While most people dread turning twenty-five, I find myself excited. I empathize with the feeling that you need to be X by the time you’re Y, but I try not to see the quarter-life mark as a finish line. It’s just a milestone mark that will only open up more paths and take me further. A month after my twenty-fourth birthday, I’m listing down things twenty things I’ve accomplished on my bucket list and five more things I want to tick off before I hit quarter-life crisis.
Things I’ve Done
1 | Got my dream job.
Never did I think working in advertising would be my dream job, but it turned out to be. When I accepted the job offer of Junior Copywriter, I felt legitimate. I’m a writer! I’ve looked back a few times, but I always end up happy where I am. Now I’m Senior Copywriter which makes me both a writer and a mentor to somebody. Huzzah!
2 | Moved countries.
This was always part of the plan, so it never quite went on the bucket list. It was, however, one of the most challenging and life-turning events of my life to date. It belongs on my reverse bucket list.
3 | Traveled without family.
I took my first trip without family members going to a best friend’s birthday party, and I’ve been on several more since then, on road or by plane, locally and internationally.
4 | Interned for a magazine.
Working for a magazine was the dream in university. While I don’t see myself doing that anymore, I was glad I got the experience in the form of an internship before my senior year.
5 | Got published.
I did mostly ghostwriting and feature blurbs at my internship, but on the last month, they let me publish an article under my byline. Yay! I also got published on a magazine website and am being primed to submit more as a column writer.
6 | Hosted a workshop.
Both online and in person. Mounting my first workshop (online) was nerve-wracking because I was terrified nobody would actually want to participate. But I calmed and told myself that, since it was all online, I actually wouldn’t suffer any loss. Lucky for me, people signed up and I garnered enough traction for a live session. I set a low standard for that as well, and managed to more than fill up my seats! This has got to be one of my biggest wins.
7 | Moved out.
Not by decision but by circumstance. I stopped living with my parents to live in the dorm when I moved to Manila, and I’ve been living in condos with siblings since then. Over the years this has come to mean cooking, paying bills, cleaning up after ourselves, and all the adult stuff it comes with.
8 | Learned to read tarot.
This was an indefinite item on my bucket list in college, something I was curious about but never quite made plans to learn. I actually went through with it in this lifetime!
9 | Learned to cook.
The success story is learning to cook beyond quick-fried food and instant noodles. I can cook sinigang, adobo, and my specialty, lemon chicken in garlic butter sauce!
10 | Learned to play the ukulele.
This became a creative outlet for me when I was unemployed and sad about being unemployed. It quickly became my favorite instrument after piano and I still hope to take it up some more.
11 | Got diagnosed.
Okay, so this was never on the bucket list, but it’s one of the most important events of my life. The plot twist is taking medication for my illness and becoming a part-time mental health advocate.
12 | Took up spoken word.
I ventured into spoken word fairly recently although I’d always wanted to dabble in it. It’s been endlessly challenging but rewarding, and has opened up more opportunities for me to creatively express my struggles and my advocacy.
13 | Got my own domain.
I’ve been writing on applenocom.com for two years! Before I got this domain, I thought owning a domain was an unnecessary luxury. But since getting it, it’s offered my some stability and consistency in writing and branding.
14 | Learned to skate.
This was another item that I never really made plans to pursue, but it happened quite recently. I was bummed about a creative disappointment and needed to do something I’d never done before to get my mind off things. So a friend taught me to skate!
15 | Graduated from a top school.
Thank you, Ateneo! Ang Matakot, ‘Di Gagalaw.
16 | Started going to gym.
…and liked it! Gyms intimidate me because I always picture them full of people who know what they’re doing. I didn’t want to be the scrawny little girl pulling weights a fraction of theirs. But I managed, and it’s boosting my confidence every time. Sometimes I think I like it more than yoga.
17 | Took up yoga.
Yoga was always a charming idea, so when my school offered it for Physical Education, I jumped at the chance. I continued the practice at a studio near my first condo, and I plan to sign up again once my finances reach some semblance of stability and comfort.
18 | Started a side business.
I currently have one signature course and two mini-courses running on moongirl.teachable.com, which I plan to grow and market into a full-on side business. I’ve already started and I could not be more excited.
19 | Started a community.
I’ve started three communities on Facebook as passion projects: Writing Room for my writing class students (currently inactive), Goal Diggers for accountability partners, and Word Chat for those wanting to practice poetry more often without pressure.
20 | Took up photography.
I’m not so good at this and I haven’t been taking it as seriously as I could, but I got started by buying a DSLR first and then moving to mirrorless quite recently. Part of my plans is taking up portrait photography as a hobby!
Things To Do
21 | Mount an event.
22 | Give a talk outside of my workshops.
23 | Travel alone.
24 | Learn a new language.
25 | Learn to drive.
So, there. See you again in less than a year as I complete my 25 by 25 list and create a 30 by 30 list. Watch me!