After reading Papertowns, here’s what I thought or felt (whichever):

All of us wanted to be found. Whether we are ready to be found or not is yet another question. And there’s a beautiful difference between finding yourself in the process and being found by others afterwards. And that’s why we needed to take a day off and go to our Osprey’s (John Green reference, using this as metaphor: the place where we can be ourselves and think through life and stuff) just to gain enough courage before we head on to a journey which will require us leaving – temporarily or for good – or staying. In the aftermath, we’ll know if we’ve picked the right or wrong decision. In the aftermath, we’ll realize that getting it right or wrong was not really the whole point. This is our lives, we had been given choices. And we can make mistakes. Terrible ones. But we had to live this life in the hopes of moving forward into a future where our mistakes and our continents of Good and Bad experiences contribute significantly to our growth and humanness.

Maybe this whole ride is meant for us to enjoy the drive, the Bluefins, the GoFast bars, the fourth food group which does not include Crackers but Apples, the friend-peeing-in-beer-cans-inside-the-minivan-before-throwing-the-bottle-on-the-side-of-the-road because that has been his role all this time: the “needing to pee” friend, the Metaphysical I Spy and (all) the John Green references you wouldn’t care about because you have not read the book and how it explained that we should be careful in choosing metaphors because it matters.

The amazing thing about being broken is the truth that you are not the only one who’s falling apart. Everyone comes to a breaking point. And the breaking point allows us to see each other as they are. Not as what we imagined them to be. And the breaking point allows us to find ourselves. And it allows us to find others. And sometimes, that’s enough. The moment of getting found was enough. And when you look back, it’s not like you’ve figured everything out. It’s just like you were allowed to breathe. It’s just like you allowed yourself to breathe. And that you are still broken but you are breathing.

We got this whole life and I bet, it’s not gonna be enough to understand everything, but at least we go out there and keep trying. Even when we’re broken, kind of stupid, overly optimistic and very human.

Like, each of us starts out as a watertight vessel. And these things happen — these people leave us, or don’t love us, or don’t get us, or we don’t get them, and we lose and fail and hurt one another. And the vessel starts to crack open in places. Once the vessel cracks open, the end becomes inevitable. But there is all this time between when the cracks start to open up and we finally fall apart. And it’s only in that time that we can see one another, because we see out of ourselves through our cracks and into others through theirs. But once the vessel cracks, the light can get in. The light can get out.

-John Green, Papertowns

Small Things

I was at the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) today, yesterday and last week. I had been fixing something for our organization regarding this new BIR policy on official receipts and invoices for business owners. The old ORs/invoices will be invalid starting July 1, hence, new ones are needed to be printed out before the end of this month; those who won’t be able to comply will be penalized with P20,000-P50,000 (that’s A LOT of money especially for small business and NGOs huhu). I think the BIR wasn’t able to communicate this information properly with the business owners even though they’re telling the news that it has been proclaimed six months ago (we only knew about this policy at the end of May). What’s kind of more  frustrating about it is that they are not going to extend the deadline. Talk about mercy! Dear Lord, please help our organization not get penalized. (please pray for us too — the processing of papers, printing of new receipts before deadline; we can’t afford to be penalized)

***

Sometimes I just wanna complain because of all this “messengerial” duties that I’m doing now and in the previous months. There would be moments that I would think that this is not what I’m supposed to be doing since it was never a part of my job-description nor it was a course that I finished in College. And there would also be moments where I ask myself if this is what I’m worth?

Before I get too succumbed by all the lies in my head, I had to snap out of it by renewing my perspectives in life.

***

Most people don’t understand my field of work — they don’t really get it. I totally understand them since I myself took my time in figuring out all the whys I had in mind.

If you must know, I am working as a Program Officer for a non-government organization (NGO) for two years now. I had tendered my resignation last February of this year but I’m still extended up to this time.

Six months back, aside from being a Program person, my boss requested if I could do the admin stuff in the office since our Admin Officer resigned then. At first I thought it was easy, but boy, I was so wrong! (!!!) It was never anything that I thought it would be. It got me at the verge of insanity at some point. HAHA. Added to that, I was doing most of the messengerial errands already (long story…). Admin work is fine but messengerial? To be honest, I don’t like it. I felt that I don’t deserve to be one.

