Problems of intimacy and social isolation

I was watching TV this afternoon when I turned the channel on TV5. It was a showbiz oriented talk show, Paparazzi, with hosts Ruffa Gutierrez and Dolly Ann Carvajal. The guest is Miriam Quaimbao. They were asking Miriam what happened to her marriage and why she decided to end it. That was the first time, Miriam talked about it. The reason for the breakdown of her marriage is that, she felt neglected by her husband.  Her husband is an Italian businessman. In the nature of her husband’s job, he’s always traveling. And after they got married, Miriam left the Philippines to be with her husband in Italy, Hong Kong, and in different countries. It wasn’t easy for her to leave because her family is in here, she has a wonderful career in TV,  her friends are in here, but she sacrificed and left everything to be with the man she loved the most. When they were living in Italy, her husband is always away and she was left at home alone, with no friends, family and husband by her side. That was the time she felt depressed. She has no one to turn to and she was seeing psychologist then. She also said that after their wedding, her husband is no longer intimate with her. She observed that there’s no more emotional connection between them. She had recognized that problem but doesn’t have the strength to address it to him. Of course, as a wife, she wanted to be taken care of, to be given time, to be loved.  When they were just dating, before, she said that they’re always happy; that they’ve experienced no problem, and everything was perfect back then. And when they reached a point in their marriage that they felt that something is wrong, they don’t know how to face it, they don’t know how to handle it. And these were the reasons why she reached the decision of ending her marriage. With that experience, she was left with ample lessons in life.  ( I wrote this, August 7, 2010.)

After I watched that interview, I was bothered, that I just want to write the things that’s going’ around my head. I’ve realized that romance is really important in marriage. For me, as a girl, and as I view myself as a future wife of someone, it doesn’t matter to me how much wealth my future husband will be earning. I will not ask him to give me expensive gifts. Because giving of expensive gifts is like trying to buy someone else’s love. What really is important to someone is the time, with how you made his/her happy and being on the side of the person you love. Plus the support from the environment, the presence of family, friends or people who cares about you, whom you can talk to, share your experiences with, and laugh with. My deepest desire is for myself not to have a broken relationship with my future husband. And with a sincere hope that the relationship between me and my future family will not drift apart. We will share every moment together, in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I’ve always have this in my mind, that my first priority when I get married will be my family, next to God.

HEROISM, from a student’s point of view.

Heroism has always been a subject for our grade school teachers to teach in us, the hero’s values, the lessons based on their experiences, words of wisdom that our teachers want to inculcate in our young minds. Even though at that time, I haven’t understood yet the value of what they did for our independence, for our country and from where the nation is heading, what I can remember is that, I was listening to my teachers and studying it because it’s something that has to be done. It’s a requirement, a compulsory thing, which I had to accomplish. My view of heroism when I was young is that, heroes have done a remarkable act for us Filipinos, to enjoy the freedom that we have now. Equipped with qualities specifically overt in them, they had turned impossible dreams to reality. Heroes were brave because they fought with all their might for our freedom even if such act may take their lives. But now, I view heroism as something innate in every person. I thought before that only few people can be a hero, that I cannot be a hero. But right now, I realized that heroism with in us can manifest in a lot of situations. In our own little way, we can touch people’s lives and to dig deeper, we can also touch their hearts. It has always been something we look forward to do, consciously in our minds, to help other people, in the best way possible.

