Most of the time, you JUST have to IGNORE the world because you’re the boss of your life. No one can tell you what to do.
“The sun goes down The stars come out And all that counts Is here and now My universe will never be the same I’m glad you came”- Glad You Came by The Wanted
Freedom. PAIN. BROKEN FAITH. SHATTERED DREAMS. SHATTERED LAUGHTERS. NO MORE US. NO MORE….. The sanctity of marriage bound by the love for each other, for God and every bit of promises that created the songs for the melody of a lifetime. It all started with that simple love story: unique, genuine, and endless. One of the amazing wonders of this universe is the human’s ability to fall in love with someone they barely know. That is it. That, in particular, makes it amazing. Who are we to halt it? To stop it from flourishing?
I woke up early, 7 AM to be exact for an appointment scheduled at 9:30 AM. Everything was different. Since there was no internet connection since Sunday and it was my turn to provide the tally and raw vote sheet for my office, I was forced to drop by at the computer shop early at 8AM. Along with my umbrella, I wander our streets, fighting the storm “Gener” that falled down. I reached our wet market where computer shops are actually located, no shops were found opened until 9AM. I headed back home again and decided to dress up, hoping to be done by 9AM, just ready to leave for my appointment. Downstairs, I found my mom talking to our helper. In a snap, she (helper) decided to go home. After staying for no more than a day, she instantly changed her mind. Why? I asked myself. I told my mom not to force her if she don’t want to anymore. My mom didn’t mind what I have said.
Done, I waved to my father and mother goodbye. Papa asked me if I’ll go home right after my appointment and I nodded while saying yes. Of course I will, I just told my Mama that I won’t go to work. Yes, I won’t for I want to help Mama to take care of my neices and nephew-Rain, Ashley and Kian. So, I went back to the wet market. With my clothes slightly wet from the rain, I told to myself, “how hassle this day is for me”- I said. Just going back and forth to find an open computer shop to finish my task for work, fighting the wind, rain and the wet streets of today, appointment scheduled for the morning, geez, my to do list is open for bargain. I stayed for 15 minutes and finished my work leaving me only 15 minutes to reach my location.
Fortunately, I received a positive response. Thank God. Finally, I’ll have my chance to start all over again and fulfill my plans for me and Mel. We have tons of plans reserved for our future. To start a business, shop for our family, bring them to places where we can enjoy, have ourselves a bank account to start with, to enjoy whatever future may hold. We promised to ourselves that we’ll reach it but for now we must work harder and always look for an alternative to gain extra income.
It was already 12 pm when I saw my watch.I decided to go to work and ignore what I just told my Dad that I will be going home after my appointment. I rode MRT and reached Qeuzon Ave. While waiting for the elevator, my Sister texted me saying ” Ms. Wendelle is happy and fond of you. She said that she sees hereself in you. You are courageous and very self-driven for the business”. Ms. Wendelle is one of the newest millionaire of VMobile, a loading system here in the Philippines, which, I am planning to try and hopefully be as successful as her. I was cheered by that text, somehow I felt I was so close to slowly fulfilling my plans.
The elevator came, walked passed through KFC Panay Ave and hop in the tricycle. Put my bag at the seat and instructed the driver to bring me to Starbucks. He didn’t respond. He was looking straight in the open nowhere. It’s as if there is something going through his mind.I changed my mind, I told him to send me to ELJ Building, there, his head slightly faced mine, I glanced at him but never mind him.
12:30 I was rushed to the ER. Hysterically shouting my father’s name. I searched for my mother but she’s nowhere to be found. I was crying hard, I can’t barely feel what has been destroyed from my face. A picture instantly throwed up from my mind. A blooded head, a hole in the forehead and a crack from my nasal bone down below my right eye. I opened my eyes, thankfully, still, I was able to manage it and command my eyes to open.
Colors of green, white, and red while the strong strange smell of blood rushed through my senses. My phone can’t skip a bit from ringing. My sister, father and brother insisting not to panic for they’ll be with me.
My life showed up. A random selection of the memories I barely scan. My father hugging me, my two sisters poking me till we laugh, my brother bringing me presents, my mom giving me pieces of advice and my youngest bro, whom, yesterday was my arguing and fighting partner (it’s a sport for us, I guess). My plans flashed through my mind, to start a business, shop with my family, travel with them, enjoy our Sundays, moviedate with my boyfriend of 4 years, stroll, party and most of all, a happy and beautiful life. What will happen to them? Will I still be able to fulfill them? How about my face? Will I be bullied by those who has lower understanding of what beauty is? Will I get a proper job? Will they judge me for what my scar will look like? Will my boy friend leave me? Will he look for someone with a great face and not ever look at me again? Will my friends like me after my operation? Will everything be the same? Will my life go back to where it was before the accident? But I never asked “God why me?” I just never did.
