Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Back to the Hospital

Today is another "hospital" day.

This time, it was my son who brought me. Mom is still not feeling well.

I had my blood tests. Ate brunch. Waited for the doctor to administer Velcade treatment. Talked to my hematologist who said I have to go on an 8th cycle. Where will I get P180,000? But then I know that God will provide, as He always has.

Then to the X-ray department. More waiting because it was break time. The x-rays themselves took long because there were many and some had to be repeated.
Back home, I did some work. Read my emails.

Looking forward to a KFC dinner.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Finished a Report

I finished a report today.

All the while, cognizant of the fact that people are still suffering because of Typhoon Ondoy.

And I learned that a friend's father died of cancer.

My mom is sick today that is why we were not able to go to the hospital.

I still feel like working today, after I pray the rosary.

A rosary for the flood victims, all the people who are hurting, for my friend and her family, for my mom.

In times of sorrow, it helps to pray.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Working on a Monday...Without the Rains

Today was a working day for me (after days of sleeping!)

I worked on two reports. A topline report which I finished. And an FGD report which I was not able to finish.

Got to talk to two friends over the phone. One was my best friend, Amy. She updated me on work and personal life. Hope my doctor will agree that I go with her to Batangas in October. The other caller was Jobert. He told me what happened to his staff because of typhoon Ondoy, what he wrote in the Internet, his travels, his reactions to my book.

Nice "disruptions" from my work.

I continue to pray for the flood victims, especially those with casualties in their families.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Typhoon Ondoy

Typhoon Ondoy brought with it so much tragedy, pain, hassle, tears...I weep. On the one hand, I am glad I live in a 30 floor condo building and we are on the 25th floor. On the other hand, my heart breaks for all those who are suffering because of the heavy rains yesterday.

Thank God, the rains have stopped. Thank God, many kind souls are being touched to reach out to the typhoon victims.

In life, there are victims...and heroes. Let us pray for the former, and praise the Lord for the latter.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Rainy Days

It is a very rainy day today.

Mom and I went out for my Velcade treatment. We even ate sopas and pancit bihon. But we were able to go home safely. Thank God! The taxi driver had to pass by certain routes to reach our destination.

I wouldn't want to exchange places with those who are stranded as I write these words. But I wish that everyone will be safe.

Because of the weather, I feel low. I kept on sleeping. I couldn't work for long. I couldn't even watch a DVD movie straight.

Like all rainy days, this too, shall pass.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Scrabble with a Friend

I love playing Scrabble. That's because I love words. I love the game so much I can play it alone.

But today, I had a wonderful privilege of playing Scrabble with somebody, my new friend, Jobert. It was fun! He was winning for the most part but in the end, I won by just a few points. Yehey!

It was just a short visit but I enjoyed every minute of it. Only part of the visit was on "business". Jobert is also a client, you see. He has been asking me to edit his written work.

I learned a new word today, "nim". Yup, my nickname is actually a word which is a simple kind of game. Me? A game? ha ha.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Marang...Heavenly Fruit!

Today, I got to eat marang. What a heavenly fruit! It's sooooh delicious, luscious, and sweet! (sorry for breaking the rhyme).

When I reach heaven, I shall eat lots and lots of marang.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Wanna Hear My Song?

Today, Mondi sent me three copies of my interview with Fr. Jerry Orbos. Not only that, he sent me via email the song portion. Here it is for your listening pleasure ("Mama, Let Me Live").

I was able to do some work today...

...revised an FGD guide to be used tomorrow

...cleared portions of presentation materials/report

...was consulted on a project by a friend

Will spend the rest of the day "relaxing"...whatever that means.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Two Hospital Visits

I went to two different hospitals today.

The first was the National Kidney and Transplant Institute along East Avenue, Quezon City. I had my usual blood tests (CBC). Then my mom and I ate at the canteen. I ate pizza and french fries, and pineapple juice. (You call that healthy food?).

Then, I had Day 4 of my 7th cycle of Velcade treatment. Had to wait a long time because somebody suffered cardiac arrest. It was code 99 or whatever.

My hematologist-oncologist gave give goods news and bad news. Goods news is that my plasma count is less than 10% which means my body is responding well to treatment. Bad news is I have to go on an 8th cycle and have maintenance medicines. More expenses! In short, I'm going to live a longer life but more expensively. The irony of things!

