Letter of a Sensitive Soul

I’m not really sure if I’m sensitive all along and I’m just finding it out now, or the sensitivity sprewed out because of all the national and personal crisis I’ve gone through ever since this year started.

On the first quarter of the year, I’m still trying to contain the sanity and still forcing myself to believe that everything’s going to be better even though my gut feel states otherwise.

Then, the next quarter of the year exploded and now everyone of us is affected by this disaster. The weakling that I am is still mortified that the life that I’m slowly building fresh from its mess is now back to zero.

I’m a mess all over again.

Around March, I’ve been trying to make connections with people hoping that somehow it’s going to ease the pain that I’m feeling. I’m looking for support system. Though I didn’t really tell it to people directly, but yes, I want attention. I want to be noticed; I don’t want to feel the loneliness that is slowly creeping up in my system. There are some people who really listened. Then some, in whom I didn’t really felt that deep concern. I don’t want to be too selfish, you know. Everyone has their own life and the world doesn’t revolve around me. But there are just times wherein you want to gain support from the people—especially to those you expect to be there—only to get disappointed. I don’t blame them. Everyone has their own battles to face. And adding my battle to theirs is just unfair for them. 

And so I realized I’ve had enough. I’m always the one to ask, to make the first move. Now, I’m over and done. If they won’t communicate then that’s fine at all. I won’t approach anymore. I’m just tired of expecting too much from people.

To be honest, I’m at fault as well. I am the kind of person who burn bridges not because I don’t like them anymore but because when depression and anxiety dominates me, I’m starting to form my own little shell and just stay away from the world. That includes the closest of friends. I don’t tell them; I just do it. In a snap, I’ll be gone in their lives. They will not hear anything from me. I’ve been like this ever since teenager. And that’s probably the reason why I didn’t have childhood friends. 

I’m always sensitive when it comes to the attention. I don’t directly tell the person I need them everytime I’m in my low points of life. But when sorrow consumes me, I always feel neglected everytime I am not being noticed even in the slightest attention I made. Not responding to my chats? Sensitive. Not responding to my posts? Sensitive. Therefore, good riddance.

I guess that is and will be my toxic trait. When I get tired, I just leave. No more explanation. I won’t be initiating a conversation ever again unless you started one. If I get annoyed at you for not being there for me when I need you the most, I won’t hesitate to stop caring for you anymore. I will quietly get out of your life and won’t come back. 

Yes, you can call me a bitch or whatsoever.

But I hope I can also ask even just a little empathy. That I am also a person who needs to be checked from time to time. I am not strong all the time. I don’t even ask you to listen to my problems. I just want you to be there, sincerely. Nothing more. Nothing less.

Destruct and Disrupt

It starting to get tiring again. 

Endless cycles of wanting and searching, 

of trying and hoping, 

of planning and pretending. 

The joy is nowhere out of sight. 

The gladness is empty. 

The heart is sulking.

The last days of Her life 

to prepare for the death. 

It’s the ode to a farewell.

Her is done.

Her is gone.

The moments Her tried to relive, but mind is all blank.

The laughter Her tried to replicate, but lips is sealed.

The panic is Her sanctuary. 

The anxiety is Her hobby.

The excruciating pain becomes

An everyday part of Her.

The numbness and the guilt 

stays within Her.

Her tried to find answers.

Questions are within reach.

Her buried the answer.

Agony is Her friend.

Sensitivity is Her lust.

People? What is that?

Her is done begging for love.

The darkness is Her home.

The light must stay away from Her.

Someone is in hold of Her heart.

Torturing, breaking it into pieces.

Oh, how lovely it was. 

The pain makes Her smile.

Stop. Don’t do anything.

Will you even keep on trying?

Nothing happens even if Her give everything.

The world is not Her home.

The silence is Her home.

Her, close your eyes.

It’s time to let it go.

There’s no point in saving what was already dead.

Her, it’s time to go home.

Her don’t belong here.

Dark, come, embrace Her being.

Her is ready.

So long, farewell, it’s time to go.

Korean Drama: Reply, 1988

So I just finished watching Reply 1988 and I must say what a whirlwind journey it has been for both myself and the characters of this drama. It’s like I had the privilege of seeing these wonderful people grow as parents and children, as lovers and friends, as students and workers. This is such a heartfelt drama and I’m glad I didn’t ignore to watch this even though I’m five years late to all these laughter and ugly cries and of course–the controversial ending.

