Sleep Well Lola Aling, Good night . . . .




February 11, 1927-September 2, 2011

84 years, 6 months and 22 days


I will miss you my love./Writing a farewell message to you is the hardest thing I could do./ I just can’t say Good bye./ I wish I could change the wheels of time and the shape of our destiny so I can go back to our sweetest moments together./ I miss you/ and I miss everything about you./ I am so lost to know that we will never see each other again ever./ I was not just ready to let you go especially that I am not home./ I thought we will stick to our promise to wait for each other?/ I have asked for March so I can go home to take care of you./ It so break my heart that you had to go and not wait for me./ I had asked for 6 more months, after 4 ½ years of longing to see you./

This is the most painful time for me ever in my whole life./ I know how hard you tried to wait for me so we can fulfill our promise./ I dread for that day,/ but I know, it will never happen anymore. My bags have been packed just as I am ready to go home  immediately but it was just too late. Please forgive me for not being able to see you,/ hug you/ and kiss you for the last time./ I failed to take care of you with my own presence and touch./ I am so sorry Lola Aling./ It’s so hard to accept the fact that you are gone forever./ You meant so much to me/ and I love you so much,/ and I love you so much that I had to go/ so I can give you the best./ But that’s what love is really all about./ It means sacrificing your personal happiness and interests for the one you love./ I learned it from you./

Finding the right words to say good bye is difficult./ It will take me a lifetime to recover from this pain./ It breaks me apart./ No words can express how I feel about losing you./

It is my faith in our God that keeps me strong at this point in time./ I know I have no one to turn to especially that I am alone,/ but to hold on to my faith and accept HIS WILL./

Oh sweetest Jesus in Heaven,/ please receive my Lola Aling,/ I trust in You./

Now that you are gone,/ I have no reason to stay longer in the US./ My business here is done./ I will just drain out whatever endurance is left and go home/ to live simple and decent life./ For I know from day one,/ America is not for me, but home/ but because I needed to serve you and ensure your wellness,/ I happily decided to stay./ Because I know I won’t earn the kind of money that we will need for your  medical needs, if I were there./  I just hope to myself,/ that perhaps I was able to fulfill my duty to you as a son./ Because I am your son/ and you are my mother,/ and you are my joy./

Two Nights after Lola Aling passed away,/ my real mother,/ Mommy Minda visited me in a dream./ Thank you Mommy for coming to comfort me./ It is indeed true that a mother,/ knows and feels the child’s pain./ In my dream,/ Mommy and I were walking along downtown in Bacolod,/ when an old woman gave me a handful of loose diamonds in my hand./ I did not like it because it got defects and came in different weird sizes and shapes./ When I started to complain,/ Mommy, pat my back and consoled me with these meaningful words,/ “ Just accept it and be thankful”./ Upon waking up, I realized what Mommy was really trying to tell me,/ to accept that Lola is gone and be thankful that she is finally home./

A few days later,/ a small white butterfly touched me in the arm in broad day light here in California./ I surely knew it was my Lola Aling,/ because I felt her presence./ She was visiting me,/ just like when I smelled the scent of fresh flowers when my Mom passed away./

I did not ever imagine that,/ that morning in the airport some 4 years ago on March 9, 2007/ will become our last meeting/ and that kiss would be the last kiss./ I could have given you my hardest hug and my sweetest kiss/ but even so,/ it will not be enough,/ I know./ I don’t know how to handle this because its just too painful./ The ache is constant./ But I know God has a reason for everything that has happened./ I know I should be happy because you are now under His care/ and that could not be any better than any of my own care. /

Every time I wake up/ I see only your face/ and from that face I feel better, knowing that face loves me so much/ and treated me like her own son./

You never gave up on me in all my troubles,/ even though the world was telling you to leave me,/ and for that,/ I say THANK YOU.

Since the time you took me under your care when I was 6 years old,/ I felt nothing else lesser than your love,/ and care,/ and protection./ You are my mother/ and I am your son/ and I thank you for the privilege of being your son./ Thank you for making that decision to raise me./ I owe my life to you./

The retired teacher’s community here know pretty well/ that since then,/ I became like a tail to you./ Wherever you are,/ Dino is following you./ They often would say/ “Ari na ang Bata ni Saling”./ Thank you for caring for me,/ for the attention you gave me./ And for that LOVE,/ that did not recognize limits and boundaries.

