OPINION | Bye Liang Rose

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LIANG Rose.  On Monday, the 26th of October, we laid her to rest at her parents’ graves. 

Liang-Rose was my wife of about 60 years and the beloved mother of our six children.  She was the happiness and delight of our “legacy”:   our kids, our “grands,” and our “great grands.” 

“Our legacy.” She would say that in her admiration of our family.  They are our bonds to this good Earth.  Our kids.  Some of them, now have grandchildren, and even great-grandchildren.  They were her happiness.  Her joy.  Always wanting to visit them.  She would say in her own way, “I want to go to our ‘Camelot.’ ”

 And the “Camelot kids” really enjoyed her presence.  They haven't forgotten her.  And they won't forget her.  She, with her lilting laughter and her lovable smile.  That was the beauty of our companionship of about 60 years.  Three generations, and still growing. 

As my nephew laid her down to rest near her mother, I whispered a little prayer for her.  I didn't ask the Lord for much.  I asked Him to send a guardian angel to watch over her everyday with loving care until the end of time.  It really broke my loving heart to lay her down and to leave her there for forever.

Sure, our life was not perfect.  We had our ups and downs, our faults and frailties, but I'm sure that there are others, too, whose lives are not perfect.

We're just humans. We strove to make our companionship work. And nothing in this world would make us change something that worked. 

And our home, Liang Rose?  It used to be that your soft, gentle fragrance would fill the air, and it would betray your presence.  You were home.  And I was happy.  Always delighted to see you walking around the house and humming a favorite tune.  Now, it's unusually quiet, and there isn't a trace of your wonderful suave scent.  How I wish that you'd still be here with me.  Liang-Rose, I would like to be with you, if I could.

You liked music.  Alfred Saures, Elvis, Don Ho, Pilita Corrales, FP Jr.  You liked Bert Kaempfert's trumpet music “On the Alamo.”  Whenever I played that danceable recording, you would come and take my hands for a dance.  Just the two of us, in the privacy of our home.  We would just sway.  And in that undisturbed sentimentality, we would drift into our own world.  We would find our requited love.  Life was enjoyable.

 Now, it's just me in my solitude.  The music is still here, but Liang Rose, you are not.  Your absence can make life a bit hard to live by indeed.

You liked that mythical invention “Camelot” like John F. Kennedy did.  But for you, Liang Rose, metaphorically, Camelot meant our kids, our grand kids, our great grand kids.  And you loved to be their jester.  What more could I say about the “fun” you, Liang Rose.

You liked the video of an orphan Mexican kid, Marcelino Pan Y Vino, and his friend Manuel, especially the part where the Icon of Christ Crucified came down from the cross to share a piece of bread with Marcelino.  There, the orphan kid and the Icon talked about their mothers.  Marcelino said that he would like to see his mother, and the Icon of Christ Crucified, obliged.  The Icon hugged the sleeping orphan and took him up into the Cosmos.  And then you cried.  The tears you shed I had never seen before in our 60 years of companionship.  A rare display of empathy.

Liang Rose, I paraphrase a few verses, in part, from 1 Corinthians 13:4-7, for you, if I may:

 “Love is patient, kind, not jealous or boastful.  Not arrogant or rude.  Love does not insist on its own way.  It is tending.  Not irritable or resentful.  Does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right.  Love does not avenge or hate.  Love makes life special, kind, and comforting in all things great or small.  Love is a song of joy. It bears all things and endures all things.”

Whenever the world-renowned evangelist, the Reverend Billy Graham, may God bless his soul, would close out his global evangelical crusades, he would bid the multitudes adieu with a blessing, “Go now, and may the good Lord bless you real good.” And the more than thousands in attendance would roar back with that uplifting, empowering and praising of the Lord, singing, “How Great Thou Art.”  Liang-Rose, with that rousing praise of our Lord, I close a page of our wonderful life of 60 years.   A renewed, forgiving, and requited love. Thank you for sharing that love with me for about 60 years.

Liang Rose, may I echo the Reverend Billy Graham's blessings, in bidding you farewell, in his own way: “Go now, and may the good Lord bless you real good.” 

Bye, Liang-Rose. I love you, hon.  Come the evening sky and you will see me searching for you among the multitude of stars, to ease my loneliness, and to console my solitude. 

Liang Rose, mi amor, te amo hasta el fin de este mundo. 

The writer is a resident of Garapan, Saipan.

November 2020 pssnewsletter

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