Tuesday, December 17, 2013

In Remembrance...

Today marks the 40th day of the death of so many.  As we remember the lives of those who were painfully taken from us on that fateful day of November 8, 2013, we also want to pray for all those who lost their loved ones and friends, all those who were left behind to mourn the death of a parent, a spouse, a child or a friend. 

May you find the courage and strength to pick up the pieces and start over again, may you find enough reasons to smile again and may you find it in your heart to accept that everything happens for a reason. 

You may find it hard to understand for now but I pray that you find comfort and healing in those around you... and that in God's perfect time you will learn to say, "everything will be okay."

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Bring Jack Home

Our dog Jack went missing after typhoon Yolanda, international name Haiyan hit my beloved hometown of Tacloban City.  He survived the storm but it is unfortunate that some stranger suddenly decides to take him away from us. 

Witnesses claimed to have seen someone take Jack in the vicinity of our home after the typhoon.  Our gates were destroyed and the walls surrounding our home was also washed away by waters rushing in from the sea.  I just hope that whoever took him is taking good care of him, and should anyone see Jack, please help bring him home to us. 

Our dog Jack went missing after typhoon Yolanda hit our beloved city of Tacloban. He was last seen outside our house and witnesses claimed someone picked him up and was seen somewhere in Manlurip. Please help bring Jack home safe to us
Read more at http://web.stagram.com/n/chinchinmd/#gCgRy8pjVSIwltxB.99
Our dog Jack went missing after typhoon Yolanda hit our beloved city of Tacloban. He was last seen outside our house and witnesses claimed someone picked him up and was seen somewhere in Manlurip. Please help bring Jack home safe to us
Read more at http://web.stagram.com/n/chinchinmd/#gCgRy8pjVSIwltxB.99
Our dog Jack went missing after typhoon Yolanda hit our beloved city of Tacloban. He was last seen outside our house and witnesses claimed someone picked him up and was seen somewhere in Manlurip. Please help bring Jack home safe to us
Read more at http://web.stagram.com/n/chinchinmd/#gCgRy8pjVSIwltxB.99
Our dog Jack went missing after typhoon Yolanda hit our beloved city of Tacloban. He was last seen outside our house and witnesses claimed someone picked him up and was seen somewhere in Manlurip. Please help bring Jack home safe to us
Read more at http://web.stagram.com/n/chinchinmd/#gCgRy8pjVSIwltxB.99
Our dog Jack went missing after typhoon Yolanda hit our beloved city of Tacloban. He was last seen outside our house and witnesses claimed someone picked him up and was seen somewhere in Manlurip. Please help bring Jack home safe to us
Read more at http://web.stagram.com/n/chinchinmd/#gCgRy8pjVSIwltxB.99

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Post Yolanda Blues

It has been almost 2 weeks after Yolanda and I can't believe how so many lives have drastically changed. Looking back at all the pain and suffering I have seen and the magnitude of the destruction almost always brings me to tears.

Listening to how my family survived that "monster typhoon" and how mama was saying goodbye to my brother while papa was hugging them close as the strong winds slammed into our house is so heartbreaking. I could never imagine how devastating it was for them to see dead bodies amidst all the ruble. But the stories of how they managed to help our neighbors by taking shelter in our house, how lucky they were to find canned goods and a pack of chocolates washed into our backyard after the storm surge, and how just things seem perfectly to fall into place with God's grace.

I know our lives have been forever changed by Yolanda. I know how painful it is for papa to leave the home he worked so hard to build and the business he inherited from his father, but i guess for now it is the wisest thing to do.

I thank the Lord for giving me the chance to be with my family again, and I continue to pray for the safety of other relatives and friends who i still have not heard of. I also am grateful for my relatives, cousins, aunts, uncles, and friends who have helped us one way or the other...

And to the home that has given me so many happy memories to look back to, "thank you" for being able to withstand that storm and saving my family and a few others. We have to leave Tacloban for now but I know that there is still hope out there... Tacloban will be able to rise again if we manage to put aside all political issues and work together to restore the city we grew up in

Monday, October 28, 2013

Handling The Blues

Today I felt really crappy.  Must be because I was not able to sleep well last night considering I was on 24 hours duty, or maybe because my hormones are acting up on me.  Good thing it's a local holiday so I was able to take the day off, head home and jump into bed.

