Why I Appreciate the Little Things

Photo: Howl’s Moving Castle

As a kid, I grew from an unwealthy family that started from scratch. Our house was made with varigated woods and leftover tarpaulins from elections. Our roof looked like a grater since it has a lot of holes.

So every rainy day, my mother thought us to get buckets and put it where the droplets are dropping into. But hey, we’re not sad at all. It actually became a game to us siblings to get the most drop of rain with our glasses.

We had no television, just an old radio that speaks 24/7. Me with my ate and kuya experienced getting shut off of window when we try to watch television from another house and we didn’t mind.

So as an ignorant kid that never owned a barbie doll, I became motivated to draw paper dolls. I drew my own kitchen too then I’d play with it the whole day.

Things only started to change when I started high school. My parents’ hardwork finally became enough to build a stronger house. And since my father is a talented craftsman, we didn’t spend any penny for labor. He designed, planned, and built our house with my brother.

So what is the connect of the title with what I am blabbering? It’s actually what it is. I started appreciating the little things because we had nothing.

I appreciate having our own electric fan in our room because we don’t have a decent fan before.

I appreciate having a foam in bed because we never experienced it as a kid.

It’s not all about materials ofcourse. I also became appreciative of other’s effort to talk with me (yes, until now) because I don’t think I’m any entertaining or approachable.

I appreciate the way people seek help or advice from me because honestly I never thought I was trustworthy.

Basically, appreciation starts when you start from scratch. You don’t have to study etiquettes or anything special to learn how to appreciate.

I hope anyone who reads this learn to be appreciative of other people’s effort in doing something they want. Their works doesn’t have to be so good when it’s the first time they did it. They have to start from scratch. And we should learn how to motivate them to continue dreaming.

It costs nothing to tell another person words like “You did great!” And “That’s so cool, please do more!” To keep them motivated.

Sometimes we have to remember thay not all are born genius. And it’s not the geniuses that are impressive, but the ones that work hard enough to achieve something.

The Ongoing Chronicle of My Writing

Last 2019 was the year I achieved my goal in journalism!!!

( The Under-construction chronicles of my aspiring writer career )

Reminiscing my kiddie times, I always tend to play the role as a teacher with my childhood playmates, and with a smile plastered on my lips I have thought back then that maybe I am into teaching?

However nowadays, remembering those fragmented times somehow confused me. Like, how did I liked being a teacher when first of all I’m not even good in explaining things orally and I’m not even good in teaching, all I did back then was to write at the dark side of an illustration board serving as my DIY Blackboa — Waiiiit, WHAT?

And that’s how it hit me. It’s not actually the teaching that I liked but the way my scrawny hand wrote at the board. It’s not the teaching that I liked, it’s the sound of chalk travelling around the board creating the magic words that my playmates passionatedly copy.

As a kid, I can tell that I actually am somehow weird or whatever you call it, I was quiet back then. I literally am the only one in my kindergarten class that won’t cry when my mother decided to leave me there and go home.

So going back to where my point is, I am sure that I love writing back then, more than arts, more than singing and more than looking at trees. I collected notebooks and wrote stories there as I imagine myself as a novelist.

In my 7th grade I wrote a story entitled “The More You Hate the More You Love” t’was a teen fiction that I manually wrote in one fourth of short bond paper composing of over more or less 20 pages per chapter. I remember that I wrote 12 chapters of it and I am surprised how my classmates loved borrowing and reading it.

The borrowing goes over and over that I still remember how it reached the grade nine students’ interest. I am at awe ofcourse because for me it’s already a success. My effort was paid off. Even though it’s the end of it because the chapters borrowed were never returned again.

So I started thinking of a way to write my stories without spending cash and tiring my hand up with writing manually. That’s how I ended up with Wattpad. Yup, I made stories in Wattpad back then and I guess the most successful story I published is the one entitled “The Man in a Mask and a Hoodie” with over 1k of reads. (Come on, don’t expect too much lol).

The Man in a Mask and a Hoodie is my first ever story in wattpad with 21 chapters I guess, I can’t remember it well because I’ve stopped writing in wattpad after finishing that story. Sad right?

Yea, I stopped writing in Wattpad and focused on my studies and journalism instead.

Before being a journalist has been my way of venting out my bottled up imagination. Not that I was any good in journalism, I ain’t saying that. You don’t have to be the winner in Schools Pressconference to be called a journalist.

In fact, I am not good in writing english articles back then, my grammar sucked, and my vocabulary is too shallow so I entered the Filipino medium instead. I lost a bunch of times in journalism but it only takes one taste of win to keep my writing going.

That was my reality. I studied english articles to broaden my vocabulary while competing in Filipino. Thus, you can imagine how happy I am to be able to win 4th place in Feature Writing Filipino Division level back then. Jaw dropped and tears out. It was when I was in grade 8 or 9.

One of my goals as a student journalist was to reach the Regionals and I thought I will never be able to do that until 12th grade. With the help of our kind mentors and teachers I pursued Feature Writing in English and won 1st place in the Division’s Pressconference. There goes my jaw dropped and tears overflowing again that time. I was too happy to contain everything.

