Tuesday, April 26, 2011


“There are five people you meet in heaven,” the Blue Man said. “Each of us was in your life for a reason. You may not have known the reason at the time, and that is what heaven is for. For understanding your life on earth.”

-from The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom.


Once upon a summer time, in a faraway resort called Monte Vista, a family vacationed. After renting a hut, they busied themselves with food preparations, chatter, and other useless engagements. Bored, a little girl of about four-feet tall, who doesn't know how to swim, jumped in the six-feet water. That's me.

If I could marry a swimming pool back when I was eight years old, I would have been married at a young age. I’m so addicted with splashing about in the water that my addiction brought me to actually drown.

But hey, I was actually expecting to land on my floater. Unfortunately, that didn't happen. Another thing, nobody knows I'm in the pool. 

But it's kind of weird, because I don't think I felt like drowning or not being able to breathe anymore. For one, I didn't panic. What I did was calmly stare up at the donut-shaped floater above me.

Then I got to my senses and actually thought about my life. (Thank goodness I did!) It was so vivid in my memory. My small hands extending up to the floater with no luck. Seemed like forever. "Ayoko mamatay sa tubig," -that's what's going on in my mind. 

But you know what, if it's not yet your time, then it's not. So while it's not, live. If you want to jump in a pool, don't let fear stop you.

Not that I'm saying you should risk your life or whatever. In the metaphoric sense, always remember that there's always going to be good-hearted people, who will help.

While I was drowning, someone held my hand and pulled me out of the pool. My hero had been a woman. I couldn’t remember her face anymore. But this was the exact sentence she told her companion: “Tingnan mo ‘to o, nasa 6 feet, ganyan kalaki.” And her companion replied, “buti nakita mo.”

I actually felt irritated at them for looking me up and down. I couldn’t remember saying thank you or expressing any sign of gratitude. In fact, I was sure I raised my eyebrows at them and marched off like a total bitch.

When my mom asked me where I’ve been? I’ve been to the shower. 

I owe that woman a lot. I sure hope she would not raise her eyebrows at me, and worst, stalk off, just in case we meet in heaven.

But if she did, I'll understand. We have what we call utang na loob. Haha! :)


Looking back, I couldn’t remember saving anyone’s life at all? Though if you ask me if it's possible that I've killed someone already, without actually meaning to do so? Let me see.

I was attempting to give my mom a kiss but gave her a head-butt instead. It made her head hurt so much that she felt something between dying and wanting to kill me. Once, I almost burned my family to death by forgetting to unplug my highly explosive cellphone. I charged it for like twenty four hours.

The thought that I might have had killed someone by accident is really scary. But we never know. Most of the time, we have no idea about what we're capable of.

But wait. I did save someone. When our pet dog ran out of the house, I went after her, just in time to see a red van ready to roll on her.

Good thing, the windows of the van are opened, so the driver heard my hysterical scream and pressed on his brakes. If I didn’t shout so loudly, the back wheels of his vehicle would have hit Sugar. And I would have filed a law suit against him. 

Or maybe not. The man had looked really angry. I must have had scare him out of his wits. Quits lang, because his stare scared me too. Haha. Oh well. At least no one's hurt. :)


Okay, I work in this publication, at least until the 29th of April. It has brought me joy and pain, both in a good and bad way. 

But honestly, sometimes, I find myself wondering why I dedicated half my HS life to it. I don’t even know who invented that publication and where the hell did he or she get the name? But I’m guessing that person might have had a certain fondness with rosaries, given that the name of our journal is The Rosarian. Whatever. I am clueless. At least Eddie is a bit familiar with Ruby Pier, right?

Not to mention all the tiring jobs I need to do, the emotional stress I went through, and the people who discourage me. I guess I just love what I do. For that reason alone, I was able to get through the thick times. :)


What about true love?

Jack and Rose. Clare and Henry. Landon and Jamie. Robby and Cecilia. Benjamin and Daisy. Holly and Gerry. Dao and San chai. Harry Potter and Ginny. Even Simon had Maria Clara for a while. 

And Eddie. He met Marguerite.  “Life has to end,” she said. “Love doesn’t.” Well, me? Good luck to that. I’ve just had my 18th yellow car.

My sister taught me a rule. She told me to count yellow cars. No taxis, vans, trucks, jeepneys, etcetera.

When I reach the 100th car, the first person who talks to,me, who is not my family or anything, shall be my soulmate. Yes, I admit, it’s kind of crazy.

Here's something less crazy. I think I've never found true love, at least not like those in the movies. But I try not to worry about it that much. I mean, yes, I gave my heart to a few people a few times and broke it, but it's not like someone told me to do that kind of thing anyway. Being unhappy just because someone broke your heart, and then forgetting everyone else who loves you, it's just unfair. For me, as long as I have my family and friends, I'm alive. :)


As for the last person I’ll meet in heaven, I have not the slightest idea.  As far as I am concerned, no one has ever died for me to live. But I do know that I have failed and hurt so many people in my life. That some sacrificed for me to feel happy and comfortable. Maybe I’ll meet them all in heaven and get to say sorry.

The funny thing about me, and I always say this, is that: I never knew how is it to hurt strangers. But that I almost, always hurt the ones I love.

I guess while we're here on earth, we'll keep on hurting one another. The world hurts you. You hurt the world. It's sort of like a process.

But somewhere, we'll always be creatures with hearts. And even if our hearts are turned into stone because of countless people or occurrences we face along the way,  there will always be something or someone to soften it up.

Because we are one giant web, a story weaved by a single force, a single Spider. Our threads lay alongside each other, constantly intertwining. So that one movement will affect the other.  So that each of us is an important element, never useless.

I think this simple fact is true, whether or not heaven is real. Whether once we die, we fade away like dusts, or we go walking into a paradise and meeting different people... it is true that as persons, we affect one another. It is true that we fall in love. And most importantly, it has to be true, that life is wonderful, no matter how frightening or sad it may seem, no matter how meaningless and depressing it sometimes is.

In the places we go to and the stages of life we undergo, in each of our travels and each of our experiences, it's the people we meet, more than anything else, that makes the most of the difference.

About heaven, or hell, or simply life after death,we’ll never know. It’s not like one of us had managed to actually reach heaven, meet God, and go back like as if nothing happened. I think death is the one thing that humanity will not be able to conquer, ever.

But death. It’s ugly, yes. But all sorts of ugliness have a hidden beauty to it. We just have to see. After all, death is the completion of life. Without it, everything falls into a meaningless pattern. 

Some of us will be famous and rich. Some of us will be commoners with a normal family. Some will have to suffer. But always, there’s got to be a reason why we lived. I think that’s what Mitch Albom was trying to point out when he said that heaven is the place to understand your life and gain true peace. 

Well, I don’t want to live my life thinking about heaven and getting over-analytic.  I want to live my life for this world where I currently exist. Like hello? But it’s also good to think that none of it ends with dying. And I do hope it’s true. I guess I should have faith that it’s true. 

And I guess I'm going to leave it all there. Don’t forget to read The Five People You Meet in Heaven. I mean, I know my essay is kind of crazy and useless. But the book, it's serious, and it will definitely mark you like no other.

P.S. I’m praying my last person would be Alex Pettyfer. Is that a little over-rated? Oh well. :)
With love, RC. :)