Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Keeping the LOVE in tact

There's this episode in Oprah I came across years ago and until today its message still resonates in me and resides deep in my heart. I forgot who the guest was, maybe a cancer survivor or a wife of a cancer survivor, something in that line... 

And her message was this: Don't ever lose love for yourself. EVER.

Whatever happens, keep something intact for you. Keep love. And keep it for yourself.

One of the signs, they say, you still have that love for self is when someone asks you what are the things you love. You instantly give them 10 answers.
Instantly. Without a blink of an eye. 10 things you love. 10 things that's your own. Not your husband's, not your boyfriend's and not your friends'. Things you love on your own, without any relative aspects of someone else's happiness. 

I'm almost 30 weeks pregnant today. And believe me, hormones aside, this chapter in my life could not even be blogged in a single entry. It was happy and scary, fulfilling and emptying, there are good times and there are bad times, but also there are the BEST of times... (insert STOP sign here; I wasn't planning on my pregnancy blog today). And in the middle pregnancy, work, marriage and life, I have me. It's so easy losing yourself in the middle of everything... so here I am. Trying to keep that "LOVE" in tact. Whatever happens...

The 10 things: 

1. I love singing (voice quality aside) or music as a whole. I'll forever be in love with this art. The rhythm, instruments, lyrics, voice and everything about it. I'll forever love music. FOREVER.

2. Laughing. At myself. At something. At my husband's mishaps. And more laughing.

3. Water. Drinking and swimming. 

*there was a long pause here; because ideally, somehow we lose ourselves along the way*

4. Mental challenge. The feeling of self satisfaction after solving a bad-ass case is one of the best feeling there is. 

5. Twitter (than Facebook). =)

6. Running (but given my circumstance: Walking). The silence within me while running. The pounding heart. The sweat. I miss running my heart out! 

7. Yoga. The calmness, peace and discipline. Priceless.

8. Taho! I can't get enough of them these days.

9. Baby Summer inside me. I think of her and tears would well up in my eyes. Motherhood. 

10. Married life is awesome! 

Monday, July 25, 2011

25 'truths' we put through

EMOTIONAL WEATHER REPORT By Jessica Zafra (The Philippine Star) Updated July 24, 2011 12:00 AM

The one thing we were never taught in elementary school was how to be a skeptic. We were trained to believe, obey and never question authority. In effect school was an extension of church (they are run by religious orders after all); those who dared suggest that the teacher was missing something were condemned as walang modo (uncouth), suwail (willful) and worst of all, pilosopo. Yes, to be “philosophical” — to ask how the teachers arrived at their knowledge and why we should accept it as true — was bad, the equivalent of heresy. 

It was not until I moved to a public high school — Philippine Science — that I realized it is not only right to question long-held “truths,” it is the responsibility of every intelligent person. What is your evidence? How do you know? If we didn’t ask questions we would still be deluding ourselves that the sun and planets revolve around the earth.

Now that no one is going to make us stand in a corner or write “I will believe what my teacher says” on the blackboard 500 times, let us review some “truths” we were trained to accept for the simple reason that teachers, priests, parents and other authority figures said so.

