To thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man (William Shakespeare, 1564-1616).
LIFE IS TOO SHORT…
…To care about what other people think. Especially the negative, judgmental, petty ones.
…To not honour who you are and what you can offer to the world through your life. If you are not happy where you are right now, then you know there is something wrong and you, and only you, can change it.
Perhaps it’s the wrong kind of work. Or the friends who just don’t jive. Or the style that isn’t you.
Don’t waste another minute going in the wrong direction. Start now and live your life.
…To live chained to the past, or pining for the future or some such utopia or alternate universe where we imagine our lives will be better. Do what you can with what you have now and…
Fall in love with you.
Get to know the person closest to you – YOU – and learn to love her no matter what.
If you’re not a city girl, go live in the country. If the country’s not for you, go live in the city. Or live in the ‘burbs like me. It’s not a crime and it won’t kill you (contrary to what other people think). Suburbia has its advantages especially for a growing family, and if you are in the middle of growing that family, don’t forget to…
Fall in love with your life. As it is right now.
Not as you wish it to be, or even as you are planning it to be.
In the midst of all the chaos and the commotion.
Accept it. Love it.
This mum’s confession about how she didn’t recognize her time and place for everything is bittersweet.
I have my own mummy meltdown moments but I’m trying my best not to go with the “When are you kids gonna grow up?” script. I genuinely want to enjoy this time of co-sleeping and video game consoles and sleepovers. My house may be getting too small for us now but I love that my husband has finally put up a clothesline that makes my small pergola look like it’s a fiesta decorated with clothes and undies. I’ll enjoy when we finally get the bunk bed so my 13-year-old can share a room with the 4-year-old (yes as soon as we’re back from our holiday this is happening!). And I will still hassle my husband for some funky chandeliers in the dining room even if I know it might make the space look even smaller.
Instead of looking at what I gave up, I want to look at what is right in front of me begging to be savoured and experience just for what it is. My moment in time.
THE INTEGRITY OF YOUR BEAUTY
Yes there is such a thing.
It’s about not fighting with what you see in the mirror, but loving it and celebrating it.
It’s about not looking at the beauty of others and envying it, or even worse copying it!
It’s about looking your best, not your youngest, your skinniest, your most blinged-out! It’s not about age or the numbers on a scale, or even the numbers or letters on a clothing label (and yes that goes for size and for designer brand names!).
It’s about not covering up your beauty, but letting it shine through.
Sometimes quietly. Sometimes loudly. But always with integrity.
EMBRACING MYSELF & MY PEOPLE-PLEASING PAST
I was once young, naive, fickle, sensitive.
Perhaps in many of the wrong ways. And though I regret some of the mistakes I’ve made, I’ve also grown to love the woman I have become. Who I am now.
I am a Type 4. Earth.
(Yes seriously get this book!)
I love jewel tones, strong primary colours. I look best in black, white, red, blue and especially when I’ve got my bold and strong lipstick on.
I’ll never be able to do ruffles in that girly sort of way, but I can rock a classic any time.
I am a working mum intent on building a home business so that one day, even when all my kids are teen-agers, I’ll be able to have the freedom to truly work at home and have more control of my day.
I like to co-sleep with my kids, breastfeed them until it’s humanly impossible for me, let them play video games or watch TV and movies as much as they can possibly handle in a day. But I also like to push them to play the piano when they think they can’t ever get past perfecting a piece, take the exam for exclusive schools to see where it leads them, and insist that they greet their elders with the traditional mano (yes I call them elders and my kids will never be on a first name basis with them nor with me and my hubby for as long as I can help it).
I am tiger mum and teddy bear mum, sometimes at the same time.
I am wife, lover, challenger, and sometimes sarcastic bi*ch to my husband (especially when I’m very sleepy or very tired or both). I am his partner-in-crime, his puppy love, his ball-and-chain.
I am a writer, mostly of non-fictional works like personal essays that disguise themselves as self-help articles.
I’m a programmer by profession too, and I’ve navigated the professional world for over 15 years now. I’m still not doing what I want to be doing, but that’s a choice because my priority is to be a mum. My dream will have its place and time.
I am a Christian by faith and by practice. Not because I’m perfect, but because I am always washed clean, always given another chance by the one who calls me His. I have integrity, beauty, acceptance only through my Lord Jesus Christ.
Oh and I love to sing. That’s because of that dang Filipino blood flowing in my veins. Karaoke, anyone?