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The Stray Star

Random Thoughts of a Random Girl

Placebo Effect in Love

I think many relationships today don’t last because the concept of ‘soul mate’ or ‘true love’ was such an effective placebo effect that when people are in love, they close the ‘what if’ mentality and love the person they’re with wholeheartedly. That’s why in the past, it was such a beautiful, generally accepted belief that relationships are not treated as games.

In these days, people in love are so criticized with ‘di kayo magtatagal’ (you won’t last) and ‘walang forever’ (forever doesn’t exist) that the thought of loyalty and long term emotional investment diminish with the thinking ‘there will be someone else.’

As they say, falling in love is a chance but staying in love is a choice. People may not realize how they’re destroying the subconscious of their own and other people when they vocalize the phrases ‘walang forever’ (forever doesn’t exist) and ‘magbbreak din kayo’ (you’ll break up anyway’. It actually affects how people view life, including one’s self. We’re unconsciously building the next generation with pessimism.

Forever and true love are not miracles or destinations of paradise, they’re what you create every time you say ‘no’ when given a chance to quit.

We, Filipinos, used to be one of the most conservative people who treat relationships and marriage with sanctity and respect. For a culture to destroy the beautiful thought of loyalty, faithfulness and love, we’re really something.

#ThoughtsinaBus

 

 

 

 

How long have you been pretending?

Have you ever had a confrontation that worked so well at your imagination yet when in the actual scenario, you just… ran away?

When I started my journey of being the person I want to be, the more have I started to feel like I’m a stranger of my own self. It struck me so hard that I had a simple homework to do and I still haven’t got to it.

When our class was asked to create a 3-slide presentation of ourselves, I seemed to have had a moment of existential crisis. I am aware that each person has his/her uniqueness and I couldn’t figure out mine. The point of the activity was not just to introduce general information but to create a presentation that emphasizes ourselves. What does make me worthy of my own name?

When you’re asked what you want, do you really know what you want?

Because when you’re asked what type of girl or boy do you want, do you say things like ‘simple’ and ‘kind’ because that’s what you really want or that’s what looks good to want? Because most people I know who say ‘I just like a gentleman’ and ‘It doesn’t matter if she’s pretty as long as she’s nice’ end up cheating their partners for sexier or thinner or more popular choices; or you know, ending up choosing an overconfident good-looking douche or an insecure social-centered girl and not the quiet, considerate gentleman and the loving, respectable woman.

By this point, most people would be in denial, the very few would have been proud of the choices they’ve made for the past years and the very next few would have an instant realization the same I went through. For the people in the last group, cheers mate.

It was so easy to introduce yourself back in elementary and high school, isn’t it? But in college and above, the question is not really ‘who are you?’ but ‘what makes you unique?’ If you’re the type of person who knows what you want and who you are at the moment, you probably think I’m crazy. I applaud you.

With the rest of the general population, the truth is, we say things like ‘This isn’t what I want,’ ‘this isn’t me,’ and ‘this isn’t the direction I wanted’ but when we’re asked ‘what do you want?’ we have to take a long pause and figure out an answer. The moment you do give something, it’s something irrational or unreasonable or sometimes pretentious.

There’s one thing I’ve learned though: I don’t expect to find whatever it is I’m looking for. I should make it. The realization that you can make whatever you want in life and create your self is more terrifying than actually knowing what’s meant for you and reaching for it.

I guess it’s disappointing that I don’t actually have a satisfying ending in this article. Trust me, I’m more disappointed that I haven’t figured out a way out of this way more than you are. This was just a moment when I’ve realized I have nothing to say on who I am and what I want with my life. I know that all of us want something good, perhaps a striving career or a nice family, a good image or popularity, a trophy girlfriend or boyfriend because they’re so nice to be displayed in our Facebook or Instagram posts, a promotion, an award, and other stuff that provide convenience and good feelings to ourselves… But why aren’t those dreams deep enough in motivating us to go to work every day or do something productive every day or seeking love and attention from a third party than seeking them from our partners? Maybe because, that’s not what we REALLY want?

Clairvoyance

Dependence. Independence. Interdependence.

I realized that I have been emotionally dependent for most of my life. If I could, I would travel back in time and stop myself from blaming people for the negative emotions I felt – emotions that I thought gave me the right to be a cold-hearted, selfish person I am today.

