gildaGilda Cordero-Fernando is a highly acclaimed writer. Under her belt are several Carlos Palanca Awards, numerous Philippine Free Press awards, and a lifetime achievement award for literature and publishing from the Cultural Center of the Philippines. She is best known for her books of short stories: The Butcher, The Baker and The Candlestick Maker and A Wilderness of Sweets. She went into publishing by setting up GCF Books, which specializes in topics such as Philippine culture and society. She has branched out into different fields of interests by trying her hand at visual arts, fashion, scriptwriting, and so on. Find out what lessons you can learn from her by reading on.

1. LOVE IS NOT ROMANTIC AT ALL.


Gilda says there is more to love than romance. She explains, “It's about giving all and getting more than all of it back. The more you give, the more you get.”


2. YOU MUST OVERCOME YOUR FEAR OF GIVING.


She says you must have “a belief in the limitless abundance of the universe.” She adds that we shouldn't be "attached to scarcity" as though we are "afraid there won’t be enough in the end.”


3. DON’T BE AFRAID TO LOVE UNCONDITIONALLY.


Gilda says that “while we try to learn the trick" of how to love unconditionally, we must recognize that "getting back more than one’s share of love is good enough.”


4. AVOID OBSESSING OVER DOGMA.


“More important to avoid than wrinkles is getting into an iron-clad box of fixed beliefs. Dogmas cause wars and are not good for the digestion.”


5. THERE ARE NO RULES.


“The moment you think something is the rule, it changes. Visionaries work on possibilities and do today what everyone will accept as 'normal' only ten years later.”


6. TRUST IN YOURSELF.


“Verify every given with your own experience. The universe gives us all the answers we need if we learn how to listen.”

7. THERE'S NOTHING WRONG WITH KEEPING SEPARATE BEDROOMS.

Gilda shared in this article that when he was alive (he passed away in 2011), she and her husband each had a room of their own. She said in 2007, "After 55 years of marriage, I need a rest and so does he. After age 50, separate rooms are ideal but not for all--some couples are happier being pork and beans. And if you still haven’t, get a life!”

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8.HEARTACHE IS CAUSED BY A MUSCLE.


“If you don’t exercise, it gives way.”


9. MOTHERHOOD IS NICE BECAUSE IT LEADS TO MOTHER-IN-LAW-HOOD.


“My daughters-in-law and son-in-law and I tried hard to be friends with one another. Now, we no longer try. We are. It’s important to remember that neither they nor oneself were wrongly brought up. Just differently.”


10. THE SECRET OF YOUTH IS STILL ELUSIVE.


“The secret of youth? Ponce de Leon died looking for it.”

For more articles about other writers and artists, check out these links:

(First published in Marie Claire Magazine, Features section as "What I've Learned" in March 2007; photo by At Maculangan; adapted for use in Female Network)

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