Tuesday, November 29, 2005

The Mysterious Thing Called "Love"

Again, for the hopeless romantic...
If you find yourself in love with someone who does not love you, be gentle with yourself. There is nothing wrong with you. Love just didn't choose to rest in the other person's heart.If you find someone else in love with you and you don't love him/her, feel honored that love came and called at your door, but gently refuse the gift you cannot return.Do not take advantage, do not cause pain. How you deal with love is how you deal with you, and all our hearts feel the same pains and joys, even if our lives and ways are different.If you fall in love with another, and he/she falls in love with you, and then love chooses to leave, do not try to reclaim it or to assess blame, let it go. There is a reason and there is a meaning. You will know in time.Remember that you don't choose love. Love chooses you. All you can really do is accept it for all its mystery when it comes into your life. Feel the way it fills you to overflowing, then reach out and give it away. Give it back to the person who brought it alive in you.Give it to others who deem it poor in spirit. Give it to the world around you in anyway you can. There is where many lovers go wrong.Having been so long without love, they understand love only as a need.They see their hearts as empty places that will be filled by love, and they begin to look at love as something that flows to them rather than from them.The first blush of new love is filled to overflowing, but as their love cools, they revert to seeing their love as need. They cease to be someone who generates love and instead become someone who seeks love.They forget that the secret of love is that it is a gift, and that itcan be made to grow only by giving it away.Remember this, and keep it to your heart. Love has its own time, its own seasons, and its own reason for coming and going. You cannot bribe it or coerce it, or reason it into saying. You can only embrace it when it arrives and give it away when it comes to you. But if it chooses to leave from your heart or from the heart of your lover,there is nothing you can do and there is nothing you should do.Love always has been and always will be a mystery. Be glad that it came to live for a moment in your life.The Mysterious thing called "LOVE"....

Sunday, November 27, 2005

It's rare for a friendship to go beyond time, space and differences. Even rarer for a friendship to cross these borders effortlessly. I'm glad that our paths crossed. But, if for some reason, you have to go, fret not. I'd gladly welcome an old friend back to my world. Anytime...Even if it would mean going back to square one. Miss the good times, mah friend.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Just decongesting my cellphone's inbox...
1. Find a guy who calls you beautiful instead of hot, a guy who calls back when you hang up on him, a guy who will stay awake just to watch you sleep. Wait for the guy who kisses your forehead, the guy who wants to show you off to the world even when you're in sweat, the guy who holds your hand in front of his friends. Wait for the guy who constantly reminds you of how lucky he is to have you. Settle with the guy who proudly turns to his friends and says, "That's her! The one I love...My everything...My life."
2. If you look inside a girl's heart and see how much she cries, you'll find secrets, promises and dreams but what you'll see the most is how hard she tries to stay strong when nothing is right and everything is wrong.
3. I've realized that life is indeed full of contradictions. Sometimes it's crazy to be sane, you need to fall to fly, people suffer because you care...You have to unlearn to know the lesson, you have to give up because you are strong, you have to be wrong to make things right...Nonetheless, life's complexities are also life's source of beauty. We should cry to laugh again, fall apart to be whole again, and get hurt to love again...
4. A heartbreak isn't always as loud as a bomb exploding. Sometimes, it could be as quiet as a feather falling. And the most painful thing is , nobody hears it but you.
5. You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.
6. If the sun shines in your soul, does it matter if it rains outside? Happiness within overlooks the sadness that any event may bring.

Friday, November 04, 2005

I'll Miss the Boy

To the boy...
Who never fails to give me a wake-up message
Who called me up from his hometown just to ask for advice about an emotional catastrophe
Who's such a hopeless romantic that he has daily love quotes on his phone
Who was nice enough to give me a copy of my fave rock songs
Who loves the beach so much that he doesn't mind going there alone
Who listens to Marilyn Manson's songs during bedtime
Who doesn't know much about computers that he depends on the computer shop staff for his powerpoint presentation and word documents
Whose favorite YM icon's the devil
Who hates coffee but likes native hot choco
Who usually spends review nights at a coffee shop but orders juice
Who loves lechon and seafood, but for some reason, orders chicken dishes every single day whenever he's in Manila
Who loves fishing
Who can speak and understand all 4 dialects in his hometown
Who rarely falls head over heels in love but when he does, he does it with a deafening crash and every aspect of his life gets disturbed
Who calls me ate/lola and can get away with it
Who I fondly call ingkong
Who always ends every text message with hehe
Who can sleep for 15 straight hours without feeling light-headed
Who doesn't smoke nor drink but is an occasional gambler...
I know you'll be busy once more. It was fun getting to know you better. Thanks for the friendship. Hope to hear from you still. Good luck in everything. :-)

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

A Torpe Girl's Letter

Months ago, I was really infatuated with someone. I felt kinda frustrated 'coz I was so torpe (again!). I passed up golden opportunities to get to know the guy better 'coz I aways got tongue-tied whenever he was around. One night, after analyzing my situation, a close friend felt that it was time to make the "move." The funny thing was my friend's a guy! He composed such a beautifully-written letter that I nearly followed his advice. Of course, I eventually chickened out. What happened to the guy? We're still friends. Hehe. The special feelings spontaneously ceased. I don't want the letter to go into waste though, so I'm sharing it with you. :-)
Women have come a long way. I have read of years before when women were shackled into tiny wooden shoes so that their feet would not grow well and they would have to stay at home just minding the house.

Women used to married off, most often to the highest bidder. Their value depended on how well they cooked, how beautiful they were at parties, and how many children they could produce.

They used to say that women were not fit to hold positions of responsibility. Heck, women could not even vote. They had no power over anything except maybe their babies. They even had no power over their bodies.

