The Hardest Part Of Being An OFW

Ok, Ok, I know this will be my 3rd post about being an OFW. I know right, it might be very overrated, but actually, a lot of our Kababayans do not know the “mysteries” there are which we unfold every single day away from our family.

Among all the other individuals who luckily spotted a good-paying job in the Philippines even right after they’ve received their diplomas,  we, on the other hand, chose to follow a different path.

We actually don’t know why we led this way. First of all, we are clueless on what will happen to us, or what adversities we are going to encounter, but still, call it brave heart, because I don’t know what else to call it, but we really are hard-as-nails, unyielding kind of people.


To be honest with you, there are a lot of things which we face that would actually make us bend our knees and beg for mercy. Among these things is this:

GETTING SICK. Iyong may sakit ka pero walang mag-aalaga sa’yo. Sorry, but you might find this childish, and I was prompted to write this because as of the moment, I am sick, and yesterday I filed for sick leave for a day to recuperate. Hindi naman malalang sakit, pero, inuubo, may malalang sipon, masakit ang buong katawan, masama ang pakiramdam, ang sakit ng ulo, at halos hindi makapag-salita ng maayos dahil sa sakit ng lalamunan. Isama mo pa iyong sakit ng likod sa kaka-trabaho.



The hardest part of getting sick while you are away from your family is that no one else will take care of you. If you need medicine, you can’t rely on someone to buy you from the nearest drug store; neither can you ask someone to cook you Arrozcaldo o Lugaw because you are so-much-head-over-hills craving na mainitan ang sikmura mo before you’d lie down on your bed, and no matter how you want to relax or focus your energy to getting/feeling better, you have a gabundok na labahin to attend to, or some house chores to do.

I’m not here writing to rant, but actually, I am seeking for understanding and a little bit of attention. In behalf of my flock, the sometimes-forgotten OFWs, please understand that we are not money-making machines. We are not a wish list or a robot which you can easily dictate on what to do or what to buy you on your next birthday, or how much you’d want your allowance to be next month. Please understand that, no matter how much we want to give you a better life, we are all but humans, with limitations; and of course, feelings-that sometimes we want you to send us a message, kumustahin niyo man lang kami.

Hindi masarap ang buhay dito sa abroad. Hindi kami dito nagpapakasarap o nagbabakasyon, akala niyo lang iyon. All we want is a ticket back home, na kung pwede lang sanang hilingin, we would choose to live a simple life sa probinsiya at hindi na maghahangad ng mga luho or anything that would make our backs bend over backward just to afford it.

Read More: OFW Story: Things We Miss From “Pinas”

If you are reading this, and you are a FAMILY of an OFW, I have just one favor to ask: Please message your loved ones abroad, ask them how they are, ask them to take care of themselves, and do your best so that later on, you will not completely rely on what they are sending you, and sometime soon, you will already ask them to come home, to be with you.

If you are an OFW like me, hang in there Kababayan! Believe in yourself, that no matter how hard your situation is, no matter how tough your Boss is, and no matter how your body aches for a vacation, believe that as long as you hold on to your faith, and as long as you have a goal to reach, KAPIT LANG. Kaya natin ‘to, ok? Huwag sumuko, pero kung hindi mo na talaga kaya, hanap ng ibang options, hindi pwedeng panghabang buhay na tayong naghahanap ng pera at naninilbihan sa ibang lahi, just to provide for our family. Pero hangga’t kaya pa, huwag sumuko. Kaya natin ‘to.

Read More: 5 Problems OFWs Hide Their Families



above photo from Min An via

OFW Earns PhP 20K in 3 Weeks Just By Using The Internet: FIND OUT HERE!

(This post is for Filipinos in the Philippines or around the globe)

Earn Money While Browsing the Internet! Really?! Grabe!

