Writing Memoir

#365grateful halfway point, check-in and pit stop

For the last few months, I’ve been miserable. At the beginning of this school term, I was handed a shit schedule that involved losing much of my free time, sleep and sanity. And I really, really resented it.

At first, I tried to get the barest minimal change made to my schedule because I was afraid of not getting anything at all. Then I got it. Mistake number one.

Next, I battled with a couple of different solutions to try to get my body and my sleep in some sort of rhythm. I tried to embrace the fact that I was losing lots of my free time and instead thought, why not just work more? It didn’t work. I was just grinding myself down. But it wasn’t the fact that I tried, it was my attitude, my deep frustration which probably led to further exhaustion that killed me. Mistake number two.

So, I spent about half of the term, waking up angry. When my alarm went off at 4.40am, I’d curse the person who was responsible for my schedule. Maybe not in so many words, but I’d be pissed. It seemed to give me energy to get ready and then I’d pedal to work half-asleep, but mostly angry. Mistake, mistake, mistake.

I was also angry about having to stop work on my book, which during the break, I was getting excited about and working on. Now, yes, I did try to focus on it when I had free time, but turning on my computer and trying to make the most of an hour does not bring out the best in me. Sometimes, I’d have to choose between sleep and all those other things that life demands, you know?

Eventually, I gave up on writing. At least for the time being. I had to let go of the blog, too, and accept what was. It was causing too much of a strain to try to keep up with everything that I wanted to. And it further fueled my anger.

Everything started to snowball, if I can use this very bad analogy for my life in Cambodia. I started to lose sleep because I knew that I needed it. I was getting angrier on the road and surely making my bf feel like he was living with Dragon Lady #1. I felt like I was living this dual life of holding it together at work, for the sake of my students and then crashing, exploding and venting at home.

After a particularly bad night where I was crying my head off, I woke up realizing I needed to make a change. I questioned whether NOT adapting to this schedule was my petty way of proving I was right, that I couldn’t do it. After all, if I could make it work, then all my complaints were invalid, right? No, not really, but you get the idea.

There have been times when I’ve wanted to stop my #365grateful posts on Instagram because, well, it’s hard. I have to check in once a day and find something to be grateful for which can be quite a feat when you are exhausted. But now that I’m about halfway through the journey, I feel like I can reflect a little. And I’ve noticed it’s been beneficial for a few reasons.

another-peace-sign
Yes. I didn’t notice how many of my students make the ‘peace sign’ until I was looking through some snaps I had taken. Funny, no? 😛

When I was squeezing the most out of those free moments, it was often the only social media that I kept up with. You might argue, so what, who cares, maybe it would have been better to drop out of social media altogether. I’d say, nahhhh. It was good to be ‘forced’ to stay connected. I think it can be very tempting to hide away from the world when life is grueling. I know this is certainly my tendency.

In a small way, it allowed me to be creative and think about what WAS I grateful for? I started to realize that “thank god it’s the end of the day” wasn’t going to cut it after a couple of posts.  I needed to make more of an effort, consistently and I think that’s part of the point.

Lastly, I think #365grateful has kept me tethered to a world that I very much enjoy: self-improvement and self-development. I used to be a negative person until I clawed my way out of it. And I obviously still have dark moments. But overall I think this blight will prove to do a number of things that will help me. It already has. Here’s how:

peace-and-smiles

When it came to filling out our next term’s schedule request, I said, no more 6ams. One of the hardest parts about living in SE Asia is the noise. Street noise often does not die down until well after I have to hit the pillow. A coworker gave me sleeping pills and I’m contemplating taking one tonight. So, as a result of this challenging term, I reevaluated what I want and need. Time will tell if my request is honored.

Secondly, I brought back the practice of mindfulness and meditation. Like most good habits, this one got neglected and forgotten over time. But don’t congratulate me, I kind of had to start meditating, or my head was going to explode into a million pieces. I’m trying to be much more Zen during my bike rides through traffic, and take a step back when I feel that chatterbox in my mind take off. When I can’t sleep, I try to concentrate on my breathing and not stress out.

I’m on the homestretch, the term is almost ending and the finish line is on the horizon. The jumble of unfinished blog posts that I’ve attempted to write during this time can finally be archived. And even though, my days are still tiring, I’ve accepted that part of my life has been shelved for now. But I haven’t accepted that getting angry at the world, accepting less than what I want/need is okay.

