A Mother’s Day Special

Mother’s Day is just a week away, and I ask myself, what could be a fitting way to honor and give tribute to my beloved Mom this year? It’s been four years since she’s been gone, but I still miss her dearly.

So I’ve thought of sharing a roundup of some of my previous pieces I wrote about my mother, as my Mother’s Day Special. Here they are:

Leftovers: Cherished Thoughts of Yesterday  – This is my first piece about Mom. Sadly, over two months later, she passed without this reaching her.

How I wish I had let her read this soon after I wrote it, so she would know I finally understood the reason behind her “penchant for collecting, never discarding, her old stuff,”  a bone of contention between us sometimes.

Loving Me, Loving Mom, Loving God – my tribute to my Mom’s strong influence on me, her “passion for living, for she indeed was a woman oozing with confidence and grit…”

When Death Gently Waits, God’s Grace Suffices – My way of making sense of her death and a description of my Mom’s strong, unwavering faith in God, persisting until the end even when pain overwhelmed her physical being. “That was the start of her final days here on earth, and Death waited for her gently until she was ready for her purification … her grace from God…”

As a finale, here is the best loved Filipino lullaby, “Sa Ugoy ng Duyan,” an immortal song that never fails to move to tears anyone like me who loves and misses their mother.

Sa Ugoy ng Duyan

The meaning of the Tagalog phrase “Sa Ugoy ng Duyan” in the literal sense is “In the Rocking of the Cradle.” The song’s official English title is “The Sway of the baby Hammock.”  This is a Filipino lullaby, the most popular collaboration of two National Artists of the Philippines: Lucio San Pedro for the music and Levi Celerio for the lyrics.  Read more at Wikipedia

What fond memories or stories do you have about your mothers? I’d love to hear from you , dear readers. Do share them here.

 

From the Shadow of Failure

“I work continuously within the shadow of failure. For every novel that makes it to my publisher’s desk, there are at least five or six that died on the way.” – Gail Godwin

Failure is part of the human experience. No one is immune from it, not even the great ones. The most important thing is how to let failure pave the way to a new beginning.

I remember one time in the early days of my teaching career when I thought I was doing fine, until a student of mine pointed out that she was not learning much from me. Continue reading “From the Shadow of Failure”

Embracing Aloneness

I enjoy being alone. I’ve gotten used to it by now.

With adult children leading their own busy lives, this is just how my life is. Being alone most of the time.

But because I come from a big family myself, sometimes I can’t help feeling lonely.

I still long for company at mealtimes, or when I feel a conversation with another human being is more palatable than talking with my plants, or the occasional lizard that makes itself visible to me. Continue reading “Embracing Aloneness”

“I’m Busy Now”

How many times have you received this response from someone you’ve been counting on – for company, or support, or a listening ear?

Perhaps not just once, and most likely, you might have also given such response to someone you want to fend off.

Yes. This is often the lame excuse we give anyone who we deem as a burden on our time. Most of us are guilty of doing this – rebuffing someone. Continue reading ““I’m Busy Now””

On a Sunday Morning

I go to have brunch at one of my favorite hangouts, right after church. Being Sunday, the small cafe which serves breakfast meals 24/7 is filled and people keep trooping in. Diners already taking their meals do not seem to hurry.

I order an egg & mushroom omelette meal, a mug of brewed coffee, plus a slice of tuyo. As I wait, I become a bit self-conscious, as I didn’t bring my mobile phone to keep me company. Continue reading “On a Sunday Morning”

In the Stillness

The depths of the human heart always long for silence and solitude. ~~ Felix O. Magallanes

I speak for myself and these words ring true for me. I need to connect with my inner self for my spiritual nourishment. It may be because I’m reflective by nature. My energy easily depletes when I cannot find even a little time for silence. Silence.

But I believe that for most people this must be true as well. We’ve heard of stories of the rich, the famous and beautiful, the accomplished, who at the end of the day find themselves feeling empty. Continue reading “In the Stillness”

On Self-Giving

The simple gift of self is the greatest gift of all.

The above quote is from a reflection contained in the book, Thoughts In Solitude: Capturing the Essence of Being Human” by Felix Berto O. Magallanes, in which the author speaks of sharing oneself to others not just utter words, communicating our very being, and expressing our inner feelings, to share […] as we would to one who is not totally “other,” but is part of oneself.

