Tuesday, August 15, 2006

I Don't Really Want To Write About This

To be honest, this is one subject that I refused to write about – for a long time now. Primarily because, I could be accused of being one-sided or worst, a narrow-minded person. Actually, my first post in my blog was something dealing with this subject. But after receiving feedbacks, which is detrimental to the person I wrote about, I decided to delete it from my blog. The post was full of angst and I definitely poured it all there. After hearing the feedbacks, I felt it was unfair to the person that was the subject of that post.

I’m talking about my in-laws, and my mother-in-law in particular. No, this is not about my relationship with her, or with them. It is about my wife, and how her condition has brought realizations that has caused her more pain than her sickness does. If you have read my previous blogs, you know what condition my wife is in. And as childish as it may seem, you definitely seek support from people you think are close to you. But read on – you might realize and appreciate how your mother really cares for you, or if you’re a mother, you might see that what you are doing may not be enough.

I am not the perfect husband. I have my flaws, my imperfections and inconsistencies. But imperfect as I am – for my wife’s condition, in every way that I can, I’ll do anything to alleviate her pain. If I, just her husband, could do sacrifices for her, what more could her kins do for her? I wish there could be an easier way of saying this. Nothing. Surprising as it may seem, we simply could not feel any support from them, nor see any initiative on their part to show some concern for her. This really breaks her heart every time she remembers it. And it isn’t helping her condition.

I’m not complaining about taking care of my wife. I admit I am really having a hard time trying make both ends meet, trying to make it through the next dialysis session, without mentioning all our daily expenses. But somehow, we’re surviving, with a lot help from other people – my mother, my brothers and sisters, her friends from school, our friends from the community we belong in, new found friends that I just met through the internet, and yes, even strangers. Noticed I didn’t mention her mother and her siblings? Because I cannot, they simply weren’t there. And it pains me so much to see my wife feel so alone in spite of all the support we’re getting from other people.

Okay, maybe it’s not really that bad. Honestly, I wish it wasn’t. So that I could tell her that, and help her ease the emotional pain she’s going through everytime she remembers it. Put yourself in the picture – if you are a mother and you have a sick daughter, although married and all, you know she still needs some help. Her husband has to go to work, and her children are still so young and all go to school at the same time. Leaving your daughter, who really can’t move that much even just around the house, all by her lonesome, won’t you run to her side to at least look after her? WELL, HER MOTHER DOESN’T! Okay, she may not like me, I may be the most stubborn person in the world, I may be the most disrespectful, good-for-nothing, son-of-a-bitch son-in-law! But would I really matter? Does a mother’s love have its limitations and conditions?

Well, I’m not really even half the man of those I mentioned and my mother is definitely not a bitch! But like I said, it’s not really about me, I have really forgotten about myself, and all that’s important to me now is my wife and her condition. Trying to make whatever is left of her life less miserable than it is. Unfortunately, I can’t do anything about that particular aspect of her life. I can’t cut the tie that binds her and her mother. I don’t intend to.

Their eldest brother is working overseas, for more than ten (10) years now. She could have supported her financially. The last we heard from him was before my wife started having her dialysis, and it was almost two years since. Suddenly, he called. He was asking my wife as to why he wasn’t informed of her predicament! He even got the courage to say “WHAT ABOUT YOUR HUSBAND? WHAT IS HE DOING?!” I swear, if he were in front of me then, I could have buried a knuckle on his face! After that, we didn’t hear from him again.

One afternoon, while I was at work and the children are in school, her sister and sister-in-law came. And when they saw her all alone in the house they said – “WHERE’S YOUR HUSBAND? WHY IS HE LEAVING YOU HERE ALL ALONE?!” and while they were talking they were crying, as if taking pity on their sister. Saying, they could have visited her more often and cook for her and take care of her, IF ONLY WE DON’T LEAVE SO FAR FROM THEM. And that far distance was nothing more than a five (5) minute tricycle ride.

I could go on… but it doesn’t really matter. Yes, I’d like to believe that they are praying for her, I’m still giving them the benefit of the doubt. I am refraining myself from judging, that is not for me to do and it won’t help our cause in any way. But everytime I see my wife, even without saying a word, I would know what she is thinking – and what she feels. Can you blame me then for feeling like this?

But to be fair, my mother-in-law did stay in our house for a while and took care of her, but that is everytime we send our son to call her. Yes, she needs to be called before she would come. Only to go again, without even saying anything as to when she’ll come back or if she’ll come back again. If you’re a mother, would you leave your sick daughter? Oh, she does have some reason. You see my mother-in-law is one of those called as R.O.T.C. or Rat Of The Church; she is a member of a church organization. We all used to be one, that’s where I met my wife.

She would have to go to attend this meeting, to visit this sick person, to pray for the soul of someone who died one year ago, to visit and attend the wake of a dead person – most of whom are not even relatives! Ironies? I don’t know, I just do not understand it.
I do know and acknowledge social obligations, but do they have to stand over your own family? Is it justifiable to forsake your own blood, just so to fulfill your obligation and look good at the eyes of others? Honestly, I believe that charity SHOULD always begin at home.

Back in 2003, I accompanied my wife to a nephrologist in Makati Medical Center. The doctor upon looking at her and her medical records immediately said that she needs a kidney transplant. He wants my wife’s siblings to be tested for compatibility, I was volunteering, but the doctor said it has to be a blood relative. Somehow, this news leaked out, before we were able to tell her brothers and sisters. They were saying words such as ‘she shouldn’t take my husband’s kidney, we have children too’ this was her sister in-law talking. They were pointing fingers at each other as to who should donate a kidney to my wife – their sister! Since then, we noticed them alienating themselves from her; they started avoiding my wife like the plague!

When she started with the inevitable dialysis, they were saying words like ‘why did we let it reach this far?’, ‘why didn’t we do anything?’ I can’t actually see it, but I can feel blaming fingers pointed at me. Still, that was all there is to it. All talks and pointing fingers! Lame excuses and what have you. The kind you hear from hypocrites and self-righteous people! People who do not know any better! I really wish I wasn’t writing this!

I don’t want to judge them nor hate them; it’s not going to help any of us. But I can’t help but feel my wife’s pain. Save for all the people who’s helping us, and our little daughter, Angel, who never fails to cheer her up – I knew at the back of her mind, she still wish that things are not how they are now. At times, I let her spill it out, pour it all on me, let her cry her pains out, lest they accumulate inside her and make her condition worse. It’s the only means I know of easing up her pain.

I write this, not to gain sympathy or to put my in-laws in a bad light. Like I said, I really don’t want to write about this subject, but having really no one beside me to pour it all out, ‘tis the only means I know of unloading myself. I can’t tell this to my wife – I can’t show signs of weakness in front of her. I have to be always tough for her lean on... while I keep it all inside of me.

Believe me, I really wish I didn’t write this.

August 15, 2006
9:28 AM


farah said...

Be strong and pray.

river02 said...

Grabe Roy...
Its as if part ako ng family mo.. sobra ako affected sa life mo...sabi ko nga sayo first ever blog ko na na read and truly na appreciate is your very own blog..Reflections by Roy...
Hay naku friend .. sa mga drama ko sa buhay walang wala sa pinag dadaanan mo.. if you need somebody to listen to you... i'm just an email away:) hope everything turns out well... am praying for you and your family:)


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