh about it.

The second incident was just recent. About a month ago, I was so happy that Mr. Bamboo was coming home from work. I danced in the middle of the stairs and showed how ecstatic I was. I was tap dancing in the platform found in the middle of the stairs but did not realize that it was already near the edge. And, all of a sudden I was four steps down. I was trying to hold onto something that can save my life, but nah, I found myself at the bottom of the stairs, again, and then felt that familiar pain forming.

I have known Mr. Bamboo, my better half, to be less emotional. But darn, that face that bore the worry and stress, was a fascinating scene. He was frantic realizing that it was too late to save me because it was all too fast. I saw it in his eyes, his love and his compassion towards me and my well being. He kept asking me if I was okay for 10 times. But he did laugh about it and gave a me a massage, which was the best part!

The experience has taught me one thing. I’m gonna try to fall from the stairs again to elicit his emotions and this time I am going to make it really, really, really painful.

I am just kidding. Of course not.

All people, however difficult they may be, have kindness in them. And I believe in that. Couples go through rough patches and we are both humans. In my previous blogs, I seemed to have given everybody an impression that he is a monster. My fault entirely. Sometimes, when your hormones are up, stay away from your laptop.

It takes two to tango for any relationships. It’s not just about him. Besides, he is right about not putting the knives on the kitchen sink.

Sometimes at night, he kisses my forehead when he thinks I am already sleeping. This happens when we argue. I was watching TV yesterday and I caught him looking at me with so much admiration. I remembered, on my first day in Toronto, he brought Filipino food for me and that is way too romantic compared to giving flowers. Roses are overrated, at least for me.

And so, whenever I doubt his love for me, I will always remember that day I fell from the stairs. I am not saying it takes a fall to realize that he is a good man and that he truly loves you. But these moments, however minuscule they are, are there to assure you of that.