Isa ka bang OFW katulad ko na naghahanap ng extra income kasi hindi sapat ang naipapadala mong remittance sa family mo? Tapos akala pa nila, ang sarap sarap ng buhay mo sa abroad, pero hindi nila alam nagtitiis ka lang sa Boss mo, at kahit meron kang sakit, pinipilit mong pumasok sa trabaho, para lang may maipadalang pera, dahil kaliwa’t kanan ang utang ng pamilya niyo.

Huwag kang mag-alala, hindi ka nag-iisa! Ako rin, isang OFW dito sa Japan. Para sa pangarap kong i-ahon ang pamilya ko sa hirap, naninilbihan dito sa ibang bayan, kahit gaano kahirap, tinitiis ko para makapag-provide lang.

Sa dinami-daming utang ang kaylangang bayaran, hindi ko na alam kung anong gagwin ko, kung saan ako kukuha, kasi limitado lang din naman ang income ko e, siyempre, empleyado, you are being paid by the hours you work, diktado na ng Boss mo ang income mo. Ang saklap lang ‘di ba?!

Buti na lang nakita ko itong magandang oportunidad para kumita ng extra, kapag wala akong duty, o wala akong pasok, at kahit galing sa trabaho, gamit lang ang internet sa apartment ko, kumikita na rin ako gamit ang system na ipinakilala sa akin, buti na lang, nagtiwala lang ako at grinab ko na agad itong chance na ‘to.

Sobrang gandang timing, sana, kung binabasa mo ito ngayon, pag-aralan mo baka ito na ang sagot sa mga problemang pangpinansyal mo. 🙂

Hope to hear from you soon!

~Kim Sancho


Good luck on your journey to your success!



OFW Story: Things We Miss From “Pinas”

2015 June: It’s already a month since I started my journey to a foreign land. Looking back, I never thought I’d ever feel this kind of thing you always hear from people, that feeling they call, “homesickness.” It never occurred to me that I’ve been feeling this sort of thing a few nights now. Before, I love putting myself to a restful sleep after a long and stressful day, but now, I’m already having difficulty sleeping at night. Maybe because I’m already homesick.

I’ve talked to some colleagues about this and true enough, they also feel this way. We ended up talking about what we miss being home.


The only substantial reason why we chose to work a thousand miles away from our motherland is because of our family. Yet, they are also the ones who make us want to go back home as much as we could. However, when the waiting gets too long, all you have are your computer-printed photos of them which you tried arranging in front of your desk. There is no substitute to seeing your family and friends in flesh like you could do back home. No hours of doing/using Skype or Viber can replace the fact that you are living away from them, and you can’t do away from thinking they might have their own sphere without you in it.
 However, thinking negatively won’t help you achieve your goals while you’re in a foreign land. Remember, you are your family’s hope and as much as you miss them, they miss you, too—so much that they get misty eyes when they talk about you. Remember, keep your faith with you and call unto Him, whenever, wherever. He will come to your rescue, no fail.




No amount of authentic ramen or swiss chocolate can substitute to the taste we’ve accustomed to long before the age we started talking. Months before going to Japan, my friends and I used to visit some Japanese restaurants to try their cuisine with the goal of getting used to its taste. We were all excited when we had our first Ramen sided with Karaage and Tempura. Yes, we admit we devoured every piece of it at first but when days were passing, and all we can see is the same thing served on the table, we cannot do away from missing the native dish we got used to, growing up.
 For Filipinos like me, who doesn’t miss Adobo, Menudo, Sinigang, Tinola, Pinakbet, Pinikpikan, Dinakdakan, Lechon, Bistek, Chicharon, Dried Mango, Sampaloc, Malagkit, Sisig, Bopis, Empanada, Miki, Champorado at Tuyo, Papaitan, anyone?


