sunshine state

Emerald

Hello! I know this blog was supposed to be posted two weeks ago but I got really busy and sick. Schlemiel me contracted some kind of infection, which left me ill all week. I’m not the kind of person who falls ill all the time. Maybe twice or three times a year, but not every month! Maybe time to re-evaluate my priorities? Something good came out of those two grueling weeks though–I realized I’m really fortunate for having the best and the kindest workmates and friends.

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Some of them covered for me while I was sick, and were genuinely concerned for my health. Being away from home for more than five years, I’ve become quite accustomed to taking care of myself–although every once in a while I would text my mom, telling her how much I miss the back massages she used to give me and my siblings everytime we’re sick. Sometimes it can get really lonely being alone, but that’s life I guess. At some point you have to leave the place grew up in and live in an unfamiliar city to actually grow as a person.

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Being in a strange place has its perks. When I arrived in Manila, I felt relieved. Finally I can leave behind all the bad memories and start a new leaf. I never knew anyone in Manila, save for my sister whose only address I know at the time. I and a college friend came with two big bags in each hands, traveled to Quezon City (a two-hour ride from my sister’s place) and looked for a room that we could rent. Our first months were not easy–our salaries were barely covering our needs; our room was too small for us both. We separated ways a year after and found myself living with three of my then-officemates afterwards.

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Many have told me how brave I am for leaving. Naga is a wonderful place, but I knew long before college that I’m destined for something greater, far greater than what people had set out for me. Maybe it’s because of my youth, but I’ve been like this for as long as I can remember. Add to that my dream school, University of the Philippines – Diliman, is just a stone’s throw away from where I’m currently living. As soon as I settled myself in our new apartment, I enrolled in a Master’s Degree program, got a nice new job, and met new friends.

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SM GTW dress | Zapatto wedges

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I remember when I was just starting out in the big city, I made a dream wall where I posted things I wanted to achieve in five years–tangible and otherwise. I’m about 95% done. Looking back at some of the obstacles I faced, I think I deserve a pat on the back. For taking risks and facing the consequences after. For failing many times, but never giving up. Now I’m pretty much satisfied with what I have–really awesome friends, enough ‘resources’ at my disposal, and I’m marrying the love of my life. Things may have not started off right, but as they say–your end is always better than your beginning. Just hang in there. 🙂

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Mad Love

My friends and officemates often ask me: Do I ever feel sad? And I would answer with a resounding yes, but I try not to dwell on it. I always tell myself that no one else is responsible for my emotions but me. I can tell the whole world about my feelings but no other person can resolve it but me. While growing up, I have also discovered that negative emotions can be contagious. I want to be that person who’s a constant source of positive, happy energy. Each of us has our own struggles, and I don’t want to be that friend who always brings bad news. I do not want to inconvenience anyone by listening to rants and problems that (probably) do not concern them.

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My mom has taught me and my siblings to be independent. When we were kids, she would often talk to us about taking responsibility. As a child, I did not understand it then. I thought my mom was being too serious and ‘baduy’ by having those talks. I didn’t realize how much those talks have permeated my daily existence until today. Scoldings from parents do have a purpose after all. Sometimes I’d wonder if I can become an effective parent like my mother, especially now that I’m nearing that stage. 🙂

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A few weeks ago, Chad and I got engaged. YES WE’RE ENGAGED!!! 😀 😀 😀

I choose you @gypsealegs ????????

A photo posted by Daphne Benosa (@dafnyduck) on

Although having kids is not one of our current priorities, just thinking about it can be overwhelming. Seeing a little Chad and Daphne playing some day would be great, but we still have a lot of things to work on as a couple. Chad and I have had many talks about this in the past, even before announcing our official engagement, and I’m glad to have a partner who possesses the same line of thinking as I do.

