Sunday, September 29, 2019

When September Ends: Timeless Memories

Here comes September: the beginning of the Merriest season in the Philippines. The start of the Autumn season or Fall in the West. The beginning of many beautiful things and the end of not-so-glorious days.

So many memorable events happened this month. Another year added to my life: the beginning of an extraordinary life cycle.    Birthday Special: Love and Gratitude are about blessings received and wishes that came true and now making things work out of the blue.

What makes September special is the Birthday of the Mother of Christ. It was on September 8 when the universe conspired for what my heart desired. I prayed to our Divine Mother, so I made this day special. She listens and prays for us all.   Heart's Desire: An Answered Prayer is a testimony of the intercession of the Holy Mother, the Blessed Mary. This day will forever be memorable and to be celebrated.

Before September ends, we have  Birthday Special: Celebrating our Mother's 66th Birthday on the 24th. A simple family gathering over dinner made it unique and meaningful.

What made this September memorable was the soulful conversation with Reverend Father Jeffrey Estrella while having lunch at the beachfront restaurant on September 17. He is the Parish Priest of the Our Lady of Perpetual Help Lomboy Parish. 

We also had a family weekend getaway at the beach with my grandfather on Sunday, September 22nd. That was like extended summer fun. The waves on the shore are so calming, and the sea view on the hilltop is breathtaking.

On the road to the summit, we visited our favorite place, Bato Arobo, on September 23rd. The natural scenery of the mountains is pure bliss. This is where we spend time with natural wonders while taking deep breaths, meditating, and enjoying serenity. 

When September ends, my heart will be filled with love because I have the best people in my life who protect, care for, and support me in whatever I do and to whoever I may become. September will always be memorable, and its joy is so meaningful.

© 2019 Del Cusay

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Birthday Special: Celebrating our Mother's 66th Birthday

We are blessed with the gift of life when we are born in this world. This is something to be grateful for. We are bound to a journey of knowing our life purpose. 

Since birth, our Mother is there to guide and raise us well. She nurtures and protects us until we live our own lives. She made a lot of sacrifices for us to have a brighter future. She loves her family and us, and her energy is about having a family to love and care for and guiding her children to know our life purpose and follow our path.

As we grow to adulthood, our Mother is still there to support us and share life lessons and wisdom. Her years of life experiences made her stronger and wiser. She is always there to listen and will always be the best counselor in times of need.

Today, we honor our Mother as she celebrates her 66th birthday. She deserves the best for her selfless love for our family and the religious community she had chosen to serve. 

Her love has grown beyond self, creating a ripple of goodwill to us, her children. She will be our guiding light and our strength. As we age, we understand her selfless sacrifices and her fight for a better life.

We wish our Mother the best of life so she can follow her dreams and make them come true. Her goals and visions of the future seem so bright, and we hope to catch a glimpse of that light as we grow and move further for a meaningful life.

© 2019 Del Cusay

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Living the Best Life From Metropolitan to the Countryside

Life in rural areas may seem unexciting or tedious to some people, just like my fellow millennials, and at some point, having a feeling of lower energy due to the lack of more significant and better opportunities offered to them.

That's exactly how I felt a little over a decade after finishing college and getting my professional license. Back then, I see myself working in an urban area, a bigger city that is vibrant and more alive.

That dream became a reality. I lived and worked in Metro Manila. That is the city of dreams for many people, especially my generation. It is a place where we can enjoy the best of the corporate world. Working in a great and big company. Wearing corporate attire. Earning better compensation. Living the best life. Those are the great things about urban living; we have the best of everything.

Despite some levels of success and career fulfillment, there comes a time of self-realization about what success means and what we must sacrifice to achieve our most coveted dreams.

I have experienced city life, which is highly livable in the Philippines. In Metro Manila, from the former Capital - Quezon City of the north, down to the finest Business District of Bonifacio Global City in Taguig. The fantastic mountain resort of Baguio City in the Cordilleras and the Finest culture of Iloilo City in the Visayas. Those place I have lived and worked offers the best life with the highest National livability index. Rural areas or towns are not even considered livable due to a lack of economic development and other factors.

After more than a decade of living and working in the top livable cities in the Philippines, I see economic development and opportunities in the countryside, an emerging local economy through good governance and better planning. 

Despite the economic development and prosperity in more fabulous cities like Metro Manila, people living and working in those cities are experiencing the downside of urban living.

For years, Metro Manila has been having difficulty solving issues on livability. For several years I have experienced problems with public transport as a commuter. I have suffered from falling in a long line on a metro rail due to glitches and a lack of train coaches. Due to traffic congestion, I have endured hours on the bus on the way home after work. We have suffered from days of rotational water interruption. Those are part of the basic needs we have endured, and the cycle seems to go on year after year. We have suffered from it, but that has become our worst reality.

