IN MY EYES
By Edward B. Antonio
I like stories that tell of the life of real people.
This one touched my heart so much that I thought it’s worth retelling, in my own version, fellas.
There was a pretty woman who belonged to a broken family.
Let’s call her Cecilia.
When she was young, her father left her mother for another man. Cecilia grew up helping her mother manage their prosperous grocery store in the market. When her mother retired from selling, Cecilia took over the business. Cecilia fell in love with Celso who bore her a child, Donna. But the union did not last long, for Celso left Cecilia for another woman. Celso was never heard of again.
In order to sustain Donna’s needs and education, Cecilia worked doubly hard in the store and through the years, it prospered. Mother and daughter were living happily and contentedly at that time. They had a house, a business and had time to go out together on Sundays.
But things would change in the coming years.
One day, a handsome man in his late twenties started buying various stuff in her store. Let’s call him Luis. Luis’ background is unknown. He would buy those stuff in Cecilia’s store 3 to 4 times a day. All along, he would focus his eyes on Cecilia.
Cecilia had two lady helpers who were as thrilled as Cecilia when Luis started courting Cecilia. Luis also “wooed” Donna of her approval. When the child nodded, Cecilia gave in.
“But please don’t hurt my mother,” Donna said.
For three years, Luis was a model father. Those three years produced two kids. Luis was a responsible man. He was loving and kind. He would prepare food for the family and helped Cecilia in the store. Their business expanded to several more branches.
It was a relationship headed for a happy ending, fellas.
In order to cater more for the needs of their kids, Luis persuaded Cecilia to stay at home and he would manage their business. Things were going smoothly for the family until one late night, Luis came home tense and worried. He would not tell of the reason.
Luis’ late night arrivals became more often. His gross sales dropped abruptly. Cecilia was bothered of the diminishing remittances, so, one evening, she decided to visit the store. She found the store almost devoid of groceries. Her store neighbors said Luis would close early. They did not know where he would go.
Cecilia patiently and secretly followed Luis, until she found out that Luis had been into drugs, apparently shabu. She discovered several sachets of shabu in his cabinet at home and when she confronted him, Luis’ personality changed. In the middle of the argument, he brought out a gun and threatened to kill Cecilia and Donna.
Things went from bad to worse as Luis got hooked into drugs. His gun-toting activity became more frequent until Cecilia and Donna decided to report it to barangay authorities who did nothing to thwart Luis. As Luis became a drug addict, Cecilia and Donna decided to leave home. They stayed at the grocery store where Donna would go to her grandmother to sleep for the evenings. Luis would prod them to go back home, but mother and daughter were too afraid to go back.
All along, the child Donna, sensing the danger that his stepfather posed everytime he would come home late in those nights, would persuade her mother to report the matter to the police. But Cecilia was too hesitant to take drastic moves.
To augment her meager income in the store, Cecilia decided to seek for other jobs. One day while she was out, drug-crazed Luis, now almost psychotic, dragged Donna home and held her hostage, threatening he would kill the child and anyone who would get near. In the middle of his hallucination and despair, Luis fired at Donna and killed her. Later, SWAT policemen stormed the house and killed Luis.
Cecilia wailed for her daughter’s loss and everyday afterwards, she would be bothered by her conscience for not listening to Donna.
Such was the tragic end of our story, fellas.
Such was the tragic result of a family destroyed by drugs.
Such was the heart-rending story of an innocent child who died uselessly from the hands of a drug addict.
This story should also touch the heart of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR), who is currently lambasting President Rodrigo Duterte’s crackdown on illegal drugs. This is the reason why the majority of Filipinos favor the intensified raid on drug personalities and killing them for “fighting back.”
If drug would not have crept into Cecilia’s family, it would have been a happy ending, fellas.
That’s why the majority of Filipinos are secretly smiling at all those raids.
And all those deaths.#