Monday, February 28, 2011

born this way.

The last funeral that i went to was Martin's. It was unconventional, bottles of Standard were toasted to him mid-service. There were no religious connotations or biblical passages read. It was a celebration of his life.

Today i attended a funeral of someone who wasn't even a blood relative, but more family than 98% of the people who are genetically related to me.

Back story:
Edwin Lagunera was hired by my my father, the ever-so-powerful CEO and worked for him for years. His sister died in a tragic drowning and my cold, callous father told him to take all the time off that he needed to heal and mourn; his job would be waiting for him when he was ready. This was nearly 30 years ago. My father was named the godfather of Edwin's first born son, for my entire life we have exchanged birthday and Christmas gifts, i have always been lavished with gifts and cakes and traditional Filipino foods on my birthday and Christmas, as have my brother, mother and father.
Leyne Lagunera was Edwin's mother. She has been sickly for years, enduring kidney dialysis and transplants and inevitably lying at home hooked up to machines awaiting her end.
February 14th was my brother's 17th birthday-She still made lumpia, his favorite noodle/pork dish and baked him a cake. She died the next day. My mother was supposed to go and visit with them but was so upset from an argument that we had had an hour prior that she didn't feel up to it.
She later blamed me for not getting to see her one last time. It's all i can do to not grab her by the shoulders and tell her to OWN. HER. OWN. SHIT.

The cake is frozen downstairs in the freezer, we know that it will be the last cake ever from her. This is sick and we should eat it in celebration, instead of clinging to the past and saving it..but we can't.

I'm not religious. I'm so far from fucking religious that i almost didn't attend the funeral service..but i decided that it would be disrespectful for me not to.

Edwin, the son made an unconventional Eulogy-i'll admit, i recorded it with my iPhone.

"I don't know what to say right now. The day before she left us she asked me to come over and visit, but i didn't. I just didn't feel like it, i had a long day. Had i known that it would've been the last time i would've seen her I'd give anything to take that back. When I was younger i gave her such a hard time. Everything she asked me to do, i'd do the oppostite of.if i could say sorry for all the times that i didn't do what she asked me to, i would". If i could take back all the times i said that i didn't want to help, i would. Whenever i left after a visit, i would say, 'I love you Mom' out of obligation. I know that i meant it deep down, but i only said it when i left because i felt bad when i didn't say it".
He looked down from his podium. "If i could do anything in this life, i would tell you that i love you, but you can't hear me anymore. You can't hear me".
He stepped down and touched the casket and sobbed.

Her husband Noberto said that she would often be hooked up to her dialysis machines and pray out loud, "Please Lord, Christ please take me now". She was half kidding, half serious. There was only so much pain and suffering she could take and was a very strong Roman Catholic woman. She prayed daily, fingered her rosary beads, gave me my own for my birthday one year. I wore them sacrilegiously with a corset and fishnets.
The stand up/sit down, kneel for prayer, crossing-of-self made me feel uncomfortable especially because i was the only person in the church who didn't do any of it. Whatever, i'm not a member of a cult, and i refuse to take part of rituals in which i don't understand.

This is my life. My mother always told me that she would snub my grandfather (whom i never knew) when he would ask her to make him tea. She would ignore him time after time, and when he died at the young and impressionable age of her being 16, she said that she would have given anything to have poured that last pot of tea.

It's strange, because my mother always told me that her father would ask her to make him tea and she would refuse. In hindsight, she would have given anything-ANYTHING to be able to do it for him, I now almost comprehend the enormity of the complete and utter loss of a parent, despite the fact that mine are both alive. I realize that my mother would tell me this in an attempt to get to treat my father less like a piece of shit and manipulate him into buying me things when i was little. The later early teen years he would treat me like a piece of shit and i would tell him how much i hated him. My mother would remind me that one day he'd be gone and i'll regret the things i said. I told her to get fucked with a knife and i would steal her not-so-cleverly hidden exacto knife and carve every name into my skin that i was too scared to say out loud that i wished that i could call her, call myself.

He looked down at the casket and said,

"I'm Sorry, Mom. I'm so sorry but you can't even hear me".
and with that he stepped down from the podium and collapsed in a pile of tears.

My Father, Mother and i sat next to each other in the pew.
Between my mother and i were our purses, it created a socially acceptable distance between us so that there was no accidental brushing of legs or arms. I kept reaching into my little golden locket of treasures anytime i felt the heat behind my eyes, the warning signs of tears to fall. I made no attempt to hide it from my mother who sat to my left. I also made sure not to look over to her left where i could see my father wiping his eyes. I knew that if i did, i would lose my shit completely at the sight of my super hero dad who has no real blood in his veins and no real tears in his body.
The thing that hurt the most about the service today was knowing that it may just be me standing up there and apologizing to my mother who can't hear me, in her urn. Maybe it'll be my dad lying there and i'll use useless words to try and right all the wrongs that i know can never actually be righted. Knowing that Edwin apologized too late made me try to apologize to my parents as we left the mausoleum.

