And as we take on more responsibilities, we become more afraid of taking risks, of making mistakes, of throwing away what we have achieved.
However, since nothing is constant in this universe, we also have to be always prepared to lose everything.
Perhaps I derive my present serenity from that realization. In my less than three decades of living, I have faced Death twice. But in those meetings, I was only afraid for my parents, who have already lost a child (my elder sister died of colon cancer in 1982).
I was never afraid for myself. I was never afraid of losing anything, since at that time I didn’t have anything.
However, now that I have my Truth, I cross the street only after looking left and right, then left and right. A tinge of fear stirs my heart when a vehicle slows down beside me as I walk the street, or when someone walks behind me along a dark alley.
Nope – I was never afraid to walk through dark streets. When I was working in the Malate district for a newspaper, I left the office at three in the morning and walked all the way to Quiapo for my ride home to Pasig.
And at the university, cars always slow down beside those who walk the academic oval. Why? To ask for directions. People aboard vehicles had asked me for directions towards the chapel, towards the theater, towards the Math building – and it happened at ten in the morning, at four in the afternoon, at eight in the evening, or even at around one in the morning.
Have I lost my fearlessness? Or have I just gained a sane amount of fear, considering that I have responsibilities now?
I am sure about one thing – that what I have now are gifts from God, from a Higher Being, for which I should be eternally grateful. In that respect, I must take care of my gifts.
And on that note, I am proud to say, I have become a “softie.”