***

Here’s a thing about humility: Jesus washed the feet of His disciples.

I don’t know when or what particular month in those six months that I felt peace in what I’m doing as a Program/Admin/Messengerial person at the office. I’m always praying to God that He will always guide me wherever I go or whatever I do because I wanted to please Him and obey Him. And I know I had failed many times, but I kept praying for a heart that is willing to be used by Him everyday anyways.

There were times that I felt that I’m not appreciated in spite of what I’m doing but I’m thankful that the Lord gives grace to people like me who could really be sunk at being too self-absorbed.

***

In my two years in an NGO, I can say that I learned a lot. It was and is a great ride. I can’t even narrate in words how much growth I had experience ever since. It was wonderful. Galing ni Lord kung san Niya ko nilagay, ngayon ko lang narealize!

I was strengthened intellectually and emotionally throughout the whole course of being a Program Officer. I had no clue and I started from scratch but see, the Lord got my back on the most confusing times of my life at the work place. #iSurvived It was amazing now that I think of it. (I’ll have to have a separate post on the learnings I had working with the people in an NGO.)

One of the pivotal moments though was doing the Admin/Messengerial work — the things I considered of “small” importance when it was not. I gained new appreciation for them. It was different. Imagine, they take care of a company’s government duties and all! I mean, we must not look on them as if we’re much greater than them because we are in a higher position. NO. That mindset is wrong.

It reminded me so much how small people (like me) matter in the plans of God. There are big people, yes, but they also needed the small people. We need each other. We compliment each other’s strengths and weaknesses. That no matter what your role in life is, you have occupy a space here on earth and therefore: you matter.

***

The small things are not always the smallest when it comes to greatness of impacts. Small doesn’t mean less. There might be difference in sizes, difference in roles played, difference in circumstances and it all boils down on how you’ll see the small things in the bigger picture of life.

Dear Batch 2013

This day, two years ago, marked the day when I went to school not to get to the last day of our class nor to enroll for our next semester.

Two years ago, this day was a Saturday. The weather was so warm and refreshing. The sun shines its rays proudly like a five year old kid in a playground who finally took all his courage to try out the longest slide of his life. Even there’s no Spring season in our country, it felt like the flowers are blooming everywhere and the trees keep swaying its leaves nonstop as if congratulating all of us who made it to our final step in College. Because, yes, Friday of May 6th two years ago was the day we graduated from the most intensive ride of our lives. We closed a chapter and were about to enter a new one.

The reason why we had gone  to school together that particular Saturday morning was to return our grad caps and  gowns and to bid adieu to each other since we won’t see each other the way we did for the past four years. There were mixed emotions as we reminisce what we had done together — the happy, sad, not so nice (but mostly, fun) memories. *introtheFRIENDSsongherelol*  

To Batch 2013:

I hope you learned to value the friends you’ve made in the academe: your barkadas, your juniors, some of your professors, but most especially, your blockmates. I hope you know how each one of them served as your backbone back in the trouble and happy times of being a student. Even there are “tampo” moments,overall, those were a great bunch of people who intruded and invaded your life. Always always be grateful for them, always be grateful for Friends. :)

Now I know you have a lot of dreams enlisted down and lined up after all of these, I had a lot of dreams and plans lined up too back then. I was excited to fulfill every single thing I had in mind ever since I was fourteen — from the work I wanna pursue and succeed in, to the things I’ll give for my mother and brother (and my own family in the future) etc, etc. All I know is I needed a lot of patience, hard work and prayer for these to materialize. Idealism is my game. 

I hope you know that even the real world will scare the heck out of you once you finally walked in that new curtain, please remain ideal. Sometimes this shattered world will make you believe in something good where you can settle. I hope you remember, good is the enemy of best, of the better plans our Lord has for you. Please don’t settle. Don’t quiet your dreams even if this world tells you that it has always been impossible. Trust in Someone who knows the desires of your heart, He did not put it there for naught, but learn to discern which to prioritize.

I still kept my dreams in my heart even when God showed me the path I should take in between those two years after I graduated. It was an uneasy choice because I got pushed out of my comfort zone. It was not something I expected at all. I hope when the Lord leads you to something or somewhere, your ears will be willing to listen that it would translate it in your heart to follow even if it’s not comfortable. It is not easy to follow, but trust me, it’s all going to be worth it. Not everything we wanted is what we needed at the moment, when you learn to let go and surrender, you might stand and find yourself where you should be in the first place.