"I want to be a good person. I want you to love me. I want your help. I want to be a daughter you're proud of."

My mother looked at me disdainfully and said, "It's a little late to help you now. Don't be a fool. You're 24. Nobody ever helped me at 24, and i turned out fine".

i beg to differ.
I lit an herbal vanilla cigarette just to piss her off and blew the smoke into the chilly air. She looked at me and said, "I thought you quit".
Without breaking eye contact i held my palm out face up and put it out in the very center.
It was a nice service though, despite the company i was forced to keep.

Two nights ago the ex dropped off the rest of my belongings in the house that we shared. My mother freaked out and screamed and cried and yelled like a petulant teenager that she couldn't stand the sight of me in her house for another minute.
"You're FUCKED! How can you be so STUPID!? What did i ever DO to make you like this? Why do you have to come back into this house and ruin all of our lives? What gives you the right to think that we'll just be okay with you suddenly coming back?"

"Because you're my mother and you're supposed to love me"?

"It doesn't matter who i am or what being your mother has to do with anything. You're ruining our lives with your sad pathetic failure of an existence. Your brother is supposed to look up to you, not down on you. At 18 you already knew that we didn't want you..what makes you think things are any different 6 years later? The only difference now is that I can't even eat around you anymore without feeling like i'm going to throw up knowing that that's the only thing you care about anymore."

"I'll tell you what. Here's a list of people that i love. They're the only people i want at the funeral, i can make this happen if that's what would make your lives collectively easier. You clearly don't need me, you have your golden boy and a husband who will pass you a kleenex or some shit should crying come into the equation."

The list had 7 names on it.
There are 2 apology letters written to the ones i nearly left behind.
It would have been so easy, so ridiculously simple and would have solved so many problems. It would have spurred a whole new set of problems for those who care about me on whatever level they think i belong on...but there's nothing left i get passionate about anymore.
i'm a selfish son of a bitch. I'm so sick and tired of hating every fiber of this hideous wretched body that i've been cursed with but paint and punish in an attempt at making it palatable for anyone. What's the point?
I paint vivid pictures with my words of my past, my "STORY", who i was and why i am the way i am now. I embellish the parts that somehow excuse my current afflicitions and behaviours, I overshare so that i can filter out anybody who dares break down the battered walls that have been broken down and rebuilt so many times that they're in a precarious state of being beyond repair should they be broken down even once more. I have a well inside of me that has run dry more times than i care to count over the past years. There have been amazing people who have filled it, but some of those people have also drank it dry. It's hard to fill an inner part of your life, when you're so consumed filling the outer- an outer that much of the time, doesn't serve you, as much as it does everyone else.

It's impossible to cry yourself to death, but i feel that i've probably come damn close some nights. Sometimes that's the worst part; not being able to crumble completely no matter how broken down you feel. When someone offers their shoulder, i feel like a weak asshole to accept their help and feign that smile and say, "I'll be okay". I need to know that it's okay to let people "carry your weight" when you can't- it feels good to let someone show up for you-i just wish it was my mother.
I want my mother.
I want my mommy. There i fucking said it.
I need her. no one else will do.
I have friends who try to help, and they tell me that they appreciate it just as much as i do. in those moments right after you scream so loud you think your windows will shatter, just before i burst veins in my eyes and my raw vocal chords start bleeding; right after i've tried to let go of the years of heavy aching; it's in the pool of silence that hangs in the air afterwards that my spirit lets out a roar too and despite the screaming, despite the pain, I am a motherfucking human and from the depths of my being i will remain a capable, warrior and prove my strength and resilience.
I'm so good at false bravado. It's one of my strengths.

i just sit here vacant and glassy eyed as i ponder what else to write. There is nothing. I have no relevant thoughts at this moment. I needed to vent. I have another 36 archived blogs that i've been too self conscious to publish, so they sit in neat little lists waiting for me to hit "PUBLISH POST".

This video makes me almost the days when life was so careless. No repurcussions, just highs and lows, and the sex, and the drugs, and the complications...I crave the complete and utter abandon sometimes. But not enough to spiral back downward.

not tonight.
maybe i'll eat an orange.
maybe i'll drink some water. maybe i'll just think about it.
maybe i'll listen to morcheeba and skateboard in the basement and hope i fall hard enough to crack something important and get out of work tomorrow.
maybe i'll stalk the man on facebook who is cheating on his naive, young and foolish lover with me (on an intellectual/digital level, asking for my advice regarding their failing relationship...he could ask anyone in the world for advice. Why me?? Ulterior motives? Doubtful.) They somehow always find their way back to me, even when they've "upgraded" to a newer model...what does that mean? That it's easier to be with someone familiar and completely fucked than it is to try to make a relationship work with someone who's prettier, shinier but dumber than a teddybear-shaped bottle of honey?
maybe i'll just look through baby pictures and wonder where it all went wrong.

1 comment:

  1. I love you, Miss Yuri. This post was very powerful. I'm glad you wrote it. If you need anything text me.