June 2, 2023

Dear Manang,
I thought I was brave, but at one time, I wanted to die. I thought it was a good idea to have cancer and just keel over and die since I am single and have no responsibilities. Now that I must take more tests for my liver because of the possibility of cancer or an infection, I am enveloped in fear because I suddenly realized that there are people who I will miss. It grips me now because I am alone and there is so much that I still want to do. Is there a more peaceful confrontation to this possibility of death?
Fermin of Bright Red Street, Baguio City

Dear Fermin,
Depression is the enemy in these circumstances. Your antidote to depression is your own mindset. You must fortify yourself against yourself. Wouldn’t it be nice to not know that you have cancer and just live? We wish it was this easy. I will not recommend any therapies because I am no expert but on my own. I catch my depression by going out and taking long walks not to mope but to appreciate what I see. Or, maybe take this time to visit and make peace with those you love and hate is what I would do. Accept that you are going soon.
Make peace,

Dear Manang,
I am almost a senior citizen but I feel older than my 80-year old father because I tend to forget too many things already. I am already doing everything that is recommended on the Internet but it is scary because it affects my routine in the house. I forget that I am cooking something and it’s too late by the time I smell something burning. What have you tried and tested for yourself with some degree of success?
K mama of Greenwater, Baguio City

Dear K mama,
My dear, to give you advice would mean that I am a senior or confirm your suspicions. But darling, I am just so glad that I have deadlines which keep my calendar and clocks in the house charged. I am forgetful, have always been so and my struggle past it is some feat. My practical moves include a small notebook organizer that I keep close to mark dates and appointments that are urgent and I consult it every morning or evening. Because the long term memory works better, I repeat saying some things that must be stored in my memory for several days or I try to read them in stick-ons that I have in places around the house like kitchen sink, bathroom, doors, my dashboard or the TV monitor. Try it.
You are the key,