Jr and I have never been big on Valentines. Everybody is out and traffic is more unbearable than usual. The restaurants get crowded and parking can be a problem. It’s never been us to go out of our way to celebrate something just because the world expects us to do so. We’re hipsters that way.
Naa. we just don’t like the crowds. We’re old that way.
But then recent life events reminded us that life is indeed short. The priest who celebrated our wedding passed away a month after our wedding. Fr. Gerry Tapiador was our family priest when I was a kid, and he’d go with us even on family vacations. He’d be tampo whenever he hears of news that one of my cousins got married and he wasn’t asked to officiate. So when I was preparing for my wedding, there were three things I was most particular of: the photographer, the food and the priest. I sought Fr. Gerry out and he happily obliged. Looking back I was glad I was able to reunite him with the family before he passed. I guess thoughts of Fr. Gerry came to mind after I heard of Fr. Erick’s passing.
While theirs are lives well lived, the deaths of loved ones are morbid reminders of our own mortality. I’m always accosted by mine, these moments where I question when, how my time will come, or end. They are random and sudden — while watching news reports, while reading articles, at 2 am when I wake up and stare at ceilings. The bouts with mortality where paralizing when I was younger but as I grow older, I learned to deal. These days, when I’m assaulted by my own morbid thoughts, I shake it off and turn to now — to the present. I learned that there’s no stopping the inevitable, but you’ll always have today to enjoy. Seize the day. Seize every moment. Yes, I’ll never now how many days I have left, or how many Valentines there’s still left for me, but I will enjoy this one, in our simple, “old couple” way.