Palette: 01
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in which my existentialism fully takes over and trouble you with ramblings

I never liked the first days of school. Well, I never liked school in general, particularly the part wherein having to wake up early for it, but that’s beside the point. I never liked first days of school because I know that they usually entail a lot of self-introductions and I never really liked those, not even a little bit. Speaking in front of classmates was fine as my school made sure of it but not knowing how and what to introduce about yourself makes the supposedly simple task of self-introduction, of saying hello very hard.

The root of all this, I realized years ago, is from my lack of any grasp of understanding about any part of myself, my identity.

Who are you? I never have anything to answer. I am always unable to verbalize anything, even mere little things about myself that would be remotely interesting as required to plant a good first impression. The question has always been so daunting for me even when I was younger. And it became increasingly more unnerving when I reached college and some teachers (still) individually asked us, their students, to stand up in class for self-introductions. At one point, I started asking myself why a touch personally invasive questions that seem, at least for me, to require reflecting on a lifetime worth of choices to formulate an answer would be a good baseline for self-introductions. Why did you choose your current study? What are your plans for the future that made you choose your course? My overthinking, perhaps a bit obsessive, existentialist is shaking.

Then, she ran for the hills.

It is also a fact that creating an ‘About’ page as some sort of obligatory introduction for my blog takes me ages to write and I am not really confident nor comfortable with the result, to be honest. Comparatively, an icing on the cake, I remain dreading birthdays. Birthdays, where clocks—biological and societal—seem to be very real and are ticking loudly, where the demons are raging wilder than usual, and the crisis that I could usually silence with a cloak of denial and a high wall built of hyper fixations screams louder for attention.

But, last year, I tried to combat my fear of self-introductions. With a rarely occurring sense of bravery inspired when I first listened to, now, one of my favorite songs ‘Palette’ by IU, I spent my anxiety ridden countdown to my 25th birthday trying to curve my existentialism down. I gallantry stepped into the metaphorical ring and fought one of my many, yet certainly mightier than the rest, demon named ‘Identity Crisis’ (but, I call said crisis ‘Leo’ for some reason—don’t ask), let everything be damned and all.

Hello, my name is Dems!


I am a 20-something year old born and residing in the Philippines. My pronouns are she and/or her.


A fangirl and a couch potato, I'm a Pisces—Libra in Moon and Gemini rising. I am also an INFP.


I paint, mostly in gouache about fanarts and studies since I am still a beginner. I like consuming content like movies, tv shows including Asian dramas and variety, books, and music, mostly through binge-watching.

I journal and I drink a lot of coffee.

It is also very important to note that I am a fan of BTS and it's not an exaggeration when I say that their music has in fact saved me multiple times.


Movies: The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Good Will Hunting, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-verse, Spirited Away, and maybe... the MCU particularly Iron Man, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Thor Ragnarok, and Avengers: Engame

TV Shows: Breaking Bad, One Tree Hill, Brooklyn Nine-nine, Charmed, and Game of Thrones but excluding its last two seasons.

Dramas: Reply 1988, Go Ahead, Fight for My Way, W: Two Worlds, Hospital Playlist

I came out with a win. I thought it was, but it did not feel so. It didn’t feel enough. It felt like I brought a knife, dull and plastic in a heavy armory machine fight. It felt like I won a measly consolation prize—an attendance award, a ‘hey, at least you tried’ pity cake. Maybe it’s the irrational in me, the immeasurable amount of unkindness and cruelty that I reserve only for myself that made these things seem so trivial especially in the war I have raged against an identity crisis. The question at the core always felt too heavy and these things I have fought with don’t fully encapsulate. While I was proud of myself for fighting, I had a lot of un-satisfaction that overrode what was an inspired start to another year of existing in this world.

The months following the celebration of my 25th year was shrouded with more restless energy that made me feel lost without a destination. I constantly felt yearning for something indecipherable. And it was an irony that left a very bitter taste.

