I am writing this post with a heavy heart and a worn out soul. If you’re not ready to empathize, please do not waste your time by reading the rest of this.
I don’t think I’ve let myself be in a very vulnerable position in a very long time. There were countless times I’ve been beaten up but this moment at the first quarter of 2020, I’ve cried my eyes out again.
I understand how every one has different tribulations in their life. It may be of different intensities and we grew up in diverse environments too. So, if my hurdles seem shallow to you, it may not be to me. We handle our own sh*t differently.
I guess mine has always been holding it in — figuring it out on my own. A helps me too and I appreciate him. But most times, we’re not together because we’re 8305 km apart. Don’t get me wrong, he and Rem are the only reason I’m still sane. There are just times like this when I stare into nothingness and wonder, when will all my hardships end?
Glimpse into the past.
You know, I didn’t grow up in a well-off household. We were 5 siblings in the family and my parents are simple people who worked so hard to feed us and send us to school and I love them with all my heart and soul, too (missing you so much, ma). While most kids my age gets to play around a lot and gets the latest consoles, we were taught to value education and put it atop our priority because it will alleviate us in poverty.
And so we thrived.
I did not understand how difficult life is though until I started working. I was able to finish my tertiary education through the help of my eldest brother. And so, it was my responsibility to help out the younger ones. Part of my salary goes to my parents too to help them out in the expenses at home (until now). The value of money wasn’t realized until I had to budget the money I earned from my own blood, sweat and tears, though.
But life goes on.
When I look back at my old self, I am very far from that spectrum of my entity. I was overly nice. Maybe because that’s what my mom taught me. Always be kind, even when people doesn’t do you good. And I know not a lot of people sees that as being genuine — and tags it as someone who craves for attention.
My first two jobs were in a call center environment. Albeit, technical representative/professional. I don’t remember it all but I remember how I was judged because I’m different — my complexion is different, my eyes are different, the way I carry myself is different, my fashion sense is different. I had to swallow it when other people hates me, and goes out of their way to find anything that would taint my name. I remember crying to my ex at that time too. It was shattering considering I’m minding my own business.
But we still go on.
A Canadian manager saw my potential despite being the youngest in the team they were building — but I gave it my all. I stayed there for two years and I was the last one to leave from the pioneer batch. It wasn’t easy too — my knowledge was very shallow compared to those who have been in the industry for quite some time. With that, I had to put in more effort than them to understand the underlying technology in our job. I am grateful for every one in there — they’ve contributed into the professional that I am now.
However, there were a lot of misunderstandings and miscommunications that transpired. I was still too nice, I was still a suck up. I fought at times, but I did not fought hard enough.
And then I have decided to leave the comfort of my parent’s care.
An almost 6 year relationship ended and a new one started — but it was one of the darkest moments of my life.
When you tolerate abuse, and you try to makes sense out of it, you know you had to leave. But I didn’t. From being the only girl in my household to someone else’s personal maid, whatever love I have for myself was depleted. I was beaten up emotionally, psychologically, physiologically, verbally and physically — but only a number of people knew about it.
I kept it from my parents, I distanced from my friends. I never wanted to be a burden to anyone.
So I sucked it up.
Until he kicked me out of the apartment we were living.
I went back to my parent’s home only for two weeks because I work in BGC and commuting to and from Las Pinas was really hard and time consuming.
For the first time in my life, I lived alone. I was in a third floor of a residential area in Taguig — no idea how I would survive it all. But I strive to live one day at a time. Strive to be better at my job. Strive to heal.
My ex cut communications with me, taking with him all of my life savings and the condo we got for both of us which was under his name.
Then my mom got sick. She had stage 4 cancer — it was already too late to be cured. She left us.
A part of me also died.
Before she got hospitalized, I left Solarwinds Software Asia Pte Ltd. to move back to my previous company, Sophos. I could not tolerate the new team lead we had that micromanaged us — I couldn’t even go to the toilet without being asked where I went. I knew I needed out.
But I wanted to keep my mom’s HMO — specially when she started going back and forth to the hospital. I called the HMO and they told me I can continue paying for it out of my own money if our HR would endorse it. I begged our HR Paolo to do so, he wouldn’t bat an eyelash about it. He couldn’t care less about the well being of my mom.
We paid so much for her hospital bills and medication, and I know she let go because she doesn’t want to be a burden to us anymore, too. There was nothing I could do, I felt so helpless. I wanted to turn back time and spend more time with her —- tell her how much I love her. Show her how grateful I am I was born from her womb and how she raised me with all her might.
I know she cries when I cry, too.
A gave me the greatest gift when he gave me Remilia — she’s my light amidst the death of a loved one. With that, I knew I had to find a slightly bigger apartment so she would have some space to roam around with. My current apartment at that time was too little and too hot for her well-being. I got lucky when Anna Melissa Tan-So accepted us in her apartment in General Ricarte, South Cembo. We agreed for a six month lease first but she said I can always extend with no problem. I was at ease, I was glad. I trusted her words.
On the other hand, life back at Sophos wasn’t easy. Especially when you’ve transformed from an extrovert to being a full blown introvert. I was misunderstood most of the time, judged by how little I seem to care of others. My only safe place was teaching at Onelife Private Studio. I found peace through teaching.
But things started to crumble, again.
A day after Christmas of 2018, I got a message that I needed to vacate my apartment and I won’t be allowed to extend my contract anymore. I was told they will renovate the space I was at to be their guest house. It was a day after Christmas, I cried my eyes out. I felt so little — so helpless. You know that feeling where you just can’t do anything because your value in the society is so little because you’re poor? That’s what I felt. I was a lowly tenant who couldn’t fight her landlord. On top of that, she lied too. A few weeks after I left, another tenant moved in. How shitty that have made me feel.