I had this one experience with my friend while we were in a coffee shop. We were talking about how good the coffee was, meanwhile, a group of adults dashed passed us, just as we started speaking in Tagalog. I know, some locals do not want to be asked or to be disturbed, however, we felt like we were so gruesome that time that they really need to run as fast as they could from where we were standing. 
People living in a foreign country right now, will agree to me that there is this some kind of “awkwardness” every time you go to pubic places or even in a small get-together. When you are the “foreigner” in that place, there is this kind of feeling you encounter every time you mingle with the locals. It is not because they are not approachable or kind to you but they are not just “the same” people you know. Being in a foreign land entails that you need to act and think the same way they do. Don’t get me wrong when I say “the locals,” what I mean is the people originally living/residing in that place.
 Sometimes, you miss being carefree. Free from thinking you might get caught by the police without your Residence Card or passport with you. Free from thinking you might get summoned by someone because you might have spoken too loud or you might have used your camera in places you are not supposed to. It is just so different when you are in your own country where you can always ask people anything you want, or you can just be yourself without a bit of hesitation.

Read More: 5 Problems OFWs Hide Their Families


I know, majority of us opted to work abroad to seek for greener pasture. This means, we moved to a place where technical advancement is not a buzz, but just par for the course. However, when you get accustomed to high-technology transpo, you always miss this somehow-stressful, back-to-basic kind of ride back in your own country.
 For Filipinos like me, still, nothing beats the morning rush in the Metro, or the TryBike or Tricycles in the provinces, and of course, the famous Jeepney—who wouldn’t miss the moment when you pass your fare one passenger to another until it reaches the collector or the driver? True enough, the Philippines is still in her developing phase but this “Bayanihan” (cooperative endeavor, Google) all over the country is but unveiling.




Sometimes, during an ordinary day, when you’re at work, you plan your way home with the thoughts of common streets leading to your house, and all of a sudden, you get back to your consciousness remembering that you are a thousand miles away from home! This makes you think more about things and places you miss about your own country.

Read More: 10+ Things OFWs Won’t Tell Their Loved Ones


When you’re in a different country, although you can still pursue your hobbies, there is still some hindrances you will encounter like time, budget, etc. Like for me, what makes me happy is making pastries, while for my other colleagues, they love cooking native dishes. Although we have available ingredients here, it is still not the same taste like what we make back home, when we make it for our families to partake and when a simple cuisine means a special banquet to them.

FINAL THOUGHTS: There might be things we miss about home but looking back to our failures and successes, we should always be grateful about what we have right now–being in a “greener” pasture. We might miss home from time to time, but we should remember to be grateful at once because we have the opportunity to change our family’s future to a better and more convenient one. Kudos to all OFWs all over the globe!

Above photo from Nicole Lawvia


10+ Things OFWs Won’t Tell Their Love Ones


What you see in FB posts taken from beautiful places were only visited once in a blue moon and the chance to take these photos were actually very rare. They just take a looooot of photos, for their family to see. Actually, it is just 1/16 of the whole picture.


OFWs carefully choose what they post in their social media because they want to avoid getting their family worried about them. They won’t show you how hard their work is or how difficult it is to be alone from a thousand miles away.




They are eaten by sadness especially during that particular time when they go to bed. They actually realize no one is waiting for them to share the bed with. (I mean, those precious moments you have when you know that after a tiring day, you are going to have kulitan moments with your kids, your parents, your siblings, your wife/husband and share the comfort of that soft, mushy, cushy, velvety bed back home).

Read More: OFW Story: Things We Miss From “Pinas”


BALIKBAYAN BOX is not just an ordinary box. It is a huge box where all the love, care, affection and sentiments were accrued together to form and fill the box, complete. It is not just the pinaglumahang gamit, or “just those things taken from the sale.” It was carefully and wholeheartedly planned and bought just for you, that’s why you often receive it with your name written on it somewhere. This is hard to explain, but it is the reality.



They rush to SALE to get you the newest model or item you can possibly have with an affordable price. So even if their monthly budget is very tight, when the sale comes, they forget about the budget and rush to buy your bilin or pasalubong, just to make you happy.


In order to complete the BALIKBAYAN BOX, what they do is to buy items from sale, or from flea market. They do it one item after the other. They do not buy the contents or items to complete the whole box all at once, because believe me, it’s not possible, because we can’t afford the whole thing.


