Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Tagging myself - Down Memory Lane

Here's a flashback...

25 years ago...1980 - I was in grade 3 in Divine Word University, Tacloban City. I vividly remember our class adviser, Mrs. Flor Manuel, the epitome of a refined lady who taught our 3-A class many things from GMRC to proper handwriting. That answers why my classmates & I have similarities in handwriting. Ok, I'd have to brag that I'm one of the few left-handed in this world who has a good script *sorry, mayabang lang po*. During our Christmas party, I received a white puppy toy which I didn't like, but I pretended to be 'happy about it' lest I embarass my 'manita'. See, that's fast learning my GMRC! And oh, during that party, I wore a white & yellow dress and a ponytail, geee!

15 years ago...1990 - I was in 3rd year nursing at United Doctors Medical Center in Quezon City. Nursing school was tough at this point but I still managed to have a very active social life (read: gimmick left & right). I remember during a Nutrition class (it was such a bore!), Liza, my bestfriend (who I believe was also bored with Botany in UST) dropped by our class (you see, we had the same uniform cut that's why she easily slipped through the UDMC guards), made a hand-signal which meant I had to cut class with her. Since I was seated in the middle, I passed my bag to my seatmates leading to the door. Exactly when our teacher faced the blackboard, I skipped my way out of the door with Liza holding onto my bag. I looked back & my 'understanding' classmates were all grinning at me!

10 years ago...1995 - I was a bum! After becoming a registered nurse in Aug. 1993, passing the CGFNS in September 1994, my application forms were all over the hospitals in Manila. Despite my good grades *wink* & line of 8 board rating *wink wink*, it proved to be the most difficult period for nurses because of the recession in US & local hospitals had no openings *sigh*. So I opted to undergo a 6 months volunteer job (read: no pay) at Quezon City Medical Center if only for experience. Summer of that year, my friends & I (actually, husband-wife/bf-gf pairs from Oras) opened a canteen beside Unciano Hospital in Sta. Mesa. It was a promising venture at first, but probably because we weren't prepared & considering our respective 'jobs', we called it off after a few months. It was my first taste of entrepreneural skills & learned a lot from it.

5 years ago...2000 - I was on my last year in Law school at FEU. I was mighty proud to graduate among the 'regulars' in April, mourned the sudden death of my maternal grandmother in May & took the Bar in September. On Oct 22, my bf then for 8 yrs & 5 mos, 'suggested' that we marry in Oct 2001. I thought it was just a corny joke (read: in denial 'coz I wanted the proposal to be romantic!). But when he insisted "it's October or nothing" (aba, takutin ba ako?), I realized he was serious.

We had a hard time telling our parents about the plans. Not that they would object, but it was an unexplainable fear. He started off with his sister Adette & I, through my sister, Dodit, who had a hard time telling my mother, who had a harder time telling my father. It was on their first visit ever to a Starbucks joint when my mother had the 'courage' to inform my father of our Oct 2001 wedding plans. His immediate response was to have it postponed to 2002 (until now I have no idea what's good about 2002).

4 years ago...2001 was my year! (read: roller coaster ride). On Feb 29, my bf-then-hubby-now flew to Oras for the 'bat-ul' (tagalog: pamamanhikan; english: is there a translation?, ok, it's when the would-be groom formally asks his would-be bride's family for her hand in marriage *whew* ). The success of the 'bat-ul' was without a blooper. my bf-then-hubby-now fell from our stairs *har har har*. Our first order of the day in Manila was to consult an orthopedics doctor. Good thing it was just a sprain. And the worst is yet to come in May.

On May 5, one day before my 30th bday, the Supreme Court announced the release of the Bar result. My bf-then-hubby-now egged his way to SC while I stayed home. Even before he returned, I received a text message from Mimi (my closefriend in Law school & room mate in Angelo King where we were billeted during the Bar exams): "I didn't make it Darlene. We didn't make it". My world crumbled. I told by-then-hubby-now I wanted to die *so so sad*. Liza called & said she didn't know what to tell me. We both cried. I have never felt so much pain. Several days later, I resolved to set aside (read: hide) my books & things. I realized that my wedding was just 5 months away!

In beween wedding preparations & work at PGH, I slowly recovered from the pain of flunking the Bar *argh!*. My younger sister Jingle took charge of the fashion part of our wedding (read: design, style, fabric & several other essentials), Dodit made the 300+ jelly candles, Baby printed the souvenir tags, Liza shouldered the invites from QP Designs *mwah mwah* & my bf-then-hubby-now worked double hard to augment the wedding fund *wink*. Come Oct 22, we had a rain-free wedding officiated by Bishop Medroso & concelebrated by 9 other priest-friends at St. Peter of Alcantara Parish in Oras. A garden reception at our backyard which we coined Remedios Garden (in honor of my maternal grandmother) completed the event. We wanted it that way: intimate & private. We could never ask for more. Our wedding story deserves a separate space in this blog. So I'll spare you with the details.

After our wedding 'high', a low point closed 2001 - my father-in-law for 2 months died of an asthma attack on Dec 16. We had a blue Christmas.

3 years ago... 2002 - my immigrant petition for the US was approved by the INS on Nov. 15. A day before that, on Nov 14, my cousin Liza A. (who was part of my bridal entourage) said her vows to Mayor Tony at San Sebastian with a reception at Westin Phil. Plaza. Liza P., Meline & I were among the usherettes at the reception. We had a good time.

2 years ago...2003 - in July, I was confined for 3 days in PGH due to severe stomach pain - - - my first hospital confinement ever. I stayed at the pediatric area 'coz I didn't like the infirmary. My Mickey Mouse PJs & Mickey Mouse blanket went well w/ the walls of my room *laugh*. Thank God it was just simple gastritis & my AP, Dr. Labio didn't charge me a cent 'coz I'm a PGH employee *clap clap clap* (discIaimer: case-to-case basis only).

