Feature Story

Beyond Deadlines Anniversary Article Series 2018

IT WAS the 26th March of 2016, when I received this private message on Facebook, “Hi Cleo, just wondering bka gusto mong maging volunteer writer ng ng beyonddeadlines dyan sa UAE? You are most welcome to submit your essays or news item.”

I was like, “Ehhhh, me? To write?” In my mind too was, “Di naman ako graduate ng Lit! (Literature) di rin naman journo (journalist).”

An overwhelming assortment of reactions within me was the order of that day; I was grateful to be considered, confused why I was actually thought of for the part, fearful that I might not meet the standards; concerned that if I agreed, find out later that I will not find the time to write (baka mag-ningas cogon), astounded that I have the chance to do something about one of my passions… writing. Inasmuch as I love reading, I love writing too… on a very personal level.

That day, I faced the opportunity to share what I have been jotting down (mostly in my head) out of my personal experiences with people, places and situations. My yellowed writing books bearing stories of the past (narratives that are etched in my mind that I wouldn’t want to be forgotten by my children, nephews, nieces and their children) peep excitedly from the recess of my nightstand. I patted them carefully, “not the time yet…”

I said my prayers and accepted the challenge though. Put pen to paper my new adventures and inspirations. I am glad I did. Contributing what little I could to beyonddeadlines has intensified my desire to write and share; I am proud being “Kleo, Cheska’s mom (or Ben’s, or ‘s and/or Arunee’s)”, happy as “Kleo, Mr. Anura’s wife”; but I am truly thankful for the continued prospect of being “Kleo of beyonddeadlines” – now I am not just a shadow, I reclaim and occupy my little niche of contentment and humble achievements.

The “Desert Quips” for beyonddeadlines is Kleo, it is me! Alhamdullilah!

Two years with beyondeadlines, I suppose means two or more years added to my life span of happy memories. Thank you to our Kapatid, Nelson Flores, the writers, followers, friends and readers of Beyond Deadlines for all the support and encouragement!

Kleo Hernandez-Kannangara
Kleo has a Communication Arts degree from the University of Santo Tomas, Manila, Philippines which she earned in 1986. She lives in the United Arab Emirates and is married to a Sri Lankan. She has four children, all of whom were born at the UAE. She describes her self as a “stay-at-home mom” who’s always on the road doing errands for everyone, and an “inspirational’ writer which according to her means "I write when inspired by a person, place or event."

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