2014 Yearend Post

I wasn't able to do a decent year-end post. The remaining days of 2014 got me pre-occupied most with not-so productive moments. Resting for most part of it since I had been sick the first few weeks of December. 

I stayed at my place for two consecutive days alone. I thought I will be able to clean but not really, all I did there was lie in my bed, either read or watch something on my laptop. I had planned to make year-end post in my head but the procrastinator in me prevailed until now, a few hours before we welcome 2015, I am collecting my thoughts about how 2014 had gone by. 

The year 2014 had been a year of many surprises. Not so many travels. Many deep realizations. Countless blessings. Getting used to solitude. Tough challenges. 

Topsy turvy.

Looking back to my posts for 2014 will activate a lot of emotions from ups and downs. Maybe that's just how equilibrium works. One can't just be happy at all times. One day, I am so happy, the next day, I feel discouraged. Then, come next day, I am back to the jolly old me. 

No matter how low I had felt, I always try to end things on a positive note. Sometimes, it feels like crazy. No matter how hopeful I am, I remind myself to keep grounded on reality because that's were my sanity is.

I try to remind myself that I should be fearless. However, there were those days that I let fear defeat my desires. For the opportunities I have missed, it was because I was scared. I didn't have much faith. I just give laziness as an excuse but truly, it was really because fear came first.

This blog had been an online diary of how my 2014 had gone. 

As 2014 comes to end, I would like to extend my deepest gratitude to the people who made my 2014 a rollercoaster ride. You had been part of it--physically or virtually, it doesnt matter. As long as you did, thank you. 

The start of the year usually is filled with plans. I ought not to make so many plans this time. For the meantime, I will continue what I am doing to make myself and the people I care for become better and better. 

Eliminating fear or not really, or mostly likely having much more faith that everything will fall in their right places is something I have to prioritize.

More FAITH.

The first quarter of 2015 is critical.

Lord, I cast all my cares upon You. 

The Score

Kunwari, may interesadong malaman......... 


Para sa taong 2014, eto ang score ng lovelife ko! Sana next year, hindi naman mag Super Dry!





Risking to Dream

It had always been my dream to be someone who reach out to many people and inspire others. But life had been so challenging that I had made so many wrong decisions in my life and sometimes I really feel that I am way behind my contemporaries and that I am not worthy to talk about how my life had been changed with the way I see things. There were times that envy would overpower my emotions and I would pity myself for being someone way below than I dream of myself. I thought earning a certain amount of money could help me erase that insecurity but it actually lead to deeper insecurities.

Signing up to be a Teaching Fellow was a very big risk—huge pay cut, moving out of a comfortable office, change of working hours and giving up comfortable travels and tours. It was a risk I am thankful I had been very brave enough to take. The two years had been crucial for it made me think of the most important aspects of my life.

Working for this organization helped me fulfill one of my dreams- that is to reach out to kids and make them realize that they can do a lot of things and that they can also dream big. Being with kids also made me dream that I am forever a child. Working with kids always makes me put myself in their shoes every time I try to plan things for them at the same time having a mature attitude on how to deal with mishaps in an out of the classroom.

Joseph the Dreamer is one of the Bible characters I had come to know at a very young age. He had inspired me in a lot of ways and actually made me want to dream of bigger dreams not just for myself, also for the people close to my heart. Just like him, I hope I can always face every unfortunate event with a positive attitude, putting my trust and my all into His Divine intervention.

Working for this organization made me dream BIGGER dreams. Through the people I have been working with, I come to realize that really, anything can happen as long as you have your eyes on the goal and if good working relationship and trust are built. Having a strong support system around had made me stronger and made me confident that I can always go for greater opportunities.

My dream of building a more comfortable house for my family is still there and if plans fall into places, we may even start the construction by 2015. My hopes of traveling around the country and the world never fades, I even have a list of which countries to go to first should I have the chance. Treat my family and friends to hearty meals and movie dates. Buy that bag and shoes without having to worry of the price. Give out gifts and books, tell stories to kids, teach them to sing and make them realize that education can really turn their lives around as long as they persevere.

Whenever I think of my ambitious goals, I am usually taken aback and afraid that I may not be able to reach it. Because I forget that I am not alone. I am surrounded with wonderful people and God is always there to lead the way. So, to not be afraid, I remind myself that God is there to lead my way and that along with me are amazing people to help me through.


Dear Jesus Christ,



They say that you weren't really born on 25th of December. Nonetheless, people had chosen to celebrate Your birthday on that day. I hope you don't mind. We just want to thank You for coming to save us from our sins and from the fires of hell. 

I hope you receive more letter than Santa does. You see, when I was a kid, I used to believe he would really grant my wishes. I would write him a letter only to realize that it should be You that I should have been writing to, not to wish for gifts but to express my gratitude. 

More than two millenia ago, you were born in a manger to later on fulfill the prophecy to die on the cross at Calvary to deliver us from sins. We were told but  most still did not believe. I am grateful that I have come to know. I do believe in You being my Savior and Redeemer. You have been guiding me eversince. 

As time goes by, as the merriment becomes grander, a lot of times we forget the true meaning of Christmas. There are times that I become sad because I don't have fancy stuff for the holidays, I can't afford a sumptuous meal, I can't buy gifts for the people I love. There are also times that I envy people around me for all the good things that they brag about. 

I am sorry if I feel that way at times. If You were here, You probably would have tapped my shoulder and told me that I am far more blessed soul than I had thought of.

Who am I to wish for fancy things, feastive meal or expensive gifts when You, the King of Kings chose to be born in a manger and wrapped in swaddling clothes, then die in a wooden cross. 

You gave Your Life for me. Knowing that Someone chose to die for me is something I should be bragging about. 

From the Lord of all creations, I had received the most precious gift. I quickly forgotten. The Ruler of all nations, saved me. I cannot ask for more. Nothing can be grander of a gift than The Gift of Salvation. 

