Saying Goodbye to My Lola (part I)

I can’t really say my grandma and I were close, because we were more than close. I owe her the first two years of my existence (along with my deceased uncle) when my parents sent me to live with them for fear of me catching this disease where my parents used to live; and even though ours was a cat-dog relationship, I loved her very much.

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It was back in February when she was admitted yet again in the hospital. It was normal for her to get Pneumonia time and time again that we all already know the drill on what to do, what to bring and how to stay calm and take care of her.

It was very timely that I just resigned from my previous job at the time so together with my whole family, I helped fully take care of her through and through.

It was weird, for almost half to 3/4 of her whole admission, she seemed totally okay. She was always complaining of the bland and cold hospital food. She was always very chatty too. In fact, on her first night, I was her only companion and we talked all night.

I remember bringing one of my film cameras that night and doing some selfies with her (that I still need to get processed in the lab). We talked about stuff she never told me before like how she took many jobs in order to help with the finances for her 8 children then. I let my guard down that night and listened to all her stories, both funny and sad alike. I usually hate talking mushy with my family, but that moment was an exception.

Though it wasn’t always like that.

As expected, the longer she stayed in the hospital, the crankier she got. She kept on asking us to take her home. One time, she got so impatient, she literally asked us to just give her the money for her commute home. Often times, we would just make fun of her like we always do, just to lighten her mood and to divert her attention, but there’d always be hard times as well.

When I graduated in 2011, she was diagnosed with ESRD (End Stage Renal Disease). She had to undergo surgery twice: first was for her IJ catheter insertion, which was a temporary dialysis access inserted through the side of her neck that was used until her Fistula (another surgery) on her left arm was ready for her lifetime twice or thrice a week Hemodialysis treatments. That was the start of her more challenging and even more unforgettable journey.

There’d be times that we’d go visit her in the hospital before I go back to work (also in the hospital) or when I’d spend my rest days with her in the Dialysis center. I can tell that my whole family was devastated during the first few years, seeing her go through so much pain in her late 70s.

But just like any other trial that came our way, we got by through prayers, helping each other out and by putting on brave faces for her.

In a year, she would normally be admitted in the hospital twice or thrice at the most. There’d be false alarms when we thought she would already be taken away from us, but luckily, she always survived. My uncle and my mother’s youngest sibling would always kid around and say “Nakaligtas ka na naman!(You survived yet again!)” or “Sumunod ka na kasi sa ilaw (Won’t you please go into the light already?)” then a burst of laughter in the whole room would arise. There were even a few times that the patients admitted in the rooms next to hers would code or would go into cardiac arrest. I think that happened a couple of times, so we would poke fun at her being cursed (or at least the patients next to her). You may think that those jokes were so rude, but they always cracked everyone up.

My family has the weirdest sense of humor, but it worked so well. We’d all always be huddled in my grandma’s small private room after work or on weekends, either teary-eyed or out of breath because of so much laughter when my uncle starts throwing the punches. I guess it helped not only my grandmother, but the rest of us too because it took our minds off the fact that we are in deep trouble. Who wants to take problems so seriously anyway? Plus, we all loved seeing our grandmother laugh so hard with no care in the world. She’d even answer him back and seeing them throw the funniest lines at each other was like watching a live comedic show.

During the last few days of her admission early this year, she started deteriorating, but despite that and the bathroom restrictions, she just couldn’t let herself grow weaker. There was a time I was so mad at her for wanting to go to the bathroom to take a dump. She was very uncomfortable in doing it on a bedpan or diaper (because who wouldn’t be?) so she insisted even though it took us a while before we got to the bathroom. Did I say she had bathroom restrictions?

There’d also be sad times when she would ask me what’s wrong with her, but I could only make up a reason because even her doctors took a while before figuring it out. There was one particular night when she couldn’t sleep comfortably and woke up every 2 hours. At 3am, she woke me up again and I saw that she was in distress and and couldn’t breathe. Before calling the nurse again, I elevated her head of bed and assisted her in sitting up straight. She dangled her legs on the side of the bed and asked me to sit beside her. Having almost no sleep at all, I was a bit irritable and refused to do so. So I was just there in front of her standing up. Her dentures were taken off so she spoke as if like a little kid and answered me when I asked her why she wanted to dangle her legs despite the doctors’ orders not to. She told me “Kasi gusto ko lang lumakas (I just want to get my strength back)”.

