Naunahan Ka Na.

“Naunahan ka na…”

Three simple words that have the power to send you into that downward spiral. In that split second of self-pity, I also found the courage to shake it off and tell myself “NO. Enough.”

I should be able to walk my talk, right?

A few days ago, I spoke at an APEC forum to represent the #Manilennials (Manila Millennials/Millennials in Manila, which apparently, is a thing). In response to someone’s commentary on the pressures of having to keep up with life today, I said,

“It’s not a race. Who says you have to be this and that at this specific time? Stop looking at your newsfeed. We each have our unique journey. It is not a competition.” 

Not that it was pure lip service but I found myself crawling into my cave of insecurity when someone told me (and quite matter of factly) “Oh, naunahan ka na ni…” 

It’s not like shots were fired. It’s not like it was said in bad faith. Still, it kind of stung. Words have the power to cut you.

Thus, I shook it off, went about my day and prayed for the ability to accept—all the while reminding myself, “Into each life, a little rain must fall.”

You do the best you can with the cards you are dealt. You make do. You get by. Life goes on.

But sometimes, it’s a bit hard to carry on with the rest of the world when you’ve run out of steam. How do you keep up?

The reason why I’ve become so anal about getting my ducks in a row is because I am tired of grappling in the dark. I need a semblance of order and stability in my life. I need to know I’m heading somewhere, that this life is heading somewhere. 

Then again, none of us really know, do we?

Much of my days have been spent in the comfort of my home, working on Black Fleet every now and then, updating my applications, looking out for auditions, waiting, exercising once in a while, napping (a lot of napping, to be honest) and more waiting. I’m not used to this pace—the slow, solitary moments where self-doubt creeps in, but I guess the world knows this is just what I need. 

I’ve been on hyperdrive since the day I could walk. I’m always running, rushing, darting to the finish line, looking over my shoulder and making sure I finish first. 

The universe knows this is just what I need. A little humble pie. A test of sorts. It knows I need to breathe and slow down. 

“Naunahan ka na.”

How do you even respond to that?

With a smile, I guess? A bittersweet smile from a person that hurts but hopes in a brighter and better tomorrow. Things will fall into place. 



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