As I remember that, it gives me comfort eventhough the house I live in with my family is dilapidated, we don't have all the delicious meals in our table, I don't have money to buy those materials things. 

I have a loving and faithful family. You surround me with wonderful people. You shower me with great blessings, most of the time, more than I asked for. Especially on those days when I make full surrender to You. 

So, who am I ask for grandeur when my Saviour chose to be born in humility? I am nothing but a blessed soul. Continue to rule my life for I find peace and comfort in Your presence. 


Your Servant,
Kat

Time.

I am not yet ready for the year to end. This feeling of not having enough time always makes me feel sorry. Sorry because I feel that I havent done enough. For myself, for my family, for the kids and for my friends. 

The chase with time is an endless chase. But I still dare try to keep up. It can be exciting at times especially if you really love what you are doing and want to get results. There are also those exhausting moments, those days that I just want to get through with or I dont know why I do what I do or my physical body wont cooperate. 

During those exhausting days, I wonder how time looks at me. Does time take pity on me because I still have a lot of things to do but I cant move on anymore? Or is it laughing at me because no matter how I try to keep up I just can't? I can only wonder for I will never know. Time will never tell me it is just there to offer itself. 

Time is just there. No feelings. It has nothing else to offer but itself. 

There are days that I say time is cruel. On days that I fail because I have no time and energy, i blame the cruelty of time. It has no consideration. Had it slowed down, I probably would had done many things. 

If Time can be slowed down so I could keep up, will I take time to stop and smell the roses? Will I be able to realize what's important in my life if I just keep pon moving? Will I take time to say thank you to the people who makes my life worth-living? 

I can never know. 

In the end, no matter how I label time to be cruel and inconsiderate, it ceaselessly gives me another chance. Every day I wake up to a bright new day to continue what were left undone. Finish the unfinished. Live. Appreciate. Be grateful. 

I may not be ready to let go of the year but I have to. I cant do anything about it but I guess, I can do something about how I want my future to be. 

Time, I will never stop trying to keep up with you. So, please do not stop giving me another chances to try. 

Random Thoughts 12.15.2014


1. Sugat na lalamunan.
    Paos na boses
    Pagod na katawan. 
    Hello Antibiotic, antagal na nating hindi nagkita. 

    Ang nega lang diba? Hehehe

    Kasalanan ko din kasi pinagodmuch ko ang sarili ko. 

2. Nung office girl pa ko, sa mga ganitong panahon, nakagawa na siguro ako ng Christmas Wishlist, nakapaglista ng reregaluhan, nagkukumahog mamili ng panregalo, at pang noche buena. Lakad-lakad sa mall. Nakikipagbuno sa Divisoria. 

3. Ngayon, walang ganun. Eto nandito ako sa bahay. Nagpapahinga. Bukas pa lang ako mamimili pero dito na lang sa malapit at hindi ko na din mabibigyan lahat ng nasa listahan.

4. Tatlong stickers na lang ang kelangan ko para makamit ko ang aking planner! Akalain mo yun. Thank you Family and Friends and to Myself! Konti na lang........ 

5. Ang hirap pa rin sagutin nung tanong, "Ano na ang plano mo after March 2015?"

6. Tanggap na ko sa aking dream school for my MA studies! Woohooo!!! Kelangan ko na din maghanap ng sponsors/scholarships. Bakit ako masaya? Eh alam ko namang sakit ng ulo ang mga iyon. LOL. 

7. This year makakasama na ulit ako sa aming Church Cantata. Exciting lang :) 

8. Nae-excite na kong mag-lookback at magsulat about my 2014. It had been a very wonderful year kahit na sobrang nakakapagod. 

9. Kinakabahan ako para sa 2015. Alam kong maraming darating na biyaya at pagpapala pero sana masuklian ko ang mga iyon.

10. Ginawan ako ng Header ni Lalabels, magamit na nga. Thankeee Lalabels... Ayan, black and white ang theme ng aking munting miming house. 

Magpapahinga na ko. Dapat talaga magpapahinga ko eh. Kaso yung tablet kasi, Yung telepono kasi eh. 

Promise, magpapahinga na ko. 
Gusto ko lang talaga may post para sa December :) :) :) :)
Kalahati na ng buwan, wala pa kong kwento eh. Pero yung totoo, marami naman talaga. Di ko lang alam kung san sisimulan. 


A Few Hours at Boys Town CDO

Sunday, November 23, 2014.

It’s my first visit in Cagayan De Oro City. For some, when they hear about Cagayan De Oro City, first thing that will come to mind are whitewater rafting, the long zipline, Camiguin Island tour and other adrenaline-filled activities one can do while at CDO. I didn’t do any of that. Instead, Rhaine, the head of Child Protection Brigade Volunteers and one of hosts for my sudden visit, invited me to join him and his friends for a few hours of visit to the Boys Town in Brgy. Lumbia, Cagayan De Oro City.

I’m a public school teacher so I’m very much exposed to stories of kids living in high need areas and them being underprivileged. I am also part of the advocacy of equality of education for every Filipino child. I thought I’ve seen it all. I was thinking visiting these kids will not be different from my daily tasks. I’ll just teach them a song and then help distribute some hygiene kits we had come up with, share some merienda, then take photos and the day will be over, I will have another story of adventure and sharing when I get back in Manila later that afternoon.

A few hours of interaction but the memories and realizations about my visit will never fade away. It is etched in my heart.

As soon as we start walking into alley towards their session hall, everything felt different. I saw teenager boys playing basketball at the nearby court. They then stopped playing and rushed to their rooms to get dressed. I met their social worker, Ate Marish, who then helped us set up and prepared the kids that day.

It took a little while for everyone to be gathered so I got the time to chat with the younger kids who were too excited about our arrival and were very much ready to welcome us. These are kids, I told myself, I can handle them. So, I asked for their names and ages and then Joseph, 12, one of the boys told me, “Nung isang Sabado lang ako dumating dito.” Then, it strucked me, these are not ordinary kids, I may be working with kids in high need areas, but most of them still have their families. These kids are mostly orphaned, disowned, abused or whatever might suffered from cruelty from whoever.

