2023 was probably my happiest

The year I told myself I’m not that important for people to keep minding me, so I can do whatever I want

The author welcoming a young life

When I go through Instagram, I come across certain trends. These last few weeks of the year, people rounded up their year with a post or a reel—videos or pictures of what they’ve done the the past year. People would also post how they began the year fresh and full of hope, but by the end, they felt like their year has been a mess.

I admit there are a lot of days when I wonder, “Was 2023 good to me?” Honestly, I have to say it was a happy year. Not a lot of people would actually admit to such a thing. But it was probably my happiest. My evidence would be my Favorites album on my phone. It’s full of pictures of things that I know had been good decisions.

Why do I say it was my happiest? What made 2023 different? I made a decision to choose things that made me happy. But at the same time, I kept in mind that I could do whatever makes me happy as long as I don’t hurt anyone. I kept in mind what someone once told me: I’m not that important for people to talk a lot about me. Harsh, but very true. It changed my perspective.

I lived my past year thinking no one cares what I do; I’m not that important for people to keep minding me, and I can do whatever I want.

When I used to come across interesting events, I would wish I could attend. But I always found some kind of reason not to go. I would tell myself, maybe next time. Now, I like to think things have changed. The past two years, I told myself, “Let’s do this! Let’s go!” I dragged my younger sister to many events this past year. We went to concerts and fairs, and traveled abroad. I got to see Harry Styles, Wi Ha Jun, and Lee Min Ho in just one year. I got to attend fairs like Komiket, Stickercon, Soiree, Purveyr Fair.

But what made me really happy about these experiences was that I got to spend time with people I love and with myself. It changed my life. I know these are my treasured memories. When I’m sick or old, these are things I will not regret, and most likely, will remember.

There were some lows in my year, but I thought to myself, “What can I do?” I don’t like staying sad, so I just accept that lows do happen. I made mistakes, I still get sad, I am not capable of certain acts, and I am not perfect. But I chant to myself, “Do not stress over things that you cannot control, and you can do something about things that are within your control.”

I also have a lot of things to be grateful for.

Reminders of enjoyment experienced

I’m very grateful to the people who have supported me to do what I want—my hype people and enablers. They are not only my family, but also friends. The pictures in my Favorites folder are not even half of the photos in my phone, and certainly not even one-eighth of the amazing events in my life in 2023. I used to love reading books because they transported me to places better than my own reality. Now, I still read, but I know experiencing life is grander.

Before, I felt like a moody teenager. I used to be insecure and very shy. I still have my insecurities, but I remind myself not to drag people down because of them. I would say I am more certain about who I am, compared to before. I may not be sure about the state I am in, but I’m sure about the qualities, principles, and values I have as a person.

When I checked my Facebook, an old post of mine popped up. These were my past New Year’s resolutions. It took me eight years to do, but I fulfilled them. They seemed impossible for me to accomplish, but I did it! I’ve learned that if you wish for something and work towards achieving it, it will eventually happen. There is a chance it won’t happen in a year, but it will eventually happen. I find myself very proud that these resolutions came true. I’ve come a long way.

If I were to evaluate my life, it has not been what I expected. I keep telling people I meet these days, that I used to have a planned-out life, and I was hardworking. Now I am learning, or trying to do my best to enjoy the present. This is something I never found myself doing. The year 2023 was a terrific one because I made decisions. And you know, I think, what made it the best was that it was the year I made decisions for myself.

Enjoy the present!

About author


Mica describes herself: “I am a straightforward person who also can be a perfectionist. But I know there are limitations. And one thing I declared to myself is to live my life as if it was art. It sounds cheesy but true. I grew up in Rizal, and I believe that it built my character and exposed me to a lot of Filipino values and beliefs. I went to college at DLSU-Manila and took a degree in Political Science. There are times I feel like a nomad because, ever since college, I’ve been staying in different places to be closer to studies or work. I’m a nerd and I find that cool. I believe in the power of learning, and I see myself as the result of years of education. Good and bad. I expose myself to a lot of experiences. I have exposed myself to topics related to art, politics, literature, religion, history, medicine, etc. Consistently, I like to do a lot of things. I get bored easily so I keep myself busy. I have to say that I love art. It is home for me. When things get rough, I always find myself drawn to it, and see it as a way home. But I have to say writing has been my dream. These days it has become my way back to myself, and a path to my peace of mind. I have no formal training, but whatever I do, I believe it develops good content. I want to write things that matter, and I believe I do.

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