These past few months have been hell, but I hope to avoid a repeat performance. I hope to remember how much a kind word means to someone, as those moments have stood out like bright shining lighthouses in the middle of a dark storm. I also hope to look back at this time and use it as a reflection to refocus my goals, intentions and energies.

My young learners hard at work. Go girls!
My young learners hard at work. Go girls!

How do you navigate through choppy waters? And what are you grateful for? Finally, Happy Thanksgiving! xxoo

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48 thoughts on “#365grateful halfway point, check-in and pit stop

  1. Oh, Lani. I wish I could reach out into the computer and give you a hug 😦 It does sound like a very grueling schedule you have had, but hopefully with the end of the term coming and a new one after that, things will be pick up and you will have more free time to yourself. There is only so much we can do spending time on one thing alone.

    “I used to be a negative person until I clawed my way out of it”. This is a very dark phrase, one that reminds me of someone going around in circles hoping they will see the light. I really enjoyed your 365 IG posts, and it really did seem you were going it well. Your photography is also good, you know – street photography and the close ups 🙂

    Do I navigate choppy waters? This year has been rough for me. Things were picking up over the last few months but over these last few weeks things have been a bit on the rough side. Sometimes I really am greatful for the ‘it’s the end of the day, hooray, time for bed’ and it is the best part of my day – because I have made it another step, and tomorrow is another chance.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Miz Mabel. Virtual hug accepted!

      Yeah, I’m not sure why I had to throw myself down so many times before I realized there is a better way. I think diving into a good book helps. This time it was 10% Happier by Dan Harris. I enjoyed his early cynicism towards meditation and his behind-the-scenes look at network news.

      The bf was also very supportive and understanding. And I do love teaching, despite it all the other bullshit. The great thing about teaching is you pretty much have to be ‘in the moment’. There isn’t much wiggle room for daydreaming or lingering over your problems.

      Thanks for your support, too. You are so great about commenting and taking time for all your fans 😛

      Like

      1. I think sometimes we feel that we have a reason going down the path we are going, and so we keep going. The darker times usually help us to see how strong we are and how far we can be pushed, and in a sense put us in a better position to evaluate our priorities.

        Fans? I’d rather have a few good friends than a million fans. And I am glad to call you one of my friends 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Thank you. And really, that first paragraph…you should bottle it. Wise words.

        I think I keep waiting for things to get better, but at work, I’m really at the whim of my schedule. It’s been a lot of ups and downs. I’m finally ready to put my foot down.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I am so impressed that you can a) mediate despite rage, and b) be self-aware enough to notice destructive patterns such as self-sabotage.

    Despite having no sleep due to noise. That’s a really tough one. A few days of that and I’m psychotic. Good for you for setting a boundary on early morning classes, though. Self-care!

    Home stretch, home stretch! Go, Lani, go!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks. Had another rough day yesterday, but I think I minimized it through being gentle with myself this morning. Allowing the ‘head noise’ to do it’s thing and then steering myself in another direction.

      xxoo

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Lani!!

    I’ve been following you since you were a newbie to Chaing Rai. Upon til now, I’ve never felt the need to say “Thank You”; Have just been a happy fly on the wall, always so delighted to see your latest posts landing in my inbox. Seriously, every time turns into a “Wow Moment” for me.

    Well, my online friend, Thank you so much!! You’re current life reminds me of my “old life” as a health care provider. Getting up so damned early, getting ready for work, commuting miles and miles in the dark and then showing up with “bells on”, really is hell. (Please pardon the quotation marks, I am not nearly the fine writer that you are!!)

    I too, used to get little or no rest, and as a result would suffer from sleep anxiety.

    I would take my angst out on myself and my partner, and sometimes even our little dogs. Never physically in either case. Maybe that would have been more effective, LOL.

    This particular post just feels is so personal to me. No other words come to mind other than “Thank You”.

    One of your biggest, best-est and proudest fans!!

    Guy.

    PS: Yep, my real first name!! 52 years old, gay(now married) and also an expat, now living in Mexico City. Have also lived a short time in Cuenca, Ecuador as you have. Too cold for moi.

    BTW: I cannot use the word “proud” enough to tell you how proud I am of you!!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you very much. What a nice and beautiful surprise. I’m glad my misery brought the best out of you. Hahahahahha.

