what is a real friend?
a real friend is someone you are not afraid to show the ugliest in you, for he accepts you as you are. you can tell him the grossiest stuff you’ve ever done and you’ll both laugh about it till you have tears in your eyes. you can brag things you have accomplished and he will not interpret this as arrogance for he is true to himself that he is happy for you.
a real friend does not expect anything back from you when he has done a favor for you, the friendship that you offer is already his reward. he is by your side when you hate your life, he will listen even you’re talking nonsense, he is there with you even if you cannot afford to buy yourself a cup of coffee for you are broke. your relationship does not involve money, for it is never an issue.
a real friend will tell you if he sees you are wrong, he may argue with you but he will still respect your own opinion. he will never leave you alone in distress, you can cry and scream and holler and act like crazy but he will just be in one corner grinning at you.
real friends are tested through time, it does not matter if you have not seen each other for months, for the moment you’re with him, everything is just the same as it was before.
i thank god for my real friends, they are one of my life’s greatest blessing.
a filipino overseas foreign worker was found dead inside the lavatory of a ‘gulf air’ plane the other day. that plane is the same one i take every time i go home for days off. i read he took his own life while the plane was preparing to land in manila, using a ‘clothing article’ to asphyxiate himself by hanging.
it is not easy being away from one’s family. here in the middle east, there are instances that one will be assigned for work remotely, with limited ways of communication. i have been working here in saudi arabia for five years and have seen co-workers who were in the brink of ‘losing’ it, specially when there are problems back home with their families.
i remember way back, my ma never tells my father who is also in saudi arabia any ‘bad news’ as much as possible. she even warns me and my siblings not to write or call about to him anything that might make him worry or make him sad because she said being away from us is already hard for him and it will just leave him feeling helpless. i followed my father’s footsteps of working here in the mideast, it was then that i appreciated my father more, for i clearly saw the sacrifice he did for our family.
i am thinking of the man on that plane. is it self-sacrifice or his last resort to escape? his exact reason no one will really know for he has brought it with him to his grave.
i was at a young age when my father left to work abroad, i did not understand then why he chose to leave us. everytime i see an airplane in the skies, i thought my father is on that plane and i shout “tatay! tatay“! (father! father!), waving my hands till it was out of my sight.
my parents sacrificed a lot for me and my siblings, i know it wasn’t that easy for them being apart. my mother used to cry when she arrives home coming from the airport after my father leaves again to go back to work. she usually goes straight upstairs in our small two-storey rented house and after a while i will follow her and i’ll see her weeping. all i can do was sit beside her. i knew she’ll be missing him again.
my father is not perfect, but i can say that he truly loves us, his family. it is very fortunate for me that he is my father, i wouldn’t choose anyone else.
happy father’s day, “tatay“.. i love you.
a flicker of light
as i walk
in a dark road
every step i took
for the right path
i have sensed it
a deep feeling
has consumed me
what i have sought
that encompassed me . . .
. . . sometimes i think the only way to make all things better is to escape.
today is the exact day that i arrived in saudi three years ago.
i told myself then that three years would be enough – guess i got that wrong.
in our life, i believe that we have a light switch that we can choose to turn on or off. but if ever someone do choose to turn it off, there will always be the risk of darkness consuming him.