Because we also are what we have lost."
And I’d choose you; in a hundred lifetimes, in a hundred worlds, in any version of reality, I’d find you and I’d choose you."
YODA: Train yourself to let go of everything you fear to lose."
Thought for the day
How I would love to be an instrument of peace and make people feel safe and secure.
Dear John Doe,
I talked to a former admirer last night on FB. Well, not talked, exactly. Just exchanged back and forth comments after he posted how hurt he had been when got rejected by this girl called ‘Elsie’ in 1991.
I made a humorous comment. He made a humorous comment and then he let out, on FB, how he once visited me at home and how he still had my book. There were a few ears, or eyes, on the comments (and they made comments of their own).
For some reason, I wanted to emphasize how we did not date and that I was just a fan of his work. It’s true, we never dated and when he went to my father’s house in the province to see me, I had welcomed him as a friend. I knew back then, though, that he had a crush on me.
When I went to bed that night, I was thinking maybe I should have kept the comments light, or maybe not commented at all because I realized I might have rejected him all over again…
Then I dreamed of you. Not him, but you. A very vivid dream where I got to kiss your cheek and even hug you. Where I stared at your dark hair, mustache, and goatee. I was a performer in some show and you were a performer, too. But the director knew you couldn’t dance so when it was your turn to dance, they put a sub in your place.
But the point is, we met. And we talked about what it would be like once I got married. Because I was, in the dream, about to get married. And just like old times, we were friends again.
When I woke up, I had a feeling of peace and contentment. And happiness. Then I remembered that in some other dimension, we met.
John Doe, I realize that you are the sum of all the men I rejected. I rejected them, and you had rejected me. You were the instrument that balanced my karma. So thank you.
And now that everything is balanced, I can move on.
It’s the little things that count
Dear creepy habal-habal driver, or whoever you are:
Please stop ringing my cellphone at 4 AM in the morning. It’s REALLY creepy.
You don’t ever have to apologize for feeling sad. You aren’t being too sensitive. You aren’t imagining things or being overdramatic. You’re being true to yourself by honoring your emotions, and that is never something you have to feel ashamed of. Whether you have a need that isn’t being met, an old wound that’s been reopened, a person in your life who is making you feel small, a painful memory of something from the past, or an emptiness from the loss of someone you care about — there is always something underlying our sadness, and whatever it is, it’s important and valid. Whatever it is, it deserves to be expressed and felt."
Most of what I remember about growing up has to do with the bullying I endured from my brother.
However, a couple of weeks ago I remember telling my son that I had the ‘best’ childhood because I was able to pick fruit.
Plucking fruit was such a childhood joy. When I was around five or six, I remember taking an unripe apple from the apple tree in our apartment complex. Even if it wasn’t edible, it was so exciting!
Growing up I was able to gather lemonsitos and cacao from my aunt’s yard. We never threw away the cacao seeds because these were washed, dried, and made into ‘tablia’ or cocoa.
My favorite past time in grade three was climbing the ‘Mansanitas’ tree. Children and locals also called the indigenous fruit ‘cherries’ because they were small, round and red. When you bit into it, it had a delicious sweet liquid. I stopped climbing the soft branches when I fell and almost broke my jaw.
I harvested ‘balimbing’ or star fruit from another aunt. Relished the ‘tambis’ or curacao from a neighbor’s tree. Felt naughty when I climbed the chico tree at school to stash away the brown fruit till they became ripe.
In one of our houses, we had papaya and pineapple and in another, there was a huge tree which bore the milky ‘star apple’ abundantly. At the back was a ‘guyabano’ tree whose fruit I also tasted. Then there were the mangoes of course. All kinds. The hairy, juicy, and sweet variety. The carabao. Eaten ripe and sweet or still unripe, sour, and crunchy.
I remember harvesting bananas - the type you boil and the type you just eat straight from the bunch. And there were the odd fruit like the ‘snake fruit’ which grew on wild vines, had a green hairy exterior, and inside, a round yellow fruit. When you opened this fruit, there were seeds encased in a white pulp which you sucked. I didn’t like it much but the lore of the fruit more than made up for it. Supposedly, snakes ate the fruit so it was almost an adventure to sieve through vines to look for them. Another odd source of joy - sucking nectar from a bunch of Santan flowers.
And oh, the guavas! Small and hard. Larger with softer white flesh. But my favorite was the variety in my uncle’s backyard. Pink, juicy, and so fragrant. I used to spend some afternoons high up in the branches, munching on the delicious fruit while gazing at the blue sky. The sound of the afternoon breeze would take me somewhere far away. Once, I made guava jelly from the fruit. The tree had so much fruit it was falling all over the place!
One of my best memories was spending the summer with my cousins. In front of their house is a deep, wide, blue river. Behind their house, a vast array of rice fields, and beyond the rice fields, hills full of wild ‘lumboy’ or java plum trees - free for anyone. One afternoon, we hiked up the hills with nothing but a liter of water. When we got to the top (after some adventures), we were so excited to see the lumboy trees full of the dark purple fruit. We each took turns climbing up and throwing down the fruit with glee and trying to find the largest one each time. ‘Look at this one! It’s huge!” Then there would be another bigger one, of course.
Inside the lumboy fruit is a seed. With no one around to see us, we had a contest on who could spit the seed the farthest and who had the darkest tongue from the stain of lumboy skin. Afterwards, when we had our fill, we sat down and watched the sun sink lower and the sky turn a pale pink with streaks of orange. We saw hills, trees, a hint of the meandering river. And when I recall, it almost seemed like I could even see far into the future.