Dear Jack......Part 1
"Dear Jack.......How have you been?
Its been quite sometime since we've spoken. I miss you....a lot. There is so much I want to tell you son....so little time life gives us. I do not know when I will see you again, or if I will ever get the chance to sit you down. As you know, I am 80 in July. I never wanted to reach 80. Accidentally, God forgot my time was up years ago.
Things have been slipping away in my mind. My memories of people are slipping. I hate that. It feels like life is cheating me out of my personal belongings. My knees and back, seems very tired. I think I pushed them too much.
I guess I just wanted to write you in case anything happens. I screwed up....a lot in this life. I missed opportunities and left a lot of good people. I failed some of my patients. And no matter what I did, I can only seem to remember the people that I failed. I do not know why I deserved to live this long. Maybe it is penance. God, my lungs feels like a husk.
I know your having a hard time now, with Ellen and the girls. You are lucky you know....you found her. I should know, I found my true love after all the things that I had done. All that masks and socially accepted crap. How she got away, was my fault entirely. I let her get away. I took my chances for granted. You know why, because I was dumb. Then again, I had a vision originally....an elaborate plan. I wanted to do things in this life. Most importantly, she wouldn't have understood. But I loved her so much. Remember when I told you about a life of meaning, or a life of happiness? I made a choice son, I chose meaning. Of course I regretted it a lot. I lived a hard and painful life. Don't think I would trade it for anything else though. I wish I could have lived both lives but it don't work that way.
Quite an adventure though. Sigh....Wish you could have met the people I met. They were the best. Nothing beats the feeling of making a change in your patient's life. In the end though, no one will remember. Not the people you stake your life for, not the people you helped by being the bad guy. Not even the angels and devils whispering, with all their twisted little wars. I don't think I will remember it all either. But you move on and choose to do it because you believe in helping others make it through the day. You believe you can make people's lives better. Maybe because you foolishly think you can defy fate....and the laws of gravity does not apply to you. Whatever the case, you do what you have to.....for the good of the patient.
I just want you to be happy son. I've seen you grow up with Ellen, and I know you got it right the first time. Don't let it go. That don't happen a lot. Dont be dumb. Don't be stupid. Take a chance. Forget the details and just make a move. Do not worry about the audience, just shout your love for her. In the end, I am at your side. No one understands this like we do.
I wish you were here. It gets kinda lonely. I also wish I had one last day of adventure....maybe with you. I never wanted to retire. Never wanted the money. I just wanted the adventure. Lastly, I wish I get some fried chicken later....I miss my KFCs....
Until next week. Same as last week. Go get 'em....
A Little Story........Part 4
As I woke up, I saw her again…..
her eyes were filled with pity…her confusion was set to be my confusion. Dazed…Something about her…seems so erased…."small details"…seemed blurry….As if she was so far away…distant….I can’t seem to remember her anymore. The world trickles…fading in and out. Like the softest breeze, she gently parts the silence, with her morning lips, she gently makes me feel human… "What are you afraid of ?…."
People like to indirectly ask me that sometimes…but never her. When they do ask, they have this knowing grin on their faces…As if they expect me to have an answer. I humor them most of the time because that’s what they want me to say. "I am not afraid of anything", or "I know what I am doing". From college to medical school, to all sorts of trivials and challenges…I was just like you, going through the motions. Facing one big bang to another. In the end, the trick was to make your mind believe that the next step is to go through the next motion…and the next….and the next. That stopping was forbidden. That moving, made a difference. Then again either way was always better than either way. It meant that there was a point where any decision can not be anymore right than the next. Where a choice can never be more wrong than the next. That going through a path is better than trying to choose which path to take.
I don’t know why she came to me tonight. I thought no one understood me. She makes me feel like I am wrong at times. I guess it is true what they say. "The path that ghosts follow are written on the land in old words". They do not take planes…or trains…or drive in interstate highways to spain. They just simply walk. Is that what she is? Sometimes it seems that I am looking through her eyes…Sometimes it seems, she maybe looks through mine. Maybe we just make it up as we go along.
