Hello! How are you? I hope your heart has been well. The last 5 months (since our last life update) has been an up and down journey but it was mostly amazing. Can I just pour my heart out first before I tell you what’s been going down lately? Hehehe.
Everything around me is going well. Our marriage is fantastic, Taziana is sweet and kind, our parents are healthy, our siblings are well guided and growing, and we have provisions wherever we go. But my heart has not been okay for the past few days.
I love being productive. I actually like busy days better than chill days. I love waking up early, doing my devo, studying, blogging, reaching out to people, working. To me, it’s not being workaholic. I know when to put work down and rest. I feel accomplished because I am able to make great use of one of God’s greatest gift to me: time. My close friends (especially my husband) know this. I am a very time conscious person. Whenever we leave the house, I open Waze to calculate the time it would take for me get to my destination. Then, I plan the rest of the day. Whenever my friends and I make plans to meet, I ask them what time they will be leaving and I’ll calculate what time they’ll be able to make it. I don’t like being late. I love making detailed plans. That’s why I am such a fan of journaling! Before the week even starts, my journal is already filled with the tasks for the entire week and what I want to do during the week.
It’s just that… I believe that though we are not all given the same status by birth, most of us are given an equal chance of living 24 hours a day. It’s what we do with that time that will make a big impact on how the rest of our lives would be. I don’t want time to pass by my very eyes and realize it’s too late before I make a move. Whenever I don’t use my time wisely, I feel like I am wasting a very precious gift from the Lord. The thing is, when time has passed, I can never take it back. Time is always constant, always moving, always unpredictable. I’m in my early 20’s and it’s the best time to shape my life the way I want it to be. And I want to live life answering God’s calling.
Aside being time conservative, another reason why my heart is feeling troubled about being unproductive is because I feel like I am neglecting God’s calling. The last months have been a great challenge for me and my career but during those months, God has been so faithful. I was affirmed that I am standing where I am called- blogging, creating, and sharing. I was also blessed with many ideas! So, in my heart and mind, I kept thinking, “Okay, Lord! Since you called me here, I will make sure to fulfill my duties with my 200% effort! The entire summer, I’ll be working on flourishing my blog and starting a business. 2 blogs a week on my website, daily updates on my accounts, daily replies to my readers, 2 vlogs a week on youtube, and business planning on my free time!”. With that in mind, I was sure summer would end with a bang.
That didn’t happen, though. Hehe. I’m still where I was. That’s what I thought.
I spent most of my time bonding with family and taking a rest. When you have a 2 year old around, basic chores to attend to, and a desire to hit the gym, 24 hours seems too short. The last semester (November 2017-March 2018) has also been so nerve wrecking because I usually slept for only 4 hours a night and on top of that, the emotional pressure in university was very strong. So, taking a rest was something I really needed.
I should have been happy about this but instead, I was troubled.
During my morning devo, I poured my heart out to the Lord.
“Lord, you promised me so many beautiful things. You’ve called me and I was ready to answer. But why does it seem like the time and resources I have does not permit it? Why have you not cleared this area for me?”
By reading the bible, soaking my heart in worship songs, and allowing myself to be more sensitive in God’s presence, my questions were answered.
The Lord sees the heart, not the status or title. I learned that all the work that I do, for as long as I give it my best and dedicate it to the Lord… that is what He counts. I spend the day doing chores, taking care of Taziana, helping Mark. I felt like I could do better things like spend the whole day researching about business, planning my next step for both blog and business, and creating content. But nope, instead, I stay home and work on building the hearts of those who live in it.
God cherishes the heart I have to be intentional in my family. What I do at home is not less important than what I do for career. Family is my first ministry. God rebuked me with this, “your blog and your business is only an overflow of what is inside… your heart and your family. What good would it be to be successful in career but overlook the needs of your own family?”. The time when I’ll be super busy at work will come, even school is about to start in a few weeks. But for now, this is where I need to be… home.
Many home makers feel undervalued because others tag their work as insignificant. But is building the hearts of their children, and making the love in their home shine brighter, any less important than building bridges, teaching, doing accounting, or encoding data (etc.)? They are all equal in the Lord’s eyes because the Lord looks at the heart. He looks at our attitude towards the work we are given today. Not our title, not the company we work for, and not our pay checks. I’m not saying those things don’t matter because in reality, they do. But they can’t be our only basis of our self-worth or be used to judge on how well we lived our lives.
So yes, back to the life updates. Hehe.
