… but not quite

My bestfriend told me that the last line of my previous entry made her think (see previous entry Almost). 

Sometimes remembering the moments that brought us to where we are today gives us a certain sense of appreciation for the present.

This is for my friends and readers who would like to ponder on the same question.   

Do you have an ‘almost’ that stands out?

Pause… ponder… and  share.  

Tag me when you’re done thinking. 

almost where?

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

PS… Special call out to the following:

  • Maura from 36×37
  • Sunshine from  Sunshine in London
  • Coffee Moments
  • Pajama Days
  • Ola from Life, love and everything else

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photo via google images

Almost…

Life is a series of hits and misses.  Sometimes, despite the planning and the preparation, things don’t always work out the way you thought they would, or the way you wanted them to. 

In your life’s “to do list,” you write down the things you have to do… the things you want to do… the things you dream of doing, things you aspire for.

Then there are the “almosts.”  These are things that we don’t plan for… either they almost happened or almost never happened…  And you know that had they happened the other way around, your life as you know it will be totally different.

Allow me to share some of my “Almosts…” 

La petite mort

at 5 years old... not nice

**I almost died when I was very young – When I was 5 years old, I contracted Dengue fever brought about by a mosquito bite.  During that time, the disease was not as common. I remember them calling it “H Fever,” maybe shortcut for Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever (DHF).   I was hospitalized for a week, had high grade fever for days, was on IV, had daily blood tests to monitor my platelet count.  My blood was probably one of the first samples in the area that the doctors used to study said disease.

Up to now there’s no tested or approved vaccine for the virus.  Unfortunately, many young children die every year because of a simple mosquito bite.

I spent the Christmas season in a hospital room and was released on Christmas Eve. 

I always knew I was special.  Though an office mate of mine before said I was more of a “freak of nature” having survived that.  I had him fired.  (Nah, kidding on that.) 

** I almost played a big role in a TV ad – In my past life, I used to want to be a model — whether print or TV (I felt I was too short to do the ramp).  I was asked by my agent (yes, I even had an agent) to do a go-see for a detergent powder.  Being the arrogant person that I was, I snubbed said go-see and told myself I didn’t want to be a laundry woman. 

my version

 The ad (and the product) became a hit… and the girl who landed the job appeared again and again and again on the succeeding ads of same product. 

Sometimes I still think it could have been me.

 

** I almost moved to another country for love – When Mr. 1994 (related post, Flashbacks) left for his home country to continue his studies, I considered following.  Since we didn’t know then how the relationship will go, we planned on meeting up after several months, this time with me being the one to go to where he was. 

I almost did.

** I almost ended up with a total j@#$ – After Mr. 1994, I went out with one of his friends.  Totally different story compared to the one I had with Mr. 1994.  It was such a sordid experience that taught me a lot of lessons – lessons that I learned the hard way!

To this day I am so thankful I got out of that one.

life in Provence

** I almost stayed in France.  I went to France for my sister’s wedding. This was also a really bad time for me, personal relationship-wise.  As I enjoyed every minute in Provence, I also dreaded the thought of going back home.  South of France seemed like a good refuge.  Every night I prayed I didn’t have to go home. 

I almost didn’t.

Belliissimo

oh, my heart...

** I almost named my son after George Clooney.   I was such a huge fan of George Clooney when I was pregnant. Okay, I still love him up to now, really, but that’s another topic (wait for George Clooney’s Girlfriend # 635 entry).  I thought of naming my son after him… but I didn’t really like the name George.  For a moment I contemplated on giving the baby the Clooney family name.  Seriously.

** I almost bought that Total Core fitness equipment.  When I turned thirty five, I realized that mere dieting (my translation: starving self) doesn’t work anymore if I wanted to keep myself thin. 

I have been obsessing about my weight and curves for the past months.  One obviously-not-busy morning, I found myself watching home TV shopping where they were featuring the Total Core fitness thingy. I was so enthralled and impressed that I picked up the phone and dialled the number on the screen to order…

… luckily I faltered when I heard that there were additional charges (i.e., delivery fee). 

Several days later I found out that said equipment is also being sold in a sports shop at the mall – at about half the price!  Good thing I didn’t place the order when I called. 

I still might get one, though.

** I almost didn’t start a blog because I was afraid it would be over indulgent and I didn’t think people would actually care about what I say (or write).

Am glad I did, though.  Blogging has been quite an experience so far. 

 Do you have an “almost” that stands out?

