2023: Perimenopause, Wedding Ninang, Ancestral Roots

2023 had major milestones (and headaches) for me and hubby, but there were around 5 instances that stood out.

  • We finally had our church wedding, 6 years after getting civilly wed, and 3 years after it got originally canceled. It was small and quick, and at least we’re now done with that.
  • Finally got to present a paper (“Maria Blanca: Re-Imagining Women in a Philippine Epic”) that I’ve been holding on to for two years. Thank you LARO Conference 2023.
  • Revisiting my ancestral roots. It’s been thirty years since I’ve returned to my maternal roots, and I really regret not taking my husband here right after our wedding in 2017. He fell in love with it. It was also the first time I started checking our historical records. My grand aunts still live in our ancestral house, and they were the ones who took us on this tour. To be honest, coming back here gave my husband and I some semblance of direction because we’ve been sort of living a semi-nomadic lifestyle.
  • Our first time to be godparents at a wedding. I love weddings. As long as it isn’t mine. And we were truly honored to be part of Keane and Angge’s day. During one of the meals we’ve shared with this couple, they told us that when they were my students, I said something along the lines of “I don’t want to be a principal sponsor at your weddings.” I actually forgot about that, but in hindsight, I was far from ready back then. When I first started teaching in 2006, I was on the brink of an annulment case, and was a total wreck. I was in no shape to be anyone’s marriage guide. Now that I have been married to the love of my life for almost 7 years (and been with him for almost 12), I could say that I am totally different from that hot mess from 20 years ago.
  • Perimenopause. Good gawd. 2023 was the year I was determined not to have too many red flags in my annual physical exam (because it took me 2 months to get a health clearance in 2022). I very slowly dropped the body fat (my church wedding dress is now very loose on me). But my body started going haywire halfway through the year: hormonal irregularities, joints aching everywhere, digestion problems amplified, etc. I am now 80% vegetarian and cannot process red meat. My body is so confused. Thankfully, we’re in hybrid mode at work, so in those times when my body could not keep up, I was able to turn my face-to-face classes into online ones.

By the time March rolls by, I would be 47. Now closer to 50. So I hope that the coming years would be gentle on me.

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