Link

Dear Mr.,

People like you deserve to live as long as you would like to.

But as much as we, both strangers and those who knew you, ache and cry because of the shortness of your stay in this world, we can’t help but be happy for you.

Reading the letters you wrote for your family, knowing you have thought about doing such brave and sweet act, imagining how hard it must have been as you were typing each word, I can’t help but realize you left home with a happy, contented, prepared heart. You have a positive yet realistic mindset. You have such big heart for the people you care for. You are the kind of person this world doesn’t deserve. 

If you are up there, continue looking over your family and letting them feel the warmth of your love. If you are among us now, born in a different physique and to a different family, I genuinely hope you live with the same heart and the same outlook in life… And that, this time, life would let you stay a little longer. 

Regards,

Hyacinth E. 

A link to the letters he wrote for his wife and 9-month old daughter:

https://wikr.com/rsns-auns-husband-killed-afghanistan-heartbroken-one-day-opened-laptop-saw-something-left-shock/?utm_source=mob&utm_medium=bot

In Time

We had film showings in Math class during the final term. It was one great way to relieve stress from all those numbers and formulae.

Ma. Hyacinth C. Estidola March 13, 2013
BS PSY 1B Math 114

In Time

This is a very unlikely movie. It depicts “a place where time has become currency.”  People stop aging at the age of 25. Luminous green digital clocks appear on their left arms afterwards. It shows the time they have left, as well as their money. The succeeding parts are five scenes that either bother or amaze me.

Not everybody sought for eternal life. A rich man named Henry Hamilton had 116 years on his clock, but he was displeased with it. He did not want to live that long; He wanted to die already. He was just waiting for people to steal his time from him, which is why he kept going to the ghetto, flashing his left arm. But Will Salas, the main protagonist, said,

“If I have all that time, I’ll make sure it won’t be wasted.”

Those words made up the kind-hearted, rich man’s mind. After making Will drink too much, he transferred all of his time to him, leaving 5 minutes to himself to prepare for his death. I feel sorry, and happy as well, for Henry’s character. The former is because he had the kind of life that everyone yearns for, but it wasn’t the kind that he wanted. The latter since despite of his troubled mind, he still thought of entrusting his time to a person whom he believed would spend it worthily.

I truly can’t understand what kind of mind Borel had. He was Will’s best friend. Upon receiving a century from Henry, Will went to his house to give him 10 years, which represents a decade of their friendship. When he returned to ask for some, he saw his wife, who was a very happy woman the last time he saw her, now agonized for the loss of Borel. She told him he drank himself to death. What could have been his reason for doing that? He wasn’t a drunkard; He had a good personality. How could he waste the decade of life that he already has? How could he leave his wife and newborn? It really troubles me.

Mr. Will Salas Sr. was an arm fighter when he was still living. He had a trick for winning time contests: Let the other win at first.. They get overconfident and distracted just as the last few seconds run down.. Then flip the arm and the flow reverses. I liked how he managed to do what his father does before. He timed out Fortis, the leader of the gang who steals time from anyone in the ghetto, using the trick he learnt from his father, and killed the rest of the Minutemen. The trick applies to reality as well.

The moment I realized the relation of the two following scenes and the actuality it suggests, I became sad ans furious. First was the 50th birthday of Will’s mother. She had 1 hour and 30 minutes left by the time she left the office. When she rode the bus, she knew that the fare had already increased to 2 hours. She pleaded, but the bus driver did not let her in and the passengers were unconcerned. She ran as fast as she could. Will also did as soon as the bus arrived without her. They were just inches apart when his mother timed out and died. The other was when the Timekeeper was chasing Will and Sylvia Weis, his love interest. They rode a bus. The driver instantly recognized them since their faces were posted there as Wanted, but Will bribed him with a huge amount of time so he allowed them to get in. Does everybody understand what these scenes are trying to tell us? The world is already blinded by the power of money. People had instilled in their minds that we have this certain hierarchy, though we don’t. The poor are deprived of their rights; The rich enjoys everything life has to offer. His mother was just a simple being who did not have enough, plus the fact that she isn’t a suspect for any crime. Sylvia and Will were obviously felonious, but they were permitted because they had more than enough.

