“You’ve Got Mail”

When mama got home tonight, she handed me a mail. It’s no secret to people who read my blog (mayron nga ba? haha) that I get excited every time I receive physical cards and letters. Since I’m not expecting receiving one, I was really happy.

It was from one of my sponsored children from World Vision. It made me all the more happy.

Unlike the previous ones, this time, this thank you card was from my second sponsored child. As I can remember, this was the first time I’m receiving a picture and card from him. For me, it was extra special and personal.

Looking at his picture, I felt nostalgic.

It all started in April 2014.

Lunch break. I remember it was at that time when God impressed in my heart that my money and the ability to produce wealth–regardless of how big or small–are all from Him. That we’ve been blessed with time, talent, resources, etc. that we can also share with others. 

That leading and the example I saw from my mom led me to also bless someone through World Vision. I started sponsoring a child in April 2014. Then, two years after, when I got a salary increase from my present job, God impressed in me to sponsor another one. The mail I received tonight was from him.

There were times when I feel insecure, thinking I haven’t done much after graduating in 2013. Five years after, I am nowhere near the “success” my batch mates and friends have attained. But, I know these are all mere lies from the enemy. God has a far greater definition for “success,” and that’s what I should focus more on.

I am glad to have received this mail today.

Letters like this one make me realize that I am blessed to be given an opportunity to invest in something bigger — someone else. 

But, this experience I can’t boast of. What I was able to give isn’t mine in the first place. It was God’s. And, the heart to give, I can only credit to Him as well.

I’ve realized that sponsoring children through World Vision has been my greatest invesment (so far). Because though I don’t earn much, somehow, I get to see God work through someone else’s life in doing so. And, I think that makes it all worth it.

Today’s mail has been an encouragement. Really.  And, I’m thankful to have received it at this moment. It was just in time.

P.S. Honestly, I’m having second thoughts on whether I will keep this entry public or private. But as much as I want to keep this a secret, I also want to share this experience to whoever might read this. 

If you want to be involved and experience this joy as well, you can get to know more about World Vision and what they do by visiting their website here: www.worldvision.org.ph

P.S.S. This isn’t a sponsored post. 🙂

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“Ezer” Sunday

My past phone-in-the water experience felt like a preview of yesterday’s Sunday message, Flee from Immorality. Having had struggles with impurity in the past (and at times even at present), the message really resonated with me. It hit. But, the reminder of how God loved me for who I was and who I am hit me harder. I guess it’s the first time in a long time that I cried uncontrollably during the closing prayer and while singing during worship.

I was given yet a new beginning even when it’s not a first day of the month. Truly, God’s mercies are new every morning.

And while that experience was already something wonderful I will remember for the rest of my days, I didn’t know that God is still brewing another one.

Through our dgroup, I found a eureka moment. I found a new and more definite purpose in my life. My role and purpose in life as a woman became more clear — it’s to glorify God by following His design and identity for me. He created and called me to be an “ezer kenegdo,” an ally, essential counterpart, indispensable companion, and corresponding strength to the men God has put me under in my life. I am to reflect God’s “ezer” nature to the world esp. to them — for now, my father.

This afternoon, my mom asked me, “Ano bang pangarap mo?” I didn’t have an answer right away. “Magkapamilya?” “Oo.” But, I didn’t sound so sure unlike before. “Simple lang naman mga pangarap ko.” I guess I’m set to discovering new dreams again.

I’m not sure whether I’ll be an “Eve” for an “Adam” in the future, but I pray that I’ll be an “Ezer” that will glorify God for the rest of my life from this day on.

In all these things I’ve been experiencing for the past weeks, all I can say is, Thank You, Lord. Maraming salamat.

Yesterday felt like a rebirth. It felt as if a new me was born. It was my Easter in July.

To New Beginnings

I like first days of the month. I feel as if I was yet again given a fresh start. New chapter. Restart button. A time to move on. Although I know that every day is a fresh start, 1st days are something I look forward to.

On this day, I had a long but fruitful one. Yay! I finally took a leap of faith today and sent applications to *secret muna.* Like what I held on to when big opportunities were handed to me in the past, I believe that this leap of faith is an act of throwing the dice. How these applications will turn out is dependent on how God will allow things to fall. Whether I get a “yes” or a “no,” I hope I’ll continue to trust in His plans and will in my life.

