I am Bipolar

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After years of struggle with erratic mood swings—periods of mania followed by debilitating depression—and doses of anxiety and frustration, I finally have an answer and a reason explaining my disturbing behavior. And after struggling on my own, I finally found the courage to talk about it openly.

I am diagnosed with Bipolar II disorder.

I need to take anti-depressants, mood stabilizer, and anti-psychotic medicines.

I tend to be very happy, energetic, full of life, but I can also shut down for days, not leaving my room with lights just switched off. I can sleep for 24 hours straight, no disturbance, no anything; I tend to over-eat, but I can also survive a day or two without food. There is no in-between, only black and white, no gray area.

Last week, I cancelled on everything and everyone because of my recent episode. I went home right after work, took a nap, woke up and cried for 5 hours for a reason I couldn’t explain. That’s it, I’ve had enough. I was so close, really close…

 

My fiancé is always the innocent victim of my episodes. He is the one who sees and experiences the best AND worst of me. I feel sorry for everything that he has to go through because of my condition, but he keeps telling me that we’re partners, and this is how partnership works— through good and bad, even worst.

I only had the courage to tell my mother about this just today because I didn’t want her to worry about me. We are miles away from each other and knowing my mother, she worries a lot about me. I told her to not worry too much because I am doing everything I can to be better—or at least to be functional again—for me, for her, for Papa, for Dencio. I immediately changed the topic because I can sense that her voice is breaking, and mine, too. See, I can shut people down just like that.

My close friends weren’t immune to my dysfunctional ways either because I already shut them down for I feel that I am just a burden to them and basically to everyone else around me. They didn’t know my condition, either, because I chose to not share it with them. The bottom line is, I pushed them away. God knows I miss them every day. I hope they are okay, and I know they are so I am okay with that.

My decision-making gets the best and the worst of me.

Even so, against all odds, I hope everyone would keep on knocking on my door even if I keep on rejecting their help. I pray they would be patient and wait for me to reappear while I fix myself. Perhaps by then, I would have the courage to tell them it was MY problem, not theirs.

Sharing this takes a lot of courage from my end but I am sharing this not because I need your pity (trust me, I have too much self-pity so I think I’m all good this time). This is for everyone’s awareness that EVERY ONE of us is a fighting battle. This is for everyone’s awareness that depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, or whatever you call it, IS NOT A JOKE. People who have this condition don’t make this up. THIS IS REAL and needs urgent attention.

If you are experiencing emotional distress or thinking about things that will harm yourself, please do remember that help is ALWAYS available. It’s never too late.

I am diagnosed with Bipolar II disorder, and I am not ashamed of it. Let’s stop the stigma;

#mentalhealth
#mentalhealthawareness
#stopthestigma
#depressionisnotajoke

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When Weakened, Take A Weekend

It was a really fun weekend. It was just like how we used to be. Getting awed by natural wonders such as the beautiful clouds, the wonderful flowers, the lovely dogs, the sunrise and the sunset behind the mountains, and the clear and crisp sound of quietness. It was not our usual weekend, but it was a nice weekend.

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This weekend was a good culmination of my “weekend thinking” series. We’ve been together through things — good, bad, happy, sad. From the most absurd to the deep ones, we have been through it. And now, after a few years that felt like a lifetime of being together, we are now on our journey to getting married and starting our own family. We’ve become friends, become lovers, we also sometimes become enemies, but all these things are just a part of the process. The process that would eventually make us just one.

Going to places with you has always been an adventure in itself. The odd things that we notice while in transit, the things that we discover about each other, the quick moments when we get lost while just staring at each other, the moments when we make the other do something that the other one doesn’t want to do, the moments we make fun of each other. All those things were parts of an adventure that I would always want to take part of, as long as it’s you I am going to share it with.

The weekend was not our usual concept of “traveling”, but it helped us get into a place where we would be out of our usual worries for a short time. Wherein we would just be in too much awe of the things around us that we forget about worrying about how big our problems are as we appreciate the simple joys of just living in the moment.

We both had fun playing with Piper and Javier, right? Playing with them helped me see how we might be as future parents, or at least as individuals who would be taking care of someone or something. I’m guessing you had that observation, too. And because we were around dogs during that time, you got to talk about Sushi even more. I love it when you talk about something that you are really in awe of.

Do you want to know which part of our weekend was the most memorable for me? To me, ALL OF IT was memorable. The odd donuts we bought, the choice of transportation route, the photos we took, the stores we bought things from, the sunrise we both got up for and immediately went back to sleep after, the play times with Piper and the gang, the waiting time while doing groceries, the jam-packed seats in the truck, the crinkles, the “oranges” we harvested from the tree, Grey’s Anatomy, EVERYTHING. I am very glad that after everything that has happened prior to our weekend, we made the decisions that we made.

