How often are you thankful for your gift of sight? You might agree with me that most often than not, it gets taken for granted. What’s worse, it’s the least thanked for.
Meditation reminded me to be mindful of the things I got to see in this lifetime and to take a moment to remember them. I encourage you to ponder on your ability to see through this post where I share the most beautiful things I have seen in this lifetime at the time of this writing. And yet, is it all that?
Something I learned when I was doing this exercise made me curious. What gets your attention? And is it the actual sight that caught it? Or do you see things that you just want to see?
To that, I got convinced that your chosen mindset gets you to pick what is worth paying attention to. There’s a layer of interest that feeds that. Probably, even more so if there’s a desire for it.
Here are some captured mementoes I had the privilege of seeing. I cannot pinpoint if it fed my curiosity particularly, or if it’s my purest desires brought to life that’s why I included them in this post… But I caught myself speechless having the chance to see them.
THE MOST BEAUTIFUL OF ALL
The idea of being a huge part of its creation is already humbling enough to keep me astounded. I am blessed to have seen my daughter’s birth. And every day is a sight to celebrate and indulge in as I see her grow up and transform with personality, skills and intellect. The world fades when I stare at her sleeping. Moments with her are perfect that keep me asking up above, what did I do to deserve this perfection?
THE SURGICAL PROCEDURE THAT I WILL ALWAYS REMEMBER
When I was in Nursing school, they had us see numerous surgeries for learning purposes. The most extreme I thought that seemed almost hard to look at was eye surgery. I perceived it was delicately painful. It looked like the doctors were slicing through jello. When logically, you don’t need a knife to cut through. But it was amazing to witness how it’s done by a surgeon’s powerful hands considering how the optic nerve relied on it greatly.
THE MOST MOVING MOMENT
I brought my friend’s friend to Disney park one day who had come straight from China after they adopted a kid with spinal limitations. He was using a wheelchair because of it and was considered PDA the whole way. His parents welcomed him into the family by bringing him to Disney. Perhaps to encourage him to let loose and to warm up to them in a non-threatening environment. I will never forget how his face lit up as soon as he entered the park. That is one of the best smiles I have ever seen.
Up to this date, his family had always been very supportive of him and he had grown healthily both in mind and spirit. I always see him in photos happy and well. I feel that he is more outgoing now than before. Maybe he was concerned with how other people would perceive his condition when we first met. But his family doesn’t make him feel lacking at all, hence the outcome. He’s very confident now and he loves life.
In the movie, “Moana”, the story mentioned a lot about going beyond the reef heeding a call of being a voyager. I was curious about what it meant.
Was there a wall of coral reefs you have to pass?
Growing up in the city, I had little idea about sailing to the open sea. But I’m not sure how wavy it could get until I saw it with my own eyes from atop Samoa’s Papase’ea Falls. When I asked my husband what was the white line that marks a part while I was indulging in the great view of the horizon. Then he said that’s where the reef is at. Beyond that is already open sea where the current strongly changes.
The view from there was sublime! I whispered a prayer of gratitude. It just flowed involuntarily. I felt so blessed that I got to see it.
YOGA POSES GIVE YOU A DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVE
Yoga introduces your body to a special kind of flexibility. In one of the practices that I have had, my perspective of the Ting Kau bridge that I pass by every day, twice a day, going to and from work changed dramatically. I always see it and the Tsing Ma Bridge from atop. That specific day, I got to see it from the bottom during one early morning practice when we had it at the pier right under the bridge. I knew then not everybody would be able to see from the bottom. And this is while doing a very simple tilted pose. The thing is, we had to hold the pose so, this allowed me to indulge on the huge pillars of the bridge.
I also know that this perspective was mine alone to indulge in. For whatever dedication my colleagues had for that day, mine spontaneously became appreciative of how I saw the bridge at that particular moment. It seemed like a gentle reminder that having a different perspective could be totally refreshing and empowering at the same time.
Related to a perspective would be a performer’s view from the stage, the street or the dance floor where I am about to perform.
The first performance I had when I was in college was at the Araneta Coliseum as a cheerleader for the UST Salinggawi Dance Troupe, the official dance troupe of my alma mater, the University of Santo Tomas. The moment we did our entrance to start our routine during the halftime for a basketball game we were supporting, I had a good 15-second stare up the bleachers, absorbed the glare of the entire coliseum’s spotlight on my face, shining back with my costume and that ear-to-ear grin, before the drums had hit the first bang!
