Posted in Own Story

New Year, New Place in Quebec

The holidays came and went by like a storm that swooped the city. We’re still in lockdown and while everyone was busy breaking their quarantine, I was in the process of moving to another place, another province, as a matter of fact. This time, I’m moving to Gatineau, Quebec. While I’m being so problematic that I won’t adjust well since it is a French speaking province, I believe it will turn out well. I’ve been off for a few days because of my move and so far, I’m loving it. I had a few trips to Tim Hortons and was still hesitant to say “bonjour” back to the person asking my order. I made another trip to the grocery store and while I can’t speak the language, I managed to communicate and ignore the look of disgust from the cashier when she spoke to me in French and I answered back in English. Sorry, newbie here. I’ll try next time.

Overall, I can ascertain that I feel home. My roommate/friend/coworker is the best. She made sure I was comfortable and I couldn’t complain. Moreover, the drive to work was certainly short and you can’t imagine the sigh of relief when I see the Ontario border. I’m still trying not to turn right on a red traffic light and figure out if I’m allowed or not! I got a few honks from Quebec drivers already on my second day. I will get by. C’est la vie.

My friend has a wonderful place. You can feel the warmth and coziness of the place. This year is going to be good.

Posted in Insightful, Own Story, Photography & Travel

Ottawa’s Magic of Lights

As we conclude 2020, we are hoping to wrap up the end of the COVID-19 era. An era that we never in our wildest dreams, will live to see and experience. Like most people, this year has brought me to a different terrain that was unimaginable especially in my career. When the news broke out that the virus has reached Canadian soil, I expected that it’s going to seethe and reach a boiling point. It was just a matter of time for it to spread and cause people to die like flies. I’ve seen it. I’ve experienced it. It was a horrific encounter and would not recommend to anyone.

As the vaccine begins to rollout, I am optimistic that somehow, this pandemic would end and our lives will go back to normal. This era has taught us numerous things that are important to our lives. We now understand and appreciate that our lives pre-pandemic era, was definitely secure and splendid. We have learned the importance of minute things that we choose to ignore because we’re too busy with our own everyday struggles. Moreover, we can appreciate the value of social connections and interactions as it was forbidden for awhile. Our human connections and bonds were strengthened. Our headspace transformed which forced us to reflect on our values as a human being.

Let us now shift our frustrations to something that is blissful and look forward to a better tomorrow. Don’t let the Grinch (COVID-19) steal our Christmas this year. We won”t let him! Sorry for the dramatic intro but I feel like it was appropriate before shifting gears. Haha! So, this week, I had a few days off and decided to check out Wesley Clover Park’s Magic of Lights Ottawa Show. It was truly a magnificent experience and a night to remember.

The show will run from November 13th, 2020 to January 9th, 2021, from 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM. Tickets are available online for $22 plus HST. You can also buy your tickets at the gate for $30 from Monday to Thursday and $35 from Friday to Sunday. Tickets are available here -> Wesley Clover Parks, Magic of Lights Ottawa Show. Now, if you’re looking to get away from the depressive mood of this year and start feeling the Christmas spirit, you should definitely check this out!

Magnificent lights
Magic of Lights Show

We also went to check out Ottawa’s famous Taffy Lane. This neighbourhood has traditionally been decorating their houses every year for the Christmas season. It’s one of the most famous streets in Ottawa during Christmas! You should definitely check this out and be amazed with their Christmas displays. The homeowners put a lot of effort into decorating their homes for everyone to see!

Taffy Lane, Ottawa

Posted in Current Events & Politics, Health & Medicine, Own Story

Nurse, can you get me a warm blanket?

Throughout history, nursing was regarded as a female dominated profession. From the works of Florence Nightingale to that of Jean Calista Roy, the pioneers were female and that along, yields a problematic history of misogyny and sexism. Women who were primarily caretakers and nurturers were responsible in taking care of the aged, sick, children and disabled; that was the expectation. When healing roles such as nursing became lucrative and technical, it was met with resistance since it promoted departure from women’s roles but it was viewed as a competition to men who were in the work force. In 2019, 91% of regulated nurses in Canada are female according to Canadian Nurses Association.