As we go deeper into the process of eventually becoming just one, I want you to know that I’ll always treasure experiences such as the weekend we’ve just had. And I’m looking forward to more weekends like those, until those weekends already become week-long.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Siargao Series: Siargao Bleu Resort & Spa

It’s been more than a month since our Siargao trip at hindi pa rin ako maka-move on sa kanya. Hahaha! I think I need another trip, or can I just go back to the island and stay there for the rest of my life? Seriously, it’s the best!!!!

I have been to some places in the country but this island, OH MY GOD I don’t know what magic it has but it really captured, and still capturing my heart. Parang pag-ibig, mahirap maka-move on unless may dumating na iba! CHAROT!

So much for that!

We have been lucky enough to have stayed in one of the luxurious resorts in the island, Siargao Bleu Resort & Spa. Originally, we only wanted to stay at Bravo Resort — because I just wanted to drink sangria by the beach ’cause I have heard that they have the best one in the island (and yes, MASARAP TALAGA SYA!!!!) — but one of my good friends told us that there was no available room that could accommodate us. Fortunately, she was able to help us look for another resort. “Ok lang ba kung sa Siargao Bleu kayo?”, she told me. I have done some research prior to this and I should know, that resort is off my list because it’s beyond our budget, nakakaloka sa mahal okay!!! My first question was “Will it be same price, though?” She said YES. Of course, I immediately said yes!

Let the photos I have taken speak for itself.

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Who would say NO to this, huh?!

We stayed at Siargao Bleu for 3 days and it was one of the highlights of our trip. Everything seemed perfect.  As far as I know, it is the biggest and the only spa resort in the island. If you are on a bigger budget, splurge and spend a night or two in here. We stayed in their garden deluxe room; you may check the prices here: http://siargaobleu.com.ph/accommodations

PJ and I are huge fans of anything buffet that’s why we were very happy that the resort serves daily breakfast buffet. Happy tummy!!! No photos, though. We devoured the food as soon as we could!

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Swimming pool and floating rooms

We were greeted by the hotel staffs and they immediately handed us our welcome drinks. They were accommodating and they have attended to everything we needed. They even let us check in earlier than the check-in time.

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Welcome drinks!

Another thing to note is they offer free shuttle service around General Luna. It was hassle-free for us whenever we want to go from one place to another. Customer service at its best!

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Surf spot near the resort! 

 

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Hey! ♥

The resort has a private beach front where we spent most of our time chilling. The sunset here is amazing!

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Look at that!

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The morning view is equally as beautiful!

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It's like a scene from Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind ❤

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We totally had fun bumming around their huge swimming pool every after our activity for the day. We had the place all to ourselves!

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Señorito PJ 😎

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Kayaking around the pool. Only in Siargao Blue 😉

The resort also offers spa and gym amenities. PJ was able to experience the massage and he said it was one of the best. For all I know, he fall asleep in the first 10 minutes.

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The view from the gym/spa.

If only we could stay here for a longer time, we would. If ever we go back to the island, I would still consider staying in Siargao Bleu.

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That’s all for now – I have yet to write another post about our island-hopping and Sugba Lagoon experiences, respectively, but  I would save that for another day (or week, or maybe another month, or never at all?) Let’s see! 😉

 

Siargao Series: Surfing at Cloud 9, Magpupungko Beach and Tidal Pool, and Habal-habal Rides

After a day of (mis)adventure just to get to the island, we’re more convinced that Siargao has a lot to offer.

I woke up at around 5am the next day to do a quick run from downtown General Luna to Cloud 9, and back. It felt great to be able to run along strange roads and see unfamiliar faces. I managed to do some quick stops to take photos and appreciate the beautiful scenery.

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I have seen one of the most beautiful sunrises that day.

Reaching Cloud 9, there were heaps of surf instructors asking me if I wanted to surf. You see, surfing isn’t my thing. I have tried it twice but my heart is not into it.

I ran back to our place to wake PJ up.

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What a stunning view!
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The iconic boardwalk at Cloud 9

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We were on our way to look for a habal-habal driver to take us to Magpupungko tidal pools when suddenly, someone approached us and asked where we’re headed. Luckily, that guy on the motorcycle is the owner of one of the surf shops at Cloud 9, and told us that his brother can drive us around the island and can take us to Pilar. Ten minutes later, we were in his shop and PJ has decided that he’s going to surf. It was an impulsive decision but it’s all good! At first I was kind of worried because he doesn’t know how to swim and might drown. Sometimes I feel like I wanna protect him all the time, TITA OF MANILA ANG PEG?! Haha! He spent an hour surfing and crashing into the waves of Jacking Horse surf spot while I enjoyed my own company. When I saw him stand on his board, I clapped nonstop, feeling like a legit #TitaOfManila cheering for his most favorite nephew. Hahaha

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Look at him; he is so cute. Feeling pro!

