Saturday, July 24, 2010


Because there were times that we won't be able to see each other, within eight months after we lived together as husband and wife, we had to decide that one of us had to leave our jobs. She was a kitchen crew of a restaurant chain in Makati City working on shifts while I was on a 9 to 5 job in a shipping company in Port Area, Manila. Alone in life, she had no problem with her work sched. Married to me, she had to do some cooking although I did not require her to do so. And on her days off from work, she had to wash clothes which now included mine because I was now her husband. And so we decided that she be the one to leave her job, her salary being lower than mine.
This decision which we made mostly out of my insistence was to be the culprit to her death twenty four years later. Having no more works to do after washing the dishes after breakfast I had deprived her of physical activities her body needed to keep away the big C. She didn't have to hurry anymore to the train station; she didn't have to hurry anymore to her work place after getting off the train; she didn't have to work anymore in the kitchen of that restaurant.
Sometime in the later part of the 90s, she began to complain about a growth inside her anus. We did not take it seriously as we thought it was just an ordinary polyp. By the early 2000, she began to feel difficulty defecating. Later her feces had traces of blood. Some months more later, she would sit a long time on the toilet bowl trying to excrete, first with little amount, and then some more months later, nothing will come out.
For nearly two years she was bedridden, and in the late morning of September 24, 2004 I had to rush her on a taxi to a government hospital. Her hemoglobin was so low I couldn't remember the figure. The doctors suggested blood transfusion but without encouragement. At 2:00 o'clock of that day, she said the surrounding was beginning to get dark. Her right hand crept into mine and held it tight. Minutes later her eyes began to slowly close and her hand slowly loosened on mine. And then she began a struggled breathing even when the oxygen was in her nostril. And in the early evening of that day, her bed dripped with her urine perhaps in her effort to hold on to life. And then she breathed her last.
In the course of her ailment, we went to a doctor at the stage when defecating became difficult. The doctor took sample tissues from her anus and recommended operation when he got the result. But the second doctor we consulted for another opinion said "no. Operation is not the solution. Even in the early growth of the polyp, operation was not a solution. Operation will only lower the quality of life" my wife will have to live in the few remaining days of her life as she'll be carrying a colostomy bag in her waist for the few remaining days of her life.
I did some reading after her death. The Encarta says heating the bacon up to nearly 500 degrees C makes it carcinogenic. But I can hardly blame the bacon although there were few occasions that we ate club sandwich in restaurants in Greenhills, San Juan, Metro Manila. The Encarta also says that lack of fruit and vegetable in the diet make the body vulnerable to the big C. We ate enough fruit mostly banana being the only available fruit year round, and she cooked vegetable quite often.
And the Encarta also says that lack of physical activities can also cause the development of the big C. The lack of activities thing of my wife which is my making, I believe is the real culprit to my wife's death.

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