We decided to go home first for lunch and a short nap.

Then, off to the next hospital - St. Luke's Hospital to see my new psychiatrist.

More waiting. The actual consultation was only about 20 minutes. It went very well. My doctor was very pleasant. And she was happy with the fact that I could sleep without need for sleeping pills. She asked me to start a journal. Yehey! I love journals. Writing and drawing can be therapeutic and I agree with her.

Whenever we go out, I can't help but look out the window...I stared at the different restaurants (when will I eat in one again?), the old houses, the wet market with all those beautiful flowers, churches (when will I go to an honest-to-goodness mass again), etc. Oh well, some day soon, things will go back to "normal", whatever that means.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Pancit Canton and the Sound of Music

It's funny how the simplest of things bring so much delight and a smile on one's face! Like pancit canton which my dear sister brought, and re-watching part of "The Sound of Music".

I also enjoyed talking to a friend over the phone who is also a cancer patient. I'm glad to find out he has reached "survivor" status. He was among the many people who contacted me when I was confined and wanted to visit me at the halfway home.

I got the chance to chat with some other friends via Yahoo. I just love the Internet!

I played Scrabble again, finished the game but did not reach a score of 600 (500+ is not bad though).

The only work I did today was talk to a client about a project. She just consulted me on a few matters.

That's it.

Anyway, today is supposed to be a holiday.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

And there are lazy days...

This was just one of them.

I kept sleeping the whole day.

I played Scrabble by my lonesome.

I colored my coloring book.

I checked my yahoo inbox and facebook account.

I chatted with a couple of friends.

I watched television mass, read the Bible and prayed the rosary.

Lord, I offer You this simple day. May You be glorified even in the simplest of things!

BTW, Fr. Jerry cited my name in his column in Inquirer. Thanks, Father!

Saturday, September 19, 2009


Despite the jitters (my legs kept shaking at first), my interview with Fr. Jerry Orbos was a success. He was a gracious and kind host and didn't ask me any embarrassing questions. I was pretty straight-forward. Fatima Soriano's version of my song, "Mama, Let Me Live" was so beautiful, much better than the original.

But the real star of the show was God. We started and ended the show with a prayer.

Thank You, Lord!

Friday, September 18, 2009

No Pain!

The bone marrow test was a success! I hardly felt any pain. That means my verrrry expensive medicine is working. Yehey!

I also got a FREE velcade treatment today. The first of my 7th cycle.

Plus, I had my chipped tooth fixed. Now, I have a beautiful smile again. (Anybody looking?)

After my long visit to the hospital, I went home...took a nap...worked.

A simple but fulfilling day and it's not yet over!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Something Postponed, Something Moved Up

My (extremely painful) bone marrow test was moved to tomorrow. Supposed to have been today. I have an extra day to pray for it.

And my live interview by Fr. Jerry Orbos was moved from October 3 to this Saturday, September 19 at 9 to 10:30. I will be interviewed on this Sunday's gospel and on the anti-abortion song that I composed.

Join me in prayer...

My dearest Lord,

Help me as I undergo another bone marrow test tomorrow. It will be very, very painful so I need You to be by my side. I hope the results will show that my extremely expensive treatments have been a success. Already, I am experiencing much less pain these days. But I hope, we need not spend too much money for continued treatments.

God, also guide me as I answer the questions of Fr. Jerry. May all my responses be pleasing to You and give greater glory to You. I also want to honor Mama Mary through my answers as she was instrumental in writing my anti-abortion song.

Thank You, Lord, for all the blessings You have given me up to this day. Thank You for continuing to use me in so many ways to bless others and the world. I remain Your humble instrument of love and joy.

I love You so very much!


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Nobody Mania

These days, everybody seems to be dancing and singing "Nobody" by the Wondergirls. It's funny but the only English lyrics in the entire song are "I want nobody but nobody but you" and the rest is Korean.

Want a good laugh? Here's the version of some guys in an office.

(or type Nobody Hilarious Dance on YouTube)

Oh how I wish I could dance again!

But I can dream can I?

