Tuesday, May 22, 2007


I'm working on the student handbook which I need to finish today and I'm working at home to get enough time alone. Argh, I'm beginning to think I'm one of my students who need more focus. Can't wait to see the end product of this handbook. It's a matter of breaking in to put the excitement and thrill into writing - one which I'm getting paid for. It's time to channel my energies to a higher purpose. Gotta make a living now. :)

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Love Much

I just read this quote, "They say little who love much." These less than a hundred word-post should show my affirmation to that. It's a brand new day, a brand new work week that will all perk us up. Love, which makes the world go round and loco begins with oneself. I'll certainly do that. Perhaps, you can fill yourself with much of it, too. Hugs. xox :0)

Friday, May 18, 2007


We're great spectators of how amazing life unfolds
The world is our constant stage
As we go through different stages
At our own pace and convenience.

It's not meant solely for watching
It's far awesome lived by
Moving, learning, healing, changing
And loving.

Whichever way
We decide to live it
Depends on our own play.
The important things
Should get us going
Keeping our head up high
Laughing off the problems
Doing well and not hurting.

It's up to each one of us
To find joy
In every stages
We are into.

Take chances
Never miss out on life.

It's All About Attention

There’s this little girl in school who’s so ecstatic every time she sees me. I’ll call her Sarah. Since last Wednesday, the start of the School’s Foundation celebration, she’d really flash a big smile, tug, hug, and ask me anything. Last Friday, I saw her participating in the ground demonstration and she was dancing along with her classmates. She was just a foot away from where I stand so I was teasing her to show the usual smile she’s been giving me so that her parents could get good photos of her. What I got from her was a timid glance and her head bowing down hastily.

Right after Sarah’s performance, she came to me and I started kidding her again but she didn’t say anything and started to jiggle her legs. She whispered to me that her parents weren’t there and nobody came to watch her. She said her parents have been separated since she was a baby. Her mother is now in Japan while her father is in Davao, with a new family. She is under the care of her maternal grandparents who didn’t see her perform either.

Sarah was with me for more than 2 hours while waiting for her grandma to pick her up. And it was there that I learned Sarah wasn’t doing well academically. Most of her grades were failing . She said her grandma was too old to help her. So I told her to see me every lunch or before she goes home to breeze through her notes, at least.

I’ve seen many of Sarah’s kind (some kids are tricky though and good in faking emotions so good discernment is a must)- neglected because both parents are compelled to work away from them or have to mind their own separate lives. 9-yr old Sarah and the other kids without a choice go to school as an obligatory function and maybe, exercise their right to be educated (or pretend to be). While their parents try as much to fulfill the obligation to send them to school- they missed the whole point of parenting in their absence and worst, if both are out of reach. By meeting the financial needs, all other equally important rights of the child are compromised. It's nobody's fault alright. But don't you think that there should be a policy where all absentee parents acquire at least PCs or mobile phones for their children to feel them or merely narrow the gap of being away from home? The heck, just communicate.

Of course, there are other children from dysfunctional families who grew up well and better than the regular families we normally see but children are children and they need attention. Some kids are lucky to endure tough times at a very young age and some aren’t. Sarah is one who can hardly paddle the lessons of life with less attention and instructions from her family. There’s really no short cut in raising kids- a little assurance from grown ups would matter .

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Please Stop Cooking Up Excuses

I was warned by my OB-Gyne friend that scheduling with a developmental pediatrician should be way ahead. True enough, I booked two of my students last week of March and got a word from the medical secretary only last week of April for a definite schedule in May. The consultations will be done separately for a two-hour assessment to tell if their attention disorder are mild, moderate or severe and to gauge how these would affect their schooling, among others.

Generally the parents I’ve met are genuinely concerned with their child and will get to the bottom of things to find out what’s wrong and, in no time, identify solutions to cure the problem. Like this couple who I’m now collaborating with, they may consistently get into the battle of highs and lows in dealing with their child’s hyperactivity and yet they never succumb to defeat. They’re still around – very much cooperating and wanting to get involved with their child’s life.

On the other hand, I have parent encounters where a dozen of alibis have been concocted to cover their mess. Take this incident I just had with a mother whose child was diagnosed with an ADD. I have had many serious talks with her and I committed to help her get the treatment that would suit the individual needs of her child.

