I May Not

I may not that rich

and give you my wealth,

I may not that smart

and give you my knowledge,

I may not the Genie

and grant your wish,

I may not the Saviour

and redeem your future,

I may not the tree

and shade you for free,

I may not the ocean

and provide you food for a lifetime,

I may not the sun

and give you warm,

I may not a teacher

and teach you for forever,

I may not the Creator

and give you the world,

I’m just a lady,

to give you my love for eternal life!

(written Jan. 06, 2007 when I was 17 years old, dedicated to my High School crush 😉 )

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How to get a CENOMAR and NSO Birth Certificate !

Who wants the hassle and inconvenient?  Of course, no one. Even if I came from PUP, which also means Pila Upo Pila (that was before SIS was created) and though my alma mater helps me develop and lengthens my patience, I still don’t want the hassle and long lines. We are in the generation of technology and instant and phase where every minute counts and so every penny must be spent wisely.

One of the requirements in applying for a Marriage License is Certificate of No Marriage (CENOMAR) and NSO authenticated Birth Certificate. We actually have various options, that will suit our different lifestyles. As the saying goes, “If there’s a will, there’s a way!”

Since we, my fiancé and I, have both works from Monday to Friday, and our vacation leave credits are easily consumed by my monthly prenatal check-up, we have to be very careful in choosing our options.

Here are the following options :

1.) NSO Main Office – It is located at East Avenue, Quezon City (in front of SSS East Avenue). It is one ride from Boni Avenue, take a bus with route SM Fairview, for doubts some buses have a card in front which says SSS & NSO. They are open from 7:00 am – 4:00pm from Mondays – Fridays. There is a step by step process instruction when you get there. But you will surely get your documents on that day. Since I am pregnant, we decided not to consider this option.

2.) Makati City Hall- It is located in Makati located at JP Rizal St.  In front of the New Makati City Hall, Ground floor of old City Hall Bldg. There is also a step by step process that will guide you when you get there. Unlike NSO Main Office, the waiting lines are not that long. But eventually, you will also get your documents on the same day also. We did not also consider this options because we are minimizing our vacation leave credits for other purposes, well merely for my OB-Gyn appointment :)!

3.) PSA  Help lines (https://nsohelpline.ph/) –  For those text savvy and don’t want to waste their time queuing in line, you can get you NSO documents online or thru phone. You can also call them 24/7 at (02) 737-1111. But, I’m warning you, this is a bit costly. The fee is Php350 per copy. You may pay through Bancnet online, any Metrobank branch, Bancnet ATM or select Bayad Center outlets. Delivery is usually within 2-5 working days upon receipt of your payment.

4.) SM Malls  –  Getting your documents in SM Business Center is like a piece of cake. You just have to go to the nearest SM Malls in your place. For us, SM Megamall is just a minute away. It is located in the 3r floor level. We went there on October 29, Saturday at 3:00pm, yes they catered during weekends but I’m not sure if they also catered during Sundays and Holidays, though. Oh, there is a cut off time. There were no long queuing lines. We paid Php 140.00 for the Birth Certificate and Php 195.00 for the Cenomar. And an additional Php 20.00 each for the processing fee. One thing to remember when getting your documents in SM Business Center is that it is suited for you if you’re in a hurry. Processing days takes 5 – 10 days for the Cenomar. But for us, it just took a week for us to get the Cenomar and the Birth Certificate. Upon claiming, you have to bring the claim stub with you and one valid ID. Just in case you will not be able to claim your documents, you can send your representative together with your Authorization Letter, your ID and her/his ID as well.

Don’t forget, you must have all the details (such as Mothers Maiden Name, Fathers Middle Initial, Birth Place) before choosing any of the options listed above.

