Hi.

I'm social!

Do drop by these buttons below and say hey!

Dear Chester: In Memoriam to a Voice of a Generation

Dear Chester: In Memoriam to a Voice of a Generation


I woke up in a dream today
To the cold of the static and put my cold feet on the floor
Forgot all about yesterday
Remembering I’m pretending to be where I’m not anymore
With You

Today, one more light went out. Like me, millions around the world either started their day or ended the day hearing the loss of not just a great talent but a childhood comfort and a dream.

I woke up with the saddest news of the year. My little brother told me that Chester Bennington died.

He hanged himself. How can that be? How can someone appear so selfish and just leave like that? I mean no disrespect. It’s tremendously difficult to accept that he’s gone.

He left his wife. His six children. His five bandmates, millions of loving fans like us and one life that could have touched more lives than he would ever know.

As I write this down, I listen to the song he sang in one of their concerts for Chris Cornell, One More Light, when news of him passing away broke out. I knew he always had a battle with dark thoughts. He wrote about it. He sang it. BUT I didn’t expect he’d take his own life, just like how he’d write it in some of LP’s songs.

He left too soon. Too suddenly. We weren’t ready. Would we ever be ready? No, I wouldn’t.

Photo by Anthony DELANOIX on Unsplash

And you're angry, and you should be, it's not fair
Just 'cause you can't see it, doesn't mean it, isn't there
One More Light

I think he knows. He’s experienced being the person left behind. He wrote those lyrics. I can’t believe that I would sing this song for him too. It’s all too much to take in.

Linkin Park is more than a childhood memory. They were and still are my dream. I remember back in 2008, they had their first concert in the Philippines.

It was Papa who accidentally introduced me to LP. He didn't know he had their songs on his laptop. This was way back in the days that laptops were so rare because they were just a new invention. I was still way back in fourth grade when I first fell in love with them.

A few years and albums past, I was too young and broke. A freshman in high school with no savings, only a dream. Linkin Park is my favorite band in the world. I promised myself that when Linkin Park comes back and I made money for myself, I would watch them. Non-negotiable.

When my time comes
Forget the wrong that I've done
Help me leave behind some
Reasons to be missed
And don't resent me
And when you're feeling empty
Keep me in your memory
Leave out all the rest

Five years later, I was on a plane to Manila with Rea. Listening to LP’s Living Things through my earphones, I can’t believe we were both fulfilling a childhood dream. We were finally going to be with LP!

Still broke, we weren’t able to afford to get the VIP seats which could get us a meet and greet with them. Giddy fangirls that we were (and still are), we promised ourselves the next concert, we’d be front row!

A working girl, around two years in the corporate world, I remember having this trip that would take us three hours on a huge river (one-way trip). There was no signal for our mobile phones. It was terribly boring.

We couldn't even charge our phones when we reached our destination because it was so far-flung, it seemed like the edge of the world. My companion and fellow fan, Yas, reminded me earlier when I commented about Chester being gone that Linkin Park saved us from boredom on those three long arduous hours stuck like sardines in a little bangka.

Chester and his music saved a lot of us not just from boredom but from the mundane and mediocrity of the life we had. For awhile, when we heard their songs, we felt alive. We felt we mattered. We felt that somehow, somebody out there gets it. That we're not alone.

The only photo I have left of my first Linkin Park concert last August 2013.

The only photo I have left of my first Linkin Park concert last August 2013.

And I
Just wish that I didn't feel
Like there was something I missed
And I
Take back all the things that I said
To make you feel like that
And I
Just wish that I didn't feel
Like there was something I missed
My December

Forward to 2017 and the release of their new album One More Light, we were saving up for the Asian leg of their tour. Whether they’d hold it in the Philippines or any nearby Asian country, we would be there.

Last night, the music video for Talking To Myself was released. Everything seemed great. Then I wake up feeling like everything was unreal. 

I immediately messaged one of my closest friends, Rea, sharing the sad news. A flood of emotions came, I can’t pick which one stood out the most. Grief. Shock. Anger. Confusion.

Tears started to fall when we both shared that we were saving up for their next concert. It was too late. We’d never get to see Chester in person and take a photo with him. 

Typing this made it all too real. He was gone. He’s not coming back. I felt a part of my dream die with him. The childhood dream, at first shriveling up painfully and then dissipating into non-existence.

There was nothing we could do to change what happened.

I cannot imagine the pain that his closest loved ones must feel right now but I am praying for them and to the countless fans like me who felt alive just listening to their music.

Now I’m trapped in this memory
And I’m left in the wake of the mistake, slow to react
So even though you’re so close to me
You’re still so distant and I can’t bring you back
With You

His hurt gave us hope, if not comfort, that we were not alone in whatever we were going through.

He probably inspired countless others who wanted to take their own lives. It’s too heartbreaking that he couldn't keep himself from taking his own life.

As I wait for LP’s statement, I pray for strength for them to go on. We all know LP will never be the same without Chester. I wish they wouldn’t decide on disbanding. This would crush us even more! 

I’d still watch them, I’d still support them all. After all, after seven studio albums and over 70 million albums sold, Linkin Park is still Linkin Park. 

Those memories are all we have for now. Reliving how his music has accompanied me through the highest and lowest points of my life, it stings inside me to realize that I’ll never hear him sing live.

We’ll never get to hear him sing live. We won’t hear his signature raspy, powerful yet soulful voice ring through whichever stadium we’d be in.

And I'll be sorry for now
That I couldn't be around
Sometimes things refuse
To go the way we planned
Oh I'll be sorry for now
That I couldn't be around
There will be a day
That you will understand
You will understand
Sorry for Now

One day, we’ll understand. Maybe we will. Maybe we won't. Depression claims another life and it’s tragic when it’s somebody that we love. 

While I may never know what Chester was going through, his memory, his legacy continues to live on through his music and the millions of voices that sing along with him.

The sound of your voice
Painted on my memories
Even if you’re not with me
I’m with you
With You

We’re with you, Chester. We’re with you, Linkin Park. We love you.
 

Philippine Surfing Championship Tour: The Beginning of Professional Surfing in the Philippines

Philippine Surfing Championship Tour: The Beginning of Professional Surfing in the Philippines

#PlasticFreeJuly: A Month Long Campaign Against Plastic Waste

#PlasticFreeJuly: A Month Long Campaign Against Plastic Waste