Ang Usapang Pagbabalik

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Ako: Teh, ano ba ‘to sepanx! Miss na miss ko na yung Bradford family natin. Sabi ni kuya Lanz, there is growth in separation. Bakit di nya sinabing malungkot ang separation?

Jennerz: Oo nga teh, napakasakit pa ng separation na ito.

Ako: Kasalanan to ng ulan napapa emo ako! Pero baka naman kasi naging comfort zone na natin dun

Jennerz: Oo nga teh naging comfort zone na talaga natin pero bakit tayo lang ang nagkaganito? huhu

Ako: Kasi tayo lang yung umalis

Jennerz: Babalik pa kaya tayo dun ano?

Ako: Oo naman teh, Di ko alam kelan pero uuwi at uuwi ka sa mga lugar na minsan mo ng naging tahanan.

Ako: WALANG HIYA ANG DEEP NATIN TEH.

Hindi na ako nireplyan.

Bakit nga ba may sepanx, mga mem?

Kasi deep down inside takot ako, takot ka, takot tayong makalimutan.

Ang Tula ni Jeriboi

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I know of sutures and streets
Of coffee that’s bittersweet
Of photo and those who smile,
Amidst their crooked teeth
Is joy bound to leave?
Or does it stay with those beneath?
Often sought, sometimes found
Joy must be somewhere not around

– Jeremiah Ablaza, 2014

Ito’y isang tula galing sa makata kong kaibigan pagkatapos ng isang coffee session about sa nawawalang joy sa detistry.

Kung nabitin kayo, check out his works here.

Ang Mga Demonyong Ayaw Akong Tantanan

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Anim na buwan.

Anim na buwan mula noong tinakbuhan kita. I did not run away from dentistry (technically, I did) I ran away from you, at least I tried.

Sa mga nagtatanong, hindi naman yung kahirapan ng subjects sa dental medicine ang nagtulak sa akin sumuko eh. Pero hindi rin ibig sabihin madali ang mga subjects. Dahil mahirap po sila. Challenging. You’re studying to be a doctor in the span of six years, go figure.

“Dentistry? Bunot-bunot lang naman yan. Bat six years?”

Ay walang hiya. Hindi po bunot bunot lang ang dentistry. Hindi rin ito pasta pasta lang. Pipiliting mong matutunan sa loob ng apat na taon ang ilang taong pag-aaral tungkol sa ngipin at basics lang po ito. Hindi sapat ang four years proper para pag-aralan lahat.

Kaya hangga’t hindi mo nasubukan
mag dentistry wag kang humusga ng mga sumuko dito.

“Grabe, 2 takes di mo pa rin nakuhang pumasa sa subject na ‘yon?”

Mahirap pong pumasa sa lahat ng subject. Malimit kailangan ng season 2. Pero, pag nag season 2 ka hindi naman yung kaalaman mo sa subject ang magtutulak sa’yong kwestyunin yung pinag-aralan mo eh. Hello, pangalawang kuha mo na. Malamang ikaw yung pinakamatalino sa klase kasi alam mo na. Pero pag nag season 2 ka na kasi, Iba na yung tingin sa’yo ng clinical instructor nyo eh. Di ko alam kung talagang judgemental lang ba talaga sila o low lang talaga yung self-esteem ko. Pero hanggat hindi mo nasubukan mag dentistry at maging recipient ng ganoong klaseng look ng mga clinical instructor, please lang wag mong husgahan ang taong sinukuan ang dentistry.

“Anong meron sila na wala ka?”

Ito po ay isang tanong na nakakainit ng ulo. Manhid na ako dito. Alam kong madaling sabihin na “mas matalino kasi sila sa akin” pero alam ko sasagutin ako ng isa pang tanong (see next question) Sana madali mag explain ano? Pero paano ko ba ipapaliwanag yung mga pumapasang cheaters at pa easy-easy at yung mga bumabagsak na hindi na ngongopya. Hindi ko po kayang ipaliwanag. Kaya nyo ipaliwanag? Kung oo, sige maari nyo nang husgahan ang taong sinukuan ang kursong ito. yun ay pagkatapos nyong ma acomplish yung mga nabanggit na patakaran sa taas.

“Bat sila? nagagawa naman nilang pumasa, eh diba dean’s lister ka dati? Naging scholar ka pa nga!”

Mahirap pong magpatali sa nakaraan. Hindi ibig sabihin na naging dean’s lister ako wala na akong karapatan bumagsak. Normal lang naman ang bumagsak sa buhay. Mas marami akong natutunan sa mga subject na nag season 2 ako kesa sa mga one take lang. Hindi dahil inulit ko ha pero hindi naman related sa dentistry yung mga natutunan ko.
Marami akong natutunan tungkol sa buhay. Wew ang deep ko! Gaya na lamang ng

1. Wag na wag mong ikumpara ang sarili mo sa iba. Magkaiba kayo. Period.

Nakakalason po ito.

2. Nasa paaralan ka para matuto hindi para matakot.

Hinding hindi ka matututo pag takot kang magkamali.

