Sunday, February 28, 2010

Vision Board

I have long been trying to stretch my hectic schedule to squeeze in creating my vision board somewhere. Fortunately, the past weekend happened to be work-free and date-free. I was feeling all excited, with much creative juices running through my veins. Everything was set. Or so I thought. Until I realized there’s no way I can create a vision board without a clear vision.

The past couple of years were a roller coaster ride. Thesis, finals, review, board exams, first job. But now that ride is over. I can look back at the giant track with all its terrifying whoops and say I survived it. That, after all, it was just a part of some amusement ride; it was a part of life.

So now that my life is back to its normal phase, I can and should start to make decisions that would set my path clear and straight. Thus, the need for a vision board, or even just a “vision”, at that.

At this point, I can say I have let go of the dream of entering the sacred gates of law school. After giving much thought to it, being a lawyer doesn’t really fit anywhere in my future. I am not that driven, career-wise. And although I meant it with all sincerity when I said I wanted to become a Partner in the firm, I am now seriously doubting I would pursue that.

So what do I really want?

Given the best-case scenario, I would want my own business, be responsible for my own time and give the best part of my day to my family. Contrary to the usual I-want-to-come-home-to-a-wonderful-family target, I want a wonderful family to come home to me. I believe that’s the biggest challenge.

I am now 21. By the end of the year, I will be 22. I have a little over 5 years to save enough money, invest it somewhere profitable but not too risky and promote my earning-capacity to a level decent-enough to produce a capital. How do I do all that?

My dad said I am being too edgy about the future. Perhaps, he’s right. I am only young once and should make the most out of it. But I want to take pleasure in being young by taking risks, investing in myself, growing up and, of course, engaging in random getaways and shopping sprees once in a while.

The weekend is over and I have no vision board to hang in my bedroom. But that’s okay. I am now starting to mull over options, searching for the best alternatives that fit perfectly in my future’s blueprint. In a month’s time, I guess I’ll be ready. With a definite vision and overflowing will, I'll create a board that means so much more than random pictures and half-hearted whims. It will be a picture of my future, of realizable dreams and places I wish to visit. It will be a collage of everything that will take me to my happiest; not just mediocre-level happy but big time happy. Nothing less than that.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Cut the Crap

Okay, so I’m a nerd.

I’ve been an honor student my entire life. Some awards I worked hard for. Some I charged to luck. But all those years, and the years to some, I sincerely believe school is important.

Just a few hours ago, I was peeking at random Facebook statuses and profiles when a certain fan page caught my attention. It said: GRADES ARE NOT IMPORTANT. THEY DON’T SAY WHO YOU ARE.

I, myself, have uttered those shameless lines a number of times, but I certainly believe they are often taken out of context.

Grades are just numbers are exclusive for people who give their best and tried their hardest, yet ending up getting a failing or not-so-high grade. Those who deliberately skip class, party all night and never lift a finger to actually scan books and lecture notes do not have the smallest amount of right to say grades are just numbers. Because, sorry to burst the bubble, for people like that, grades actually tell who they are.

I hate giving out excuses. I hate people validating their mistakes by twisting the original meaning of a qualified theory and making it sound cool. Grades are just numbers. I don’t know who first said that, but I am pretty sure he didn’t mean school isn’t important; learning not essential. Honestly, I think he meant you know in yourself if you’ve learned and gave your best in doing your part, and no bitch of a Prof can change that.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Hallmark can’t say how happy I want you to be on your Birthday…., instead of getting you the usual one-fold card, I opted for this open letter.

To the Birthday girl,

Same day last year, I was busy preparing for your birthday surprise; from stitching a grand plan with the rest of the magic girls to buying the pizza which substituted as the birthday cake. The three of us met at the lobby and Keng became the fourth guy at the last minute (thanks to him we had an instant photographer. Haha). We were all giddy like little school girls, trying to predict how your exact reaction would be like. Still, your actual facial expression plus that bang on the door beat every single prediction we made.

This year, there are no surprises, no colorful poppers to welcome you as you open the door. But in place of all those, we are now more certain of we are and who we want to be in the near future. And that’s so much better than a birthday pizza with candle drawings, right?

