I hope there was a manual for relationships, marriage and parenting. That one manual that every person is required to have when they enter adulthood, like a life 101 and an obligatory seminar where you’d be taught the hows and whys, the what nots and the what to dos. unfortunately life, #adulting, is more like those Choose Adventure Books you have when you were a kid. The worst thing about it though is that when you get tired or get lost and somewhat don’t like the outcome, you can’t just close the book or go back the previous chapter to reevaluate and change your course by choosing differently. Life has consequences and most of the time the consequences that comes with it is permanent or irrevocable.
You would often hear people wish they were back to being kids, I for one have wished it more than once and if time machines could be invented, it would be a commodity that everyone would want to have. To undo wrong decisions, to go back to a much finer time and to bring back the old. When what we are aiming for is a brighter tomorrow, sometimes it just seems to get gloomier. What I’m trying to say is, life is a journey taken one step at the time, filled with decisions and outcomes, outcomes that are sometimes beyond our control eventhough it is triggered by our actions or inaction, by words spoken or not spoken.
Today we could all look back a year ago, some years ago or a decades past and see how many failed choices and wrong turns we’ve made together with good choices and great outcomes. Life is like that. It is filled with both good and bad. On melodramatic days I can think of so many things I wished I’d done differently. So many words I hope I did or didn’t say and so many actions I hope I did and did not do.
Sometimes when I think of the yesterdays I think most of all about the people I have lost and people I have gained and it breaks my heart to realized that this past year I seemed to have lost more than I have retained. Moving on, I can only wish to make sounder decisions to veer myself away from heartbreaks and from causing people pain but we can only try one day at a time and no matter how much we learn from the past we can never guarantee ourselves and others that we know how to make the best decision all the time. So yeah I wish I had that manual so that I can only look back with smiles and joy and not tears and heartaches.
Anything outside of being a “normal” family is still somewhat considered a taboo in today’s society where single moms are still faced with criticism and divorced or separated mothers and fathers are left to feel guilty about their choices to raise their kids with only one of them present. In a perfect world, we all imagine a stepford mom and a responsible, successful dad with straight A kids living in some suburban neighborhood with as little problem to face like which vacation destination to take next or what movie to watch on Saturday night. But, we are far from living in a perfect world and as much as we want to deny that it is happening a rising percentage of the generation today will be raised in a not so conventional setting.
Saying so, I do not believe that the generations to come is doomed should we all see past the dysfunction and find means to make the present circumstance work. We, humans, have adopted quite well in every era and have survived slavery, wars, famine, dictatorship and many more and adopt we must, lest we plan to raise a generation that will make way for some other form of zombie apocalypse – a world full of emotionally incapable human beings, with blank and empty stares, devoid of humanity.
I read an article earlier today that in order for us to raise emotionally stable kids that could survive every social situations with a sound mind and heart, parents should learn to show affection towards each other in front of their kids. That children should witness love between mothers and fathers but how about those that are raised by single moms or dad or those who are from broken homes? Are we to automatically predict a life of turmoil and mental issues from them? Little boys and girls will learn to treat others from how their parents treated each other, but being raised in an unconventional family setting should in no way be a hindrance for them from learning how to grow up decently.
Some of us will have to raise kids on our own, or we will have to share the responsibility with an estranged someone. If love is not available and affection is something that we cannot show towards each other in front of the little ones then lets show respect and kindness instead. When there is a lack of love lets treat each other with decency instead of hostility, patience instead of anger and understanding instead of contempt. Looking past differences is hard but it is a sacrifice that parents must do their children. Let us never teach our kids to harbor hate and unforgiveness nor shall we show them indifference and resentment.
As the days progress, the Philippines, its government and its people regress. Where we all should be aiming at one goal – which is to uplift the Filipino people, here we are stuck at a war against each other. Political groups fight for their own causes, private sectors criticizing the government without giving sound alternatives, the government doing its own thing without stopping and listening to the cry of either the majority or minority and the people arising vehemently – at times at the cost of the innocent.
Today, as people go out in the streets to protest against tyranny and dictatorship while others who see the governments move and actions as necessary – we are even move divided than we are in the Marcos regime. Instead of us all helping in trying to build a stronger nation – we are all helping it fall apart. We take sides instead of bridging gaps, we speak ill instead of encourage, we hate instead of understand each others perspective, we speak instead of listen.
I am apolitical, I don’t take sides – I am one who believes that, it is up to us to bring change. Not the government, not the opposition – we, the people. If we start to speak our minds with understanding and respect, if we start to write with hope and act with clear intent – then we can start the change from one person to another. I do not believe that starting an effective change will begin from our government – it is corrupt, has been and will always be. We the people will bring the change, from one act of kindness to another.
