Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Life is Short.

Last week, I was already mulling over the thought that life is short. Its a trite phrase I know. But watching my mom recover in the hospital, hearing about that poor little boy in Ateneo, and finding out about an old office mate who suffered a stroke (at the age of 36!) really drove it home for me.

Life is short.

Then today I read a friend's blog about the passing of her brother's girlfriend. And all I could think of was: life is short.

As I get older, as my life becomes more intertwined with others, its a thought that scares me and yet fills me with a strange determination.

Life is short. We will lose people we love. 

It doesn't mean we stop loving people. We open ourselves up to the eventuality of loss (and don't kid yourself that loss isn't inevitable) to allow ourselves to love fully, to appreciate the people that we love, to realize that each and every day is an opportunity to love and be loved.

Losing a parent taught me to cherish the one I have left. And after years of struggling to know her and understand her --- I can now see my mom through eyes that realize how much she sacrificed for us, how much she loved me in her own way. That she raised me in the best way she knew how. And that a lot of what I am, I owe to her.

It taught me to open my heart to my in-laws so that they could (in their own measure) become parents to me. It has taught me to love them unconditionally, to love them on my own terms --- not as John's parents, but as people who truly love me and care for me who I love and care for in return.

Losing a child taught me to cherish the one I have now. That she is, and always will be, a miracle -- a gift from God. I love her unreservedly and wholeheartedly --- and if that will turn her into the biggest brat in the world I don't care. All our days start and end with me telling her that I love her and she will always know that she is the best thing that has ever happened to me.

It also taught me that even in the light of such tragedy, life goes on. Moves on. That new life can light even the darkest corners of our hearts. 

Life is short. Time is running out to do the things that will mean something to us. 

I quit my job a year ago. A job, that despite the tremendous pressure and 14-hour work days, I actually really liked. I quit it to do 2 things that I felt were more important:

1. To try to have more kids
2. To be a full time mom

I'm 33. I'll be 34 at the end of the year. Each year that passes, my fertility issues compound upon themselves. I didn't want to wait any longer to try and have more kids, only to realize I had waited too long. 

Pilar, at the time, was 3 turning 4. She would only be that age once, and I had already missed so much. The child we had waited so long to have --- was growing up without me.

So even with my dream (of becoming a Marketing Director) so close at hand --- no one, except for my ex-boss and I, will ever know how close --- I chose to leave it all behind to do something I always thought of doing but never thought I'd do.

And while I am now no more than a glorified part-time nanny/cook/human incubator for two --- I have never regretted that decision.

Because life is short.

I am holding my loved ones close and trying to make dreams come true.

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