After 21 years of marriage, my wife wanted me to take another woman out to dinner and a movie. She said, “I love you, but I know this other woman loves you too, and she would love to spend some time with you.”
The other woman that my wife wanted me to visit was my MOTHER, who has been a widow for 19 years, but the demands of my work and my three children had made it possible to visit her only occasionally. That night I called to invite her to go out for dinner and a movie.
“What’s wrong, are you well?” she asked. My mother is the type of woman who suspects that a late night call or a surprise invitation is a sign of bad news.
“I thought that it would be pleasant to spend some time with you,” I responded. “Just the two of us.”
She thought about it for a moment, and then said…
“I would like that very much.”
That Friday after work, as I drove over to pick her up, I was a bit nervous. When I arrived at her house, I noticed that she, too, seemed to be nervous about our date. She waited in the door with her coat on. She had curled her hair and was wearing the dress that she had worn to celebrate her last wedding anniversary. She smiled from a face that was as radiant as an angel’s.
“I told my friends that I was going to go out with my son, and they were impressed,” she said, as she got into the car. “They can’t wait to hear about our meeting.”
We went to a restaurant that, although not elegant, was very nice and cozy. My mother took my arm as if she were the First Lady. After we sat down, I had to read the menu. Her eyes could only read large print. Half way through the entries, I lifted my eyes and saw Mom sitting there staring at me. A nostalgic smile was on her lips.
“It was I who used to have to read the menu when you were small,” she said.
“Then it’s time that you relax and let me return the favor,” I responded.
During the dinner, we had an agreeable conversation - nothing extraordinary but catching up on recent events of each other’s life. We talked so much that we missed the movie.
As we arrived at her house later, she said, “I’ll go out with you again, but only if you let me invite you.” I agreed.
“How was your dinner date?” asked my wife when I got home.
“Very nice. Much more so than I could have imagined,” I answered.
A few days later, my mother died of a massive heart attack. It happened so suddenly that I didn’t have a chance to do anything for her. Some time later, I received an envelope with a copy of a restaurant receipt from the same place mother and I had dined. An attached note said: “I paid this bill in advance. I wasn’t sure that I could be there; but nevertheless, I paid for two plates - one for you and the other for your wife. You will never know what that night meant for me. I love you, son.”
At that moment I understood the importance of saying, in time, “I LOVE YOU.”
And to give our loved ones the time they deserve. Because nothing is more important in life than family… and they shouldn’t be put off until “some other time.”
Please share this with every daughter and son you know. Oh well Just Share it with every family and friends you know too! Don’t be too late to say How much you love your parents, your sons, your daughters, and your spouse. Today is a good time to go and tell those beautiful words or better do something so beautiful that they will cherish it forever. God Bless. :)
I’ve just finished attending a two day seminar (Continuing Education for Pharmacist) Contrary to what I’m expecting I did not fell asleep haha! I have this very bad habit of headbanging every time I’m in a conducive place for learning (my body interpret it as conducive place for napping :P ) Applause to the speakers for keeping me awake, their names are worthy mentioning. Dr. Los Banos, Dr Jennifer and Dr Grace, and of course to our very own Atty. Edsel Manuel. I find him cute despite his receding hairline. I’m a softie when it comes to men with good head on their shoulders ( alright that’s too much details!!! )
It felt good to be a student again, in fact I feel young! I really enjoyed Psycho c/o Dr. Los Banos, rediscovered new adjectives to describe me ( Delusional and Hypochondriac to name a few). Serious during Oncology lecture c/o Dr Jennifer and dreamy during Derma c/o Dr Grace ( 2 hours figuring out how in the world she has such beautiful skin -UNFAIR!) I was really enjoying all of it, then it deemed to me, I use to dream of becoming a doctor… I think it’s still in me… But what happened? … and the memory just flooded through me.
In the hospital, lazy afternoon, a very ordinary day at the hospital. The ER door burst open, a stretcher appear before me, in it a three yr old boy with a third degree burn. Following Him is his mother and father. Later that day I’ve learned that the boy’s name is Emmanuel. His brother accidentally poured a pot of very hot porridge on him.
The moment I saw Emmanuel, I know he’s going to die. Even if he would, he’ll be crippled, disfigured and ugly. He’ll just suffer… longer. I am not going to be attached.
The following day as we do the rounds, I saw Emmanuel. Pale and Frail. Her mother trying to bath him, thinking that it would alleviate the boy’s pain. I just stood and stare at Emmanuel. He’s parents doesn’t have the means to support his treatment. I am not going to be attached.
The next day, Emmanuel is barely breathing. I will not be attached, For Pete’s sake I’ve got to stop mentioning his name. But in my heart grew admiration for the young boy, for fighting for his life, for being strong. I knew that every breath pains him, every touch is a punishment. In my mind, I was mentally giving orders. Give this child fluids, antibiotics and pls! damn change the boy’s dressing. Give Emmanuel clean sheets por pabor! I ain’t feeling this. I’m stressing too much on a boy I very knew that would die. He’s just another patient that would come and go…
The following day I passed by his room. He’s in a stretcher with a blanket over him. I stop, I wanted to take away the cover. Oh no! I am attached. I turned my back and wipe away the tears that threatened to fall. I caught a glimpse of the doctor attending to Emmanuel, He was looking at me with such pity and mockery, looking at me as such kind of a moron for spending too much time and emotions on the boy. And, i thought to myself. I don’t have the makings of a doctor…Im too emotional and too emphatic.
I heard the boy’s mother’s wailing, she plummeted me with questions I myself don’t know the answers. She asked why did it have to happened? Why did he have to be taken away from me? I wanted to shout at her, Can’t you see its hopeless! Can’t you just be happy that finally his suffering is over, finally he’s not feeling the pain… I dont know… I don’t know why God allows this to happen. I wanted to shout, no longer at her, but to the world. To the world that I’m attached to, to the world that seems addicted to pain and sufferings. But I didn’t…
I remember that God came into the world in human flesh. I remember that God watched another God suffer. That one God could have send His angels to protect that God, that God who is His only begotten son. But He didn’t. He didn’t want to compromise humanity. He didn’t want to risk it even if it would mean the life of His only son. God never gave up on a race who are deemed unworthy, hopeless, ugly and deform.
So I didn’t shout at his mother, Instead I hug her. With a big lump on my throat I said to myself… I may not fully understand, but I’m not going to be a doctor without a heart.
So damn ture.