That scene kept repeating in my head over and over and even when I think about it now, I still can’t help but cry. She just wanted to be okay again and I couldn’t even set aside the fact that I’m tired and sleepless. She’s been through worse, but I had to be a complete ass to her.

When I realized how much of a douche I was, I wanted to make it up to her before it was too late, and boy, I’m glad I did.

Soon after, they finally figured out what’s wrong with her and disclosed it to us. Apart from Pneumonia, she was also diagnosed with Aortic Stenosis and so she was referred by her main AP (a Nephrologist) to a Cardiologist. The aorta is the major artery of the heart that pumps blood from the heart to the rest of the body. It has a valve that in this condition, narrows, thus restricts blood flow to the body causing breathlessness, weakness and sometimes even fainting. To add to that, she also started having absence seizures during her dialysis treatments that she eventually had to be referred to a Neurologist.

On the latter part of her admission, she started refusing her food and was advised to have an NGT (Naso-Gastric Tube) Insertion. My mother who is always overcome with her emotions, refused the procedure. We had to argue among ourselves with me wanting to get the procedure done. Still, my mother won. She talked my grandma into eating again to avoid having to put her through another ordeal and even though it was harder, we had to carefully assist her in eating. We exhausted all the techniques we could think of to encourage her to eat more including those that you’d normally use with kids and they worked. The NGT insertion was deferred a couple of times and eventually canceled.

Just when we thought that the hardest part was over, she started having episodes of disorientation, which was most probably caused by her prolonged seizures. The longest episode was the first time she had a seizure during her dialysis treatment. She couldn’t recognize any of us, or she just pretended not to because she was sulking. She was conscious, but she just stared at all of us with a weird look in her eyes as if seeing us for the first time. I even broke down in front of my relatives because I was reading about the worst case scenarios of her current condition which led to my aunt’s crying as well. The disorientation went on for the whole night and when my parents came to visit after work, she started uttering “‘Nay, ‘nay, kunin mo na ako (Mom, mom, please come and get me)” as if calling to her own mother. She said this in a childlike manner too. Our eyes swollen, I, surprisingly slept that night. The morning after, I was happy to see that itwas over and my grandmother was back to her old, chatty self again. You could hear the excitement in my aunt’s voice asking her whatever sinful food she wanted to eat so she could buy it.

After starting some treatments, she started feeling better. She couldn’t really stand on her own anymore, but she was strong enough to ask her doctors to let her go home. Soon, she was permitted to go home and continue her dialysis treatments outside the hospital.

I stayed with them for a few more weeks, going home only when I had no more clothes to wear. All of us still took turns in taking care of her. We bought more Oxygen tanks for her because she could consume about 1-2 big ones in a day. We also had to buy her own hospital bed, egg crate mattress, glucose monitor, new BP monitor and I insisted on getting her own portable pulse oximeter as well. Then, I taught everyone how to use the said monitors so they could observe her appropriately when I’m not around. I was very happy at how everyone, including my younger cousins were ready to learn and eager to help out even with diaper changes and bed bath. There was a time when I asked all my teenage girl cousins to help me in giving her a bath and changing her sheets. They all learned the proper techniques in turning and lifting our grandma and all I could think of was boy, all those night shifts taking care of bedridden patients in the hospital surely paid off.

We were able to take her back to the dialysis center for treatment, and force her the second time, but she was on close monitoring and hooked to an oxygen tank. Dialysis settings had to be adjusted as well so her heart can keep up, but still, she had episodes of absence seizures. She grew weaker and wouldn’t go back for a third treatment the same week, so we had to give up her slot, not knowing that it would be her last.

She didn’t want to continue her dialysis treatments. In fact, she didn’t want to go back for the third time so bad that week that even though she started sleeping for longer periods of time, she woke up just that one time we asked her if she still wanted to go and uttered a big “no”.