To date, we’re still fighting for our wages and fair treatment as a work force and profession. Male dominated professions are still paid higher compared to nurses which I find reprehensible, to say the least. In late 2019, the controversial Bill 124 in Ontario was passed and set a cap of 1% on registered nurses’ wage, which definitely was a slap in the face. In fact, male dominated professions are exempted from this wage cap such as the police. To add, they’ve reached an arbitrated settlement that guarantees up to 3.5 percent for 4 years. What is wrong with this equation?

I suppose the obvious reason of the above predicament is gender bias. It baffles me that up to this modern day and age, nursing is poorly represented politically and rarely have a voice in changes that not only affects them professionally but undermines their gender.

With the onslaught of the pandemic and as nurses continue to work harder in unsafe work conditions, institutional sexism is insidious and deeply ingrained in the profession. It remains a lost cause. Moreover, as Nursing remains stoic and powerless over proving its capacity to develop, adapt and innovate, the dynamic didn’t change over decades since Nursing doesn’t confront and remains busy proving how capable of a profession it is. In the public eye, nursing is still subservient to the physician and one a patient can call and ask, “Nurse, can you get me a warm blanket?”

Contrary to some popular belief, nurses don’t just get you a warm blanket when you’re cold, or get you some water when you’re thirsty or make you toast when you’re hungry. Or worse, nurses are not a physician’s assistant. We’re already in the 21st century where nurses are the glue to your health care journey. Nurses work tirelessly to protect and advocate for the individual in our care. Beyond this reputation for compassion lies a highly specialized profession that continues to evolve to cater the needs of the society. From ensuring standardized care to continuous education of the public’s health issues, nurses are indispensable. They deserve all the credit and that starts with revamping the wage cap, but one can only dream.

Nursing and its attempt to prove its worth to society is still an issue. Unfortunately, nurses are hailed as heroes, treated like dung. More importantly, nurses are continually to be belittled, and disrespected even as they provide the most compassionate and exceptional care to the society. In fact, the wage caps just proves how nursing doesn’t have a voice and still yet to be hailed as heroes, to say the least.

Posted in Health & Medicine, Own Story

The Plight of Internationally Educated Nurses in Canada

For most internationally educated nurses (IENs), Canada & United States are the top destinations for a nursing career in North America. With the high demand of health care and very favourable wages, it’s undeniably “too appealing”. Equipped with various skill sets and experiences, internationally educated nurses migrate to Canada as the country’s warmth and multicultural workforce invites each aspiring nurse to pursue their career and live the Canadian dream.

In 2013, according to Canada’s Regulated Nurses: A Look at Internationally Educated Nurses in Ontario and Canada publication, the top countries of internationally educated nurses in Ontario were from the US, UK, Poland, India, China and the Philippines. There was a significant decrease of  the growth in the supply of IENs in Ontario from 2009 to 2013. Additionally, in 2013 about 64.6% of internationally educated registered nurses (RNs) were employed at a hospital compared to Canadian educated nurses which was 63.4%. Moreover, internationally educated registered practical nurses (RPNs) who were employed at a hospital was 25.1% as opposed to Canadian educated nurses which was 43.5%.

Now, let’s go back to the part where there was a decline of IENs growth in Canada. The reason being was the assessment process became more expensive, lengthy and biased. The launch of the National Nursing Assessment Service (NNAS) added a fair amount of difficulty to IENs who were willing to reciprocate their international licenses to a Canadian nursing license and integrate into the workforce.  In fact, the proficiencies of these professionals are wasted instead of getting utilized as a work force asset in Canada. For those who are unfamiliar, NNAS is an assessment body that evaluates the equivalency of IENs’ education with that of the Canadian nursing degree. In short, they will tell you if your education is up to par or not. With a fee of $650 for the main application, IENs have to pay this amount upfront and fulfill the documentations needed for the assessment of their international nursing degree. Let me tell you, that’s just the beginning of never-ending fees. Along with this application comes a huge number of requirements such as English test, licensure verification and transcripts certification. UNDERSTANDABLE. They have to protect the public and that’s just fair.

What doesn’t sink in to me is for the price that the applicants have to pay, they’re not getting their money’s worth. What’s worse is the lengthy wait times. The application process came to a point when IENs have to wait 2-5 years of completion. RIDICULOUS! And after years of waiting, unfortunately, a few received an offensive evaluation such as, YOUR EDUCATION IS NON COMPARABLE OR SOMEWHAT COMPARABLE TO THAT OF THE CANADIAN EDUCATION, enough to crush one’s spirit trampled the years of professional experiences in highly acute areas and disregarded their almost perfect English test. By the time they receive their result, they have been stagnant for years from their practice waiting for a process that’s cocktailed with ineffectual arbitration.