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photos via weheartit.com

Highlight of My Day

Nothing beats an interesting afternoon chat

I met up for lunch with a couple of my mommy friends yesterday.  I have known these women for several years now.  Our sons’ ages range from ten to twelve, they go to the same school and they are in the same baseball team.  Another commonality that the three of us have is that we are all full-time moms.  Having no daily job or an office to go to, the highlight of most of our days is basically picking up our sons from school and bringing them to baseball practice.  That, and of course, occasional lunch or coffee dates with friends.

As we were having our dessert, I asked them this question: “Have you ever thought of doing something else, like pursuing a career or having your own business at this point in your lives?  Or…” and I paused to add some drama, “… are you content with this?” And I moved my hands about to point at our table, our dessert, our coffee… basically I was talking about what we were doing at the moment.  We were having lunch… with all the time in our hands.

~ * ~ * ~

I came from a career oriented family.  My lawyer mom took pride in being a working mother.  She almost had a breakdown when she found out I decided to be a full-time mom.  She didn’t have to tell me, but I knew that she couldn’t understand why I chose to be a full-time mom over having a career… a position in an office somewhere… a title that goes before my name.  Double the breakdown when she learned that my lawyer sister decided to stop practicing law so she can have more time with her kids.  My sister set up her own business, so my mom forgave her somewhat, but she still couldn’t understand why my sister chose to give up her title of being an attorney. 

My mom believes that a person can be career oriented and still be a parent (though I don’t remember her spending much time with us when we were very young) .  She also believes that our relationship (mine and hers) is the same as my relationship with my son.  She thinks we are just as close.  She is either in a total state of denial… or is utterly clueless. 

As my sister often says, my mom seems to live in a totally different plane.

~ * ~

Years ago, when my son was still very young, I couldn’t quite get rid of the hang ups of being a non-working mom.  I guess it didn’t help that my sister gets to be introduced as “the lawyer” while I get the title, “the other daughter.”  There were times when I can’t help but ask myself if I needed a title too, in order to gain more respect.  Will the world respect me more if I have a title before my name?

I have long come to terms with myself on what would give me self-fulfilment and contentment.

~ * ~

Yesterday when I posed the question to my friends, one of them replied, “I am happy where I am.”  And then she added this, “Life is short.  Why should I concern myself about trying to find a job just to prove somethingI love that I get to spend time with my kids.  I love that we can do this.  Why should I add more stress when I can enjoy what I have?”  And she proceeded to tell us about the flights she just booked for her and her family for the upcoming school break.

I believed what she said made perfect sense. 

~ * ~

I don’t have anything against working mothers.  In fact, I admire the mothers who have their careers or their own business and still have time for their kids.  And I mean quality time. And there are working mothers who, given the chance, would rather stay home with the kids (or have leisure coffee dates with friends on a Monday).  I feel for them, too.

Different strokes for different folks.  But to me, more than anything, it’s about the time that you spend with your kids, whether you work or not.

~ * ~

a beautiful world

one Monday afternoon

It was my personal choice to be a full-time, hands on, supermom.  Not that I have to justify it, but I feel one can never have enough time with one’s kids.  I mean, they grow up so fast.  Surely you would want to be there to see them grow, and to experience life with them while they still want you around

When I picked up my son from school yesterday afternoon, I can’t help but smile as I listened to him talk about the highlight of his day.  Being there in the car with him, listening to his stories, enjoying a peaceful, stress free afternoon, I couldn’t help but realize that THAT moment was the highlight of MY day.  I couldn’t ask for more.

So despite the fact that I am seemingly untitled, I know I am happy where I am.

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photo via weheartit.com

Doppelganger

  • Doppelgänger – n.  A ghostly counterpart of a living person; a double  (Merriam Webster online) 
  • Etymology – German, literally a double goer

 

Last week I caught a rerun episode of How I Met your Mother.  In said episode, the gang were talking about seeing their doppelgänger.  The word was used loosely to describe someone who looks exactly like them.  It’s like seeing your double – or the identical twin that you never had. 

The idea of seeing someone who looks like you, only with different hairstyle or hair color, at first seemed pretty funny.  I have wondered about that, too.  I mean, there are millions of people around the world.  What if the Creator at a certain point ran out of ideas for a different ‘face’ and decided to make a carbon copy of each of us – and just placed the look-alikes in different countries, far away from each other. 

I am not talking about having mere facial similarities.  I am talking about exact replica.  And given how the world seems to be shrinking by the minute – people from various parts of the world somehow getting connected or something – there is now a big chance of us coming face to face with our doppelgänger.  Hmm, come to think of it, would that be nice or would it simply be creepy?