We’ve grown together, and we’ve grown the most in the last five years, I believe. We were there for each other's triumphs and disappointments, which felt more like a life full of triumphs, since we had each other to lean on. We’ve been together since day one, like the ultimate DAY ONE of our College lives; and I can’t dare imagine how my days in La Salle would have been had fate made a slight alteration.

Today is your birthday, and as one of the many people who find you such a blessing, this day reminds me of the many good things life offers. You are such a sweet and thoughtful person, who knows how to value family and friendship. You possess an intelligent mind that, although often belittled by its owner (tsk tsk), is able to put together so many wonderful notions. You are such a gift to the people around you, whether as a daughter, sister, and so many others of those titles. And speaking for myself, I can’t be any more grateful that you came into my life with “bestfriend” written all over the package.

Good memories. Soulmate's bday 09.

CPA soulmates

Happy birthday, soulmate! Whatever it is you think your life is lacking will soon fall unto your lap, for sure, because you are one good person who deserves all the happiness in the world. =)

The Bestfriend of the Birthday Girl

(written on Feb 22, but, as usual, work got in the way of uploadinng it. tshhh.)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Another Valentine's Day Story

After six Vdays together, I didn’t expect I would still have this boy-surprises-girl-with-flowers story to share. But it was my bad to underestimate my boyfriend.

We already had our official Valentine’s date the day before. We were booked for a tour in Binondo that literally drained all my energy, in a good way, of course. So Sunday was my only designated rest day. I woke up really late and even skipped breakfast to stay longer underneath the sheets. Warm and worry-free, I missed that feeling.

Early in the afternoon, I joined my parents in the kitchen for some snack when suddenly, someone came at the door. The boyfriend, carrying those beautiful pink roses.

I jumped out of my seat and hid behind my dad. I was totally unprepared, not to mention unbathed with my PJs on! And not those cute ones I reserve for slumber parties but the one I pull out of my dad’s closet, overworn, crumpled and covered with small holes all over. Totally unpretty!

From where I was standing, I could see that Keng was trying his hardest not to laugh, while I was, well, swept away. One look at those flowers and I knew he went all the way to Tagaytay, like always, to buy from the same flower shop where he bought the first bouquet he ever gave me. That was almost seven years ago. He is sweet and thoughtful like that. He doesn’t mind taking the extra mile to make me feel special, even on a random day.

Same flowers. Same love.Same Valentine.

Quick dinner at Yellow cab to end the day

Everday, I recognize how blessed I am that Fate was extra-generous to me and True love came like an instant delivery. I never had my heart broken. I never had nights of crying, asking why some guy had to cheat on me. I was never in the waiting list when it comes to love.

Celebrating our 7th Valentine's day together

He is not my answered prayer because he came way before I had to kneel down and ask for the one. He is not what I dreamed of because I never really had time to visualize the perfect guy before he came along. We fell in love, even before we were fully able to grasp what it really is. We banked on faith, trust and respect. And, with young hearts and immature minds, we took on a journey of growing up together.

We haven’t looked back ever since.

Fall in love, stay in love and it will decide everything.

Sunday, February 14, 2010


Last night, I went with my dad to visit the wake of his bestfriend’s mom. She was already 87 years old, but her death was sudden. She wasn’t seriously ill months before, so everyone was left surprised. But, using her daughter’s words, God already gave her 87 long years. Who can ask for more?

During the wake, I couldn’t help but observe how Lolo (her husband) was noticeably miserable. He was usually very cheerful, silly even. But he couldn’t be like that, anymore; not when his partner for 67 years is no longer with him. That vision transported me to an image of another couple much like them: my own grandparents.

My grandparents have been together for 63 years. They are still healthy and very much alive, and we are, indeed, very thankful for that. Three years ago, on their 60th anniversary, they renewed their vows. And I must say, it was one of the most touching moments of my life.

….We planned for an intimate wedding. We wanted only those who mattered to our family to be there. But after we met with the Parish priest to schedule the wedding, the plans turned upside down. Rather than a small, quiet renewal of vows, he picked a regular Sunday mass, which is surely overflowing in attendance; because, according to him, the rest deserved to witness it. Most of us were hesitant. We wanted a solemn celebration, not a circus. But we were happy we trusted the priest and pushed thru with his idea.

