Monday, January 24, 2022

I am a Disabled Person

Having a disability is really hard, moreso if it's invisible. My lungs were impaired by several illnesses. This limits my activities a lot and I immediately get sick when I overexert. The second pulmonary embolism I had last year really did a huge job on me. It forced me to retire. 

Most patients like me don't really get the understanding we need. I was once with my team in Sydney and we had to walk from the office to the restaurant for dinner. It was cold and the short walk was uphill. I walked very slow because I was having a hard time breathing from the effort and the cold. My teammates tried to stay with me, but I was soon left alone to fend for myself. It took awhile because I had to make a lot of stops, but I eventually made it to the restaurant. I soon left after eating because I was so tired. 

That happened several more times and I even experienced people laughing at me because I walked so slow. I eventually asked permission to work from home twice a week. The government work from home order was a huge relief for me because it reduced the guilt I felt from working from home. I became more productive, but the stress and a viral infection I picked up randomly made me ill. My doctor eventually declared I was disabled and recommended I retire. 

The ASEAN has drafted the ASEAN Enabling Masterplan 2025: Mainstreaming the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. They envision to have a more inclusive community. I hope though that this will include people with invisible disabilities. There is very little understanding about it because very few people understand what it is. I have also experienced getting my condition trivialized. 

Having a disability is hard, whether it's physical, mental or an invisible illness that causes impairment. I decided to write about my disability to support the ASEAN Disability Forum. I have been able to cope with my disability with the help of family and friends, but there are many others struggling. I hope governments would implement the masterplan to make communities more inclusive for the disabled. 

A basic program the Philippine government I can think of is making sure that places for public transportation would be easy to maneuver. One example is the MRT and LRT where the elevators are always broken. If they can't provide ramps, they should at least make elevators and escalators work. You can also learn more about what other countries are doing from the ASEAN Disability Forum FB page ( 

Let's hope and pray for a more inclusive community for everyone. Dear presidential candidates, bekenemen...

#BeKind #StayHome 

Sunday, January 23, 2022

The Interview

Watched the Jessica Soho's interview of presidential candidates last night. It was interesting to watch and gave me a better idea of plans and thoughts of the candidates. Every election is important because it makes and breaks a country. It's not just about addressing local level needs, but also managing how other countries perceive us. Majority of the issues that were tackled were for domestic needs. 

In 2016, I wrote about assessing candidates based on the job description written in the 1987 Philippine Constitution. Let's do a brief rundown of it based on the interview:

Have the skills and network to appoint the right persons in office.

Lacson - he was PNP chief during the Estrada administration, a senator and has served the cabinet. He has a very long list of senate bills filed. His vast experience showed during the interview. I'd like to believe he has a good understanding of how things work and would have good credible contacts by now -- just hopefully not all military men!

Moreno - Isko's political career has mostly been in the local level although he mentioned that he served as DSWD undersecretary for a few months. I did not get a good impression that he has a good grasp on how things run in the national level. Local programs aren't necessarily scalable. 

Pacquiao - his sincerity shown through, but I think where he's good at is helping people not running a nation. 

Robredo - among the four candidates, she was the one who was able to show that she's been doing things already. Getting an ISO certification is no easy feat. With the many volunteers she's been able to encourage, I think she'd also be able to recruit and appoint the best persons in office. 

Good understanding of what the country needs in terms of security.

Lacson - I think among all the candidates he has the most knowledge when it comes to the military. I have no doubt he'd be able to keep the country secure. My question though is, will he be able to develop the relations with other countries to help with the territory issues? 

Moreno - he wasn't able to protect the beach in Manila Bay from dolomite, what more about our national security?

Pacquiao - sorry, but I cannot imagine him sitting down with other heads of state to talk about territorial matters. As I mentioned, I think his best asset is his heart in helping people. 

Robredo - she is going to push for the recognition of the ruling on WPS. I could see that she's going to be firm on it and won't back down from China. 

Will not abuse the ability to suspend the writ of habeas corpus.

Lacson - with the Dacer-Corbito case, Mr. Lacson had been a fugitive for 15 months. It's worse than showing up in court with a neck brace. If he was truly innocent, why did he run away? 

Moreno - Isko gave me the impression he'd shadow the things the other mayor who became president did. 

Pacquiao - what I'm afraid of with Manny is he'll be used by his "friends". 

Robredo - I do not think she'd abuse this power. 