Away from the people I love, Apart from the work I am so passionate about,..Without meaning and almost empty of options… I stare at her…all night…and I wonder, "Where do we go from here?…."
Only in Dreams....
Imagine a little boy, whose heart begins to burst out of his chest......
Several years before all my education ever happened, I was this clumsy little geek who loves comics and made a buncha friends. It was a very confusing time for me. Trying to define what was cool and what was apparently not. Grown-ups called it "the impressionable age". I called it "What the F@@K?!".
I grew up with 3 brothers and attended a famous catholic school exclusively for the male species. From the first grade....until I finished puberty. It was fun though and for some reason i was friends with everybody. Until now, I havent unraveled that mystery. I use to know what to say and when to say it. It was a gift I think. For some reason though, whenever i talked with girls...i lose myself. I suddenly dont know what planet i am from. I get sweaty, my hands are faucets...and my heart....oh my heart...just beats away like a big giant drum.
The words dont come easy. It never did. I did not have a lot of money back then. No car, no fashion sense....and certainly did not know how to tango. All I had was my dreams, good humor, and the blessed people around me. God I miss that feeling. It seems I felt so unimpressive those days....looking back though...I would love to be back to the clueless little kid who thought girls where angels from pluto. I did not know why, i just knew they were special. I miss being all nervous around someone. I use to play this weezer song "only in dreams" when i went to bed. It was on repeat, a million times, everytime i slumbered.
Trying to work up the courage to ask for a number or to call someone. Like a giant kryptonite, I would fall ill...my laugh chokes me...and i have to follow through like it was all natural. I had a script to the next few words i was going to say. I was innocent, I think. I had no claims. I had nothing impressive...yet....I miss it....Being all clumsy. I have all this confidence...but i dont think its real. I think it is a mask we wear to tell ourselves we are achievers. That we have grown up. Because that is what people want. Honesty and sincerity...that was me back then. My epiphany now, is I defined those words when i was young. I never wanted to compete with anyone and show how bigger my TV was. I just wanted to be me. To clumsily ask a girl out. To read my adventure graphic novels. To come up with a thousand ideas a day. To dig deep to my pockets just to afford a date. to break out my coin bank and feel momentarily like a man.
What brings us to this weird and vent-ful blog. I dont have a clue. For the first time in years...I heard that song again. For the first time in years...I felt soo clumsy again. My heart just bursting in the seams and i dont know what to do. Its all memories but its all heavenly of course. So I just crank up the song again, place it in repeat,...and just enjoy the sweet scent of uncertainty, disdain, and awe....It is the only thing that makes me feel alive. I certainly dont know if anyone knows what that means anymore.....
The Secret.........Part 1
Your name is John...and you deliver babies. You secretly hold your breath each time you grasp their tiny little heads…you hold your breath secretly...each time until they move about and cry. You hold your breath each time you carry their soft slippery gooey bodies across the room. You secretly hold your breath on a lot of stuff and pretty much get away with it.
You have been working in the same hospital…with the same people for an unknown period of time. You do not care. For a time, nothing meant anything anymore You do not care. It just started not to matter for a really long time. You are disgusted by the outside world as much as the people that you help. Full of desperate and needy people…the only difference is…people outside hide them better. There is no place for you out there. Except beside the warm body that cuddles you at night after a long shift is over.
