It took me a while to get to write another blog, and this one is no picnic. I’m writing this to pay homage to a really good friend whom I have lost recently.
Let’s call him “A”.
I met A a few years back, for a company we both worked for. He was clean, with very nice teeth and smile. He dresses well, like he is always going to meet clients. He is jolly and will find ways to cheer up an otherwise dull day. We became fast friends, and I learned a lot about his life. I’m amazed with what he has gone through, from his career, rising from the ranks, to his family life, being a breadwinner when we were just of the same age. At times he’d complain about making ends meet, but in a way, he’d sound like he’s just joking his way through it. He’s hardworking, never heard him complain about the early call time for events, or the fact that he will have to be the one to man booths and set them up himself.
One of the things I love about A was that he is very gracious and thoughtful. I remember before, he used to buy me lunch daily as I don’t want to go out of the office and walk towards the store. I loved the fattening liempo and lechon kawali, and he noticed that I ordered the same thing everyday. He’s concerned about my health, so for a couple of weeks, he pretended that liempo and lechon kawali were not available so I’d be forced to order chicken or fish. I got pissed but realized quickly,wow, this person cares!
He also always mentions the things he appreciates in a person — whether its the work ethic, generosity, or sincerity. I think that in the midst of this cruel world, A will always see the good in others, and that is what he helps me remember.
When I left the company, we still kept in touch, and even had a couple of projects tied up and worked together. We do not regularly talk, but when we see each other, we’d talk non-stop until we realize it’s already late. I hated that he called me “Ms. Jan” in front of others, but loved it when he says I taught him a lot of what he does on his own now. I wish back then I also said to others, that I learned a lot about him too.
Come March, we found out that A was very sick. On that same week, another friend and I visited him, and cried at what we saw. Very thin and sickly, he smiled weakly at us and talked as if he wasn’t scared. I gave him a book, and left it with a note in the middle of the grocery bags we brought for him. I was just entering my car when I got a call. A was half laughing and half crying, telling me thank you and not to worry about him. A couple more visits and another month came along, and suddenly, he was gone.
We were told to expect it, but like everyone else, we did not expect it to end so soon. I miss his smile. I miss his criticisms, especially when he tells me I look fat in what I wear. Up until he passed, I didn’t realize how much he was part of my life. My friends from events know him, my family and relatives, my ministry-mates, and even the people I work with now. Everyone who got to know him, remembered him.
So to A, whom I know is looking down on me right now from heaven, THANK YOU. IT WAS A GREAT PLEASURE KNOWING YOU AND KNOWING YOUR LIFE. IT WAS AN HONOR WORKING WITH SUCH A HARDWORKING MAN LIKE YOU. I WILL FOREVER BE GRATEFUL FOR OUR FRIENDSHIP. You’re home now, and that leaves us with peace. No more pain, just joy and memories we will always keep.