      Yeah, this time has reminded me of the work slog back home and how much I hated it.You feel like so much of your life is sliding away. In any case, home stretch, almost there. Must keep running towards the finish line.

      p.s. Ah, Cuenca. I can’t believe I was there!

      Humbled. And feeling loved. xxoo

      Like

  4. How do you navigate through choppy waters? I think I attempt to hit it like you dear friend, with the similar results.

    And what am I grateful for? I am really grateful for the true friends that I have found on this strange journey of life. You, dear friend are one I am so glad to have met. No matter where you live or whatever mental condition, I always find that you are an inspiration. I admire your creativity, even when you don’t see it in yourself. I wish I had the ability to communicate and turn a phrase like you do. Like others, I wish I could give you a hug or a word of encouragement.

    I wish you the very best. Good thoughts are sent your way. XXXOOO

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Awwww. I’m glad we met too. We sure did have fun! I very much loved being part of your family and little life back in CM.

      Ug! I got to tell you Kelly. I’m feeling so sensitive and thin-skinned lately. Your words are making me cry. I just want to stay in bed. 555+

      Hope life is treating you exceptionally well. Give my best to everyone and I’ll email you soon. Happy Turkey Day!

      Like

  5. I hear you — 365 gratitude posts are exhausting! But I’m also glad for the reminder to think about something good every day. I’ve been enjoying yours a lot. xxx

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, it definitely helps that I don’t have a job requiring me to be at school at 6:00 am. I could never do this on top of a full-time job!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Lani!! I hope you get a better schedule next term. I also get very grumpy if I don’t sleep well. Night noises suck! There was a period a few years ago when I had to use earplugs to sleep, it helped me, although I know some people cannot get used to having earplugs on all night. (But I shared a room for a year with a lady that snored a lot so it was either earplugs or kill her, haha).

    I think your 365 gratitude posts are very important. Sometimes we really need to think hard to notice the good things, but they are there.

    Hugs hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Marta. I appreciate your hugs and for stopping by!

      Yeah, I think I’m one of those people who can’t sleep with earplugs or even one of those eye masks. I get up frequently, so that doesn’t help. You can close your eyes, but you can’t close your ears, eh? 😛

      Like

  7. aww! sad to read that it’s been such a tough school year for you Lani. *hugs*
    i am not a morning person either and when i worked early hospital morning shifts that started at 6:45 a.m meaning i had to wake up at 5, i was bitter the entire morning too.

    in times like these, you may not be able to control your circumstances but you can control your response. i too would usually respond in frustration and rant all the time (to the annoyance of my family and coworkers), then my pastor would remind me that in our frustration is when God wants us to pray.

    hope your schedule comes out better for next year but if it doesn’t, may God give you the patience, self control, and perseverance and press on no matter what comes your way.

    p.s. i too am glad you are still doing your 365 gratitude posts! you’re still doing that and at least occasionally blogging. (its like i forgot i even had a blog… no motivation for it at all these days, so girl you’re still good!)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for all the well wishes!

      Yeah, I started to re-read my intentions/goals that I had created for myself months ago, and the last thing I wrote was really a reminder, “ask for help”.

      It’s how I’m trying to start my morning.

      Trying 😛

      Hugs from the Motherland! 😀

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Lani, I really feel for you and hope that things will get better.

    Earlier this year I was in a truly awful work situation and it became my new normal – I became the absolute worst version of myself at home and it almost cost me my sanity, health and put an enormous strain on my relationship. I was at a point where I could no longer tell what the job was breaking in me and my life and what was already broken in me and my life.

    When it ended, I couldn’t believe how different everything felt. It even showed physically, people suddenly started commenting how well I looked and I realised just how sick the situation had made me.

    Take care, I hope there are brighter days ahead soon. I always try to remember (not always successfully obviously!) that no job is worth your health.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the reminder. I sometimes feel like this job has aged me. Seriously. I’m remembering when I was a Waldorf teacher and looking in the mirror and feeling really aged. These days, I’m working harder to balance things out and I’m completely ready to set boundaries for next year.

      Better late than never, right?

      Yeah, the ‘new normal’ I find that terrifying. Can’t do it. I have already started brainstorming ideas for a healther future and of course, doing what I can now to make things better.

      Thanks again! xxoo

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I feel for you. It does sound demanding to start teaching very early in the morning. I start early in my job –7:30 am but I’ve always wanted to, for past 20 years or so, no matter what the job. You probably have post-class work as a teacher too.

