Haiyan and Her Friends

It resonates deeply to the core of my being.  I’ve shed many useless tears from watching commercials on world hunger or YouTube videos on sick, parentless children.  If you’re a critic from the get-go, best you stop reading now because this is personal.  Like I said, it resonates deeply to the core of my being.

I’ve always believed that charity is personal.  We give to whatever feels close to heart, whatever tugs gently at the strings.  I can’t expect you to understand if you don’t know.  So let me introduce you to that which pulls at my heart like the moon gathers the tide.

Say hello to the Philippines.  The pearl of the orient.  A wonder of an archipelago.  A serendipitous collection of 7, 107 beautiful islands.  The Filipinos.  Fishermen and scholars alike.  Musicians and lovers.  Diligent and dedicated.  A people rich in tradition, culture, faith, and heart.  Whatever the Filipinos lack in anything, they make up for in the depth and intricacies of their heart and soul.  Passion.  They burn the fire within.  They are heroes to each other, silent and committed.  Their greatest pride?  Their unified and beating love for their country.

It’s heartbreaking to think that, in the course of a day, the country’s 96.7 million population declined by an estimate of over 10,000.  People are people.  It could’ve happened anywhere.  Majority of the world’s nations are still third world.  Resources are sparse.  Government infrastructures are weak.  Economies are corrupt.  People are impoverished.  Downtrodden.  Hopeless. What else is there to give?  What more can be taken away?  …But their souls.  Their hearts.  Their home…their greatest pride.

I lived yesterday.  I walked around with a relentless lump in my throat.  I cried, and I let myself do so freely because it simply hurt. I’m so saddened by the loss of all those people I don’t know, the ones who looked the same as I do.  I feel hopeless and helpless.  I cried for the little children crying for the things they could not understand, the families they lost.  I cried for parents who clasped their children’s fingertips as much as they could, only to lose them in the end.  I cried for all the scenarios I saw on television, repeating them over and over in my head as worst-case replays.  I saw myself as a little girl walking the same streets; I tried to imagine what I would’ve done or felt if I were there.  And I just couldn’t.

Most of us feel sorry.  And a lot of us will feel like there isn’t much to do.  But the truth is ever so obvious now.  THERE IS much to do.  So much.  Haiyan and her friends will just keep visiting us at different moments, different places.  Why is it that we can’t be more prepared?  What about Vietnam?

I write this for the place where I come from, for my family that still lives there, and for my neighbors who didn’t survive.  All of you are in our thoughts and minds and hearts.  Stay strong and be steadfast in your faith.  Help is here.

i carry your heart with me(i carry it in
my heart)i am never without it(anywhere
i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done
by only me is your doing,my darling)
                                                      i fear
no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want
no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)
by e.e. cummings
[i carry your heart with me(i carry it in]
Featured photo courtesy of http://demo1.globescope.com//fpss/slideshows/myslideshow1/images/photo1.jpg

Author: Jennifer Longinos

I'm a freelance writer and a homeschooling mom of two awesome toddlers. If we aren't out on an adventure, we spend most of our days tickling each other on the bedroom floor, making things explode in the kitchen, jumping on piles of laundry before and after washing, or just doing random little things that make life absolutely worth it.

7 thoughts on “Haiyan and Her Friends”

  1. Such a well done post! The catastrophe in the Philippines is heart wrenching…such devastation…I hope you and friends/family are safe. The rebuilding will take time, but they will come together with a lot of help from many sources!

    Be encouraged and strong,

    1. Thank you Clayton! My family over there are safe. But a lot of my friends haven’t heard from their families. It will take time. We’re staying hopeful and as strong as we could be.


      1. I hear a good bit of relief is on the way! If you are spiritual/religious, pray for everyone. The prayer of a faithful soul is a powerful thing!

        Clayton 🙂

      2. Heaven is being stormed…prayers have been nonstop. Thanks for being so encouraging. Sometimes it’s strangers that make the difference.

        Jenn 🙂

      3. Strangely, much love and support does come from people we don’t even know. Thank God for such people!

        Take care and the best to you and your family…

        Clayton 😉

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