27. Phew. Three more years and I am required to be a fully functioning adult with savings preferably with a car, paying home mortgage, in a healthy happy relationship, a vision and a precise road map to going up the career ladder. But no, not because that’s what the society dictates us to be does not mean I should conform to it. In all honesty, I don’t feel like 27 at all, I feel like an ageless creature still wading in water. I hope I resemble a duck when I wade through life, calm on the surface but freaking out from the inside.

Twenty seven. Twenteen seven? I was thinking of a nice post to open up my new year, hopefully with a bang, but nothing comes to mind except to list down a few things I learned along the way.

You can bleach your hair three times in a span of six months, but it will curse you and the ends will die. Do so sparingly.

Girls, if you’re going to wear a white top, opt for nude/skin tone colored brassiere; no, colored bras do not look good, especially on whites. Skip bras with designs and all, what are you, thirteen?

If you want to become a “published writer,” write from the heart – says the two-time newspaper-published writer, naks!

Jumpsuits are cute. Until that time you had to go and pee. Evil!

White canvas shoes turn yellow when you let them dry under the sun. The fix? Wash with water + baking soda, and air dry them.

Muriatic acid hurts the eyes, the nose and throat and will make you feel itchy, but it’s very powerful in cleaning bathrooms.

The only downside in traveling solo is having no one to take your photos with the beautiful backdrop. You have to ask somebody, or buy a selfie stick and swallow people’s judgments (I suck at using selfie stick though).

Selfie sticks can double as a weapon for when traveling alone; practice your fencing skills with it.

Yes, tattoos hurt. They’re little pinpricks created by Satan himself.

You should never mix drinks. Tequila is never your friend. So mixing tequila and beer will leave you puking your guts out ‘til the wee hours of the morning. Do not drink to death if you don’t have friends who are sober enough to take you home. Thank your friends for taking care of you the morning after.

There are days when you just can’t accept shit. Make more days like those.

There is nothing wrong with saying “NO.” Sometimes, it just means saying “YES” to yourself.

Adulting is fucking hard. Stay as young as you can.

The length of your skirt does not define your morals so wear whatever you want. There will always be boys who will catcall you, they don’t have morals, so you can either give them the finger or feign nonchalance.

Yes, you can wax your legs on your own, but waxing the bikini area is another story. Look for a great wax aesthetician to do it for you. Likewise, not waxing your legs while still wearing skirts is totally okay. Fuck society and conformity. Go do you!

Walking several blocks to work every day makes walking longer distances easy as a pie. Even in heels.

Quitting Taking soda, coffee and spicy food in moderation keeps the doctor away.

You cannot put an ultimatum or a deadline for when you have already moved on from any kind of heartbreak. The mind, body and spirit will do it in their own time. You can’t force it. It takes time.

You are not always the best person for the job, how ever your parents tell you you’re fucking special and you’re going to do special things someday. There will always be somebody who’s better than you. It’s okay, it keeps you on your toes and fires up the competitive part of you. Work on what you can offer, your work ethic and if they still don’t pick you, move on. You deserve better.

You should never please a boy so he’d like you. Pretending to be someone you’re really not is hard. “Be yourself” is a cliché for a reason. One day, someone will appreciate you for being you.

Do not make a decision when you’re angry. Sleep on it, and when you wake up the next day and still feel the same way, then act on it. Stand by the consequences of your actions.

Happiness is the hardest thing to find. You’d find your needle in a haystack, that bobby pin or that scrunchie you lost two years ago, but happiness? Well, let’s see about that.

You will lose friends along the way, that high school best friend who you promised to name your first daughter after someday will become an afterthought or become a Facebook ‘like’ notification on your food porn post and that’s okay, because as I’ve said, people move on, in different paths. Likewise, you’ll meet people you’d become friends with in the unlikeliest places! In the internet, an airport, while getting held up, and will have better communication with them than those you’ve spent your diaper days with, and you’ll realize that you can’t really control how people enter, get out and stay in your life.

Keeping your heart guarded is a good defense mechanism to not end up a love fool; if you love less, it will hurt less. You get better sooner. Sometimes it’s an idiotic thing to do, choose your poison wisely.

Travel while you still can. Aside from a good education, it’s the only thing that you spend a lot but go home richer. But do not believe the people who say do not worry about the money, just travel now. They’re stupid. Or they have their parents’ money to spend anyway for travel so their parents are stupid for not bringing them up wise in this cruel, cruel world.

Give yourself a break every now and then and enjoy life’s little blessings. That whip cream over your caramel machiatto, that warm ray of sunshine, the sound of waves and the feel of sand in your toes, a child’s smile, a day of bingewatching. Whatever it is, enjoy it.

You don’t need to be as famous as Taylor Swift to have haters. And they’re going to hate, so you’re just going to have to shake. But from where I see it, you have four options: a.) you can make them like you, b.) walk away and never look back (I do this whenever maturity kicks in) c.) be an adult and confront them about it, d.) annoy them more by doing that thing that they hate the most or what I’d like to call the “turn your bitch switch on” (my personal favorite!) Oh yeah! There’s letter “e” and I highly suggest this: live a happier life and make them hate you even more for it.

Family is everything. Friends, boyfriends, girlfriends, money and your possessions will all be gone, but your family is the one constant thing you’ll have. So say your “I love you” to your mom and dad, hang out with your siblings more and give them a big hug. NOW NA!

Lastly, and I should tell this to myself more: It’s okay to not be financially and emotionally stable at 27. It’s not a requirement to have your life sorted out when you’re an adult. Some, if not most people are still winging it and they’re at their forties, so you’re totally okay. Do not worry so much, stop creating drama in your mind and you’ll be seeing wrinkles a little far more than expected. (Also, washing your face before bed and wearing sunscreen helps!) Repeat after me: you are a work in progress.

Some questions still left unanswered I wish I could answer by the time I reach the big 3-0:

Why do good things happen to bad people? Why do epiphanies happen when you’re in the shower? Why do I often get drunk calls and texts? Why is Emilio Aguinaldo a thieving, conniving bastard? What do hardcore fans get from fighting with other hardcore fans?

To clarify: I hate “HBD” wall post greetings, they’re my number one birthday pet peeve. What’s HBD? HIV’s sister? Seriously. Dude, it’s the person’s birthday, the least you could do is greet her properly. How hard is it to type “Happy birthday”? It does not take a lot of muscles to lift your fingers. You’re not required an Instagram post or a novella-long memoir on the person. Just greet properly. Or don’t greet at all. Nobody’s forcing you. That is the reason why I disabled posting on my wall two years ago and taking out my birthday on Facebook notification altogether. It’s so much better for people to greet you, call you and message you on your name day because they remembered, not because Facebook made them remember. Yes, I have a love-hate relationship with social media.

And in that note, I’ve already answered the many “Why is your Facebook wall post thingy off? It’s so hard to greet you” I got today. Yep, I hate clutter on my timeline.

But I have to end this on a positive note, so here’s a photo of me…

haberday

no I’m totally kidding! Hahahaha! Thank you to everyone who remembered, you make me feel like I’m living a teenage dream happy and loved. Cheers to another year of documenting (kapag sinipag) adventures and misadventures!

Love,

Mina

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