Monday, December 10, 2012

KCAT CAN: Giving the deaf the chance to hear again

Giving the deaf the chance to hear
by Maria Kathrina Lopez Yarza 
December 10, 2012

As most of you know, Med-el is my cochlear implant provider. But it isn’t just a brand of a hearing device. Having it also means having a whole company that supports you. When I decided to choose Med-el a few months before I had the implant in 2007, I felt that I did not only enter another dramatic change in my life, but more than that, I was welcomed to an additional family, the Med-el family.

A couple of days ago, I attended the 15th anniversary of Med-el. We were so lucky that it has an office in the Philippines to help people with hearing impairment to be able to hear life once again. There were a lot of people, mostly kids, with round-shape magnets with a wire attached to their heads. It is called a speech processor, the external part of a cochlear implant. To us, it is a hair accessory.

One of the things that I look forward to whenever I attend a Med-el gathering is seeing these deaf kids perform and display their talents. They danced to the beat even if they could not fully hear the sound or lyrics of a song. Some of them sang while some served as hosts. Others played musical instruments even though they did not really distinguish every pitch of the sound they made. And most of all, it was really fun to see them play around like children with normal hearing ability.

Monday, November 26, 2012

KCAT CAN: Bringing Christmas Back

Bringing back Christmas
by Maria Kathrina Lopez Yarza 
November 26, 2012

Somewhere in the City of Mandaluyong is an area impassable to any vehicle.

Our neighborhood located at M. Vasquez Street is not as attractive as the other communities. There are a lot of small houses here that are cramped together. Within the area is a small compound called Green Years Apartment or GYA. This is where my friends and I have lived since we were young.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A GYA Christmas: Excited kids are excited!

Photo from my instagram

3 days after we announced about the upcoming GYA Christmas, 100+ excited kids already registered.. Let's make these kids happy on December 24!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

A GYA Christmas for the children: Care. Share. Donate.

When we were kids, my friends and I along with the other kids in our street, would always look forward to Christmas celebration the whole day of December 24 – a day full of games and a party at night.
GYA  Christmas Party 1994

Remembering how it has given us so much happiness over the years, it became our goal to make these kids feel the happiness that we’ve felt when we were their age. We’re letting them experience the spirit of Christmas and showing them how it’s done. We would solicit from government offices and from some of our friends in and even from what little amount we have on our own pockets order to raise funds, buy everything, decorate and give the children a memorable Christmas Eve. We call ourselves the GYA Peeps.

Monday, November 12, 2012

KCAT CAN: Leading an extraordinary life

Leading an extraordinary life
by Maria Kathrina Lopez Yarza 
November 12, 2012

It really does feel great whenever people tell me that I have touched their lives and influenced them in one way or another. Actually, I am not really doing anything greater other than enjoying my life and living it the way I want it.

I accept whatever life gives me despite the odds and enjoy whatever comes out from it. Some may complain that it is easier said than done, but it’s not really the case. Yes, life is hard, but doing the things that you can is not really that hard. It all depends on you and your attitude.

Thursday, November 01, 2012

October Festivities

October 5
Merienda with my longest closest bestest friends (Daisy & Michelle) though sila lang ang kumain dahil kakatapos ko lang..

October 16
New Found NF Friend who in the same street as I am.. Jonalyn.

October 19
Minor Surgery on Talitha's birthday. The party surgery was held at PGH-FMAB (the new building for outpatients) which was done by, of course my neurosurgeon, Dr. Willy Lopez. Yes, it's a super minor and small surgery than can be performed by another doctor (at a cheaper price), but I want my doctor to do it because I'm more at ease with him.. We just need to raise raise raise funds.. and thank you for your continuous support :)
The very small, but very very very terrible tumor under my right toe finger
The processing of papers was actually longer than the duration of the surgery..
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Ready. Get set. Go.

Monday, October 29, 2012

KCAT CAN: Cheerful Givers

Of course I wasn't the one who discovered and started celebrating birthdays though outreach and gift-giving, but whenever I learned that one of my friends would do as such, I would always feel giddy and have a feeling of satisfaction because somebody, who is just a common person like me, is doing the same thing I have been doing – sharing my blessings on my special day.

You really don’t need to be rich or be a public figure in order to share and help by organizing an outreach project, right? Like what my friend Jen always say, “It’s not how much you give, but the love you put in giving.”

Erratum: The photo was from last month's event
with the Street Kids of DBS, not Grace Be Born.

The cheerful givers
by Maria Kathrina Lopez Yarza 
October 29, 2012

A few days ago, I took part in Kathleen Madula and Coe Tolosa’s 2nd Birthday Project in Don Bosco School (DBS) with a couple of streetkids. Kathleen and I were schoolmates at DBS and we share a passion for reaching out to those in need.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Minor Surgery on Talitha's birthday

October 19, around 4 p.m.

