My Rags to Clothes Story - A Modern Rags to Riches Story

I grew up believing in fairy tales.

I always believed that someday my Prince Charming would come my way and that he just got lost, stumbled and is just too stubborn to ask directions that's why it's taking so long for him to come around at the outskirts of town. I grew up always wanting to have delicious foods during recess, always wanting to purchase if not the most expensive dress, at least one of them. 

When I was a kid, I always watch Maalaala Mo Kaya? (Will You Remember?) and always find motivation in the success stories of people that grew up wanting to be good at something or want to have something and eventually through hard work, patience, perseverance, humility and faith in God were able to achieve their goals in life and live as a living example that dreams do come true. There were thousands and probably millions of stories shown on the television through the said program (as they are still running the said program until now) and each success story has its own share in motivating, inspiring and helping me to keep dreaming and working towards its realization. 

I have always been fascinated with rags to riches stories and have always wanted to tell one of my own. However, I don't think I've reached the zenith of the my dreams yet hence the title rags to clothes because I feel that God has been so good in helping me gradually enjoy the blessing of my hard work and that He enables me to be strong daily and equipped me with the right attitude in chasing and making my dreams come true.

I always tell myself that someday all my fears will flee away and all my dreams will come my way. Dreams do not just come our way though. Only opportunities.

I have learned that the best way to get the right opportunity is to say no to the wrong ones so you can be ready when the right one comes. The same is true with guys. 

Try not to laugh so hard at this.

For twenty one years, I never had a boyfriend. At first it was a comforting because I felt empowered and free to do anything I want. However, as my friend puts it, "you will reach the point when you will seek to love and be loved". Perhaps I am still in that stage but this is about my rags to clothes story and love stories always need to have a separate page of their own. Let's keep it that way.

When I was a kid, I always wanted to have our own house. We used to live in our relatives house or rent a room in town since it's where I go to school to. We never owned any house. I always wondered why since my father is a welder in the KSA (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia). When you're a kid, you always have the wrong notion that OFW (Overseas Filipino Workers) are well off since they're earning with currencies higher than that of our own country. But I was wrong. Even if my father was earning Riyal, we were not rich. Now I am paying for a rent-to-own house in Calumpang. It's a townhouse and it's got 3 rooms, two bathrooms and two floors. I know it may not be the rags-to-riches but at least, rags-to-clothes. At least in 18 months, I would be able to have my mom live in a house we can call our own.

I remember walking because the tricycle driver wouldn't accept my P1.00 because I didn't know they already raised the fare to P2.00. I am grateful for those days when I had to walk because it helped me develop stronger legs that don't get easily tired with the walk of life and mountain that I have to climb in the stairs of success. 

I remembered the day when me and my friend, Richelle Ann Valencia, were looked down upon by a sales lady in Royal Supermart because we were merely looking at the items for sale. We didn't have extra money then to buy their expensive clothes. It's normal to be scoffed when you're wearing high school uniforms and all the sales ladies know that you're only dependent on your allowance. I remember that day so well that I promised myself that when I am well off, I would return and purchase their most expensive items and give the sales lady the biggest tip of her life--because after all, her actions motivated me. I may not have credit cards (I chose not to have one) to purchase whatever I may want but I am no longer the Jonha that could not afford to buy what she sees in the department store. 

I remember when I used to cry because I wanted to own a personal computer so I could watch the Harry Potter movies. I was so envious with my friend, Renz Malapit, because he has a computer at home and glad when he gave me a picture of Daniel Radcliffe. I was so desperate to own a personal computer that I thought of borrowing money from the bank or paluwagan only to realize that I wouldn't qualify. Now, I am grateful to God that I don't have to purchase anything (except our house of course) on credit. Perhaps the only thing I could be proud of to posterity is that I would never leave them any debt because I have developed a habit of paying for everything I want in cash. I don't have Macbook (because I chose to invest my money on other things than a single item) but I have Meagan, which I carry with me everywhere when I'm on vacation and the first item I picked when our apartment was almost on fire

Maybe I don't have the best things in life...yet. However, I am already grateful for every little things that God is giving me daily. I am grateful that I no longer have to walk because I have spare money on my pocket just in case the fares would increase unexpectedly. I would no longer have to be scorned and scoffed when I enter an establishment because every time I do, I would go out with shopping bags in my hands. I am grateful that I no longer need to fantasize of watching Harry Potter movies on PC but enjoy all the movies I would want to watch on big screens or download all I want.