I know in myself that I am not a quitter. I am a fighter. As much as how I wanted to give up things, but because of the drive, motivation and reinforcement from the external environment, I just cannot give up easily. At this time, my view before of what a hero is, has already changed, as the changed of century has occurred. With poverty, economic, social and political crises striking the country at this time, and with the increase in unemployment rate and recession, how can an ordinary Filipino survive this ordeal? At one point in our lives, we had been in our lowest. A time when we cannot find strength from ourselves, even from the people around us, a time when we cannot find even a slight hope for a brighter future, but we were able to overcome that because we want to continue living. I am a person who doesn’t want to be stuck in one direction. I wanna try different fields. I’ll finish college; will strive harder than before, for me to be able to find a good job. With that, I won’t be included in the number of Filipinos unemployed. We, people should have a change of belief. We should want to be successful not only because we’re doing it for ourselves and family but also because we’re doing it for our country. We should try to settle issues, first, with in ourselves. After doing that, you’ll start to notice that you can open your heart to everyone and that makes you realize the importance of our responsibility to help other Filipinos. Let us inspire each other to be a good Filipino and to do good to other Filipinos.***

I wrote this essay when I was a 4th year college student. Back in my college days, we were asked of what our view of heroism is. In the subject “Life and works of RizaI”, I’ve come to admire Jose Rizal more. He was indeed worthy to be called a national hero. I haven’t met or known a person, at such a young age who has an idealism as strong as that of Rizal. He’s a good writer. A substantial writer.

An open letter to God

Dear God.

It is such a difference that I am able to smile again and for the longest time, sincerely to other people.  It’s really something that is not easily obtained.  I remember in one of my grade school subject, GMRC, which stands for Good Manners and Right Conduct. It says there that peace in a spiritual concept is having a good relationship with the Lord. I really get emotional when I think of You, just like at this moment. I can feel You. You’re here beside me, comforting and embracing me. I love you Lord. My heart is bursting with love for you. I’ve never felt this ever in the past 20 years.  I can feel what you want to address me.  You want me to trust you. You want me to cry, and let my emotions run through. You want me to cry my heart out, to wail, to do whatever so I can let my feelings be out and not to hold back. Why did it take a long time before I appreciate You. I knew you before, but what I knew about you is just superficial. I prayed to you before, but sometimes, I don’t mean them. Can you forgive me for that? I know, without even asking for forgiveness, you had already forgiven me. You are so kind. Am I worthy of all Your sacrifices? Lord, please help me be a good Catholic. Please allow me to be your follower.  May I turn out to be the person that you want me to be. Please let me shine. With your grace, I know everything will be alright, as you have always comforted me.  Please, help me to smile every day and to give people the sincerest smile they can ever receive from a person. I promise, from now on, I’ll talk to You more often. I’ll go to church not to do my obligation as a Catholic but to see You when I miss You.

Love Berna.

Free-flowing words unexpectedly written

Random Poetry

Why am I staring at nowhere?

Why am I smiling with no reason you could see?

I know why…

Still in denial of the feelings for one person

The person who has awaken my soul

The person who has brought my mind back to its consciousness

He put flame in my what-is-presently-sleeping inner desires

The desire to inspire, to give love and to share what I’ve got.

Silently staring the clouds and the birds in the sky

The moon and the stars at night

Dreaming of the universe and the eternity

The destiny and the fate it brings.

All could sum up with just you and me.

Thinking of the boy across the mile

When will it be?

When can it be you and me?

As half the world is sleeping

I stare at the ceiling

Hallucinating that I see your image across the dark surrounding.

With your sincere smile

And your warm touch

The meaningful words that come out of your mouth

The self-captivating ideas that you write

No one will not fall on your simplicity and depth

You definitely kept my spirit alive

You touched my soul

You warmed my heart

You gave vision in my mind

You put hope in my life.

You are simply amazing.

You are simply the best.

And as the leaves of the trees sway in the direction of the wind

As the water in the river continues to flow

As the destiny takes you away from me

I won’t go with the flow

I won’t follow its direction

And one thing is certain…

My feelings continue to flow for you

My mind will always wander to the direction towards you.

So I’ll keep smiling

Hoping that one day, someday, I’ll cross your path again

At that time, if ever you have uncertainties

Then you saw me smiling

I know you will smile back, radiantly

At least, at that very moment, I was able to enlighten your face

True enough with the saying,

Smile and the world will smile at you.

