Following Your Bliss: When it’s not as easy as it sounds

Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors where there were only walls.

No offense to you Mr. Campbell but what if I don’t know what my bliss is? What if I don’t ever find my bliss? I have one thing I cling to but what I feel is not the bliss that destroys the walls and replaces them with doors. Instead, I can feel the walls slowly closing in on me; the door’s bolted from the outside and offers me no hope of escaping. On some days, I try to push back the walls but they come back angrier and what’s left now is less space than what I had before. It won’t be long until I’m completely suffocated and helpless. I take that back. I’m already helpless.

I envy the people who found their bliss easily: the travelers, the writers, the artists, world changers, ground-breakers, trend-setters. They must have known what their bliss was and made sacrifices to achieve them. But at what cost? What have they given up for their bliss? Did they ever got it back?

I want to find my bliss; to stand at the doorway and welcome everyone who wants to enter and share it with me. I want to find my bliss but I’m scared to death of letting things go because I might not get them back. I want to find my bliss but I’m afraid I’ll lose sight of the people around me. I might turn into something I hate.

I want to find my bliss but I’m afraid of what I need to do.

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Joseph Campbell is one of the most influential people in my life. He thought me about the power of myth and the hero’s journey and the monomyth (my favorite); his works in comparative mythology and comparative religion have helped me let go of my attachment to my faith. He was the one who opened my eyes to many things, he’s the biggest influence in my agnosticism and my reason to pursue Anthropology (Mike Rugnetta’s here too!).
I haven’t met him but we learned about him in passing alongside Roland Barthes during uni. We didn’t really delve into studying about him so I don’t really recall what got me interested but a few weeks after I was buying all of his books and watching his documentary.

What I Realized When Looking at Children

thanks...

My friends and I attended our friend’s baby’s christening and what I realized was that I liked playing with babies. I like hanging out with them, I get so gigil when I’m near them like how I get when I’m near puppies, but I wouldn’t want to have one of my own.

You know how some parents only like their own children but have a strong aversion to kids who aren’t theirs? (I’m talking to you Louis C.K.) I think I’m the opposite.

A few days ago I was reading something in Thought Catalog (here’s the link) and I pretty much found myself saying, “yes, exactly!” to pretty much everything the writer had written. I especially agreed with this part:

Generally speaking, if your kid is a little shit, it’s not helping anyone, and that’s probably on you. And I really think the world has enough little shits.

I know that there are already an abundance of little shits in the world and I don’t want to contribute to that. I was once a little shit, myself. When I was a child, we had maids (I swear we’re not rich) and most of them do not last for more than two months–except for this one maid I really loved because she didn’t pull my hair or made me kneel, or slapped me when I was being unruly. Ok, so maybe I was just retaliating but my parents have said countless times that I was a little monster.

So when I imagine taking care of a dozen me I get aversive of the responsibility. But then again, what if I don’t? What if my child can become someone great, not a little shit, and someone who can probably contribute a great deal in our lifetime or future generations? I’m mulling over whether I really want children or not because of that possibility.

There is, however, another possibility: the possibility of really raising a shitty kid. We have to agree that it isn’t all nurture but also the nature surrounding the child’s development. Take my brother and I, for example. Our parents are religious people. They’re sort of progressive but they’re still religious. We always go to church; I once wished to become a nun; when I was little up until 1st or 2nd year of college, I prayed 3 times a day and feared that something bad would happen to me if I didn’t. I was pretty much set to be a religious nut then Literature happened, Philosophy happened, a lot of things happened that were beyond my parents’ control that shaped my views on religion. My brother and I are now agnostics.

agno

The point is, you won’t have any idea what’s going to happen to your children. And I have great respect for parents or for people who decided that their calling is to be a parent. That’s a really big responsibility and I salute your courage. But just like the author, I don’t think I’m being selfish. I guess I’m already decided that I’ll just travel instead of have a baby.

I think in the end, we’re just choosing whatever makes us happy. No pressure, no gender roles, and no guilt.

Returning to the Blogosphere (yet again) and my struggle with stuff

January passed by and I promised myself that I’m going to write again when the year starts. It’s an annual folly of mine to give my blog a makeover, write 2-3 posts about things in my life and then completely forget about it. February ends next week, and I’m a month late. But hey, better late than never, amirite?

I’d like to think that I’m a Jack-of-all-trades kind of girl; but the reality is, I’m what people in my country would call a ningas kugon or  someone who’s really enthusiastic only at the beginning of an endeavor then loses interest without acquiring mastery. It’s part of my being impulsive, I guess. This has been my struggle for most of my childhood, teenage life, and early adult life.

I’m still struggling.

