Ikigai Second Part

These past few days, I am beginning to realize that I have been dealing with my insecurities by flooding my cart with stuffs... and the bigger my self-doubt, the more expensive the items I checked out.  Before I would babble constantly about almost anything... but after my trip from the province, I decided to relearn keeping "things" in "private"...  not for fear of being judged nor criticized (because the carpers will never cease to exist) but to allow the moments to sink in... deeply...  I would lose myself in my dreams and write them in my journal.  In one dream, I was robbed of my laptop and phone... my means of communication to the outside world...  In another dream, I saw two of my cousins being murdered by people I knew from the past...  I would wake up finding myself relieved despite those unpleasant circumstances. I have let out hidden emotions of anger and frustration in my subconscious.  Perhaps, my dreams are not as frightening as they seem to be

Ikigai First Part

It has been a long while since I wrote. I have many things in my mind but work always gets the better of me. I've set aside drawing and music. I felt tense about deadlines but I still added food on my plate (that meant less time for recreation) and I kept going... BUT if there is one thing we can never postpone... it would be the death of a loved one or a person we knew. I was torn between celebrating and mourning last Christmas. It was already the 23rd of December when my batchmate broke the news of Sr. Beth's death. Our last conversation was in November before she had her radiation. I saw how fragile she was in a birthday photo shared by one of the sisters who was with her during her treatment. She still wanted to live and still had plans she wanted to carry out, that is why I changed my prayer and asked God if He could grant that miracle. The Lord knows best... her time was up. On the 2nd of January, while the world rejoiced with hope for the coming of 2022, another family w

Blissful Days part 1: Opening our wounds to Christ

We learn to appreciate life by living it... I was out for a while... hibernating...this time, with a friend who snatched me away  from my ab'normal' crazy days leaving behind tons of work in my desk and my phone mute (for several days) . I was unmindful of the endless calls and messages at home and in the office.  I have not been my 'usual' self since the pilgrimage I had in 2019. A wall I have carefully built between myself and others was torn down and I felt myself vulnerable once again  in the face of familiar people.  I thought that I have outgrown the hurts that I have in the past but experiencing the Lord in Jerusalem exposed my brokenness ~ I started feeling again. The voices I have learned to drown emerged and the pains were unburied.  I thought tears was a sign of weakness (I have stopped crying for five years) . But I  lost my composure before His tomb... I did not lose my peace... I realized that I never had it in the first place.  A gentle reass

Gift of Realizations

The day is almost done and I quickly wrote this on my wall: Today, I resolved that I need not be the person everybody wants or wishes me to be. I realized that I am loved for who I am and not for what I do or do not do. I realized that I am blessed no matter what. Everything is grace.  I have passed the long quarantine wait unscathed.  I have come across fire and was not burned.  I have weathered the storms, experiencing deep calm inside. I realized that I have both the good and wicked inside of me  but I am capable of conversion because of God's mercy and grace. I am simply grateful for being alive...  I am blessed... I have family... I have friends...and I believe in love. Grazie a Dio ... grazie di tutto ... Io confido in Te+

The New Normal: Of Masks and Social Distancing

A co-pilgrim once shared that their government opened up a place for them to jog while on quarantine. He said the ennui was suffocating and it was refreshing to see the sunset and walk by the beachside to breathe clean air. Flashback to the second week of March at work, all of the conferences scheduled this year, including our Annual Convention, were postponed. Our head told us to "chill" for a week while we awaited news.  These two and a half months were far from relaxing. We had to stay home together while the "curve is being flattened," and while a vaccine is being developed against COVID-19.  Work from home was instilled.  At first, I hesitated to stay in the house but then we were forced to. The house which we formerly referred to as a "hotel" was gradually transformed into a real home. I developed a friendship with my older sister. The family started eating together... there was more time for conversations... more caring... more praying t

A Pilgrim's Journey: The Wedding Feast

23 December 2019 " Together we fall in love with God and together we surrender to God’s purposes." ~Bishop Robert Barron~ -------    On our third day in the Holy Land, I woke up with a very bright smile on my face. It was our flock's turn to animate the liturgy for the couples who will be renewing their marriage vows. We prepared the songs over dinner and I downloaded several others as Mass fillers. The wedding theme thrilled me endlessly [til the end of the day]…  The moment we stepped at Cana, I  was caught by our pilgrim guides' surprise ... a part of the wedding celebration is a reception afterwards at the winery nearby. Kafr Cana  The Shrine of Our Lord's First Miracle at the Wedding in Cana of Galilee We had five couples who renewed their wedding vows. My parents had theirs here in 2017. I felt blessed to visit churches under the custody of the Franciscans. The first ones were the Basilica of the Annunciation and the

A Pilgrim's Journey: The Call to an Adventure

Listening to God's voice is always an invitation to an adventure ... move from our own buffered selves [little soul] to an infinitely wider space [great soul]   ...beyond what we can aspire to or imagine ."  ~ Bishop Robert Barron, 8 March 2020 homily ~ Early morning on the 22nd of December 2019, we went out to the Sea of Galilee and sailed on a boat.  I remembered heeding to the same call  of adventure twenty-two years ago... I felt free and unfree at the same time. I celebrated my independence from my family in this pilgrimage and yet was called to join  a bigger family with my co-pilgrims.  It was never a solitary affair ... not an exclusive cruise for me and Jesus but a journey 'to be with' the  people God called together for a purpose... God took my hand and was led to sing, dance, meditate on the Gospel readings that we had.  It was a call   to ' break free ' from what was familiar... the s