So take care my prince, with a charming smile

If you felt something upon reading this

Then maybe, I am referring to you

And maybe, you are my inspiration.

So follow your heart and I’ll follow mine

Do not be afraid to fall in love

I’m not asking you to put your eyes on me

But I’m asking you to give yourself a chance.

Allow yourself to be happy.

And just let your happiness overpowers your worries.


***  This poem was written by myself in a wrong place at the wrong time but not with a wrong reason.

Prince William and I

The Royal Wedding is fast approaching. The whole world will be watching into what is called “The wedding of the Century”. It is scheduled tomorrow, April 29, 2011.

But what does a typical Filipino know about the Royal Family? Who is Prince William? Why is the whole world interested in them, even us here in the Philippines, knowing that it is a thousand miles away from our land?

I’m going to write all I know about Prince William.

I’ve heard the name Prince William when I was still young. Everything started in the end, the end of the life of one of the most influential people in his life. I get to familiarize with his family during the death of her mother, Princess Diana on August 1997. She was hailed, “The People’s Princess”. At that time, I was only 9 years old. But I can vividly remember the videos and news footage in the TV covering the fatal car accident that claimed the life of the princess in Paris, France. As a 9-year- old child (I think I was in grade 3 then), I just watched silently about the news, I was not affected because I don’t know her at all. But one thing remained in my mind, the name “Princess Diana”. And so my life moved on. I graduated elementary, then went to high school in that same school. One day, I was finding something in my sister’s closet, when I saw several magazines about Princess Diana. There, as I turned the pages of the magazine, my curiosity led to admiration. The magazine featured her wedding with Prince Charles, her life before the wedding (she was then, a pre school teacher), her wonderful deeds, her charitable works. She was admired as a mother for her two sons, Prince William (the heir) and Prince Harry (the spare). She wanted her children to live a life as normal as possible. She would take them to the amusement parks, eat in the fastfood, and walk in the park. Of course, in disguise. She was well-loved not only by the British, but by the whole world. She has done a lot of charitable deeds. She fed the hungry, embraced the people with AIDS, shook hands of the leper, caress the sick child. Her idealism was clear to everyone. She has visited places with landmines (she was totally against it), has fed the poorest of the poor in Africa and other countries. Indeed, her compassion to the needy is unquestionable. Her inner kindness and purity of heart were mirrored through her acts. And so, when she died, the whole world mourned. Even before her engagement with Prince Charles (the heir to the throne after Queen Elizabeth II), the public was already interested in her. Just like Kate Middleton, as the fiancée of Prince William, with paparazzi that always follow her. Princess Diana was called the “Most photographed woman in the world”. In everything that she did before, expect paparazzi nearby, taking her pictures, as it was sold to the newspaper and broadsheet, very expensively. The reason was because people wanted to know what’s she’s doing, where she’d go, what she eats, what she thinks, etc.

After the passing of Princess Diana, the limelight was turned to her children, most especially to Prince William. He was deemed as “the world’s most eligible royal bachelor”. Girls are running after him knowing that whoever it is that he chooses to marry, will become a princess and eventually, a queen when he ascended to the throne. The royal family is a true fairy tale. Their lives are fairy-tale brought into reality. I must admit, that as a teenager, in one of my wildest imagination, that someday, I would be crossing the path of Prince Harry as we have a closer age than Prince William. And as I remember it now, it sounds so silly. And so again, my life moved on, I graduated in high school in Nueva Ecija and went to Manila to study for college. I’ve come to forget about my fascination of Prince Harry and the whole Royal family as I was struggling to pass my major subjects in college. I think I was in 3rd year college when I saw the news of the woman that Prince William is dating and her name is Kate Middleton. At that time, there was still no confirmation of their relationship, it was all speculation, you know, the media thing. And then again, my life went on, I graduated college, B.S. Nursing, took the board exam and passed it with flying colours. Then 2 weeks after the release of the board exam result, I applied for work, got hired and still in the company until now. Well anyway, I heard the news last year after I went home from work, I think it was October when the official announcement was made about the engagement of Prince William and Kate and their wedding that is scheduled the following April 2011. Then I silently told myself, this is it. It’s real. Kate has found her prince. The prince has found his princess. I’m excited for their wedding. It’s a once in a lifetime event. When Princess Diana and Prince Charles got married on 1981, I was not born yet. And now, their son, whom I think is we’re of the same generation, will be tying the knot with the woman who’ll be by his side in every step of the way. I’ll be able to witness a royal wedding live on TV. I may not be there physically in Westminster Abbey, but my sincere hope, is for Prince William and Kate to be happy together in everyday of their lives and for their marriage to last a lifetime. I envy those who are in London, for they get to watch the wedding and be part of not only the history of the British Monarchy but also the history of the modern century.

