On Slowing Down

It’s that feeling again. That feeling of moving forward, but not fast enough.

It’s that feeling again. Memories from last year remembered from reading a novel whose lead male character is only one letter short of his name.

It’s that feeling again. The need to slow down. Collect my thoughts. That feeling that the reason I probably want to speed up work so much is to forget the pains of 2016. But the very act of using work to distract me is very much like him. Thus, the need to slow down and face whatever I need to face. I am nothing like him. I will never be like him.

He would make the decision to leave you himself so that he knows for a fact he can never hurt you again. -Colleen Hoover, It Ends with Us: A Novel

It’s that feeling again. The desire to give him the benefit of the doubt. Maybe he was trying to save me from pain? He warned me from the start. “Don’t get too close. Masasaktan ka lang.” I did not listen.

It seems I will spend the rest of my life wondering what was actually going on in his head the day I flew back home. Maybe it wasn’t easy for him not to say goodbye? Yeah. I’m crazy enough to even wonder (people think I was crazy enough to even have felt something in the first place).

One day maybe I will realize it doesn’t matter what he was thinking about.

It doesn’t matter anymore.



On Difficult People

The article below is very applicable to my experience last year. It’s a good reminder for me, especially now that I’m having unavoidable contact through email with some of the difficult people from last year. Their mere online presence still has a tendency to suck out energy, but the distance makes it easier to keep negative effects at bay.

I recalled what my PI taught me as I sat in his office last year and cried in front of him: “You have to be stronger than this. Be single-minded, there is work to do.” I guess single-mindedness has its merits for certain circumstances. It keeps you focused on what’s important. (My PI panicked a bit when he saw tears fall from my eyes to the point that he offered me Kimwipes to wipe my tears. Kimwipes! Talk about panicking! XD His gesture made it a totally unforgettable moment :P)

Okay, Jill. Your PI opened a door for you. Let’s make the most out of this. Navigate carefully.

“They don’t die in the fight. Smart people know how important it is to live to fight another day, especially when your foe is a toxic individual.”

Article: Here’s How to Effectively Deal with Difficult People

On Focus


One of the things that stuck on me after watching the documentary, “Becoming Warren Buffet” was focus. Focus on what you want and need to do. Never mind what other people think. He learned from his dad that, “as long as you know why you’re doing what you’re doing, then that’s enough.” Focus.

This year, I told myself that I will focus on what I want to do. There are tempting offers to lead research projects and/or stints that unfortunately do not align with my goals and this week I have to say my “no” to them. It’s a risk, as it always is with life. We always lose a potential outcome when we make choices. But what is life without risks? We grow because of the risky decisions we make. I have enough on my plate for this year. I need to focus more on making an impact than making a name. As Mr. Khanjan Mehta told me when I interviewed him last year, “It’s all about impact. Impact. Impact.”

Another reason why I will say no to these other projects is because saying yes to them would mean saying yes to having a boss again. I have proven last year that I am not the type of person who wants to work for someone. God willing, I want my PI in the US to be the last boss I will report to. I will find mentors/advisors, but definitely not bosses.

Bottomline: focus on projects that will have an impact. Impact. Impact.


by jmanapat


I hear it in writing.
Letters appearing quietly,
To form words,
To form thoughts,
To make sense of things
The mind is desperately trying to organize.


I feel it when my heart is at peace.
When it is confident,
That the Universe will always provide
Enough reason for the heart to continue beating,
To continue loving.


It’s when I sleep at night,
That moment when the music just ended,
And am about to close my eyes.
Sometimes tired,
Sometimes hopeful,
Sometimes too excited to rest,
But always,
Grateful for everything.
The laughter,


That moment when I wake up in the morning,
Opening my eyes,
To let the first rays of light,
Illuminate the magic of a new day.
Another day of making choices;
Of deciding whether or not to be happy,
And grateful.


He said it was difficult to be happy.
I don’t want to believe that.
What if,
It is only ourselves who makes happiness difficult to achieve?
What if happiness is not difficult to achieve?
Maybe we just have to open our entire being to it;
We need to believe we deserve it.
We need to believe,
Everyone deserves it.
Because we all do.


In each moment of silence,
Choose wisely.

Morning Has Broken

Morning Has Broken
by Cat Stevens

Morning has broken, like the first morning. 
Blackbird has spoken, like the first bird. 
Praise for the singing, praise for the morning, 
Praise for them springing fresh from the Word. 

Sweet the rain’s new fall, sunlight from heaven. 
Like the first dew fall, on the first grass. 
Praise for the sweetness of the wet garden, 
Sprung in completeness where His feet pass. 

Mine is the sunlight, mine is the morning. 
Born of the one light Eden saw play. 
Praise with elation, praise every morning; 
God’s recreation of the new day. 

Morning has broken, like the first morning. 
Blackbird has spoken, like the first bird. 
Praise for the singing, praise for the morning, 
Praise for them springing fresh from the Word.

It rained early this morning, but it stopped by the time the sun had risen. I looked out of my window and opened the screen to give me an unobstructed view of the now wet garden. The leaves were sparkling as the rays of the sun hit the water droplets on them. The birds were singing happily. The air smelled fresh. The rays of the sun grew brighter and brighter as if it were showcasing the beauty of the garden.

I asked myself: How can I feel sadness when I am surrounded with such beauty and wonder? I must be doing something terribly wrong. Obviously.

Here we go again. Another one of life’s practice sessions. On with the day! :)