By the time this blog post is up, I would probably be somewhere up North, backpacking my way through town after town, roaming recklessly like the eternal wanderer that I am, talking to people and asking for directions because your girl is forever clueless at navigation, getting to know strangers like I have never done so in life, meeting locals as if they are family (because, at least for now, they are), and finally circling my way around the northern coast of the archipelago — in search of nothing, in praise of everything.
It would be a lie to say that I didn’t plan this trip because I did, gently, carefully. Like a child tracing a piece of brand new crayon on a sheet of paper with all her utmost care. Like a child planning the biggest mischief of her life. I carved my holiday plans against the wall and told myself time and time again that I would never let the year end without seeing the ocean once more.
And so there I was, dumb and determined. I knew right away that nothing could stop me.
The first step was to clean. I busied myself and cleaned every inch of my apartment. I dusted the ceiling and scrubbed the floors until they were glistening with my repentance, my reflection. I wiped every surface, removing the memory of sin and smoke. I sent the blankets and pillows to laundry, if only to erase the scent of the passing year.
By the time I was done cleaning, I was a magnet of dust, dirt, and delirium. And my apartment was sparkling like a brand new home.
When I come back after New Year’s Day, I will be greeted by a brand new home. No speck of dust, no trace of memory. Nothing to remind me of who I have become after the world has decided who I must be. Nothing of that falsely invented girl, but only this person, this self that I have lost when I chose to conform to the demands of the default world. I am returning to the ocean which is home and meeting myself there. I am healing and becoming one.
I took a cold shower and packed my bags. I checked the time and saw that I have a few hours to spare, so I picked up my laptop, plugged the wire into the socket, and typed my way into memory.
Here is a memory.
Exactly four weeks ago, we were together beneath the vast, endless stretch of that indigo sky, bathing together under the bleeding sunset of Bolinao, laughing our lungs out as we hit the peak of our acid trip. He was holding my hand and I was holding his, as we tiptoed our way into the water and watched the colors transform into a psychedelic paradise. The taste of the ocean burned in my memory as fiercely as the setting sun burned into the beach front, melting with it my great expectations. The sound of the waves was comforting like nothing in the world ever was, or ever will be.
For the first time in my entire life, I was not afraid of laughing. I was not afraid of what happiness might bring. We sat together on a rocky part of the ocean, our bodies soaked in saltwater, our limbs stretched in front of us like two pairs of wooden cylinders, as we both welcomed the coming of the crashing waves. The waves slapped me once, twice. It slapped me hard like trauma took a tangible form. It slapped me hard like the lessons in life that I had to learn the hard way because there was no other way to do so. And before I even knew it, I was crying and laughing at the same time.
Through the puddle of tears, I saw him smile with that same old smile. Only this time it was more real, more unguarded. He spoke to me about something funny, senseless. And god, I laughed. We laughed.
Only in retrospect could I ever truly say that I was happy. I was genuinely happy. It was one of those rare moments in life that will flash in your mind on your deathbed many many years from now and will strike you as beautiful precisely because it was pure and genuine; because it did not demand anything more than the present; because I was there and he was there and the ocean was there and everything was written.
I have always been an overly skeptical kind of girl. Nothing in the world has ever impacted me or impressed me in any way, except for my own beliefs based on my high moral standards and impossible expectations of life. For all I could remember, I was mocking him when he handed me the blotter. I was more than doubtful that a mind as controlling as mine could ever be subjected under the influence of any form of psychedelic. I was full of hate and disappointment 10 minutes into taking the acid. I was confused.
But 30 minutes of waiting was all it took to strip me of my pretensions. And after that came a creeping headache at the back of my head, followed by a slight dizzying sensation. Soon after came the ocean, the sunset, the light.
Here I was — at the peak of my consciousness.
I saw my entire life in a brand new light. I understood my experiences and learned how to accept them for what they were, not for what I imagined they were. I understood my own actions and decisions, as well as the actions and decisions of the people surrounding me for most of my life, and learned one of the most difficult lessons in my life: forgiveness. Under the haze of the moment, I caught myself saying, “I forgive you Mom. I forgive you Dad.” And I meant it. God knows how I meant every word of it.
It takes a certain kind of courage for self-transformation to take place. LSD gave me that courage. It allowed me to confront my self and my wounds, the ones I have so carefully buried within the deepest parts of my being. It asked me to surrender these wounds to the ocean for them to finally rest and heal. But most importantly, it opened up my mind to a different reality where everything in existence is restored to their original state, where everything in existence is Divine.
I may just be a human like everybody else — stuck in the default world, in the mechanical world that is operated by the ceaseless flow of cash and routine. But I know one thing now: a revelation that is bound to chase me for all the days of my life.
Beneath our skin, buried deep in our bones, deep within the folds of our consciousness lays the portal to the world of the Divine. Everything in us bears the mark of the Universe. Everything in us is stardust.
I may not be certain about what the future holds for me now but none of that ever matters to me anymore. All I need is the time I am given in the present; a time to love life, to seek freedom, to be one with the ocean, to finally come home. I am going to live my life in honor of that cosmic truth and to dedicate the rest of my energies into sharing healing to other people and reminding other people to always remember the Divine.
I am leaving you with a reminder like a parting gift from a friend to another: That whatever you do in life, do not ever let yourself forget. Against will and reason, always remember the universe inside your bones, the galaxies in your bloodstream, and the constellations in your forever beautiful mind. You are a nebula. You are a child of the Cosmos.
Always remember the Divine in you.