Another year ends and, as usual, the mind goes on automatic, into some kind of mental “pass in review,” a backward glance as it were of events that have occurred the past 365 days of your life.
This is big time looking back. What have we been up to during the last 564,800 minutes? Has anyone kept score? When we tally up the time, will there be more done than still to do?
Media has a field day with this kind of format. They choose the best or the worst of, the most this and the least that. I used to enjoy watching their picks, sometimes even tried to second-guess each category.
This was before fake news, way before “alternative truth” entered our vocabulary.
Now I read their list of winners and losers with a skeptical eye and wonder who paid and how much it cost to land in the list. It is sad.
Suddenly I worry. Unless there’s a change, and it happens soon, the little children of today will have no one to believe in when they grow up. Whom will they trust? Whom will they emulate?
“It is a sad state of affairs,” my friend mournfully tells me. “We are without heroes.”
Reviewing the events of the day is not an entirely new exercise for me. I do this at bedtime every night when I pray and I call to mind what I did and what I failed to do. Too often, I am not pleased.
Many nights I turn the lights off aware that I have wasted a precious day. And there’s only myself to blame. Still, I give thanks for every good and happy moment.
As time has hurried on in my life, I have learned that everything happens for a reason, and it is now easier for me to thank God even for the difficult and painful times and not complain or ask Him why.
Some nights I rate myself a kick in the pants. I’m too old for “time out.”
“And the new Miss Universe is—Philippines!”
Filipinos around the world all heard Steve Harvey announce it (this time he got it right) and our emotions spilled over.
Our very own Catriona Gray was crowned Miss Universe 2018.
And what a Miss Universe she is! Beyond beautiful, she is intelligent, graceful, confident, compassionate, and oozing with charisma. And as if that was not enough, she sings!
Thank you, Catriona, for putting a super sparkle in our year. The country so needed it.
But I don’t think the euphoria did much to dispel the outrage aroused by the disturbing video of the bully from Ateneo Junior High School.
The images are repulsive.
Is bullying a consequence of a sense of entitlement?
This was discussed over lunch recently. There were suggestions for appropriate action. Several wanted “an eye for an eye,” or worse.
My thoughts rush to my huge barangay of grand- and great-grandchildren. And I say, “Thank you, Lord.”
I hear someone ask, “Who raised those children? What have the parents taught them?” And my heart feels sick as I think, “And who raised their parents?”
There was a severely criticized delay in action “pending a more complete study and thorough investigation” by school authorities. This didn’t sit very well with the public. Social media was relentless with enraged comments. It was out for blood.
Last Sunday, finally, an order of dismissal was announced by Ateneo. And it’s about time!
Will it help? I pray it does. But I think the problem goes much deeper than what we see at the surface. It must be addressed. In all schools. Now.
Also in 2018
My driver of almost a decade retired. He went home to Bohol to fish. His replacement can’t find his way out of a paper bag. Neither can I. Time for Waze!
I received my first walking cane. I don’t use it. Not yet.
In denial? But lately I am starting to clutch at things within reach for support. Is it time?
My golfer grandson won the Queen’s Cup in Thailand.
My 10th great-grandchild was born.
A very special man in my life went to be with the Lord.
Time to take stock
The year is over. We don’t know what lies ahead. But it’s a good time to take stock of what remains to be done.
Every night when I reflect on the day that ends, I remember “The Sin of Omission,” a poem by Margaret Sangster.
It may do us all a world of good to revisit it, as we bid 2018 a fond goodbye.
Sangster says we all get so involved with our lives that we miss out on what really matters.
Listen as she reminds us about “the tender work forgotten, the letter you did not write.”
And how sad it is to remember, “The stone you might have lifted out of a brother’s way.”
We are so busy that we forget about “The loving touch of a hand, dear, the gentle, winning tone which you had no time nor thought for with trouble enough of your own.”
She tells us about the little acts of kindness and the chances to be angels that we miss.
And she ends her poem with a message.
For life is all too short, dear
And sorrow is all too great
To suffer our slow compassion
That tarries until too late.
It isn’t the thing you do, dear
It’s the thing you leave undone
Which gives you a bit of heartache
At the setting of the sun.