Friday, July 31, 2009

A Cabinet of Thoughts

I'd like to believe that I was really destined to be a writer. These are some of the journals that I have kept all the years--proof that I would eventually develop a relationship with words. I started writing my thoughts on a diary back when I was 12. But sad to say, that journal was lost and some where burned. I chose to send them on fire for it contains some negative, bad memories.

So, what do most of these notebooks tell? They narrate stories. A lot of them. From my work and the occupations that I had, my feeling towards each and every failure and success, the milestones that I get to achieve, my funny courtship story and the things and the persons that I love as well as the happy events that's worth celebrating.

My journal spells about my faith, the giddy feeling that I have when I fall in love as well as the tears when I fall out of it. These lined pages had been witnesses to what's been running in my head when I meet people and boys too.

Some pages contain prayers and uplifting Bible verses during my times of hopelessness and my words of thanks for each blessing that come my way.

These journals spell history. And like a piece of advice that was once given to me, record the important events of your life. Your children will cherish reading those when you're gone. I find refuge and bliss in every event that I write in my journals and I hope to pass that on to my kids too.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

According to the Book

I long wanted to do my own version of the book tag since I first learned about it in one of my favorite blogs. It's just that I have a lot of books that I find it hard to choose what to pick since it needs one book where I can get the idea for the tag. And I love books--a lot.

So how does this thing work? read on.

1. Grab the nearest book beside you (no topic specified) just what is near you.
2. Turn the book to page 56.
3. Post the text of the first two to five sentences in the page.
4. Tag five people (if you wish) to do the same thing.

Here's mine:

1. The book is Power of the Plus Factor by Norman Vincent Peale (all right, that's an old book
published in 1987 but worth reading).

2. page 56, here is what t says:

I was tremendously impressed by the caliber of these people. You could tell that the Plus Factor was energizing in all of them. Soemetimes, I think, a single action on the part of an individual can open the door to the Plus Factor. The long term results of the action may not be fully apparent for years but the process has begun.
4. It's actually true and uplifting in a way. Pessimists will have courage to shift to another level if they try to understand the phrase. And I'm tagging these people to do their own thing too:

How about you? share a piece of wisdom from your favorite book.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Sweet Dreams Tara, May the Angels Be With You

I first heard about Tara Santelices almost a year ago during my stint as an ESL teacher in the night shift schedule in Ortigas. At first, I never had an idea that she was actually the girl my co-teacher Ella was mentioning about. (For those unfamiliar, Tara was a victim of a robbery and shooting incident in Cainta, Rizal in August last year).

I am one of those people who despite of being unfamiliar about her personally, kept on following the developments about her case. As soon as I learned about her through Rem's posted bulletin on my Friendster account and after knowing that she was actually once my former beau's acquaintance during an org event here in Angono, I kept myself posted about Tara through the Internet and the news.

She suffered after that horrible night of what was supposed to be a celebration of her 23rd birthday. After that shooting incident, she was left in a coma for almost ten months. It was only this July when she was allowed to go home--despite the doctors' words that she will be permanently disabled.

When I heard about that, I was among those few who hoped that she will still recover and as impossible as it sounds, go back to the same normal girl in this photo. Sadly however, those will remain as it is.

Tara died 4 am last Monday July 27. 10 days before her 24th birthday.

It took her some months of uncertainty and suffering before God finally decided to call her home. Sure it is sad and really disappointing for she was at the verge of her youth capable of doing a lot of great things--from being an artist, musician and head of an NGO; those were taken away from her just by a fateful night and a single gunshot in the head by somebody who still remains unidentified and at large--and the police say the case is closed (it made me feel fuming mad inside for it clearly shows how useless the law in this country is--it sucks).

But then, all of her sufferings had ended. And all her deeds are off to travel to the gates of heaven with her.

Sweet Dreams Tara. Enjoy singing with the angels and please bring your artistry There with you.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

When Time Isn't Much on Your Side

You can also see this post via Fishball Perceptions.

How do you make the most of the time that you’ve got when it seems away from your side?
This is the thought that is currently running on my mind as I write down this entry. Last night, in the midst of helping out my brother on his thesis is a combined thought running in my head.

The past few weeks, I knew I am a bit consumed with the thought of this person that I see as a potential friend. I don’t consider that person to be special but I’d rather want to become this person’s friend and take things from there rather than going to the next best thing ASAP. I’ve been single for six months and I do enjoy this state that enabled me to know and meet people and talk to them–including single, potentially-available guys.

