I am always the first son – the one who says no (quite stubbornly) before finally giving in because conscience starts kicking in like a heavy punch in the gut. I only know two things: none or everything, and most of the time, I decide miles ahead. It’s comforting to have enough leeway to turn around and save face.
Or ass. Whichever. Excuse the language.
But today, an unraveling happened, in the most unlikely moment: a car ride. A quiet drive in an off-beat road where vehicles rarely passed. And the discovery of two souls, whom I already regard as beautiful, turned more radiant. Like God amped up the brightness and for the first time after a long time, I am standing in front of the light with the shadows behind me.
I want to mention their names here, but let me etch them first in my heart so I can pray hard, super hard for them, because they reminded me to commit without conditions.
My brother is like that. Like my dad. Selfless and constantly looking for purpose.
I knew what my “purpose” was (writing, if that may surprise you, a very selfish art), and then I realized that my dream may have to take a step back so that I could be the one to fan the fire of the stars.
Tiny, sparkling, struggling stars.
This morning, while riding the bus towards that tiny, distant town where my dad’s church was, I thought of that. That, maybe, my dream doesn’t have to come true, and it wouldn’t matter. It’s not a big deal. But I’m here in a position where I can influence lives for the better, to create opportunities for them, to show them possibilities, that they’re possible, even though I’m not, and the latter doesn’t really hurt.
Some years ago, I’ve been saying I’m a Habakkuk girl, and being a person on a watchtower, I don’t have to keep pushing for a seat at the table. I’m supposed to watch, echo warnings, be grateful for sunrise, be prepared for the dark.
So, here I am, slowly shedding that bit of selfish skin so I can cry and pray and wrestle with Jacobs.
Even though I have a wrestling match too. Maybe it’s not about winning mine. My gift has always been exhortation, I was the cheerleader, that silent whisper in the dark, “Kaya mo yan.” The things I write speaks of that too. So, I guess, I’m in the right place, doing the right things.[a moment of silence for that sliver of joy that fell on my shoulder like a shining feather]
This is where it all begins. Again. And again. x