Archive for the ‘blessings’ Category


“Be a child again. Flirt. Giggle. Dip your cookies in your milk. Take a nap. Say you’re sorry if you hurt someone. Chase a butterfly. Be a child again.”
― Max Lucado, When God Whispers Your Name

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Ad Jesum per Mariam! To Jesus through Mary!

If there is one event in the Catholic calendar that we all love to celebrate, it’s Mama Mary’s birthday. And for those who think that we worship Mama Mary, WE DON’T but we honor her. We see motherly love, goodness and gentleness in Mama Mary.

And here’s a lovely picture and message posted earlier at our Catholic site, the Apostles Filipino Catholic Community (AFCC).

Mama Mary1


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When the world lets you see its lovely face on a beautiful morning like this.

You are humbled, mesmerized, awed and dazzled.

When  the morning brings such beauty

before your eyes.

When the morning sun reflects its light

on these  lovely cotton candy clouds,

be thankful….it is enough!


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Thank You

It’s been a while and I’ve missed blogging. I don’t want to miss this opportunity though to say my heartfelt THANK YOU for all the blessings in my life.

Today is my 6th year in remission. Some of you might wonder why I celebrate something that brought me so much pain and insecurities and doubts and all the emotions you could imagine. I believe that you are strongest when you are at your weakest. Cryptic you might say but it is true. When you are at the lowest ebb in your life, when you feel so much alone, God is there to lift you up. When you are given second chances at life, you appreciate every minute of every day that you are alive. You appreciate the wonder of living no matter how painful it is sometimes, no matter how hurt you feel because not every one is happy for you.  You wonder how you were able to cope but you did and you smile that you are brave and strong in facing all the challenges, and you are left standing tall  and proud.

Six years ago, I also started this blog because I wanted to share my plight hoping that I could reach  some souls out there who are in the same journey as I was. I am glad that a few also shared their personal experiences with me and I am happy that in the process of blogging, I met a lot of online friends who made the journey even more meaningful and worthwhile.

Six years ago, I was given a second chance at life. I am grateful and thankful for everything.

Today, I celebrate the beauty of life. Today, I celebrate the gift of second chances. Today, I celebrate the gift of family. Today, I celebrate the gift of friends who were with me throughout my journey and I am thankful for those new friends I met along the way.

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There are moments when we want to reminisce about those things we enjoyed doing in the past. It’s not exactly a different world, just simple reminders of how life should be.  Life is a continuous struggle but then amidst such pain and suffering we see the light and still enjoy whatever life deals us along the way.

Last night, I woke up to this ungodly hour of 1 am and it was hard to go back to sleep. My mind was full of images of places I’ve been to not long ago. I can’t even recall if they were just snippets of dreams I had earlier.  I had this fear of going back to the hospital even for a simple check-up. I had phobia of  those people lined up outside a doctor’s clinic  waiting endlessly and patiently for the doctor to arrive.That feeling of being treated for a simple allergy then they find something more serious than those red marks on your skin.  Fifteen  years ago, I was hospitalized  for almost a week because of allergy and then one of my doctors  (my OB-Gyn) suggested that I undergo TVS ultrasound since I was already there.  After two years of treatment, there was no option but to undergo a first major operation …total hysterectomy because of endemetriosis.  My second major operation was in July 2009. They had to cut a portion of my sigmoid colon and remove the affected parts.  A few months after my last chemotherapy, I underwent a kidney bypass and had to be hospitalized again. For almost six years now, I am in remission from colon cancer. I thank God for second chances at life, I thank God that He let me see the beauty of life despite all the setbacks.

Three weeks  after my so-called “graduation” from chemotherapy, our friendly neighbors invited us to join them to visit a place in Tanay, Rizal, a two-hour trip by car from our place. I was even hesitant to go, I was thinking I would not be able to endure that trek down the place and the climb back later to civilization but it was one of those trips that I would remember vividly.  We brought along my then six-year old niece who stayed with us during the Christmas break.  The log cabin where we stayed was still in the middle of construction so we fetched a tent and enjoyed the cold breeze of the countryside. All you can see was the long-range of the Sierra Madre mountains from afar.

Sierra Madre Mountains

Sierra Madre Mountains

Simple life, simple joys...

Simple life, simple joys…

We roasted marshmallows, grilled hotdogs and milkfish and brought along a big pot of adobo and a pan of pancit. Everything tasted so good but the company was even better.

the best place to commune with nature...

the best place to commune with nature…

And the best sharing about life was done inside that tent with Jane, our neighbor and Nissa, my daughter while the two younger kids were looking for ants and other insects just outside the tent  and the men in our group explored the place. Looking back, I felt so happy that I was able to endure  the 15-minute walk, a kind of litmus test after six  months of treatment/chemotherapy. I felt so good that it was nice again  to go back to being normal, if normal means there were no more pain of the IV and the effects of the drug, if normal means going out  and bonding with friends and family, if normal means you could forget the endless laboratory  tests and the hospital and seeing your oncologists.

the trek back to the top

the trek back to the top

Chasing dreams and remembering the good old days, an escape from the ugly realities of life. Sometimes, life is full of angst and broken dreams but it’s nice to reminisce about something that would put a smile on your face again and you could face the world one more time with more dreams to pursue and happy memories to recall.

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Of course I didn’t forget. This is just a little late but I am extending my greetings to all the blogger moms here at WordPress. HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY TO US!

I’ve blogged about Mother’s Day celebrations since 2010 I think documenting those moments of bliss, lovely sharing with the family  and choosing where to spend the day – those special moments that make me smile just remembering. I still could remember the places where we spent lunch and how much we enjoyed bonding together as a family. Early this morning Josef and I heard mass together. He came straight from a night shift so I suggested that we just go home so he could rest. Besides, the place where we want to have dinner is fully booked until next week.

All  moms who attended the 9am mass received a special prayer/blessing from the presiding priest. There was a time when they gave a white rose each to the moms after the blessing. It might be just an ordinary day to some people but I must admit that moms are special so celebrating that one important day in their lives is kind of special too. Having a great mom is one of the many gifts and blessings a child could ever have.  I have one and I am blessed.

“A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor  by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.”

That’s a lovely quote from Washington Irving.  I had a good laugh hearing Nate greet me earlier. Nissa taught him to say “Happy Mother’s Day Nonna” but the one clear word I heard was Nonna. Listening to him say “love you” made my day.

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One shy smile

One simple hello

Could change a cloudy morning

Into a sunny day.

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