Tag Archives: motivation

The Day I Realize that I Can’t Live Up to My Mother’s Dreams

Yes, in my life’s bucket list is making my mom really proud of me. For details, read on.                   Photo courtesy of http://thebettermanprojects.com.

March 12, 2014.
Just in case I don’t get to upload this blog post on the actual day.

It’s Saturday and we just got back a couple of hours ago from Tagaytay (Philippines), where my mom has decided she’d settle in when she gets older. It’s pretty cold and windy up there and one need not be paranoid about floods anymore (compared to where we live now, which is in Malabon–again in the Philippines) since, as the land-seller says, “If it floods even one inch up here, you can be assured that the rest of (Metro) Manila has sunk.” I can say it’s a really great place to settle in: no need for airconditioning despite the Philippines’ tropical climate, relatively friendly neighbors, quiet village but not so far from civilization, et cetera.

Anyway, we get back home and my oldest sister tells me about this series entitled Veronica Mars. It’s basically an old series (2004-2007?) starring Kristen Bell who is the daughter of a private investigator and has taken to following her father’s footsteps. Kinda like Nancy Drew, but more independent and whose ‘hobby’ is semi-supported by her dad. So we’re watching this series in the dining room since my mom was busy multi-tasking and cleaning out the refrigerator, when I checked out my CRS site to view my grades this semester. See, despite being a sort-of decent, well-rounded student with no harmful vice to speak of (i.e. drugs, alcohol, smoking), I just got to be a College Scholar (hereafter referred to as CS) this semester.

Some terms:
CS is a recognition given to those who manage to acquire a 1.75 general weighted average (GWA) for a semester. Our grading system is such that 1.0 is the highest, 3.0 is the passing, and anything below that is failing; ergo, the lower the grade, the better. Those who get a GWA of 1.45 and ‘below’ for a semester are recognized as US or University Scholars.
CRS is our school’s online..database of sorts where we enlist our subjects and view our grades and whatnot. Oh, jsyk, I’m in college.
Latin honors.. I really don’t think I need to explain anything about this except that in our grading system, you get to be a cum laude with a GWA, for your whole college life, of at least 1.75; magna cum laude for at least 1.45; and summa cum laude for at least 1.20.

Back to the main story.
Needless to say, as it is my first time to be a CS, I was ecstatic. Of course I want to be at least a CS for my remaining summer and 2 semesters now that I know I can do it, so it came to me to calculate the lowest GWA I’d have to get in my remaining 33 units to qualify for Latin honors. The short of it is I’m gonna need 1.1212 to qualify for cum laude. Thing is, if I could do it, I would’ve done so ages ago.

I’m not limiting myself by saying that, partly because I don’t want to jinx any chances of getting higher GWAs in the future. But given my extracurriculars and apparent capabilities (and other things), I think that getting a GWA above 2.0 is already an achievement for me. Furthermore, it will be my senior year when the next academic year starts. I’m not belittling my siblings, but I am proud that I will be (with God’s will) the only one among us who will graduate on time, besides the only one who hasn’t failed anything during her undergraduate course (and hopefully, will continue to be so), along with being the first to be recognized as at least a CS during her undergraduate years.

However, other realizations come to mind. See, I was a really bad daughter when I was in elementary–which was also when, ironically, I was at my best when it came to academics. I always told myself that it’s okay since I bring home good grades, that my easily-aroused irritation and bad attitude should be excused because of the high grades I bring home. Despite how mediocre my grades were during high school, I was still proud because I studied and graduated from one of the top high schools in the country and got into a prestigious course at, dare I say, the top university in the country. Needless to say, it was the only school in the country that is offering my course. I now realize that the things mentioned above, along with the comparisons I made with my siblings’ alternate academic journeys, made me complacent and developed a somewhat dampened sense of superiority in me. It made me put my self in the area of exceptions. I realized that the way I thought when I was in elementary never really went away, that I still was a douchebag of a daughter at times since I believed that I can still redeem myself in my mother’s eyes with my grades.