Good money manager.

Lacson - he has an anti-pork advocacy and from the interview showed he hates corruption. I think he'd be able to manage the budget well as long as he's able to get a good DBM secretary like Butch Abad. 

Moreno - so far he's been able to utilize his city's budget very well, BUT, I'm baffled about how the campaign donations ended up with him? Wasn't that supposed to go to the party? Correct me if I'm wrong.. 

Pacquiao - I've heard of his legendary bayong-bayong na pera pinamimigay. Not so sure about him managing the nation's money. 

Robredo - as VP, she's only had a meager budget, but she's been able to utilize it for good. Just compare her health packs vs. the DOH's. 

I just listed out some general guidelines from the 1987 Constitution. It's the job description for a president. I was a program manager for a very long time and being process oriented is important to me, so I looked at that also. I was also a community manager for a long time and I think at this time it's important to get help from volunteers, so I also looked at the ability to enable change. 

And as for the one who did not show up in the interview, why consider someone who can't be bothered to show the electorate his plans and platforms? Oh, but I never really considered him anyway. 

Go watch the show and keep an open mind. I thought to break down my thoughts based on the JD since it was a job interview after all. 

Great job Ms. Jessica Soho and team! :D

#BeKind #StayHome

Saturday, January 22, 2022

Cooked Spanish Adobo!

It's been more than a decade since I last cooked Spanish adobo. The last time I cooked it was for our Christmas family reunion in 2010. I remember because Tito Mon requested it. He super loved it and set aside half of what I cooked for the reunion (he didn't want to share). I didn't get to make it again because dalandan is not available in SG (afaik or I just dunno where to get).*

I learned this recipe from a TV show. It was KC Concepcion who showed how to make it (must have been Kris Aquino's morning show). I've since modified the recipe based on taste. Here's a short vid on how I made it -

Recipe available on Recipes for My Son

*Looked through my photos and apparently I was able to cook it in 2013 when I was home recovering from OHS, haha. I still prefer to remember the one when I made it for Tito Mon. 

**Please also like and subscribe the Recipes for My Son YouTube channel. :D

Friday, January 21, 2022


There's an alien plant in my lettuce pot! The plant just grew overnight in the big wave lettuce pot. I've been trying to identify it using Google Lens, but it's been giving different results everyday. I guess I'll wait a few more days so I could identify it better. 

Banana? Curry? Moringa? Tamarind?
Hopefully not an invasive plant.

Just like other aliens in my life, I have to decide whether I should keep it in the same pot, separate it or discard it. This will probably depend on what kind of plant it is. Whether it's ornamental or a veggie and hopefully not an invasive plant. My Mom would probably not think twice and just pull it out, haha. I've been a bit bored the past few days since I've been forced to rest, so forgive me for overthinking this. 

A Mom-friend pinged me yesterday to ask how I was doing. She reminded me to just chill and let the boys do heavy stuff. I told her I miss our cleaner in SG who came in once a week to clean for us. She said I could probably do it again once things get better. Keep your home happy not clean. That advise made me smile because I'm okay with the house being messy, but I get anxious when it becomes dusty.  Anyway, she was yesterday's guardian angel. Thank you Tita Dine :)

I probably need to do better at staying put. Just chilling is an alien concept to me. Whenever I watch TV, I'm usually multi-tasking. I normally sew. Sweetie told me yesterday to just rest while watching TV. It was hard and to calm myself down I put my planner on my lap. I just made a list of things I need. I eventually managed to just watch TV. With practice I'll get better at this. 

Happy weekend everyone! Double mask to stay safe :)

#BeKind #StayHome 

Thursday, January 20, 2022

A Scare

I haven't stepped out for over two weeks now, so when I started feeling unwell on Monday I said maybe it was because I overexerted myself. I mopped the living room and kitchen floors. I like doing it because it gives me a good workout and is the best sweat-inducing chore. It's probably too much for me because my whole body ached until the next day. 

Strangely I started having slight fever. I reduced my activities, drank more water and used EOs. It helped, but the fever kept coming back. The ABS-CBN Foundation Benefit Concerts kept me company while resting in the sala. We monitored my temperature closely and it's always a bit elevated. I didn't really experience any other unusual symptom. 