The conversation continued…
“San ka galing?”

I actually don’t remember what place he answered for that question. I think he said he is originally from Butuan.

Iniwan ako ng nanay ko sa palengke ng 2 years old pa lang ako.
Eh bakit isang linggo ka pa lang dito
Namatay na kasi yung umampon sakin.”
Tapos nagpagala-gala na ko. Nakita lang ako ng pulis at dinala ako dito.”
Kumusta ka naman? Mas ok naman dito diba?”

Then he smiled.
“Opo.”

Then the program started. Rhaine introduced each of us -- Me, Lala, John and Imee. We all went into a circle and introduced ourselves. I’ve met 21 boys ranging from ages 4-20 years old. A great number are teenagers and are studying under Alternative Learning System or ALS. They were all smiling when they introduced themselves. A bit shy but still smiling.

Thoughts were already running through my head. I am not in a classroom. I am somewhere else where kids have been through a lot and they probably are undergoing healing, getting support from each other and trying their best to live a normal life. I was thinking of teaching them our Community Song in school as a reiteration that they live in a community and that they have to work and help each other.

I tried my best to look composed, I introduced myself again.

Hi, ako si Teacher Kat. Grade 3 teacher ako sa isang public school sa Quezon City. Katulad lang din ng school nyo yung nandyan malapit sa labas.”

We played Simon Says, a bring-me game which I wasn’t really prepared for. So I tried to be fun as much as I can. I asked for a Gray Hair, Toothbrush, a Flower and a School ID. All of which they enthusiastically brought to me. The kuyas were so competitive that they ran outside and into their rooms to get the items.

Then, it’s time to teach the song. I started to sing. They were all silent. I tried teaching them the actions of the song, but I seem to have been lost.

I apologized.
“Pasensya na kayo, kinakabahan kasi ako.”

Then one of the older guys shouted.
“Wag kang kabahan, ituring mo kaming parang nakakabatang kapatid mo lang.”

I felt relieved and tried my best to be composed and excited about the song. The big boys look so cute while dancing and the younger ones where trying their best to sing the song as well.

Still, I was rattled. But then, the day went well and Rhaine took over the next part of the hour and did some more games until it’s time for some meryenda. Everyone gladly took their share. We shared two trays of banana bread and a big jar of juice. It was a very humble meal and, everyone gladly fall in line and took their share.

Then it’s time to distribute the hygiene kits Rhaine prepared for them. Inside it are two sachets of shampoo, a toothbrush and a small bar of bath soap. He asked me to give it to them one by one, I was a bit hesitant because I was just there as an invite and that it was really him who made this visit possible for all of us. So, as a starter, I asked what the importance of clean body is and how to keep ourselves tidy. They all jovially answered. Then I reminded them, that it’s important that they keep themselves healthy and clean because they have to finish their studies and later on, be the ones helping other people. I even kidded that they are not yet allowed to have girlfriends, that they have to finish their studies first. Then, every time get hold of their loot bag, they say, “Thank you.”

As a thank you gift, the Swagger Group, a group of dancers they have in there, prepared a hiphop-techno dance for us. The two youngest boys also joined they really captivated the audience with their own groove. They also know the steps, and they look for adorable trying to dance the steps just like their Kuyas.

While everyone was trying to have some good time, I asked Ate Marish about the other things these boys would need. She said that they have so many clothes. I asked if they have a library, she said, they currently don’t have. Also, I noticed that their utensils are not that much, so I guess, kitchen and dining pieces are also needed.

It’s time to end the program. So Rhaine, said our goodbyes and the boys started to go on their own ways. Back to their usual Sunday stuff I guess, the young ones were still in the room hanging out with us. All smiles. I know they wanted to say more but I personally have a hard time understanding their dialect.

I was trying to check out the property, asking Rhaine about the orphanage when Ate Marish came and we said our exchange of thank you and goodbyes. Then, I saw Joseph again.

“Magpapakabait ka dito, ha. Bibisitahin kita ulit.”
“Makikita kita sa TV!” was the last words he said and then left.

I actually don’t know why he said that. But, it felt good that somebody had thought that I am a celebrity. Haha

Our program ended early because it was really an impromptu one so we still got the time to visit one of Lala’s friend within the vicinity for some refreshment until we are ready to go back to the city as I have a plane to catch later that afternoon.

The visit lasted only for a few hours. I was leaving the place with a heavy heart. Not because I pity those kids but because I wasn’t prepared for it. Would they even remember I visited them? For sure, a lot of other people and organization had been reaching out to them. Will they even remember the song? Will they even realize the meaning of the song? I don’t know. I haven’t really taught them anything that they don’t know. But they did teach me something.

Their smiles. That’s one of the best smiles I’ve seen. These kids had been through a lot and still they had manage to smile. They share their life openly not because they want other to pity them, but it’s a sign that they had accepted their situation and that they are trying their best to life their life just like any other child.

They are family. They may have lost a family in the past, but they had found a new one and a new home. I am so happy that they had seen me as an “Ate” even though I just met them for a few hours. It meant so much, to be respected and to be trusted by their healing souls.

They sing and dance to tune of the music. I really didn’t do well teaching them the song, my hands were all over, my voice was a bit tense but still they got me going. They made the song lively and they danced happily to it. They can find the happiness in every little thing.

They say “Thank you.” With a smile. What we gave them would seem very small yet their thankful. Endlessly thankful. I’ve heard the word so many times that day, uttered smilingly. It felt great. We’ve only given them a few but their grateful, I wonder what more if we can them something big and something that won’t fade.

The bristles of the toothbrush will grow old and would need to be replaced, I am sure though that their smiles will always be there.

The shampoo and bath soap may ran out, I am sure though that their souls will stay clean and free from hate from whatever dark past they had.

