The One with the Kamingaw

September has come and gone and the last days of September will always reminds me of youth play.

Tonight I spent some timw catching up with friends. We reminisced about our past youth play experiences. I remember losing some sleep, I remember being tired and drain every after youth play. I remember being absent at school every Monday after the youth Sunday but I also remember having good sleep after each events. I remember my strength being renewed. I remember missing out on school but gaining so much more. 

I miss Cebu.

Oh the challenges & sorrow I felt in that place. The island where I lost and doubted myself but found and gained and recieved much more than I gave and asked. It whispers joy and comfort. A place where friends who have turned into family. A place I’m sure I will always have a space. 

It once screamed broken dreams, bad choices, disappointments, wasted years 

but

It also screamed new dreams, choices that made me stronger, growth, discipline and traininh ground for the future.

It also screams home.

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Ang Usapang Pagbabalik

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Ako: Teh, ano ba ‘to sepanx! Miss na miss ko na yung Bradford family natin. Sabi ni kuya Lanz, there is growth in separation. Bakit di nya sinabing malungkot ang separation?

Jennerz: Oo nga teh, napakasakit pa ng separation na ito.

Ako: Kasalanan to ng ulan napapa emo ako! Pero baka naman kasi naging comfort zone na natin dun

Jennerz: Oo nga teh naging comfort zone na talaga natin pero bakit tayo lang ang nagkaganito? huhu

Ako: Kasi tayo lang yung umalis

Jennerz: Babalik pa kaya tayo dun ano?

Ako: Oo naman teh, Di ko alam kelan pero uuwi at uuwi ka sa mga lugar na minsan mo ng naging tahanan.

Ako: WALANG HIYA ANG DEEP NATIN TEH.

Hindi na ako nireplyan.

Bakit nga ba may sepanx, mga mem?

Kasi deep down inside takot ako, takot ka, takot tayong makalimutan.

Ang Tula ni Jeriboi

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I know of sutures and streets
Of coffee that’s bittersweet
Of photo and those who smile,
Amidst their crooked teeth
Is joy bound to leave?
Or does it stay with those beneath?
Often sought, sometimes found
Joy must be somewhere not around

– Jeremiah Ablaza, 2014

Ito’y isang tula galing sa makata kong kaibigan pagkatapos ng isang coffee session about sa nawawalang joy sa detistry.

Kung nabitin kayo, check out his works here.

Ang Mga Demonyong Ayaw Akong Tantanan

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Anim na buwan.

Anim na buwan mula noong tinakbuhan kita. I did not run away from dentistry (technically, I did) I ran away from you, at least I tried.

Sa mga nagtatanong, hindi naman yung kahirapan ng subjects sa dental medicine ang nagtulak sa akin sumuko eh. Pero hindi rin ibig sabihin madali ang mga subjects. Dahil mahirap po sila. Challenging. You’re studying to be a doctor in the span of six years, go figure.

“Dentistry? Bunot-bunot lang naman yan. Bat six years?”

Ay walang hiya. Hindi po bunot bunot lang ang dentistry. Hindi rin ito pasta pasta lang. Pipiliting mong matutunan sa loob ng apat na taon ang ilang taong pag-aaral tungkol sa ngipin at basics lang po ito. Hindi sapat ang four years proper para pag-aralan lahat.

Kaya hangga’t hindi mo nasubukan
mag dentistry wag kang humusga ng mga sumuko dito.

“Grabe, 2 takes di mo pa rin nakuhang pumasa sa subject na ‘yon?”

Mahirap pong pumasa sa lahat ng subject. Malimit kailangan ng season 2. Pero, pag nag season 2 ka hindi naman yung kaalaman mo sa subject ang magtutulak sa’yong kwestyunin yung pinag-aralan mo eh. Hello, pangalawang kuha mo na. Malamang ikaw yung pinakamatalino sa klase kasi alam mo na. Pero pag nag season 2 ka na kasi, Iba na yung tingin sa’yo ng clinical instructor nyo eh. Di ko alam kung talagang judgemental lang ba talaga sila o low lang talaga yung self-esteem ko. Pero hanggat hindi mo nasubukan mag dentistry at maging recipient ng ganoong klaseng look ng mga clinical instructor, please lang wag mong husgahan ang taong sinukuan ang dentistry.

