I was looking at my Instagram feed the other day (only because I was looking for ways to improve my feed, not because I’m a narcissist…), and I realized that I’ve been wearing such different styles lately. So, I decided to dial it down and go back to basics for a day of retail therapy. I needed something simple and comfortable yet chic. I went with this staple look of mine: my favorite MANGO textured tee, my trusty Calvin Klein Jeans (the only brand of jeans that will work with my nonexistent Asian butt), and a pair of neutral stacked heels from ShoeDazzle (only because I’ve broken them down enough to the point where they’re bearable to wear for a few hours).
This playlist is a collection of songs I’ve had on replay for the past few days. Sadly, there’s no particular theme or random musings associated with this week’s mood. I just wanted to share feel-good music. So, just sit back, hit play, and enjoy.
Do you have any music suggestions?
I don’t usually wear dresses with plunging necklines like this one from TOBI, but when I do, I wear them with a feminine boho chic aesthetic. I’m having so much fun playing around with different styles. I used to wear clothes that I thought looked good on me, but now I prefer to wear clothes that make me feel good.
“I just wanna dive inside your innocence.”
I’ll be honest. I used to hate wearing clothes that were revealing or clothes that made me feel uncomfortable because maybe they showed a bit of my flaws. But now, I really don’t care. I’ve learned to appreciate my body and love myself again. I used to be so critical about every little thing I had to cover up. I finally realized that my value isn’t determined by the way my body looks. For a very long time, I picked away at my self esteem, always telling myself that I had to look skinnier, prettier, better.
It’s sad to look back at my past knowing that I was just like millions of other girls out there who continuously compare themselves to the ideal of having the perfect body or perfect looks. I just wanted to be attractive. I wanted the radiating confidence that certain kinds of women on social media portrayed. What I didn’t know at the time was that I had to accept myself and love myself first to get to that frame of mind.
Many times we forget that there’s more substance to a human being than just how they look. We live in such a superficial world which makes it hard to find people, or dare I say *friends*, who appreciate authenticity and candidness. That’s why I’m so grateful to be surrounded by the greatest and realest friends and family.
With that said, cue the procession of photos…
If you’re struggling with the same issues I had in the past, let me just tell you something. You’re beautiful. Every human being is beautiful in their own way. We are all unique. Stop trying to chase after society’s ideal of beauty and perfection because it’s not attainable. Simply love every single part of yourself.
Outfit Details: Dress from TOBI; Belt from SHEIN; Mykonos Wrap Bracelet from Alex and Ani; Gold Necklaces from Anthropologie; Throw and Pillows from Urban Outfitters; Tea Mug from Japan.
Spring(love) is in the air. So, I hit the refresh button on my tired winter wardrobe and decided to go for a playful polka dot look for a fun brunch date at Town Square with our family friend (who’s basically my very stylish aunt). Because wearing polka dots isn’t really my thing, I decided to keep the outfit monochromatic, pairing the wrap dress with a black bomber jacket and my favorite white sneakers.
Here’s a song that I discovered right before writing this post. Of course, it’s on replay.
“What matters most is how well you walk through the fire.” -Charles Bukowski
This look is a departure from my simple, almost tomboyish, style. I wanted to play on my feminine side and really work with my new hair to create a slightly ingénue look. This beautiful weather is also a big contributor to the inspiration behind this outfit. In this new year, I plan to redefine and evolve my style as much as I can. It’s like hitting the refresh button on my personal style and perspective.
I should also properly thank Cici from Salon Fontana in Henderson, NV. She’s the one who worked magic on my hair and completely transformed my look. She gave me new inspiration and energy to keep moving forward. I can’t thank you enough, Cici!
But before we get to more photos, here’s a song I’ve had on replay. Doja Cat never fails.
You were never my dream to dream.
Today’s playlist is a bittersweet love story. Looking back at the past four years from a detached perspective, I have absolutely no regrets. Things happened, but I wouldn’t have done anything differently. I’m grateful that I can be a stronger person because of my past experiences. I’m happy that I now have control of my life again. I’m simply evolving into the person I’m supposed to be. There are no feelings left but respect for him for loving me the way he did.
n u a g e s – Beside You
This song reminds me of the beginning where it all started. We were young so there wasn’t much we could do in Vegas. We were content with simply spending time with each other and going on long night drives. I remember coming home and listening to my mother’s lectures about how I shouldn’t be out late. But he was the first guy to really show me how much I meant to him. I was falling hard and I knew it. I remember the moment when he looked at me while we were eating at In-N-Out on our third date and I just knew that he liked me back. We were always beside each other. Inseparable.
