You who are missing your loved ones. Especially those whom you can never ever hug again. Those whom you can never ever talk face-to-face with again. Yes, you who are constantly thinking about how life would be today if they haven’t left. You who once believed that “time will heal” only to find out that with time, you can only learn to grow stronger each day and try to accept the reality because without doing so, life will never move on. Yes, you, you who are longing for the day you will be able to see the beautiful faces of your loved ones whom you’ve missed everyday oh-so dearly. So, this is an open letter to you all. And, of course, to myself…
July 30th marks a year since my brother’s passing. Gosh, I miss him. It’s funny to think now that he’s not here anymore, I started to miss him, his smile, his ignorance, his mischief, and just about everything about him. So to speak, I miss him (and dad). A lot. I want to tell them all the things they are missing out on. I want to tell them about the places we have been and the accomplishments we made. (Hey, Tea just completed her first year of university, and I am about to graduate in a year, and mom has been going strong more than ever! You guys better throw us a party up there!!) I want to share with them how God has been so good and faithful all this time to our family. I want to have one more conversation, one more laugh, one more meal, and one more sweet memory of us. I want to picture together with them where I’m heading towards in life, and the next steps I’m going to take. I’m sure you’d want to do the same thing too with your loved ones.
Most times when I think about Koko, I have this feeling of regret inside of me. I still remember how I rarely care about what he does as we were miles and miles apart. But truth to be told, I miss him now, more than ever. Maybe some of you would have known how it felt to take for granted each moment you have with your loved ones, and now ever since they were gone, you started to wish you could travel back in time and do it all over again. With a new perspective. But that is not the case with reality. Many times, I was left regretting the many times I’ve refused to go the extra mile to reach out to him. Regretting the many times I’ve been reluctant to play a game with him, when all he really wanted is just to spend time with his sister. One way or another, I’ve learned to go past beyond the regret and start to look at things from a different angle.
To embrace the moments that both of us had, and appreciate my todays surrounded by the people I hold dearly, right here, right now.
To tear up a little at good old memories, but to stay strong enough to come into a realization that at the end of the day, those are memories to be smiled upon with joy.
To imagine what it would be like to have them around still, but to keep my feet firm on the ground, not being too caught up by all the should’ve, would’ve and could’ve.
To want their companionship throughout many more milestone in my life, but to be grateful for all the times they’ve been and the impact they are to me.
To wish for their presence by my side, but most importantly, to find strength to fight our desires, knowing that this world is temporary and they are indeed now home.
“As unfair, unreasonable, and impossible as it seems, we still have work to do after a tragedy occurs. We still have roles to fill. We still have responsibilities to family and others. The stuff of life may pause for a while, but it doesn’t stop. Fair or not, that is reality.” – Cheryl McGuinness
So, dear you, you who are missing your loved ones, it is okay to miss someone. It is okay to have a yearning for their presence. It is okay to mourn and grief for a while. Don’t try to fight the urge to remember or miss them, but gain strength to live without them being physically present while glancing over the rear view mirror for a little snippet of those lovely memories once in a while. Miss them, cherish them, but don’t let all that pull you back from living your todays to the fullest and blur your eyes in seeing the people is around you all this time. Just like how Gandhi puts it, “you don’t know who is important to you until you actually lose them.”, let us cherish the people around us right here, right now, and not be found in a place where we are wishing to turn back the time. And for me, I’ve come to learn and to realize that this life on earth is so momentary, and that what I thought was mine wasn’t really mine to begin with – really, nothing ever belongs to us anyway. Day by day, I’m still eager to learn the fact that, experiencing loss is a part of experiencing life.
Keep the Positivity,
PS. Why the photo, you ask? It’s my brother’s jersey and thought it’d be nice to wear it! 😉