Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Just Be Free...

What does it mean to be truly free?  To be able to do things without having to think of the consequences of what you would be doing.  I am realizing that in some ways, no matter how independent or free we think we are, a part of us is still captive of that voice within us that tells us to stop and think before we plunge into action.  When I was younger, even if I wanted to do something out of this world, the thought of what my parents would feel is reason enough for me to re-consider.  How would I classify myself?  Am I just a good daughter, or probably someone who's afraid to take risks?

When i had my first serious relationship, I felt that I never had the freedom to do what I wanted to do, but in time I realized that it was not the lack of freedom, but rather an immature way of implementing the "golden rule".  I would limit going out on weekends hoping that my boyfriend would also do the same, but it was never the case for he would go out with his friends whenever he would want to.  But that's all in the past and too bad I realized that it was foolish of me to do that.  Then again, no regrets.

More than ever, now that i have a family of my own, I am not entirely free to do the things that i want.  First and foremost I have to consider my family and the effect it would have on them.  I guess that's where the word love and sacrifice would step in.  I had to give up some things to be where I am right now.  But in the process I gained more than what i expected.  Things are never easy, who says it is anyway? We all have our own stories to tell, and struggles to face.

But I still believe that we should all be Free.  Free to dream, free to love, free to hope, free to do things that would make us happy no matter what the consequences (as long as it does not entail hurting other people), 

Letter to a Friend

 Dear Friend,

As You got up this morning, I watched you and hoped you would talk to me, even if it was just a few words, asking my opinion or thanking me for something good that happened in your life yesterday but I noticed you were to busy trying to find the right outfit to put on and wear to work or class. I waited again. When you ran around the house or dorm getting ready I knew there would be a few minutes for you to stop and say hello, but you were too busy. At one point you had to wait fifteen minutes w/ nothing to do except sit in a chair. Then I saw you spring to your feet. I thought you wanted to talk to me but you ran to the phone and called a friend to get the latest gossip. I watched as you went to school and work and I waited patiently all day long. With all your activities, I guess you were too busy all day to say anything to me. I noticed that before lunch you looked around, maybe you felt embarrassed to talk to me, that is why you didn't bow your head. You glanced three or four tables over and you noticed some of your friends talking to me briefly before they ate, but you didn't. That's okay. There is still more time left, and I have hope that you will talk to me even yet.

You went home and it seems as if you had lots of things to do. After a few of them were done, you turned on the TV or the net; I don't know if I like TV or computers or not, just about anything goes there & you spend a lot of time each day in front of them, not thinking about anything-just enjoying the show. I waited patiently again as you watched TV and ate your meal but again you didn't talk to me. At bedtime I guess you felt too tired. After you said goodnight to your family you plopped into bed and fell asleep in no time. That's okay because you may not realize that I am always there for you. I've got patience, more than you will ever know. I even want to teach you how to be patient with others as well. Because I love you so much, a long time ago I left a wonderful place called Heaven and came to Earth. I gave it up so that I could be ridiculed and made fun of. and I even died so you wouldn't have to take my place. I love you so much that I wait everyday for a nod, praise or thought or a thankful part of your heart. It is hard to have a one-sided conversation. Well you are getting up again and once again I will wait with nothing but love for you hoping that today you will give me some time. Have a nice day!

Love Always, Your Friend,

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Thoughts on Life...

"Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is bliss, taste it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it."
~ Mother Teresa

Friends Forever

Of all the friends that I have been blessed with, these three ladies have stood out simply because we have gone through so much together for the past decade that we have been friends. We have basically grown and matured together, shared secrets and stories, cried over broken hearts, consoled each other, shared the joys of each others achievements and personal success.  We each have our own unique personalities, but somehow we also find things that we have in common.  Time and distance has kept me from seeing them as often as I would want, but just the thought that they are there gives me comfort.  I am grateful for their friendship, and I am blessed to have them in my life.  They are friends who have accepted me and loved me for who I am.  I miss the long chats, the laughing over silly things, and just the feeling of being with friends who you know will not judge you, and you are free to be yourself and not pretend to be someone you are not.

Sandee, Apple and Rizza... Thank you for the friendship.  You guys are a part of the jigsaw puzzle that completes my life.  Here's hoping for more wonderful years of friendship together!

Saturday, August 28, 2010


Let your imagination run wild.