Today’s message from a church event I went to made this 1st of July a special one. Feeling ko, I found a foundation, a Word, to help me start overrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr again.

“But Daniel was determined not to defile himself by eating the food and wine given to them by the king. He asked the chief of staff for permission not to eat these unacceptable foods.”
– Daniel 1:8

As I welcome new beginnings, this is my prayer: that like Daniel, I won’t let myself be defiled again by things that dishonor God. More than that, I pray that I’ll be more intentional in doing so and choosing well. I shouldn’t waste this chance to start over again.

But, there’s one thing that capped off my night I still need to pray more about. That, for now, I can share to a few … for now.

So yeah, that’s basically how my 1st of July went. And, I want to document it here. Sign of commitment na rin to start anew.

To new beginnings,
Me

Out of the Comfort Zone

Last Sunday (Sept. 4) was something I’ve looked forward to that I’m also nervous about. It was #TripToQuiapoKinse’s screening and interview @ UPFI. Coming to UP that rainy Sunday was my last toss of the dice. But, you know what, whether I get chosen or not among the thousands of dreamers who came to the screening and interview, I will be equally thankful for all that I’ve experienced. The experience I had there is enough to make me grateful. It’s a one-for-the-books experience I could have missed if I didn’t go. There are a lot of fears I conquered that Sunday. Good job, dear self. (pats self on the back) Thank You, Lord!

It has always been my secret dream to either write a book or a screenplay. Well, it’s not a secret anymore. Hehe. That’s why when this free film scriptwriting workshop opportunity came, although I don’t know where I got the courage to sign up the initial application forms, I signed up. Wew!

How all of this started

Last June, I went to a retreat where I met Aly. She was assigned to the breakout group I and my friend, Demi, facilitated. In one of the getting-to-know-you activities of the retreat, I shared my dream of either writing a book or a screenplay. Aly who happened to work at Star Cinema in the past knew about this dream of mine and encouraged me. In June 30, I received a Facebook message from her about Ricky Lee’s Free Film Script Writing Workshop. Woah! Ricky Lee ‘yun. She told me, “Just in case na gusto mo :),” with the Google form attached. I found it amazing that we were just talking about these dreams the other day and then here comes an opportunity to make those dreams a reality.

Although delighted, I honestly felt fearful at first. I was afraid to step out of my comfort zone and try pursuing my writing dreams. Takot agad, ‘di pa naman nga sure kung makakapasok. Hehe. It took me five days before I filled up the initial form. OA ko nga, name, address, email, & other basic information pa lang naman hinihingi that time. Typical fearful Flok. But, I thank God for intervening. Great opportunities like this one only knocks once. It’s something I would have regretted if I didn’t even dare try. I told myself, “no more whatifs.”

A few days after, we need to fill up another form. Fear and worries kept murmuring in my mind again. “Ayyyy, Sundays ‘yun, ‘di ka makakapagworship service.” (which was then answered, there’s CCF & VCF Katipunan I could attend.) “You have a wedding to attend in November, ‘di ka naman makakapagcommit if ever.” “If pumasok ka, paano ‘yun?” I was so filled with worries that weren’t even there at all. I was worrying too much. Because of all the thoughts going through my mind, I prayed to God to give me a direction on this. That day’s devo gave me an answer but to a different question, so I kept praying. It was one friend’s devo recommendation that hit me strong, it said, “Lay aside the weight of tomorrow’s trouble. Fear for tomorrow kills our faith today.” Bull’s eye.

That night, I prayed to God as I filled up the second form, “Whatever happens, Lord, I lift my writing dreams to you.”

The submission requirements

The murmurs of “wag na lang kaya” are still there as I was looking at the questions blankly. In fact, I submitted the final form two days before the deadline. Nasimulan ko na, ‘di ko pa ba itutuloy? I also reminded myself I already prayed for this, and “no more whatifs” diba nga? As I answered the questions in the form, I also got to dig deep into my heart and got to know myself more — what I value, what I learned and relearned through life, what makes me happy, what makes me sad, what I like, and many more. Answering the questions is already an experience to be treasured.