But when life throws you a curveball, you either gotta meet it head on or avoid it, if you can. I don’t think I can avoid this particular curveball, so now I’m facing it head on. I’ve always been so proud of my academic achievements, no matter how small they may be to others (most people, actually) since, besides being testaments to my brain’s capacity and my ability to multitask, they make my mother proud. See, my mother has this habit of owning other peoples’ actions and decisions. With my sisters not exactly rushing to graduate and the other troubles that I will not mention here, I feel proud of making my mother feel that she succeeded in raising us. I want to be the exception among the three of us, in a good way, because she raised us all the same way and I believe that having at least one of us turn out the way she expected will make her realize, “Look, I did a great job of raising my kids after all.” With all these in mind, I had two goals upon entering college: 1) graduate on time, and 2) graduate with honors.

Of course the second goal was replaced with “SURVIVE”, especially during semesters of taking prerequisites to our majors, some of whose relevance to my course I cannot fathom. Now that I realized that I most likely, by which I mean 95% probability, will not graduate with honors, I feel disappointed in myself and for my mom. My mother herself graduated magna cum laude, and that is without the comforts of our living situation today, either financially or brought about by modern times. Our grandmother was super strict on her and her siblings out of necessity, and she did household chores everyday while she was a student. Not one of us followed in her footsteps (both honors-wise and in the chosen field), and I know it must be hard raising us as, virtually, a single mother.

I know that I’m a pretty decent person but now I realize that I’d have to grow up a bit more, and not hide my faulty attitude behind a wall of numbers. Now that I know I won’t be able to make my mom proud of me in the way I hoped to, I have to redeem myself not just through grades but also through being a better daughter. I know this means less tantrums, less shouting, less arguing, and more patience, more persevering, and more succumbing to her ‘will’. I know this will be hard, because I think she has more than enough control over my life as of the moment; but the thought of having her realize that her best was, and will always be, more than good enough to make us the best versions of ourselves (besides our ‘soulmates’, if we are to meet them. hoho) is more than worth it. Starting tonight, I resolve to be a better daughter in all aspects.

And unlike my apparent attitude towards my New Year (2014) post’s goals (finishing at least one Tribesports challenge every month and blogging every month), I intend to stick to this.

“He mounted the broom and kicked hard against the ground and up, up he soared, air rushed through his hair and his robes whipped out behind him — and in a rush of fierce joy he realized he’d found something he could do without being taught — this was easy, this was wonderful.”
— excerpt from Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone

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Obligatory Post for the New Year (2014)

This photo captures not just the new year, but the name of my blog’s new theme. Inspired, right? :))


Different posts have been popping up on Twitter and leaking onto Facebook (and vice versa) recently, among which include the “Give me a number and I’ll write you a message without anyone knowing” and the “List 10 books that have touched you; tag me and 9 other friends”. While I was irked that my Twitter/FB feed was flooded (and I didn’t want to start unfollowing and unfriending people left and right since I knew this trend would pass, as others did), I did answer the latter with a post of my own. Here are the 10 books I listed (along with the original instructions of the post):

Don’t take more than a few minutes and don’t think too hard — they don’t have to be the ‘right’ or ‘great’ works, just the ones that have touched you. Tag 10 friends, including me, so I’ll see your list.

1. Poison (Chris Wooding)
2. Ender series (1-7) (Orson Scott Card)
3. Solitaire Mystery (Jostein Gaardner)
4. Harry Potter series (JK Rowling)
5. Thirteen Reasons Why (Jay Asher)
6. Adorkable (Sarra Manning)
7. The Fault in Our Stars (John Green)
8. Elsewhere (Gabrielle Zevin)
9. Why We Broke Up (Daniel Handler aka Lemony Snicket)
10. Brida (Paulo Coelho)

I was reluctant to answer this at first because I thought that it would be really hard to choose among the hundreds of books that I’ve already read. However, once I actually followed the instruction, it wasn’t hard at all! Well, except for the bit where you try to remember the actual book titles and their authors.

And since it’s the New Year, resolutions have been cropping up all over the place as well! I myself haven’t really been able to keep my resolutions (in fact, I didn’t even write a letter and then burn it. I used to do that the past years) because I either forgot them over time or felt that sticking to them wasn’t that necessary. So I’m just going to set goals for myself this year. By the end of 2014, I should:

  • Weigh less than 120 lbs and have been maintaining it for at least 3 weeks.
  • Have taken (and completed) at least 1 Tribesports challenge every month. (almost 1 down: Day 5/7 done – 10 proper push-ups every day!)
  • Have ran/jogged at least twice a week, for every week that there is school.
  • Read at least 23 new books. (1 down: City of Secrets by Mary Hoffman.)