She then started having visual hallucinations as well, if you can call them that because there may be in fact, real souls of random people in her room, but only she could see them. There was a time when I just got back from our house to rest for a day. My uncle had to get the oxygen tanks refilled, so there were only the two of us in the house at the time. I had to do a bed bath for her and right before we finished, she uttered irritably, “Ang dami namang bata dito! (There are so many kids in here!)”. I know that she wasn’t disoriented at the time because we were talking and she even kept on asking me to make the bath quick because she can’t breathe well. I felt all the hair in my body stood and almost ran out of the house and left her alone in there. I turned the TV volume up before sending my mother a text message, telling her what happened, then shortly after, my uncle who went to get the oxygen called me. He was laughing and told me, my grandma has been seeing things for a while. True enough, she has been seeing a lady carrying a child, a boy that even sat beside her in the car one time and some other souls that give me the creeps.

Filipinos believe so much in the supernatural especially those involved in death and dying. Some of these I’ve heard from my senior nurses, like when a person’s death is at hand, you can observe them trying to remove their clothes. There’s also this belief that when you stare into their eyes, they stare back not at you, but at someone from behind you, as if their gaze goes directly through you. There’s the “Sundo“, which I know everyone knows is the entity that awaits the souls of those that are dying. There’s also this weird belief that those that are dying attract ants and you often see tons of ants underneath their sheets or body before they die. I’ve never heard that last one before, by the way, but I saw it happen to my grandma. It was so bizarre because we always kept her clean and comfortable so we couldn’t find anything that could have drawn the ants to her.

Right before she eternally closed her eyes and eventually became unconscious, I had a small talk with her. We just finished praying the Rosary together after she saw so many “people” gathered in her room, even though there were only 3 of us in there. I asked her if she knows we love her. She answered weakly, but in the sweetest tone I’ve heard and told me that she indeed knows. I told her we all love her the same and I felt that she was happy when she heard that. That was the last time I was able to talk to her.

During the next few days, she barely opened her eyes. She would nod occasionally when asked, but that was it. She couldn’t speak much. She couldn’t even eat anymore so we tried feeding her a supplementary milk, but could only consume 2 tablespoons.

The last weekend she was with us, visitors, close friends, relatives, family, co-Mother Butlers in Church and a Priest flocked to her. Even our household help, who was a close friend of hers, together with her sisters visited lola. I had to get out of the room when she cried, because I knew my eyes were going to fill up with tears again.

A final mass was held for her and was also anointed by their parish priest.

My brother couldn’t come home in time, so he had to talk to her one last time through a video call, which was the same for my grandma’s sister in Canada and our other cousins in Cebu and Ormoc. Their remaining brother was too weak to go on a long trip all the way from La Union so he never saw her too.

I had to come home after that and go back one last time. When I got back to her house, I greeted her in the most enthusiastic and scandalous way I could. I knew she wouldn’t respond anymore, but I also knew that hearing was the last sense to go in a person who’s dying so I made sure I was heard. This was the time my uncle (mother’s youngest sibling) and his wife went to get my grandma’s brother from La Union but had to go back because their children told us he couldn’t travel that far anymore. My aunt and I gave grandma one last bed bath and when my uncle and his wife arrived, my aunt and I went to get some groceries, and stuff for oral care and bed bath.

When we came back, we cleaned grandma’s mouth and left her in a high back rest position. We all stayed together in her room and watched a late afternoon show. She was very calm until shortly after, my uncle saw that she was drooling. She then started coughing hard and drooling even more, before finally passing away.

Two of my cousins came home from school just minutes after her passing. My aunt was already crying so hard while talking to her one last time, telling her that she’s now an orphan. My uncle (same one who always teased her and took care of her since forever) tried carefully jolting her a couple of times even though he knew that she was gone. I placed her pulse oximeter on her finger one last time and waited for the ECG reading to go on a flat line as I hold her still warm feet.

I’ve never seen anyone die in my life before, not even while working in a hospital. I wasn’t in shock, but I didn’t shed one tear either. I couldn’t understand what I felt then and I still couldn’t explain it now. I just knew that she was gone and it happened unexpectedly.

