While thinking of how to start this post, these words keep on reverberating in my ears… “You cannot protect yourself from sadness without protecting yourself from happiness.” Happiness and sadness have a very real connection. How will we know happiness if we haven’t felt sadness? We’re able to distinguish the difference between the two, because we know how each felt like.
Last week, I had a call from my sister in Seattle. I hate it, when the opening statement is, “How’s your day?” Well, maybe it’ll be great if you didn’t wake me up at 5:30AM. I have trouble sleeping, so a straight 5 hrs. sleep is great enough for me. I know something’s wrong, because the sister who’s calling me, is usually the wacky one, she always starts every call imitating voices of celebrities or some of our funny old relatives, but not this time. She’s using a monotone voice and seemed forgetting our different time zones, asking how my day went when it’s obviously just 5:30AM on my part of the world. So I broke the pleasantries, and asked bluntly, why what’s the emergency? Still injecting humor sounding like a 911 operator. In a low voice she said my aunt in Texas was found unconscious in bed, vital signs are ok, but she can’t be wakened up. As always, instead of being consoled from the shocking, sad news I’ve heard, I found myself consoling my sister, and assuring her everything will be fine. We ended the call, with her, promising that she’ll call me right away if there’ll be any changes. We hang up, but before we did, I made sure she’s okay and however difficult, I still injected some humour to the situation just to make her smile a little.
That day, I was back to my daily chores, busy as ever. Evening of that day, we received a little good news, my aunt moved her eyes, then finally uttered some short phrases. It was her second stroke, doctors found 2 more blockage in her tiny veins in the brain. She’s very lucky that she didn’t go into brain coma, they said it was really a miracle of some sort. But… They can’t do anything about it anymore. The family is advised to just bring my aunt home, and be in a hospice care. We as Filipino-Catholics, have very strong faith. We always believe that mountains may be moved by prayers. It’s been second week now, she’s still doing okay. My siblings and other relatives are taking turns going to Texas.
You might be wondering why I’m sharing this? I am the closest to my aunt. I celebrated one of my happiest birthdays in Beaumont, Texas. A day I will never forget. We are best friends, not just aunt and niece, you know what I mean. But I was puzzled, I can’t show any emotions. I’m sure I’m very sad, I can’t be there with her now, and there is a big possibility that we’ll never see each other again. I know deep in my heart I’m crushed to pieces. It’s not easy having loved ones all over the world. I may have built-in a very strong wall all over me that even my sadness cannot penetrate my being.
At the back of my mind I still believe she’ll be okay. I have strong faith that everything will be okay, and we’ll see each other again.
We all have different approach to sadness. In my case I write a lot. You will see them in my Tumblr posts or handwritten in my journals. Journals, plural because I have at least four all over the house.
There are two types of people in the world: those who prefer to be sad among others, and those who prefer to be sad alone. I guess I belong to the latter.
I keep reminding myself that it’s okay to be sad. Though I know this time it’s a different kind of sadness. It is with great fear of losing someone you love, and the reality that you will never see that person ever again. I should learn to accept this, only then that I can allow myself of sadness.
I am a dreamer. Finality is never the end. I believe one day, we’ll all see each other again.
I still hope for happy endings.