“Anong meron sila na wala ka?”

Ito po ay isang tanong na nakakainit ng ulo. Manhid na ako dito. Alam kong madaling sabihin na “mas matalino kasi sila sa akin” pero alam ko sasagutin ako ng isa pang tanong (see next question) Sana madali mag explain ano? Pero paano ko ba ipapaliwanag yung mga pumapasang cheaters at pa easy-easy at yung mga bumabagsak na hindi na ngongopya. Hindi ko po kayang ipaliwanag. Kaya nyo ipaliwanag? Kung oo, sige maari nyo nang husgahan ang taong sinukuan ang kursong ito. yun ay pagkatapos nyong ma acomplish yung mga nabanggit na patakaran sa taas.

“Bat sila? nagagawa naman nilang pumasa, eh diba dean’s lister ka dati? Naging scholar ka pa nga!”

Mahirap pong magpatali sa nakaraan. Hindi ibig sabihin na naging dean’s lister ako wala na akong karapatan bumagsak. Normal lang naman ang bumagsak sa buhay. Mas marami akong natutunan sa mga subject na nag season 2 ako kesa sa mga one take lang. Hindi dahil inulit ko ha pero hindi naman related sa dentistry yung mga natutunan ko.
Marami akong natutunan tungkol sa buhay. Wew ang deep ko! Gaya na lamang ng

1. Wag na wag mong ikumpara ang sarili mo sa iba. Magkaiba kayo. Period.

Nakakalason po ito.

2. Nasa paaralan ka para matuto hindi para matakot.

Hinding hindi ka matututo pag takot kang magkamali.

3. Mga mem! Hindi race eskwela. Hindi ito paunahan.

Hindi ka palaging mauuna, minsan mahuhuli ka pero tandaan na hindi ka disqualified.

Anim na buwan.

Anim na buwan mula noong tinakbuhan ko ang mga demonyong ito.

Mga demonyong nagpapaalala sa akin ng nakalipas ko. Nagpapaalala ng mga judging look ng mga CI, ng mga pagkukulang, ng mga disappointments, ng mga
failures na I can’t seem to shake off, ng mga doubts at ng mga “tama nga ata yung doubts nila sakin”.

Mga demonyong ayaw akong tantanan.

Pilit kong tinakbuhan ang mga ito. I tried to run away from the person I have become, insecure, underachiever, fearful. A person missing joy.

Pero nakakapagod na.
Ayoko ko na.

Akala ko sapat na yung anim na buwan para makatakas.

Pero eto pa rin ako sumisintas ng sapatos handa nanaman ulit tumakbo.

Ang Huling Laro ni Pareng Kobe

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Medyo emotional ako sa huling laro ni Kobe Bryant kanina. Oo, with matching luha sa mata at may bukol pa atang kasama pagkatapos kong mauntog ang ulo ko nung naka score sya para ibigay ang lead sa lakers sa huling minuto ng laro.

The 37 year old guy scored 60 points, which is an all time high in NBA history for a farewell game. He played for 42 minutes. Classic Kobe.

Medyo affected ako sa #MambaDay the last time I felt like this was when Olsen Racela retired from PBA.

Kobe’s love and dedication for the game is one the reason why he’s one of the G.O.A.T. for me. Come on people, remember when he tore his achilles? He hopped on the way to the bench, went back on the court to shoot & made the two free throws and walked refusing to be brought out in a stretcher to the locker room. Si kuya na ang hindi takot masaktan!

Earlier after the game, He was asked about what will he leave behind in the court. He was quick to answer: “My heart and soul” and surely it was his heart and soul that he will be leaving. Let me share to you his retirement announcement before this season started. Mga mem, OA lang pero feeling ko nakipag break sya sakin sa letter na ‘to HAHA

Dear Basketball,

From the moment I started rolling my dad’s tube socks
And shooting imaginary
Game-winning shots
In the Great Western Forum
I knew one thing was real:

I fell in love with you.
A love so deep
I gave you my all –
From my mind & body
To my spirit & soul.

As a six-year-old boy
Deeply in love with you
I never saw the end of the tunnel.
I only saw myself
Running out of one.

And so I ran.
I ran up and down every court
After every loose ball for you.
You asked for my hustle
I gave you my heart
Because it came with so much more.

