Communication Arts Student with Bone Cancer Fulfills Wish to 'Die Beautiful'
Racine Pregunta, a Communication Arts student in Davao City, had her whole life ahead of her. The youngest of three sisters, the bubbly and charming Racine had also been tapped for to model in several photo shoots.
In 2016, Racine was diagnosed with bone cancer, specifically high-grade osteosarcoma. Her family took her to the hospital on October 18, 2016. On November 1, 2016, her right foot was amputated.
Racine's sister, Rolyn revealed, "Racine remained her usual bubbly self after her amputation. When we would go to the mall, she was so confident about walking around. It was as if the amputation never happened." In fact, Racine had even joked to Rolyn, "Ate, tell the truth. I'm still beautiful even if I no longer have one foot, right?"
Rolyn related that their family was actually optimistic that Racine would make a full recovery. After all, the the amputation had been a success. Meanwhile, Racine was trying to gain weight so she would be strong enough to undergo chemotherapy. Racine celebrated her 20th birthday on December 12, 2016. Later that same month, Rolyn remembers that they watched the movie, Die Beautiful. The movie would later play a part in Racine's dying wish.
Rolyn said that because the whole family was hopeful that Racine was on the mend, they even made plans to go on a trip to Japan.
Rolyn said that the last time she and Racine went out was on March 22. They had gone to SM Lanang to watch Beauty And The Beast. Shortly after that, Racine's health took a turn for the worse.
Rolyn wrote that on April 12, Racine asked for an off-shoulder white dress and a white flowerband. Later on, she also asked for something that had her three favorite colors: violet, blue, and mint green. When Rolyn asked her what it was for, Racine replied, "You know what it's for."
At this point, Racine's friends, as well as the family relatives, made it a point to visit Racine every day at the hospital. Through it all, Racine's cheerfulness never wavered.
On April 13, Racine told Rolyn, "I want to be beside Papa." Their father had died in 2010.
Rolyn related, "I consulted our mom about it and she told me, 'If we can afford to buy the lot beside my father's grave.' Then, she practically suggested, 'What if we just place it on top of your dad's grave?' I immediately relayed the message to Racine and she answered, 'It's fine.'"
Racine then added her request, "If I die, I want to die beautiful."
Racine died on April 17. Rolyn immediately tapped Gladys Fernandez Ayuste, Racine's favorite makeup artist, to help fulfill Racine's final wish.
Racine's remains were laid to rest at the Davao Memorial Park on April 21.
Rolyn said she, like everyone else in their family, already misses her little sister. Despite the sadness, though, she has many happy memories to sustain her. In fact, Rolyn recalls that on the day Racine died, she had greeted her, "Good morning. Thank you that you are still here." Then, she kissed Racine on the cheek and told her, "I love you."
"Whenever I told her, 'I love you,' Racine's response would always be automatic," Rolyn said.
After that, Rolyn and a cousin of theirs prayed over Racine. Shortly after that, Racine was gone. Rolyn stated, "It hurts but I'm happy that she passed away peacefully."
Photos of Racine Pregunta were used with permission or provided by Rolyn Pregunta.
This story originally appeared on Cosmo.ph.
* Minor edits have been made by the Candymag.com editors.
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Outdoors Danielle Flestado @artdkf | May 1, 2020 "I miss the outside world. The last time I went outside of our house was on my birthday. We just bought coffee across our village and went back home immediately. This painting made me feel that I'm in a field, just appreciating the beauty of God's creation. Can you imagine the green grass and pink flowers?"
When everything around you suddenly turns dark, the first thing we'd prolly do, as humans, is to find and grab anything that is closest and nearest to us. We'll hold onto them for as long as we can, trying to collect ourselves and gather courage to adjust our eyesights to the pitch black environment that's consuming us minute by minute. And then you'd hear nothing. Your sense of hearing would somehow go off after not seeing anything for quite awhile. You'll let loose. Cry. Panic. You'll be exhausted for fighting your way out. Then just when you're about to stop and give up, you're no longer afraid. There's only this deafening silence and pithole of darkness that's gonna eat you up alive. And surprisingly, you'll make a home out of it.
You'll make a home out of the darkness that when a ray of light suddenly hits you, you'll try to avoid it. You'll try to cover your eyes. You'll try to cover your ears from the voices trying to help you get out of it. You'll try to hide because your mind and body will go against your will to come out and live. Because the darkness that used to scare you, now comforts you in a way you thought has helped you survived life. And you'll try to live. Day by day. In the darkness. Not knowing where to go. Not knowing where to start. Not knowing who is with you. You will try to live until the darkness that once surrounds you is now within you. And everyday, it's gonna be a cycle of subtle torture. But let me tell you a secret. The darkness won't make you whole.
You'll be broken. And in those hair-like cracks, the light will stubbornly fight its way through until it warms you up. Until you realize to check the switch and turn it on. Until you allow other people to help you find your way back in the light. Until you realize you're ready to live in light again. There's a light at the end of this long and dreading tunnel. The only question that matters: will you let them in?
I always thought of life, like a bead where each piece makes it worth sewing together with other piece of beads to make a stronger bond and to create a beautiful result. Today, how do we bond well with different people especially this difficult time? As this day challenges us to a new normal, may we continue to bead along positively with our life.