Be creative

Dream BIG.

Aim high.

Remain grounded..


Life can be ridiculously complicated, if you let it. I suggest we simplify.

Thich Nhat Hanh’s quote, is the shortest guide to life you’ll ever need:

“Smile, breath, and go slowly.”

If you live your life by those five words, you’ll do pretty well. For those who need a little more guidance, I’ve distilled the lessons I’ve learned (so far) into a few guidelines, or reminders, really.
And as always, these rules are meant to be broken. Life wouldn’t be any fun if they weren’t.

the brief guide

less TV, more reading
less shopping, more outdoors
less clutter, more space
less rush, more slowness
less consuming, more creating
less junk, more real food
less busywork, more impact
less driving, more walking
less noise, more solitude
less focus on the future, more on the present
less work, more play
less worry, more smiles

Misadventures on a Friday

I had a brief moment of insanity.  I had four scheduled trainings for today and when i got into the office 30 minutes before my first meeting, I was told that there was no internet connection, and all the other employees were deployed to internet cafes.  Good thing my co-worker brought his lap top and he has this usb type thing he plugs in to get internet connection, so I asked him if I could use it for a bit to send out a skype message to our colleagues in the US to help out and cover the meeting. 

   In my panicky mode I skyped our manager informing him of the situation and instead of saying I was planning to head out to the nearest internet cafe, i told him I was in an internet cafe.  Gosh, I actually told a lie, well I consider it a "white lie' since it was not intentional.  He started to ask me if I had audio connections in the internet cafe, and I told him there were no headsets available as a lot of people were playing.  And he was like, "why are people playing, aren't they supposed to be working?", so I told him they were not from the office and so as not to tell another lie, I signed out of Skype without saying goodbye.

With no other choice, I grabbed my headset and decided to head home and do my trainings there.  When I opened my e-mail at home, my 2 pm training was rescheduled to 4 pm, and my 5 pm was moved to August 31st. Great, at least I only have one training to worry about. Sitting in front of the PC at home and doing work is really not my thing.  It's really true what they say not to bring your work at home. I feel as If I could not get things done because there is the temptation of going to bed and sleep, or maybe open social networking sites, not to mention the television.  And just when I was about to doze off, I was told that the internet connection at the office has been restored.  I immediately changed back to my work clothes, luckily a cab just dropped off a neighbor and so I hurriedly went outside and got into the cab.  In less than 30 minutes I was back in my work station and typing away e-mails.  Well, that was my misadventure on my last working day of the week.  Anyway, I have the weekend to look forward to so no worries, I'm back to my old self again. :)

Friday, August 27, 2010

Don't Be Afraid to Love

Don't be afraid to love someone
totally and completely.
Love is the most fulfilling
and beautiful feeling in the world.
Don't be afraid that you will 
get hurt
or that the other person won't love you.
There's a risk in everything you do
and the rewards are never so great
as what love can bring.
So let yourself get involved
completely and honestly
and enjoy the possibility
that what happens
might be the only real
source of happiness.

My Family

I've read from a book that even before we were born, God has already chosen our family for us. If that were true, then I would say that I am truly blessed to belong to the family that I've known now. I want to introduce you to my family...

Let us first start with the head of the family. I would proudly describe Papa to be the "perfect" father. Being the sole breadwinner in the family, he has worked so hard to provide us with only the best. Whenever we would ask for something, he would really try to give it to us. Of course there's a downside to it, since my brothers and I tend to depend on him to provide us with everything, but of course in time we learn that we have to stand up on our own too.

Papa rarely gets mad at us. Whenever we do something wrong, he just talks to us calmly and rarely raises his voice. He is patient with all of us. He was always there for me, even when I got married and had kids of my own, he would still support me in all of my endeavors, I wouldn't have survived reviewing for the board exams had he not supported me morally and financially. Even now that both me and my husband are working, i still run to him sometimes whenever I need help. I thank God for Papa, because without him, life would be different... and difficult too I guess. He would always want things to be easier for us, in a way spoiling us a bit.

Papa is the "BEST", he's like a friend to us, and he has a great sense of humor too. My kids adore him so much, Andre loves to snuggle next to him when they watch TV. Papa is a gentle human being, with a very big heart not just to his family but to everyone who knows him.