I hope this helps you one way or another. If you have suggestions or corrections, please feel free to leave a comment 🙂 Thanks for dropping by :*

Love ♥,

2

The Dysfunctional Union

Being a product of a broken family was a real struggle. Not everybody can survive. It’s like a survival of the fittest under a deep dangerous forest, where you need not only to find your way out but you need to find yourself also. Your survival will be determined by only you. Physical pain is painful but an emotional pain will leave an unforgettable living scar … forever

broken-family-glass

My parents married without fully knowing each other. My mother was only 19 years old then while my father was 27 years old – a gap which will fuel their misunderstanding. They both came from a simple family. My mother was the eldest of three Marias while my father was the second child among four siblings. As far as I can remember, they just had a short span of a-boyfriend-girlfriend relationship when my father asks my mother to marry him. Actually, Mama seldom tells us their love story, like it was a nightmare for her.

The newly wed live on my father’s side in Cebu. Unfortunately, my father’s family has a cold hearts for her. They were not in favor of their son’s decision in marrying my uncle’s ex-girlfriend. Yes ! My mother was my uncle’s (Father’s 3rd brother) ex-girlfriend, yet I cannot elaborate the details for I also don’t know.

Their first years together was a misery, not a bed of roses. I remember seeing her crying in one corner of our small house because of them-it was painful. For years, she finally gets used to it. All their hatred, their cold treatment, and their negative comments. I don’t want to ruin my father’s reputation but I really don’t remember him consoling and defending her from them. We, my siblings, also get used to it. Hmm, how do I say this … favoritism factor ? Sometimes, they’re okay. Sometimes, they’re not. Even my cousins were influenced by these acts and attitude. We grew up not close to each other. I’m proud to say that in spite of the poverty, we were top notchers at school and we always make sure that at the end of every year we bring home medals and awards. We often joined the inter-school contest and bring home the bacon. But it was not enough for them to appreciate us.

I thought we were okay. My family was okay. During my early years in elementary, I know they quarrel a lot. They were not in good terms already. They fight with their mouth, though. But see, words hurts more than a physical wound. It’s ruining each others soul, not only there but it’s torturing us. I never ever thought we’ll end up like this-broken, a part.

Then, in one ordinary day in October 2000, my mother decided to end it. I guess it’s bound to happen or maybe it’s just the decision of someone stress, burnout and exhausted. I was 10 years old back then, so imagine how young my siblings were, the youngest was only less than a year. She packs our clothes and the next thing I know we were already traveling by sea to Manila. What’s the reason ? Just a simple misunderstanding that was fueled with their past piles of misunderstanding. That’s the start of everything, or shall I say the result of everything. Eventually, after 10 years of being in turbulent years together, she decided to cut the rope. She’s tired.

With my parent’s unsuccessful relationship, I realized the following were some of the pitfalls:

1.) Communicate – It doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be somewhere else to talk to. You just have to be yourself when talking not only to your partner as well as to others. When you talk, try, to be honest as much as possible. Listen first and try to digest it before you react.

2.) Stop Shouting – Sometimes it feels good to shout especially when you’re angry. But did you even ask yourself if is it okay when someone will shout at you too? Isn’t it degrading? It could lose your respect as well as your partner’s respect too.

3.) Write – Not all people speak well or express themselves transparently through verbal. If your one of those unlucky ones, do it in a letter. Love letters are not corny at all. Sometimes, it could speak out your hearts. Plus it creates memories, painful and happy memories which someday will remind you of how you have been through.

4.) Grow Up – Do it for yourself and for your partner. We all have flaws and negative side as a person. We may not change our self completely but we should know when to grow old enough to adjust to our new surroundings, our new life, and new responsibilities. Every chapter of our life needs a new version – a better version of our self.

5.) Us Time – Try to have some quality time for each other. Bond with your partner, watch your favorite movie together when the kids are asleep, do the laundry and dishes together, have a walk in the park together with no kids around. Treasure your time together. Remember the universal rule is that someday, your kids will sooner or later leave the two of you to make his/her own family.

6.) Me Time – As the song Hard to Say I’m Sorry by Chicago goes, ” Even lover needs a holiday, far away from each other!” Well I guess, it’s true and effective. It doesn’t mean you should separate or file an annulment. Just take a day off away from your nagger boss or dependent office mates, away from the awful childish quarrel of your kids, away from the boring monotonous household chores, away from the chaos of life. It’s okay and normal to be burnout, congrats you’re 100% human. Treat yourself in a parlor or a massage spa or take a short stay-cation, visit a church and talk to him.