I have met various IENs who have worked in ICUs and highly acute areas overseas who received a non-comparable result. Some of them have master’s degrees, numerous years of experiences and specialized skill sets. Surprising, isn’t it? The inconsistencies with the process to obtain a Canadian nursing license have to be terminated. I’m not complaining but it’s certainly a case of unfairness in plain sight and one has to speak up. I understand that the gaps for knowledge can be corrected by refresher programs  and they’re setting the bars high however, when does this systemic unfairness stop? Systemic unfairness or systemic racism? Internationally educated nurses are discriminated because English is not  their first language despite the fact that they have passed the NCLEX, met the requirements, have worked in highly acute areas and PASSED AN ENGLISH EXAM. What are we missing here?

I bumped into an open letter by the where it tackled some few interesting points. It says that regardless where we came from, we are all Canadian nurses and opening up about racism in nursing and healthcare must be addressed.  Systemic racism education is omitted in the nursing curriculum and workplaces. I agree. While cultural sensitivity is greatly emphasized, systemic racism among  health care staff and fellow nurses are not discussed. It is a touchy subject that most people fail to address and even refuse to acknowledge. It exists and it is real. So, how can we tell that each application from an IENs is not viewed by an adjudicator without discrimination and prejudice? There is no valid proof to this claim but there should be a better system of transparency and open communication between the applicant  and assessment bodies. Be more accessible, perhaps? After all, they’re not paying for cheap fees.

Additionally, I also understand that each province have standards of their own. I’m not saying to make it easier, MAKE IT FAIR. One does not realize that these IENs have a life to live. The emotional turmoil and stress of waiting for result is too much to fathom. This is unacceptable on all levels. Stop wasting their time. Stop making the application processes a money grab. Shorten the wait times. Establish a pathway so each case can be dealt with appropriately. Develop an effective system where applicants and nursing bodies can benefit from each other. We are in need of more nurses!

The questionable processes, amounts and timelines are the problems we have to solve as it strains the applicants financially and emotionally. To add, I don’t think anybody has questioned this because of possible repercussions. And I doubt change will happen soon because of extreme red tapes. It’s a life altering process for the applicant’s end and some lose their hope and confidence on what this country has to offer.

And as the pandemic continues to hit, the shortage of nurses is obvious. The health care system is overwhelmed with patient overflow and short staffing issues. This is the time to expedite applications. On the contrary, I still think that the standards have to be maintained to protect the public at all cost. After all, we’re all in this together. Or, are we really?

Posted in Own Story

COVID-19: The Unseen and the Unyielding

Chaos. Fear. Uncertainty, fueled by the unseen enemy, COVID-19. When is this going to end? Did the statistics go up? How much people have recovered? Worse, how many fatalities today? These are the questions that curb our mind everyday. Never have we ever checked the news this much before the COVID19 pandemic. The traffic in those websites must be explosive. It’s almost similar to the anticipation of vote counts during election, just the opposite.

Before the COVID19 pandemic, man was preoccupied about their own needs and interests. In fact, the influx of technology and information has taken over the world and our lives. Similarly, man has disregarded the basic values of humanity. In other words, respect, empathy and compassion were completely forgotten. Despite some government warnings and recommendations to stay home, news of large gatherings are still rampant, a cringe-worthy moment. Certainly, the pandemic highlighted the ugliness of the human behavior. By all means, man has no regard about others but themselves. We have become self-centered and selfish. We have seen the worst in mankind within a few months of 2020. Altruism and good character are dead. Indeed, we have to restart and emphasize what really matters to our children. We are building the next generation of self-obsessed, uncaring and obnoxious generation.

Months later, here we are. We are still facing the same problems as the government continue to find the cure and vaccine. America is in chaos. China continues to shrug its shoulders. The world is in the verge of collapsing despite the technological ad medical advances.

How did we get here? The virus has its prime consequences however, it is up to us to realize what’s vital. After all, our enemy is not COVID19 but ourselves.