Perhaps I may not have rags to riches story yet but I am already happy and contented with my own rags to clothes story. 

Below is a story of a man named Nick Vujicic. He has no arms, no legs and no worries.

He may lack a lot of things but he's still happy because real happiness doesn't depend on what you have but how you find pleasure or appreciate what's given to you.

What about you? Tell us your rags to clothes, if not rags to riches story and inspire millions of people.


dannybuntu said...

Why do you want to be rich when you can just have just what you need?

bloggista said...

Wow, very moving post ha. For me, it doesn't matter if you don't get what other people have, as long as you're happy, then it is something most people would envy.

Of course dreaming to be better is necessary - it's what keeping us live each day :-) Btw, thanks for visiting my blog. Appreciate it a lot.

Jonha Ducayag Revesencio said...

@ Danny:

I think it would be hypocrite to say that we don't wanna get rich. :)

I am sure everyone wants to be financially secured and that's what I'm trying to do, having been someone who has never experienced a lot of great things in life. Well I think that's what makes me appreciate what I now enjoy.


Contentment in what you have is indeed what makes people happy and that's what really matters. I also believe that if you want to accomplish something in life, you need to really work for it, and it's what I'm trying to "preach" here.

I am hoping that my little beginnings will in a way inspire others.

dannybuntu said...


I guess.

But what does it mean to be rich? For example, if I told you that I earn 100,000 a month but have expenses that reach 110,000 am I rich?

In my own humble opinion, the definition of "rich" is always taken for granted.

That's why I say that I don't want to get rich.

I just want all my family's needs and obligations to be met.

Why don't I want to be rich?

Because people around you will change, family, friends, everyone will - even if their perception is wrong.

Even if you're not rich, but everybody thinks you are, trust me, you wouldn't want to be in that situation. Unless, of course, that's what you want.

Jonha @ Happiness said...


I hear you on being rich but in some cases, rich with loans. I never thought this post would raise such an issue that I really wanted to be rich. I just wanted to be a little better than I used to. I've lacked a lot of things in life during my childhood that I promised myself I wouldn't want my kids to suffer in the same situation, had my parents made wise decisions and invested when I was younger. But I couldn't blame them, the situation has actually made me become more determined and stronger in my decisions. Though I may WANT a lot of things, I appreciate and acknowledge the things I have as being happy or successful is being contented with what you have. Of course I am grateful for all the things that I currently enjoy, but if there's something I can do to make things better, then I would do all that I can. Hope that clears things up.


dannybuntu said...


You are already rich you just don't know it.

God Bless You More!

Jonha @ Happiness said...

Thanks Danny!

You too! Wish you all the best in your freelancing ;)

Tsiken said...

Insipiring. Thanks for visiting my blog. It's great that you are happy with what you have.
You really get to appreciate things other people take for granted when you've experienced having lived without it.
Congrats on your house! It's a big accomplishment.

Rommel Bondoc said...

Well to be rich is not everything... many people i've known are not happy even if they have typically everything their money could buy... money after all is just a piece of paper we all cannot take to heaven neither on the other way...

You may not be rich materially, but with friends always to extend their arms for you, with family that you can always depend on... what more could you ask for right?

I guess being rich is not entirely on money alone...being rich is more on how you handle things out... and how, out of nothingness... you emerged triumphantly and mighty....

This is what you are now... ! Way to go!

Anonymous said...

Please one more post about that.I wonder how you got so good. This is really a fascinating blog, lots of stuff thcat I can get into. One thing I just want to say is that your Blog is so perfect

Gian Faye said...

I can relate a lot to those things you've mentioned. I wouldn't post so much details but I remembered back when I was in high school, me and my best friend went to Expressions in uniform. Spent some time on the store browsing things we always wanted to buy those times. Then ended up being frisked by the lady guard. Di pa nakuntento, pati sa chest ko kinapkapan pa. Sigh. What I really hated those times was this type of discrimination. That's why I badly wanted to graduate from high school back then. Taga-public school eh. -__- I swore I wouldn't go back to the store since then.