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Reflections Archives - Page 2 of 5

Pinay’s Real Life Drama on the High Seas


In 2003, Rebecca Catedrilla, in her 40s, left the Philippine island of Mindanao to work abroad—not for greener pastures but to hide herself from the shame she brought to her family. “I am not proud of what I did but I am proud of the lessons I learned,” she said. (more…)Read More

So What If I’m Queer? I Am Proud of It


I first encountered the identity of “queer” as a first year in college. I attended a meeting for one of the Filipino organizations on campus, and one of the coordinators introduced his program as a “space for queer Filipinos.” I was surprised to hear that term. In high school, the (more…)Read More

Having a Bad Day? Watch What You Tweet

It could be anybody’s typical day. Like someone woke up 30 minutes late for a very important appointment or somebody woke up with a stiff neck just before a big cheering competition. Status: “Bad trip! This is definitely not my day and it sucks!” It could be like anybody tripping (more…)Read More

Life Lessons I Learned From Mountain Climbing


I first thought of mountain climbing as just a sport but veteran mountain climber Louwel Dejesica who introduced me to it has made me think otherwise. After my experience climbing mountains I see mountains now as wonderful playgrounds. Their silence gives me back my focus in life. “It is a (more…)Read More

In Dubai, I Met God in the Desert!


I find myself tracing my path to the plane that brought me somewhere I never wanted to be. Six years ago I was working in a good company in the Philippines as an engineer, but for some reasons that were not a matter of life or death, my destiny brought (more…)Read More

When Passion Takes Flight Later in Life

Back in high school, I thought I was going to be a fashion designer. Every day I drew models and different outfits that I fancied in my head, putting together a collection that never made it to the runway. Many years later, my imagination kept running, this time sketching stories. (more…)Read More

How Pinays Abroad Observe Holy Week

The Lenten season is an important part of Filipina life. For one week—it starts on Palm Sunday, April 13, to Easter Sunday, April 20—Christians in the Philippines take time to deepen their faith, do penance and reflect on the Passion of Jesus Christ. On Maundy Thursday, Christians usually attend mass (more…)Read More

Breath of the Babaylan

In 2000, I didn’t know I was trying to pass as a white man. I didn’t realize that my internalized racism and sexism was the result of intergenerational trauma. Generations of colonization coupled with the effects of several wars created a mind-set in my family that to survive, a person (more…)Read More

Pinay in Nepal: The Land of Dreams, Mountains, and Revelations

By Loyva Conje-Fernandez The encounter began with breathlessness. More than the cold, a disorienting sense of oxygen deprivation made me lose my balance for a second. I held on to bricks; a pile of them welcomed us at the hangar amidst scattered construction materials. The airport seemed suspended in time, (more…)Read More

Why are we our own prophets of doom?

We Filipinos are generally shy and negative which make us view life incessantly with dark-colored lenses, allowing us to just see our glass as half-empty. I vacationed very recently on the high seas and the ship I was on was staffed with a majority of Filipino migrant workers — from (more…)Read More