About the Book “Success is a Journey: Creating a Life from Antique to America” by Dr. Cesar D. Candari

About the Book

Success is a Journey: Creating a Life from Antique to America

By Dr. Cesar D. Candari, M.D., FCAP Emeritus

For your information, curiosity and understanding of the features of the book, the scope, background, preliminary or historical content, and/or my intentions as the author shall be briefly covered below.


We all have a life story that is waiting to be told. I wrote this memoir of my life as a legacy to my family and friends. It is for my children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, and the future generations so they know about my life – and by extension, the values I held dear and wish to pass along. A written story of one’s life is often more valuable than cash. It is, as the commercial tells is, “Priceless.”

I hesitated to write this story, but my youngest daughter Arleen would not let me rest; she pursued me with a zeal until I told her, “Yes, I will write my memoir.” I have narrated various elements of my life. The themes cover a diversity of subjects: my dream as a poor boy, the pleasurable man who reached a New World that transformed my life, all the while gaining modest accomplishments through the will of God Almighty.

Discovery of truth is the sole purpose of philosophy and truth promises to exist to the end of time. One truth I quickly learned is that it is a challenge to write about yourself. It is therefore necessary to dig deep into one’s own story. That story is one that only you can tell because what you leave behind is the evidence of the life you have lived. Why not tell it your way? This is exactly what I am doing.

A popular quote from Ben Sweetland: “Success is a Journey, not a Destination.” What you do is more important than the outcome. There is nothing paradoxical about that quote. It means successful people would more likely than not tell you that they haven’t reached the pinnacle of success. The journey continues; success is not an absolute; it’s a continuing evolution of your progress as a person. Describing the road I traveled to reach my destination provided me with an unexpected clarity of the road we might all walk, for I gleaned the finer aspects of my life when two roads diverged into the woods.

Taking the path less traveled made all the difference. How can anyone understand that the burning desire I had to reach the underprivileged elders in the community provided me a bounty? Rising from my origin as a poor boy with a lowly beginning to the finer aspects of my life confirmed for me my strong belief: that dreams really do come true – if only we make them come true.

“Yesterday is but a dream, tomorrow but a vision. But today well-lived makes every yesterday a dream of happiness and every tomorrow a vision of hope. Look well, therefore to this day.”– Sanskrit proverb.

I wanted to assist others in need, and the establishment of “Operation Samahan” Health Clinic answered my calling. In my genuine charitable gestures I helped the poor and the disadvantaged; I kept the poor alive through their sufferings; I traveled in a desert devoid of water, followed my star, and finally reached my destiny. Filipino physicians like me who adopted America as their country not only enjoyed the blessings of freedom and democracy and opportunities not available in our beloved homeland – the Philippines – but also became blessed with an American Dream. I fervently uphold the highest ideals of the medical profession as written in the THE OATH OF HIPPOCRATES, circa 400 B.C.

My primary dream is for Filipino Americans to come together, awaken from the torpor in promoting cohesion within community organizations and advocating unity for progress, empowerment to protect the interests concerning Filipinos in this “Land of Milk and Honey.”

Many people dream of writing their memoir, for a memoir represents an ideal – a goal to be reached. But too often those with so much to offer leave their aspiration in the dream stage. Writing is a craft. It takes time and care to propel a story its desired end, but anyone with the dream and a bit of dedication can do it. That’s me and that’s what I did. This project has opened up a whole new endeavor for me. I do acknowledge that I’m not an effusive writer with journalistic shrewdness; I am a physician. However, I realize that simple and straightforward manner of writing are the best. I had never thought of actually writing a book, but it posed as an opportunity to challenge my creativity in a different and unique way. I was motivated to learn and understand the process of developing a book proposal. I was propelled to write my story and write it in a fashion that would easily relate to other people. I had to learn how to creatively write a story that would keep the readers interested and draw them into the next chapter. I wanted to portray my own life story with the hope that it will help other’s deal with the challenges in their lives.

If you examine your life and remain pleased with what you have achieved then what would there be left to do? The answer is, nothing. You may be alive physically but emotionally you’ve become a wasteland, especially if you were driven by the need to succeed.

In other words, success is relative, and the semblance to success is recognizing the strides that you made during your journey. A writer stated: “As long as you keep trying; as long as you don’t give up; as long as you continue that journey; that glorious quest will always be within reach.” I am still on my journey and that is the very reason why I wrote my life story.

Life, though filled with happy moments, is also checkered by struggles and defeats; that whatever success one has gained, there is sadness along that journey. It is this reality that compels me to include those moments of distress and sadness, so that the contrast to my moments of happiness and even those of ecstasy can have greater meaning and relevance – and to lead to a deeper understanding of my family’s lifestyle and trials, and to provide a more accurate glimpse into the lives of my ancestors. We all suffer setbacks in life. We must learn the lesson of minimizing the impact of setback by accepting it with grace. How we face those setbacks defines our fitness to become leaders and role models.

You can buy the book from Amazon:
Success Is A Journey: Memoirs of a Life from Antique to America

Articles | Tuesday, November 16, 2010 @ 7:08 pm by