One of my outlook in life is to always start your day on a positive note.  I always try to see the good side in everything.  But there are just days when the clouds seem to cover up the sunshine, and you feel really down and out.  I know you also have those days. 

But I am telling you that it's okay to feel sad sometimes, it's okay to feel down and out.  We are just humans and feeling those emotions are part of our humanity.  What matters is how we handle ourselves and how we face the "blues".

What do you do when you feel down?  Do you get on others nerves or do you shy away in a corner and be on your own until the sadness goes away?  I have my own little tricks to make the blues go away.  I sometimes go on long walks by myself to clear my head up, I put on my earphones and listen to music, be around happy people, I even try to sleep it off sometimes.  But one sure cure for me is to lift it all up to God in prayer.  I would sit in a corner at church and talk to Him about how I feel.  I don't pray for the sadness to go away, I just open up and somehow I know that when I walk out I would feel a little better.

Life is not all about the good things.  Sometimes we need to feel a little sadness to appreciate our life more.  I remember a quote which says, "When you feel sad, be a blessing to others instead."    So the next time you feel down, try not to focus on your sadness, but rather try to help out those who are in the same situation as you are.  Not only would you feel better, but you would help someone else feel better too.

Sunday, October 20, 2013


The earthquake that shook us on that Tuesday morning was one that I will never forget.  I remember waking up because our house was shaking like crazy and on instinct I carried my two kids immediately, my husband had to yank our daughter away from me as we headed outside.  

It lasted for a while, and during those seconds that the ground below me was shaking all that I could think of was that I was just thankful that I was home with my husband and kids.  It was all that mattered to me at that moment.  When the shaking stopped, I had to calm myself because I was trembling and I did not want my kids to see me terrified because that would scare them the more.  

The aftershocks that followed were strong so we opted to stay outside instead.  Some of our neighbors left our apartment complex immediately after the quake, but we could not leave because the road leading to the main highway was blocked because two buildings at the corner collapsed.

In the hours that followed, the effect of the quake shocked the entire nation.  It was sad to hear that there were over a hundred casualties and even more injured.  Churches destroyed, houses and buildings badly damaged in just a glimpse of an eye.  

Personally we were affected because the hospital were my husband has worked for more than 5 years was closed down because of the damages caused by the quake.  We don't really know what's going to happen next, we are just keeping our fingers crossed and hoping for the best.

As of writing, another earthquake shook us again at around 4:05 pm.  That is the 4th today with a magnitude of 5.2.  I guess most of us are pretty much shaken by everything that has happened this week.  I feel chills down my spine every time I remember the first quake that shook us last Tuesday, and I can't forget the scary sound coming from beneath the ground just like what you see in the movies. 

Believe it or not, despite this tragedy we still have so much to be thankful for.  I thank God that it happened on a holiday and the kids were not in school and most offices and business establishments were closed.  Imagine if it happened on a regular day, there would have been a lot more injured.  But I pray for all those who lost their loved ones, those who lost their homes and all those who were greatly affected by the quake.  We will get through this...

Here are some photos of the 7.2 magnitude earthquake that shook Bohol and Cebu last Tuesday, October 15, 2013.

The bell tower of the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño was damaged

Properties damaged from the quake

These two establishments are located at the corner from where we live

As the earth continues to tremble beneath us, may you find comfort in God's words and I pray that wherever you are and whatever it is you are going through, let God hold you and keep you in His loving arms.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Livin and Lovin It

It has officially been a month since I started my residency training.  I have now adapted to a whole new morning routine which includes waking up early, having breakfast with my two boys, and my daily walk from the main building where I log in for our biometrics, to our own building located just beside the TB Pavilion.  I have also adjusted to going on 24 hours duty every 5 days, and sleeping alone in our residents quarters which I found out just recently that it used to be the operating room of the old hospital.  I guess that explains why there are tiles on the walls!  It can be creepy sometimes, but as long as I don't feel someone grabbing my foot I think I can manage...

