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November 15th, 2010

The Path We Have Taken

Originally published on Tuesday, April 22nd, 2008.

From the book, The Gifts of Life and Love by Ben Zion Bokser.

The Path We Have Taken

An innate conservatism often holds us back from embarking on new adventures. Sometimes this is a brake on progress. Yet in its own way it makes a contribution to our happiness.

The world is rich in endless possibilities. Each is a path that might be pursued, that would offer many fulfillment to one who will embark on it. But if we followed the call of every possibility, we would be forever on the go. We would dissipate our strength by trying the impossible, to go in many directions at the same time, or to continue shifting from direction to direction.

Life demands that we concentrate on a given path, that we pursue it till we reach its final end. We cannot know what a given path has to offer unless we pursue it for some time, resisting the call to embark on new adventures as a diversion from the task before us.

There are times when the path we have chosen has disclosed its defects, and it becomes necessary to leave it in favor of a new path. Then it is time to abandon the promptings of a conservative disposition with its call to caution. But it is good that human nature tends to surround what we have with an aura of love, and to defend it against the disrupting pressures of a changing world.

Life is full of possibilities. Often, we face the dilemma to choose which direction to take and to be happy and content with the choices we have made. If we could only split ourselves, live different realities at the same time and could somehow go back where we have started, it would be easier and life would be a life without regret. But to live life, we are only given a one-way ticket, one chance. There is no going back and time is forever lost.

In the road of life, a light illuminates but only a part of the way. With religion, tradition, custom of society or laws of the land, or with whatever that tells us what is right and what direction to follow, the course will still be walked with uncertain steps. For all this is only a partial light and it does not clearly indicate what path that must be taken. It is for this reason that every choices made based on certain facts and circumstances are fallible and short-sighted. Thus, our mind must be open to new knowledge and wisdom which time will hopefully bring. In light of the new knowledge and wisdom, we must continually, carefully review and reassess the choices we have made.

However, our innate conservatism prevents us from taking new direction even when the path we have taken is in its dead-end or deviates from our life’s goals, happiness or betterment of living. This conservative disposition calls upon caution as its main reason. It also asserts fondness towards familiarity and resistance to the pressure of change. But sometimes, it is a mask of fear – fear of the unknown, fear of change, fear of another possibility of dead-end and failure.

But whatever is behind our conservative disposition, do not lose sight of the goal. With faculties intact, knowledge, wisdom and a dose of courage, it is important to move forward following the direction of our life’s goals and to be not held at a stand still, for in the road of life, we move backwards by standing still in this fast moving world.

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February 2nd, 2010

Men in my Life

Soon there will be four, but right there’s three men in my life.

Hubby and Me. Photo taken on December 26, 2009

Hubby and Me. Photo taken on December 26, 2009

My loving hubby, Michael. He is more than I could ever ask for in a man, a husband, a father to our kids! I’m so glad I married him. While I was trying to find a recent picture of us together, I realized that we don’t take pictures of us as much anymore.

Matthew's Star Wars Tent. Thanks to Grandma for this fabulous Starwars Tent.

Matthew's Star Wars Tent. Thanks to Grandma for this fabulous Star Wars Tent.

Matthew, my little man. So adorable, with the sweetest smile. At 3-years-old, he has managed to melt my heart and drive me insane at the same time. No matter how old he gets, he’ll always be my baby.

This is me and my brother JC, on his way to the Senior's Ball. Photo taken on 2007 March 25.

This is me and my brother JC, on his way to the Senior's Ball. Photo taken on 2007 March 25.

The other man I’ve not written about so far is my baby brother, JC. But he is not a baby anymore. The last time I saw him was during my vacation in the Philippines in 2007. He was graduating high school then. He is pursuing college now.

We are a generation apart in age, 12-years age gap. When he was so young at a toddler age, it’s so funny that we, his big sisters and big cousins, would call him Kuya, which means older brother. I think he carried being called ‘big brother‘ very well. He grew up not getting in too much trouble, especially as a teenager. He grew up to be very observant but you’ll have to guess what goes on in his mind because he is not so outspoken, not too expressive.