The partners-in-crime’s actions were similar to Robinhood’s. They robbed Weis bank and ordered every person around to get as many time cassettes as they could. They opened the large vault of Phillipe Weis, Sylvia’s father who happened to be the richest man in the world, containing a single cassette with 1 million years in it, and gave it to the time lender. Before leaving Mr. Weis, Will told him that

“No one should be immortal if even one person has to die.”

That is the best quote I heard that pertains to equality.

In every little action

Do you play with plants you see? Take the leaves and flowers for no reason?

Don’t you participate in the Earth Hour?

Does your family burn your garbage?

Do you sleep with the lights on?

Do you let the TV turned on for a long time though you aren’t really watching?

Do you throw candy wrappers in the streets?

Do you leave your bottles and plastics in buses?

Do you let the water from the faucet flow though you aren’t using it?

Do you use an air conditioner though it isn’t too hot?

Don’t you stop your companion from littering?

If you have a bike, do you use it?

Do you prefer walking or riding vehicles when going someplace near?

Do you smoke?

These are just a few of the many things people do everyday that result to the gradual destruction of the Earth’s environment. Some are ignorant, but what hurts is the fact that most are aware; they just act like idiots, or worse, just completely shrug it off.

A very significant truth that human beings fail to realize is that everyone must contribute: cease from doing such faulty acts and begin to do those that will aid in the conservation of our home. Two heads have always been better than one. There may be 90% of the world’s total population that doesn’t do the actions listed above, but the 10% who does greatly affects the goodness of the former. It’s like a cup of water placed on a straightened palm. Incline it the slightest bit and the water will spill. The palm must be kept straight for the water not to be wasted. 90% is not enough, 100% is what the world needs.

If these don’t stop soon, who knows what will happen? We might wake up one day living in the worst place.. or having nowhere to live. In every little action, the Earth suffers little by little.

Kids are the best, naughty or nice.

I go to Vian’s each time I:
1. Feel so tired from a long day in school
2. Realize it’s too early to go home
3. Miss spending time with Vian [bveh]
4. Want to rest on their red couch
5. Don’t want to be alone in my dorm
6. Urge her to go home early for her not to be scolded
7. Get caught by the rush-hour
8. Or just dang lazy to move :))

But a few weeks ago, I had another reason..

9. To be with the kids in their house! :”>

They actually are an extended family. The families of the Avila clan have been living there altogether for almost 40 years, which is amazing. They comprise mostly of adults, her uncles and aunts. But three tiny creatures make the whole house filled with noise and stress, not to mention the joy they bring to them.

The eldest is Wewei, the son of Ate Pat, Vian’s cousin. He seems to have ADHD (haha ^^v), since he moves around like a catterpillar sprinkled with salt. :)) He’s extra playful and extra talkative, but Vian told me he’s only like that when there are visitors (aww). Among them, he’s the one you could chat with for a length of time, because he’s already six. He understands what you say and doesn’t get impatient too fast.

Then there’s the only girl, Nica. She, as they say, is not their biological niece, that pretty much explains the slightly cold treatment they give her. BUT she’s definitely pretty! She has beautiful facial features, very white complexion, and natural curls. Needless to say, she’s only half Filipina. But her personality contradicts with her looks; She’s an amazona. :)) Perhaps playing with boys caused her to be as tough as she is. Her real name’s Monica Alexis; It fits her! She’s like a bird as well, chirping every second like she was left alone in their nest. She’s high-pitched and easily irritated, causing pain in everyone’s ear every time she speaks.

