just a week ago, i learned from my brother that a fellow Bikolano UPean, straight from el-bi, is now battling with stage 4 cancer. indeed, it is very easy to say, let him be, stage 4 cancer is incurable anyway. that was admittedly my first reaction when i heard the news. i even thought, he must be killing himself because he intends to do at least 4 major 'projects' (a book launch, a piano concert, selling of shirts and postcards, selling of his private manuscripts) to raise money for his chemotherapy.
but after taking yaman to school and walking along the windy subdivision where their school is, i began to wonder, how does one really approach the reality of dying early? early as in half a period earlier than the national life expectancy. early as in your only child is only 3. early as in you'll be leaving your wife to take on the role of father and sole provider soon. early as in, you will never have the privilege of being able to take things for granted. like getting a smoke, having one bottle of beer, reading a newspaper without thinking of yourself, pausing to take pictures here and there. blogging just for the heck of it. just allowing time to pass by unnoticed. when one gets sick and terminally ill, the intangible and precious commodity that is time could no longer be had.
you want to compress everything in an instant. if your life can fit a scrapbook then so be it. one aims to an act of heroism by leaving an imprint of the life spent in so short a time. in a paradox with my thoughts yesterday, faced with the prospect of death, we yearn to find a bit of instrumentality and importance to our existence as specks in the universe. we are memorable specks after all. that we mean something to someone after all. in this way, death can be defeated.
death can be defeated by memory.