I apologize to acquaintances, whom I’ve briefly come across, that I’ve judged because of the way they treated me. No matter how you treated me for our short encounters did not give me the right to brand you as someone displeasing to other people.

I apologize to friends whom I’ve shut because of how unfairly I felt I’ve been treated. it was a hasty and emotionally-driven decision to shut you out. I realize that it was not the backstabbing, the acts of pushing me out of the circle, nor making me feel unimportant was the core of my decision to shut you out of my life; but my crave for social acceptance. Your acceptance. I understand now how you could see me as an overly dramatic introvert. I truly do love and treasure you yet I failed to communicated that in a proper manner.

I apologize to my ex, whose unfaithfulness I blamed for our failed relationship for years. It was my dependence on your reciprocation of my love that drilled the holes in our foundation and caused it to collapse. I understand now how you could say I was always too proud of myself. I hope you could laugh now as heartily as I did then when I thought that was ridiculous. Because the reality is that on the contrary, I had so low self-esteem that your acceptance of me  was the highest measure of my self-worth. I felt threatened at every moment I’d feel I wasn’t important to you anymore that it just drove me mad and made me do dramatic things. That wasn’t a relationship was supposed to be and I’m sorry for putting you through that.

Lastly, I apologize to myself. Where we are right now is all my fault. I’m sorry we have lost our sense of self and sense of worth — no, in fact I’m sorry we didn’t have that for the last 19 years of our existence. Living up to expectations and following the rules of the society was the best I could do, what I’ve always thought was the right thing to do. Now we’re almost 20 and stuck at the phase of ‘figuring things out’ instead of facing adulthood with our head high, chest out and hands clasped on our waist. I’m sorry I’ve ruined most of our valued relationships. I’m sorry I didn’t know better.

But now I have the ability to.

This moement is not about making people see how much I’ve grown. It is about making people see the total opposite, the true state of what I am right now. I am a child learning its way into the world, not how it’s supposed to but how it freely chooses to.

Like what Audrey said in Pitch Perfect 2, “Sometimes you need to break things down before you can bring them back up.” And that’s exactly what I’m doing. I am not building myself up right now so I hope people don’t expect me to be mature, reliable and grown up. I am breaking myself down to have a fundamental understanding on how I react to situations to know where I feel genuine. Because I want to be genuine, not some trash or success story the circumstances shape me to be.

I am learning not to be dependent on the external forces that affect my everyday life. I am learning to be independent so that I can affect the external forces in my life. I trust that if I have a positive energy, I will attract positive energy. And by the time I reach that, I can learn to attain the supreme rule of life — interdependence.

It is a journey I do not expect to last within hours, days or months. I am not in a rush. I do not want this to be tactical decision. I want this to be a strategic direction. After all, I only have one lifetime to love. What do I have to live for afterwards?

It is not a journey I expect people to stick with me either. If you’re thinking I’m being difficult right now, imagine how I’m feeling handling myself right now. Haha. I’m draining almost 20 years of set paradigms and culture of what should be from my system.

 

 

Featured post

Through The Rain

I always take the bus on the way home and that day was no different, mainly.

Halfway through the ride, as I was enjoying the mellow music plugged in my ears, raindrops stained the clear window I was staring through. I felt a rush of panic as I recall that I left my umbrella at home in a quick leaving.

129… 128… 127. The numbers on the road posts were quickly passing one after another. As I was feeble at remembering places, these numbers were the only sign I rely on to know where I am. As soon as it gets to 1, that’ll be my cue to get off the bus. Unfortunately, I’ll be there very soon and the rain had only gotten worse. By the time the bus reached 26, the skies were fully covered with dark and heavy clouds. At 10, I finally gave up hoping and decided to run to the nearest shade and let the pouring pass. So reaching number 1, I got off and ran.

I stood in front of a closed store building while drying my hair with a handkerchief. As I wipe my face and look up the sky, I knew I was going to be here for a while. A relaxing piano piece played next on my phone and as I was about to grab the device, another bus parked and unloaded the rushing passengers. It might have been the combination of the cold, heavy rain and the calming music in my ears that I have found myself falling in a trance with the flow of people getting off the blue bus parked a few feet from where I was standing. My vision soon blurred out as my mind occupy my consciousness with a memory from two and a half years ago.

