Books Magazine

Wonder Ilay

By Maytpapa
Wonder IlayWonder Ilay

I met Ilay in 2012. Nanay Lyzette told me that we will get along well, because Ilay loves books.

True enough, when Ilay and I met, we became friends instantly. She had just undergone a very delicate operation that took out a large tumor from between her eyes. But from her wide smile, her very quick and playful manner, it didn't seem as if she had just gone through something very scary and painful. She was only four years old.

She must have some kind of superpowers, I thought. Amazing kid!

Ilay and her mother lived in Bataan. They just came to Manila for Ilay's treatments. Even if I wanted to visit her, Bataan was just too far away. Years passed, I was able to see Ilay grow up, through the photos Nanay Lyzette shared on her Facebook page.

"Ilay's first day in school" Nanay Lyzette captioned one photograph. "Ate Ilay makes it to the Top 5 in class," she captioned another. I was happy Ilay was growing up to be a happy, smart, and pretty young lady.

Last Sunday, Nanay Lyzette sent me a PM. And I saw Ilay's new pics. Apparently all these years, Ilay has still been very sickly.

"It doesn't look good for Ilay," Nanay Lyzette wrote. "The infection in her blood has reached her brain. She continues to fight, but we expect to lose her anytime now. She is already very weak."

Brave Ilay is fighting her bravest fight yet. We are lifting her up to God, in whose loving arms our beloved Ilay will find comfort and strength.

Nakilala ko si Ilay noong 2012. Nasabi ni Nanay Lyzette na magkakasundo kami, dahil napakahilig ni Ilay sa libro. Noong magkakilala kami, agad nga kaming nagkaibigan ni Ilay. Noo'y kakalampas pa lamang niya sa isang delikadong operasyon na nagtanggal ng malaking tumor sa pagitan ng kanyang mga mata. Ngunit di mo ito mababakas sa napakalaki niyang ngiti at liksi ng kilos. Tila walang nakakatakot o masakit na pinagdaanan. Apat na taon pa lamang siya. Baka may superpowers siya, naisip ko tuloy. Pambihirang bata! Ngunit sa Bataan si Ilay at ang kanyang nanay. Gusto ko man siyang dalawin ay napakalayo ng Bataan. Sa kabila ng lahat, sa paglipas ng panahon, nasubaybayan ko ang kanyang paglaki mula sa mga letratong ibinabahagi ni Nanay Lyzette sa Facebook. "Unang araw ni Ilay sa paaralan," ani Nanay Lyzette sa isang letrato. "Top 5 si Ate Ilay," aniya naman sa isa. Nakakatuwang makitang lumalaki si Ate Ilay na isang masiyahing, matalino, at magandang dalagita. Bigla na lang noong Linggo, pinadalhan ako ng mensahe ni Nanay Lyzette. At nakita ko ang mga bagong larawan ni Ilay. Sa kabila pala ng kanyang masasayang letrato, sakitin pa rin pala si Ilay. "Hindi maganda ang lagay ni Ilay," aniya. "Umakyat na ang impeksyon niya sa dugo sa utak. Patuloy pa rin siyang lumalaban, ngunit 'di na namin siya inaasahang magtatagal. Napakahina na ng kanyang katawan." Ang pambihirang si Ilay ay lumalaban sa pinakamalaking laban ng kanyang buhay. Iniaangat namin siya sa kandungan ng Diyos, kung saan makakahanap ng ginhawa at lakas ang aming mahal na si Ilay.

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