Journal Entry 10: The Cradle of the Half Moon

As I walk along the pavement painted with dew of the rain, I gaze upon the moon. I am not alone, I think. The moon is up there, chasing me wherever I go. The moon may shape shift or change to different shades, but it is always there. Ever so reliantly shining even when the clouds thicken and cover it. I look at the half moon directly and suddenly I feel the breeze. I feel as if I was touched by the glow of the moon, cuddle by the cold wind. I feel as if I’m alright, as if nothing’s wrong, as if I’m made whole by the half moon.

-Joelle

Journal Entry 008: Advice to My 15-year-old Self

At 15, you’re jamming to those Justin Bieber songs. You’re trying to learn instruments just so you could play his songs on them. You might have that crush on the school drummer. You sneak to read a chapter or two of your newly found fictional book while your teacher writes formulas. You were even certain you were going to be an ambassador.

My advice is to not stop what you’re doing. Keep jamming to your favorite songs. No, they might not be liked by all but at least you do and that’s the most important thing. It’s impacted your life and made a difference in you.

Do not stop what you’re doing. Yes, learn instruments. Learn everything and anything. Never stop learning. That’s what will shape you and open you to the world.

Do not stop what you’re doing. That drummer boy? Yes, he’s your inspiration. Continue finding inspiration on others but when your feelings are broken, don’t forget to have yourself as your inspiration. And also be an inspiration to others.

Do not stop what you’re doing. Your teacher called you out because your attention was on the book you were reading. And reading takes you to places. Know how to balance your time. When it’s time to study, you must. And when it’s time to read or go places, you also must.

Do not stop what you’re doing. You dreamed of being an ambassador. Keep that dream. In a few years time, you may land a job totally out of what you dreamed of but that’s the beauty of life. The mazes and uphill battles help you grow until you can reach your dreams. Don’t ever lose your dreams.

-Joelle

Journal Entry 007: Last Friday Night

The neon lights were blinding. The air smelled of smoke, alcohol , and sweat altogether. My ears were deafened by the 90s mix that’s urging me to sway from time to time. “We’ll be there soon.” I read a text on my phone. I felt excited and nervous that I search for my partner in crime and ran to her. She doesn’t know he’s on the way. She looks at me, and I just offer my drink to toast to hers. I smile and she knows something’s up. She knows what was up. “Nandiyan na ba siya?”, she asks. “Papunta na daw.” And I smile with the fact. I smile with the thought of you. But I remind her of my Plan B, which was to run to her when I can’t stand the situation.

Six songs and three beers down, you arrived. I was talking to my friends but I already saw you in my peripherals, like I always do. And like I always do, I ran back inside the bar to my partner  in crime. She asks the same question but my response was “Oh my god! Nandiyan na siya!” She stood up with no hesitations and we went outside where you were. We went straight to our friends. And you were just a few meters away. While I wished we’d just be inches away instead. Sometimes I could feel your eyes on me. Or was I just assuming? Did you want to start a conversation? Because I did. There were many conversation starters I thought of in my mind. None of them worked. None because I was too nervous to even approach you. I decided I would just be glad that you were here on a Friday night, with us, with me. And that’s my problem, I get attached to people and things even when the distance between us are counted by light years.

The night turned darker and I’ve already lost count of the sticks I smoked. I kept looking at you and you kept looking on your phone. Until the last one when you stood up, crossed the road, and opened a door for someone. Your girlfriend. I knew she’d be here. “Nandiyan na girlfriend niya.” One of my friends said. As if I already didn’t see. As if I needed another person to tell me. I already told myself that beer and friends were the only things that’d I’d mind that night. I already told myself I wouldn’t mind her… them… But I did, didn’t I? And I don’t have the right to feel this way, do I? And up to this day, I regretted spending that Friday with you. And up to this day… I’m glad that I spent that Friday with you.

Finally after a few more sips from other people’s bottles, I had the courage to sit near you. One friend between us to be exact. And I think you noticed. I know you did. Because you looked at me, asked our friend to get my attention to you, as you thanked me for the gift you thought I gave you last December. I responded with a half-hearted nod. And that gift and how you thought it was from me is a whole different story and meant to be told in another time. I’ll tell you in time, if we had the time. I found your conversation starter a little awkward though. Digging up something that happened a few months ago. But I’m glad too, because that was a convo starter nonetheless. I’m glad you did the first move. Even with your girlfriend beside you. Just know it hurt. Just know it felt good too.

A few hours later, people started to leave. And we’re left with six as we decide to eat. A big part of me wanted to make an alibi so I could leave too. Why would I spend more time with you and your girlfriend? But the little part of me that wanted to see you more even just for the night won. I agreed to go. Just to be with you. Even if that meant seeing you with her. And so we ate. And I got to talk to you for a few minutes. And I was even glad when we handed changes to each other after eating. Thinking there I was, not meters away from you anymore. But what am I doing to myself? In the end I’ll be going home alone. In the end, you’ll be going home with her. And I’ll just end up writing how I felt last Friday night.