Next in line is Mama. I am a carbon-copy of Mama. My friends would tell me that if I want to see how I would look when I'm older, I would just look at Mama. She's the one responsible for keeping the home in order. She takes good care of everyone, she cooks for us and makes sure that we eat on time and have everything that we need. I'm proud to say that she is an excellent cook, and I always look forward to eating together with the family because it's like dining out at a restaurant! The dining table is a bonding area for the family, aside from sharing good food, we share about what's happening in our lives.

During my younger years, it was Mama I remember who was the disciplinarian. She would get mad if you don't do things correctly,but her anger does not last very long. Mama is a very strong person, and would defend her loved-ones and stand by them no matter what. One thing I love about mama is that she sees to it that we are well provided with our needs. She nurtures us not just with our emotional needs but also when it comes to our material needs. She buys me clothes, shoes and other stuff, and she even buys things for my kids. Even now that we are away from them, she would send money to buy things for Andre and Micah. Yes she may be tough sometimes, but that is who she is, she doesn't pretend to be someone she's not. 

I love her dearly for taking good care of us and also for taking good care of my kids. Even if I'm away, with mama around, I know Andre and Micah are in good hands.

I have 3 younger brothers, but let me start with the first two. Cocoy and Lucky.

They hangout together most of the time, they have the same set of friends, they used to sleep on the same big room, but since they moved to a new house, they each got rooms of their own. Both are good looking, talented in their own way, one is a balladeer and the other a rock star, they both enjoy sleeping late, both are DOTA fanatics, (I'm not sure if even until now, since Cocoy is working and Lucky is in Law school).. and so many similarities that are too many to mention. 

They seem to be alike, yet different in so many ways. Cocoy is the happy go lucky type, funny, grumpy sometimes when things are in disarray. Lucky is the serious type, silent but deep, obsessed with being clean all the time, imagine taking a bath 3x a day?! Anyway, they are both good uncles to Andre and Micah.

Then there's Miko our youngest. I can't believe that he's already in highschool. It seemed just like yesterday when he was still a little boy. Being the youngest in the family, i thought he was not prepared to be an uncle yet, but when I was pregnant with Andre he would always ask me when the baby was coming. And when Andre arrived, he was excited and declared he was not an uncle instead he would say that they we're twins! They were playmates and would often fight for the same toys, and Miko would sometimes end up giving up his toy for Andre. When Micah came, now he wanted to be uncle miko. He would love to kiss Micah, play with her and make funny faces until Micah would let out a squeal of joy.

As a sister, I don't think that I'm the strict type, I'm not sure if that's a good thing or not, but I let them be, especially when it came to my two younger brothers. Of course there are times when I'd give them advices, especially now that we are older. But I know they are intelligent, maybe right now they still want to have fun and enjoy being young. But I hope they'd also realize that we're not getting any younger and would eventually come out of our comfort zone soon. Maybe like me, they are afraid of what lies ahead. But there would come a time when we'd have to spread our wings and fly on our own. 

I guess that's the reason why God gave us parents, to nurture us, teach us, and prepare us for the life ahead when we leave the shelter of our home.

As a daughter, I'm not perfect, I know that I disappointed them in the past, but I hope that I made up for all my mistakes along the way. I hope that I made them proud when I passed the board exams and became a doctor. I hope that I continue to make them proud in everything that I do, especially when it comes to being a mother to my kids. I am who I am now because I know my parents raised me well.

This is my family. These words are not enough to describe how truly blessed and lucky I am to belong to this Family. This is a simple way of saying "Thank You" to my parents and my brothers for everything. I now am married,with two kids, but I'm not embarrassed to admit that I still run to them for help and advice. No matter how much I badly want to stand on my own, I still need their help once in awhile. My friends would say I'm lucky to have my parents who are ready to support and help us no matter what, I would tell them that it's not sheer luck, It's a blessing and a gift from God!

Music Therapy

Eversince I could remember, I have been listening to music, from the old walkman, to a discman and now an mp3 player.  I've had a casette player and now a CD player.  The way we listen to music has evolved, the way that music has evolved as well.  Now there are different genre of music, but I still consider mellow songs and love songs as my favorites.

Listening to music is therapy for me.  It helps me when I'm stressed out.  There was a time when I was at my lowest and I turned to Christian music and it really helped me feel whole again.

Music brings back memories of things that happened in the past.  A song that my friends and I used to dance to, or the background music playing during my first date with my husband.

