If there is one word to describe Ditas*, that is she is cheerful. She always has something to be happy about, the sunrise, the sunset, the drizzle of rain, the cloudy sky, the falling leaves, the dirty children running down the street. She always finds beauty in everything that she sees. She never complain about anything. For her, the cold nights are a blessing and so are the hot days or the pouring rain. She would always say..
“You’d miss the rain when it gets too hot next summer.."
If her friends envy her cheerful attitude, they envy her zest for life even more. Ditas always does what she wants and what makes her happy. She doesn’t care about what other people would think of her. So, she works and buys the things that she wants, clothes, food, books. She watches the movies that she likes and treats herself for jobs well done.
She also likes to give things. She gives away books that she already read, slightly used clothes that don’t fit anymore, old cell phones that have been replaced. She buys cookies and gives them away to kids in the neighborhood. She buys stuff for her friends, not because it was their birthdays but because she thought they might like it. She always gives more than her share every time she and her friends get together.
If Ditas is generous with material things, she is more so with her time. She attends all invitations, birthdays, weddings, christenings, town fiestas and festivals. She visits sick people. She takes time to talk to acquaintances. She goes with any friend who needs company when shopping. She always find time to text her texter back even if only to say ‘okay’.
When asked why she does all those things, she would always answer..
“Why not, this may be my last chance…”
Ditas’ friends found the thought horrid so they stopped asking.
Then one day, in one of their planned getaways, Ditas and four of her friends had an accident. The hanging bridge they were crossing gave way leaving the five of them hanging by the threads. Luckily, the person ahead of them was already safe across so he ran to ask for help. It didn’t look very good, there were five girls and the threads may not carry all of their weight much longer. It will snap any second and the girls would be flung to their deaths.
Meanwhile, the five friends, unsure whether they were going to live or die started to panic. Three of them were already crying and one was chanting..
“Lord, I don’t want to die yet.. Please don’t let me die yet..”
Ditas’ asked in a calm voice.
“Why don’t you want to die yet?”
“I haven’t done even half of the things I wanted to do…” one answered.
“I still have plans for the future..” came another.
“I still haven’t been to places I wanted to go…” came the third.
“I haven’t enjoyed life yet..” came the third.
Ditas kept quiet then asked again..
“Why why didn’t you those before?” no one answered so Ditas continued.
“if you make it out of here safely, would you do all the things you wanted to do?”
“Yes!” the four answered in unison.
Ditas smiled and said..
“We’re too heavy. If I let go, the thread will hold the four of you much longer than if there are five of us. Promise me you’ll live your life to the fullest..”
“No, Ditas!!!” but Ditas already let go and let herself fall into the water under the bridge.
After several more minutes, the four girls were rescued. Thanks to Ditas’ sacrifice, all of them were safe. Miraculously, Ditas was found by the riverbank, apparently washed ashore, very weak but still breathing.
After staying at the hospital for quite a while, the five friends called for a celebration and four of them vowed to live each day as if it were their last..
(Original story by the blog author. Any similarities with other stories, fiction or otherwise, are purely incidental.)