At 33, my mind’s still fresh of hundreds of memories with you. I will never forget that day when you invited me in to a spooky “spirit of the candle” only to find out you are making a fool out of me. That excitement and happiness I felt when the candle answered a resounding “yes” to my question on whether my crush also likes me; and that how in just a split of a second it broke my heart because the candle’s answer was a hoax but still glad because you chose to answer “yes” and made me a bit happy nevertheless. I can still feel today the exhaustion and my cries of pain when you let me go with you and our cousin on a 3-hour mountain hike, because you really felt that “that girl” who lives very far from the plains was the one. And after a few months, you were already dating someone else. Lol!
Those high school days when you hate the planting season because we have to cook loads of food for the planters or the harvesters. The days we were asked to gather “kuhol” or wood for fuel. At school when I am always asked how we are related, and how they expect me to be as intelligent as you. I always smile and I feel proud, that you are my brother. When we were always out; when you were with your dance group; and when at one point we failed to prepare dinner; and that Papa got angry and blurted out how irresponsible we were and announced he will get married-and only to find out his wedding is the next day. I would never exchange those bitter-sweet moments.
How I hated that day when I thought we will lose you. I hated the doctors and those incompetent nurses for not being able to pinpoint what was wrong with you. I could never bear to see you suffer that way. I was your companion, your storyteller. It didn’t matter how difficult it was and how worried I was, all I prayed for was for you to survive. Your youth, your brains, your good heart- I told God you deserve to live.
The times when we argue because you could not understand my point of view; but I always felt your respect as you know what was in my heart because we grew up together. Today, I always look back on those moments. They inspire me; you inspire me and make me remember how fun and wonderful it was growing up with you.
Your birthday will always be a reminder that I am given a wonderful package of a best friend in a brother.