3. Mga mem! Hindi race eskwela. Hindi ito paunahan.

Hindi ka palaging mauuna, minsan mahuhuli ka pero tandaan na hindi ka disqualified.

Anim na buwan.

Anim na buwan mula noong tinakbuhan ko ang mga demonyong ito.

Mga demonyong nagpapaalala sa akin ng nakalipas ko. Nagpapaalala ng mga judging look ng mga CI, ng mga pagkukulang, ng mga disappointments, ng mga
failures na I can’t seem to shake off, ng mga doubts at ng mga “tama nga ata yung doubts nila sakin”.

Mga demonyong ayaw akong tantanan.

Pilit kong tinakbuhan ang mga ito. I tried to run away from the person I have become, insecure, underachiever, fearful. A person missing joy.

Pero nakakapagod na.
Ayoko ko na.

Akala ko sapat na yung anim na buwan para makatakas.

Pero eto pa rin ako sumisintas ng sapatos handa nanaman ulit tumakbo.

Ang Isang Malungkot na Araw

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Four year ago today, I woke up to a life changing text message from my mom.

“Nak, na stroke si mama be. Please pray…”

I’m not sure if you ever experience waking up to a text message like that but let me tell you, it’s a feeling I don’t want any of you to experience.

10 mins of being down to my knees praying later, I received another a message.

“Nak, coma si mama be”

and yet another one

“Ga, tinext ka ni mommy mo?
Pa book ka ticket uwi tayo”

Ma. Aurora is our aunt. She is Mama Baby or Mama Be to my cousins and I. She was my room mate ever since I stopped sleeping in my parents’ room when I  was in Grade 2 until I left home for college. She was a single lady all her life, so my cousins and I took the role of being her spoiled kids.

March 29, 2012

I remember pleading for healing.

I remember asking for His will to be done.

I remember myself asking, Has she accepted Jesus as her personal Lord and Savior.

I remember reminiscing about that time where my voice was shaking as I share the gospel at church and there she was in the crowd trying to hold back tears.

I remember the peace of knowing there is eternal life waiting for her, If this is it. If her time’s up.

I remember dragging Jenny and Nado with me to look for an Air Philippines office to print out my itinerary receipt.

I remember going to church with puffy eyes.

I remember being asked why I have puffy eyes.

I remember the things I did to keep my mind off mama baby being in a coma state.

I remember the fear of spending the night alone.

I remember pulling an all nighter video editing at church for youth camp which is scheduled to happen in two days.

I remember sleeping at Ate Jam’s classroom that night with Ate Glazy, Rochelle, Ting-Ting, Jang-Jang and Barkadits Van-Van.

March 30, 2012

I remember having to walk from church to the dorm at 4 am.

I remember grabbing breakfast with Ate at the airport.

I remember Ate Aysel explaining Mama Be’s case to me.

I remember hearing medical terms. Aneurysm & Cardiomegaly. I know those words, I studied them but I never realize their meaning is as simple as this: a lost cause. There was nothing we can do.

I remember not sleeping the whole flight home.

I remember holding lola’s hand on the way to the hospital.

I remember entering the ICU.

I remember the tubes and machines hooked to her.

I remember crying on her side.

I remember the nurse giving me the “why are you crying, she’s not yet dead look”

I remember asking the nurse about Mama Be’s urine output to break the awkwardness. When she said “Yes, that all her fluid output” I just nod because we both knew, this is it. It’s just a matter of time.

I remember then laying down on a hospital bed that night. Thinking “Oh no! I’ve been awake for 36 hrs already”

I remember not sleep that night.

March 31, 2012

I remember being awake.

I remember going inside the ICU to start the day.

I remember Mama Nette’s arrival.

I remember having to wait.

I remember Pastor Lisa praying with us.

I remember hearing them decide for DNR, Do Not Resuscitate.

I remember the whole family gathered on her bedside.

I remember holding her hand.

I remember how quick I let go because the machine sounded off which only meant one thing : Flat line. Finish line. The end.

I remember them turning off the machine.

I remember having to usher lola back to the watcher’s room.

I remember crying.

I remember the pain.

I remember being awake for another 24 hrs at St. Peter’s.

April 1, 2012

I remember going home.

I remember going home but it’s not the same anymore.

March 29, 2016

Four years, I think that’s more than enough time to heal, to move on, to go on with life. And I have. I’m healed, I have moved on and go on with life.

But there are still days where I long for Mama Be’s home cooked meals and nights where I cry myself to sleep because I miss her.

Ang Uncertainties

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“Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd.”

Sabi ni pareng Voltaire sa intro ng pelikulang Sana Dati.

“When you’re young you feel certain about a lot of things, as you grow older you learn to embrace uncertainties. You only crave certainty when you’re afraid of not knowing things pero yun nga, the more you mature the more you realize the world is so random and uncertainty is the only thing that’s out there and growing up is just letting go of the things you don’t have control over and focusing on the little things you can control.”

Sabi ni pareng Jerrold Tarog sa audio commentary ng pelikulang Sana Dati.