Saturday, July 28, 2012

Friday, July 27, 2012

Med Student Syndrome


If I Could - Celine Dion

For my daughter ...

If I could
I'd protect you from the sadness in your eyes
Give you courage in a world of compromise
Yes, I would

If I could
I would teach you all the things I've never learned
And I'd help you cross the bridges that I've burned
Yes, I would

If I could
I would try to shield your innocence from time
But the part of life I gave you isn't mine
I've watched you grow
So I could let you go

If I could
I would help you make it through the hungry years
But I know that I can never cry your tears
But I would
If I could

If I live
In a time and place where you don't want to be
You don't have to walk along this road with me
My yesterday
Won't have to be your way

If I knew
I'd have tried to change the world I brought you to
And there isn't very much that I can do
But I would
If I could...
Oh baby... mummy wants to protect you
And help my baby through the hungry years
It's part of me
And if you ever... ever need
Sad shoulder to cry on
I'm just someone to talk to
I'll be there... I'll be there
I didn't change your world
But I would
If I could!

I admit that, unlike my mom, I'm not maternal by nature. It's simply not one of my inherent traits. I had to learn and develop it over the years. I was used to being taken care of and not the other way around. I was always my mom's little girl and I kinda got stuck in that role for a long time. When I found out that I was going to be a mom, I felt so emotionally unprepared for the seemingly daunting task of rearing a child. When my baby was born, I was scared to hold her for fear that I might drop her precious, fragile body. I didn't know how to change her nappy, when to feed her, what to do whenever she cries. It was a constant guessing game, a very challenging trial-and-error thing. I thank the people who answered my 911 calls whenever she wouldn't stop crying, whenever she's sick and whenever I was being a frantic clueless mom. How time flies. Mishka's 3. I may not have aced my first 3 years of mommyhood but I think I'm doing fine. I actually think I'm getting quite good at it. :-) The ordeal I had to go through this week in order to make my daughter stay in the UAE with me involved lots of tears, sweat, guts, faith and determination. With the help of my family and friends, I did it, we did it! To my daughter, I love you more than my life. Wherever I'll be, you'll be with me, no matter what it takes. That's a promise.       

Friday, July 20, 2012

A Brief Lesson in Flow Charts


Source: Outside the Interzone

Stress Busters!

Don't let stress get to you. Fight it. Learn to live with it. It's part of life. Here's my personal list of stress busters:

1. Take a walk along Corniche.
2. Jog in the morning.
3. Drink your favorite coffee while reading a good book.
4. Listen to music, lots of it.
5. Shop but watch your budget. If your budget is nil, go window-shopping instead.
6. Smile even if you want to scream or throw things around. Just smile. :-)
7. Be with someone who makes you laugh and laugh out loud at every opportunity.
8. Go bowling.
9. Go to a nearby arcade and play hockey or basketball.
10. Watch a feel-good movie.
11. Go to a bar and sing along with the band. Watch the people go crazy on the dance floor.
12. Go to the salon and enjoy a bit of pampering. Again, watch your budget.
13. Watch a fun TV series like New Girl.
14. Read some lines from your self-meditation book.
15. Pray.
16. Act like a kid. Thanks to Mishka, I'm starting to be a pro at this.
17. Videoke. I find "What's Up" by 4 Non-blondes a very effective song. You can scream "WHAT'S GOING ON?!" at the top of your lungs. 
18. Eat cake. I love Costa's New York cheesecake with caramel topping and blackforest cake.
19. Grab a bag of potato chips.
20. Get kikay with your friends and take lots of pics for FB.
21. Travel.
22. Blog.
23. Read funny comic strips. Gulf News has Garfield, Dilbert, Wizard of Id, Andy Capp and Calvin and Hobbes. We have our very own Pugad Baboy.
24. Watch anything jologs on TV. The more jologs, the better.
25. Take deep breaths. Stretch out those tired muscles.
26. Cry for a LIMITED time period only.
27. Get lots of sleep.
28. Watch Just for Laughs. Simply hilarious.
29. Watch Barefoot Contessa, Unwrapped and Everyday Italian.

Kiss Me - Sixpence None The Richer

Butterflies in my stomach, fairy lights, petty fights, burning the phone lines, love letters and poems, bouquet of flowers, puppy love ... THE KILIG SONG of my teenage years!

Ramadan Rules and Regulations for Non-Muslims

Source: Yahoo News

During the 30 days of Ramadan, fasting Muslims around the world will observe strict rules, including abstaining from eating, drinking, smoking and engaging in sexual relations between sunrise and sunset.

