Adulthood. Since when?

personal

2017 is the plot twist of my life cause this is the first for me to be independent. I grew up with strict and conservative grandparents that’s why I always crave for freedom. When I got the chance to move out of our house and live by myself without second thoughts I grabbed it right away. So at 22, I am that ‘independent woman’. I create these image inside my head of what am I gonna do once I have my own apartment. All of it was beautiful, exciting and fun. I thought it will be look like college sleepovers but reality hits me like a truck. I don’t know why I have this habit of making major decisions without really thinking about it.

At firsts it was a struggle, the emotional aspect of it is tough. I can’t sleep cause it doesn’t feel like home, getting home with no one to talk to my family is big I’m not used to silence, eating alone all the time. Even the day-to-day living was hard cause after long of work I have to take out the trash, cleaning dishes, laundries, cleaning, cooking, understanding your taxes, paying your bills all by yourself which I took for granted before.

This whole adulthood phase is all new to me that’s why I am so overwhelmed. I still fucked up, missed work cause I’m too drunk (don’t tell my mom), hitting snooze button for 100x, eating junk for the whole week to make ends meet, panicking over petty things. In short, I still don’t have my shit together I think we all do. No one have it all together. It’s bullshit some are just better at acting like they do. No matter how old you get life will always be a bitch but that’s what makes life interesting and worth living for. Well, my point is don’t be too hard on yourself as long as you’re trying world will understand.

I am not ready with adulting and I will never be. It’s fun but in a different way. The accomplishment when all your bills are paid, all laundries are done, sink is empty . It’s the little things that counts and don’t forget to celebrate it cause nobody will understand what does it takes you to get it done. The fulfillment finding out you can actually feed yourself and completely getting in control of your life. All the decisions big or small without the influence of anyone. It’s still tough but I won’t trade it for anything else cause I won’t have it the other way around. 2017 is life changing, indeed. Be grateful always!

‘Adulting is realizing we’re just children with taxes.’

xoxo

 

 

 

Advertisements

Started from the bottom, now I’m here!

personal

Who would have thought that this ‘probinsyana’ girl will make it to Osaka?!

Today, I quit my work at the factory because I got hired in an American clothing brand. This is insane! My life’s gonna shift 360 degrees. I started my life here in Japan at the real bottom as a skilled worker in a factory. But don’t get me wrong, I will never be ashamed where I came from because being a skilled worker in a foreign land is not easy. Especially, if you don’t know their language. They will mock you, bring you down, belittle you and other nasty things only just because you can’t speak their language. They think highly of themselves because they are locals of this country. But instead of being discouraged, I turned all those experiences as an inspiration to do better and educate myself. I pushed myself to learn Japanese not only speaking but also reading and writing, So no one will ever try to belittle me again and I can defend myself if someone’s trying to bully me.

I’m a truly believer of the saying ‘Everything’s happens for a reason.’ I’m glad because today, I knew the reason why all those things happened to me. I learned a lot from my experience as a skilled worker like A LOT of patience, self-discipline and time management. It was not easy, everyday you’re not treated as humans but robots. It feels like you’re programmed to do this every single time. I even worked 10-13 hours, 6 days per week. Since then, I learned to be humble and appreciate all kinds of work. I view now people the same. I salute all the OFW’s whatever kind of work you do, I know we all just have one goal and that’s to provide and help our families back home. I know it’s not easy but always remember why are we here.

Now that I’m going to a better place, I’m still thankful to factory cause it’s part of who I am today. I went through hell to be where I am right now, I fought the hardest that I can and I’m so proud of myself for not giving up even to the days where it seems like nothing makes sense anymore. But one thing for sure, if you don’t like where you are right now, do something about it! Push yourself and stop complaining. If there’s a will, there’s a way.

