I’ve decided to accept the reality of my being—for now, at least. Right now, I’m just one of countless med students struggling to cope with sleep deprivation and academics. I’m one of the countless students who are not sure if they should leave the profession. I’m one of countless lost souls trying to figure out if they like what they’re doing.

Nonetheless, I’ve decided to have a positive outlook for now and just recognize how lucky I am that I’m still here. I know a lot would kill for where I am.

I will strive to remain #hearthappy until I can no longer bear it.



Pressed flowers

I found some cherry blossoms from last year’s Japan trip. We went during sakura season so the sakura were all in full bloom. It’s frowned upon in Japan (and frankly, should be everywhere else in the world) to pick blossoms from the trees, so I just took them from the ground. These were some of the ones that weren’t trampled completely. I remember putting them into this notebook so that I can have pressed blossoms, but I completely forgot about them until tonight.

‘Till next time, Japan!

I feel like seeing the blossoms again is sort of poetic, since I’ll be leaving home again in a few days to explore a familiar, but still fairly new place. The greatest city in the world awaits me. Time for a new adventure.

How the past 24 hours unfolded 📚

I was searching for When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi for about a month now, since one of my professors gave us a short but sweet excerpt to read for class. Last night, I finally found a copy at Fully Booked Greenhills.

When I got home this afternoon, I made a to-be-read pile of books that I bought before but haven’t been able to read.

Then, I went online to look for more books that I can queue up for when I have more money. I found all kinds of pre-loved books on sale online and I felt like all I had to do was wait until I had more money (way easier said than done) before all those treasures I coveted would finally be mine.

Lastly, just to be sure I had space for my new buys, I went around my bookshelves in the house — and lo and behold, found more than 10 books still waiting to be read!!!

I therefore conclude that I am trash for books and now I can’t figure out how to read all of these before classes start up again. 😭😭😭

If anything, though, I suspect that the next month would be anything but boring for me. 😍📚



Here it is. The culmination of four years of sleepless nights and hard work. The ups and downs were worth it. I failed a lot, and I learned a lot more, and I was happy most of the time, which is all anybody can really ask for.

“You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” This quote is something that I really 100% thought about a lot. Because there were a lot of times when I felt inadequate next to my colleagues, when I felt belittled and inferior, and I just generally thought of myself as not being good enough. But then I learned that it shouldn’t be about comparing yourself to others, but comparing yourself to you. I really believe that you are your own greatest enemy, and the best thing I can say about myself is being able to control, rather than conquer, that idea.

In the end, there’s nothing you can do except be the best you that you can be.

The past four years was an uphill battle for me, and there are a lot of people I owe this victory to.

1. My family, for their unending support.

2. My college batchmates, iMBBa 2015, for being my comrades in the journey, for being the best people to go on this journey with, for giving me a good time in the midst of the flurry of papers, exams, reports, and whatnot, and for teaching me so many things (both academic and not). I will miss seeing you guys often!

3. My high school friends for keeping me sane and grounded. Naomi, Dindin, Kat, Shen, Joni, Berty, Czai, and the rest of Onse… you guys, you’re the only ones I can really just be myself with. Let’s keep this friendship strong until we’re old and wrinkled.

4. UP MBBS for everything. Working for the org and with the people in it really taught me a lot and made me grow leaps and bounds. I gotta say, having the burden of responsibility and the gift of leadership on my shoulders for the past year was one of the things that I can truly say changed me for the better. I hope I showed the value of leading by example instead of by force, and I hope that my members learned as much from me as I did for them.

5. UP CSSC ’13-’14, for giving me the chance to serve my institute and the College of Science. It was a blast working and learning with you guys. UBE soon! Siyentista ng bayan, para sa bayan!

6. The NIMBB senior faculty, junior faculty, and research associates, for teaching me and molding me into being the scientist that I am today. To PSILab, thank you for the knowledge, the great thesis experience, and for giving me a family in MBB. The NIMBB admin and staff, for always being kind to me and helping me whenever I need it.

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Spreading my arms wide like the iconic Oblation. Took this a day before college graduation and two days before university graduation. Kinda jumping the gun a little bit, but I knew this shot would be damn near impossible to get come graduation day.
The graduate among the famed sunflowers that line the University Avenue every graduation season!
With the NIMBB faculty–my professors who taught me a hell of a lot.
The University of the Philippines Diliman Class of 2015!
Me in the Academic Oval after the University graduation. Sablay on the left shoulder means I’ve officially graduated from the university!

It’s been a blast, UP. Thank you for everything. Sa wakes, sumablay na din ako!

Iskolar ng bayan, para sa bayan!

On to the next chapter.