I have been told several times that I look like this person or that person.  Whenever I am being compared to someone, I often say that they look like me and not the other way around.  Or I just say that there may be similarities – like shape of face, length of hair, bone structure, etc., but over all we still don’t look alike.  It bothers me to think that I have a common face. 

I went out with this guy once who told me that I looked like his first girlfriend (that wasn’t exactly ideal).    At first I took it as a compliment, but then I realized I wouldn’t want to be someone else’s shadow… or a reminder of a past that didn’t quite work out. 

And then there was this time in my past life –I still had a night life then—when this strange guy came up to me in the middle of the dance floor, called me by a different name and insisted that we knew each other and I was the friend of so and so (like I had an amnesia and I didn’t know who I was).  On hindsight, maybe the guy was just hitting on me – the wrong way, though, because it surely didn’t work.  He merely freaked me out.

Now that I’m thinking about it, what if there’s someone somewhere out there who looks exactly like me… Would I want that?  Would the fact that my face is not unique make me feel any less special?  And would I want to meet my doppelgänger?   

i wouldn't mind the hot bod, too!

 

Interesting thought.  Maybe if people would insist that I look like this, then I wouldn’t mind…

Who am I fooling? If I were 7 inches taller and ten pounds lighter, maybe you will see the similarity somewhere. 

With emphasis on the maybe

PS… Does having the same hair color count?

What about you? Would you want to come face to face with your doppelgänger?

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photo of Gisele Bundchen via wikipedia

The Notebook

*Disclaimer: This post has nothing to do with the movie. And I mean totally nothing 🙂

I started writing on a diary when I was 12.  When I discovered the fun in writing my thoughts down, it easily became a habit for me.  I think it was also because of my diaries that I realized that I loved to write.

it wasn't always this cute

Being young, though, and having to rely on my student’s allowance, I had to make do with ANY kind of notebook.  On good months (say, after Christmas or my birthday), I could afford to buy the cute, frilly kind.  So sickeningly feminine and cute.  On lean months, I would settle for anything with a spiral on the side.  As long as it had lines… and I can write on it.  Truth be told, I had more of the latter. 

What I loved about keeping a diary is that you can air out your thoughts — and your diary won’t try to oppose you or say that you’re wrong.  You can whine and vent — and your diary won’t roll its eyeballs while you’re all whiny (because it doesn’t have eyeballs, duh!).  And when I was much, much younger and was in the poetry making mode, my diary was my “artist’s canvas.” 

More than that, my diaries preserved my moments.  Good ones, bad ones, exciting ones… okay, even the boring ones (like when there’s really nothing to write about but I was so bored and I wanted to write something…it happens.)

I used to chronicle every interesting thing that happened to me.  I remember the night before the first day of my freshman year in high school, there was a concert on tv that I so badly wanted to watch (which I did)…

Spandau Ballet in the early 1980s, clockwise from left, John Keeble, Tony Had...

I'm an 80's girl...

Said concert lasted ’til midnight, and I was the only one awake and I had no one to share the excitement with… but I had my diary with me, and all throughout the concert I was writing my thoughts, along with the sequence of songs as the band sang them. I was singing and dancing, too (yes, I already knew then how to multitask). After the show, I reread my entry — about 5 pages of them — and relived the concert in my mind.  My handwriting was almost illegible, but I was happy.  I felt I saved the moment on paper.

You see, we cannot remember everything.  There will come a time when our memory will fail us.  Happens for some people way earlier and faster than for others.  Sad but true.  I don’t consider myself old (i mean, OLD) yet, but honestly, there are things — events — from years past that I cannot remember anymore.  Like a friend of mine will say, “Remember when we…” and I feel bad for not remembering.  Heck, sometimes I can’t even remember what I wore last week! (Not that it’s worth chronicling or something…)

Just as an aside, I overheard my sister and a cousin talking the other day about an event that they had together almost a decade ago, and funny thing was, both of them couldn’t remember the details.  My cousin couldn’t even remember being there!  And she blamed having had two epidurals (she has two kids now) for her memory loss.  My sister does the same, a lot of times.  She blames her epidural whenever she forgets something (Most of the time I tell her she owes me money to check if her brain cells are still active… and then the epidural gets the blame).  The thing is, we are still in our thirties!

Antonio Pigafetta, a great chronicler

I would want to remember a lot of things.  I want to preserve my memories.  When I am much older, I want to be the type who will tell her grandchildren stories of childhood and youth.  Not that they would want to listen, but that is another issue.  The thing is, I want my children and my children’s children to learn from me… to see me as the person that I am/was. I cannot tell my grandchildren stories if I don’t remember them.

