2013 Goal Two: Stay Loyal to Your Pursuits
"Oh, we just threw her in the water when she was a baby. She somehow never got out of it," my parents would say about me as I was growing up.
All great loves—even when they’re not with people—have the habit of falling on your lap. That’s the easy part. For you to be able to hang on to them calls for a pouring of your whole self. The feeling turns into a choice. It then begins to sculpt your dreams and the kind of life that you lead.
My love affair with the sea started when I was two, and remained as strong as ever now that I was 26. It is so vital to who I am that before I can make any life altering decisions, I ask myself: “Will I be able to visit the beach whenever I want to? Do I still have enough for future trips?”
I’ve always known that I wanted to be a storyteller, but loving the sea was what helped me find my voice. Each word and photo that I fished out from places that I visited had a certain ebb and flow. They weren’t mine; I just let them stream through me.
There were many times when being frustrated with writing, hitting a creative rut, or feeling that I wasn’t good enough made me want to be passionate about something else, something new. It was fun to flit from one diversion to another. Like flings though, they burned out quickly.
Sometimes I’d get so fixated on being satisfied with my output, I’d overlook keeping myself inspired enough to have the right goods in the first place. Loving the sea was my muse. I needed to nurture it.
Chances are, whatever gave you joy, and made you feel your best when you were a kid, still stoked your passion to this day. Whether you’re an artist, entrepreneur, designer, photographer, traveler—stay loyal to your pursuits. You’ve known long ago that you’ve found your great loves. They’ll always be there for you, ready for the taking.
Brave the waves,
2013 Goal One: Cherish Experiences, Not Things
Another glorious weekend. How did I ever become so lucky?
Seleena and I hit the beach during the start of our birthday month last December with our best travel buddy, Sannds.
The long ride to Batangas (remember how I absolutely get smashed during road trips?) knocked me out, as expected. So while they spent the early part of the afternoon lounging by the shore, I was cocooned in our hut, drowning in my drool. Do you realize how naps have become a rare indulgence nowadays? Mine was that magnificent guys; you should’ve seen (/heard) me snore like there was no tomorrow! Five stars, nap, five stars.
Hearing waves crashing outside your window can lull you to sleep, and it can also nudge you out of bed. We had this whole stretch all to ourselves. Sannds and Seleena were clearly having a great time in the water. I didn’t hesitate to join in.
Loved ones would tell me that I seemed to be on a vacation all the time, but leading this kind of lifestyle actually took lots of effort, discipline, and sacrifice.
Most of the people our age would blow off some steam by spending hard nights out every week, shopping, and burning cash on toys and gadgets. My friends would only do those things for special occasions (see previous post). Instead, we’d pool a portion of our savings together for weekends out of town like this one. And if we happened to be stuck in the city, we would find ways to hie off the beaten path, discover new nooks and crannies, or take comfort in our favorite spots.
Seeing this moon rise (this photo does not do it justice; it dipped so low, hovering over the sea!) made me feel that I was doing the right thing.
In 2013, I would continue to make and cherish experiences like this one, and prioritize them over things.
- Laiya, San Juan, Batangas
- Landline number: +63 759-2020
- Mobile number: +63 917 813 1301
Brave the waves,
Between Staying Still and Moving
When you’re about to make that defining step—from the boarding ramp and into the plane, from that dry part on the shore to the sliver of wet sand, from the final curb before you reach the top of a hill…you just know that you’re different. Although you’re crossing the smallest of spaces, you feel like a great change happened.
Regardless of the thousands of miles that I was able to traverse last year…those hushed, crucial moments between staying still, and moving were the ones that signified I was really getting somewhere. Much like swimming, being brave enough to take that deep gulp right before I had to go underwater was what mattered the most.
This very same resolve, and the love and support from family and friends, thankfully allowed me to meet my 2012 goals.
- Invest in relationships that matter
- Find joy in quiet moments
- Make your trips worthwhile
- Learn the ropes of sailing
- Support the arts
This 2013, I’ll be making my list of goals even shorter because I’ll be dedicating more time and effort to each one of them. Here goes nothing. I’m holding my breath now, hoping that even if I just move an inch, continents inside myself are shifting.
Brave the waves,