Music is an expression of feelings.  For me, music speaks what is in a persons heart and mind.  And as the  Abba song goes

So I say, Thank you for the music,
The songs I'm singing,
Thanks for all the Joy they're bringing
Who can live without it, I ask in all honesty
What would life be?
Without a song or a dance what are we?
So I say Thank you for the music
For giving it to me...

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Secrets to a Happy Life

A Good way to be happy is to learn the common characteristics of happy person and apply them.
  • - Forget the past
  • - Take responsibility for your life
  • - Build relationships
  • - Develop multiple passions
  • - Build your character
  • - Be who you are
  • - Live your life purpose
  • - Have positive mind
  • - Work creatively
  • - Use your talents
  • - Make others happy
  • - Practice compassion
  • - Live your life purpose

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Change is Inevitable. Progress is a choice.

I came across this quote and I can't help but relate this to my present situation.  I've been doing a lot of thinking lately about what I would be doing in the next couple of months.  Nothing is permanent in this world except for change, and no matter how I try to avoid thinking about it...  I would still be making big decisions very soon. And whatever decisions I would be making I would make sure that it will all be for the better.  As what Dean Lindsay said, "Change is inevitable.. Progress is a Choice",  And therefore I choose Progress, because that would mean an opportunity to grow, to learn new things, to improve myself, and to become a better person.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Going Home...

Today I woke up feeling happier than usual.  Maybe because this weekend, the kids and I would be spending the time over at my parents place.  Going home always keeps me excited.  the last time I visited was 4 months back.  Even the kids were excited when I told them we were going on a trip.  Whenever they hear the word "boat" they would associate it with going home to our place.  A plane ride would have been better, sadly it's more expensive.  Good thing some airlines offer great promo fares every now and then, and we were able to purchase a plane ticket for October.  Again, another trip back home I would be looking forward to.

  This trip could not have come at a better time.  The past few days have been quite stressful and I really need to go home.  I remember a movie I saw, a father was telling her daughter that a starfish is capable of healing ones self, but to do that, the starfish must first go home.  It's funny,  now I am comparing myself to a starfish, because I feel that I am wounded and i need to go home and heal myself.

   Funny but true.  When I am at home I feel safe, it's as if i don't need to worry about anything because my parents are there to take care of us.  It's really hard to leave the comforts of our home, but eventually we all must come out of our shell and face whatever it is that the world has to offer.  But even if I am now living away from my family and I am trying to build a home for my kids and husband, it's always good to know that I could always "go home" whenever I feel that I need to.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Love Yourself

The secret to happiness is to love yourself... agree or disagree?  Because before you learn to love others, you must first come to love yourself, that's what they say.  For me, loving ones self is to accept that I am not perfect, that I have my flaws... that I am just human.

And with loving comes forgiveness.... we must learn to forgive ourselves for all the past mistakes that we have done and learn to learn from those mistakes.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Breaking into Pieces

I had a rough time at work today.  Things have been a bit stressful lately and it's taking a toll on me.  I feel that I am not the fun person I used to be because I constantly obsess about work even when I'm at home, which is definitely not a good thing.  I miss the people I used to work with.  I secretly envy those who have finally moved forward and found new jobs.  I promised myself that I would be submitting my resignation letter one of these days and finally pursue my residency training.

I don't really know if I could last any longer... I feel myself breaking into pieces and I know that I have got to pick myself up and start anew.  Just this morning my manager told me his trip back to the Philippines was canceled,  which for me was not a good sign.  He told me to keep the morale of my co-employees up, which is very hard for me to do since I myself an having some personal issues, but I told him I would try.  I admitted that I  feel like quitting sometimes.  And what he said surprised me, my manager told me, " A job is just a job.  Don't let it control your life.  If you feel that you have to go, I would totally understand."

Monday, August 16, 2010

What Lies Ahead?

What is in store for me in the future?  That is the question that bugs me every now and then.  There are so many things that I would have wanted to do, but things are different now, this is not just my life but I have my kids and my husband to think of as well. 

 About a year ago, I finally moved here in Cebu where I currently am to be with my husband.  I applied for residency training in one of the hospitals and barely a month into the training, I decided to put my dreams of going into medical training on hold to look for another job that could financially help me bring my kids with me.  With God's help I did find a job and after a month I was able to bring my kids and we all started living together as a family.