Posted in Love, Own Story

Soledad: The Greatest Person I Know

You taught me everything I know, Lola. I exist because you didn’t give up on me. You would get the efficascent oil and Vicks vaporub to massage my belly with love when I was feeling sick. You cooked me all the delicious meals and taught me good values that made me into who I am today. You managed to stick around when I have nobody. You understood me very well. Where do I start? The millions of great things that you have contributed to this family are countless. I couldn’t find the words to describe how great of a person you were. When I left home, you told me to follow my dreams and never look back. I still did in my own little way. I didn’t forget you. I would never forget you. For every dream that I was chasing and opportunities that I was grabbing, you were my inspiration. I wanted to make you proud. I wanted me to be your biggest accomplishment. I knew I made you proud and happy. I always told you how much I love and appreciate everything that you did for me, for us. Your sacrifices for us were impeccable.

I want your good memories to linger. I will continue to chase the stars for you. Now that you’re gone, what am I left with? Your wisdom and constant encouragement were all I have in this world. Without you Lola, I am nothing. We are nothing without you. What happens now?

December 02, 2018. 5:00 AM EST. I woke up suddenly with my heart pounding in my chest. I know something was not right but I couldn’t pinpoint where. I turned to the other side of the bed, and again to the other. I did it several times that I gave up trying to fall back to sleep. I turned my tablet on and continued the Russian show I’ve been watching. Reading the subtitle gave me a little bit of a headache.

Then came 9:00AM. My phone beeped. It was my mother who sent me a text message from the Philippines, “Your lola (grandmother) bade goodbye.” Silence. Numbness wrapped my whole being. I was trying to contemplate as to whether it was real or am I dreaming?

1992. My Lola Soledad/Soling moved swiftly to and fro around the kitchen. She was washing the vegetables and cutting up the pork in the wooden cutting board interchangeably. She looked around with her disheveled hair trying to search for something or someone behind her. Her disheveled hair showed some streaks of grey. Her stained dress with holes were quite wet from splashes of water and sweat. “Anne!” My lola called out my name with such authority and gentleness that it made me flinch. “I’m just here, lola. I will be nearby, ” giving her reassurance. I went and ran energetically like a normal kid would do. “Be careful!,” her voiced echoed in worry and concern.

My grandmother, Soledad, was the 9th child out of 10 children. She grew up in a house that was made of wood with capiz shell windows. Spanish influence. She would tell me stories about her childhood as if it were yesterday. We would lay in bed together and she would take me down to memory lane with her interesting stories. I remember her story about the World War II. She was barely 8 years old. She told me they all left their homes to flee in the mountains and hide inside a hole to hide from the Japanese soldiers. My grandmother’s father, according to her, killed two Japs with their own rifles with bayonets. After the World War II, they went back to their home with some little to rebuild. Together with her siblings and parents, they were able to do so. Life went on.

My grandmother was a brilliant woman. After the war, she continued to study and was eager to learn more. She lived in a time where women were not empowered enough to do what they please. Basilio, her father, unfortunately asked her to stop school at Grade 6. They couldn’t afford it and her father chose to send the older brothers to finish school instead of the girls. I remember when she was telling me that story, I saw the sadness in her eyes, not just that. I saw regret. She would peep outside their window and would see her friends walking to school. She would hide and cry.

“Anne, lunch is ready!” My grandmother’s authoritative voice reverberated throughout the house we were renting at that time. She cooked my favourite adobo. I stood up and went to the dining room. “Don’t forget to wash your hands,” she reminded as she was preparing my plate. I washed my hands and sat on the chair with legs open. “What do you think you’re doing? Sit up like a lady with your legs closed and back straight!” I looked at her in fright and did as I was told. I felt that if I didn’t do what she said, I would suffer a consequence. I look at my grandma and saw the look of exhaustion in her face. She still have some few chores to do. She woke up as early as 5 in the morning to start finishing the chores.

1950s. Soledad gazed upon the heavens and sighed. Her two older sisters left for Manila to work. Now, she was stuck in their home to just exist. She prayed that her sisters would send her to school when they have money saved. She wondered how her future would go. She was frustrated but optimistic. Her other sister, Maria stayed with their mother to help out with the household. She was invited to a dance tonight. She could go if her sister will chaperon her to the dance. That night, her fate changed. She met my grandfather. The rest was history and they had four lovely children, one of them was my mother.

