A Journey of a Lifetime

It’s been over a year since I first got sick of a lung infection which required me to take medicines for a month and that I had to quit my job or I wont get well at all because I have asthma and my boss at that time was smoking inside our office.

After I came back from the Philippines after my graduation, I was overwhelmed of work even though it was Ramadan and we’re supposed to have shortened working hours. I also had depression then and I couldn’t concentrate well in my duties and responsibilities. I had an argument with my boss and then I had to leave the company without receiving my salary for 3 months.

After a month of home medications, I was brought to the hospital and was confined 3x over the course of 4 months in Doha. In the ICU I didn’t know what was happening but I was hurting so bad they had to induce coma and put ventilator and NGT on me 2x in one week. I thought I was gonna die but still, here I am fighting to survive even though all I want is to give up.

I went back home to the Philippines to find some answers to what my conditions really are. I met a doctor who specialise in my case. He got to introduce me to his patient who had the same case as mine. That’s when I had to accept that these chronic conditions are irreversible and I had to deal with it for life. I had to accept that this is my new normal.

Along the way, dealing with constant hospitalisations here in Doha and in the Philippines where I got my treatment and Rehabilitation, I became so down that whenever I see other people who do the things I can do before, I get so frustrated that I want to die. The only reason that I wanna fight is because of the people who took their time to help me financially and emotionally. I don’t want to let them down. But still, these thoughts just isn’t easy to go away so I had to deal with it everyday.

The pain won’t leave me alone. I just pretend and try my best to show everyone that I am doing well when I couldn’t even carry my own weight. I get frustrated that  feel like everything is being taken away from me. I feel so alone. I struggle everyday, not only physically but also mentally and emotionally. I had to hide everything that could harm me because as impulsive as I am, I could harm myself without even thinking.

One thing’s for sure, I miss the old times, when dad used to be by my side, when we enjoy taking trips together as a family. Me, my brothers and my parents. Though I know that I have to accept the reality, my reality is still in my childhood years, when nothing seems wrong and even though I am constantly hospitalised, my parents are there supporting me, not like this present reality where I feel like a burden to my family for being sick.

I don’t want to say goodbye to writing, but this has become a difficult task for me now. Everything I loved doing, passionately, I feel like they’re gone. I try so hard not thinking about the pain, I try so hard not to complain about long walks, even though I really wanna cry in pain. I don’t want people to know that I’m weak, but deep inside, my heart breaks when I try to hide the pin,

This new journey with these conditions is what I have to deal with now. But I’m still stuck in my childhood years, yearning for my parent’s love and attention. I don’t have money to help even when I’m trying to. I’m still trying to figure out how. It’s not easy but I hope it would be worth it.

I miss my dog, Hiro. He always knows when I feel sad, He sleeps beside me back home. I feel sad that I can’t have a pet here who will help me with my mental state.

I haven’t started with my rehab yet but once I can, I’ll do my best to be able to walk again, to run again and not be frustrated that I have to rely on everyone.

Love, and understanding, that’s all I need. I hope someday I could give them all back to those people who need them too.



Ms. Velilla.jpg

President and CEO Wins in the Individual Category of the 37th Agora Awards

Quezon City, Philippines – Nutramedica, Inc. President and CEO Sheila Mae Velilla bagged the Outstanding Achievement in Entrepreneurship – Medium Scale at the recently concluded 37th Agora Awards.  Nutramedica is a homegrown 100% wholly-owned Filipino enterprise that manufactures and distributes Novuhair, an acclaimed line of products that addresses hair loss.

Held last October 26 at PICC, CCP Complex, the Agora Awards recognizes individuals and organizations for exceptional marketing skills and strategies.  It is touted to be the premier marketing awards body in the country and sets the high standards of excellence in the industry.

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Moving in an industry dominated by giant multinational pharmaceutical companies, Nutramedica’s tenacious rise from its humble beginnings as a microenterprise is one for the books.  Thanks largely to its creativity and innovation, it has become a major player with a well-established niche in the industry.

Founded in 2004 by Velilla, Nutramedica develops beauty and healthcare products out of natural and mostly indigenous ingredients.  It is one of the pioneers in the commercialization of virgin coconut oil (VCO) and gained wide success with its slogan “healthiest oil on earth,” which led to its acquisition by a big company. 

It continued to create more VCO-based skin care products and hit the jackpot with its latest, and now banner, product – Novuhair, nature’s answer to hair loss.  This breakthrough solution is made of 19 herbal ingredients and comes in topical scalp lotion, herbal shampoo, and herbal conditioner that effectively battles the effects of hair loss and helps enhance and restore one’s crowning glory.