1. “Beauty is useless, character is the best.” These words were written in big block letters tacked above the blackboard. As a child I had a problem with its corny wording; as an adult I have a problem with its accuracy. Like many allegedly self-evident truths from our childhood this one assumes that we live in a perfect world full of righteous citizens. 
Of course beauty is useful! and not just because our society is mad about beauty pageants and cosmetic surgery. We naturally respond to beauty. In the absence of solid information we judge strangers on the basis of their physical appearance. We like to think that someone beautiful on the outside has the spirit, guts and smarts to match. Frequently we are disappointed, but beauty still short-circuits our brains. It can’t be helped. Beauty will get you in the door. Character determines whether you get to stay in and climb the stairs.
2. “When you finish school you join the real world.” Not exactly. Empirical evidence shows that the so-called real world is an extension of high school populated by the same archetypes: the geeks, the prom queens, the jocks, the stoners, the teachers’ pets, the outcasts and so on. Why do you think Glee and Twilight are so popular? It’s certainly not for the quality of the writing. Hopefully high school has trained you for the real world, so that if some troglodyte tries to bully you, you know exactly how to bitch-slap him. 
3. “If you are too smart boys won’t like you.” True, alas. The male ego is more fragile than they would have us believe — easily cracked by an open display of female superiority. 
There are ways around this. One, never let on how smart you are. Let them think that they are in charge, that they personally make the choices you maneuver them into. This approach requires tact, acting ability and a high EQ. 
The alternative is to be entirely yourself. So you’ll intimidate those who are less intelligent or capable than you are. Do you really want someone so insecure that he has to be assured of his dominance? That’s exhausting work. But the ones who are not afraid of you, who think they’re smarter than you or are confident enough not to care, they’ll stick around. True, you’ll get the alpha males. The relationship, if you have one, will be a constant struggle for power. You will butt heads at every turn. Fun!
4. “They’re just lucky.” This is what our elders always said of people who, for no apparent reason, attained wealth and power. Especially those they disliked or considered to be beneath them. Ah, envy. Ah, snobbery. It is a fact that one can plan and toil all his life but get nowhere, while others can coast along but achieve great success. So don’t say “just lucky.” It is foolhardy to dismiss the role of luck in human affairs. 
5. “If you study hard and get good grades your success in life is assured.” Not necessarily. There are people who excel in an academic environment but flounder when they leave the confines of the university. Grades are important, but so is the ability to work with other people. You must be able to apply the knowledge you gleaned from books to real-life situations and environments. You must understand that people are complex organisms who do not behave like theoretical models. Get yourself some street smarts.
6. “He’s not right for you.” Listen to your mother. If she says this about the guy you are dating, she is probably right. It is called maternal instinct. That and the fact that half of your chromosomes are hers so you are more alike than you care to acknowledge. So consider Mom’s advice, but never let on that you ditched him because she said so. Show some resistance. You can’t have Mom taking over your life.
7. “Talent leads to fame and fortune.” Talent, timing, and a canny manager. Now let’s look at that statement backwards: “Fame and fortune spring from talent.” That’s so funny I forgot to laugh. 21st century fact: People are famous for being famous.
8. “Stories and films should contain moral lessons.” Strangely enough these are the stories and films that bore us to smithereens. A piece of writing, a work of cinema — Art stands on its own and speaks for itself. It might contain a lesson but it does not exist for that purpose. Does it even have a purpose? 2,000 words, on my desk in the morning.
9. “The good are rewarded.” Nope. Being good is its own reward. In fact if you expect a reward then you’re not really good. It may be that you are only good because someone is watching. You phony.
10. “The bad are punished.” No, they are not. Many of them are elected to office. We would cite examples of the guilty who get off scot-free, but we don’t want to depress ourselves.
11. “What will other people say?” It’s more annoying in Tagalog: “Ano na lang ang sasabihin ng ibang tao?” Who cares what other people think? It’s your life! You can do what you want as long as you’re not hurting anybody. Unless you want to run for office or be voted Miss Congeniality. 
12. “Don’t flaunt your wealth.” This used to be true, but times have changed. What used to be considered tacky — brandishing what you own and what it cost — is now acceptable behavior. Basically, free market capitalism won.
13. “Don’t wash your dirty linen in public.” Unless you have a Twitter account with a million followers, in which case go ahead.
14. “The elegant one-handed backhand is superior to the brute two-hander.” I had to work in the tennis bit. Yes the one-handed backhand is beautiful to behold, but you still have to win. Sacrilege! But as Roger Federer’s playing career approaches the twilight years, and given that today’s players are bigger and stronger and the racquet technology more advanced, it may be time for a rethink. 
15. “She’s only a housewife.” Have you any idea what a full-time stay-at-home mother and wife has to put up with? She’s the CEO of the household but with no salary, no benefits, and no office hours. She is always working. Everything that happens under her roof is her problem. She has children to feed, clothe, shelter, educate, nurse in times of sickness, and train in the finer points of being human. Just listing her responsibilities makes me tired. So the next time you think “She’s only a housewife,” you try it.
16. “Comedy is not serious.” Seriously? Ever tried making people laugh? Comedy is all we have against the terrifying uncertainty of human existence. If you can laugh in the face of randomness, you’ll survive.
17. “Let the guy pick up the check.” As previously mentioned, the male ego is fragile. What part of women’s hard-won victory over discrimination and male chauvinism can we give up without compromising our principles? The part that says we have to split the bill on a date. Therefore by allowing the guy to pick up the check you are actually being generous. If you still feel bad, you can use the money to buy yourself some shoes.
18. “He just hasn’t met the right girl.” He’s gay, Tita
19. “Obey your elders.” If you believe that what they’re asking you to do is right. If you have doubts, express them. Politely, there’s no need to be rude.
20. “If you have nothing intelligent to say, don’t say anything.” We wish everyone would follow this sage advice. Unfortunately they all have blogs, Facebook and Twitter accounts. Hey, check out my website!
21. “Your clothes, shoes and accessories must always match.” Maybe in the 1960s when our mothers were young and everyone took up smoking in order to look cool, blithely unaware of what it was doing to their lungs. In the 21st century total matchy-matchy is dull, robotic and weird but not in a good way. Unless of course you’re being ironic.
22. “Don’t wash your hair every day, it will fall out.” In this environment, with all the pollution? Gross. 
23. “Someday your prince (or princess) will come.” That would be nice. And if he (or she) doesn’t, you can be happy anyway. You can hang out with your friends. You can take off at a moment’s notice. You never have to synchronize your schedule with anyone else’s. Your time and money are your own. You have your own bathroom. And if your prince/princess arrives late, remember these words of infallible wisdom: Separate bathrooms.
24. “When in trouble, pray.” If it brings you peace and helps you organize your thoughts in times of emotional turbulence, by all means go ahead. It can be a great help, but bear in mind that it is not the solution. You will still have to make a decision and act on it. Never think that you are helpless and powerless. 
25. “Money can’t buy you love.” Your parents are right, it really can’t. Having a lot of it makes you a target for opportunists and gold-diggers. However, you still need money in order to live. Love won’t pay the bills unless you are a bestselling romance novelist or creator of telenovelas. And financial problems have ruined the most ardent relationships. So fall in love with the person, not their statement of assets and liabilities, but keep your wits about you.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Happy 1 year engagement!! (ring)

