Saturday, December 26, 2015

Thank you to everyone who made me who I am today

This post is brought to you by SMART Communications.

This video made by SMART made me miss my Mama.

It's the song. A few weeks after Mama died, I was commuting to somewhere I don't remember when "Everything I Own" by Bread played on the radio. I love that song. The taxi driver sang along to the radio. I did, too. I like doing that. But when the lyrics went "Is there someone you know/ You're loving them so/ But taking them all for granted/ You may lose them them one day/ Someone takes them away/ And they don't hear the words you want to say," I started sobbing. The taxi driver was concerned and I told him Mama had just died and he nodded and said, "Kaya dapat lagi tayong nagpapasalamat sa mga taong nagmamahal sa atin talaga."

I never got to thank Mama. The biggest regret of my life. But I have heaven to look forward to, and there I will tell her all the words I want to say.

Meanwhile, here on earth, I'd like to thank those who have made my life so amazing.

First, to my husband, my dearest Vince. You have always always pushed me to be a better version of myself, to dream big, to work hard, to not get lazy, to not mind those who tried to pull me down, to focus, to be disciplined. And when I failed, you always caught me then pushed me back up again. Thank you for seeing in me what I don't see. In many ways, you are my mentor, the very best one, because you teach me everything! From understanding pop culture, history, current events, my many gadgets and apps haha, and the intricacies of writing and editing well all the way to the profound ways I can be a better person. Every day is a lesson of love and learning from you. Thank you!

Second, to my beautiful children, my darling Vito, Iñigo and Piero. I always thought the toughest part of my job as your mother is to teach you about life. In the 5 years I've had that honor, I've realized the toughest part is opening my eyes and heart to the lessons you teach me every day. How to be patient, how to be silly, how to be compassionate, how to forgive, how to be full of wonder, how to be humble, how to be fully alive, how to truly love. I struggle each day to be a better mommy because you deserve no less than the very best. Your patience with me is my inspiration. Thank you!

The light of my life! They teach me so much!

Third, to my family—the Ampers and the Saleses. Vince and I are, well, different from you but you all always accepted us and loved us. You supported us, our dreams and our lifestyles even when you didn't understand. Even though we mostly update each other through Facebook haha, you are always there. You teach us always about generosity of the spirit and the hugeness of hearts bonded together by blood. Thank you!

Fourth, to my friends. My family—because they know I can be obstinate—have long realized it is never a good idea to put me in my place, but you, my dearest friends of which there are few, have always bravely called me out when I'm being an asshole or just stupid. You encourage my dreams and you shoot down my fears. Yet you always show me respect and acceptance despite the many times I can be dumb and full of doubt. You've taught me about fierce loyalty. You inspire me all the time because of how amazing you all are with how you passionately pursue what you want—anything from the outfit you want and the career you desire to the life you want and be absolutely unapologetic about it. We're all so busy now and some of us live far far away but I love that we keep tabs on each other through Facebook, Instagram and emails because you value our friendship. Thank you!

Fifth, to my blog readers and all the friends I've made online. My life would not be this amazing now were it not for you. It's true. I don't know where I'd be now if not for blogging. You made it possible for me to spend every day with my family. Your support for my blogging, my projects, my workshops, my everything I do online is what feeds my family. To top it off, you email me all the time encouraging me to keep blogging, you share with me your life and your wisdom, you edit my grammar and spelling, and you tell me you love my little boys every day! You've taught me that friendship need not be a face-to-face thing. It can be made, forged and sustained virtually and yet be even more real than flesh-and-blood ties. Thank you!

This 2016, I'm going to be more appreciative. Like, if not verbally to their face at least through emails or when Facebook announces it's their birthday and I can expound more on the standard "Happy birthday!" greeting. I will really tell everyone who's made a difference in my life that what they do and how they live their life has made a monumental impact. That's the least I can do. I don't ever want to have unspoken gratitude as my regret ever again.

I also hope I've made a difference in your life, dear Loyal Readers. I've got quite a few plans up my sleeve for my blog this 2016. I want to use whatever influence I have to share with you what I've learned from my husband, my children, my families, my friends, my readers, my work, and my God. It's going to be an exciting year of learning for all of us! Stay tuned! Thanks!

For more on how SMART wants us to be teachers with the help of technology, visit

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  1. I sobbed while reading your post, Frances. I actually backread all your past posts about your Mama after, and the tears just kept falling.

    My father went to Heaven two months ago, you see. I've been listening to Bread a lot lately because they're one my Papa's favorite bands. I listened to a lot of his music when I was growing up, but hearing them again now gives a whole new poignant meaning. Sigh. It's been a tough year, but I'll try to find something thankful for like you did.

  2. My Papa just passed too, October 2015, and it made a big difference to our Christmas. I miss my Papa but I'm okay. My dad was seriously ill when he passed, but he just quickly deteriorated, so it still seems so abrupt. Nevertheless, I am grateful for the last months we got to take care of him, hug him and kiss him. I wouldn't trade that for anything.

    Now, I see mornings as a great blessing. Another opportunity to be with people I love. Happy New Year Frances!!!


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