    Work has some internal politics which aren’t always pleasant.
    That’s why I bike, blog and listen to music at home. But still, that doesn’t make other problems go away. So I vent to dearie..patient guy.

    Hope you eat healthy, continue to bike safely and sleep… Don’t be on computer for hrs. before bed.it keeps brain awake. Sleep doctor told me this. I did take sleeping pills, but got off since I didn’t want to get hooked.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes. I’m very hesitant to take them and that’s why I haven’t yet. I don’t like the idea of having to need it, you know?

      I’m generally good about being off the computer before bed. Honestly, there are days my PC is never turned on. But the danger is the smart phone..it’s too easy to play around on it until I get tired. But overall, I prefer to read before bed.

      You’ll be happy to hear that I’m wearing my bike helmet these days. I know I stick out like a big dork, but the way folks drive is too unpredicatable. I can’t take the risk.

      Yeah, I wanted an early schedule because:it’s cooler and quieter, it meant I’d be off the roads in the evening and the students are usually more focused. However, this term kind of blew all those assumptions out of the water. It’s okay. Moving on.

      Thanks, Jean.

      Like

  10. Sending you a big hug from over international waters. Lani, sounds like you’ve been having a really rough time, but it also sounds like you’ve been able to recognise what’s gone on and make a change.

    I can’t imagine what your schedule’s been like—I’m exhausted just reading about you having to get up at that hour of the morning.

    “I think it can be very tempting to hide away from the world when life is gruelling.” <- this is pretty much how I react when life gets a bit too much. I just switch off too. Though unlike you, while I recognise this isn't the best solution, I still stick to it! Your 365 gratitude posts on Instagram have been brilliant and admire how you stuck with them!

    Like

  11. Happy Thanksgiving Lani. I’m glad you caught yourself before you hit rock bottom, in a manner of speaking 🙂
    I always say that gratitude is the cure for all that ails me. I’ve found this to be true and try to stay grateful as much as possible.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And yet the practice of gratitude is the last thing you want to hear or practice when you are feeling stressed or angry!

      I suppose then, the practice must be kept up at all times so that when you do feel like falling, you remember out of habit, to be grateful.

      Cheers Timi!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Lani, that sounds tiring! As someone who had to give up on the blog this month due to a crazy work schedule, I get where you’re coming from with the frustration and desire to have things. just. so. Like you, I eventually learned to change too.

    And it’s great to hear the #365grateful tag helped you through the term. Who would have thought, eh? 🙂 Hope you enjoy the coming holidays and the next term turns out better for you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re so astute. Yes, who would have thought, for sure.

      Thanks for all you well and good wishes. I hope the same for you. It will be nice to see you on the blogosphere again. Until then, IG will have to do 😉

      Like

  13. Gratitude is a wonderful antidote to anger.

    In the days before Thanksgiving, we had all been filling our minds with anger about the election of Donald Trump. But when we sat down to the table to eat our turkey, we took time out to give thanks. We went around the table, and each of us gave a sincere accounting of all the things we were grateful for. It really set the tone for the evening.

    Your students are so cute! They must be a joy to teach … when you’re not too tired to enjoy them.

    I hope you can find a way to have a more reasonable schedule so you won’t wear yourself out. I’ve done that before, and the older you get, the harder it is to recover.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, if only I could remember to be mindful and grateful instead of being angry. But I suppose the point is not to pretend the anger is not there, but acknowledge it and move on.

      It’s been fascinating to absorb all this collective anger regarding the US elections. I really hope now that everyone on all sides can start to work on healing the nation, rather than further dividing it with more anger, from here on out. We need it!

      Thanks for your kind thoughts. I will certainly try and endeavour to let go of what no longer serves me. xxoo

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Lani!

        Once again your words touched me.. my new/old friend!!

        Acknowledgement of both the election back home,and your feelings about your awful work schedule are both very real things that need to be taken into consideration…… Try not to loose me in the following…..

        So begins my anthem to you, my new internet friend… Here we go….

        Sorry about the structure of this post. My entire life, including my speech patterns, seem to be like one extremely long run on sentence. But hey on the brightside, I can/will save your life, right?!! Sumpin’ to be said about that!!

        I truly believe that perhaps rather than being a fly on the wall and not participating is actually more difficult than the other, Lani…..

        Being an expat, one would guess, just by nature, would make a person an extrovert. Well….

        As we both certainly know, the opposite is and can be so very true.

