fundraiser, health, loss of a child, personal, rant

Stabbed

Social media has taught me a lot lately.  I realized that when you asked for help on social media, it is equivalent to being stabbed in public. Your friends and family who are not there in the streets to see you get stabbed are excused. They did not know. How could they help? But how about the others who were able to read your post?

My fundraiser had several reactions on Facebook:

  • some immediately donated money from their pockets (they are like the ones who have cars and can drive you to the emergency room in no time)
  • some did not have extra money but made sure their concern is felt through PMs and other contributions (prayers, blood, messages of support, re-sharing of link) – they are like the ones who do not have vehicles themselves but are there to press on the wound while calling 911
  • some merely watched as I see group posts racking up “seen”, but I did not get a message from them (they are those who watch on the sidewalks, afraid that blood will be splattered on them)

It sounds slightly bitter, but I have to be brutally honest. Social media had shone a light on who my real friends are. Weirdly enough, a lot of those who offered their help (in words, cash, prayers, blood, etc.), were strangers. They had the right to turn their backs on me. The stabbing did not concern them. They do not know me, and yet they were able to say kind words. Some even took out money from their wallets. For all they know, this could all be a scam – this fundraiser for my 26 weeker niece. I could not blame them. In the streets, people worry about helping a stranger because it could be a ruse for a stickup. But friends, people who know you, they should be there. Right?

As a college student, I was extravagantly generous I would say. My dad is a doctor, after all, and he was also generous. He charges very little compared to other specialists. He worked free of charge several times when I was still little. He is a good example.

I once paid 3000 pesos to get a friend’s hair fixed. I lent 5000 pesos to a friend in need. I lent 1500 pesos to a student of mine. I never heard from him again. I never minded paying for my friends’ lunches whenever we went out because my tummy was too sensitive that I could no eat at carenderias. I guess I was hoping that karma would unleash something good for me. In the end, there are simply people who are good no matter what their circumstances are. The richest among my FB friends never contacted me. Friends who are struggling teachers, writers and artists are the ones who offered comfort in my time of need.

Because of my beautiful angel-niece, I learned a lot about friendship and appearances.

 

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health, loss of a child, news, personal, preemie

Broken Heart

I have had my heart broken before, but not with the same intensity in which it broke yesterday.

I had lost a romantic relationship. It hurt a lot. I was twenty two and thought that it was the worst thing ever. I drank wine for a week, and then I was back on track because I refused to ruin my life for someone who never deserved even a glance from me. Looking back, I believed it was more of the pain of humiliation that made it hurt. I am, after all, quiet but proud.

I had lost grandparents, both pairs of them. It was sad and yet peaceful. I never met my mother’s parents. My dad’s parents died in their nineties. They lived full lives.

Yesterday, however, was different. My little brother – who although only three years younger was like a first child to me – lost his little angel. 26 weeker Jordana Belle fought hard. She was in the NICU for more than 60 days. All she knew was the plastic case of an incubator and the pain of being prodded everyday. She had a little taste of her mommy’s breast milk. Her tongue usually slid out as if looking for more, but her feedings were interrupted by caution. After every feeding, her tummy bulged. Her intestines could not take too much feeding yet. Her liver was getting bigger. And everything was falling apart and a part of us knew it even weeks before, but we continued smiling and praying and hoping.

To make things worse, half of the family is in the Philippines: my brother, his wife, and our mom. My dad, my husband, my son, and I are here in Dominica, tens of thousands of miles away. Each one of us grieves. Even my son had to wipe tears furiously at mass, attempting a big boy stance. We grieve silently. Only the closest people know. I am sharing this because those who cared enough to read my past blogs – precious few – deserve to know what happened next.

Please include us in your prayers.

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fundraiser, health, preemie

Please Continue Supporting My Niece

https://www.generosity.com/medical-fundraising/born-at-only-590-grams-jordana-fights-on/x/12153416

It’s hard to ask for financial assistance in the Philippines unless you are completely impoverished or well-connected (extremes, both of them). My family is well-educated but every penny is hard-earned. My dad and brother are both doctors. My dad started off as a generous doctor, who has a tendency to be charitable to his patients. It is good for the soul, but not for the pockets. Still, we all have no regrets. Helping is helping. Helping is good. This time, though, we are at the other end – we also need help. My brother is still a resident doctor in a government hospital. He had about more than 600,000 pesos in savings. He had to give them up in just five weeks to the hospital where his 26-weeker daughter is fighting to survive. NICU spending is no joke.

There are four ways to help:

  • donate funds via Generosity (see link above)
  • donate funds via my brother’s bank account number (for this you have to email me at belle07081981@yahoo.com)
  • share the link to your social network
  • pray to the God that you believe in. He has many names, but there is only one that we all look up to.

Thank you.

 

 

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Uncategorized

Welcome, Jordana Belle!

No, I do not have a new baby. My son, who is turning seven next week is still an only child. I do have the next best thing. My brother (a resident doctor – orthopedics) and his wife (a nurse), who live thousands of miles away (I am in Dominica. They are in the Philippines), were expecting a baby. However, the little one was delivered at 26 weeks 4 days on May 1st 2016. My brother was terrified that they were going to lose the baby, but the baby has survived and continues to fight hard. Named Jordana Belle, our baby girl is still in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and has from the very first moment, won our hearts. Born at only 590 grams, the 26-weeker has been weaned from the CPAP to the nasal cannula. She has been fed a little pumped breast milk from her mom at a time. 1 day old

She is on Day 14 at the NICU. My family continues to pray for her complete health and strength. We hope to be able to shower her with more love when she is finally discharged from the hospital. Jordana Belle and my son Joreb William share an amazing pediatrician, Dr. Luchie Morales.

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