My brother’s Facebook status reminded me to write this blog today.
There I was, yet again, on my Instagram stream… pausing picture after picture, deciding whether this post deserved a ‘like’ (perhaps a comment), until i saw hashtag after hashtag: a day which apparently was the #nationalsiblingsday.
Coincidentally, days ago, my sister Vibered a photo of her and my brother to me when they were babies. They were born two years apart from each other and were often mistaken as twins. They now live some four hours away from each other by plane.
I, on the other hand, was born almost a decade after, and live across the globe from the two of them.
Now, I know that my story is no different from millions of those who live away from their families. But I could not overstate nor underemphasize the pain (I’m not entirely sure this is the right word to use — pain) of the distance; some say I’m lucky because at least my parents are with me, etcetera, etcetera… but somehow, I still digress.
Maybe I’m overreacting, being overly dramatic. I’m… an adult, after all. And it hasn’t been that crazy long, just a little less than two years. But having seen from others’ experiences, I do not want to be a stranger to my siblings. I don’t want to save forever preparing to go back home when I’m already indifferent to the way things used to be between us. I definitely do not want to be that sister who showed up twenty years later, because “life” happened. So to two dearest to me, I struggled to find a picture to post on Instagram (this is really the point of this entry. hahaha)…
and I realized that according to Facebook, there are only 20 tagged photos of me and my brother. And 80 percent of those were of Marielle’s. Long story short: no picture to post of the three of us. (Well, there’s one which my sister disapproved of.)
So there I was lying on bed thinking about my siblings and started scribbling on my phone:
… to two of the few who remind me to pray to God who listens; to two who believe I can when I think I can not (and unfortunately at times think I can NOT when I feel I can); to two of the
very few who tolerate my silly, stubborn attitude at times; to the ones who truly want to see me through not for whatever or whomever but just for me (and maybe the earth’s greater good); to the ones who constantly teach me to appreciate our parents:
I don’t really know what to say.
Many people think that distance has allowed us to be closer as a family. I beg to disagree. I have loved my family and appreciated them the same way even before we moved — only we learned that it takes some getting used to, but no amount of time can ease the longing: no matter how old, no matter how much of adults
we think we already are.
You two may have their respective partners in life right now but I trust that no matter how our priorities change, we have each others’ backs in the long run — at least in this lifetime. For hopefully in a parallel universe, we wouldn’t be Skyping birthdays and holidays away. I’ll no longer need to Viber what strange thing I’m eating… or wait for your Facebook posts to see where you spent your weekend. Only now do I realize that that gallon of Selecta ice cream while waiting for The Buzz on Sundays is priceless, even under Manila heat. And in that parallel universe I’d be sharing chocolate chip cookies with Marielle in person and not virtually.
I don’t know if I’m good at keeping promises, but this I know for sure: that I’ll do my bestEST to not be a stranger to you two. And until we meet again, I’ll take comfort in the fact that though we’re not on the same lands, we all are under the same sky. And wish that this blog post warm your hearts enough to surprise me with roundtrip tickets (I’m not choosy, MNL or KL is fine — your choice).
And sorry, weebs, here’s a photo of me and kuya. Ikaw kasi, ayaw mo yung picture nating tatlo kaya kami na lang. :p
I love you ate and kuya. :)
And because I’m overly in like with quotes, here’s one from a favorite book:
“I am not,” the general said, tilting his head sideways and pressing his hand to his chest to convey humility. “Boys and girls must know the legacy of their fathers.” He turned to me. “Do you appreciate your father, bachem? Do you really appreciate him?”
“Balay, General Sahib, I do,” I said, wishing he’d not call me “my child.”
“Then congratulations, you are already halfway to being a man,” he said with no trace of humor, no irony, the compliment of the casually arrogant.
P.S. Ok frustrated lang talaga ko waley ako napost that day. Hahaha. Kasi si kuya status status pa drama rama tuloy. Huhu. I love you two!