On Aug. 26, hubby & I stood as cord sponsors at Kevin's wedding to Minerva at Sacred Heart Parish in Tacloban & Kanhuraw Convention Center (Kevin was his best man in our wedding). We had a great after-wedding party but had to leave Tacloban the following day since hubby had to leave for Malaysia on Aug. 28 for a 1-week business trip.

Last year...2004 - Husband & I finally decided to have our own space. We transferred to a 2-bedroom unit in Makati on Nov. 1 & painted the cupboard, cabinets & bedroom doors yellow against the all-white walls & ceiling. Our dining chairs are in yellow & black, & we eat in yellow china *smile, sigh*. We find it soothing. It's our space anyway. During the last week of November, he left for a 1-week 'official trip' to Oras. He had to do site inspection of the Cagpajo farm Auntie Lina plans to retire, 'coz he had to design of the river landing, pathwalk & farm house. During that week, Jingle stayed with me at home & whiled her time by making 3 fruit paintings which now hang in our kitchen (I had it framed in black w/ yellow borders in keeping w/ the house motif *wink*).

This year...2005 - In the despedida for Arnel & Litos (who had to return back to Arizona) on the 1st week of February, I was cajoled to drink tequila for the first time. I don't know why, but I just can't stand the after-taste. I guess I did it for the love of a friend who I have't seen for a long while.

In the evening of Feb. 12, I just got back from Rustan's Makati where I accompanied my sister Baby to register in their Bridal Registry when suddenly, my stomach surged w/ intense pain. I figured it was my not-so-monthly cycle. My OB, Dr. Ching Ilao-Oreta's phone was off *gasp gasp* so I endured the pain rather than be sent to the hospital. The next day, a rather meaty substance went w/ the bleeding & I suspected something was wrong. The first order of Feb 14, a Monday (we forgot it was Valentine's day!) was to see a doctor. Since I was in PGH, & St. Luke's is rather far from there, I was referred to see Dr. Aguilar. The pregnancy test strip yielded 2 stripes. My! you can just imagine our surprise. I had to have a trans-V ultrasound the next day to find out if, in Dr. Aguilar's word "something was left". When the doctor said during the trans-V that "it's gone", I cried. God, it felt like flunking the Bar again *sniff*. I didn't return to the office at once as I was really down & out. I just found myself walking back & forth the parking space of UP Manila Pedro Gil wing. At that time, husband was at the airport to fetch her sister. He texted saying how sorry he was for not taking care of me enough. I cried more 'coz I know he's taking care of me more than enough *sniff again*. If only for the thought that I am in fact capable of conceiving, I was relieved despite the diagnosis that I had a complete, non-septic abortion. But the days that followed left my husband devastated *sniff more*.

In the evening of March 30, we started our long drive to Oras. The AUV husband was driving carried dozens & dozens of fresh flowers & loads of apples, pears & oranges for Baby's abundant harvest-themed wedding, so you can just imagine Baby's sigh of relief when we arrived Oras in one piece. On April 1, the clock ticked so fast amidst the busy wedding jitters. After the church practice, we had a surprise shower for Baby complete w/ balloons, a drawing of a giddy bride by Anjo, naughty gifts & games.

As early as 9 a.m., I started decorating the 3-layered white fondant cake w/ fruits while Remedios Garden was in its final sprucing-up stage (read: hubby & my sister Jingle climbing the walls to hang the yards & yards of white tulle to create a ceiling *argh*). By 12 noon, the minutes ticked like a bullet. Before we know it, Jerome (our soon-to-be brother-in-law) was already calling Baby that the Bishop was at the church & we were running late! As planned & expected, the event was a success.

On May 6, I stood as ninang to my cutie niece, Bea Alexa Macato in Tacloban. Yes, it was also my 34th bday. In the afternoon, we attended my cousin Jumbee's wedding to Bing in Sacred Heart. At the reception in Kanhuraw, I met Lilian, Grace & Lorelie - - -3 high school classmates who I haven't seen for ages. Small world indeed! The next day, we went to Guiuan & had a really great time for 2 days (read: cheap seafoods & beachfront).

On July 24, Jingle left for Doha, Qatar where she works as a designer in a fashion line, and on Aug. 13, our brand-new nephew - - - Bach Cordero was born in Chinese Gen. Hosp. c/o my brother Nonoy & Joni.

Yesterday...Sept. 27 - 1 day after my mother's 61st bday & 7 days before my father's 60th bday, was just another ordinary day at the office & went home to a hearty dinner c/o, as usual, dear hubby *huuug*.

Last night...We were not happy with HBO.

Today...Sept. 28 - another ordinary day at the office. I look forward to tonight's 'American President' starring Michael Douglas & Meg Ryan on HBO (I'm a Meg Ryan fan). That's not saying that I'm not as excited to see my hubby dear 'coz I always am.

Tomorrow...I hope it's another good day.

Next year...Aside from a baby, I wish we'd finally be able to immigrate to the US. That's not asking for too much after the petition's approval in 2002. Otherwise, I'll start reviewing for a 2nd try of the Bar in 2007 *fingers crossed*.

5-10 years from now...I pray for good health of my family. If it's not an abuse, I pray that by that time, we are already blessed w/ an improved version of a mini-me or a mini-Misa *he he*. Can I wish that I hope by that time, we are finally relocated in the land of milk & honey?

Now, who do I want to tag? YOU. Try it & see what you've been up to.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

My Birth-blog?

At last I have my own blog. Geee!, I'm excited to write whatever, whenever & no matter how others (who will come across this blog) may find this boring. Isn't technology great?