A Writer Writes

You have the making of a good writer,” so scribbled in my blue book by my Communication I professor. I was a college freshman then.
Oh, Speech ka ba? Mag Writing ka na lang” (So, you are taking up Speech? Why don’t you take up Writing, instead?) then turning to my classmates, he quipped, “She writes quite well.” This time it was my Humanities professor who always spoke with highfalutin vocabulary egging me to take up Writing instead of Speech Communication. I initially considered taking up Theater arts, but somehow, I had not had an itch for acting when I entered the academic jungle that was UP. (I only got to showcase my prowess in one of my outrageous performances for my English 3 class under the most motherly Professor I ever had and from whom I received a resounding compliment, “Florian, ang galing mo!” (You were good!)
But I was young then… I loved to be in the spotlight— chattering like a parrot. I relegated writing in the backseat—necessary to jot down my daily insights and not…

When Cancer Strikes

An acquaintance. A high school batch mate.A college friend. A church mate and close friend.  And now a family member.

Over the last six years or so, I have witnessed how the big C has ravaged once healthy and vibrant bodies of beautiful women close to my heart. Seeing them wasting away when once they were a picture of vitality brought a sinking, unexplainable feeling of dread over one undeniable truth:Death is inevitable. Sooner or later,it will barge in, taunting, stinging, laying claim to its power amidst tears of resistance, pleading, and bargaining.  Just when we think life sails like a bedecked hot-air balloon on a calm day, it suddenly comes crashing down sans any warning. The reaper shows up, mostly in moments we are utterly unprepared; Yet, death, for all our pretense that it won’t strike, is as firm and certain as the tax deductions in every employee’s payslip. Indeed, each day that we live is a day closer to our death; how ironic could it be?  If we are all destined to cross th…

Fear 101

In my post in 2010 , I extensively discussed my worst fears at that time: death, ghosts and snakes. Over time, I had not realized (and only until recently) that there was one fear that has lurked deep in my heart for so long-- the fear of the opinions of men.
This fear, I believe, stems from one's love -- in fact, too much love for one's self. Have you even been afraid, or to put it mildly, conscious, of what others would think of you because you covet their approval? No wonder you desire the thumbs up sign or likes  in all your social media posts, hence you post only the best photos (often with loads of filters).
Whenever I  take selfies, I have the tendency to keep  doing it again and again until I hit the right angle or perfect expression. Seeing my wall peppered with selfies of FB friends has prompted me to join the bandwagon, as well. Now I ask myself, "Why do we itch to upload the latest selfie? Just to show what we look like? To get admiring nods? To earn a thumbs…

Rejection is Good for the Soul

How many times have you received the thumbs down? How did it feel? Me, I have already lost count of the times I felt the sting of rejection. There is not a single year for the last four decades that I have not experienced being turned down and consequently, being disappointed.

My first taste of rejection was on my first grade in primary school

The memory is still as vivid as if it were only yesterday.

My friends and I auditioned for an amateur singing contest for our level. Five of us trooped to the shabby classroom to showcase our singing prowess. I was giddy with excitement when we queued and waited for our turn. Days before, I had been rehearsing all by myself inside our toilet which happened to be located outside our wooden house. I chose a Tagalog song with an upbeat tempo so I could sway and gesticulate to add flavor to my performance.It had to be “entertainment” level so I did not leave anything to chance. (My self-taught choreography, though, was but an imitation of what a favorit…

Through the Dark Night

Fear not for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” Isaiah 43:1-3
“Even to your old age and gray hairs, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you.” Isaiah 46:4-5
My ordeal started on the first week of October 2017 when my uterine bleeding came back. I just had a D&C two months before (a procedure where I was on general anesthesia). My activities went back to normal after my D&C until I noticed that I had started bleeding again. My OB prescribed that I undergo Hysteroscopy with Polymectomy and Endometrial Curretage after my latest ultrasound showed that I had polyps. Hysteroscopy is allegedly a minor procedure where an instrument with a lighted camera is inserted into the uteru…

Cherish Each Moment

Each day, each moment is a blessing. Do not let time pass by without a prayer of thanksgiving to the one who sustained you and keeps sustaining you. Each moment is an opportunity to cherish because once it has passed, you can no longer recapture it.

Since life is not ours and our time on earth is borrowed, let us press on each day with a smile in our eyes and joy in our heart. Know that we are not the master of our fate, nor the captain of our soul.
Let us then submit ourselves to the one who holds our eternal destiny. He who came here, clothed himself with human flesh (though He is eternal—the Ancient of Days) and suffered for us is with us. He hears us. He empathizes. He embraces us in the warmth of his love. Yes, he’s been there. Whatever travails we may experience in this lifetime, know that it is nothing compared to what he went through to redeem us from the darkness engulfing our soul.
When fear, doubts and worry rear their ugly heads and stare at you, take heart. You are never al…

Finding Hope Again

When life hits you hard, would you give in? In the midst of hurts, disappointments,  doubts and fears, brought about by varying circumstances – serious health problems, broken relationships, unmet expectations, unfulfilled dreams-- would you throw in the towel? Would you sulk and get angry? Would you turn your back from the world, retreat in your own little corner and hold a pity party by your lonesome? Or would you endure the pain with the hope that this refining leads you  to share in the sufferings of the One who died for you, such that you can one day say, “ Oh, beautiful scars, beautiful scars—thou  have made me more patient, more loving, more compassionate, yes, more like Jesus, our savior.”
Endurance… Resilience… Pressing On…
This is the gist of the powerful message at Church today delivered by Kay Warren, Pastor Rick Warren’s wife. Poised and classy at 63, she talked from an overflow of life experiences – from being a victim of molestation when she was a child, to experiencing h…