Work situation had gotten worst too, and I fell into a deep state of depression. I was always feeling sick, I was crying a lot, I did not feel I belong there. I know I was being seen as a black sheep. Memos were flying — even from the littlest mishaps my lead could find. Imagine how it all piled up to me.
Apart from that, Rem has been taken to the hospital twice too. Since it was just her and I, it was really difficult to juggle all the responsibilities. The ironic part of it is, none of my clients and co-instructor at the pilates studio knows about it. I was so good at hiding it.
A few days after we settled in the new apartment which costed 55% more of the previous one, Rem had to undergo a surgery. I was so scared she’d left me too. The baby had tough it out for me and her dad, but A and I’s funds were heavily depleted.
Two months after that, I knew I had to leave Sophos for good. My relationship with my lead was irreparable because she was expecting me to be the person I am not, and I just couldn’t handle it anymore. When someone who claims to be a dog lover too (has 3) also judges you for taking your sick dog to the hospital and ditching your job, you know it’s time to leave.
I found home in my new job.
I did not know one can be that happy with the environment they work with. That harmony is possible — and just supporting each other’s growth, plausible.
Rem and I had to move into an apartment nearer in BGC , too. It was easier if I’m alone and I know I can take living in a confined small area. But I wanted her to have a comfortable space too while I’m at work. However, places that accepts dogs are very rare. Hence, when we found a humble abode in General Malvar, South Cembo, I couldn’t be any happier. I told A I felt that after all the hardships of moving to a different apartment for 3x already in a span of less than one year, may be, this was going to be our long term home.
I thought all is well.
July of 2019, I received an email that made me feel low again. The solace I found in teaching was taken away from me. On top of that, a made up rumor was crafted and I wasn’t even asked to explain my side.
You would think if you stick your nose to only your business alone and try to live an honest life, that people will do the same to you. I was wrong. The society nowadays gives value to you only if you meet their standards. Is she pretty enough? Thin enough? Famous enough? Rich enough? If not, then you are nothing but shit. And to be perfectly honest, that was what I felt. I am nothing but a lowly coach whom Tanya can just throw because I have no use for her anymore. I wasn’t the first person she treated like this, but it did not change the fact that it hurt me to my core.
When you put your heart and soul and really considered it to be your passion, hearing the news that I can no longer be the light for my clients shattered me. A heard me cry so much. I was on the floor, helpless. I felt lower than the lowliest person ever recorded in history. I started losing faith on my self. I started thinking — I don’t have 23,000 followers or more on Instagram that’s why I’m just shit to her. I am not an influencer. I don’t get invited to events nor is sponsored by any brands. I am not beautiful enough, I am not rich enough. I wasn’t a product of Ateneo or La Salle — that’s why she regarded me as shit. I just wasn’t enough.
There’s still a scar left from that.
With all the stones thrown at me in my lifetime, I’m still striving to achieve my dreams, to heal, to be better. I’m still happy with the work I have right now and the tribe I have at work — and is very much looking forward to marrying the man who stayed with me for 7 years despite all my shortcomings as a friend and as a partner.
We know life is not all rainbows.
But is one really prepared to handle such when it comes? I’m not.
Amidst the pandemic, Rem and I are confined at home because that’s the least we can do. The seclusion didn’t scare us, we are used to staying indoors. What heightened my anxiety was the fear of what ifs. And being away from my fiance and my dad. The fear of people resorting to violence when food is no longer available to the masses —- that’s what kept me up at night. That’s what makes me feel I am not equipped if worst comes to worst.
And then this morning happened.
When you thought it’s only the covid19 you should think of, and the welfare of your families and close friends, life gives you another blow.
Just this morning, I was getting a vegetable delivery when the owner of my apartment dropped news to me that I will need to vacate my apartment after covid19 quarantine period. After covid19 quarantine! (April 14). I was in shock. She mentioned that she needed to have the poso negro be installed and my unit needed to be vacated for that. The unit beside me has been empty until recently and she mentioned that that unit has a poso negro available in it. Mine doesn’t.
I asked her why she didn’t ask me to move beside the vacant unit and allowed another family to move in, she said she was asked about it long time ago. I had to plead to stay until the end of the year but when I got home, I broke into tears again.
I called A — crying, wailing terribly. Helpless feeling of being kicked out again. What have I done wrong? I’ve done my very best to be good to my neighbors, not cause any inconvenience — why was it not enough? Why do I have to go through this? Have I been a bad person to be subdued into this?
I wanted to die.
I couldn’t count anymore how many times I wanted to die. With everything that had happened in my life to the endless ordeals I still have now, it’s really draining me out. Is the gap between the rich and the poor really this big? Is there really no equality and no justice? Again, had I really been such a bad person to deserve such?
I told A how badly I wanted to not feel pain anymore. My heart is still healing from everything that I’ve been through but it’s cut open again.
Now we live with uncertainty of until when can we stay here… What if she changed her mind again, then Rem and I will surely be homeless.
And with a heavy heart and battered soul, I asked myself— when does one stop being strong?
I’m really tired and I wanted to just vanish. This is all too much.
Buthe answer is, you don’t get to afford to stop being strong. You live life again one day at a time. No matter how painful, you live for the ones you love. You live life still hoping there’s a light at the end of this road.
You. Have. To. Fcking. Endure.
Even if it wore you out, even if it pains you to do so, you just can’t stop because there’re still some living soul waiting for you, rooting for you, caring for you.
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