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Saturday, October 26, 2013

Dreaming of Nikki

It was one sunny morning; a day that coincided with the birthday of our cousin ate Ivy. The weather was remarkable because it was not too hot despite of a summer day. There was a cool breeze swirling around that led us to stay outside of the house. It was definitely one perfect day. It was actually the day that forever changed our lives.

My mom just went to the doctor for a checkup.  I never really had the chance to know why she went to the doctor that morning all by herself.  It’s been hours since she returned and as soon as the maroon gate opened and saw my mom’s feet stepping through the porch, one question came in unison, “How did it go?” (We actually asked her in Tagalog)… One word came out of her mouth and that word really altered our lives. ..She uttered the word “Positive”.

That was the very day that I really felt very blessed. A blessing was about to come out after 9 months. Actually, I was an only son for a span of 12 years and during the time that my mom was tested pregnant, she was already 39 going 40. For almost 12 years, I was praying to God to give me a sibling or siblings. I was even sleeping at my cousin’s house almost every weekend just to make sure that my parents would do their own thing and make a baby.

The moment that my mom confirmed that she’s pregnant; it was inexplicable happiness all around the house. It’s as if we were on bliss. I can tell from my dad and mom’s eyes that day that a source of irreplaceable joy is in line. During those times, we wanted the whole 9 months to be soon over. We wanted to see how the baby would look like. My mom’s doctor had a clinic at Medical City. It was the old Medical City placed near Lourdes School of Mandaluyong. Yup, I graduated from that school. I remember every checkup of my mom, I had to be fetched from school first and then go straight to her checkup.

One of the most exciting days was the day that my mom had an ultrasound. As soon as the doctor declared that my mom was going to have a baby girl and showed us the results, I really couldn’t stop looking at the baby’s ultrasound pictures. I was so excited to see my little sister even on an ultrasound image.

During the 12th day of January 1997, a healthy little girl was successfully delivered. My baby sister Isabella Dominique Santiago Castillo was born. All of us had the biggest smiles on our faces as soon as we learned that everything went well. We were racing towards the nursery room and tried peaking through the blinds just to have a glimpse of my baby sister. I was very relieved that she did not have the same color as my skin. I was really hoping that she would acquire my mom’s complexion and she actually did. Nikki was a very beautiful baby girl.

As the months passed by, everything went on perfectly until one diagnose really shattered everything for us. Nikki was diagnosed with a congenital heart disease. She had a hole in heart. It was the most excruciating moment of our lives. I couldn’t fathom why of all the people in the world, why does it have to be my little baby sister? I must admit that my faith really wavered. I kept on asking why her and not me instead.

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