I played through the sweat and hurt
Not because challenge called me
But because YOU called me.
I did everything for YOU
Because that’s what you do
When someone makes you feel as
Alive as you’ve made me feel.

You gave a six-year-old boy his Laker dream
And I’ll always love you for it.
But I can’t love you obsessively for much longer.
This season is all I have left to give.
My heart can take the pounding
My mind can handle the grind
But my body knows it’s time to say goodbye.

And that’s OK.
I’m ready to let you go.
I want you to know now
So we both can savor every moment we have left together.
The good and the bad.
We have given each other
All that we have.

And we both know, no matter what I do next
I’ll always be that kid
With the rolled up socks
Garbage can in the corner
:05 seconds on the clock
Ball in my hands.
5 … 4 … 3 … 2 … 1

Love you always,
Kobe

Mamba out.

Ang Isang Malungkot na Araw

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Four year ago today, I woke up to a life changing text message from my mom.

“Nak, na stroke si mama be. Please pray…”

I’m not sure if you ever experience waking up to a text message like that but let me tell you, it’s a feeling I don’t want any of you to experience.

10 mins of being down to my knees praying later, I received another a message.

“Nak, coma si mama be”

and yet another one

“Ga, tinext ka ni mommy mo?
Pa book ka ticket uwi tayo”

Ma. Aurora is our aunt. She is Mama Baby or Mama Be to my cousins and I. She was my room mate ever since I stopped sleeping in my parents’ room when I  was in Grade 2 until I left home for college. She was a single lady all her life, so my cousins and I took the role of being her spoiled kids.

March 29, 2012

I remember pleading for healing.

I remember asking for His will to be done.

I remember myself asking, Has she accepted Jesus as her personal Lord and Savior.

I remember reminiscing about that time where my voice was shaking as I share the gospel at church and there she was in the crowd trying to hold back tears.

I remember the peace of knowing there is eternal life waiting for her, If this is it. If her time’s up.

I remember dragging Jenny and Nado with me to look for an Air Philippines office to print out my itinerary receipt.

I remember going to church with puffy eyes.

I remember being asked why I have puffy eyes.

I remember the things I did to keep my mind off mama baby being in a coma state.

I remember the fear of spending the night alone.

I remember pulling an all nighter video editing at church for youth camp which is scheduled to happen in two days.

I remember sleeping at Ate Jam’s classroom that night with Ate Glazy, Rochelle, Ting-Ting, Jang-Jang and Barkadits Van-Van.

March 30, 2012

I remember having to walk from church to the dorm at 4 am.

I remember grabbing breakfast with Ate at the airport.

I remember Ate Aysel explaining Mama Be’s case to me.

I remember hearing medical terms. Aneurysm & Cardiomegaly. I know those words, I studied them but I never realize their meaning is as simple as this: a lost cause. There was nothing we can do.

I remember not sleeping the whole flight home.

I remember holding lola’s hand on the way to the hospital.

I remember entering the ICU.

I remember the tubes and machines hooked to her.

I remember crying on her side.

I remember the nurse giving me the “why are you crying, she’s not yet dead look”

I remember asking the nurse about Mama Be’s urine output to break the awkwardness. When she said “Yes, that all her fluid output” I just nod because we both knew, this is it. It’s just a matter of time.

I remember then laying down on a hospital bed that night. Thinking “Oh no! I’ve been awake for 36 hrs already”

I remember not sleep that night.

March 31, 2012

I remember being awake.

I remember going inside the ICU to start the day.

I remember Mama Nette’s arrival.

I remember having to wait.

I remember Pastor Lisa praying with us.

I remember hearing them decide for DNR, Do Not Resuscitate.

I remember the whole family gathered on her bedside.

I remember holding her hand.

I remember how quick I let go because the machine sounded off which only meant one thing : Flat line. Finish line. The end.

I remember them turning off the machine.

I remember having to usher lola back to the watcher’s room.

I remember crying.

I remember the pain.

I remember being awake for another 24 hrs at St. Peter’s.

April 1, 2012

I remember going home.

I remember going home but it’s not the same anymore.

March 29, 2016

Four years, I think that’s more than enough time to heal, to move on, to go on with life. And I have. I’m healed, I have moved on and go on with life.