Non-Muslims, too, will be expected to respect the local culture in many Islamic countries, and should be aware of certain rules and regulations…
    There are strict fines in some Islamic countries, as well as possible jail time, for eating, drinking, smoking and even chewing gum in public – including in their own cars - during daylight hours. In the UAE, for instance, fines can range from AED2,000-2,500 and/or a one- or two-month jail sentence. Getting let off with a warning is a possibility, but not guaranteed. In Egypt, citizens and foreigners can be arrested for a misdemeanour offence if caught, while in Indonesia penalties can include flogging.
    While non-Muslims are not expected to fast, showing courtesy and consideration for those who are fasting is expected.
    During the day, non-Muslims can eat in designated areas, usually behind screens. Some hotels, shopping mall food courts and restaurants will remain open – but discreetly – so it is best to plan ahead by calling them to find out. Most outlets will deliver food during the day as well.
    Similarly, most offices have designated areas where you can eat or drink. It is considered common courtesy not to do so in front of your fasting colleagues.
    Learning a few Ramadan greetings can show your respect for the Islamic culture. In Arabic, it is customary to say "Ramadan Kareem" or "Ramadan Mubarak", which basically translates into "May you have a generous/ blessed Ramadan".
Do accept Iftar invitations from friends or colleagues, as this will provide you with a way of learning more about the customs and traditions of Ramadan.

Ramadan is a month for peace and piety, so abstain from swearing and using offensive language or gestures in public, as this is considered disrespectful.
Ramadan is also a time for giving and charity, so do your bit by donating to your favourite charity or volunteering.
Because fasting also includes abstaining from sexual contact, any public displays of affection are considered disrespectful, too.

Modest dress is advisable, so do cover up. Women should wear loose, long-sleeved tops and knee-length skirts or trousers, while men should wear long trousers.
Work hours
for most banks, offices and government organisations will be reduced by at least two hours, so make sure you find out the new timings. Public transport schedules (such as for the Dubai Metro) and paid parking hours will also change during the month.
Live music is banned in public places during Ramadan but recorded music may be allowed. While bars remain open at night, most night clubs are closed. Likewise, playing loud music either in cars or in private residences is considered impolite and should be avoided.
Some Muslims are exempt from fasting during Ramadan, so do not be surprised to see them eating as usual. These include the sick, elderly, pre-pubescent children, nursing mothers, pregnant or menstruating women and travellers.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Fix You - Coldplay

When you try your best but you don't succeed
When you get what you want but not what you need
When you feel so tired but you can't sleep
Stuck in reverse

And the tears come streaming down your face
When you lose something you can't replace
When you love someone but it goes to waste
Could it be worse?

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

And high up above or down below
When you're too in love to let it go
But if you never try you'll never know
Just what you're worth

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

Tears stream down your face
When you lose something you cannot replace
Tears stream down your face
And I

Tears stream down your face
I promise you I will learn from my mistakes
Tears stream down your face
And I

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

If I had my way, I'd be a morning person --- someone who welcomes the early morning calm with arms wide open. I used to love waking up at the crack of dawn, thinking about the great possibilities of the day ahead. I love the fact that the earlier one wakes up, the more he/she can do with the rest of the day. The word "morning" evokes memories of coffee and pan de sal, the taho vendor, idle chat with my mom and brother, catching the morning show on TV, the crows of the neighbor's roosters, the occasional school bus, the occasional tricycle, my aunt carrying plastic bags loaded with market goods and kids in school uniforms dragging their trolleys. Ever since I got into the midday shift, my body clock adjusted and mornings are not what they used to be. Sometimes, I even view them as an inconvenient part of the day that I'd rather spend in bed. Lately, I have been trying to revive my affection towards this time of the day. I try to move around the house as soon as I wake up. I jog, listen to random songs, browse the net and keep in touch with the rest of the world. I'm looking forward to going back to the morning shift (fingers crossed).  

Friday, July 06, 2012

Growing Up Fast

Weeks ago, I watched My Sassy Girl on TV. I was silently crying over one of the scenes when I turned and looked at my 3 year-old daughter. She had tears on her eyes too! Hours later, I heard her singing Yellow by Coldplay. "It's my favorite song, Mom," she told me matter-of-factly. Two nights ago, she wanted to search for girl's make-up. Last night, she told us that she wanted to have twins when she grows up. I think my daughter is growing up a wee bit too fast and I can't catch up with this premature growth spurt. She hasn't even started formal schooling yet! I'm not yet prepared to answer questions like "What is love?" or "Where did God come from?" Sheesh!  

The movie that made us cry ...

I think the original and Korean version is a lot better though ...

Mishka: Mom, I want to look for girl's make-up.
Me: At your age?! You're scaring me.
Mishka: I'm not a monster Mama.


4th of July

I can always rely on my brother for a great night out. He invited me to tag along with him and the love of his life at Warehouse last night. Incidentally, it was the 4th of July --- the perfect excuse to celebrate "freedom and independence." It's also the new bar in town so I was curious. I loved the energy of the band. They sang songs from my generation. They kept the crowd alive. Guys and gals were jumping, singing along and dancing like there's no tomorrow. Everyone felt young and free. I momentarily forgot that I was a busy working mom with lots of responsibilities and bills to pay. I time travelled to my days as a carefree teen, when life was simple and easy. Thanks bro. That night earned a slot in my memory lane. Sa uulitin. :-D