Reply 1988 | Drama Wiki | Fandom

This is the third installment of the Answer Me series helmed by the same PD-writer duo. Though each series offers different plot, the formula of the Answer Me series was not just about the Guess-the-husband fiasco, it’s a story of normal people on a certain generation. It’s about a nostalgia of young love, growing up, childhood friends, as a students and a rebel teen (no matter how nonsensical the issue we rebelled on to our elders), pop culture in which becomes a part of our memory as we grow up, and simply just about our youth. I haven’t really watched Answer Me, 1994 and I remember trying to watch the 1997 but college life happened and so I haven’t finished the series. So as to speak, this is my first taste of the Answer Me universe and I’m glad I finished until the end.

Short Synopsis: It’s a story of five friends and their families who grew up in the same neighborhood–Ssangmundong. Hilarity and troubles about families, siblings and friends ensue.

Reply 1988 - 응답하라 1988 - Watch Full Episodes Free - Korea - TV ...

There are so many wonderful aspects of why this drama truly worked for me especially as I watch each episode. I have to be honest that during the first four episodes, it was hard for me to watch it not because of the storyline (I was literally crying every episode especially the first few) but maybe because each episode is just too long, there’s no extravagant conflict that makes me want to hit that next episode button, or I’m just really in a severe drama slump. It’s not you Show, it’s me. However, after I gave it a try again and realized that what makes it endearing are actually the reasons I’ve mentioned above (except the last one, of course). There are episodes where I felt like it was really long unlike the standard length drama which is an hour, but it gives the advantage of fleshing out all the characters in Ssangmundong and having us shown each of their dillemma and growth throughout the series. There are episodes where I didn’t even noticed that 1 hour and 40 minutes have gone by simply because episodes extracted such fine storytelling that makes it really enjoyable to watch. I’ve also mention there’s no crazy conflict in this show. The plot is just to show the normal lives of the characters and the simplicity of life during 1988. How can a writer and director create a show with no makjang-level-plot, no out-of-the-top antagonist or a surprising twist like amnesia or someone unexpectedly dying yet managed to make us laugh so much, cry the next scenes and mostly—laugh and cry at the same time. This is a show about the normal lives of people—struggling on their own, finding support in each other and just trying to live a life not just for themselves but for their own family. This is a youth and family drama all at one.

Reply 1988/Answer Me 1988 (First Impression) | Drama for Real

I guess my most unforgettable scene of this show is the montage of the Ssangmundong squad after they took the entrance examination for college. It’s a montage that signifies transition to the characters. How heartbreaking yet impactful that scene as we witness them blossoming into their adulthood. It’s a scene that shows us that no matter how beautiful and wonderful a season is, people won’t stay there forever. Change is constant. And you will really have to say goodbye to the closests of your friends at some point, deal life on your own, meet new people; to witness that there are so many wonders to unravel, so many potentials that will be unlock and understand that growth and pain are part of life. The montage scene from youth to adulthood is so impactful and very emotional for me.

As much as I love Jung Hwan, I actually am satisfied with his trajectory. Jung Hwan’s story is a lesson about missed chances and creating opportunity if you can’t see one. He is a lovable character and we have witness so many endearing scenes from him. We can learn in Jung Hwan’s story that hesitation and doubt will be the death of opportunity and open doors. Yes, he stepped back for the sake of friendship, but so is Taek. And we have seen in their adult years how both of them react differently on the opportunity and what kind of stake they had given up in order to pass through that open door. I believe that it’s a lesson Jung Hwan needs in order for him to grow and be free.

In conclusion,

Reply 1988 hits all the right note it wants to convey—the beauty of youth, the benefits of transition, the camaraderie, a family that goes beyond the bloodline, the impact of pop culture and its way to spark nostalgia, young love, letting go and growing up.

So many thrills and cries for a series that shows us what a blissful time it is to be young.

The Wonder of Ikigai

The pandemic caused me to lose my job and reevaluate myself especially when it comes to my career. It’s been three months and I’m continually lost and in need to look back on what my inner core wants me to do. I found this fascinating perspective on how to find out that calling and purpose. I found it in Ikigai.

How To Find Your Ikigai And Transform Your Outlook On Life And ...

A brief explanation of this term: Ikigai is a Japanese concept that means “reason for being”. This would help a person determine specifically on what direction should we take in this life and turn it into something worthwhile. This will help a person know what steps should one make and what actions does he need to do for satisfaction and a sense of meaning to life.

