Saturday, October 28, 2006


two day's ago, father was way too early to be knocking on my door.

"son," he said, "your mom's calling on you. she's having some chest pains, could you come and see her?"

it was about 6 in the morning and i had just woken up from a hard night's sleep. i hurried over to the other house with father hardly able to keep in step with me. like mom he's also advanced in age. mom's about 81 now while he'sabout 79. unlike mom, though, he's still very mobile while mom never really recovered her mobility after she suffered a stroke 4 years back. what's surprising was while her doctor claimed that she had recovered about 94% of her good condition, she never exhibited such recovery. after the stroke, she became too reliant on father. she demanded that father be constantly at her beck and call.

and so father became her nurse and her companion. it was difficult to see father like that. although he's already a retiree, father is still very active in his extra curricular activities. these he lost all when he devoted most of his time to attend to mom. but as his husband he must perform his duty. when they got married it was part of their vow -- to take care of one another always.

i entered mom's room and there she was lying, eyes half closed. when i held her hand she clasped my hand tightly and opened her eyes. she smiled a faint smile, and pointed to her chest. she's having difficulties speaking now. she resorts mostly to signs and gestures.

i asked her loudly, "are you having trouble breathing?" no, she shook her head. "is your chest still painful?" yes, she nodded. "shall we bring you to the doctor?" no.

she motioned to me to come nearer her. she wanted to whisper something to me -- "this is just natural for someone who's close to dying," she whispered in my ear.

it's my turn to shake my head. but she smiled again. and stroked my hand as if convincing me. her eyes were half-closed once again. how could she suffer like this, i thought. how could someone be gifted with long years of life but spend that existence in pain and misery? it's been taught things happen for a purpose. things happen so one can pay back. to even things out. if one had planted seeds of negativity one will one day reap negative fruits. if one had planted seeds of positivity, one will gather positive fruits. either way one is getting a payback. either way one will have the opportunity to even things out with the Great Creator and with one's fellowmen.

i stroked mother's hand in turn.

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