After buying one item after the other, some months will pass until they’ll finally realize it’s time to order the “box” from their maaasahang courier agency, most of these boxes are pre-paid so they shell out some part of their savings to pay for it. (One large box is more or less a hundred bucks, 100USD, so it’s quite expensive, some are cheaper depending on the destination).

Read More: 5 Problems OFWs Hide Their Families


Even if they plan to send the balikbayan box in the next 6 months, they already have the “list” of what to buy and to whom it will be given.


Every time they go to malls or department stores, most of the things they’ll see are items which are fit to a certain family member. Let me say it in Tagalog, “Ah ito bagay kay Nanay,” or “Siguro magugustuhan ni Bunso ito.” Actually, they seldom do think about buying themselves new things because they always prioritize their family who are left in the Philippines. They want you to be happy, and even with just a simple shirt or item from that mall, we expect that you will appreciate it because we remembered you.


A simple “thank you” means a lot to us.




Most of our OFWs are always in their best behavior and stance when they are in their job, even if they are sick. So no matter how difficult it is to work when you have high fever, excruciating back pain or your cough is getting worse, they will patiently finish their shift because they do not want salary deduction. “Sayang kasi eh, pantuition na lang ni Bunso.”


The reality of having no one to care for them when they’re sick is a life-sucking reality.


After a tiring day, they won’t go straight to bed, because they still need to cook, do the laundry, iron the uniform, or to tidy up a little because nobody else will do this for them. Indeed, they are their own heroes.

Read More: 5 Problems OFWs Hide Their Families


Most of them stay at home for Skype calls or short period rests during their day off.


Hindi masarap ang buhay sa abroad. Akala mo lang iyon.


They suffer a lot from being spendthrift. For example: They do not use the heater even if it’s freezing outside because their electric bill will explode, basta lang makatipid, kahit lamigin, ok lang. Another example is: They actually eat the same food everyday, just because it was the cheapest version of bread or whatnots in the supermarket. Whichever the sale is, ‘dun lang dapat ang choice mo.


Their appetite is actually limited by their budget.


They love you so much that’s why they are willing to sacrifice everything for you, even if it means being away from you.




Choosing to work overseas doesn’t mean we want to escape the poverty in the Philippines, but we want to be the solution to this poverty.


There are times when we’re alone in our room, and then we suddenly burst out in tears, because we miss you.


Short messages from you means the world to us. Photo messages of daily events in your life are even better.

Read More: The Hardest Part Of Being An OFW


Please do not think of us like we are very mayaman or big time, because we actually are not. Naninilbihan lang din kami sa ibang lahi, kahit gaano kahirap, titiisin para lang sa pamilya.


Most OFWs go home without savings because they send their salary straight to their family. Salary means remittance. In short, dadaan lang sa kamay mo iyong sahod mo.


When exchange rates are high, we are the happiest.


We wanted to give you everything, or buy everything you want, but sometimes, the budget can’t make it, and we are deeply sorry.


We are terribly sad when we miss all the important events in your lives.


Social media” is our next hobby.

FINAL THOUGHTS: I did this post without the intention of making all the families of the OFWs (even mine) to feel sad or to feel guilty, but I did this on behalf of the OFWs out there.  All the things written in this post may not be true to every OFW all over the globe, but at least one is true, I must say.

To our families,  we just want you to know that we love you so much and you are always on our minds and hearts every waking moment of everyday. Your happiness, your presence, your care are the things we dream about before we go to sleep. You are the force that gives us determination. Just the thought of you being completely happy is what makes us get up every morning. We ask you to remember us always and pray for us every day, and make sure you are healthy and safe, because these things are the ones we want to make sure at the end of every tiring day away from you.

To GOD be all the GLORY!

Kudos to all OFWs!!!


Above photo from Skitterphoto via

Read More: OFW Story: Things We Miss From “Pinas”