Diamond Girl

YES, I like to call myself Diamond Girl.

I was born in my family hometown in Masbate City, on July 5, 1949. So, I am now 74 years old.

Next year, I will be 75 years old, my Diamond year.

I grew up in a family just surviving with basics like food, no budget for education. So, my parents sent me to a public elementary school, and that’s just it.

For a better life, I left Masbate and went to Manila to look for a job.

I settled in Barangay San Jose, Montalban, where I met my beloved common-law partner, Gary. Gary had a job, we were okay together living in a simple house we rented.

Until a tragic blow… Gary was murdered. It was more than a thousand times shocking, so I’d just forgotten the exact date of his passing, the reason for the murder. What remains… forever… is the pain of losing him.

With Gary gone, I just had to find a way to sustain my day-to-day needs, not to mention the house rent. I found a job as a housemaid. But I was already weak, so

I did not last long in this job. With no money for my rent, I had to leave the house and stay out– at a creekside in our barangay.

From Creek to Cottage

By this time, I was already in my 70s, old age ailments rendering me half-paralyzed.

A staff in a social welfare office in our place saw me at the creekside. As a social work facility, the office is familiar with ministries for the elderly. And so, the staff arranged that I be accepted in one: in Anawim.

This happened on November 30, 2023. And I felt I was like back in my hometown.

For in Anawim, I am home– with food, a bed in a comfy cottage, and my other basic needs.

I am with family– my fellow elderly residents.

Not to mention the very kind Anawim leaders, personnel, medical staff, social workers, caregivers. They’ve all made me feel safe, secure, and loved.

And above all, spiritually nourished. I am Catholic, by the way, so I am so grateful we have here the Anawim Feast Light with Holy Mass, Worship, and talks on practical living.

The best lesson I’ve learned is that the Lord will use other people to help me in so many ways. I am blessed to become part of this Community where faith and loving people unconditionally are the priority.

At The Feast, I feel great learning Bible verses, all true to my situation– past, present, and future. Like what’s now my favorite:

The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.– Deuteronomy 31:8

Next year, I will be 75 years old– yes, my Diamond Year.

I praise and thank God I have found my Diamond in advance.

And that’s Anawim.

This story was first published in the Feast Family Online News Magazine.

Published by THE FEAST MERCY MINSTRY (June 2 , 2024)