Wednesday, May 31, 2006

a year of jots

today i celebrate one year of blogging.

just itty bitty jots
of thoughts i want to remember

of feelings i yearn to rekindle

of fears i dared to conquer

of lessons learned i hope to pass on

of life dreams i long to realize.

just itty bitty jots
to look inwards

to come out and share

to make me sane

to trap precious time
to cherish the moment

just itty bitty jots
from innermost me

and for you

who cared to read

all year long

thanks much.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

for mara

hi ate mara!


Thursday, May 18, 2006


roque was born with a thick mop of hair. and so was our daughter arianna. and so was my husband. and so was i.

by the time he reached a year old, he has had five haircuts. that's how fast his hair grows. and imagine, it grows lengthwise as well as sideways. i have always dreamed of him sporting a crewcut ever since he was a toddler. i think his head was shaped wonderfully and he was cute enough to carry that cut. but my husband and daughter would not hear of it. three months ago, he started going to the barber with my husband. before then, it was always a major production as my mom's hairdresser would cut his hair. he would sit on my lap, fidget undlesslessly and in the end it would seem as if both of us had a haircut. with the barber, he would sit still the whole time, waiting patiently for the ritual to end. the trips to the barber was something he looked forward to, as he felt priveledged to be going to the barber just like one of the big boys. just him and his dad bonding. he even memorizes the name of his barbers. there have been three so far... marvi, luis and noel.

bless barber noel! with razor #4, he has finally fulfilled my simple dream. voila! i am right, roque's head has a wonderful shape indeed, perfectly round without bumps or corners. and yes, he now looks like a cuter, naughtier imp. when he's sweaty, i see millions of itsy bitsy glistening beads through his hair pores instead of sweat-plastered hair. when i run my fingers through his hair, it feels like touching fresh evenly-cut grass. but the best part of it all is that not only i, love the crewcut. roque exclaims proudly to me, "i love my hair!"

Friday, May 12, 2006

i hereby donate

the back of my driver's license reads:
"i hereby donate [ ] any organ
[ ] specific organ ______________
upon my death"

and so does yours.
on that line, i ticked "[ ] specific organ" and scribbled "corneas".
i have another card from the eye bank foundation that says "eye donor".
for many years now i have kept those in my wallet, not really thinking twice that i would like to donate my corneas in case i become brain dead.
but what about my other organs which could also be transplanted? why didn't i write them down?
the plight of my med school classmate made me think about organ donation seriously. she has been on hemodialysis for end-stage renal disease for almost ten years now. a successful kidney transplant is the definitive management for her illness. in the meantime, without a suitable donor, she has to spend an arm and a leg for her regular hemodialysis to tide her over.
one would think that among her relatives, there would be one willing to be a donor. the best source of any organ to be transplanted would be a relative because the risk of tissue rejection is lowest. apparently her brother intially agreed to give one of his kidneys but later on back out. for what reason, i don't know. it seems selfish of him not to help his sister at this time of desperate need. she is my age, with the same hopes and dreams of a bright future ahead. but then again, truth is, being a living organ donor is quite frightening... going under a knife even if one is perfectly well, waking up after the surgery with one organ less, and thoughts of being less healthy because of it. there are real risks involved and subjecting one's self through these for another person is really quite a sacrifice.
admittedly, it is when one is still alive and well with hopes of still being strong and healthy in the future, when it is difficult to give up something anatomically. i guess when i am about to die, it will really not matter that i give my organs other than my corneas. put in that perspective, yes, i can now actually tick "[ ] any organ" at the back of my driver's license.
but being a living organ donor is another story. i hope to god i do not even have to think twice about being one for any of my loved ones in case any of them needs one. i imagine myself in that situation and i want to be able to say that i will be willing to make that sacrifice. i know the force which will drive me is loving that person enough to not want to lose him or her. and i know the force which will strengthen me is remembering that this sacrifice is miniscule, almost nothing, compared to that of laying down one's life to save humanity.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

wednesday group

Acrylic 14.5"x20"

Interaction\Roque & Mom
Acrylic 9.5"x12"

i love, love wednesdays
my midweek work hiatus
at times productive
at times just rest
but always with my kids
that's what makes it
the best!