My winning piece was entitled “Finding Narnia” wherein the topic was about the Underwater Gold Mines. (Maybe I’ll feature it in my next blog if anyone is interested)

The story goes on, I represented Nueva Ecija in the Regionals Schools Pressconference held in Capas, Tarlac. It was still a fresh memory. The topic given to us was the earthquake last April 21, 2019 which has been an advantage to me because I was at Pampanga during that time and I experienced the earthquake myself.

Luckily it was my first time in Regionals and I won 4th place with my article entitled “Heartbeat”. I felt so happy and fulfilled because even though I am not a qualifier to the Nationals I still managed to achieve my journalism goal which is to reach the Regionals.

So if you get my point, I am honestly just a typical kid with a writing passion. A normal kid that can both win and lose a writing contest. A blogger that writes everything honestly in her “Publicized Diary”. And I write to inspire.

I mean who knows? Maybe that one silent kid in class turns out to be a great novelist in the future. Maybe you or the one close to you has a passion to writing just like me. Let us support them like how everyone supported me.

And I sincerely hope that everyone earns respect and support not just from the people around them, but also from themselves. 🙂

To God be

One with Panic Disorder

See how I fake the smile. Lol.

Guess what? I feel like I’m going crazy. And I needed to release my thoughts right now at quarter to 2AM in the morning before I lose it.

This started way back 4 years ago in the After Graduation Vacation. Just in the middle days of that vacation I was attacked by a strange thing which I called before as “fear of d..dy…i.n…g” I can’t even type it well and I’m crying literally right now.

This fear attacked me so suddenly before like a rain shower. I felt like something bad is gonna happen, something is gonna harm me and I overthinked about it a lot. I imagine a lot of things in my mind – scenarios of bad things that might happen to me. I was afraid to go outside, I was afraid to sleep, I was afraid to be so happy. I was afraid to even take a bath. All of it was because it might kill me. Crazy right?

Yeah. I opened up to a friend before and he called me “crazy”. So that was tha last time I ever opened up with somebody about this matter. Because I thought everyone else would think that way with me. They might go away and unfriend me. It’s too heartbreaking to confess something that might ruin your everything.

My parents are clueless 4 years ago. Because I concealed it to everyone including my best friends. So I fought it with prayers and hope that it might end. And luckily, when school started again and I get busy, I somehow get over it. (PS to my former classmates reading this, you probably don’t know this about me don’t yah?)

School year ended again and I thought I got over it already. But I noticed the changes in me is still visible. I always avoid my gaze at cemetery and I avoid scrolling in my feeds with death as a topic. It was insane and still is. Until now that fear is with me, and this is the perfect time for me to unleash it.

Once again, in this times of pandemic my fear began. Considering how much months I spent inside the house, it was practically cornering me to overthink

But the difference is that I am matured enough now to research about this insanity that keeps me awake til 4 am in the morning.

The questions are why do I feel this way? Why am I thinking like this? Why am I so negative about everything when I’m actually bubbly around my friends. And here goes researching, I found out that this is a disorder called “Panic Disorder”

Google defines Panic disorder as an anxiety disorder where you regularly have sudden attacks of panic or fear. Everyone experiences feelings of anxiety andpanic at certain times. It’s a natural response to stressful or dangerous situations.

What are the signs and symptoms of panic disorder? People with panic disorder may have: Sudden and repeated panic attacks of overwhelming anxiety and fear. A feeling of being out of control, or a fear of death or impending doom during a panic attack.

Those facts mindblown me. When all this time I thought I was alone fighting this insanity is actually common especially in the US.

Now, I still am having panic attacks regularly, honestly I hope I get healed soon enough by having classes. My pulse rate is still in the average of 100 and I can’t sleep well. That is why I wanted to write this. To help myself and to help anyone reading this with the informations I got.

There are still a lot of things we need to do, and we should seek for living life everyday and the future. Praying to God helps a lot to calm me down. So, I am cutting this blog here. Let’s all fight this insanity. Stay positive!

What Makes Me Unique

I have a name that’s too common in my country. My height is just almost ‘5. My skin is a common tan, curly hair, wide forehead (lol). Still, in spite of all those common characteristics that I have, I can proudly tell everyone that I am unique.

Let’s say that you grouped me with seven girls with the same name as me. Does that lessen my well being? Did it lessen my dignity in any way? No. Ofcourse not. Because names are just a mere label for people to know what to call you. And no matter how many John or Robert or Abigail there is in a room, you won’t lose yourself.

My height sometimes bothered me in a way that it is a disadvantage. And even though I know a lot of people with the same height as me I can still see our differences clearly.

You see, not because your characteristics don’t resemble a rare type means that you become mixed with another. Not because you look like another person doesn’t value you as a person. No matter how many identicalities you have with anobody somewhere in the world, you will always be unique.

Your fingerprint will always stay yours, and so does your name, or your height, or skin color, name it all. You will always be your most precious character in your story.