My family rushed to me, crying and saying things I can no longer hear. They were with me all the time. They were talking to the doctors, while my boyfriend came and I cried telling him not to let me go. He never did. He just stayed there with me. I heard my family planning and estimating a plastic surgery operation. Was my injury that severe that I have to undergo operation that I only hear of at some television drama? Is my life turning into a drama now? Or is it a drama now?
The tricycle driver was not detained. He was uninjured like me. My father talked him at the police station. My father told me that the driver lost his daughter or son I guess not a week before the accident. My father, whose Emotional Quotient is way way higher that anyone can imagine told me that he will feel more guilty if he’ll charge the driver and let him go to prison. It will no longer do anything. Rather, it will just add up to the driver’s problems. He said he never even thought of hurting either send him to prison. He believe that God was with him during his conversation and He helped him coped up with his emotions
My father held me in his shoulders, crying. My brothers and sisters looking at me as if they were just waiting to be shaken and wake up to this bad dream I brought them. But no, that wasn’t a dream. That is the cold blooded truth. My mother called me at my cellular phone, repeatedly saying to pray and ask God for guidance and protection. I can’t keep myself from crying. I just can’t. That time, I wished I obeyed my mother from telling me to refrain from going to the office that day. I wished. But it’s too late.
I felt my hands. Mel was constantly holding it. He never let me go. He was there. Fighting hard not to cry and show weakness. I asked him not to let me go and he didn’t. I was gladly smiling at him, ignoring the pain from my injury. I can still put a smile, I said to myself. “I can still show them that am okay even if I am not ” I whispered.
That day, after they have cleaned my injuries, I composed my self. Did a lot of re evaluation of myself. What have happened to me? I still can open my eyes. I still can smile, walk, talk, move my body. I am completely alive. God saved me, he is the strongest and most powerful of all and am sure he will never leave me. I gained my senses and faith, well in the first place, I never lost it. That’s the number one rule my parents imposed-to not lose faith in Him, and I’m planning not to.
I started saying that God has his own plans for me. I should surrender to it. Also, He will never give me trials which he knew in the first place, that I can’t pass. I already had different tests, and this, will not bring me an “F” for “fail” to my record.
Things will change of course, but my family? They will not. Mel’s love and endless care? It won’t. My friends’s concerns? They will always be there. Everything will stay the same, my life in particular. My face may portray an endless stich, however, it will never define who I was, I am, and will be in the future. It will only make me stronger, wiser and faithfully a believer of God. His plans are stronger and more powerful than mine, so why not fight it? Might as well hold on to it and keep my faith blazingly burning like a fire.
August 15 Wednesday 10:25PM
Lying at our sofa, watching television while thinking of everything. My life, my family, everyone, everything. Our door opened. I saw my papa and mama.
“My beautiful daughter is here, I am able to see you again, I’m happy”
For me, it was kind of sarcastic. Considering the fact that I still have my injury on my face. Steri-strips on-to cover up my wounds. I don’t know if I can still call myself pretty, or if I was, in the first place. I guess, that’s family are for, to cover the hurting and make you feel no pain at all. For me, they are my pain killers.
He gently slided to my side, he was carresing me. He’s the type of man, a father, that is very ideal, very God-fearing, a believer and a constant pursuer of His words. My mother, his partner slash part-time enemy was seated at my side.
“Alam mo tin, wag mong isipin yang mukha mo. Pinalalahanan ka lang ng Diyos. Baka nakakalimutan mo na siya. Alam mo ba na si St.Paul isa siya sa pinakamasipag na desciple ni Jesus. Pero meron siyang hiniling sa Diyos na hindi pinagbigyan ng Diyos pero hindi siya nawalan ng faith. Ang sabi ng Diyos, “lage mong tatandaan, sa oras na pinakamahina ka, doon mo makikita na nandito ako, kasama mo at nagmamahal saiyo”.
“Don’t worry about your face. God is just reminding you, maybe because you are forgetting about Him. You know St.Paul? He is God’s kindest decsiple. He once made a wish, but was not granted. St.Paul had a disease and he wished that God take away this yet God did not grant it. God said to his desciple, ” Always remember that when you are in your weakest state, that is the time that I am here, with you and I love for you.”
My mother consistently nods during our conversation. She said, “I told you to just pray and believe. You shall not falther your faith. God will never leave you, just believe and He will do the rest. When you were in the hospital, I almost crawl and lie at our altar! I told Him to take care of you and all of the expenses. I believed in Him, I also asked Him to hold the Doctor’s hands and let Him be.”
I believe in Him, He saved me. He gave me the stregth and gave me the second chance to live and experience everything including the love of my family, friends and Mel. I am very thankful to God for He gave me such family that I never imagined.