We didn’t try to revive her nor rush her to the hospital anymore because we knew that all she wanted was to rest and be free from all the pain. Had she been revived, she would just be hooked to a ventilator and no one in my family can ever stand seeing her intubated, especially my mother. She and all of her siblings agreed that the moment lola was brought home from the hospital, all we needed to do was to make her feel comfortable and wait for her final breath at home like she personally requested and that’s what we did.

My parents had to attend to my brother in Cebu at the time of her death. Before they left, my mother asked my grandma to wait for her to come back. She must have had a hunch that something might happen. I couldn’t tell my mother the news so I had to tell my father instead. I know how hard it was going to be for her and I know it still hurts up to this day.

My grandmother died peacefully on March 15, 2016. She was one of the most annoying, most makulit, most mataray, most maloko, most beautiful, most fashionable, most God-fearing, strongest and bravest persons I knew.

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And I loved her so much.

I love you so much. Thank you Lola!

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So happy she get to eat all the sinful food, every after Hemodialysis session;) (at Lydia’s Lechon LOL)

 

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Sensitib

Sobrang bihira ko nang gamitin ang Facebook account ko. Maliban sa pagpo-post ng mga kuha ng adventures namin ng pamilya ko para rin may kopya sila at sa minsanang pagch-check ko ng mga grupo ng mga business owners na inaantabayanan ko, hindi na ako masyadong aktibo dito.

Di gaya nung nasa kolehiyo pa ako o hayskul (nung Friendster pa ang uso) na lahat ng kaibigan ko binubulabog ko ng komento o na nagpopost ako ng mga pasaring na linya na kunyari tungkol sa homework pero lovelife naman pala ang tinutumbok. Ika nga ngayon, hugot lines. Natatawa na lang ako kapag naiisip kong dumaan rin pala ako sa ganung phase.

Sobrang laki na ng pinagbago ng social media community sa panahon ngayon kung ikukumpara noon. Yehesss ang tanda ko na pala para maikumpara yung panahon na wala pang SNS (kung tutuusin naabutan ko rin ata yung panahon na wala pa yung SMS haha) sa panahon ngayon. Napakapangyarihan na nito ngayon.

May gawin ka lang mali at natyempuhang may telepono ang nakabanggaan mo, panigurado, kukuyugin ka na ng sambayanan online. Para bang yung slut-shaming nung panahon ni Hesus na minsang bumiktima kay Maria Magdalena, babatuhin ka ng bato hanggang mamatay ka. Medyo mild lang tong atin ngayon pero ganon pa rin epekto, kahihiyan at kawalang-puri. Nakokondena ka ng di oras.

Siguro sa mga abusadong tao na makapal pa sa kalyo ng kalabaw ang mukha o sa mga pagkakataong wala nang ibang paraan para maisuplong yung nang-aapi, makatarungan siya, pero kung yung mga one time, bigtime HONEST MISTAKES na walang intensyong makapanakit at tumapak sa pagkatao ng kapwa, makatarungan pa rin bang masasabi ang online shaming? Napakahirap ngang magkamali online sa panahon ngayon. Kahit saan, may mapaghusgang mga matang nakabantay sa konting pagkakamali mo. Kaya hindi rin maiiwasan na madalas nagiging mapagpanggap na ang mga tao, ingat na ingat sa bawat kilos at salita para hindi mahusgahan at mapagkaisahan. Pero minsan kahit anong gawin mo, meron at merong masasabing panget ang tao.

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Madalas na rin tayong makarinig ng mga taong sumuko na at pinagbubura na lang yung accounts nila dahil na rin sa taglay ng SNS na “superpower” na sirain ang isang tao. Kahit nga mga artista sa Hollywood, hindi umuubra dahil konting kibot lang nila, ang daming nasasabi ng mga fans nila na may kapangyarihang magbagong-anyo dahil bashers pala talaga, pero madalas ngayon, mas madami pa yung negatibo kesa sa magagandang komentong makikita mo.