7.) Don’t Hold Grudges – I’ve been reading this over and over again in many books, articles or blogs. And believe me, it’s effective. Don’t sleep with your grudges in your heart because we can never tell if tomorrow we will still have a chance.

8.) Be Sensitive – Mind your partner. Not all “okay” means okay. Because sometimes, I mean a lot of times it means the opposite. Marriage is a union of two souls, a special connection between two different hearts. I believe that when you truly deeply love someone, even if you don’t talk with your each other, you will still feel and know what your partner feels and wants because it’s your hearts that’s talking.

 9.) Be a True Friends – Be your partner’s true friend, someone s/he could lean on and talk to. But remember not to be biased. Tell her the things, s/he doesn’t want to but needed to hear.

10.) Put God In the Center – Above all, make HIM the center of everything and everything will follow according to God’s plan. Surrender all your worries, pains and problems to HIM and let HIM lead the way.

There’s no perfect relationship at all. Love is a give and takes process. Marriage comes with higher responsibilities. A two to tango. What’s important is that you are enjoying every step, digesting every mistake and reliving all lessons learn along the way. A mistake in the past creates painful memories no one could erase , but on the brighter side, it teaches us a lot of lessons that will help us build a better version of ourselves to create a much better tomorrow.

As for me, I am happy that although I am a product of a broken family, I didn’t turn to drugs and vices. As well as my other sibs. I had to manage my emotions and continue my life. It was so hard that until now, even in writing this, I still shed tears, reminiscing the pains, still asking the same question what if and if only. I thought I could never make it. But I realized that moving on is an initiative and a decision you do for yourself and not for the other people. Moving on means accepting the truth. I know that the emptiness and the broken soul will always be part of me and my sibling’s life, for it can never be stitched or patched with anything, not even with money. Yet, being a product of a broken family never means you are also destined to fail. Failing is a decision, your sole decision only believes me.

Love♥,

2

Living in the world of pain

My eyes began to swell

as I remember my mother so well

the tears suddenly fall

with sadness … I recall

My tender childhood

was full of bad moves

I was like a lonely shadow

left behind a room of solitude and so narrow

My heart was crushed

pieces … by tears was flushed

Being sweep by the meddler people

who keeps on judging me at all!

I was living in my illusions

and was afraid to face my obligation

I was a princess in my dream

but in reality, was a servant of my own pain

Trying to express my tacit feelings

through writing my lines … my fame

But in reality, I was in vain

And yet, still subordinated by such pain

My life itself was wrung

by destiny’s poisonous fangs

a mute, as I am

thoughts and feelings were gone

Like the sun that was happily smiling

when actually, deep inside I was crying

Just trying to clothe the ache

being brought by my bad fate

I was more than a jerk,

wondering what way to take

will it be happiness as they dedicated ?

or still, be a subordinated by the pain

my fate was made …

written December 15, 2006

Posted in Poetry

if you and only you

I live long ago

with the heart’s so blue

spent my nights, eyes with tears

coz’ someone broke my heart in pairs

‘Till you came into my life one day

and you fixed my heart in your own way

light’s finally came and shine

because of you and only you dear of mine

You stole my heart before my very eyes

willingly I’ll give it to you but please be wise

I’ve been down for so many times

because of those foolish lie lines

I know it’s time for me to move on

and because of you and only you, life must go on

I would dare sell my heart bravely

if you and only you would be bought it for me and only me

 

-written by me on Feb. 20, 2008

It’s Positive !

I used to have a timeline for my dreams and for myself. By the age of 18, I should graduate from college, by 25 I should have my own family, get married and have kids. Yet, it’s God who decides for us.

