No Rest For The Wicked

November 29, 2015

I turned 31 last 25th. I know, I know. Nothing monumental about turning 31. It’s not like I turned 30. Or 20. Or 25.

It is, however, monumental for me. For the first time since forever, I’m fine. I’ve got nothing weighing down on me. Anti-depressants, you’re a life saver.

It’s not to say that I’m ignoring my problems. It’s still there. The demons are still there. I can just handle them a lot better now that I’m on meds.

Oh yeah, I’m on anti-depressants now. My doctor prescribed them for my clinical depression. I’m on Day 14 with it and let me tell you, it’s making my life a lot better. My head’s a lot quieter now. I can now control my thoughts. Whatever that was popping out of nowhere in my head before are now on standby. I also realized that I can focus more. I pulled my guitar from its temporary case yesterday and played a bit just to see how I can perform while I’m on medication. And holy hell, I haven’t sung in weeks and I was singing much better. Fretting and strumming hands were a bit rusty but I did ok with the guitar. I guess my head was just focused on singing and playing the guitar that I wasn’t thinking of anything else.

My body has also acclimated to the meds. Side effects are minimal at best. I used to pee a lot, which I just chalked up to me drinking water a lot because my mouth gets dry.

One side effect, if you can even call it that, that’s of note is that I can’t drink when I’m on medications. I mean, I can, technically, but I have to skip taking them. If I intend to drink, my body should be clear of the meds for twenty four hours. That means that I have to skip two days of medication.

I was dead sober on my birthday eve party. Celebrated it at a bar, of all places, with friends. It was still fun, though.

Anyway, I’ve had a pretty eventful couple of days. After the family birthday dinner at Jason’s Wednesday, I went straight to 12 Monkeys to watch Up Dharma Down. Earlier that afternoon, I found out that they were playing there. I messaged the guitarist, Los, if he could add me to the guestlist. Told him that I was planning on going after my birthday dinner. He said yes.

During the dinner, I contemplated on pushing through with going to watch them. I wasn’t exactly tired. More like I was suffering from food coma cos the food, courtesy of Louie and his brother NJ, was goooooood. I’m glad I did! Up dharma Down was still flawless, despite some technical glitches. I also got a birthday greeting from Los and Armi from the stage! How awesome is that! That also ended my month long music photography hiatus. Rather fitting that it was with UDD.

The day after, I went to Green Sun Hotel in Makati for Clara Benin’s Riverchild EP launch. I saw and got to hang and talk with Jaren, a friend of mine from my Luna days. It was great catching up. The night also became a sort of meetup for a handful members of the Music Photographers Philippines Facebook group I created a few months back. Saw the usual music photographers that I’ve met at gigs. Even had a group photo taken!

And Clara, of course, was absolutely divine. As always. She played tracks from her Riverchild EP, along with a few Disney songs. If you can catch one of her gigs, I suggest getting the EP. It’s spectacular. My favorite track from the five song release is the title track, Riverchild. It’s brooding. Haunting. Sparse. My kind of music.

I also got a few shots that night that I’m proud of. Clara seems to like them as she shared it on her personal Facebook account and fan page. She shared the link to my Infinity Blues Photography photo page with her thank yous.

And yesterday, Saturday, was Doc Def Productions’ In D Flow at Flow House Manila. I scored two free tickets (went solo, though) through the website When In Manila. In case I haven’t mentioned it here yet, I am a freelance photographer for WIM! Anyway, it was amazing! Everything about the event was fun, with the sole exception of my burger predicament. As dinner time came, I ordered a burger from the resto/lounge/bar they have therebecause my stomach, while I could usually operate on an empty stomach for a while, needed nourishment because of the meds.

I was asked by the waitress if I was willing to wait thirty to forty five minutes. I said that I was since I was, well, out of options. I also said that since I’m covering the event and my order arrives while I’m still out shooting, they should just put it on the table I was on.

So I was out shooting the bands and everything. Came back to a still empty table. Waited a bit. Went back out to shoot. Came back to still an empty table. I followed up on my order. Waited. Followed up again, and one of the waitresses uttered “oh, that order was yours” in Filipino. I assumed that they either gave my burger to someone else or it fell to the ground or something. So I waited and waited and waited. Followed up again. Waited some more. Two hours after I ordered it, it finally came. I tweeted the whole “willing to wait” bit so I know the exact time I ordered.

I lost my momentum after that. Didn’t bother to shoot anymore. Even missed a couple of bands because of the wait. Couldn’t get back there to the concert area cos I was tired and frustrated. I left shortly after.

Aside from that incident, the event was pretty great. I was…not my usual state. WHICH IS GOOD. I mean, I always get anxiety attacks when I’m mostly alone at gigs, even when I’m shooting. I did get attacks, but they were really really minor. I could just shrug them off – something I wouldn’t have been able to do drunk, or sober, for that matter, and without meds.

The photos I shot at In D Flow might make it to the When In Manila website. I was asked by Anj, WIM’s managing editor, if I was interested in doing a photo diary of the event. I said yes, of course! So yay for that!

And today, Sunday, was Reese Lansangan’s private listening party for her upcoming album “Arigato, Internet” at ASpace Makati. I covered it also. I’ll do a separate post on that. I’m pretty much rushing blogging now because I might not have enough time this week. Got lots of photos to post process. I’m also gonna be covering four gigs this week: Loop at Checkpoint on Wednesday, Indie Manila’s first anniversary gig at Route 196 on Thursday, Fools & Foes’ EP launch on Friday, and Reese’s album launch on Sunday.

Yep, next week is gonna be post-process / REST WEEK.

Til then!

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