The Journey to a Happier Me

As the proverb says, “fall down seven times, stand up eight.” This has been the mantra that kept me going the past months. Despite all the challenges, there was always a reason to stand up and fight another day. Thus, I stood up.

The past year has been challenging, to say it simply. It has taught me a lot of life lessons that I didn’t even fathom before. It’s showed me the harsh reality of life but at the same time it’s showed me that life is still bearable and eventually, beautiful despite these obstacles. Honestly, although I’ve known these all along, it’s different when you’re the one that’s actually there. When life kicks someone we know in the butt, it’s easy for us to offer our advices but if you’re the one in that situation, it’s very difficult to follow a sound advice. Now I know why my friends seem to never listen. Because it’s hard to.

I’ve been kicked, pushed and strangled by life and sadly the bubble I was living in was burst in an instant. I was in a deep, deep hole. And when I thought I couldn’t go up, I remembered the proverb. Slowly, I stood up. Slowly, I regained the “old me”. Slowly, I started the journey to a happier me. It wasn’t easy, but with help, I eventually found it. I know life is a roller coaster so this moment I am in will soon fade and I would find myself at the bottom again but with what I learned the past year, I know I can stand up.

Like I said, the journey wasn’t easy. Some would say it looked like I was taking it easy, some people told me they never felt something was wrong, but during those days I was fighting an internal battle. Every single day was a war inside. How I was able to overcome that battle, I didn’t know at first but looking back now, I think I understand better. Given that I love lists, I’ll list down the things that helped me in my journey. These are what pushed me to become an updated version of me.

1. Have a support group.

This one is tops on my list. I don’t know how I would ever have gotten here without a support group. These are the guys that kept me busy, giggly, sad, happy and scared at the same time. They held my hand and led me to happiness but they also kept me honest with myself and supported my decisions every step of the way. If there’s one thing I’m grateful for from this journey is that I knew who my true friends are. And I’ve built a stronger relationship with them.

2. Follow your passions. Build new ones.
I kept myself busy almost all the time. I went back to do things I missed doing and started doing new ones.

I cooked, ran, touched base with long-lost friends, travelled and spent more time with family. I was always on the go which helped me keep awful things from my mind. I surrounded myself with good moments and great company.

3. Have some “me” time.
Even if my life moved in a blur of activities, I spent some time alone. To recuperate and think things through. One thing I learned at work is to do a Post Mortem regularly. And so I did. What went wrong? What did I/we do right? How can I avoid it in the future? So my action items were identified. One by one, I had to act on it. Geeky but helpful.

I don’t think the list can be as exhaustive as how the process went but these 3 things are what kept me sane. I’ll be forever grateful to my support group because with them, life can be grand. They taught me that standing up for myself was not a selfish act but rather a necessary step to move on in life. And luckily, I did.

Knock knock…Who’s there?

This might not be as funny as experiencing it first hand but I just had to chronicle for future reference. I still can’t stop laughing at Yui’s sense of humor. She really got me in her knock knock joke earlier so please bear with me as I share..

Scene: Yui and I doing some artwork on the floor when I saw the glitter glue

image

and…

Mommy: knock knock
Yui: Who’s there?
M: glitter glue (while holding it up)
Y: glitter glue who?
M: *sings* glitter glue, glitter glue…I’m one with the wind and skyyyyyy *goes on to laugh at my own joke while Yui grabbed the glue from me and went…*

Y: knock knock
M: who’s there?
Y: glitter glue marker (aba, competitive. She added marker pa) while holding the glue
M: glitter glue who?
Y: glitter glue, glitter glue… I’m one with the wind and skyyyyyy
M: oh, where’s the marker?
Y: here oh! (showing the marker to me) *ultimate LOL moment* tugsdugudug!

I know this post doesn’t do justice at how funny the moment was and the precious look on her face like she just one upped me on that joke. I died laughing. That kid.

Juan Dela Crew (Yun oh!)

For our department’s year-ender party last August, the theme was Street Dance Battle. Projects were formed into 6 groups and we had to joint forces with another project within the department.

The Street Dance Competition teaser

The Street Dance Competition teaser

Forming the dance group was not easy since some initial members backed out when we started practice, including me. I really wanted to join the dance crew but had previous engagement on the day of the competition so I had to back out. But I requested them to make a costume for me since it was just a shirt and I figured I could use it some other time. (Glad I made that choice!) 🙂

So the group was formed, and next they had to think of a group name and find a choreographer. We finally came up with JUAN DELA CREW (YUN OH!), a pun to a popular tv show here in the Philippines.

Juan Dela Crew (Yun oh!) Poster

Juan Dela Crew (Yun oh!) Poster

One of our group mates had a common friend choreographer who turned out to be quite a professional himself. His group won in the World Supremacy Battlegrounds and he choreographs celebrities performing in the popular Sunday variety show, ASAP.  So the 2-week training was intense for the team (one of our members even lost 10lbs from all the practices). They were staying at the office until 3AM just to finish the practices and also had to practice during the weekends.

