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Friday, March 28, 2014

"I Am your Ruth, You are my Naomi" -- A Closer Look at My Relationship with My Mother-In-Law (Conversations Before my Father-in-Law's Death)

Wowa on her latest birthday with our clan's youngest, our baby
Isabelle Veronica - March 3, 2014

My mother-in-law is one of the most, if not the most holy person I have ever had a chance to come in contact with. She is humble of heart, loving, kind and non-judgmental, and most of all she has a childlike and unwavering faith in God. Not many are given a chance to have such a godly relationship with their in-laws but I have been blessed to have found such a godly mother in Mommy Letty, whom we fondly call "Wowa" which is a bulol (mispronounced by a child) word for Lola which means Grandma in Filipino. I am blessed to have Wowa because I myself lost my Mama due to cancer, when I was just 17 years old.

My father-in-law whom we fondly call "Wowo" which is bulol (mispronounced by their first grandchild) for Lolo or Grandpa, died just a few days back, on March 22, 2014, after two months of being in and out of hospitals due to pneumonia, heart ailments, diabetes and other complications. He was 77.
Wowo and Wowa in healthier times - 2002

Wowo left behind six grown sons, and his saintly wife of 55 years, Wowa Letty.
Wowo and Wowa's 50th Wedding anniversary
From L-R at back: my husband Dong, Kuya Toby, Kuya Pochie, Kuya Egoy, Kuya Jojo. Kuya Gino
Note: "Kuya" is a Filipino term of respect for older siblings.

Below are some of our conversations that showed our great love for each other, bound by our even greater love for God.

Part of being a Peaceful Wife is also being a Peaceful Daughter-in-Law. Loving my husband means loving and honoring those whom he loves, especially his own mother.
At my sister's despedida - 2008

My texts are in red. Wowa's will be in blue.

These were some of our conversations (via text) leading up to Wowo's death....

Sat 2/1/14

How are you, Wowa? How are you holding up? How is Wowo?

I still have the strength to go on, praise God although my hyperacidity came back due to extreme tiredness and stress. I am full-time with Wowo, because he is now home, not like in the hospital where he had lots of nurses and attendants. Here, it's all me, but praise God, Wowo is improving little by little. Prayerfully, his recovery will continue. Amen. Thanks Nikka. God bless you all.

Tues 2/4/14

Wowa, why is Wowo calling all his sons? Does he feel the end is near?

Yes Nikka, he thought he was dying. He cheered up though when he saw all his sons.

What is he exactly feeling at the moment? Tightness of chest caused by heart problems? I thought that yesterday, you were dealing with insulin shock.

Yes, suddenly he had a heart attack.  He is now feeling weak.

I am at chapel. I will lift Daddy Fred to God. You as well. Dong will watch Wowo with you after he fetches the kids from school. God bless you and keep you both.

Thank you Nikka. Keep safe. God bless you all.
This was the last time we saw Wowo Fred healthy. We visited his sick sister (Tita Delia, the one to the lower right) who was terminally ill as part of our corporal works of mercy to the sick. A week after this, he suffered his first heart attack and from then on, his health down-spiraled all the way to his death. His sister, though still alive, is now still in hospital.
January 17, 2014

Wed 2/5/14

Hi Wowa. How are you and Wowo today? Dong said you have had some sleep since they started with shifts? (Note: The sons had round-the-clock shifts, watching over Wowo to let Wowa rest. Wowo, too, was restless when there was no son to be with him during that time.)

Yes Nikka. I am starting to recover inch by inch. Hopefully, we don't have to bring Wowo to the ICU. Let's keep on praying. Thanks a million for everything and God bless you a millionfold! Mwah. Love you all.

ICU? Why, Wowa?Are there some complications?

Yesterday, he had a heart attack longer than the first one. Hopefully though, we won't need to bring him to the ICU. Can your Kuya Egoy pass by for the payment of the Saint Peter's Memorial Plan? I don't want it to lapse. I am very sorry for the inconvenience. Don't worry. All this shall pass. Our chain of trials will end. The Lord allowed this to happen, and after this, He will bless us a millionfold.

It is our honor to help you and Wowo. Please do not hesitate to ask us for help in any way. We have discussed that whatever we can give, we will. Please do not feel ashamed.

Thank you so much, Nikka. God will never be outdone in generosity. Love you. Mwah.

Celebrating Wowa's 77th birthday. I baked her a cake. :) Wowo looks on.

Thu 2/6/14

Hi Wowa. How is Wowo today? Will he be going out already?

His vital signs are okay but still very weak. He cannot go home yet.

Dong senses that Wowo has lost his spirit to live. I told him I think Wowo still wants to fight. How would you assess his spirit? I am fasting today.I will lift up, Wowo.

