Today is my brother’s 8th year death anniversary. In remembrance of his life, his wife scheduled a mass near his grave site. It was surreal, 8am, and the day started off quite early for me. Having done my work prior to changing and heading for Greenhills Memorial Park in Bulua, Cagayan de Oro City, I quickly whipped breakfast for my children and took a cab.Read More
Whenever I get the chance to buy things for me, I tend to go for books or CDs. I love to listen and make music. My selection vary and they range from Pop, Acoustic Rock, and even Country Music. I have a very huge selection of playlist on my PC, Mac and Nokia. I like to listen to music while working and when I needed a break, I like hooking my earphones and listen intently to my favorites.Read More
I have just received news that the mother of my friend Melba has just passed away. I sincerely know how she feels right now. This news brings back memories when my own mother died two years ago. Not only that, this reminds me of the death of my older brother Joemen almost 5 years ago. Death of a family member is not new and for the longest time, I can say that the feeling of loss eventually fade but the memories linger.
I hardly remember my mother now. But certain things, a smell, food, and certain sound triggers some memories and I am reminded of her. How she smiles, how she laughs and the food she cooks.
She died of pneumonia which was caused by her heart ailment. She has endured an open heart surgery at the age of 32 as well as a lifetime of paralysis. Her last months on earth was not very comfortable. She spent months in the hospital shivering and whimpering and as my older brother said, she spent hours hanging to her cellphone hoping she’d receive a phone call from me and my sister.
During that time she was in pain, I was also undergoing one of the most painful times of my life. I never knew she was dying, and when my children and I were on our way back home, and in transit in Bangkok, she had quietly passed away. Looking back, I sort have understood and taken this as a sign that she knew I was coming home and on my own way to recovery from a very painful separation from my husband and the breakup of a seven year marriage.
I dealt with the death of my mother swiftly, knowing and recognizing the fact that death was inevitable and that she was finally home on the other side. Do I believe in heaven and the concept of life ever after. No. Although born and raised by staunch Catholics, I believe that death is a finality and end of life.
My brother’s death was sudden. He died at the age of 42. His death was more painful to me than my mother’s since he was healthy and all of a sudden had myocardial infarction while on a meeting with colleagues. He even called me hours before he died. Demanding me to see him at Makati Medical Center, and to bring food. Looking back, I thought it was hilarious and was laughing as I prepared a cake for him the next day and my husband and I picked up his wife, Luchie who was on her way from Mindanao to see her husband who when we got to Makati Medical Center was already in ICU and was not expected to live. I was in shocked but the thought of death never came to me.
He died with me, my daughter, his wife and my husband on his side. He made one long gasp for air and died. His chest went to high up and he sort of reached up for some invisible hand. He died peacefully and I was in shock and saw the grief and look of his wife, Luchie and I can only imagine the pain she felt.
While the death of Joemen was unexpected, my mother’s death was a gift. Her death has finally ended her physical pain. Her death has brought her relief and to the people who was looking after her.
So how did I get over the deaths in my family?
Acceptance eventually come. Handling grief is the most painful hurdle. Transition difficult and painful. I handled some of the death arrangements. I took care of her things and which of her things to give away. I kept some of her things, but I eventually gave her clothes to charity and her bags and shoes to relatives who wanted them. Parting away with the material things she held valuable and kept was not very easy for my father. He wanted to keep everything. I had to wrangle and rationalize with him that while my mother’s things give him comfort, the fact remains that he had to deal with her death one way or the other. The fact remains that she is now gone and we are still alive and we needed to continue living. She would have wanted us to keep going on and it gives a smile on my face whenever I am reminded of her funny laughter and her addiction to telenovelas.
I treasure my memories. My mother has been through so much pain and adversity. I teach my children about the normalcy of death and how it can come swiftly to people who are healthy and young.
Don’t forget that you are still alive and you need to focus on the tasks at hand. I remember that when my mother died, my father seemed to have lost his purpose. Once he has accepted the death and the finality of Mama’s death, he managed to move on with his life now and continues to enjoy life without her.
Think about it this way, if your parent was still alive, would she or he want you to do this on yourself. Most likely not. Life went on for me, and the death of a love one is just one painful episode in your life. The loss feeling of loss will fade and you will eventually find and refocus your life once you have accepted the death of a loved one.
Death is part of life and it comes and it goes. Life goes on for those left on earth and it might be unbelievable for those who has just lost a loved one, but we eventually will feel better. The pain will cease and the memories of pain will come to bay and eventually fade.Read More
One of highlights of the week was my talk with a friend and she asked me, “Alma, do you ever wish to have somebody again?”