I was standing at the very same spot, soaked and exhausted from a long day at school. I considered unfortunate for having a busy day combined by a painful stuck-in-traffic scenario to be sealed by a strong storm. I had no umbrella and I was stuck in the sea of people as desperate as I was to take shade at almost midnight. Adjusting to college life was exhausting and by this point, I was ready to crack and fall in tears.

It was then that I received a text from my boyfriend, now ex. He asked me where I was and as I was typing my response, I heard a familiar voice that sent a wave of warmth throughout my shivering body. I saw his tall, rugged body making its way through the hassling crowd. I wanted to run and embrace him with all the strength I have left, but I was too surprised to move and all I could bring myself to do was greet him with a teary eyed but smiling face. I felt a strong urge to kiss him right there and then to show how much it meant to me that he came, and yet I chose to remain with a tired composure. He carried my bag and held me tight as we venture through the rain, together under one umbrella.

Soon I found myself sitting beside him inside a jeepney. I felt my body relax as he wraps his arm around me. I remember resting my head on his shoulder while thinking, ‘this is it. I can just melt in this warmth all night.’ As it was crazily traffic and the vehicle kept going and stopping, I had a hard time getting a rest as my head bumps at every break. He probably felt my pain for he placed his had on my head to keep it steady and whispered that I get some rest. Hearing his soft, loving voice put my racing heart at ease. Feeling safe right there and then, I dozed off.

HOOOOONK. The sound of the bus awoke me from my flashback. The blue bus had just left and this time, a white one with red letters replaced it in its place. It was at this moment that my eyes started to get misty.

I was staring at the passengers unloading and kept hoping that one of them will be him. I was starting to imagine him holding an umbrella and offering to share it with me wearing his most charming smile I’ve missed so much. I kept hoping and praying. It didn’t even have to be until I get home. Even just a few seconds of being next to him and I promise I’ll make up my own excuse to part ways, just so I wouldn’t have to cry in front of him because of how much I terribly miss him. I can settle with that… But for course, he wasn’t one of those passengers. This isn’t a movie or a story, and even if it was, he wasn’t meant to share that scene with me because he belongs to some other heroine.

At this thought, I wiped my tears and ran out the rain, struggling my way through the strangers following the flow of people. I was able to take another shade at a small street-side eatery. It was then that the rain started to ease. I looked up to a slightly brighter sky before looking back one last time at the bus unloading passengers.

I imagined him getting down, holding an umbrella. Seeing me did not make him call my name with his loving voice. Instead he offered to share the umbrella with a straight, emotionless face like he was complying to a social norm and nothing more. I will act hesitantly to take it and cover my gleeful heart with a small, pretentiously forced smile. Then we’ll share small, casual talks that friends and acquaintances normally share with smiling faces, not these obligatory little smiles we’ll both wear to make each other feel how uninterested we care at whatever each other says. Then when that 15-25 ends, I will thank him and he will reply with an obligatory ‘you’re welcome’ statement. He’ll jokingly ask what could have I done without him, to which I’ll respond with a laugh and bid goodbye.

But the moment I turn around, my smile will face. With the cry of my bleeding heart, I’ll answer in whisper…

“I would’ve ran through the rain in tears.”

Crush

The cycle of having a crush:

1. Aw, he’s so cute.

2. Am I starting to like him?

3. *one interaction later* *shrieks* he’s so cute I like him so much ❤

5. *stalk mode*

6. *not talking anymore* wha– what did I do? why 😥

7. *still not talking* …

8. *asked him out, he says no, someones asks him out for a party, says yes* … 😥

9. *eats ice cream and rocks back and forth in a corner* what did I do wrong? 😥

10. *still not talking* *unfollowing* you know what? I don’t even care anymore. Whatever. *heart crushes inside*

This is probably why it’s called a crush.

1AM Thoughts

I’ve been shut down, ignored and offended around 50 times this week. It’s currently 1:20 in the morning and the only person I wish to talk to turns out to be busy. Hoping to be able to talk to other friends, I sent messages again and again and again, but as I stare at the ceiling waiting for a response I found the silence draining me. I can’t believe it’s only been less than a year that I’ve come of age, I knew being an adult wasn’t about automatically having it all figured out but I didn’t expect it to be more confusing and messy. I felt every string of my existence being questioned most days. I find challenges way more overwhelming and honestly I am mostly distraught with grief. I usually don’t crave for appreciation, but they’ve been such a scarcity lately that my heart immediately melts at the smallest affection.

