Eight years ago when my grandmother passed away, I was completed devastated. At that time, I was still a child. In fact, my grandmother passed away the day after my 12th birthday. She and I used to dance together every Saturday and Sunday morning in the kitchen while she cleaned and listened to her music. When I found out that she was getting gravely sick and began to worry, she said to me, “Don’t worry, baby. I’ll be better.”
We ended up agreeing that when I came back to visit her after my classes would end to go on to Christmas break, we would celebrate my birthday by dancing again in the kitchen like we used to. I remember how she beamed with happiness because of the excitement in my voice. I kept our agreement to be an unbreakable promise.
However, we now know that the promise never happened. The morning after my birthday, the day I was supposed to go down to San Diego to dance and celebrate with her, she had suddenly passed away.
Eight years ago, I didn’t know how to accept the death of a loved one especially the woman who had raised me alongside my grandfather, my mother, and my older brother. This was my first loss of someone I truly and absolutely loved and at a young age.
For a long time now, I always reflect on the time when my grandmother passed away. As a believer in God now, I know that she had made it to Heaven and is under His care now. However, it’s not until now where I question what was it like for her when she realized that she had passed away. What was it like for her when she knew she was no longer going to make it?
Eight years later, today, my grandfather has also passed away. It was this event that has made these questions occur to me. I’m genuinely happy in my heart to know that my grandfather is now with my grandmother again because they were/are the most beautiful couple I have ever witnessed in my life.
I started thinking, “I wonder how happy Lolo was to see Lola again.”
But then I thought, “What did Lolo do when he realized that he was no longer here on Earth?”
The reason why I question this is because I don’t know if my Lolo was entirely or consciously aware of what was happening to him during his last few moments. I also pose this question because I just feel so sad thinking that it’s not only us here on Earth that are sad, but my grandfather as well. I know my grandfather truly and absolutely loved us as much as we loved him, but it must have come to be a shock for him as well to know that His will has been done and this was what it was.
Now that I’m older, the impact of death was not as painful as it was eight years ago. I know now that there is a Heaven and that both my Lolo and Lola have made it there. I realize now that they are no longer in pain and suffering has ceased. I know now that they are happy together once again and they are both dancing together like they used to when they lived in the Philippines and when they were both still physically able.
I suppose what I’m trying to say is that the feelings that we must feel here, those who depart to Heaven must also feel as well. Though we know that they have made it to paradise, the journey to Heaven may not be as simple as it seems. God is busy comforting us all on both sides and He is here to bring us back into the game.
The one thing that I’m just hoping right now is that my grandfather, my Lolo, knows that I truly and absolutely love him. I will miss him and his laughter; his powerful voice that sounded like a lion’s roar full of strength. And I most certainly hope that while he is up there and possibly grieving that he won’t see us for a very long time, that my loving grandmother will be there to comfort him alongside our Heavenly Father.
Lolo, I love you, and I’m happy and blessed to have been with you during your last few days and your last few moments. You are my role model and the reason why I laugh and want to be like you. I know I have a lot of work to do, but I will never forget the small times you would talk to me and just tell me to keep studying hard and to never give up.
Please have fun while you’re there, Lolo.
Until we are reunited again, Lolo, I love you and please take care.