If I’d say the thought never came to me, then I would be lying to you all. Ofcourse the thought came to me several times before and my answer to that is no. Primarily, I am just too preoccupied to even think if I’d want another man in my life. Suffice to say, with everything that needed to be done at home, work and with school, the thoughts of “getting me a man” doesn’t slip through often.
This thoughts usually come at night time when I am done with work and I am checking out Facebook to check on my friends and how they are doing. I see longtime friends smiling with their husbands or boyfriend’s arms around them. I feel happy to see their gleaming smiles.
Was I jealous? No. But I felt wistful. I think its the companionship and partnership that gets to me. Years ago, I had that life. I had felt the butterflies in the stomach. Getting goosebumps whenever he was near. Or feeling giddy whenever he calls out of the blue or comes home with flowers and unexpected gifts.
I knew the feeling of happiness, and felt the support of a husband years ago and I had relished it. Unfortunately, that life ended and I had mourned it. It took me 3 years to divorce myself emotionally from my husband. It took a year for me to completely detach my thoughts and psychological ties from my husband.
I am happy whenever I see couples huddled together. I smile when I see old couples walking side by side with their children. Perhaps the key to my survival is the fact that I know and recognize the fact that sometimes relationships end.
I actually think of myself as a widow. A woman who had lost a loved one by death. I had mourned that loss years ago. And from time to time I remember things about that life. Certain smell triggers the memory and it permeate through my thoughts. Some memories were bad, some were good. These are my memories. My experiences. I learned that to be able to survive and go through the hurdles is to embrace and recognize these memories. These are mine and mine alone. It has happened and it has brought me to where I am today.
Today, I am happy being alone. Yes, I am alone but I am not lonely. I have my moments, but hey, I know for a fact that life is not at all perfect! I dare not complain….Read More
It was just so freakin hot where we’re at. The weather was hot and balmy. It’s was just like inside a steamy sauna room. I remembered my first sauna experience at Fitness First years ago and I almost died inside. It was just so balmy– I mean, that was what the sauna was about. But I swear, I couldn’t breathe inside the room, and I was getting lightheaded even.
I thought the 10 minute sauna would kill me… it didn’t. Anyway, the heat here was tolerable and the children were enjoying their day outside with the neighbor’s children. I heard their merriment as they told me their first attempt to fly a kite. Boy I have never flown a kite before.
They were just so happy. One of the older girls made a simple kite for my daughters. It was just one of those ones made of bamboo strips and simple chinese paper and nylon. It was a joy watching my children play on the vacant lot near our house. Hearing their peels of laughter was music to my ears.
How about you? How was your day? I sure hope it was as good as mine…
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The connectors of my cable to the antenna of my Bayantel Wireless fell apart. The connectors broke and this meant no connection for me both landline and internet. I am still reeling with the fact that Smart Bro has turned down my location saying they couldn’t simply get any signal to my house. This irked me because a few house down, a neighbor has their very own Smart Bro. So, what gives?
Anyway, I called the Bayantel Hotline (171) yesterday and they said they will be sending a technician down tomorrow. I followed up early today and I managed to catch the technician and I told him what exactly happened. I asked if he could bring a couple of connectors for me so the problem can be fixed right away. Not only that, I reminded him to bring his own tools and I mentioned that I do not want technicians borrowing my own tools.
I have not even blinked and I was expecting the guy to come later in the afternoon and there he was! He went to work right away. Fixed the connectors using the connectors he bought at the local hardware shop along the way (which I refunded). After 15 minutes of tinkering with the connector and using his solder to fix the wiring, the connection to the phone to the antenna was fixed! When he was done, I asked him to check my connection up in the roof and he climbed up and told me the connection there was busted too. I think the heavy rains that caused floods in the area the past few days has damaged my connection and I thanked God I had asked him to buy 2 connectors! He fixed the connectors, went down to solder again and climbed up and asked me to peer inside and check the signal bar and alas! For the first time in 6 months– I have a full bar! I checked the internet connection and was connected fast. The downloading was also quick! Hurray, even for dial-up!
I would like to thank Bayantel- Cagayan de Oro Team for the
apt quick response. Thank you to Ivan Francis for the repair. He was courteous and he definitely knows his job! He even promised to confirm the news that Bayantel DSL can actually tap on Misortel telephone line so consumers can enjoy DSL connection. I hope he can get a better response and explanation regarding this since I was informed before by Misortel that their lines in my area is not fiber optic and not DSL ready. Let’s see what happens to that… And, thanks to Chona of Customer Support personnel for taking my call.