Today I thought about many things, especially about people who have at one time or another been part of my life. There are people who figure prominently even if they are not really aware of the impact they make or the impression they leave on you when they're gone. Not to the netherworld I mean, but, just moved on to something else. When I was in highschool, I had a friend named Diana. I could very well say that her name suited her to a T because she was very pretty, intelligent, had a great personality, even if she tended to be painfully shy at times. We became very close friends because we both were interested in the same things--poetry and books. What struck me most about Diana is that she wasn't at all conscious of how beautiful she was, outside and inside. I thought I wanted to be like her, but she was always so unassuming and didn't think much of herself. We lost touch after graduation, but even now that I am an adult and am miles away from her, I will always feel blessed at having known humility and meekness in its physical form.
In college, I got to know Jo. Like Diana, Jo came from a well-to-do family. But she too was self-effacing. Jo and I were like peas in a pod, we were just inseparable and were always doing the same things together. I always felt a tad envious about JoAnn, although not in a bad way. I think she had everything, nice family, nice home, comfortable life---while I was a half-orphan living under the mercy of my relatives who put me through college a little grudgingly by making me do tons of household work than I could manage. Nevertheless, when I was in school, I forgot all about it. I was just happy to be with Jo.
When I left college, we exchanged letters, but soon we would drift away and lose in touch until more than ten years later. One day, I got a call from Jo asking if she could fly over to Manila to see me. Of course I was more than happy to see her. I was a little embarrassed to see her though because I didn't have a house of my own and was doing an 8-hour job, and had really little, if at all, to be proud about. But Jo was simply happy to see me. She stayed at my place for a couple of days, then took the route back to her homeplace via Bacolod. Or so I thought. Little did I know that she was staying in some seedy motel the whole time I thought she has gone back home. I was stormed with calls at my office from her family who demanded to know where she was. It was only then that I learned Jo has gone to me on the pretense of seeing me, but she had wanted a place to stay whilst she was hiding from a husband who was suffering from a chemical imbalance and had wanted to hurt her. She left her daughter with her mom, but didn't let them know where she was going. I felt so sorry for her. I could have helped her with what little I had. But that was the last I heard of her.
There are other people who've walked past my door and changed the shape of my life. At times they've hurt me or made me happy, but always, the notch that lingers is how they've made me the person that I am now.