Posted by: theboyfromsmallville | September 23, 2006

I’m creating a new holiday that we should celebrate every year

Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The strength to change the things I can
And the wisdom to know the difference.

Every morning, I wake up with that prayer already on my lips. It’s as automatic as sucking your first conscious breath in your first conscious moment of the day.

Of course, what passes as morning for me is somebody else’s noon. But that’s inconsequential.

You know how they say that somehow, your prayers get answered actually? That there is more to this whole ritual of solemnly communicating with a Divine Being everybody seems to have different versions of than just adherence to ages-old customs or a show of respect to the wishes of the elders?

It’s true.

We’ve just stopped believing in miracles, or have preconceived notions that every handiwork of the Divine should come in some grand fashion like a resurrection—or  a parting of an ocean—to notice the little magical moments that could not have come from elsewhere but above.

We’ve numbed ourselves to ant-sized miracles.

Mine snuck up on me, forcing me to a well-whaddya-know kind of smile this morning.

Friday night last week, I went out with somebody. A casual non-date. We walked in some wind-brushed seaside park and then passed up on dinner for a silent sit-by, savoring in silence the salty scent that swept our skins. We cracked jokes, laughed nervously and caught up on the months that blew by us in a blur.

Earlier that day, I asked her out because I realized there was something I could change. If only I could find the courage to set change in motion.

Ant-sized miracle No. 1: She said yes.

Cocooned in the privacy of a familiar vehicle, the air-conditioner humming in rhythm with the purring engine, I bared my soul. I had wronged her. Drove her to the point of wronging me. I made her understand that I wasn’t out to extend apologies. Not only did I not like the idea of apologizing for who I am, but I did not want to put on her the weight of having to wrestle through wake-filled nights—I had given her enough already—trying to forgive me.

Forgiveness was not mine to ask. It was hers to give. In her own time. For her own reason.

Ant-sized miracle No. 2: The tempest I had expected, gotten used to, from her never came. No, she didn’t forgive me. She just understood. And that was more that I could have ever asked for.

That was when we stepped out into the night’s waiting embrace. I wrapped an arm around her shoulder.

Ant-sized miracle No. 3: She wrapped hers around my waist.

And the evening unfolded as unplanned and unexpected as it could have. Truths were spilled. Lies were erased. A fragile friendship was formed. There was no Hollywood-ish ending to that night. We did not expect things to be better. We will still argue about life’s messy details. Like bank payments and other financial matters. Most of all, there was no promise of rebuilding a bridge already torn apart.

Just a vow to exert a shared effort to row across the river every now and then.

There was no reconciliation. In fact, there was the opposite. It was a final letting go. One that ended with no goodbyes. Just me saying that there was still that love inside of me for her.

Ant-sized miracle No. 4: She believed me.

And her urging us to keep the door open for when old age drives us back together again.

I do not know what sent me to make that snap-of-the-finger decision to ask her out. Maybe it was dealing too much with the struggle to find the serenity—and the sense of humor—to accept the things I could not change that I had neglected to summon the courage to change the things I can.

Or maybe it was experiencing Ant-sized miracle No. 5: I had been granted the wisdom to know the difference.

I always thought that I needed the courage to change the tide of another friendship that had already reached post-mortem stage. Wisdom told me to leave that alone. For unless the other half of that friendship decides to tell the truth that will set all of those involved free, it is serenity I need for that.

I always thought I needed the serenity to watch an old love fade one final time. Wisdom told me that there was still something I could do about that one. Summoning the courage came easy.

Or maybe it was ant-sized miracle No. 6: Stumbling on a New York Times story about a struggling mother murdered in front of her children.

That mother had dreams. She had plans. What she never had was a chance.

My dreams have withered into nightmares beyond imagination. My plans have been thrown off-course by events that my carelessness and someone else’s lie created. But I realized I still have a chance at something. I don’t know what it is. But it’s out there.

In the meantime, in a place inside me where I thought I lost love, I discovered a new friend. That much, I have. I have, too, the little miracles that I can celebrate.  I also have my mornings, no matter how late in the day they come for me. And in those mornings, just as I suck in my first conscious breath, I have my prayer.

Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The strength to change the things I can
And the wisdom to know the difference.

Thus, I have decided to establish a new holiday that I celebrated today. It’s rest-of-your-life day.

And let me be the first to greet everyone: Happy rest-of-your-life, too.



  1. Same to you, Happy Rest-of-your-life. :-)
    Ah, pinaiyak mo ‘ko dito.
    Deepdeepdeep sigh.

  2. Wanted you to know about this first before anyone else, baby sis. But we ran out of time last lunch. Had a great time though.
    I realize nothing beats Zinger + Coke light + fun shots + chocolait + baby sister for lunch.
    Next time ulit! Next time ulit!
    Quarterpounder naman instead of Zinger.
    Thanks for being there always.

  3. awww, every sentence napangiti ako. si ms mae ba ung girl? awww. naiinggit ako senyo ni din. i should be with you guys. pero huli ako lagi sa balita. am sorry. i miss you two. i miss us. =(

  4. It really melts my heart when I read entries like this written by guys. When a guy’s sensitivity shows (like in this post), sometimes his words are more heartfelt than how some girls will express the same feelings. This entry is like hot chocolate on a cold cold day. Sarap. (-:

    (Kailangan mo na ako ilibre ng kape niyan, haha, joke.)

    Happy rest-of-your-life,too.

  5. A moment of silence for a relationship that crossed over.

    Have a good one my friend.

  6. Thanks… everyone.
    Lex… I miss us more. Starmart. Saguijo. Cynthia Alexander looks promising though. To more laughs, more camera-whoring and more beer-and-band nights!!!

    Nie… I like that. Crossing over.

    Kat… Coffee’s on me. Anytime. Hope to get to meet you and jang soon. More posts ah?

  7. Nah, sinabi mo na rin naman sa’kin eh,
    ‘di nga lang derecho.
    Aynako, naglilihi ka pa rin???
    Excited na ‘ko sa Friday! Yehey!

  8. “There was no reconciliation. In fact, there was the opposite. It was a final letting go. One that ended with no goodbyes. Just me saying that there was still that love inside of me for her.”

    WASAK NA WASAK, PARE. *sniff*

  9. Happy Rest-of-your-life, Irene andrea. :-)

  10. […] Happy Rest-of-your-life. *smile* […]

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