Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Back To Square One

Like what I’ve said, my Monday has been somewhat manic and different since I left my teaching stint last Friday. It was a bit difficult adjusting to the fact that waking on mornings will be for a different reason. And I haven’t gotten enough rest since I resigned; except for a long and deep sleep last Saturday, I spent my weekend, cleaning my room, taking my books from the shelf and packing them in one large storage box.

Once I finished putting my things in order, it’s my planner’s turn to get organized. Every year, I make sure that I have a planner-organizer which I always keep handy. But this year, due to a lot of agendas and backlogs, it took me three months before I finally got one from the bookstore. March na nang makabili ako because it was either I kept forgetting to buy, I don’t have time or the planner’s expensive.

I keep two planners with me as well a post-it notepad handy almost all the time. And they’re always practically full. My planner (pictured above) is for those advance reminders while the other one I have—a 2007 green leather day minder (not in photo) contains the add ups that I missed to either my articles, class lessons, proverbial wisdoms and stuff like that. The post-it is for ASAP issues in my job being the forgetful girl that I am; I need this for not-to-forget urgent things.

Monday came and the first thing I’m off to the office to meet my managing editor for the articles and the matters of the upcoming project. It took me some hours or so discussing things with her just to make sure that my questions are answered—so as for me not to be that silly and panic-driven during I-don’t-know this moments. I really am back to the basics. But like what I’ve said, I also wanted to devote some of my time for the magazine since this is where part of me is. While teaching is also one of my passions, I simply cannot serve two masters at the same time right now; and so as sad as it seems, I need to choose.


Sunday, April 26, 2009

Parting Shots and Messages

Last Friday was my final day at the academy. After some three months, I decided to (partly) bid them goodbye in order for me to give some time for my other career. Although I also love teaching, I knew I can’t serve two masters at the same time this moment. And I admit that as my life started changing, it’s a bit hard—knowing that I’ll be waking up early by Monday morning but I won’t be reporting to the same place nor doing the same task.

I am taking this time to pay my gratitude to the people I have been with. People who I’ll be missing so dearly.

I’ll miss my students. Becoming a teacher to Aaron Park and Aaron Lee was actually fun. Aaron Lee’s advice for me—not to be shy of my good voice and his encouragement to let me take the path to optimism is one thing that I’ll keep. On the other hand, I’ll miss Aaron Park’s demonstrative and lively behavior and humor—including the way he imitated Alex’s guffaw.

Despite that Jerry has been acting all hyperactive, I’m going to miss him too. The past few days, we had some bonding time over spelling quizzes which he said he enjoyed. I realized he’s not really that mean at all. Oh, and when he got to beat me twice in the spelling quiz, I could attest that in a way he’s an intelligent boy

Having great people at work as colleagues is also one of the things that I’ll ache for; Che’s point of view (and the way he approaches me with “po” on the side), Grace’s resilient opinions and our ukay-ukay sessions every payday, Alex and Jeff’s antics, the mellow voice of Teacher Regine (and her motherly advice), Teacher Luz’s science lessons and theories during our lunch get-togethers.

Meeting somebody like Teacher Arthur. The man who loved the Beatles (actually he’s got some similarities to John Lennon—only that he’s Pinoy) is one of the best advisers I ever met (career wise). His diplomatic way of resolving conflicts is one great asset to a successful and harmonious workplace. On the final day he asked me where am I going after my teaching stint at Sejong, I do love both teaching and writing but what Teacher Arthur said, pursue your passion, your heart’s desire and you’ll go along way.