There are more things we have sacrificed. Our health has been at risk due to the stress those problems have caused. More people are getting sick, maybe not due to the nature of work, but due to stress, anxiety, and fatigue caused by air pollution and travel time on the road, from home to the workplace, and vice versa. I endured almost 5 hours of travel time in a day when I worked in Bonifacio Global City in Taguig while living in Caloocan City. That is from North to Southbound and vice versa. I was not alone. I am among the thousands who share the same fate in the Metro. Those are the sacrifices we have to endure for a living. But that may have come to an ending.

Living in the Metro is excellent, but there are options here in a city that is no longer healthy but only for survival's sake.

There's life in the countryside, in the Rural area we used to live. We may have temporarily left Rural living, but it will always be in our hearts. While others make endearing sacrifices just to live their dreams in the Metro, we are fortunate to have a countryside we can return to.

In the countryside, we enjoy vast land and greenery. We have the best natural landscape and scenery. We breathe cleaner air and drink spring water. We are awakened and greeted by the chirping of the birds at dawn. We can see the incredible sunrise while having a cup of coffee. We have a bright sunny day and look up above the blue skies. We see the mountains, the hills, and the valleys. We can swim in a river or waterfalls. We can witness a beautiful sunset. At night we can go stargazing. We go to bed and fall asleep early. We have a goodnight's sleep. These are not our vacation escapes or fantasy. This is not a dream but our living reality, which best describes the place we love to be.

That's a quality life! Not much extravagance, but only a natural living that rural life offers.

In the city, people can build a fortune amidst chaos and suffering; in the countryside, we can live a life of simplicity and serenity. In the town, we define success by the number of wealth, while in the country, we feel successful when we are in perfect health.

No wonder, in today's time, more people invest in real estate properties in emerging Provincial areas even though they are already established in the cities. Some would acquire a townhouse property. Others would buy a lot for future house construction. More families spend their vacation on an eco-farm. More people patronize farm tourism activities to escape the city life's hustle and bustle.

We developed our family country farm with the Divine's grace and built our dream farmhouse. This family real estate would be where we partly live a quality life together. We make our dreams and build a better life... and a better community of Divine love and light.

© 2019 Del Cusay

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Heart's Desire: An Answered Prayer

If there is a tool that hears and grants our dreams and wishes, that would be the power of prayer to the Almighty. God hears... God listens... God answers our heart's desires.

That spiritual tool is in the hearts of people who flock together in a Holy place for prayer, celebrate a mass, or offer a thanksgiving. This is an act of affirmation of one's faith in the Divine, no matter their religious affiliations.

In the Philippines, people sincerely believe in the powerful intercession of the Divine Mother, Mama Mary, the Mother of Christ.

At school, in our religious studies, and in catechism, we were taught about the Holiness of Mama Mary for her obedience to God's revelation and plan. That virtue made her the most incredible Mother we adore.

In the powerful intercession of the Blessed Mary, we visit the National Shrine of Mother of Perpetual Help, attracting thousands of Devotees and faithful due to so many answered prayers and petitions. It is our deeper faith that our prayers are granted, just like our dear Mother who gives her child's wishes.

In our hometown, where people and families flock in a peaceful sanctuary in her honor, the Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish Lomboy has blessed many people who call her name in her intercession.

As we celebrate Mama Mary's birthday, we give her thanks and praises for all the answered prayers to God. Blessed Mother of God never fails a child who kneels and prays. Her Divinity inspires and blesses our heart's intentions and desires.

At this moment, I am blessed with another answered prayer. I am forever grateful for the Divine Mother whom I praise and adore. Our love for our own dear Mother is a manifestation of our love for the Divine Mother, our Mama Mary, who loves us and prays for us. 

© 2019 Del Cusay

Monday, September 2, 2019

Birthday Special: Love and Gratitude

Birthday marks a new beginning, a new cycle of life. It is one of the most pleasant days of remembering how the past year had been and how we were fair in life's dealing, how we lived our best life and braved all the challenges that had arrived.

If life is a cycle of ups and downs, of good times and bad times, then I have gone through its roller-coaster ride. Some bikes were good enough that they gave me more energy and willpower to execute ideas and turn them into reality. Whereas some cycles triggered lower emotions that produced lower frequency or vibrations.

The life cycle just before the birthday was a purification time to break negative thoughts and obsolete beliefs. Letting go of unpleasant emotions and moving forward for a brighter side; a more excellent cycle of renewal and strong will. 

On this day, I was born in this world more than 3 decades ago, and it marks the first cycle of life that gives meaning and power. The most critical time of the year is celebrating our precious birthdate. This is when we provide wishes for ourselves and extend them to our loved ones. 

