The title of this post was inspired from the song of Spiral Staircase which will always remind me of this great friend I had.
"I had". Speaking in past tense about him is one of my struggles in the last few days. Maybe it has not fully sunk in yet that my dear friend Binchy is now gone. Its been more than a week since he left us and my friends and I still cannot stop talking about him and the way he touched our lives. It is also probably the reason why this memoriam post is a bit late. It took me more than a week to finally open my desktop PC and gather the beautiful pictures we had. It was truly a heartbreaking experience for every photo is a memory of fun times together.
I was chatting and doing my on-line stuff last Monday, February 4, when I got a message from Jovet, a good friend from Goodyear, asking me to pray for Binchy because he was rushed at the Asian Hospital. I replied and asked what happened. Jovet did not reply so I decided to call. That conversation was probably one of the worse I’ve had in my life. Jovet relayed to me that Binch collapsed after getting home from a badminton game and arrived ‘flatlined’ at Asian Hospital in what appeared to be as a Cardiac Arrest. He told me that the doctors and nurses were able to revived him but he was then in a respirator about to be wheeled to the ICU.
I was frantic and nervy after that phone call so I immediately went out of my room and told my parents what happened. I also grabbed both of my mobile phones and started calling Ros and Eric, two of our closest friends, at the same time. Eric, who was in India at that time, was the first to answer. He also cannot believe what happened and even told me that Binch sent him an SMS just before he left for India. Ros on the other hand was already asleep when I called so she had a hard time absorbing everything that I was saying at first.
The next few days were tragic ones. There were a lot of calls, e-mails and SMS between friends and former colleagues. Ros, Eric and I were so affected by what happened and I cannot focus very much at work. I went to see Binch on Tuesday at the ICU and it broke my heart when I saw him with all the tubes. I also met his family led by his sisters, Beepsie and Butchick, and it was really heartwarming to see them all there and the loving support and care they are giving their "Kuy". It was also nice seeing the many friends who visited and prayed for him at the hospital (and eventually at his wake). I am sure that Binchy will go “Awww, how sweet!” by the outpouring love, support and prayers by all of his family, friends and relatives.
February 8, 2008 was probably one of the worse days of our lives but it was probably the best day of Binchy’s. If there was one person I know who was ready to meet his fate and was God-conscious, it was probably my dear spiritual friend, Binch. At 2:45 am of Friday, February 8, 2008, Binchy went into the light to meet his Father and Creator at a young age of 38. He was ready but I guess most of us were not. His 4 days in the hospital where he stayed and fought were probably not for him but for us so we can properly say goodbye to him.
Who is HE for me? Except for my maternal Lola, Binch was probably the closest person I had ever loss. He was this funny, goofy former-Goodyear-cube mate friend of mine who never failed to make fun of me whenever there was a chance. It was also probably the reason why I cannot fully cry until now since all of my moments with him were pure joy and happiness. Plus - I know that he doesn’t want me to go all drama on him and his memory. Nevertheless, he was a very important friend of mine, who used to be one of my go-to-guy cradles at Goodyear. Thanks to him, my iPod is rich with music and classic timeless playlists. Binchy, as my blog readers would also notice, was also a constant star here on my blog and was probably the best looking guy at my Multiply photo page. (oh yeah, I know you want me to say that, Binch!)
I actually have a confession to make. A lot were telling me about widow and bereaved wife jokes since last week. So, was there ever a time when he was more than a friend for me? It was in 2006 when Binchy and I became really close. We became friends when I started pouring my troubles to him after I broke up with Mark and started having troubles at work. He was one of the advocates of my “moving on and starting anew” mantra. He was such a great friend who provided me lending ears at that time. We went out to watch cheesy movies, dinners and lunches, shopping, and work from the coffee shop. He really helped me in one of the lowest points in my life and for that I am forever grateful. It was never ‘more than friends’ but I must admit that he was really a good looking guy whom you can impressively take to dates and events. Hehe! He always got adoring stares from girls whenever we were out. There was an unpublished blog post which I wrote while we were together in one of our late night video-editing sessions for our project, Bayani Ng Kalsada. He fell asleep beside me at the sofa after gushing about seeing his crush in a badminton game he just came from. The blog post I wrote was about him. I said that I would have fallen for “this sweet sleeping guy beside me” if I was not too blinded and still in love with my ex-boyfriend. I mean what’s not to love, right? I never posted that blog entry (nor entertained other sweet thoughts about him) but I showed it to my friend Marge. It unfortunately went to the trash bin together with my other Goodyear files.
There were so many memories I have of him and space is not enough if I will write them all here. There were so many fun times but there were also a couple of bad times – mostly the times we fought and argued because of work. One of the things which stood out (and I know he wants me to write this) was when he took me with him to his Bible Study at CCF Alabang. It was truly one of my finest moments with Binch. He was really on his element at that time and he gladly answered all of my curiosity questions even if I was already bothering him while he listens to the Pastor.
I was part guilty because the last I saw him was when we had dinner at Brother’s Burger in Westgate at the end of October 2007. He and Ros just filed their Goodyear resignation that week and I was really happy for them for finally taking the plunge. We never actually ‘talked’ that night and that was one of my regrets. But I remembered pestering him for information on our ex-boss’s reaction when he handed his resignation letter. The four of us (Binch, Ros, Eric and I) usually went out and had dinners post-Goodyear to catch up on things. There were several plans in November and December but they unfortunately did not materialize due to our our busy schedules. There were also SMS greetings between us last Christmas and New Year but that was it…and now my friend is forever gone. :(
I have no doubt in my mind that Binchy is now with our loving Father. He was one of the few people I know who was never afraid to proclaim the greatness of our Lord each moment he can. (He used to send us Daily Bread messages in our e-mails which he typed religiously each day.) I also admire the way he helped other people through his kindness and generosity. His life was very full and alive and he made sure that each person he met was appreciated. He touched so many lives and for that he will never be forgotten.
I was hesitant at first to write something about him on this blog because it might be too heartbreaking for me. Then I remembered one conversation we had when he told me that he tried Googling himself once and even found a post or two about him – which I made fun of, of course.
So, here you go, Binch. I swear that I have carefully chosen your most gwapo shots for the picture collage above! I know you will like this very much and will even make fun of my blogging habits – as usual! :) You will be missed and always remembered! We love you!