A few hours of interaction that had left a mark in my soul. They taught me many things. I had always loved my parents but visiting these kids, made me love my parents more. I am such a blessed soul. I can say that I am positive person but there will really be days that I feel that the whole world is against me but these kids reminded me to keep my positivity ALWAYS. I may not know all their name, their stories, but I know that they have been through a lot, far more than I can imagine, yet they manage to smile and get through the day and accept what life had to offer them.


I promised to come back. As to when, hopefully, as soon as the school year ends. This time, I want to share to them something that doesn’t fade nor ran out. I want to share to them my love for reading, I want to share that wonderful experience of being lost in the pages of imagination and opportunity. 

Just like any other kid living with their families, they deserve to know. They deserve equal opportunity in education that will open more doors and windows for brighter future. When, how and what would it take for me to get this done, I still have to figure out. I know I am not alone. I have Lala, Rhaine, Imee and John to back me up. See you again CDO. See you soon, Boys Town. 

On Leaning In.

My mentor suggested that I read this book: LEAN IN by Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook.


The author discusses about being a woman in the corporate jungle---how Sandberg survived and thrived in a career path where men are considered powerful. 

Allow me to share a few things that really made an impression on me. The entire book did, I had a bit of difficulty choosing which one to prioritize, but I know I had to choose.

1.       If you do please everyone, you aren’t making enough progress.
This is absolutely a struggle for and the organization I work with. I personally have internal debates as to when is the right time to rock the boat. I guess, there is really no perfect time, the right time is now. My co-fellows and I can only hope that we really are making a progress. We all have this desire to be liked by everyone, even though we all know that it can never be possible, we can only be liked by a majority but not by everyone. As I attempt to be liked by everyone, I should always remember my main goal of being in the community.

2.       Taking risks, choosing growth, challenging ourselves and asking for promotions (with smiles on our faces, of course).
I really like how she compared corporate world into a jungle gym and not a ladder. Jumping into the next opportunity for growth doesn’t necessarily have to be on the same field where one had started. It actually calmed my soul a bit. At least, I am not the only one having that concern. Swinging from one rope to another can also have its advantages of skills being brought it and the great challenge of learning something new at a very short span of time.

3.       It’s better to focus on specific problems with real solutions.

I want to work in the finance industry because that’s where I had spent most of my working years before I got into teaching. Do you have any suggestions for readings? Websites and companies I can check?

4.       Feedback is an opinion, grounded on observations and experiences which allows us to know what impressions we make of others.
 I wonder what impression I had made on others?

5.       Date them all: bad boys, the cool boys, the commitment-phobic boys, the crazy boys. But do not marry them.
I guess I have been taking this advice eversince. It really is just hard to find a good match.

6.       Done is better than perfect.
Working in an environment which has very high standards in some way made me hesitant to try new things. I became afraid that I might not be able to do it and just make an embarrassment out of myself. I should try embracing this mantra and not let the dreams of perfection stop me.

7.       Every job will demand some sacrifice. The key is to be able to avoid unnecessary sacrifice.
As for unnecessary sacrifice, I really can’t think of anything. So far, with all the decisions I’ve made, I had learned not to regret anything.

My final takeaway in this book:


Leadership is about making others better as a result of your presence and making sure that impact lasts in your absence.

I am broke so I spent a weekend in CDO!

Why I chose CDO? I really don't know. Then, while I was there, I knew all of a sudden.

As soon as I clicked the send button with the email that I had chosen CDO, I really never thought it will ever happen. After a few more days, I received an email with the instruction on how I can get to Cagayan de Oro for free!

Still, I had another problem, what will I do in CDO? Relatives from my grandmother's side had all moved to the US so, contacting them about my sudden trip will not be advisable. I decided to contact Lala, of Telelalahbells, to ask how I could go around the city for a day and what are some advisable things to do while visiting the city. Just the city. I had no plans of going whitewater rafting, or that great zipline because, I have no funds. Remember my previous post? It's all about me being broke at the moment.

Lala, as we all know her, responded enthusiastically and all of a sudden had made an outline of a tour where I could go to while in the city. I said that I was just planning to stay for a day because I have no place to stay. Her friend whom I have never met before was kind enough to offer their house where I can stay overnight.

All set. Booked and I can't really say I was ready. I was a bit of scared. Though I had done lone trip before, it was not like this. I had everything settled, a hotel booking, a map and a list of places where I plan to go. But this one is way, way different. I am putting my trust on a friend I had met though blogging. I am nervous but I am confident that everything will be fine.

Friday had been a long day. Teaching hours in the morning. Seminar workshop for bully kids in the afternoon. A restaurant review in the evening. Laundry. Packing up. Cleaning and checking and re-checking of myself if I really want to do this.

I tried to get an hour of sleep. Since it was the first flight, I had to leave the house an hour past midnight just to make it there two hours before the departure. A few more hours, I am stepping out of the plane, breathing that cold fresh air of Mindanao. Hello Cagayan De Oro of Misamis Oriental Province!

While I wanted to tell you a lot about how my 2-day and 1-night stay had gone, I am more eager to share my realizations about this adventure.

                                                          

                                                        1. It's good to have friends from everywhere! 
               One of the reasons why I pushed through with the CDO trip was because of Lala. She had responded to my queries very happily and that got me excited.

2.  It's good to have the feeling of fear, but the feeling of overcoming that fear should be stronger. 
              It's my first time to go on a trip without a big budget and first time I will meet these people personally.

3. No matter how cruel this world is, we get to meet wonderful people along the way. 
            I had stayed at Kuya Pep's house. There live with him are his younger sister and his mother. Their place had been one of the badly affected areas by Sendong. I can see that they are trying their best to get things back to normal but I can also feel that it's really sometimes hard to get back on track. A bit frustrating as well sometimes. I had also come to know that Kuya Pep is connected with an international humanitarian organization with whom one of my close friends work for! He was suppose to be deployed in Albay however, some things had change and he decided to stay in CDO for awhile until he gets to figure out how to pick up himself from some personal battles he is going through. He was the reason why we were able to spend time with the kids at Boys Town CDO. If he was in Albay, I would never get to meet him.

