Tuesday, February 17, 2009

working mom ed's note, nov 05

i was looking for something in my old CDs when i came across this--an ed's note i had done for the november 05 issue of working mom, which had the theme "passion". i remember jose enrique soriano shot the cover (a problematic one, because it was uncharacteristically de focado [well maybe not, as i later learned], and pixelized to the core). that frederick peralta designed the gowns and knorr had bought the cover brought me much stress during those days. frederick screamed when he saw it; knorr didn't want to pay. but they did. i remember pacing the living room of my apartment, squirming with discomfort on how i would deal with soriano about the quality of his photo. in the end, i ran it. WTH. it was a good-selling issue, though. and this was my intro for it.

the true meaning of passion

I was chatting with an old friend last night on YM. He’s based in Israel for the moment for a leading semi-conductor company, then will fly home next year to rest, then fly out again when it’s time for him to update the bosses on what’s happening in this region. He’s with his family, gets to indulge in his hobby of guitar music and Apple gadgets, and has a clean credit history. “I gotta hand it to you, man,” I said. “I would never have the guts to do what you’re doing, being away from the Philippines and all.” His answer was a surprise. “I’d trade places with you anytime,” he typed. “You’re doing what you always wanted to do. I feel I’m still drifting.”
This defines what Cora Llamas, WM contributor, JobsDB.com content editor, and Star Studio International editor in chief, recently asked us: “If you could choose between having a job that paid really well, as in MALAKI, versus staying at a job you loved, but didn’t pay really well, what would you have?”
The answers were unanimous: “That’s why I left ADB,” Marla replied.
Ditto with yours truly, who had a short stint writing and copy editing for a regional health publication and was earning what junior editors-in-chief earn—with none of the headaches of administrative, staffing, advertising, and circulation. I came in three days a week and had a cubicle twice as big as mine now, with floor to ceiling windows. But I left after barely three months, eager to get back to the gritty world of journalists who were art guerillas by night, and who accepted stories on a pittance because of the rush and fulfillment they gave.
This is what this issue is about: Passion. The passion that drives us to do what makes us happy; the passion to overlook all discomforts to pursue what we believe in. It’s also the kind of passion tempered by self-knowledge and self-inquiry—the passion of a woman with children—not the reckless ardor of someone alone and carefree.
Our two cover moms, Jean Garcia and Eula Valdez, epitomize this passion as today’s icons of working momhood. “Plastik!” Jean declares to people driven in their jobs “for the children’s sakes.” “Common, that’s for yourself! Because if you’re not happy, if you’re not OK, how can you be OK for you kids?” she challenges. That’s passion without guilt.
Eula, meanwhile, settled in her new marriage and on top of her TV career, still wants to conquer the world of films. Quality films. That’s passion subdued with discernment.
Bing Balayon, our Good Life mom who shares with us her story on page XX, is a reading clinician and single mom who built her impressive career around her son Czar. From grade school to college, she went where Czar went, but never let go of her advocacy to spread the love of reading. Now, she and Czar run a reading clinic and library called Bookgrove. That’s passion with focus.
In a time and world when people think the only passion is of the kind that’s ruled by hormones, it’s good to know that we’re part of a community that sees and funnels passion the way it should be used: upward and outward. It may start as a basic instinct, from a flicker at the base of our spine, but—and this is just how the ancients say the kundalini flame travel—it should flow up, heavenwards, shooting above our crowns to meet halfway with the divine.
Now that’s passion. That’s hot.

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