I have to stop being so honest.


The Fable of Piney

Piney is a three-inch pineapple fruit wtih a four-inch crown. He was planted on a littleplanter on my 21st birthday by my Grampa. To this day, I don’t know what my Lolo meant by giving my a miniature pineapple except that I liked cute tiny things.

Piney wasn’t much of a looker. He had uneven yellowish moss green skin. At least his crown was a stunner: thick deep green spines that were glossy.

I took care of Piney: watering him every other day, making sure he gets some sunlight every other day, talking to him on occassion. I migled him with my family of tiny cacti. The prickly little fellow felt right at home.

And then he started to die. Piney withered before my very eyes. His yellowish moss green rounded body came slumping off the tiny planter. At least his crown was still a stunner.

And I figured, Piney really wasn’t meant to live long. Tiny as he is, he no longer had breathing space in that tiny planter of his. And so I left him to his fate among the cacti,  tiny planter and all  and forgot about him.

One day, I was trimming my nails on our paseo(the prettified alleyway leading to our house) right beside the giant dama de noche bush. I inspected the cacti table. Piney was no longer there. All that was left was his tiny, cracked planter. I figured Mom must have cleaned up the remains. And so I forgot about him.

After some heavy rains a few months later, I came out inspecting the damage to our plants in the paseo. And I found some stunning thick deep green spines that were glossy hiding under some mayana leaves. Piney was prettier than ever! He had new green shoots, making his crown even lovelier.

I asked my folks how that happened. And my brother cockily said “You didn’t know how to take care of it. So i transplanted it, dummy. It’s mine now.”

Moral of the story: Some gifts are better taken care of by wiser people. Or else they wither and die.

Back to the Corporate World

Now that I’m done with the board exams, it’s back to my regular job. I asked for a month-long study leave for the exams and now I’m back.

Call center jobs are another uso in this country. It’s my bread-and-butter. I can’t say it’s a 9-to-5 since I work the ungodly hours of 12MN to 9AM. I train newly-hired agents in a call center a.k.a.  business process outsource (BPO) company. It’s very tough, yet rewarding. It is a bit more lucrative than, say, being a clerk at some daytime office.

One of my teachers way back in high school expected me to be a bohemian: an activist, a writer, or a musician. She never expected that I would go the corporate route, but I reminded her that I was already selling my writings and things back in high school. But then again, I never really left writing, or music, or serving the people.

A major part of what i do in both fields is teaching people. I have to constantly update myself with new methods, materials and theories. I also learn a lot from the people I work with. As the saying goes, “In learning, you will teach. In teaching, you will learn.”

On weekdays, I live in the corporate world of the BPO trainer. Although I enjoy my job, its simply my means of living, not life itself. I go back to earth by serving the poor as a volunteer midwife. In between this hectic schedule is life: I write, make music and hang out with my friends and family.  If I didn’t learn how to balance time, I wouldn’t have achieved this kind of balance.

Midwifery Board Exams in the Philippines begins Tomorrow

Tomorrow I will take the Midwifery Board Exams.

Jumping the medical bandwagon is another uso here in the Philippines so we can get better pay abroad. Most students would opt to be nurses because it is one of the most lucrative jobs out there. According to the news, there are 100,000 unemployed nurses here in the country. 89,000 more will take the Nursing Board Exams this November.

That sounded like a lot of competition so I opted for Midwifery. It’s a shorter and easier course. I never had the guts or brains enough to be a nurse. Nurses face a lot of death and disease; midwives face a lot of …well, life.

On some days I do regret not joining my friends who shifted to nursing. I felt left out again. But on most days, I feel like i could do the most good as a midwife. There’s nothing better than giving primary care to the community.

Oh wait, there is something better: Holding that newborn and handing it to the new mom.

I am praying for that license.

thank you