Its madness really. But you do not care. You like it that way. So it was the same when she was born. She was a slimy 6.6lbs…with a physiologic physique. A baby. You held your breath just the same. You waited for the cry…and carried her body across the room just the same. It was 2am…and you really wanted to sneak sleep for a few minutes. Sleeping helps pass the time. Makes things go faster. She was suppose to sleep after you did your thing. But irritatingly, she didn’t. She opened her eyes and you were alarmed by something unusual. At first your senses were dazed. At first you held your breath again. She had the most beautiful eyes you have ever seen in this life. She started to smile…and for some unknown reason, looked around, as if curious of the rotting walls of the room…she said “hello”. You look around, but most of the staff were on their own sneaky corners…sleeping for a sneaky 5-10mins before another one gets delivered. You looked at her, wearily almost jumpy…and said to yourself…I am in trouble. The little baby asked, “why is that?”. You replied, “I think I just lost my mind. Would you help me find it?” The baby laughed. How can a baby laugh? You ask yourself. She laughed and giggled to your sarcastic little remarks. You indulged her a bit…talked a bit. Sometimes, insanity is an entertaining thing you tell yourself. I will take a pill for it later. Anyway, you both go on and on about what the world is like. You, of course talked about what mattered to you. Music books, hospital drama. And then she stops and asked, “You don’t look happy?” “Are you kidding? I am happy, I like what I am doing, better to let the world rot while we constantly try to clean up the mess” “Your funny” she says. Tired and bored with the direction of the story I tell her to sleep, like the rest of the babies beside her. She says, “I will in a minute but I wanted to ask you why you like being unhappy? Why is misery so attractive to you” I tell her its not. That I wanted to help people, there was nothing I wanted to do rather than this. Life is full of pain and misery…I just learned to accept it and live with it. She looked at me angrily with her big brown eyes and said, “Are you on crack? I did not get born just to enjoy misery” You then argue “…then you should not have gone and be born…this world...this life...its all about that little good thing preceeded by a ridiculously huge amount of bad things. It is pain that tucks you in bed almost every night…It is pain that helps us wake up and move forward” She begins to cry…and then...you suddenly feel like the biggest idiot.
You vigorously apologize to her and say that there are small things that do make it worthwhile for you. One of which was seeing someone as beautiful as her. For the rest of your life, people you meet along the way shall never see the beauty that you saw that night…in that filthy little place. You tell her you felt sorry for the rest of the world. She begins to sob slowly and then stops crying altogether. She says “John, I think your beautiful too. I am mystified by you…I am curious, elated, and very excited to hear your stories. I think your beautiful and a good enough reason to live. I am in awe and can never imagine meeting anyone like you”. Then it comes…That sudden chill from your spine…the dumbest, simplest, warmnest feeling in your heart. You fear feeling warm…you hate feeling anything…You are mortified by the truth. You feel your iron walls melting like butter. You began to realize this baby does not know how much she has suddenly made you feel…vulnerable again. You begin to hate her because you suddenly feel happy with her. And that is that. She smiles for a long time…you take a picture together…A look in her eyes says she is happy…and there is no place she would rather be at this time than be with you. She falls asleep moments after. You close your eyes a bit and everything was back to normal. Your eyes were a few seconds away from shedding a tear. You never were comfortable having tears…You almost forgot how salty they can be. Then suddenly you hear shouting and the clanking metal rolling towards the delivery room. Your eyes open, you put on your mask…and automatically move in gear towards the incoming patient…secretly holding your breath. Still with the same passion…still with the same resolve…Secretly an inch happier. Sneakingly holding on to a tad more hope...
The Silence of Jabe...
Imagine you can never speak.....Not a single sound.......
Not a hymm, not a yawn...not a single word. Ever. Then Imagine you are given one chance to speak,...What would you say?
Imagine a life so mudane and hopeless...Where everything else is constant...That death would be such a sweet release...Imagine people lining up to jump off that ledge...What would you say?
Imagine the people you love...suffering and in pain...trusting you and your finite wisdom...Hoping you can help take back their lives...Imagine that you are lost...and uncertain of what to do...What would you say?
Imagine you are faced with our Creator...the vastness of His power...the insignificance of you...centered to His attention...Imagine he takes a good long look inside you...What would you say?
Imagine you fell asleep...Reason be damned, you see her again in front of you. Imagine their is nothing else left in this life but to be true...No masks, No circumstances,...and no roles to play...Imagine you were given a chance to whisper...What would you say?
Imagine the swaying of a tree...the flow of a river that would not move an inch...Imagine that world would completely stop, standstill, and listen to you...Imagine the silence that would break on the very next sound you make...What would you say?
