This is the only way I can describe the last day of 2013.
Every other December 31 can be described as so, but this December 31 is truly bittersweet.
Just the other day I found out a batchmate of mine, Troy Carbungco, caught bacterial meningitis. Later I learned she was confined in the ICU and in a coma.
A quick search led me to the signs, symptoms, and complications of bacterial meningitis, and it was, simply put, daunting. But I heard she was fighting it with everything she’s got.
Other batchmates’ reported how she would really try to blink, raise her left arm and leg (for her entire right side was paralyzed) when they spoke to her. I was amazed at Troy’s continuing strength and, like everyone else, I too prayed for a miracle, for her full and speedy recovery.
Come earlier this morning, we found out Troy had gone.
There is no one word that could possibly encapsulate the bevy of emotions one feels upon learning someone you’ve known for years, someone who has walked the same halls and done the same homework you had, had passed away.
There’s always disbelief. The bargaining. The anger. The sadness. The numbness. The guilt. This is the unmistakable bitterness that accompanies the last day of the year.
But there was also the hope. The gratitude.The inspiration from having known such a strong, talented, determined, and passionate individual.
Posts of “I miss you” and “I love you” peppered my newsfeeds. But it was the posts of “You inspired me to do this” and the “Thank you for being so friendly/happy/game for anything” that showed me just how sweet December 31st can be. She and I were never that close but I can say she deserved all those kind words and more.
Troy lived her last few days the ways she’s lived her entire life: with an unmatched zest and determination.
She was a theater star and an aspiring model. I have seen the fruits of her labor, and her efforts do show. She chased her dreams. Took bold and solid steps to achieving what she sent out to do and rightfully so.
She is a star. Not just in the theatrical sense, but also an astronomical sense. Like a true star, she may have gone out but her light still shines for all of us to see. And that, I think, is the ultimate goal of every person: to illuminate and inspire even when physically gone. Being true to her passionate and determined self, she got there ahead and so will her light shine longer and brighter than anyone.
Rest in peace, Troy Carbunco. Thank you shining your light on us. I know you will continue to do so even when you’re up there.
Some people’s personalities are so easy to fall in love with.
Hotarubi no Mori e (Into the Forest of Fireflies’ Light)
This 45 minute film is beautiful and sweet and heartbreaking all at the same time.
Its art is beautiful. Its plot is seemingly simple enough. Its characters are endearing and would definitely grow on you. Though it deals with some supernatural elements (mountain gods and spirits, anyone?), the emotions you’ll feel are as real as can be.
Hotarubi no Mori e is one of those films that hits you bad but since its so beautiful and touching, you can’t not see it again. Its story definitely stays with you for a while.
Photo credit: Nippon Cinema
Somewhere between the casual introductions, the many casual conversations, that one night out, and the confession, something went amiss.
The popular notion of lack of physical interaction leading to a decline in feelings toward a person may have initially been thought of as the reason for the lack of mutuality but I disagree. I think the feelings started waning earlier on, perhaps they might not ever been there at all.
The importance of open communication in any relationship cannot be stressed enough but the power of self-love cannot be denied. In fact, it should probably be a pre-requisite for romantic relationships specifically. Like they’ve said: You cannot save anyone, you can only love them.
Unless both people in a relationship can accept or work through their personal problems first, I don’t think it’ll work out. The idea of one person loving “more” than the other bothers me. How is that love if it isn’t fair?
Of course, this is where our own manifestations of our loving comes into play. Compatability and likemindedness have more bearing than one would think. If you’re the type of person who doesn’t feel comfortable with people doing favors for you, chances are you’ll feel awkward being given random presents that took a lot of time and effort to put together. That inner struggle you feel between being grateful but “undeserving” of such a gesture eats you up and eventually, you think it’s best to cut ties.
What a cruel twist of fate life turns out to be. Too much of a good thing can really get to you if you don’t know what to do with it.
If I Never Knew You by Mel Gibson and Judy Kuhn
During the last few weeks of classes (which are now officially over for the semester!), I was searching for some Disney love song playlists on YouTube to keep me company as I worked through the numerous late nights I went through, which is how I came across this gem.
The dialogue and lyrics are a little cheesy but I love this track.
I don’t understand how choosing to be asexual is a selfish act since “some people would want to like someone but just can’t.”
If you have your reasons for being “unable” to like anyone, then I can have my reasons for choosing not to develop feelings for anyone too.
I say they’re the same thing, except saying that you choose to be asexual is more active.
But meh, I don’t even know why I still have these conversations anymore. It’s not making anything any better.
Everything is going to be alright
"Are you okay?"
"I will be."