This may seem like a really short list (which it is), but I think it’s 100% attainable given my limitations. Oh, and since I/you/we have a whole new year to look forward to, I figure that it’s high time to change the way I’ve been ending my posts. I recently chose to relive my ‘childhood’ by rereading the Harry Potter series (I have, in fact, finished the first 2 books already and well into the 3rd); and thus, I shall end all my posts from a quote in the series.
And what better way to start the year than with a bang?

“STOP! I FORBID YOU!” yelled Uncle Vernon in panic.
Aunt Petunia gave a gasp of horror.
“Ah, go boil yer heads, both of yeh,” said Hagrid.
“Harry — yer a wizard.”
–excerpt from Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone

Common Names and Personal Bests

Merry Christmas everyone! With barely half an hour left (in my country, at least) before the 25th is over, I will share to you things that both befuddle me, amuse me, and make me proud. 🙂 so to jumpstart the Christmas feelings in this post:

My mom forgot to buy cash envelopes so she asked me to make some. I hope you got a couple of them, like I did 😉

Let’s start with Personal Bests.
My last post was about (re)discovering the joy of running. Since then, I have made an effort to jog every other day, a chain that was broken by today (although I did jog last Sunday & Monday). If you don’t know yet, I just started this last December 16, in an effort to jumpstart my way into fitness and not seem like a complete unfit snail compared to my HS-BFF-cum-running-veteran friend, rainbowraid. I’ve always thought of myself as a sprinter kind of runner, which was why it was no surprise that I found it hard to run 2.2 km straight on the first try. Since then though, I’d like to think I’ve improved 🙂 here are some of the recent achievements I’m proud of:
Longest continuous run3.95 km in 20’24”; average pace: 5’10” per km.
Fastest 3k18’55”.
Fastest 1k4’59”.
Sprint record0.22 km in 43 SECONDS; average pace: 3’19” per km.
As evident by the ALL CAPS, I’m most specially proud of the sprint record because it’s apparently fast (faster than a 6-minute mile) and the time it took me to run that 220 m is ‘just’ twice the world record for women (21.34 sec, Florence Griffith). Considering I haven’t been physically active in months, this just makes me proud.

Onto Common Names.
For this to make sense, you have to keep in mind that one of my preferred nicknames is “Ana”. What a really common name, right? Although it may be typically spelled as “Anna”, you’d think that my cousins and other relatives won’t find it hard to remember that my name only has a single ‘n’. But no.
I don’t know how to feel about this year’s Christmas haul, besides thankful of course. While I’m touched that almost everything non-monetary I received was in shades of violet, I can’t help but wonder how they seem to know my favorite color yet can’t remember my name properly. So here are the gifts addressed to “Ana”, “Anna”, and.. “Anne”:

  • Violet umbrella
  • Violet/purple Lacoste sling bag
  • Purple Kipling purse
  • Dark violet Kipling wallet
  • Dress with purple patterns
  • All-white bag
  • Lots of moolah \:D/

Oh, and my doctor cousin suddenly asked us out of nowhere who wants a pair of contact lenses. When she said they were green, I was like THAT’S MINE and I got it!! (Yeah, I’m one of those girls who wants to go for the fair-skinned, auburn/red hair with green eyes look.) All in all, I’d say it was an awesome haul.

I’d envisioned a brighter green but since my eyes are dark brown, here goes. At least the lenses are free 😉

Last but not the least, my sister and I weighed ourselves today. While I’m truly happy for her weight loss, which is already a whopping 10+ lbs in the last few weeks, I can’t help but be alarmed and frustrated at the same time by the fact that our weights only differ by 6 lbs now! I’ve been maintaining (w/ or without effort) my weight ever since getting out of high school, so imagine my frustration when my sister (who, by the way, used to be the slimmest of us 3 and at one point became the fattest) goes off and sheds weight like it’s tattered clothing while I run and eat moderately and nothing happens. Of course this may just be attributed to her on-the-job training at a local buffet restaurant, but this is really weird considering she didn’t lose any weight despite joining a gym for 2 months or so a couple of months back. Definitely befuddled and having mixed feelings about this one.

