Life lately

  • General

I miss blogging. And no, not the blogging that I do here now, but the online journaling of the early 2000’s–those long posts about our days written in LiveJournals or those self-hosted blogs on Greymatter (who remembers this?). I used to do it in a sort of ~cryptic fashion in my other personal blog before I published my first book, but to be honest, when I read them now, I could see how the blog posts were kind of…performative in some way. I mean, yes, those were the words from my heart and a slice of all my angst and learnings during those years, but also now I could see that I wrote them in a very similar way to the other blogs that I consumed at those times. Like, there should always be a Message to the post, a Realization about something in life, a Learning, a Point. And maybe, maybe, I kind of want some people to read that and maybe realize the things that I couldn’t tell to their faces.

I have no regrets on that phase of my life, but also I remember that I never really set out to that kind of blogger. When I first made a blog back then it was really just to write about my day–where I went, what activities I went to, my classes, and maybe a bit too much about my current crushes. Haha. And I miss that.

Of course, spilling your guts online for the whole world to see and for people to search decades later isn’t the wisest things now and that’s really the purpose of all the blank notebooks here at home, and talking to people about things. Or maybe I just miss this because I miss my friends, I miss having long conversations in person rather than on video calls or chats.

But like I said in my last post, I have kind of come to accept that a big part of this 2021 will probably be the same as last year–until a big chunk of the world gets vaccinated, anyway, but even then, who knows, right? So I’m keeping my expectations low but my hopes up. By this I mean, not to expect that all that I missed last year will come back quickly this year, but still hope that it will come back in some way, shape or form sometime. If within this year, then yay, but if not…well, it is what it is. I mean, Jesus did say, “Do not worry about tomorrow” so maybe that’s what I really need to do this year.

And with that, there is no real point here except that I just want to write something. Get some words out as a warm-up because it’s Monday and people are finally getting back into the groove of work and I actually need to be productive. And also maybe because I feel like rambling a little bit (you’ll see haha), so here we go:

Reading:

Geekerella: A Fangirl Fairytale by Ashley Poston. Reading this mostly for research on a Thing but also I just wanted something light and fun. The last few months of 2020 were crappy for my reading and even now I still have a hard time focusing on any of the books in my Kindle–not even the latest book from one of my favorite authors from last year. 🙁 I am tracking all my 2021 reads in this Twitter thread, and I hope I can keep it updated this time. (Sidenote: I sort of kind of miss reviewing books on a book blog, haha, but my book blogger days are over now.)

Writing:

I have several articles due for work this week, and also a short story that I hope to finish this week for an upcoming thing. Creative writing nowadays feels like pulling teeth. It’s been hard writing things, really, and sometime late last year, I started despairing over it, until friends reminded me that 1) we’re all on survival mode so obviously, our brain puts more of its power into surviving vs. creating, and 2) we’re all still grieving for the things that we lost/were taken way from us in 2020 that it’s just natural to not be able to write or create anything.

It sucks, but things have been looking up lately, so here’s hoping it all works out.

Listening:

Black Swan by BTS, which turned 1 yesterday. I first listened to this during BTS Week on Jimmy Fallon (hello look at this beautiful performance), but I only really paid attention to the lyrics a month later and it spoke to me so much that I always pause whenever this comes up on shuffle. Here’s one of my favorite pieces about it.

I have to add, though, that many BTS songs speak to me and I can go on and on and on about them and these 7 men from South Korea who have been an utter source of joy and comfort in the past few months, but I won’t because there’s not much time and I don’t think I will be able to do it right without blabbering incoherently at just how! much! I love them! Instead, I will direct you to my friend Pinky’s newsletter where she chronicled her experience as a Baby ARMY (honestly, this one pushed me further in, after that one day I just decided to listen to Dynamite over and over again–which was exactly FOUR MONTHS AGO woohoo happy monthsary!), and this video I stumbled upon last weekend:

 

Honestly, I’m just so grateful that I finally paid attention to BTS last year. There’s a saying in the fandom that you find them exactly when you need them and it was so true–I watched the Dynamite video that day four months ago because I needed a pick-me-up after a stressful day at work, and it’s been a wild ride since then. I don’t think I would’ve gotten through the bleak last quarter of 2020 if not for them? It’s a little hard to explain, really, and I think it is better experienced, especially for someone like me who has never been a Kpop person. I’ve always heard about them, but I shied away from Kpop because I always said that I’m a lyrics person and I’m really not one for listening to songs I don’t understand–BUT I TAKE IT ALL BACK! I am sorry for all the times I ignored you! I get it now!

Haha, this is what I meant about rambling. Let me leave you with their NPR Tiny Desk Home Concert, which was aired a week after I got into them. This is 15 minutes of their talent and just pure fun. It’s so nice watching people do the things they are passionate about.

Loving:

Cancelled meetings! *cartwheels*

Needing:

To figure out how to do groceries this week, because I really don’t want to go out now that the new strain is there and this cold amihan weather is an asthma trigger, so I need to anticipate what we need so I can put in an order in time for it to arrive on Saturday.

Thinking:

This post from Jen Fulwiler, one of the Catholic speakers I follow on Instagram, about this advice she got from someone when she was so overwhelmed by all the bad news:

You have to be a joyful warrior.

You have to find light in the darkness, even if you have to spark it yourself. You have to cultivate hope. You have to find moments to smile – not because you don’t take the issue seriously, but because you take it so seriously that you’re preparing yourself to be in this fight for the long haul.

This came back to me after I was writing the part about BTS (lol, everything is about them what). But seriously, I remember when I was trying to explain why I can’t stop thinking or talking about them, and someone told me that in times like these, we need to hold on to things that give us joy. And then I go back to this because…that’s right. We need to find light in some way, find those moments to smile because we need it to keep fighting. Even if it’s a small thing like a tweet, a song, a video clip, a message. These small things do build up, and become part of our armor as a joyful warrior, so let’s not dismiss them.

* * *

I’m scheduling this post for later today, just so I can say this: you’ve worked hard today. 🙂

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