The screening & interview day

The night before the screening, I was redirected to my verse during my LET and I personalized it, “When I come to UP tomorrow, Lord, if You will, please grant success to the journey on which I have come.” (Gen 24:42)

My Sunday started by attending the first worship service. Amazing pa kasi that Sunday’s message was about trusting in God with our “out-of-the-boat” experiences because He is limitless; of things we could be missing if we’re not stepping outside our comfort zones because of fear instead of trusting God. Sakto!

I was supposed to go to UP alone pero I prayed din naman na if God can send me someone who can accompany me, much better. And, thankfully, God sent Demi. Yay. More than the company, she encouraged and prayed for me too.

Before we left Malolos, it was raining real hard … as in. Pero when we arrived at UP, ambon na lang. Thank God at ambon lang kasi medyo naligaw kami at medyo inikot ang oval going to UPFI. Hehehe. Pero sabi nga sa #TripToQuiapo, yung nagkanda-ligaw-ligaw siya ‘yung mas mayaman sa experience at kwento. Totoo nga. That medyo-naligaw moment was my mini trip to my “Quiapo.” Naligaw man, nakarating din. Hihi

After getting the printed forms submitted via Google docs, aspirants were asked to write a story with the six elements given (radyong gumagaralgal, madreng lumuluha, motorsiklo na nakatumba, torotot na gawa sa film reel, sunog na diary). Woah. On the spot. I think I finished writing mine after an hour or more. Hehe. Right after submitting the papers, I waited for my name to be called for the next step: the interview. #nervous #asdfghjkl

We were called in groups of five and a staff accompanied us to Plaridel Hall. The interviewers there were directors. 😱 While seated in the waiting area, a woman asked me, “Estudyante ka pa?” It all started with that question and we got to know a few things about each other. Hehehe. We also happened to be of the same faith and of the same church rin. Of all people no, kami nagkatabi? Amazing. Because of her, I forgot that I was nervous. Whew.

While waiting, I also saw Bb. Joyce Bernal. Yie! I only get to read about her through Direk Jadaone’s blog and it made me like her character as a director. Hihi. I was startstruck or should I say directorstruck? (nyek)

Then, Sir Ricky Lee came to check on everyone. He was so soft-spoken, palangiti, and so mabait. He even asked us while we were waiting to be called for the interview, “Okay lang ba kayo dyan?”. Eeeeeeee. Napakamahinahon.

After waiting for less than an hour, our group was called for the interview. Our group which consisted of a theater actor, a recent Palanca awardee, an experienced writer, a young writer, and me someone who just loves to write was interviewed by Direk JP Carpio. Oh oh oh. Kakaba no? They were all experienced in the industry already as compared to me who just dreams. Hehe. The interview experience wasn’t HR like. Haha. We were asked to think of story concepts for different film premises Direk would give. But, my favorite part was the “duktungan ng eksena”. Direk started with one scene and the one seated next will give the next scene and so on. We’ve got two rounds of that. I super enjoyed that part. I felt sila rin. Hehe. The experience was awesome. Before we parted ways, Direk asked as one last question. (non verbatim) “What will you do if your writing or script gets rejected?” I said, “I’ll still keep writing…”

————————————————————-

I was not my usual self that Sunday – well, in a really goooooooooooooooooooooooooood kind of way.

The typical Flok I know was fearful. I used to have so many fears and insecurities. These fears and insecurities didn’t totally disappear though, but little by little, and with God’s help, I’m learning to overcome them.

On the 4th of September, I conquered the fears of intimidation, trying something new, being surrounded by smart people (hehe), the place that is UP (hehe again), interviews, and making a big step outside the box I made for myself in the past.

Whatever the result of the screening will be, the experience is already a “win”. The experiences and realizations I had that day were already blessings. Whether I get a “yes,” “no,” or “wait,” I’ll still be thankful; I have already prayed for that writing dream eh, I know God knows what’s best for me. I’ve already done my part which is to throw the dice, how it will fall is up to the Lord na.

This one-of-a-kind Sunday is one big step away from my comfort zone. It’s one of those out-of-the-boat / out-of-the-comfort-zone experiences I will alwaysssssssssssssss remember. 📇

What’s so special with August 17(s)?

