One time, I was in a prayer meeting, and our topic at the time was about dreams. I did not think about it that much but I wrote in a piece of yellow post-it that I want to write the story of my grandparents. I then placed that note inside my journal and looked at it every day. It did not mean that much to me during that time, but I know in my heart that I truly wanted to do it. My office mate even saw the note and asked me if I would do it. I told her I don’t know, and that I was not much of a writer.
That note continued to stay in my notebook and remained an idea until my birthday last 2018. On that night of my birthday, my sister gave me a gift—a large frame full of memories like when I went hiking, a photo with my favorite priest and author, and a picture with my grandmother. The last one struck me. That time, it was three years since my Lola passed, but when I looked at that one picture, it was as if all the memories with her—her voice, her scent, her stories—all came rushing back.
“What will happen to her stories, to her and Lolo’s stories?” I asked myself.
I did not know how to start with my journey in writing their book, but I wrote what I wanted to say, what I wanted to include. Asked my sister, my brother, mom, aunts and uncles to share with me their stories and their memories of my grandparents. I recorded and wrote them all on a blank page.
I didn’t do everything by myself, as I had a great mentor, Elaine Marie Factor, who guided me and helped me find my words. I had friends who encouraged me along the way, a family who were all supportive and a proofreader and a layout artist who helped me every step of the way.
What lessons did I learn from my journey?
I learned to find my reason.
This encouraged me to move forward and finish what I started. When I was lost and could not see the end of the tunnel, I went back to my why and in the darkest times, even if I was blindly moving, I kept pushing forward because I was holding on to that reason and before I knew it, I was already there. I wanted to write my grandparents’ story so badly that even though I was bad at writing; I wrote. I kept on digging my brain with their stories to write and although some days it was hard for me to write as it became too emotional. I kept on writing with tears flowing through my eyes, blurring my visions and all. I kept on typing, for my love towards my Lolo and Lola and for my passion—my reason.
I learned to find the right team.
I could not have done it without the helping hands that reached out and grabbed me to keep me from drowning in the misery of frustrations and doubts. They say, when you really want something, the universe will conspire into giving you what you want, and it seems that the universe saw how desperate I was and threw me to the right people. When I did not know how to start my writing journey and how to start at all, I met my mentor, Elaine, who helped me get through my fear for words and when all I could do was sit and stare at the blank space, she helped me find the right words to say. My supportive family was also there to give me words of encouragement and tell me more stories to add to my writing. I am thankful to everyone who helped, for I know I could not walk through it alone. And I know God was there with me, whispering His love, courage, and wisdom to my heart so I could continue on with my journey.
I learned to charge it to experience.
I had a lot of learned lessons and mistakes as I went through this first writing of my book. It took me a while to finish with my self edit because I did not give it much time, or I did not plan it well enough at the start. The last part of the process was one thing I did not know about and felt like I lacked research. Those were a few, and I learned to forgive myself for the mistakes I did. I learned to charge everything to experience and hopefully the next time I write my book, I could avoid all that and not go through the same mistake. Mistakes and failures are good, they are there to help you grow and learn, so the next time you will know what to do. I am thankful for the lapses and the faults but I hope I will avoid them the next time 🙂
Fun fact, it took me three years to get to where I am now. To have my first published book (I get so kilig with this statement!). The stories shared to me by my loving grandparents all in one book, which I now share with everyone as well. I hope this book will touch your heart.
Order details below.. I am excited for you to read it!
A Silver Lining Book Order
“Always look for the Silver Lining and try to find the happiness of life.” Keep moving forward! 💕