“Try to eat everything on your plate. Some people are starving with nothing to eat. You don’t want to throw that food away. It will be a waste.” She was attentively looking at me while chewing my food and I just answered, “Opo, Lola (Yes, grandma). When lunch was finished, Lola asked me to sit in the living room and play. After she finished washing the dishes, she walked to me with a radio and blank cassette tape on her hands. “What are we doing, Lola?” I couldn’t hide my excitement. She gave her sweetest smile, looked at me with her gentle eyes, “we will record the poems that I taught you. You’ve memorized them all, right?” I nodded and smiled back.

“Ang Munting Inakay”

May isang inakay na ibig lumipad

Ngunit pakpak niya’y di pa maikampay.

“Bayaan mo anak, ikaw ay magsanay.”

Ang sabi ng inang siyang nagbabantay.

Ang munting inakay na nais matuto

Sa gilid ng pugad ay paluksu-lukso!

At isang araw nga pakpak ay gumalaw

At lumipad na siya sya sa malayong lugar.

Like the poems that you taught me, fly away, Lola. You’re at peace now. Fly away with the angels, my dear Lola. Watch over us. I love you. Rest well.

Posted in Own Story



For weeks, I was a nut case. Not to frighten anybody, but I’m not talking literally. I have zero motivation in life. And definitely, it’s not what I want to hear from myself, nor the people that care about me. My friends have been supportive about the whole breakup situation and I am really grateful that they’re on my side.

But quite frankly, I could spend the day with them, laughing and joking around, and when I get home to my apartment alone and just hearing the clock tick tock-ing, that’s when the sadness seeps in. I couldn’t say that I am a weak person, cause I am not. I have encountered worse situations in my life before and yeah, this has taken its toll on me. It is draining me mentally and emotionally. I couldn’t sleep early now. I distract myself from reading self-help books or watching any show on Netflix. I started drawing and it gave me a sense of satisfaction that indeed, I can do something worthwhile. I am valuable.

It’s baffling how a breakup could make you feel worthless about yourself. At first, you will feel you own the world or have won the lottery and in a blink, everything is gone, they’re gone and stole your heart away. Your capability to think straight is shattered, even your ability to breathe freely is compromised.

When somebody breaks your heart, you lose yourself. I understand how many dating advisors would tell you, show them how strong you are as a woman and he will come back running to you because by then, he had realized how worthy of a woman you are. I call it bullshit. In the first place, if the person loves and accepts who you are, he shouldn’t have broken your heart and spirit. A person who truly loves you would never bring a single tear in your eye, would accept you no matter what your differences are, respect you as a human being, and wouldn’t toss you away like trash. One minute they will declare their love for you and the next, they act like a total stranger. But why?

I decided to end this misery by not thinking about the good times we shared. It just hurts me more and brings me back to that limbo where I was when the breakup was still fresh. I am strong. I am an independent woman, but I am human. I am in the process of healing myself and in the end, I will be stronger. I have learned my lesson, a valuable lesson.

I will focus my energy on things that matter in my life. I will love myself more and rebuild myself from the broken pieces that he has left me with. I will be happy not for the sake of others, but for my own. I will live my life for me and not for anybody else. There are goals that need to be accomplished and new memories to be made. I call this redemption. I am redeeming myself from the perils of a one sided relationship, being made worthless by a man who just thinks about himself and unhappiness brought about by a failed relationship.

I, is what matters…

I, is where happiness starts…

I, is the one who realizes her own value…

I, will choose to redeem herself…



Posted in Love, Own Story, Uncategorized

Saddest Christmas


It’s been a while since I went home. For eight Christmases, I spent them all in a foreign country. This is by far, the saddest of them all. I was trying my best to cope and move on from my recent breakup and it’s slowly eating me day by day. I love him and I know he doesn’t feel the same anymore. I’ve pictured myself being with him, happy and contented.

Three weeks and I’m still on the same spot. I’m usually strong and could face anything, but this time, I guess I really fell into a deep hole. My guards were down and I just let him swallow the whole of me. He made it seem that he loved me, that he cared about me and I was all that mattered to him. The relationship went hot to cold and I would have tried anything to salvage it. I remembered how he looked at me with his gentle eyes and whisper I love you. Then at a snap, it changed.

