Wednesday, April 01, 2009

A Missed Opportunity

This morning, I rode a van to my university. It was twelve noon and the heat of summer sunshine was so intense that you can actually grill ham and cheese just by going out without a cap or an umbrella. The vehicle was public and I felt like a fish enclosed in a can. I felt how sardines are feeling.

The woman beside me has a daughter with her and her daughter was very adorable and little. I think, her age ranges from two to four. She was so white and tidy, the kind of child that you wil love to squeeze. Unfortunately, the daughter was just standing in between her mom’s left leg and my right leg. I felt sorry for her and so I volunteered to hold the child in my lap. Her mother has big bags, convincing me that they are going to a far place and she cannot let her child sit on her lap. After volunteering, the woman was very grateful. I was overwhelmed by her thankfulness because the truth is I don’t feel like I was doing a favor or any of the like. I have no bags and the child is not that heavy for me to sacrifice an hour travel. For me, letting her sit on me is like having a porcelain doll in my lap. There were no harms done. I decided to look at the things outside and think about my exams.

I was surprised when I heard the little voice of the child asking her mom why is she crying. I looked at the rear view mirror and saw that her mom was really in tears. The woman later on answered her child and said, “No baby, I am not crying” and the child stopped and focused her attention to the truck passing beside us… but I did not. Surprisingly, I read her eyes and understood what happened. Maybe I was wrong. I hope so but there was something familiar about her tears. I am sure I’ve seen it before. I am sure that I saw it from my own mom before.

I got emotional at the moment. I do not know why but I wanted to weep with her but silently, exactly what she is trying to do. My emotions almost crashed me as a poor petite surfer weakened by the wave. I felt like I was with my mom at that time and as her child, I need to comfort her and serve as a pillar of her strength. I should not simply sit there and watch her hurting. I should always do something to lessen if not completely remove the hurtful feelings.

It took me some more minutes for me to convince myself that that wasn’t the perfect time to cry and be sad with my own drama story. I have a long day ahead and still got a final exam for me to focus on. I just felt that I need to sympathize with the woman and make her feel that she is not alone and she have to be really strong for her cute little baby. Otherwise, they will be both broken. I know that I was not in any position to speak out. I know that I am not in any position to interfere with her life especially her problems and so I did not.

After getting out of the van and walking my way to the jeepney’s terminal, unsatisfaction ran in my veins. I wasn’t able to make myself proud with what I did. Nevertheless, it was too late. I walked my way and heard the van accelerating. “Missed opportunity,” I said. "Maybe praying for her is the best thing I can do".


lucas said...

i can say that you're an empapthic person, rhainge; :)

Rhaingel said...


Well, I am not sure if that is good or not. I think it is but it affects me too much :D