I’m the type of person who doesn’t really believe in lucky numbers, lucky days, or any other “lucky” stuff. I’d rather call them special than lucky.

For some reason I don’t know yet, August 17 started to become a really special and unique day in my life since the August 17th of 2013. For a four-year streak, this day has really been favored with something good to remember. I always find myself thankful on an August 17. And, to be honest, after experiencing great things on this day, I kind of look forward to the next one.

2013

Back then (in 2012), I was crushing on someone because of his music. Hehe. I follow him on Twitmusic, Soundcloud, and YouTube. And, somehow listening to his music has been a part of my routine. Then, in 2013, he got signed into a music company and released his first single. During that time, there’s an ongoing promo, a few fans who’ll download his single will get a chance to meet him in person. As someone who’s been a constant listener, syempre I downloaded the single without really expecting to win and be part of that. If my memory serves me right, I downloaded the song a day before the promo ended. Hehe.

On August 14, I was surprised to see my name posted on the list of the ten people who’ll get to bond with him in person. Honestly, I prayed about about what may happen after I downloaded that song. Ewan, bakit ko nga ba biglang naisingit nun yun sa pagdadasal ko. Sabi ko, God, if kagustuhan mo, go po, if not, then no. Kaya when I saw my name, I was like, talaga ba?! My friends were more excited than me. Haha. I was happy. Really happy. But, I was more nervous than excited. Buti na lang, I discovered that one of those in the list like me is a friend of someone I know. In fact, we have lots of mutual friends. Amazing, right? We clicked right away too! The fact that I know someone there made me less nervous too.

On this same day in 2013, that great memory happened. We got to meet him. I got to meet other girls that became my friends too. I felt comfortable hanging out with everyone. It was fun. He sang us a few covers and originals. We ate, laughed, joked around, took photos, and said our goodbyes. I got to talk to them & him a bit through FB even months after. That August 17 really was a day to remember. I didn’t imagine that this would be the start of the “special” August 17’s of the coming years.

2014

The same day in 2014, I found myself taking the licensure examination for teachers (LET) at UE. I was even nervous because I didn’t have much time to review as I was working. I only got to sneak out and review a month before the board exam at a coffee shop near my office in Ortigas, then go home to Bulacan right after. More than that, Educ was only my second course. I only had 18 units for that. But during my review days, a verse spoke to me. It was about Abraham’s servant being asked to look for a wife for Isaac. He prayed that if God will’s that he’ll find a wife for Isaac, then so be it.

“When I came to the spring today, I said, ‘Lord, God of my master Abraham, if you will, please grant success to the journey on which I have come.  (Gen. 24:42)

And from then, that has been my prayer too. Kari Jobe’s ‘Steady my heart’ has been my song. These two calmed my worries. I entrusted the journey of taking the LET to the Lord.

Waiting for the results of the LET is so loooooooooong. My heart’s been kind of nervous for months. Hehe. But, on the 27th of October, thank God, I passed the boards. Yay! A close friend called me by the phone as I was looking for my name on the list of passers. But, behind the joy, I was sad that the friend who’s been with me in this journey didn’t make it.

2015

A month after I took the LET in 2014, I resigned from my previous work at the radio station. Although at some point, it has been my comfort zone, I long for growth and I wanted to try something else. I also thought that I need some time to think things through in my life and career. So, after my resignation, I kind of gave myself the much needed rest I missed when I started working right after graduation. I didn’t send any application to other companies yet. I’m really just enjoying my rest before entering the workforce again. More than that, I was praying for a job that will really suit me + with a location that’s nearer than Ortigas. Hehe

During my rest period, a friend who’s working in one of the largest TV stations asked me to send her my resume. I did. A few days later, I got a call for a pre-employment exam. And, a day after that, got the news that I passed the examination. I just needed to wait for a department to be placed in. Months passed, no news still.

While I was anticipating the call from that company, I received an email from JobStreet. That has been a special email because I didn’t see it coming. It led me to where I work now. In that email is a list of possible jobs I could apply for. But, there’s one job that caught my interest – Creative Content Writer,  Malolos. Whoah! I’ve always wanted to be a writer. Sa TV, Film, or Magazine nga lang. Hehe. But hey, that’s still a writing job. To cut the long story short, I sent my resume, got interviewed, underwent an on-the-spot writing exam, and got hired! Yay! I also thank my additional writing tasks from my previous job. It became a stepping stone to where I am now.

