2020: A Recap

I seldom post personal photos but I want to honor the year that has been. 2020 is full of ups and downs — Taal incident, pandemic, earthquakes, etc. Not to be insensitive, but I a am grateful that my family and friends weren’t greatly affected by these. And to show my gratefulness, let me honor some of the highlights of my 2020.

GSK Philippines

I became part of GSK Philippines before the Taal eruption incident. Which I consider a blessing because imagine if the training didn’t start before the Taal eruption? Businesses got affected because of the incident, some even postponed hiring and training and finding a job became extra difficult for some.

Training was hard; the hardest training I had ever went through. But grateful to all my batchmates turned real good friends who never failed to lend a helping hand and share their expertise.

Then I became part of an amazing team – #FamiliaCanicosa – and was regularized in July.

My experience with GSK is very different from my previous companies. In here, I really felt like I can become anything. Like I have a good future, career-wise. My previous boss gave me all this challenges to hone me and develop my skills, and I am very grateful.

For the first time in my 6 years working, I made plans for my career – I want to be this and that. And with GSK, I know it is possible.

In October, I became one of the ERG leads of GSK Philippines. 🙂

Meeting Sonny's family

I met Sonny’s entire family for the first time last November 2019. And if you know us, or any Filipino-Chinese relationships, you would know that this is a big deal. During the first few weeks and months of our relationship, this was a big issue. Thinking and preparing ourselves that we won’t be accepted by his family. But one day, all of a sudden, his mom wanted to meet me and invited me over dinner. No photos but I can still remember every single detail.

November 19, 2019 – Caithlyn’s birthday, Diamond Hotel.

And now, I can freely visit them, go to Bulacan anytime I want and even meet his Dad before going straight to the farm.

Keeping in touch with my CDCI family

I consider my former colleagues my family. During my stay in CDCI, I experienced quite a lot – family problems, health problems, boy problems, etc. I have grown and matured in my 4 years in CDCI – it became my nourishing years. And I found a family in here. We’ve been through thick and thin, ups and downs, sad and happy moments, drunk and sober, you name it. We know each other’s families, we know each other’s problems, we know everything about each other like a real family.

When I left CDCI in Sept 2018, I never thought I’ll be in touch with them until now. Of course, I wanted to. But I was assigned in Cebu for a while, we had different priorities, different areas of assignments. So I am really glad that I am still in touch with them. We  make time for each other without so much pressure. And I think that’s beautiful.

High school friends forever

Need I say more?

My high school friends are my core people. I literally grew up with them. And although at some point, we kind of grew apart because of conflict in schedules, especially in college, we still know how to go back in each other’s arms. Of course I won’t be hypocrite. There are some that I completely grew apart with. And I think that’s okay. We should actually normalize friendship break ups because it really happens.

It’s really beautiful seeing us grow and mature, we became different people, and at the same time, the same. Is that even possible?

My fur babies

I became a fur mom in 2017 when I got Luca. She is everyone’s favorite – fluffy, well-behaved, spoiled, somehow trained. My dad personally trained her which made her extra special. 

Then I got Suki this year – energetic, competitive, playful, ugly. I’ve always wanted a pug but it was pricey for an average earner like I was. And then I was able to buy one.

Being a fur mom is a HUGE responsibility – from taking them to the vet, buying their food, making them eat their dog food (which is most of the time, they doesn’t), cleaning their poops, bathing them. I do not say that I do all these things; my mom is. But every dog owner could relate how therapeutic having a dog. 

One reason I got Suki is to help my mom recover. She’s taking the loss of my dad very well but I was worried when I started to go back to work and she’s all alone in the house. Luca, like I said, is actually well-behaved and won’t take so much of her time and attention. I am glad my sister and I got Suki. HAHAHA They are literally my babies. I sleep with them, I eat with them, I do everything with them.

Please get a dog and love them as much as you can. If you can’t, please don’t get one.

Family, always

I lost my dad last year. I lost my uncle a year before that. And my grandmother in 2013. The people who raised me, the people who shaped me, the people who has greatly influenced my life, my values, everything I believe in.

When my grandmother died in 2013, I literally felt in my heart that I can face anything; the old lady is my greatest love. I was a lola’s girl. And when I lost her, I became fearless, much more stronger, in an instant. She died, in my arms, I saw her being revived, many times, and failed. I can’t think of anything worse, more painful than that. It was my first ever real heart break. And I was able to manage.

I am not saying that losing my uncle and my dad was easier. But again, I became… stronger. But when I lost my uncle, then my dad, and finding out that few people from my childhood are starting to die – former neighbors, parent of this, parent of that – I realized that nothing will ever be the same anymore. That a part of me died with them. And I am not the same.

With all these, I realized that whatever kind of family you have, however weird or magulo or unique, whatever problems you are facing, at the end of the day, they are your family. And they are part of who you are as a person. Treasure them. Make time for them. Because it’s not only us that are getting old. I always hear people my age complain how old they are, how tita they are, how most of them are married and have kids already. Let’s not forget the fact that parents are growing older as well.

I am grateful that I have time with my mom now. I get to spend more time with her during the pandemic. I get to pamper her and treat her things and experiences. I love her so much, she’s the love of my life. And I want to give her anything she needs and wants and more. And my sister, she’s something. We fight, we make up, we argue, we make up. And  I love her. I have an uncle who lives with us. He drinks a lot, but I love him. My family is weird. But I love them, and they are a part of me. And I will take care of them as long as I can.

I am grateful for their lives; and I am grateful to them for giving me the life that I needed growing up.

If anything, one thing that I learned to love about growing up is the realization that I am free and it’s okay to feel things. I feel like I am more vocal, I am more open, and I am more accepting to the feelings of others and mine as well.

Aside from the bills and the responsibilities, I love being an adult; having the capability, and the ability, to support the people that I love.

To a better 2021.