Days passed and we became stagnant. I was willing to fix it, work on our differences. Maybe I became too comfortable and maybe I was not capable to make him happy anymore.

I wonder if…

…he still thinks about me.

…what happened to our relationship?

…what did I do wrong to make him go away?

…am I not enough?

I never pressured him to do anything he doesn’t like. I would ask him if he wants to do anything and he would be adamant to do what I was suggesting. I do enjoy his company even though he doesn’t enjoy the things I like to do. I just didn’t know that it bothered him so much that he has to drop me like a hot potato.

I respect him so much that when he asked for a little bit of a space, I just gave it to him. Little did I know that he already made up his mind and the break that we were having was his way of slowly easing away from our relationship.

It hurts. I have never been hurt like this before. I loved him dearly and I still love him. I don’t know how long can I recover from this feeling but I know it may take a while. I’m trying, I really am. But when everything becomes quiet and I’m alone, I can’t help but be sad. I hope I can recover and move on totally. I will be able to.

The sadness that lurks in my heart right now is indescribable. I hope he’s happy.

I hope I can be happy soon, that’s all I am praying for.



Posted in Love, Own Story, Uncategorized

The Beginning of the End

He said he needed time to think about our relationship. That was louder than the bomb that has been dropped at Nagasaki and Hiroshima during the World War II. I thought everything was perfect. Wrong.

When he whispered, “I love you,” my world turned colourful and I saw fairy dust in the air. Loving someone and being in a relationship are probably one of the greatest aphrodisiac in this life time. You savour every moment and you’re magically taken to a place you’ve never been before.

I loved it when he opened the doors for me and treated me like a princess. How he gently stared at me every time, gave me butterflies in my stomach. He would look at me sweetly and give me kisses. We would share jokes and laugh together happily as a couple.

Fast forward to the day he became cold and indifferent. I don’t know what to do or say to him, because I don’t want to drive him away. I was never good at confrontations. I was scared to lose him. What went wrong? What have I done wrong? Did I upset him? How could I fix it?

So, he wanted his space and I gave it to him. And by giving it to him, he will realize that he loves me and we can look into our differences. Wrong again.

After a week of endless wallowing in my tears, various distractions and late night contemplation, he finally sent me a text. “Good morning, how are you?” My heart jumped. Would he say he missed me? Would he say he loves me and will stay with me? Will we find a way to iron out our differences? But, no. He wanted to meet and talk in person. Suddenly, my heart started to throb very fast. I know I would’t like what he will tell me, so I told him to call me and just tell me over the phone. He called me. The conversation was very casual. I went directly to the point and asked how did his “thinking about our relationship” went? He just replied with zero emotion, “I’m sorry, I don’t think we can continue.” I was shocked.

I did see it coming but when I heard those words, I just became speechless. It’s real. Oh, is this happening? I wanted to sob but I told myself to be strong. I asked him what was his reason and I couldn’t remember the exact words he said. I just knew that what it meant was he doesn’t love me anymore. Initially, we had a discussion about our differences and these were rubbing off a bit, according to him. That I don’t do what he likes to do and he doesn’t want to do what I like to do. And oh, that I wanted to have a kid some time in the future and he doesn’t. Not in his plans, not going to change.

At that point, I wasn’t able to dissect the situation. I just said okay and began sobbing. I ended the call and I was left alone in my room trying to absorb what happened.

The process of moving on was difficult. You meet a person who became your world, shared your everyday experiences with and loved unconditionally; and the next thing you know, they’re a total stranger. You’ll wonder what went wrong and blame yourself for the end of the relationship. You’ll try to reason out for this person and lose all your rational thinking because you want to convince yourself that it’s still going to work. You’ll remember all the good memories you had and cry at the end realizing that it has already ended. Gone. It’s a done deal. He left you. He dumped you.

This person who you gave your heart away to and treated with utmost respect did this to you. He doesn’t care what you think or how you feel. He doesn’t take into consideration if you’ll be hurt or break your heart. He doesn’t even ask how you felt and only cares about how he feels. He is a self-serving human being. He doesn’t care about you, he just cares about himself!