I’ll miss Luigi too. I’ll yearn for those short, interesting but mind-stimulating talks that we used to have. While some might not agree to most of his philosophies, I also got some bits of wisdom from him. I enjoyed his company and the intellectual conversations. I like him not because of charm but because of his wit. It made sense to me that at least some of our ideas jibe together. I hope I could still know him better but with the succinct moment, I’m not sure if that will still be possible—I just hope it could still be. Yes, he could be short-tempered at times but then he can’t say no to a bag of Tempura or a bar of Hershey’s (as in abot sa magkabilang tenga ang ngiti niya.-)). He’ll remind me of Broadway plays too. He once uttered right point-blank to me that I was heaven sent because of one simple thing that I did (and I took it as a simple compliment despite that—there is) but I do have something to thank him for. Things that really define what heaven sent (which he once became to me) really means. On my final day he thanked me but I don’t know if I really did something worth thankful—I simply did my job. I’m happy to have met someone as witty as him; someone who sticks to the no-gray area view point—no maybe just a YES or NO which I also liked about him.

Tomorrow, I’m back to square one. I have to face some tasks and the family’s business—going back to being dad’s secretary again and stuff like that.'

But I’ll still keep in touch with these wonderful people who I’ve been with.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Focus Not On Disability But Dreams

This was what I got from reading Bo Sanchez' newsletter on creating one's destiny which landed in my inbox days ago. His words were inspired by Filipino-American Jessica Cox. A 25 year old girl without arms due to a birth defect; but despite that, she's a licensed pilot, with two taekwondo balck belts and can do anything even put on contact lenses all by herself despite the absence of her upper limbs.

I can relate to her story. And I admire the courage of people like her. 14 years ago, I was diagnosed with an illness that still is unnamed and unknown to me. Despite of having one of the country's best neurologists to handle my case, he can't directly tell me what is this "rare disease" which left me physically challenged.

And in spite of my physical difference, even people nowadays still ask me of this; and what I felt. Of course at first it left me with pity rather than anger. Yet, I knew my spirit kept being strong. I don't remember any instance that I had a reason to be angry with God; nor thinking about committing suicide. I never deemed to focus on this difference (I call it as a difference rather than a disability; I'm not disabled after all for I can still do a lot of things just like a normal person). Yes, God probably planned this to happen to me but then, His graciousness was still proven for He has been good to have granted all the wishes of my heart.

If other people can do things, then so can I.

I might be physically different but God still blessed me with a lot of things; including a career that completes me and makes me happy; a career that I do love. A good and God-fearing family that is strong and full of wisdom. I am surrounded with good people and though on a part time basis, I work for a kind employer who values my efforts.

I am happy to be alive, loved, being in love and pursuing my passion. Reading the story, I learned these:

I have more than a Genie. I have a God within me who has given me all the resources I need to fulfill the dreams He has planted in my heart.

Don’t focus on what you don’t have, focus on what you have.

Don’t focus on your disabilities, focus on your possibilities!

Big dreams attract more energy, more attention, and more resources.

and last but not the least,
Focusing On Your Dream Is Important To Your Happiness

Friday, April 17, 2009

Happy Horizons From Writing

Writing this entry while listening to How to Save a Life by the Fray.

Growing up, I never really thought of becoming a writer. I'm all addicted to books and reading. I loved science and while thinking of what path to take, I hoped to venture into studying Medicine and becoming a surgeon (nobody has yet to become a doctor in my family--probably no one will ever will since my brother's into Fine Arts). But then it was a twist of fate. Despite I passed the requirements for an undergrad course and a possible med-school career, I took a U-turn.

I became a journalist and a practicing writer-editor. And I am currently having the best part of my life. The past few days, I have been exchanging emails with Alvin Tabañag from the Registered Financial Planners Philippines. I first got acquainted with him due to the need to ask for his permission (that's not plagiarism right?) if we could probably use parts of his article for the Financial Management issue, to which he said yes.

Then some days ago, he emailed me back asking some questions about the company. At first I was uncertain and doubting what to do since I'm off to release some tidbits of information about the company. But then, with the good, business-related intention, I informed my managing editor and realizing the purpose, Ms. Peng said it's okay. In the end I addressed the query to her
to answer and do the whole thing.

And things like that make me in a way happy too. Being in this career thought me a lot. Brought me much prospects and the opportunity of meeting different (and some famous) people in the society and the industry. Being a writer taught me the aspects of business and all the things that can't be found in school's four walls. Who knew that the sociophobic me will find bliss in this career?

