The Month of the Heart of Winter

the new leaf of January is my Month!

so long, farewell Kakang Teryo

We drove south last Thursday night to give our last respect to Kakang Teryo. For all you know Kakang Teryo is my Tatay’s eldest brother and we used “kaka” to regard the older people in the province. Though he is an immediate family from my paternal side I cannot talk much about him. I do not have any significant recollection of him even during my growing up years. I don’t know but probably because I was never been close to the paternal side. I don’t have issues with them or anything but blame it on the age gap and physical separation. My cousins from this side are either much older (than my sister and I) and some had lived far away from our hometown. And even with those distant cousins who would come by to visit we never developed any closeness, never at all. Say it that I’m very biased with the maternal side, which I really am. I’ve written many times how I always look forward seeing my maternal cousins and I can only wish I had the same connection with the paternal side.

Anyway, because the death of a family member normally becomes a reunion of our families, it’s becoming a happy occasion to see relatives which I haven’t seen for quite a long time. A lot of hi and hellos, how are yous and fake smiles –this is what I hate most getting acquainted with people I don’t really know. At the last day of the wake, probably some of the relatives do not know me either which I less care about. Call me a snobbish but I’m not the type of person who would walk-in and introduces myself to them. I am not the type to start the conversation, and the least I could do for them is to smile, nod or pretend I’m listening at all. So this is me, only me.

At the funeral, probably many had been wondering who the hell I am. Would I care? No. Because I’m there to sympathize with my family especially to my Tatay who wouldn’t let people see his true feelings about his Kuya’s sudden demise. I am there because I belong to this family no matter what. And I’m not there to get attention from anyone, so please excuse my feelings.

Really, I have nothing much to say here, so I leave a short message for my Kakang Teryo and hoping that he gets to read this in heaven.

Kakang Teryo,

I never had the chance to get close to you, you never reached out anyway. I never felt close to you because in my mind I know you don’t really care. Probably I was looking for the same attention the maternal side has on me, you can’t blame me because I grew up with them. But I don’t have anything against you or any ill feelings at all. At your sudden death, I know my Tatay felt bad, I know he would miss you, and he may not say or show it but deep within him he is hurting. May you continue to guide him, may you protect him from all harm, may you enlighten his mind at times he’s age is taking up on him. And may your passing away be the key to a close knit between our families. May your earthly departure remind us that life can be so short and in an instant it can be taken away.

Your memorial service was remarkable, that despite the heavy shower people didn’t mind at all. I know you’re in a better place right now and I hope you’re well rested now. The family would miss you.

Your niece 🙂


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