We became a family of two./ For many years since I was a boy,/ we lived in one small bedroom in the house in atubang simbahan,/ with our own kitchen,/ dining/ and living area in it./ We lived independently./ We slept in one bed/ and I remember not being able to sleep without Lola Aling by my side./ I was everything to you/ and you to me./

You were a wonderful cook/ and many people remember you for your Valenciana,/ Dinugu-an/ and Pancit Molo,/ I went with you wherever the cookings took place./ As well as your mahjong sessions./ You gave me my childhood experience./ The trips to Bacolod,/ mostly to get loans from Feobit/ or GSIS/ which normally entails eat/ and shop at downtown were one of the bests./ Eating Batchoy in Downtown was your item./ You loved to buy step in sandals for yourself./

In your stronger days,/ you don’t trust others to do my laundry works/ especially my karsonsilyo/ as you call it/ because only you/ can make the best,/ the whites whiter./ When I wake up,/ my breakfast is ready/ and my towels have been prepared./

Each time I complement breakfast is good,/ I will have the same breakfast for the rest of the week,/ until I start to complain,/ then that’s when the menu gets changed again./ All at my convenience./

You know everyone/ including their business/ both good and bad./ I remember as a boy when we walk in a street,/ to go from point A to point B/ which will normally take us only 20 minutes,/ it will get us 3 hours to reach to our destination/ because you would chat to everyone that we meet along the way,/ as a boy I was always there pestering you./ It becomes a sweet memory now./

The prayers you taught me,/ to this day,/ I still pray them each single night./

In all of my 6 years at Victorias Elementary School,/ you were also there as a teacher./ You let me choose who I want to be my teacher for next school year/ and I usually get it./ By the time I graduated,/ it was also the time of your retirement after 38 years of service./ As I went to Don Felix to study High School,/ you went with me when you rented the school’s canteen./  That’s why all of my teachers and classmates from both elementary and high school know who is Tya Saling to Dino./ We lived very simple/ but loved filled life./

Lola Aling,/ I want to tell you how much I love you/ and how much I miss you/ and I wish you are still around to be with me,/ for one,/ to sing with me via skype, our favorite old visayan songs like Felimon and Dandansoy,/ and we would both giggle./

I know that your mission is now over./ You have done your part,/ you have raised 2 sons/ and taught many students/ and loved many friends./ Served relatives/ and touched lives./ God wants you home now,/ so I release you./ In my heart,/ you never went anywhere,/ you are always here with me./ My heart is a safe place where you dwell now./ We are always together./ Farewell,/ but I will never say good bye./

To the Retired Teachers Community who are here today,/ Thank you very much./ You are always very dear to me because you are a part of mine and Lola’s lives./ Each time I will see any of you,/ it will always remind me of my Lola Aling./ Thank you for your love./ I consider you our family./

To all of Lola’s friends and relatives,/ Madamo gd nga salamat sa inyo pag unong sa amon sa sini nga ti-on./ The love you have shown today meant so much./

To my siblings Michael,/ Maricel,/ Maricar,/ and Dennis,/ cousin Lara/ and friends Grace,/ and Ning-ning/ thank you so much for covering for me while I’m gone,/ for making the effort to make Lola Aling feel that she is not alone/ and also,/ for your own love/ and affection/ shown to our dearly beloved Lola Aling./ Words can’t express how grateful I am to you/ for giving Lola the love that she deserves from you./ You have become selfless for her./ I have seen how a family works in us./ THANK YOU.

To the daughters of Lola Pelia Lazalita- Manang Nancy and Manang Echel,/ thank you very much for always being there and checking on/ and giving me advices on Lola’s health condition./ Your love and kindness is sincerely felt,/ SALAMAT GID.

I would like to special mention Tita Ninfa Lajera,/ Tita Myrna De Asis/ and our neighbors/ Tita Loret Palmes,/ Tita Norma/ and especially The Demiden Family/- Tita Didi,/ Tita Lete,/ Tita Mila,/ Tita Annete,/ for always seeing Lola  and keeping her in company./ She needed those./

To my 3 other Nanays,/ Tita Lilia Espera/ Tita Pearl Javelosa,/ and Mams Visi Calida/ – For 3 years now—in all my sorrows and griefs—I always found solace and comfort in your words./ Your love is felt deeply./ SALAMAT GID SA INYO.

To Lola’s biological nieces from Iloilo,/ I can’t thank you enough for sharing Lola Aling with us./ I know how much you love your Auntie Saling/ and how much you wanted her to be with you/ but you gave her the freewill to do what she desires./ I will always give you my respects/ and I humble myself to you because you are my Lola Aling’s loved ones./ I consider you a family./

To Manong Jonas,/ madamo gid nga salamat sa imo. You never ceased to help and care for Lola Aling. You gave her your lifetime commitment. I am glad that you and I were able to be with her till the end. She did not die lonely, and helpless.

Lastly,/ let it be known to all/ and I say it with pride/ and honor,/ that in my LIFE, there was once MISS ROSALINA J. HAUTEA, who took care of me like her own child. She will live in my heart forever.

Lola Aling,/ farewell my love./ I promise you/ I will live by the many life’s lessons that you imparted to me. SALAMAT GID KAG PALANGGA TA GID KA./ Till we meet again.

Sleep well and goodnight . . . . .

Toto Din-din


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