My papa said, “I can handle the financial expenses but I was so touched that your sisters and brothers helped me and never let me go. They never left me hanging. I just told myself that I am so blessed that I have raised my kids to be these kind, loving and giving. I asked God to give me strength and He did not disappoint me.”
“As if they will leave you alone, they won’t of course. We raised them to be who they are now” my mama whispered. “You should always and everyday be thankful your life, thank God” she added.
And I will be forever be thankful to God for this life. He showed me who my friends are, lead me to stregthen my faith and never doubt. You’ll see who loves you and those who will stay in your side.
I should be thankful also to Mel, my boyfriend who never left me during my accident. He left his work on that day, totally throwing everything. Went to the hospital everyday after work until I get home. Before the accident we see each other almost everyday. We eat, talk about our plans for the future, quarrel, laugh, giggle and hope for the best. Now, we can only stare at each other and laugh. Whenever he is available he goes to our house. He is proving himself. My family, most especially my father sees this.
My father would tell me how kind and self-giving Mel was during my stay at the hospital. I am happy. For almost 4 years, I am longing for that moment wherein Mel can visit me without worrying about what Papa might think of it. Everything is just so wonderful. Yes, I am this optimistic.
This world, some, surrounded by people who no longer have their faith and some, who nearly think that in the first place, there is no life left for them, is constantly being loved and saved by God.
Why should I be thankful inspite of my accident? An avulsion at my forehead, a fractured nasal bridge and a slash at my lower right eye, I should be thankful. Why? For without these, my life will be left unchanged. Still. Stagnant. Now, my life is as plain as ever. I only plan for the present. I now only pray for my family’s safety as for Mel and his family’s and relatives and friends. I discharged the thought of obtaining those material salvation some of us imagined of. What more could I ask for when God has already given me second chance to keep my faith, believe, spread His goodness and lastly, experience the love of my family and loved ones as well as show them what is in my heart for the rest of this borrowed life.
God has plans for me, better than those I insisted and planned long time ago, and I will now let Him decide for me. No hesitations. No doubts. No if’s.
August 9th of 2012
This is the 9th day after my accident. My third year and 11th monthsary with my boyfriend and my first life with God. Why first? Since my accident, I make it to a point to thank God for what I have received, given and always think that today is a brand new day-with Him and my family.
I talked to my friend over the phone. He asked me if I was ok, not knowing what had happened to me. My accident was unknown to some who I barely see, to my college acquaintances and high school classmates.
Tonight, I was able to get in touch with a friend and asked me if I was fine-not knowing my condition. I told him if he knew about the news but he responded negatively. I went straight into telling him what took place on July 30. He was shocked, it’s inevitable, well, in my case because everybody was used to seeing me smile and happy and cheerful then all of a sudden this accident came to me. For them, it is a bad dream. For me, it is a blessing. A blessing to know more about God’s power and His love for each and everyone of us.
He then said to me, “You are still beautiful, no matter what” and I replied “it doesn’t matter anymore”. I meant the physical appearance, because for me, since the accident, I barely think about my face or how will I face people and their judgement. My father once said, “You should not worry about your face as long as your heart is clean, you shall not worry”. It is now important to live my life to the fullest with my family, friends and loved ones and having to share it with God-that for me is priceless.
Long before I met my accident, I was torn to those artificial things I was enjoying but I prayed too little. I pray during my transportation, when I wake up, eat and when I need help. I talk to Him a little, visit Him a little and ask for His forgiveness a little. A little for Him. Yet, He showed me greatness, goodness and what He has reserved for me.
Today, I pray, not because I need help nor to ask something but to thank Him for giving me another chance to live, breath and love, laugh with them inspite of my shortcomings. Them-they are the reason why I chose to fight, why I chooses to trust God and why I am still believing with His goodness and plans for me.
He hugged me tight, put me into safety and given me everlasting life. In short, He who have given a little of me, has saved me with all his grace and power. He, who is great and ever loving, who saved the world and saved me from my sins since the day I was born, has saved me again. I know He will, because even though I gave him little of me before, I never lost my faith in Him and what He can do to my life.
I guess, that is everybody’s duty and responsibility regardless of what religion we are in, to never lose faith of what and who we believe in. To trust and to never let go. To open our eyes with our sincerest smile and thanks to the one who we give little of our own but gives us back tons and immeasurable kindness.
Mary Pickford once said: “If you have made mistakes, there is always another chance for you. You may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing we call ‘failure’ is not the falling down, but the staying down”.