But despite of this single and available status that I am currently having, I admit to still being that slow–as in. Yesterday, I posted a status on my Facebook account asking for advice on whether asking for a guy’s number is okay or not; just to set my thoughts straight. I suppose I’m really that slow. I’ve been describing this person to some of my friends but when they ask if I was able to get the number, I’d give the same, soggy reply–NO.

They poured their opinions out good enough for me to understand. They say it’s okay as long as you’re on speaking and greeting terms. And that’s the way we have been for some time now. But then I just don’t have the guts on doing other stuff–which includes asking for the number.

Then last night as I was talking to a friend who’s also close to this person, she told me things about this kinda cute creature (I found out we have the same penchant about basketball) however, I found out one thing too which I know would prompt me to move. The person is about to leave by the end of the month.

Two weeks. That’s all that’s left for me to see this person. I want to know this kinda cute creature more. And I don’t know how is that going to be. Lately, I’ve been looking forward to Fridays as my favorite day of the week for a lot of reasons.

And suddenly I only have two (or less than that) Fridays left. I really want to be friends with this person and I don’t know how I could do that with that short span of time that’s running so fast.

Indeed I’m chasing time. But I hope it doesn’t mean closing time.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Celebrating Six Months of Singlehood

Blogging on a rainy Saturday afternoon. Relishing sentimental solitude listening to Michael Jackson's She's Out of My Life. Sometimes, it's good to be alone even just for a day.

So, today June 18 is somewhat worth celebrating for me. It has been a six-month journey to singlehood. Six months of doing nothing but exploring and knowing things as well as devoting myself to work. Six months of independence and liberation.

But don't get me wrong. Before I tried investing myself in a relationship, I have already considered myself Ms. Independent. And while I have been single and going solo for six months, within those quiet, peaceful period, I was learning lessons. Bits of wisdom that I really appreciate and makes me wise.

Five years ago, I knew that I wasn't ready to be romantically involved with somebody. I knew I really am not. That's one fact that I attest to. Despite my mom's belief that being 19 is already acceptable to go out on dates and enter a relationship, for me I knew I wasn't just ready for that yet. But, I took the plunge despite the uncertainty at the back of my head; however, things that followed told me my intuitions were right.

I know that I'll be ready for the whole relationship thing only when I reach 24. That I was really sure. It was during my time of being solo that I learned the essentials of a (successful) relationship. Probably, my first one is just like a practice test (if I could put it that way). And experience is indeed a great teacher. For one, back then I learned I was that idealistic over it. I'll be frank to admit that I wanted the whole thing to work for I believed that whoever will be the first should be the last. Which is actually a huge false, notion. So lesson 1: Never be so idealistic. Be realistic instead.

However, I'm happy to have known that I could still be the independent me. Yesterday I had this chat with Sherwin and Jade; from Sherwin, it was a conversation which led to a line that linked being single equals cold, lonely nights. And with Jade about the nice things a "perfect guy" or (perhaps ideal boyfriend) would do--buying you roses, driving or in other cases ride with you home.

Another lesson I learned both as a single and a once attached lady, is that you can be happy on your own. Happiness is a choice. And guys find happiness attractive too (that's a nice tip). Romantic relationships aim to enhance you and not to change everything about you.

And with regards to the gestures, I often tell my friends that I don't need a man to buy me roses or chocolates--that's why I'm working; to earn money for me to buy them on my own. But to put things precisely, it's not bragging but to show independence. I'm not preventing prospective guys to be sweet and caring. If they'd want to be so, I'd love to accept that. I'd be upfront in admitting that I'd love to feel that giddy feeling of being pursued by a guy whose worthy of ardor. If only those heartwarming gestures would be consistent. It's that I simply just don't want to rely on the sweetness and end up disappointed for the romantic today deadma tomorrow behavior. Like what an APO Hiking Society hit goes, wag masanay sa pagmamahal.

On the other side, I also learned things about expectations. Dr. Phil McGraw writes, "the 100 percent candidate doesn't exist. If the guy has 80 percent of what you want and potential to grow the extra 20 percent, you need to bag that boy up for he's good to go Do not walk past him while you're looking for Mr. 100 percent, because somebody else is going to marry Mr. 80 percent."

