2012 from side A to side B

Hearing Cookie sing, you let go of the sadness of memory. You find that these songs, these voices, are now just about you: they are now just yours. 
"Women. Freedom. Rakenrol." by Katrina Stuart-Santiago

rakenrol start, as Katrina's article puts it. 

While some gigs save, there are those that remind you you're okay right where you are. That things are not perfect, but they are good. Perhaps they will get better and it's not because of some change in your external circumstance but because you have allowed yourself to undertake that process, the one of reclaiming. 

"Paglisan" has always been one of those enigmatic songs of my 90s youth- I've always found it to be beautiful and haunting, but never really fully understood what the lines "Kung ang lahat ay may katapusan/ itong paglalakbay ay makakarating din sa paroroonan/ at sa iyong paglisan/ ang tanging pabaon ko/ ay pag-ibig" meant. 

Because I've always thought love is expressed in the choice you make between staying or leaving, what did the song mean when it talks about a journey's eventual end? How could you send someone off carrying love, mean it and not be a martyr to self? I've always thought love and indifference equaled the polarity between presence and absence.

Now I understand better. I think "Paglisan" is a litmus test of adulthood. Listening to Cooky Chua and Lolita Carbon sing a duet of the song, I drink in every word and feel my way through each line. 
Di mo man silip ang langit/ Di mo man silip/ Ito'y nandirito pa rin. 
Sa pagbuhos ng ulan/ Sa haplos ng hangin/ Alaala mo ay nakaukit/ Sa pisngi ng langit.  
Di man umihip ang hangin/Di man umihip/ Ika'y nandirito pa rin.
Because ultimately, that thing we do- love- is an act that is of our own choosing. It's ours to give and ours to feel. However it may turn out, we're forever changed by it, as the cliches would say. How it affects the other party is really none of our business. 

That journey after is your own. I take comfort in the sentiment in the chorus- that the journey will reach its intended destination. And when you can think about that person and no longer throw imaginary darts their way, despite the hurt or how everything unraveled afterwards, when you can just say thank you, acknowledge how they have changed you, and wish them love, you may be headed towards freedom. You don't have to get there today, but one day you will. Because as with love, how we break is also of our own dealing.  

Thank you, Ms. Cooky Chua & Lolita Carbon for the gift of that night. Thank you too, Bayang Barrios, Gary Granada, & Cathy Go for making it even more stupendously awesome to the levels of papano-pa-kaya-mapapantayan-yun? 

Update: Turtle just uploaded the video she took of that night. Do give it a click: 

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