I can't believe it has been a month!  Time really does fly when you enjoy what you are doing.  But working in our institution is not a walk in the park.  It's not easy to be hearing stories about how these patients suddenly changed their behavior, how a once loving son could suddenly turn violent towards his mother, or how a mother could do harm to her own child.  It takes a bucket of patience and a really big heart to be here, and I pray to the Lord each day to grant me the wisdom, the strength, the courage to help these patients and their families.

I still have a long way to go... but I am optimistic about what lies ahead of me.  I am living my life each and every day, hoping that somehow in my own little way I am able to make a difference to everyone I meet.  I am living each day looking forward to learning new things, and hopefully being able to share whatever it is I learn to those that would come after me.  I am living my life according to how I want to live it, not on how others expect my life to be.

We only have one life to live, so we might as well live it to the fullest.  Live a meaningful life and make sure you don't look back with any regrets.

Why limit yourself when there are endless possibilities waiting to be discovered?

Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Power of Facebook Sharing

Do you believe in miracles? If not, than this simple story of reunion might just change your mind.  When our FAMED rotator saw a photo shared by a friend on her facebook wall about a missing person, she thought that the woman in the photo resembled the foreign national brought in by the police that morning.  They did not only look the same, but the name given by the patient was the same name on the missing person post.

Ellis was brought in by the police because she reported that all her stuff were stolen including her passport.  However in the police station, she was acting confused so she was brought in to our institution for evaluation.  When I personally saw her, she looked really tired but still mustered a smile when asked how she was.

Our FAMED rotator got in touch with the sister who originally posted the photo, and in less than an hour we received a call from her brother in law.  They were updated of her condition and they arranged to fly in from abroad and fetch her personally.  After staying for about 2 days in our hospital, the relatives arrived with a medical team from Manila to accompany her and she was transferred to a private hospital there before finally flying back home.

How I wish that all stories of families with missing loved ones would end up like this one.  There is indeed caring in sharing.  Thanks to all those who shared the photo which eventually ended up on the facebook wall of the doctor who saw the patient that day, Ellis is now reunited with her family.

Here is the original photo shared on Facebook.

We can make miracles happen...

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Just a Recap

I love Sundays.  It's the only day of the week where I have the luxury of waking up a little later than what I am normally used to.  But today I woke up really late, I guess my body was catching up on sleep since the past week has been quite hectic.

My week started off a bit stressful.  I was on 24 hours duty last Monday, which also happened to be a local holiday so my other co-residents had the day off.  It was my first solo duty so honestly I was a bit anxious, but things went smoothly, we had around 9 consults, 2 referrals and I had 3 patients for observation in the acute area.

My next 24 hours duty fell on Friday the 13th.  But the day did not turn out to be unlucky after all.  I was able to attend Micah's recognition during my one hour break, and got there just in time before her name was called.  My interns brought food in the evening, so it saved me from buying my dinner.  We were able to sit down and enjoy dinner without any calls from the ER for patients coming in or referrals.  

I think I had my share of bad luck when I found out that we were asked to attend a strategic planning workshop at the City hall the following day.  I was already looking forward to spending Saturday at home with the kids, but since it was a hospital memo I had no choice but to be there.  But the workshop did not turn out to be bad after all.  It was a strategic planning workshop of the anti-mendicancy board  and I honestly learned something from the workshop.  It was a shock for me to find out that there is a city ordinance penalizing mendicants/beggars as well as those who would give money to them.  I just forgot to ask if giving food would also be counted...   

I was quite unsure of the Cebu city's vision of having a mendicant free city by 2015. But I guess if you dare to dream then might as well dream big.  I just hope that whatever plans and ideas discussed during the workshop would really be implemented.  We need a long term solution to this problem and not just a band-aid fix like picking up vagrants on the street who they suspect to be psychotic but only to find out on evaluation that he has been walking around looking for food and was hungry.  I guess any person who has not eaten in days would have a brief psychotic episode.

Tomorrow is the start of another week.  I don't really know what lies ahead but I am positive that things happen for a reason and that there is always a lesson to be learned in everything...

