"a caterpillar doesn't just grow into a butterfly. a caterpillar must undergo metamorphosis, and a cocoon is where a caterpillar risks it all: enters total chaos, undergoes total rebuilding, and is born to a new way of living. only in taking the risk of entering that inert cocoon can the caterpillar go from dormancy to potency, from ugliness to beauty."

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

death has a purpose...

"teng wala na si lolo."

this was the message that i got from my youngest sister at 12:26 am (philippine time) last sunday.

the moment i read the message, i couldn't help but cry. i did not know which of my two sick lolos died but my tears just flowed... sadness can be so instantaneous, death is such a thief.

before last sunday, i had four living grandparents. now, i only have three. my lolo, my father's father, has been taken away.

the last time i really experienced death in the family was back in 1989, when my cousin ayn died of brain tumor at the age of 6. i lost my very playmate, the only girl cousin (from my mother's side) who was about my age. it happened when i still couldn't understand death.

this is only the second time that i have to deal with the death of a loved one. i already forgot this kind of pain, why do i have to be reminded? and at a time when i'm so far away? ugh, this is what i hate about being away -- sad news is sad news several-fold.

...but i shouldn't feel too sad. my lolo had a good life. he lived 'til 84, was a hardworking farmer and excellent cook, had 12 kids (2 from his first wife who died, 10 from his second wife), and had been a good grandfather to i-lost-count-how-many grandchildren and great grandchildren.

i just have to accept that it's really his time to go. he's been sick for quite a while already -- he couldn't even remember my name.

"anak ka ni boy" was all that he said the last time i asked him for my name. he thought about it but my being "anak ni boy" was all that he could recall. this was last december. it's now september and he's already gone.

he used to glug tuba... used to chew nga-nga... used to do the lechon for his grandkids' birthdays (just so we could have yummy lechon during our birthdays even if money was scarce)... used to help out in those handaan... these and more will be what his family and friends will remember about him...

i'll always remember him biking his way to the public market just so he could buy me toothbrush -- a yellow toothbrush.

p.s. death has a purpose... sadness i suppose.


  1. I have a classmate back in highschool who thinks of death as a gift.

  2. I'm so sorry. Hope you're feeling better!!!!

  3. maybe death is also a reminder that nothing is permanent on earth, that we should treasure what we have here.

    i received the same message when I was in college, when my lola passed. Iooking back the good memories made me cry.

    like the toothbrush story. i reminisce on her smile when i cooked noodles for her or her tears when i have to leave davao to study.

    hope you would be OK soon.

  4. I'm sorry for what happened to your grandpa...

    I also lost a grandfather last August.. Just like you, now I only have 3 grandparents.. But unlike you, it's my first time experience death from someone close in the family... He used to tease my younger brother and cousins.. he also used to ihaw the kambing during special occasions...

    It's lonely to think that it was only in his funeral that I was able to sing for him... =C

  5. my lolo's legacy lives on... and that's what comforts me.


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