No matter where your Somewhere is, always hold on to that Someone (capital S) who’ll light the way where you should go. The world can be blinding, it will show you the pleasures that you can do with your life any moment now, it’s always best to be guided.

One of these days, months, or year, you’ll think that you are not doing any valuable thing in your life (or the mankind) because you haven’t achieved what you intricately planned  before. That, or, you are now confused which career you should really pursue because you now don’t have an idea of what you really want. I hope you know that it’s okay. We are also in that stage. A year or two after College is never a measurement of your success in life. Success is defined in so varied ways and I just hope the way you define “success” won’t always be about having lots of money because it is NOT.

While you are (we are) in the stage of not knowing which roads to take, move on to life one step at a time. Gather all the skills you may need, fail a lot, make mistakes, work wholeheartedly — one day, as your experience get richer, you’ll have the determination to be somewhere and you’ll get there. Just have a little faith, kid. Life takes time.

And finally, be brave. There will be bad days where your age and your supposed-to-be “maturity” will take a toll on you and will, sometimes, discourage you. You can mope around and stay in the mud, but I suggest, get up and do things with your hands and feel better.

If you do (work hard), if you stay positive, you have a shot at the silver-lining.

-The Silver Linings Playbook-

Live your life accordingly. Do not neglect the simple things as meeting with old friends and taking a break (you’ll need a lot of those, trust me). Let loose and don’t be too serious, or at least, try to balance. Discover what you will do in the wilderness because all I’ve told you are thoughts in the air, you can choose what to do. I encourage you to make the best choices.

You’re about to take over something big, I pray all the best for your endeavors. And even you look back after a year or two, let me tell you that the learning never stops. Find your Great Perhaps. You are created for something more! :)

Psalm 124

Last 13th of October last year, I attended the Dialogue Education (Vella) Seminar. Every morning then before we start, we dedicate 30 minutes to an hour of devotion, we are lead by our facilitator Miss Vylma.

Anyways, one day Miss V asked us to do our own versions of Psalm 124 as part of our devotion. Here’s what I wrote mine back then.

(Raw file. Don’t mind my grammar.)
“If the Lord had not been on my side–let Kriselle say–if the Lord had not been on my side when doubts, fears and rejections I had on myself and from other people, I would have left myself and throw myself a Pity Party every now and then. I have been scared all my life and I would not experience the mercy and grace of my Heavenly Father.

Praise be to the Lord, God, my Father for whenever I ran far away from Him, he always follow me and catch me each time I fall. Indeed, he’s lovingkindness is better than life and as much as I can–and by his grace–I will live a life that will serve as a testimony to draw more people close to his side. I’m a work in progress and I know that he will never leave me until I fulfill his purpose in my life.”

Something to inspire me whenever I’m down. Try doing your own versions of Psalm 124. It’s like a mini reminder to yourself when doubts came knocking in the pouring rain. :)

Backbeat.

Hello dear blog! I missed writing random thoughts and feelings and whatever else I got to say in my mind. I’m kinda got it stuck these past few days.

I’m having an emotional-slash-mental battle still going on, you see. I have this major decision to do and I’m competing with myself—something’s terribly wrong is happening with me right now. It’s hard to explain, though. And, I dunno what to do, really. Well I know but I don’t know. I guess one’s self is the hardest opponent of all. Since I’m emotionally unwell, I cannot give full focus on writing/blogging/whatever else I’m doing; hence, the blog hiatus. There’s a lot of tension and drama going inside me.

With all of that being said, I’m requesting for all of you to pray for me a littl lot more. If you could please include me, I would be really grateful.

I don’t know how long I’d be like this (pero sana it ends soon na) but I’m gonna try to be more positive and do the usual things I’m doing in this blog. I’m hoping you’ll help me to cheer up myself quite more.

Dear Self, please do what you need to do; do it ASAP and please, choose wisely.

Anyhoooz, from this point forward, I’ll try to get back to my blog duties. Everything will be alright.

*and this is the part where I should insert a smiling face*

Here you go. Cheers. :)