Mom used to tell me that of all journalists, I am the one who's afraid to speak up and be a fighter. A former colleague, MJ Formilleza (the nephew of my former boss in La Salle) once tagged me as a Silent Warrior. And all that they said were true. Back in the university I became the editor in chief at 20, I wrote my first and last Editor's Note but never an editorial. Ironic as it seems but I'm the editor-in-chief who never wrote editorials (either by chance or by choice) I venture more on feature stories, and now in business, HR and web content writing.

I'm a writer but I have accepted the possible bitter reality that it's going to make me rich. Luigi once joked, the editor will be the editor (but mind you, I also get red marks on my essay writing exam) yet, I do acknowledge the fact that I still have some lapses with my writing (that's why there are EIC's--to scrutinize it) I'm happy to have been employed in a company that's both customer and employee oriented. That's why despite working on a freelance basis, I chose to stay with them.

Simply because it is making me absolutely happy. I don't mind having to work on my articles late at night or even being like a doctor on call to do an emergency assignment (yes, in some ways writers are like doctors too).

I owe a lot to my career and it's no biggie if I don't get much moolah in it. When it speaks of bliss the job gives me, that's incomparable to any amount.

If you'll have the time, feel free to comment on my entries. I'll be glad to read them and even respond to them so keep those comments pouring in.

Tomorrow's another weekend. Have a great weekend readers.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Surrounded With Gods and Goddesses

Back from the land of gods and goddesses. That's what I call Meralco Development Center, the office where I serve as a writer/ editor for the past three years. Yup--that's corporate and training environment setting (actually, I just learned from my managing editor that aside from being a training center, MMLDC is actually an NGO) but what makes me stick to that environment aside from enjoying my work is the people I am working with. They're all nice and absolutely hunks and babes as in beautiful and handsome people--attitude wise and the physical of course.

To see how these gods and goddesses look like, consider these photos:

Sometimes, we need no other explanations. We're working our butt out but we need to have fun too right?

Now, today I got to see this guy named Paulo from marketing and Ernest, the ever-reliable editor that I haven't seen for such a long time. Due to my job as a teacher, I have been doing some of my writing on a flexi-time basis at home for some days so I don't get to see them often. But probably that will change because there are a lot of work to do now. Of course, the environment is still cool, bubbly, loud and full of laughter and energy. The marketing people thought I was there as a trainee but I cleared it up telling them that I have been writing for the magazine for three years and I had some bonding time with them. They we're a bit embarrassed for I've been hearing them talking about "green" stuff but then I'm used to that though I don't divulge. They asked some few but not that personal questions. They asked me of my civil status and while I said the real thing that I am single--no attachments or pending relationships--not even married (it doesn't mean any offense to me anyway), the guys remarked out of the blue matching me with somebody (they think I'm just sitting quietly but then my ears are all up to everything).

I know Paulo as the guy that I see in the marketing department where the editorial staff holds office; normally when my managing editor is out, it's him who I approach to get my copy of the magazine. Although I don't get to talk lengthily enough with him--okay, just now but the conversation lasted for just some minutes--and I don't consider it lengthy. He's accommodating like everyone (probably because I am visiting that's how they do it with other clients and visitors), and I think he's nice. But it makes me feel awkward when he refers to me using the term ma'am. Most people in the office do that actually, I'd be fine when they address me by my first name but then, that's SOP. Probably I'll tell them about it one time.

On the other hand, I met Ms. Eve too (one of the members of the Academic Services Department where I also serve). Of course, our meeting was packed with the usual hug and beso. When she told me that Ernest was with him, I grabbed the chance to step out of the marketing office to have a glimpse of him. And well, when he greeted me with that simple hello, the butterflies in my stomach became alive. Since I began doing projects with the Acad people, I have worked in tandem with Ernest on some projects including transcriptions and the 4th quarter issue of Highlights in 2007 (which was my favorite issue). He's one handyman when it comes to lay outing and PhotoShop editing; thank God for techie creatures like him, he once came to my rescue when I encountered trouble with PhotoShop techniques and shortcuts. He also once tested my courage that made me do something I never thought I have the guts to. Ernest also earned much of my admiration when I saw him pray during our lunch with other Acad members. And what else can I say but he's still good looking as ever.