In this world, we can never deny that there are 2 kinds of people. The GOOD and the BAD. It is something that is beyond our control. Each one of us is raised differently, affected by varying forces, inside and outside of our homes, thus some people grow up decent, others, not so much. We can stay inside our homes and avoid contact with people who can harm us however realistically we all have to leave our homes to go to school, work or simply to enjoy life.
So what can we do? We protect ourselves. How? By being private about our lives as much as possible. I know how it can sometimes feel so elating when people congratulate us for our achievements and success, our new home, new car, expensive jewelry and what not’s but haven’t you realized that by being so open about these milestones we only open up ourselves for harm?
As people progress in this age by embracing technology, people with bad intentions are also embracing such. Like pedophiles have also embraced the world wide web in hunting for their next prey, burglars are using Instagram and Facebook in looking out for who to rob and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. There are bad people out there. As much as we want to believe in the good that is in the world we have to also believe that the bad lurks around some dark corner waiting for your vulnerabilities.
Protect yourself. Protect your loved ones. There is nothing wrong with posting about our lives but learn to filter what you let the world know about you. Your social circle would be happy to know about your children’s milestones but learn to protect your children too. Don’t over expose them. Your marriage, your partner, your job deserves enough privacy. You emotions nonetheless deserves to be protected too.
Is love really necessary for a relationship to last? Is it the main ingredient to a happy lasting partnership? Is love even real or is it some kind of concept taught for us to be able to gauge happiness and contentment between two human beings? People fall in and out of love everyday. People profess their emotions every minute and people grow cold at the same time. Love, our current concept of love, is as unpredictable as it can get. It is wavering, every changing and too affected by outside forces, social media, third party views and era.
One, who has failed at love too many at times or has waited for it far too long, can just question on and on if it is worth troubling oneself with. The world gets lonely, no matter how one says that they are born or built to be independent – how then do we reassure ourselves that it is okay to try one more time? LOVE is always a gamble. A mystery that is yet to be solved. Always different and constantly evolving. It is painful and messy, it is, however also quite rewarding and exhilarating. But for someone who has gone fragile and bitter, is there another option?
Respect. Two humans can live in harmony with respect even if they do not love one another. Although you can never claim to love someone without respecting them, unless your concept of love is deranged, you can always respect someone without having to love them. Too many a times people claim that they love someone but can’t give them the respect that it entails. Broken promises, deceit, constant lies and a general disregard for ones welfare and well being. Love, nowadays, has become selfish and self serving. Where ones aim is to satisfy ones need for approval and attention, understanding and acceptance, one does not reciprocate the same.
Sometimes it is easier to stay in a relationship, after all the giddiness and spark has gone and magic has turned bland, when you feel that you are still being regarded as human – deserving of civility. What I’m really trying to say is, the love that we all know, that fancy emotion that feels like a burst of sunshine, it wavers but when it does, it is not a reason to start disrespecting that someone you are with. They still deserve to feel that they exist. They still need your time and honesty and most of all they still deserve to be treated like living and breathing human beings with emotions and intellect.
We are all constantly facing a war greater that we are all refusing to acknowledge. Not war on politics, or territorial rights, not on drugs or terrorism but a war on meaningful human relationships. Sitting alone in one corner of a public space with nothing but a keen sense of your surrounding you can see that there is too much indifference in the world today than in any other time in history. Gone maybe the days of slavery but we are now enslaved in a much more ruthless form of bondage. A slavery that affects all color and race, age and social status.
When social media was suppose to connect us together, it has broken up relationships, ruined marriages, friendships gone sour etc. One can just shake ones head as you see people dining together with their heads down, in their own world, locked in those shiny screen that gives them access to everyone else outside of their world but has disconnected them to the ones in arms reach. Instead of embracing moments together we preoccupy ourselves with how to best capture our experiences, the travel, the food, the special occasions to a point that we actually forget how to truly experience these wonderful moments in life. We let our Instagram photos speak for us never realizing that when the time comes and we would need to look back on it, those supposedly wonderful experiences were devoid of any meaningful emotions.
Gone are the days when people would sit and have meaningful conversations about life and love, about the good old days of childhood and high school crushes, about heartbreaks and success. Gone are the days when the first thing we reach for as we open our eyes are our significant others, embracing and being thankful for yet another day to get by. Our gadgets have brainwashed us into believing that it is more important than the people we cherish. I remember a mobile company’s tag line, connecting people – it doesn’t seem true anymore.
So next time you are with someone, put the phone down, the people on the other line can wait, that someone in front of you has gone out of their way to make time hoping for an interaction. Connect, relive and make precious memories you can treasure for the rest of your lives. No amount of pictures can make up for lost opportunities simply because you were too preoccupied taking pictures that you forgot to run free and embrace the beauty of now.