Wowo expects to live longer. He ate breakfast and is trying to keep his head above the water.

Amen to that Wowa. Will continue to pray for his healing in all aspects. God bless you both.

Thank you Nikka. God bless you.

Wowa, may I share with you a verse from the Bible? I read it daily now since my conversion last year. It was shared to me by Erica (Note: my sister) just now too. From James 5:16

16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.

It's beautiful, Nikka. Very appropriate. Wowo is being aware of it and is starting to admit most of his mistakes. Right now, he is getting better and might be discharged tomorrow or day after. Thank you so much Nikka. God bless you all.

The trial is bringing out the best from your sons as well as bringing up some deep-seated resentments too against Wowo. May this be used by God to make you all closer to each other and to God. Nothing is wasted in His Greater Scheme of Things. Praise be to Him Who is sovereign and merciful.

Amen Nikka. May God's Purpose be fulfilled in trial. It has always been our prayer that all the brothers will be bonded in loving, caring and sharing, and I guess this is God's Way of answering our prayers.
Wowa and Wowo on their wedding day

Mon 3/3/14

Happy birthday, Wowa, It was lovely seeing you and Wowo yesterday and I was especially touched when Wowo held your head many times while saying your name. It spoke volumes how God is working in Wowo and your marriage! Praise Him for His Goodness!!! God bless you and may His Will be fulfilled in you. You are a great blessing to me personally and to the clan as a whole. It is my honor to be your daughter-in-law. Love you.
Our very last happy time with Wowo. On Wowa's 78th birthday
March 3, 2014
He was rushed again to the hospital for the 3rd time a few days after this pic was taken.

Thank you, Nikka. You are God's precious gift to me and Wowo. I thank Him for greatly for your presence in our lives and for being the mother of our grandkids and the loving wife of our son. We couldn't ask for more. Thank you and thank God for you.

Fri 3/14/14

Hi Wowa. Heard about Dad's scary episode last night from Kuya Poch. (Note: Wowo was delusional, flailing his arms, and extremely panicky.) The Enemy seems to be working full time on Daddy Fred. I do not know God's Plan for Wowo but I do feel that this is God's way of sanctifying and purifying him so let us just pray fervently because more than just the physical, this is spiritual warfare.

Yes, I believe so. It's a battle between good and evil. Good won because at the height of his struggle, I prayed the Jesus prayer shouting His Name out loud, nonstop till almost morning. His restlessness stopped. Now he is sleeping peacefully, his blood pressure is down to normal, his blood sugar back to what it was before and his excessive coughing has stopped. I praise and thank God for He is truly amazing, in His great power and mercy and love. Thanks, Nikka. God bless you and please take care of everybody. Love you.

I know it is not my place to suggest, since I have no authority over you or Wowo being much younger but I feel the Spirit's leaning to tell you that to counter the lies of the devil, you have have to read to him God's Word straight out of the Bible. I am sure he finds comfort in your prayers but nothing beats the power of the Word of God. Forgive me if I am out of line with my suggestion.

I am willing to be his Bible reader when we visit. Reading it daily after my regeneration and conversion has freed me from my bondages, Wowa. I am so thirsty for God's Word and I now know Who He is and who I am because of my daily commune with Him through His Word. It is not out of pride that I say this, but out of my desire for Dad to fully turn over his life now to the Lord, so his sufferings won't be for naught... God loves him so much!

No, Nikka, you are not out of line. That is true and proven very powerful. Unfortunately, in my haste to bring Wowo to the nearest hospital, I failed to grab my Bible. Good I memorized Psalm 91 and 23 which I frequently recite to him. It helped a lot.

Amen, Nikka. God is love and I pray that we too will feel and share that to everyone within reach and throughout the whole world.

Amen. I am your prayer warrior, Wowa.

Thank you Nikka for always being there for us. Thanks for being my prayer partner.

Newly weds and with only one child then - January 2006

10:13 pm, same day

Kuya Pochie said that Wowo is not doing okay. Praying for him to experience peace and rest in God's Arms amidst this trial. I am sensing his extreme fear of dying which is understandable. But I pray he relax and let go because God is in control. Praying and fasting still, Wowa.

Thank you, Nikka.

Sat 3/15/14

How is he today, Wowa? If you would allow me, I will read him something later when we visit. The Words were shown to me while I was lifting up Wowo. (Note: I read to him the whole of John 14, which my sister suggested, but that I was also led to read, even prior to her text message -- a sure sign that it was meant to be shared. Wowo was lying down with eyes closed, but tears fell from the sides of his eyes.)

By the grace of God, Wowo is better today than yesterday. We welcome God's Words, Nikka. Thanks lots. God bless you all.

