I spent Sunday night at St. Luke’s Bonifacio Global City. I felt an intense lower abdominal pain which was soon followed by repeated vomiting. I threw up about 8 times from 4pm to 8pm, before heading off to the ER. I got admitted and was administered with anti-nausea meds. I got my period the next day. It could have been just a bad case of dysmenorrrhea. Or it could be something else. My ultrasound results have yet to be released (I insisted on getting discharged before the results became available). Whatever it is, I am thankful. I am grateful for our health insurance that allowed me to get medical care without worry of paying for the bills. I am grateful for my hubby who stayed with me the whole time I was in the hospital and cared for me in a way that no experienced nurse or high-paying doctor can possibly replicate. I am thankful for my family who was mobilized to prayer and kept me company through their text messages asking for updates. I am loved. There is no greater blessing.

I spent the next two days resting and recharging at home, trying to eat normally again. I am grateful for our household help, Malou, who is a great cook and who prepared my arroz caldo and other meals, because I could only eat soft food. I am grateful for her help in preparing my hot compress every few hours during my two days at home to ease the pain of menstrual cramps. Good helpers are a blessing. She’s leaving us in a few weeks. I pray we’ll find another one as good as Malou.

On Monday, my dad turned 67. He had a party! At the beach! I am grateful for another year in his life. He’s been battling health issues but each time, God has been faithful to see him through. I am grateful for my dad’s life and how he continues to serve the Lord and ministers to the people around him. He’s been a blessing to our family and to the people he works with in his ministry. I am grateful that he is physically strong, despite the health issues, and is very mobile. I am grateful to have him around and I pray that he’ll still be around for many years. I love my dad, and I still need him. I know a lot of people, even outside of my family, still need him. I am grateful to all those people around him who continue to support and love him.

Thursday night I met up with Anna, an old friend I haven’t seen in over a year. Ariel and I had dinner with her and her hubby. Anna and I used to work together many years back. I am grateful for the opportunity to see each other and catch up. I had a great time (despite my tummy problems) and we chatted for hours before parting ways. It might be a while before I see her again, but there’s always Facebook. I am grateful for friends I’ve made at work and how our friendships have been sustained through the years, surviving resignations, long absences, and even moves abroad. AND I am grateful for technology that has allowed me to connect with them.

I was able to buy a few newborn items to be used as props for my upcoming shoot. I am excited for my shoot on Sunday and I’m just so thankful for the opportunity to practice and grow in this craft. Again, I am so grateful to my family and friends who have been very supportive of my hobby. I am also blessed to be part of an awesome forum from my online class early this year. The ladies there are a huge source of inspiration. I learn a lot from them, I get motivated by them, and we always have fun together, even if we only “see” each other online.

I was editing the rest of our UK photos the other night (I’m still not yet done) and I am reminded of our awesome time there. Some of the scenes we’ve captured are breathtaking and I found myself staring at a couple of them, in total awe. I am grateful for the places we’ve seen, the beauty of God’s creation that we’ve witnessed, the people we’ve met along the way. I am grateful for the memories.

I am thankful for so much more. I just can’t list everything here, but I thank God for all of them. Hope you had a great week. Happy weekend!

Written by Alby Laran

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