That’s why I kept diaries… because I knew that at some point in time, I would want to look back and remember something — an incident, an emotion… even a heartbreak.  I can read my entry and reminisce, and relive. 

I lost most of my old diaries, though.  Nature has its way of cleaning one’s closet (i think my first ever blog was about the sorry fate of my diaries).  And then as I got older and had more pressing responsibilities (i.e., parenting and motherhood), I didn’t think I still had the time to sit and chronicle my day.  Besides, my son would probably find it hilarious if he sees me writing on a diary (You’re still using notebooks? So uncool mom!).  Yet it would be nice to chronicle my midlife adventures.

And then I realized that basically, this whole blogging experience is what it is.  My daily chronicle. I’m airing out my thoughts, I’m venting, whining, ranting, raving… sharing, teaching, humoring myself, humoring others…making friends.  Plus, I am preserving days.  I am preserving the moments that I write about

I have gone back to the habit that I began when I was a young girl.  And it’s all good.

I just hope wordpress doesn’t crash. Ever. And I mean ever, ever…

————————–

dear diary...

 

PS.  And yes, I used to start my entries with Dear Diary.  All the time.

 

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photo via weheartit.com and google images

Postscript from the “IT Girl”

You've got Mail!!!

I remember years back when snail mail was still the ‘in’ thing, I used to write really long letters to my best friend.  Okay, I wrote long letters to past loves (shameless plugging, but do check out Flashbacks post)… and whoever I want to write letters to.  For whatever reason, I always seem to forget to say something that I have to write a PS.  At times, I even add a PPS (I think at some point I reached 5 P’s that made me wonder why I had to end the letter when I did to begin with). 

Sometimes it’s just about being forgetful.  Other times, you realize at the last moment that there is something you would still want to share —which you were not able to because you were forgetful...

Regardless. I had so much fun playing tag with friends (see previous entry, I’ve Always Wanted to be the It Girl)  that I forgot to tag other people whose brains I would surely want to pick…

So this is PS…I’m tagging the following:

  • Christy from Mamarazzi Pages – because this means adding another item to her to do list (sorry Christy!). Nah, it would be really nice to get to know her.
  • thypolar life uncensored – because she is reflective and her answers will be interesting.
  • bended spoon – because she has a sense of humor.

Come on gals, join the fun… and don’t forget to tag me back (post a comment) when you’re done!!!

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photo via weheartit.com

I’ve Always Wanted to be the It Girl

This post totally has nothing to do with my frustrations — of not being the ‘It Girl’ in high school nor college. 

Several days ago, Maura over at 36×37, invited me to join their game of tag here in blog world.    I am supposed to answer 8 questions and afterwhich, tag 8 people to answer the same.  (Uhm, do I have 8 people to tag??? Now I feel unfriendly. No wonder I wasn’t an It Girl.)

I digress.  Today, I’m “It.” 

Here are the questions and here are my answers… (Very well thought of, if I may say so myself!)

1.   If you could have any superpower, which one would you have and why? 

The power to freeze time.

Photos of Holly Marie Combs

i'm the 4th sister

There was a time when I used to like the show Charmed a lot.  By a lot I meant I watched it every week, without fail.  Nobody dared to bother me when it was on.

I always thought that Piper’s power of freezing time was just so awesome.  Now that I am a parent and I always seem to have about a hundred items on my daily to-do list (and another hundred items NOT on my to do list, yet I do anyway), I wouldn’t mind having that power so I can tick off some while the whole world is on pause.  Sometimes 24 hours just isn’t enough.

Said power proves to be useful, too, in the middle of a heated discussion (or fight), especially one that you’re badly losing.  It’s nice to be able to hit the pause button so you can check your notes or clear your head and come up with a better argument.  

2.    Who is your style icon?  

Gretta Monahan.  She makes style and sophistication look so easy.

i just love her

3.  What is your favorite quote?

That which does not kill us makes us stronger – Nietzsche

I used to say this a lot, even without knowing that someone famous had said it first (really, I thought I was the one who invented said quote!).   Each of us has at some point in our lives experienced trials and even pain. Regardless of how bad the situation was or how much pain it had caused you, you will know that once you have surpassed it, you will come out a different person.  Stronger  in ways you never expected.

Best movie quote : “That’s the price you pay for the life you choose.”  

I can still hear the voice of my philosophy teacher in college as he was passionately quoting Michael Corleone.  That line somehow stayed with me. It served as a constant reminder that every choice I make has a corresponding result or consequence.  It kept me grounded somewhat.

And because I am a child at heart… One day not too long ago, I was watching Hannah Montana the Movie with my son and this guy Travis said something to Miley that really struck me… “Life’s a climb.  But the view’s great.”  Very well said, my lad, very well said.

