Thursday, October 12, 2017

When destiny unfolds

Original Photo by Joshua Miguel

No matter how much effort we put in organizing and planning our life, the tides of our destiny will always dictate our fate. We always come across the word destiny, but most of us do not really know what it means. Destiny is a predetermined event in a person’s life that is beyond human control. Destiny is also known as our “purpose in life”. In my own opinion, it will take a big deal of time before we discover our true destiny is. I myself who is already 42 years old as of this writing is still in doubt of what my real task in this world. Every single day I always ask myself what my Creator wrote in my palm and what is waiting for me at the end of this tunnel called life. When I was still in my childhood years, I see my future as difficult and full of challenges because that was what I saw from my parents. My dad in particular was the one who inculcated in my mind that adult life is tough and I should prepare for it. He always told me that I should not follow their footsteps because their chosen profession was not only exhausting but also financially unrewarding. I believed in him because our life during those days were indeed financially difficult. Both my parents took more than one teaching jobs just to support our family. It was still clear in my mind how my mother would leave our house as early as 5:00 o' clock in the morning to catch her 7 am class and she usually arrived in our house past 9:00 o' clock in the evening. This was her daily routine and sometimes she extends her work even during weekends. Working in the education industry here in the Philippines is still a challenge until now and I thank my dad for not encouraging me to venture in to that field otherwise I might not be enjoying the perks I am enjoying now. 

My dad died last year and he may have fulfilled some of his many dreams. But despite that, I know that he was still very frustrated with so many things. In fact, when we were together he always shares his frustrations with me. He talked about his frustrations on his job, his frustration of not having enough money to travel around the Philippines and across the globe. My dad was an explorer and he wanted to be free, but he was trapped in a world that was opposite of his dreams. He may have not openly expressed his frustrations about his life but I know he gave up his extemporaneous nature and chose not to take a riskier road to explore his untapped talents. He did that because he do not want to drag us - his family, in the pursuit of his dreams. Following one's dreams is not as easy as we think, it will entail some risks and chances of failure is big. I know that because right now I am still in the process of chasing my dreams, and believe me I have sacrificed so much... my time, my energy, my relationship, my family, and most of my hard-earned money. Honestly, until now, my dreams are still of great distance. As mentioned earlier, we have no idea of what is in store for us. Our Creator's plan for each one of us is beyond our understanding. It is up to Him what our future will bring us. Finding our dreams may be easy for some and very hard on others including me. But how do we know if we have already achieved our dreams? I think if we are already happy and contented with what we have or when we already reached a state when we stop longing for material things, I think it is safe to say that we have already achieved our life's purpose.  
 
Today is my dad's first death anniversary. His death was unexpected, it was sudden and it caught me by surprise. But his death taught me a very important lesson, that life is unpredictable and we should never settle for anything less than what makes us truly happy. If you are not happy with your current situation, you are free to get out of it. Your happiness is in your hands. Don't be afraid! You can do it! Maybe your current state is just part of God's grand master-plan and He is teaching you something very important as He unfolds your life's purpose in the very near future. Live life!


You might be interested in this post >>> My Road to Recovery

Sunday, July 16, 2017

A Letter from Mother Earth

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When I was young, I started my day on the East so I can welcome the warm embrace of the sunrise. The air was crisp, cool, and smell so fresh. The fragrance of the green forest greeted me as the wind whispered in my body. The flowers were blooming with colors then and the butterflies roamed freely in the Babylonian gardens. The sky was so blue as if you can reach it with your hands.

Birds glided gracefully like angels sent from heaven and their sweet song echoed as it touches the mighty cliffs of the mountains. The rivers were clear as a mirror and its water was soft like a warm pillow. The school of fish danced gracefully underneath the picturesque beauty of the pacific sea. Its waves roared with joy as it touched the crystal shore. When the moon and the sun set above the ocean, the water twinkled like a diamond star.

These were the memories of my past, the past I missed so hard. Time has faded my beauty and others abused my generosity. I gave shelter to mankind and nurtured his wildlife. I gave you food, clothing and medicine… but you gave me nothing. The billion of years that I took care of your generation have led to my slow destruction. I gave you everything my friend, but again, you gave me nothing. I am writing you today to say that I love you my dear friend. I am willing to share you everything and all that is left of what I have so you can live happily with your family. I am willing to sacrifice my life for your survival …because I care for you.

Just like you my friend, I will soon grow old and die. Time of my death is still unknown but at this pace, I know in a short while it will be known. Honestly, I am scared to die, I am scared not to see your children grow and I will be hurt to leave this world I know. Do you really love me my friend? Then why don't you take care of me like the way I take care of you? I am dying... I need you to save me. You are my only last hope.