I’m gonna make another blog on my independent life in Osaka! I’m too excited because this is my first time to live in a city and it’s Osaka real quick! Is this even real? I’m too happy. I’m a survivor and stubborn when it comes to my goals. LOL

xoxo

Failures makes sense

personal

May 16, 2015

How can I forget that day? It was the day I changed my life forever. It only took me one day, one-way plane ticket and one decision into a completely different life. Since coming to Japan, I always find myself defying my norms. I only had failures after failures, my insecurities eating me up but I tried my best not to give in cause I know to myself I’m not that weak. I fought the hardest that I can, chase the path I thought was the right one for me.

I thought I needed no one. I think highly of myself and didn’t rely to anyone cause I always believe I got my own back. I put too much pressure on myself that at this certain age, I should already achieved this and that etc. that’s why when my plans didn’t worked out the way I wanted it to be I always get disappointed and devastated.

There was also times, I questioned the Most High cause hey I’m trying my best, I always worked hard. Why it seems like it’s getting nowhere? Why it’s so easy for some people to get what I wanted without so much effort? Life is so unfair. I’m being such a bitch here I know but it was all in the past. Sorry. I forgot that God’s plan for me is even greater than what I plan for myself. I forgot to ask Him. I only rely on my own thinking and strength. But  I understand now, every failures I had was God’s way of saying ‘No, I have bigger plans for you. All you have to do is trust Me, my child.’

I got tired from all the failures and disappointments I had. The day I decided to completely surrender everything to God was the best decision I ever made. Ever since then, life surprises me. God will send you people as instruments to help you to realize His will. Currently, I’m on my way to a better place and I know that this time, God is walking me through. This is all His plans and not mine. All my failures makes sense. I was chasing the wrong path all along. I owe everything to Him I can’t do all of these alone.

For every lost souls, I completely understand how hard it is not to know what to do with life. There are days where you don’t feel alive and just empty soul. So we tend to chase and look as desperate as we can but we often forgot all we have to do is ask and trust Him. It’s that simple. It’s not a matter of religion. I hate religion it causes division among people but I do believe in God. I just don’t believe in any teachings even though I was born and raised as a Roman Catholic.

Always keep on trying, no matter what the results might be. Do things you think can help you at the moment. Be brave and make yourself proud. We got this!

‘Keep in mind the recipes for success: work, pray, think and believe.’

xoxo

 

 

An Open Letter to my Grandparents

personal

Dearest Lolo and Nana,

I consider myself lucky to have both of you until now cause not all people has the opportunity to meet their grandparents. Though I grew up without my parents but because of your love, I never felt like something is missing in me. You filled me with love, compassion and kindness.

Now I’m older and had the taste of the real world, I met a lot of shitty people throughout this journey. I had nothing but praises for both of you for raising me with compassion for others and reminding me all the time to be a better human being. All my wisdom, morals, values and beliefs came from you. No matter how cruel the world might be, I promise I will continue to be humane cause the world doesn’t need more rude people. Everything I am today, I owe it all to you. Thank you is not enough for everything you’ve done for me.

Every time I see old people walking alone, I badly want to talk to them cause probably they also have lots of stories to tell and no one is bothering to ask them. It makes me sad, I miss you everyday. The stories from your era, history and politics of our country and all of your quirky jokes. I won’t get tired of it even though, I already heard all of it for countless times.

I can’t forget the day when I called and cry my heart out cause I felt like I can’t take the burden anymore for all the struggles I’ve been through. Like what a mother will say to his child ‘I’ll send you money, buy plane tickets and go home.’ I felt so touched and loved. Thank you for always being my rock, anchor, safe haven and home.

I know both of you are already bored with life cause you said you’re already satisfied to reached this age and your mission was already fulfilled. But sorry to disappoint you Lolo and Nana, I pray to God every night to prolong your life cause I can’t afford to lose one of you. I know I’m not vocal regarding my feelings but I love you more than you could ever imagine. Thank you for everything. I can’t imagine life without you. xoxo

