Wednesday, January 16, 2008

To Be Remembered, Laughing (Part 1)

I do not really brood about dying. But it crosses my mind, now and again. It makes sense to think about it, death being one of life’s few certainties, the others being taxes and change.

Thus have I made a living will. (Click here for a previous post about it.)

Thus have I composed my own (tentative because a bit too mushy) epitaph – “She looked for the meaning of life .. and found love.”

And now I want to make sure I am remembered by people I love, laughing.

No, silly, I don’t mean a remembrance of laughing me or me laughing. A laughing image of me would be hard to conjure. My smile is really a smirk. And I have this annoying habit of suppressing laughter, no thanks to an early blemish on a front tooth, which though long ago corrected has left an incorrigible tendency to avoid showing teeth at all cost.

More to the point, I want my family and friends to laugh laugh laugh when they think of me.

I want to be associated with things funny and happy and quirky.

Like my penchant for getting lost.

I want them to chuckle when they say: "Remember when mom got lost when we went on pilgrimages to Antipolo, to Agoo? Remember how she spent the night in a stranger's house in Agoo, sleeping on the floor, and then taking the first bus to Manila the next morning?" And someone would probably add, giggling: "She got lost, too, shopping in Mega Mall." Hopefully they will forget their mom had the temerity to get angry and scold them and insist THEY were the ones who strayed.

I want them to roll on the floor laughing when they recall my fashion style that dotes on shoulder pads, blouses worn back side front, stirruped pants, buttoned up collars, passionate-red lipstick, and a fluffy "banged" hairdo. Surely, someone would remark how I'd get pikon if anyone so much as snickered at the piquancy of my wardrobe. They had no way of knowing then -- had they -- that they could laugh their butts off, with permission, when the time comes.

They should also remember, with matching lip-smacking, my lengua, kare-kare and baked mac – rated the best in the world by a six-person, panel of tasters, never mind that they are biased and possibly intimidated by sharp looks from the cook. If I get lucky, they would also drool for my deep, dark, mmmmmoist chocolate cake, never mind that it is unevenly layered, sloppily glaced and iced and always in danger of toppling over.

A quick survey of my children’s memories told me they remember the mom of their youth: for unfailing Friday night pasalubongs (that could vary from hopia to belekoy to doughnuts to siopao depending on the state of her temperament and wallet); for shopping trips that usually ended at Goldilocks; for Christmas gifts of remote control cars they get to stealthily play with -- weeks before Christmas, with mom in the office blissfully ignorant that the toys she thought she had ingeniously kept in some out-of-reach hiding place had been found and pre-empted.

They also remember unsavory things ... like her being pikon when corrected, her tendency not to listen to explanations, and her uninspired housekeeping-- but these are of course to be glossed over and erased-erased-erased.

Lately, I have been telling my children I wish to be remembered for reformatting our "ho-hum" annual family reunions into memorable events that resound with laughter.

(to be continued with a post on our last reunion)


Em Dy said...

Interesting question to ask one's self: How would you want to be remembered? And when you ask yourself that question, do the answers satisfy you?

I find that I'm not content with how I'll answer mine. Seems like I have work to do with my life. Thanks Annamanila for a thinking post.

lazarus said...

*winked* while drinking coffee.

To be remembered... that's all that matters to me.

MrsPartyGirl said...

i guess the reason why i'm being a good girl now is so that i'll be remembered in a good way when the inevitable comes, too. pero parang its no fun, haha! the notorius peeps are always remembered longer. :P

anyway, thanks for sharing those tidbits about you. i'm sure your family has a lot more fun stuff to add to your "remember-me-by" list. :)

lady cess said...

when my sisters and i get together we remember and laugh at our mom's eccentricities. pero our mom is very much alive and on top of the world :)

gusto ko ganon din. that when people remember me, they will not take my imperfections too seriously :) said...

we all want to leave a legacy. Pero if there are imperfections, I hope my loved ones take time to laugh and remember

Gina said...

One thing that came to mind when I read about the Agoo misadventure..nasaan ang cellphone?

Aw, I'm sure you will be remembered with so much respect and love. And very well , with laughter na nga rin! =))

Chateau said...

Love this post! Love, love it! :D

This made me think ha... I'd like to be remembered laughing too. Sometimes I don't know if I will be. But this post reminds me everyday is a chance to build memories. I won't waste each chance. Thanks for the reminder.

GreyMom said...

Great post! Made me think how I want to be remembered as well. Thanks for sharing!

thailandchani said...

I get what you are saying. You want people to enjoy their memories of you instead of being sad.

That makes a lot of sense.

(Have the same "teeth" issue. :)

Thanks for stopping by my site.

ScroochChronicles said...

How do I want to be remembered? Now that's something worth pondering over.

The only thing I've ever bothered with, with regards to my passing, is what I'm supposed to wear and what picture of me is to be displayed. Talk about vanity.

Now you've got me thinking....hmmmm....good deeds, maybe? Kakenkoyan, pwede!! Love for life...ok din. Sige, isip ako :)

Anonymous said...

That light-hearted moment when what you want is not to be taken too seriously---ahh, that is something to wish for.

faith said...

That light-hearted moment when what you want is not to be taken too seriously---ahh, that is something to wish for.

bw said...

looks like you had a pretty exciting life! I'm sure your family and friends will remember you more than what you want them to :)

Anonymous said...

you got lost in megamall?? me too hahaha!

Win $250 said...

Not surprie if one gets lost in Megamall. Touring the whole site of is such a big task - consider it a form of exercise :). But of course, none will beat a walk in the country.

Leah said...

Oh the bangs...?! and shoulder pads? I surely will remember that with a hearty laugh too.

I'm sure your kids will have all these memories to treasure. Happy memories.

Looking forward to the 'ho-hum' description of your family reunion.

SexyMom said...

Annamanila--how you entertain us even with a very dreary topic such at this. even the last viewing day is as exciting as can be. makes me pause for a while and ask myself--how about you, sexy mom? how would you like it to be?

Anonymous said...

pareho tayo, I'd want to be remembered for the laughter I brought into their lives.

nice post anna. can't wait for the continuation.

princess said...

I am sure even the angels will be laughing while going over with what you had done on earth! Interesting post. Great sense of humor, and I like that epitaph!

exskindiver said...

you will be remembered well,
this i am pretty sure of.

(and why mention your lengua?
it is 1:10 AM, at naglalaway ako.

Toe said...

Hahahahahaha! You are sooooo funnnnnny Annamanila! Who would not forget such a goofy mother?

And you have this blog post pa to remind your children on how you would be remembered ha. :)

Annamanila said...

hi. Test comment frm celfone.

julie said...

AM, this is so funny. But then since we will all go when we have to, nothing beats being ready huh?

I love the way you want to be remembered. Your humor, your perspective and how you look at yourself.

I hope to taste one of those famous dishes of yours.

((hugs)) to Andeng

Heart of Rachel said...

This is a wonderful post. I wish I could leave a positive imprint to others before I go.

Rudy said...

Me? I just hope I will be remembered, period. But that would be a tall order since I don't have even a family of my own, nor will ever have one it seems. I'd probably end up being remembered by my nieces as that old cranky uncle of theirs. :-D


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