Launched in 2009, Novuhair enjoys tremendous success until today.  It is widely accepted not only here in the Philippines, but also in other countries.  It is set to enter the international market, starting with the United States (US), in December of this year.  Such bold, yet timely, move of the company to export Novuhair to the US and eventually the Middle East also opens the opportunity for proudly-made local products to penetrate the global arena.

Novuhair’s popularity and market leadership may be attributed to the company’s initial market study coupled with the right timing, as well as smart use of resources by coming up with an effective tri-media campaign best described as low-budget yet high-impact marketing.

Leveraging on its organic growth from a microenterprise to medium scale with over 30 employees in a span of 12 years, Nutramedica continues to further develop, market and distribute high-quality goods that could bring honor to the country.

The firm raises the bar in entrepreneurship with its faithful adherence to best business practices, such as provision of high quality products and excellent services, adaptability to market trends, constant innovation, diversification of trade, and giving back to society.

“Great things in business are never done by one person, they are done by a team of people”, Velilla quotes Steve Jobs when asked what’s her secret to success in this competitive business of beauty and healthcare. 

“We at Nutramedica also adhere to our core values of integrity, trust, fairness, discipline, humility, leadership, teamwork and faith in God.  That’s our winning formula,” Velilla further adds.

Novuhair Topical Scalp Lotion, Shampoo and Conditioner are available in all Mercury Drug Stores and other leading drug stores nationwide. For more information visit http://www.novuhair.com, like the brand’s official Facebook Page at Novuhair Official, follow it on Twitter at @NovuhairNatural and on Instagram @novuhairofficial. You may also call the Novuhair hotlines at 4136570 and 09228830575 and order online at Lazada and regaloservice.com.


sometimes we think it’s best to fight to succeed in life but sometimes fulfillment comes when we let go. Sometimes the will is to push farther and go with everything as planned but being strict is never the answer to achievement. Sometimes we have to enjoy every moment of every experience we encounter in life. This is the reason why we all have regrets, not stopping or slowing down but pursuing everything all at once. How can we see the beauty in life if you don’t stop and admire the beauty of your surroundings? We all take fore granted the things around us so we create all these sufferings in this world. We don’t stop and catch our breath, we blink at the real truth and shove it aside, we all see the future, not knowing we are at the present times.

Present is always the reality but we are so blinded by the past and scared of the future. Always, we are so eager for comfort but do we see the real deal? Or is it just personal?

Just a thought. Eid Mobarak everyone!

Slow down, reality couldn’t catch up

The Earth Underneath My Feet

Greenfield City Clean Air Run

Barefoot Princess

Many have been asking, curious and intrigued; “Why do you run barefoot? How does it feel? Etc.”

I have only been starting to run through long distance races and fun runs barefooted this year 2012. It’s just been a few months and I’m still new to this, but apparently, I felt as if I’ve been running barefoot my entire life. A little background about me first will be good to know at this point.

I am an artist, performer, a sports enthusiast and like many others, a regular kid of the neighborhood. I hadn’t thought of actually making a really big career out of my indulgent hobbies. I do anything from crocheting to writing, from acting to dancing, from playing a lot of sports like volleyball, martial arts, badminton, etc. to being a varsity player in basketball, table tennis and long jump. Name it and I’d tell you something about it. However my best pick for a favorite sport is Running. I’ve been running since elementary in school competitions like relays, 20-500m dash and obstacle relays. During PE classes in elementary, I’ve always had either the highest score or is one of the highest scorers in my class in standing long jump with my personal record of almost 3 meters. Though I’ve stopped a long time because of personal problems, I went back to running when I was introduced to running long jump during my high school years. I discovered that with my PR in standing long jump, I could take it to the next level with long jumping. I almost snatched the gold during my first official competition for long jump in Dubai, UAE with a supposedly record of almost 4 meters but I landed flat on my back from a wrong air thrust and a wrong form. Too soon to jump caused me to give up that medal. Though It’s just the beginning, I’m going to be better at it.