If you happen to stumble in this blog, you’ll notice that most of its contents are about me, my self-discovery, rants about life, and Asian Dramas. I am making this post in order for me to align myself in the concept of Ikigai and eventually finding out what I should do in life that will not only give me a sense of purpose but also at the same time, will also help me pay the bills. Sometimes you just get really tired of being so melancholic and negative all the time that you just want to make a move and get yourself out from obstructive and cynical thoughts. Because who else will help you get out of the gloom? You. And me. We only have ourselves to help us get back up again. We can listen to a lot of motivational videos, or advice to friends, but if we’re not going to make a decision to stop being hopeless, then we’re just going to get stuck on the same path and a cycle of misery for the rest of my life.

I’m not saying we are not allowed to feel any sorrow or frustration. Grieve if we must, but don’t stay for a long time. Allow yourself to feel the destruction of your thoughts, to mourn what was lost, to be passive and just binge-watch your favorite Netflix shows or Korean Dramas, then once it’s all done–decide. Decide that leaving a messed-up life is just a repetitive motion with no good results in our life. It’s alright to feel the sadness from time to time, but live. Learn to live that life is chaos and constant asking of what, why and how. Life is a constant pursuit of what to be and how to become. And maybe, once we get to understand that the world is a disarray planet and our life is in sync in this world we live in, we will get to accept that even though some circumstances are a pain in the neck, there might be something worth valuable to continue living.

Breaking down my Ikigai:

There’s four big circles in the diagram for us to be clearer about what can really be our purpose.

  1. What you love
  2. What you are good at
  3. What you can be paid for
  4. What the world needs

Combining 1 & 2 = PASSION

Combining 2 & 3 = PROFESSION

Combining 3 & 4 = VOCATION

Combining 1 & 4 = MISSION

We might have our Profession but it could be different with our Passion. Or we can be doing our mission but it doesn’t really help us earn money for that one. Again, we want to achieve a purpose that hits all the notes in the diagram. According to the articles I read, and some videos–in order for us to determine what we love, we have to look back the time where we are kids or we don’t have any responsibility yet to put food on the table.

What do you love to do when you are kid? What do you love to do that you will forget the passing of time?

A. WHAT I LOVE WHEN I WAS A KID AND WHAT I LOVE TO DO IN MY FREE TIME

  • singing
  • writing
  • I do this when I was a kid – talking to myself in front of the mirror like I’m doing interviews :D,
  • teaching (I remember we had a small board and I’m role playing as a teacher. Note that I’m imagining myself with students Haha!),
  • I’m gonna add that I love watching Asian dramas and anime
  • reading
  • I LOVE TO EAT
  • travelling (who doesn’t, right)
  • playing ukulele

B. WHAT YOU ARE GOOD AT

This is hard for me to answer. You see, ever since kid I’ve been battling this problem wherein I am not confident of my skill. It’s hard for me to answer this because whenever I feel like I’m good at this skill, I will eventually realized that I’m lacking a lot on this areas. Anyway, I’ll still gonna answer this question to the best of my ability.

I think I’m good at:

  • singing,
  • writing
  • public speaking
  • hosting
  • performing
  • and at a certain point in my life, motivating people.
  • cooking (not all dishes though)

C. WHAT YOU CAN BE PAID FOR

So I’m going to write down the jobs that I did before and we’ll check if any of those are included in what I love and what I’m good at

Brief background about my past jobs:

  • worked at a kids’ theme park doing role-play activities. This is actually a job that I really enjoy to do but then it becomes repetitive for me in the long run and the “role-playing” part of the job slowly becomes too operational and statistical for me.
  • worked in a cruise ship facilitating both active and passive games for children. Plus, we get to learn different skills in performing like circus skills and storytelling for kids. This is actually a fun job but it got halted because of the pandemic.

What was included in my previous jobs that has relation to what I love and good at?

Oh wow. The answer kind of shocked me because there were none. You could say performing but not really as much because I didn’t really perform but help the kids perform. I can add the teaching but not the academic one but more of leisure and fun.

In summary: I get paid facilitating for kids.

Now the next question I will answer is what skills do I have that could get paid?

