a celebration of life

It was exactly a year ago today that I had a once in a lifetime experience. Although the event was a very sad one but I am still thankful for the opportunity to be a witness and to be present there at that moment. I am talking about a dear friend and brother’s death. Death, as we all know, is not a happy thing for everyone involve, most especially for the family. This particular friend is a very close one. Though we met not so long ago, but our zest in life and our love of it and our family bonded us easily. At 18, he sort of stood as his siblings’ breadwinner. Sacrificing his collegiate degree for work so he can provide for his brothers, likewise sending them to school. And amazingly, he never complains about it. Months before his death last year, he had a swollen neck with a lot of pus. Yet, he still continued to work and send money for his brothers instead of going to the doctor for a check up and medicine. It worsened and made him bedridden. Pardon me for I couldn’t extensively explain it medically, I personally lack in that aspect. So, last year, on this day, he texted me in the morning asking for a particular food and on how he has been. After dinner, I received a text from his brother asking me to go to the hospital to help them appease him. Days before this, while he was still able to talk, he said he is still willing to fight, despite seeing his vegetable state. So onto the hospital I went, without a clue how he’s been. I was shocked and saddened and unable to respond what to do upon what I witnessed. His respiration was already assisted, clamoring for anyone to hold, unable to speak. It was a very different scene, one I was afraid would happen but had been preparing for. He was reaching for me while grasping for air. I don’t know if he can still recognize me and if he is asking for help. So that’s the scene upon my arrival. We lost him that night. I was standing on his bedside, staring at his chest. Still wishing that it had continued its ebb and flow, but it slowly just ceased to rise. And the doctor declared the time. I did not know how to comfort his Mama, his brother was punching the floor. While I, stayed at the corner seated on the floor, immobilized and in shock. No words could come out, even words of comfort. I just held his brother’s shoulder to try to calm him. I still could not compose a text even, no words exactly. I lost a dear brother that night.

I had faced a dear friend’s death years back. And the 1st one took me 6 years to mourn, grieve and accept his death and absence. But this time with him was different. It was my first time to witness a life slowly fading. My first to be on a deathbed. And though everything was in turmoil, there was a silent goodbye inside of me. I cried not because I wanted to hold on to him more, but I cried because surely I would miss him. No more quite walks with him or sharing of experiences or even talks about our favorite anime. I have all good words for that guy. Despite his being unpredictable but with me, he could not dare leave me hanging. I feel that he respects me so much that he could not even dare lie to me, maybe just hide some details but he would still open up when I pry. More so, it was his love for his brothers and his desire to give them a better life despite sacrificing his own awed me.

It was a year ago. I am grateful for his life and the opportunity to be on his deathbed.



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