And maybe I really have to slow down at work for a lot of people have been noticing the weight loss that I've been having lately. From Ma'am Cez, my parents and now my bosses as well as Ms. Eve and Ernest.

I might have had a bad hair day with my teaching today but I'd rather not dwell and divulge much on it. I have a lot to be happy about including a big project and articles lined up. And being surrounded with hunks makes me squealing in giddy delight and maybe I'll be off to Dreamland with an ear-to-ear smile on my face.

Indeed, ang sarap mapalibutan ng gwapo (being surrounded with good-looking guys really feels good) I feel like a goddess too in some way. hee...hee... Talk about the blessing and best part of singlehood.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Realities, Being Blunt and Things to be Happy About

Tuesday night and I am again putting on my sentiments here (or maybe like one superior, Teacher Arthur puts it, writing some "sucky" words). I just wanted to let out all the stress for the past few days has been really draining--from exams to household chores. Since Friday night I have been doing the role of a mother and household manager together with my other obligations as a teacher, writer, blogger and editor.

And I found out, doing the duties of a mother slash household manager is one draining task. But I understand that I really need to go through it; being a woman and with the plans of marrying in the future, it's one essential macro skill.

Now, I have a lot of things to be happy about. Among them:

1. The first issue of Highlights for this year is out (finally!).

2. Visiting MMLDC's website, I was glad to find out that we also participated in the recently held Earth Hour campaign and there's another addition to the sections of the website-- Highlights' E-magazine.

3. My blog entries here are earning comments from readers. Which makes me feel happy, inspired, fired-up and fulfilled in some way.

4. Making peace with a colleague. Really forgiveness heals relationships.

5. I'm letting out the artist/ goofy lass in me for I've been exploring the gadgets that I can put in this blog.

Yesterday, I, with other co-teachers took the exam. It's like returning to the old school setting really. But I almost got into another episode of anxiety attack after being notified of the speech for the speaking exam. Having no time to waste and prepare, I simply deliberated on the subject of marriage. Funny but I and Teacher Grace have contradictory statements.

I simply wanted to share my view and the way how I see marriage. Yes, I could be that serious really, but I have my sacred view when it speaks of that holy sacrament (being a Catholic, matrimony is one of the sacraments I do respect). Funny but years ago, I am a huge marriage skeptic (to the point that I never go to weddings and hate seeing wedding ceremonies) so how come I came to this "probably moving" entry.

This post first appeared in my other blog, Fishball Perceptions with the title Why the Proposal Thing Makes Me Cry and to have that sneak peak of the speech I delivered yesterday, read on the next few lines:

I don’t want to hide in hypocrisy. I admit that in every episode and in every tear that I shed for each unique proposals that I see, I have this secret hope for that day—when one would seriously ask me that question too. I also hoped that he would ask me that. But that does not mean nagmamadali ako. Don’t get me wrong. I’m dying to hear that not because I’m rushing to get married—I’m dying to hear that because I want to seriously spend my life and my days with someone.

It's not just being wed for a day but being with someone in a blessed union forever. To me marriage and getting married is not about the usual connotation—FOR SEX TO BE DONE IN WHAT THEY SAY LEGAL. For me, it’s about spending life with a person I wanted to grow old with; sleeping and waking up next to someone I know will be there for me to have and hold during life’s good and bad times. Making babies and parenthood of course includes the menu.

Some may say that as I watch I Propose, I’m just adding salt to my still fresh wound—but then it keeps my hopes and dreams alive. I believe in the sacredness of the bond of marriage—seeing it through my parents. And I hope that in the near future, it's going to happen to me too. I don’t need a too pricey diamond solitaire engagement ring to signify commitment for I prefer a rather simpler kind.I could even go without it. What matters to me is living the sacred promise.