After less than 30 minutes (though it seemed like less than 20 minutes)

Monday, October 15, 2012


by Maria Kathrina Lopez Yarza 
October 15, 2012

Here’s a tumor. This also. This. This,” said Dr. Willy Lopez, my neurosurgeon, while pointing to the tumors in my brain from the Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scans. “You have a disorder called Neurofibromatosis,” he finally told us. It is such a long and tongue-twisting word that I often forget what the abbreviation NF stands for.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Neurofibromatosis on Pinoy MD (October 13, 2012)

Neurofibromatosis is a neurological disorder and causes benign tumors to grow on nerves that can affect the brain, spinal cord, nerves and skin. It can be inherited or it can happen because of a mutation in genes. And once you have it, you can pass it along to your children.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Please watch Pinoy MD on GMA tomorrow

My mom and I had a brief interview for a case study on Neurofibromatosis this week and it will be aired tomorrow morning.
Please watch PINOY MD tomorrow, October 13,
on GMA7 at 6:00am 

Be aware of Neurofibromatosis (NF). Watch.

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

KCAT CAN: Our Best Friend's Wedding

Our best friend's wedding
by Maria Kathrina Lopez Yarza 
October 1, 2012

I am so blessed because all of the close friends that I knew from when I was growing up are still the same people whom I call friends.

The lyrics “For good times and bad times, I'll be on your side forever more. That's what friends are for,” exactly describe the friends that I have. They grow in number but none of them ever left and empty their spot in my heart. And among these best people in my life are my longest and closest best friends Michelle and Daisy.

Monday, October 01, 2012

Blissful September

The month of September was full of celebrations and I can foresee that there will be a lot more happenings and celebration in the coming months until this year ends..

September 3
Because it's Talitha's holiday from work.. ;P 
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In the evening, there was a surprise birthday celebration for Mother Banix, Tita Ate Bel, prepared by Kariz, Kayze Batching and Kathreen (even though she's currently in Japan).. Of course, the GYA peeps were the visitors and not to forget the Tamagochi Katren Banix who is always present.
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September 6
Janna MOMO's birthday at Momo Cafe. She had a super momolicious birthday dinner with (Congressman/Security Guard) Dong, Kariz, Kayze, Michelle, Talitha & me.

Monday, September 17, 2012

KCAT CAN: ‘Why Do Bad Things Happen To Good people?’

‘Why Do Bad Things Happen To Good people?’
by Maria Kathrina Lopez Yarza 
September 17, 2012

It was early in May when someone sent me a message on Facebook and asked me if I could re-post on my wall about a baby who was in urgent need of blood donations. I obliged and I got to know Baby Yvan Calimlim.

Monday, September 03, 2012

KCAT CAN: Me? Bored? Far from it!

Me? Bored? Far from it!
by Maria Kathrina Lopez Yarza 
September 3, 2012

I bet you get easily bored most of the time.”

Someone said these words to me after telling her my story that I am deaf and immobile.

I told her I am not and asked why did she think so?  She told me that it’s because I’m sick and the things I can do are limited, so it must be boring.

Saturday, September 01, 2012

August Joys

Recap. Recap.
August 5
Finally got our Hello Kidney shirts.. and thanks to Betty for personally delivering it despite the heavy rain..
After almost 7 years?

Help Betty with her upcoming kidney transplant, visit Hello Kidney and Friends on Facebook. :)

August 9
My dad's youngest sister, Tita (Ninang) Myrna and her family visited the country!

Monday, August 20, 2012

KCAT CAN: A mother's strength

A mother's strength
by Maria Kathrina Lopez Yarza 
August 20, 2012

Joann Pacaña and her husband Michael had their first child Gabrielle Mikhail on Sept. 27, 2011 in Cebu City. She is fondly called Bielle. “Sometime we even call her Pedring because she was born during typhoon Pedring,” Joann quips.

It is only now that Joann could laugh about things after depression took over her life when she learned that Bielle had congenital heart disease.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

KCAT CAN: The gift of hearing

The gift of hearing 
by Maria Kathrina Lopez Yarza 
August 6, 2012

Despite being deaf, I am still so much grateful because my hearing loss did not occur from the time I was born. I was still able to hear the sounds of the world for 22 years.

Saturday, August 04, 2012

Sayonara Rainy July

This took a while.. Was a bit under the weather, that's why. But I'm fine now, so here:

Amazing Spiderman at Greenhills (Promenade) w/ Talitha, Maro, Cris, Janna MOMO & Dong. Dinner at Army Navy after.
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July 6

Monday, July 23, 2012

KCAT CAN: Fixing a broken heart

Fixing a broken heart
by Maria Kathrina Lopez Yarza 
July 23, 2012

At some points in our lives, we experience heartbreak from the loss of loved ones. The feeling of loneliness, doom, panic, discomfort, and emptiness seem to break our hearts into pieces.

Well, I have good news. Even with heartbreaks, your heart is still whole.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

KCAT CAN: With me in my dreams

With me in my dreams
by Maria Kathrina Lopez Yarza 
July 9, 2012

 If I’m gone when you wake up, please don’t cry. And if I’m gone when you wake up, it’s not goodbye. Don’t look back at this time as a time of heartbreak and distress. Remember me, ‘cause I’ll be with you in your dreams.”

These lines are taken from the song “With You in Your Dreams”, one of my favorites from Hanson in the late ‘90s. The lyrics are meaningful because they helped me move on during sad times of losing someone dear. I kept on listening to this song after Papa Noning, my maternal grandfather, died 11 years ago.

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Calm yet Blissful June

Monthly recap time! Enjoy.

June 1
First Friday Healing Mass at Megamall.
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the big swtch!
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Watched Men in Black 3 in Shangrila.
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June 13
Check-in at Manila Pavilion. Saling pusa kay Engr. Edgardo A. Yarza.
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