4.   What is the best compliment you’ve ever received? 

Unexpected, from a total stranger.  Pizza delivery guy one night, “Ma’am you are very pretty.  You are so blessed.” 

Tumblr

blessed

  

Blessed was the term he used.  How can you not be thankful? 

  

 

5.  What playlist/cd is in your CD player/iPod right now? 

Glee: The Music  vol. 1 & Glee vol. 3 Showstoppers

owl | Tumblr

i read at night

6.  Are you a night owl or a morning person?

Night owl.  I feel I am robbed of some hours of my life when I sleep early.  But being a hands-on mom, I have to wake up at 5:30 am during weekdays to prepare for school, and weekends when there’s an early baseball game. I do wake up…grudgingly so.

7.  Do you prefer dogs or cats?   

a place to love dogs

Mr. Big is MUCH bigger

 Since we got our pet labrador (Mr. Big), I can now say I like dogs.  I sing the dog lullabies so he can sleep at night. If that’s not love, I don’t know what is.

 

8.  What is the meaning behind your blog name? 

I have to thank a good friend of mine for this.  When I was in college, I told people I was a semi-goddess (a demigod of sorts).  Believe it or not, some people ACTUALLY believed.  I had to come up with the story about me really originating from Mt. Olympus, but that I wanted to commune with mortals (thus, the “semi”).  I had a pretty wild imagination… and some kids are just so gullible. 

i am also one of them

So the goddess moniker stuck.

Last year I met an old classmate in one of the reunions. This friend of mine said that surely I have  evolved.  Called me Supergoddess

And the rest is history.

——————————————————————-

There you have it.  Eight questions, eight answers.  Now I am passing it on… Unfortunately, I only have two people (okay, three) in mind.

I am tagging Coffee Moments (www.coffeeandskyeblogspot.com) and pinaygoddess. 

Special call out to Ms. Alexandra Potter… if you are by any chance reading this post, I am tagging you as well.

Hope you guys enjoy answering as much as I did.  Phew!

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(photo credits: weheartit.com and google images)

Finding friends in a place least likely

It is amazing that people can find friends in places least likely. 

When I started blogging, I didn’t really know what to expect.  I mean, I hoped I will get readers, and I hoped my readers will appreciate my writing — or at the very least, learn something from me.  What I didn’t expect is that there will be some kind of relationship that will be formed between me and my readers, or me and the other bloggers whose works I follow.

I often say that modern technology has made the world smaller.  I even blogged about my long distance romance in the ’90s and how the presence of emails, ym and sms could have helped the relationship survive the distance.  Now, because of all these forms of communication, it is much, much easier to meet people from other parts of the world… from various continents, even.

The thing I love about following other people’s blogs is that more than the entertainment value that some may give, or the admiration for the blogger’s writing style and skill, basically, reading about their experiences reminds me of one’s humanity. People are the same everywhere.  Regardless of race or skin color, or continents where they are at, people go through the same experiences in life.  Okay, so maybe in varying degrees.  But parents from two different places may have the same struggles concerning their kids.  We may all have the same victories and joys, too.

It is a journey.  Life is a journey. And if there’s one good thing that this so called blog world had given me, it is the feeling that no matter what personal struggle I may be going through, or I have gone through, or may go through, there are other people out there who have experienced the same… who can offer some form of learning or support.  People who will unselfishly join me in my journey.  Simply because they have been there… and they just want to reach out and help. 

Last week’s bad encounter in cyberspace with some sicko may have been very disturbing.  Yes, there are disgusting people out there — in real world and cyberworld, alike.  But there are good people, too.  I have read so many words of support given to a blog “friend” of mine from people who are practically strangers… people  she probably has never met in person.  And that is something. 

One of the highest points in my blogging experience was when a writer (a real book author) made a comment in one of my posts.  I was thrilled.  In fact, I was ecstatic. My first thought was, “Wow.  She is a real author.  And I am just a fan!  I have read about four of her books!! And she’s commenting on my blog post!!!”  It was pretty surreal. 

Then I realized that she is human, too.  Author, or not, she experiences the same emotions that I do.  In fact, she posted a comment because she was so thrilled to find out that I have been reading her books.  She is just like any ordinary human being, capable of feeling joy and excitement, as well as sadness and grief.  She reaches out to people with her works, and she reached out to me by showing gratitude and appreciation.

There still are good people.  One can find friends in places they don’t expect.  Even in cyber world…. even in blogworld.  Maybe I should say, most especially in blogworld.

☮

it's a small world after all...

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photo via weheartit.com