Then, everything changed when the fire nation attacked. As if some sort of divinity (social media algorithms—yes, I have, indeed, fallen that far down as I now consider bad money-making algorithms divinity) took pity on me, it was some randomness that I found yet another YouTube video that, although I know isn’t the answer to all my problems, it, at the very least, eased my mind and some of my troubles.

See, I learned that the third sign of being an INFP according to the Cognitive Personality Theory by Harry Murrell is having a fluid identity. He describes a person with the INFP personality type, like I do, as someone predisposed to constantly self-actualize, to constantly ask questions about existence and identity, and to have every interest, hobbies, and self-expressions, at the core, about being immersed in a headspace of internal dialogues. To be in a, I quote, “constant state of reformulation,” and by itself, an INFP will persistently find cementing an unyielding and static identity a struggle. I learned that in my war with Identity Crisis (Leo), I shall never win. I shall always be at conflict with my identity.

Where do I find comfort with the knowledge of a future that, apparently, is plagued with the same restlessness and struggles that I feel with the utmost revulsion right now? Well, it just finally feels that I found footing because of this knowledge. Of course, I am not sure if it’s an exact science, nor is it the answer to my life’s questions but it is a solid possibility that I am, with my overthinking and obsessive mind and energy, willing to positively work on. Especially since Murrell also believes that it is an INFP strength to be constantly changing and evolving.

There’s hope in that—the kind that the existentialist in me has desperately been looking for. There’s a huge relief in finally having a decent, truthful, and firm description: I am being who I am by not knowing who I am.

That was halfway through my 25th year and it overturned everything and put my perspective in a new light, most definitely in hindsight. I think I spent the rest of the year at ease and thus, making me enjoy the things I was interested in like consuming pop culture, painting, and other arts and crafts that I habitually would give an weighted undertone of hatred because of being too monotonous. I started seeing beauty in it, in its simplicity and mundanity and slowly, but surely, learning to consciously live for and in the moment.

I don’t know if it’s enough. Being like this. Sure, there’s still some fear and doubts, too, if I’m being honest. It’s a ‘for now’, I guess, an ‘atm (at the moment)’ and apparently, that’s okay—more than okay.

My father had said in one of his letters for me: “There is no constant in life, only time. And there is a time for everything including being lost, sad, and confused. It's part of the fabric of life. A cycle of dying and growing. Like the seeds of grand trees, they, too, must decay first to sprout a new hope, a new life. It’s not the end of everything, but rather a beginning of a new thing. Follow where your heart tells you to go. Whatever your heart tells you at the moment, that’s who you are now—your now. And it’s okay whatever and whoever you are in the ‘now.’”

Besides, I figured that there’s some sort of finality in ‘enough’ that doesn’t allow for any spontaneity and room for growth. It would be, as I have learned, in spite of who I currently am. And it shall be the very last thing I would want, to refuse myself to explore and grow because I have lost footing, because I was too comfortable in my ‘enough.’ To be scared of changes and uncertainty—the future.

Dad also said, “Would you be sure on what to do? Definitely no. Life would have been trivial if so. Rather, it is the hope that everything will be fine that will carry us over. One step at a time—forward or backward, sideways. Lunge or any other. Be present in the now for it is something that is real and true. Let the future worry about itself and the past—well, it’s a past and it’s done.”

And so, here’s to my 25th year!

Cheers, it seemed that it wasn’t as bad as I thought. And with only a few days away from another celebration of birth, of existence, for the first time in years, I find myself looking forward to it. I might actually be doing some proper celebration, not only for my birth but for finally rewarding myself and my efforts, no matter how small, that I have never allowed myself to be given credit for. For pushing through another year and surviving as some renewed soul.

You did well.

You're not a grownup nor a child. You're just you. That's when you shine the most. Even when darkness falls around you, don't get scared. You are so beautiful; you are fully bloomed. You will always be loved.Palette — IU feat. G-Dragon
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