Love,

Mae

22 Life Lessons at 22

personal
  1. Don’t take life too seriously, unless you want to go crazy.
  2. Be your own hero.
  3. Age doesn’t measure maturity.
  4. Don’t wait until you’re ready cause life is happening now.
  5. ‘No’ means no. You don’t owe them explanation.
  6. Quality over quantity in all aspects of life.
  7. Guard your heart above anything else.
  8. No matter how busy you are, don’t forget to take care of yourself.
  9. Good food, music, bath and sleep solves anything.
  10. Never stop learning.
  11. Trust your instincts.
  12. Dreams do come true if you work hard on it.
  13. Stop overthinking everything.
  14. Your faith will take you to places.
  15. There’s more to life than love.
  16. Do more, complain less.
  17. You are the master of your life, rule it.
  18. Accept the fact that people come and go.
  19. Appreciate the little things.
  20. Faking bravery and confidence can go a long way.
  21. Take every opportunity to do something you never done before.
  22. At the end of the day, a bottle of beer won’t hurt.

Navigating life has no instructions and manuals. We were given the freewill to decide for ourselves. Life is tough but the beauty of it is undeniable. Every experiences whether it be good or bad is teaching us something important and that’s what makes us who we are. Enjoy everything while it lasts, none of us coming out of this world alive. Dance like no one’s watching, do whatever makes you feel alive even if it’s just singing at the top of your lungs with your favorite jam.

I’m at the point of my life where I don’t give a shit of what others think of me, I do whatever makes me feel great and happy. When you already reached this certain point, you feel so free. It feels like I’m at the top of the world screaming to life ‘I don’t give a fuck, you can’t bring me down this time.’ Life doesn’t get easier, you just get stronger. Day by day it seems like nothing’s changing but looking back, everything is different. I’m growing into something I never thought I can be.

‘Live boldly. Push yourself. Don’t settle. Just live well. Just live’ -Me Before You 

5 things I always miss about Philippines

personal

It’s been so long, Dear Philippines. How are you? I might not be there anymore but I always wish all the best for my beloved home. I remember my first year in Japan, I don’t want to accept the new culture and norm I’m surrounded with cause my system can’t take the reality I’m not in the Philippines anymore.

I guess no matter how long I stay here, truly there’s no place like home. Yes, I’m surviving but there are days homesickness will hit you hard and you can’t do anything about it but cry and remind yourself to be strong. I believe this is a common struggle for all expats. They are not kidding when they told me living abroad are only for those people who has strong heart and mind, cause you will make a lot of sacrifices. Sometimes, I wish my reality now is just a dream. But no regrets, I’m just homesick so bare with my drama tonight and I really miss home right now. So here it is:

5. Weather

I miss the days where I woke up with sun beaming into my face and the sound of rooster saying it’s already morning. It’s still bright even if it’s already 7pm, the beautiful sunset with shades of pink, sky blue, purple and orange.

Philippines has only two seasons: wet and dry. As you all know, we are tropical country. All year round, you can hit the beach cause there’s no winter but beware of typhoons. I remember during my college days, even if it’s December we hit the beach at night, drink cheap spirits and BBQ. The good old days of my life! (okay. I want to cry T.T)

4. Street Foods

Filipinos loves to eat. I swear, we eat five times a day: breakfast, snack before lunch, lunch, ‘merienda’ and dinner. All of our festivities and parties equals to food. When you go to Philippines, you will notice a lot of food stands that sells street foods. If Japan has lots of convenience store at every corner, we have food stands.

Street foods are really cheap perfect for students budget. It has been part of my highschool life, after school we buy siomai, kwek-kwek, buko shake forever, ihaw-ihaw and stories we shared over it. I miss how life was so simple back then.

3. The Filipino Spirit

Filipinos are jolly people. We love to smile, throw punchlines and laugh. It’s part of our culture. No matter how big the problem is we still manage to laugh and shrug it off. This is the one thing I’m really proud of about us. I was surprised when I came in Japan, where the news is all about suicides. I wonder why? I want to tell them how lucky they are to be Japanese, their government gave them everything they need. Unemployed? Single parent? You can receive money from the government. Senior citizen? free of charge from the hospitals and medicines. Do you have kids who are minors? They can receive allowance from government quarterly. Public transportation? very fast and efficient, no traffic jams. Unlike in our country, everything is the opposite of it.