1:30. I question my existence as my thoughts wander for as far as it could in the past. The horror escaped my eyes through the flowing mist of sorrow. I have never been more terrified of the future, never been more concerned to commit an error in a decision. Perhaps the distrust I’ve come to embrace to protect myself from people have been so effective it has infected me as well. I feel unwell and I’m starting to believe the saying that an ill soul corrupts a healthy body, for I can feel my body physically hurt.

1:40. I should go to sleep, yes I really should. But knowing that the troubles of tomorrow should be faced sooner if I do, the fear drives me reluctant to enter into slumber. But perhaps hours of nightmare will be much better? Much as a sweet dream trumps reality. These are ramblings of a troubled being, and I thought I’m through with this. I’ve conquered far worse yet now I crumble. Have those conquers been nothing but good fortune’s coincidences? That I’ve really done none of anything I’ve been credited with? Then what have I become?

1:50. That’s right, an occasion is to come soon — A day of privilege a person only has once a year where he/she can be remembered for being alive. Soon I can have that privilege, and I want nothing more than to wish to reverse the meaning of that day’s reason to celebrate. For even if a broken clock gets it right twice a day, it’s still useless the rest of the day and could and should be replaced with the one that works.

Lost Thoughts

Most of the time we settle for things simply because it’s what’s available.

This is the job that I have right now, and this is alright considering things. This is the circle of friends I have right now and given my personality I shouldn’t really complain. He/She likes me, meh, that’s good enough, we have those sweet moments. Better than being miserably single.

Everyone agrees that we should all be thankful for what we have, but this does not mean we should keep settling. We all get tired of waiting for the best thing because we’re uncertain and even more so, terrified, at the possibility that it might never come. Who can blame us, right? Uncertainty is really terrifying. What if we keep waiting and after all this time, we just fooled ourselves believing that something better is about to come? What if what we have right now is the best that it’s ever gonna get? If that’s the case, we’d choose to grab everything that feels like it’s gonna be the best and would never let that thing leave our grasp until something better appears. Is this really such a great idea?

Truth is, I have no idea.

Whether you should leave your current job for other matters or stay until a better one opens up is out of anyone’s jurisdiction to decide. Whether you should keep settling with every person you’ll fall in love with or wait for your ideal one is out of anyone’s imagination either. Because honestly, nobody knows the course of life you want to take better than you. We often think that every decision falls in only two categories: right or wrong. Who can say otherwise when when we make a ‘wrong’ decision, our line of thoughts always go ‘I should’ve picked the other option so this wouldn’t have happened.” Our fear to decide is there only because of consequences.

And that’s the thing – consequences. We all know every decision has at least one. Most of the time, what we think is a good decision is the one that would lead us to the least consequences because that’s how the world works — good people make the least or the lightest consequences, mistakes. But does it really?

Truth is, I believe that the only person who can determine whether the decision we make for ourselves are good or not … are ourselves. There are decisions we make that might seem so utterly idiotic for other people and even makes us miserable, but we know deep down that it’s the right thing to do and that it would give us peace that we’ve done it in the long run.

Honestly, I think that the decisions we do for the amusement of other people and personal security rather than what we truly feel is right for ourselves are the pretentious lies that lead us to think we’re living a good life rather than making choices to have the life we want.

The Only Standard That Matters

The only standard you should be pressured with is the one you set for yourself

-Glads

6 Lessons I’ve Learned About Life

1. Do not rely your happiness to anyone other than yourself. Doing so will make you so dependent, hungry for so much attention and always clinging to things you have no control over. I mean come on–

2. –Give yourself a little more credit. It’s never wrong to appreciate the littlest things you achieve. Be proud. (Caution: do not interchange the word ‘proud’ with ‘boastful’)

3. Give everyone the right to their own opinions– Be the person who eats popcorn while watching comment debates in Facebook and YouTube. Isn’t that fun?!

4. –But learn how to filter. Only absorb the things you think are applicable to your situation. No one knows the situation you’re going through better than you.

5. Be your own person. Have your own opinions based on your own experiences and observations. By being easily swayed by other people’s opinions, you give yourself a little less credit than what you’re worth. Investigate. Use facts. Logic exists for a reason.

6. Let it go. Blaming yourself for the mistakes you did for the previous years will only make you, and you alone, suffer. Do not give that satisfaction to people who keep bringing you down.

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