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JUST LIKE THE ANGEL

I was playing basketball with some of my friends, when I suddenly slipped at the court.  I found myself curled in a fetal position while writhing in pain,  “Agaaaaaayyyy!!!! Agaaaaayyyy!!!!”. The other players thought that it was just a prank, but sensing that something was terribly wrong they immediately carried me to a corner and called for assistance.  I could feel that my tendons were dis-aligned that I could not move my left foot.  Later, they lifted me up and brought me to the nearest barangay health center.

But, there were no health volunteers there, not even the assigned midwife.  So,  they just   stretched my leg in an effort to give me the needed first aid.    Fortunately, my mother came rushing and brought me to the public hospital.  I waited there for an hour because the doctor was still roving, but when he finally showed up, he just looked at my left leg and then gave my mother some prescriptions.  “Ayaw sa pag dula ug basketball ha”, he said.

I  wondered if he totally understood what he advised me  because in my mind I thought it was foolish for him to say that.   Nevertheless, I took the medicines as prescribed and my mother gave me  a hot compress at home.  I was relieved for a while, but noticed that my left leg started to swell. But, out of exhaustion, I fell asleep early and forgot about my left foot.

The following day, I woke up to find my left foot very painful.  I noticed that the swelling became more pronounced too.  I tried to stand up, but I could not do it without the help of my mother.  She later told me not to worry  because I was under medication and that after a few more days, I would feel a little better.

A week passed, and I was still in pain.  The swelling has not subsided and so I  told my mother that I needed to go back to the hospital.  I was also worried because I was absent from my classes for one week already.  I didn’t know if I could still catch up with the lessons because the mid-term examination was fast approaching.

Anyway, my mother insisted that I should finish taking my medicines first before going back to the doctor.  But, he practically did not do anything.  He merely looked at my left leg and did not even touch it.  I could see that there were so many patients that time so he was in a hurry to give me the prescriptions.  It was just a mere quick glance on my leg and so I could not trust his judgment.

To appease me, my mother  bought me a stretcher, so I could move around with little help from her.  Maybe, she just did not want to baby sit somebody as big as me, and so she pushed me to help myself.   It was a little hurting, but she was right.  I had to do something or else I could end up being a member of the PWD (or persons with disability).

But, If I had to go back to the doctor,  I wanted  a more thorough check-up.  There was no time to dillydally.  I was in pain for almost a month already.  I was getting frantic.  My left leg  continued to swell and I was afraid that  it could end up getting amputated.

In times like this however, we always remember God. So, I left the house early accompanied by our housemate and  decided to  drop by the church to seek for Divine intervention.   I asked God to help me recover as soon as possible because I did not want to stop schooling that semester.

Outside the church, I happened to meet “Manong Loloy”,  my father’s former colleague who resigned to go abroad.  I was surprised that he easily recognized me and told me to send his regards to my father.  Of  course, he noticed that I was limping and asked what happened to my leg.  But, before I could even answer, he told me to visit him in house saying, “ga panghilot ko sa Saudi, daghan kog na ayo nga mga ingon ana”.

I laughed silently because I needed to go to a doctor, not to a “hilot”.  But, I was also courteous enough to say yes, even if I did not really believe him.  On the way home, somebody seemed to whisper to my ears  to try going to his house.  Who knows, he could cure me.   It was like God led me the way.  So, instead of going home, I found myself right in front of their door step.

“Manong Loloy” was seated at their veranda, and he was smiling as if he was expecting me to follow him right away.  He held my left leg, massaged my foot, turned it around 3 times  and that was all.  “Na ipit imong ugat, mao nang ni hubag imong tiil”.  He then told me to go home and to take a rest.  But, I  could not believe what I saw. The swelling  instantly subsided!  Suddenly, too,  I could walk normally! Goodness, he was like an angel!

On the way home, I dropped by the church again to thank God for sending “Manong Loloy” as my healer. “Thank you God!! Thank you God!!”, I said it sincerely.  My mother was glad to see me walking straight without the stretcher.  “You see, just as I told you so”, she said. “The doctor was very good”. “No Ma”, “it was Manong Loloy”, I corrected her. But, because of my excitement I forgot to thank him.   My father was also happy to see me walking straight again.  He said that I should go back to “Manong Loloy” and  give him a ream of cigarettes “para pasalamat”.

A week later,  I went back to “Manong Loloy’s” house bringing a ream of cigarettes.  I was wondering why there were many people around.  I hesitated for a while because from a distance, I could see a coffin.  “Kinsay namatay?” I asked. “Si Manong Loloy.  Heart attack daw atong isang adlaw”.   Whaaaattt?  I was totally shocked!  I could still remember our conversation vividly. He just healed me and I came to thank him!   I trembled in disbelief. Was his smile a premonition?  I don’t really know.  But, like an angel, he came to me as fast as he left me.  My only regret was that I did not have the chance to thank him.

A month later, my father and  I visited “Manong Loloy”  at the cemetery.  We offered prayers for the repose of his soul.  It was the first time that I  felt bad for losing somebody who was not really close to me.  It was a strange feeling because I was very much affected by his death. He touched my life in a way that I never expected it.  But, in his grave, I finally had the chance to thank him for helping me to walk again. It was very sincere.  And yes, I also bade my angel goodbye.

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