Taking Steps toward a Semblance of Normalcy

It’s been almost two months since I was discharged from the hospital. Except for a couple of trips to the hospital for follow-up checkups and to Makati to take care of some unfinished transactions with my former workplace and my bank, I mostly stayed at home.

Obviously you can only distract yourself so much inside the house before you get bored. So recently, as my condition continued to improve, I tried walking outside, farther and farther from the house. I first started walking to Fatima Church, about a kilometer from us, and it exhausted me a lot. But I was determined to take it a bit further and walked to People’s Park beside the Valenzuela City Hall, where I also used to work.

People’s Park, Valenzuela City

I also got to explore Diliman a bit during our visit to the National Kindey and Transplant Institute (NKTI). More on that later.

Quezon Avenue leading to the Quezon Memorial Circle

A couple of days later, I went for it and accompanied my brother as he went to San Sebastian College in the University Belt district of Manila (about 9 kilometers from where we live). My brother is taking up law there, and while waiting for him, I walked around the area, eventually reaching UST in the evening.

San Sebastian Basilica

Such a walk would have been easy in the past, but this exhausted me so much, and I felt heaviness in my abdomen. Fortunately nothing bad happened, Joseph and I were at home later without incident.

University of Santo Tomas campus grounds


I was supposed to have surgery at De Los Santos Medical Center under Dr. Larrazabal two weeks ago. After a month taking antibiotics, the lump shrunk but not by much, and it’s still large enough to cause discomfort and bloating especially in the evening. So I was supposed to undergo laparoscopic surgery to drain the abscess. But my mom and sister wanted to consult Dr. Teh for a second opinion. Dr. Teh is a hepatobiliary surgeon who is also the co-chair person of the Liver Transplant Program of the NKTI. She was the same doctor who oversaw the treatment of my dad when he had liver abscess in 2012.

Nonetheless, her diagnosis said I still need surgery, but that she would still need to talk to me first. So I will return to NKTI this week and probably undergo operation a couple of days later.

It’s a scary thought actually, but on the bright side, I’m hoping that it will lead finally to where I was before all these ordeals started. Fingers crossed.

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