Monday, June 15, 2009

Let Me Write For I am Living


(In which I am happy that my hands can write what my brain says.)


Yesterday, my sister brought a DVD – One Liter of Tears – a Japanese drama. It was actually being aired at a local TV network but due to my work schedule, I wasn’t able to catch it. It was hard watching it though, since it wasn’t dubbed in Tagalog. You have to look at the actor’s faces, read the subtitle, be sure the dog’s not gnawing on your shoes and eat your meal at the same time. Thank goodness that on the times when our multitasking skills failed to serve us well, the “pause” button was always there to help. We weren’t able to finish the entire series because of its length yet I sure learned a lot from it.

I never knew how important my most random and seemingly senseless writings are until I met Aya. She suffered from spinocerebellar atrophy – a very cruel disease that will leave you with your brain working properly but with the rest of your body so impaired that they will gradually stop receiving messages from the brain. She was advised by her doctor to keep a record of the changes she experiences with her body in the form of a diary. And that diary was published and touched many people’s lives.

I am without an intention to make myself known for my writings. We have to be realistic. I know that being a well-kn0own writer takes more than penmanship. And it sure requires a lot of patience and passion. How cliché is that? There are times that I feel that writing about my feelings and my thoughts wasn’t very useful since it takes a lot of time and energy to create one and post it on a blog site yet less than a minute for a reader to ignore it. I know. Failing to see any comments doesn’t mean failing to get any readers. But it doesn’t mean you got one, either.

I have heard the very famous “Write to express and not to impress” line when we were studying in high school. Well, my writings aren’t made to impress but they could do so. It’s really done for the sake of expression and record-keeping. It’s for preserving memories.

Whenever my students ask me how to write, I always started with the basic “You must have an introduction, a body and a conclusion” thing. But at the end of the lecture and they seemed to get more confused because either I am using difficult terms on composition or they seem not so convinced, I tell them to be true. I tell them not to stop the flow of ideas in their mind and to just put the ideas on the paper using words. I just tell them to write. Please do not say I don’t know how to teach. You see, it’s hard to teach essay/creative writing which you studied for years in high school and more than a semester in college to students who are intending to study it for less than a month. I did my best.

So there. Just write. I just write. I write about jovial, confusing, disappointing, interesting, ridiculous and historical experiences. My hands try to express the things my mouth cannot. And aside from that, I now have a new purpose in writing, thanks to Aya. I can write. And I want to write as long as I can. I will write to acknowledge life.
“My writings are the evidence that I am still alive.” – Aya Kitō


(Real photo of Aya Kitō)