Eight Years ago, I was diagnosed with Leukemia. It was too young to really understand what was happening. To this day, I remember the events but I know that at that time, all I knew was that I was sick and had to go the hospital twice a month. I also remember getting angry when I was told I was going to lose my hair, I remember my Mommy bringing me food all the time, I remember my doctor, who is still my doctor to this day and I also remember seeing a lot of people come and go. Many of those people are here tonight.
Back then, I really didn’t fully comprehend why there were so many people all the time. My ninang told me it was to donate blood for me but I didn’t get the significance. I do now.
For two and a half years, I had chemotherapy which would have cost about Php80,000 a month. My parents and grandparents had jobs and they always made sure we had food on the table. But there was no way we would have been able to produce $2,200 monthly. At that point, one thing was clear. I was going to die.
But I guess, God always makes a way, when there seems to be no way. He sent his first angel, Lolo Ennie. With no questions asked, without asking for anything in return, he helped me. He never failed. I am not his daughter. He didn’t even see me often but he helped me. He gave us money so I could get better, money that he worked hard for, money that he could have kept for himself, money that could have saved for his future of future of children and grandchildren. Because of him, I was able to go to my doctor twice every month for 2 and half years.
Lolo Ennie, thank you. I don’t get to say it often and with the generosity you showed me, I should be thanking you everyday. If it wasn’t for your kindness and generosity, I wouldn’t be here now. Because of you, I am alive.
God wasn’t done performing his miracles. A big chunk of the expense was the blood transfusion I needed. Apparently, I needed more than 9 bags, twice a month. One bag costs more than $60. The hospital told us, the only way we can offset the cost is if we get donors to donate 9 bags every hospitalization.
I have always been told that my Papa, Nanay and Tatay had friends they can count on in times of trouble. I didn’t know that the friendship extends to family because I saw just about every friend my family has in the hospital to donate blood for me. You were all there to save my life. I didn’t know it then but I know it now. You were my angels.
Because of all of you I know that angels don’t always come with wings. They sometimes come in sleeveless basketball shirt and shorts and old jeans and shirt. Because of all of you, I know that angels come in different sizes, shapes and colors. Because of all of you I know that I am surrounded by angels.
I was skin and bones back then. I couldn’t even walk. I couldn’t even go to the restroom myself. I was literally dying. You saved me from death. I know that to others, blood donation isn’t much but for people like us who don’t have much, every little we have is a lot. That’s why I know that with every bag of donation comes with almost everything you have.
Seeing all of you here is overwhelming. I can’t imagine that it took hundreds of people to save one life. My doctor told me that for every 30 cancer patient, only one survives. I was that one and it was all because of you. Because of you I was able to walk again, go back to school, travel… live.
I wish that someday I can become a billionaire and help you back in some way but if I don’t become a billionaire, I will just repay you in the best way I know how… by doing the best I can in my studies and hopefully someday, I can pay your kindness forward. Hopefully someday, I can help someone else. I don’t know how but I will try my best.
Lolo Ennie and to everyone who donated blood, who helped out in other ways, thank you. You are God’s greatest miracle in my life. Because of you, I can dance, eat and laugh tonight. Thank you for giving me the gift of life.