I have been wanting to write a blog post because I was grieving quite a bit, but just never got around to it. 10.10.18 was my sister’s 2nd year death anniversary. It also happened to be the same day as my Father-in-Law’s girlfriend, Suzanne.
And surprisingly… I’ve been running into some old friends lately. Maybe I shouldn’t be so surprised because it’s the Universe’s way of nudging me. I just happened to go to “our” McDonald’s the other day with my mom. Mind you, I haven’t been there in years! But just sitting there and saying to hi Rosalina and Jenny Chan just made me really miss the times I worked with my sister. Those are some times I really hated (because who really liked working at McDonald’s?) but those are times I can never get back and I just miss when I think about my younger days. It was also very weird to introduce my son to Rosalina and Jenny. I guess it’s all because that WAS a place where I had a spent a lot of years and I guess I never in a million years I would just casually go back there with a kid… MY KID!
Anyhow, during these past few days…. I have been running into a couple of “moments” that have ties with my sister. So on Tuesday night, October 9th, I went to Suzanne’s viewing and saw this man named Rodney. Rodney was a McDonald’s regular who was always nice to both my sister and I. I noticed him and he noticed me as well but we couldn’t really make conversation during the Rosary. As soon as the prayers were done, I got up to comfort my fussy child… then Rodney called me over and asked me, “I’m sorry but where do I know you from?”
As soon as I said McDonald’s, I saw how i finally clicked in his mind, and he recognized me right away! He mentioned that he ran into “the lady at the gas station”— Angel! Angel was at one point, my sister’s best friend. My sister even co-signed for a Beamer she had purchased. Which I could NEVER do for a “friend.” Rodney told me that Angel had given him the sad news about my sister.
A couple of days ago, I received a friend request from a “Jen” on Facebook. I didn’t recognize her right away… but she is someone my sister and I had worked with at McDonald’s. Jen, too, also mentioned she had just heard about my sister’s passing from another co-worker.
Then on Friday night… I received a message from a woman named Sanza D. Torres, a lady who appears to still be living in the Philippines with her son. We exchanged stories on Messenger, she asked me what had happened to my sister, how she got sick, and if she ever got married. She shared some stories about their days at NU (National University) while they were both studying Architectural Drafting. She said that my sister was very nice to her and Roma was her go-to whenever she had any problems. She also let me know that my sister sent her $2K Pesos (this is when we had already moved here in the US) when she needed it the most, especially because she was a struggling single mother.
My heart was aching when I heard this story… because that really really really REALLY sounds like something my sister would do. And I knew that that lady, Sanza, was telling the truth… she was grieving as much as I was. And her grieving happened so late… and it makes me think… does everyone who ever knew my sister know that she’s gone?
How lucky am I to have been associated with someone like her! People have nothing but great things to say about my sister. I hope she knew how much people love(d) her.
I just recalled one time, when my mom and I were helping her use the bathroom…. she was very sick, very frail already, hair gone, legs were trembling. She just suddenly turned to me and my mom and said ‘how come nobody gives me a hug anymore?’ in Tagalog. It really breaks my heart just thinking about that time. I should’ve hugged her more.
These past few days have been very difficult for the heart. I think that my outer behavior isn’t the best to be around either. I mostly have a lot of anger/guilt still. I wish I had been nicer to my sister and nicer to my dad.
I wasn’t able to attend Sue’s funeral because it at the same time we attended Mass for my sister’s 2 year mark.