Thank you for dinner guys 😊

The group of interns and PGI I go on duty with

Our group from Sotto who attended the workshop

The committee on health and sanitation from the City Heath Office, CCMC and VSMMC

There is still so much out there to be learned...

Thursday, August 29, 2013

For Love Of The Game

If there is one sport we all love in general, I would probably say it's "basketball".  I think every barangay in our country has a multipurpose gym with a basketball court.  And who has never seen a lamp post with a makeshift basketball ring and guys playing basketball on the streets?

This game has been my husband and his colleagues  favorite past time as well.  Despite their busy schedule in the hospital, they would find time to play with teams from other hospitals or even just a friendly game among themselves.

I can't even count how many basketball jerseys my husband has on our closet from all the basketball tournaments he has joined all these years.  But I salute the organizers and pharmaceutical companies who sponsor this kind of events.  It is an opportunity for these doctors to get away from hospital work, have fun and just enjoy! 

Sharing some photos from the recent CCMC Open, Celcoxx Cup and SHH Cup :)

Their team got 3rd place during the CCMC open

Warming up before the game

CCMC team for Celcoxx Cup

On their final game for 3rd place, only these players showed up for the game that Sunday.

Taken last Tuesday after winning the game against SHH floor 2 staff.

I can confidently say that their current team is the "team to beat" for the Sacred Heart Hospital basketball tournament, fingers crossed :)

My husband's number 1 fan :)

Friday, August 23, 2013

Sweet Cravings

My sweet tooth has been acting up again.  I have this craving for chocolates and cakes that I have yet to give in to.  But I did not have the chance to go out this week and satisfy these cravings since my son was sick, and I had to stay home with him the entire time.

And now as I am watching these food channels on cable, and all the yummy desserts on screen, I can't help but wish I was munching on something sweet.  On second thought, let me try to share my cravings.  Maybe writing about it would lessen the urge to grab the chocolate bar sitting on the fridge, or would it make things  worse?  We'll see...

I can't even remember  the last time I ate suman latik, that is why I asked my brother to bring some for me once they get back fromTacloban.


 Oatmeal raisin cookies from Mrs. Fields.  Too bad Cebu does not have an outlet,the ones you find in the grocery are not as good as the freshly baked ones.

Milk chocolate digestive biscuits from Marks and Spencer.  The kids enjoy this too.  Might grab one if we happen to go to Ayala this weekend, fingers crossed...

Blueberry cheesecake.  I wish I knew how to make one so I would not have to go to a coffee shop or dessert place whenever I crave for it, lol!

Moist chocolate cake with choco icing.  The ultimate comfort food :) 

Maltesers! I love these chocolate covered malt balls.  I remember the time when hubby bought  the bucket size from duty free, I was squealing with delight!

I don't want to sound shallow writing about my sweet cravings with the recent calamity in Luzon and the pork barrel issue our country is facing, but It's something that I want to share and I hope you guys don't mind.  

It seems writing about it helped lessen my cravings because I just want to doze off after posting this.  What food do you  usually crave for? I don't mind you sharing it with me :) 

 Always a food lover at heart ❤

 PS: I do not own these photos and simply got them online so credits to the owners of these photos.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

In Pursuit of Greater Things

It's another pay day.  I miss the times when I would go online to check whether my salary has been deposited into my account or wait in anticipation for a text telling me that "may sweldo na doc".  It may seem shallow,but for someone who has bills to pay and kids to feed and send to school, pay day is the most anticipated day of the month.

But sadly for me, my last pay day fell last June 26.  Ever since I resigned from my old job, I have been living on our savings and a little help from my father who loaned me money to cover up some expenses.  

To pursue my goal of going into residency training, I had to give up a good paying job.  A job that has helped us live comfortably for the past years.  But sometimes you have to give up one thing to achieve something bigger.  I must admit that it's not easy thinking about all the bills and the expenses piling up, but somehow God has a way of working things out.

I would tell myself that this is a small sacrifice compared to better things that are yet to come.  Tomorrow I would be having my Promotional Screening Board interview.  The final step before I officially  become a First Year Resident in the Behavioral Sciences Department.  