  • singing
  • writing (my niche is creative and fictional writing, contents about pop culture (esp Kdramas), spirituality and religion)
  • public speaking
  • performing
  • hosting
  • as a motivational speaker

D. WHAT THE WORLD NEEDS = Another tough question to answer!

So I find out some possible questions that can help us answer this question:

  • What problems in your society would you like to help solve immediately? – the purpose of other people (funny coz I can’t even understand mine :D), how to be positive amidst tough times
  • What issues in your community/ the whole world touch you emotionally? – the fact that people works hard all their life but still don’t get compensated for it
  • Are people willing to part with their resources to buy what you’re selling? THIS IS ACTUALLY A TOUGH QUESTION but I don’t think so
  • Will your work still be relevant a decade (or even a century) from now? Yes (ref: https://inside.6q.io/guide-to-ikigai/)

Now with all these questions slowly unraveling the answers to my Ikigai. I am now going to try to find out what my Ikigai could be.

  • writing content about motivation and healing
  • something to do with entertainment and to help people be informed and have fun at the same time. In short, entertainment with a cause

To be honest, that’s all I can think of for now. So I’m going to reflect deeply about this one and see where it would take me.

To end this lengthy post, I think searching for our Ikigai will change over time. The world is vastly changing and so as our needs to be able to keep up with that changes. We will all find our Ikigai soon. And if we already did, there will always be room for improvement and learning.

How about you? Have you found your Ikigai? I am very welcome for more tips and information regarding this concept.

The Catastrophe of the Mind

It was supposed to be a normal Sunday afternoon for her — lying down on the bed while browsing her social media accounts as if there’s something thoroughly interesting on her News Feed and timeline. The neighborhood is blasting old songs that makes her feel plethora of emotions. The songs are her jam. The songs brings her back to her youth—the dreamer she once was and now is out of sight.

“Are you going to stay inside? It’s time to go out now.” her housemate knocked on her door and makes a futile attempt to get her out of the Main Room. She felt a sense of concern coming from her roommate and was about to feel a foreign sensation so she immediately brushed it off.

She’s been staying inside her Main Room for three centuries now. This place is her sanctuary. She has comfort, peace and nonchalance everytime she’s in the Main Room. On her first month, she tried to go out but the tranquility that she is trying to protect instantly vanish as soon as she go out. It was chaos everywhere in the House. The Living Room is so filthy that all kinds of insects reside on the sofa, on the table and even on the appliances. She ran to the Kitchen so she can be safe as the insects notice her presence and tried to eat her, but the kitchen is not safe as well. A small fire that came on the stove slowly becomes gigantic right in front of her eyes and is about to devour her. It was suffocating but she managed to get out. She didn’t even notice the tears that keeps on falling off her eyes because the sight of what was going on is frightening. She wants to go back to her Main Room but it was too hard to do. The House is slowly being infected by doom and disaster. Constant fear made a home in her heart and it made her mental state in the brink of insanity. She looked for her housemate to ask for help. She keeps on screaming for her name. The housemate respond but that was just it. No help came from her. As it turns out, her housemate is in the Bathroom, being sucked by the toilet-like-monster, screaming and crying for help. But she cannot come closer to the Bathroom. There’s so many insects in front of her waiting for her to move. 

The sight and scenario she had gone through when she was out is such a terror that she vows not to get out of her Main Room again.

“I will never go out of again.” she mustered. 

She stayed in her Main Room until the present time. Her housemate was safe from the monster in the Bathroom. She decided to checked up on her but she was too scared of the outside. She is still distress because of the House especially when she found out that the chaos haven’t stopped. It stayed there.

My housemate keeps on knocking. “It is better outside now. The insects are slowly dying and there’s no more fire in the Kitchen.” she said, trying to woo her to go out.

“I don’t feel safe anymore in the House. I only feel safe in my Main Room. I will never get out of here.” she replied to her housemate.

“You have to come out because it’s not what you think of anymore. The House is safe now. It just keeps on getting better and better.” 

“I don’t believe you. Just leave me alone!” she shouted.

The music from her neighborhood is gone. The voice of her housemate is gone. It is just her all alone again and the voices in her mind. “Just don’t do anything. Just stay still. The Main Room is the haven. The Mind is the King. You are being protected from the malicious monster that is roaming in your House.” The words started to rumble like a woe of echoes repeatedly circling inside her mind.

Tranquility is friend.

Chaos is enemy.

Serene is the Main Room.

Destruction is the House.

Listen to the voices—it’s your breeze in the dark.

Trust no one—they are despair out of the light.

Stay in the Main Room and never get out. One does not know what is currently happening in the House. Be lost in your universe. Be joyful in the alternative. 

Yes, that’s right.

Stay, don’t go out.

Be forever in the cosmos that is made perfectly for you.