Before I begin telling you about the bittersweet trip to the Philippines Little One and I went on, I would like to announce the winner of our Wholly Guacamole and Beanitos #CANsnack giveaway!
entry #4 I like to try the Chipotle BBQ Black Bean Beanitos (have not tried before).
I love the Wholly Guacamole products. My favorite is the Spicy dip.
You will be receiving an e-mail asking for your mailing info. Your prize will be shipped to you as soon as possible. Enjoy your fabulous Beanitos and Wholly Guac goodies!
Thanks again to everyone for entering! More exciting giveaways and reviews to come!
Now for my first post since I took off to the Philippines a few weeks ago!
Over three weeks ago, I received a phone call from the Philippines. My grandmother was in critical care in the ICU. I felt a knot in my stomach when I heard my aunt’s voice on the telephone. I purchased plane tickets for Little One and myself, packed our suitcases (and made sure to pack a black dress in case we had to attend a funeral), and the next day, Little One and I were on our way to the airport.
I dragged my sleepy three year old on a very long flight from Toronto-Narita-Manila. This was her first international flight and also the first time she would meet some of our family members in San Jose, Batangas, Philippines.
My grandmother and grandfather were like second parents to all of us (my cousins, brothers, and me). When we were younger and while our parents were at work, “Mommy” and “Daddy” took care of us. Everyone called my grandparents “Mommy” and “Daddy”. Since our parents called them that, we did as well. The names just stuck. To this day, even close family friends call them Mommy and Daddy.
My grandfather died when I was in my early twenties and while I was teaching abroad. His death left a huge empty space inside of me. My grandmother remained healthy, strong, and as sharp as a tack! She remembers everyone’s birthdays, anniversaries, and special occasions.
The thought of losing Mommy too just left me feeling really heartbroken. When I received the phone call, she was in critical condition in the ICU and unconscious. When we arrived, she miraculously came back to us! Bed ridden, on a ventilator, with tubes everywhere and in a lot of pain, she waited for us to come.
The hardest part about spending our days in the ICU was seeing Lola (Grandma in Tagalog) with her sad eyes, and pleading for us to let her go now. She is in a lot of pain and basically, her existence is being prolonged. She mouthed the words, “I love you all. I am so tired and in a lot of pain now. I just want to rest. I want to go to Heaven now.”
Seeing her like that, holding her hand, and imagining my world without Mommy/Lola was unbearable. It’s selfish and unrealistic for me to want to keep my grandmother with me forever. I know everyone has their time when they have to leave their loved ones behind. I’ve never been good at goodbyes.
I’d have to wait until I got to the hall or the waiting room so I could break down and cry. I didn’t want Mommy to see me crying and knew we had to look strong and positive for her. I keep telling myself that I need to be at peace with letting her go and that she needs to know that it’s okay to rest now. She needs to know that she doesn’t have to hang on and keep suffering because we want her to stay. She’s tired and in lots of pain.
I really don’t know how or what I’m supposed to feel right now. Her heart and mind are still strong, but everything else is giving up. She has pneumonia again, her hemoglobin levels are low, she needed four blood transfusions in the past three weeks, and things just keep getting worse. I don’t want her to suffer any longer. I just pray that she is free of pain. At the same time, I don’t want to say goodbye. I don’t know what to feel or how I feel. All I want to do is cry.