If you ask me, 2017, despite the numerous challenges and low-points encountered, has been such a fantastic year for me. The growth, the opportunities, the people I met; all of these contributed to making all the ~365 days worth it.
Seizing the day, everyday.
If we’re friends or if you have been following me on Instagram, you would know that this year has been eventful for me. In the workplace, I have been given accounts I sincerely enjoy servicing. A lot of challenges have been given to me so I may refine my skills. Most recently, my Director has advised me of the added function to my current role…which is intimidating and exciting, at the same time.
Beyond the workplace, I have been given the opportunity to teach in my alma mater. Some of my close teachers and close friends know that to teach Marketing is one of my goals in life, and I didn’t expect to be able to do so at this stage of my life. I am very thankful that I was able to teach in the First Semester of AY 2017-2018; and I am excited to come back on January 20 for my first day of the Second Sem.
While it’s part of work, I take pride in being able to be involved in numerous things that concretely contribute to the growth in different communities. I have joined in capability-building seminars, female-empowering activities, and in organizing events which educate children. It has always been a part of me to give back to society, and I’m happy I am able to do more of it this year. In all honesty, I am generally more passionate in doing work for clients if it’s all about CSR.
Thriving in crazy places
Much like in any year, there were a couple of adversities faced, and moments of weakness. I’ve had a couple of anxiety attacks and breakdowns. Honestly, there was even a time when I informed my bosses that I couldn’t report to work because I was having an anxiety episode. It didn’t feel nice, to be honest, but I knew I had to prioritize my health—myself. A few weeks ago I had quite a dark episode, but something I was able to get out off. Seeking help, I believe, has helped me, and I’d like to think I’m in a much better place than before.
Insecurities still popped up, whether it be about work, or if it’s about how I look. I wasn’t able to fulfill my promise to go to the gym religiously and lose weight. However, I have been eating right more thanks to the existence of Salad Stop and Juju Eats. Ha ha!
I still get bogged down when I’m not excelling as much in the workplace compared to colleagues, but I’ve learned to focus on the grind and just improve. Everyone has different opportunities, workloads and focus areas for clients. At least, I get to say that I was able to secure five front pages for Smile Train at the start of the year without having to seek special support. I guess it’s learning about priorities and being mature to accept that some things are just not meant for us, at least, not yet.
Not to mention, my constant struggle in preaching to stop “effem-shaming” and go for total inclusivity within the gay community has gotten me flak. I have always been vocal about this not just because I’m a victim of toxic masculinity and internalized homophobia, but because it’s hurting the LGBTQ+ movement. How can the community show strength, if there are people within who are causing a divide?
A time for continued strength, self-awareness and love
There were a lot of growing up moments for me this year. Some changes have been welcomed by people, and some were questioned. Despite the proud cheers of my friends, and disappointed sighs, I’ve remained true to my very core. And I’m proud to have been able to do so.
One of the greatest takeaways I’ve had this year is that in the face of adversity, when you’re slowly losing light, when you’re about to give in, do not sink. Do not allow yourself to be swallowed by all the chaos. Take a moment to accept what you’re going through, understand that we all go through misfortunes and moments of silence, and just power fucking through it. There is no better feeling than being able to rise above it all. The tremendous feeling of the rush again. Being able to hear the loud hum (reference to the TED talk of Shonda Rhimes) again.
Learn to love yourself deeply, and intently. You will always be surrounded by people who may actually care about you, but if you refuse to choose yourself, if you fail to feel that you are enough, if you haven’t learned to fly closer to the light, you will still have a difficult time to enjoy life even a little bit better. The dark episodes will always be a part of our lives, so you have to accept those situations and learn how to best those.
Be stronger, be better, and continue to soar higher.