Dear Nay Ating,
Exactly nine years now when you traveled up with the Heaven’s Majesty – the Lord. For sure, you are now enjoying the greatness of your mansion and the pleasure of walking on the streets of gold. I presume, you don’t do anything there but praise and worship our Creator with your beautiful golden voice. I cannot imagine the meeting we will have on that blessed glorious day when the trumpets will sound and we’ll meet up in the air! I cannot wait for that sweet blissful day to come.
Anyways, nine years seem a very long time but it was only like yesterday. Such memories! I still cannot forget how you departed from your earthly body. I was there. I saw it all. I wanted to cry but there were no tears. Seeing you as you part your body and hearing that last tick when your soul departed from your body was like a message telling me to be the strength of my family. I tried but when I went thru your things; I was looking for your life plan which was needed few hours before you left us, tears never stopped. I was alone. I cried like a baby because no one was looking at me. And while I am writing this letter, it still won’t stop. I have to quit recalling things or I might not be able to tell you the many things (sad and happy) that happened around here four years later after I wrote my first letter in March 2010.
Which one first? Good news or bad news? Okay, I guess I have to start with the good things first. I don’t want you to have another heart attack hearing all the bad ones.
Years passed so quickly and your great grandchildren have all grown so fast. They are all lovely kids and full of talents. Thank God for the breeding! Rap-rap was added last year. He is Patrick’s son. He can’t wait for his turn so he by-passed Karen, Ivan and I without our permission. Don’t worry we are stronger as a family now. It may seem hard to accept at first but we could get through it. God is with us, remember?
Ivan and I were blessed in 2011 when we were able to get out of the country. It was Ivan’s first time to go and it was my second time already. God has been really good to each of us.
What about our old folks? They’re all kicking, getting more gray hairs and getting a little bit more like you. They just go on with their daily routines. Well, I have to add the bad news now. Tito Pat lost his voice early last year. He was diagnosed with a thyroid cancer. He went to several check-ups and was advised to remove the lump in his throat that’s causing the pain and covering his voice box. The possibility that he cannot regain his voice again made him stay away from the doctors. We all prayed for him and after two months he recovered. He took several herbal medicines that may have helped him recover his voice. But now, he lost his voice again. We just have to entrust everything to God.
Feeling dizzy now? Don’t be Nay Ating, just read more. You are yet to know the worst scenario ever happened in the family and in Philippine history. It happened last November 8, when the strongest monster typhoon (Haiyan/Yolanda) made landfall in our city. It wreaked havoc to our beloved Tacloban, including your hometown. If there’s internet connection there, you can read my Yolanda story. It was pretty awful. The experience was a sad one but somehow we were taught with many things. Yolanda left sad memories to our family, to our kin, to our old church friends, to our neighbors and to our friends. The good things, we have been made closer to each member of our family and our kin. We helped our old church members even if some were still in denial of accepting the fact that we were once rooted and grounded in love. We will always recount together with our neighbors and friends the day when the monster typhoon ruined our simple lives leaving us those precious moments of survival. None was left but that alone.
I know how much you have loved Tacloban and Tabon-tabon and I can sense your tears while you read along. Yes, you can see the stressed placed from up there but I know tears will never do anything now. We have wiped our tears away and we have moved on already. Then again, we give everything in God’s care.
Nay Ating, I may not write letters to you every now and then but we have not forgotten you. I just realized that maybe God took you earlier so you won’t be able to experience those things. I know you were a strong person but all of those would be too much for you to bear. God always has His reason for things and it took me many years to understand why He allowed you to be with Him sooner than I thought. But, now I did. Thank you so much for all the love, prayers and care you have given us. Thank you for being an inspiration to all of us. We have not forgotten every single moment of your presence (whether you have been naughty or nice). As you celebrate your birthday in your mansion in heaven with beautiful fresh flowers, everything perfect and in pure gold, filled with majesty and all inspired with everlasting peace, we celebrate with you from down here on earth. We love you and miss you.
With much love,