There are major decisions that we have to make.  Kuya Jo will talk to you and Dong and Kuya Toby.  I have some messages from the Bible which I want you to read and confirm what it meant, and tell me ASAP. It's from Isaiah 45 and Isaiah 55.
Wowo, in our old house, happy and healthy - 2010

I am at chapel for my prayer and Bible time. I will get back to you. I will reflect on His Words based on what you felt inclined for me to read. God is good. Love you, Wowa. Good morning.

Hi Wowa. I have read both chapters in their entirety and have asked God to speak to me... God is telling us to not question Him in what He has allowed to happen to Wowo. He has allowed this 'calamity' to occur... He also tells all of us to listen to Him and by this, I feel that it means that we read His Word. The only way we can know Who He really is, is by reading His God-breathed Words in Scripture... 

I have been fasting, Wowa.. That not only Wowo but all of your children, all of us from your family,  accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior. I am hopeful that it can happen with God's Grace and Mercy through His Spirit.  I am hopeful that the Lord will not turn His Face away from me, as I ask Him to convict every one of us of hidden and apparent sins that grieve God's Heart... I know that with their God-ordained authority sick and helpless, God will use it for them to look within themselves and their own lives.. I am confident that the Lord will not turn His Ear from me, a sinner, Whom He called by name and was given a new self. The old is gone, the new has come!

I ask that Wowo be healed if it be God's Will. Or to NOT heal him if He so wills, for as long as Daddy Fred, finally, truly turn over his life to God, repent for his sins and be a new man in Christ.  In order that all see the glory of God through his own suffering and conversion of heart. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
With our extremely mischievous son, Reuben, whom Wowo finds so funny!

While reading God's Words awhile ago, I saw a stampita of St. Padre Pio, a healing saint. It fell down from my Bible. As I picked it up, I had the urge to beg him to intercede for us for Wowo's healing. His prayer was heard because when Wowo woke up, he asked for Ensure and ate one piece of sausage. He took all medicines without hassle  then went back to sleep. Praise God. 

(Note: Wowo and Wowa are devout Catholics, as all the Alejars are, and the Catholic Church believes that the saints are in heaven and can intercede for us more powerfully because they are in God's Presence. We liken it to asking people to pray for us, except that Wowa asked Padre Pio, whom she believes to be alive in spirit and within God's Presence, to pray for Wowo. Not to say, she does not believe in going straight to Jesus, though, as you would read throughout our conversation. She believes in Jesus being our Mediator. Wowa just asked for more prayers or intercession for Wowo, via the healing saint, Padre Pio. To understand where this belief came from and whether or not it is Biblical, please click this.)

We will all emerge victorious from this trial, Wowa. I pray that we all focus on God, during these difficult times and not listen to the enemy who enjoys bringing up the past and condemning Dad. Jesus came for sinners, not the saints. I am sure our holy friends in heaven, including Padre Pio, want Dad to be saved and healed. Praise God for His Mercy!

Amen, Nikka.

Yes Nikka. It is the working of the enemy because we have always been praying for salvation, humility and holiness for the whole clan up to the last generation.

They all love Wowo. They just want to see him fight it like a man. It lowers their morale to see their father "act helpless." :(

With her "apos" or grandchildren, not complete though.

Tue 3/18/2014

Wowa, please read this to Wowo. I feel that God wants him to hear this.

Psalm 143 part

Answer me quickly, Lord;

    my spirit fails.

Do not hide your face from me

    or I will be like those who go down to the pit.

Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love,

    for I have put my trust in you.

Show me the way I should go,

    for to you I entrust my life.

Rescue me from my enemies, Lord,

    for I hide myself in you.
Teach me to do your will,

    for you are my God;

may your good Spirit

    lead me on level ground.
For your name’s sake, Lord, preserve my life;

    in your righteousness, bring me out of trouble.
In your unfailing love, silence my enemies;

    destroy all my foes,

    for I am your servant.

Amen. Good pm Nikka. About 4 am today, I was led to read the Bible and after praying to the Holy Spirit, I opened it. I was led to read Isaiah 57 verses 15 to 21.Then, reading further, I came up to Chapter 60, read the whole of it, and was truly consoled. God is truly amazing in His Great Love. Let us praise and thank Him always.

At Fontana - Christmas 2011

Wed 3/19/14

Hi Wowa. How are all of you today? I will be the one to canvass for Wowo's oxygen. Dong is busy with our business.

Godwilling, we might be able to go out tomorrow from the hospital. I ask for your patience and understanding, Nikka for all the hassle. Do not worry, by God's Grace, we will all see an end to this. 

The Lord allowed this to test all of us -- Wowo, in his faith in God; you, in your selfless serving of your leader, us in our generosity of time and treasure. May the Lord's Spirit fill all of us with His Fruits in order that we be able to bear each other's burdens. We are all in this together, Wowa.