If I were to dream I watched a wedding video. And I imagined myself being the bride. She was lovely! (All brides are beautiful.) But I also look at grooms. This particular groom practically gaped and held his breath when he saw his bride! Oh, to have that same look again someday.

But I can dream can I?

What are my chances? I'm already 48, sick from head to other words, high-maintenance, I don't know how long I'm going to live, and I don't think I can make a man happy physically again.

I think I would have better chances on being able to dance again.

But then again, "libre naman ang mangarap, di ba?" (It's free to dream, isn't it?)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Work and Play all in a Day

Today was divided into work and play.

Work meant writing a topline report on ready-to-drink juice.

Play meant coloring my new coloring books.

In my facebook, I wrote, "Life is like coloring coloring have to stay within the lines but you get to choose the colors within." How true!

Here's what my new friend, Jobert, sent through the email last midnight. See my name?

Monday, September 14, 2009

Of Old Friends and New

Today, I chatted with two friends.

One was over Skype. She is Malou, a friend (former officemate) during my Magnolia days. We talked about a lot of things. She was worried that I was "in absentia" for a long period of time. I told her what happened to me. Malou told me how her life in Cebu is. She has two maids, able to go to the gym but still does most of the cooking. She teaches catechism on Saturdays and hears mass four times a week. Ever-religious and a Marian devotee, she reminded me to say the rosary daily.

My other friend is Lydia, a "sister" in Tabitha (a group of separated, widowed, single for life, etc. women). We talked over the phone. Aside from counseling, she acts as "lupon" or arbiter of barangay disputes. Like me, Lydia loves to play scrabble so we agreed to play scrabble over the phone some time. Ha ha. Sounds like fun!

Then, I met for the first time, Jobert. My new friend. I was excited to meet him because I asked him to buy me coloring books. He brought me two coloring books plus two boxes of crayons! I had great fun as I colored right away, while he made two drawings out of his poems. I "conceptualized" another drawing. We listened to music, mostly my cheesy kind. He kept taking pictures of our work, me, my mom, and himself, and views outside the window. Jobert is real cute and very nice, and sweet. (Too bad he's 12 years younger.)

Thank you, Lord, for friends - old and new. They make life so interesting. They make me feel so loved.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Happy Grandparents' Day

I no longer have any living grandparents.

And my son does not even have an official girlfriend yet.

So today, is my mom's day as a "Lola".

To celebrate, my sister's family (sans one daughter) came over and brought chicken barbecue (Coron recipe), rice, brownies, apple strudel, and softdrinks. We also had crab omelet, lanzones, and mangosteen to add to the feast.

They stayed for only a short while because one of my nieces had to watch a game.

I spent the rest of the day in front of the computer...and I chatted with an old friend.

I don't know if I will grow old enough to be a grandmother but I thank God for every day. For a Big C patient like me, every day is a blessing.

Reminds me of the winning entry in a writing competition which was turned into a video. The story is of a blind man with a sign "Have pity on me, a blind man". He gets few alms. Along comes a well-dressed stranger. He wrote something at the back of the blind man's sign. Suddenly, the beggar got a lot of alms, there was no space left on his can! When the stranger returned, the blind man asked, what did you do to my sign. The stranger said, "Nothing. Same thing, just changed the words."

What were those words? "Today is a beautiful day, but I cannot see it."

Made me cry.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

A "Feel Good" Day

Today was a "feel-good" day.

I woke up early enough to catch my son awake and getting ready for work.

I did not do any work.

I did spiritual stuff like read the Bible, listen to a Bible reflection and Bo Sanchez in Preacher in Blue Jeans, and listened to an online mass.

I managed to reduce my 800+ inbox to less than 200.

I watched the rest of the "Samantha Who?" series.

I talked to a client-friend who is coming over this Monday. He is giving me a coloring book! Yehey! And he is going to teach me how to draw (one of my frustrations). Real nice guy.

I got to eat lanzones - two kinds.

Ohhh, the simple pleasures of life!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Workshops...Work, Without the Shopping

Today, I conducted a marketing research workshop in my mom's condo. I had only two participants. Talked about types of marketing research. Showed some examples. Confidential material but the studies were conducted ages ago and these girls could be trusted.