Naalala ko yung isang panayam kay Sarah Jessica Parker kamakailan lang, nung sinabi niyang matagal na siyang tumigil sa Twitter kasi hindi daw niya makayanan yung mga pananalitang gamit ng mga kababaihan laban sa kapwa nila babae.

Ang problema kasi sa kasalukuyang panahon, kahit sa mga henerasyon ng mga magulang ko, nakikita ko yung kagustuhan na laging magpasiklab pero ang mali yung pakiramdam na hindi sila pwedeng mahigitan ng iba. Naiintindihan ko naman yung gustong ipakita sa mundo yung mga tagumpay nila sa karera o mga lugar na napuntahan kasi normal lang yun. Pero yung magpapayabangan pa sa mga komento, paninirang puri o paghahanap mo ng kamalian sa tao, dala siguro ng inggit o ng mga pinagdadaanan sa buhay o mga pansariling isyu yung nagiging problema.

Natawa na lang kami ng pinsan ko nung minsang makita namin yung dalawang mas nakatatanda sa amin na parang teens lang kung magpasiklaban sa Facebook. Ganon na ba talaga ang mundo ngayon?

Sa sobrang “advanced” kasi ng teknolohiya ngayon, napakabilis mo nang masabi yung gusto mo kahit pa nasaang bundok ng tralala ka naroroon o kahit nagbabawas ka pa sa banyo. Minsan rin hindi na napag-iisipan ng tao yung sinasabi nila, basta mauna lang sila mag-like o magkomento masaya na sila.

Pero meron rin namang mga hindi mo mawari kung paanong paraan pinag-isipan yung sasabihin. Yung tipong singsakit ng kagat ng langgam na ang sakit na nga ng pagkakakagat, pero parang may “stinger” pang natira sa balat mo kaya ang tagal mawala. Maliit lang yung kagat pero di mawala-wala. Sa madaling sabi, simple lang yung pananalita pero sobrang parang medyo may pagka-matalas.

Kahapon nasupalpal ako ng di oras ng isang dating malapit na kaibigan nung nag-post ako ng kontrobersyal (chos!) na bidyo na di ko napansing may mali pala. Honest mistake nga kung tutuusin. Pero habang iniisip ko ngayon buti na lang rin naagapan kung hindi, laman na rin siguro ako ng balita ngayon. Blessing in disguise na rin siguro? Minsan yung pagka-praning ko abot hanggang langit pero malay natin diba? Ang balita ngayon kakaiba na ang pakpak.

At naagapan yun dahil sa komento nitong dating ka-close na kaibigan. Kung hindi ko na palalakihin pa, pwedeng concerned lang talaga si friend sa akin, pero kung magaling ka kumilatis ng pananalita, a.k.a. praning, tulad ko at ng kabarkada kong si JC (yehes parang fashion pulis lang ang peg) na minsan nahahawaan ko ng ka-praningan ko, maiisip mo talagang may laman yung mga salita nya. Di ko alam kung wala lang siyang paki sa masasaktan nya basta maipamukha lang nyang magaling sya o tulad ng sabi ng kaibigan ko na baka may isyu sa sarili ngayon o baka nagiging “territorial” si ateng. Hindi ko lang nagustuhan yung paraan ng pag-atake niya kasi kulang na lang bigyan nya ako ng ticket. Ang dami lang niyang sinabi samantalang matagal ko na rin naman siyang hindi nararamdaman online. Tagal na naming di nag-uusap tapos bigla bigla may pag-atakeng nagaganap?

Mali ako, pero hindi naman siguro kailangan tapakan at ikuskos yung mukha ko sa lupa. Chill ka lang friend! On her defense, may pagka-prangka at maloko siyang tao pero siguro mas na-appreciate ko yung concern kung sinabi na lang niya sa pribadong paraan or siguro kung hindi ganon ka-harsh at yabang nung dating niya. Napakababa lalo ng tingin ko sa sarili ko ngayon at sobrang dinamdam ko siya buong araw kahapon.