Now, things are better. Women can buy their own shoes, and we know of some like Imelda who have thousands. More importantly, women can now go where they please. Women can now choose who they marry. Their value depends not on how many kids they could produce or how pretty they are, but on what they can contribute to society. Of course there would be some who would disagree.

Women now hold positions of responsibility. They can now vote. In fact, we have a woman in Malacanang. In some places, women can even abort their babies which is sad. But still, it proves a point. In terms of freedom, power and place in society, women have indeed come a long way.

Yet, notwithstanding all these, it seems that our society still does not fully allow women to express freely and without stigma how they truly feel. When a woman tells a man she likes him, or acts in a way that will catch his eye, she is said to be a flirt, cheap, easy girl…When a man fails to express upfront what he feels, he’s weak, pathetic, basically a loser. So, is our society pressuring males to be virtuous and truthful while punishing women who are the same? Why are men who say what they mean considered great men and women who say and do what they feel considered bad girls?

Truth is, I don’t know. But I write at the risk of being labeled as a flirt, cheap, easy girl blah blah blah because I need to tell you that I really like you. I don’t really know why. I haven’t known you for a long time but when I see you, I feel happy. Good things seem great when you are there and the bad things are just more bearable.

I really would like to get to know you better.

I ask for nothing except that you not consider me a cheap, easy girl for I am not. I am just a girl who one night gathered the courage to defy convention and say what she actually feels.

At the End of the Day

At the End of the Day
by Michael Hussin B. Muin, M.D.
Doctors are leaving. We’ve read the bitter reviews, the harsh editorials and the sensational news. Filipino doctors are packing their bags and taking the next flight out of the country. It doesn’t matter where or as what. The bottom line is that they're out of here—and Philippine society is angry.It’s easy to lump individuals into professional categories: doctors, specialists, general practitioners. When headlines shout “Doctors are leaving”, it conjures an image of a crowd in a cinema running and fighting their way to the exit as if a fire just occurred. In this instance, it doesn’t matter where you end up as long as you don’t end up dead. Anywhere but here, as an old saying goes.Is this far from the truth? I honestly don’t know. I only know that there are familiar faces in the crowd: classmates, friends, teachers and mentors. And they are not running. They are sitting silently in the corner, deep in thought but ready to make their next move.My friend told me a story once. He was in a Florida club with a white female friend. This was just after he passed the local boards. A white dude came up to him and insulted him with racist remarks. His female companion defended him, saying he was a Filipino doctor. The dude just had one thing to say to my friend, “So, what does that make you HERE?” My friend replied, “Nothing. That makes me nothing at all.”It is a true story. Sad, but true. It also drives the point that some doctors, when they leave for other countries, may also be leaving their hard-earned degrees. Ten years of sleepless nights, stressful days and neck-breaking hours in between—all down the drain.Only a few understand the rigors of medical training. The prized M.D. degree consumes almost 10 years of a person’s life. If you add residency training, by the time the new specialists graduate, they’d have spent half of their lives going after a goal—to be a doctor.But beyond the time and the labor, fewer people understand the support behind every medical student or resident physician. For many, medicine is not an individual goal; it is a collective dream—nourished by fathers and mothers way before medical school. Nobody survives medical school or residency training without moral and financial support.We know the stories: an OFW in Saudi cannot go home until his daughter becomes a doctor; a caregiver in Canada continually sends half her income to pay tuition for her brother in med school; a government employee foregoes retirement to fund materials and equipment for her son in residency training. There is no dearth of stories, as each will have his own. Behind one doctor’s dream is a collection of family sacrifices—family sacrifices that may have to be paid in full.It’s not surprising new physicians or specialist are running up and about, ready to put all their training to use. They need to earn. Let me repeat that, they need to earn. With a certificate in one hand and some idealism in the other, they stand at a crossroad.Doctors practice their trade wherever and whenever they can. Some go home to their provinces, while some try their luck in urban centers. Some take up additional training, while some set up small clinics. Some apply for admitting privileges in hospitals, while some get affiliations from HMOs. Working hours may start as early as 5 am and may end as late as midnight.But at the end of the day, in the confines of their own homes, they hang up their stethoscopes and tuck away their degrees. They watch the news and eat stale dinners like everyone else. They play with their kids and put them to sleep like everyone else. They go to bed tired and weary like everyone else. Because at the end of the day, these doctors are not doctors. They are fathers and mothers, sons and daughters, husband and wives. And much like everyone else, they worry about their future and their family’s future.As the exodus continues, Philippine society will see doctors leaving careers and patients behind. But in the confines of homes in different parts of the country, we see fathers and mothers leaving families behind, sons and daughters saying goodbyes, and husbands and wives praying for a bright future. At the end of the day, we are not losing doctors, we are losing loved ones.Almost a year ago, my good friend told me he was leaving for Trinidad and Tobago as a UN Volunteer Doctor. I didn’t ask about his career, his degree or his plans. The only question I asked was “Paano anak mo, asawa mo?” And with a long sigh and a short smile, he answered, “Para sa kanila naman ito.”And that is where many doctors find themselves at. With a plane ticket in one hand and a good dose of reality in the other, they stand at a new crossroad—where paths lead to faraway places and foreign countries, where the only things they can bring are what they can fit in their hearts, and possibly some pictures in their wallet.I may soon find myself standing at that crossroad—falling in line and holding that crisp boarding pass in my hand. But I don’t dread the day some white dude would walk up to me and say, “So, what does that make you HERE?”.It makes me a father. At the end of the day, in the confines of my rented space in a foreign land, my son is more important to me than a piece of paper hanging on a wall.
---------------------Michael Hussin B. Muin, M.D. is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Pinoy.MD - The Website for Filipino Doctors. He is a professor of Clinical Anatomy and Medical Informatics in Pangasinan.