Rendezvous at Two – Love Me Right
Something about him I could never ever replace. There’s something in his embrace that’s driving me crazy and I’m addicted to the thrill and I’m addicted just a little bit to the way he’s making me feel. I’m holding on so tight.
At some point, we fell in love. He confessed and I told him I felt the same way. We spent almost every day together. He was my best friend and he knew me the most out of everyone. He made me feel like I was on top of the world and that I could achieve anything and everything I wanted in life. It was your typical love story. I thought it was perfect regardless of each others’ flaws and shortcomings. I remembered thinking to myself that things couldn’t get any better. We saw each other as life partners, soulmates. How naive we were…
Sabrina Claudio – Tell Me
Help me understand your love
Help me go the way you want me to go
‘Cause I can’t guess the things that you’re thinking so
Help me understand your love
Tell me everything you want me to know
‘Cause I can’t fix it ’til I know that it’s broken
Tell me what you want. Those were words I actually uttered innumerable times. When we moved in together, everything changed. Our relationship was a bit shaky but we stuck it out. We had patience for each other because at the end of the day, we knew we both loved each other. We sacrificed so many things just to be together. Slowly, we started to change. I had more tolerance for his quirks and I was essentially oblivious to all the ways he treated me less than what I deserved. But I stayed…
Rendezvous at Two – Missed Call
I talk to God at night asking, “What were you thinking?” as I’m standing here. I talk to my reflection asking, “How will I… how will I survive when I live in fear?” The more I love, the more I break. And I’ve never been one to learn from my mistakes. And so I keep losing it more, until you call.
Some miscommunication happened, or should I say, complete lack of communication. We rarely talked aside from how was work and how our day was. I guess we grew a bit tired of seeing each other every day and living together. Then, we started talking about marriage because we had this fantasy that we would stay together until our dying days. But aside from talking about it, we never really showed each other that we wanted it. When we felt that we were losing grip on each other and that we were slipping away, we fumbled and decided to plan a wedding. It was a desperate attempt to save the relationship because we’d been through so much together. We felt that everything we went through would be a waste if we didn’t at least have something to show for it. If anything, we didn’t want to fail in our relationship. But I knew that the more I gave of myself to this person, the more I broke my heart. I lived in pain every day, asking myself, “Is this what I really want?”
Ta-ku – We Were In Love
I was the only one. So, I was the only lonely one.
We were in love, but that love faded away. We grew apart. We were planning a wedding and showing everyone a filtered version of our relationship. Everyone only saw the perfect apartment, perfect furniture, perfect food, perfect clothes, perfect everything. But we never once hinted at the problems we had behind closed doors. It was toxic, dysfunctional. It became so one-sided. I took care of all of his needs, but he couldn’t even lift a finger to take care of me even when I would get sick. I was tired of the arguing, and lack of effort and thinking on his part. He turned his back on me, on us. I knew that, yet I gave him another chance…
Rendezvous at Two – Too Much
I know you
And you know me
So why are we
Say you love me
And I love you
Then we argue
And you needin’ proof
Maybe we just had too much.
This was a time of acceptance. We knew that we fell apart and there was no saving it. We would argue about the relationship, about the wedding, about each other, about his guilt, about our love. I knew I had enough. I loved him, but I had to love myself more. I had to put myself first if I was ever going to be happy. I was done. My patience and tolerance for him were spent. I had too much.
Doja Cat – Trauma
I might get ugly, if nobody loves me anymore.
I go back there every time you leave me crying out to the sky. You can tell me why. Love could be alive, if your love is not a lie. No one’s gonna save you from yourself. And I hope that you feel better. And no one’s gonna want you if you cry for help. And I’m there now.
With every breakup comes heartbreak. Regardless of how numb my heart was during the relationship, I really felt an outpouring of emotions shortly after the breakup. I was sad, angry, happy, grieving, disappointed, untroubled, content, all at the same time. But I went through a few days of just feeling worthless. I thought of all the fights, all the problems we had. I blamed myself for letting those things happen. I blamed myself for allowing him to control me the way he did. I was disappointed that all this time, effort, and love amounted to nothing. But this experience taught me so much in life. My heart feels lighter and happier. I know I won’t make the same mistakes again. I know I can love again.