Two years ago, I was diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) is a condition in which a woman’s levels of the sex hormones estrogen and progesterone are out of balance. This leads to the growth of ovarian cysts (benign masses on the ovaries). PCOS can cause problems with a women’s menstrual cycle, cardiac function, appearance, and worst – fertility. (For more information, please wait for my blog about PCOS or just research it in Google.)

When I first discovered it, I just shrug off my shoulder then let it pass to the other side of my ear. It was by 2015 that I took it seriously. When again my menstruation becomes less frequent, aside from being irregular and other symptoms such as weight gain, anxiety, mood swings become more frequent.

Aside from that, I notice that more and more of my batch mates are becoming a mother. Pressured eh?  I was afraid that I will not be able to bear a child if I still ignore it. Also, we were really planning to have a child soon, though we were just in our mid-twenties.

I started seeing my second OB Dr. Esther Ongkeko, a resident OB-Gyn at Victor R. Potenciano Medical Center (also known as Polymedic General Hospital, Inc.). She was really good and kind and calm. By the symptoms I told her, she easily identified it as PCOS. And joke that it was her specialty. She made me undergo a number of laboratories which confirms my case. Then she let me choose between two options, either to take a pill or the natural way (which requires a lot of patient and time management-it is some kind of a cream, forgot the name, though) to make my menstruation regular or even close to it. She also told me that PCOS is not curable but preventable.

I started taking Diane pills ( yes, I chose the less hassle option) by September 2015.  As far as I remember, it cost Php 648.00 in Mercury Drug Stores. Then eventually, my menstruation visits become monthly. Fortunately, I didn’t feel any negative side effects from taking one. But I stop taking it when January 2017 enters. I decided to try what others said about stopping the pills and it might get you pregnant.

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For months, my menstruation became close to regular, meaning I had my monthly visits but the dates were not accurate. By May 2017, it stopped until June. I then schedule my appointment with Dr. Ongkeko for my check up by June 22.  Had undergone pap smear, Pregnancy Test, Ultrasound, and BhCG test – a pregnancy test thru blood. All my test turned out to be negative. I was expecting it as well since I am not feeling anything inside my tummy or even the early symptoms of pregnancy such a vomiting.

Then Dr. Ongkeko schedules an appointment after a month, that will be on July 13. I still haven’t had my monthly visit by then. The night before my appointment with her, I already took my Pregnancy Test. I was thinking, since I haven’t had my mens since my last visit to her, she would then told me to do the PT in her office and it was costly for me hahaha :). And the test was Positive ?! I can’t decide because it was just a faint pink line then just shrugs off my shoulder.

By morning, at the Hospital, before proceeding to Dr. Ongkeko’s office, I took another test, I don’t know, my instinct was urging me to do so. And boom, it was very clear – two red lines. It’s POSITIVE! I reallyyyy can’t believe.

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When my time comes, I show my PT results to Dr. Ongkeko and ask for confirmation if it was really positive. I had my emotions mixed. Then she told me that ” Yes! It’s positive! Congrats, you can’t deny it! ♥”. She prescribed me with prenatal vitamins for the baby and for me.

When I came out of the Hospital, I was like floating on cloud nine. I couldn’t explain how I feel. I’m so happy and excited and anxious and worried and mesmerized. I really can’t believe. And above all, I am so thankful to God that in spite and despite all my mistakes, I am still too bless!

I didn’t tell Maue right away, I want it to be personal. By evening, when he comes home, I show him an ampao and ask me what was that. I told him to open it. When he realized what he saw, he hugged me so tight and I could feel tears were flowing in his face. He was speechless 🙂 I was too. Now, our grand adventure is about to begin!

I always believe that if it’s God’s will, it will come true. You just have to trust him with all your hearts and surrender. No one’s perfect, we are just human and making mistakes is one of our nature. But our Merciful God never forgets to forgive us and still look after us after everything we’ve done. All we just have to do is pray and trust HIM!

Shall I say, Welcome to motherhood to self then eh ?! ♥♥♥

Love♥,

2

Posted in Uncategorized

A Writer Writes

A writer writes, always! Maybe not through a pen or a pencil or a keyboard. But everyday , when we walk in the street on our way to the office or to the school, we stitch pieces of ideas, imagine and assume what people are doing or going through, then came up with our own opinions – that’s when we became writer.


