I used to be an avid comic book collector. It started in grade school, and went all the way up to College. Maybe “avid” isn’t even the right word. I was addicted. All my money went to comic books. I would even reserve 20 to 30 of them at a time, per week. Comic Quest in Makati was my store. It was still inside the old Greenbelt (I can’t remember the name now….), and I would go there all the time. I still have the comics in the attic just piled up in boxes.
There was one series called “What If…?” chronicling the would-be scenarios in the Marvel Universe. Like the one above. In the original series, the X-Men defeated Karakatoa. But what if they didn’t? What would have happened? And they had a lot of these stories, that had no effect on the real timeline.
Just like life, I suppose. We have so many “What If…?” questions. If we fail in an exam, we ask: “what if I studied instead of just stalked people on Facebook?” Or if we get stuck in traffic, we ask: “What if I passed another way instead of here?” And so on. And the questions get harder, when life gets harder too. What if I asked her out? What if I just said sorry? What if I spoke up when I had the chance?
There are many questions running through our (Des and myself) now. What if we didn’t bring Maria to the pedia that day? What if we didn’t leave the hospital so soon? What if this and that. This situation and that situation. And it drives me INSANE. Yes, there could have been other options. And of course life may have been easier because of those different choices, but that’s how life is. We make choices and we have to face whatever comes next. Good and bad things happen to all of us, whether we are good or bad.
The sun shines on the good and the bad. And the rain falls on the just and unjust. Matthew 5.
It is what we do next that makes the difference. How we deal with what life is throwing at us that makes us either fall into depression and despair, or makes us stronger and more determined. That one second decision on how to react makes a whole world of difference.
Sabine is now healed from her sickness. Aida is almost there too. Ankoi’s lip has closed, with just a small scar, and he doesn’t even seem to mind anymore. He is also a bit sick, but getting better as well. Maria is still in the hospital. Still on antibiotics. But her condition has not gotten worse. And we see her getting bigger and stronger everyday. God’s grace brought us to the pedia that day, and I believe intervened and gave her the opportunity to heal faster.
I could dwell on the what ifs in life. But what’s the point, really? Let’s experience the what is, instead. And prepare for what is to come.