If they only knew how lucky and comfortable their life is. In the Philippines, a lot people has no work and living in the poverty lane. But it’s so rare for us to give up on life. I know I’m in no position to judge. I just don’t really understand why? I’m saying all of these cause I already saw two perspectives of it.

 2. Simplicity of life

Sure, life in the Philippines is not extravagant. It is actually the opposite of it, you can see the face of poverty at every corner but even though it’s like that, you can feel the warm, harmony and happiness. I miss the days where neighbors will hand you a plate of dish she cooks for you to taste. It’s always been like that and common for Filipino neighborhood. ‘Sharing is caring.’

Most of the time, I miss the simple life. You don’t need to spend much just to be happy and have fun. Street corners, good friends, good music,’bangketa’, anti-repellent for mosquitoes, cheap spirits and chips will do the magic.

Filipino kids don’t own expensive gadgets. Streets and rice fields were our playground. We climbed trees to get fresh fruits, climbed the roof to watch stars, and played in the rain even though we’re afraid of thunders. I miss playing in the rain, I swear. And of course childhood would not be fun if you didn’t experienced to chase by a dog.

1.People I love

Of course, this is already given. The people I left behind to pursue greater ambition in a strange land. My friends, cousins and grandparents they are my reminder that I can always come back home and they will welcome me with open arms. It feels like no matter how far I roam around or how my life has been changed for them I’m still the same ‘Hana’ and why it’s important not to forget it. It’s nice to know you have people in your life, you can always count on when life seems so restless.

See you soon, my beloved. Philippines has a lot of flaws but there’s more love in here that’s why I will always come back to you. If I had the chance to choose what nationality I want, I will always choose to be a Filipino cause I can’t have it the other way around. Exactly one month to go! yatta!

Proud to be kayumanggi. xoxo

 

 

Budgeting 101

personal

I don’t know if I’m in the position to talk something about budgeting cause like every other millennials, I’m struggling when it comes to it. I don’t have a huge amount of savings in my bank, but I can safely say I’m financially independent cause I pay my own bills all alone and I can still help my parents considering I’m not earning that much, I can travel and buy the things I want without depending on anyone else. Personally, I think saving up money is all about discipline and lifestyle. It doesn’t matter if you’re earning a lot or not, it’s all about how well you handle your finances. So, I want to share to everyone how I budget my money.

1.Wants VS Needs

I’m a woman but I’m not fan of shopping. I can go on months without going to mall, I rather stay in my bed read books and watch my favorite shows than waste my time on it. So when I go shopping, I only buy the things I really need. You will see how much money you can save by only buying the things you need.

‘I like that mini dress! It’s really cute’ but it’s winter girl, can you wear it?

‘Oh! that crop top is really pretty.’ But do I have the guts to wear that? No, that’s too sexy for me. I can’t.

‘That heels is the bomb!’ But wait, where am I going to wear that? I’m not having dinner with Obama.

So those are the things going on with my mind every time I go shopping. You can live your life without those fancy things. It’s not as if you’re going to die if you don’t buy that dress you want. (Keyword: discipline or you can also say I’m just frugal and practical. Maybe lol.) 

2. Have separate bank accounts

I have two bank accounts, one is connected with all my expenses. That is where every month I left enough amount of money for all my bills cause automatically, it will be deducted. The other one is for my savings, obviously this account is not connected to my bills. This method is effective if you really want to see how much you save each month.

3. No Luxury Items

I’m ‘allergic’ to everything high-end whether it be a place or things. I rather have 2oo,oooyen cash than 200,000yen worth of a wallet with only 1,000yen on it. I can’t understand the logic why people are so crazy with branded stuff. A 200,000yen of bag is already worth of plane tickets to somewhere.

17373333_1678639208818887_35397528_o

This is the only branded thing I own. I bought this as a remembrance from my first-ever salary. It’s kate spade small coin purse. It’s not that expensive compared to LV.

