I cannot control my tears when I learned that our former President, Corazon Aquino, passed away after battling with colon cancer for more than a year. I feel sad because she is gone even if I know that she will live in our hearts. I am consumed with sorrow because she lost her battle with cancer despite surviving many battles in her lifetime - the incarceration and assassination of her husband, Senator Benigno Aquino; the EDSA Revolution; her 6 years term as President of the Philippines; 9 coup attempts to topple her administration; and the countless problems given by her celebrity daughter, Kris Aquino. I am really in grief even if I know I should be relieved that finally her sufferings are over and she is now in a better place.
How can I fit all her accomplishments in a page in my blog? She was larger than life. How can I do justice to her accomplishments? Her life was spent in honest, dedicated and selfless service to the people. How can I honor her more? Millions were already written about her, from memoirs and blogs to newspapers, magazines and history books.
She was the symbol of our hope for freedom from a 20-year dictatorship. She drew millions of people during the 1986 EDSA Revolution, to fight through peaceful means and stand to say, ENOUGH! I was there. She became the first woman leader and the most influential icon in Asia. She became the inspiration of 9 peaceful revolutions, including the Tienanmen Square Demonstration and the Fall of the Berlin Wall. She was nominated for Nobel Prize for Peace and was named Woman of the Year by Time Magazine. Her speech in the US Congress was interrupted by numerous applause and standing ovation by men from the most powerful nation in the world.
But beyond all those titles, accolades and accomplishments, she is "Tita Cory" (meaning Auntie Cory) to all of us. Intelligent, kind, selfless, brave. She embodies the picture of the real Filipino.
I grieve for the passing of an icon but I know that her legacy will always live in our hearts.
Thank you, Tita Cory, for sharing your life and touching us.
I want to share the poem written by her husband to her when he was imprisoned during the Martial Law Regime. This was made into a song by Jose Mari Chan.
I have fallen in love
With the same woman three times
In a day spanning nineteen years
Of tearful joys and joyful tears.
I loved her first when she was young
Enchanting and vibrant, eternally new
She was brilliant, fragrant
and cool as the morning dew.
I fell in love with her the second time
When first she bore her child and mine
She's always by my side, the source of my strength
Helping to turn the tide.
I fell in love again
with the same woman the third time
Looming from the battle her courage will never fade.
Amidst the hardships she has remained
Undaunted and unafraid
She is calm and composed.
She is God's lovely maid.