When I woke up I told Sweetie it's probably better to do a swab, just to be sure. I had a similar incident back in September before I had a biopsy. The hospital tested me also, but the doctor said that it was unlikely I was infected since I didn't have any exposure (I was also just staying home all the time). Anyway, the CDC said to treat any symptom as COVID-19 and to test to know. So I did a swab and as expected it was negative. 

The boys have been fussing over me since it's unusual that I've been feeling extra unwell. My rheumatologist explained to me that the ESR in my blood has been constantly elevated for three years now. It's an indicator of an inflammation or infection. Whatever it is remains a mystery. I think maybe the slight fever is a manifestation of PTSD (it was triggered over the weekend) and the sadness of losing a good friend. 

Negative, whew.

Well, it is what it is, I found some Biogesic in my suitcase. Hopefully that would put an end to it. If needed, I'll go see a doctor (or teleconsult). It's truly a miracle I've lasted more than two months without seeing a doctor. I shall go celebrate and eat some maki. 

On a happy note, my plants have finally started sprouting! Except Cucumartin! Gaaaah. But happy to see progress. Woot!

#BeKind #StayHome

*It would be really useful if self-testing kits are made available for everyone. I still don't understand why Watson's requires a prescription to purchase. In Singapore they provided kits for all households and you can easily buy at the pharmacy. My friends who need to go to the office use it every Sunday night to test. 

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Goodbye Fwend

I feel defeated. This pandemic just doesn't know when it should stop. I've been feeling unwell the past few days because I overexerted myself (a.k.a. I mopped the floor). I was settling down to sleep when I chances upon a post. I thought it was just someone trying to be funny, but after some investigation I realized a good friend just passed away. 

It was so unexpected and felt like someone punched me. It was the same feeling I had when I lost Juned. 

Eugene was a colleague turned close friend when we were working for EYP. I was a young product manager then given the additional task to make sure EYP delivered revenue. Eug was one of the 15 people I hired to do sales. He was one of those who believed I could deliver the herculean task. With his support we cracked the code to generate revenue for EYP.

For many months we spent time saturating Intramuros and Malate. After work we'd unwind with the while team in Malate. It was always videoke night for us and that's how I got to know Eug more. We were complete opposites. He was funny, pilyo, easy going and chill. At that time everyone saw me as an ice queen, but Eug managed to see through it and that's how we became friends. We usually talked about our kids. The best support he gave me though was seeing me through a breakup. He absolutely hated my ex.

Through the years though it was hard to bring the gang together again. We kept in touch online and the last time we chatted was last year. He asked me why I was in the hospital again. We updated each other about our kids and reminisced about those times we spent in Malate. I told him I didn't have clotting issues back then because we regularly drank! 

Fwend, I didn't expect you'd be gone so soon. Thought we'd still have time to update each other about Hope, Miggy and my inaanak. Mahilig ka talaga manggulat noh? Rest in peace my friend, please say hi to all my loved ones up there.

#BeKind #StayHome

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Trying Something New

Our neighborhood continues to be eerily quiet. It's always been quiet, but I usually hear more planes pass by and schoolbuses dropping off kids (plus Miggy when he was younger). In the mornings, I'd hear Mang Jabar, our favorite taho vendor, shout out "Tahooooo!". There would also be the sound of horns from the manong who picks up trash for composting. There would also be sounds from the walis tingting sweeping front yards during early mornings. Of course, there was also the wake up call of chickens and dogs barking. 

The only sound I regularly hear now is the rustling of the bamboo leaves from our garden. Even the sound of sirens have lessened (which is a good indicator there are less emergencies). I guess my neighbors are all staying home and keeping safe just like us. Well, if you're interested to be my neighbor, the house in front of us is for sale (needs renovating though). Anyway, I noticed how quiet it was again when I watered the plants earlier. 

Speaking of plants, we decided to try something new -- hydrophonics! Sweetie successfully grew basil in water when we were in Singapore. We've been frustrated with buying lettuce lately. It's either not available in supermarkets or full of insects. It's ruining our healthy eating plans, so we thought we should grow some. After scouring Lazada and Shopee, I found a starter kit that seemed easy to follow. 

We started the process last Friday. Waited three days and opened the container where we put the rockwool with seeds. They sprouted! (Faster than the ones I planted in soil!). Woohoo! We transferred them last night and it's sitting nicely in the kitchen for now. We're hopeful it will provide us with lettuce and mustasa. If we're successful then maybe we'll add more kits so we can provide veggies for Mom too. 

Happy Tuesday everyone!

#BeKind #StayHome