Remembering June 8, 2010.

and I quote from Grey's Anatomy 

"You never know the biggest day of your life is the biggest day. Not until it's happening. You don't recognize the biggest day of your life, not until you're right in the middle of it. The day you commit to something or someone. The day you get your heart broken. The day you meet your soul mate. The day you realize there's not enough time, because you wanna live forever. Those are the biggest days. The perfect days."

18 more days!!! I can't wait!! Beyond the jitters, beyond the stress and scares... I'm still this little girl who can't wait to marry the love of her life. 

Hopefully I can post more decent engagement pictures after everything, then wedding pictures, and videos and all the rest! :) for now I'm savoring every moment of this once in a lifetime experience!

Monday, June 6, 2011

An effort to make me calm

I just felt like blogging today. Wala lang… I just realized I have so many thoughts these days and I forgot that writing takes out a lot of weight.

I’m a detail freak and secondly, I’m an impulsive buyer. That right there is a very bad combination. I have so many details in mind and when I go into stores, right then and there that thing that looks so good in my eyes is part of my ‘wanted’ details.

So I freak out, I think I have so many things and details in mind, but in fact I just want to add and add and add more and more details to everything that I see. *guilty*

I need to stop. I need a list. And yet I have a list, I just don’t follow it religiously. :p

18 days and counting!! giddy giddy giddy!! 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


I woke up today feeling normal- just like any other day. And then after a couple of hours, my heart just felt HAPPY. Right now, I’m still feeling this happy feeling in my heart- that I’m smirking while typing.
I was humming tunes while walking to the office.
Stomping my feet while sitting in the bus listening to Kerri’s song.

I am happy.
I am loved.
And I am definitely blessed beyond what I deserve. I know that I’m feeling this happiness because my heart is screaming with gratitude.

But don’t get me wrong- I don’t have the perfect life. I’m not everything-is-fine-everyday person. I have problems and struggles like any other person.

-         This morning I woke up alone, in a far away place with no family/loved ones near. And it has been this way for almost 3 months now.
-         The bus arrived 30 minutes late this morning. And I had to stand in the bus stop with a big heavy laptop bag in my back. And I was late!
-         My muscles (entire body muscles that is) are aching as well because I did yoga last night and carrying that bag made it more difficult.
-         In a normal day here, I only get to talk thru chat. Voice talk is about an hour max. Imagine that with me?! Not talking my heart out.
-         I eat my breakfast in my desk. Lunch with my housemate/officemates. And then a silent dinner again by myself.
-         I have a wedding in 80 days and there are a lot of things that needs polishing. But I can’t polish them because I have to wait until I’m back in Manila.
-         Weekends are excruciatingly lonely L

Believe me. I can fill out a whole a lot more space of sulkiness and negativity to complain about every single thing that is happening to me.

But I don’t.