        Curl up in our individual cocoons ….,and yet go through the motions….

        We are here, but we are not.

        We feel extremely grateful, but not nearly as grateful as we feel we should be.

        We miss home, but really don’t care…because of this we feel confused and sometimes sad.

        Smile, shop, travel a bit within your new realm, and continue to feel isolated and missing out…

        Yet we are still in the middle of it all,…

        Truly the middle of it all….

        Then what….

        Seeing it…feeling it…not thinking so much about it and just doing it.

        That’s us Lani.

        You and I, and the millions of who can do this,…

        And what to do?……..What’s next?….

        Next up, as you have mentioned, all this noise in our heads and transitory confusion and frustration……

        Here we are………..change it for the world…..

        Oh hell no……..

        Lucky, over-the rainbow, super fortunate and brave ones, the ones who left home to live a dream out loud and in color….. In 1960’s NBC Rainbow Peacock Style Color (Google it if you don’t know Lani)….Please try and keep this in mind on any and all those “bad days” …… I try to……

        Yep, those days are real, but they would be worse back home……

        My friend, when the intolerable times end, which they will, and sooner than you can even understand at this moment, you will wake up happy, delighted and perhaps even overjoyed!!……,

        Wherever this big world takes you, you’ll be where you want to be, and maybe more importantly,….. where you need to be….. and most importantly, my dear….

        You will always be thought of and loved…..

        Indeed, types like us are still prone to sail into the doldrums; I guess that there is no escaping that……Anywhere you choose to go…or chose not to go….

        But…..Let me think, and perhaps come out of my little cocoon just a little more… if just long enough to finish my POV.

        My goodness…. Hummmm… What to say…..

        Suppose that God and/or the Universe put the sweetest and most wonderful folks on the planet here to help the rest of us……..

        Yep, to help the rest of us who are also currently living our dreams, and the rest of us who are working so hard, to someday live their dreams that you and I see in 1960’s NBC Rainbow Peacock Style color every single day…..

        Bless you Lani, your words and thoughts are like magic to me and so many others!!

        Guy and Mike in Mexico City luvs ya honey!!

        XXOO.

        Guy and Mike, Sparky and Max.

        PS: Mike is my spouse and the New Fly On The Wall!! The other two guys are our Shih Tzus. These little fellas have traveled and have seen more of the world than most of my relatives. And between friends, I believe that they are more appreciative than said relatives!! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thanks so much for your outpouring of love and support!

        Expats rather do, as you put it, live in a oxymoronic world. 😉 I suppose that’s what makes it challenging and magical at the same time. Yes, I very much want that rainbow peacock style and this time has been my reminder that I need to get back to what’s important and gain a clearer perspective.

        Thanks again, guys, love right back at ya. xxoo

        Liked by 1 person

  14. Your like button isn’t materializing for some reason. Sorry it’s been so hard, L. I remember what it was like: I did it to myself, though, workaholism my escape. Yeah, I know. You can’t imagine anyone doing that, in your shoes. I gained money and success…at the expense of my health and joy. Hope this chapter has a better ending for you. You’re the one writing a lot of it, though Life throws crap.

    Xxx
    D.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for letting me know about my ‘like’ button. I’ll take a look at it.

      Yeah, it has been a bitter reminder of what I don’t want and how I don’t want to handle stress and adversity.

      Things are looking up though. Had a heart to heart with my boss and he was really great. I should get the schedule I want next term.

      xxoo

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Oh god Lani that sounds awful!!! I’m sending you lots of virtual hugs!!! Crossing my fingers for you that the 6am schedule goes away… 😦

    Your 365 grateful posts also help me. Sometimes I am just stressed/angry/upset and I can’t concentrate on anything positive… then I flip through instagram and see your grateful posts and think: dammit Mary, you have a lot to be grateful for. Get your mind out of the gutter. So, thank you!

    Hopefully 2017 will be a better start for you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Awww, cheers matey! *clinks beer glasses*

      Yeah, I actually had a great talk with my boss about it. ‘Twas all good, felt appreciated and heard and he said next term I’d get what I’d want! Wooohooo!

      You should start your own gratitude IG posts! Or journal them 🙂 They can be suprisingly addictive and uplifting.

      Like

  16. I am glad you are steadily getting back on the right track, so to speak. I get what you say, A LOT. I have a lot of dark days, which I try to make light of or else, I’ll burst. I have to keep positive because I am somehow the glue that holds things.