Finding my “thing” as a kid

and master none

and master none…OTL

I got introduced to writing when I was 12 or 13, basically my first year in high school (we didn’t have K-12 back then, y’all!), when I met my best friend. Before I got started in writing, I used to draw before high school and many people admired my drawings; they would ask me to draw characters from anime shows that were popular back then. I was very proud of it. I drew everyday to “hone” my skeelz just to beat everyone who knew how to draw and I would ignore those people who drew better than me. It was fun for me, and my classmates were happy when they got their drawings.

I met my best friend when I was in the sixth-grade and have occasionally seen her and her drawings around. We were formally introduced by this guy–who tried to court us both, btw–some time around graduation practice.  During those days, I was still sort of indifferent to her presence but appreciated the fact that another person became my friend. I had very few friends back then, and the ones I did have didn’t feel like they were really my friends.

We both loved anime and was addicted to the anime RaVe. She would call my house to ask if I’ve seen the latest episode (which I did) and we would commence our conversation from there. It wasn’t until when I was placed beside her in high school that we became close. I discovered that apart from making amazing art, she was also a writer and a really, really good one too. She had a notebook where she wrote down this anime-esque fantasy novel called Fate (I still have it) and I loved it. She had me read every new chapter she wrote and I kept anticipating for new ones to the point that I was rushing her and asking every two days.

Soon, I started to copy what she did.

I tried my best to draw as well as her. There was one time when I felt that my art was getting close to her level. I don’t really remember what happened but I eventually stopped drawing. Just like her anime-esque fantasy novel I also my own and then when I got bored of the first one I created  another one which was an anime-esque horror fantasy novel with vampires (I seriously thought a half-vampire vampire hunter was unique until I found out about the anime Hellsing). Their names elude me now but I never finished either one (figures). I could not admit to myself that I was internally competing with her because my childish mind could not comprehend the concept of a friendly competition. To me, the people I compete with it are purely rivals even though they didn’t reciprocate the thought.

It was also around this time that she introduce me to blogging. Only me, her ,and a couple other friends knew about it and would read it. I learned a bit about coding and layouting a blog. Not even the basics but as long as I could turn a pink layout blue then, hey, I was bloody elated.  We never made our own blog layouts, though; we haven’t learned that yet. We just downloaded themes and then manipulate them a bit. My first time blogging was fun; it was like a diary but  other people can read it. I continued this online diary for a year and it was fun while it lasted.

I did back then whatever it is I’m doing now. Writing. And even though I was never really good at it, it was fine because I was having fun writing it.

A couple of years passed, still in high school, she became the editor-in-chief of our school newspaper, and I, the sports editor. The writing stuck as it was something I was really beginning to enjoy because I love words; then poetry came and my world changed.

I was really good at it during high school, or so my classmates would say. They would pay me to write their poetry assignments for them which I had no problem doing since I was just writing the same shit for them using different high faluting words. They were lazy little shits but the poetry I created for them was something I was proud of since I could churn out 5 poems (which I thought were excellent, btw) a day and it was sort of an ego boost. The teacher even thought I was just taking them from books or the internet; I felt insulted but it’s a rant for another post.

Around that time, the journalistic board (us) was already planning to produce a creative writing folio. Most of my poetry was to be published there, every one was excited, even the artist drawing the art for my poems already started drawing. But nothing ever became of it. I forgot what the reason was, I think the nun principal told us we didn’t have the budget for it which really disappointed me. My best friend fought for that folio because she knew what the school budget was but it failed. We had fun for a couple of months conceptualizing the stuff, though.

We eventually stopped feeling sorry for our failed folio dreams and abandoned pining for it. After that, for some reason, writing and poetry stuck with me until I pursued Literature in university, while my best friend went on to become a great fashion designer/artist.

The year after we graduated in high school, our folio dream was realized. It was too late for me and the other aspiring creatives in our batch, though.

My creativity is selective

As much as I like writing, I just want to do it at my own pace, and at my own time. Forcing me to write something I have no emotional investment to (like what I do for a living now) will just create bad writing. Still, I try my best. I may not be excellent in creating reading materials that flow naturally when read but I’m getting there. Or at least I’d like to think so.

This is part of the reason why I’m blogging again; practice makes perfect. And what better way to practice writing than to write about your own life? Even though no one gives a rat’s ass about what goes on in my life, it’s one of the things that I have the biggest emotional attachment to. I have to give justice to my thoughts, right?

As much as I want swear to the universe that I’ll update this blog regularly. I will do no such thing this time. I won’t force myself to write when I don’t feel like it and when I have nothing to say. Otherwise everything will feel forced which is not the feeling I want to have when I write.

For now, I leave with my very first blog post of the year. Hopefully it won’t be the last. But I’m really busy :I

me too, Rick

me too, Rick