Friday, January 09, 2009

In from left field

I never had any interest in French. I didn’t want to learn it and I was not particularly impressed with people who spoke it. Yesterday, I considered taking French lessons for the first time because I need, my soul badly needs, something new.

Today, I enrolled na.

Wooo hoooo!

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

The high cost of grabbing life by the balls

It doesn’t come cheap this living business. There are so many things I want to do but migeads, its adding up. I have given up a laptop na nga eh and its still gonna be masikip like my pants. Sana Oprah finds out about me and grants me three wishes. Anyway, to put it on record, these are the things I plan to do this year for myself;

For the body:
1.Box – at least twice a week, no exceptions
2.Yoga – at least twice a month, no exceptions
3.Dance – at least once a month, no exceptions
4.Hike – 1 mountain lang, okay na yon
5.Take better care of skin so derma and facials and face creams - regularly
6.Be more vigilant about hair removal (so waxing and IPL) – as needed
7.Shop more. Much more.

For the mind:
1.Enroll in a workshop and/or short course.
2.Take a foreign language class – I want Italian but its soooo mahel so maybe Spanish nalang. Hay. How obvious.
3.Read more, stalk less.
4.Improve my career skills and take the career seriously
4.Also yoga – see above

For the soul:
1.Travel - domestic or international, I don’t care talaga as long as its someplace else
2.Enjoy more art in various forms - visit more museums, watch more plays, listen to more music, yadeedee, yadeeda.
3.Take long drives alone as often as possible
4.Meet new people, make new friends – I don’t know how to go about this really.
5.Learn to love myself - Yuck. Well at least this one comes free. Although kailangan maresolve ang issues of the body which entails expenses so fuck)
6.Also yoga – see above

Finally, I don’t want this year to be all about me. I want to affect the world. I want to make that worn out cliché-ic difference. Miski pa onti-onti muna. Kasi naman sa totoo lang, I’m not yet ready for all-out, paheram-ng-belo-mother-theresa altruism and since hindi ko rin kayang mag I-will-fund-a-foundation philanthropy, these will be my baby steps to making a difference;

1.Make one stranger smile - daily
2.Spend, at least, one afternoon a month in a depressed community and do my best to not make them so depressed. Hee hee.
3.Find one person running for office that I truly believe in, pwedeng kahit ano miski barangay tanod, basta someone I really believe in and volunteer to help with his/her campaign.

Yun na muna. Hee.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009


written by Max Ehrmann in the 1920s

Go placidly amid the noise and the haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.

As far as possible, without surrender,
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even to the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons;
they are vexatious to the spirit.

If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain or bitter,
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs,
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals,
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love,
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment,
it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be.
And whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life,
keep peace in your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Dear God,

It would be a waste of time to start with anything else but the obvious so let me just break the ice by saying that that 2008 was the single most difficult, painful, traumatic, terrible year of my life. Of course, I’m just taking your lead here since you didn’t want any time wasted either when you clued us in on just how difficult the year was going to be when we found papa unconscious in the bathroom on January 1, 2008. I suppose you didn’t want to insult us by sending subtler hints like black cats or dead fish wrapped in newspaper. I appreciate that. It was going to be hell and you wanted us to brace ourselves. Thank you.

We lost papa in February 23. Since then, there hasn’t been a day that I have not felt guilty about not spending more time with him or not showing him enough how much I loved him. I will have to learn to forgive myself for that someday. It’s difficult to breathe you see, when it feels like this big, merciless hand is gripping your heart. Guilt is often merciless. As it should be. Rightly or wrongly, this guilt is still one of the things that connect me to papa today. I am grateful for it.

A little over a month after, tito gozen passed. In august, abuela's long and fruitful life came to an end. In September, caye left us as well. In December, tita nena’s tired body finally found rest. Four people I loved dearly and who were loved immeasurably by people I myself love immeasurably. My mother, her brothers and sisters, Tracy, and Corinne have lost sooo much. I have never once pretended to know exactly what they were going through. Loss is different for everybody. And yet, loss is still loss. And papa’s death prepared me to be there for them.

All I wanted to do, all that I thought was right to do, was mourn for them. Life should have left me alone to grieve. Instead, I had to worry constantly about money and keeping our house. Instead, I had to keep on mending a stubborn heart that kept breaking.


It’s done.

I will be happy now.

After all, I have so much to be grateful for.

I have this amazing group of people I call my family and get along with like friends. And then I have this other amazing group of people I call my friends and love like family. I am surrounded by individuals who have held my hand and kept me warm through all this shit. I will not exchange any one of them for Brad Pitt. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

I am especially grateful for this strong, incredible woman who has kept my family well and happy. I watch her sleep sometimes and I am always filled with pride and love when I do. She’s not perfect and she’s sometimes weird and she’s bullishly set in her ways but she is simply amazing.

I have a job that I am loving more and more each day. Never mind that its not a passion that consumes me and never mind that it doesn’t pay so much. I like the people I work with. I love the man I work for. I even enjoy the company of my clients for your sake. Hahaha. Get it? I was gonna say for Christs sake but since I was already talking to you I said for your sake. Hahaha. Sorry. Exag.

Anyway, moving along.

I have a sense of humor that keeps me sane. Thank you.

I have a new car. Yesssss. Thank you.

I, at least, didn’t gain as much weight as I could have. Yes, I definitely could have gained much much more. Super thanks.

I have enough wonderful memories of the people we’ve lost to keep them alive in my heart forever. Thank you very much.

Basta marami pa.

All I can say is, I am looking forward to 2009. I am excited. I am very excited. After all, there’s nowhere to go but up. And I promise you my dear God, that I will do more than go up. I will fly.


Love always,