PJ’s instructor, Gugong, taught the former some techniques on how to properly stand on the board and have a good balance. I think PJ has done a good job as a first-time surfer.

I highly recommend Ally’s Surf Spot if you are going to try surfing at Cloud 9. Their staff are accommodating and they won’t let you drown while surfing; in short, they will take good care of you. An hour of surfing lesson costs Php500.

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Another hour was spent riding a habal-habal going to Magpupungko. Along the way, we enjoyed breathtaking and agricultural scenery, which reminded me more of my hometown, Calbayog. We hardly saw large transportation along the way. It was very peaceful.

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There is a Php50 entrance fee to the Magpupungko Beach and tidal pool. Entering the vicinity, I immediately looked for the tidal pools but I was more enthralled by how beautiful and clean the main beach was. I never expected it to be that way. It’s like the tidal pools are just added bonus to its beauty! Nonetheless, Magpupungko tidal pool stands true to its promise as a must-see among Siargao island tourist spots. There was a huge rock that you can climb for cliff-jumping but we weren’t able to try so. Next time, maybe, when we visit again.

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Entrance to the tidal pools

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The beach! ♥

Before heading to Magpupungko, make sure to always check the schedule of the tides. The pools are best-enjoyed when you visit during low tide so you can walk around and hop from one pool to another. We went there just in time for the high tide so we only had an hour to enjoy the place. It’ still deep even on low tide so if you’re hesitant to jump, just find contentment near the rocks where you can hold on to. You can never imagine how amazing it was to see the huge waves from the Pacific Ocean envelopes the pools. It was really a breathtaking scene. Mother nature sure knows how to surprise us human beings!

Additional notes:

Hire a habal-habal driver to bring you to Magpupungko beach and tidal pools. Fee ranges from Php800-Php1000. Travel time is an hour and 30 minutes. We opted to hire a driver because we don’t know the way going there and it will take us a while if we insist to drive on our own. You may also visit Tayangban cave pool as it’s just along the way but we skipped this part.

UPDATE: Yakson House’ Abdomen Massage and Face Resizing Care

I know, I know, I have been caught up with other stuff that’s why I have missed writing my reviews for the face resizing care.

It’s been a long overdue post but here it is…

My 7th session for the face resizing care using golki therapy.

I was then again ushered to the changing room and placed my stuff into the basket. This time, I was asked to settle down but this time, my body facing up — meaning my breasts are out in the open. “Is this really necessary?”, I asked the therapist. It was very uncomfortable but I just had to go through it. I had to go through a front massage applying breast care and the abdomen massage afterwards.

 

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had to cover my breasts for pic purposes. hahaha

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I fell asleep during the massage.

This is from their official website:

Abdominal obesity, especially visceral fats can have serious effects on your health. As one major role of fats is to protect the internal organs, your body accumulates more fats in order to protect them if you have problems with your liver, bile, heart, intestine, spleen, stomach, lung, colon, kidney, or bladder. If this problem continues, your organs will not function properly, resulting in digestive problems, constipation or even more serious diseases. Abdomen massage helps open the abdominal cavity and release the fascia so the organs can lay unrestricted in their natural positions in the abdominal cavity.

The effects:

Slimmer waist.
Helps digestion
Regularity in the digestion process
Helps lose abdomen fats

After the abdomen massage, we have proceeded with the golki therapy.

It was everything that I have expected, as usual. Painful but so addictive. I wouldn’t want to sugarcoat the procedure; it was really painful. I felt like my bones were breaking. Kim, the golki master/therapist put heaps of effort pushing my jaw bones to create a V-line on my face.

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After the session, another therapist entered the room to give me the final massage which is the face massage and cleansing. I believed she has used sea salt powder to even out my skin and get rid of the dirt .

As usual, every golki therapy session is worth the visit. I can’t wait to share to you the before and after photos of my face. 🙂

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Yakson House Makati, Philippines

G4 Perla Mansion 117 Don C.Palanca St. Legaspi Village, Makati, Philippines

 

Siargao Series: Why Siargao and how did we end up here?

​I know I have been talking nonstop about Siargao for more than a week now. I think my Facebook friends are already sick of me but to be honest, I am just too happy to care. 

The rumors are true: you fall in love with a strange place in an instant that it feels like home already. I thought that El Nido was my “home”, until I set foot in Siargao. 

The famous Boardwalk at Cloud 9

But why Siargao? How did PJ and I end up in this secluded island?

The original plan was just to explore some parts of Mindanao (Butuan, Bislig, Hinatuan, Surigao del Sur, and other nearby places), but a week prior to our flight, I have decided to ditch everything and just go to Siargao, instead. I’d rather travel farther and just stay in one island than to travel from Point A to Point B that it feels like our whole time is devoted to habal-habal and bus rides. 