Nice, wise words. To which I agree and I'd be gracious to put mine to Mr. 70 percent. Once a colleague asked me about this and I responded another wise advise I found from reading Cosmopolitan; telling him that I don't need the next guy to be good looking the same way as Sam Milby, Piolo Pascual or Brad Pitt. For even if this guy looks like Brad, if he can't take his hands off all the Angelina Jollies in the world, he's no good. Keep expectations low and it will take you a long way to go.

My ex is certainly out of my life now. I have learned my lessons and will continue to learn more as each day comes along. Yes, I still have that little fear about feeling and falling in love . But then I know I deserve to feel that wonderful, blissful feeling. While I've been hearing of my friends' kakainggit and kakakilig love lives and other friends are trying to set me up for dates, I am not closing my doors to eventually finding him and building my own. As talk show host Boy Abunda puts it, always have the courage to love one more time. Always one more time.

I end this entry quoting Vince Sales, husband to OK! Magazine Philippines' editor-in-chief Frances Amper-Sales taken from her blog Topaz Horizon:

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

Have a great weekened everyone.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

You're the 1 Goldilocks

taken during Lola's 89th birthday last June 12.
Whenever I hear the name Goldilocks, I associate the name with either of these: the girl in the children's book story, luscious cakes and pastries and of course, birthdays. More than just a bakeshop and sweetland, the name Goldilocks has been a haven of sweet treats and memories. My love story started with a box of Goldilocks polvoron left in my doorstep. Soon after, it was my friend's turn to establish her sweet love story with a pack of their macaroons. Their products are more than just a remedy to a sweet tooth, is a way to win someone's heart. In families, including mine, their products had become part of the family's special events. No matter what the occasion is and despite our ages--may it be my two-year old nephew, 25-year old daughter or my 89 year-old grandmother, we look forward to having Goldilocks pastries and cakes as our (edible and yummy) "special guest"in our table during Christmas, New Year's Eve and of course, birthdays.

Now that Goldilocks also served native dishes, I find myself frequenting their stores. When I was teaching, I got so hooked on their fresh lumpia; so heavenly that it became my comfort food. No wonder, even my relatives in Canada would come home just for their polvoron, palabok and other yummy and really Pinoy dishes. I must admit that despite of having Famous Amos or Mrs. Field's, I can't trade them with Goldilocks.

You're the 1 Goldilocks for you bring out the happiness in every story, the bliss and fun in every occasion and most of all, make us proud of being a Filipino. Having Goldilocks gave me another reason to be proud of. More than 40 years of bringing happiness in everyone and memories in every occasion that is worth to be cherished for a lifetime.

Indeed, Goldilocks is more than just a fairy tale character to me--and even to everybody.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Not Only For Today

Today I got this message on my mobile phone:

Just for today
Decide to be happy.
To live with what is yours.
If you can't have what you want,
Maybe you can what you have.

Just for today...

Decide to be kind.
Be cheerful.
Be agreeable
Be understanding
Be your best
Dress your best
Talk softly
Look at the brighter side of things.
Praise people instead of criticizing them.

Just for today...

Try it.
After all,
It's just for a day
Who knows, you might like it
And do it again tomorrow.

Thank you Sir Noel Adriano for those wonderful words. Surely, these things need not be done just for today but everyday.

Friday, July 10, 2009

What a Former Wife Thinks

Two days since Michael Jackson's memorial service. Everyone still has that hangover while US authorities are facing a problem of where to put the cards, gifts and flowers given by mourning fans. Like Frances Amper's blog says, surely MJ will be missed. And after the busy schedule I had with a project, I had the time to access the blog of Lisa Marie Presley, the King of Pop's ex-wife. And I don't know the feeling running deep within right now. The blog states of Michael's premonition and fear that he would end up just like his late father-in-law, Elvis.

Creepy but 14 years after that, it actually happened. The blog contained Lisa Marie's feelings toward her ex-husband's death as well as her clarifications on the life they had as a couple. She clarified that their relationship was not a "sham" as what others (including the press) think. With her conviction (which I do believe is real) that despite of being just together for one (or two) years (they got married in 1994 and divorced in 1996), Lisa Marie said and believed Michael loved her as much as he could love anyone.

She had seen the best and worst side of her ex-husband and wanted to save him from the latter.