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


for the past week, my two children were sick almost simultaneously. arianna was down with high fever and colds for three days followed by diarrhea, which we thought was viral.

in the morning as i left for work, i told roque,
"please take care of "ate" while mom is away.
you will be the doctor-of-the-house, ok?"

and he happily obliged,
"sure, mom! i will take care of ate."

he felt proud to be in charge.
when i got home, he reported to me,
"ate went to the toilet so many times today."

arianna was pooping eight times a day and not eating too well. and then roque started to have fever and colds. after four days and a stool exam, it turned out arianna's diarrhea was not viral and she had to take antibiotics for it.

so medicines, i bought for both children. they were a study in contrast as not surprisingly they always are. roque downed his syrup from the medicine cup, licked his lips as if it was an ice cream moustache. then he poured a bit of water to swirl the leftover medicine coating the cup, and slurped it with gusto. i guess it tasted good. arianna, however, prefers the capsule or tablet form. but this time, the size of this one scared her. needless to say, it was even more difficult with her expecting not to be able to swallow it, hyperventilating and crying in fear at the same time.

just then, her brother doctor-of-the-house, roque, muttered,
"c'mon ate, my eardrums are hurting!"
talk about being a caring, empathizing and supportive doctor
... tsk.... tsk.
so after what seemed to be endless waiting and coaxing,
she finally downed the tablet successfully.
and roque exclaimed, "good job, ate!"
well, at least he appreciated her efforts.

several things about being a good physician, among other things... availability, eagerness to help, impeccable monitoring, setting a good example, patience, empathy, reassurance, appreciation. five out of eight ain't bad for this doctor-of-the-house.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

dr. dado

i would have wanted my husband to blog about this story. but he doesn't blog. so i decided to blog about it lest i forget it. it is his story.
he works with children who have eye tumors. for some reason, these children get quite attached to him. it may be because he looks like a kid himself, plays with them, and is naturally nice to them in his sincere desire to help them.
kyle, a three year old kid, was one of his patients whom he has been treating since infancy. he is an only child of a young couple, diagnosed just like his other patients, to have a congenital malignant tumor of the eye. his was bilateral. as if this was not enough, kyle was abandoned by his father, who could not take on the challenges of the situation. fortunately, kyle's loving mother more than made up for his father's weakness and loss.
one eye was removed early on to prevent the tumor from spreading. the vision of the other eye he tried to save with chemotherapy. all throughout the months which stretched to years, kyle and his mother would visit my husband for check-ups. my husband would describe him as "amoroso", so "malambing" because kyle never fails to hug him each time they visit. though kyle was compliant with the treatments, his remaining eye whose vision was saved, eventually had to be removed as well because of poor response. their succeeding visits were quite painful and difficult for my husband, as kyle would say, "wala ng ilaw." for kyle though, it seemed everything remained the same except for this darkness. for at this time, instead of reaching out to hug my husband, kyle would just grope in the dark, feel for him and then hug him.
the unfortunate inevitable happened several weeks ago, the tumor spread to kyle's brain. the bulge on his scalp which kyle's mom hoped was just because of a bump, was also a tumor spread. simultaneously, many questions haunted my husband. should have i done this or that? what if i did this, could i have prevented the rapid spread? did i do everything right? tormenting. the kid had gotten too weak for any treatment and upon advise, went home to spend his remaining days with his family. they continued to be in touch with my husband. a few days at home, my husband received a text from kyle's mom that kyle wanted to see him. he just wanted to tell my husband, "dr. dado, love ko kayo." still a few days later, kyle passed away.
it was sad, but an enlightening kind of sad. at that moment, my husband realized he did everything he could. and i would like to think, maybe even more. i know he has touched the life of kyle in an indescribable way. he was just a vessel of our lord, the healer of all healers. and so was kyle. our lord spoke back to him through kyle. "dr. dado, my dear child, i love you."

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

between 4 & 70

how truly wonderful
it is

to share the same passion

within & transgeneration

between father and daughter twice over
between husband and wife
between father and son-in-law
between father and son
between mother and daughter
between mother and son
between sister and brother

between grandfather and grandchildren

at most between four and seventy
years spanned six plus sixty!