I googled everything: from places to visit, how to get there, where to stay, where to eat, etc. I even asked my Facebook friends’ suggestions. I have contacted almost everyone, every resort possible, reserved rooms (even if I don’t have plans of staying in some of them) just to be sure. If plan A doesn’t work, I have until Z, right?

The view from Romantic Beach Villas

I asked my good friend, Kaie, to help me get us the best place to stay. Bravo Resort was my first choice since it was everyone’s recommendation. However, a day prior to our arrival, she informed me that Bravo was fully booked. I FREAKED OUT but of course I didn’t tell her. Hahaha! I know she has a Plan B. Lo and behold, Plan B was even better. We were booked in Siargao Bleu Resort and Spa for 3 days. No additional fees!!! Whew, what a lifesaver!

My other dilemma was the flight schedule itself. Since Siargao was an impulsive decision, and our flight was Manila-Butuan, I was worried that we won’t catch the ferry boat from Surigao to Siargao. Take note that the ferry boats from Surigao to Dapa Port are very limited. Last trip is at 12pm, unless you wanna rent a private boat that could get you to the island anytime. Imagine this: Manila-Butuan original flight schedule was 7am, another 3 hours to Surigao via van transfer, 2-hour boat ride to Dapa, and another 45 minutes to General Luna. I WAS FREAKING OUT THE WHOLE TIME. Pressure’s on! I told PJ that we will take the risk and be chance passengers for the first flight out which was at 4am. Without any decent sleep, we immediately went to the airport and took the chance. Thank goodness, we were able to get into the first flight to Butuan. 

We arrived Butuan a little past 6 in the morning, and immediately looked for a van bound for Surigao. The driver told us that he will look for more passengers to fill the van; we had breakfast while waiting. It’s a little past 7am and I was freaking out again. The driver announced that he will wait for the next plane to arrive para daw mapuno ang van nya. “Kuya, papunta kaming Siargao, kapag hindi talaga namin maabutan ang ferry, ewan ko nalang sayo.” I know, I was being OA but I just wanted to get it done and over with and just set foot in the island. 

Luckily, we were able to catch the ferry boat scheduled at 11:30am. Thank goodness! Two hours later, we arrived Siargao Island. But wait, there’s more, the adventure didn’t end there!

Boat ride to Siargao Island

Since our stay in Siargao Bleu was booked from March 23-26, we had to look for a place to stay during our first night. We went to Point 303, and it was fully booked. Next stops were Arka Hayahay which we didn’t like, Traveler’s Inn which was also fully booked, and other resorts not worth mentioning. Finally, the habal-habal driver brought us to Kokai’s Resort; it was also fully booked, however they have another place that we could rent out for a night. We were too exhausted to negotiate that we immediately booked it. OUR BODIES WERE SCREAMING REST! After settling all our stuff, PJ and I took the rest of the night exploring General Luna, went to Bravo for some drinks, ate dinner at Kitya’s, and went back to our place to get some well-deserved sleep.

So that’s it for our first day in Siargao. Stay tuned for more. 🙂

5 Reasons Why I Love Yakson House

Today’ my last session in availing Yakson House’s face resizing care, and I can’t help but to be kind of nostalgic about these past 10 weeks with them. It’s been great, to be honest. This is first time to avail anything that is related to facial care. I am the type of person who doesn’t really care how my face looks like, as long as I think that it’s presentable enough to people.

I came up with 5 reasons why I love Yakson House. Below are the list:

  • The Location

I cannot emphasize this enough. The location is literally a 3-minute walking distance from where I work, and a 10-minute waking distance from where I live. It saves me from the horrible traffic.

  • The Ambiance

Ahhh, Yakson’s receiving area is the cutest! The couch is cozy I think if I will be staying there for hours, I could totally fall asleep on it. The massage area looks inviting, as well.

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  • The Staff

Kim, Joana, and Lisa are the best. They treat me with utmost care, and they always ask if everything is okay with me. I am going to miss them so much!

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  • The Service

Their service includes unique ways of massages which improve the quality of their service. I have been going to different massage houses here in the Metro but so far, Yakson offers one of the best service out there. The back and facial massage are to die for!!!

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  • Of couse, the Golki Therapy

What is not to love about Golki Therepy?? It is a method where pressure is applied to simulate blood flow. It is a natural, non-invasive, an non-surgical procedure that will help people achieve a beautiful and healthy body. It is a painful method: Imagine that a part of your body is being massaged (hard pressure, this time) thoroughly in order for blood to circulate properly. It’s always a painfully beautiful experience that I would do all over again and again.

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I will totally miss this experience. Thank you so much, Yakson House for giving me this opportunity! My heart is filled with joy! ❤