    Regarding the peace sign…When I was younger, it was the peace sign, though people didn’t normally use it when pictures were taken. You know what we were always fond of (the Filipinos, anyway)? Getting behind someone in a picture-taking and secretly putting up both our index fingers behind his head so he’d have horns. Unless you got caught, it’s only the photographer and anyone who happened to look that noticed it. Fun times.

    Today, many of us do the peace sign, which I won’t exactly call a peace sign anymore because it’s used to pretend to be cutesy patootsie. Filipinos didn’t use to do that until animes and Korean soap operas (especially these!) invaded us. So Filipinos do that, too, all the time, but most times, I think it’s to be funny, giggling at the act itself, not to pretend to be cute.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi J. Gi !!

      Thank you for for liking my answer to Lani!!

      Doesn’t she seem like the best buddy that we have never yet met in person?

      I just seem to “get her”. I grew up in Washington State. At that time, back in the 1970-80’s, the largest group of “minorities” were Chinese, Japanese and Filipinos. Interestingly I grew up in the mostly “black” part of town.

      So starting off early, I have always felt comfy being around just about everyone. The exception being, nasty, judgemental and mean people.

      The last three types of folks tend to all fall into the same group.

      But not always!!

      Within these three groups, they sometimes can be all these at once, or any combination.

      For more than a couple of years as a little boy, I would pray that someday my folks and I would wake up and be Black.

      Ain’t life rich!!!

      I took a look at your profile just now. You are so full of ideas and expressions!!

      When I was your age, I was looking for the next party, trying to figure out “who I was” and just trying to be a decent person.

      So fast forward to 2016, if you will…….

      As you may have read, my partner, and nowadays my Husband, (that still sounds funny to ME!!) are not quite sure what this crazy United States election is going to mean to our status in Mexico.

      Before moving here to Mexico City, we had considered moving to the Philippines or to Cambodia.

      Who knows what this crazy world may bring,

      J.Gi, someday perhaps you and I shall be neighbors!!

      From what you have posted, this would be a most wonderful thing!!

      Please stay in touch!!

      Guy, Mike, Sparky and Max. (The last two are our little Shih Tzu’s!! )

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Thanks for your kind words. Yes, things have improved vastly since I started being mindful of my actions and thoughts. And of course, since I decided to get myself on a smoother path.

      Yeah, the ‘peace sign’ or bunny ears as you reminded me. It’s THE cutesy Asian sign now.

      Like

  17. Hi, Guy! No probs about the LIKE-ing. When I like what I get to read, I hit the button, no biggie. And yes about Lani seeming like the best online buddy! I actually said something about her along that line once and our mutual friend Mabel agreed. That’s also why Lani’s the first to be in my #FeatureFriday posts (unfortunately, I haven’t gotten around to posting more when I do have more people that I feel deserve to be featured).

    “So starting off early, I have always felt comfy being around just about everyone.”

    I think that was great! Meanwhile, I who grew up in a mostly Filipino (say, 99%) environment was always shy and awkward. Ironies, eh?

    “I took a look at your profile just now. You are so full of ideas and expressions!!”

    Why, thank you! Can’t tell you how much that comment pleases me. Oops! I said it anyway, LOL!!! Gotta tell you, I had to actually go back to my profile pages to check :p What REALLY made me smile was this: “When I was your age…” Thank YOU!!! I’m not that young, but that tickles, he he. I wasn’t quite the party-goer when I was young, though.

    “my partner, and nowadays my Husband, (that still sounds funny to ME!!) are not quite sure what this crazy United States election is going to mean to our status in Mexico.”

    Sorry about that. It’s crazy times. Even here, it’s crazy times, too, so you might want to not move to the Philippines just yet. Maybe wait till there’s a new president. And if we’re going to be neighbors, that certainly won’t be where we live now (we live in the same compound with many relatives and our clan is a total mess).

    Will stay in touch, for sure! I love conversations and people who love conversations 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Goodness, Gracious!!

    If Lani is watching this little exchange, she will soon understand how loved and cared-for she really is!!

    Also, my new friend, J.Gi, I’m not quite sure how to use this interface properly yet.

    I don’t want our correspondences to “stomp” all over Lani’s well deserved responses.

    Any suggestions from you or Lani, or anyone (LOL) to help me here for a second, will not be taken miss heartedly.

    Thank You!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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