The Return of eLf ideas

ideas of an eLven being in Canada

Monday, April 17, 2006

A Happy and Sad Easter for Grandfather and Me

April 17, 2006
Easter Sunday

For now I "envy" those who are in the Philippines because all of you can spend the Lenten season in a relaxing and sentimental way—mountain climbing, swimming, or just be with family and friends.

I sorely miss my life there. During Lenten season, I got to take time out from work and spend time with my family going somewhere relaxing.

Here, if not for my friends' messages which serve as reminders of the season, I would have forgotten all about it.

One setback in living in a very diverse and multicultural society is that you always find yourself lost—spiritually and culturally. The sense of belongingness is just a spot in a map. Unlike when you're in your homeland, or at least in a place you regard as home, you can just take time to sit back and relax and you feel you're okay.

This may be a battered cliché but I'll say it anyway, May we find again love and peace and forgiveness in our hearts during the Lenten season. Regardless if, as humans, we have the tendency to revert to our follies, there're always Christmas and Lenten to re-cleanse ourselves.

Don't worry, friends, I'm trying to practice what I preach. I am beginning to eliminate hatred and resentment in my heart.

I'm an eLf after all!

I realize that, deep inside me, I'm more forgiving and understanding than I am vengeful and resentful.

As in an egg, I am more yolk than shell.

Happy Easter.


However, Sad Easter too.

As I write this entry, I'm alone in my room. Sad. Teary-eyed. Glad yet worried. Confused. Lost.

Yesterday we brought Grandfather to Seven Oaks General Hospital because of severe pain in his stomach. The results said that he has infection in his kidney; the results of his blood test showed an abnormal condition of the liver. Tomorrow he'll be having a blood transfusion.

Since the hospital does not allow a relative to stay with him overnight, I got to get home and have some sleep, and then just return in the morning.

My feelings are ambivalent at its greatest (or worst)...

First, I pity Grandfather because I can't be there with him during the night to look after him as how I'm accustomed to for the last two and a half years. But then, I'm also kind of relieved because I can rest in the room without someone to interrupt my sleep.

Second, I'm glad that I can finally have my privacy being alone in the room, but I noticed that I'm feeling kind of weird being alone.

Anyone who saw the movie Stuck on You? The concept of the emotions and circumstance in which I'm currently finding myself is something like that in the film.

I just hope that whatever happens, I can emerge of this psychological dilemma with my spirits and emotions intact, or at least not that damaged so I can still experience healing eventually.

As for Grandfather, I could only wish one for him right now because of my ambivalence—may he not suffer much pain.

For the past many months, I was the only person who was witnessing Grandfather's physical and emotional sufferings virtually twenty-four hours a day.

And if there's one realization about my personality that I discovered from such experience, this is it—I'm a compassionate and kind person after all, because balancing my annoyance and frustration and resentment for my having to deal with all of these for so long and my understanding and pity and empathy for his sufferings, the last three emotions weighed more.

I'll be writing more updates about Grandfather, as well as some bouts of learning and relearning experiences in having to stay in the hospital with him, enough to observe trivial to salient things. I'm starting to familiarize myself with the machines as well as the procedures the healthcare staff members use and undertake. I feel that, after all, there's really a nurse in me. After having the chance to observe again after 14 years (I had my last year of internship as a nursing student way back 1992) the condition of the sick, the elderly, and the hospital staff, something tells me that another mission of mine is to help sick people alleviate their sufferings and guide them as they battle illness and death. I could somehow feel that my having taken and finished B.S. Nursing was not a mistake after all.

May I be granted a longer life myself to enable me to realize my dreams and plans, but not too long a life to the point that my children will see me as a burden.

To my mother and father, don't worry, I promise to take care of you especially when you reach old age. If there's one great thing I learned from having to share Grandfather's elderly life for almost three years—this is it:

Parents and children (and grandchildren) must, since day one, really have an open line of communication between them, for this removes the formality and the emotional gaps which prevent them from freely expressing their affection and genuine concern for each other.

Tomorrow morning, I still have to get up early. I need to be there with Grandfather during the daytime, to assure him that everything will be okay—a sugar-coated lie.


  • At Monday, April 17, 2006 4:45:00 AM, Blogger vayie said…

    Happy Easter, eLf. No matter how sad things are for you today, I still hope you'll find it and give yourself a favor by looking up... Things will be okay.

  • At Monday, April 17, 2006 8:07:00 AM, Blogger Jennie said…

    I hope everything is well. "All good things come to those who wait."

  • At Thursday, April 20, 2006 9:30:00 PM, Blogger Micaela said…

    Hi Alfie! Share ko lang. My mom has stage 2 cancer and she's undergoing hormonal inhibition right now. Right now I took her under my wing (temporarily), and the side effects of her medication are not just making her crazy, it's killing me too (see my blog). I'm trying my best to be patient with her every day, and you know what? I always remember you and how you take care of your grandfather whenever I feel my patience drop. Ang galing mo =) And your lolo is so lucky. I wish that someday, when I get to that part of having to fully take care of mom, that I'll also have your patience and care. =)

  • At Sunday, April 23, 2006 8:36:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    thanks for everything, you love you love you!!!



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