Saturday, May 10, 2014


Maybe you don't have to be perfect all the time. Maybe you don't have to explain to the world everything you do - no need to justify why you dyed your hair blue or paint your nails gold. Maybe the world can't tell you whether or not he is right for you or if you should buy a house. Maybe you don't need to listen when the world tells you you're too young or too old, too shy or too strong, too fat or too thin. Maybe society is messed up but you don't have to be. You just need to be you.

This society will have people pointing fingers, telling you what's wrong with you but bear in mind there will be people who do that to them, too. This society is creating a vicious cycle of pain and bitterness. Reject that. Don't let the world break you. Stop trying to fit in an image made by someone else. At the end of the day, choose to be strong, honest, brave and real.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Two Months After: Looking Back to My Experience with TV Maria

200 hours may seem daunting at first. Immediately, I imagine long weeks of training. Surprisingly, now that I’m done, it feels like time has flown away.

I have learned so much and I am deeply thankful. TV Maria, far from what I expected, is actually a tight knit group of less than 10 people. I have learned that in a small team like this, every hour counts. Every task accomplished matters.

While there were days I felt like I had nothing to do, most days were really busy. One task had to be pushed aside because another more urgent task comes up. The hustle and bustle in the office was caused by the preparation for the Catholic Heroes shoot. Props had to be prepared and packed. Documents recopied. While all these in theory sound trivial, I learned that thoroughness is part of making sure the quality standard is reached.

The most memorable experiences happened in the shoot in Quezon for the episode 1 of Catholic Heroes. The early mornings and late nights felt no different as every waking moment was spent on making sure every scene went well. Ma’am Kathie and Ma’am Monik, Assistant Production Managers, never tried to leave all the work to me. Still, the constant motion and things we had to lug around always had me staring at the ceiling at the end of the night with numb legs but a fulfilled mind. Though tired from the shoot, it felt like a crime to even stop working to take a break even to eat.

Then again, days spent inside the office also taught me a lot from script formats to news writing, I took each day as a learning experience. Because I wasn’t assigned to a particular show, I had a glimpse of each program on going. From observation and actual experience, I learned that no one ever sticks to just one job. It takes an extra effort, pairs of working hands and nine generous individuals who coordinate and labor for every show aired.

As a student only beginning to test the waters in this industry, I appreciate all the tasks I was given, no matter what they were. The exposure to how a shoot progresses and the daily tasks in the office gave me a clearer overview of what my responsibilities might be once I start working. I feel truly blessed to be part of this. It felt good to be working for a purpose I believe in. That was the number 1 motivating factor in every task I had to do – that in the end, everything will be for God’s greater glory.

For all the times I left the compound with a frown on my face, none of it mattered. After 201 hours, I walked away - not for good - breaking into a smile.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Where is Paraiso?

I always believed in the idea of paraiso or paradise. Somehow, even as a little girl, I had a dreamer's mind always imagining pots of gold or a room made of clouds.

Paraiso to me is real, tangible and prepossessing. It always have been a place to go to or time to come. My idea of paraiso was like a drug to a chaotic mind. Growing up, I was always dreaming of a great perhaps.

When I was six, I imagined paraiso to be a day in the future. In retrospect, maybe I should have thought of paraiso as messy afternoons in the mall in the whole family. After all, those afternoons don't exist anymore.

When I was 12, I thought paraiso was in a different universe where a guy with wings is surrounded with blue balloons and is holding a sparkling pendant for me but then I learned guys with wings don't exist and receiving sparkling pendants don't feel as good as an arm around my shoulder.

Somewhere along the way, I imagined paraiso to be a walkway full of gold or a garden full of flowers. I imagined it would be movie-esque, unreal and enchanting to the eyes but also raw and pulsing with life. I hope Paraiso is where I finally touch the face of God. I hope it's where I can finally sit beside him and tell Him about my joy and love. I hope Paraiso is where there is no pain. I believe Paraiso is where golden walkways exist, lush gardens bloom, velvet flags on tower tops wave, and beautiful palaces fit for the King go on for miles and miles.

Now I know Paraiso is welcoming Easter hand in hand with my choirmates. Paraiso may be in heaven with Jesus but there are little pieces of heaven here on earth, little pieces of Paraiso.

Paraiso is watching the city lights glow or the sun rise. It's your younger brother growing big enough to carry you. It's looking at the guy you love regardless of how he feels for you. It's making a baby giggle with glee. It's a picnic with people who love you for who you are. It's dinner with your family. It's knowing you are loved but more present when you know you can love. These are little glimpses of Paraiso.
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