Lastly, the cutest and youngest, my quarterback, Polo! I call him quarterback because he looks like that character from the game Zombie Tsunami. :)) He’s very cute and cuddly and shy and innocent! Plus, he speaks in English. (Oha?) I felt so touched when Vian told me that he was looking for me during Christmas break. :”> And when she got tired of it (because we were not in good terms that time :P), she told him I won’t go back to their house, ever. He cried afterwards. I don’t know if I should be sad about that, because that’s really sweet of him. :”>

One particular day, Vian and Wewei went out to buy ice cream. Bad as they are to Nica, they didn’t let her come with them. I was drawing something for a certain subject when I heard her crying in the kitchen, pleading to Ate Cecil, her babysitter, to go out. I took her and talked to her. I have a very soft spot for children; I can’t just sit around while she cried. I thought of ways to comfort her, that ended up in getting my papers and colored pencils out of my bag. I asked her to write her name and all she wrote was lots of letter As. :)) I also made her draw Wewei and their house. These are the results. Tada!

image

image

Cool, right? 😀 When they got back, Wewei criticized Nica’s illustration of a house and drew his version. He was kind enough to let Nica color it.

image

Hours went by so fast. As much as I hated it, I had to go home. Wewei didn’t want me to. He insisted for me to spend the night at their house again, since I already did it once. I’d love to, but I couldn’t. 😦 I don’t want Vian to get scolded by her father because of me.. again. </3

Before I left, Nica took out some of her things from her room, which consist of a pencil case, a dollhouse, a McDonald souvenir, an Angry Bird eraser, and few other toys. She said they’re all mine. Vian and I were dumbfounded for a few seconds, before we bursted out of laughter and called those my relief goods. :)) But I couldn’t erase the fact that it was so sweet for an innocent young mind to give her new friend her things. :”> I only took this one, of course. This will forever remind me of Nica. ❤

image

The highlight of that day was my very lame joke that the kids got so used to say. They now call me Ate Ganda and Tita Ganda, all three of them! Hahaha. What could be better? ❤ 😀

What defines you?

This morning, as I browsed my Facebook account, I saw a link to a video entitled “Labeled as the world’s ugliest person, Lizzie Velasquez stands up for herself to teach this world something!” World’s ugliest person? Must be another victim of bullying, I thought. I watched it out of curiosity, but googling her right after and writing this now are results of a touched soul.

Lizzie Velasquez is a 25-year old American who has a very rare condition. Her body’s small and extremely thin. She isn’t anorexic but she doesn’t gain weight. She’s visually impaired. All these make her appearance very unusual. But her illness is not what made me cringe. It is her optimism, her courage, her wide sense of appreciation, her family, her strength, her voice, her eye, her heart, her faith, everything but her disease.

We, people with normal appearances and not struggling from any form of illness, should be shameful. Look at her; Despite the stares of strangers wherever she goes and teasing of her schoolmates throughout her school life, there she stands in front of people, joyfully sharing her life story and encouraging everyone not to let others’ criticisms define us. How about us? We get too irritated for a simple flaw. We tend to be embarrassed over every little negative part of us. We worry about the petty things, when those are the least that we should think of.

“I used the people who are telling me that I couldn’t do this, to motivate me. I used their negativity to light my fire, to keep going. Use that. Use that negativity to make your life better because I guarantee you, you will win.”

She speaks as if nothing has gone wrong in her life. She thinks as if not a bit of negativity has ever crossed her path. She acts as if no one has ever mocked her. Her strength is inexplicable, and it’s clearly because of the perpetual love and support her parents have been showering her since the day the doctor told them about her inevitable condition. I may be in no position to thank them, but if this blog ever reaches Mr. and Mrs. Velasquez, I want to let them know that I am so grateful for their courage. Your daughter’s tender heart is the evidence of how wonderful you are as parents and enough reason as to why God chose you to become her mother and father. (And why I am envious. Kidding. Partly.)

I am one of the fortunate people who were given the chance to listen to one of her talks. Those few minutes struck me deep. She reminded me that I should look at what I have, not at what I don’t. I realized that I should be more confident about myself; At times I should be deaf to the criticisms of the world and just walk my way to my destination. Most of all, I learnt that it is what you think and how you feel about yourself that will define you. Now, I am more than ready out there and face the world. Thank you, Ms. Lizzie. You are a very wonderful person, inside and out. ❤