On the day of the wedding, as expected, the church was definitely jam-packed. Only the aisle was empty of people. There were children crying, yayas running after toddlers. But when the wedding song began, everybody turned still and quiet. It was peaceful. More than that, it was heartfelt.

We did not have the usual entourage. Only their sons and daughters walked down the aisle with their husbands and wives. Following were the bride and the groom: my lolo and lola.

They were both in white. Lolo in his Barong and Lola in her terno. They walked down the 20 meter aisle hand in hand, ever so slowly, yet everyone remained quiet. They were making baby steps, looking at the altar where they first made their vows, while stealing short glances at each other. And I couldn’t believe my eyes when I looked at the rest of the church. People were teary-eyed. Actual tears, from people who didn’t even know our family. And when the couple reached the altar, people applauded. That point I realized what the priest meant when he said we had to share this glorious moment with the world…

Next year, we will be celebrating their 65th wedding anniversary. But really, there is no need to wait for that day for us to feel the rarity of a love like theirs. We’ve been experiencing it in every moment we spend together, every small family gathering, every gift-giving in front of our century-old Christmas tree.

Other families pass on businesses. Some, political powers. For us, it is the legacy of love, of loving what really matters and when it really matters, that is being passed on, generations from generations. And that, that makes us all feel safer in a place where love is usually superficial and forever seems nothing more than wish.

A Valentine's Day Letter

This time of the year, it is typical to write a letter to your boyfriend/girlfriend. But I'm not typical, and I am blessed with above and beyond "typical" friendships. So to my magic girls, this one's for you:

Graduation. CPAR. Magic girls. Our friendship started during the most difficult phase we had to go through. And who knew that we would come out from the experience, not only as CPAs, but as bestfriends. I know we haven't had the luxury of spending much time together. Canceled dinner dates here and there, no more surprises on birthdays, and uncertain summer getaways. But looking on the brighter side, the time spent apart only makes our friendship deeper and stronger.

There's always something special about friendships that do not require weekly slumber parties, regular movie dates and constant bonding sessions just to bloom and mature. We share something really, terribly special. And i have you all to thank for that..........

and the super awesome Valentine's day movie date we just had! =)

I love you, girls!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

It's Love

Giving you a taste of the best, although not in a romantic/cheesy kind of way, and most filling Valentine's date, ever. The blow by blow account will follow later.

Happy hearts' day, everyone! Keep it real.=)

Monday, February 8, 2010

Love/ Hate Letter

Dear Job,

Last week, I almost walked out on you. I was on the verge of seriously quitting and not looking back. Contrary to popular reasons, I didn’t get to that point because of insanely long work hours and unfortunately low pay. I almost called it quits because I felt you do not give importance to things that are important to me. And I cannot live with a job like that.

I begged you for a day off because it was the last day of my Lola’s wake, my last chance to see her and be with her. But rather than being considerate, you set a 6pm deadline for that same day and you even wanted me to work longer so we can finish the review and release the report. Like, you are effing kidding me, right? I never seriously complained about going home late and even spending overnights working, but that was way beyond my tolerance level. I think I sent that message by not showing up, even though you basically required me to.

I spent all weekend mulling over my choices. I could quit ASAP, I could wait until I reach a year in the firm before resigning or I could convince myself otherwise. After giving much thought into it, I went for my third option.

I decided not to resign because I realized that it wasn’t really YOU that is the problem, but other people that come with YOU, and I refuse to quit on a dream for those bullies. The regrets that will come later, for sure, will be too much to carry knowing it was my spineless, weakling version who decided to walk away.

So, since I’ve decided to go on with this love/hate affair, let’s set the boundaries crystal clear:

I will stay, even though friends and friends of friends resign and move on into more popular, higher-paying companies, as long as I feel it’s worth it; only as long as that.

Your ever-martyr slave,

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Sweet Nothings

Six and a half years ago, I said "I love you" and promised to stay in love with you forever.

See? I'm keeping my promise.

Photo taken on our 5th year anniversary (time does fly fast)

I won't get tired of loving you, everyday, in the smallest of things.

I love you.

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