But doing so, she was left emotionally and spiritually ill that in the end she decided to leave and let Michael be brought by his fate. And now that he's gone, she felt gutted at that.

That she was unable to save him.

In a way, I could relate to what she wrote there. Though I was never married to anyone, I had been through the same situation that lasted five, hellish years filled with 90 percent tears and disappointment. I thought I could "change" the man but then, for trying to do that, I ended up almost losing the identity of who I really was. I'll be frank in admitting that after I ended the relationship six months ago, I realized that in the five years, I became the tasteless girl that I was not born to be. In the five years, I became somebody who settled for the so-so second best when people and friends knew me to be someone who lived by some "standards".

Yes, I let loose and eventually removed those "standards" to accept someone who in the end is not worthy. In the weeks after the break up, of course I felt sad too for in a way he had been kind kahit pakitang-tao man lang. And like Lisa Marie, I tried to be a man's savior. Trying to wake him on the reality that he has to do something for himself.

In the end, I knew I need not be his redeemer. I was left with the lesson that men can't be taught what to do--regardless of how good the intention is, if that's what they want for themselves, that they would follow. There were more things that got revealed to me months after that--things that were actually hurting and disappointing. I was really thankful to have left this loser guy before losing the whole game, my identity and myself.

Yes, I could be the girl living in "standards" but those things are for the good purpose. If he was unable to take the hag of it, it's because he really doesn't want to. He wanted a loser, trash worthy life and that's one thing that I don't. Probably, in the future, someone's going to understand why I have those and maybe live by it--aside from me.

To read Lisa Marie's blog, click here.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Thoughts in the Middle of Preparations

The editorial board of the magazine has been busy preparing for the anniversary issue scheduled to be released hopefully next month. As of this writing, I just finished writing another article for one of the sections. I'm happy that one of my works were included for the "best issues" of the magazine; my hard work is paying me off.

Yet, lately I have thoughts running in my head about my career as a writer. I do love this thing but then, I also yearn for career and financial stability. These days, there had been moments when I think about it. Sometimes I have doubts too of leaving this in exchange for another career. But then I knew I simply can't leave my being a writer. Despite of the joy that I get pursuing my passion, I also want to achieve a thing that I'll be doing daily.

For three years, I've been serving MMLDC in a freelance basis and within that span of time, I knew I'm happy with the company. I am happy with the company of people I am working with. I must admit that for such a long time, It was my earnest hope that I could serve the company for good.

At 24, I also long for stability. I've been career-driven and now that I've had my wish of being a published writer before I reach 30, I am already happy realizing that. This time, I'd want to serve the company for good. Although I'd still want to write for the magazine. I told one of my editors about it--that if ever I'd be hired to work for any post in the company, I'd still be willing to write for the magazine just so that I would be able to practice my craft and pursue my passion which I think is what's really in my veins.

I was once asked by somebody, what made you stay with MMLDC for three years being a freelance writer and you only live paycheck after paycheck? It's plain simple but true, my response was: because I'm happy writing, practicing the craft and I enjoy the company of people I am working with. That despite of their ranks, my bosses treat employees not as plain ones but like a family. They make me and their other crew feel important. One time I remember telling my mom, if my application (to other companies) won't work--which happens most of the time, then probably I'm really destined to serve and stay in MMLDC.

When you're happy and you know it, it's really hard to leave. Or to put it appropriately, you won't think much about leaving. I declined an opportunity waiting for me in Australia in 2008 because it would mean goodbye to writing for MMLDC Highlights--and I can't afford to quit. Thus in my current situation, I take part-time jobs in order for me to still write for Highlights. At least while I'm not yet working for MMLDC as an employee.

The other thing why I've been looking forward a stable career? I'm saving up for my next plan--going on a Disneyland trip--again before 30.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Goodbye Goggles!

This is the pair of spectacles that I have been wearing the last two years. And after that period of wear in and out, this morning, my eyeglasses finally resigned. And I'm currently dealing with an eye wear emergency. I'm currently a bit distressed and concerned since those spectacles are so important for me. Half of my life is in it; without it, I can't go anywhere and although I can recognize hues and shades, I can't read words and letters.

Literally, I'm blind. I can't chat for long tonight, I have to put my writing on hold and the, other thing I have a scheduled meeting tomorrow.

I just hope my glasses will be repaired tomorrow morning.