AYOKO NA PERO DI PWEDE | On Finding myself, Changing, and Growing.

Let me start this off by saying, "Hello! I'm Rae. And I am lost."

I thought I had it all planned out. Graduate and get my Bachelor's degree, find a nice day job (with financial and emotional satisfaction), take board exam, pass, and then finally continue pursuing my passion: ballet. Easy peasy, eh? Sounds like a plan of a girl who really knows what she's doing with her life. But N-O. Nope. nope. nope. I'm lost. 

"Ayoko na pero di pwede."
Pen on paper.  | Oct.10,2016
Art by Rae Abigael J. Caacbay

Ayoko na talaga. Pero hindi pwede eh. I posted this doodle on instagram and on facebook a few days ago and quite frankly, people closest to me (mom, dad, brothers, friends) reacted. They knew that it's more than just a doodle. And they are right.

And I never really intend on turning this into a blog post because I thought this would be too much to handle and if we categorize these thoughts and feelings, they would, more or less, fall into the downer side -- a failure should i say.

But then again, I just want to share inspiring stories here on my blog and come to think of it, I'm pretty sure that I'm not the only one struggling in life. I'm still finding myself and I want to show the world that I'm not just here to share my glitters, sparkles, and sugary-flavored life. Because I also want to let the world know how it's so difficult to chase after your dreams and 'giving up' is never an option.

On Finding myself

At a very young age, I knew that Interior Design is my calling. I was in grade school when I set my mind and heart that I will be an interior designer and I so can't wait to go to college and pursue my dream. But I was also taking ballet classes twice a week after school and although I'm not enjoying every minute of it (I was lazy and forced myself to go from time to time), I was happy and at the back of my mind, I wanted to be a professional ballerina and I can never imagine myself not dancing ballet.

And then I graduated from high school and applied for college. I passed in this prestigious University here in the Philippines with me being a BS Interior Design major. This is definitely a step closer to my dream! I was excited. But unfortunately, the tuition fee contradicts my ballet dream. So I was actually asked, "ballet or college?". Believe it or not, I chose ballet. But I it didn't happen. My parents made me take that bachelor's degree because in their point of view, a bachelor's degree is more acceptable and practical than making "ballet" a career. I don't blame them though and I'm not mad because I could have fought for ballet. Interior Design is also my dream so I made a decision to just put ballet aside for a few years to get my degree... for my family, and for personal reasons as well. I was promised that I'll be back in dancing pag naka-luwag luwag na. But 6 years after, here I am still waiting for my toes to set on to the ballet studio and theatre. College is expensive. Ballet is expensive. My two brothers are both studying in an exclusive and private schools as well so we can no longer afford both ballet and college for me. 

So 5 years after, I got my bachelor's degree. What now?

Now that I'm working and earning my own money, I can fund my ballet dream. I can finally dance again. But I don't have time for ballet now because of work. And I don't want work to take over my life. But then, if you're passionate enough, work will not be work. So really now, I am confused and lost.

I'm on my 3rd job as of this moment. And guess what? I'm not sure if I'll be staying longer. I resigned on my first job because I wasn't happy. The job was fun but I wasn't happy with it. It was easy and I was paid high. The boss was super nice as well. But I wasn't happy. So I quit after 8 months. On my 2nd one, the job was okay, the bosses were super nice (in terms of work mode) but the salary was so low, the company didn't even give me the agreed amount on my first pay day with them. So I resigned after 1 1/2 month. Now onto my 3rd and current job. The experience is sooooo worth it so I'm sacrificing my personal time for travel everyday (I live in North and the office is in South). My fellow junior designers are all so nice as well. But guess what? Happiness is fading day by day. I ACTUALLY CRIED LAST NIGHT DURING DINNER and I don't know. I guess I had just enough and I no longer want to conceal my feelings and I just let it all out. Good thing my mommy, daddy and brother supported me and gave me advice and I can't believe that my dad is actually suggesting something I never thought he'd suggest. (Can't tell you what that is now though because my boss might be reading this. very loooong story). But after talking to my father, I think I might find myself sooner than later. Hopefully. 

I don't quit easily. I'm quite a martyr and I can sacrifice as long as I know that it will all be worth it. But what I'm feeling right now is quite confusing. I'm lost. I am really lost. I'm thinking that maybe the reason why I can't settle and stay so long in a company/design firm is because I'm still finding myself, I'm looking for something and I haven't found it yet, that my 2 passions are constantly battling everyday. I go to work as a designer but from time to time my heart is shouting for the pain and sacrifice that ballet can only give my soul. Also, I want to blog, write, paint, do art! And I don't have the time to do that. I guess the only thing I must do now is to think things over and wait for the right time.

On Changing & Making the World a Better Place

Despite being so lost, the only constant thing in my life right now is the desire to inspire. I just want to inspire as many as I can to make the world a better place to live in. Most bloggers only share their achievements and the good stuff happening to them online. But I don't want to be like that. I want to share my failures and struggles because they help me grow and push me to pursue my dreams. Hence, I share my struggles to inspire and to keep on moving forward. That it's okay to suck and fail sometimes and it's not the end of the world even if it feels like so.