When you barely had 4 hours of sleep, 30 weeks pregnant and seriously round, being lazy is at the top of your priority, however, this morning is not one of those morning spent staring at the ceiling hoping the day would end tremendously fast. A few days ago I received an invitation to attend a free seminar called Digitize Cebu: Empowering SMEs through Digital Marketing at the Grand Ballroom of Marriot Cebu. Listening to the very perky and beautiful Jessa from Globe MyBusiness, I honestly barely heard everything she said while I was thinking of the possible free food there is at the said event. So the day has come and hoping to be fashionably late, which I never am (fashionable, that is) I was seated right beside the lovely Carmen Albiso listening and trying to comprehend while at the back of my mind also wishing food is going to be served soon.
As a Marketing Executive, which in all honesty, I’m still trying to “fake it till you make it” the DIGITAL WORLD holds to much promise if and when we play our cards right – that’s probably the first thing I learned in this job I landed barely 2 years ago. Opening this seminar was the charming MR. Mayor, Tommy Osmena, who I think is doing a fine job in keeping his citizens abreast with what’s happening in his city through his social media account. He asked the participants one important question that we all should be at one point in our life be asking ourselves, Where would we be without innovation? A simple answer to that would be, in darkness and coldness as Fire the first among all the others [innovation] that followed has allowed the world to eat better, sleep safer and continue to thrive.
So in a nutshell, what was DIGITIZE CEBU all about, according to Ken Lingan, Country Manager for Google, digital transformation allows small businesses to compete with bigger brands, why? because the internet, which is accessible to all, levels the playing field to allow the presence of small businesses to be felt. Where expanding your business outside of your locality would require tremendous amount of capital in the past, digital marketing has paved a way to much cheaper and convenient means for owners to go beyond their comfort zone.
For someone who is barely new to this industry, the marketing world and the business of advertising, the World Wide Web and social media has greatly empowered me. I still have a long way to go in terms of learning my way through it but as long as I’m connected I am sure to find the answers from the essentials to the the more complicated. Marketing, digital marketing, to be specific is one that most, if not all businesses should strive to be good at. In this age where 65 millions of Filipinos are constantly online, you can always reach your target market where ever you are round the clock.
I lay there watching you sleep
Knowing that, although I love you
I have broken you to pieces
You are no longer the man I use to know
No longer the love I use to hold
We have fallen apart, distanced and cold
I look at you look at me as you awake
And your stare no longer holds a promise
Just uncertainties, just emptiness, just space
We are even more strangers that yesterday
How I wish I had held you better
How I wish I can turn back time
But now I guess its just too late
And all I can do is sigh
Dear Single person,
I know its been awhile since you’ve been with someone and you’ve been wishing to be held tightly, loved gently and understood completely by that one person you can call your better half. I would like tell you to hold on and keep your hopes up cause that person is just around the corner but no. I’m not going to, however, I would like you to realize that you are where you should be and that you don’t have to change your status now or ever. Stay single for as long as you can and no, that person will not come cause that person who will love you, cherish you, understand you and accept you is no other than you. Don’t believe in what others say that you need someone to be complete. You were created complete – from the time you immersed from your mothers womb. Love, that kind that prompts us to marry another is just a figment of our imagination. Something birthed from fiction, a story written by some writer or a movie directed only to mislead people in their understanding of love.
Just go on with your life enjoying and soaking in its wonderfulness. Love everyone equally. By that I mean just be kind to people. Never expect from them. Try to be as independent as you can. Live as though you don’t need to be held or kissed. Wake up everyday joyful as if you don’t miss waking up to someones embrace. Put your lipstick on as red as possible as if your lips don’t miss anothers. Never be vulnerable again or ever. Live life as happy as you can with friends and family and if that one person comes knocking telling you that there is that kind of love, run… run as fast as you can. Build impenetrable walls around you and should they plead to tear those down, hide.
Remember it is all an illusion and once the spell is broken, you will one day wake up to a horrible truth. We only need to coexist with people and should you need to procreate, I tell you, you don’t need love to do so. All you need is to find that someone who is willing to be faithful to you in terms of procreating the next generation, someone who will coparent with you and respect you enough to be civilized. But if you can – don’t jump in all that kind of drama. Stay where you are. Don’t envy those who seem to be living a fairy tale, they don’t.
Don’t, i tell you, don’t believe in love or relationships. It is only as real as aliens. Be a friend though to everyone. Be passionate about what you love. Be happy that you can be whoever you want to be in your own time and space. Delight in the fact that you can live by your own rules and if it gets too lonely… get yourself a cat.