What would you do if you only have a week to live? Before 2013 came to an end, a HerWord guest columnist posed this question to herself and to her friends and was inspired to revisit her bucket list. Read more
Clueless about cockfighting, a female sabong non-fan seeks answers from a foreigner and a stranger. Read more
The perks of being a cancer fighter
Anyone fears having cancer and, admittedly, it is scary. But the most frightening part of cancer is not the sickness itself - it is how life goes on after being diagnosed with an estimated living time. Read more
A lesson from the one that got away
We grew up with different idealisms of love. We've had our own share of giddy crushes and failed first loves, of soulmates and purely platonic relations, but nobody ever told us to brace ourselves in meeting someone that would teach us the hardest lesson of missed chances and regrets-the one that got away. Read more
A good cry
What do parents of children with disabilities fear most about the future? While autism comes in a spectrum of abilities, individuals with profound autism face more difficult challenges as they try to fit in a neurotypical world. Read this mother's thoughts as she wrestles with an uncertain future for her son with autism. Read more
Missed by a Mile(y)
Miley Cyrus is no pop princess or role model. Her vulgar act at the VMAs proved that. Read more
He is getting married tomorrow. My friend sent me a message on Facebook. I have always thought this day would come-that the person I once loved will finally find someone and settle down. But as in all other thoughts and dreams, reality bites just so differently. Read more
Words with friends... and strangers
An online player stays loyal to a sociable word game despite the charm and attraction of combining and crushing candies. Read more
Personal lessons from Nick Vujicic
When internationally-renowned motivational speaker Nick Vujicic visited the Philippines, a Filipina fan from the media made sure she can get valuable life lessons straight from Nick and was moved to share his inspiring words with the world. Read more
The other morning, I was talking to my daughter Nikki on the phone. It was early evening in Thousand Oaks, California, where she lives. In a few minutes, she would be leaving with her husband Jed to go across the street to Anita's houseto bring her a bowl of hot noodles from the Philippines, or maybe something Nikki had cooked for their own dinner, which they were going to share with Anita. In her house, Jed and Nikki would stay for about an hour and a half, visiting with her, listening to her stories and reminiscences about her life as a young girl in the old country until the war came and she married an American and moved to the United States. Anita's second husband passed away a couple of years or so ago, and last year her only son Eddie, passed away as well, leaving her completely alone in the house across the street from Nikki's house.
Anita Hansen is 90 years old. She uses a walker when she moves around her house, her yard, or cross the street to Nikki's. She's 90 years old, after all. But guess what? She does housework, she gardens, she cooks (such delicious food! Nikki says) and she bakes cookies that Jonathan absolutely adored. And most of all, she still drives her carto go shopping or to the supermarket, or wherever.
Still, Anita lives alone, and so, unless there's a compelling reason that keeps them from crossing the street to Anita's, Jed and Nikki visit with her in the early evening, and sit with her and listen to her stories about her life. Anita has grown to look forward to their early evening visittheir two chairs are ready for them to sit on when they come. And Jed and Nikki have grown to look forward to this part of their day that they share with a lonely old lady, realizing, to their surprise, that it wasn't so much that they were helping Anita from being too lonely as that they felt a sense of fulfillment in what they were doing, and they were actually helping themselves.
It's not a duty or obligation, Mom, Nikki tells me. It's something we like to do because we feel good inside that we're doing it, and we're actually happy that we're doing it.
I believe this is exactly what Karen Davila was saying about caring for something beyond ourselves. She was talking about her volunteer work and she feels and realizes that "more than the people I help... the person I help most is me."
I guess that's what making a commitment is all aboutpromising yourself to do something no one else is really asking or obliging you to do, but which you can make a promise (to yourself, to God, to other persons, or another person) to fulfill. And which commitment, once fulfilled, raises you to a level above self into selflessness.
Sohave you made any commitments lately, or ever? It's never too late to start, of course. You can be 19 or 90, but it's never too late.
Someone on TV suggested one evening that we should try to put a little magic into our day. And, of course, magic ismagic! Well, last Wednesday, coming from speech therapy and getting into the elevator, there was this little girl with her Mom. She must have been about three years old. Very pretty, with a dimple on he cheek. I know, because the dimple showed when she smiledand that's exactly what she didshe smiled at Vic, seated in his wheelchair and smiling right back at her. Most children (and even adults) stare at him because of his head surgery, or because he's in a wheelchair, but this little angel in a denim dress smiled right back at him, raised her hand in a little wave and said "Bye!" when her Mom told her to say goodbye as they got off on an earlier floor. And my wheelchair-bound husband whose head is always bent when we're in an elevator or anywhere that there are other people who sometime stare to the point of rudeness, he was looking straight at this tiny three-year-old, smiling at her and waving and saying goodbye to her.
And that was the magic that filled me all through the day and well into the night. As indeed we all should put a little magic into our life, every day of our life.
The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of HerWord or BusinessWorld.
BE OUR GUEST COLUMNIST! Write your own piece in our Her Words section. Reflections on life, inspirational stories, the one that got away, the funniest conversation you've ever heard, or whatever you would like to share. If you've got something to sain 750 words or moreemail us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Guest columnists will receive special gift certificates from HerWord.