4. Coin Banks

I’m that old-school that up to until now, I still have my coin bank. It’s all because of my upbringing, I grew up with my grandparents. Since I was in Elementary,  if I wanted to buy something for myself I have to save up for it. My grandma is so frugal, we’re not spoiled. They will provide the basic needs but not the ‘luho’ she simply won’t hand things to you especially if it’s just new toys or dolls. (I remember my coin bank back on elementary was the bamboo trunk you can bought at Public Market. My grandpa bought it for me. Every week, the money I save was only 20Php LOL)

So until college, the rule is the same. ‘If you want something, save it up for yourself.’ Well actually it helps cause I learned not to be depended on anyone and I learned the value of money at early age. So that’s the story why until now, I have my piggy bank.

Yes, it’s just coins but as time passes by you will be surprised by how much you can save on it. It can be a really huge amount of money. But sad to say, my coin bank is nearly two years now and it’s still not full. But at least it’s in half by now. LOL

17357338_1678599785489496_1569660062_o

I’m using this coin bank you can bought it at 100 yen shop. There are lots of coin banks you can choose from.

So there you have it. I hope my blog post for today somehow helps and inspires you to save up. I know it’s not easy especially if food is life but nothing is impossible if you’re determined. You can still save money while having fun and enjoying the fruit of your labor like what I do.

How to deal with homesickness?

personal

Time check: almost 11PM and I can’t sleep due to homesickness.

Living abroad sounds fun and exciting until you have to deal with homesickness. I believe all immigrants can relate. This is the toughest battle we have to face.

When you scroll down on your facebook timeline and see your friends hanging out without you or receiving video calls when they go out, for a while you can forget the thousand miles distance from them at the same time you want to cry cause you miss them. It makes you realized how your life has been changed since then.

When you crave your local food or homemade meals and you can’t do anything about it. There will be no grill joint at the street corner, no more midnight snack lugawan, 24/7 Panaderia that serves hot pandesals, fresh coconut juice and taho early in the morning.

Even the hot weather cause I’m really getting tired of snow and winter. Missing my tropical home. I know you can feel me, right?

Most of the people who know me are amazed how fast I adjusted my life here, but they have no idea what’s really going on inside my head. So, how I deal with days like these?

1.Reminiscing the good old days

You can say I’m masochist but yeah, when I’m feeling down and missing home I always browse old photos. Those photos means a lot. Old but golden, the good times and happiness where we’re just having the best time of our lives and we don’t care about tomorrow. Photos that will make you smile no matter what’s going on with your life.

2. Calling my grandparents or love ones

Talking to my grandparents always makes me happy. They raised me, so when I’m feeling sad I always talk to them they are the only one who can give me warm and fill my heart too cheesy but true.

3. Watching favorite shows, anime or kdrama

I consider myself as an ambivert. I like going out with people but I need alone time cause it exhausts me, most of the time I watch my favorite shows to uplift myself. Sometimes, reading my favorite book also do the magic. Just do whatever makes you feel great and happy.

4. Good food, Good bath, Good sleep

The three combos that can solve anything. I know you get me.

So there you have it. The best advice I could give is only you, yourself can make you feel good. Always remember why are doing these? Who are your inspirations? Never lose of that sight. Life is tough and much tougher away from home but always remember why you started.

You are entitled for all of those emotions. It’s healthy to release it once in a while, but don’t be stuck there. You have to keep going and don’t let life defeat you. After all, living in a strange land is not that bad. Have a mindset of this is actually an adventure, a roller coaster ride so might as well, enjoy it while it lasts!

P.S. For all immigrants, I’m so proud of you.

‘Little Miss Too Nice’

personal

This blog post is very personal to me cause it is dedicated to all those people who let me down. This will be the first and last time I’m going to talk about it. I just want to express and let go all the pain I’m feeling right now.

I bet all of us know what betrayal feels like but I never expected it will come from those people who are really dear to me, who I knew for so long, who I trusted so much. I can accept everything if it comes from people who hated me rather than for those people who I treated like siblings. I was speechless.