There was a story I heard…two or three days ago…
about a girl who lost everything she held dear. What was dear to her meant something that had 2 arms and 2 legs. What was dear to her was the soothing company of a particular guy…the soft caress whom she grew very fondly of. They once met in a small coffee shop within the city. It was something they never expected to happen in a day such as that clumsy day was. They talked for hours and laughed for hours. They forgot their names and who they were. Everything seemed so unimportant. She remembered swearing oaths to him while in bed. She remembers looking into his eyes and building a world in each of them. She saw a life with him and never saw anything else. And now she finds herself crying…swearing at life and all its intricacies. How rudely everything falls apart. She does not remember what she did wrong…or where it went wrong. She just knew something happened…and it all came falling apart. She could not care for the dry world she now lived in…all she ever knew and wanted was gone…he was gone. Life seemed chaotic…dull…and unimportant. She buried herself under blankets and sheets. It seemed like the only thing she could do. But it was not the only thing that he could do. He came again…just like before…from a flash of light…he was there again…in her bed…under her blankets and sheets. He came again…and he held her tight. She did something she never thought possible anymore…she cried even harder. She cried loud and hard…and held him so tight...tighter than anything she ever held before. For a moment, he was just there…staring at her…giving that comforting smile she always liked. Life seemed fuller and she suddenly stops falling. She felt saved. She forgot who she was, where she was, and everything else that happened in this life. She just knew one thing. She knew she was happy with him. It’s a sudden acceptance that she cannot live without him. What seemed like forever in hell suddenly ended. She felt an uneasy comfort…drenched in false hopes. She hears him say those 3 words she so longed to hear.
Then suddenly like a passing splash of water…he was gone…and she felt the tearing fire of hell condemning her again. The empty hole in her chest burst wide open yet again. She cries even harder and louder under blankets and sheets…where no one can hear her. Where her life is but a fleeting paper gone with the wind…buried somewhere…which the world will never stop for, care for, and wonder about…Where she will see nothing…but what could and would have been…
Here we go again....
Trapped with another one...I see flickerish lamps and hazy shinny objects...a dim shade of light...and stale smoke hanging in the air...I grab my glass and sip...and drink what lefts of it. I am surrounded by my often friends...Johnny, Jack, Smith,...JB, Miguel, and Tito Pepe. Nobody really likes Tito Pepe...but we still let him hang around with us. Johnny laughs and tells me how pathetic i am. That all my frustrations are a joke. I really wish it was. Nothing seemed to be going my way. I felt so alone...so tired...that i can do no right. I tell them how clumsy i was with a lot of things. Relationships, work, and even small little things...I seem to fcuk it all up. It was irrational...unfair...like i was being bullied by fate. Finishing my drink i gave johnny and jack the finger anyway...hoping it would work on them and make me feel better. But they just bloody laugh. JB and Miguel tells me maybe i should try harder...I tell them i already have. Smith just shook his head and looked at me with pity. Tito Pepe would speak up...but he knows better than to say anything in my current state of mind. I like to give up now...I tell them that it does not seem to matter how much i try...people would look down on me...people i have known all my life would take risks with me...but they would never believe in me...and even if i do make it, It would not change the way they saw me. That is was all for nothing. I tell them i am leaking hope...tears began to fall down from my eyes. I start to wish i never existed...i wished I was dead...that a huge comet would just fall on me and end this silly joke. I plead them...to just make it stop..........Then suddenly...i feel a light brush of a hand...unnerving my scalp...brushing my hair. It was so soft and so gentle that it sent a sweet chill in my spine. I look around and i see angel black eyes and long brown hair...Her rosy cheeks and naughty angel smile calms my every thought...She seemed worried. "Where have you been?" I asked...She told me she was looking for me...and that i forgot to take my pills. I tell her i love her and that I was just thinking. She says that she knows. Her voice is so calm...so soothing...like mints. I start to look around...and i see an empty room...i see friends back in their shelves...quiet...dusty...watching. I look back at her, and say "honeydude, I'm tired...Can we go home now?"...She smiles and lets a tear out...she takes my hand warmly and with a smile...i stagger to stand...and start to make our way home...