27 Thoughts While Working Out for the First Time Ever


On my first day at the gym, my ultimate goal was not to die. So these were the things that were running through my head while I was making my way through the unexplored (in my case) territory called “the gym”:

  • I seriously hope I don’t die today. 
  • The gym’s on the 3rd floor? I’ll take the stairs then. I’ll consider that as a warmup.
  • Oh good, the place is not packed.
  • Where’s the locker room?
  • Wrong hallway, God, did I just try to go to the women’s locker room?
  • Okay, found the men’s locker room, no people, that’s a good sign.
  • So this is what a gym treadmill looks like. So many buttons! Do I need a college degree to operate this thing?
  • Two minutes in, I think I can get used to this. Do peolple die on treadmills?
  • Stretching time! Wait, you want me to do squats? Sure i’ll do squats. How many?
  • Can we stop doing squats now? Can’t feel my legs!!!
  • Oh Lorde, more squats! 
  • Oh good, we’re moving on to a machine. What is this thing called and how would it torture me?
  • What do you mean “chest out”? 
  • These things are heavy! 
  • My heart can’t beat any faster. Is this the onset of a heart attack?
  • Another machine. For legs. This one’s better. At least I get to sit down.
  • Whoa, almost fell there. Dear legs, don’t give up on me yet.
  • Water, I need water. Every cell in my body is screaming for water.
  • Wait, more squats?!? 
  • Another machine. Leg curls. These things look like they could kill me.
  • Why do others make this look so easy? Like the guy i’m next to. Was he born ripped?
  • Don’t they have a “beginners'” area? I mean it’s my first day for crying out loud.
  • Ten-minute jog, are you fucking kidding me? My legs are nothing but dead weight.
  • Oh good, we’re done. 
  • Locker rooms make me aware of all the body issues I have. Yes, at 30, I still have body issues.
  • Wait, why is walking down three steps of stairs feel like an Olympic sport? My legs, my legs are gone!
  • This is so fun, let’s do this again!😊

Bayang Magiliw


I am a Filipino
I have a spirit that cannot be bent nor broken
I am remain resilient, unfazed and unbowed
I am a survivor
I fall, I lose, I cry but when the sun rises
I get up, I win and smile again

the journal

tattered and yellowed

cobwebbed and worn

cracked and beaten

the pages heavy with thoughts

and memories

and dreams

i pry the book open, gingerly as i go

and then i am taken back

to a place where visions are cast

and my world used to be yours

with limitless hope, i write without fear

my future, our future

letter upon letter, word upon word, sentences on sentences

the blank pages became my canvass

to a masterpiece we once created, we once shared

written on eternal sunshine

read with the light of the moon

i touch the old and cracked page

like skin

and all the tales and all the stories

surround me like wisps of smoke

and then i breathe

the memory fades

the pages fall to the ground like ashes

the story ends and the book is closed



outside looking in

the pavement is wet

as i walk the streets tonight

i bid goodbye to summer

as i feel the cold wind’s kiss

and i look up

at the windows in the night

like stars

the lights, almost dancing but still as a lamp post

i walk further

windows, like eyes, stare at me

smiles and i smile back

the shadows moving inside, warm and inviting

a hand reaches out

i flinch slightly

your touch, like coals draw me in

i come to your window

my breath frosted the glass

and you move farther

and i keep on walking

the windows, still smiling in the night

wave goodbye


where dreams awake

and reality slumbers

the moon smiles and the stars,

fiery like candles

burns away the remnants of day

night stands proud and the sun

hides behind the cloak of the blackest of skies

dawn still sleeps



i lay beside you

silent, like a shadow

i plant a kiss, yet you do not stir

outside, the wind whispers your name

and we are still



black, like satin, flowing freely

smooth like the still waters

cold like december

sleep slowly creeping, like my fingers combing your hair



you wake and smile

teeth like diamonds gleaming

in the dark

you take me

and i, you



the wolves howl

and i moan

deep. deeper into the darkness

silken kisses, masking the hunger

that night awakened


at midnight.

this ends, now

i no longer recognize your face

your smile ceased to be warm and inviting

your touch, cold like death

i shiver in fear whenever you come near

i no longer understand your language

the words you speak like shards of glass

wounding my heart

i bleed, like a dying soldier

begging for death to take me

but i see only you, standing over me

the dark shadow over my dark days

you have changed when i have not

i no longer trust you

i no longer love you

i no longer yearn to be in your arms

for there is no love to be found there

only hurt and pain and suffering

and tears

my feet, too tired to walk away

but my soul no longer wants to stay

this too shall pass, so they say

but this ends, now