It’s not year-end per se anymore as I write this, but it is just appropriate that I let the 365 days pass before doing an analysis of the year, for who knows how much can change in the few days since I decided to record this? (FYI, nothing much.)
It would be unfair to evaluate the year specifically in successes or failures only. 2011 is the year I truly lived—I learned what it meant to step out of my comfort zone, defy a few rules, take risks and find myself in situations I thought were always just going to be figments of my imagination. It took two decades and a series of wet and dry seasons for me to understand what living really entails.
Below are just a few things I’ve learned, experienced and discovered in no particular order.
Dated a Houdini
First of all, I don’t even date–not since I had my last relationship, and not until I decided to. It just so happened that I thought I was ready again, and I was, but I should have known better than to expect where a three + invisible-fourth month-long dating can end up in. I was a hopeful cynic, ready to finally let butterflies flutter within my intestines again yet keeping in mind the dark side of it all, hoping we won’t ever reach that side. But we did. It ended as quick as it started, but I can’t say I regret my decisions or call the whole thing a mistake on my end (no, I am not in denial, I swear). I learned a lot more than I ever expressed and a lot more than I thought I would in three moon cycles.
For the short time that he was a significant chunk in my life, one of the most important things I picked up from him is that dreams can come true, but you have to start somewhere. It’s okay to dream and not let fear take over me when I haven’t even started. How do I find things out without trying?
And other things I learned…
-I saw the beauty of lies. Yes, a lie crushed my illusions but I have eventually learned to use the white variety to my advantage.
-The local music scene is alive and kicking…when did I stop being in the loop?
-Other things I ought to know in my twenties
-You cannot expect everyone to give you an explanation, as much as you want it, as what my officemate has repeatedly told me a.k.a. life is unfair
-I learned how to ride the bus, which leads me to my next item…
Mastered the Metro Manila public transportation
Back in first year college, the first time I rode the LRT on my own, I felt like an independent and invincible adult. Then, I realized, bragging about this little achievement of mine made me one of the typical inexperienced freshmen. Everyone else in my school rides the train and generalizes it as commuting; I am proud to say I’ve come a long way from that.
I learned how to ride the FX, jeep, tricycle, and cabs that eat up my allowance. Then came the bus. I became a bus girl since I rode one with that guy, and it was my mode of transportation from work to home for a period, enjoying 1.5 hours like a field trip and listening to albums I’ve downloaded. Then I learned about the shuttle service. I’ve heard about this, but I never thought there’d be routes going up north. So now I am shuttle/van girl.
Hurray! You can now leave me in a street corner and I won’t be as terrified as I would have been five years ago. Someone wrote this goal in my life list and I never bothered to erase it, and now I have another ticked off without noticing this lesson unfold.
Got a job
Had I known that I was going to be part of the anxious and whiny employed population, I could have saved a lot of time seeking out the perfect job. My peers are surely familiar with this. We all want the perfect job, and we want it to be the first. Screw that.
It happens for some, but I am part of the most. The way I see it, it shouldn’t be too hard to jump from one chapter to another despite the pressure of having to finish a whole year just to have a fool-proof resume, but right now I am more resolved to focus on finding my next stop. Seems that one way to find out what I want is through a process of elimination.
Fulfilled a dream
This was done in a month-long routine, paired with a few tears and a confused mind on self identity. I wish I could mention this already, but all I can say for now is that I’m glad I did this and refused to let the opportunity slip through. What helped: a little less thought on the future and more living in the present.
Other unusual highlights
I drove with no license from Makati to Quezon City at midnight (thank you world for not conspiring against me); got my way out of getting a ticket by crying; lost appetite and weight for many weeks; hit my neighbor’s water pipes, which meant they couldn’t take a bath or wash anything for a span of a few hours.
I have a bundle of goals for this year, have semi-organized them by priority and I’m all set to take action. Here they are vaguely stated: eat more, spend more, walk slower, start a business, design and create, think less and act more, make stronger connections, find and seize opportunities, let go, and love myself more. I know I said in a previous entry that I am not a fan of planners, but if there was one year I would have wanted to record with Staedtler pens in a diary, it would have been the year of 2011.