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To my daughter, the graduate: Life is always a choice


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To thine own self be true. That’s a line you and I have often thrown at each other these past months as you were winding down your college life. Tomorrow you leave the doors of Loyola, come down from the hill, and will soon venture into the brave, new world of your choosing.

Posted: March 30th, 2014 in Columns,Featured Columns,Headlines,Sunday Lifestyle | Read More »

Please be careful with my heart!


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February always makes me think of hearts. And not just because it’s the love month. My son, who was born with a congenital heart defect, was born in February. Today, as I write this, would have been his 20th birthday. My dad was only 49 when a heart attack claimed his life. I think of these two Miguels who were very dear to me. I think of love—the mother for her son, the daughter for her father.

Posted: February 23rd, 2014 in Columns,Featured Columns,Headlines,Sunday Lifestyle | Read More »

How I came face to face with Christmas in a little coastal village in Leyte


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I have this image of myself as a five-year-old, a white handkerchief tied around my tiny wrist, the other end tied to my mother’s.

Posted: December 22nd, 2013 in Columns,Featured Columns,Headlines,Sunday Lifestyle | Read More »

Picking up the pieces after going through traumatic experiences


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“Mama, mo-balik ba si ‘Yolanda’ (Mama, is Yolanda coming back)?” Michael asked his mother, his tiny body starting to quiver as the gentle rain began to fall on the tarpaulin sheet above their heads. His eyes darted back and forth between the skies and his mother who held him close.

Posted: December 8th, 2013 in Columns,Featured Columns,Headlines,Sunday Lifestyle | Read More »

Inspiration from the rubble


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“In 20 years of doing humanitarian relief work, it’s the worst I have seen,” Ned Olney, deputy country director of Save the Children, told us in a meeting a few days ago.

Posted: November 24th, 2013 in Columns,Featured Columns,Sunday Lifestyle | Read More »

How to move forward instead of just moving on


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On Monday evening, my son and I finally caught the feel-good film “She’s the One.” The main conflict in the movie was how the lead character, portrayed by Bea Alonzo, could “move on” and reinvest in life after experiencing the loss of both her parents and staying stuck in unrequited love.

Posted: November 3rd, 2013 in Columns,Featured Columns,Sunday Lifestyle | Read More »

Lessons in midlife


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Midlife is an interesting phase. It can be the best of times or the worst of times. More often than not, it’s both at the same time—angst-ridden but also laced with discovery and joy over strengths we never thought we possessed.

Posted: October 27th, 2013 in Columns,Featured Columns,Sunday Lifestyle | Read More »

Are there 50 things you want to do before you turn 50?


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Birthdays always make me think of bucket lists. This is the final year of my fourth decade in life, and the big idea is to come up with a list of 50 things to do before I hit 50.

Posted: October 20th, 2013 in Columns,Featured Columns,Headlines,Sunday Lifestyle | Read More »

The link between animal cruelty and antisocial personality disorders


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This week’s viral video had many netizens in an uproar, myself included. The video showed three young women crushing a puppy to death with their feet. It elicited much furor over social media sites, and has led to discussion about compassion, cruelty to animals and antisocial personality disorder, the roots of which can often be found in childhood.

Posted: October 6th, 2013 in Columns,Featured Columns,Headlines,Sunday Lifestyle | Read More »

Save the Philippine Children’s Medical Center


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It’s a structure that’s all too familiar to me—as a child and a young mother. My pediatrician used to hold clinic here back when it was new, when its walls were shiny and bright. Murals adorned its large walls, lifting a sick child’s spirits; play equipment was placed strategically to entertain kids waiting outside the doctor’s offices.

Posted: September 22nd, 2013 in Columns,Featured Columns,Headlines,Sunday Lifestyle | Read More »

Letter to a young friend who lost a parent


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Reading your Facebook post today transported me back in time. Like you, I was 16 when my father died. I won’t even begin to imagine how much more difficult it must be for you now that you have lost both your parents. Yet you carry the pain with much grace and courage.

Posted: September 15th, 2013 in Columns,Featured Columns,Headlines,Sunday Lifestyle | Read More »

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