I miss teaching. These mini workshops are the next best thing.

But no shopping, no going out, no going to the mall, no movie-watching. My immune system is still down. Sigh.

The other work I did today was finish entering corrections to a book of poems I am editing. My Client is very nice. But I never met him in person. I wonder how he looks like? Hmmm.

I am also helping putting the finishing touches to a report for my "suking kliyente". I notice that they are becoming too dependent on me.

In between jobs, I am trying to trim down my 800+ Yahoo inbox. Facebook is another thing. But I am itching to just watch "The Sound of Music" again. ha ha. Or read, "The Devil's Banker". Or continue viewing, "Samantho Who? series". The decisions I am faced with these days...

Must slow down. Must relax. I just had a major relapse, remember?

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Ahhh! Pizza!

Pizza is one of my favorite things. Sharing it with my son and mom made it even more special today. We availed of the buy one take one offer of Shakey's so my son could bring a whole box to the moviehouse tonight. And there is one box left for breakfast tomorrow.

Ahhh! Pizza (which my mom pronounces as "picha"). Heaven is thy name!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Feeling Weak

Work slowed down today.

My entire system slowed down today...feeling weak all day.

I think I know why but I'm ashamed to say.

It's one of those things...if you know what I mean.

So, I'm resting early today.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

A Productive Day and Yet...

This has been a productive day...

...I worked on a couple of marketing research projects

...edited up to 100 poems

...filled up forms for the BIR

...finalized the billing for a foreign client

...talked/chatted with friends

And yet...

...I have not yet read the Bible

...I have not yet prayed the rosary

...I have not read a new book or started watching a DVD series as reward for myself

...I have not listened to Bible reflections on the internet, heard mass, listened to Preacher in Blue Jeans

...I have not written in my spiritual journal

...I have not finished my letter to Ms. Charo Santos for MMK

...I have not spent quality time with my son

...I have not visited my Facebook

Too many "have-not's" for a 24-hour day. Oh well, there are more 24-hour days ahead of me.
Thanks to a healing Father and the wonders of medicine and the love of family, friends and even near-strangers.

Praise You, Lord!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Food Trip and 5 Lbs. Heavier

Since I got released from "prison", I have been eating chocolate chip cookies, garlic bread, wafers, Lukban longganiza, lechon kawali, bread, lanzones, trip! I just weighed myself and I am now officially 140 lbs. (5 lbs heavier than just a few days ago) Serves me right!

Today was still a working day...worked on three projects.

I received a wonderful blessing...the proceeds of a fund-raising premiere project for me by some La Salle students. I'm soooh grateful! My son helped by announcing the event in my Facebook account. A lot of his friends and my friends watched the movie, "UP". (Has nothing to do with the University of the Philippines though.)

I looked up the winners of the Palanca awards. I didn't win in the only category I joined, One-Act Play in English. Oh well.

I just have to keep my spirits UP.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Working and Hungry

It's Sunday.

I spent it working on two reports but frankly, my heart wasn't into it.

I kept eating the whole day! I think my tummy is having a hunger vengeance. They just gave me fish and vegetables at the half-way home. My mom said I might regain the 15 pounds I lost in just a few days.

I guess I will treat myself for the rest of day doing something I really love doing...coloring books, reading, whatever. yeah that's what I need these days. I just came from a manic episode so depression could easily set in. I must do "feel good" things.


Saturday, September 5, 2009

It's Great to Be Back!

After more than a month's stay in the hospital and in a half-way home, I'm back! With a VENGEANCE! ha ha

I'm raring to work again, play again, write again...fall in love again oops! Not that one.

I missed my son so much! And my mom and all my loved ones and friends.

There is much to do but I shall do each task slowly and well. No more fast tracks for me. I'm no supergirl. I should have known that 16 nervous breakdowns ago but some people take ages to learn their lessons.

Take things slow, that's now my motto.


Guess what?

I might appear on TV. Father Jerry Orbos wants to guest me in his show Teleradyo on DZMM to interview me about my anti-abortion song, "Mother, Let Me Live". They just asked permission to change the "Mother" into "Mama" to make the song more personal. Fatima Soriano will sing the song.

That will be on October 3, 2009. By then, I should have my broken front tooth fixed.