My problem is I always care, I always do. Even for those people who don’t deserve it. If my friends need me, I’ll be there in a heartbeat cause I know what it feels like to have no one. If you need a listener, I’ll be there to listen and comfort you cause I know what it feels like to have no one to talk to. When I love, whether it be relationship or friendship I tend to give myself too much to the point, I was being taken for granted. I put too much trust on people even higher than Mount Everest cause I never had a single doubt about the friendship we had. But surprise! I know now that just because you treat them well with all your honesty and soul it doesn’t mean they will also do the same for you. Life is unfair. Why do I always need to learn things the hard way?

You can never really trust people these days. Even the people you thought will be there for you until the end will drop you down. I swear. So from now on, I’ll do what’s best for me. I will let go all the people who taken me for granted and never really appreciate me. The show is end, my dear ‘friends’. I don’t deserve all of these bullshits cause all I ever gave was only love and genuine friendship. My hands are already full with so many things going on with my life right now. I don’t want to waste another time for fake people.

So lesson learned, at the end of the day all you’ve got is yourself and your faith. Don’t put too much trust on people. Learn to be silent and be your own hero. I can’t kill all of you literally but I will treat all of you like a dead person. I will just completely ignore you like you never existed in my life. You won’t hear a thing from me starting today. You all made me look so stupid. I just can’t believe what you did to me cause you’re the least people I thought who will ever betrayed me.

I know now who are really true to my face. I really appreciate those people who says the truth no matter how hard it is than to comfort me with lies. Thank you for saving me from the people I thought who cares for me. Truth hurts but I’ll always choose pain and honesty than faking it. So fuck fake friend, fuck fake love. For one last time, TANGINA NIYONG LAHAT.

P.S I’m so sorry for the cursed words. I just badly needed an outlet to vent all my emotions but I’m fine now.

Being at 20-ish

personal

‘we’re happy, free, confused and lonely at the same time. It’s miserable and magical oh yeah..I don’t know about you but I’m feeling 22. Everything will be alright if you keep me next to you.’ 22- Taylor Swift

This is the phase where you are almost legal in everything that the world has to offer. Loans, credit cards, alcohol, driver’s license, bars, casinos etc. name it! Yep, we’re ‘that’ legal now. We don’t have to make fake ID’s anymore in order to enter a bar or buy cheap spirits. Sounds fun, right? But also overwhelming, cause from now it means we’re ‘adults’ and we have to be responsible for ourselves. (omg! Hi Mom, please read my blog. I don’t want to be an adult anymore, help! sending SOS loljk)

Nobody said it will be these confusing cause the decisions I’m going to make today will either make or break me in the future. For the past few months, I was a ‘damsel-in-distress’ trying to figure out what the hell am I gonna do with my life? I’m also wondering how come some of my batchmates are already married with kids while the others are still busy getting wasted every weekends? I belong to the latter, okay. We’re still kids who are so confused and lost trying to act like an ‘adult’.

They say 20’s are your selfish years to build, learn and explore. Being in the foreign land, makes it much harder for me to know what am I supposed to do cause I don’t have any idea what’s going on. It took me a year to realized what I want to do with my life. For the first time, I am so sure with my decisions. I finally found my reason to stay. Congratulate me, guys!

I know the journey would not be easy. It might be tough and hard but I want to pursue it. I finally understand the feeling of waking up each morning with goals and dreams to achieve. I’m not living my life like a ‘jellyfish’ anymore. This time I’m taking control with my life. I might be too ambitious but the hell this is what I want and I’m going to make it happen no matter what it takes. So young folks, ‘chase dreams, not people’ cause there’s more to life than love.

We’re still new in these whole adulting phase, so don’t be so hard in yourself if you’re still feeling lost. You might be drained, confused, lost, and stuck but I tell you, it’s completely okay cause it’s all part of the process to grow and learn. As the saying goes ‘if you’re struggling, it means you’re progressing.’ So don’t give up yet, we’re just starting. Don’t forget that we can always rewired, rebuild and restart our life cause we’re still young we’ve got time.

xoxo