“Who wants to become a writer? And why? Because it’s the answer to everything. … It’s the streaming reason for living. To note, to pin down, to build up, to create, to be astonished at nothing, to cherish the oddities, to let nothing go down the drain, to make something, to make a great flower out of life, even if it’s a cactus.”

—Enid Bagnoldpost

Posted in Emotions & Hormones

Starless Nights!

I know crying is all I need. A long hard cry. I was silently hoping that this tears will take away , well maybe not all, but some of my heavy baggage’s inside. I’ve been wanting to cry so hard not minding if my eyes may swell. But I know I can’t, coz’ I’m living in a place where even when you snort to deep sleep , your neighbor can hear it. But I really need to cry this feeling out. I don’t have someone to talk to … leaving me with no choice but to keep all my heartaches to myself; my only outlet at times , my only option is to let this tears run dry. I know it will not solve the problem itself but it will lessen the burden inside. 

Ever since my parents separated ways when I was 10 years old, crying alone out at night has become my outlet, it has become my comfort zone. Crying myself out has been my charger, it is where I’m getting my strength. 

For me, crying isn’t a sin neither it isn’t a sign of weakness. It’s a sign of being strong. It’s an indication that throughout the day, I was fighting the life’s reality so hard that at night I need to recharge myself through releasing all those pains, doubts, fears and all the negative thoughts. So that tomorrow, I will courageously face the world again.

“…you know that a good, long session of weeping can often make you feel better, even if your circumstances have not changed one bit.”
Lemony Snicket, The Bad Beginning

Posted in Emotions & Hormones

The Unknown Self

I’m originally a self-proclaimed Cebuana Poet and writer. Way back when I was in Cebu – my hometown-I wrote every day. I wrote corny poems, short love stories-the one that makes someone’s twitter-patted (kilig), I wrote articles which were even published in our school paper. I wrote everything under the sun-my crushes, my pain, my emptiness, my anger, everything. It’s my way of releasing my stress. That was-writing-was my outlet.

It all changes since we lived here in Manila, year 2007. I’m finding it hard to release what I’m feeling, I cannot concentrate. I can’t find the right words to write. That’s why I felt suffocated, kasi wala akong nagiging outlet. I’ve got no one to talk to, not even my mother. All my friends were in Cebu.I find it hard accepting new friends because I still cling to my past. I became a stranger in a place where I don’t have a choice but to call it HOME! I felt alone. Out of place. Lost.

Yet, I know I don’t have a choice but to continue my life, to survive in this world of chaos and adjust with the current culture, a culture which is totally opposite to the one I was acquainted with. Pinabayaan ko ang passion ko, kinalimutan ko. There even came a time that I couldn’t construct a good sentence. I couldn’t form a paragraph.

Tapos, naiisipan ko nalang magsulat pag may iba saken. Mostly, I want to write when I’m pained. Then, whenever I would start to scribble-it’s nothing, a scrap. I couldn’t put my feelings into words.

Up until now, hindi ko pa din naibabalik yung burning desire ko for writing. Feeling ko tuloy hindi na ako ‘to. I mean I know I’m changed but I don’t like those changes in me.

Hindi na ako yung leader type na Joanna. I’m often tired of accepting responsibilities. Nakontento ako just as a member. I miss my old self. Yung strong will ko to be a leader who accepts challenges and responsibilities with all her heart. Now, I’m almost afraid of challenges-and it is so not me. I am not the kind of person who just sat in a corner silently and just accept ideas. I was the one who likes to debates, I always had a new and unique ideas and I am active, I love to move and run and direct plays at school and organized programs and activities in our school. I always had the desire to be the winner,to be the best. Not so perfectionist though but I’m no mediocre also. That was before. I guess I left part of myself in Cebu, in my past. And now even if I go back there, it would never be the same, I will never find that part of me again.