From the Book of Ruth, part:
“Don’t ask me to leave you and turn back. Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God. 

Then the women of the town said to Naomi, “Praise the LORD, who has now provided a redeemer for your family! May this child be famous in Israel. 15May he restore your youth and care for you in your old age. For he is the son of your daughter-in-law who loves you and has been better to you than seven sons!”  

As long as I live, with God to help me, I will help you, Wowa. Love you. Good morning!

Thank you so much, Nikka for being the Ruth in my life, as she had been to Naomi. God bless you. Love you always Nikka. Have a Spirit-filled day.
At our old house, before we left for their wedding anniversary party - 2009

I told Dong the other day that Wowo is extremely loved by our Heavenly Father to have been given a wife like you. If I could be half the woman you are, God would be pleased with me.

God is already pleased with you as you are, Nikka. He loves you very much.

Kuya Jojo is the fifth of the six brothers. He is an actor/TV host/producer/etc. by profession.
Wowo spent his last two days in Kuya Jojo's home. His happiest since his whole ordeal happened.

Later that day:

Hi Nikka. Regarding the hospital bill, the brothers will give their share. Godwilling, it will not be so great. Do not worry. God will give back with good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, and He will always provide.  I think Kuya Jojo does not expect equal sharing. Only that which one could conveniently afford, then he would take care of the rest.

God bless Kuya Jojo for his leadership and generosity. That is why he is so financially blessed. I think the Lord planned Wowo's sickness at a time when most are financially sound. He is a God of Great Timing. Thank you too Wowa, for praying for us always. I have no doubt that most of the comfort we have now was due in part to your and Wowo's prayers.

Yes, Nikka. God is an answering God. He sees to it that the needs of His children are met. All we have to do is ask because He said, "Believe that you have already received what you prayed for and it shall be done unto you." Halleluiah! Anna (Note: my sister-in-law) will shoulder it first with her credit card, then she will pick us up and bring us to their home. He is our Great Provider, our Divine Healer, our Great Everything.

Amen! You have so many Ruths in your life, Wowa. You are very blessed to have Anna. :)
Anna, Kuya Jojo's wife is my sister-in-law and my sister in Christ.
Baptism of Isabelle - December 29, 2013

Yes Nikka. I am so blessed having you and Anna. I am sure the other daughters-in-law have their own roles to play under the circumstances. Praise and thank God for you all.

Everything that happens has its purpose. All we have to do is trust and praise Him, in ALL circumstances. By the way, God's message to me this 4 pm was Jeremiah 33.

I will read it now. :) His Message to me this morning at prayer time was John 6:43-45. It reads:

John 6:43-45

New International Version (NIV)
43 “Stop grumbling among yourselves,” Jesus answered. 44 “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them, and I will raise them up at the last day. 45 It is written in the Prophets: ‘They will all be taught by God.’[a]Everyone who has heard the Father and learned from him comes to me.

Wow. We are DRAWN and yet, who are we? Nothing. God is so good. Text you later on your own Reading. :)

We are God's children. Yehey!

Amen to Jeremiah 33, which echoes the NT verses that God wanted me to read! Peace, truth, restoration, holy cleansing, joy, praise and glory to Yahweh, our God. Amen. :)
Wowa with our second child, Andre, during his baptism - Dec 2008

* * * * * * *

A tarpaulin Dong and I had done for Wowo Fred for his wake.

Wowo Fred was buried on March 26, 2014.
These were the last moments before his coffin lid
was to be closed. Wowa kissed and embraced his
lifeless body for the last time.

On March 22, 2014 at 2:30 pm, Wowo Fred, passed away peacefully, joyfully, and without pain. His last spoken word was "Amen.", as an answer to Wowa's loud invocation of   "In Jesus' Name, you will be alright!" After saying this, he looked out of the window, coughed one last time, then finally closed his eyes. 

Alfredo M. Alejar
May 18, 1936 to March 22, 2014

Wowo Fred, thank you for being my husband Dong's earthly father. For all your perceived and real flaws, the one thing nobody could fault you with, was your unconditional love for your children. Dong is a good husband and father because he learned how to be a good man from you. I am blessed to have known you, Wowo. May you now rest in peace. Enter now into Our Heavenly Father's Loving Arms.
At Daddy Fred's Wake
Though we are grieving, we are also "celebrating", thus the happy smiles, because
Wowo is no longer in pain and can now go back to our Creator. The Alejars opted to celebrate Wowo's life.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you soooo very much for sharing your beautiful story with the world!!!!! It touched my heart!! It caused tears to stream down my cheeks and the reality hit me!!! Life is but a vapor and will eventually come to an end. Where we spend our Eternity is what truly matters!!!! Thank you again 😊 Wowo is in the Fathers Arms. I can't wait to meet Wowo!!!!!


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