Honestly, in the beginning, it was pitch-black because the lights were too strong. But my adrenaline dilated my pupils allowing it to adjust accordingly to stay alert during the entire choreography. Because behind every performer’s delightful smile is a very alert mind thinking about the next blocking, gauging the timing of the music mixed with all the necessary emotions and confidence to block stage fright and catatonia.
As soon as my eyes adjusted, I felt great and that I would never want to be anywhere else but there, to perform.
Fast forward, here I am paying the dues by doing what I love to do. Performing at the happiest place on earth!
BEING ON TOP OF THE WORLD
My first hike was in Tsuen Wan, Hong Kong. I’m not quite sure of the exact height of the mountain but it was over-looking the great length of Tsing Ma and Ting Kau Bridge. It is the world’s 11th longest span suspension bridge and was the second longest at the time of completion. It was named after the two islands it connects, Tsing Yi and Ma Wan, hence the name.
Since it was my first, I thought the view was exhilarating. The trail was not easy to take and we had to rock climb. The beauty of it goes with the expectation that I didn’t have at all from my husband and daughter. I was with my three-year-old then and thought it was dangerous for her to come with us. 15 minutes of taking rest from above. I heard her voice say, “Mommy!!!!!”. My jaw dropped. My husband assisted her and our helper to reach heights. We all had a good stare of view. And that sense of accomplishment that the universe gave me was priceless.
It’s no wonder of the world but knowing that there are only 9 Bahá’í churches/temples standing, I got to see one overwhelm me. The privilege of knowing my husband’s church and how they pray truly is a revelation. While one stands in Samoa, the heart of Polynesia, I’d say the Bahá’í church was one of the most beautiful temples I have ever seen. It was surrounded by lush gardens on top of Mountain Afiamalu at the Village of Tiapapata, Upolu.
PASSION INTO FRUITION
Figuring out what you want to do in life is hard. Sometimes, I find myself arguing with my own thoughts on whether I wasted time and money on finishing a degree in Nursing when I ended up performing. Maybe there’s a reason behind it all, experience-wise.
At 34, I finally became fully aware of what I really have always wanted to do…
Remembering my first business of stationeries, applying and becoming the News and Information Editor for the Aquinian, UST Pay High School’s official school published paper and finding refuge in blogging for a decade. I realised that I loved writing ever since.
I was helping out a friend with her practice dialogue for her life-coaching assessment dialogue, the conversation led to her simply instructing me to describe how I love writing so much and how I find it worth pursuing. Without hesitation and doubt, I heard myself going, “I would rot if I don’t write.”.
I don’t know exactly if it’s to be considered, but after that, I have seen a path opened up. Suddenly, I attracted so many things from writing conferences, writing retreats, writing workshops and an online professional freelance writing course by the British College of Journalism. I have never been so sure in my life and enrolled. The course gives its online students 2 years to finish. Because I like it so much, I finished it in just one year, earned my diploma right then and there and am now writing for the International News Syndicate.
So you see, at 34, I saw, what I really wanted to pursue.
HIGH CHIEF CEREMONY
I never knew it could be real. OK, I admit, I never knew this culture still existed. My husband received the Pe’a tattoo led to him being appointed as the high chief in Savai’i.
Most foreigners who had gone to Samoa would speak of the food, the waterfalls and island life. But seeing how my husband had become a big part of its core is beyond my imagination. This I never knew I would get to see. Chiefs from all Savai’i’s villages came together to hail the next high chief. The songs they sing, the ceremony they conduct and the words they exchange gave me goosebumps. We were served food, service and time. I am blessed to have taken part in it and I am blessed to be a faletua who would help and cater to the high chief.
CELEBRATION OF UNION
Being celebrated by the people around you, your family, your friends and most of all, your spouse is truly a blissful experience. One of the best views I had was before I made a Thank You speech at my wedding. People were dressed up very nicely, cheering and clapping on their feet, wishing my husband and me all the best and just feeling pure love and enjoyment. I don’t remember eating enough that whole day. Until now, I don’t have the exact words to describe such a high.
Seeing my husband prepare all of it for me along with our families and friends was truly humbling. God has blessed me tremendously for having these people witness a special time in our lives.
And to that, a shout out to my husband for you are the greatest blessing. The vision that we share for our budding family completes me. Thank you for being my other eye. There are things that you make clear to me. And there are things that you see with me that I may not be able to do so if it’s just me.