December 8, 2022

We celebrated Ed’s one year death anniversary last Jan. 25 with a simple mass officiated by Fr. Vanie Abrasado assisted by Rizalina Savellion.
As always, Fr. Abrasado gave a beautiful homily. Only a limited number of immediate family members were present. For other members of the family and friends from Baguio, Manila and other parts of the world, we had Zoom.
Time flew so fast. One year can be fast and yet so slow. During this time span everything changes. Coping with grief is different for everyone. I take it one day at a time, I call it baby steps. Four things helped me to get better: Jesus, family, friends, and work.
The first day was the hardest. With it came the shock, even with the acceptance. Everything seemed foggy and in slow motion. You are momentarily lost. Kanina lang nandito pa siya and now he is gone.
My children Nash and Jackie and apo Eli, Deke and Anna, and Reggie and Ric, my in laws, Pete and Emma, my sister Teresa, my nephew Kawayan and niece Nona, friends Emma, Sam, and Bree, Laydeh and mga anak sa museum Gemma and Jon, were my refuge.
During those times, I could look at Ed’s pictures, but could not bear to watch his videos. ‘Yun ‘yung tipong so near yet so far away. How could I watch something so alive only to realize wala na pala? Hindi mo na mayayakap at makakausap?
The nights were long, interrupted by nightmares and palpitations. I would call on Jesus a hundred times until my heart would calm down. We kept clothes that still had his scent as a reminder. The days stretched into weeks. I marveled at how strong widowed friends were able to hurdle and cope with their grief. I asked them and got this reply, “Keep yourself busy the whole day that all you can do after is sleep.”
I was very thankful that a terminal report to the U.S. Embassy’s 2017 Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation project of the Baguio Museum was due. It kept me busy, a little stressed and mostly awake. With the impending deadline, I had to work meticulously with the narrative and the template of the liquidation report.
Still, Gemma and I had to look into some unfinished work. My children, ate Bot (Teresa) and my in-laws Peps and Emma kept a close watch. They would video call everyday and Emma and Peps would come up every now and then to give a supply of goodies. Thank you, Lord, for my children, family and friends. God, you are indeed all knowing, good and magnificent.
And yes, there was depression.
There were days when you would not like to get up and just sleep through the day. You think of the “what ifs.”
You get angry at people who could have been kinder and more compassionate. And thankful at those who help. But Ed had his ways of appeasing and letting his family know he was still around, guiding and watching us through butterflies, music and dreams. He would remind us to forgive by playing music through his mp3. When my son asked him how he was. His MPs played “Immortality.”
I have watched a lot of inspiring videos on YouTube and listened to charismatic and spiritual songs that lift the spirit. At the end of the day, just trust, believe and put your faith in Jesus. He will heal you.