Since last week, I’ve contacted her office and mobile phone to notify her of the schedule and I got that funny feeling she was serving me amusing lies. In the initial call, she said she can’t remember me despite the fact that I have spoken to her several times about the red marks her child got; 2nd call, she pretended she was not the person I was looking for and had the nerve to say she was out; 3rd call which was today, she said that the lady I was looking for was no longer connected in that (family) hardware store (?!?); 4th to succeeding calls were brewing me mad as she cooked up a pretense that something’s wrong with her telephone line.

Sadly for her, I would not allow her to spoil my day. I waited a few hours to simmer down, called her in her mobile phone and gave her a decent whipping up. I told her that the school is her partner in working for the best interest of her child but she cannot rely on it to make wonders when she and her husband barely cooperate. She said her bag was snatched, blah-blah... She said her child has been seeing her own tutor so she decided not to enroll in the Summer Enrichment Program her child was required to take. I guess it's the minimal doctor's fee that's bothering her...But it took us two months to finally end the waiting.

I have had enough of her excuses. Her child may physically look ok but the attention deficit disorder has alarmingly affected his academic performance. At the end of my conversation with her, I have minced strong words to let her taste her own bitter broth, if only to let her realize that her child needs a spoonful of help.


A mom of one of my students unexpectedly called this morning. Last week, I texted her to ask for any progress on her child’s therapy but I didn’t get an answer. Over the phone, she mumbled an excuse which I perfectly understood for a curt reply translated to “give me a breathing space while I try to absorb all that’s happening with my child.” I may have felt the same way if I were in her shoes so I just let it pass.

She’s called to inform me that she’s with her kid today who’s attending a speech therapy session. She mentioned about the counseling session that her child and the whole family were required to undergo. She gave me the impression that she wasn’t expecting to engage in this kind of activity too soon. There was despair in her voice and had to calm her. I could sense she felt guilty for the condition of her child which, any mother would spare her child to avoid ridicule or difficulty that may affect her child’s future.

See, mothers could go at any length to make sure their kids would grow well and she is no exception to this. Her intelligent child had a trauma which she can’t trace where and how it originated. She just knows her child’s life is not as normal as she would have expected it to be. She is awfully bothered and would willingly seek any intervention to help her child improve.

A child draws strength from his parents especially his mother. And while any mother would put a brave front on her kid, she’s really not as strong as you think. She crumbles for fear of not succeeding and not getting things right. “What if the therapy won’t work? What if my child’s condition will not improve? What if my absence has caused this to my child? What if I am a terrible mother despite trying to make ends meet?” These questions are actually in the back burner put off by a mother built with significant high hopes and optimism. On the other hand, these can also trigger anxiety to a mother when her emotions run low.

They say a mother is like a lighthouse. Most of the time, she can see what’s coming ahead, shed her light and anticipate better than anyone. She can map out solutions that would work best confronting her child. She can and will prevent harm from knocking on her child’s door. Although, she does not have all the might to prevent the things that are bound to happen to her offspring/s; she cannot predict the minutest that the future brings; and she does not have the answers to all the questions - as with all of us.

Yet as long as a mother (like her) would try to instinctively act tough and do what’s right for her child, she’s doing a good job. When her child is quite grown-up, he’ll be the one to reassure her, that despite the complications of life, she is a great mother and an endearing one.

Saturday, May 12, 2007


Somewhere in a tranquil place of Norzagaray
A retreat house lies
Isolated from the cluttering city noise.

We arrived late afternoon
Our eyes feasted on the verdant trees shrouding the hills
With perfect view of a cloud-draped mountainside
The shy kisses of the gentle wind greeted us
And we were all like kids wanting to laze around
That idyllic piece of heartland.

The chimes glided playfully
As if inviting us in that blissful edifice
Made to soothe baffled souls.

Silence was so pure
We were engulfed in a somber mood
The kids were in whispers
The murmur of their soft grunts filled the room
While soft music was played for reflection
Set certainly for a retreat.

That night, the shrilling sound of cicadas echoed
Along with the sound of children weeping
Of fear and confusion
Of love and faith
Awakened emotions in slumber
There were only silhouettes of innocence in darkness.

And the morning came
The birds hummed with delight
The sun bathed the room and its rays reached for a warm embrace
The thrill of a new day was invigorating
The cheery teens were up and awake
With tears no more.

We were summoned by the bells
To jubilantly fill up our appetite
And then the cravings of the heart.

It was quite an eventful journey
Without loud whimpers this time
Only infectious laughter and brief pauses to breathe.

It has got to be the place that tamed them
And the affirmations of kindness
Meant to last
Hopefully, a lifetime.