The Philippines is now the talk-of-the-town because of the hostage-drama made by a dismissed Philippine National Police officer but who is to blame for this incident? The hostage taker who dreadfully took over the tour bus carrying 25 tourists from Hongkong in an attempt to get his job back? The PNP Chief who is not present in the sight? The policemen who caught the brother of Senior Inspector Rolando Mendoza’s brother? The media that covered the incident who supposed to observed the limitations in this kind of situation? The DILG Sec. Jesse Robredo who only came at the last hour of the drama? The Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team who did not handle the situation cautiously? Or the President of the Republic of the Philippines who was absent when the hostage-drama was taking place and that only after midnight he was able to release a statement? Who are to blame for the deaths of the many? Is it the few we mentioned who should take the blame for all the Hongkong national’s anger?
What occurred last Monday, August 23, 2010 was like a horrifying scene from a fictional crime book. We are used to criminals doing all those things because it is only the ones who are heartless that is able to harm others life aside from himself. But is Senior Inspector Rolando Mendoza that cruel for all of his life? Let us assess his life for the sake of fairness so as not to be too negative about him. Rolando Mendoza graduated with a Degree in Criminology. He joined the police force as a patrolman, and rose to become Senior Inspector. He was decorated 17 times for bravery and honor. Colleagues at the Manila Police District said he was hard-working and kind.
On February 1986, Mendoza led a group of policemen that flagged down a van that turned out to be carrying 13 crates full of money, which late Philippine president and dictator Ferdinand Marcos was apparently trying to take out of the country. Mendoza and his team turned the shipment over to authorities. That year, Mendoza was awarded as one of the Ten Outstanding Policemen of the Philippines by Jaycees International. See? He was not that monster at all. He served our country and risked his life to fulfill his duty. But his life changed when Christian Kalaw, a hotel chef, alleged he was accosted by Mendoza and several other officers over a parking violation on April 9, 2008, when they planted sachets of methamphetamine in his car, forced him to take the drug, accused him of being a drug addict, and demanded him to empty his automatic teller machine and hand over his money. The Office of the Ombudsman found Mendoza and four others guilty of misconduct and ordered Mendoza’s dismissal from the service and the voiding of all his benefits. After that, Administrative charges against Mendoza were filed on April 25, 2008, after which he was relieved as Chief of the Mobile Patrol Unit. In August 2008, the Manila Prosecutors Office Eighth Division dismissed the case after Kalaw failed to attend the dismissal proceedings; the PNP Internal Affairs Service recommended the dismissal of the case on October 17, 2008, for the same reason. Mendoza’s brother, Gregorio, said that what his brother wanted was a fair hearing by the Ombudsman, who “never even gave him a chance to defend himself; they immediately dismissed him”. All is and should be fair and just in terms of justice. However, the Hongkong nationals are gnashing their teeth because of the awful and tragic situation that occurred. It is only now that the poor performance and capabilities of our Philippine National Police shook off the world. There is only truth that subsides upon this terrible condition. First, the police are incompetent and they did not set up a working cordon that would have secluded the crime scene and quite possibly have prevented injury to that bystander who got nicked by a stray bullet. They also did not take advantage of the long hours of waiting to plan a more operational tactics to secure the lives of the hostages and so as the hostage-taker. And lastly, they were not able to control the media, which allowed Sr. /Inspector Mendoza to witness everything. Second, everyone was asking why it took time for DILG Sec. Jesse Robredo to show off. Maybe he has confidence to his subordinates. But as it turns out, looks like it all went wrong. I would like to quote a statement in a blog site; “Unfortunately, as we have seen, the subordinates were no better than keystone cops. There should have been a clear chain of command, and it should have been manned by true leaders of men. In both cases we, the people, lose. Sadly, due to poor leadership, chaos was allowed to dictate the pace of the whole event.” Third, the media for the blanket coverage they gave for the event. It is easy to blame the media. If only the authorities were able to cooperate with media and sought for some assistance not to cover a specific scene maybe then, certain situations were prevented. The limitations of media were quite blurry on how to act on it, but guided by proper authorities they know how to listen and cooperate. Fourth, President Noynoy Aquino who was questioned over and over why it took him until midnight to release a statement. And where was he while the hostage drama was taking place? Why didn’t he order the media to have a media blackout? Was he afraid that media might question him for the suppression of freedom? He can say that no media in that instance because when the police moved and announced to the criminal then all the tactical advantages may loose. To sum it up, the police, the leadership behind this, the media and the President should take part for the responsibilities. Not only were the Hongkong nationals mourning for their fellows but, us too, were also saddened by this tragic incident. Let us not put fingers to each other, instead help everyone to solve the problem. As what Barack Obama said: “I know my country has not perfected itself. At times, we’ve struggled to keep the promise of liberty and equality for all of our people. We’ve made our share of mistakes, and there are times when our actions around the world have not lived up to our best intentions.”