**Kung mabasa mo man to, hindi to kung anumang personal na pag-atake sayo  (kasi alam ko paano pakiramdam non), opinyon ko lang to sa nagawa mo at therapeutic lang talaga sa akin ang pagsulat sa blog na to bukod sa pagkausap sa mga taong malapit sakin.

Pero syempre ikaw lang nakakaalam ng motibo mo para pagsabihan ako ng ganon sa harap ng pamilya at iba ko pang mga kaibigan na maaaring nakabasa ng sinabi mo. Masaya ka ba na ang know-it-all ng dating mo o nagpakamataas ka sa page ko? Nasa tama ka, may point ka, gets ko yun. Natauhan ako at salamat ng marami sa pagpapaalala pero sana next time, ayusin rin tono ng pananalita at tanggalin ang ere. Kahit kailan hindi ko ma-tolerate yung mga taong may angking hangin at sa pagkakakilala ko sayo, alam kong ayaw mo rin ng mga taong ganon. Gusto ko man ikaw kausapin, hindi na rin tayo malapit para sa ganung klase ng komprontasyon at sabi nga nila maliit na bagay lang to pero bilang blog ko to, pinalaki ko pa rin pala. Chos!

Siguro ganito lang yun, kung ilalagay mo ba sarili mo sa posisyon ko, at nagkomento ako ng ganon, tingin mo ba mas ma-t-touch ka sa concern ko o mapapahiya ka lang rin sa sinabi ko? Concerned ka ba talaga o isa ka lang sa mga gusto magpasikat? Ikinataas mo ba yun?

Siguro paalala rin na na maghinay-hinay sa pananalita kasi hindi natin alam yung pinagdadaanan ng mga taong nakakasalamuha natin at hindi rin natin alam ano yung dating ng mga salita natin kasi iba-iba ang personalidad ng tao. Sobrang SENSITIB na kasi ako ngayon. Yun lang pala. Haha. May pait pa rin sakin noh pero mawawala rin naman to. Mas magaan na rin naman pakiramdam ko ngayon.

Kagabi rin nakausap ko yung isa ko pang kaibigan na matagal nang walang Facebook account na si JM (O diba puro kayo J). Minsan na rin siyang naging paranoid dahil sa paggamit ng naturang SNS. Sabi niya sakin, and I quote, echos! Sabi lang nya na hindi lang rin niya kinaya yung paggamit ng iba sa Facebook upang iparating sa pamamaraang immature yung mga pasaring at pagpaparinig nila sa mga kaaway o mga kinaiinisan. Aminin ko minsan ko na rin tong ginawa at mas madali itong gawin kesa diretsuhin na lang yung pinariringgan (parang ngayon lang?) o parang may feeling of satisfaction ka kapag nagawa mo kasi ang lakas makapagpa-praning ng ganitong tactic eh. Mga babae talaga. Daming alam na schemes. TSK TSK! Pero matagal ko nang natutunang hindi ito maganda lalo na kung nakakasira ka na ng emosyonal at sikolohikal na estado ng isang tao. Ang hirap mag-translate ah!

Hindi maikakaila na na-trauma itong kaibigan ko pero ang nakakabilib eh yung kaya naman pala ng taong mabuhay ng walang Facebook account. Sa panahong ultimo business transactions and announcements sa trabaho eh sa FB na pinapadaan, posible pa rin palang maka-survive kasi totoo may iba pa namang mga apps gaya ng messaging services na pwedeng gamitin upang di mahuli sa balita.

Dahil dyan, tuluyan ko nang idedelete ang FB account ko. Haha. Yun lang pala yung punto ng lahat ng to.

Pinag-iisipan ko yung tip ni friend, JC na maglinis na lang ng account ko at mag-unfriend na ng mga taong maaaring hindi naman na kaibigan ang turing sakin o nung mga nakakapag-trigger lang ng negative emotions sa akin. Sabi niya, based from experience eh kung magkaibigan kayo, eventually the universe will find a way to bring you back together at take note, applicable rin ito sa lovelife haha. Balak ko na rin maglinis ng Instagram accounts ko at salubungin ang 2017 na nakapagbawas-bawas ako ng bagahe.