I have a love/hate relationship with music. I love the underrated or undiscovered artists who really work for it and have amazing talent. But I sometimes hate what’s on the radio nowadays, and I just can’t bring myself to listen to the same annoying pop song three times in one hour. So, here’s a new weekly playlist to keep you all inspired.
One thing’s for sure: I definitely have a thing for chokers, button-ups, and denim shorts. I’m just so happy that the weather in Vegas is quite beautiful these past few weeks because I’m not ready for the heat!
Aside from this beautiful weather, things have finally calmed down in my life. I’m overjoyed and grateful to be able to reconnect with old friends and spend time with new friends. This journey of self-discovery is so fulfilling, and I’ve definitely learned so much about myself in such a short amount of time. I’m now more willing to take risks and live life unburdened by the expectations of other people. Cheers to happier days!
Have you been well?
I guess I have to do this as an act of closure.
Nothing has been more intimidating than staring at this blank page. I mean that in a literal and metaphorical sense. I’ve got to fill this page with words, things that I have to say to you so that I can really, finally, move on. I’ve got to fill this blank page in my book with new experiences, new love, new memories, new friends…
I would be lying if I said tears aren’t streaming down my face as I’m writing this. I would be lying if I said that I’m fully healed from the pain you’ve caused. But I have to forgive, forget, and keep moving forward no matter how hard that may be for me to do. Even if every fiber of my existence tells me not to forgive you, I still have to because I want to be a better person. I want to love myself and find myself again, and it starts with coming to terms with my pain.
These past four years was a crazy ride. We went through so much together. We laughed, we cried, we loved, we sacrificed. You were my life and you knew that. We grew up together and you knew me better than anyone else. It’s crazy to think that we lived together for three years and now there’s nothing but distance between us.
I lost everything: my best friend and my love. It’s sad to think that for four years, I could see your face every day. You were physically there. But were you emotionally there for me? Where was the support that I so yearned for, for four years? I wanted your approval. I wanted your love and care. But in the end, I was still the only one. I was alone.
Keeping this distance between us, moving out of the apartment, and starting fresh was the best decision I’ve made in my life. In the end, we were just two incompatible people who had a dream of being married to each other and growing old together even when we knew it would never work out. But should we stay friends? Or should we cut things straight down the middle as we watch our memories burn into ashes? Is it shameless of me if I choose the latter?
You changed so much and I saw that. You got your new job, new friends, new girls taking interest in you. You no longer felt that you had a need for the only person who cared for you and loved you more than she cared for and loved herself. You were always at the top of the list. I woke up every day thinking about what I could do to make you happy, to see a smile on your face. You forgot that you had someone to come home to; you forgot that you had someone who put your life before hers. You forgot about me.
You only saw yourself and what you wanted and what you felt. You never really looked at me, at my pain and suffering.
I tried. I tried really hard to do whatever it was I had to do to make you happy. I’ll admit now that it’s all over, I feel a bit of emptiness in my heart, in my soul. But now I have an opportunity to fill that emptiness with something better. I have an opportunity to find myself again, to love myself again. I have a chance to start over, a new life.
Forgetting you is really hard because it’s like trying to forget a big part of myself, of my past. But walking away from all of this is the right thing to do.
Letting go was hard. Accepting the fact that I no longer had that person there for me was really hard. But I have to come to terms with it so that I don’t make the same mistakes again, breaking my heart over and over and over again. I’m doing this so I don’t lose myself again.
I learned so much about myself this past month being without you. I can look in the mirror and actually just see myself in the reflection, not us. I have a chance to work on myself and achieve my goals and dreams. I can smile again, laugh again, and be happy again. I’m a different person now, and I thank you for helping me get to this point in my life.
Although you might not even see this, I wish the best for you. Take care of yourself just as much as I took care of you. Learn to cook for yourself and don’t get sick. Talk and visit with your family more because they miss you. Be successful at your job and always stay safe. I truly hope you find your happiness.
“It’s amazing. All the days I’m facing nothing seems to faze me ’cause I’m confidently lost.”
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This line taken from Sabrina Claudio’s song Confidently Lost defines me right now. It defines how I move past adversity and how I’ve been handling this hard break-up. It wasn’t just any break-up. He and I literally planned out our whole lives together, but all good things come to an end. I’m not denying the fact that it’s tough to get over something like this, but it’s not tough for me for the same reasons as one would usually think of.