Despite the illness, the challenges of my house arrest, and the extra safety and health precautions I have to take, I am very grateful to be alive. There was a change in me. and people noticed. I gained a ton of weight, around 20 lbs. And then there was less drinking, less night outs, less stress, and less work.
While I was sick, I had to skip a lot of events and was given less workload. While resting, I pondered on a lot of things like love and relationships, forgiveness, letting go and moving on, and many other things about life and dealing with its challenges. This was when I accepted that I couldn’t control a lot of things in my life and I accepted it, not quite wholeheartedly, but there was acceptance.
I realized that there was really nothing else I’d like to do more than to write. And I told myself I was going to be ok as long as I can write and share my crazy thoughts to the world.
I was allowed to go to Metro Manila with the Avatar Media Team for WordCamp Philippines 2010. I delivered the opening remarks to the event and was very happy with how the event happened. While I was there, I also got to enjoy the company of my old and new blogger friends. It was a very refreshing and enjoyable, albeit a bit stressful, trip.
In October 2010, my cousin finally married his girlfriend of almost 13 years. Amaaaazing!
And later that month, I got happy news as well. After around 6 years of blogging and countless nominations, I finally won my first my Philippine Blog Awards trophy. I got the trophy for Best Food and Beverage Blog for Mindanao.
I also traveled to Iloilo to participate in the Visayas Blogging Summit 2010. I delivered a talk on the Role of Bloggers as New Media. I’d like to think it was a good talk since I got a lot of positive responses even after the talk.
In December, I delivered the State of the Philippine Blogosphere to open the first BlogFest Soccsksargen in General Santos City. On the same event, I was asked to deliver an acceptance speech for my Top 10 Emerging Influential Award and my PBA Mindanao 2010 Award. It was a very humbling experience which made me cry. It had been a very challenging year and it was great to finally get an award after 6 years of earnest blogging.
And the awards didn’t stop there. I got another award from the PBA for the Top Three Video Posts and Podcasts for 2010. My friend Winston received the award for me, and I only recently got the trophy. The award is for my podcast on Beings Friends with the Ex.
I had the privilege of judging the entries to the 6th Mindanao Filmfest along with NCCA’s Teddy Co and filmmaker/writer/music enthusiast/photographer Rudolph Alama. It was a very challenging experience but also a memorable one because I was able to experience first hand the talents of local fimmakers.
I got to spend Christmas with my relatives, and it was extra special because I got the chance to re-connect with a cousin I haven’t seen in quite a long time. And we even went out of town and cooked, drank, and player board games like we used to when we were younger.
New Year’s Eve was spent with my paternal relatives which I haven’t done in a while. Everybody went home before 12 midnight because Daddy’s has a “palihi” belief thing. He believes that what you do when the stroke of midnight strikes on New Year would be what you will be doing the rest of the year. LOL!
Life became more hectic as 2011 rolled by.
I watched my cousin Mark and his band Baby Boomers go through the arduous process of auditioning for Pilipinas Got Talent 2. They got 3 yeses but somehow they didn’t make it to Manila.
I also got to speak to more than 500 Grade 6 students of Ateneo de Davao during their IT Day. I talked about being responsible on the web, specifically how to use social networking accounts properly and effectively. It was one of my most scary speaking experiences since I could not remember or think of ways to relate to 12 year olds. But apparently, I was an effective speaker according to the teachers and the kids themselves.
2011 was also memorable because I finally got to fulfill one of my dreams, to be in a billboard. HAHAHAHAHA! It was a proud moment for me to be invited as a blogger to endorse a product and be on its billboard. It’s not my only endorsement deal but it is the most publicized one. BONGGA! Many thanks to Crepelato for the experience and to Hairs and Nails Salon for making sure I look good in the bilboard!!!
In January, I travelled briefly to Gen San to attend the grand birthday celebration of Avel. It was a short but enjoyable trip. I travelled to Gen San again in February to judge the Lakan at Lakambini ng Gen San 2011 Pageant. I also joined the SEx Tour 2 or the Soccsksargen Experience Tour Part 2 where I got to go around Region XI while bonding with bloggers from all over the Philippines.
I thought I needed change and a new challenge in 2011, I asked my cousin to recruit me to JCI. Coincidentally, a friend whom I bumped into during a party, invited me to join JCI Davaoeña Daba Daba. So I joined the organization in February and got inducted in March. It has been a flurry of activities, events, and projects since then.
The year has always been very kind to me as professional opportunities came knocking. And some opportunities continue on to knock on my door and there are some I pursue like crazy.
While I celebrate the New Year, I consider my birthday as the day I begin making resolutions as it is the start of a new year in my life. And as it approached, a lot of great things happened to my career and to my personal life.
Two days before my birthday, I met somebody special. More about that soon. 😉
I celebrated my birthday multiple times this year. With the people in my organization. With my relatives. With my friends. With the special children of the DS Foundation. And of course, with the special person I met.
This post is around 3 months delayed and I even considered not posting this at all. I never really got the time, energy, or inspiration to finish writing about the second half of my 29th year. But here it is… a summary of how the past year was and how great my life is as I live through my 30th year.
Yes, I’m going to be 30 on April 28, 2012. Nine months left and I know it’s gonna be awesome thanks to all the wonderful people around me!
LIVE. LOVE. LEARN. <3 Part 1 posted more than 2 months ago