Ocean’s Eleven. Twin Towers. Stranger Things character. Sixth grader. Today marks my eleventh year in the blogosphere. I miss my backpacking life—the strangers and strange places. I miss writing here—anecdotes and whatnots. I miss teaching inside a “real” classroom—and the unspoken words with them students. I miss my mom. I miss my dad. I miss my life outside the house.

It’s been almost two years since the worldwide pandemic and we are nowhere near our old selves. My pre-pandemic life felt like so long ago that I had to go back reading my old Instagram posts to relive those moments. Add my 28-month old son to the equation and you would get my “new normal” life. I wouldn’t complain though, I have a roof over my head, food in the fridge, and my two boys to share this crazy life with.

We’re still in a work-from-home status at school and it feels weird that it’s January and the school year is only halfway finished. I’ve been missing the old school, real classroom feel in teaching but yeah, really, I’m just grieving for lost time.

The past year was a blur—exactly how I described the year before. My mom died because of COVID-19 and I dunno where to start on describing that horrifying experience of not seeing her during her last days— I still haven’t got the courage to write about her and the incident. That prompted our three-week vacation/homecoming to my mom’s hometown in Zambales which was Akira’s first time to get out of the metro. To say that we were so happy to witness his many firsts is an understatement. The three of us were a team since day one and it was just amazing to see him grow up right before our eyes every single day. And when Christian felt the symptoms, he isolated himself for fourteen days which was the first time that we were all separated (he tested negative for COVID-19 on the first day and tested positive on the fifth day). It happened two days before my birthday.

But my mom wouldn’t name me “Carla” which means “strong” for nothing. So, I manage to live my life day-by-day. One challenge at a time. Focus on one task each time. Because life may be too overwhelming lately so we need to take it slow. Good thing though, I get to blame my extended breastfeeding and post-partum hormones for my occasionally psyched up emotions—although my hormones synced back to its pre-pregnancy levels after six months of giving birth, yes, most probably I am just emotional at times.

I am not planning for the future right now. I’ve got hopes and wishes but the hard core plans, none. It works for some, the setting-a-goal kinda thing. But after everything that I’ve been through the past year, I just want to live in the moment—having that one extra bite of dessert, watching endless movies and series, and taking photos and videos of Akira and posting it on Instagram, just because.

Happy 11!

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