Love,

Mother Earth

Friday, May 5, 2017

Work now, play later







Lucky are those who were born wealthy for they are already enjoying the fruits of their parents' hard work. For the unfortunate ones, we are working very hard to support our current needs and to secure a better future for our children.

Most of us want a better life and a secured future. If we want a comfortable life tomorrow, we should work earnestly today. But don't forget to rest and play in between. Remember, life is not always about work. Always find time to enjoy life after a long days work.

Have a great day!


Sunday, April 30, 2017

People will never forget how you made them feel

Maya Angelou, an American poet once said, "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." 

This message of Ms. Angelou is indeed correct based on my personal experiences. Honestly, it is so easy for me to cherish those people who cradled me during my darkest moments and I will always remember them as long as I am alive. Those good-hearted people made me feel that I am not alone and they were by my side when I fought those battles.

On the other hand, it is also hard for me not to forget those people who inflicted pain in my life - those people who shoved me down and destroyed part of my life. And I also cannot forget those people around me who just watched me go down the drain without exerting a single finger to pull me out of that darkness. I so cannot forget them until now. But don't get me wrong, I have no plans of seeking revenge on those people. I'm just saying that I cannot stop myself from feeling hurt whenever memories of these people crossed my mind. I forgave them, the wound was already healed but their scar left a bent in my heart. My mind want to forget the sorrow that I have experienced from them, sadly my heart doesn't want to. 

These experiences also taught me great things. These people inspired me to do good and to be of help  to the needy. Most importantly, it taught me the value of sincere empathy. I really feel for those good people who are in the abyss of their lives, with no one around them who are brave enough to lend a shoulder to lean on or spend time to listen to their desperate cry - I feel for them because I've been there. 

These difficult experiences in my life inspired me to create this blogsite so that I can share my experiences to the world. To show them that they are not alone. 

I am also starting a website www.onelifenetworx.net. This is a site where you can share your problems and our small team of volunteers are willing to offer their personal advice for free. There are many of us who in one point of our lives were desperate and cannot find someone to lean on. With OneLifeNetworx, we are offering ourselves to reach these people through the power of the internet. 

Feel free to visit us at OneLifeNetworx at www.onelifenetworx.net. There is hope. You need not face your life alone.


Thursday, April 13, 2017

The day my father died

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On the evening of October 11, 2016 at around 7 pm, I was about take my evening bath and plan to sleep early when my phone rang. I answered it and it was my mom. She told me that my dad was having problem breathing. I was panicking when I asked her, "Where is dad now?  What is he doing?". She replied, "He is sleeping now but I am scared". I said, "Okay, wait for me and I'll be there in a few minutes." 

I hurriedly went to my car and I made all the necessary preparations to rush my dad to the hospital. When I reached my parents' house, the door was locked unfortunately I left my keys somewhere in my house. My mom who is already weak due to old age and because of her Parkinson's Disease, slowly reached for her own keys and went outside the house with her walker so she can open the gate for me. It really broke my heart watching her as she struggled to walk towards me, but I waited patiently. As soon as she opened the gate, I helped her walked her way back inside the house. Once inside, I told her to rest in the couch while I attend to my dad. When I entered my parent's room, I saw my dad laying in the bed with froth of saliva in his mouth. I shouted at the top of my lungs, "Dad!" as I ran towards him crying. My whole body was shaking and I have no idea on what to do. My hands was trembling as I look for his pulse. His body was still soft but cold. I shook his shoulder while shouting, "Dad wake up! wake up!" I have no knowledge of doing CPR but nevertheless I pumped his chest will all my might and hoping for any positive response from him. I suddenly heard my mom entering the room and I told her crying, "Mom, dad might be gone already." She said in a soft voice, "No, try reviving him, he is just sleeping." I tried pumping his chest again, this time my tears are intensely flowing in my eyes. After a few minutes, I stopped and I started crying helplessly as I told my mom who is already beside my dad, "Mom, dad is gone." She answered in a soft cry, "What will happen to us now?" I did not answer.

I called my older brother and told him about dad. He arrived in my parents house together with his wife, who is a nurse by profession. My sister-in-law once again performed CPR but we still got no response from my dad. We tried calling 911 and surprisingly said service was working. The 911 operator gave us instructions on what to do as we wait for the response team to arrive. Ambulance came in less than 15 minutes. They again performed CPR using their machine. They knew that my dad was already dead but they politely asked us if we still want our dad to be brought to the nearest hospital. Since we do not know the correct protocol was, we just said yes. They carefully loaded my dad to the ambulance and my brother accompanied them to the hospital. 