I started working as a writer for this company in February 16 of 2015. Did you know that the TV company called me on my third day of work as a writer? Too late!  Hehe. Anyway, 6 months after, on the 17th of August, a Monday, I got regularized as a creative content writer. At present, I’m on my 1 1/2 year mark and received yet another salary raise yesterday. I didn’t expect that. I’m so thankfullllllll, God.

Working for this company I’m with now gave me confidence in my writing skills. It’s also the reason why I have this blog now. It gave me confidence to have a ‘real’ blog besides my Tumblr account. Hehe. It also gave me the confidence to try getting published with big websites such as Thought Catalog, etc.

2016

Because of the 3-year straight of great things for the past August 17’s, I am somewhat looking forward to something special that can happen today. But, because I was feeling a bit down for the past few days, negativity’s been creeping in.

When I thought that this day will just be a normal day, I received an email from one of the editors of Thought Catalog. An article I submitted weeks ago got published today! It’s my fourth published article on Thought Catalog. Yay! As someone who loves to write / someone who dreams of being published / someone who dreams of having a book one day, an email like that is enough to make me happy. It really made my day.

What happened today may not be as special and grand as the memories given to me in 2013, 2014, and 2015, I’m equally thankful and joyful. I realized that merely looking back at those beautiful memories is already a blessing. Having something beautiful to reminisce is enough to be joyful and thankful. More than that, I realized as I looked back, these memories became special because God’s been a part of them all.

What’s with August Seventeen? Up to now, I really don’t have a specific answer yet. I’m just thankful to God for all the great memories He allowed to happen on this same day for the past four years. Four years. What a blessing!

Thank You, thank You, thank You, God for allowing me to have these memories I could treasure all the days of my life. With or without these, I’ll still be happy because I know I have You & You’ve been with me ever since. 🙂

A Pre-Birthday Time Travel @ Las Casas Filipinas 🚇

IMG_8527

To my surprise, my parents planned a trip to Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar as a treat for my upcoming birthday. Little did they know that this idyllic place is one of the places in my dream to-visit list. Yay! When they told me about this, I did a little research about the place, rates, directions and all. Minsan lang ‘yun eh! The original plan was to stay overnight and dun na lang daw kami magbook. But, in my mind, we better check the availability of bookings first kasi syempre mahirap na. I don’t want to let any mishap ruin that day. ‘Yun nga fully booked na sila. At least, we know what we’ll do and expect. So, on April 2, we went to Bagac, Bataan.

Though I don’t appear that enthusiastic about it upon hearing the news because of previous events, this short trip has been really memorable for me because this kind of family trip is new to me. It was the first trip that it was just us three. I just felt so loved that day. It was totally different from last week’s drama. And, I am super thankful. Above all, thank You God for this short trip and alam mo na po yun. #BawingBawi 🙂

P.S. Sa tuwa ko, mas marami akong nakuhang videos kesa sa pictures. Hehe. Hence, most of the images below are screenshots from the videos I’ve taken.


 

Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar
As we entered the Las Casas premises, we were welcomed by security guards dressed like the gwardya sibil’s of the Spanish era. Excitement slowly rose inside my old-school heart. I was so giddy! My mind was so loud, “this is it“, “yuhooo“, “ang gandaaa“, “thank youuu!” Kulang na lang mag-baro’t saya ako. Haha. Seeing the 18th century Filipino houses appear one by one (even from afar) made me feel so ecstatic. Las Casas was so beautiful even from the entrance. We were also welcomed by the view of the beach, the coconut trees, and the boulders.

Ladies in baro’t saya manned the registration booth. After giving them our day tour payment, they handed us each a map of the heritage resort. Las Casas is a home to 27 Spanish-era heritage houses or bahay na bato. To roam around or transfer places within the resort, you can either walk, ride a train, a jeepney, a kalesa, or a golf car.

Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar
Casa Lubao
 was our first house to visit. It’s where the guests meet for the scheduled heritage tour of the houses. From what I remembered from our tour guide (Eva), the original owners of this house helped support Emilio Aguinaldo (our first President)’s education in exchange for his mother’s paninilbihan. Before we entered this house (and the other houses), we were asked to remove our footwear first. I find it cute. It’s very Filipino!

Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar
Casa Luna (of La Union) is the house where we first experienced how it is to be an aliping sagigilid. They are literally servants who just stay at the inner sides of the house. May maliit na daanan at talagang sa gilid lang sila na nakatago! They can also be sold by their masters. 😩 But, unlike them, tourists are allowed to go inside the house and not just stay at the tiny hallways. We were able to view some of Mr. Acuzar (the Las Casas owner)’s huge collection of antiques such as old pictures from unknown people, vintage recorders and appliances, etc.

Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar
Casa Baliuag II is one of the for-rent family houses in Las Casas. We were only able to view it from the outside. It was located next to the Casas Cagayan stilt-wooden houses near the batis-inspired swimming pool. Very probinsya feels! The ground floor of Casa Baliuag was transformed into a passageway for the horse-drawn kalesa. And, from that passageway, the “pang-Instagram” pink and blue doors of Paseo de Escolta can be viewed. 🙂

Paseo de Escolta
Paseo de Escolta is the most photographed structure, I think. Haha. But, according to our tour guide, this was just a replica of the original Paseo de Escolta; unlike the other houses which are really transferred piece by piece. This structure houses for-rent rooms for tourists, the panaderia (bakery), a souvenir shop, and Fotografia de la Escolta (a photography studio where you can take photos wearing Spanish era clothes). Hindi ko rin makakalimutan ‘yung kinain kong Spanish bread na worth 35 pesos. 😂

Las Casas de Acuzar Filipinas
Casa Quiapo / Escuela de Bellas Artes Filipinas and University of the Philippines’s first building is by far the largest of the 27 houses in Las Casas. However, the ground floor was a bit eerie because of the abortion room and the unusual art exhibits. But, the second floor was surprisingly the opposite of the eerie ground floor. It was majestic and spacious that’s why it serves as the grand ballroom for events such as debuts, weddings, and other functions. Plus, the original pillars were preserved. Panoramic views of the whole of Las Casas, especially the beach front, Jones bridge, Sanctuario de San Jose and Hotel de Oriente, is the best part of Casa Quiapo. Para siyang ‘yung lugar na pwedeng mag-dialogue ng “… ipinatawag ko kayong lahat…” Ganooon!

Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar
Casa Biñan / Alberto House is only a replica of the two-storey home originally owned by Gregorio Alonzo. Later on, the ownership was passed on to his son, Cipriano, who is Jose Rizal’s maternal grandfather, then to Don Jose Alberto Alonzo, his uncle. Upon climbing the grand staircase and entering this house, the huge portraits of Don Jose Alberto, and his wife, Teodora Formosa welcomed us. It is the most controversial house among the 27 casas. We were shown the room where Teodora Formosa was locked in because of her adulterous relationship with one of the gwardya sibil’s. It is also Formosa who caused the imprisonment of Jose Rizal’s mother, Teodora. She accused Teodora of poisoning her with the food she delivers in her room. This incident ignited Jose Rizal’s desire to fight for the freedom of the Filipinos.

This controversial casa also houses one of Las Casas’ restaurants, ‘La Bella Teodora’. The ground floor is an ala carte Italian restaurant while the second floor is a buffet Filipino restaurant. We were the first to arrive for the lunch buffet! Haha. Like Casa Quiapo, it was also huge and filled with long tables. Occasionally, servers in baro’t saya will refill your water goblets, etc. Feeling yayamanin! Haha

Las Casas FIlipinas de Acuzar
Not all 27 houses are part of the heritage tour. The others are occupied by tourists while some other houses you can visit at your convenience. There’s La Puesta del Sol which offers the best view of the Las Casas canal. Venice, Italy feels! Next to it are Casa Terraza and, my favorite, Casa Ladrillo. Right across it is Casa Hagonoy. It looks almost exactly like the old house I fear every time we visit our old home in Hagonoy, Bulacan.