But life was never that easy for us.  We had to struggle to meet our daily needs considering that we had to pay all the bills, unlike before when we still lived at home, life was much more simpler.  But I guess we all have to make choices in our life, and face its consequences.

Please don't get me wrong.  I am not regretting the choices I made.  But I sometimes wonder what could my life be now If  I chose a different path?  Still, I am happy with my life, because no matter what happens in the end, I could proudly say that "At least I tried".

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Answered Prayers

Have you ever prayed for something so hard in your life, that if it would be possible you'd knock at the gates of heaven to talk to God face to face? When I was reviewing for the board exams, I was anxious about what the outcome would be. Comparing myself with other reviewees, I felt I was at the losing end. Imagine starting to study a month before the examinations?! I would often ask myself, I'm I doing the right thing? But you see, I'm a mother with two kids, and my husbands salary won't be enough to support us, so I really need to pass the boards to earn my license and start my residency training. All I had in mind was to really study hard and pray even harder!!

If there's one thing I'm really thankful for, is that God has blessed me with a family who has always been there to support me. While reviewing for the boards, I left my two kids with my parents, and I did'nt have to worry because I know they were in good hands. I guess what's left of me to do is give my share of the bargain.
For the previous board exams i took, i'd stay with my husband in a rented place and just read inside the room. But for this particular exam, I wanted to do some minor changes. I decided to stay with my friends who were also reviewing, and so I'd get to see my husband only when he's not on 24 hours duty and we would just eat together and after that I'd isolate myself and read and read again. I also decided to go to a study center, it's just like a library where you'd get to study but it's not for free so you'd have to pay either on an hourly, daily, weekly or monthly basis. Everyday was a routine for me, church, study center and back to the dorm. Then a friend told me to go see a person who helps people like me through prayers. He is known as a prayer warrior at Sto. Rosario church. When i met him, i thought that i'd just write my name on a piece of paper, hand it to him and ask him to pray for me for the coming board exams. But it was not that easy... he told me to do a couple of things, pray the rosary everyday at the adoration chapel, go on a pilgrimage and visit 9 different churches, and the most important church was the church of the Marian Monks at Upper Lindogon, Simala.

My life started to change from that moment. By going to church everyday and praying the rosary, i had a deeper understanding of what praying meant. It was not asking God for something, praying is talking to God, sharing your thoughts, your fears, your worries... surrendering yourself to HIM, and trusting HIM. I also prayed the rosary to Mama Mary as a sign of my devotion to her and hoping that through Her divine intercession I would be able to make it. I also visited a couple of churches and prayed to God for guidance on my review, I also prayed to the Holy Spirit for wisdom. I offered myself to God in total surrender, telling HIm that I put my life in His hands... promising to do my very best and the rest is up to Him.
Two days before the exam, a friend and I visited a church located in the South of Cebu, it was run by the Marian Monks of the Eucharistic Adoration. People visit the church because of the miracles of Mama Mary that happened in that place. Written testimonies of those who received favors from Mama Mary was also displayed at the side of the church. I felt goosebumps upon entering the Holy Place, and i felt so happy and at peace to be there. It was said that Mama Mary shed tears and it was witnessed by a lot of people. The veil that was used to wipe the tears of Mama Mary was displayed in front of her crying image, and when i knelt in front of Her image, wearing the veil, i cried to Her and prayed for a miracle. I believe that only a miracle could help me. I promised Mama Mary that I would come back to see her once again, and share this beautiful experience with others.
And know here I am, writing this blog... with a smile on my face and my heart ready to explode with so much happiness and gratitude for at last I passed the exams. I am know a DOCTOR and it is indeed a Miracle!! I am one of the millions of people who have received God's favor through the divine intercession of Mama Mary!

The exam is over, I am now entering a new phase in my life. As a Doctor I am faced with bigger responsibilities. But I'll never stop praying to God and to Mama Mary for guidance in everything that I do. I encourage everyone to pray the rosary to obtain the 15 promises of Mama Mary. I hope that by sharing my personal experience, I would be able to bring others closer to God and also to Mama Mary. In this present time of modern technology, may we never forget to ask ourselves why we are here... God has plans for all of us... may you be able to see the purpose why God created you. Live life by example, live life with a purpose, and that is to show your love for God by being a blessing to others. God Bless!
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