When I went back to the Philippines, I still played in a varsity during my last year in high school but when I graduated and went on to college, I focused on my academics but enjoyed my Physical Education classes the most. I ran my first official 5-kilometer race in the 8th Animo Run that’s required for Freshman students. On the day of the race, I haven’t had enough training and halfway through the race I realized I was wearing ankle weights. It didn’t stop me though, in aiming to finish the race with my normal pace. I finished the race with a time between 25 and 26 minutes and I haven’t really thought about keeping track of it then. I felt extremely lightweight after the race and felt like running more mileage. That was my first Long Distance Fun Run and at that time I still wear rubber shoes. I stopped running for a long time after that but gained enthusiasm again after 2 years. I ran my 1st run in 2 years at Hyundai Run held last April 29, 2012. I got registered in 10-kilometer. That was my first 10 kilometer run. I started the race wearing my shoes actually, but in less that 2 kilometers, my feet hurt so much that I started to go barefoot at a much slower pace, because it’s my first time. Alas, I endured the pain much easier than I thought. I actually felt great, relieved, accomplished and fulfilled after running barefooted. I felt much lighter, thus less tired. I felt like I’m one with the earth, but less gravity. Nothing can even compare to the feeling I had running bare in long distances. I’ve never ran barefoot outside before, as a kid, because I had an overly protective parents. And now that I’ve grown up to be a fine young lady, I am happy that I can run freely as I please. After that, I’ve become acquainted with Barefoot Running Philippines and got involved in the running community. I’m no longer a lone runner and I have had a lot of inspirations and people to support me in running.

Back to running barefoot in races and training, YES, it hurts at first and even during your races it will. In running barefoot, once you step on the ground with your bare feet, you have to be ready to face the challenge. You have accepted all that’s there to face what’s up ahead. It’s a matter of the mind. It’s a challenge to stay positive and developing optimism and tolerance to pain. Reward is just there around the corner. With enough training and experience, you’d be surprised on how far you could actually go. Well of course, you wouldn’t really be able to avoid the pain and injury but you could always face it willingly. Lo and behold, running bare will cause you blisters, wounds and all other injuries just like running with shoes. However, the feeling of fulfillment and unrivaled joy is reached after completing another challenge.

Humans are naturally born bare, we are designed to run free and can tolerate running long distances. On the down side, more buildings, road constructions and pollution causes our body to change and adapt to the environment, putting us at a disadvantage to running without protection.

Life is like running on the road barefooted. You gotta be ready in all the challenges you face. The road has two surfaces, rough and smooth. You’re in for a surprise, a bumpy ride. Sometimes, you pass through the smooth road which brings you relief and joy. On the other hand, there are times when you will pass the rough road where you slow down and experience pain. That will make you stronger, no worries. It’s a cycle of pain and joy, as usual, achieving the balance of life in every way.

I maybe a nobody, an amateur, having not much experience in barefoot running but I have achieved this much enlightenment in my early stages. I’m so excited to hear yours!

Happy running! Experience the thrill and goodness of running bare. Experience the earth speaking to you, embracing you beneath your feet. Love the feeling and let it into you.

You’ll see why.

Rethinking Marital Relationships in the Light of the Changing Role of Women Today

Rethinking Marital Relationships in the Light of the Changing Role of Women Today

Ana May Dominique de Dios



If I go over the long talk about the history of cultures and traditions of marriage in light of past and contemporary context, I might as well be able to write a novel just talking about that particular topic. It is very broad and there are almost a million words that I could blabber about. So we’ll just stick with the basic context of life in the boundaries of marriage in contemporary times. However, just to have some comparison, we’ll be looking back to the not so distant past. Just to shed light over why it’s changed over time.

In the past, as what we’ve been taught, the man has all the rights in the world. Man is the center of life. Man is always the stereotypical strong and wise and laborious. While women are just in the shadows, men take all the credit. Women are often misrepresented-even in the bible. We all know the story of Adam and Eve where Adam is the first person created, hence making man the original inhabitant of earth and that Eve was just created out of a man’s body part. So that was why they think that the women are subjected to men. Also that story when Adam was persuaded to eat the apple from the knowledge tree by the woman. This came to be interpreted that women are temptations and hindrances to men’s success. That is not true, isn’t it? What is it like to be married then in all these things present in the world today?

I won’t know the answer in a guy’s point of view but for a girl’s, it’s pretty much like being saved by a knight in shining armor. In the past, the man had always been the breadwinner in the family. Women don’t have much of an important role in the society. They are plain housewives whose main purpose is very well served being a supportive wife, serving her husband when he comes home, taking care of the children. Pretty much in the shadows, isn’t it? In the contemporary world, where the women already are serving in the working force in the society, leading organizations and excelling in their chosen fields, women have already been proving that if men can do the laborious workload, they can too. In light of this rapid globalization, there have been drastic changes that have occurred over time. Wives can now be seen in the office while men can now be seen at home being a househusband. Or most popular today is that both the husband and wife succeed in their career as professionals.

In light of this, a couple now has equal rights and choices on whether or not to go conventional or be part of the globalization trend today. Women are now seen as independent and are be entrusted with men’s role. Men can choose whether or not to become a house buddy. Each one has a choice to share in expenses around the household or not. They may or may not be able to do their duties well as couples depending on their schedules. In short, there are good and bad consequences in the life of the married couple in contemporary context.