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Things I know for sure


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31/43. I need regular check-ins with myself. Monthly works fine, most of the time.

Tonight, our toddler slept at 10:30 pm. Bedtime started at 7 pm. That’s 3.5 hours of reading, singing, playing, one more random bath because she wanted to — despite already bathing before 7 pm.

It’s one of my favorite moments as a mother but yes, it is exhausting. Especially after a day filled with tasks from my role as a home manager, mother, wife, my day job, and responsibilities at Law School.

Superwoman ka, Dai? No! You are just an ordinary 43-year-old who now uses an unhealthy amount of haplas (soothing body ointments) to get by. Also, you have run out of groceries and food supply. You need to do the marketing.

I am exhausted, and I wear that not as a badge of honor. That’s a sign of me losing control of my calendar, and my life. Not saying “No” enough, no matter how hard I try. Doing too much, especially at a time when we are building our house, slowly packing our things, adjusting to Big School with the Tiny Human.

So my reflections today:

* Cut back, Darna.

* Get rid of work that doesn’t give you joy or fulfillment.

* Automate as many tasks as possible.

* Delegate what you can.

* Go on vacation. Get drunk. Read a book, sunbathe, and try not to worry too much about how expensive it is to get rid of darn sun and age spots.

* Do less, so you can be more.



32/43. When I was reviewing for the Bar, my friend Louanne Florendo-Piñero would sit with me in cafes, read a book, and wait for me to finish studying.

When I went to Singapore for work, my cousin Ponsing Benjamin would pick me up at my hotel every single day to have dinner with me.

One time, a friend and I were both in Bangkok for work but because of back-to-back meetings, we could not catch each other for a drink or dinner. Before I left, he took a taxi to meet me at the airport before I checked in. We had a bottle of beer each, and talked for at least two hours.

At a time when we can already afford what we need, and many of what we want, the gift of Time remains to be such a blessing.

May the coming days give us all time to rest, and just be with each other. For coffee, for a drink, for shared meals. And shared life stories.

That matters. That matters a lot.



33/43. While carefully and responsibly removing items from my 11.11 cart, I googled again for the history of “11.11”.

Wikipedia says: “The Singles’ Day  or Double 11 , originally called Bachelors’ Day, is a Chinese unofficial holiday, and shopping season that celebrates people who are not in a relationship.”

To “celebrate people who are not in a relationship”!? So where’s the party? Can we married people come, and bring our awesome single friends so they can meet your awesome single friends?

It must be especially hard to date in a small city like Dumaguete, and even in a small province like Negros Oriental. The community is so small that the dating pool could be made up of people who could be your cousins or people you just want to punch.

With more and more places to hang out in on Fridays and the weekend, it also becomes harder for people to simply meet. I remember during my time, most of us in the City would just meet up at Hayahay or at El Camino Blanco. (Gone are those days.)

I lived in Manila for most of my single adult life, and in that big jungle, dating was already hard, especially for a lazy girl who just wanted to find a quiet bar at the end of the work week, suspiciously rejecting drinks offered by strangers, and talk about anything under the sun with friends.

But I celebrated my 34 years of singlehood.  So many adventures. So many mistakes. So many irresponsible purchases that were oh-so-good for the soul.

So to all single friends: If you choose to continue finding a partner, may the odds be ever in your favor. If you choose to remain single, enjoy it. Celebrate it. Add to cart with all your heart and soul. Applies to dates and irresponsible purchases.


Author’s email: [email protected]



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