To My Younger Self

Gathered have I all the flowers
collected from the path
that was chosen for you.
Plucked are all the leaves,
barren now are the stalks.
I know my way and here I am,
but you have just started.

My protest, my screams
are feeble from over here.
I cannot help but watch you
find beauty among the thorns.
I am screaming at an unforgiving void.

If I could have, I would have
replaced every thorn prick
with the flowers I had accumulated.
I would have made myself
the first stranger you stopped
to ask for directions.
Your path may seem without direction,
but I promise abundance is yet to come.

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Bound

I am a museum bound artifact,
though not because I am a masterpiece.
I am displayed for inspection,
abstract therefore questionable,
any explanation as a default is justified.
I am what they see,
what they think they know, I am.
A velvet rope divides us.
Try not to get to close.
I might just break,
the semiotics of your world.
I am a museum bound artifact
created by many artists,
conflicting judgmental delusions.
Bound to this glass case,
in this museum I break silently awake.
I am what they see,
what they think they know, I am,
but I am not.

To My Son,

It is past midnight and the rain hasn’t stopped coming down for the past couple days. Everyone is asleep and the rain has suddenly become peaceful and inviting instead of the nuisance it has been. We weren’t able to go for a walk because of it. I just realized that in a couple of days you will be three months old. I understand now the meaning behind the phrase “they grow up so fast” because it really does feel like it was just yesterday I got to hold you in my arms for the first time. I say this but at the same time it feels like it has been more than three months.. Motherhood is a funny but nonetheless a rewarding experience.

I just wanted  to say thank you for choosing me as your mother. I feel undeserving of such a huge title, but I promise I will honour it and try my best to do right by you always. To be honest, having children was not in my plan, at least not for a few years. I wanted to graduate university and get my career started. I wanted life to settle first. Things might not have gone according to plan, but you have blessed me with the motivation that has been lost for awhile. Being a young mother does not mean I can’t do all the things I set out to do, it may delay my plans a little, but being a mother has made it clear to me why I need to try to be as successful as I can be, for you.

You may be almost three months old, but you are already so full of personality. The way you get frustrated when you can’t seem to burp right away. The way you pretend to sleep when there are too many people around. The way you smile and laugh at me whenever I change your dirty diaper. You may not be able to say actual words and it’s just babbling right now, but you already have so much to say. I can also already tell that you’re going to be strong-willed because of how determined you are to keep your head up for long periods of time and how hard your kicks are becoming. I cannot wait for all the adventures we are yet to have.

Broken Love

It’s that kind of hurt,
when you feel something disconnect.
The shattered pieces don’t fall to the ground,
they grind against flesh, dancing inside of you.
It’s that kind of hurt,
when you know what it is like,
not to be broken, but to know
you were never whole to begin with.

Just Another Shy Immigrant Writer

I was always shy and writing was the only way I knew how to really communicate my feelings. I remember for my elementary speech fest, my  teacher took pity on me and allowed me to do my presentation with the lights off  and my classmates had to put their heads down on their desks so there wouldn’t be any eye contact. I was that painfully shy which meant that making friends was a struggle. I was known as the weird quiet girl who kept to herself, but I wasn’t bullied because of it. I was just part of the background, like white noise, often slept on as a result. I wasn’t always shy though, and if  I had to really think back to what triggered my shyness it would probably be when my family migrated from the Philippines to Canada fourteen years ago.

I learned new words like “diversity”, “culture” which was different than the dominant uniformity of religion and culture in the Philippines. I remember on my first day of school I was labelled as an ESL student. The school system automatically assumed English was my second language, but really it was the only language I knew how to speak despite coming from the Philippines. There was already that ignorance in place that just assumed that if you weren’t from North America you weren’t educated. They pulled me from class to test my English and was surprised when they realized that not only could I speak fluent English (despite my slight Asian accent), but I could also write in English very well.

This was fourteen years ago, before social media took over society, before everyone owned cellphones, before the way politics are today. I cannot imagine the hardships of immigrants today,  but being an immigrant myself heavily influenced my writing therefore made me the person I am today.  Our hardships make us who we are, never be ashamed of your history.

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Home

Someone dearest to me,
she was beaten and torn,
within the very walls she was born,
but she still calls it home.
We might not be perfect.
You would never lay a heavy hand.
We’re not that broken, are we?
So can I still call you my home?
The definition is a little worn
and my soul has been wandering
for some time now.
It would be nice to settle
but not in the way dust does.
So can I still call you my home?
Or is it wrong to do so?

Purpose

Everything feels
so oddly real.
The night is so still
but my heart won’t.
The sky cried and
so did my eyes.
Patience is waning,
tired of explaining
my existence to everybody.
I wish to know,
I wish I knew,
What am I here for?
but don’t we all
wish to just know.

Writing Anxiety

I came across an email about an opportunity to be a volunteer blog writer for my school’s career and volunteer blogs. We were to pitch topics we would want to write about if we were chosen. I decided on a whim to sign up for this opportunity thinking that I wouldn’t be chosen anyway, but to my surprise, I was! I decided to write about the struggle that is procrastination, something I struggle with on a daily basis and am suffering the consequences of it now that I’m nearing the end of my university career.

At first, I felt uncomfortable with the idea of sharing my article with my peers. I’ve always been private and shy about sharing my writing with others because I felt like my writing wasn’t good enough and that it was nothing special. In the end, I decided to share my article on Facebook anyways despite my anxiousness and was blown away by all the support from my peers. This goes to show that you should never feel ashamed of the things you love to do and to never pass on an opportunity. More importantly, please always be proud of the work you do (if anyone is interested in reading the article I have it linked below).

Source: A Procrastinator’s Guide to Success | SFU OLC