Reflections for the mid-year


Here at Preen, we’re fully aware that adult life doesn’t always go as smoothly (and look as beautiful) as curated Instagram feeds. We all face challenges amidst all the good things. Meet Mikka Wee, a former food editor-turned-working gal in Singapore, who’s about to share all the ups and downs that come with adulting and living. Welcome to Bless This Mess

As I was browsing through social media, I caught sight of a photo from The Cut’s Instagram account that read, “2020 is in five months. Don’t let anyone waste your time.”

See, I live for milestones. For example, I await and anticipate occasions such as my birthday, the New Year, Chinese New Year (to make up for the New Year’s resolutions I failed to keep), the first of September, and the middle of the year. What attracts me so much to them is the idea of a new chance; an opportunity to start fresh; a clean slate.

I am not good at keeping resolutions, and yet, I am very good at making excuses. During the start of the year, I vowed that I wouldn’t touch meat—and now, I laugh at the ridiculousness of it all. Me, of all people, turning pescatarian. And all for what? I also told myself that I would stop buying paperbacks, but I ended up not reading anything at all, so my bookshelf is now spilling with an excessive number of new titles that I dream to read someday (soon). I told myself I would go cold turkey and not shop at all, but I’ve obviously had my days of retail indulgence since January.

I don’t even know why I do this to myself. I like to eat, I like to shop, and I like to enjoy my life. But for some strange reason, I always find myself in a guilt-induced spiral. That inner voice spites me and scolds me. “That top was excessive and you know it.” “What’s going to happen to your savings goals now?” And I end up profusely jotting down a checklist of things I should stop doing, knowing deep inside I would break my vows again. It’s been a vicious cycle that’s been going around for as long as I can remember.

But, of course, it is not as bad as it seems. I am actually quite proud of myself this year because I’ve started to work out consistently (after years and years of trying). On top of that, I’ve also been able to build up my savings. Of course, I could always do better, but I have come to accept that whatever amount of progress I’ve achieved so far—though not perfect—is still progress.

To tell you the truth, if I took a look at my journal now and read the resolutions I wrote down during the start of the year, I’d be ashamed to say that I broke all of them. However, what I managed to do was to pick myself up and bounce back. All this picking-up-and-starting-over soon opened my eyes to what it meant to really persevere and forgive myself in the process. It’s been a tough half-year so far, but I have been learning a lot.

Now that there are six months left before 2020 (my endorphins are pumping knowing it’s another “milestone”), I am resisting the urge to list down all the things I’ve been doing wrong and go cold turkey on them. Instead, I am looking at it from a different perspective—instead of making this a time of resolutions, I’ll make it a time for reflection.

Some things I will be pondering on are the people and the events that I am grateful for, the accomplishments and achievements that have made me proud this year, and some lessons I’ve learned and want to remember. There’s also a lot of improvement, so I’ll be thinking of the things I need to work on and maybe activities that will make the rest of my year worthwhile—habits I want to build and maybe explore. It doesn’t matter if I don’t have any. This is my way of trying to move forward with a healthy mindset. Because you see, 2020 is indeed coming in six months. And really, we shouldn’t let anyone waste our time, even if this someone refers to ourselves. Let’s live this second half of the year wisely, mindfully, and kindly.

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author in her private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of, or any other entity of the Inquirer Group of Companies.

Art by Tricia Guevara

For the latest in culture, fashion, beauty, and celebrities, subscribe to our weekly newsletter here  

Follow Preen on FacebookInstagramTwitterYouTube, and Viber

Related stories:
One year of Bless This Mess: How writing helped me survive adulting
We all need a “marriage vacation” from time to time
A season of slowness is a season of gratitude
Yay or Nay: Let’s build a bar exclusively for women