I have started using a bullet journal
Bullet journal-ing was first introduced to me by my aunt. I didn’t get the concept back then but my mom decided to try it out. That’s when I started to appreciate bullet journal-ing. I feel like there’s more freedom to express and tickle creativity and I can be more flexible in what I want to keep in the layout of my journal. For now, I have savings tracker, weight tracker, bucket list, verse of the month, goals of the month, and my daily entries. You should try it out. 😉
I learned basic calligraphy
Since I started exploring how bullet journal works, I developed an interest for calligraphy. I felt like actual calligraphy was too tough for me so I started with faux/false calligraphy. Then, my friend Bea introduced the main concept of calligraphy “light strokes up, heavy strokes down”. Hehe.
I started cutting
After many years of trying to get out of the underweight category, I was finally able to achieve my normal weight. My normal weight range is from 109-113 lbs. I decided to go a little over that which is 115 lbs before I started my fat loss. I’m currently working to shed the excess fats I’ve earned during my bulking phase. I’m looking forward to see the muscles I’ve gained during the years. Hehe.
Years of waiting, patience, and hard work (for Mark and his parents). Mark finally graduated with a degree in BS Psychology. It’s an end of one chapter and we’re excited for what is to be written in this new one. Graduating is a very big achievement for anyone. It is through the Lord’s grace that Mark was able to graduate amidst trials. But we know this is just the beginning. I wonder what the Lord has in store for Mark. I’m excited to keep seeing His wonders in my husband’s heart and life.
My in laws came home
I’ve only met Mark’s parents once and on different occasions because they work abroad. Daddy visited the Philippines on 2015 while Mommy visited on 2016. It was the first time we were complete in physical presence as a family- Mommy, Daddy, Ate Mel, Mark, Taziana, and I. They are both wonderful parents to Mark, his sister, and even to me. Every morning, I wake up early to have coffee with my in laws. It was great to get to know their hearts even more. No wonder why Mark and Ate are such good persons who have so much love to give. A bigger part of it is the Lord’s grace, and a big part of it is the beautiful influence of their parents.
Daddy actually flew back to Dubai last week and it made me tear a little. Well, a lot. Hehe. I just couldn’t believe I finally feel like I belong somewhere. One time, we had crab for lunch. It was very hard for me to crack it open so I opted to eat the alternative (fish) instead. I was surprised when Daddy already peeled the crab shells for me and told me to eat and enjoy the delicious crab. He did this again when we had fish for dinner. In the mornings when I do my devo, I would be surprised when Daddy would sometimes have coffee ready for me. I think this is really just Daddy being his usual, sweet, and loving self. But to me, it was my first time in a very very very long time to experience the presence of a father. This moved my heart. Though they may be simple gestures, they were very sincere.
Taziana is being suuuuper playful
Taziana is now two and a half years old. She’s so cute and adorable but she also requires a lot of patience. A whoooole lot of patience. Aside from the 10,000 questions a day she gives us, she’s also exploring how she could possibly manipulate others by crying (which she now knows will not work), she’s curious about many things, and she loves running around despite the danger she could fall in. It sounds bad but I actually enjoy the beauty that lies beneath that. I am so glad I get to witness this stage of her life and be physically present to guide her and mold her. Yes, it requires extra patience and time but I would not have it any other way
I cut my hair short
I cut my hair short the same time last year but I told myself, “I have done it once. I would never cut it short again”. I really liked my short hair but I felt like short hair was a hassle and I could do more with long hair. Besides, I pretty much lived with long hair my entire life. Hahaha! But my husband is such a fan of short hair on me. I don’t really know why. Because Mark has been my friend since we were 11, I know he is usually attracted to girls with longer hair.
Mark expressed this with, “honey, try cutting your hair a little short” “honey, can you cut your hair shorter again? You look so beautiful with your short hair”. He explained how I look younger with short hair and the rest of my friends agreed. So there, I chopped it off. I loved the look so much, I am not sure whether I am ever going to grow my hair again. Hehe.
We had a family photo shoot
My sister in law has an amazing photographer friend. Ate and I were just talking about how excited we were for April because Mommy and Daddy would come home together and we’d all be together for the first time. Then, we thought it would be great to do a photo shoot so we’d have great memories to keep and photos to hand on the walls of the my parents’ home. Her friend loved the idea and we had the shoot done on the second week of April. I can’t wait to share all the photos with you guys!
So, what about you? How are you doing? Talk to me through the comment section or send me a personal message. I love getting to know you guys. Hehe.