Me and my mom were left in the house - still shocked with the sudden event. I then received a call from my brother who just arrived in the hospital and told me that the doctors officially confirmed that my dad was already dead upon arrival. The hospital was also asking him to immediately remove my dad's corpse otherwise they will send his body to their accredited funeral home. I knew my dad has a memorial insurance plan but I have no idea what company was it and I have zero knowledge on the procedure on how to avail such service. Since I was still in the state of shock, It never crossed my mind to search for my dad's file to look for his insurance contract and have no intention to read or even interpret his insurance policy. My only goal that moment was to transfer my dad to a reputable funeral home so we can laid him to rest with grace. With that in mind, I searched the internet and looked for a reputable memorial service for my dad. I saw St. Peter's Chapel-Novaliches and luckily the place was also near our area. It was already 11:00 pm when I called their number. I was praying that someone will entertain my call considering it was already close to midnight. To my surprise, a nice lady entertained my call and she gave me a detailed step-by-step procedure on how to avail their service. She even consoled me during moments when I would pause to cry. I will forever cherish the services of St. Peter Chapel Novaliches. I felt their presence during the darkest time of my life. The services of St. Peter was so seamless and very organize. We never encountered any single problem during the entire duration of the memorial service. The facilities of their chapel were very clean and their staff were very professional.   Truly a world class service. They are truly a DeathCare expert company! And by the way, my dad was not a St. Peter Chapel plan holder, imagine we got all those wonderful services even if my dad was a non-policy holder! 

That's why I am planning to get a memorial plan from St. Peter. I will also encourage my two siblings to follow me as well. Again, maraming maraming salamat sa inyo St. Peter Chapel! More power to your company!


I would also like to take this opportunity to thank the people behind 911-Philippines. I am not really a President Rodrigo Duterte fan, in fact I did not vote for him, but his 911 initiative is truly very impressive and I trust this administration will do more wonders for the our country! I salute all the people behind 911-Philippines.


I would also like to thank Forest Park Memorial Park for being so helpful when we availed their service. Staff of Forest Park in their Novaliches Office was so accommodating, they also explained to us in details all the features and guidelines of our memorial lot plan. Thank you Forest Park!


And finally, I would like to thank all our friends, family, relatives, and co-workers who visited us during my father's wake. I will forever cherish the love you have given us. Again thank you!


You might also want to read this related blog post, "My Road to Recovery"

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

My road to recovery

I can honestly say that I am far better now as compared six month ago. Last October 11, 2016, was the most unforgettable day in my life so far. I took a leave from work that day so I can attend to some important matters in my house. Just so you know, my house was under renovation during that time. We were constructing an additional bedroom with a small kitchen for my parents. My parents are at their mid-70's and they were staying in our ancestral house a few kilometers from my place. I've been living separately from them for almost twelve years. But in 2013, I got into an accident resulting to a bone surgery. Since I am living a single life, I had no choice but to stay in my parents house for more than three months. Before the accident, I had no knowledge of the condition of my parents. I knew they were already old and already suffering from some sort of sickness. My dad was already taking maintenance for his hypertension and diabetes while my mom was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. It never crossed my mind that both my parents were very unhappy with their situation and was so unprepared with the challenges of old age. Since childhood, I always run to my parents for all my daily problems be it petty or major ones, but during my short stay with them it made me realized that they were no longer the same go-to person that I grew up with. In fact I felt so ashamed that my aged parents were the ones who cared for me during my accident instead of me that should be caring for them. But I had no choice. My mom and my dad were the only ones who can help me that time.

I am very thankful for the love that my parents showed me during that difficult part of my life. I was unable to walk and almost useless that time. Even going to the kitchen just to get water to drink was impossible that I had to ask my mother to get it for me despite her weak legs and body. In the morning she made sure that breakfast was served and all my other daily needs were taken cared of. My dad, on the other hand accompanied me on all my appointments and check-up with my doctors including all my physical therapy sessions. My dad was known to be impatient but he was with me throughout the long queues as we waited for our turn for my doctor's appointment. I cannot recall hearing any complains from him and I will be forever grateful for that. 