I once shared to you my Ballet Manila Audition (shared it in 3 parts). I was hesitant to share it at first because I failed. But that's life. Ballet life. It's rejection after failure after rejection until you land that perfect role. And it actually felt so great when I wrote those posts down. I just want to document and share my experience. Never even expected people would read it. But then I got a message from a reader and she was telling me that I really inspired her. She told me that we're going through the same phase, that she also stopped dancing for 2 months and she was also planning on auditioning. So from there we talked and exchanged stories and experiences. And it just feels so nice to know that somehow, I touch others.

I see my blog as a tool not just for me to express myself but as a tool to inspire the world. I use it as a tool to change for the better. Here are some of my advocates:

 1. To fight the "poison" that the media is inflicting in the society regarding naturally curly-haired women. It angers me when a character (in movies and in tv shows) is labeled as "ugly" and that character will automatically be curly-haired. Like, seriously media? seriously? Well I try to fight that.

2. To diffuse the beauty of ballet in a country where this type of art is underappreciated.  I want people to feel what I feel every time I dance ballet. Ballet is more than a dance for me because it helped me forget my problems and struggles. It helped me when I was so down. It's really beautiful and I hope it will be much more appreciated.

3. To make the world a better place to live in through my art. I paint my dreams and share them to the world! I also make DIYs, share design ideas, share tips and tricks, and just share whatever I can (i.g. my kraft) because sharing is fun! Also because you'll never know who'll be needing them.

4. To inspire and be inspired. I believe that to make this world a better place, we must inspire each other and help each other to reach dreams and not step on one another for the betterment of one.

Basically, what keeps me motivated and inspired in blogging are my advocates and my desire to inspire as much as I can, and to help make this world a fun place to live in. I try to find time to squeeze blogging in my very busy schedule and I guess blogging somehow helps me to move forward when I am also so down like right now, in this phase I'm going through.

Blogging is fun especially when you know that you're helping in making this world a better place. You don't have to brag everything you do but I guess it's okay to share your stories and your art so you'll inspire others.

On Growing

"It will all be worth it". - I keep telling this to myself. It's kind of like my mantra to help me keep doing whatever I'm doing everyday. But from time to time, I doubt. I doubt that what if it will not be worth it and I'm just wasting time? What if?

It's so difficult to be lost and then be in an environment you thought is already great but apparently, not so much pala? It's so difficult to be lost in a world where you're so confused if what you're doing is really your passion? It's so hard but I want to grow. I want myself to grow and become a better person. 

This blog is a big help though. I've grown so much over the years and it wouldn't happen if it wasn't for all of you (my readers), my sponsors, and my collaborators. I have a long way to go. I want to change for the better and at the same time, I want to help in making this world a little better.

As a blogger, I share my stories because I want to inspire. I share ideas to inspire. I share DIY projects to inspire. I share my downfalls and failures to inspire. I share my achievements to inspire. I share to create positivity in the Philippines and around the globe!

So what should I do to grow? That is what I have yet to discover.

Ayoko na pero di pwede. Ang hirap maging designer kung yung art at fun nawawala. Ang hirap, oo. Pero di pwede sumuko. Kelangan lang mag-explore at mag-tiwala sa sarili. :)

P.S. If you're still here reading, thank you for sticking around and for being patient enough to finish! Love you1 :D

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  1. Kapit lang sabi ng tarsier! - Mey-gan Ang

  2. Hey girl!
    Lovely article! And it is perfectly ok to be lost.. you are young now... I am sure you would find your true calling soon and will be happy forever! :)
    Let's Talk About Everything
    Latest Post: Gamis Outfit for October Heat

  3. I actually went through a similar struggle! Ever since I was little I was interested in science, and wanted a career in it. But then along the way I started taking ballet classes and found a love for dancing. For so long I couldn't decided between being a professional ballerina, or a scientist. Eventually I went with science, (everyone said it was the more practical choice..) It took me a long time, and many jobs, to make peace with my decision. But I finally found a job where I am happy, and it happened right when I was considering leaving the field all together because nothing ever felt right. Although I will always wonder what would have happened if I had taken the other path.. I think it's perfectly normal to go through these feelings. I am wishing you the best of luck with everything and I hope you find total happiness in whatever you decide to do :)

  4. You’ll get lost and then you’ll find it.
    love ,

  5. I'm sure you'll figure it out one by one at a time
    you don't HAVE TO have everything figured out right now, Rae
    just take your time and keep your eyes on the goal, whichever that goal might be
    just know that there's no wrong decision as long as you deciding it

    The Sweetest Escape

  6. Rae, how could I have missed this post but I see from the dated comments, it was because I took a break from blogging. This was open and honest... I totally feel you about not knowing if you are in the right place or made the right decisions. Up until a week ago I was pondering changing jobs myself, which is not easy at my age... but I was becoming so weary with the commuting.. finally my job has given me the opportunity to work from home, it has changed my mood so much. I am able to do other things... so I get where you are coming from... If you need to talk, just message me on... I'm always around xox