4. Adventure can only happen if you are blending in with the right people. 
             My stay in CDO had been memorable because people I had been with made me feel very welcome. They were so fun to be with and it's good to see how bonded they are. I am thankful that they let me in the circle even just for a few days. Imee had been the one who took my pictures! This is the first time that I have lots of pictures on a trip! It usually is me who takes the photos! John also brought me a lot of White Rabbit candies! I had never seen White Rabbit candies for a while and imagine my surprise when he he gave me one and did bring more the following day.  Their company had made my CDO stay a memorable one.

5. Kids say the most hilarious things!
             I met Joseph, 12 years old, it's his first week of stay during our visit at Boys Town CDO. His parting words was, "Makikita kita sa TV mamaya!" I dont know what to reply. Hahahaha.
The Boys of CDO Boys Town

6. I am going back to CDO!
             My stay had been very pleasant but I know that there are still things left undone. Apart from the tourist spots that I ought to visit, I really want to come back because I think I need to go back to Boys Town and visit those kids again. Specially Joseph. He was one tough, positive boy. He was the first one I spoke with and the last one who bid me goodbye.
Til we see each other again dear friends!

My CDO trip is a story that is one for the books. My books. My story. My blog.

Another story of gratefulness worth-sharing and worth-looking back when I grow older.

Yeah, I am broke so I spent a weekend in CDO and I am grateful!

Broke and Positive About It

I'm broke.

Believe me, that is something very hard to admit for a 28-year old girl like me. It had been years since I graduated with a degree and had gotten license for it, worked hard, became a BPO and corporate slave and yet, 8 years after, I am broke. I am financially incapable of doing a lot of things a lot of people at my age do, like travel, buy books, spend on coffee, shopping, give to parents and not worry about emergency expenses. For some, they even had started paying for their own places.

But I would never trade this two years I gave it up for.

Two years ago, I was living a normal life, not that I am living an extraordinary life after that, I could say that two years after, I started living a far more grateful kind of life.

I may have stopped acquiring a lot of material things, or even giving so many things money can buy, in return, I learned a lot, much of it money can't buy at a nearby mall or signature shop.

Gratefulness.

That is the word I could come up with fitting to describe how my two years have been. That GRATEFULNESS can be branched out to a lot of many other descriptions--- Family, Friends, Surprises, Faith and of course, Love.

I am so blessed to have the kind of family I have right now. We may be living in a dilapidated house, but inside it I find my treasure. I used to ask why my father never really worked on building a more sturdy house for us, but now, I understand. My parents had invested on us-- their kids. It's now time to return that investment.

I am so lucky to have found wonderful friends from all over! Some of them, I just have to meet up and talk to without the fear of being judged. Some, I don't even have to talk to but reading their thoughts makes me feel connected to them. Others, I may have not talked for awhile but when I get caught up with them and reminisce, it's like we were talking about things that had just happened yesterday.

I had received a lot of wonderful surprises for the past two years! I received a huggable bear which now lays beside me in my bed, a cute bag I bring anywhere as I go forth and catch my dreams, gifts, so many wonderful gifts I didn't ask for but just came and I am so glad to have been the receiver.

In times when I feel so down, prayer kept me going and still keeps me going. God is so wise to give me the opportunity to meet wonderful people. experiences and realizations. I would probably not have it any other way.

I am surrounded with so much love. From family, friends, and the school community I am placed in. And I am not giving up on the chance of finding The One. It's just taking a little bit longer than usual but in God's perfect time and after His own heart, He will let me know.

For now, yes, I am broke and I am grateful.

I just can't wait for the next four months to unfold and complete my 2-year journey.

Strumming My Pain.


Today is Friday. 
This is how I spend the Friday after I lost my phone.
Nagwala ako. Hahaha.

It's been awhile that I had played my guitar Fernando. 
Since I am a Taylor Swift fan and she had released a new album, I had chosen my favorite song on the playlist and this is it pansit!

Maraming mali sa aking strumming dahil kanina na lang ulit ako kumarir ng pagigitara at kumanta na wala din sa tono. >_<

This is one of my maladaptive schemes to cope with a stressful day. I have sooooooo many school-related things to do-- grades that are due on Monday since the card-giving is scheduled on Nov. 13, lesson plans, papers to check, yet, I chose to learn to play this song instead which I wasn't able to perfectly play pa din. Still, this is my favorite! Hahahaha

Please play it at your own risk!!!!!!
Forgive me, I don't know what else to do.

Day-op si Inday :P :P

 

Talking to Myself

I really like to write. I love to write a lot. Just about anything. My life. My thoughts. Just about whatever runs into my head. Writing feels like talking with the words in print, that’s how my tita would always tell me whenever she asks me to write about something when I was in high school. However, I just can’t make that happen all the time. There will be days that I would just run into my computer and type away and post it. There were days that I would start on something and have it forever on the drafts page. Worst are the days that I want to write but I can’t write anything. Just like this.

I am just typing away with nowhere to go. I am squeezing out senseless words from my brains just because I want to write and I am restless.

For now, I will try to write as if I’m talking.

It’s the time of the month. If a girl says it’s the time of the month, people in the room should be able to get it. If not, then let me tell you about it with a ( . ) do you get it now? That looks like a boob, but no, it’s not. It should be regarded as a period. Anyway, I am just trying to make this paragraph longer. So, it’s the time of the month. Red Flag.

For the past few months, these times of the month had been frequently emotional.

Seriously, I can’t even get myself. Why am I so sad? Why do I even bother feeling guilty about what happened to me and my ex when I know now that he is a happy place right now, away from me? Sounds more like of envy, right? For four consecutive months, I had been waking up late in the evening just wanting to cry. Ugh. Not so me because I am not yet drunk. My drunk state-of-being is a different story. But during those late nights, I would wake up and cry and would start typing on my tablet about how I feel if one ever would get a hold of my tablet and read those notes, they probably, scream at my face to “Get a life!”

