The Filipino is Worth Dying For

Former Philippine president Corazon Aquino passed away last Saturday. Since then, I've been following the wake, the necrological services and today the funeral. If I had been in the Philippines, I would've definitely gone to the wake and paid my last respects.

I did not know her personally. I have no personal memory of her. But she was the political figure that may have awoken my nationalistic spirit. I was born during the martial law years. The Marcos dictatorship was the only form of government I knew. Then, this simple housewife of a murdered politician stood up to champion democracy. I was at the cusp of my teenage years then. My parents took me to rallies. Cory. Cory. Cory. We would chant. Laban. Laban. Laban. We would flash the "L" sign with our thumbs and forefingers. It was the perfect time to awaken a child's eyes. Be proud to be Filipino. "The Filipino is worth dying for" is what Ninoy Aquino had said. "The Filipino is worth fighting for" is what I got from Cory Aquino.

I cried as I watched and listened to the interview of Kris, her youngest daughter. I cried again as I watched and listened to the necrological service that was being aired over the internet. I cried again as I watched her funeral. It really is a sad day to say goodbye to our beloved president. But it is beautiful to see the love the Filipino people has showered upon her.

It is a little sad to think that it has taken the death of someone to move the heart of the nation. Death is such a reality check - that we live mortal lives and really have to embrace every moment we're given. Sudden deaths often move other people to make sure that their families will be taken care of when they die - life insurance no exam are updated, living wills are written up.

I've been glued to the computer watching all these that DD1 asked, "Why is this important?" me thinking. Was it really important for me to watch it? Maybe not. But the Filipino spirit within me is stirring. I want to be one with my people. I want to mourn the loss of a true leader. I suppose it is my way of saying that I am proud to be a Filipino.