I simply want to express my opinion for it could probably save someone else's bleary concept about marriage. Yes, I am currently unattached, running and striving through daily bouts of the stresses of life but then, my sincere, solemn conviction remains. Like what I said, I might be walking funny like a penguin due to my disability but then I still have serious thoughts on stuff like this. And with this belief is the prayer that God will give me back the guy that I knew I really wanted to spend my life with.

Quoting Frances Amper-Sales' husband Vince, I end this entry with these meaningful lines:

Perhaps, the greatest measure of love is not in ending up with someone who fate decreed was yours but choosing someone simply because you both want to make it work.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

My WAP is Now Working

Part of my job as a writer is doing research. For three years, I've been that glued to the Internet to rely on back up informations; resulting to RHS or what experts say Research Happy Syndrome which I actually have. Nowadays, since I don't have Internet access at home, I rely on my phone's WAP to access the net for resources. The past months, my internet's always down so I am really feeling terrible.

But last night I tried accessing my phone's internet and well, good news is it's functioning now. At least even if I'll need to work on my articles for the Holy Week even at late periods, I'll survive--with my WAP helping me out.

Now, the next thing to do is to have my busted, bacteria-eaten PC reformatted.

Will a programmer or a technician help me do it please? I just need my PC back ASAP.

Friday, April 3, 2009

I Need To Be Serious With My Health This Time

Taking time out on another Friday. And unfortunately, things are actually not going the way I hoped them to be. Setbacks come one at a time. The week has been full of stressful moments for me and it starts to drive me like wanting to be eaten by my bed.

And I realized that because of these setbacks, my health is starting to suffer seriously. My anxiety attacks are starting to appear again. My stress-induced headaches and migraines are also striking me especially in the afternoon.

Both my parents had realized how my weight started to decline. And a lot of people have been noticing that too.

I realized, I have been putting off my medical needs. Yes, for such a long time, I have never seen my doctor--compared before when I was really a hypochondriac.

I guess I am stressed out with the things that happened at work. I'm starting to think that probably, I'm not really meant for it. That I'm really meant to be a writer and an editor. Right now, what excites me is the assignment for the next issue. I have a deadline to run and yet, maybe I could convert it to positive stress.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Liking Doesn't Necessarily Mean Loving

The past few days, I have been rendering six to seven hours of teaching. And although I have been finding myself coming home bone tired, it's just fine. I enjoy the company of my students. Knowing what has been cooking inside their mind just keeps me compensated, entertained and fulfilled.

And today, as I was having classes with Aaron Lee, I found myself confined in a mind-stimulating argument. No, we did not have a heated, fight-worthy argument like others might think. It began with a simple sentence that started with the phrase I'll be in trouble if... and then the story went on.

I told Aaron that like and love are two different things. The funny thing is he told me, "but teacher it's (like) going to develop there (to love)." To which I defended my view saying that when you like somebody, you don't necessarily need to fall in love with that person. I used an example--comparing the person to a pair of expensive Adidas shoes that you see in a mall. When you look at the merchandise, it doesn't necessarily mean that you must buy it.

Because that is how I look at the situation this time. I knew I've been that "stubborn" for a lot of times--jumping into the pit unprepared; with a feeling unknown, and reasons unclear in my head. And nowadays though there are instances that I am feeling that "complicated emotion" I try not to dwell on it and divert my attention to something else. Just to avoid further complications and heartaches.

I just don't want history to repeat itself.

Yes, it could be true that falling in love is a wonderful feeling. Like how the Beatles' song goes, it is love that makes the world go round. But then when you fall into it without discerning the real reason or purpose, it simply leaves you and your life complicated. And if Aaron Lee has that conviction that liking could further develop into loving, I respect him for that. At least, he has a concrete view on something. A belief that he could live by in his life.

Like what I used to say, to each his own.