Seriously, I am also shocked about myself. With what I am going through and why am I like this. I am not into any pill except the vitamins I take and the fat burner pill I take whenever I go to the gym which happens to be on it’s 10th day last Friday. The fat burner is the new addition to the intake however I cannot take it into account because I just had it recently and this emo thing had been happening for months now. And the job of the fat burner is to burn fats while I am working out and not me make cry.

I hope I would stop being like this. I guess it does. In terms of fertility, they say that five days before and first five days of the period are the safest to be in contact to avoid pregnancy. But for me, I am starting to regard these days as the stay-away-from-me days. These are unsafe days to be around me, but honestly, these are the days I am so vulnerable that I would want someone to be with me.

If you’re a boy and you are reading this, be glad you don’t have this kind of monthly burden, so please stop bitching around.

If you’re gay and you are reading this, I am happy for you that you have the heart of a girl like me but no red days.

If you’re a girl and you are reading this, I know you know what I am going through.

So there, I was able to write. I don’t know if it makes sense.

Not everything have to make sense, I suppose. They just have to be worthwhile and I find writing this a worthwhile thing. Whatever that means. 

Randomthoughts 10.23.2014

9:45

Nakakamiss na din magpost. Makapag-random nga.

1. Habang isinusulat ko to, nanonood ako ng The Adjustment Bureau. According to the movie, there are siginificant people whose lives are planned, the plans entails that the lead role give up his love for more bigger responsibilities and wider opportunities for the one he loves. He decided to give up his love and work according to plan. Di pa tapos eh. Di ko ma-share ang ending. 

2. Naka-Day 8 na ko sa gym! Yoohoo! So far, di naman masakit ang katawan ko. Hahaha. I noticed in myself na mas productive ako with my daily tasks and I sleep better.

3. Every day is a success. Small progress and still a progress. It's a slow process.

 4. My bestfriend arrived from Japan, and I got a few Hello Kitty stuff with me again. Pinaka-cute tong si Hello Kitty football player. 

5. Tumaas yata ang grado ng mata ko. Nahihilo ako kapag nagbabasa ng matagal. Nagigising na lang ako sa umaga na nakatakip sa mukha ko yung libro. LOL.

6. Yung mga friends ko dati nag-eenjoy silang magswipe left or right sa aking Tinder Profile until they decided to have their own at nauna pa silang nakapag-date kesa sakin... Why.. LOL.


7. May kamukha si ex sa tinder, pinag-isipan ko pa kung isu-swipe left or right eh, swipe right din naman ginawa ko and It's A Match! Hahaha.



8. I don't know how to say what I really wanna say about the swiping left or right base on how someone looks like on a photo, alam naman nating lahat na essential yun--the physical appearance, I mean. Makabuo nga ng bagong post tungkol dito. Harinawa.


9. It's Museum Month this month, and while checking papers kanina, napagusapan naman ang Art Appreciation na mayroon ang mga ordinaryong pinoy. Kung anong effect ng curriculum sa kalinangan ng mga mag-aaral sa sining. Ang K to 12 ay nabuo upang makapagproduce ng mga ready-for-work na graduates. Very limited room for imagination. Very limited suppy of art materials as well. Art Appreciation had also been marginalized. Most of the time, only the "burgis" people would know how to appreciate it. Nagtanong nga ko sa isang co-fellow ko, 'if we really want to change things in terms of deeper appreciation and awareness of art, where do we start?" We therefore conclude, "Ang hirap sagutin. Mahirap kasi ang bansa natin."

10. Nagstream ako kanina ng mga TED Talks na ginawa dito sa Pilipinas. Hay... Fave ko pa din yung kay Joey Ayala. How he criticized and attempted to re-arrange the National Anthem, the beat, how the words were pronounced and the "ang mamatay nang dahil sayo" got replaced with "ang magmahal ng dahil sayo." Truly, I will never sing the National Anthem the same ever again. I hope the government considers his arrangement. 

11.  Syempre, hindi pa rin nawawala yung desire kong maka-attend ng isang live TED Talk. Kung ako naman ang TED Speaker, ano kayang sasabihin ko. Makapag-prepare na nga. LELS.

11. Natapos na yung The Adjustment Bureau. Makes me think about the last lines in the movie:

Harry Mitchell: [voice over] Most people live life on the path we set for them. Too afraid to explore any other. But once in a while people like you come along and knock down all the obstacles we put in your way. People who realize free will is a gift, you'll never know how to use until you fight for it. I think that's The Chairman's real plan. And maybe, one day, we won't write the plan. You will.

12. Matatapos ko na ang mga grades ng mga bagets. Third grading na! WAAAAA. Magpapasko na! And bonus, mapupunta sa pambayad sa enrolment. LOL. Excited na ko mag-aral ulit para sa sarili ko. Since it is an Open University set up, goodluck sa Time management and Sipag Management.


10:26

Shake It Off

Shake It Off Moments

1.    Dumating na yung test sa Science, tinuro ko sya Mother Tongue as per directive. Ang test nasa English.

2.    Prepared ako magturo, absent ang tatlong teachers. Di ako maka-ikot sa mga dapat kong turuan.

3.    Kinuha ko yung number ng gym na naka-post dun sa labas ng gym, nung tinawagan ko, wrong number.

4.    Anong nangyari sa professionalism sir/mam/sir?

Bad Teacher Moments

1.    May lapis akong dala para sayo. Ano pang dahilan mo at di ka nagsusulat?

2.    Paggising mo sa umaga, bago ka pumasok, isipin mo kung kaya mong maging mabuting bata. Kung kaya mo, go, maligo, magsepilyo at pumasok nang mabango sa school. Kung gustong subukan pwede rin. Kung hindi talaga kaya, baka gusto mong pag-isipan kung anong dapat ginagawa sa paaralan.