Over and out,

*******23

P.S. I don’t know why but whenever I find it hard to put on contact lenses, I find it easy to take them off and vice versa. Why is it never both easy? :\

The New High

Running..on water? Whatever the effects, I wish I’d have this girl’s fit figure someday.

I’ll make this post short 🙂 well, relatively.

So this weekend, I was finally able to hang out (the 2nd/3rd/4th time since we entered high school) with my high school BFF, rainbowraid (oh, this is her WordPress account). Some things never change, like how we interact and how we never seem to run out of topics, but maybe that’s just because we haven’t seen each other in ages? We keep each other posted more or less on Facebook though. Anyway, one of the things that did change, and drastically, was her weight. 20 lbs or so over a year isn’t drastic if you think about it, but I feel like when I saw her, she was skin and bones compared to the last mental image I formed of her. *astounded* I was both proud and at the same time concerned: proud because she was able to motivate herself to lose so much and concerned because she still thinks she needs to lose weight! I’m also proud because she has made running a hobby 🙂 So there we were, talking and walking, fat me and skinny her, and we talked about jogging in my campus (since it’s an environment so much more conducive to running than the claustrophobia-inducing smoke-infested buildings of her campus, #nooffense). We set up a jog date on Wednesday, on which I also plan to tour her in my institute.

Note that this girl is so disciplined (I’m so glad this is my blog because if I’m mentioning these things to her, she’d be outright denying them) that she’s able to maintain an active social life outside school and maintain decent grades. She’s not the most stellar student, grades-wise, but one shouldn’t let numbers define him or her! She’s quite active in her church and even plays tennis/badminton from time to time, as well as actively joins fun runs. She also survives demanding diets too, like the 7-day diet wherein you just eat a specific food group per day (Btw, I’d totally survive that too if I didn’t have to prepare all my meals by myself. I go to school everyday man -_- just saying.) She’s quite the veteran on the running front, able to run a 10k in 40+ minutes. This is, of course, quite daunting to someone like me who’s never had much physical activity over the past couple of months, counting out walking to buildings and walking during lab class. I was, for all intents and purposes, a certified couch potato (but not because of the TV, thank goodness, but because I study there). So last night, while watching The Lizzie Bennet Diaries up until 3 am, I stumbled upon this article:

http://shine.yahoo.com/healthy-living/4-reasons-running-best-weight-loss-160900106.html
So the main points of the article are:
1) Running works even when you’re at rest (stimulates more ‘afterburn’ than low-intensity exercises)
2) Running is time efficient (being able to run the same distance with a shorter amount of time)
3) Running is convenient (it just needs you in your shoes. Or if you want, you in bare feet.)
4) Two words: Runner’s high.
           “The first rule of exercising for weight loss is that if you don’t enjoy it, you won’t stick with it. Fortunately, studies support what many runners have experienced on an anecdotal level–running can actually get you high. Scientists have found links between moderate to intense exercise and morphine-like brain chemicals called endocannabinoids, which suggest endorphins alone aren’t responsible for the occasional flood of euphoria that rushes over you during a hard run. That floaty, happy sensation you had after your last race–makes you want to go for another run, right?”

The last one, I personally experienced today. I went to school an hour early and jogged out to our academic oval and went 2 rounds around the 2.2 km-long oval before going back to my institute. The record’s pretty crappy compared to my friend, but considering my unfit-ness, I’m very very very proud of it. x) Here goes (copied from my Nike+ Fitness record in my iPod Nano):

Basic Workout
Duration: 48 ‘ 22″
Start time: 8:18 am
End time: 9:10 am
Pace: 9 ‘ 55 ” / km
Distance: 4.87 km
Calories: 318

The last time I ran a 5k (during my institute’s nth anniversary) I ran it for 40+ minutes as well, which means I’m pretty consistent since I was also physically inactive before that run. Otherwise, everything seems good 🙂 if I’m able to keep this up during the Christmas break, hopefully I’ll be running 5ks in 20 minutes in no time.

But still, baby steps right? 😉

Over and out,

*******23