So going back to the topic, let me just straightforwardly say, I am unique. I can do things that other Jonalyn cannot. I can write differently, sing differently and dance worst than any other Jonalyn you’ll ever meet. (HAHA) And I am proud of it. I am proud of my flaws. I am proud of my mistakes, my dumb acts, clumsiness and everything because that made me different.

The things that I’ve done made me the rarest person in my story. Good or bad or neither, I am always the only kind of Jonalyn that you’ll ever meet.

So, how about you? Are you unique too? 😄 Probably, righttt?

Yes, I am Jonalyn. And I am unique in my own way 😉

My Own Meaning of Self-Quarantine

We all know that self-quarantine is a strict activity of those that had a contact with an illness-infected person. It is a basic activity to keep yourself away from infecting other people in case you are already infected. But this article will tackle a different kind of “Self-Quarantine“.

For the past loooong months of being locked down in the house — because I’m below 20 years old. I am kept inside the house until I honestly feel suffocated. I can’t go further outside the street because of two reasons: I can’t drive a motorcycle and second, we don’t have any other vehicle than that.

In the first, and second and third month of being just inside the house I felt relaxed. I did a lot of my hobbies, binge watched the avengers and anime. I literally chilled.

But as months go on with me just chilling. My overthinking grew especially at night. Oceanly deep thoughts started to drown me. Why? Because I had lot of free time that thinking has gone all over me. I became uncomfortable, I had moodswings, I had anxiety. And it is something you know is hard to handle, right?

There started my hardships in sleeping. Milk doesn’t help me at night. And I can’t even control the flow of my thinking when I am trying hard to sleep. I don’t know if this sounds shallow to you. Does it? (Feel free to comment) But believe me, it’s harder than what you think.

So, the next days I started to keep myself busy again with stuffs that aren’t actually needed. I drew, painted, read a lot, watched movies, grow plants, give a bath to our dogs, and the list goes on and on. And it somehow helped me to be happy and sleep better at night.

Realization hit me. It is not actually the quarantine that made it hard for me to sleep. It is actually my self-quarantine that made it. I quarantined myself, deprived myself of socialization which is needed to be happy.

I self-quarantined myself from the things I used to do. It made me unwell, uncomfortable and eventually grew into anxiety. Why did I isolated myself from the things that would make me happy? Feel free to slap me.

May my mistake be a lesson to each and everyone especially in this quarantine days. REMEMBER to never deprive yourself from entertainment. Do all the things you used to do at home. Make your own milk tea, dress up, cook your own instagrammable foodie.

And most importantly, always pray to the Creator before you sleep. Never let your problems ruin your only rest of the day. I love you!

Dreams are Reversible

At the age of 8, I dreamed of being a teacher. I wanted to teach everyone about everything in exchange with their response of twinkling their pair of eyes.

Tables turned upside down when I hit 12. I decided to be an architect. My cousin pretty much changed my mind because of his great drawings and design which I pretty much love doing as a kid. I was confident that I’d be one.

However, when I entered Senior High School, things started to change drastically. I began to hate Math and loss passion in Arts which are necessities in the field of Architecture. I was feeling lost and out of place in my academic strand.

So, I decided to wander off again. I re-discovered my likes and hobbies as a person. And somehow I found it in writing. Winning a writing competition literally boosted my confidence and a lot of times I wanted to take a Literature-based course.

But, we all know how this world works. Mottos such as “Chase your dreams” don’t produce success that much especially if you live in a province away from the city of reality – like me. And then again, the journey of me wandering like a stray cat finding an assured future takes off.

Finally, before graduating senior high school I was convinced to enroll in Accounting course. And I don’t exactly like it, but practically, my family doesn’t have an accountant yet, so why not? It’s too lame to be an excuse right?

Honestly, I am just afraid of the future. I want an assurance that I would be able to get a stable job. I want an assurance that I will have a meal on my table everyday in the future. I just want an assurance that I’d have enough money to help my family. And oh, kids. This is adulting reality.

Now, if you’re starting to get confused with the connection of this article to the title… What I am about to say is based on personal experience. As a matter of my own factly, dream course is reversible to the unpreviledged. When you start to age, you’ll choose what is practical than what you want.

Dreams are only cool when you’re a child waiting to be served with your favorite golden fried chicken in your plate. Dreams depend in the standards of reality. If reality rejects your dreams, that’s pretty much it. You need to find another dream, which is to SURVIVE.

Going back to where I started, now that I’m an incoming freshman. I was in between Accountancy and Literature. My entrance exam results concluded that I am more capable at Literature but I still hard-headedly proceeded in Accountancy.

I prayed to God to help me in choosing career. I hope that whatever course is brought to me,it would be the one to suit me better in the future.

Yesterday, my schedule was sent to me. And I was surprised that I am enrolled Literature.

I don’t even have to elaborate the details. You know how I felt right? Goosebumps and all.

Now, I am in a new phase of wandering my unknown future. Care to be updated with it? :)) hmmm.