3.    Simula bukas, magdadala na ko ng chili powder. Ang marinig kong magmura, bubudburan ko ang dila ng chili powder!

4.    Nanay: Ako nga po sumuko na sa kulit at tigas ng ulo ng batang yan. Hindi ko na po alam ang gagawin.

Teacher: Baka gusto nyong pabakasyunin muna ng isang buwan. Ang hirap po kasing magdisiplina at magturo nang sabay.

5.    Magkikita ba ulit tayo sa isang taon? Dyan mo pa rin ba gustong umupo sa isang taon?


Ang agang dumating ng burn-out ngayong taon.


Makapag-gym na nga lang. Simula next week. Oo, mag-g-gym ako. Perstaym ko sa buong buhay ko. Sa ngayon, #shakeitoff muna. 

Work in Progress

I thought I had my life all planned out. I thought I already know what will happen with me in the coming years, I know what I want, what I need and who I want to be. I really thought I do.

But here I am know, staring at my paper, holding a pencil on my left hand with nothing to write, I try to write something, but I erase it eventually. Then, nothing is in there anymore. This is my first assignment with the 6-month mentorship program I am currently under. It aims to re-design and match the skills and leadership skills we have acquired from the two years of teaching in a public school to our chosen hopefully lifelong careers after this experience.

Before our second meeting sometime this month, I have to make a layout of my life. From my current age up to the age I could ideally live.

Typing this post seems to be a lot easier than doing my life map.

Where do I start?
What do I start with?
How do I start all over again?
Do I really want to start over again?

This time, my personal challenge is to pick that LIFELONG career. That something I wouldn’t get tired of doing every single day.

Nobody is pressuring me but myself.

Hmmm.. Yeah, I am a 15-yr old girl, trapped in a 28-yr old's body. LOL.
But seriously, that's up to my ideal age of 76 I am working on.
It’s not really hard to design my life if I start from a few years from now. What I am having doubts and second thoughts with is what to do after April 2015.


Even if I choose to stay where I am now, after April 2015, it’s going to be an all new journey as my colleagues and those people I took the two years with are deciding to take a brand new paths.

What I like about it is the idea that I can start all brand new. More equipped. More support. More positive.

My career should be able to support and jive with my personal, family and travel desires. My mentor calls this an iMap. On the photo you will see the first three years of my life. From where I am now up to the next two years which I feel are so crucial as I build my career and go with my plans. 

Any time soon, on one of my "paggising, bangon agad" moments, I will tell myself that thing I will never get tired of doing every day of my life. For the meantime, I just gotta do what I have to do every day and do it to the best of my ability. So I will have stories to share and more things to learn from the kids inside my classroom.  

Hagupit


Cry Monday

6:49PM

Umiyak ako kanina.

Parang nagsusumbong lang. Di naman bago sakin ang pag-iyak. Malungkot man o masaya,umiiyak ako. Mas madalas na di ko mapigilan ang luha kapag nagkukwento ako tungkol sa mga masasayang bagay. Kesahodang sinuman ang makakita, basta masya ako, wapakels na. pero ang luha ng lungkot, iilan lang ang nakakakita. Kaya, iniiwasan ko din ang malasing, iba kasi ang trip ko pag lasing. (Friends, kung mabasa nyo man to, please…… secret na lang yun. Hahaha)

Mabalik tayo, umiyak ako kanina. Sa harap ng klase. Sa harap ng mga bata.

Dahil nakakainis. Nakakafrustrate. Ang sistema. Ang ugali ng ibang mga bata. Di ko na napigilan. Di ko yata sila kayang mahalin. Ayoko sila makita bukas. Ayoko na. Ilang beses ko na yan sinabi pero kinabuksan, papasok pa din ako. Katunayan nga, eto oh, gumagawa ako ng lesson plan para bukas.

Noong self-contained ang handle kong class, multimedia ang setup sa loob ng classroom at may routines ang mga bata. Nakakausap ko sila nang mahinahon. Alam nila ang oras para sa laro, nood, kanta at ang asal kapag may guro na sa harapan. May ADHD kid ako nun na kapag di sya mapakali sa upuan, tatayo sya sa harap at iikot nang iikot nang iikot. Pag lesson time na, uupo na sya.

Anong nangyari?

Nitong mga nakaraang araw, di ako nakakapagturo nang regular. Di nakakapasok sa mga klase na tuuruan ko. Di nakakausap ang mga bata tungkol sa dapat naming aralin.  Nakapagturo ako impromptu sa 2 lower grades na science classes. Ayun lang. impromptu dahil sinabi lang sakin ng grade chairman na ako magturo dahil wala sya sa araw na iyon dahil may dadaluhan silang Science Fair sa ibang school. Kasama nya ang ibang Science teachers at piling pupils na kalahok sa mga contests. Limang teachers ang wala nung araw na  yun, kapag ganun, we, the floating teachers usually get stucked at one classroom. Team-teaching cancelled. Self-contained classes activated. Ganun lang. Last  week, iba ang tunuruan ko, di nakapagturo at napagod sa workshop pero ok lang, na-meet ko si John Legend in person. It was a helluvah week ika nga. Sabi ko sa sarili ko, ayos lang, habol na lang kami ng mga kids.

Nakakamiss mapagod nang may kapararakan.

Akala ko talaga magiging ok na ngayong linggo. Paggising ko nga, bangon agad, luto tinola, saing ng kanin, assemble ng salad, ligo, bihis and hello school! Akala ko talaga, ready na ko. Pero hindi pala. For one, nawawala yung lesson plan ko. Hindi ko kasi yun inuuwi, piniprint ko lang ang lesson for the day, at dinidikit ko dun. Second, three teachers ang wala. Kami ng mga kasama ko, mas gusto naming nag-iikutan. Syempre, yun ang routine, yun ang sistema. Yun ang alam ng mga bata. Nakapagturo pa ko sa isang classroom. Yung pinakamaaga kong tinuturuan, pero pinuntahan ako ni chairman at sinabing, ako ang maghandle ng class nung teacher na absent at wala nang lipatan. Wala nang lipatan. Di ako prepared. Science lang ang ready ako. Yung class pa na ayaw ko. Oo, meron akong favorite class. Hindi ito ang pupuntahan ko ngayon.

