you KNOW how YOU VOTED

While on the line earlier, waiting for my chance to vote, I overheard a conversation between two guys behind me.

Guy in a RED shirt: Pare, kuanon mo na sana tapos dai iboto. Pwede man baga. Alangan man maglaog sinda diyan tapos basahun ang balota mo.

Guy in a WHITE (almost cream) shirt: Iyo ano? Saen ngani sinda nagaabang?

Guy in a RED shirt: Diyan baga sa may luwas. Itong nagtatao ning sample ballot.

(English translation)

Guy in a RED shirt: Just get it then don’t vote for the candidate. It’s doable. They won’t go in and check who you shaded on your ballot anyway.

Guy in a WHITE (almost cream) shirt: That’s true. Where are they again?

Guy in a RED shirt: Outside, they’re   the ones giving away the sample ballots.

It’s frustrating because quite frankly this seldom happens in my city, most of the voters are learned and have high respect for the system. Compared to the rest of the country, we were as safe as a walk in the park. I was so close to coming up to them and telling them off; I was that pissed (partly due the heat too) but I decided against it. Today I’ll let them make that decision for themselves. I cannot keep coaxing people to do the right thing when they themselves are not convinced they should do it.

But just to get this off my chest, here’s what I would have said:

Yes, people will not know who you voted for. Those who paid you off will keep their fingers crossed that you stay true to your words and they get the votes they need. Those who process your vote will be oblivious to the fact that you sold out.

They won’t know but YOU WILL.

You will know at that very moment that you lied, you sold out and you gave in to a broken undignified system. While  a hard earning construction worker refuses for his vote to be bought despite his obvious need for money, here you are squandering your chances to make a difference. Granted, you may think, “What is one vote?” How is it going to affect your country? I can construe a dozen arguments why it does but that won’t matter as much as HOW YOUR VOTE CAN AFFECT YOU.

You have a chance to prove to yourself that you are worth more than a few hundred pesos. We don’t get chances like that very often.

If knowing that you just sold your vote isn’t torture enough, then you have a bigger problem. You are numb to people trampling on your dignity, callous to overglorified politicians walking all over you and treating you just like any other purchase he’s made- disposable and insignificant.

You’re better than that. WE are better than that. Once every 3 years we get to prove it. 

on HATE

Hate and all its cruel manifestations are products of different circumstances in our lives. We cannot say that they are all the same or that they all come in the same degree or last for the same lengths of time but what we know is that when we feel it, it can be very destructive.

A year ago I was told of a secret that shattered my belief in relationships and my recently restored trust in people. I know that sounds melodramatic and depressing but if I did not feel those at that time I’d be worried where my emotions went or if I even have them.

Bear with me as I cannot discuss further the specifics of that event, both for your benefit and mine. I have accepted it but I’m not proud of it. The bottom line is this, she lied. She betrayed me for the longest time and all she could muster after that is a sorry-not even a heartfelt one. I played the rational card and stayed strong. Trust me, there was no bitch fight- not even yelling.

I HATED HER, in my heart I knew that but I never really admitted it until recently because I wanted to save the relationship. I thought by not confronting my feelings they will fade away. Soon I’ll forget I even felt them. But the more I denied them, the stronger they grew. It’s like trying to stop flood. No matter how many bolts the doors have, water will still seep through.

THE BEST WAY TO COPE IS TO ALLOW YOURSELF TO FEEL IT.

Do not punish yourself for feeling that way. Chances are you have every right to feel the way you feel but even if you don’t, castigating yourself because of how you feel towards someone will only encourage you to resent the person more.

When you feel that overpowering, enveloping need to hold on to the awful things a person did, recognize it. Understand it. In time you’ll learn to overcome it. Remind yourself that even the flood recedes after the rain