What to do? Move on! The end of this relationship is a beginning of endless opportunities to explore the world of single-hood. Embrace it while it lasts. Keep your head up high. You’re beautiful, kind and sweet. You will find a person who would appreciate what you can offer and treat you like a fragile glass. The end of a relationship is not the end of your happiness. It teaches a lesson of strength, self-improvement and determination. Yes. Embrace it. Most importantly, cut yourself some slack and don’t blame yourself. It was never your fault. Some things just don’t work out the way we wanted them to. This is just the beginning. Smile and move forward.


Posted in Own Story, Uncategorized


Life is easy. Wrong. Years ago, my perception was as a simple as this. After finishing my Nursing degree back home (Philippines), I felt as if I own the world. The experience was surreal. I was dreamy and then comes defeat. And then you’re doomed, the light at the end of the tunnel seems to be getting farther and farther.

For many reasons, I gathered myself up and tried to overcome these hurdles. If one is unlucky, I would consider myself the superlative of those. Surely, if I didn’t survive those storms, I would have been 6-feet under (just an exaggeration).

My aunt would always lecture me on how ‘real life’ is. Those two words always rang my ears, repetitively. So there would be times when I have to mumble in tears, self-pitying. Why, though? You can’t force the universe to just make everything happen, according to your own inclination. It just doesn’t happen that way. It’s magically designed to fall into place according to its rhythm.

So, what now? Now is the time to embrace what lies ahead. Savor it, live with it and continue those efforts. The fruits of your labor would surely give you the greatest accomplishment you will ever encounter. Be grateful. Spread those wings and look unto the world, tell yourself, you are more mature, sensible and strong. Live each day with gratitude and humility. Love, there’s so much to give and be taken in return. Life will be fantastic starting from now. Don’t forget, goodness is vital, it’s your secret ingredient to life’s complicated recipe.—ANNE


Posted in Own Story


It seems like I’m walking in a very long tunnel. Dark and cold. The light’s too far away from my grasp. If only I could put an end to what I’m feeling. Not what you’re thinking, but there comes a time when you feel as if you’ve been stripped with all the happiness in the world, then you become numb and cold like the tunnel I’m walking in right now.

For years, I’ve been struggling. For what, you may ask.  Struggling to fight away the meanness and insensitivity of people who surround me. I give in, rest my case or walk away from endless bickering & nagging which makes me the coward and the underdog. I’ve done this a few times, not just a few, but many times. There would be no point in explaining at all. You can never defend yourself to a person who can’t hear you (or doesn’t want to listen to you).

I don’t need to be constantly reminded of what I should do and what should have done. There are quite a few things that should just be left alone. Mistakes should be buried, or learn from. Once stumbled, you rise up and not repeat history again. My battles are my own and I should face them alone.

Posted in Own Story, Photography & Travel

Living it up in the Knife (Yellowknife)

Living in Yellowknife at this time of the year is the worst thing, I think. You would be going out at a temperature of up to -52 degrees Celsius and be overwhelmed with the horrific coldness. It happens to be my 4th winter in Canada now and I am still not getting used to this coldness, well growing up in a tropical country (Philippines), I suppose. After being in this city for four months, I begin to appreciate the brighter side of the city.


Coming from Ottawa, which is certainly a bigger city than YK, it was a huge change. Three years of living up in that city made me get used to a more urban/suburban living. What I mean is, everything is accessible at a snap. Ottawa has a nice public transit and is quite easier to anybody who doesn’t have a vehicle, like me which is just so neat. Even though I’m still trying to adjust to the culture and the dynamics that this city possesses, I have to make the most out of it and enjoy every single second.

I came at a very good time in this city which is the nicest season. Lakes, beach, fishing, canoeing, and, oh sun! This place has a lot to offer. If you are into these kinds of things, this is the place for you. One of my favorite places  is the Pilots’ Monument, where you could see a breathtaking view of the most part of the city. The awesome boat houses that afloat in the clear blue waters of the lake will capture your attention. During the winter, the lakes freeze and people could walk over it.


I miss the summer and the warm weather. The winter in this part of Canada, they said is one of the coldest in this country. You have to be dressed really good and be prepared to battle the freezing weather. Apart from dreading the coldness so much, I like how beautiful outside is. The soft snow that blankets the trees, ground and houses, it truly is magnificent.




I’d say, change is good. Yellowknife, please be good to me. I’m really beginning to love this place and will see what the future has in store for me. 🙂