What 2017 Taught Me About God, Family, Friends, Career and Others

Happy new year to all of you supporters and readers of my blog.  How was your new year's eve celebration?  Ours was just as simple as ha...

Happy new year to all of you supporters and readers of my blog.  How was your new year's eve celebration?  Ours was just as simple as having Media Noche together as a family and simply welcoming 2018 with a bang!

So how was your 2017 loves?  Personally, I can't say that 2017 was an awesome year for me but it was a year full of breakthroughs, yaya challenges, milestone celebrations of my children, blog struggles (a long phase of writer's block but more of the passion took a vacation somewhere, but is now back baby!) career plateau and 10 year mark, and the unforgettable renewal and total surrender of my life to Jesus Christ.  It was an Ups-And-Downs ride for me this 2017, and it definitely taught me important life lessons and had reset my perspective on many things to ready me for this year.

I want to share them with you and I hope you also get something out of these personal realizations of mine.

But first, let me share a throwback of the year that was through some photos I have shared with you via IG or my Facebook page throughout the year:

First time Damien ate solids! :)
First family photo of the year.
Enchanted Kingdom where I tried a liver-flippin' ride for the first time.

IndustreeTV shoot
Damien's first beach trip. :)
Mother's Day with kids doing something we all love - SWIMMING!
Damien turned ONE!!!!
My husband turned 30 something - lost count na!  Hahahaha!
My first born turned 14!  Waaahh I can't believe how fast he's grown!
A milestone 7th birthday celebration of my second son.
Bataan family getaway
I turned a year short from 40. :)
A life-changing retreat attendance with my son Wes and my public declaration of my total surrender to Jesus!
Looking at my photos, I also realized that I've focused a lot on my family.  I celebrated every milestone and I also prioritized them most often over everything.  There were sacrifices made and compromises done to some areas in my life but I never regret and will never ever regret making my family my priority.

Now let me share with you what I already knew in the past but was impressed to me more last 2017.

1.  Prioritize Family Always
I've dealt with numerous yaya problems last year which made me take almost all my vacation and sick leaves from work or do a work from home stunt just to stay at home to take care of my baby and do all the house chores.  My career and even blog was compromised because of the indefinite helpless situation but those didn't matter that much to me as much as it did in the past because I know my priority is my family. My family is my ministry.  Well, the office and the bloggy world will always have someone/anyone to replace me, but I will always and forever be irreplaceable to my husband and children.  I've learned not to adore my job too much that I sacrifice the welfare of my children.  But this didn't mean I slacked in office work or even with blog, it just took a backseat a bit but was still able to deliver what needs to be done.  Job will come, money will come.  But the time which passed, the milestones of the kids you missed, the health, safety and welfare that's compromised - once they're gone.. you can never go back in time and get them all back nor rewind them.

2.  Submit To Your Husband
I admit to be a stubborn, a bit bratty, proud, fearless, know-it-all, self-reliant, independent woman who finds her husband an equal - BEFORE.  Until my husband and I renewed our relationship with God and attended our weekly DGroup meetings (a small support group for couples to share both blessing and struggles of every day in marriage and family who come together to learn more about God and align hearts to what God really wants for us), I learned a lot about the important roles of the husband and the wife in the family.  I was guilty of not submitting to my husband and following his leadership for the family.  I used to be too proud to say that "I can actually live without him..." or that "If he can do it, so can I!" and the mahaderang asawa lines could go on and on.  I am not proud about that.  But I am glad that I've changed my ways and perspectives on marriage and how I look at my husband right now.  I submit to him now more than ever.. and there's more peace, happiness, tolerance, and patience at home now more than ever.

3.  Health Is Wealth
Just like prioritizing family, we should also prioritize health.  How will you be a wife to your husband and take care of your children while they are young if you're ill right?  Never take health for granted.  As moms - homemakers or working moms, we tend to take on everything.  We tend to say, "I can do this!" or "Ooops that spot isn't sparkly clean yet, let me tidy some more!" or "I have to finish all the tasks on my to do lists." and so on and on.  And not to mention, we wake up early in the morning, do chores, go to work and stress out, suck in traffic blues, clean the house again, and sleep late.  Yun ang culprit, PUYAT and PAGOD.  Both are enemies of our health.  If you're tired, it's okay not to pick up and organize all the messed up toys.  When we tend to do so much and don't get enough sleep, we get tired easily, we get stressed, and different sicknesses kick in.  When it does, REST and don't say "No.. it's all in the mind I can do it."  If you've got health card, use it (abuse even!) and have yourself checked.  For women, get vaccinated against HPV, do self-breast-examination regularly, see your OB-Gyn doctor.  Healthy food and exercise should also be part of our TO DO lists.  I think I am telling this to myself out loud.  Personally, now that I am nearing 40, sometimes fear lures around the corner because I have a breast mass which needs to be checked via sonomammogram every six months.  Having a tip-top shape healthy body  should be every moms' priority. And by healthy it doesn't mean just losing weight but more of being strong.  So that's my goal for this year, to get back to eating more fresh colorful foods (fruits and veggies) and avoid bad cholesterol.  Again, health is wealth.

