Monday, November 05, 2007

I forgot to light his candle on October 31st,

…. it is the 1st time in 11 years.. I know I am a nerd and I obsess over all things I cannot change.

I have never seen that date as a festivity, at least not the way most people see it –even if it is November 1st, “el Día de los Santos Muertos” the official date (at least the date designated by the Roman Catholic Church) I don’t think it is a day to party, not October 31st nor November 1st.

I have never understood the point of celebrating “Halloween” in my country, sure you can go to many parties, dress-up, etc., but not on the particular date…that is just me. As It is a time to “be with”, or remember your loved ones who are no longer with us and even as I believe you don’t need one particular day –date- to do so, I don’t believe you have to wear masks, and do whatever it is people do …

Historically speaking the day of all saints is intended for all reasons but what we commonly practice.

I was thought at a very young age that November 1st is a day to celebrate and honor the lives of the deceased, because it is the material presence we used to know what is no longer with us, and the celebration comes from the thought of festivity the continuation of life brings, believing that death is not the end, but rather the beginning of a new stage in life, something else, something bigger. ..That is just me. – We should all celebrate this any day, if we want to; that is not the point, instead is the “respect” matter.-

I remember seeing people holding white orchids and all sorts of white flowers, walking down streets dressed in white or black, -never did I participated in such things nor did my family, as far as I am concern-, yet while traveling inside the country, I saw that many times..

It is not about going to graveyards/cemeteries and churches, we should do that, if we want to, any day, any time, not because of a date.

-It reminds me of Valentine’s commercial purposes, and I am not going there –

But the quiet time, the peaceful time, this date has always been…

( I don’t want to disturb the dead)

I just don’t get the craziness…I don’t understand why people HERE “celebrate” “Halloween”, it is not part of our culture, nor history for that matter, and by “celebrating” I mean getting funky outfits and drunk.

And I am not the one to educate anyone on this matter, considering that the All Saints Day – as I remember “learning” at a young age at school- the date –which was not November 1st at that time- was considered “festival de la Lemuria” (I think no one could answer my question regarding the meaning of the word, I can’t remember) or something –in Roman tradition- and it was on that date when exorcisms were perform to houses or places believed hunted by the souls/spirits/spectrums of the deceased, I was also told these were wicked and malicious (both words are the same in my book…-in English- or at least most of the times in Spanish not so much).

Anyway, Is ironic how in our culture is used as an opposite, I thought that back then, and I think so still. But we deal with a different historical reality, we were indigenous 500 + years ago, “Christianized” and it was then God and the idea of afterlife (and it is believed in our culture still) brought by Catholicism (right? .. )

I have no idea why I am thinking or writing anything about any of this; my frustration is “I forgot to light a candle” and it is so much more than that, a candle, not an important item but so representative throughout history; a candle for someone I didn’t know, never even met, and far from that would be by now about ten years older than me. And for the 1st time in 11 years I forgot to light a candle in his memory - as I have no memory of that person in my life, never was-

And I obsess over things I cannot change, I do.

There are people that amaze you without even saying ONE WORD, their sobriety yet all the opposite to that seemly moderation; people who even give you the impression they are homeless, and maybe they are -in more substantial way than “owning a house”, the kind of people who change your life and they have absolutely no idea the impact they have on others just by being themselves, with their grace, character, generosity and apparent lifestyle, they are good… but most of all they are rare.

Walking among the living but in a higher ground, for us who see them, who watch them walk, pass by, and then...darkness, as they leave but their brightness remains, even if we are suddenly covered with a fog, thick, due the departure, but in time, we kindly see the brightness never left, it was just overshadow with sorrow, sadness, the sincere desolation, “losing” them causes.

It amazes me, even more, when that person touched us, thousands and thousands of km. apart and like traveling through time, 10 years ahead, and fourteen years ago.

It is weird the way people dies, the day, the time, the place, the way, the we have lived and then in a moment, just like that “it’s over”, in a second, a nature thing, a men thing, a men thing sentenced by nature, and vice-verse; everything changes and we affect others so much not only by the way we lived but how we died in that second, how we left, or were taken away; we leave so many unanswered questions it makes me tremble to think leaving like that, like some sort of mystery..

Leaving those who loved wondering “did I ever know her?”, “who was she?”, “what happened?” I don’t want to leave that grieve…or weird “fascination”, the book that seemed to be open but never truly was…

And above my admiration for the beauty I see, still, in this person, I see a great example of all things I want to be and all things I don’t to become… or stop being…

I don’t want to forget to light his candle, every October 31st, he touches me deeply and in the mist of all my emotionality, the one that I so candidly hide, and socially speaking rarely demonstrate, this touching way to express myself …I am and I don’t longer care about showing it, when I write, I have not care about that for 11 years and there is so much to do.

I still have to learn to say “I love you”, and to do it in time as well, to speak my heart out and say all things I can’t but write instead… it is not pride, ironically, is shame of my emotions, embarrassment of my feelings, and that fear to seem corny , the fear to jump.

It is that candle that reminds me that it is okay to cry in public, it is okay to walk away from a room when you feel your heart is about to break… it is okay to be human and most of all to act like one.


“God had tried to convince him to be born one more time. He told God, "I'd rather stay up here with you." So they bargained. God was persuasive, and he offered to go for five years, and then ten, and finally agreed to visit earth, but only for twenty-three years.”

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