Visiting Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar felt like entering a time machine and being transported into the past. I wonder how it will look more beautiful at night. For sure, the lamp posts will add a more historical and magical vibe to the place. Mama’s original plan was to stay overnight, however, all rooms are booked nga kasi. Sayang! Anyway, this short trip’s still one for the books! (yep, pun intended. hehe)


But, but, but…
more than the beautiful houses and spots, seeing mama and papa like this ↑ will always be my favorite sight. This short trip we had was a happy pre-birthday, indeed. Thank you, you two! ♄

P.S. Las Casas, I’ll visit you again someday. Maybe, with my future special someone naman, or even without one. Haha. Nevertheless, I surely will visit you again.


A few days, weeks, months, or years from now, this trip will just be a plain memory. But, it was and will always be a great memory I would always love to go back to. Years from now, I’ll go back to this post and remember how my parents made me feel so loved especially on this day! 💛

Happy Post 😁

Hi, I just want to share and document my joy. Hihihi. As a writer-wannabe, it’s always an ecstatic feeling every single time something you wrote gets published. There’s that happiness you can’t exactly put into words every single time you see your name on the author byline.  More than that, the thought of getting to inspire at least one person through something you wrote is really an opportunity and a blessing.

A month ago, I posted a blog (“Dear, you are far greater than mere labels.” ) about how our real worth and value are not defined and limited by our labels. It came to mind during our Prayer and Fasting week. In the past, I used to be the girl who was so insecure. I always felt inferior. I always felt like I need to belong. I have looked for my worth and value on the wrong things and situations. I felt as if “labels” define me. But, I thank the Lord for rescuing me from my past, from my insecurities, and for making me realize that my worth and value isn’t found in the world. It’s found in Him. Thank You for His love that gave me security. Although, I still struggle with insecurity at certain points in my life (especially during PMS. hehe), I know and I am reminded that I do not need labels. Who I need is Jesus. I always go back to the truth that even though I am a sinner, He loved me still. His love met me in my mess.

So, going back, the blog post I posted on this blog, I also submitted to Thought Catalog. I think I submitted it in January, and after a few weeks I still haven’t heard from them. So, I thought that my article didn’t make the cut. Then, I also tried submitting it to Berlin-ArtParasites website. (Taas ng dreams. Haha) After a few more days, I have resolved that my article won’t make it on both websites. If it’s meant to get published on those sites, it will.

The morning of February 6th, I saw a message on my inbox. It’s from Thought Catalog!!! I was so happy as I read it. My article got published. Yay! More than that, I saw it on their homepage. I can’t describe my joy. I know writer-wannabes like me could relate. Hehe. So, I ended up print screen-ing everything. Hahaha

Wow, Nasa homepage yung sinulat ko.png
They replaced the title with “7 Labels Happy People Never Use To Define Themselves.” (Homepageeeeeee. Waaaaaaaaaa!)
Nasa Twitter din ng TC ayyyy grabeee
Twitter!
Nasa FB page din ng Thought Catalog Waaaaaa
Facebook!

Yes, that’s how happy I am. More than the joy of seeing my article get published on Thought Catalog, I felt the opportunity to share my article to more people. It doesn’t matter how many. I just want to share the message. It might reach someone who needs it. Hehe. Although, there were a few nega comments on the TC page, I read one that made me smile. Napasabi ako sa sarili ko, solve na. Sulit na. One lady commented on the article and said,

TC
My heart went ‘awwwwwwwwwwwwww’. Thank You, Lord!

But, when I thought that it’s all over for this article — I received another great news today. The same article was published in Berlin-ArtParasites’s website too! My heart is so happy! A very, very, very good bonus.

ArtParasites
Pardon the image that they used. Hehehe
Berlin
The last two paragraphs. And the byline. Huhuhu. My name! So happy!

I’ve realized that nothing is impossible. Let’s keep dreaming! 🙂 And, I also pray that I won’t only write for myself. I pray that this gift of writing (that I still need to improve on. Hehehe) will be used by God for His purposes.

And, to end, here’s one of my favorite songs by Tenth Avenue North, “You are More.”

Good night! Remember, you are valued. You are special. Go to God and experience the same love that saved, changed, and secured me. ♄