After a Sunday Practice

After a Sunday Practice

Late Night Practice

Late Night Practice: Clock is at 12:50am

This was already around 2AM

This was already around 2AM

A sudden turn of events happened though when Manila and Northern Luzon was hit by a typhoon which caused my previous engagement to be cancelled. So I had a window of opportunity to join Juan Dela Crew! (and use the costume!) I was so happy. But at the same time nervous, because I had only 2 more days left for practice. And to add more pressure, I had to learn 2 dance routines (Hip hop and Lyrical) in those 2 nights. Which took the team 2 weeks to learn. Whew! Talk about PRESSURE.

On the day of the competition, everyone was hyped up and (feeling) ready for the battlegrounds. We were so excited, some went on a whole day leave others left the office after lunch. We were all complete at the venue around 4PM to do some final practice. It was such a high performing on stage and despite some missed steps in the routine, we were able to pull through and had such high confidence in our routine. As it turns out, our confidence helped boost our overall performance in the eyes of the audience.

With our choreographer - While waiting for the winners

With our choreographer – While waiting for the winners

Confidence beybeh

angas lang mga bradder

When the winners were called, we were all praying hard for the championship but still reminded ourselves not to be overconfident.

Praying for it

Praying for it

The 3rd place got some 70+% (sorry, I forgot the exact percentage!), the 2nd place got 80+% and then they finally announced the winner…. JUAN DELA CREW was declared champion of the Street Dance Competition and got a total of 90.4%!!!!!!!!!!!

Champions!

Champions!

It was pandemonium for us. haha! We literally owned the dance floor after that. It was opened until 12 midnight and we were the only ones left who kept on dancing until they turned on the lights and ushered us to go home. Haha!

Champions

Pandemonium

For me, the best thing from this experience is the closeness that this group developed over those 2 weeks of late-night practice. People who I didn’t talk to before are now chummies. Even after the competition, we retained our communication and maintain a highly exciting and entertaining group chat over at FB and weChat. I’m so thankful to have met these guys and wishes that our future plans for more celebrations will push  through.

Spartanettes

Spartanettes

The S&M Girls

The S&M Girls

Here’s a video of our Hip Hop performance

JUAN DELA CREW! Awooooo! Awooooo!

Things That Make Me Smile: Family and Reunions

In this edition of the TTMMS (things that make me smile), I would like to show some photos from recent reunions between family and friends…

 

At Sage’s baptism: all mommies and babies in our barkada are present. And we’re so happy to know that our dear friend Leslie is expecting! More babies! Yey!

Mommies and Babies

Mommies are babies’ first BFF 🙂

Daddies and babies always make me smile.

Daddies and Babies

Daddies are little girls’ first love

 

Goofy family photos are love! ❤

Goofy Bunnies

Goofy Bunnies

 

Seeing my grandma on her homecoming after 9 years of living in the US brought happy smiles to us especially my mom. 🙂

Reunited and it feels so good

Reunited and it feels so good

Family reunion

Family reunion

Four generations. One happy family. 😀

4 generations. 1 family.

Quatros Marias

 

Travel Theme – Costume

This week, Ailsa have yet another fun and colorful travel theme, exploring the wonderful world of costumes! Having a little school girl meant Christmas programs and Moving Up presentations that showcase not only the children’s talents but also some wonderful play on costumes which will take us back into our childhood. Here are a few of Baby Bunny’s costumes from previous school programs:

Little Mermaids

Little Mermaids

 

My little sailor

My little sailor

 

Sailors in action

Sailors in action

 

Little Angels

Little Angels

 

Sunflower from PVZ and Princess Bubblegum: homemade costumes

Sunflower from PVZ and Princess Bubblegum: homemade costumes

 

And last but not the least, we are never too old to feel young. We felt nostalgic with these Super Mario Bros. costume during our company Christmas party last year. 🙂

Super Mario Bros.

Super Mario Bros.

My Big 31st Surprise!

I didn’t plan anything special for my birthday this year. I don’t know why but I just didn’t get all giddy to plan something. I spent the day mostly at home responding to greetings in facebook and reading some work e-mails (loser much!). Daddy Bunny had to go to work that day since they have an expat visitor and he can’t take the day off. Maybe that’s also the reason why I didn’t feel like planning anything special.

I was determined to let the day pass like a normal day when Daddy Bunny turned it around. We’re not the type to give gifts to each other on birthdays and he’s not the cheesy-romantic type either, so imagine my surprise when I saw this greeting on my facebook timeline:

 

As simple as it is, this video made my birthday so much special. ‘Coz a girl doesn’t get serenaded with a violin too often, right? ♥

Weekly Photo Challenge: My 2012 in Pictures

I’m not really the type to write year-end posts on “the year that was” since I can’t find the words to sum up everything that happened and all the rollercoaster emotions I’ve been through in a year. I’ve started blog posts for several year-ends and then quit before I finish a paragraph. It’s just overwhelming.

I guess now that the weekly photo challenge is about my 2012 in pictures, I can finally have that year-end post that has eluded me for so long. This year has been one of the most challenging and emotional one for me and my family. But like they say, what does not kill me makes me stronger. So without further ado, here’s a sneak peek of My 2012.

 

It may not be the best but it sure is still filled with memories and lessons learned. Now that 2013 is here, cheers to more challenges and fun memories! Happy New Year everybody!  🙂