The gift of a good life is the fundamental source of gratitude, and the goodness of life is shared with love and compassion with my family, friends, and dear ones.

On this new birth year cycle, one of the best gifts would be "a break" to take it slow, stop for a while, and build enough energy to appreciate the things I already have. To express my deepest love and gratitude for my parents, who gave me life, enjoyed God's natural wonders, and lived a simple and slow-paced life. 

Today, it's just another simple celebration of the start of another life cycle. Another year has been added, but age certainly is just a number. As I grow old, I continue to live my most extraordinary life and aspire to be a reflection of Divine love and light for my family and those people I will meet along the road.

Another life cycle will rock my world, but I wanted my faith and to stay above circumstances beyond my control. I have conquered my weaknesses, and this time is the beginning of making the best things possible through Divine power, love, and light. The cycle of life is God's greatest delight. 

© 2019 Del Cusay

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Journey to Self-care and Personal Development

Sometime in 2013, I met a wise old man in an Elderly Home Care in New Delhi. He is bright because of the great wisdom he imparted to me for about an hour of meaningful conversation. He is a sage; his intellect may be far beyond our consciousness, but one thing that made him inferior at that time was that he was physically ill and unable to enjoy what a physically able-bodied person could do.

The volunteers, residents, and Founder of Panchvati Elderly Care Home, Ms. Neelam Mohan, in New Delhi on June 27, 2013.

He offered me his mental and spiritual consciousness and life experiences from that conversation. That was one of the most profound conversations I ever had, and I was so thankful that I met someone like him. What an aha! Moment and a blissful encounter.

So yes! Some people may have reached the level of "intelligentsia, a Saint or a Sage," which is a developed mental and spiritual level of consciousness, but some have failed in physical health. However, some people may just be of average intelligence, but they are physically fit and enjoy what life can offer.

When I left the wise man's room, I realized that it would be better to improve oneself and reach that level of consciousness just like him and at the same time physically well so we can enjoy our most extraordinary lives, living a great life.

Just like those elderly residents that I have met in that home care, most of them had medicines for their health conditions. They used to become active in their younger years but later experienced some pains and suffering on physical, mental, and emotional levels of health.

On that day, when I gave a health talk and some practical exercises to the elderly residents in the home care, I felt their desire to bring back their physical health, and some of them perhaps have regrets.

So here comes the importance of self-care; no matter how much success we have attained in life, some will be bound for physical suffering as we age when we neglect some levels of health. For instance, we may be mentally healthy, but stress, anxiety, and fatigue lead to illness and health imbalance.

Self-care is about doing activities promoting health and wellness; sometimes, we only have a little time and effort because we think we only have a limited time and must work harder and aspire for more to live more comfortably and successfully.

Self-care is about healing our well-being after a stressful day. It could also be healing our emotions when we feel sad or depressed. It is also about clearing our minds when troubled. It uplifts our souls when we are lost and in the dark. So everything in life is a balancing act to soar high. We must balance physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health for complete well-being.

Thinking that self-care is a selfish act and expensive? That weekend treat in a spa and wellness center could be costly, but some things in life are worthwhile for a bit of expense.

That weekend travel getaway with your family or friends could lead to rejuvenation. Spending time at the beach, river, or lake is like breathing out your inner toxicities, making you feel lighter and calmer. Barefoot walking in the sand or river stones promotes earthing or grounding, feeling more attached to nature and earth. Nature is lovely; spending time on it cleanses our souls and revives our spirits.

In our travels, there are some things we could do. We can have meditation and breathing exercises to relax and heal our body, mind, and soul. Have some pure thinking while having your favorite cup of coffee or tea. A meaningful conversation with the family or friend. Do some stroll in the garden or nearby park? Appreciate historical sites, arts, and cultural heritage. Visit a church or chapel for a prayer or a mass.

Also, occasionally even a little thing relaxes our senses and can have positive effects. A body massage, aromatherapy, music therapy, and journaling. You see? That completes a meaningful and soulful journey. That promotes balanced health at all levels: physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. That is the essence of self-care! to bring back our holistic being.

Returning to our home or work, we feel renewed and whole again. However, self-care never ends. It is a lifestyle! It may be a struggle, but we need at least 8 hours of quality sleep. Eating foods with nutritional value. Having some "me time" to evaluate oneself. These self-care activities are essential for personal development.

At work, self-care must be practiced to protect ourselves from physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion. It would be good to escape toxic situations and harmful influences that can degrade our self-worth.

Self-care is doing little things that matter to keep our balance and in perfect health. We must look into our being before extending our services to others. More excellent service comes with a great self, a love of beingness, and our holiness.

© 2019 Del Cusay