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Many people think that when you get married, you can no longer have time for your own dreams. I disagree. That may be true for couples with kids but not for married couples. Chad and I still have lots of things to fulfill. More than a year ago we collaborated for several creative projects and realized how compatible we are, not just as boyfriend-girlfriend but as partners. We accomplish so much when we’re together and manage to weed through the challenges of long-distance relationship—these and many other things convince me that Chad and I will make it.

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Not that I need any convincing. I’ve loved Chad since meeting him more than a decade ago and nothing will ever dissuade me from marrying him. When he left for the States when I was in college, I totally gave up hope that I’d still see him. But he came back in 2011–and it was the right time. I’m not one to believe in ‘The One’ (oh boy, here we go), but that moment, our first conversation after so many years, I knew then he’s the person I’d marry. He’s my ideal man and my best friend, and it makes me so happy that I will be spending the rest of my life with this wonderful being. 🙂

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Top from SM GTW | Cotton On Trousers | Thrifted Parisian Sandals | MANGO Quilted Bag | Casio Watch
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Just thinking about Chad and our future makes all my worries go away. My officemates have remarked about my blooming aura since becoming engaged and I have to say it’s all because of the love I constantly receive from Chad, my family, and friends.

When you focus on how much you are loved instead of how unfortunate you are, it will show. It’s all about perspective. 🙂

Photos by Chad Verzosa <3

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Step Forward

Warning: Senti post. Haha. With my birthday just a few days away, I figured I needed to blog about something more raw and personal today. How do you overcome unfortunate situations? The year has not ended yet but I’ve already experienced a series of ups and downs. Frankly, I’m surprised I’m still sane. If I were probably more weak-willed, I would have easily gone mad. But no, this girl right here has endured much more than you can imagine–and that’s not an exaggeration.

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Like most people, I get really terrible days, would lock myself in my apartment and think about why I’m experiencing such and what I could have done to prevent them from happening and what I can still do for them not to reoccur. When I was younger, however, I would get pretty self-destructive, but only for a while. I learned later on that it’s not a good way of dealing with problems. If we always try to escape every time we’re facing a huge dilemma, it will never stop. In the end, it will only create more problems.

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The past months were very emotionally exhausting, but one day, being the amazing partner that he is, my boyfriend told me the most wonderful thing. I am far from perfect but he said my best trait is I learn from my mistakes. When I was a kid, my mother would always remind me and my siblings the importance of chances, so I suppose I got that trait from her. Yes, I would often mope for a day or three, but I would certainly bounce back better and wiser. And I guess it’s because I give myself time to reflect. When we make mistakes, we are only given very few chances, if we’re lucky, of making things right so it’s important not to waste them.

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A lot of us can be quite reactive too when stressed and angry. While I do understand that it’s a way of “getting it all out there”, sometimes they cause more harm than good. You see, when emotions are high, our judgment is clouded by unpleasant things it’s impossible to be rational. So  when I’m in that situation, I would clear my mind first, ask for a time out before saying or doing anything.

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Even though I had numerous challenges this year I can say that I’ve successfully overcome them. Right now things seem to be going very well again for me. But you know, life never fails to find a way to shake us once in a while. But when you have a calm, positive disposition, you will always find a way to move forward. Keep in mind also that there are people who love us unconditionally, willing to listen and help. I’m honestly grateful for being surrounded by my wonderful family and friends. Although I usually keep my problems to myself, these people are always ready to cheer me up and support me when I need it. My boyfriend has unfailingly been my constant source of strength. This person is the only guy who took the time to really get to know me despite all the negativity surrounding us and I really appreciate that. The last time we were together was almost a year and a half ago (boy, time does fly) but we make sure to be ‘present’ for each other. I feel very lucky to be loved and understood by him. I honestly can’t wait to be with him again, hopefully before the year closes.

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My relationship with Chad and my family and friends are perhaps the only things that are consistently positive in my life. And that’s okay. I think, as long as we have love and positivity in our hearts, things will always work out. 🙂

SM GTW dress | Twinky pumps | MANGO quilted shoulder bag

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