Sunday, August 15, 2010

Officially Denied Hidden Status

I refuse to hide my scars.

And that’s just my hand

My body is filled with scars, and that’s not an emo-statement of a figurative matter like dude, I’ve got emotional scars of pain, anger and depression against life. Nope, I’m literally scarred all over. I’ve got scars on my legs, on my arms, on my hands, and even this belt like shaped scar at my back. They look pretty much the same as that wretched looking hand and I’ve had them ever since I was seven years old. I’m currently twenty-one, and for fourteen years I’ve been trying to hide them.

Of course, that’s impossible.

Of course. How can you completely hide your body, and still live a normal life (read: not look like an idiot)? But try I did. I’ve spent years wearing long-sleeved shirts, and pants everywhere I went. I even wore gloves at times. The only scar I didn’t manage to hide was my own face. It was hard, and not to mention really, since I’ve been living all my life in the tropics. In Brunei, it was tolerable because everywhere you went there was some semblance of an air-conditioned room, but in the Philippines? You’d die of dehydration from sweating too much, that is if the shame of walking around in sweaty clothes didn’t kill you first.

But I’ve firmly decided that I will no longer hide myself. For practical reasons and for the principle of it. Practical reasons include: it’s hot in the Philippines; I look like an idiot every time I go out, and I no longer want to feel like Edward Cullen who hides from the sun every chance I get.

And the principle is this: these scars are a part of who I am. They’re a part of the mould that formed Jana Macabali. To deny and to hide my scars seems pretty much hiding and denying me, and I no longer want to do that.

This is why this principle automatically follows several other things:

I will not hide my undying love for music. I will sing whenever and wherever I want, and you can’t stop me. Even if I sound like a cross between a bull and very dying frog, I will sing to my heart’s content.

I will not hide my love for predictable comedy shows/movies. Label me as shallow, label me all you want, but I will not back down and watch depressing things just because it’s the smart thing to do.

confidentialityspice:   Shawn: Watch for the flash, Gus. As soon as Lassie hits 88, he goes back in time. And this time, he does not go to the prom with his sister. Gus: It was his mother, and it was the Enchantment Under the Sea dance. Shawn: C’mon, man, it was a throwaway, so we could make an entrance. Gus: But you got it wrong! Shawn: I can’t do this with you right now.  Psych - 5.05 “Shawn and Gus in Drag (Racing)”

I will not hide my nationality as a Filipino. Ako ay Filipino na marunong magfilipino at hinding hindi mawawala ang pagmamahal ko sa inang bansa na kahit hindi ko kinalakihan, ay aking ipagyayabang pa rin. Mahal ko ang aking wika, kahit ako’y hindi magaling sa paggamit nito. Hindi ako matatakot magfilipino sa harap ng mga dayuhan, dahil wala akong pakielam kung anu man ang iniisip nila sa akin at sa aking mga kababayan. [For the foreigners who are reading this: I’m a Filipino who knows how to speak Filipino, and I will never lose my love for my Mother Country. Even though I did not grow up here, I will still be proud of it. I love my language, even though I’m not very good at it. I won’t be afraid to speak Filipino in front of foreigners, because I don’t care what they think about me and my countrymen].

I will not hide my belief and my faith as born again Christian. Call me a fanatic, call me religious, and call me whatever name you want, but I will not turn away from the greatest relationship and the greatest friend I have ever met: Jesus Christ.

It starts with my scars and it ends with so much more.

Lotsa love, Jana

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Blogger Seeking Understanding said...

The scars are who you are, and you are beautiful kapatid. And thanks for the translation...I was way off :S

5:19 AM 
Blogger arakira said...

Jana, you are such a pretty and couragious woman!! Be proud of who you are and keep your head up high!

Hope your arm's back to normal again and congrats for making it to the finals!! Ganbatte!

5:29 PM 
Blogger jana said...

@Brandon; Hahahaha practice practice and you'll get better in your tagalog too! Hahahah also, you should come back and visit us soon :)

@Ate Arakira; feeling much better now! Hahahah looks like we have a shot at becoming 1st place at this volleyball thing. Hahahah, after five years, how awesome is this??

7:18 PM 
Blogger gardublag said...

hi! saw your blog in definitely filipino.way to go. commend you to read columns by ambeth ocampo. he has a book re. filipino history w/c is really good and has a column at yung mga generation na bago eh ganito din kasi wala magmamahal sa bayan natin kundi tayo din.

5:59 AM 
Blogger Ethlenn said...

Hi, darling!
You've made a few quite bold statements, and I really do hope some quiet lurkers who read blogs silently will find the same courage as you did. Because giving an example is the best way we can behave. It's not sermonizing, it's not slanting, it's just giving one's own example. Let's hope you will be able to change some anonymous person life, even for a while, even for a bit. It counts.
My dongsaeng, you are not alone with scars though. So I'm really impressed by your move.

3:31 AM 
Blogger Lady.Goldfish said...

Good for you, I feel quite the same way, I have scars on my arms that I have to hide from the world and at times I feel beyond sick having to feel guilty about making other people feel uncomfortable around me. Strength is a very good thing!

2:36 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, I was led here by your post about "unintelligible musings" and let me just say that there is nothing unintelligible about this post right here. Beauty is more of a state of mind/being than a state of cosmetic. Think about it, a lot of filipinas try different cosmetic products to look pretty, they dye their hair blond, they splurge on whitening creams and imported clothes. It seems to be, in the common mindset that beauty is found in looking like an American, Aussie, or Korean but never a Filipina. So in a sense, if you take away all the features that make you a filipina, you become a beautiful filipina.

You are only as beautiful as you think you are. It doesn't matter how many compliments you get, if you don't believe it, then the praise you hear are just blabbers of unintelligible noises.

Believe it, you are made in God's image - you bear the image of truth, perfection, and love, what beauty do you need in addition to these?

Ok, I'm getting carried away, maybe I should move these thoughts to my blog. I think what I'm getting at, in a long way, is that I think you are beautiful and more so because of what you wrote and decided. Thanks for posting my friend. Keep em' comin' you are intelligible.

8:19 AM 
Blogger jana said...

@gardublag; thanks :) I'd love to see some of that
@Ate Ethlenn; aww, thanks ate. You guys are as always, the best.
@Lady.Goldfish; how did you get your scars? Don't be feel guilty it's not as if you had a choice in matter, right?
@Kuya Vic; thanks for the encouragement. It means a whole lot :)

8:36 AM 
Blogger Samantha said...

Found this blog the other day and decided to come back and glance through it. Those are some amazingly powerful words right there. Thats awesome for you. :)

2:38 AM 
Blogger Samantha said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

2:38 AM 
Blogger jana said...

@Samantha, thanks :)

12:47 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm too old to say some of the things I should not be thinking. God gave you too much so he had to take a little back. And I mean, A very little. Don't slow down. Speed up while you are still young. Regret is worse then failure every day of the week. Let your scars bless you and not curse you. I am 30 years older and half a world away from you, but even from here I can see a very special woman in Christ.

Fanatic! You said to call you a fanatic. I'm right there with you. I'd rather die then deny because life without Jesus Christ of Nazareth tastes more like death.


5:40 AM 
Blogger jana said...

@mark the arrow; thanks dude.

1:20 PM 

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