But there are still days where I long for Mama Be’s home cooked meals and nights where I cry myself to sleep because I miss her.

Ang Uncertainties

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“Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd.”

Sabi ni pareng Voltaire sa intro ng pelikulang Sana Dati.

“When you’re young you feel certain about a lot of things, as you grow older you learn to embrace uncertainties. You only crave certainty when you’re afraid of not knowing things pero yun nga, the more you mature the more you realize the world is so random and uncertainty is the only thing that’s out there and growing up is just letting go of the things you don’t have control over and focusing on the little things you can control.”

Sabi ni pareng Jerrold Tarog sa audio commentary ng pelikulang Sana Dati.

Ang Blogpost Na May Babala

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Babala: Medyo madrama ang mga sumusunod na salita.

People close to me would know that I’m not so vocal with what I truly feel. Not in a group setting or conversation that is. I’d rather text or write it instead. Maybe it’s the thought of how fast words become when you speak. Unlike when you write it, you take time to choose and screen the words you use or maybe just because I’m too phlegmatic and nodding and agreeing is what I do best.

With that in thought, I realize hindi naman pala talaga manhid ang mga phleg. Sadyang di lang talaga kami marunong mag comfort. Kagaya nalang, pag umiyak ka sa harap ko. Wala akong gagawin. Di naman sa di ko napapansin o nararamdaman yung mga pinagdadaanan mo teh, Di ko lang talaga alam anong sasabihin at gagawin. Well, may alam akong gawin. Salamat sa psych friends ko (Hi, Jennerz and Nadz!) Wag na wag ka daw gumawa ng physical contact (eg. Rubbing of back) dahil di raw yung nakaka comfort at mapapa “it’s all coming back, so coming back to me now” raw yung umiiyak. Talagang sinusunod ko yun ‘no! Kaya iyakan nyo lang ako. Mag jjoke ako para di masyadong heavy pero pag uwi ko saka pa ako mag ttext ng mga seryosong mga bagay. Oo, ganoon ako phlegmatic na pagiisipan ko pa talaga kung anong sasabihin kaya naman napaisip ako, pag sinagot ko ba yung tanong na

“Bakit huminto ka ng Dentistry?”

Ng

“Hindi ako masaya dun eh!”

Would it be enough? Acceptable ba yung reason ko? My happiness matters naman siguro, ano?

Sabi ko naman sa inyo, medyo madrama ‘to.

Ang Nakaraang Dalawang Linggo

Medyo naging tahimik ako banda rito nitong nakaraang dalawang linggo. Naglakbay ako kung saan saan. Actually, sa off sem ko na to, napakarami kong napuntahan.

Nung January

-Whaleshark watching sa Oslob
-Naligo sa Tumalog Falls
-Muling umakyat ng Osmena Peak
-Nag late night tambay sa dagat ng Moalboal
-Nag canyoneering sa Alegria
-Napadpad muli sa Kawasan Falls

Nitong nakaraang dalawang linggo

-Naglakad sa Eden Nature Park sa Davao
-Tumawid sa Samal Island
-Hinintay lumipad ang 1.7 million na bats sa Monfort Bat Sanctuary
-Umakyat sa Mt. Apo Heritage Park
-Nagapa art art para ibigin sa Kublai Art Mountain
-Nadismaya sa Lake Mirror
-Nag cruise sa Lake Sebu
-Naligo sa white sand ng Gumasa
-Lumipad sa Manila
-Natraffic
-Nanghinayang na di nakapagpapicture kay Jason Magbanua sa Las Casa Filipinas De Acuzar, Bataan
-Napa emo sa Dambana ng Kagitingan
-Kumain ng legit Pampanga sisig sa San Fernando
-Pumunta sa Simbahan na natabunan ng Lahar ng Pinatubo
-Namyesta sa Guagua
-Dumaan sa Sandbox
-Namangha sa painting sa ceiling ng Betis Church
-Namili ng Kaserola sa Bulacan
-Nagpakain ng tigre sa Subic
-Nang asar ng mga tindera sa Greenhills
-Nag tsinelas sa SM Aura
-Nagpaiyak ng bata sa Paranaque

Ngayong nakauwi na ako. Naiisip ko, Oo! naka uwi nga ako pero bakit parang nawawala pa rin ako.