Well. That’s it. That is Prince William and I’s story. He, living a very public life in London as the second in line to the throne, and me as an ordinary Filipino citizen. Here I am, taking chances in my life, trying other fields, hoping that one day, I’ll be able to find my niche. What are my realizations then, that even if William is a prince, and I, as an ordinary person, we are human beings who experience happiness, sadness, fear, anxiety, jealousy, disappointment, etc. In his case, on the divorce of his parents, and on the death of his mother. We only have one life to live, so might as well live it happily, peacefully and contentedly. This is not measured on one’s status, but by the experiences that one has in living a life in this world and using the gifts from God to re-evaluate what really is our purpose in life.

Message to self

This article goes out to all who are hurting, devastated, emotionally-in-pain, broken and to those who feel empty inside. This could also be a message to myself, in times of uncertainties, and if ever I’ll face another trial as heavy as the world carried on my shoulders. I wrote this last July 12, 2010; 11:38pm. I cannot sleep then. These words came out of my mind. Maybe because, these are the things that I want to tell myself. If moving on in life and acceptance is just as easy as 1,2,3… then, people wouldn’t have to spend countless sleepless nights, they wouldn’t have to shed bucket of tears, then they wouldn’t have to pity themselves. If only it is easy. Then everyone would be smiling.

So (say your name):

                You have to let go of your feelings. Surely, it hurts and it will hurt even more if you keep it hidden inside. No one has told you that life is easy. So why are you crying? Did you expect that the journey is smooth sailing? You have to realize that every morning you wake up, is another chance to make a difference in your life. Aren’t you tired of crying your heart out alone? Look. Weeping won’t make any difference in whatever load you are carrying. Why not start accomplishing the handwritten goals in your planner. You may feel that sometimes, you’re running out of time to accomplish them. Forget everything that I said earlier, but keep this one thing in mind. Hope! Don’t ever lose hope in your heart and in your mind. Hope that one of these days, you’ll forget the heartaches of your past love. Hope that you’ll be able to forgive the persons who have hurt you. Hope for a change within you. Hope for the goodness in the world and in all the creatures that God has created. So as when you travel to explore the beauty of Earth, you can stand confidently in a strange place, safe and sound. Explore all possibilities. Get to know yourself ever more. Be open. We’ll never know what the fate has in stored for you. So smile. Show the world your sweet smile. Help lighten the darkness in other people’s lives. If you can avoid being sad, why not avoid it? Or else, when you get old, you’ll be in despair. And we don’t want that. Happiness is a choice. Do things because you want to grow in every aspects of your life and not to prove anyone your worth. So, rest. Sleep peacefully this night, because tomorrow, there will be another YOU. A value-driven, strong, superb YOU!


Nice message! I read this whenever I feel like giving up.  Whenever I feel down, whenever I experience difficulties in life, for example, in school when I was still studying, and now, at work. I’m not a quitter! That’s for sure. It’s one thing that I can proudly say about myself.