Dearest Ate V,
Today is another blessed day for you. As you recount God’s numerous blessings, let me also recount the ways you have touched my life in one way or another.
Remember the first time I have had my first encounter with you at the COMELEC office? I was then working for a Non-Government Organisation and our short exchange of pleasantries was rather friendly. I had no inkling then that you’d soon be my “partner in crime”; be that in the execution of my daily duties as a public servant or otherwise. We may have frictions every now and then but they were minor; and I see to it that I look up to you not only as the alterego of the Boss but also as my “Big Ate”; you have my respect being my senior.
But let’s not talk about age. Let’s talk about how good you were to me.
I saw how some were treating you like crap and you felt less respected. You cried a river for some petty and not so petty issues. I have been a witness on how dirty “politics” can play in such an environment. It’s sad. Our daily struggle was real as we fell prey to all sorts of gossipmongering and fault- finding environment and we felt that if at all, we were acknowledged for our effort and dedication, there was never any mention.
These were all a thing of the past but I vividly remembered these paved the way for us to get strongly bonded and connected. As you whinged about your ordeals, I showed you compassion and empathy; and you offered me similar support when I was on the same path as a neophyte in public service. I am not known to kiss anyone’s ass but I will always thank you for encouraging me, for keeping me strong, for always giving me that gentle nudge and push when the goings get tough. You spoke so highly of me and I always had your back. I felt your support all the way through; I felt encouraged, motivated; I felt bravery in times of cowardice. You have always lifted my spirits up.
We ultimately got even more connected when we shared the same interests. I was able to encourage you to blog and that’s when our friendship reached a notch higher! Seeing each other everyday at work was never enough; we had to continuously support each other virtually through our blogs. Isn’t that so amazing?
We led an active lifestyle by going to our badminton sessions almost every night; we scheduled out-of-the-country trips together. I was grateful when you acted like my Mum, “Ate”, and friend all rolled into one when you protected my petite and fragile stature by volunteering to lift my heavy and overloaded baggages; yes! How can I forget it?
You were ever so willing to take on those little tasks that I can’t find the time to perform; you were always ready to assist in every way; in the most unselfish and dedicated fashion.
How can I not laugh at your hilarious antics especially when you were trying to speak using the English vernacular? I don’t need to expound more as you know what I mean. Haha!
I miss the way you shared with me your nightmares and dreams from the night before and out of curiousity and for fun, we both look up its meanings by Googling and we ended up delving deeper into the issues in our lives.
You touched the very core of my being when you took the time to see me one last time at the Gensan Airport to offer your prayers; just a couple of minutes before my boarding time and READ: you almost missed me as I was already queueing up going inside the departure lounge.
You have my full admiration as you have been a wonderful single Mummy to your kids especially to your unica hija Vyne, a great daughter to your loving “Mamang”, a dear sister to your siblings, and a caring and beautiful friend to anyone you know.
You may be unaware of it but you have made such a big impact in my life. I thank the Lord for the blessing of meeting and knowing you; paving for friendship and sisterhood to blossom in more ways I can ever imagine.
May God continue to bless you in the same way that you have blessed my life.
Happiest birthday! I miss and love you!