“Here is the crux of the matter, the distilled essence, the only thing you need to remember: When considering whether to say yes or no, you must choose the response that feels like freedom. Period.” – Martha Beck
It was a long way to get here. Sometimes, it still feels surreal. But here we are – and it feels like freedom.
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I had this calling card made on September when I launched my book. By this time, I was already on my countdown to leave my promising corporate job by end of 2019. After 15 looooong years of hustling. I had a plan. I don’t know how I would make it happen. I trusted the Universe and prayed hard that everything will work out fine even if the stable corporate pay would be gone. The goal was clear: I had to try to make it work outside of corporate so I can spend more time with the kids, to do what I love to do and not accepting that “this was it.” I still do not know how long this would last. I still do not know if I can really make it outside of the corporate jungle. I did not even think I can be a consultant but God answers prayers. In the meantime, I promised myself to live in the NOW. Just make NOW work. Write my articles. Catch up with clients. Blend some oils. Play and teach Santi and Lucia. Do some home errands. Stretch here. Meditate there. When friends ask, so where are you now? I am here. Hi, I am Balot. I am an author of Lost but Found, a certified aromatherapist, Smart Parenting contributor, Brand Love Strategist at BAD Brand Consultancy (that’s Balot A. Del Rosario, by the way, haha), and the CEO (Chief Essential Oiler) at @lanalaneph. By the way, I am also a work-at-home mama. 💚 Nice to meet you. Wish me the biggest of luck!
It is roughly a month ago when I quit my corporate job. 15 years. It has been a long time. The decision to quit came as an epiphany – when my soul started shouting:
THIS COULD NOT BE IT!
My soul longed to do what it wants to do: make a difference. It sounds crazy, I know. More like messiah complex. But it is what it is. I wanted to make a difference. I wanted to spend more time with my kids. I wanted to spend more time with me. I wanted to do sooooo many things.
There were whispers prior to that shout.
It started December of 2018. I repressed the feeling because I did not want to act like a “millennial”. No offense and pretty much, I AM A STILL A MILLENNIAL so I kinda get a hall pass. But that was how it was perceived, haha. Mumimillennial kalang eh! My friends said.
But it was an emotionally and psychologically mind-effing journey that started with that “soul scream.”
It all came too sudden when Edzel and I came back from Cambodia June of last year. I don’t know what happened really. Maybe it was the ruins. Maybe it was reconnecting with nature. Maybe it was — God.
I needed to do something else. What that something is I did not know.
In fact, I still do not know but where I am now is something that I could have only daydreamed.
And then, coming from Cambodia, I met kindred spirits when I did my Prenatal and Postnatal Yoga Teacher Training in August of 2019. Next thing: my world exploded.
I knew by heart that I could do something more. Outside of the four walls of the office.
I wanted to write. I wanted to teach about aromatherapy. I wanted to help women with APAS find alternative modalities in curbing their stress. I wanted to spend more time with my kids. I wanted to spend more time with my parents and sisters back in Bacolod.
And so, the plans were cemented in my heart. It was almost six months in the making until I would leave my corporate job by end of 2019.
While this may seem a hasty decision, I sort of planned a little for it. I had to establish my writing opportunities. I had to save some moolah so the husband would not be burdened too much. I had to rev up my business.
It was a really scary time before THE JUMP.
Roughly more than a month after, I could not be any happier. This new ME would be someone that my old ME would have scoffed at.
My old ME loved corporate. She loved the boardroom hustle. She had a love/hate relationship with office politics. She loved meeting powerful people. She loved wearing high-heeled shoes and putting on makeup and dressing up. She loved gulping Starbucks and Coke. She even mildly loved traffic because she gets to listen to her Audibles.
But that was the old ME.
The new ME metamorphosed into something my old ME would have never recognized.
The new ME still wakes up like the usual time. But while the old ME would have been frantic in choosing what clothes to wear or putting on some makeup before heavy traffic looms, the new ME sits cross-legged on my meditation mat and utters a short prayer. Or if it is a weekend, I would be running to my 7am yoga class. She loves to fix the bed they slept in. She loves to spend time with the kids before her day starts. She loves writing articles, creating marketing plans for clients that she resonates with (this was something that was totally unexpected but you know, God has a lot of surprises), and blending oils for clients. She may not be a mama still 24/7 but she loves the extra hours spent with Santiago and Lucia painting, or playing with blocks, or watching Cocomelon. She loves that she has the time to read books, engage in her spiritual practice, or take naps when needed. She loves that she can do the chores the husband asks her to do or simply the chores that she wants to do. And most of all, she loves doing all this, barefooted (except when going out of course) and in her yoga pants.
It is a humble day. But for the new ME – this is freedom and I love every bit of it. My Mama’s passing has even brought greater gravity to my decision; with me realising that really, we could be taken away in an instant and we have to make the most out of our life while we can.
And so, here I am. And I pray to God that it will last.