There’s always two sides of the bread. And I choose to wake up on that positive side- every single day. There are days that it’s not easy. There are days that you just want to curl up in bed or cry your heart out or literally buy a one-way ticket back home. This is where I call on God. I would never have survived without Him, without prayers. He wants me to be silent and trust Him. And that’s what I do.

This brings me to the sad part of this story. When you’re away, social networks will be your ally, you get to check out what’s happening to the world you left behind and be updated. And I get hurt with negativities. Person A is cursing. Person B is picking a fight with a person. Person C is not happy everyday because his manager sucks. Person D is just plainly negative.

Don’t get me wrong- I respect feelings. I respect opinions and I respect that these are just outlets that you can vent out your emotions.

But come to think of it. Those people who are with their loved ones (daily), those who can chit-chat with their parents over dinner, those who can stroll to the mall with their friends, have someone fetch them after work—are the ones who have more complains than gratitude.

Think twice or thrice before belting out.
Think of the things you have and not of what’s in the moment.
There are people across the world that doesn’t have what you have- and constantly wish they had that.

Try waking up on the different side of the bread today.
Try to close your eyes and face the morning sun.
Say a little prayer.
I’m sure you’re day will be way BETTER!

Sharing one of the best prose ever written: (A personal favorite)

The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company... a church... a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past... we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you... we are in charge of our Attitudes.” - CHARLES R. SWINDOLL

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

1 Month In

I've been here for more than a month now. 
The 1st weeks were tough. Hard. Painful. And sad. Trust me, whatever emotional preparation you make before packing your bags and then leaving everything would be nothing.
Nothing to what it feels like being far and alone
Realizing you are all by yourself
And your support system is hundreds of miles away 

So I put my head up
and pray harder
And live each day.
And I get by... 

There are days that I'm barely hanging here
There are days I'm OK 
And there are great days.
That day when I ran my heart out on to Raffles Exit I 
to meet Micuy
That was one GREAT day
That was pure love right there.
One hug erased everything.
Just like that.

And then reality would again sneak in and bite you in the ass.
It's bite always seem to hurt.
Every time. 
And before you know it happy days are over 
And you're back to that dark, sad, lonely place.

Life goes on.
And then when you least expect it
Reality bites you even harder
Knocking you down on your knees.
Damn! I did not see that
Cut straight thru me.

I'm still on the process of healing.
Slowly standing with unstable feet
Getting my bearings right
Careful not to fall that hard again. 
There are things that are still unsure
Things that need answers
And like every painful phase in life... I lift everything up to God.

I'm not sad.
But I'm not happy.
I'm OK. :)

Definitely much stronger. 
And I have something coming up this weekend...
Happy days are coming!

2 more months. I'm OK. I know I'll be. 

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Day 2 (Jan. 27, 2011)

1.) Work for everything that it is: the self-worth, the hard-earned money, the perks.... it's a gift. Thank you God. For 3 years, i have a work that I love.

2.) Working out. Well it's not called "work"-ing if it's not hard. It's tough to maintain a draining job then run you're heart out at night. But for the past year I have learned to take good care of my body. Health is really wealth and I've got to start nurturing it as early as now. :)

3.) M Hotel. Breakfast. Clean room. Good bath. Good sleep. Cocktails. Filipina trainees who have become my friends. This place which has become my home for the past 4 days is a treasure. I'll look back at this place, smiling- happy amidst the loneliness.

4.) Kitsy. She's my 1 month old niece. She's adorable. She's the apple of the eye of my parents every single day. I love her to death!!! and she's so pretty I wanna stay in Davao for the rest of her infant life!

5.) Mama. I owe her everything. We still talk almost every day. And she's where I draw strength from. Whatever I have right now, is because of how she raised me.

6.) Papa. My rock. My ever calm and steady rock. We have the same views in life, and I love sharing everything about life with him. Ohh...parents! makes me sooo emotional!

7.) My 2 yr. old iTouch. She's now back in Singapore. I bought her during our 1st abroad trip here and she's a treasure. Everything about her is a treasure.

8.) Chocolates! :) Sorry babe, but I've been eating a lot lately. hehe For the happy hormones. And for my forever affair with them.

9.)  Rain. For 2 days now whenever I wake up, there's rain drops on my window. I thank God for it. Just this morning, I felt like this city is crying for me because I was not happy being here. But rain is still one of my favorite thing in the world. I love rain!!! 

10.) Reality. Well I had a bad dream this morning. When I woke up my heart was aching so bad.. And then reality sneaked in and everything is where it's supposed to be. REALITY- as hurtful as you are sometimes, I'm still up for the challenge.