Beauty For Ashes

Ano kaya naramdaman nila nung mga panahong iyon?

They must’ve had a hard time.

I wonder if I could have done something for them then.

I want to comfort them now, but I don’t know how.

These were the thoughts that ran through my mind as I was skimming through my Facebook news feed today. It’s quite weird but the past few days, I just found myself looking at photos of some women I went to college with, photos with their babies, looking like the proudest parents on earth. As much as I wanted to congratulate them, I don’t know if it’s the right response.

Because we’ve just been classmates during our last semester. And that was just a few months ago.

So it means she was pregnant while we were performing our lab exercises.

It means she was pregnant during the time we were gathering our samples outdoors and sharing smiles and chats together even though we weren’t really that close.

It means she was pregnant the time I saw her come into class crying her eyes out. I should’ve approached her then, asked her what the matter was, and tell her it’s going to be okay.

But I didn’t. And she must’ve had a rough time. I know, because it happened to our family once, and it wasn’t easy.

I imagined what she would’ve felt the first time she realized her period was delayed and confirmed it with a pregnancy test kit. She would’ve been scared, and didn’t know what to do next. Who should she talk to? Who should she ask for help, someone who wouldn’t judge her? Who would tell her everything’s  going to be alright?

The mere thought of telling her parents must have drained all color from her face. Her father’s face after learning her state must have hurt her more than anything else in the world. She must’ve cried a lot.

Though her parents still accepted her after, she must’ve found it difficult to accept their care as love, and must’ve thought of how much disappointment and shame she’s bringing them. She must’ve thought of leaving – her home, or this world altogether. She must’ve cried every night because of the thought, the battle raging in her mind.

She must have felt the pang of defeat and loss – of her dreams and her family’s dreams. She must’ve lost hope during the time. She must’ve closed the curtains on everyone and everything. She just wanted to get things over with.

She must’ve wondered if he was really the one.

This wasn’t the right way to go. No, this isn’t how I wanted it to be. Why hasn’t he called? Does he already know, will he feel it? Or should I tell him? But I’m afraid that if I do, he’ll leave me altogether. I can’t risk that, I can’t handle much more pain.

And where was I during those times? I was clueless. I was helpless. I didn’t know. And now, though I see her smiling, I see that hint of regret and shame. She’s happy, but I wonder if she’s at peace. Now she’s not just considering her dreams and her future, but the future of her child as well.

No, I don’t want to pity her – I’m sure she doesn’t want that. She has a precious child now, a new life and new hope – someone to love and protect.

She doesn’t need my pity, she doesn’t need my rebuke. Now, all she just needs is my love. She needs to know that I’m here and I’m willing to listen. She needs to know that she still has a place in this world, and she still has all the right in the world to dream and to pursue her dreams. She needs to know that she is strong. She needs to know that she is wanted, needed, loved.

My heart goes out to her, and to all the girls who went through the same phases in their lives. I don’t know [if and] how hurt and broken you are right now, but I want you to know that you are still precious and loved. The King of Kings, creator of the heavens and the earth, the wielder of stars, designer of flowers, and the maker of rainbows – He loves you and delights in you. There’s nothing that you can do that will make him love you more, and there’s definitely nothing that you can do that can make Him love you less. By the sacrifice of Jesus, you have been made pure, blameless, and without blemish in His sight 🙂 He makes all things new, and bestows upon us a crown of beauty instead of ashes. So heads up, Princess – the King is enthralled by your beauty 🙂

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