But this would only be the beginning of my four years training.  I would still have to go through in service exams, reportings, mortality and morbidity conferences, case presentation, and I still have to complete two research papers as part of training.  I have conditioned myself that I may have to occasionally give up attending some family events, going on vacations and other things that I have been used to doing in the past.

All these in my pursuit to being able to do great things for the greater good.

 Hoping for the best :)

Friday, August 9, 2013

Loving With Your Heart or Mind?

How do you love someone?  Do you follow the famous line which says, "I love you with all of my heart"? Or would you rather have someone tell you "I love you with all of my mind"?

When we initially  fall in love with someone, it is more "feelings based".  So we rely more on what our heart feels rather than on what our mind dictates.  The best part about loving and being in a relationship is usually during the early part.  It is during this phase where you only see the good side of the relationship.  It is also during these times that you both find out things you both like to do together, traits that you appreciate in each other, which would eventually help you both establish a bond that would help strengthen the relationship.

But the real challenge begins when you both discover more about each other.  When you find out things you never knew existed.  When you are both faced with difficult situations that test how you feel towards each other.  Most of the time, these situations may not only test your relationship, but your character as well.  I guess it is during these times when we would rather have our mind work over our heart.

 The heart who has experienced pain may not know what is right from wrong.  All it knows is that it is hurting and may not be able to make a rational decision.  The heart who has been given too much attention by another may eventually give in and forget that he already belongs to someone else. And the heart who is madly in love gives more than what is needed in a relationship leaving her with nothing for herself.  Oftentimes we do something based on how we feel, not realizing that we end up hurting others, or worse hurting ourselves in the end.

Our feelings falter from time to time, so when we love someone, we must commit not just our hearts but more importantly our minds into the relationship.  When we always keep in mind why we love someone, we learn to look beyond the hurt, the anger and the imperfections.

So when you love someone, love not just with your heart, but keep your mind in the equation as well.  This might help keep a lasting relationship or it just might save you from being in the wrong one.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

My Food Adventures

One thing I'm not too shy to admit is that I love food, which simply means I love to eat.  Call me weird but there are times when I eat out all by myself if I really have a craving for something.  But eating out is best enjoyed with family and friends, it's one way for us to bond and catch up with what is happening with each others lives.

Over summer, hubby and I went food tripping when we traveled to Manila and to Laguna.  Went to an eat all you can restaurant in SM Megamall, a Mexican restaurant in Greenhills, a Persian restaurant in San Pablo Laguna and a steak restaurant in Alabang town center with my in-laws.  Just remembering the places we went to and all the good food makes me crave for the beef enchilada and lamb kebabs all over again. :)

1.  DAD's Restaurant in SM Megamll

They had a make-your-own Taco and Shawarma station

I just love the Halo-Halo station because I get to put as much "sahog" as I want :)

Fresh Fruits Galore

Lechon Kawali and Lechon station

This part of the restaurant serves mostly Filipino dishes, the other side has Continental and Japanese food

I think I ate more than my husband, because I used up two plates, lol :)

They also have an Eat-All-You-Can Meryenda for 199 on weekdays, not bad...

2.  Mexicali Restaurant, Greenhills

One of the best Mexican restaurant I've been to so far  ♥

The interior was really cozy

The red bell peppers on the wall added a nice touch, really cute :)

My eating partner, lol :)

Beef enchilada and Taco meal

Beef enchilada and Burrito for me.

3.  Middle Eats, San Pablo Laguna

Because of this restaurant, I became a fan of Mediterranean cuisine

The mixed kebab platter consisted of lamb, beef, chicken and squid

My brother and sister in law loved eating here because this is just a few minutes walk from their spa.  We also enjoyed the pita bread and the Musaka which is a dish made from mashed eggplants.

4.  Pepper Lunch, Alabang Town Center

I would say that this was one unique dining experience because you get to cook your own food on a plate.

The steak is served to you on an electromagnetic plate that is heated and you get to cook and spice it up yourself.

Just toss and turn the steak and it gets cooked really quick.  Be careful not to touch the plate because it's really hot!

Let's not forget dessert :)

If you are ever in Manila or Davao visit their branches and I assure you it's worth every peso :)

So that's it for now, but there would be more food adventures for me waiting to be documented.  Until our next food trip ♥
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