A post shared by Angelo Villamejor (@jojovillamejor) on

It took me more than three months to endure the pain of my broken fibula (leg bone) and painstakingly taught my self to walk using my crutches. I may not have overcome it without the support of my parents. That is why I promised myself that I will repay them will all my love and time as soon as I recovered from my accident. Honestly, it went well during the first few months after my recovery, I remember staying in their house instead of heading to my own place. I recall forcing myself to leave early from work so I can join them in the dinner table. But my work slowly crept back into my schedule and ate back all my extra time intended for my parents. My daily sleepovers on my parents house turned into weekly visits. And there was a time that when I rarely visited them in a month. I was so guilty for not fulfilling my promise.

As expected, my parents health condition got worse. My dad's diabetes was already affecting his behavior making him restless and irritable resulting to frequent fights with my mom. My mother on the other hand was getting weaker and weaker due to her Parkinson's disease. My two siblings do not have a full grasp of my parents health condition that time and this was probably the reason why they were not as alarmed as me when it comes to their health. I also notice that they do not have the same urgency that I have to take care of our parents physical, emotional, and financial needs. I cannot blame them since they already have their own family to nurture. Without me knowing it, they just silently appointed me as the caretaker of our parents which somehow infuriates me. Not because I do not want the responsibility, in fact I am honored, what I just hate is children starting their own family and forgetting their responsibility on their aging parents. I strongly believe that all of us, not matter what our marital status in life should be obliged to care for our parents until their last breath. Anyway, my mom's frequent complaint about my dad's behavior and their frequent lovers quarrel prompted me to toy on the idea of relocating my mom to my place. She loves the idea but she asked me to construct a separate room and kitchen for her to preserve both our privacy. That's the story behind the renovation in my house. At first, the room was just intended for her, but as the renovation progress, I slowly modified the design so that it will not just fit my mom but will also accommodate my dad as well. In short, I want them both to relocate in my house - without them knowing it. I was hoping if we all live together under one roof, I will have more time to take care of them. Unfortunately, a few days before their planned relocation, my father died. He died October 11, 2016...

His death was a surprise to me. It was regretful on my part for I was not able to fulfill most of my promise to my dad. Me and my dad have more memories together as compared to all other members of my family. He is my mentor, my travel buddy, my friend (sometimes my enemy), my inspiration, and he is my counsel. Most of me is because of him and I am proud of it. Only if he knew how important he was to me. I regret that I never had a chance to say that to him when he was still alive. I just wish that he is watching over me now so he will know how I deeply love him.

I have not yet fully recovered from his tragic death, but I'm a work in progress.

Photo of my dad with my nephew


You might be interested with this related blog post : The Day My Father Died

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Deep sadness

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Its been more than three months since my father passed away, honestly I still carry the pain of his death inside me. His death left a deep hole inside my heart and no matter how hard I try to move on with my life the deeper that hole gets. There was no day since he died that I never cried. For his memories always bring tears in my eyes. I believe this pain will stay with me forever for his memories are permanently embedded in my heart and mind. I am fine with it, because his memories are worth the pain.

My dad was not a perfect father, but for me he was the best. He was my shield, my sword, and my strength. When I was young and until the day he died, just a mere sight of him made me feel secured. I considered him as my fortress who protected me from all the agonies of this life. Now that he is gone, I feel I have no more armor to face this world. It is like I am all alone in this battleground, fighting a war all by myself. Good thing he taught me how to be a strong warrior and molded me to be an independent and resilient survivor. Most of  all, he indoctrinate the power of seeking Divine guidance and to obtain inner strength in the event of despair. For my dad helped me realized that we cannot rely too much on other people to survive. Instead, we must use our own feet to reach our own destiny and to use our own hands to mold our future. The greatness of our future is dictated by our own actions and our failure is a product of our own decision.  

My dad was a big influence in my life and I know he will still continue to inspire my life until I leave this world. The legacy that I will hand down to the next generation will be shaped by his love and his guidance. I am sad that my dad has already ended his journey. But I am glad he is already happy in heaven.

I miss you dad... so much.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Dad, you are the best father ever






When I was young you taught me how to read and rhyme,
And showed me laughter under the smiling sunshine.
I remember that day when I stumbled with pain
But you carried me in you arms and the pain was gone.
You taught me the meaning of respect, to other beings and to thyself
You modeled these traits not only in thy words but by actions on oneself
You taught me responsibility to thy spouse and to our dynasty
You modeled these through thy affection to my mother and members of our family
The greatest kings have conquered the strongest nation
But believe me; no king is greater than your affection.
As you leave this world we know
But the love you’ve showed in my heart entombed
Today I may be sad because you said goodbye
For the angels in heaven took your soul up in the sky
If mothers are the best, fathers are the greatest.
Thank you for your fatherly love, it was the best.
.

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