Also known as: The rollercoaster first week of September
September came and well, it kind of knocked me silly.
I was very glad when September came around because August was crazy busy. For one thing, I hardly had any sleep because I kept on changing shifts, so going back to a semi-normal shift was a very welcome thing. It wasn’t a bad month, per se, except that it had a lot of…changes that I had to deal with for the first time, coming from the previous month. I think August was the month where I had the most entry drafts here but most of them didn’t get past and posted…because…well, I just don’t feel like it should be posted here.
I really don’t want to post something too personal here, despite this being called a personal blog, because…well, I know people I know in real life read this.1 I try to filter the posts here based on what I think too personal or not, especially since I don’t really want to cause friction or anything. Or you know make some things awkward because I wrote something here about something in real life for public consumption.2
Which, now, mentioning it, makes me feel awkward. Hrm.
But I digress. When September came, I breathed a sigh of relief because it was finally, finally a new month. I liked new months because it means another beginning. I even started September well — I took the time off to be with myself, pampered myself and you know, just allowed myself to be enjoy my own company. Then the first week came and suddenly, I was all, Wait a minute.
I thought of narrating the events of my first week of September, but then I realized it might break my personal privacy thing. So instead, I’ll just write about the things I learned, because they’re more important than the events itself. So, the first week of September 2012 taught me the following:
1. It’s nice to take a break from social media every now and then.
I was out almost all weekends of August for different activities, and it followed that I was also almost always in my different social media stuff. Come first weekend of September, I was shocked to find myself with a blank social calendar. I wasn’t having the best time, then, really, so I decided along with visiting the parlor for a much needed pamper time, I hibernated from Twitter and Facebook for the entire weekend.
It was nice, actually. I remembered how I quit Twitter during Lent and it was peaceful. That weekend, I turned off all my notifications, and settled with my book. It was liberating not checking my Twitter feed or my Facebook feed for updates, and it kept me more focused on my own thoughts, too. Of course, come Sunday, I started tweeting like crazy again, but sometimes, a break is good.
2.a. Friends who care enough to give you advice and talk about your woes are good people.
Sometimes I wonder what I did to deserve really awesome friends who really care about my well-being and my heart. I had a chance to talk to several last week, and some of these conversations reduced me into a blubbering mess. (Don’t ask why. Really.)
I am very, very thankful for these friends and I don’t know how I would stay sane if it weren’t for them. They’re friends who’d talk to you for hours just to help you figure out things, friends who remind you of your worth, friends who would eat pizza with you while you cry and the restaurant plays Where Do Broken Hearts Go (seriously), friends who’d tell you the truth straight on because they know you can handle it. The first week of September showed me that, and I am very, very grateful (you guys know who you are!).
2.b. But you don’t always have to follow their advice.
But I also learned that in the end, with all these advices coming from different people, the final decision about what you’d d in your life still lies in your hands. My friends last week gave me different kinds of perspective on several things and gave me sensible advice, but in the end, the decision was with me. Won’t they get mad after I asked for their advice and then not follow it? Well, as long as the decision I make isn’t a stupid one…then they would probably understand. I think it’s a matter of telling them that yes, you listened, and yes, you value their advice, but you will think of what you’d do. Then you just have to listen to your heart an pray for discernment to know if what you’ll do is a stupid thing or not.
If you end up making a stupid decision, then…well, you’ll get an earful from them, but true friends will still have your back. Listen to them, and maybe this means you need to follow their advice.
But here’s the thing: friends who take the time to pray for your heart? Keep them for life. These are the ones who have your back, no matter what. Even if you do make stupid decisions.
3. Speaking of perspective…pay attention to perspective checks.
I was feeling down early the first week of September and when I feel down, I also often feel selfish because I want to wallow. But I guess God didn’t want me to do that because suddenly, two friends came to me and asked for a listening ear.
I find it funny how timely these things come to me. I found myself thinking outside of myself, and it did me good. I think it just reminded me that not everything is about me.
And that’s true.
4. It’s okay to cry.
Really, it is okay.
5. You won’t cry forever.
It may seem like it, but really, you won’t. It’s true. If I may quote:
I learned that you don’t cry forever. That you don’t need to be afraid of disappointment, because what happens to you is for good. So you roar with the truth.
So you roar with the truth. I really like that line. :)
6. (Intentional) honesty is the best policy.
Oh how cliche. But seriously, I learned that twice during the first week of September. People can smell when you’re dishonest, I think, so being intentionally honest saves you a lot of trouble. Of course it’s not easy, and this is another cliche but the truth with really set you free.
Sometimes, this honesty just means being gracious in saying no and not lying just so you can get out of something. Other times, this honesty may mean a phone call that you didn’t think you can do, but once you did it, your heart calms down and you know that you’ll be okay.
7. Space is good.
“Slightly close the door, but keep it ajar. It’s not over yet.”
“You’re fixating on this. You need to set your sights elsewhere.”
“You need space.”
When I was a kid, I used to get these scratches and wounds from playing outside. Whenever I get them, my mom slaps some medicine on it and covers it on the first day. Near healing, she tells me not to cover it anymore to let it “breathe”, but of course, I didn’t want to see it so I try to cover it…but then it gets icky. Okay, this is a really bad analogy, but I realized why my mom told me to do that — because you really need to let it breathe so it can heal faster. Icky again, but the point is, some things really just need space. I realized that I never really liked the word “space” because it meant…well, distance. It meant things may not be all right. You know? You know how some people in relationships say “I need space” and then you know things just don’t work out after? Eh, I didn’t like that. It meant that maybe I can’t get the things I want now now now.
During the first week of September, I realized that “space” need not be negative. Space is necessary, space heals. There were some things in my life that I’m just so scared of losing that I felt that I needed to hold on tightly. Like I said before, I tend to hold on things tighter when I’m afraid, and it was the case last time. At the same time, I was hiding behind the I’m okay mask, because I couldn’t bear the thought of not being okay.
Last week taught me that it’s okay not to be okay. That you don’t have everything figured out, and that things aren’t going as swimmingly as it should be. It’s okay. I learned that space isn’t bad, and sometimes, it’s not the other people who need space but myself. Step back, stop fixating, close the door slightly. It’s not giving up, exactly, but just laying the gun down and not fighting. It’s…letting yourself get a better view of things. It’s giving yourself space to breathe, because God knows we don’t give ourselves enough of that.
* * *
The second week of September is almost done and I’m excited to take a break this weekend and go out of town. Ah, finally. But I definitely won’t forget this first week of September — who knew you could learn so much in a single week?
Have a great weekend, everyone. :)