Self-giving water

The most profound example of this giving of self is God’s self-giving – sending His Only Begotten Son to be born in a humble manger to become one of us. And again, as the Son’s total obedience to the Father, Jesus Christ gave up His life on the Cross in atonement for our sins and to redeem humanity. Continue reading “On Self-Giving”

Giving Thanks for All God’s Gifts

It’s Wednesday and I’ve been thinking of what to write when I noticed that most posted statuses today on Facebook were expressing “feelings of being blessed.”

I do believe God grants each and everyone of us countless blessings, great or small, that come in many different forms. And blessings do not necessarily come in ways that make us happy, joyful or feeling rich.

Blessings are also packaged as pain, sadness, frustration – like an illness, death or separation from a loved one, loss of job – but they are blessings too. Continue reading “Giving Thanks for All God’s Gifts”

When Death Gently Waits, God’s Grace Suffices

The flurry of events in the past days still leaves me in a daze; everything still seems surreal; a part of me still numbed, tears surge every now and then…

I still can’t believe that today it’s the fourteenth day since my mother passed on to her eternal Home. Death came waiting for her, gently waited while she agonized in pain…

They say that it was her purification…that she has now gone straight to Heaven. Not only was it her earthly “purgatory,”  but the nun-formator at my sister’s convent said my Mom was a Victim Soul, –

a “CHOSEN SOUL who freely sacrifices oneself, one’s health, material goods, happiness, etc. as an offering to Divine justice for the sins of the world, for sinners, or for the benefit of the Church. Or as Our Lady has often said, these generous souls, after the example of the crucified Christ, are needed to “balance the scales.” 

That should comfort me enough, yet deep inside – the pain of losing her sears through.

A Sense of Denial

Although Mom was already in the winter of her life, and though she was battling the disease which had grown big inside her, still it had not dawned on me that she’d be taken away from us this soon.

Deep inside me, this sense of denial seems more real than the fact she is no longer with us physically.

Perhaps it is because Mom was always a picture of vibrancy and youthfulness even if she’d already bequeathed to my sister much of the tasks she used to do around the house. Continue reading “When Death Gently Waits, God’s Grace Suffices”

Me and My Soul Dreams

 

Today, I tell you about myself and my dreams, which has something to do with who I believe I am deep within: a creative person, an artist, a writer at heart.

To write is my CORE GIFT, too... - Marichu

Marichu, that’s how I’m called. I’m an EFL teacher, but I still dream of going up and doing more. I dream of writing a book, some journals, a memoir, poetry anthology — write, write, write and join and win the prestigious Palanca Awards, a Philippine national competition in literature.

Shoot for the moon, even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars, they say, so this quotation often pushes me to just aim high, dream big.

I once read a book, How to Know If Your Dreams Are God’s Dreams, written by the well-known, well-liked Filipino author and Catholic preacher, Bo Sanchez, and his inspiring book has led me to discover — these dreams of mine are connected to my Life Purpose and Core Gifts! They are my soul dreams.

What makes me affirm that these are indeed my soul dreams? These are dreams whose seeds I’ve nurtured since I was a child, and though through the intervening years they seemed to have faded away, my dreams have never died – just like what the author says in his book, some of our dreams are meant to die to tell us we need to grow up.

Yet there will be dreams that are meant to grow. Just like my Soul Dreams that have to come to their full flourishing, even now well into my golden years.

I believe God prepared me when I was younger to be a teacher, and that is what He wants me to be. Now, I’m a teacher, and my Core Gift is to teach, to communicate. But I believe, God wants me to not only teach, but to mentor others to become good teachers themselves. And He wants me to be a teacher of other fields as well, not just of language. I’m still figuring that out.

To write is my CORE GIFT, too and God wants me to share this talent of mine to others, to let others be inspired by my writings. This Dream Makes Me Happy in the Deepest Way Possible.

All these I’ve mentioned are what motivate me to blog, not merely keep a personal journal. I want to see how I can reach out to readers out there. I’m also putting myself in the shoes of my writing students so I can feel, experience what they’re going through each time I give a writing task.

Thus, the reason I’ve joined Blogging 101 is to learn how I can blossom to my fullest potential as a writer, keep a blog, find my voice, enjoy the process as I meet new friends along the way.

And this post is my response to the 1st day writing task of Blogging 101: to write who I am and why I’m here.

I WRITE ALL THESE DREAMS IN MY HEART AND IN REALITY, on this Day of the Lord, September 15, 2014.