Moral of the story:

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P.S. Natutunan ko ring:

  1. Kilatisin yung sarili ko, yung paraan ko ng pananalita at kung paano ko pa mas lalong pag-iingatang hindi rin makasakit ng iba. Baka hindi ko alam, ganon rin pala dating ko sa ibang tao.
  2. Mas maging tough, hindi talaga pwede yung lalambot lambot pusong mamon at iiyak iyak na lang palagi sa dog-eat-dog world na to.
  3. Mas maging responsable at attentive sa kalsada (wag daldal ng daldal), sa mga rules of the road at pagmamaneho. Hindi option ang mailagay ang buhay mo, lalo na ang buhay ng iba sa alanganin.
  4. At syempre ang good ol’THINK BEFORE YOU POST!

P.S. eto ang kontrobersyal bidyo. Echos!

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You

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They say that after a woman gives birth, she eventually forgets how painful the whole process is that she wouldn’t mind getting pregnant again and going through all the pain that she once went through.

I can’t help but see a resemblance in the way we feel about falling in and out of love. Love isn’t so much about the way the other person makes us feel. It should be way beyond that, for love is a choice, to stick through the pain and perils of finally giving away your heart entirely to someone who stole and eventually owned it.

I can say for sure how easily I find it to forget all the pain love has caused me because like magic, love has a way to make us feel so many emotions at once. Like magic, love can make us believe in the impossible. Like magic, love can overwhelm us and catch us off guard. Love can lift us up even when it wears us out over and over. Because love is magical and it gives us that giddy feeling in our stomach, we easily want more of it despite all the complications and pain that come with it.

In the past 5 years, I’ve lost count of the times I’ve gotten hurt or hurt the one I love, but we easily fought through all the hard times and negativity because we are just so persistent and determined like that. We just wouldn’t give up, at least not completely. We both are each other’s first loves and I know how first loves are messy and beautiful at the same time. I also know that despite those, we both love each other so much that we just wouldn’t let each other go, no matter how many times we’ve broken up; but sometimes, holding on can do more damage than letting go ever can.

I don’t even know if I’m doing it right, but I love you. I’ve found a best friend and a partner in you which no one can ever replace in my heart.

I hate the fact that our love seems so right, yet everything else feels so wrong. I hate that the we were given but a fleeting chance to love. I hate that you were given to me, yet will only be taken away. I hate that those that once cheered us on, now only want us apart. I hate that I now have to put away this ring with your name on it. I hate how the once sweet words we have for each other became bitter and sad. I hate that we always talked about marriage and having our own family, yet here we are back to being strangers again.I hate that our paths met, but never to remain intertwined like how I always dreamed of.

But just so you know, I don’t hate you. I don’t hate the fact that the whole universe seem to conspire to break us apart. I don’t even hate the fact that there is now a story of more woe than of Romeo and Juliet’s, and that is ours.

I love you and I hope that when you look at the stars at night, you see the world not as a traitor that robbed you of happiness. I wish that the brightly peppered sky rather remind you of the hope and happiness He promised to come. I hope that when I see you again, we both are rid of all the pain, have completely forgiven each other and eager and brave to love again (whether each other or strangers we have yet to meet), much like the women who fear not the pain of bringing another child into this curious, little world.

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Nobody said it was easy. Missing you already.

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Wine Wednesday 🍷

 

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Yesterday, I was feeling a lot bluer than usual but God is so good, He sends angels just when we need them the most.

I was blabbering incessantly to my friends, Jan and Nikki on Messenger all morning because I honestly felt like both my brain and heart are going to explode about the same old shit-uation I keep pulling myself back into.

I just happen to be so blessed with friends who have the wisest advice and the patience of this guy

to which I am most thankful for. They talk me back to sanity when I think I’m gonna lose it.

Remember the saying “Friends are angels in disguise“? This is definitely just one of the moments when I truly felt it manifest. Most of the time, I find it hard to listen to God’s answers to my prayers, so I’d like to believe that this is one way of Him getting through to me, by way of my friends’ kind and ever understanding hearts.

In the middle of our conversation, Jan suddenly thought of of dropping by our house, being almost free from corporate slavery herself. So she did and I was very happy that I got to talk to her over late lunch, wine and dinner.

