Tuesday, April 21, 2009

of wakes and debuts

there are only two events in this world that i do not go to - wakes and debuts.
this is a terribly belated confession to make. i have disrespectfully turned my back on debut invitations and turned a blind eye on wakes of students, family friends, student's parents, classmates and teachers who have died.

i absolutely respect the importance of both events to the lives of my friends and their families. i am certain that if i am in the same position, i would be hurt to be ignored. i would want me to be there when i begin ladyhood and become officially legal. i would want me to be there offering comfort at the death of a loved one. but i suck at these things.

mere presence would have been a grand gift and a great comfort.

i do not remember when i decided to skip those two events. but i want to tell you dear mikee and jyle that my heart was absolutely twisting in indecision. i just could not make my body move. and when i did try, i got physically sick. you were always in my mind and i prayed hard that you are happy even if one teacher decided to be absent.

this brings me to horrifying realization that i am bound to start disappointing a lot of people as i grow older. i'm afraid i have become jaded and cynical and oftentimes i see flashbacks of how much i have disappointed many of those who looked up to me. this makes me cringe in shame and regret. i cannot undo everything i have done. i am such a small thing, a mere flawed human. the things i speak of before as true and lasting and dear, i often forget many times as each year passes by.

the longer i am in the world, the more that the struggle for genuine-ness and sincerity take its toll on me. and i am oftentimes confronted with how awfully insignificant and imperfect i am. then i look at the kids i used to teach. now grown up and confronting their own adult struggles. i am humbled that they chose to remember me but all i do is disappoint them. i take it like a stab to the heart. it pains me. it makes me look for the "me" that i was. the one that would do all it takes to show care and sincerity and love.

i cannot find "me".

i got lost somewhere between the struggles of raising a family and confronting my personal demons. i got buried together with a mountain of bills and tuition and daily allowances i had to pay for. i drowned in the bitter realization that i am not enough and i cannot do enough no matter how hard i worked. i lost heart in the struggle for justice and righteousness that nobody took seriously. my heart was trampled on and got used many many times over. it got calloused and hard and i learned to look out for myself. to think of the other "me" again. the other side of the coin. i worked to survive.

so when i get invitations to attend debuts, all i feel is pain. i do not deserve the honor to give blessings. my presence would be a farce. i have changed so much that i feel i am not really the one being invited, but the person i was. so forgive my cowardice, dear mikee and jyle. there is still that lost part of me that thinks of you fondly. and i have not forgotten you. i want to tell you what older people say to the younger ones such as you, "you will understand when you get older".

wakes make me sad. it wraps me in such negativity that i get a bad headache afterwards. i get nausea from the flowers and spirit of the place wraps itself around me even when im home.  i do not like the waiting and looking at the sad people. funerals are better. there is a haunting beauty there that i find intensely powerful. and people actually smile and laugh after the burial! but wakes are like an immense feeling of waiting. its prolonging sadness and it hurts me physically. its a sadness that is too sad for me. i avoid it. and i cannot apologize for it.

this entry is making me sad too..so i have to end it.