-Joelle

P.S. I tend to over-dramatize because I imagine too much. My feelings may seem deeper here but it’s not. HAHAHA!

Journal Entry 005: Untitled

You dont belong here little girl.
You dont belong in confined spaces,
With Four walls surrounding you.
You dont belong in these kinds of places,
And do what you’re not supposed to do.

You dont deserve to spend hours sitting,
With a break as fast as a blink of an eye.
You dont deserve to feel as if youre nothing,
Reduced to a tiny spec floating in the sky.

You belong with the world little girl.
You belong in wide spaces,
Where your big heart can just shout.
You belong in your happy places,
See the world and go out and about.

You deserve to spend hours travelling,
With never wanting a break ’cause it’s what you love.
You deserve to feel everything,
From the crumbling of the ground to the stars shining above.

So run little girl, drop everything you’re doing.
Run as fast as you can till you catch up on your dreams.
Run until the darkness finally dims.
Run until you reach where your heart really wants to go.

-Joelle

Journal Entry 003: Seven Seconds in Heaven

I stare at you,

Hoping you would look at me too.

On second thought, I change my mind.

I wouldn’t know what to do if you did.

Here I was, expecting you to turn the other way,

Like you always did.

But you didn’t this time.

You looked at me too,

With those two brown orbs,

One thousand one.

And you worked your magic,

One thousand two.

I started counting.

One thousand three.

Maybe because I was panicking

One-thousand four.

You let out a smile from ear to ear.

One thousand five.

Or was I counting to know how long we’d stay like this?

One thousand six.

And when everything was done,

You suddenly went away.

You went away as I was feeling all the feelings.

And suddenly I let out a breath

I didn’t realize I was holding.

Then you looked back.

One thousand seven.

-Joelle

Journal Entry 002: Nomo

Pag may alak, may balak.
Kaya balak ko yan sige sayo na tong berdeng bote,
Habang akoy nagiisip nang masasabi.
Mata mong laging nakapungay,
Nais kong titigan hanggang masanay.
At sa pagubos ng panganim na bote ko
Nagsisimula narin umikot ang mundo.

Inuman lang walang aminan.
Pero oo na, sige na, aaminin na, gusto kita.
at sa hiya hiling ko ang tumakbong parang bata.
Para habulin ka kahit alam kong sobrang layo
o di kaya palayo sa’yo at kung san di ikaw ang dulo.
Yan nanaman tayo sobrang gulo ko diba,
di alam kung titigil o ipagpapatutuloy ko pa.

Susuka pero hindi susuko.
Ahm… eto… wait… oh my gahd… ako’y may katanungan.
Pwede bang isuka yung nararamdaman?
Dahil baka ito ang tanging paraan upang di ikaw ang hinahanap.
Lalo’t alam kong wala ako sa iyong hinaharap.
Sabi ko na nga ba deliks yan tinamaan na.
Ano? Bill out na ba o isang bote pa?

-Joelle

Journal Entry 001: Contents

I sigh as I step inside the air-conditioned bus. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve rode on one. I walk across the one-way aisle, trying to look for a vacant window seat but there is none. What a way to start the week. The all too familiar pine-tree-shaped freshener drowns my sense of smell, instantly making me feel nauseous. To make the trip feel a little longer, I’m forced to sit between a guy who’s sweating like a pig and a man struggling to keep three bags on his lap. In just a few minutes, the bus starts moving and the conductor starts collecting the fare. I scramble on my messy bag, trying to find that fifty-peso bill I thought I had prepared. “Crossing po.” I say as I hand my money to the conductor. He hands me my change and ticket I know would stay inside my bag until I decide to change bags again. As soon as he moves on to the next passenger, I doze off.

I wake up right on time for me to get off the bus, Shaw Boulevard. I check my phone, it has been an hour since I slept. I scramble my way towards the front, letting the driver know this was my stop. As the door of the bus opens, I’m immediately welcomed by the scorching heat of the 12pm sun. The ten-minute walk feels like forever under the summer heat. A time I spend with, no matter how I try not to, thinking about my life decisions. I’m happy that I have a job and that the friends that came with it are something I know I could cherish for a long time. I’m happy that I’m able to buy the things I used to wish I could buy. I’m happy that my job is not difficult in nature, though a lot of heavy contents stress me out.

But I know myself. I am not one to stay for a long time. Routines bore me. I am not contented with just sitting around all day. I seek new knowledge, different environment, fresh faces and visiting places I’ve only heard from books. And every time I wait for the lift that would bring me to 39th floor, I convince myself it’s going to be okay. That running away to explore the world rather than riding the lift sounds amazing but it’s not yet time for that. I convince myself that daydreaming is far better than traveling itself… For now. Because I have Australian news to listen to, scoops to attend to and Priority One contents to finish.

-Joelle