He was in pre-school when I left home for college. As a big sister, I regret that I didn’t see him grow up. So I don’t know how much a positive influence I am for him. But he’ll always be my Kuya! I always love him and hope great things for him.

November 11th, 2008

‘Thank a Veteran’ Day

Photo: Michael in Training

This is hubby taken when he was 17-years old during his training in the US Army. He served during the Gulf War in the early ’90s and had gone to various parts of the world for different missions. He recently just retired after 23-years in the Army Infantry. Unfortunately, I met him and we got married during the later part of his service so I didn’t get to witness so much action. But then I’m just glad that I met him at all.

He continues his service by providing mentorship to students as a Tactical Officer in a military school here in Alabama. And he still gets to wear his military uniforms.

Today, Hubby and the school’s marching drill team are on their way to a parade in celebration of the Veteran’s Day. They are all dresssed up in their formal military uniform including Hubby. Buckles and shoes are all shiny and bright. And they are even wearing white gloves. They all look sharp and patriotic.

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November 4th, 2008

Prayer to the Guardian Angel

This is the traditional Catholic prayer to the Guardian Angel.

Angel of God, my guardian dear
to whom God’s love commits me here.
Ever this day/night be at my side
to light, to guard, to rule and guide.

I learned this prayer in kindergarten. I grew up praying this before going to sleep and before going anywhere. We even prayed this in school at the end of the last period when it was time to come home.

As a child, I sincerely believed in the power of this prayer that i didn’t feel safe going out anywhere or even going to sleep without reciting this in my mind. As an adult, I don’t pray as much anymore. Whenever I do pray, my prayers have become less memorized.

Photo taken from Christian Clip Art.

October 28th, 2008

Parents’ Nightmares and Parents as Nightmares

I came upon this TV show while flipping TV channels. It talks about urban legends that are mostly funny but some are scary. One of them disturbed me a lot. I think it’s because when I watched it, and heard the story for the first time, I was pregnant with Matthew and overwhelmed with maternal instincts. I was, at that time, in the peak of preparing myself to become a parent for the first time.

Anyway, the story goes like this:

There was a girl and she was babysitting. The parents had gone out to a party and had left their infant at home with this sixteen-year-old girl. So she was babysitting and they phoned just to see if everything was all right. She said, “Oh. Fine! Everything’s great! The turkey’s in the oven.” The mother went, “Oh, okay. Fine.” and she hung up. Then she looked at her husband and went, “The turkey’s in the oven? We didn’t have a turkey!” He said, “What’s the matter?” So they decided they had better go home and see what was the matter. Maybe there was something wrong with the babysitter.

They excused themselves from the party and went home. So they walked in the house and saw the babysitter sitting in the chair freaking out. She had put the little infant in the oven and had thought it was a turkey.

– Reference: Wasted and Basted,

There are other variation in this story. Sometimes it is incorporated with the babysitter being high on drugs. Knowing that it’s an Urban Legend, it’s suppose to have not happened at all in real life. But it still gives me the chills. It makes me think about real life dangers that could happen to my child. I cringe at the thought of them.

And then, I watch the news. There are so many cases worse and scarier than this urban legend. Little kids or even babies as young as a month old in real life are being killed. Crimes against innocent children are bad enough. What could be worse is that some crimes were committed by the children’s parents. Cases of shaken babies, for instance. Or when babies are left forgotten in the hot car by their own parents deliberately. I have also read about mothers cutting off their babies hands to elicit sympathy from people. So that they will get more when they beg for money and food. And how about those parents who kill their newly born baby because she is not their preferred gender. As a mother, these acts – I just can’t understand. When the parent, who are suppose to be the child’s protector and the ultimate caregiver, becomes a child’s nightmare, it’s disturbingly sad and scary! And if they could do harm to their own children, what’s going to stop them from harming other people’s children? What’s scarier is they could be the next door neighbor, the school nurse or the postman.

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