Dumating ako sa classroom na may teacher pa sila. Pero may mga batang nakatayo na, nagbabangayan at paikut-ikot sa loob ng classroom. Pinakahirap akong disiplinahin sa loob si JC. Isa sya sa mga repeaters, isa sa pinakamalaki, isa rin sa pinakamadaldal at pinaka-siga. Di ko rin maramdamang teacher ang tingin nya sakin. Sa tindi ng kasungitan ko, di yata umuubra sa kanya. Sa kanya lang yata hindi. Ewan ko ba. Kapag Science class, dahil maiksi lang ang 40 minutes, natotolerate ko ang pagsagot-sagot nya. Nakakaya ko pang mapagsabihan sya nang malumanay, basta sabi ko, kaya pa yan, matuturuan ko pa sya. Iba ang araw na ito sa mga araw na 40 minutes ko lang syang kasama. Di sya mapakali, ang lakas ng boses. Di sumusunod. Sumasagot. Walang takot. Napuno na ko. Kinuha ko yung isang folder slide, pinukpok ko sa lamesa nya. Paulit-ulit. Tinakpan nya ang mukha nya. Gusto ko syang saktan. Gusto kong ipadama sa kanya ang frustration na nadadarama ko. Ang pagkadismaya sa sarili ko, sa sistema, at sa ugali nya. Yung tipong kapag nasaktan sya, kapag nakita nya ko kinabukasan, makikita ko ang takot sa mata nya na lumabag sa mga kasunduan naming sa loob ng silid kapag oras na ng Science- Papasok, Tatahimik, Makikinig, Susunod. Kung pwede lang sanang ganun. Pero hindi. Hindi ko sya pwedeng saktan. Hindi ko sya kayang saktan. Sa pagpukpok ko ng folder slide sa lamesa nya, halos madurog ito at di sinasadyang may parteng tumama sa gilid ng isang mata nya. Biglang sinubsob nya ang uo nya sa kanyang braso at umiiyak nang malakas. Malakas pa din kahit iniimpit nya.

Tumayo sya, “Kala mo kung sino ka! Gago ka! Nakakasakit ka na sa mata!”
 
“Oo, sino nga ba ko dito sa classroom na to? Ikaw ang tumayo sa harap, ako ang papalit sayo, ako ang magpapasaway para maranasan mo ang hirap na nararamdaman ko!” Hinila ko sya sa braso at pinilit na tumayo. Pero dahil malaki sya, nahirapan akong hilahin sya patayo.

Dun na ko bumigay.

“Hindi ako nagpunta sa classroom na to para sawayin kayo isa-isa. Hindi ako nagpunta dito para saktan kayo. Nandito ako para turuan kayo. Nung pumasok kayo sa silid na to bilang mga estudyante, alam ninyong kelangan nyong baunin ang disiplina para matuto kayo. Dapat alam nyo na ang tamang asal dahil alam kong nakakaintindi kayong mga bata. Hindi kayo bobo. Walang bobo. Tamad lang at walang disiplina. Nagpunta ko dito para magturo. Lahat kayo. Hindi pwedeng may maiwan. Kung ayaw mong matuto, hindi ka bagay sa classroom na to. Simula bukas, lalabas ka ng classroom na to, at sasama ka sa adviser mo. Kung paano ka matuto sa Science, gawan mo ng paraan.
Bumalik ka ng classroom na to kapag kaya mo nang idisiplina ang sarili mo.”

Pagkasabi nun, lumakad ako papunta sa lamesa ko sa likod. Ang tahimik ng classroom. Lahat ramdam kong nakatitig sakin habang nakatakip ako ng panyo at pinipigil ang mga luha.

Di ko na napigilan. Di ko ginustong masaktan sya. Pero naubos na ang pasensya ko.

Sobrang frustrating.

Bukas, handa na kong makita ang magulang nya. Kakausapin ako marahil. Hindi ko alam. Hindi ko nga alam kung alam ng mga magulang nyang ganyan ang ugali nya.

Sana lang marealize nila kung bakit sila nasa paaralan. Naniniwala ako sa corporal punishment. Maraming kokontra for sure. Kasama yan sa tough love. Napalo ako nung bata ako ng mga magulang ko. Tuwing pinapalo ako, sinasabi sakin kung bakit. Sinasabi sakin kung anong mali ko at bakit ako umabot sa palo. Pero kaylanman, hindi ako napalo sa paaralan.

Bukas, sana may magbago para sa ikabubuti. Mahanap ko na din sana ang lesson plan ko. Bukas, sana may trabaho pa ko.

Bukas sana makapagturo na ko. Namimiss ko na sila.

Namimiss ko nang mapagod nang may kapararakan. Kahit hindi ko alam kung tunay ngang may kapararakan ang ginagawa kong ito.


7:50PM

Paggising, Bangon Agad!


As reflect on a few things I had learned this week, here are my three takeaways from someone I had met for the first time and had been generous enough to share things on how I could get started on building my life-long career. 


1.    Branch Out.
I had been used to thinking about the setbacks I could encounter whenever I think of trying out of something new. As you have said, I should never limit myself to things I thought I can or cannot do. Stop thinking about the challenges I may face if I choose one. I should lay all my options first.

2.    Internalize.
The question you’ve given, “Am I willing to do this every day of my life?”, is something I am asking myself. I try to ask myself more often this time. One thing is for sure, I want to go back to the corporate setting, but this time, I want to be part of more challenging tasks and not just someone who will sit at the corner part of the office and just do work. I want my corporate life to be meaningful and still be able to touch many lives for the better.

3.    Paggising, Bangon Agad!
 Getting up in the morning is really my ultimate struggle. However, once 
 I had got up, I just start moving. This one is a new mantra on my list J 

I am so grateful I had the chance to meet her. I look forward to more wonderful conversations with her and see my life unfold for the better.