Of all the years of my life, I think 2017 had been the most challenging so far, but also most exciting year of my life. So many new experiences that I never thought would have been possible. Here’s a rundown of the highlights of my 2017:
ASEAN Workshop for PWDs in Bangkok, Thailand – At the start of the year, I was tasked to attend a workshop to develop the M&E Framework of the ASEAN Decade for PWDs. It was my first time to represent the Philippines in an ASEAN activity. I got the chance to meet Mr. Lauro, an active PWD advocate who is a PWD himself and his cheerful character and passion for the cause inspired me to hope for a better future for our PWDs. Truly grateful.
I was assigned Officer-in-Charge of a Division, where we successfully organized two workshops on Risk Management and M&E, one training on M&E where we served as the Resource Persons, one M&E Conference, and one Evaluation Study. I think this was the most challenging part of my 2017, having to lead a team of people who I considered my peers and friends, but also having to deal with other people within our Bureau and outside our Bureau. Made me realize that leading and managing people is not the easiest task and it takes a lot of character, love, respect, patience and intelligence. I learned a lot and would not have done anything any different. I may have disappointed some people at times, but it is from there where I have learned to become better.
Wrote a paper and presentation for the National Evaluation Capacities Conference 2017 held in Istanbul, Turkey – where I celebrated my birthday for 2017. This was my first time to be outside of Asia and Istanbul was truly mesmerizing. The conference was attended by over 500 evaluators and governments from 113 countries.
Selected to be the student for a Certificate Course on M&E at the Asian Institute of Management where I graduated top 4 of my class. I learned a lot from the professors but also to my fellow classmates. I realized that I still had a lot to learn, and to learn I have to interact with others, be inquisitive, work with other people, share enthusiasm and also establish friendships + hard work! Grateful for the opportunity.
I got accepted to AIM Master in Development Management program with scholarship, and my office approved for me to do it on official time. I am so excited for this chapter!!!
2017 was the year I *tried* to actively pursue my passion for the arts. With the extra push from my Love, I started an Instagram account of my art. I tried to practice by producing as much artwork as I can, and asking people about how I can help if they needed anything designed.
I realized that it’s so much easier for me to create art if it’s for other people, not just for me. I look forward to using my love for art to make more people happy in 2018. 🙂
I also attended three painting classes this year – Cheryl Ong, Enon de Belen and Joannie Candi. I thank the Lord for the provision. 🙂
FITNESS & HEALTH
Okay, I have failed at losing weight again! But I’ve managed to enroll in a gym and have had for the most part of the year some regular exercise with my Love.
Highlight for 2017 was the successful 21K run sub-3 hours!
Calatagan with family
Mt Pinatubo with friends
Cambodia-Vietnam with Love
FAMILY & FRIENDS
I am not the best at maintaining friendships and relationships because… sometimes I prefer to be alone, I don’t know the right things to say, I suck at conversations, I’m shy, I’m introvert. But I have a few people to whom I can just be me, where they feel my love despite my lack of warmth.
This 2017, I tried to be there for family and friends – big moments, small moments, even awkward moments. I just hope that no matter how distant I may seem, they know that I will be there for them if they need me.
Got married! This year was all about love, not just from friends and family but also from my soul mate and best friend. My love proposed and the rest is history! I made the best decision of my life. ❤ Truly the highlight of my 2017.
Credits to owners of the photos! Wedding planning went smoothly and it actually brought us closer. We were lucky that all of our wedding suppliers performed great and the guests felt our love. We could not ask for a better wedding. ❤
So many chances given to me to choose love and respect, exercise grit, perseverance, hard work, patience and leadership – traits I have been praying for. 2017 has taught me so much about dealing with challenges in life as if they were really sent to you for the purpose of building your character, being of service to God and the people around me in all that I do, in acknowledging my innate skills to be of help to others, and choosing when to speak and stay silent.
If I were to name my theme for 2017, it would have to be Love and Service. I sacrificed and cried a lot for others, and in return I got so much love from so much unexpected places and people.
I am excited for 2018! Each year just gets more packed with surprises, dreams, friendship and love. 🎉