4.  You Win Some You Lose Some
Sure you didn't get that promotion or nailed that presentation to get your dream client or in my case I wasn't considered in some projects or collaborations with brands that I hoped to represent or be an ambassador of.  If I were the old me, I would feel a little jealous of others who got the promotion faster than I did or others who got the blog project and would compare them to me.  Ask WHY NOT ME?  But nah, that's the old me.  Though I'm not really full on envious of others victories, I am not perfect and I humbly admit that to these mistakes.  You know what happened to me?  Self-esteem was blown away, self-doubt rushed in, and I even questioned my relevance.  But I changed the way I look at all these things and was able to move on from things I didn't get or achieve and just celebrated the things that I did.  When we pray to God for something, (and please remember God is not a genie that we only call on to when we need something hehe!) never question his answers because He may say Yes, No or Later.  Why?  Because He always has something BETTER for us, trust me!  I know.  So you win some, you lose some, and know that it is okay. :)

5.  Learn To Let Go Of Some Friends
 This may be one of the hardest to do sometimes, to let go of people in your lives who do not bring you or give you value, who belittle you, who were never happy when you achieve something, and who do not bring you close to God. Not all relationships are bound to last.  Those whom you thought you've found gems in them may lose their luster.  Those you've trusted with your all and sold it to others behind you aren't worth your time and effort.  Those who can't afford to be honest to you no matter how much it may hurt and didn't even bother to give you the answers you needed when asked, no point in continuing the relationship.  When you lose friends or end relationships along the way, it's God's way of pruning, molding, and directing you to the path He wants you to take.  Some friendships or affiliations don't always work and do not bring Him glory and thus there are unexpected E-O-Fs or F-Os (End of Friendship or Friendship Over) along the way.  Accept it with grace, let go of them, and move on.

6.  Forgive Even Those Who Didn't Ask For It
 To them who had done you so wrong, who had hurt you, who betrayed you, who bullied you, who took you for granted, who left you, who didn't stand up for you - it could be your mom or dad, any of your siblings, your best friend, an ex, your colleague, and even your spouse, don't harbor hatred, it will make you look older, prune bitterness in your heart, turn it to resentment and let it affect the person you are to become.  Sometimes pa, we may not know it but we are in denial saying that we've forgiven a person yet will never forget what they have done.  When we forgive, we forgive totally.  We let go of everything that comes with the pain or hurts or brokenness we experienced with that person or persons.  And even if these people do not ask forgiveness, okay lang, forgive anyway.  You are doing this more for yourself and for the Lord.

7.  Surrender Your ALL To God
Early last year, my husband and my eldest attended a retreat organized by CCF (Christ Commission Fellowship). Last December, Wes and I attended CCF's (Christ Commission Fellowship) True Life Retreat where we both deeply understood how much God loves us that He sacrificed His own Son to save us from our sins so we could all receive the gift of salvation when our "time" comes.  I used to just hear and accept those words casually and didn't fully understood them deeply.  We've also been attending services in CCF more regularly as a family since the start of the year.  Since then, one answered prayer after the other happened.  I didn't say challenges in our marriage, kids, work, and financials didn't occur anymore.  Of course they did, but our spiritual maturity has helped us cope better, accept these things better, worry lesser, fight lesser, be convicted quicker when we did something wrong or not so good, and this made us forgive more openly, and apologize immediately.  Our prides are still being crushed because we're still works in progress.  My husband is now more intentional, he's more patient to me, he's more thoughtful, he's now saying SORRY (which is a very hard thing to say for a man most of the time right ladies?) and he has stepped up in leading our family closer to God.  By surrendering to God and lifting up all to Him (everything talaga, challenges, triumphs, frustrations, anxieties, worries, bitterness, as in everything!) our family life has changed all for the better.  Our relationships are more knitted together, communication is more open, we pray together at night, my relationship with my husband has improved, my outlook in life has been more positive, and the past hurts and brokenness had been slowly taken away.  There's no way to go but UP with God!

These are the lessons that were impressed more to me this 2017.  These aren't new but every year because of my spiritual growth and maturity, I look at these lessons or topics at different perspectives.  All I know is I am happy to still be alive, to have renewed my personal relationship with Jesus, that my family and I are healthy, safe, and together, that I am less stressed and less worried, that I am more focused, and that I've never felt so alive!  I've also never felt so much loved by my family and of course by God.

Cheers to an awesome 2018!  Thank you for your continuous support and love for my blog.  Happy new year to everyone!

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Mommy Practicality is a home and lifestyle blog that's about positive, informative, 
inspirational and helpful sharing of life experiences of a working mom 
with topics on motherhood, relationships, events, food, travel, shopping, and finances. 
It hopes to influence moms and women to realize 
that it's possible to live a quality life while choosing a practical lifestyle.

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