Maybe this will be the first time I’ll give a Happiest Birthday greetings to you. I’m not a perfect “ate” (not even a good one) I must say. But deep in my heart I love you the way a sister loves a sister.
When I decided to leave home, basically it’s for you. We haven’t done things sisters usually do. I grew apart while you, you stayed innocent. Too innocent for the world.
You are actually better than me ‘cause our other two sisters became your best friends. You have your own way of bonding moments. Too different from mine. You laugh together, cried with each other, fight together, watch TV, stays home with our parents and a lot of stuff.
Your innocence to the world is unbelievable. I thank God though that she spared you from the harsh world we’re living in. When you went home to our Father, it broke my heart. My very first heart break. It took me some time to process things. I almost gave up fighting. I got scared. I got scared that you left too soon without knowing that I always love you for who you are. I got scared that you left me and you might be thinking that I’m just one hella “ate” in your life. I continue living wondering what your last thoughts about me were.
Then I remember that during our Elementary days, you used to go to my classroom during lunchtime and we ate together. I was praised by my teacher because I looked after you. On our younger years, you were my playmate.We cried together when Mama spanked us because of our naughtiness. We skipped naps and siesta just to climb that guava, ”duhat”, and “santol” tree.
We didn’t have much in life, so we walked from our home to school and vice versa. On my fourth grade and you were still in your “first grade”, my adviser sells pandesal every afternoon. I always bought a piece or two for us and our younger siblings. Fondest memories that I suddenly remember.
When I was living in a foreign city a month after you’ve gone, I got jealous when I see sisters having fun. I can’t stand watching them ‘cause I know we aren’t like that. Then I got into a motorcycle accident. The first thing in my mind was your name. Funny as it may seem but I felt your presence protecting me. I feel my tears streaming down not because of fear but because of your presence. I was shaking because on that moment I felt your love.
In the bus while I was sleeping I could hear you calling my name the way you say it when we were still children. I couldn’t believe it until I met this lady who read cards. (Yes,I’m into card reading. I believe that stuff). She picked one card and it was an angel smiling, happy and really pretty.
The lady told me ”Your sister is in a happier place. She is happy. She doesn’t remember any sad memories with you. She wants you to let go of regrets. She wants you to be happy” (I forgot her exact words). I cried a lot ‘cause how could this lady whom I just met, knew something I was going through. Then I thought maybe that was your exact words. Until the end you still wished for my happiness. Your love is still innocent, pure and selfless.
On your birthday today, I wish you the happiness in heaven that you deserve. Play with angels in heaven. Enjoy your time with Papa and Benjie Ilagan. In time we will meet each other and we will have the bonding we never had here on earth. That will be precious ‘cause it will be a never ending bonding in heaven.
For now, I wanna greet you a 10th monthsary in heaven, Putot.
You’re always in my heart no matter where life may take me.
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