Letter to Mariel, February 29, 2008


Dear Mommy,

It’s been over five months now and I still miss you so badly. I promised myself not to keep count but what can I do, when I still think of you almost every minute of the day. You know I talk to you all the time and I’m very sorry to keep bothering you with my trivial issues. But I have had no one else since you left for God’s garden last September 20. And there’s so much more I wanted to say to you.

Most of all, I never had a chance to say good-bye properly. They had to let me leave the ICU at 11pm the night before and all I can do was to give you those little kisses on your feet. I was very afraid to give you ‘germs’ for I know they were giving you those immunosuppresants. Plus, I thought you really needed some rest. That’s why I can’t understand why I suddenly woke up at around 3:30 am with the very high fever and that bad case of gout. And how can I ever forget Alma (my sister) getting that fateful call at 430 am from the doctors telling her that they were administering CPR on you already. I was in shock to put it mildly and I wanted to rush down to the ICU to be with you. But I can’t even stand up. I wanted to be brave and be with you like you always wanted, but I just couldn’t walk. Was it God’s way of saving me from seeing you in such a desperate state? Alma told me later that you decided to “go” only when she told you that she will take care of Sam. And she has really delivered on that promise to this day. She truly loves Sam like her own but I still weep knowing Sam can no longer have your embrace. (It hurts now so much just thinking about this, Mommy. Please help me finish this post, it’s too painful.) And yes, I remember how peaceful you were when I was finally able to go down to see you (and kissed you once more) that day.

Sam misses you too very much, Mommy. But she would not talk about it much. She takes after you. But I guess you already know that. By the way, do you want me to bring her to the salon for a haircut? We’ve had some “spirited discussions” about getting it some days ago. Although I can’t believe how much she is starting to look like you, specially with the longer hair. She is as beautiful as I’ve always remembered you. And she has your “flawless” skin too. Don’t worry though as she is fine and is generally starting to “recover” from that little dip with her grades. She’s still number one in her class (I know you’ll hate me for writing this), that’s because she really takes after her smart and beautiful mom.I also got your little message the other time. I know you’re really always there for me, especially when I get those usual “setbacks’ at work. I’m still not 100% but I do try my very best for you. I know you want me to succeed in life for our daughter Sam and I promise not to fail you. (Even if it’s the last thing I do before my own exit) I still can’t do much traveling these days, although I really think I need to do it so I wont miss any of those opportunities in Thailand and Vietnam. Mama promised meanwhile to look after Sam whenever I’m away. Besides, school’s out in a few weeks. Don’t worry Mommy, it will just be for a couple of days at a time. I vow to make you proud of me again.

It’s kinda late and I also know you want me to go to sleep now. I will write again soon but then I hear you in my head all the time, so you know where to reach me (hehehe). Also, please keep “reminding” me if I sometimes “go astray”. After all, you’re my Guardian Angel now. And I ‘m very happy because not very many people get to call their angels by their first name. I miss you Mommy. Please stay “close” to me always. I also really look forward to that time when I can be with you again, “to love and to hold” forever. I love you so very, very much.

Good night Mommy.

With all my love,


P.S. Here’s a song I thought you might enjoy listening to before you sleep, ‘love you.

4 thoughts on “Letter to Mariel, February 29, 2008

  1. Oh Bong,

    I weep tears of both sorrow and joy for you; sorrow for your loss and joy for the beautiful love you will always feel for Mariel, and she for you.

    Reading your beautiful letter felt like I was intruding – so do forgive me.

    I don’t have any doubt that Mariel is already very, very proud of you and her beautiful daughter. I am quite sure she watches over you both too – and will always be your guardian angel.

    Take care.

  2. Dear Jan,

    Thank you for opening your heart to us. We’ve thought of you and other dear friends in this blog as already part of our family. So it’s not intruding when you share with us in our sorrow. You’ve given us much solace when we inevitably feel our great loss from time to time and your words indeed truly comfort us.

    We wish you happiness and peace always.

    With kindest regards,


  3. Dear Bong,

    Reading your words to and about Mariel always makes me cry, but not just because I understand so clearly how much her loss is affecting you and Sam. Your words make me cry because you are so open and honest with your feelings. This is the stuff about you that Mariel surely fell in love with, and loved throughout your marriage, and her short and devastating illness.

    She knew you were there with her in spirit on that last night. I’m sure she felt your presence. Your bond was obviously strong enough to feel through time and distance.

    I wish you peace throughout your days (and, yes, I have those times at work, too – I just leave the building, and walk a bit, from being overwhelmed at how present Owen feels in a given moment), and especially I pray for peace when you say goodnight to Sam, and greet the night with only your memories.

    Thank you for continuing to share your stories with us,

  4. Dear Linda,

    I too have been blessed to witness your unrelenting love for Owen. And the eloquence with which you have shared with us your pain and longing. I have gone through some self- doubt these past months but if there is one thing that I’m truly certain of. It’s that Owen and Mariel are NOW free from any pain. And that they wish us only to be happy again. And that they will be always there for us, especially in our darkest moments. Because only LOVE can absolutely transcend death.

    Please keep sharing with us the unique, beautiful and loving person that Owen was (and continues to be). Take care and many thanks again from my heart.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s