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I like how sometimes, we both want just to hang out and have real, good, private conversations where we can just lie down and actually hear ourselves rather than fighting ourselves through crowded malls or places of some sort.

I barely go out with my friends anymore, so I’m glad that despite such hiatus, I’m still able to talk to them as if we’ve never parted. We never really hung out as often as we used to after graduating high school yet just like everyone else, our friendship remained the same. We still get to talk about the littlest and silliest things in between mounds of our adult problems.

Perfect example was just last night when we tried to name our grade school and high school teachers as well as some of the mild controversies they were associated with that we now find funny. We remembered some teachers and batch mates that have gone ahead. We even got emotional and teary-eyed over one of Karel Marquez and now hubby’s very smart pre-nup videos (thanks to Jan for letting me watch it!).

Late into the afternoon, we decided to finish a previously popped open wine. Let’s just say that we didn’t exactly have the fanciest experience, but the wine still worked its magic just fine to make us all woozy and giggly.

Here’s Jan seemingly back to junior year, Chemistry class. Apparently, we had to filter out the disintegrating cork out of our drinks and voila! Nothing a strainer and kitchen towel can’t fix!

And yes, we also had to improvise a wine ice bucket to cool the thing. 😛

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But all’s well that ends well…

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Nothing like a good laugh and real conversation with one of my oldest friends on a rainy, Wednesday night. My kind of chill.

Of course, we had to cap the night off talking to a rude and short-tempered Uber driver, but just the same, it turned out to be a perfectly good night, that should hopefully last me til I see them again.

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Survey Time!

I got this one from Fuck Yeah Surveys. Link is posted below!

Get to know me.
A) What does the last text you sent say? And to whom? – It was to my friend Jan (whom I asked to come with me on my free driving day) telling her that I didn’t get any slots for it.
B) What does the last text you received say? And from whom? – “Thanks ma’am” from the driving school branch secretary
C) What time do you wake up most mornings? – around 5:30am -7am
D) Are you afraid of walking alone at night? – only in unfamiliar places and scary neighborhoods
E) What do you do to relax at the end of a stressful day? – I read a lot of blogs and articles, watch Jimmy Fallon’s and Ellen’s shows, do something artsy
F) Where did your last kiss take place and with whom? – can’t remember
G) Do/did you get into trouble a lot at school? – sadly, no. 😛 I was pretty boring in school.
H) Do you enjoy your job? If unemployed, are you content being so? – I can say that I’m pretty much content with taking time off from work since I get to do a lot of the things I could only dream of when I was working full time.
I) Do you often pick up on double entendres and innuendos? Not all the time 😛 Sometimes they do take a while before they sink in!
J) Have you ever been offered drugs but declined? – never! thank God!
K) Have you ever met someone who has completely altered your way of thinking? – Yeah.
L) Have you ever been offered drugs and accepted? – Hmm, now that I thought about it, I did accept a bag full of imported Acetaminophen from a patient’s relative a few years ago. 😛 Nothing illegal! LOL
M) Tell us something weird that turns you on. – nothing weird, really.
N) When did someone last admit romantic or sexual feelings for you? Was the feeling mutual? – a few years ago. yes.
O) What is something you have given a lot of thought to lately? – no.
P) When did you last swallow your beliefs to avoid an argument or confrontation? – I don’t think I am the type to avoid arguments, sooo…never, I guess?
Q) Do you usually initiate hugs? – only with close friends and family
R) Are you a very affectionate person? – only with my grandma, dad and ex.
S) Can you roll your own cigarettes? no.
T) What are you looking forward to? last family hurrah for this year.
U) Do you have any tattoos. Do you want any/more? – nope, but I’d love to get some.
V) Are you mentally strong? – I’d like to think so.
W) Are you physically strong? – Kind of!
X) Do you think you’re a good person? – Maybe? I hope so!
Y) Name one thing you wish you could change about your life right now. – My career path
Z) What do you usually eat for breakfast? – eggs or tomato/onion/bell pepper omelette, bread and tea!